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Illusionist

Some hold truth to be the greatest virtue, but it can do more damage than fiction. Everyone lives in a constant state of deception. White lies, false smiles, and secret thoughts keep society running smoothly. Honesty is a virtue only up to a certain point. Illusionists understand these ideas better than anyone, and they use deception, misunderstanding, and secrets as skillfully as a soldier employs weapons of war.

Role: Illusionists are masters of deception and strategy. They control the battlefield through illusions and trickery. More often than naught, it becomes hard to tell from friend or foe when facing against an illusionist.

Alignment: Any

Hit Die: d6

Starting Wealth: 2d6 × 10 gil (average 70 gil.) In addition, each character begins play with an outfit worth 10 gil or less.

Class Skills
The illusionist’s class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Bluff (Cha), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Disguise (Cha), Knowledge (arcana) (Int), Knowledge (local) (Int), Knowledge (planes) (Int), Linguistics (Int), Perception (Wis), Perform (Cha), Profession (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis), Sleight of Hands (Dex), and Spellcraft (Int).

Skill Points Per Level: 4 + Int modifier

Table: Illusionist

LevelBase Attack BonusFort SaveRef SaveWill SaveSpecialMPSpell Level
Type1/2BadBadGood
1st+0+0+0+2Veil Pool, Blinding Ray, Spell Proficiency, Deceptive Flourish, Cantrips, Limit Breaks31st
2nd+1+0+0+3Cloaked Casting (+1 DC), Mirror, Discern Deception41st
3rd+1+1+1+3Veil Power, Haze (-2), Chains of Disbelief52nd
4th+2+1+1+4Clear Vision, Social Cloaking, Body Shift62nd
5th+2+1+1+4Clear Mind I, True Illusion, Haze (-3), Minor Illusion Esoterica83rd
6th+3+2+2+5Veil Power, The Show Must Go On113rd
7th+3+2+2+5Quick Veil (Move), Master of Disguise, Haze (-4)154th
8th+4+2+2+6Cloaked Casting (+2 to overcome SR), Tenacious Illusions204th
9th+4+3+3+6Veil Power, Extended Illusions, Haze (-5), Illusionary Puppet265th
10th+5+3+3+7Clear Mind II, Moderate Illusion Esoterica325th
11th+5+3+3+7Beguiling Aura, Haze (-6)396th
12th+6/+1+4+4+8Body Double, Veil Power476th
13th+6/+1+4+4+8Cloak of Shadows, Haze (-7)567th
14th+7/+2+4+4+9Quick Veil (Swift), Invisibility Field657th
15th+7/+2+5+5+9Clear Mind III, Veil Power, Haze (-8), Doublecast (1/day), Major Illusion Esoterica758th
16th+8/+3+5+5+10Resilient Illusions, Illusive Reality868th
17th+8/+3+5+5+10Haze (-9), Illusion Mastery, Blurred Reality989th
18th+9/+4+6+6+11Veil Power, 1 MP Spell (3/day)1109th
19th+9/+4+6+6+11Haze (-10), Master of the Veil, Walk Unseen1229th
20th+10/+5+6+6+12Clear Mind IV, Cloaked Casting (overcome SR), Bend Reality1359th

Class Features

All of the following are class features of the illusionist.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency

Illusionists are proficient with the dagger, sling, power rod, power staff, and quarterstaff, but not with any type of armor or shield. Heavier armor interferes with an illusionist’s movements, which can cause his spells with somatic components to fail.

Limit Breaks (Su)

At 1st level, the illusionist receives the Limit Breaks (Perfect Illusion and Terrifying Nightmare).

Perfect Illusion (Su): This Limit Break allows the illusionist to become an illusion and essentially gaining the incorporeal subtype for a duration of 1 round + 1 round per four illusionist levels after 1st. This limit break requires only a swift action.

Terrifying Nightmare (Su): This Limit Break causes the illusionist’s enemies to be plagued with phantom assailants, causing them to run in fear. Enemies within a 30-ft.-radius of the illusionist must make a Will save (DC 10 + half of the illusionist’s level + his Charisma modifier) or take 2d6 points of non-elemental damage plus an additional 2d6 points of non-elemental damage per four illusionist levels after 1st and be afflicted with the Frightened status for a duration of 1 round + 1 round per four illusionist levels after 1st. Those who make a successful Will save take half damage and are afflicted with the Shaken status for the duration of the limit break instead.

