Ruins of Adventure
- Races: Any (male only)
- Sub-Classes: Thief or Spy
- Ability Requirements: Health 13
- Alignments: Evil
- Starting Cash: By class
- Weapon Slots: By class
- Bonus Weapon Proficiencies: Garrote
- Required Weapon Proficiencies: Signature Weapon (see below), Martial Arts
- Allowed Weapons: Any one-handed weapon
- Allowed Armors: Leather or Padded, Shields
- Non-weapon Slots: By class
- Available Categories: By class, plus Spiritual
- Bonus Non-weapon Proficiencies: Disguise, Brewing, Religion, Rope Use
- Required Proficiencies: Endurance
- Recommended Proficiencies: Alertness, Animal Noise, Blind-Fighting, Bowyer/Fletcher, Etiquette, Forgery, Heraldry, Herbalism, Inquisitor, Jumping, Modern Languages, Reading Lips, Rope Use, Sign Language, Tightrope Walking, Tracking, Trailing, Tumbling, Ventriloquism, Weaponsmithing
- Forbidden Proficiencies: Begging
Overview: Holy Slayer are ghosts hiding in the shadows of many evil temples. They mete out justice and threats in a manner that intimidates and frightens most infidels. These characters view an opposing nation or religion as a great beast to be slaughtered, or at least confused by the severing of its head. Sometimes the mere warning that a Holy Slayer is nearby is enough to turn away those who seek to harm the assassin’s people.
The Holy Slayers are a radical faction of the faithful. Their leader sequestered himself within a great, secret mountain in the desert. There (as the story goes), young recruits were drugged. When they awoke, they were told they had been carried into heaven, to a garden of earthly delights. The youths dallied in this “paradise” for some time, then were drugged again and returned to the leader’s quarters. When they regained consciousness, they were offered the opportunity to serve the holy cause as warriors of the faith. The bait: the promise that they would be readmitted to the garden after death, to spend eternity in paradise. Many young recruits agreed. They joined the assassins, fearless in their conviction that even if they died, they would be better off in the next world. Tales of such a secret society have changed through the centuries, but these legendary characters have the power of faith, even if misplaced faith, and an organization behind them.
In Faerun, nearly every evil religion has its own order of Holy Slayers. Each fellowship is a religious organization dedicated to the advancement of its particular faith. Such organizations usually have the support of the church’s clergymen, but vary in their intolerance of other factions. Each fellowship operates from a secret location, which is unknown to low-ranking members.
Holy Slayers are ruled by omens and rewarded for plentiful sacrifice. A few times a year, huge groups of Holy Slayers go on a murderous pilgrimage. On such ventures, they kill any traveler they meet, provided the omens are right; failing to kill such a traveler, they fear, brings divine wrath upon them. They employ deceit in murder and rarely attack larger groups. They stake out favored places for murder, usually in areas of solitude and soft ground. When omens sour, the band turns back, the expedition over.
Description: Holy Slayers typically dress in a manner similar to the priests of their faith.
Role-Playing: Holy Slayers operate under as many restrictions as paladins, their antithesis. Members of this kit believe that were literally created on the earth to follow the orders of the high priests of their respective organizations. They must be willing to die immediately for their cause. If a leader should ask an Holy Slayer to leap from a building to prove his or her faith, the Holy Slayer does so without question. Unfortunately for assassins, leaders often ask exactly that, in order to prove their power.
Holy Slayer are not required to announce their profession to the general public. While a few fellowships encourage such displays, members who do so may be told to perform extremely dangerous missions in order to prove that they are worthy. Most fellowships prefer to operate in secrecy. To disguise their identity, Holy Slayers often attempt to imitate other kits such as beggars, smugglers, or scouts. In such cases, Holy Slayers lose none of their normal abilities. Nor do they gain the special benefits of the “cover” kit, though smart assassins often pretend they do. At a minimum, it’s a good idea to feign the cover kit’s hindrances.
