Fantasy Locations: The Crossroads

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The Crossroads

The Crossroads is a settlement located in a nexus where multiple lower planes entangle with each other and the mortal realms. Here envoys from various fiendish powers try to out do each other, mortal adventurers supply before forays into some of the darkest parts of the multiverse and recuperate afterwards, and the most ruthless and callous mercenaries offer their services to the highest bidders.

The Crossroads
N Planar metropolis
Corruption +5; Crime +4; Economy +6; Law +3; Lore +5; Society +3
Qualities magically attuned, notorious, rumormongering citizens, strategic location, tourist attraction, wards
Danger +20

Government Autocracy
Population Unknown, but exceeding 25,000
Notable NPCs
Curator Of The Crossroads (M construct)
The Librarian (N human expert 21)

Base Value 28,800 gp; Purchase Limit 170,000 gp; Spellcasting 10th
Minor Items *; Medium Items 4d4; Major Items 3d4

The Crossroads have many quirks and peculiarities, but the two most important are The Warding and The Interposition. The former is its detrimental nature to denizens of the outer planes, diminishing them in power and making them closer to the visiting mortals. The later is occasional event, when some of the streets of the Crossroads interpose themselves on the various roads of the mortal realms.

The Warding prevents planar powers from taking control of the Crossroads, at least overtly, and force them to use mortals, proxies, and expendable pawns instead. While it does not completely blocks outsiders from entering boundaries of the Crossroads, all outsiders with alignment or elemental subtypes are greatly weakened, suffering penalty equal to half their HD to all attack rolls, weapon damage rolls, saving throws, skill checks, damage reduction, Spell Resistance, fast healing and regeneration values, saving throw DCs of all their abilities, and caster level of all their abilities. They also reduce all their resistances by their full HD value. Mortal beings (animals and humanoids) are granted benefits of magic circle against chaos, evil, good, and law, gaining +2 deflection bonus to AC and +2 resistance bonus to saving throws against attacks and effects of creatures with chaotic, evil, good, or lawful alignment, and suppress effects that would exert control. Planetouched races are neither hindered by the Warding nor gain its protection, along with aberrations, constructs, dragons, fey, magical beasts, monstrous humanoids, oozes, plants, undead, and vermin.

The exact source of the Warding is not know, thought it is often speculated that it is projected by talismans and fetishes often embedded in the walls of building by ghenso, as those creatures are fiercely protective of the buildings of the city. Others claim it is projected and maintained by Curator, though he refuses to comment on queries to that effect.

The Interposition happens at least once a month, in series of cycles that require complex calculations and extensive planar lore to be predicted. During such event, one of the streets of the Crossroads partially overlaps with a road somewhere in the Material Plane, always around the local midnight. During the event, sapient mortals and planetouched races can pass between places or the other way around, during the narrow time window before the connection wanes. Outsiders can pass through only if they gain permission from a creature on the other side, usually via some sort of deal.

Many outsiders, especially weaker ones, risk the effects of the Warding, roaming the streets of the Crossroads with or without the knowledge of the next Interposition, hoping to get a chance to make a deal with a mortal, gain a cultist, capture a soul, or even enter the Material Plane, depending on the circumstances.

Even ignoring those two cosmic qualities, the Crossroads are a mixture of bizarre and mundane. Buildings are constructed in eclectic styles, often incorporating old shacks and external parts added by the denizens to the frames built by ghenso. Often, old buildings have additional stores added later, which might or might not get accepted by ghenso as worthy of future maintenance. Many follow the patterns drawn from the outer planes—black infernal iron can stand side by side with heavenly palace, next to a grove of living treehouses or a burrow.

Some of the denizens are mortals that wandered here accidentally, damned who fled their respective hells and found refuge here, adventurers who stuck, or mercenaries who retired, though majority are native-born descendants of those who came to the Crossroads and stayed here. Planetouched, especially tieflings, and various crossbreeds are common, as are lesser fiends—used to being on the bottom of the social (dis)order—on the run from their superiors and enemies. More powerful fiends and other outsiders are encountered less often, as those are creatures unused to weakness the Warding would bestow on them, though they do appear from time to time, hoping to take advantage of the Interposition.


Monster: Ghenso

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A massive, white furred creature with six limbs, with elongated snout and perky ears, resembling a mix of bear, sloth, and anteater.

CR 10; XP 9,600
N Large Magical Beast
Init +3; Senses darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision, see invisibilityPerception +20

AC 24, touch 12, flat-footed 21 (+3 Dex, +12 natural, –1 size)
hp 126 (12d10+60)
Fort +13, Ref +13, Will +9
DR 5/piercing; Immune charm, compulsion, fear

Speed 20 ft., burrow 20 ft., climb 20 ft.
Melee 4 claws +18 (1d6+7, 19-20/×2), tongue +18 touch (pull)
Space 10 ft.; Reach 10 ft. (15 ft. with tongue)
Special Attacks penetrating claws, pull (tongue, 10 ft.)
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 12th, concentration +12)
Constant—see invisibility

Str 24, Dex 16, Con 20, Int 2, Wis 21, Cha 11
Base Atk +12; CMB +19; CMD 32 (40 vs. trip)
Feats Combat Reflexes, Improved Critical (claws), Lightning Reflexes, Outflank, Power Attack, Shake It Off
Skills Climb +15, Perception +20, Profession (intuitive tinkering) +20

SQ blend in, intuitive tinkering

Blend In (Ex) While not exactly masters of stealth, ghenso presence feels so natural in the Crossroads that they tend to be overlooked unless one is specifically looking for them—in the similar way the stray dogs, half-feral cats, and pigeons are in other cities.

