I've been working on this prestige class for a while, and I was wondering how much more work you guys think I should do with it. Are any parts overpowered? Underpowered? Is there anything that I didn't include at all but would be a good idea (or that I did include but didn't need to)?
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Nightmare Slayers are the people that specialize in combatting the worst demons, devils, and undead that the world can throw at them.
They can be the holy warriors devoted to protecting the innocent, the mercenaries who find that city-states plagued by vampires are willing to pay more than are those that are plagued by bandits, the survivors who grew up in an environment plagued by evil necromancers and had no choice but to learn to defend themselves against the mages' creations, the cultists devoted to one specific side of the Blood War and who aid their masters whenever the battles spill into the Material planes, or simply the thrill-killers who find hunting fiends to be more "fun" than killing mortals.
To qualify to become a nightmare slayer, a character must fulfill all of the following criteria.
Feats: Vampire Hunter; OR Nemesis (Undead OR Evil Outsider)
Special: Favored Enemy (Undead OR Evil Outsider) +4; OR Smite Evil 2/day; OR Favored Enemy (Undead OR Evil Outsider) +2 and Smite Evil 1/day
The Nightmare Slayer's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are: Bluff (CHA), Concentration (CON), Gather Information (CHA), Heal (WIS), Hide (DEX), Intimidate (CHA), Knowledge (The Planes) (INT), Knowledge (Religion) (INT), Listen (WIS), Move Silently (DEX), Sense Motive (WIS), Spellcraft (INT), Spot (WIS), Survival (WIS), Tumble (DEX), Use Magic Device (CHA)
Skills Points at Each Level: 6 + INT modifier
Hit Dice: d8
1st | BAB +1 | Fort +2 | Ref +0 | Will +2 | Favored Enemy
2nd | BAB +2 | Fort +3 | Ref +0 | Will +3 | Disruption
3rd | BAB +3 | Fort +3 | Ref +1 | Will +3 | Eldritch Experience
4th | BAB +4 | Fort +4 | Ref +1 | Will +4 | Exorcism, Special Ability x1
5th | BAB +5 | Fort +4 | Ref +1 | Will +4 | Improved Disruption
6th | BAB +6/+1 | Fort +5 | Ref +2 | Will +5 | Imp. Exorcism, Binding, Imp. Eldritch Experience
7th | BAB +7/+2 | Fort +5 | Ref +2 | Will +5 | Imp. Binding, Special Ability x1
8th | BAB +8/+3 | Fort +6 | Ref +2 | Will +6 | Greater Disruption/Exorcism/Binding
9th | BAB +9/+4 | Fort +6 | Ref +3 | Will +6 | Greater Eldritch Experience
10th | BAB +10/+5 | Fort +7 | Ref +3 | Will +7 | Special Ability x2
Weapon and Armor Proficiencies: A nightmare slayer is proficient with all simple and martial weapons, and with light armor and shields (except tower shields).
Favored Enemy (Ex): A nightmare slayer has devoted her entire life to learning how to fight pure evil incarnate. She adds a bonus equal to her Nightmare Slayer class level to all Attack rolls, Damage rolls, and for Bluff, Listen, Sense Motive, Spot, and Survival skill checks against Undead or Evil Outsiders.
Disruption (Ex): A nightmare slayer does not rely exclusively on melee combat when she can be taught to use spells specifically designed to kill undead and evil outsiders from a distance. From class level 2 onward, when attempting to activate a magic item to cast a spell from the Good, Glory, or Sun Domains, she adds a bonus equal to her nightmare slayer class level to the Use Magic Device skill check.
Eldritch Experience (Ex): Despite the fact that none of an undead's formerly-vital organs serve any purpose save occasionally the brain, experienced nightmare slayers have found they do in fact have vulnerable areas that can be attacked, however mind-bogglingly different from those of any creatures still alive. From class level 3 onward, nightmare slayers can deal precision damage to undead such as Critical Hits, Sneak Attacks, Skirmishes, etc.
Special Abilities: At class levels 4 and every 3rd level thereafter (7th, 10th, and 13th), a nightmare slayer gains the appropriate number of special abilities of her choice from among the following options.
Eldritch Precision (Ex): A nightmare slayer adds 1 to the Critical Threat range for all attacks she makes against an Undead or Evil Outsider. This ability may be taken up to 3 times.
