Character Classes


The savant is an adventurous expert, an academic who seeks to expand his knowledge of the world by actively exploring it. Savants learn a little bit of everything. Much of their knowledge comes from striking out into foreign lands and strange cultures. While a sage or other academic relies on sprawling libraries and careful study to expand his knowledge, the savant plunges into the world and uncovers truths long overlooked or lost to the mists of history.

Savants see their adventures as the opportunity to expand their knowledge. In battle, a savant observes a creature and takes mental notes on its abilities even as he struggles to defeat it.

The savant learns a little bit of everything. He studies arcane and divine magic, learns how to find and disarm traps, and handles a wide variety of weapons with ease. His deep knowledge and intense learning allow him to aid his allies in a variety of situations. The savant's advice and talents guide and assist his allies.

Savants can be of any alignment. Lawful savants seek to catalog the world's knowledge, while chaotic savants study whatever lore happens to come across their paths. Evil savants believe knowledge is power, jealously guarding their lore and considering others their bumbling, intellectual inferiors. Good savants seek to broaden the world's knowledge. They wish to improve the good of all by uncovering forgotten lore and bringing enlightenment to the masses.

Some savants see the deities as another subject of study worthy of impartial, careful study. Thus, they prefer to avoid any attachments to one specific deity. Other savants see their quest for knowledge as religious in nature. Good and neutral savants with this attitude tend to worship Boccob, while evil savants revere Vecna.

Becoming a savant is a difficult task akin to training to become a wizard. Savants spend long years in an apprenticeship, usually at a major library, monastery, or similar center of learning. Once a savant completes his training, he must set on out his own to begin his academic research. Many savants return to the place where they first trained to present their findings in hopes of increasing their stature and renown. A savant who uncovers new lore or makes a major intellectual discovery wins tremendous respect from his peers. Feuds among savants who research similar areas are common, and some evil savants resort to trickery and murder to advance their work at the expense of their rivals.

Savants tend to identify themselves by the academy where they studied. Each academy has a unique identity among savants. The Library at Atheneus might be known for studying planar phenomenon, while the Velden Collegium produces the finest historians in the world. Rivalries and competitions between these academies are both common and intense.

Humanity's innate ambition and curiosity produces many savants, and some of the most prestigious savant academies he within human lands. Elves see savants as keepers of their racial lore, but their flighty, light-hearted nature means that few elves take on the rigors of the class. Dwarves and gnomes, on the other hand, have a strong tradition of hard work, invention, and toil and produce a relatively large number of savants. Dwarven savant academies are located in remote mountain strongholds where the savants carve their knowledge into metal plates mounted within enormous caverns, preserving it forever. Halflings and half-orcs rarely become savants. The halflings' nomadic lifestyle makes their culture ill-suited to produce and support large, formal institutions of learning. Most halfling savants study under an elderly, revered master who passes his lore to the next generation. Half-orcs, with their poor intellectual abilities, rarely have the patience or desire to become savants.

Savants find all of the other classes intriguing, as they see in each a unique talent worthy of study and even emulation. In particular, they see bards as fonts of myths, stories, news, and rumor. Savants appreciate a wizard's study and research of arcane matters, while they see sorcerers as enigmas waiting to be solved. Of all the classes, savants are the most likely to see themselves as members of a team made stronger for its diversity.

The savant is a jack-of-all-trades. His mastery of a wide range of lore, from arcane and divine magic to the secrets of defeating traps, makes him useful in almost any situation. However, savants lack other, more focused classes' mastery of magic and combat. They are excellent support characters, particularly since their unique talent with skills allows them to mask their allies' shortcomings.

Alignment: Any.

Hit Die: d8.

Class Skills

The savant's class skills are all skills.

Skill Points at 1st Level: (6 + Int modifier) x 4.

Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 6 + Int modifier.

Table: The Savant

Level Base
Attack Bonus
1st +0 +0 +0 +2 Academic lore, skill assistance (5 feet), trapfinding
2nd +1 +0 +0 +3 Talent lore
3rd +2 +1 +1 +3 Sneak attack +1d6
4th +3 +1 +1 +4 Skill assistance (10 feet)
5th +3 +1 +1 +4 Arcane lore
6th +4 +2 +2 +5
7th +5 +2 +2 +5 Talent lore
8th +6/+1 +2 +2 +6 Skill assistance (15 feet)
9th +6/+1 +3 +3 +6 Sneak attack +2d6
10th +7/+2 +3 +3 +7 Divine lore
11th +8/+3 +3 +3 +7
12th +9/+4 +4 +4 +8 Skill assistance (20 feet), talent lore
13th +9/+4 +4 +4 +8
14th +10/+5 +4 +4 +9
15th +11/+6/+1 +5 +5 +9 Sneak attack +3d6
16th +12/+7/+2 +5 +5 +10 Skill assistance (25 feet)
17th +12/+7/+2 +5 +5 +10 Talent lore
18th +13/+8/+3 +6 +6 +11 Deceptive attack +5d6
19th +14/+9/+4 +6 +6 +11
20th +15/+10/+5 +6 +6 +12 Skill assistance (30 feet)

