The wealthiest of lords gain the ire of the toughest of foes, and use their coin to obtain the strongest of protectors. These retainers guard their lord with their lives, standing ironclad against all manner of assassins and thugs. The most well-equipped bodyguards do not come cheap, and mere commoners could not hope to afford the services of these vigilant guardsmen. Some say they take after the swordsman god Yojimbo, such is the weight of wealth required for their services.
The retainer is an archetype of the samurai class.
Archetype Main Ability Scores:
The retainer mainly focuses on STR/DEX for martial combat and CHA for his class features.
Archetype Feature Replacements:
1st – Class Skills, Limit Break (Unseen Strike), Improved Initiative, Kenki Pool, Weaponskills. 3rd – Resolve, Blazing Initiative. 4th – First Strike, Bushido Art. 5th – Dragon Defense. 6th – Bushido Art. 7th – Kenki Charge. 9th – Greater Resolve. 10th – Bushido Art. 12th – Bushido Art. 15th – True Kenki Charge. 16th – Bushido Art. 17th – True Resolve. 18th – Frightful Presence, Bushido Art. 19th – Last Stand. 20th – Master Samurai.
A retainer gains Appraise as a class skill, but loses Swim as a class skill.
Limit Break (Su)
At 1st level, the retainer receives the Limit Break (Zeninage).
Zeninage (Su): This Limit Break allows the retainer to conjure fat sacks of gil out of thin air, having them appear on his person or in his hands. The gil totals a denomination of 1,000 gil + 1,000 gil per four samurai levels after the 1st. Additionally, the retainer adds a bonus to gil toss damage equal to 1 + 1 per four samurai levels after the 1st for a duration of 1 round + 1 round for four samurai levels after the 1st. Once the duration is over, this gil turns from coins into dried leaves. This limit break requires a swift action.
This ability replaces the Limit Break (Unseen Strike).
Blade Guard (Ex)
At 1st level, when a retainer wields an eastern melee weapon in both hands, he gains a +1 shield bonus to AC. This shield bonus increases by +1 for every four samurai levels after 1st (to a maximum of +5 at 17th level).
This ability replaces improved initiative and a bushido art gained at 2nd, 8th, and 14th level.
Gil Toss (Su)
At 1st level, a retainer places his material fortunes on the line to make an attack. The retainer can turn up to four coins into deadly projectiles that gain the velocity of a bullet when thrown. The coins retain their normal appearance but can be used as simple thrown weapons with a range increment of 20 feet and a critical multiplier of ×2. The transmuted coins are treated as ammunition for the purposes of drawing them. Like firearm bullets, the coins deal bludgeoning and piercing damage, and attacks with them are resolved as touch attacks within the first range increment. Regardless of whether a transmuted coin hits or misses the target, it is destroyed after the attack. Only the retainer can make attacks with the coins, though other creatures can safely handle them without discharging the ability.
The retainer can make a single ranged attack with a coin as part of using this ability. Different types of coins create different bullet effects. 1-gil coins deal 2d4 points of damage. 10-gil coins deal 2d6 points of damage and count as silver for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction. 100-gil coins deal 2d8 points of damage, count as masterwork weapons, and are treated as adamantine weapons for the purposes of overcoming damage reduction and bypassing hardness. 1,000-gil coins deal 2d10 points of damage and count as +1 weapons (that improves by 1 for every four samurai levels after 1st).
At 4th level, all coins deal an additional 1 point of damage, increasing by 1 point of damage per three samurai levels after 4th (to a maximum of an extra 6 points of damage at 19th level).
At 6th level, a retainer can throw an additional coin at a -5 penalty as part of a full-attack. In addition, the retainer no longer provokes attacks of opportunity while throwing coins in melee range. At 12th level, he can throw a third coin at a -10 penalty. At 18th level, he can throw a fourth coin at a -15 penalty.
This ability replaces kenki pool and a bushido art gained at 4th, 6th, 12th, and 18th level.
At 1st level, the retainer begins the day by designating 1 ally as his client. While within 30 ft. of his client, a retainer grants them a +1 insight bonus to AC and benefits from other abilities (see below). This range increases by 10 ft. and the bonus AC by +1 for every four samurai levels after the 1st. A retainer cannot be another retainer’s client, unless he does not designate any ally as his own client for that day. If the retainer is unconscious, helpless, or otherwise unable to act, any abilities that affect a client end until the retainer is no longer impaired. Initially, a retainer may only have 1 client at a time. At the beginning of each day, he may select a new client.
This ability replaces weaponskills.
At 3rd level, a retainer performs his duty to his clients with the utmost diligence. His reputation as a guard is upheld by his honor, and he gains abilities he may use in a variety of ways. He may use these abilities 3 times per day, plus an additional time per day for every two samurai levels after 3rd.
- Honorbound: As a standard action, the retainer can remove the fatigued, shaken, sickened, or poisoned At 8th level, he can remove the exhausted, frightened, nauseated, sapped, or staggered conditions. If the condition has a duration longer than 1 hour or is permanent, this ability removes the condition for 1 hour, at which time the condition returns.