Eldritch Ferocity (Ex): A nightmare slayer adds 1 to the Critical Multiplier for any attack she makes against an Undead or Evil Outsider. This ability may only be taken once.
Eldritch Resistance (Blood) (Ex): A nightmare slayer only takes 1 point of CON damage per round of a vampire's Blood Drain attack, rather than 1d4, and the vampire only receives 1d4 temporary HP per round instead of 5. This ability may only be taken once.
Eldritch Resistance (Energy) (Ex): A nightmare slayer receives no negative levels on an Undead or Evil Outsider's Energy Drain attack that does not score a critical, and only takes normal negative levels on a such a creature's critical hit instead of twice normal (which also deprives the attacker of the temporary HP that they would've received by inflicting more negative levels). This ability may only be taken once.
Eldritch Paralysis (Ex): When a nightmare slayer inflicts paralysis against an Undead or Evil Outsider, the paralysis lasts an extra 1 round. This ability may be taken any number of times.
Exorcism (Ex): A nightmare slayer will not always settle for just hoping that combat will be enough, rather she will also explore ways of removing the threat without risking direct confrontation. From class level 4 onward, when attempting to activate a magic item to cast "Dismissal" or "Banishment," she adds a bonus equal to her nightmare slayer class level to the Use Magic Device skill check.
Improved Disruption (Ex): From class level 5 onward, when activating a magic item to cast a spell from the Good, Glory, or Sun Domains, she adds a bonus equal to her nightmare slayer class level to any Saving Throw DC for opposing the spell.
Improved Exorcism (Ex): From class level 6 onward, when activating a magic item to cast "Dismissal" or "Banishment," she adds a bonus equal to her nightmare slayer class level to any Saving Throw DC for opposing the spell.
Binding (Ex): As a nightmare slayer learns to kill stronger and stronger fiends, preventing the escape of those that can be killed easily becomes just as important as is banishing those that cannot. From class level 6 onward, when attempting to activate a magic item to cast "Dimensional Anchor," she adds a bonus equal to her nightmare slayer class level to the Use Magic Device skill check.
Improved Eldritch Experience (Ex): From class level 6 onward, when a nightmare slayer deals a Critical Hit against an Undead or Evil Outsider, the opponent is paralyzed for 1d4 rounds. Creatures can neither change their form nor move inter-dimensionally until this paralysis is ended (unless it is done to them by another), even if they would've otherwise done so automatically.
Improved Binding (Ex): From class level 7 onward, when activating a magic item to cast "Dimensional Anchor," she adds a bonus equal to her nightmare slayer class level to the Attack Roll for the spell's ranged touch attack.
Greater Disruption/Exorcism/Binding (Ex): From class level 8 onwards, when activating a magic item to cast "Dismissal," "Banishment," "Dimensional Anchor," or any spell from the Good, Glory, or Sun Domains, her character level is used in place of her nightmare slayer class level for determining bonuses.
Greater Eldritch Experience (Ex): From class level 9 onwards, if a nightmare slayer decreases the Hit Points of an Undead or Evil Outsider by at least 50% with a single attack, the opponent is paralyzed for 1d6 rounds (this stacks with the 1d4 rounds if a hit was also critical, and the same prohibition against teleporting or changing form applies for the whole duration).
EPIC NIGHTMARE SLAYER
Hit Die: d8
Skill Points at each level: 6 + INT modifier
Perfect Disruption: At class level 11, when activating a magic item to cast any spell from the Good, Glory, or Sun Domains, she may Take 10 on all such Use Magic Device skill checks even if circumstances would normally not allow her to, and she may add either her INT or WIS modifier as a bonus to the selfsame checks.
Perfect Eldritch Experience: At class level 12, when a nightmare slayer makes an Attack of Opportunity that inflicts paralysis against an Undead or Evil Outsider, the paralysis lasts an extra 1d3 rounds.
Perfect Exorcism: At class level 14, when activating a magic item to cast "Dismissal," "Banishment," she may Take 10 on all such Use Magic Device skill checks even if circumstances would normally not allow her to, and she may add either her INT or WIS modifier as a bonus to the selfsame checks.