Intuitive Tinkering (Ex) Despite their apparent non-sapience, ghenso seem to be perfectly capable of dealing with repair and maintenance works, having a number of ranks in the requisite Profession skills equal to their HD, and treating them as class skills.

Penetrating Claws (Ex) Ghenso's claws ignore the first 10 points of damage reduction.

Ghenso are lumbering creatures that roam around the Crossroads repairing the buildings, dealing with the maintenance works, and occasionally erecting new constructions. Calm, patient, and mostly unresponsive, they slowly but meticulously take care of their duties with little regard for anything else unless disturbed. While they try to ignore or deal peacefully with interference to their work, they will resort to violence when attacked or when someone is destroying buildings. When fighting, ghenso seem to instinctively group in packs, trying to overwhelm opponents with superior numbers.

Ghenso are know to occasionally grab foodstuff left unsupervised, or even take meals from others, though they never resort to force while doing so, unless attacked themselves.

The exact number of ghenso in the Crossroads is unknown, as they roam across the city dealing with various works in everchanging groups. The only constant is that they seem to avoid the presence of Curator. In fact, they seem to be stopping their work and moving elsewhere when Curator is coming their way. There are rumors of people witnessing new ghenso hatching from the walls of the Crossroads themselves—a statement interpreted by some that the ghenso come from the old prison pockets.


Planar NPC: The Librarian

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The Librarian

A rotund old man wearing simple robes. His few remaining hairs are gray and his face is wrinkled, but his gaze is sharp and inquisitive.

CR 8*; XP 4,800
Male venerable human expert 21/mythic tier 10
LN Medium Humanoid (human, mythic)
Init +7; Senses blindsense 30 ft., true seeingPerception +31

AC 15, touch 10, flat-footed 15 (+5 armor)
hp 98 (21d8)
Fort +7, Ref +7, Will +16
Defensive Abilities hard to kill, immortal, mythic saving throws, recuperation, unstoppable; Immune inhaled poisons, sleep, non-mythic compulsions, curses, and diseases

Speed 30 ft.
Melee unarmed strike +12 (1d3–3 nonlethal)
Special Attacks amazing initiative, mythic power (15/day, surge +1d12)

Str 10, Dex 10, Con 10, Int 40, Wis 18, Cha 13
Base Atk +15; CMB +15; CMD 25
Feats AlertnessM, Extra Mythic PowerM, Lucky SurgeM, Maximize SurgeM, Potent SurgeM, Skill Focus (all knowledges)
Skills Appraise +36, Craft (books) +36, Diplomacy +22, Heal +24, Knowledge (arcana) +45, 
Knowledge (dungeoneering) +45, Knowledge (engineering) +45, Knowledge (geography) +45, Knowledge (history) +45, Knowledge (local) +45,   Knowledge (nature) +45, Knowledge (nobility) +45, Knowledge (planes) +45, Knowledge (religion) +45, Linguistics +36, Perception +31, Perform (oratory) +24, Profession (scribe) +25, Sense Motive +31, Spellcraft +36, Use Magic Device +22
Language Abyssal, Aklo, Aquan, Auran, Celestial, Common, Draconic, Dwarven, Elven, Giant, Gnoll, Gnome, Goblin, Ignan, Infernal, Nekril, Protean, Sylvan, Terran, and other, more obscure languages
SQ display of Intelligence, enhanced ability (Intelligence), enhanced ability (Wisdom), legendary hero, longevity, mythic sight (×2), mythic sustenance, pure body, pure destiny, sleepless

The Librarian is the Crossroads's foremost loremaster. A mortal man made immortal by his quest for knowledge, he keeps seeking answers to questions that come to him. He is calm, polite, and friendly, though a bit distant man. He shares knowledge he deems common freely, though more esoteric and rare pieces of wisdom will be offered only in exchange for equally exceptional information or a task, usually involving acquiring, confirming, or denying some pieces of established lore, or putting a piece of vital information to practical test. Some of the quests he handles might be jests on his part, though, like when he sent an experienced party to compare the flight speed of some sort of birds... Or he might have been genuinely interested in their capabilities.

* his CR reflects his base-line defensive capabilities, not counting his mythic qualities. His lack of offensive abilities makes this value exaggerated in practice, despite his mythic defenses, though.


Planar NPC: Master Brewer Rootshred

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Master Brewer Rootshred

A bulbous entity that looks like a tangle of roots and branches, with a carefully tended hair-like growth on the upper pair stands behind the bar.

