Within the purity of the elements and the order of the wilds lingers a power beyond the marvels of civilization. Furtive yet undeniable, these primal magics are guarded over by servants of philosophical balance known as keepers of the grove. Allies to beasts and manipulators of nature, these often misunderstood protectors of the wild strive to shield their lands from all who would threaten them and prove the might of the wilds to those who lock themselves behind city walls.
The keeper of the grove is an archetype of the beastmaster class.
Archetype Main Ability Scores:
The keeper of the grove mainly focuses on DEX for martial combat and WIS and CHA for their class features.
Archetype Feature Replacements:
1st – Animal Focus, Wild Empathy. 3rd – Beastmaster Tactics, Teamwork Feat. 6th – Teamwork Feat. 7th – Second Animal Focus. 9th – Improved Empathic Link. 12th – Teamwork Feat. 13th – Third Animal Focus. 14th – Greater Empathic Link. 16th – Teamwork Feat, Improved Quarry. 17th – Master of the Pack. 20th – Mastery of Beasts.
A keeper of the grove’s base attack bonus decreases by one step (from Full BAB to 3/4 BAB). Also decreases keeper of the grove’s hit dice from d10 to d8.
A keeper of the grove’s bonus language options include Sylvan, the language of woodland creatures. This choice is in addition to the bonus languages available to the character because of her race.
A keeper of the grove also knows Druidic, a secret language known only to keeper of the groves, which she learns upon becoming a 1st-level keeper of the grove. Druidic is a free language for a keeper of the grove; that is, she knows it in addition to her regular allotment of languages and it doesn’t take up a language slot. Druids are forbidden to teach this language to non-keeper of the groves. Druidic has its own alphabet.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency
The keeper of the grove is proficient with the following weapons: club, dagger, dart, quarterstaff, scimitar, scythe, sickle, shortspear, sling, and spear.
The keeper of the grove is also proficient with light and medium armor but are prohibited from wearing metal armor; thus, she may wear only padded, leather, or hide armor. The keeper of the grove is proficient with shields (except tower shields) but must use only wooden ones.
A keeper of the grove who wears prohibited armor or uses a prohibited shield is unable to cast spells or use any of her supernatural or spell-like class abilities while doing so and for 24 hours thereafter.
Spells and Cantrips
A keeper of the grove casts druidic spells, which are drawn from the druid spell list. A keeper of the grove begins play with 3 1st level druidic spells of her choice. The keeper of the grove also selects a number of additional 1st-level spells equal to her Wisdom modifier to add to her list of spells. Each time a character attains a new beastmaster level, she gains two spells of her choice to add to her list of spells. The two free spells must be of spell levels she can cast. Like most mages, a keeper of the grove can find or purchase scrolls with spells to add to her repertoire.
To learn or cast a spell, the keeper of the grove must have a Wisdom score equal to at least 10 + the spell level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a keeper of the grove’s spell is 10 + the spell level + the keeper of the grove’s Wisdom modifier. In addition, a keeper of the grove gains additional MP for having a high attribute (Wisdom).
A keeper of the grove must spend 1 hour each day in a trance-like meditation on the mysteries of nature to regain MP. The keeper of the grove may cast a spell with a target of “You” on her animal companion (as a touch spell) instead of on herself.
In addition, a keeper of the grove learn a number of cantrips, or 0-level druid spells. These spells are cast like any other spell, but they do not consume MP and may be used again. Keepers of the grove begin with 2 0-level spells and gain an additional 0-level spell every three levels after 1st level.
This ability replaces animal focus, second animal focus, and third animal focus.
Table: 3/4th MP Progression
|Level||Base MP||Spell Level|
Nature Bond (Su)
At 1st level, a keeper of the grove forms a bond with nature. This bond grants the keeper of the grove two of the following cleric domains: Air, Earth, Erosion, Fire, Ice, Lightning, Plant, Water, or Weather. When determining the powers granted by these domains, the keeper of the grove’s effective cleric level is equal to her beastmaster level.
This ability replaces wild empathy.
Armored Mage (Ex)
At 3rd level, normally, armor of any kind interferes with a spell-caster’s gestures, which can cause spells to fail if those spells have a somatic component. A keeper of the grove’s limited focus and specialized training, however, allows her to avoid spell failure so long as she sticks to light armor and light shields. This training does not extend to medium armor or to heavy shields. This ability does not apply to spells gained from a different spell-casting class. At 10th level, a keeper of the grove learns to use medium armor and heavy shields with no chance of spell failure.
This ability replaces beastmaster tactics and teamwork feats.
Favored Terrain (Ex)
A keeper of the grove gains the geomancer’s favored terrain ability. She gains her first favored terrain at 7th level and a new favored terrain every four beastmaster levels thereafter. In addition, at each such interval, the bonuses on initiative checks and skill checks in one favored terrain (including the one just selected, if so desired) increase by 2. Starting at 11th level, a keeper of the grove adds half her favored terrain bonus on damage rolls while in her favored terrain and fighting a creature native to that terrain.
This ability replaces trackless step.
Speak with Master (Ex)
At 9th level, a keeper of the grove and her animal companion can communicate verbally, as if they were using a common language. Other creatures cannot understand the communication without magical aid.
This ability replaces improved empathic link.
Nature’s Resilience (Su)
At 14th level, whenever a keeper of the grove is on one of her favored terrains, she gains a bonus equal to her favored terrain bonus on all saves against extraordinary, spell-like and supernatural abilities.
This ability replaces greater empathic link.
Timeless Body (Ex)
After attaining 17th level, a keeper of the grove no longer takes ability score penalties for aging and cannot be magically aged. Any penalties she may have already incurred, however, remain in place. Bonuses still accrue, and the keeper of the grove still dies of old age when her time is up.
This ability replaces master of the pack.
At 20th level, a keeper of the grove’s connection with the earth is so great that she is able to move through it with unparalleled ease. In a favored terrain she has chosen, she is able to teleport a distance equal to her movement speed as a move action.
This ability replaces mastery of beasts.