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Dark Guardian

A dark guardian focuses her efforts to defending herself and others with her dark sword and her dark powers.

The dark guardian is an archetype of the dark knight class.

Weapon Proficiency

A dark guardian becomes proficient with a specialized melee power weapon, the dark sword. Dark Sword (1d6 shadow damage + Charisma modifier, 1-handed). The dark guardian begins play with 1 dark sword. The dark sword requires at least 1 dark point in his dark pool to function.

This ability modifies the dark knight’s starting weapon proficiencies.

Deflect (Ex)

At 1st level, a dark guardian learns to deflect projectiles with her dark sword, thereby providing a +2 deflection bonus to AC against such attacks, which increases by +1 for every three dark knight levels thereafter. The dark guardian must be carrying an active dark sword to use this special ability.

This ability replaces grit stance and shadow wall.

Dark Pool (Su)

At 1st level, the dark guardian gains a reservoir of holy energy that she can draw upon to fuel her powers and enhance her weapon. This dark pool has a number of points equal to half her dark knight level (minimum 1) + her Charisma modifier. The pool refreshes once per day when the dark guardian rests for a full 8 hours.

At 1st level, a dark guardian can expend 1 point from her dark pool as a swift action to grant any weapon she is holding a +1 enhancement bonus for 1 minute. For every four levels beyond 1st, the weapon gains another +1 enhancement bonus, to a maximum of +5 at 17th level. These bonuses can be added to the weapon, stacking with existing weapon enhancement to a maximum of +5. Multiple uses of this ability do not stack with themselves.

At 5th level, these bonuses can be used to add any of the following weapon properties:  abyssalabyssal burstdancingearthenearthen burstflamingflaming burstfrosticy burstjetstreamjetstream burst, keenroaringroaring burstshockshocking burstspeed, or vorpal.

Adding these properties consumes an amount of bonus equal to the property’s base price modifier. These properties are added to any the weapon already has, but duplicates do not stack. If the weapon is not magical, at least a +1 enhancement bonus must be added before any other properties can be added. These bonuses and properties are decided when the dark pool point is spent and cannot be changed until the next time the dark guardian uses this ability. These bonuses do not function if the weapon is wielded by anyone other than the dark guardian.

A dark guardian can only enhance one weapon in this way at one time. If she uses this ability again, the first use immediately ends.

This ability replaces darkside.

Dark Powers (Su)

As she gains levels, a dark guardian learns special powers tailored to her specific way of blending martial puissance and dark power. Starting at 2nd level, a dark guardian gains one dark power. She gains an additional dark power for every two levels of dark knight attained after 2nd level. Unless specifically noted in a dark power’s description, a dark guardian cannot select a particular dark power more than once. Any dark powers that requires a save, the DC is equal to 10 + half of the dark knight’s level + her Charisma modifier.

Affect Mind (Su): At a cost of 1 dark point from her dark pool, the dark guardian can use her dark powers to alter a target’s perceptions or make a telepathic suggestion in another character’s mind. The dark guardian must declare whether she’s attempting to alter perceptions or make a suggestion. The target must make a Will save, if the target fails, she can do one of the following things:

  • Alter Perceptions: This creates a simple false stimulus, such as a brief sound or a fleeting image, detected by a single person and lasting no more than a single round. It is generally used to distract an opponent, which can also have the effect of a feint (see Bluff). Note that the target receives a +2 circumstance bonus on their saving throws for every additional person beyond the first that the dark guardian wants to detect the false stimulus.

  • Suggestion: This is the classic “mind trick,” allowing the dark guardian to make an otherwise unpalatable suggestion seem completely acceptable to the target, and the suggestion can’t obviously threaten the target’s life. The target won’t realize later that what he did was unreasonable.

Bane Blade (Su): Whenever the dark guardian enhances her weapon using her dark pool, she may spend 1 additional point from her dark pool to add the bane special ability to the weapon. Prerequisite: Dark Knight 16

Dark Accuracy (Su): The dark guardian can expend 1 point from her dark pool as a swift action to grant herself an insight bonus equal to her Charisma modifier on all attack rolls until the end of her turn.

Dark Defense (Su): At a cost of 1 dark point from her dark pool, the dark guardian can use her dark powers to improve her resistance to holy power attacks, wrapping yourself in the light’s protective embrace. This adds a +2 circumstance bonus to any saving throw made against a Holy Power attack for 1 hour. This bonus increases by +2 for every three dark knight levels after 2nd.

Dark Grip (Su): At a cost of 1 dark point from her dark pool, the dark guardian can use her dark powers to injure a single opponent within 30 feet by finding the lines of energy that connect all things together and using them to grip an organ or crush a larynx. The target must make a Will save. On a failed save, the target takes 3d6 points of physical damage. On a successful save, the target takes half damage (round down). In addition, at a cost of 2 dark points from her dark pool, the dark guardian has the possibility of dazing her target by using Force Grip to cut off his airway. If the target fails his saving throw, he is dazed for 1 round in addition to taking full damage.

Dark Lightning (Su): At a cost of 1 dark point from her dark pool, the dark guardian can channel her dark powers into withering blasts of darkness that can weaken Holy Pool users or harm creatures with lightning within 30 feet. When used against a character or creature with Holy Pool points, the character or creature loses a Holy Point (plus an additional holy point for every three dark knight levels after 2nd) if it fails a Will save. When used against a living creature, Dark Lightning deals 1d8 points of shadow damage (plus an additional 1d8 for every three dark knight levels after 2nd) to the creature, a Reflex save reduces the damage by half.

Dark Redoubt (Su): As a swift action, the dark guardian can expend 1 point from her dark pool to treat her shield bonus to AC (including any enhancement bonus) as a bonus to touch AC until the beginning of her next turn.