CR 11; XP 12,800
N Medium Plant
Init +0; Senses low-light vision; Perception +3

AC 25, touch 10, flat-footed 25 (+15 natural)
hp 142 (15d8+75)
Fort +14, Ref +7, Will +10
DR 10/slashing and magic; Immune mind-affecting effects, paralysis, poison, polymorph, sleep, stunning; Resist fire 30
Weakness vulnerable to fire

Speed 20 ft.
Melee 2 slams +16 (1d6+5 plus grab), stinger +16 (1d8+5 plus drunkenness)
Special Attacks constrict (1d6+5), spores

Str 20, Dex 10, Con 20, Int 13, Wis 17, Cha 20
Base Atk +11; CMB +16 (+20 grab); CMD 30 (32 vs. trip)
Feats Blind-Fight, Defensive Combat Training, Diehard, Endurance, Iron Will, Lightning Reflexes, Power Attack, Skill Focus (Profession [brewer])
Skills Craft (alchemy) +16, Profession (brewer) +24, Sense Motive +18

Language Abyssal, Celestial, Draconic, Infernal, Protean, Sylvan

Notable Gear greater ring of energy resistance (fire)

Drunkenness (Ex) Master Brewer Rootshred's stinger injects a dose of alcohol equal in potency to 1d3 drinks, or 2d3 on a confirmed critical hit.

Spores (Ex) Drinks and food—ingestion; save Fort DC 22, onset 1 day; frequency 1 day for 7 days, effect the subject doubles his needs for sustenance for the day, cure passage of seven days. Drinks sold by the Master Brewer Rootshred contain spores of his species, for the purpose for their propagation—after seven days of maturation within the drinkers' intestines, they are expelled (in a moderately unpleasant though completely natural way) along with fresh fertilizer. This is a disease effect. The saving throw DC is Constitution-based.

Master Brewer Rootshred is a sapient plant from one of many places in the universe currently residing in the Crossroads. He sells food and alcoholic beverages in his venue, with dryads or maybe dryad-looking plant maids serving as waitresses. What he does not advertises, but also won't deny if asked explicitly (doing otherwise might incur wrath of Curator by explicitly lying about the wares offered), is that the food and the drink contain his own spores, that will mostly harmlessly pass away and take root where expelled, allowing his kind to spread across the planes.


Planar NPC: Fleshtearer Ironclad

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Fleshtearer Ironclad

Shadows and foul vapors surround this lizard riveted in mithral plates.

CR 13; XP 25,600
Awakened deinonychus graveknight fighter 7
NE Medium Undead (augmented)
Init +7; Senses darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision, scent; Perception +35

AC 30, touch 13, flat-footed 27 (+10 armor, +3 Dex, +7 natural)
hp 148 (6d8+7d10+78)
Fort +17, Ref +12, Will +9
Defensive Abilities channel resistance +4, rejuvenation; DR 10/magic; Immune acid, cold, electricity, undead; SR 24

Speed 60 ft.
Melee 2 talons +20 (1d8+10 plus 3d6 acid, 19–20/×2), bite +19 (1d6+8 plus 3d6 acid), foreclaws +14 (1d4+8 plus 3d6 acid)
Special Attacks channel destruction (3d6 acid), devastating blast (3/day, 30-ft. cone, 8d6 acid, DC 21), pounce, undead mastery (DC 21, 65 HD)

Str 21, Dex 16, Con –, Int 15, Wis 16, Cha 20
Base Atk +11; CMB +16; CMD 29
Feats Acrobatic Step, Combat Reflexes, Great Fortitude, Improved Critical (talons), Improved Initiative, Iron Will, Lightning Reflexes, Nimble Moves, Run, Toughness, Weapon Focus (talons), Weapon Specialization (talons)  
Skills Acrobatics +27 (+39 
jump), Intimidate +29, Perception +35, Stealth +27
Language Abyssal, Infernal
SQ armor training 2, weapon training 1 (natural weapons)

Notable Gear +1 mithral full plate (customized to a deinonychus shape), amulet of mighty fists (+2)

Only a twisted mind would think to awaken a vicious deinonychus. Even more twisted mind would fit her with a full plate custom armor made of mithril. A truly fiendish mind would then bind her spirit to her armor turning her into a graveknight for eternity of carnage...

Fleshtearer Ironclad's creator was a fiend, literally, and a mad genius. Created by a daemon as a machine of pure destruction, Fleshtearer remains true to her predatory origins (and her name), and is ready to tear anyone she meets to pieces, but she also developed a side her designer hadn't thought of—curiosity. When she is bored, she is willing to play with her prey, but when her attention is swayed with novelties, puzzles, games, and tricks, she is more than willing to let the others live... As long as they are entertaining. Crossroads is an interesting place, for now, and even when the familiarity will breed inevitable contempt, they will serve as a road to the mortal realms where so many new things will await discovery and so much more prey will await hunting...

Fleshtearer Ironclad has is not particularly interested in binding mindless undead to her will, though she does that occasionally to utilize their opposite thumbs. She is more willing to command sapient undead, though they tend to be boring company offering little entertainment.


Planar NPC: Blood Of Vherl-Shrequohl

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Blood Of Vherl-Shrequohl

A slithering pool of dark crimson ichor, with a vaguely anthropomorphic figure slowly emerging out of it.