Spells

An illusionist can cast illusion spells which are drawn from the illusionist spell list. An illusionist begins play with 3 1st level illusion spells of his choice. The illusionist also selects a number of additional 1st-level spells equal to his Charisma modifier to add to his list of spells. Each time a character attains a new illusionist level, he gains two spells of his choice to add to his list of spells. The two free spells must be of spell levels he can cast. Like most mages, an illusionist can find or purchase scrolls with spells to add to his repertoire.

To learn or cast a spell, the illusionist must have a Charisma score equal to at least 10 + the spell level (Cha 11 for 1st-level spells, Cha 12 for 2nd-level spells, and so forth). The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a illusionist’s spell is 10 + the spell level + the illusionist’s Charisma modifier. In addition, an illusionist gains additional MP for having a high attribute (Charisma—see Table: Bonus MP per Day (by Spell Level) on the MP System page).

Spell Proficiency (Ex)

Illusionists are considered to have the Precise Shot feat while casting spells, using class features that require ranged touch or using any magical items that require ranged touch.

Cantrips

Illusionists learn a number of cantrips, or 0-level spells. These spells are cast like any other spell, but they do not consume MP and may be used again. Illusionists begin with 4 0-level spells and gain an additional 0-level spell every three levels after 1st level.

Veil Pool (Su)

Starting at 1st level, an illusionist draws power from a reserve of magical energy to strengthen his illusions. This veil pool has a number of points equal to his class level + his Charisma modifier. The pool refreshes once per day when the illusionist rests for 8 full hours. As a standard action, the illusionist can spend 1 point from his veil pool to alter his appearance as per the spell disguise self. This is an illusion effect that lasts a number of hours equal to the illusionist’s class level. The DC to disbelieve the effect is equal to 10 + half of the illusionist’s level + his Charisma modifier.

At 5th level, the illusionist can alter his perceived audible (sound) properties when he assumes his disguise.

At 9th level, the illusionist can also alter his perceived tactile (touch) properties, and can imitate any voice with which he is familiar.

At 13th level, the illusionist’s veil fools even extraordinary senses, such as scent, blindsight, or tremorsense.

Blinding Ray (Su)

At 1st level, as a standard action, the illusionist can fire a shimmering ray at any foe within 30 feet as a ranged touch attack. The ray causes creatures to be blinded for 1 round. Creatures with more Hit Dice than the illusionist’s level are dazzled for 1 round instead. The illusionist can use this ability a number of times per day equal to 3 + his Charisma modifier.

Deceptive Flourish (Su)

Beginning of 1st level, the illusionist gains a +2 enhancement bonus on Bluff and Disguise skill checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every five illusionist levels he has, up to a maximum of +6 at 20th level. At 20th level, the illusionist gains the benefits of misdirection (Will DC = 20 + his Charisma modifier).

Discern Deception

The illusionist’s expertise at disguising reality also helps him recognize small inconsistencies in others’ attempts to hide the truth. At 2nd level, the illusionist gains a competence bonus equal to half his illusionist level on Perception skill checks made to locate traps or see through a Disguise check.

Cloaked Casting (Ex)

Starting at 2nd level, the illusionist’s spells are particularly effective against unprepared foes, granting him a +1 bonus to the save DC of any spell he casts that targets a foe who would be denied their Dexterity bonus to AC against the illusionist’s attacks. This bonus increases by +1 at 6th level and every four illusionist levels thereafter.

At 8th level, the illusionist gains a +2 bonus on rolls made to overcome the spell resistance of any affected target.

At 20th level, the illusionist becomes able to automatically overcome the spell resistance of any affected target.

Mirror (Su)

At 2nd level, the illusionist can appear exactly as another individual of roughly the same body type, and no more than twice as tall or half as high. The illusionist looks, feels, smells, and sounds just like the target creature. The effect requires the illusionist to have a portion of the target creature (a hair, drop of blood, a tooth) or significant item (a scepter or crown, an amulet, a personal weapon). This item is incorporated into the illusion in its true form, and the effect ends if it is separated from the illusionist.

This effect does not confer any special knowledge or abilities on the illusionist, but the duplication is otherwise seamless. Creatures that interact with the illusionist do not gain a save to disbelieve. The illusionist’s actions, or lack of specific knowledge, can cast doubt on her identity, but her true identity cannot be discerned without magical aid. This ability lasts for a duration of 10 minutes per illusionist level. The illusionist can use this ability a number of times per day equal to his Charisma modifier.

