Character Classes


It is foolhardy to explore a dungeon alone. Those who attempt to do so quickly find that they lack the skills needed to get the job done. Sometimes, this can happen in larger parties as well. Enter the factotum, a new standard class, capable of mimicking the abilities of others and filling in when the need is greatest.

After a lifetime of work, few can claim even a fraction of the versatility that the factotum displays every day. Skilled in nearly every art, factotums draw upon their lore to master almost any trade or ability for a brief period of time before other pursuits draw their attention. Whereas bards use their general knowledge to aid others, factotums focus their abilities solely upon themselves. Constantly on the hunt for new abilities and tricks, factotums eventually find the right tool to overcome practically any problem.

However, a factotum cannot go it alone. He relies on sudden flashes of insight gleaned from his studies and the broad array of his experiences. He might not be the best fighter or the mightiest spellcaster in a group, but when the party needs a stout warrior or an arcane spell, the factotum can provide it.

If you like having a trick up your sleeve, or if you want to have an answer to almost any problem, then the factotum is the class for you. Your intellect bolsters your fighting ability, and your basic understanding of divine magic and arcane spells allows you to manipulate magical energy.

You can fill almost any role in the party, but you typically do so only on a temporary basis. If Jozan the cleric suffers a grievous injury, you can provide some healing until he recovers. If mighty Tordek is paralyzed, you can draw your weapon and hold the line for a few rounds. When a troll lurches into view, you can cast an acid spell if Mialee did not prepare one. However, you can pull off such tricks only for a limited time each day. The key to succeeding as a factotum lies in identifying what the group needs at a given moment and filling that need.


As a factotum, you are a jack of all trades. For short periods of time, you can stand in for almost any other member of the party. Your intellect, training, and experiences allow you to bolster your efforts in almost any situation. But your magical abilities are at best limited. You can master potent spells, but your lack of formal training makes it difficult for you to use them more than once each day. Furthermore, your understanding of magic is broad rather than deep.

Intelligence is a factotum's most important ability. Almost everything you do relies upon it. You master so many areas of study because you have the keen mind needed to learn through observation and experience, rather than formal study. When you fight, use a skill, or cast a spell, your Intelligence plays a role in your success. Of course, Dexterity and Strength are useful, too. When you cannot provide a cunning solution to a problem, you can heft an axe or fire a bow as well as a cleric.

Factotums are commonly humans, halflings, and gnomes. Those races are a natural fit because of their inquisitive nature, personal drive, and clever solutions to tough problems. Longer-lived races, such as dwarves and elves, find a factotum's fickle nature to be a poor imitation of the true mastery that can be attained only through centuries of life. Due to their low Intelligence, half-orcs find the factotum class difficult to master, but some manage to make a name for themselves.

Factotums can be of any alignment. Some use their abilities for good, helping people in need and learning from the attendant challenges. Other factotums view the world as a well that is rightfully theirs, and they take what they like from it. Relying upon no one but themselves, these evil factotums steal and cheat to gain power and use their abilities to further their own ends. The majority of factotums fall somewhere between these extremes. They appreciate a stable, benevolent society, but they are too absorbed in travel and study to care much about others.

Factotums usually favor law over chaos; they love to find structure and insight in the topics they study. Chaotic factotums are vagabonds and wanderers who experience life as it comes, believing that whatever topics happen to cross their paths are as good as any other.


Knowledge is everything, and applied knowledge is even better. You adventure out of a sense of curiosity, a desire to pierce the veil of ignorance that shrouds so much of the world. If you hear rumors of an island with beaches of diamonds and mountains of gold, you want to find the island, determine its origin, and learn its secrets. To other adventurers, the entrance to a dungeon is a gateway to treasure and power. To you, it is a promise of secrets waiting in the dungeon's deepest levels.

Think of yourself as an adventuring scholar, an expert who has the right answer at the right time, a seeker who finds the truths hidden in the world. You are the one who notices that an ogre has a long scar along its leg, allowing you to strike the creature where the old wound has not fully healed. You are the one who read a book on the dark arts, allowing you to conjure the spell needed to banish an ice devil. Other adventurers must prepare their abilities and hope they have the right tools to overcome a challenge. You wait for difficulties to present themselves and then decide what talents to employ.

