Acrobat

Acrobat
Bounding from rooftop to rooftop, spanning alleyways with a leap, scaling walls and buildings in a matter of seconds, the acrobat is the master of urban terrain. In many cities, guilds and cartels train or recruit specialists who learn to run, jump, and tumble with phenomenal precision, skill, and strength. Relying on their supreme mobility, these experts can slip into strongholds by simply bounding over their defenses. Where a rogue relies of stealth for much of the same tasks, the acrobat is the master of speed and maneuverability. He skirts danger, evading his enemies, leaving them grasping at air as he nimbly slips away. When the time is right, he leaps in to attack, springing from an unexpected direction to make a sudden attack before slipping quickly away.

Adventures: Acrobats live life on the edge. When they make their way across an urban landscape, they routinely attempt stunts which would leave them crippled or dead. Their casual recklessness and bravado lead many to become adventurers. With their phenomenal speed and agility, they can easily outflank opponents and support the party's melee fighters. When faced with traps and other perils, they can activate them and slip away unharmed, using their razor sharp reflexes to avoid danger. Some acrobats are merely performers who find daily life in a carnival or circus dull. As the adrenaline rush of their stunts fades, they seek new, dangerous environments where they can ply their skills. Dungeons and other hazardous environments fill this need perfectly.

Characteristics: Speed is the acrobat's defining characteristic. He can slip around his enemies to flank them, aiding the party's fighters. By the same token, when faced by an enemy spellcaster, he can slip around or through bodyguards to eliminate the caster directly.
    The acrobat also excels at avoiding dangers. With his finely honed reflexes, arrows, spells, and traps pose little threat to him. He seems to always duck or dodge out of the way a split second before others can react, allowing him to dive to safety.
    In combat, the acrobat's speed and agility leave his enemies confused and vulnerable. He darts in to strike his foes, attacking with blinding speed in the very moment they leave an opening. He leaps from walls, bounds off opponents' shields, and rolls between their legs to make attacks from unexpected directions.

Alignment: While the acrobat's wild manner and willingness to take dire risks means many members of this class are chaotic, some approach this profession with the slow, careful consideration of a master artist. Thus, acrobats are drawn from a wide range of alignments. Evils acrobats use their talents to steal whatever treasures they can find and waylay innocent travelers in lightning quick ambushes. Good acrobats infiltrate evil fortresses, using their speed and agility to gather information or defeat key commanders with rapid attacks.

Religion: Avlara is the patron deity of most acrobats. Her disciplined martial focus and physical perfection is aspired to by them. Many acrobats also revere the Valkyries for their strength and courage and others revere Kaern for his endurance against all odds.

Background: Acrobats hail from a wide range of backgrounds. Some operate as specialist thieves who infiltrate upper story residences from the outside. To many merchants, guards and traps are something meant for the front entrance and first floor, not the balcony outside the master bedroom. Other acrobats are members of bardic troupes, having learned their talents from masters who used them to entertain the audiences. While the acrobat's art can inspire and amaze, it is a potent weapon when directed against his enemies.

Races: Capsin and kreen readily take to the acrobat's art. Scylgris skinks also excel as acrobats. Humans occasionally serve as entertainers and performers in traveling troupes, unable to find any other place to fit into society. Aegar occasionally become acrobats, finding their skills useful in their mountainous home. Other races seldom become acrobats, and elves, half-elves, and forged acrobats simply do not exist.

Using Acrobats: Acrobats are suggested for use primarily in an urban campaign as an alternative to the monk. Monks in Playground are rare and usually limited to remote monasteries, making such martial artists significantly rare in most cities. Monks are usually quiet, serene individuals who find contemplation and cloistered isolation preferable to a city's frenetic hustle. The acrobat meets or surpasses the monk's capacity for speed and maneuverability within a city, filling the roll of a striker quite nicely. As such, it is suggested that the DM allow either acrobats or monks but not both. A character should not be able to have levels in both classes, as acrobat can be considered a monk variant much as a specialist wizard can not multiclass with a generalist wizard.
    In Playground, Lodge Luminous is the primary trainer and employer of acrobats, using their talents where psionic prowess is lacking. The shadow organization known only as The Guild also employs a significant number of acrobats, though they generally prefer to utilize rogues. As well, there are a few groups of traveling entertainers in Ramua who may support a small number of acrobats.