Haze (Su)

It is much more difficult to notice or clearly focus one’s interest upon a 3rd-level illusionist, imposing a –2 penalty to Perception checks against the character. This penalty applies in all situations, including when trying to see through an illusion that allows for such a roll or even a disguise, even if the illusionist isn’t actively trying to avoid the perception or maintain a façade. This penalty increases by –1 for every 2 levels of illusionist attained after 3rd level.

Chains of Disbelief (Ex)

Also at 3rd level, even if a viewer disbelieves an illusion created by an illusionist and communicates the details of the illusion to other creatures, those other creatures do not receive the normal +4 bonus on their saving throws to disbelieve the illusion. Furthermore, even when presented with incontrovertible proof that the illusion isn’t real, creatures must still succeed on a Will saving throw to see objects or creatures that the illusion obscures, although they get a +10 bonus on the saving throw.

Veil Powers (Su)

In addition to being able to use disguise self using his veil points, the illusionist gains veil powers. Starting at 3rd level, an illusionist gains a veil power. He gains another veil power for every three levels of illusionist attained after 3rd level.

  • A complete list of veil powers can be found here: Veil Powers

Social Cloaking (Su)

At 4th level, even when not actively trying to do so, an illusionist’s identity is obscured by the falsehoods within which the character lives. As such, others find it difficult to conduct proper social interactions with the illusionist; situations always seem uncomfortable and off-putting at best or elusive at worst. All Bluff, Diplomacy, Intimidation, and Sense Motive skill checks made concerning the illusionist suffer a −1 penalty. This penalty increases by –1 every three levels after 4th level. This same penalty is applied to the illusionist’s leadership score if he has the Leadership feat.

Clear Vision (Ex)

A 4th-level illusionist is better able to see through illusions, granting a +2 bonus while making Disbelief saves. This bonus increases further by +2 at levels 8, 12, 16, and 20.

Body Shift (Sp)

At 4th level, the illusionist may cause his image to continually shift about his actual position as a standard action, gaining concealment (as the blur spell). He can use this ability for 1 minute per illusionist level per day. This duration does not need to be consecutive, but it must be spent in 1-minute increments. At 7th level, each time the illusionist activates this ability, he can treat it as the displacement spell, though each round spent this way counts as 1 minute of his normal body shift duration.

Clear Mind (Ex)

At 5th level, an illusionist can regain his MP quicker. The illusionist must be relaxed and must be free from overt distractions, such as combat raging nearby or other loud noises. For example, he could be riding in the back of a carriage and benefit from this ability. The illusionist does not gain this recovery if he is asleep or unconscious. The illusionist regains 1 MP per hour. This increases by 1 for every five illusionist levels after 5th.

True Illusion (Ex)

Starting at 5th level, whenever another creature employs a spell, spell-like ability, or magic item (such as detect magic, see invisibility or a gem of seeing) that can detect the magical aura or reveal the effects of one of the illusionist’s illusion spells, the creature must make a caster level check (DC 11 + the illusionist’s caster level) to successfully detect or reveal the effects of the illusionist’s illusion spells. A creature using a magic item uses the item’s caster level for this check unless the item specifically states otherwise. Failure on this check means the caster believes their spell functioned normally, but it fails to detect the presence of the illusion spell or its effects (for example, an opponent who casts see invisibility and fails this check would believe that the spell is working, but would not detect any creatures currently invisible due to an illusionist’s invisibility spell). The creature can make this check only once for each spell used, no matter how many of the illusionist’s illusion spells are active in a given area.

Minor Illusion Esoterica (Ex)

At 5th level, the illusionist’s unflagging focus on illusions opens his mind to new possibilities and increases the save DCs of his illusion spells that have a saving throw entry of “Will disbelief” by 2.

The Show Must Go On (Su)

At 6th level, when an illusionist has a creature under the effects of an enfeebling spell and that creature has line of sight to an illusion spell the illusionist has cast with a duration of concentration, the illusionist can link the illusion spell to the enfeebled target. As long as the target has line of sight to the illusion and is enfeebled, and the illusionist has line of sight to both the target and the illusion, the illusionist can maintain the illusion as a free action each round. The illusionist can maintain only one illusion spell in this way. At 13th level, the illusionist can maintain two illusion spells in this way, requiring a separate enfeebled target for each illusion.

Master of Disguise (Ex)

Such is a 7th-level illusionist’s skill with disguises that he may gain one re-roll per session for a Disguise check that has been seen through, be the disguise illusory or mundane in nature.

Quick Veil (Su)

At 7th level, an illusionist can assume or alter his disguise with his veil pool ability as a move action. At 14th level, the action is reduced to a swift action.