Versatility is the key to your success. In some encounters, you draw your weapon and hold back the enemy. In others, you slip around behind the foe to unleash a potent spell. At other times, you scout ahead, uncover traps, and clear the way for your friends.

Most factotums worship a variety of deities and have holy symbols for every occasion. A typical factotum might offer one prayer to Obad-Hai before venturing into the wilds, and another to Moradin while traveling through an abandoned dwarf mine. Factotums seek a higher understanding of the world than a single deity can offer. Besides, they know enough about divine magic to leach energy from a number of gods. It pays to spread the prayers out.

If a factotum favors one deity, it is usually Boccob, the god of magic and knowledge. But few factotums are religious fanatics. Instead, they see Boccob as the ideal manifestation of their talents, a cunning mastermind who has accumulated boundless knowledge.

A few factotums of non-evil alignment revere Vecna. They see that dread deity as the keeper of knowledge and secrets, and they hope to uncover his most potent mysteries to better master the world. While they might revile Vecna's methods, they respect the knowledge he keeps and the secrecy with which he protects it.

You work well with other classes whose role is clearly defined, such as fighters, barbarians, clerics, sorcerers, and wizards. While you appreciate the dual roles of paladins, druids, bards, and rangers, you often feel frustration at their difficulty in identifying where their skills are needed most. You have the most in common with rogues and wizards, whose reliance on cunning and knowledge is similar to your own.

You are best suited to filling whatever role the party needs, so try not to spend your inspiration points too early in a battle. If the fighter falls to a lucky attack, you will have to take his place and hold back the enemy. If the wizard runs out of spells, your arcane talents will prove crucial. Likewise, save your healing for a critical juncture or until the cleric is down or out of spells.

You have unmatched flexibility in building your talents. You can emphasize one ability or nurse a broad range of abilities. In most cases, feats that consistently improve your talents are better than feats that function only in certain situations. For example, Weapon Focus improves all your attacks, whereas Power Attack provides more limited benefits.

When multiclassing or taking levels in a prestige class, find combinations that broaden your abilities or that increase your flexibility. Bonus feats allow you to improve your combat prowess while retaining much of your flexibility. If your feats make you a more competent warrior, you can spend inspiration points on spells rather than on improving your attack rolls and damage rolls.

The chameleon prestige class (Races of Destiny) deserves special mention. This class allows you to change your focus on a daily basis, making it possible to switch from being a skilled warrior to being a potent spellcaster. This prestige class is a great combination with the factotum class. The chameleon's focus allows you to fill a single role well, and the factotum's inspiration points let you retain the flexibility to heal an ally, make a sneak attack, or deliver a decisive blow. In many ways, chameleons are factotums who specialize in a few narrow fields.


The factotum class gives players a chance to be the archetypal jack of all trades. Inspiration points allow a factotum to excel in a wide variety of situations because he decides which of his capabilities to bolster. While other classes are locked into certain abilities, a factotum has unmatched flexibility.

Factotums are curious, driven, and inquisitive. They adventure not only for gold and glory, but also to uncover lost secrets and expand their lore. They find almost any situation interesting, wanting to learn everything from the intricate social protocols of a royal court to the tactics used by rampaging goblins.

Many factotums become sages and loremasters when they retire. They catalog the lore they uncovered and use it to advise others, particularly adventurers. A retired factotum likely has an archive of maps and charts from his previous exploits, tools that can prove useful for the next generation of explorers.

Factotums rise to become advisors, sages, and experts in a variety of subjects. Alerach Longseeker, for example, is famous for crossing the Barrier Peaks, the Hellfurnaces, and the Yatil Mountains in a series of solo expeditions. Rumors say that he owns the last surviving map of the location of a fabled dungeon of metal corridors high in the Barrier Peaks.