Holy Slayers who are not based at their fellowship’s secret hideout are allowed to act as free agents for a time, much like priests who are not currently attached to a particular church. These free agents are allowed to live their lives in a normal fashion. However, as soon as word comes from the high priests, they are expected to perform whatever actions are ordered. They are not expected to ask for additional aid or time, nor may they appeal the decision. They are expected only to do or die. NPC Holy Slayers rarely if ever ignore such orders. They are willing to die for their faith. However, those rare player characters who belong to this kit are not automatons. They may ignore the orders of their leader if they choose, especially if death is the likely outcome of those orders (of course, death may be the outcome of refusing an order, too.) Holy Slayers who disobey become outcasts. The same applies to those who “obey” in part, but have managed to twist the meaning of an order through clever interpretation of the wording. Outcasts become the target of attacks by other members of their fellowship. Rather than kill a target outright, fellowships usually prefer a string of nasty assaults—for example, the kidnapping of allies, the destruction of home towns, or the summoning of monsters. These attacks take place at the worst possible moments. They continue until one of the following occurs: the PC decides to complete the assigned mission; the PC has survived a number of separate attacks equal to his or her level (at which point the high priest may consider the punishment sufficient); or the PC slays the current leader of his or her fellowship (which is why the location of a fellowship’s base is kept so secret).
- Holy Slayers must be proficient with the signature weapon of their religion. This weapon varies from religion to religion: Hand-axe for Auril, Scourge for Loviatar, Spiked Gauntlet for Xvim, etc. (consult your DM as to the preferred weapon for your chosen faith). Holy Slayers receive +2 to hit with this weapon. In addition to this bonus, the Holy Slayer is also allowed to specialize in the weapon of his faith if he chooses.
- Holy Slayers are able to brew a special concoction to aid them in battle known as a Ravager Potion. Crafting a ravager potion takes 1 day and a successful Brewing proficiency check. Before a dangerous mission, the Holy Slayer will often take the time to brew enough doses for himself and his entire party. This slow-acting potion takes effect 30 minutes after being drunk and lasts for 1d3 hours. While under the potion’s influence, a character receives the following effects:
- He is immune to sleep and charm spells.
- He possesses two additional hit points per experience level.
- He receives a -2 bonus to individual initiative.
- He receives a +2 bonus to Armor Class.
- At the end of the potion’s effect, all benefits wear off, and the character must make a Health check. If he fails the check, he collapses in a coma for 3d6 hours. If the character has sustained enough damage that the sudden loss of the extra hit points brings him down to zero hit points or fewer, he dies (no saving throw).
- The Holy Slayer is ruled by omens, anything he sees may be interpreted as an omen from his god. At the start of each encounter (or when the Holy Slayer is preparing to perform an assassination), roll 1d6 and consult the following table (specific omens vary from religion to religion—see for examples):
|1||Turn back||-3 on attack rolls until heeded|
|2||Do not kill||-3 on attack rolls against specified target|
|3||Great luck||+2 on attack rolls until end of encounter|
|4||Good luck||+1 on attack rolls until end of encounter|
|5||Bad luck||-1 on attack rolls until end of encounter|
|6||Very bad luck||-2 on attack rolls until end of encounter|
- An Holy Slayer’s greatest hindrance is a short lifespan. When a priest says jump, these characters jump, unless they like the idea of preparing themselves against a number of ambushes. In game terms, the DM should secretly roll for the chance of receiving “the call” each time a PC Holy Slayer makes it to the next experience level. There is a noncumulative 10% chance per level of receiving “the call.” Sometimes the call is an order to kill. It also may involve a risky mission to deliver a message or warning, or perhaps to retrieve a valuable item. When such an order targets a particular individual (though not necessarily for death), there is an 80% chance that the target is in the same city or territory as the PC Holy Slayer. Further, there’s an 80% chance that the target is a native of that area—in other words, that he or she is on “home turf” and is probably well-protected. Targets are always persons of importance or responsibility, such as rulers, politicians, or a captain of the king’s guard—never common merchants or loud-mouthed innkeepers.
Return to Universal Kits