Monday, September 3, 2012

Thieves aboard the Appolyon

I've been working on this post for quite a while, and frankly it's overdo for my Apollyon players.Below are the skills that Specialist's aboard the HMS Apollyon can train in and gain skills in.  Specialists begin with 5 skill points (with a limit of 2 maximum on a skill to start) and advance at a rate of 3 points per level, but a limit of spending 2 maximum on a skill.

Specialists Aboard the Apollyon

Most Scavengers are not dedicated warriors, magicians or infused with divine power, most are jack of all trades who have a wide variety of valuable skills,  These specialists take on a variety of roles, from light fighters and assassins to thieves, explorers and even learned antiquarians.  I have tried to make the skill set varied enough to include mountebanks, medical students, false priests, wayward sorcerer's apprentices, animal handlers, researchers and engineers - All of whom might find themselves in the hull.

Note: Rules for Fighters are HERE
while rules for Magic Users are HERE

Duelist - Specialists in fighting a single enemy with one-handed weapons, duelist skills are typically gained by gladiators and aficionados of the wealthier fighting academies alike. Duelist skills only work when the Duelist is faced with a single opponent that may attack them that round. Defending, or even considering defending against multiple enemies robs a duelist of the concentration needed to use his skills effectively.
LVL Duelist
1 Duelist - Duelists' reliance on accuracy and speed means they may elect to use their DEX bonus in place of their STR bonus for the purposes of melee to hit and damage. Additionally, duelists are experts at sudden strikes to the vitals of an enemy and hit critically on a 19 or 20.
2 Anticipation - Skilled duelists develop the ability to predict an opponents next move, and so gain a +1 bonus to AC and a +1 bonus to Initiative.
3 Cold Blooded - The Duelist remains calm in battle and strikes with the intent of killing his enemies as quickly as possible +1 Damage.
4 Uncanny Speed - The specialist's rigorous training has made her unnaturally fast and she now strikes with +1 hit and gains a +1 to Initiative.
5 Lethal Strikes - The specialist has become an advanced student of anatomy and terrifyingly accurate and now receives a critical strike on any roll above 16. Additionally, a hit roll of a natural 20 will kill any opponent with HD less than that of the duelist.
6 Kinetic Sense - The Duelist has developed abnormal situational and kinetic awareness and can use duelist skills even when fighting up to two plus his Dexterity bonus number of opponents.

Pugilist - These Specialists are practiced unarmed combat and their skills are only effective when they are not wielding any weapon (fist weapons might be allowable under some circumstances). This discipline includes bare knuckle pit fighters and agile ninja types.
LVL Pugilist
1 Fisticuffs – Specialist is able to strike opponents with her hands and feet for 1D4 damage + STR bonus per attack.
2 Grappling - The Specialist has become an expert in wrestling, dirty fighting and crippling his opponents. If the Specialist elects to grapple an enemy he will do only 1D2 damage on a successful strike, but will prevent the enemy from attacking that round as they struggle. While grappling the pugilist is easier to hit and suffers a 1 point penalty to AC.
3 Toughness - Specialist has become used to the pain of combat +1 HP per Level.
4 Nimble - Specialist is Nimble and gains +1 bonus to AC when wearing any armor that they have the skill "Efficient Use" in.
5 Stunning Blows - On a successful strike the opponent of the pugilist is stunned and will strike at -1 to hit plus an additional -1 to hit for every point of Strength bonus the Specialist has. Additionally a pugilist with this level of training will do 1D6 points of damage + STR bonus per attack.
6 Deadly Blows - The Specialist knows the secrets of deadly pressure points and spine snapping holds and on a to hit roll of a natural 20 will kill any opponent with HD equal to or below his own. Pugilists of this level of ability also gain +1 attack per round.

