Prestige Classes


"My blades thirst for blood."

-Rhaskana, Bloodclaw Secretkeeper

A bloodclaw master embraces the animal within to a degree that it becomes external, partially transforming him into the beast from which the discipline was inspired. He employs small, light weapons almost like claws. He focuses on the Tiger Claw discipline, and his maneuvers speak to the quickstriking nature of his discipline's feline namesake.


This class favors those who prefer fighting with two light weapons, and who are fond of the maneuvers of the Tiger Claw discipline. Most bloodclaw masters are swordsages or warblades of the Tiger Claw discipline. Some barbarians also choose to embrace their inner beast, becoming a bloodclaw master after either taking a few martial adept class levels or selecting the Martial Study feat enough times to meet the entry requirements. A few rogues also consider this class, because sneak attacks made with two weapons are especially deadly.


Like the tiger, you are aloof and proud, but quick to act when a situation demands it. Some mistake your demeanor for arrogance, but you know your attitude is more like patience. You seek to learn the details around a circumstance before offering your input. When you speak, you do so sagely, with confidence, even if you aren't certain that you are actually correct. It is more important that others believe you are right, that you are infallible. Your patience is not infinite, however, and you are always eager to spring into action. Nothing bothers you more than spending a long period of time in a small, enclosed room with nothing to do and no one to kill. As you identify with your internal tiger, you adopt external ways of displaying your bond, perhaps by striping your arms or face with black soot or adorning yourself with jewelry fashioned from tooth and claw.

Bloodclaw masters are held in high esteem by many followers of the fractious Tiger Claw discipline, though some Tiger Claw adepts harbor jealousy or even loathing for those who follow the bloodclaw master path. As a bloodclaw master, you fight with a ferocity and cunning that surpasses all but the most skilled masters of Tiger Claw. A few believe that your ferocity dilutes the purity of Tiger Claw, and that bloodclaw masters mark a regression in the advancement of the discipline. Others simply bide their time, waiting like a tiger for you to drop your guard. Even so, every proclaimed student of the Tiger Claw will give you the honor and respect deserving of your expertise.


Half of a battle occurs before the fight begins. You prefer to choose your battleground, to stalk your opponent into terrain that best suits your abilities. Once battle is joined, you become a frenzy of motion, striking quickly and at the most vulnerable target available, hindering your opponents' ability to react. You lead with a charge, shifting along the way, to get yourself in position where your claws or your kukris can deal the most damage. Taking advantage of your leaping skills, you jump to any available high ground to gain an upper hand.


In your hands, small blades are like an extension of your own hands - like claws made of steel. The strikes and counters of the Tiger Claw discipline are natural extensions of your own combat ability. Following the path of bloodclaw master speaks to your feral nature, letting you become one with the beast in your heart. Masters of the Tiger Claw see this spark within you, and through your training you have learned of the path of the beast and what you must do to unlock it.

As a bloodclaw master, you have earned your way into an elite subsect of the Tiger Claw school. Your abilities are revered by many, especially those relatively new to the discipline. Older masters who have not embraced their own inner tigers might view you with disdain, but even they must recognize the power you wield.

To fully utilize some of the best Tiger Claw maneuvers, you will want to keep your Jump skill maximized. If you haven't already, you should take the Blade Meditation feat. Tiger Blooded is an ideal feat to take if you have a barbarian level, and you can use Martial Study to further expand your Tiger Claw maneuver repertoire. Many of your maneuvers key off critical hits, so Improved Critical can increase those opportunities.


A fellow student or master of the Tiger Claw is obliged to provide food and lodging for a short time, unless you are enemies for some reason. You, in turn, are expected to provide a demonstration of your abilities, showing your host the true nature of the tiger. Since the bloodclaw masters are not a recognized group or authority, even within the Tiger Claw discipline, any additional support is unlikely. More often, a master might provide a task or quest that serves his own ends, but you are not under any particular obligation to accept it.


"What's worse than a raging weretiger? A raging weretiger with a huge axe."