Perfect Binding: At class level 15, when activating a magic item to cast "Dimensional Anchor," she may Take 10 on all such Use Magic Device skill checks even if circumstances would normally not allow her to, and she may add either her INT or WIS modifier as a bonus to the selfsame checks.
11th | Perfect Disruption
12th | Perfect Eldritch Experience
13th | Special Ability x2
14th | Perfect Exorcism
15th | Perfect Binding
PLAYING A NIGHTMARE SLAYER
A champion that has trained specifically to battle the fiends of Hell itself would not be very humble about her combat prowess, even by already a warrior's already tenuous standards for humility, because if truly anybody could do what she does every day, would her foes really be considered the universal symbols of invincible monsters?
She might choose to downplay her choice in challenging demons and devils by instead emphasizing her duty to the church or the community, she might choose to downplay how much of her ability to do so came naturally by instead emphasizing her years of training, she might wish to avoid taking advantage of celebrity status by instead choosing not bringing up her prowess when she is not needed for combat, but she normally realizes how insulting it would be to downplay her prowess itself once it has been made known.
Combat: When facing a potential confrontation against groups of fiends, experienced nightmare slayers - with the exception of the most reckless thrill-killers - will normally attempt to use their scrolls to exorcise as many enemies as possible before the fiends can counter-attack them directly.
Advancement: Nightmare slayers start out as rangers and/or paladins/liberators, and occasionally seek out precision training from rogues, ninjas, and the such, after discovering that undead do in fact have vital areas.
Resources: Nightmare slayers tend to travel with clerics even more than other warriors do, as clerics can provide scrolls for exorcism and nightmare slayers can battle (with buffs from the clerics) undead that are too powerful for a cleric to simply Turn/Rebuke.
NIGHTMARE SLAYERS IN THE WORLD
"Why is it that every conversation you people have has the word "corpse" in it?"
Daily Life: Nightmare slayers generally spend much of their time practicing combat, studying lore on undead, demons, yugoloths and devils, and practicing using magic items that could end combat faster. Some of the more sadistic slayers use captured fiends/undead as test subjects for experimenting hands-on with which scrolls work best and where the slayer can hit them for the most grievously crippling injuries.
Partalock Zetob (Ranger) was one of the most powerful warriors in the Blue Flame of Dispater, a cult that would abduct demon summoners, not only to remove demonic warriors opposing Dispater's armies in the Blood War but also to take the credit for slaying them in the Material Plane, not revealing that they both served Dispater and orchestrated the demon summons in the first place. Partalock was extremely popular in his town for the number of demons he killed and the amount of time he spent training the new demon-hunting recruits from the nearby towns. Obviously, Partolock had no connection to those summoning the demons he killed, and obviously he wouldn't do anything to harm the fellow demon hunters, and obviously the ones that didn't come back from scouting missions were lost in combat against demons and Partalock will be a hero when he avenges them, and obviously the deceased demon hunters didn't find out about some imaginary conspiracy that attracted the attention of mortal assassins that obviously Partalock wouldn't have conveniently forgotten to train them against...
Todracent Crillaim (Paladin) grew up in a town that was frequently attacked by packs of vampires. He was raised by the Church of Pelor when his family was slaughtered, and he spent most of his life training to fight back against vampires. By the time that the disparate packs started to unite into a massive army under a commander who had been a minotaur in life, Todracent had grown powerful enough to slay the vampire in single combat while his allies handled the honor guard; when divinations showed where to find what was left of tribe that the minotaur had belonged to in life before turning against them as a vampire, Todracent and his friends brought the staked and beheaded body to the tribe to show them what had happened to their elder, and were able to persuade them to join the war against the army of vampires that had been raised.
Organizations: The Blue Flame of Dispater was a cult that controlled numerous city-states by abducting summoners of demons, forcing them to summon demons (with the demons believing that their summoners acted alone) that the cult would be able to kill, and having the summoners give the demons permission to ravage the countryside while being distracted from Dispater's armies. The regions' governors would then hire local guilds of demon hunters that allegedly had no connection to anything like the cults of Dispater, and the warriors would be publicly viewed as heroes for slaying the demons while the guild leaders would have the good-will of the populous and governors to take financial/political advantage of at a later point.
Anybody who has learned to battle the perfect embodiments of pure evil itself and lived to tell the tale will be universally recognized as incredibly powerful warriors by anybody who has seen or heard stories about what fiends and undead do to those who cannot fight back.