Two Weapons - A specialization that depends on the use of two one handed weapons being wielded, one in each hand. Both hands may wield any one-handed weapon as limited by the below skill chart.
LVL Dual Weapon Skills
1 Basic Skill - Specialist may use a large weapon in the dominant hand and a small or medium weapon in the other hand. If the main weapon attack misses, Specialist receives an additional attack at -1 to hit with the secondary weapon.
2 Defensive Weapon - Specialist can adopt a defensive stance with their off-hand weapon and will gain a 1 point bonus to AC when doing so. The off-hand weapon cannot be used to attack if used defensively.
3 Feint - The Specialist can use their off hand weapon to feint or distract an enemy, receiving a +1 (+1 an additional +1 for every DEX over 15/max +3) with a strike from their main weapon. May not use other striking or Defensive options with this skill.
4 Balanced Use - Specialist has become effectively ambidextrous and may use any one-handed weapon in either hand without penalty. Always receives an off-hand weapon attack, even when first attack hits.
5 Flowing Blows - Specialist's blows flow into each other in a complicated pattern of constant attacks. Specialist may use attacks to strike multiple targets and gains + 1 Attack per round.
6 Two Weapon Mastery - Specialist is a master of dual weapon combat, all strikes are at +1 to hit when using two weapons and critical hit chance is increase to a natural 18,19 or 20. If using a weapon defensively Specialist gains an additional +1 AC (beyond Defensive Weapon Bonus)

Firearms - Familiarity and practice with firearms generally makes the gunman more accurate and efficient using any kind of powder and shot weapon.
LVL Firearms
1 Basic Training - A deeper understanding and familiarity with firearms allows the specialist to conduct preventative maintenance and avoid overcharging weapons. Any misfire or fumble will simply be a jam rather than an explosion. Friendly fire is still possible.
2 Marksmanship - The specialist is a trained shootist. +1 to hit.
3 Quickdraw - The specialist can fire multiple shots quickly and without a loss of accuracy. The shooter gains +1 to initiative, +1 shot per round with multi-shot weapons and +1 aimed shot with automatic weapons.
4 Sniper - The shooter's aiming skills are incredible, an additional +1 to hit. When braced and having at least 2 rounds to prepare the Specialist receives an additional bonus of +1 damage per die for the first shot (Counts towards exploding damage).
5 Two Gun Mojo/Fast Reload - The gun has become and extension of the Specialist's self. Two pistols may be used simultaneously without any penalty and when reloading the shooter may do it in 1/2 the time.
6 Dead-Eye - The uncanny, and perhaps supernatural ability of the shooter to place bullets into the vitals of her enemies. A natural 20 will kill any opponent of up to equal HD to the specialist, and do x3 damage to all others. Specialist receives an additional +1 damage (this is counted for exploding damage purposes).

Missile Weapons – Specialists and Froglings often specialize in muscle powered missile weapons, from thrown axes, daggers, harpoons and spears to bows and crossbows. The abilities below may only be used with missile weapons, but become quite lethal as skill increases.
LVL Missile Weapons
1 Trained - The Specialist has trained extensively with missile weapons and gains +1 to damage due to the accuracy of his attacks with them. Additionally he knows how to use special shot (such as flaming arrows) if it is available.
2 Marksmanship - Additional training focused on hitting moving target allows the specialist +1 to hit with missile weapons.
3 Quick Shot - Specialist can fire or throw missile weapons more quickly than most without a loss of accuracy and gains +1 attack/per round with missile weapons.
4 Crippling Shot - The Specialist can shoot to injure and cripple. At the Specialist's request a shot can be used to damage and tangle an enemy's shield (-1 to AC) or to otherwise interfere with his fighting ability (-1 to enemy to hit). These shots do 1/2 damage and can only be used once per enemy.
5 Deadly Shot - The uncanny, and perhaps supernatural ability of the Specialist to place her shots into the vitals of her enemies. A natural 20 will kill any opponent of up to equal HD to the Specialist, and do x3 damage to all others. Specialist receives an additional +1 damage.
6 Uncanny Aim - Any natural roll over 15 cause a critical hit (assuming it hits at all) as the Specialist's missile seem to seek the vital organs of his targets with unerring accuracy.