-Aubren Starchaser, ranger of the north

Bloodclaw masters are feral fighters that represent the purest form of the Tiger Claw discipline, at least in their own minds. They are a specialized extension of the martial classes, an example of how a character might embody the essence of a particular martial school. In the case of Tiger Claw, the followers of the discipline itself are fragmented and disorganized, and a bloodclaw master could just as easily be a valuable ally or a memorable foe.


It is said that a mountain can be home to only one tiger. In ages past, the Tiger Claw martial school had many monasteries and fighting colleges, but now the former order is fractured and in shambles after many of the masters met their end following the destruction of the Temple of the Nine Swords and the death of the Tiger Lord. Now, masters of the Tiger Claw are few and far between. Although they show each other courtesy, many work against each other for their own petty ends. Bloodclaw masters are seen by the discipline's masters as pawns they can use to gain personal power, and even while they provide training, they secretly plot to use their pupils against their rivals.

NPC Reaction

The sometimes outlandish appearance and marked stand-offishness of bloodclaw masters tends to intimidate most people. Those who have significant knowledge of the martial paths give due respect to a bloodclaw master, but the reception by others depends on the venue. People in locales that adventurers frequent are more likely to be indifferent to a bloodclaw master, while those in more upscale environs tend to be unfriendly.


Characters with ranks in Martial Lore can research bloodclaw masters to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including the information from lower DCs.

DC 10: Somehow, these people can turn in to tigers.

DC 15: Bloodclaw masters are fierce two-weapon wielders in combat.

DC 20: They are masters of a martial discipline, known as the Tiger Claw, that allows them to channel an inner beast to briefly transform themselves into a form not unlike a tiger.

DC 30: Characters who achieve this level of success can learn important details about a specific notable bloodclaw master, the areas where he operates, and the kinds of activities he undertakes.

A character with the Gather Information skill can attempt a DC 25 check to locate a bloodclaw master, provided one is in the region. Alternately, he might attempt to locate a master of the Tiger Claw discipline, who could at least provide information and background on the bloodclaw master and the way of the beast. Doing so requires the master's attitude to be helpful.


Bloodclaw masters epitomize the Tiger Claw discipline. A campaign that incorporates multiple martial schools can use bloodclaw masters to represent the more active members of the Tiger Claw school. Even a setting that is not entirely integrated with the martial classes could incorporate a bloodclaw master as a lone warrior.

The class appeals greatly to players who want to focus a martial adept character in the Tiger Claw school. Players fond of dual-weapon-wielding characters will also be drawn to this class. The specialist, rather than the generalist, will find the bloodclaw master appealing.


In the Eberron setting, bloodclaw masters are typically shifters who use the teachings of Tiger Claw and the way of the bloodclaw master to bring themselves closer to their animalistic heritage. Groups of Tiger Claw adepts and bloodclaw masters share their martial knowledge in conclaves throughout the Eldeen Reaches.

Sample Encounter

Bloodclaw masters tend to stay on the fringe of civilization. They are loners who rarely seek out the company of others unless they have a compelling reason to do so.

EL 9: Rhaskana (NG male human warblade 6/bloodclaw master 3) is a scowling, foul-tempered warrior. He takes any minor slight, perceived or otherwise, as an excuse to duel one of the PCs.

Hit Die: d12.


To qualify to become a bloodclaw master, a character must fulfill all of the following criteria.

Skills: Jump 9 ranks.

Feats: Multiattack or Two-Weapon Fighting.

Martial Maneuvers: Must know three Tiger Claw maneuvers.

Class Skills

The bloodclaw master's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Balance (Dex), Climb (Str), Handle Animal (Cha), Hide (Dex), Jump (Str), Knowledge (nature) (Int), Listen (Wis), Martial Lore (Int), Move Silently (Dex), Spot (Wis), Survival (Wis).

Skill Points at Each Level: 2 + Int modifier.

Table: The Bloodclaw Master

Level Base
1st +0 +2 +2 +0 1 0 Shifting 1/day, claws of the beast
2nd +1 +3 +3 +0 0 0 Superior two-weapon fighting, tiger claw synergy (stance)
3rd +2 +3 +3 +1 1 1 Pouncing strike, low-light vision, shifting 2/day
4th +3 +4 +4 +1 0 0 Tiger claw synergy (strike)
5th +3 +4 +4 +1 1 0 Rending claws, scent, shifting 3/day
Class Features

As you advance as a bloodclaw master, you become more like the tiger that inspired your chosen martial discipline. You gain mastery of more Tiger Claw maneuvers, while also gaining the ability to shift into a feral form.