CR 10; XP 9,600
N Large Ooze
Init +4; Senses blindsight 60 ft., scent, detect fiendish presencePerception +13

AC 24, touch 9, flat-footed 24 (–1 size, +15 natural)
hp 126 (12d8+72)
Fort +12, Ref +6, Will +11
Defensive Abilities all-around vision, amorphous; DR 10/epic and good; Immune disease, gaze, poison, sleep, paralysis, polymorph, stunning, visual effects; Resist acid 20, cold 20, electricity 20, fire 20
Weakness awakened mind, blind

Speed 10 ft.
Melee 3 slams +18 (1d6+10 plus grab)
Special Attacks consume fiends
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 20th, concentration +20)
Constant—detect fiendish presence
3/day—quickened dispel evil (DC 15), quickened infernal healing

Str 30, Dex 10, Con 22, Int 11, Wis 21, Cha 11
Base Atk +9; CMB +20 (+24 grapple); CMD 30 (cannot be tripped)
Feats Great Fortitude, Improved Initiative, Iron Will, Lightning Reflexes, Quicken Spell-like Ability (dispel evil), Quicken Spell-like Ability (infernal healing)
Skills Knowledge (dungeoneering) +8, Knowledge (planes) +8, Perception +13
Language Unerstands Abyssal, Celestial, Infernal, Protean; limited telepathy 10 ft.
SQ no breath, unholy blood

Awakened Mind (Ex) Blood Of Vherl-Shrequohl is a fully sapient ooze and can be affected with mind-affecting effects.

Consume Fiends (Su) Blood Of Vherl-Shrequohl is capable of dealing with Outsiders with evil subtype easily. Their attacks are treated as cold iron, good, magic, and silver, for purpose of penetrating evil Outsider damage resistance and suppressing their regeneration. When Blood successfully maintains a grapple against an Outsider with evil subtype, it deals 1d4 points of Constitution and Charisma drain and gains 5 temporary hit points. An evil outsider drained to 0 Constitution and Charisma in this way is utterly destroyed and won't reform back on their native plane, until Blood is killed.

Limited Telepathy (Su) Blood Of Vherl-Shrequohl is capable of communicating telepathically with nearby creatures, though unless they share a language, Blood communication is restricted to series of simple images.

Unholy Blood (Su) Blood Of Vherl-Shrequohl is made of demonic ichor. Small samples of this vile substance have magical qualities of demon lords' blood and can be used as potent components in spells and rituals. Blood Of Vherl-Shrequohl can only sustain oneself by consuming blood taken from demons, with one vial being an equivalent of a fitting meal. If Blood is ever killed, the essences of demon lords that formed it will be released and will proceed to reform.

Blood Of Vherl-Shrequol calls the Crossroads their birthplace, their home, and their prison. This oozing sapient pool of demonic ichor formed when blood of two demon lords mixed after they killed each other within the boundaries of the Crossroads. Their hatred of each other trapped their essences within their spilled blood, and yet, their hatred somehow negated each other, forming a new life form, neither fiendish nor semi-divine.

Blood Of Vherl-Shrequol existence is reliant on continued consumption of demon blood and remaining within the boundaries of the Crossroads—its wards suppress the constituent demon lords' essences and prevent them from reforming again back in their realms, unmaking Blood in the process. Blood deals with the first issue either hunting occasional demons that entered the boundaries of the Crossroads or hiring mercenaries to bring demonic blood—paying them with valuable demon lords' ichor.


Planar NPC: Rannfeyrathael

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A slender man, handsome in an androgynous way. The unearthly light of the Crossword tinges his smooth dark blue skin and long silvery hair with a purplish hue. He wears an elegant black trousers made of finest leather and black studded leather vest over a frilled white shirt.

CR 11; XP 12,800
Male drow oracle (life) 12
CN Medium Humanoid (elf)
Init +2; Senses darkvision 120 ft., lifesense 30 ft., detect magicPerception +15

AC 16, touch 12, flat-footed 16 (+4 armor, +2 Dex)
hp 81 (12d8+24)
Fort +9, Ref +9, Will +14; +2 vs. Enchantment
Immune sleep

Speed 30 ft.
Melee rapier +9 (1d6, 18–20/×2)
Special Attacks channel (6d6, 10/day)
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 12th, concentration +19)
Constant—detect magic
At Will—dancing lights, deeper darkness, faerie fire, feather fall, levitate
Oracle Spells (CL 12th, concentration +19)
6th (4)—harm (DC 23), heal (DC 23), mass cure moderate wounds
5th (6)—breath of life, mass cure light wounds (DC 22), mass inflict light wounds (DC 22), plane shift (DC 22)
4th (7)—1, cure critical wounds (DC 21), inflict critical wounds (DC 21), lesser planar ally, restoration, summon monster IV
3rd (8)—blindness/deafness (DC 20), cure serious wounds (DC 20), inflict serious wounds (DC 20), neutralize poison, remove blindness/deafness, remove disease
2nd (8)—cure moderate wounds (DC 19), inflict moderate wounds (DC 18), lesser restoration, levitate, locate portal, make whole, minor image, remove paralysis, summon monster II
1st (8)—bestow planar infusion I, cure light wounds (DC 18), detect undead, endure elements, inflict light wounds (DC 18), remove sickness, shield of faith
0 (at will)—create water, detect fiendish presence, detect poison, ghost sound, guidance, light, mage hand, mending, purify food and drink, spark, stabilize