Even those who use their power and reputation to extort those who live in fear of demonic attacks will be accepted, however begrudgingly, as the lesser of two evils, and the people who's lives depend on slaying the demons that have plagued them will be even more terrified of angering so-called mortals that the selfsame demons would be afraid of.
NIGHTMARE SLAYERS IN THE GAME
A nightmare slayer's focus on Undeads and Evil Outsiders would leave them less prepared for mortal enemies, so they would learn to choose their battles carefully.
Adaptation: In a sci-fi setting, nightmare slayers could be re-imagined as the soldiers, mercenaries, or hunters that specialize in killing aliens of unique species (sentient or otherwise) that have very specific weaknesses and require more specialized weaponry to kill than do most other species like humans (who can be killed simply with quiet feet, quick hands and a letter opener).
Encounters: Good Slayers would tend to be Paladins more often than they would be Rangers while Evil Slayers would always be Rangers, although Good Ranger/Slayers would still be fairly common.
Unless the PC party includes undead or evil outsider characters, enemy slayers probably wouldn't want to pick a fight with other mortals without their own, less over-specialized, back-up. However, neither would the party want to attack a slayer outright if the consequences would mean the anger of his allies that are more dangerous to mortals, especially if his public face is that of a hero and the party would have to deal with law enforcement as well as assassins.
EL 13: "Through the trees, you see a party of [fewer than half a dozen (Good PCs) / over a dozen (Evil PCs)] tents built in the clearing. You are spotted by a watchman who wakes the group, and are addressed by a woman who identifies herself as Casistomend, Paladin of Bahamut and commander of the region's Exorcism chapter."
Good PCs: "She informs you that half of her party was captured by vampire raiders, and requests your assistance in attacking the vampires' holdout to retrieve her warriors before they can be killed or turned."
Evil PCs: "She warns you that her troops have far more experience dealing with all of the fiends from all of the Lower Realms than yours have dealing with the mortals that are afraid of them, and that if you do not wish to have every knight in the country hunting you, you will surrender to be taken to trial for your crimes."
Lawful Good/Female/Human/Paladin5 NightmareSlayer8
Init +0, Senses: Listen +6, Spot +6,
AC 25, touch 12, flat-footed 21 (+13 armor, +2 DEX)
hp 93 (5d10+8d8+26 HD)
Fort +10, Ref +3, Will +7
Speed 30 ft. (6 squares)
Base Atk +13, Grp +15
Scimitar +19 Melee (1d6+6)
Mithril +3 Breastplate: 13,000 gp, 15 lbs
Silver +4 Scimitar: 32,000 gp, 4 lbs
Cold Iron +3 Scimitar: 20,000 gp, 4 lbs
Heavy Mithril +3 Shield: 10,000 gp, 7.5 lbs
Cloak of Charisma +2: 4,000 gp, 2 lbs
Gloves of Dexterity +4: 16,000 gp, 2 lbs
Minor Scroll [Dimensional Anchor x2 + case] x5: 3,500 gp, 5 lbs
Minor Scroll [Banishment x2 + case] x5: 8,250 gp, 5 lbs
Minor Scroll [Searing Light x2 + case] x4: 1,500 gp, 4 lbs
Aura of Good, Detect Evil, Smite Evil 2/day, Divine Grace, Lay on Hands, Aura of Courage, Divine Health, Turn Undead, Special Mount, Focused Training +8, Disruption, Improved Disruption, Greater Disruption, Exorcism, Improved Exorcism, Greater Exorcism, Binding, Improved Binding, Greater Binding, Eldritch Experience, Improved Eldritch Experience, Eldritch Resistance (Blood), Eldritch Resistance (Energy)
Abilities Str 14, Dex 14, Con 14, Int 12, Wis 10, Cha 18
Power Attack, Cleave, Vampire Hunter, Improved Critical x2, Skill Focus (Use Magic Device)
Concentration 18, Diplomacy 12, Heal 8, Intimidate 10, Knowledge: Nobility/Royalty 6, Knowledge: Religion 7, Knowledge: the Planes 6, Listen +5, Ride 5, Sense Motive 5, Spot 5, Use Magic Device 19
Traveler's outfit: 5 lbs