Table: Savant Arcane Spell Progression

Level 1st 2nd 3rd 4th
5th 0
6th 0
7th 1
8th 1
9th 1 0
10th 1 0
11th 1 1
12th 1 1 0
13th 1 1 1
14th 1 1 1
15th 2 1 1 0
16th 2 1 1 1
17th 2 2 1 1
18th 2 2 2 1
19th 3 2 2 1
20th 3 3 3 2

Table: Savant Divine Spell Progression

Level 1st 2nd 3rd 4th
10th 1
11th 1
12th 1 0
13th 1 0
14th 1 1
15th 1 1 0
16th 1 1 1
17th 1 1 1
18th 2 1 1 0
19th 2 1 1 1
20th 2 2 1 1
Class Features

All of the following are class features of the savant.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A savant is proficient with all simple and martial weapons. Savants are proficient with light armor and all shields save for the tower shield.

Academic Lore: The savant studies a wide variety of disciplines, from the physiology and lore of plants to the genealogy of ancient noble lines. The savant may make a special academic lore check with a bonus equal to his savant level + his Intelligence modifier to see whether he knows some relevant information about a particular situation, person, item, historical event, or other subject. If the savant fails this check, he must gain at least one level in this class before attempting to use this ability to answer the specific question again.

If the savant has ranks in a Knowledge skill relevant to the situation, he can use both this ability and his normal Knowledge check to answer the same question. A failure with one method has no effect on his attempt with the other. If both checks fail, he cannot attempt another Knowledge or academic lore check on that particular subject until he gains a level in savant or rank in the appropriate Knowledge skill. For example, Delephon the 3rd-level savant has 6 ranks in Knowledge (engineering). He inspects an old ruin to determine if it is structurally sound. His Knowledge (engineering) check fails. He then attempts to use his academic lore ability and succeeds.

Skill Assistance: The savant's broad range of talents and insights into dozens of areas of knowledge grant him the ability to lend his knowledge to others. If, for example, a savant sees an approaching ogre, he knows how to deliver a swift warning that alerts his allies before the ogre is upon them. If he and his friends must slip into a blackguard's fortress, his intense study of stealth and reconnaissance allows him to mask the clanks of his paladin ally's armor.

At 1st level and again at 4th level and every 4 levels thereafter (8th, 12th, and so on), the savant selects a skill from the following list in which he has at least 1 rank: Balance, Climb, Disguise, Hide, Listen, Move Silently, Ride, Spot, and Swim.

The savant can choose to replace an ally's skill attempt with his own efforts. Rather than make a skill check, the ally can use the result of a special check made with a bonus equal to the savant's skill ranks + the ally's ability score modifier, armor check penalty (if any), and other modifiers. In effect, the ally replaces her ranks in the particular skill with those of the savant and adds all other modifiers as normal. The savant makes the d20 roll on this check in secret (although the DM can ask to see it) and cannot take 10 or take 20.

The savant can replace the skill checks of a number of allies equal to his Intelligence modifier. The allies must be within 5 feet of the savant at 1st level. This range increases by 5 feet each time the savant chooses a new skill to gain the benefits of this ability (up to 30 feet at 20th level).

A target of this ability must choose whether to use the savant's result or make his own, and he must choose before he knows the savant's die roll. In any case, the targets of this ability never use their own ranks in addition to the savant's ranks. They must either make a check as normal or substitute the savant's ranks and die result for their own.

The savant cannot use this ability if his allies wish to make a skill check as part of an attempt to aid another's check.

For example, Delephon the savant, Abelard the paladin, and Esmeralda the sorcerer attempt to sneak past a group of orc guards. Neither Abelard nor Esmeralda has ranks in Move Silently. Luckily, Delephon has chosen that skill for his skill assistance ability. Delephon has 8 ranks in Move Silently. He makes one d20 roll for his Move Silently check and the checks for his two companions. The die's result is 12. Delephon resolves his Move Silently check as normal using that roll. His companions resolve their Move Silently checks as if they had 8 ranks in the skill (just like Delephon) and rolled a 12 on the d20, the result of Delephon's roll, to make the skill check. Abelard has a Dexterity of 8 (-1) and wears full plate (armor check penalty -6). Thus, his total Move Silently result is 13 (Delephon's 8 ranks + 12 result on the d20 -1 Dex -6 armor). Esmeralda has a 14 Dexterity (+2) and wears no armor. Her total result is 22 (Delephon's 8 ranks + 12 result on the d20 + 2 Dex).