Dark Redoubt, Greater (Su): Whenever the dark guardian uses her dark redoubt dark power, she may spend an additional point from her dark pool in order to apply her shield bonus to AC (including any enhancement bonus) as a bonus on Reflex saves until the beginning of her next turn. If she is targeted with an effect requiring a Reflex save while using this power, she may spend 2 points from her dark pool as an immediate action to grant herself evasion, or 4 points to grant herself improved evasion. Prerequisite: Dark Knight 12, dark redoubt dark power

Dark Strike (Su): At a cost of 1 dark point from her dark pool, the dark guardian can attack an opponent using her dark powers. The target must make a Reflex save. On a failed save, the target takes 3d4 points of physical damage. On a successful save, the target takes half damage. At a cost of 2 dark points from her dark pool, the dark guardian can physically shove her target in addition to Force Strike’s normal effects. Her target is pushed 10 feet directly away from her and knocked prone on a failed Reflex save. In addition, the target gets a +4 bonus to its Reflex save for every size category greater than Medium, a –4 penalty to its Reflex save for every size category smaller, and a +4 bonus to its Reflex save if it has more than two legs or is otherwise more stable than a normal humanoid. The pushed character moves in a straight line directly away from the dark guardian and takes 1d6 points of damage (no save) if he hits an obstacle. The obstacle takes damage according to the pushed character’s size. If the obstacle is a character, he may make a Reflex save (DC 15) to take half damage.

Devoted Blade (Su): Whenever the dark guardian enhances her weapon using her dark pool, she may spend 1 additional point from her dark pool to add either the anarchic or unholy special ability to the list of available options. A dark guardian may only add one of these abilities if it matches his own alignment. Prerequisite: Dark Knight 12

Dispelling Strike (Su): The dark guardian can spend 1 or more points from her dark pool as a swift action to imbue her weapon with a special power. If the weapon strikes a creature within the next minute, that creature is the subject of a targeted dispel using the dark knight’s level as the caster level, except that this effect cannot dispel a spell of a level higher than the number of dark pool points expended to activate this ability (treat higher-level spells as if they do not exist and apply the dispel attempt to the remaining spells with the highest caster level). Once the strike is made, the power dissipates, even if the dispel attempt is unsuccessful. Prerequisite: Dark Knight 8

Disruptive (Ex): The dark guardian gains Disruptive as a bonus feat.

Enduring Blade (Su): Whenever the dark guardian enchants her weapon using her dark pool, she may spend 1 additional point from her dark pool to increase the duration to 1 minute per dark knight level.

Enhance Senses (Su): At a cost of 1 dark point from her dark pool, the dark guardian can use her dark powers to enhance her normal sensory capabilities. This adds a +2 circumstance bonus to any Perception or Sense Motive check for one hour. It also adds to Survival checks made to find or follow tracks. This bonus increases by +2 for every three dark knight levels after 2nd.

Fear (Su): At a cost of 1 dark point from her dark pool, the dark guardian can manipulate her dark powers to learn what frightens others and use that against them. At a range of 30 feet, this provides a -2 penalty to a target’s skill checks and attack rolls for 1 minute, a Will save to negate.

Ghost Blade (Su): Whenever the dark guardian enchants her weapon using her dark pool, she may spend 1 additional point from her dark pool to add the brilliant energy and ghost touch special abilities to the list of available options. Prerequisite: Dark Knight 8

Hasted Assault (Su): The dark guardian can expend 1 point from her dark pool as a swift action to move more quickly. This functions as haste, but only targets the dark guardian and lasts for a number of rounds equal to the dark guardian’s Charisma modifier. Prerequisite: Dark Knight 8

Lingering Pain (Su): The dark guardian can expend 1 point from her dark pool as an immediate action after hitting a target with a weapon attack. All damage from that attack is considered continuous damage for the purposes of any concentration checks made by the target prior to the beginning of the dark guardian’s next turn.

Prescient Attack (Su): The dark guardian can expend 1 point from her dark pool as an immediate action after hitting a target with a weapon attack, allowing him to anticipate her opponent’s defenses. The target is denied its Dexterity bonus against the dark guardian’s attacks until the end of the dark guardian’s next turn.

Prescient Defense (Su): The dark guardian can expend 1 point from her dark pool as an immediate action after hitting a target with a weapon attack, granting her a premonition of her enemy’s intentions. The dark guardian gains a bonus to her AC and on Reflex saves equal to her Charisma modifier (minimum 0) against attacks by that opponent until the beginning of her next turn. Prerequisite: Dark Knight 8

Spellbreaker (Ex): The dark guardian gains Spellbreaker as a bonus feat. Prerequisite: Dark Knight 12

Telepathy (Su): At a cost of 1 dark point from her dark pool, the dark guardian can use her dark powers to establish a mental link with a specific target within 30 feet. Through the link, she can exchange emotions and a single thought, such as “Go!”, “Help!”, or “Danger!” Against hostile targets, they have to make a Will save to resist.

These abilities replace abyssal arts.

Improved Dark Sword Wielder (Ex)

At 6th level, the dark guardian is able to attack with her dark sword an additional time at a -5 penalty to attack rolls as a full-round action.

This ability replaces a defile gained at 6th level.

Advanced Dark Sword Wielder (Ex)

At 12th level, the dark guardian is able to attack with her dark sword a third time at a -10 penalty to attack rolls as a full-round action.

This ability replaces a defile gained at 12th level.

Superior Dark Sword Wielder (Ex)

At 18th level, the dark guardian is able to attack with her dark sword a fourth time at a -15 penalty to attack rolls as a full-round action.

This ability replaces a defile gained at 18th level.