The Acrobat

Base FortRefWill Speed AC
Level Attack Bonus SaveSaveSave Special Bonus Bonus
1st +0 +0+2+0 Acrobatic maneuver, quarterstaff affinity,
 whirling strike +1/+0
+0 ft. +1
2nd +1 +0+3+0 Uncanny dodge +0 ft. +1
3rd +2 +1+3+1 Whirling strike +1/+1d6 +10 ft. +1
4th +3 +1+4+1 Acrobatic maneuver, evasion +10 ft. +2
5th +3 +1+4+1 Whirling strike +2/+1d6 +10 ft. +2
6th +4 +2+5+2 Improved uncanny dodge +20 ft. +2
7th +5 +2+5+2 Acrobatic maneuver, whirling strike +2/+2d6 +20 ft. +3
8th +6/+1 +2+6+2 Bonus Feat +20 ft. +3
9th +6/+1 +3+6+3 Whirling strike +3/+2d6 +30 ft. +3
10th +7/+2 +3+7+3 Acrobatic maneuver, improved evasion +30 ft. +4
11th +8/+3 +3+7+3 Whirling strike +3/+3d6 +30 ft. +4
12th +9/+4 +4+8+4 Bonus Feat +40 ft. +4
13th +9/+4 +4+8+4 Acrobatic maneuver, whirling strike +4/+3d6 +40 ft. +5
14th +10/+5 +4+9+4 Bonus Feat +40 ft. +5
15th +11/+6/+1 +5+9+5 Whirling strike +4+/4d6 +50 ft. +5
16th +12/+7/+2 +5+10+5 Acrobatic maneuver +50 ft. +6
17th +12/+7/+2 +5+10+5 Whirling strike +5/+4d6 +50 ft. +6
18th +13/+8/+3 +6+11+6 Bonus Feat +60 ft. +6
19th +14/+9/+4 +6+11+6 Acrobatic maneuver, whirling strike +5/+5d6 +60 ft. +7
20th +15/+10/+5 +6+12+6 Bonus Feat +60 ft. +7

Game Rule Information

Acrobats have all the following game statistics.

Abilities: Dexterity is critical to an acrobat's survival, since it governs his ability to use his unique attack and defense maneuvers. A good strength serves to improve the acrobat's attacks and some of his skills, most notably Jump.
Alignment: Any
Hit Die: d8

Class Skills: The acrobat's class skills (and the key ability for each) are Balance (Dex), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Escape Artist (Dex), Hide (Dex), Jump (Str), Move Silently (Dex), Perform (Cha), Profession (Wis), Swim (Str), Tumble (Dex), and Use Rope (Dex). See Chapter 4: Skills in the Player's Handbook for skill descriptions.
Skill Points at 1st level: (4 + Int modifier) x 4.
Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 4 + Int modifier.

Class Features
All of the following are class features of the acrobat.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Acrobats are proficient with all simple weapons, plus the rapier, sap, and short sword and with light armor but not with shields.

AC Bonus (Ex): With their excellent speed and agility, acrobats are able to slip away from sword blows, dodge arrows, and evade attacks. They gain a dodge bonus to their AC based on their level. An acrobat gains this AC bonus only when wearing light or no armor and carrying no more than a light load.

Speed Bonus (Ex): Acrobats train to move in quick bursts of speed, using the terrain and their athletic ability to outmaneuver their enemies. During combat and other tactical situations, the acrobat uses the improved speed listed for his level. An acrobat may use this ability only when wearing light or no armor and carrying no more than a light load.