- Implacable: When the retainer is reduced to fewer than 0 hit points but not slain, he can use this ability as an immediate action to instantly stabilize and remain conscious. He is staggered, but he does not fall unconscious and begin dying if he takes a standard action. He does fall unconscious if he takes additional damage from any source.
- Unshakeable: Whenever the retainer fails to make a Fortitude or Will save, he can use this ability, as an immediate action, to reroll this roll.
This ability replaces resolve.
Blade Control (Ex)
At 3rd level, the retainer gains Quick Draw as a bonus feat. He may only use this feat with eastern melee weapons, gil coins, and treasure items. In addition, he may store these weapons and items as a free action. A retainer is still treated as threatening the squares within his reach when he has an eastern melee weapon sheathed, and can draw these weapons as part of an attack of opportunity.
This ability replaces blazing initiative.
Serve and Protect (Ex)
At 4th level, when the retainer is adjacent to his client and the client takes damage, he may redirect up to 2 points of damage to himself as a free action that can be taken outside of his turn. This transfer of damage may only happen once per round per client. At 8th level and every four samurai levels thereafter, he may redirect 2 additional points of damage at once, to a maximum of 10 points of damage at 20th level.
This ability replaces first strike.
At 5th level, a retainer’s fearsome prowess and quick blade forces his enemies to move with care. Any space he threatens is treated by hostile creatures as though it were difficult terrain for enemies. If a creature would not be affected by difficult terrain due to its movement type, the effects still apply. In addition, whenever the retainer hits an opponent with an attack of opportunity, that opponent becomes flat-footed until the end of his next turn.
This ability replaces dragon defense.
At 7th level, a retainer may spend uses of honor to affect a client. He may use Honorbound on a client in range of clientele to remove a listed status effect. At 11th level, a retainer may use Unshakeable on a client in range of clientele as an immediate action, allowing him to reroll a failed Fortitude or Will save.
This ability replaces kenki charge.
Ultimate Price (Ex)
At 9th level, the retainer is ready to put his honor before his life, and is willing to sacrifice himself for his charge. When a client would be reduced to 0 HP or less by an attack or damaging effect, a retainer can use an immediate action to move up to twice his speed, and must end this movement adjacent to his client. This movement provokes attacks of opportunity, but cannot be stopped even if the retainer is reduced below 0 hit points. The retainer is staggered for 1 round and then takes the damage in place of his client, treated as though he had been hit by the attack and failed any saving throws.
This ability replaces greater resolve.
Double Duty (Ex)
At 10th level, when a retainer uses clientele, he may designate up to 2 allies as his clients instead of just 1. In addition, whenever he spends honor to affect a client, he may spend an additional daily use of honor to affect up to 2 clients at once. Both clients must be within range of the retainer’s clientele ability to be affected by honor at the same time.
This ability replaces a bushido art gained at 10th level.
Gil Rain (Su)
At 15th level, a retainer can use his gil toss ability to hit any number of creatures within 30 feet by spending gil (must use the same type of coins) and making a ranged touch attack for each creature. However, he cannot make multiple attacks with his gil toss ability through the gil rain ability.
This ability replaces true kenki charge.
At 16th level, whenever an opponent attacks one of the retainer’s clients, that enemy provokes an attack of opportunity from the retainer. Enemies are aware attacking a client will provoke. The retainer must be within reach of the enemy attacking his client.
This ability replaces a bushido art gained at 16th level.
Death Before Dishonor (Su)
At 17th level, the retainer gains the effects of freedom of movement until the start of his next turn when using ultimate price, though he is still staggered for 1 round.
This ability replaces true resolve.
Diamond Hands (Su)
At 18th level, a retainer learns how to spend his gil only when the most opportune moment arises. He gains a bonus to all gil toss and gil rain damage rolls equal to his Charisma modifier. In addition, up to 3 times per day, he can maximize the damage dealt from these abilities.
This ability replaces frightful presence.
Implacable Stand (Su)
At 19th level, when a retainer uses the Implacable ability, he may spend an additional daily use of honor to make a stand. For one round, the retainer takes minimum damage from all sources, becomes immune to death effects, and does not die from having negative hit points in excess of his Constitution score. In addition, he remains conscious and is not staggered while he is below 0 hit points. At the start of his next turn, a retainer may use one use of Implacable again as a free action to continue this implacable stand.
Once the implacable stand ends, the retainer gains 1 negative level. The negative level cannot be removed by normal means but heals when he completes an 8-hour rest. If the retainer gains multiple negative levels through an implacable stand, he is all healed by the same 8-hour rest.
This ability replaces last stand.
At 20th level, the retainer can designate a number of allies equal to his Charisma modifier (minimum 1) as his clients when using clientele. In addition, when using honor to affect a client, he may spend honor to affect any number of clients within range of clientele as well as himself, using a number of daily uses of honor equal to the number of targets affected. Finally, he grants a morale bonus to all saving throws to his clients within range of clientele equal to the AC bonus he provides (+5 at 20th level).
This ability replaces master samurai.