Str 8, Dex 14, Con 14, Int 12, Wis 13, Cha 24
Base Atk +9; CMB +8; CMD 20
Feats Drow Nobility, Endurance, Extra Channel, Greater Drow Nobility, Improved Drow Nobility, Iron Will
Skills Heal +6, Knowleedge (arcana) +13, Knowledge (dungeoneering) +13, Knowledge (planes) +16, Linguistics +6, Perception +15, Sense Motive +16, Spellcraft +9
Language Abyssal, Aklo, Celestial, Common, Draconic, Elven, Infernal, Protean
SQ daylight adaptation, haunted curse, revelations (channel, enhanced cures, lifesense, spirit of life)

Notable Gear +1 rapier, +1 studded leather, belt of mighty constitution +4, cloak of resistance +3, headband of alluring charisma +4

Spirit Of Life (Su) Rann can manifest a Tiny incorporeal orb of positive energy within 60 feet or move it up to another location within as a swift action. As long as the spirit of life manifests, Rann can use it as a source of own channeling positive energy or to cast any of his touch-ranged healing spells on a creature occupying the same square. Spirit of life can be manifested for a total of one round per oracle level each day, though its duration does not have to be consecutive.

Rannfeyrathael is a charming renegade at the run from his kin and their patrons. Picked to serve as a sacrifice to a demonic lord his house bowed to, he managed to escape, at the expense of life of his twin sister, whose spirit keeps haunting him, and yet, it also gave him a powerful connection to the desire for life itself, stubborn vitality that keeps on living despite the odds.

Rann is a cheerful hedonist, celebrating every moment of continued existence, seeking sensual experiences, and the finest joys the life has to offer. He is friendly, some would even say too friendly, and while self-serving and vain, he is neither cruel, hateful, or prone to envy.

Currently, he resides in the Crossroads as a mercenary healer, spending his earning on the finest exotic goods, services, and experiences available in a planar nexus.


Planar NPC: Curator Of The Crossroads

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Curator Of The Crossroads

A man-shaped construct, wearing official-looking, if slightly tattered robes.

CR 15/MR 7; XP 51,200
N Medium Construct (mythic)
Init +14; Senses darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision, lifesight 60 ft., planar sight, true seeingPerception +30

AC 30, touch 18, flat-footed 27 (+5 deflection, +3 Dex, +12 natural)
hp 226 (21d10+111); fast healing 20
Fort +15, Ref +15, Will +15
Defensive Abilities fortification, protection protocols; DR 20/—; Immune construct traits; Resist acid 20, cold 20, electricity 20, fire 20, sonic 20; SR 30

Speed 30 ft.
Ranged 2 disintegrating beams +24 touch (10d6, 19–20/×2)
Special Attacks disintegrating beams, mythic power (7/day, 1d8), prison plane
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 20th, concentration +23)
Constant—tongues, true seeing
At Will—greater dispel magic, greater teleport (self and 50 lbs of gear, only within the boundaries of The Crossroads)

Str 16, Dex 16, Con —, Int 17, Wis 17, Cha 17
Base Atk +21; CMB +24; CMD 42
Feats Combat Casting, Critical Focus, Extra Mythic Power, Improved Critical (disintegrating beam), Improved InitiativeMSkill Focus (Knowledge [arcana]), Skill Focus (Knowledge [planes]), Skill Focus (Knowledge [religion]), Skill Focus (Perception)M, Skill Focus (Sense Motive)M
Skills Knowledge (arcana) +30, Knowledge (planes) +30, Knowledge (religion) +30, Perception +30, Sense Motive +30
Language Abyssal, Celestial, Draconic, Infernal, Protean; tongues
SQ planar sight

Disintegrating Beams (Ex) The Curator can project beams of destructive energy from its eyes, firing single beam as a standard action, or two beams as a full round action, without provoking attacks of opportunity. Each beam is a ranged touch attack with range of 60 feet and no range increment that deals 10d6 points of damage. Any creature or object reduced to 0 or less hit points is disintegrated, leaving only a handful of dust that is quickly dispersed by the Crossroad's winds. The Curator's disintegrating beams suppress all forms of regeneration that can be suppressed by a specific type of damage. The Curator can spend one use of its mythic power when firing disintegrating beams to turn them into 60 feet lines, affecting everything they pass through, except the Crossroad's permanent constructions. Disintegrating beams count as disintegration spell for purpose of interacting with other effects.

Planar Sight (Su) The Curator can immediately recognize what alignment, elemental, and racial subtypes Outsiders possess, as soon, as it can see them. It can also recognize home plane of each creature it sees. While it might not be able to tell much about more obscure planes, it can still identify other creatures from the same world.

Pocket Prison (Su) The Curator can spend one use of mythic power to banish touched bound or helpless creature to a pocket demiplane anchored to the Crossroads. The demiplane will always be capable of supporting the creature banished, though not necessarily comfortable, and filled with a permanent dimensional lock. It exact composition will reflect on the nature of the trapped subject, the cause for the banishment, or its circumstances. Each pocket prison contains a way that will allow its prisoner to escape, though it might take form of a lesson, demand for sacrifice, or taking steps to change own nature. The victim might also be released by the Curator, or by finding the linchpin anchoring the demiplane to the Crossroads. The pocket prison lasts as long as the subject remains trapped within, though there are rumors of pocket prisons lasting after they were abandoned.