Trapfinding: Savants can use the Search skill to locate traps when the task has a Difficulty Class higher than 20. Finding a nonmagical trap has a DC of at least 20, or higher if it is well hidden. Finding a magic trap has a DC of 25 + the level of the spell used to create it.

Savants can use the Disable Device skill to disarm magic traps. A magic trap generally has a DC of 25 + the level of the spell used to create it. A savant who beats a trap's DC by 10 or more with a Disable Device check can study a trap, figure out how it works, and bypass it without disarming it.

Talent Lore: The savant gains a bonus feat at 2nd level and every five levels thereafter. His intense studies and wide range of training grant him access to specialized abilities and talents.

Sneak Attack: Beginning at 3rd level, if a savant can catch an opponent unable to defend itself effectively from his attack, he can strike a vital spot for extra damage.

The savant's attack deals extra damage any time his target would be denied a Dexterity bonus to AC (whether the target actually has a Dexterity bonus or not), or when the savant flanks his target. This extra damage is 1d6 at 3rd level, and it increases by 1d6 every six savant levels thereafter. The savant never multiplies sneak attack damage on a successful critical hit.

Ranged attacks can count as sneak attacks only if the target is within 30 feet.

With a sap (blackjack) or an unarmed strike, a savant can make a sneak attack that deals nonlethal damage instead of lethal damage. He cannot use a weapon that deals lethal damage to deal nonlethal damage in a sneak attack, not even with the usual -4 penalty.

A savant can sneak attack only living creatures with discernible anatomies. Any creature that is immune to critical hits is not vulnerable to sneak attacks. The savant must be able to see the target well enough to pick out a vital spot and must be able to reach such a spot. A savant cannot sneak attack while striking a creature with concealment or striking the limbs of a creature whose vitals are beyond reach.

Arcane Lore: Savants study magic with the same curiosity and intellectual rigor they use to approach other topics. Through an understanding of the basic theories of magic, the savant learns to cast a limited number of arcane spells.

At 5th level the savant gains access to arcane spells as shown on Table: Savant Arcane Spell Progression. The savant must choose and prepare his spells ahead of time. To learn, prepare, or cast a spell, a savant must have an Intelligence of at least 10 + the spell's level. The DC for a saving throw against a savant's arcane spell is 10 + the spell's level + the savant's Intelligence modifier.

Like other spellcasters, a savant can cast only a certain number of spells of each level per day. His base allotment of spells is given below. In addition, the savant receives bonus arcane spells if he has a high Intelligence score.

At 5th level, the savant chooses two spells from his lists that he has acquired through research and diligent study. Each level afterward, he selects two more arcane spells from the savant arcane spell list. The savant cannot select spells from a given level until he is high enough level to cast them.

The savant must choose and prepare his spells ahead of time by getting a good night's sleep and spending 1 hour in study. While studying, the savant decides which spells to prepare. The savant does not need a spellbook or similar item. Instead, he focuses on the arcane lore he has learned and sorts through his notes.

If the savant has a 0 listed for a spell level, he adds his bonus spells for a high Intelligence as normal to determine the number of spells he can cast each day. If after applying this modifier the result is still 0, the savant cannot cast spells of that level. When selecting his two new spells, he cannot choose them from that level's list. A 5th- or 6th-level savant who lacks the Intelligence score needed to gain a bonus 1st-level spell does not choose any spells.

The savant's caster level equals one-half his savant class level.

Divine Lore: At 10th level, the savant's broad range of study and research allows him to unlock the secrets of divine magic. He learns to manipulate deific energy and use it to cast spells much like a cleric.

At 10th level the savant gains access to divine spells as shown on Table: Savant Divine Spell Progression. The savant must choose and prepare his spells ahead of time. To learn, prepare, or cast a spell, a savant must have a Wisdom of at least 10 + the spell's level. The DC for a saving throw against a savant's divine spell is 10 + the spell's level + the savant's Wisdom modifier.

Like other spellcasters, a savant can cast only a certain number of spells of each level per day. His base allotment of spells is given below. In addition, the savant receives bonus divine spells if he has a high Wisdom score.

The savant gains divine spells in the same manner as arcane ones. At 10th level, he learns two new divine spells from the savant divine list. Each level thereafter he gains two additional divine spells. He must be high enough level to cast a spell before he can select it. If the savant has a 0 listed for a spell level, he can cast and gain new spells of that level if his Wisdom score is high enough to grant him bonus spells of that level.

The savant chooses and prepares his divine spells at the same time as his arcane ones. After 8 hours of rest, he needs 1 hour of meditation and study to prepare both sets of spells.

The savant cannot use his arcane spell slots to prepare divine spells and vice versa. Keep track of the two sets of spells separately.

The savant's caster level equals one-half his savant class level.