Rather than create their own organizations, factotums tend to join groups founded and run by others. Many thieves' guilds employ a few factotums to handle unexpected dangers on a heist. Some factotums join formal adventuring guilds and companies to find ready allies to help them on their expeditions.

Most commoners have no idea what to make of a factotum's unpredictable skills and abilities. Barbarians, druids, and other folk of the wilderness see factotums as overeducated and overly civilized, but an adventure with one in the wilds quickly dispels that notion. Most adventurers are happy to have a factotum in the party, especially on a dungeon expedition during which traveling back to civilization will be difficult, and determining what dangers lie ahead nearly impossible.


Characters with ranks in Knowledge (local) can research factotums to learn more about them. When a character succeeds on a skill check, the following lore is revealed, including the information from lower DCs.

DC 15: Factotums are sages and experts who master a variety of talents.

DC 20: Factotums draw on their training and intelligence to fight well, cast spells, and heal wounds, but they lack the formal training needed to do so consistently.


Factotums are the closest characters in the D&D game to professional adventurers. Fighters serve as soldiers and mercenaries, wizards delve into the secrets of magic, clerics lead the worship of deities, and rogues beg, borrow, and steal. Factotums, however, explore the world and uncover its secrets. They usually gather in large numbers near well-known dungeons. Many children who dream of gaining wealth and fame by looting tombs, braving the planes, and defeating powerful monsters grow up to become factotums. In rare cases, factotums form professional adventuring unions and guilds, just like blacksmiths, bakers, and other artisans.

The typical D&D campaign world has plenty of dungeons and treasure to go around. It makes sense that a class of professional adventurers would arise in time. Factotums fill this role - they are the experts who cultivate all the skills needed to make it as adventurers.

The factotum is readily adaptable to most campaign worlds as a sage, an expert, or a jack of all trades. Fantasy literature offers many examples of a hero who uses his experience and cunning to overcome obstacles. He need not wear heavy armor, carry a sword, or cast a spell to make a name for himself. A quick wit, a brave heart, and boundless energy are enough to best many challenges.

A factotum is similar to an everyman hero, an average person who uses his wits and bravery. Good examples include wandering adventurers, rugged explorers, and cunning archaeologists. The Indiana Jones movies provide a perfect example of a factotum. Indiana Jones dodges traps, uses his scholarly knowledge to find hidden treasures, handles a whip and a gun, and throws a mean left hook. In a D&D campaign, replace his gun with a basic understanding of magic, and you have a factotum.

An encounter with a factotum should highlight his use of a wide range of abilities. A factotum in light armor might appear to be a rogue at first, but he can surprise the party by casting a spell or healing himself. A factotum also makes a useful contact for the PCs. He might share secrets that lead to hidden treasure, sponsor expeditions to recover lost antiquities, and so on.

EL 6: Alerach Longseeker(NG male half-elf factotum 6) is a retired adventurer who runs a small museum filled with strange objects, preserved monsters, and other oddities he acquired during his career. He pays adventuring parties to bring back intriguing trinkets, unusual treasure, and items from ancient civilizations. In return, he provides cash rewards, maps to lost treasures, and other services. Alerach is a mentor to many young factotums, and his personal library is an astounding source of information.

Alignment: Any.

Hit Die: d6.

Class Skills

The factotum's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are all skills. Factotums have a huge repository of knowledge, allowing them to treat any skill as a class skill.