Assassin Not all killing is fighting, and Assassins specialize in the cold art of murder. They are generally distrusted, but their abilities are also sought. While much of what Assassins do is inapplicable to real combat, certain skill shave overlap, and Assassins can become deadly fighters, even if it is simply because they lack any hesitation towards killing.
LVL Assassin
1 Back stab – The Assassin may attack an opponent from behind, and inflict X3 damage when she does so. This may be accomplished by stealth, subterfuge or targeting an enemy who is distracted by another attacker.
2 Assassination – When undetected or unexpected the assassin may make a sudden strike that kills any human/humanoid target if it hits. Targets with HD higher than the Assassin are allowed a save vs. Death to take backstab damage.
3 Schemer – Long practice planning and plotting the details of assassination operations has given the Assassin practiced reasoning skills. +1 Intelligence.
4 Deadly Strikes – Assassin has no mercy or sense of proportion when it comes to killing and will cause a critical strike on a 17,18,19 or 20 (assuming these rolls hit).
5 Anatomy - The Assassin's knowledge of anatomy has increased to the point that their critical hits are unusually effective doing 3x damage and their backstab likewise increase to 4x damage.
6 Killshot – Specialist may now Assassinate targets with ranged weapons, killing any human/humanoid target on a successful hit. Targets with HD higher than the Assassin are allowed a save vs. Death to take backstab damage.

Light Armor - Training in the use of light armor mostly focuses on making up for its defects. Light armor includes: padded, leather, scale, chain and banded armors as well as back and breast plate. Again these skills only apply when wearing light armor.
LVL Light Armor
1 Efficient Use - Allows the use of light armor without movement penalty and allows the fighter to move and act almost as easily as would unarmored. With this skill a Specialist may even swim in light armor, though diving and actual combat in armor in any armor heavier than leather is still penalized.
2 Nimble - Specialist is Nimble and gains +1 to AC when wearing any armor that they have the skill "Efficient Use" in.
3 Quickness - With the added protection of his armor the Specialist is still quick enough to better able to avoid magical and other unexpected attacks, gaining a +1 to all saving throws.
4 Deflection - The Specialist has learned the art of taking blows on the reinforced portions of his armor and gains a 1 point bonus to AC.
5 Rapid Attack - A trained Specialist in light armor may attack more quickly than a Specialist in heavy armor could ever believe possible, +1 Attack every two rounds.
6 Endurance - Long use of even light armor will harden a person, and the Specialist gains +1 HP per HD.

Agility - These skills are for Specialists who specialize in fast and agile melee using quickness and accuracy rather than brawn.
LVL Agility
1 Fast - Specialist is quick, gaining +1 to Initiative.
2 Acrobatic - Specialist is capable of acrobatic leaps and similar feats, while there is some general utility to this skill, the most practical combat use is the ability to quickly leap back from combat
3 Nimble - Specialist is Nimble and gains +1 to AC when wearing any armor that they have the skill "Efficient Use" in.
4 Quickness - Specialist can use his speed and agility to dodge or avoid most attacks including magical attacks and gains +1 to all saving throws. Specialist may also opt to use DEX bonus instead of STR for melee to hit and damage bonuses.
5 Disarm - Using her agility the Specialist can opt disarm an enemy on a critical hit. This attack will only work on opponents with a weapon, and will reduce them to unarmed attack until they can recover their weapon.
6 Flowing Strikes - At this level of skill each of the Specialist's strikes is a set up for the next and she can attack far quicker than all but the most skilled, + 1 Attack.