Protection Protocols (Ex) The Curator has permanent +5 deflection bonus to AC and +5 resistance bonus to all saving throws. When an effect allows a saving throw for half damage or partial effects, the Curator suffers no effects whatsoever on success.

The Curator is an overseer and a keeper of the Crossroads—a eclectic settlement that grew at a transplanar nexus where multiple Lower Planes entangle. The Curator is mostly focused on maintaining the existence of the Crossroads and protecting it from falling under direct control of any of the fiendish lords and deities. Those who get to meet the Curator are often surprised by shows of dry wit, unexpected for a construct, and certain predisposition for accepting gifts and bribes for favors or exemptions—though never ones that would threaten the Crossroads.

What is even more surprising to some, the Curator can be occasionally seen doing simple menial jobs, dusting, cleaning. Always in different parts of the Crossroads than ghenso laborers maintaining and repairing the buildings.


Premade Character: Rogue Medic

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Player Character: Rogue Medic

So, today's blog entry is a ready to use character for 2nd edition—a rogue who happens to be a medic. This build is capable of very efficient out-of-combat healing, thanks to very generous Medicine rules (healing 2d8 points of damage takes 10 minutes, and can be repeated every hour, in mean time you can take care of wounds of other part members easily, while the rest is taking their time to Refocus). It can also provide healing in combat with a single action, though it can be done only once per target every 24 hours.

Twilight heritage was picked to provide low-light vision. Thief racket to allow adding Dex bonus to damage and bypass poor damage potential of low Strength.

Rogue Medic
Ancestry Twilight Halfling
Class Rogue (Thief Racket)
Background Field Medic
Ability Scores Strength 8 (–1), Dexterity 18 (+4), Constitution 14 (+2), Intelligence 12 (+1), Wisdom 16 (+3), Charisma 10 (+0)

Armor Class 17 (+4 Dex, +3 trained)
Saving Throws Fortitude +5 (+2 Con, +3 trained), Reflex +9 (+4 Dex, +5 expert), Will +8 (+3 Wis, +5 expert)
Hit Points 16
Speed 25 feet

Perception +8 (+3 Wis, +5 expert); Senses low-light vision
Skills Acrobatics +7 (+4 Dex, +3 trained), Athletics +2 (–1 Str, +3 trained), Deception +3 (+3 trained), Diplomacy +3 (+3 trained), Lore (Warfare) +4 (+1 Int, +3 trained), Medicine +6 (+3 Wis, +3 trained), Nature +6 (+3 Wis, +3 trained), Religion +6 (+3 Wis, +3 trained), Society +4 (+1 Int, +3 trained), Stealth +7 (+4 Dex, +3 trained), Survival +6 (+3 Wis, +3 trained), Thievery +7 (+4 Dex, +3 trained)
Languages Common, Halfling, one additional language

Ancestry Feat Halfling Luck
Background Feat Battle Medicine
Class Feat Nimble Dodge
Skill Feat Assurance (Medicine)

Other Abilities Keen Eyes, Sneak Attack 1d6, Surprise Attack

Melee shortsword +7 (1d6+3); Traits agile, finesse, versatile S
Melee dagger +7 (1d4+3); Traits agile, finesse, thrown 10 ft., versatile S
Ranged dagger +7 (1d4+3); Traits agile, finesse, thrown 10 ft., versatile S

Gear shortsword, 5 daggers, explorer's clothing, adventurer's pack, healer's tools, thieves' tools

2nd level—increase hit points by 10 and all proficiency bonuses by 1. Increase Medicine rank to expert (which increases its proficiency bonus by 2 more). Select Continual Recovery skill feat and Minor Magic class feat, with shield and stabilize gained as divine spells.
At this level, when you Treat Wounds or use Battle Medicine feat, you can automatically succeed the DC 15 Medicine check thanks to the Assurance feat, healing 2d8 hit points without risk, or you can roll the die, with results of 6 or more healing 2d8, and result of 16 or more healing 4d8 points of damage. Alternatively, you can decide to make a check against DC 20, hoping to get 11 or more on the dice, and heal 2d8+10 points of damage or 4d8+10 on natural 20. Either way, rolling natural 1 deals 1d8 point of damage to the patient.
3rd level—increase hit points by 10 and all proficiency bonuses by 1. Increase Thievery rank to expert (which increases its proficiency bonus by 2 more). Select Toughness general feat (increasing your hit points by 3 more) and Ward Medic skill feat. Gain Deny Advantage ability.
You can treat two patients with Treat Disease and Treat Wounds, allowing you to put the rest of the party on their feet faster.
4th level—increase hit points by 11 and all proficiency bonuses by 1. Increase Stealth rank to expert (which increases its proficiency bonus by 2 more). Select Hefty Hauler skill feat and Quick Draw class feat.
Now you can carry more without getting encumbered and you can draw weapon and strike in a single action, an important ability as using your Battle Medic requires two free hands to handle the healer's tools.
5th level—increase Dexterity by 1, and Strength, Constitution, and Wisdom by 2. Increase hit points by 16 and all proficiency bonuses by 1. Increase Crafting rank and proficiency with simple weapons, rapier, sap, shortsword, and shortbow to expert (which increases their proficiency bonuses by 2 more). Select Distracting Shadows ancestry feat and Robust Recovery skill feat.