Acrobatic Maneuvers (Ex): Acrobats learn a wide range of special dodges, tumbles, and strikes that combine to make them effective fighters. In battle, they rely on speed and agility to overwhelm their enemies rather than raw strength. These special maneuvers are the heart of their fighting style. An acrobat may use their acrobatic maneuvers only when wearing light or no armor and carrying no more than a light load. When an acrobat gains a new acrobatic maneuver, he may choose from any of the maneuvers for which he meets the prerequisites.

Fleet of Foot: The acrobat can make twists and turns while running. He gains FeatsF#FleetOfFoot Fleet of Foot as a bonus feat, even if he does not meet the prerequisites.

Trap Dodger: The acrobat's speed and senses are so refined that he can easily avoid mechanical and magical traps. When forced to make a Reflex save to avoid a trap's effects, he may replace his saving throw with a Tumble skill check. If the check succeeds against the trap's DC, the acrobat makes his save.

Rapid Climb: Prerequisites: 3rd level.
    The acrobat can scale surfaces with such speed that he appears to run up the side of a wall. When climbing, the acrobat moves at twice his normal climb speed. Furthermore, the acrobat can take part of one of his move actions to traverse a wall or other relatively smooth vertical surface if he begins and ends his move on a horizontal surface. The height he can achieve on the wall is limited only by this movement restriction. If he does not end his move on a horizontal surface, he falls prone, taking falling damage as appropriate for his distance above the ground. Treat the wall as a normal floor for the purpose of measuring his movement. Passing from floor to wall or wall to floor costs no movement; he can change surfaces freely. Opponents on the ground can make attacks of opportunity as he moves up the wall.
    An acrobat can take other move actions in conjunction with moving along a wall. For instance, the Spring Attack feat allows him to make an attack from the wall against a foe standing on the ground who is within the area he threatens; however, if the acrobat is somehow prevented from completing his move, he falls. Likewise, he could tumble along the wall to avoid attacks of opportunity. An acrobat may not tumble when moving from floor to wall or wall to floor.

Superior Charge: Prerequisites: 3rd level.
    The acrobat's speed and agility allow him to charge without dropping his defenses. He no longer suffers the -2 penalty to AC normally incurred when using the charge action.

Power Leap: Prerequisites: 7th level.
    The acrobat's strength and agility are so great that he can jump much farther than normal. His maximum speed no longer limits the distance he may jump.

Agile Landing: Prerequisites: 9th level.
    The acrobat suffers only half the damage he would normally talk from a fall. Take this reduction into account after using any skills or abilities to reduce falling damage.

Tumbling Strike: Prerequisites: 10th level.
    The acrobat learns to dodge and leap around his opponent's attacks, allowing him to maneuver around an opponent to strike him from behind. If the acrobat begins his move in an opponent's threatened area, he may use a move action as normal to move anywhere else within that threatened area without drawing attacks of opportunity from that one foe. If the acrobat attempts to leave the threatened area, he is subject to attacks of opportunity as normal. The acrobat may combine this ability with Fleet of Foot.

Death From Above: Prerequisites: 16th level.
    The acrobat masters the ability to dive and tumble into his foes from above. The acrobat may leap down upon an opponent to attack. He takes falling damage as normal, but he inflicts 1d6 additional points of bonus damage per 10 feet he falls if his attack hits. A death from above attack gains a +4 competence bonus to hit due to its unexpected nature and brutal force. An acrobat can combine this maneuver with his rapid climb ability by simply ending his move directly above an opponent. Whether the attack hits or misses, the acrobat ends his attack prone. This maneuver counts as a standard action. It cannot be combined with a full attack action.

Supreme Agility: Prerequisites: 19th level.
    The acrobat moves with such speed and agility that he never sustains attacks of opportunity due to movement. Furthermore, he may combine a full attack action with a standard move, allowing him to make his iterative attacks in any order he chooses at any point during his move. This ability counts as a full-round action.