Swimming – The ability to act under or in the water very useful aboard the Apollyon, as many of the decks are flooded, and many other areas contain submerged areas.
LVL Swimming
1 Swimming – Swimmer can move in the water without making a Strength check for long periods of time.
2 Diving -The Swimmer may dive and move underwater without additional penalty and more submerged at their normal swimming rate.  The Swimmer also becomes proficient with simple breathing equipment such as snorkels.
3 Submerged Combat – Swimmer may act normally to attack and defend in a watery environment without penalty. Swimmer may even wear and fight in any armor they has the skill of “Efficent Use” in.
4 Deep Breathing – Specialist has learned secrets of diving and may stay submerged for for their Con value of rounds without air.  The Swimmer's CON value also increases by 1.
5 Advanced Swimming – Specialist is an incredibly strong Swimmer and may swim at their normal movement rate for their Con worth of rounds, before returning to their normal ½ movement rate for at least 4 turns.
6 Water Mastery – Swimmer is so accustomed to being in water that they are more aquatic than not and receive a +1 to all rolls while swimming

Climbing – Acrobatic climbing skill far beyond the normal ability of even a practiced climber, this skill allows the Specialist to make their way up sheer surfaces, silently and without tools (though proper tools provide a +1 bonus)
LVL Climbing
1 Basic Climbing – Thief may climb smooth or sheer surfaces n a 1 in 6 chance.
2 Practiced Climbing – Thief may climb smooth or sheer surfaces on a 2 in 6 chance. Additionally thief has become skilled at the use of climbing gear and any climbing route they set up will give a bonus equal to the thief climbing skill to other climbers.
3 Strengthened Sinews – Long practice in climbing difficult surfaces has increased the thief's Strength by one point.
4 Adept Climbing - Thief may climb smooth or sheer surfaces on a 3 in 6 chance.
5 Expert Climbing - Thief may climb smooth or sheer surfaces on a 4 in 6 chance.
6 Master Climbing – Thief may climb smooth or sheer surfaces on a 5 in 6 chance. Additionally thief has learned to fall gracefully and will take no damage for falls up to 40'.

Survival – Survival is the ability to do without and to find what is needed in the wilderness, without regard to the nature of that wilderness – from tundra to jungle, to cyclopean decaying sea vessel, a skilled survivalist will be able to find food, shelter and water.
LVL Survival
1 Basic Survival – The Survivalist can find food, shelter and water in almost any environment and will do so on a 1 in 6 chance (with bonuses or penalties depending on the resources of the specific environment). Each additional person who requires food and shelter will penalize the Specialist.
2 Tracking – The Survivalist can track creatures or men over wild ground (but will be penalized in dungeon corridors) and determine the number, direction and health of his quarry. All tracking skills require a Survival Skill check – which is now at 2 in 6.
3 Detect Poison – Knowledge of wild foods and animal poisons has given the Survivalist the ability to determine is something is poisonous with a Wisdom check. This skill does not work on magical poisons. The Specialist now also has a 3 in 6 chance with survival skills
4 Toughness – Long privation and rough living has toughened the Specialist increasing CON by 1. In addition the Suvivialist now can find food shelter and water on a 4 in 6.
5 Awareness – The Specialist’s instincts have been honed by long time in the wilds, and they, nor any party with them, can no longer be surprised.
6 Herbalism – In any environment the Specialist can discover natural remedies to many ailments. On a successful survival room (now raised to 5 out of 6) the Specialist can slow poison or provide first aid that heals 1D6 points of damage to a wounded comrade.

Stealth – Many Specialists find stealth important to survival. If the goal is to find and collect item of value, sneaking past monsters and beasts is far more desirable than confronting them.
LVL Stealth
Concealment – on a roll of 1 in 6 the Specialist may conceal himself in almost any environment (even fairly bare locations). He may also move silently with the same chance of success
Silent Climbing – The Specialist's general stealth skill increases to 2 in 6, and she is now capable of climbing walls, ropes and ladders silently and/or unseen.
Aquatic Stealth – On a successful Stealth check (now a 3 in 6 chance) the Specialist may even move unseen and silently through water, swimming or wadding.
Dexterous – Hiding and Sneaking has given the Specialist a great deal of poise and muscle control, increasing Dexterity by 1.
Detect Hidden – The Specialist may apply her stealth abilities to spotting others who are concealing themselves (though this will not detect traps or secret doors). The Specialist's Stealth roll is now 4 in 6.
6 Shadow Walker – The Specialist's skills of concealment are so great the his stealth roll is now 5 in 6.