6th level—increase hit points by 12 and all proficiency bonuses by 1. Increase Acrobatics rank to expert (which increases its proficiency bonus by 2 more). Select Cat Fall skill feat and Light Step class feat.
At this level, your Assurance feat allows you to meet DC 20 with your Medicine checks without rolling. If you are desperate for a lot of healing (or have a lot of bonuses) you might try to roll anyway, hoping to get 16 or more and heal 4d8+10, with regular 2d8+10 healing provided on a roll of 6 or more.
7th level—increase hit points by 12 and all proficiency bonuses by 1. Increase Medicine rank to master (which increases its proficiency bonus by 2 more). Select Diehard general feat and Multilingual skill feat (or whatever). Gain evasion, vigilant senses, and weapon specialization abilities, improving your proficiency rank with Perception and Reflex saves to master.
With Medicine at master rank, you can try to beat DC of 30 to heal 2d8+30 hit points with single check. Your bonus with Medicine skill should be +17 +18 (you bought yourself better healer's tools, didn't you?) meaning that you can hit that DC with a roll of 12... And you can re-roll a failed skill check or a saving throw once per day if you have to.

Congratulations, by now you should have better practical knowledge of this build than me.

A few observations... General feats are crap. Selecting among them is a very meh process, as  they are very limited in number and rather underwhelming. Selecting skill feats is not that stellar either, though they are not as bad as general feats (even if only by virtue of their numbers)—some of them are interesting, some of them are fitting specific builds, other are useful in specific circumstances. Still, some of the choices felt forced as some levels had no really fitting choices.

Reduced number of skills feels underwhelming for rogues as well—they already start game being trained in more than half of the skills, and it is not hard to make a rogue character that is trained in almost all skills at 1st level. In fact, a human rogue with Intelligence 16, skilled heritage, natural skill ancestry feat, and scoundrel racket would run out of non-Lore skills to pick. On the other hand, that number of skills might work much better (or even feel to be too much) for other classes that don't get so many skill increases.


Class Options: Alchemical Research Fields

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Alchemical Research Fields

Another batch of 2nd edition options. This time for the alchemist class. Second edition alchemists cast no spells, instead interacting with expanded alchemical items and crafting rules, though they mainly skirt the regular crafting rules with an ability that allows them to create a certain number of alchemical items each day automatically without expending materials, though they last no more than 24 hours.

Each alchemist picks a specialty field that gives them advantages when procuring and using a specific subset of alchemical items: bombers can control their splash, prepare more bombs, and use low-level bombs without them counting against daily limits; chirurgeon who can use Crafting skill in place of Medicine, prepare extra healing elixirs, use certain low-level remedies without them counting against daily limits, and maximize effects of elixirs of life; and mutagenist who can use mutagens that weren't custom-made for them, fight better with unarmed attacks, and can prepare more or even free mutagens.

While the selection is interesting, I immediately thought of a few additional choices that focus less on specific alchemical items and more on other aspects of archetypal alchemy.

You focus on growing your own specialized alchemical familiar, more powerful and versatile than those kept by other alchemists.

You gain Alchemical Familiar as a bonus feat at 1st level and your familiar gains an extra ability.

Field Discovery
You can take 10 minutes to adjust your familiar's abilities. For each batch of infused reagents spent for that purpose, you can replace one of your familiar's abilities with another. Whenever you feed your familiar an elixir of life, it heals maximum amount of hit points without rolling.

Perpetual Infusions
Your familiar gains an extra ability.

Perpetual Potency
Your familiar gains an extra ability.

Greater Field Discovery
Growing a replacement for your familiar takes one day of downtime activity instead of a week. When you are unconscious, you can direct your familiar as if you took an action to command them each round.

Perpetual Perfection
Your familiar gains an extra ability.

You use complex alchemical processes to create life and grow it into obedient, if mostly mindless ooze.

You gain ooze companion, which follows rules for animal companions, though it is ooze instead of animal and cannot be ridden, even if larger than would-be rider. They can be replaced by one week of downtime activity with access to suitable alchemical tools.

Your companion is an alchemically grown ooze.
Size Small
Melee (Action) pseudopod (reach), Damage 1d4 bludgeoning
Str +2, Dex –2, Con +2, Int –4, Wis +0, Cha –4
Hit Points 4
Immunities critical hits, mental, precision, unconscious, visual
Skill None
Senses motion sense 30 ft., scent (imprecise, 30 ft), no vision
Speed 15 ft.
Support Benefit Your ooze companion splashes your foes with corrosive fluids that weaken their resistances. Until the start of your next turn, your Strikes against creatures within your ooze's reach ignore the first 5 points of one of the target's energy or physical resistances.
Advanced Maneuver Pseudopod Whip
Pseudopod Whip (Action)Your ooze companion makes a Strike with its pseudopod ignoring concealed conditon and AC bonuses from covers or raised shields.

Field Discovery
During your daily preparations select one of acid, bludgeoning, cold, fire, electricity, piercing, or slashing damage. Your ooze companion gains resistance equal to your level to selected damage type until your next daily preparations. Whenever you feed your ooze companion an elixir of life, it heals the maximum amount of hit points possible, without rolling.