All of the following are class features of the bloodclaw master prestige class.

Maneuvers: At each odd-numbered level, you gain a new maneuver known from the Tiger Claw discipline. You must meet a maneuver's prerequisite to learn it. You add your full bloodclaw master levels to your initiator level to determine your total initiator level and your highest-level maneuvers known.

At 3rd level, you gain an additional maneuver readied per day.

Shifting (Su): You can become more like a tiger by focusing your feral nature. Once per day, you can enter a state that is superficially similar to a barbarian's rage. While you are shifting, your appearance takes on tigerlike aspects: Your fingernails become more pointed and clawlike, the irises of your eyes become narrow, catlike slits, your ears grow more pointed, and so on. While shifting, you gain a +2 bonus to Strength and you grow claws that can be used as natural weapons. These claws deal 1d4 points of damage with each successful attack. You can attack with one claw as a standard action or with two claws as a full attack action (as a primary natural weapon). You cannot attack more than once per round with a single claw, even if your base attack bonus is high enough to give you multiple attacks. You can attack with a claw as a light off-hand weapon while wielding a weapon in your primary hand, but doing so incurs the normal penalties for fighting with two weapons.

Shifting is a free action and lasts for a number of rounds equal to your Con modifier + your bloodclaw master class level. At 3rd level and again at 5th level, you gain an additional daily use of your shifting ability.

Claws of the Beast (Ex): When attacking with two daggers or Tiger Claw weapons (kukri, kama, handaxe, unarmed strike, or claws), you add your full Strength bonus to damage rolls made for your off-hand weapon.

Superior Two-Weapon Fighting (Ex): Starting at 2nd level, when you attack with two daggers or Tiger Claw weapons, you do not take the -2 penalty on attack rolls for fighting with two weapons.

Tiger Claw Synergy (Ex): Beginning at 2nd level, while you are in a Tiger Claw stance, you can choose to gain either a +1 dodge bonus to your Armor Class or a +10-foot bonus to your base speed. You make this choice when you enter the stance.

At 4th level, you become more accurate at dealing Tiger Claw strikes. You gain a +1 bonus on any attack rolls made as part of a strike from the Tiger Claw discipline.

Pouncing Strike (Ex): From 3rd level on, when wielding two weapons, you can take a standard action to make a single melee attack with each weapon. Each attack is made at your highest attack bonus. You can also make an attack with each weapon against an opponent at the end of a charge.

When you use pouncing strike, you lose the use of one Tiger Claw strike you have readied for the current encounter, just as if you had initiated the strike (except you do not also gain the strike's normal effect). Once you use this ability, you can recover the maneuver you expended and use it normally.

Low-Light Vision (Ex): At 3rd level, your eyes function better in dim light, as you adopt the senses of the tiger. You gain low-light vision.

Rending Claws (Ex): At 5th level, while you are shifting and attacking with two daggers or two Tiger Claw weapons and you successfully hit an opponent with both weapons in the same round, the second weapon that hits deals an extra 2d6 points of damage. This effect is considered a boost from the Tiger Claw discipline.

When you use rending claws, you lose the use of one Tiger Claw boost you have readied for the current encounter, just as if you had initiated the boost (except you do not also gain the boost's normal effect). Once you use this ability, you can recover the maneuver you expended and use it normally.

Scent (Ex): Once you have reached 5th level, your heightened animalistic senses also give you the ability to smell nearby creatures. You gain the scent special ability.


A shifter character, from the Eberron campaign setting, gains slightly different benefits from taking levels in this class. The class's shifting ability instead grants the shifter one additional shift per day at 1st and 5th levels (but not 3rd level), and the duration of the character's racial shifting ability is increased by 1 round for each level he takes in this prestige class. The PC is treated as having the razorclaw shifter trait for the purpose of meeting prerequisites (such as for other shifter feats).