Chronicles of Cantius
The leader of the small band of goblins peers from behind the rock formation, bloodshot eyes narrowing, toothy grin stretching across the sickly green skinned face in a twisted smile. The sun had set, It was time to have some fun.
A quick motion and the band drew their filthy daggers and moved in to assault the farmstead. The farmer was with his wife in the kitchen, cleaning up after dinner. His two sons and daughter had retired to the main living area to relax after a hard days’ chores. That was when the goblins broke in.
The battle was fierce. The women screamed and attempted to take cover, the farmer grabbed a knife from the kitchen, the oldest son ran to the barn to get a pitchfork while the farmer held them off.
The farmer’s family was slaughtered, although they gave as good as they got, two goblins met their death from the attack.
The baron of the village cannot let this menace slide. He needed to find a group of mercenaries strong enough…and willing enough…to end the goblin threat.
Hold on, strong enough? For goblins? CR 1/3 goblins? Most humans should be able to handle goblins, right? Why would they need to hire mercenaries?
More simply put, a world where many humans and demi humans are running around with multiple levels in several classes, would never see goblins as a threat.
In this world, even first level characters are a rare occurrence. Such characters are considered above the norm, and have taken time to learn the skills they need to learn simply to become first level. Achieving this is not trivial. Many hours of training in that skill would be required to achieve even this level, to say nothing of moving up levels in this class. Such characters would be heroes of a sort, even more so as they gain a level or two. Moving up past level 5, such a character would gain a reputation far and wide, and would likely begin to be sought out by rulers from further and further away, with more severe threats. As the character moves toward 10th level, they would no longer be simple “servants” doing quests for other rulers, but would likely be rulers themselves, whose decisions would greatly influence the direction of the world around them, growing ever more mighty until becoming a force in the entire world and other worlds, until eventually they would be revered as a god.
Because of this, any character skilled in one area that chose to “dabble” in another area would not simply gain a level in that area of study overnight. Such an achievement would require as much dedication to this new craft as to the original, to the point of losing their “edge” in their original skills, possibly even failing to learn the new skills. Imagine the irritation of a cleric’s patron deity, for example, if they decided to forgo their prayers and dedication in favor of several hours of research and study into learning the arcane to take a level as a wizard.
Because of this, it is assumed that all characters are experts in ONE of FIVE areas of expertise:
Theology and Prayer
The other philosophy in this world is that there is a belief that characters should not be pigeon-holed into choosing a class that is very specific from a background/personality sense, usually because choosing this class provides many more benefits than a more generic class. These “specific” classes are likely far more rare in a more realistic setting than the rules tend to push players into.
There are a total of eight basic classes to choose from. Each class is an expert in one of the five areas of expertise listed above. There is no multi-classing allowed, and hybrid classes have been removed. Any base or core class that is not listed here may have rules changed so one of the “generic” classes can actually take some of the special abilities in some manner, either as a feat, or by some other method. For example, there is no barbarian class, however, the more generic “warrior” class, which is based of the core fighter class in the Pathfinder rules, can take rage powers as feats if they choose, providing they meet the prerequisites.
In general, a character’s alignment or background will not be a barrier in playing the character that they want to play, with a few exceptions (mainly the cleric class and the knight class that wants to take paladin/antipaladin powers). To take the barbarian example again, the player may choose to play a lawfully aligned, city born mercenary, with the ability to rage. They would choose the warrior class, give the appropriate personality and background, and as they advance, take Rage and rage powers as feats. There is no restriction to be chaotically aligned or to have a feral background to do this. However, if the player still wishes to conform to this idea, then they still can build the character this way.
These ideas can be extended to alternate abilities with arch-types and hybrid classes as well, provided that the alternate skills do not bridge the gaps between area of expertise. Arch-types that fit a specific campaign setting such as the Golarion setting, may also be disallowed.
For any and all changes, these rules must be cleared by the GM before being allowed.
Here are the classes available for choosing:
The warrior is a combat class, and is based off the fighter class. In general, all fighter class rules and abilities apply. The Hit Dice for the warrior is changed from a d10 to a d12. Also, as mentioned, several times above, barbarian rage powers may be taken as combat feats, provided that the warrior meets the same level requirements and prerequisites that would normally be applied to the barbarian class.
The knight is a combat class, and is based off the cavalier class. In general, all cavalier class rules and abilities apply. The knight joins an order and follows the order abilities as described in the rules. Each order typically aligns with a deity. When taking feats, the knight can choose mercies or cruelties if they are good/evil aligned, as the paladin/antipaladin class. They must use a feat slot for each ability. At fourth level, the good/evil aligned knight can also use a feat slot to take the channel energy ability. Neutral aligned knights cannot choose mercies, cruelties, or channel energy. Knights of any alignment also cannot perform lay on hands, touch of corruption, or cast any spells.
The wizard is an arcane class, and is based off the wizard class in the rules. In general, no changes to the rules apply. A wizard learns their spells through rigorous study.
The sorcerer is an arcane class, and is based off the sorcerer class in the rules. In general, the sorcerer follows all class rules. The sorcerer learns their spells through powers from their bloodlines, and not through study. This power is tied to the red moon Crimsonlune, and the sorcerer becomes more and less powerful as the phases of the moon change. The sorcerer also tends to have certain mental issues as well, such as anxiety, bipolarism, and schizophrenia. These mental issues tend to be worse or better depending on the phase of Crimsonlune, where the moon in its new phase, the character may even be considered emotionally stable.
The cleric is a theological class, based on the cleric class in the rules. In general, the cleric follows all class rules. Every cleric is required to worship a deity, as this is where the cleric gains their power.
The druid is a theological class, based on the druid class in the rules. In general, the druid follows all class rules. Druids get their power from worship and study of the natural world around them.
The rogue is a subterfuge class. It is based on the unchained rogue class in the rules. In general, the rogue follows all class rules.
The bard is a performance arts class. It is based on the bard for the rules. In general, the bard follows all class rules.