Perpetual Infusions
Your ooze companion grows into a mature form and gains the associated benefits.

Perpetual Potency
Your ooze companion develops even more and becomes your choice of either a nimble or a savage companion.

Greater Field Discovery
Growing a replacement for your ooze companion takes one day of downtime activity instead of a week. When you are unconscious, you can direct your ooze companion as if you took an action to command them each round.

Perpetual Perfection
Your ooze companion reaches peak of its abilities, gaining a specialization of your choice.


Class Options: Rogue Rackets

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Rogue Rackets

So... I might have something for 2nd edition earlier than I expected.

While creating rogues, one of the basic customization options for them is selection of a racket, which represents the style of activities the rogue takes. Ruffian is brutal and threatening, scoundrel is charming and deceptive, and thief is your traditional adventuring rascal, stealing, fighting, and dealing with traps. The first two offer an option to change key ability score from Dexterity to Strength and Charisma, respectively, which led me to think about possible rackets based on other ability scores: Intelligence, Wisdom, and Constitution.

Playing with chances and fate is your daily fare, as long as you can rig the chances in your favor. You combine observation skills and long-honed intuition to notice others manipulating the odds, through cheating or supernatural means alike. You might be a card-shark, a petty diviner, a fortune-teller, or a daredevil addicted to risk-taking.

You can notice subtle hints when an action or activity taking place within your presence is affected by a fortune or misfortune effect, though you might not know the source of the effect. You must be able to perceive the action or activity being taken in the first place (e.g. saving throw against fireball is a appropriate situation, saving throw against poison no one knows about is not). You can sense when a fortune and misfortune effects are affecting your action before taking the action and might choose to abort it harmlessly before making the check if the circumstance permit it.

You are trained in your choice of Arcana, Occultism, or Religion, and your choice of Fortune-Telling Lore or Games Lore. You can choose Wisdom as your key ability score.

You are living by your cunning plans and careful preparations, using custom tools and applied sciences to deal with your problems. You might be an inventor, a gadgeeter,  or a sapper, or maybe a criminal that likes to rely on high quality tools and complex planning for your heists.

During your daily preparations, you can either attempt to craft a single item or a batch of items that you would normally be able to craft during your downtime, or try to reverse-engineer formula by disassembling an item. You need access to the appropriate tools and have to spend the full cost for the crafted item or reverse-engineered formula in required materials, you can't spend more time crafting to cut the costs.

You're trained in Crafting and alchemical bombs. You can choose Intelligence as your key ability score.

Rogues are all about underhanded tactics, but some methods are often viewed as more vile than others, such as use of various noxious toxins to help you eliminate your opponents. You are trained in dealing with poisons, either to harm, or to protect against them. You might be a professional assassin, an unscrupulous apothecary, an unsavory courtier, a dedicated poison tester, or even a vermin exterminator.

You gain poison resistance equal to half your class level (minimum 1).

You're trained in Medicine. You can choose Constitution as your key ability score.

Rogue Feats
Following feats complement the new rackets.

Know Your Foe
Feat 2 (rogue)
Prerequisites mastermind racket
You amass various bits of discarded lore and random gossip all the time. Occasionally, they give you an insight into the identity of your foes as you face them. Whenever your Strike is a critical hit, you can make Recall Knowledge check to recognize your foe (either as an individual or to recall facts about the foe's species) as a free action and it loses its concentrate trait. If your damage was increased by racial weakness, decreased by racial resistance, or stopped by racial immunity, you get +2 circumstance bonus to the check regarding lore about the creature's species. If your damage was affected by weakness, resistance, or immunity granted by a spell, an item, or other external source, you suffer –2 circumstance penalty.

Lucky Hit
Feat 2 (rogue)
Prerequisites gambler racket
When the luck is on your side, it's on your side all the way through. If you deal damage with a Strike that was influenced by a fortune effect, you can roll the damage twice and select the result you like more. Alternatively, whenever you roll for damage, you can spend a Hero Point to re-roll the damage.

Nauseating Assault
Feat 2 (rogue)
Prerequisites poisoner racket
Your critical strikes hits vulnerable spots. Whenever your Strike is a critical hit and deals damage, the target gains sickened 1 condition.

Disruptive Debilitations
Feat 10 (rogue)
Prerequisites mastermind racket, Debilitating Strike
You know how to distract and confuse your foes. Add the following debilitations to the list you can choose from when you use Debilitating Strike.
  • Debilitation The target becomes dazzled.
  • Debilitation The target becomes stupefied 1.

Ruinous Debilitations
Feat 10 (rogue)
Prerequisites gambler racket, Debilitating Strike
When an enemy leaves an opening, you know how to help fate balance things a bit, one way or another. Add the following debilitations to the list you can choose from when you use Debilitating Strike.
  • Debilitation The target cannot benefit from fortune effects.
  • Debilitation The target cannot use actions with misfortune trait on others.

Weakening Debilitations
Feat 10 (rogue)
Prerequisites poisoner racket, Debilitating Strike
Your debilitations make your enemies particularly vulnerable to further toxic afflictions. Add the following debilitations to the list you can choose from when you use Debilitating Strike.
  • Debilitation The target gains weakness 5 to poison.
  • Debilitation The target becomes fatigued.