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

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

Table: The Factotum

Level Base
Attack Bonus
1st +0 +0 +2 +0 2 Inspiration, cunning insight, cunning knowledge, trapfinding
2nd +1 +0 +3 +0 0 3 Arcane dilettante (1 spell)
3rd +2 +1 +3 +1 1st 3 Brains over brawn, cunning defense
4th +3 +1 +4 +1 1st 3 Arcane dilettante (2 spells), cunning strike
5th +3 +1 +4 +1 2nd 4 Opportunistic piety
6th +4 +2 +5 +2 2nd 4
7th +5 +2 +5 +2 2nd 4 Arcane dilettante (3 spells)
8th +6/+1 +2 +6 +2 3rd 5 Cunning surge
9th +6/+1 +3 +6 +3 3rd 5 Arcane dilettante (4 spells)
10th +7/+2 +3 +7 +3 4th 5 Opportunistic piety (+1 use)
11th +8/+3 +3 +7 +3 4th 6 Cunning breach
12th +9/+4 +4 +8 +4 4th 6 Arcane dilettante (5 spells)
13th +9/+4 +4 +8 +4 5th 6 Cunning dodge
14th +10/+5 +4 +9 +4 5th 7 Arcane dilettante (6 spells)
15th +11/+6/+1 +5 +9 +5 6th 7 Opportunistic piety (+1 use)
16th +12/+7/+2 +5 +10 +5 6th 7 Improved cunning defense
17th +12/+7/+2 +5 +10 +5 6th 8 Arcane dilettante (7 spells)
18th +13/+8/+3 +6 +11 +6 7th 8
19th +14/+9/+4 +6 +11 +6 7th 8 Cunning brilliance
20th +15/+10/+5 +6 +12 +6 7th 10 Arcane dilettante (8 spells), opportunistic piety (+1 use)
Class Features

All of the following are class features of the factotum.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A factotum is proficient with all simple and martial weapons, and with light armor and shields (except tower shields). Because he uses spells as if they were spelllike abilities, a factotum can wear armor without incurring the normal arcane spell failure chance. A multiclass factotum still incurs the normal arcane spell failure chance for arcane spells received from other classes.

Inspiration: The factotum is a dabbler, a professional explorer who plunders a wide variety of fields to find the tools he needs to survive. He reads through tomes of arcane magic to gain a basic understanding of spells. He offers prayers to a variety of deities to gain their blessings. He observes warrior stances and exercises to understand the art of fighting. But while a factotum learns many paths, he masters none of them. Rather than train in a given field, he masters all the basics and manages to pull out something useful when the situation is desperate enough.

To represent this seemingly random body of knowledge, a factotum gains inspiration points that he can spend to activate his abilities. At the beginning of each encounter, he gains a number of inspiration points determined by his level (see Table: The Factotum).

Cunning Insight (Ex): Before making an attack roll, damage roll, or saving throw, you can spend 1 inspiration point to gain a competence bonus on the roll equal to your Intelligence modifier. Cunning insight does not require an action, and you can use it as often as you wish during your turn or others' turns - provided that you have the inspiration points to spend. Because this ability provides a competence bonus, it does not stack with itself.

Cunning Knowledge (Ex): When making a check involving a skill in which you have at least 1 rank, you can spend 1 inspiration point to gain a bonus on the check equal to your factotum level. You can use this ability once per day for a particular skill. For example, if you use cunning knowledge to gain a bonus on a Hide check, you cannot use the ability to improve other Hide checks for the rest of the day, though you can use it on different skills.

Trapfinding (Ex): You can use the Search skill to locate traps with a DC higher than 20, and you can use Disable Device to bypass a trap or disarm magic traps. See the rogue class feature.

Arcane Dilettante (Sp): At 2nd level, you acquire a vague understanding of magic. You know that with a few weird hand gestures and an array of grunts and bizarre words, you can conjure up something that looks like a spell. By spending 1 inspiration point, you can mimic a spell as a spell-like ability.

At the start of each day, choose a number of spells from the sorcerer/wizard spell list based on your factotum level. You can choose one spell at 2nd level, and you gain additional spells as shown on Table: The Factotum. The maximum level of spell you can use, according to your class level, is also shown on the table. You can select any sorcerer/wizard spell up to that level, but you can prepare only one spell of your maximum level. Your caster level equals your level in this character class. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against your spell is 10 + the spell level + your Int modifier.

Once you have used a spell, you cannot use it again until you have rested for 8 hours. After resting for this time, you choose new spells and lose any unused spells from the previous day, though you can select the same spell on consecutive days. You cannot prepare the same spell multiple times to use it more than once during the same day.

