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The shadow is a ninja trained in mystic arts beyond the mastery of ki and poisons, creating an assassin-spellcaster who combines secrecy with magic and mind-over-matter techniques to become an arcane killer and scout. Because they must master both the very physical arts of ninja stealth and the mystic arts of spellcasters, shadows are often seen as being particularly clever, and are sometimes referred to as “monkeys” by other ninja.

The shadow is an archetype of the ninja class.

Class Skills

The shadow adds Knowledge (Arcana) and Spellcraft to his list of class skills. This replaces Disguise and Knowledge (Local) as class skills.

Mystic Brilliance (Ex)

The shadow uses his Intelligence modifier for the purpose of ninja class features that use Wisdom modifier.

Spells and Cantrips

Beginning at 1st level, a shadow gains the ability to cast black magic spells, which are drawn from the black mage spell list. A shadow begins play with 3 1st level black mage spells of his choice. The shadow also selects a number of additional 1st-level spells equal to his Intelligence modifier to add to his list of spells. Each time a character attains a new ninja 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 spellcasters, a shadow can find or purchase scrolls with spells to add to his repertoire.

To learn or cast a spell, the shadow must have an Intelligence score equal to at least 10 + the spell level (Int 11 for 1st-level spells, Int 12 for 2nd-level spells, and so forth). The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a shadow’s spell is 10 + the spell level + the shadow’s Intelligence modifier. In addition, a shadow gains additional MP for having a high attribute (Intelligence).

Table: 3/4th MP Progression

LevelBase MPSpell Level

In addition, a shadow learn a number of cantrips, or 0-level black magic spells. These spells are cast like any other spell, but they do not consume MP and may be used again. Shadows begin with 2 0-level spells and gain an additional 0-level spell every three levels after 1st level.

This ability replaces sneak attack. A shadow cannot select ninja tricks (or thief talents) that add or augment sneak attacks.


Shadows cannot take any ninja tricks, ninjutsus, or thief talents that augments or modifies sneak attacks. Shadows do gain access to new ninjutsus, outlined below.

Arcane Assassin (Su): The shadow can spend a ki point whenever he casts a spell with a range of “touch” or “ranged touch” from his spell list to deliver the spell through any weapon he is wielding as part of a melee attack. Instead of the free melee touch attack normally allowed to deliver the spell, the shadow can make one free melee attack with his weapon (at his highest base attack bonus) as part of casting this spell. If successful, this melee attack deals its normal damage as well as the effects of the spell. This attack uses the weapon’s critical range (20, 19–20, or 18–20 and modified by the keen weapon property or similar effects), but the spell effect only deals ×2 damage on a successful critical hit, while the weapon damage uses its own critical modifier. Prerequisite: The shadow must be at least 12th level to select this ninjutsu.

Cannibalize Magic (Su): A shadow has learned how to renew his own ki pool by draining off the mystic energy of his spells. Once per day, the shadow may expend MP to regain a number of ki points equal to the MP spent (to a maximum equal to the spell level he can cast). This cannot allow the shadow to regain ki points above his maximum pool size, however.

Greater Ki Blade (Su): When a shadow spends a ki point to grant an enhancement bonus to a weapon he is holding using the ki blade ninjutsu, these bonuses can be used to add any of the following weapon properties: abyssalabyssal burstdancingearthenearthen burstflamingflaming burstfrosticy burstjetstreamjetstream burstkeenroaringroaring 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 ki point is spent and cannot be changed until the next time the shadow uses this ability. Prerequisite: A shadow must be at least 12th level and have the ki blade ninjutsu to select this ninjutsu.

Ki Blade (Su): A shadow can expend 1 ki point as a swift action to grant any weapon he 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 enhancements to a maximum of +5. Multiple uses of this ability do not stack with themselves. These bonuses do not function if the weapon is wielded by anyone other than the shadow. A shadow can only enhance one weapon in this way at one time. If he uses this ability again, the first use immediately ends.

Ki Spell (Su): The shadow can use his ki to cast dark spells of a higher level. By expending one ki point, the shadow may cast a 2nd level or higher dark spell using a 1 less MP than normal.

Shadow Spell (Su): By spending one ki point, when casting a spell, a shadow casts without needing its somatic component.