Tenacious Illusions (Ex)

Starting at 8th level, the illusionist’s illusions are particularly hard to dispel or counter. Whenever a caster makes a dispel check to dispel one of the illusionist’s illusions, the DC is 15 + the illusionist’s caster level. Whenever a caster attempts to counterspell an illusionist’s illusion spell, the DC of the Spellcraft check to identify the spell increases by +5. In addition, whenever an opponent fails to counter or dispel an illusionist’s illusion, they take a -2 penalty on Will saving throws to disbelieve its effects.

Extended Illusions (Su)

At 9th level, any illusion spell the illusionist casts with a duration of “concentration” lasts a number of additional rounds equal to half of the illusionist’s level after he stops maintaining concentration (minimum +1 round). At 20th level, the illusionist can make one illusion spell with a duration of “concentration” become permanent. The illusionist can have no more than one illusion made permanent in this way at one time. If he designates another illusion as permanent, the previous permanent illusion ends.

Illusionary Puppet (Su)

At 9th level, an illusionist can create a false image of himself that acts as though created by casting major image, although it will appear identical to the illusionist’s current appearance. This appearance cannot be altered in any way except by altering the illusionist himself. So, to disguise the projected image the illusionist would need to be wearing a disguise. Similarly, any damage the illusionist suffers will appear, as if from nowhere, on the projected image. The image will stand still for that duration, requiring a DC 10 Concentration check as a swift action to do something simple, like move. Complex actions, such as speech with appropriate mannerisms or dancing requires a DC 15 (or higher) Concentration check with each action. If being used while the illusionist is involved in combat or spellcasting, increase the Concentration DC to control the image by +4. Events that otherwise cause a spellcaster to make a Concentration check are also needed at that same DC while manipulating an illusionary puppet image. If the Concentration check fails, the projected image does not disappear, however, but becomes immobile in the middle of whatever it was doing until a new Concentration check is made to get it under way again. The projected image has an AC of 10 + size modifier + Dexterity modifier. Successfully attacking the projected image does not cause it to dissipate, but will reveal it isn’t solid and won’t show any false indications of suffering damage. Duration is equal to half of the illusionist’s level + his Charisma modifier in rounds (minimum of 1 round) and can be dismissed at any time as a free action. The illusionist can use this ability a number of times per day equal to 1/2 of the illusionist’s level + his Charisma modifier.

Moderate Illusion Esoterica (Ex)

At 10th level, the illusionist’s long study of illusions leads to a breakthrough. The illusionist gains concealment when he casts an illusion spell and lasts for a number of rounds equal to the spell’s level.

Beguiling Aura (Su)

At 11th level, as a swift action, the illusionist can emit a 30-foot aura that beguiles his enemies with phantasmal assailants. Enemies within this aura must make a Will save (DC 10 + half of the illusionist’s level + his Charisma modifier) or have to move at half speed, are unable to take attacks of opportunity, and are considered to be flanked. This is a mind-affecting effect. The illusionist can use this ability for a number of rounds per day equal to his illusionist level + his Charisma modifier. These rounds do not need to be consecutive. The illusionist can end this aura as a free action.

Body Double (Su)

At 12th level, the illusionist may create an exact duplicate of himself made of shadowstuff as a full round action. The duplicate has half as many hit points as his hit point total and comes equipped with any non-magical gear he possesses. If reduced to 0 hit points, the duplicate immediately dissipates and any gear taken or given to others immediately dissipates. The duplicate lasts for a number of rounds equal to his illusionist level and uses his base attack bonus and his base saving throw bonuses. The duplicate has the same scores as the illusionist does for its physical abilities while it has a value of 10 for its Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma (using the illusionist’s Charisma modifier for any spell casting requirements and benefits). His duplicate may cast any spells the illusionist possesses, but spells cast have the MP deducted from the his MP pool. The duplicate may be dispelled with a dispel spell and will instantly vanish if it enters an anti-magic field. The illusionist may use this power once per day.

Cloak of Shadows (Su)

At 13th level, the illusionist learns to draw wisps of shadow around himself that blur and conceal his movements. Whenever the illusionist moves at least 10 feet in a round, he gains concealment until the start of his next turn, causing any successful attacks against them to suffer a 20% miss chance.

Invisibility Field (Sp)

At 14th level, the illusionist can make himself vanish as a swift action for 1 round per illusionist level. These rounds do not need to be consecutive. This otherwise functions as greater vanish.