You cannot use spells that require an XP cost. You must otherwise provide the necessary material components as normal.

If you wish to enhance a spell with a metamagic feat, you must apply the feat when you prepare the spell. In addition, you must be capable of using a spell of the modifi ed spell's level.

Brains over Brawn (Ex): At 3rd level, you gain your Intelligence bonus as a modifier on Strength checks, Dexterity checks, and checks involving skills based on Strength or Dexterity, such as Hide, Climb, and Jump.

Cunning Defense (Ex): You study your opponents and learn to anticipate their attacks. Starting at 3rd level, you can spend 1 inspiration point to gain your Intelligence bonus as a dodge bonus to Armor Class against one opponent for 1 round. Using this ability is a free action. You gain this benefit even while wearing medium or heavy armor. You can use this ability multiple times to gain a bonus against different opponents, but you cannot use it more than once during your turn against a single foe.

Cunning Strike (Ex): With a quick study of a vulnerable opponent's defenses, you can spot the precise area you need to hit to score a telling blow. Starting at 4th level, you can spend 1 inspiration point to gain 1d6 points of sneak attack damage. You must spend the inspiration point to activate this ability before making the attack roll. When determining if you can use sneak attack against a target that has uncanny dodge, use your factotum level as your rogue level.

Opportunistic Piety (Su): Factotums are legendary for the number of holy symbols, lucky trinkets, and blessed items they keep handy. As the saying goes, there are no atheists in the dungeon. Starting at 5th level, you can spend 1 inspiration point to channel divine energy as a standard action. You can use this energy to heal injuries, harm undead, or turn undead. At 5th level, you can use this ability a number of times per day equal to 3 + your Wisdom bonus (if any). You gain one extra daily use of this ability at 10th level, 15th level, and 20th level. You cannot use opportunistic piety if you have exhausted your daily uses, even if you have inspiration points left to spend.

If you use this ability to heal injuries, you channel positive energy to heal a living creature of a number of points of damage equal to twice your factotum level + your Int modifier. The energy will also deal the same amount of damage to undead targets.

If you use this ability to turn undead, you act as a cleric of a level equal to your factotum level. No matter what your alignment, you cannot control undead - your understanding of divine magic is too rudimentary.

Cunning Surge (Ex): Starting at 8th level, you learn to push yourself when needed. By spending 3 inspiration points, you can take an extra standard action during your turn.

Cunning Breach (Su): Starting at 11th level, your broad knowledge allows you to study an opponent and gain a brief flash of insight to breach her defenses. By spending 2 inspiration points as a free action, you can ignore a single target's spell resistance and damage reduction for 1 round. The target automatically fails any spell resistance check that she attempts to avoid your spell.

Cunning Dodge (Ex): Starting at 13th level, your luck, reflexes, and intuition allow you to avoid an attack or spell that would otherwise defeat you. If you take damage that would reduce you to 0 or fewer hit points, you can spend 4 inspiration points as an immediate action to ignore the damage. You dodge out of the way, take cover from a spell, or otherwise escape. You can use this ability once per day.

Improved Cunning Defense (Ex): At 16th level, you gain your Intelligence bonus as a dodge bonus to Armor Class. You no longer need to spend an inspiration point to gain this benefit. Unlike the standard cunning defense ability, you do not gain this benefit when wearing medium or heavy armor.

Cunning Brilliance (Ex): At 19th level, you become the ultimate jack of all trades. Your sharp mind and keen sense of your surroundings allow you to duplicate almost any ability you witness. At the start of each day, choose three extraordinary class abilities. Each ability must be available to a standard character class at 15th level or lower, and must appear on the advancement table or in the text description for that class. By spending 4 inspiration points as a free action, you gain the benefits and drawbacks of one chosen ability for 1 minute. You use the ability as if your level in the relevant class equaled your factotum level. You can use each chosen class ability once per day.

For example, if you use a monk's flurry of blows ability, you gain all the benefits and drawbacks described under Flurry of Blows. You do not gain the benefits of unarmed strike, because that is a separate ability in the monk's class description.