Animal Handling – Animal companions are invaluable within the hull, they can carry supplies, generally have better senses than humans and can fight, some with incredible ferocity. Yet to control and care for more than one beast in the complex situation
LVL Animal Handling
1 Animal Handler – Handler is able to handle 2 + LVL of regular (1-2 HD) war beasts and/or a string of up to 5 + LVL of pack beasts.
2 Evaluate Animals– Handler knows how to evaluate and train warbeasts and any normal beast purchased will have maximum HP for its type. Beasts with greater than 2HD will gain a +1 HP per HD.
3 Large Animal Handler – Pack Handler may now handle beast of greater size and ferocity, including any domesticated warbeast up to Handler's own HD. 2+LVL of Beasts may be controlled.
4 Trainer – The Pack Handler may train his beast to get the best from their breed. All beasts in his possession gain +1 hit and +1 Damage.
5 Beast Handler – Pack Handler has the skill and empathy to train and handle strange and unusual beast that have been subdued – Beasts must have less HD than handler and handler must take 1 week per HD of the beast and pass a Wisdom check in order to successfully tame a beast, even after it is subdued.
6 Animal Companion – The Pack Handler has become more comfortable around animals than around other sentients and has developed a special relationship with one special creature. These creature will have the same HD as the handler and attacks for +2 damage, it is remarkably intelligent and communicate with the Handler almost as well as if the two could speak.

Awareness – Working within the hull and facing it's myriad dangers can put a person on edge. This isn't always a bad thing, as a specialist with keen skills of observation can detect things others miss. Traps, Secret doors, Sloping chambers and Concealed treasures can all be noticed with this skill.
LVL Awareness
1 Caution - The Specialist is an extra cautious person and on a roll of 1 in 6 will notice things others wouldn't – hidden doors, gentle slopes in the floor, strange footprints. This skill may also be used for listening, when something more than a regular listening roll is required.
2 Observation – The Specialist has become more paranoid and observant and can spot hidden things with a 2 in 6 chance.
3 Quick Reactions – The Specialist is quick on his feet and notices things before others. He will gain a +1 to initiative and can spot the hidden on a 3 in 6.
4 Watchful – Hardly anything escapes the senses of the Specialist, who can now detect hidden on a 4 in 6 chance.
5 Vigilant – The Specialist nor any party with the Specialist may be surprised and the Specialist can spot hidden on a 5 in 6.
6 Sixth Sense – The Specialist has become so attuned to danger that he has an unnatural ability to sense trouble and gains 1 Wisdom to represent this.


Urban Skills 


Hedge Magic – Specialists often pick up a little bit of everything, including magic. While a dabbler will never compete with a trainer wizard, a little magical knowledge can provide an unexpected advantage to a Specialist.
LVL Hedge Magic
1 Defensive Wards – The Specialist hasn't learned to cast spells, but has learned simple precautions to make magic less effective on her. Charms against the evil eye, elemental wards and other mystical bits provide a +1 to all Saves vs. Spells and Wands.
2 Learned - Knowing anything about magic requires a great deal of systematic thinking and often a copious amount of reading.
3 Read Magic – With practice and diligent study the Specialist is able to slowly pick out the meaning from Magical texts and obscure languages and may use scrolls of spells up to 4th Level.
4 Counterspell – Not a proficient caster the Specialist still has enough understanding to distract and stymie the castings of magicians under his level and may counter any spell (using normal counterspell rules) he has read off a scroll or witnessed cast before at a -2.
5 Magic Knowledge – The Specialist has a basic understanding of the practice of magic and can often identify magical works and effects as a mage might. On a successful intelligence check the Specialist can look at a magical effect or item and know that it is magical.
6 Casting – The Specialist has the developed the ability to actually memorize and cast spells. Specialist may now cast Magic – User Spells as a mage of 3 less levels, but is limited to 1st and level spells..

