Previews
In Like a Beholder, Out Like a Beholder
Previews for March and Beyond
By Mat Smith

Explorer

Explorer

The Explorer is a new advanced class available to characters in any historical era covered by d20 Past.

An Explorer is the first to go anywhere -- from the highest mountain to the center of the earth. Relying on unparalleled bravery and experience gleaned on all seven continents, he is always seeking out new adventures. Explorer characters might attempt to circumnavigate the globe or seek the mythical kingdom ruled by Prester John, delve into the jungles of Africa or search for the fabled Valley of the Dinosaurs, or excavate ancient Mayan pyramids in a race against Nazi scientists to find precious antiquities.

Select this advanced class if you want to put your ingenuity to the test. You'll have a wide array of skills and the guts to get you through a tough spot.

The fastest path into this advanced class is from the Dedicated Hero basic class, though other paths are possible.

Requirements

To qualify to become an Explorer, a character must fulfill the following criteria:

Base Attack Bonus: +2.
Skills: Spot 4 ranks, Survival 6 ranks.
Feat: Guide.

Class Information

The following information pertains to the Explorer advanced class.

Hit Die

The Explorer gains 1d8 hit points per level. The character's Constitution modifier applies.

Action Points

The Explorer gains a number of action points equal to 6 + one-half his character level, rounded down, every time he attains a new level in this class.

Class Skills

The Explorer's class skills are as follows.

Balance (Dex), Climb (Str), Decipher Script (Int), Disable Device (Int), Drive (Dex), Gather Information (Cha), Handle Animal (Cha), Hide (Dex), Jump (Str), Knowledge (art, current events, history, popular culture) (Int), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Navigate (Int), Pilot (Dex), Profession (Wis), Read/Write Language (none), Ride (Dex), Search (Int), Speak Language (none), Spot (Wis), Survival (Wis), Swim (Str), Treat Injury (Wis).

Skill Points at Each Level: 7 + Int modifier.

Class Features

All of the following are class features of the Explorer advanced class:

Track

An Explorer gains Track as a bonus feat.

Trailblazing

An Explorer can discern the best route through unfamiliar or rugged terrain. When traveling in poor weather conditions or difficult terrain, an Explorer can make a Survival check to save travel time.

With a check result of 15 or better, an Explorer reduces the total travel time by 25%. With a 25 or better, the time is reduced by 50%. An Explorer can take 10 on this check, but he can't take 20. This ability applies only to long-term travel, not tactical movement.

Travel time is reduced for everyone traveling in the immediate vicinity of an Explorer. An entire caravan can benefit from an Explorer's trailblazing. Travelers following behind an Explorer, however, don't benefit and must pass through the terrain normally.

Sweep

An Explorer knows how to size up an area and get the lay of the land in a single sweep of his eyes that often isn't perceptible to those around him. This sweep provides a +4 circumstance bonus on Spot checks and covers an area out to 30 feet away from the Explorer (but not behind him). An Explorer can use this bonus at the start of an encounter to look for obvious enemies, alarms, traps, escape routes, and any objects of historical or anthropological interest.

Anything not concealed can be spotted in a sweep with a successful Spot check (DC 10). The DC for concealed or less obvious threats is equal to their Hide check result.

Endurance

An Explorer gains the Endurance feat for free at 3rd level.

Bonus Language

At 3rd level and every third level thereafter, an Explorer learns a new language from his travels. An Explorer can both speak the new language and read it if it has a written form.

Bonus Feats

At 4th and 8th level, an Explorer gets a bonus feat. The bonus feat must be selected from the following list, and the Explorer must meet all the prerequisites of the feat to select it.

Aircraft Operation, Alertness, Animal Affinity, Cautious, Educated, Exotic Melee Weapon Proficiency, Force Stop, Renown, Studious, Vehicle Dodge, Vehicle Expert, Windfall.

Uncanny Dodge 1

An Explorer retains his Dexterity bonus to Defense regardless of being caught flat-footed or struck by a hidden attacker. (He still loses his Dexterity bonus to Defense if he's immobilized.) An Explorer need not have the evasion class feature to have uncanny dodge. If the character already has uncanny dodge 1 from another source (such as the Fast Hero's defensive talent tree), he gains uncanny dodge 2 instead.

Skill Mastery

At 7th level, an Explorer selects a number of skills from his class list equal to 3 + his Intelligence modifier. When making a skill check using one of these skills, the Explorer may take 10 even if stress and distractions would normally prevent him from doing so. He becomes so accomplished in the use of these skills that he can use them reliably even under adverse conditions.

Sidekick

At 10th level, an Explorer gains the Sidekick feat for free.

Ready-to-Use Explorer

Need an Explorer for an adventure? Here is a ready-to-use character that can serve as either a friend or a foe for the heroes in any d20 Past campaign. Explorers often begin their careers as Dedicated heroes. They can be fairly straightforward to create and play.

Dedicated Hero 3/Explorer 3: CR 6; Medium-size humanoid (human); HD 3d8+3 plus 3d8+3; hp 33; Mas 12; Init +2; Spd 30 ft.; Defense 17, touch 16, flat-footed 15 (+2 Dex, +4 Class, +1 armor); BAB +4; Grap +4; Atk +6 ranged (2d10, Winchester 1873) or +4 melee (1d6/18-20, saber); Full Atk +6 ranged (2d10, Winchester 1873) or +4 melee (1d6/18-20, saber); FS 5 ft. by 5 ft.; Reach 5 ft.; SQ empathy, improved aid another, sweep, trailblazing; AL varies; SV Fort +6, Ref +6, Will +8; AP 3; Rep +3; Str 10, Dex 14, Con 12, Int 13, Wis 16, Cha 8.

Occupation: Adventurer (bonus class skills: Spot, Survival).

Skills: Jump -9, Knowledge (earth and life sciences) +7, Knowledge (physical sciences) +7, Listen +5, Navigate +6, Read/Write Dutch, Read/Write Mandarin, Read/Write Swahili, Ride +11, Sense Motive +9, Speak Dutch, Speak Mandarin, Speak Swahili, Spot +10, Survival +14, Treat Injury +9.

Feats: Archaic Weapons Proficiency, Endurance, Guide, Iron Will, Personal Firearms Proficiency, Track.

Possessions: Buff coat, Winchester 1873, 20 rounds of ammunition, saber, horse, various gear and personal possessions.


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