Major Illusion Esoterica (Ex)

At 15th level, the illusionist’s knowledge of illusions reaches its peak. He can cast any illusion spell as a stilled and silent spell (per the Still Spell and Silent Spell feats) without an increase in caster level or MP cost. He can use this ability a number of times per day equal to his Charisma modifier.

Doublecast (Su)

Also at 15th level, an illusionist can cast two spells using one standard action. Both of the spells must have the same casting time. The illusionist can make any decisions concerning the spells independently of each other. Any target affected by both of the spells takes a –4 penalty on saves made against each spell. An illusionist receives a +4 bonus on caster level checks made to overcome spell resistance with these two spells. The illusionist may use this ability once per day at 15th level and one additional time per day at 20th level.

Resilient Illusions (Su)

At 16th level, the illusionist’s illusions are so lifelike that they defy disbelief. Anytime a creature tries to disbelieve one of the illusionist’s illusion effects, make a caster level check. Treat the illusion’s save DC as its normal DC or the result of the caster level check, whichever is higher.

Illusive Reality (Sp)

At 16th level, the illusionist may alter the environment within a 50 foot radius of his position as a standard action. The effect is identical to hallucinatory terrain but includes changes to structures and creatures within range of the effect. The effect lasts while he concentrates on the effect and a number of additional rounds equal to half his illusionist level. Those interacting with the illusionist’s reality suffer a -4 penalty to any Will saving throws to actively disbelieve the illusion. He may use this power a number of times per day equal to 3 + his Charisma modifier.

Blurred Reality (Su)

At 17th level, the illusionist is surrounded by a constant haze of minor illusions that disguise his exact shape, form, location, and even the sound of his voice. The illusionist now adds his Charisma modifier as a competence bonus on all saving throws and to all his Bluff, Disguise, and Stealth checks.

Illusion Mastery (Su)

At 17th level, when an illusionist casts an illusion spell, he can choose to render all enemies within 30 feet dazzled for 1 round (no save). Blind creatures are immune to this effect.

1 MP Spell (Su)

At 18th level, three times per day, as a free action, an illusionist can reduce the cost of his next spell to 1 MP. The use of this ability cannot be used with metamagic feats.

Master of the Veil (Sp)

At 19th level, the illusionist can create an illusion that hides the appearance of himself and any number of allies within 30 feet for 1 round per illusionist level. This ability otherwise functions like the spell veil. The rounds do not need to be consecutive.

Walk Unseen (Su)

At 19th level, the illusionist has cloaked himself in so many illusions and wrapped himself in so many deceptions that he is almost impossible to find, unless he wants to be found. The illusionist and any item on his person cannot be scryed or detected by magical means, including the clairaudience/clairvoyance spell. Any spells that grant bonuses to a creature based on insight into future events or circumstances, such as the true strike spell, do not grant that bonus on attacks or effects targeting the illusionist. The illusionist may choose to suppress this effect for 1 round as a standard action that does not provoke attacks of opportunity.

Bend Reality (Su)

At 20th level, an illusionist may disbelieve a real object making it an illusion. The object effectively become ethereal, and may be invisible or translucent. Objects cannot be larger than a 10-by-10-foot square. Unattended objects do not get a saving throw, but objects wielded, worn, or carried get a Fortitude save, (DC 20 + the illusionist’s Charisma modifier) using the saves of the creature that the object is carried upon to be unaffected. The effect lasts for 1 minute. The illusionist can use this ability a number of times per day equal to his Charisma modifier.

Favored Class Bonuses

Instead of receiving an additional skill rank or hit point whenever they gain a level in a favored class, some races have the option of choosing from a number of other bonuses, depending upon their favored classes. The following options are available to the listed race who have illusionist as their favored class, and unless otherwise stated, the bonus applies each time you select the listed favored class reward.

  • Dwarf: Add +1 bonus on concentration checks when casting illusion spells.
  • Elvaan: Add +1/2 bonus on Bluff skill checks.
  • Galka: Add +1/4 to the penalty of the haze ability.
  • Gnath: Add +1/6 to the DC of illusion spells.
  • GuadoThe illusionist gains +1/6th of a veil power.
  • Half-Breed: Add +1/4 point to the veil pool ability.
  • Hume: Add +1/4 point to the veil pool ability.
  • Mithra: Add +1/2 bonus on Disguise skill checks.
  • Moogle: Add +1/4 to the DC for the Cloaked Casting ability.
  • Nu Mou: Add +1/6 to the DC for all illusion spells.
  • Sylph: Add +1/4 point to the veil pool ability.
  • Tarutaru: Add +1/6 to the DC for all illusion spells.

Archetypes