Appraisal – Sometimes knowing the value of salvaged objects is almost as valuable salvaging the objects in the first place.
LVL Appraisal
1 Appraise Gems and Jewelry – The appraiser may appraise valuable metals and stones on a 1 in 6 chance.
2 Art Connoisseurship - The Appraiser can now identify valuable art objects for their artistic content, not simply their material value. Appraisal skill increases to 2 in 6.
3 Antiquities – The Specialist's Appraisal skill goes up to a 3 in 6 chance and they may also value antiquities and other random items of salvage. On a successful appraisal roll, followed by a successful intelligence check the appraiser will be able to determine the nature of the object as well.
4 Forgery – The Appraiser may forge objects that appear to be valuable at 1/10 the cost of the value on a successful appraisal roll, and their appraisal skill increases to 4 in 6. Forgeries may be detected by a successful appraisal roll.
5 Detect Magic – The appraiser is able to detect magical items by examining them closely, on a successful appraisal roll they will also know a small amount about the item's history.
6 Master Appraiser – The Appraiser is highly skilled and can determine the value of almost everything. Appraisal skill is now 5 in 6.

Confidence Artistry – Not all thieves depend on quick fingers and stealth, and many learn that tricking, bluffing and charming a mark or enemy can be just as effective as poisoned knives and ambush attacks. By building the skills of Confidence Artistry a Specialist can become an excellent negotiator and leader as well as a trickster or mountebank.
LVL Confidence Artistry
1 Ingratiating – The Specialist has a gift with people, or has trained to learn the tricks of social interaction and gains +1 Charisma.
2 Intimidation – The Specialist may belittle and demean his enemies , making them doubt their abilities and fear his, and all when he spends at least an entire round doing so his enemies will lose one point of Morale.
3 Disguise – The Confidence Artist has learned to disguise himself as someone else. Those he doesn't know must save vs. spells to determine he is disguised and even those familiar with him must make a successful Wisdom check to determine that the Specialist is disguised.
4 Amiability – The Con Artist is a natural diplomat, or has the ability to project likeability, he is able to talk those he encounters into a better response to him than normal. All reaction rolls will be made at a bonus of one point if the Specialist has a chance to speak to those he encounters.
5 Hypnotism – Through the art of fast talk and compelling narrative, or the use of tiny shiny objects the Specialist may effectively cast hypnotism on 1 intelligent humanoid that can understand her speech.
6 Charming – With concerted effort and a bit of time the Specialist can sweet talk almost anyone. This effect is like the spell charm person, and can be attempted once per session. Of course the target still gets a saving throw.

Tinkering – The Apollyon is an artificial environment, and its people technologically inclined. The ability to interact with and even understand mechanical devices is useful. At the simplest levels of skill it can be used to open locks and disarm mechanical traps, while more advanced tinkers can unwind magical or ancient technological wards and plant or disarm explosives.
LVL Tinkering
1 Handy – The Specialist has an understanding of simple mechanical devices and can pick locks and detect/disarm mechanical traps on a 1 in 6 chance.
2 Jury Rig – The specialists skills with mechanical objects has improved, a simple lock can be picked on 2 in 6 times. Additionally the Specialist may repair damaged equipment using a Dexterity check, and assuming repair is possible.
3 Mechanic – The specialist is a skilled tinker, and has an understanding of machines that allows him to pick locks and detect mechanical traps (even the most complex) 3 in 6 times.
4 Organized Mind – All this messing with fiddly parts has required that the Specialist develop a more organized mind, and she gains +1 Intelligence.
5 Explosives/Arcane Tinker – Through long study and practice the Specialist has learned to apply his skills to magical locks and traps and now has the ability to open simple locks 4 out of 6 times. Additionally the Specialist understands explosives and may set up demolitions and safely build bombs using his Tinkering skill.
6 Engineer – At this point the Specialist is a highly trained engineer, capable of finding and disarming simple traps simple mechanical locks with ease, 5 out of 6 times and is capable detecting the age and nature machines with a simple Wisdom check.