Acrobat
Quarterstaff Affinity (Ex): The acrobat gains the use of Two-Weapon Fighting when fighting with a quarterstaff as a double weapon. Acrobats have a natural affinity for the quarterstaff, as they use it to help balance when traversing tightropes or to give them an additional boost when attempting a high jump. When carrying a quarterstaff, the acrobat gains a +2 circumstance bonus to all Balance, Jump, and Tumble checks. Additionally, if an acrobat has the Weapon Finesse feat, he may apply it to his quarterstaff.

Whirling Strike (Ex): The acrobat's speed and agility allow him to make sudden, rapid attacks that confuse his opponent's defenses and allow him to make telling blows with his attacks. If the acrobat flanks an opponent, he gains a +1 competence bonus on attack rolls in addition to the normal flanking bonus. This bonus increases by 1 for every four levels gained above 1st (+2 at 5th, +3 at 9th, +4 at 13th, and +5 at 17th level).
    At 3rd level, an acrobat also deals an extra 1d6 damage to enemies he flanks. This extra damage increases by 1d6 for every four
levels gained above 3rd (2d6 at 7th, 3d6 at 11th, 4d6 at 15th, and 5d6 at 19th level).
    The acrobat does not gain the attack bonus against flatfooted opponents or those who have lost their Dexterity bonus to AC, unless they are also flanked.

Uncanny Dodge (Ex): Starting at 2nd level, an acrobat can react to danger before his senses would normally allow him to do so. He retains his Dexterity bonus to AC (if any) even if he is caught flat-footed or struck by an invisible attacker. However, he still loses his Dexterity bonus to AC if immobilized.
    If an acrobat already has uncanny dodge from a different class, he automatically gains improved uncanny dodge (see below) instead.

Improved Uncanny Dodge (Ex): An acrobat of 6th level or higher can no longer be flanked; he can react to opponents on opposite sides of himself as easily as he can react to a single attacker. This defense denies another acrobat the ability to use whirling strike on the acrobat by flanking him, unless the attacker has at least four more acrobat levels than the target does.
    If an acrobat already has uncanny dodge (see above) from a second class, the character automatically gains improved uncanny dodge instead, and the levels from the classes that grant uncanny dodge stack to determine the minimum acrobat level required to flank the character.

Evasion: At 4th level, an acrobat gains evasion. He can avoid even magical and unusual attacks with great agility. If he makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save (such as a red dragon's fiery breath or a fireball), he instead takes no damage. Evasion can be used only if the acrobat is wearing light armor or no armor. A helpless acrobat (such as one who is unconscious or paralyzed) does not gain the benefit of evasion.

Bonus Feats: At 8th, 12th, 14th, 18th and 20th levels, the acrobat gains a bonus feat. This feat may be taken from any of the following: Feats#AcrobaticLeaper Acrobatic Leaper, Acrobatic Strike (PHB2), Feats#AcrobaticSwinging Acrobatic Swinging, Feats#AgileAthlete Agile Athlete, Blind-Fight (PHB), Combat Acrobat (PHB2), Combat Expertise (PHB), Combat Reflexes (PHB), Dodge (PHB), Improved Disarm (PHB), Improved Initiative (PHB), Improved Trip (PHB), Leap Attack (PHB), Mobility (PHB), Feats#Roofwalker Roofwalker (City), Run (PHB), Feats#Sidestep Sidestep, Spring Attack (PHB), Feats#Sprinter Sprinter, Weapon Finesse (PHB), and Whirlwind Attack (PHB).

Improved Evasion (Ex): At 10th level, the acrobat is so agile that he gains an improved ability to evade attacks. This ability works like evasion, except that while the acrobat still takes no damage on a successful Reflex saving throw against attacks such as a dragon's breath weapon or a fireball, henceforth he henceforth takes only half damage on a failed save. A helpless acrobat (such as one who is unconscious or paralyzed) does not gain the benefit of improved evasion.




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