Huckster Faith – Some Specialists turn to religion as a way of dealing with the horrors within the hull. This group contains unschooled true believers, lapsed seminary students, conniving religious con artist and madmen. Still this skil also often allows a Specialist some measure of access to divine power.
LVL Huckster Faith
1 Fractured Faith – The Specialist is a wayward follower or half trained convert of some religion. Still they possess some knowledge of religion and can determine the presence of divine magic or the holiness of objects and people with a Wisdom check.
2 Holy Fool – Despite the Huckster's lack of conventional faith the god's still favor her, and the Specialist gains +1 to all Saves.
3 Sublime – The Specialist has a certain vaguely spiritual charm. Both a calm meditative demeanor and oleaginous charm are encompassed by this skill, which adds 1 CHR.
4 Holy Presence – Despite the dubious nature of the Specialist's faith the gods have endowed him with some level of power and the Specialist may turn undead as a Cleric 2 levels lower and with a -3 to their roll.
5 Firebrand Preacher – For either the purposes of bilking the faithful or earnest, if misguided religious conviction, the Specialist has become an effective lay preacher and may spread the world of his religion, inciting crowds 1D6+LVL people in a crowd (or more if his cause is especially good) to take actions he proposes for the purpose of religion. Saving throws vs. Poison are allowed, and the time that the preacher can whip his followers into a frenzy is limited to a simple task or a few hours.
6 Death Bed Conversion – The Specialist may petition his deity when faced with certain death or an equally terrible situation. A successful Save vs. Death will allow the Huckster to avoid death much of the time through divine intervention. This skills is subjective and the benefit is determined by situation and GM whim. In no case can this skill be used again until the Specialist has accomplished a major question on behalf of the deity petitioned.

Sleight of Hand – A general skill involving manual dexterity. Useful for stealing small objects, picking pockets and magic tricks.
LVL Sleight of Hand
1 Sleight of Hand – The specialist knows the basics of manipulating small objects in a way that cannot be scene or misdirects the view. The Specialist has a 1 in 6 chance of manipulating small objects undetected.
2 Trickster – Chance to manipulate objects undetected increases to 2 in 6.
Legerdemain - Chance to manipulate objects undetected increases to 3 in 6.
4 Quick Fingers - Chance to manipulate objects undetected increases to 4 in 6. Additionally, the Specialist’s skill at Sleight of hand allows him to Rapidly draw or change weapons.
5 Dexterous – Practice at Sleight of hand has increased the Specialist's dexterity by 1 point.
6 Master Trickster – The Specialist’s object manipulation skills are unrivaled and in addition to a 5 in 6 chance of success the Specialist gains +1 hit with thrown weapons or objects.

Poisoncraft – A favorite tool of assassins and hunters is poison, and with the Posioncrafting skill a Specialist may learn to prepare poison to apply to his or her weapons.
LVL Poisoncraft
1 Poison Brewing – The Specialist has learned the basics of preparing poison. The novice poison crafter can make 1D4 doses of poison for 100GP in materials and will succeed on a 1 in 6. The poison is weak and does 1D6 points of damage on a failed save.
2 Poison Identification – The Poisoner has the ability to identify a type of poison used or discovered on a successful poison check and their own poison crafting skill increases to 2 in 6, doing 2D6 points of damage.
3 Toxicology – The Specialist has worked with poison long enough to understand the basics of antidote preparation and may provide any person a 2nd save vs. poison if they spend the rest of the encounter working on the poisoning victim. The save will be rolled at the end of the encounter.
4 Monsterous Poison – The Toxicologist has learned to make poison that is instantly deadly on ingestion, injection or is applied to weapons. This poison may only be obtained from monsters with equally deadly poison and generally in the amount of 1 dose per HD of monster. To make the poison a Poisoncraft check at -2 is required. Poisoncraft Skill increases to 3 in 6 (3D6 damage).
5 Poison Mastery - The Specialist has mastered the dangerous are of poison-crafting and may now make poison successfully 4 in 6 times. The Specialist's poison does 4D6 points of damage.
6 Poison Immunity – The Poison craftsmen has been exposed to so many toxins over the years that they are immune to natural poisons. Magical poisons will still effect them. Their poisons skill also increases to 5 in 6 and poison they create does 5D6 points of damage.

Medicine – The specialist has learned the skill of medicine or other non-magical healing and aid. With this skill a Specialist will often increase their value to their fellows dramatically as they are able to save them from injury and harm.
LVL Medicine
1 First Aid - The specialist has learned enough about health and injury to be more effective at rendering first aid. When the Specialist attempts to aid others her attempts to do so provide 1D6 points of healing rather than 1D4.
2 Medical Knowledge – The Doctor may on a successful medical check diagnose the negative effects, cures and likely course of serious injuries, diseases and poisons. This may help in finding antidotes and the like.
3 Surgery – Through battlefield Surgery a Doctor may prevent death, and on a successful roll (given the rest of the encounter and 1D6 turns afterward to operate) restore a party member who is at negative HP (but not dead) to 0 HP
4 Toxicology – The Specialist is now skilled enough to attempt to arrest the effect of poison. If the Specialist works on a poisoned individual for the rest of the encounter after they have failed a save, the victim may make another saving throw to only be rendered unconscious.
5 Anatomy – Knowledge of the body's systems and anatomy allow the specialist to strike vital areas more effectively. Critical hits are now achieved on a natural 19 or 20.
6 Epidemiology – The Doctor has an understanding of disease and may attempt to cure disease on a successful Intelligence check. If the check is successful the victim receives

Umber Brides, a mysterious group of Assassins


  1. Holy crap, that's a lot of skills!

    Some of these are shared with other classes, right? It might be useful to call out the specialist-only skills (if there are any).

    Another suggestion: for the skills that use specialist-style X in 6 chances, it would probably be least confusing if the X always corresponded to the skill level, with 6 in 6 failure occurring on a double 6 roll (as in LotFP). Example: climbing 4 has a 3 in 6 chance.

    A big master table that you could roll on would be helpful for people like me with a super short attention span.

    You should totally collect all of these into a pdf some time. Digest sized, one per page would be perfect.

  2. @ Brendan. There is overlap with some classes - well Fighters. Most are uniquely Specialist skills (though con artist & medicine may get on the Cleric list).

    I intentionally have skills on go to 5 in 6 and the non - point levels are intentional breaks/barriers.

    A pdf is on the way but behind some projects finishing frogling & monkey classes and cleric list prior. A page should be up with links to all Apollyon stuff later.

    Any thought on the skills is much appreciated - I wanted to provide builds beyond lick picking skulker and backstabbing ninja.

  3. Survival seems a little weak, as does Appraisal. I'd add an ability bonus to the Appraisal tree- dunno how to fix Survival off the top of my head. Medicine could use a boost too- maybe swap the critical increase lower and add a Wisdom bonus later. Is Swimming:2 intended to be a straight copy of Agility:2? Con Artist:6 could lose the 1/session limit, but add "anyone seeing the Con Artist use his charm person ability on a third party is uncharmed and gets a +4 stacking save bonus on any further Con Artist attempts?" I do have a personal bias against dissociated mechanics.

    Toxicology's awfully expensive- I'd never use the level one ability, since I can get four doses of 1d6 poison for just 60 GP in the Rust Gate shops. Assassin:6 still needs to be a sneak attack, right? Unclear from the text provided.

    Beyond these nitpicks, though, these are really evocative. You've pulled out what's good and character-developing about skills and feats and taken away the minutiae and overplanning.

  4. Eric, Thanks for the in depth look at these.

    1. I am pretty happy with Appraisal and Survival - Survival gives most old ranger abilities, while Appraisal ultimately provides: Detect Magic, Identify and forgery at will. Likewise the CHR and reaction bonuses on Con Artist are going to make Charm Person a secondary ability.

    2. I'm not aiming for balance actually, some skills are clearly better than others. Min Maxing isn't really my concern.

    3. Swimming has been fixed, thanks for catching that.

    4. The issue with poison is that Sick Lichen (available for sale) is a ingested poison, while toxicologist's poison can coat weapons.