DARK SUN House Rules
Welcome to Athas: A Quick Player’s Primer
The world of the DARK SUN Campaign Setting is unique in several ways. Many familiar trappings of the DUNGEONS & DRAGONS game are missing or turned on their heads. Athas is not a place of shining knights and robed wizards, of deep forests and divine pantheons. To venture over the sands of Athas is to enter a world of savagery and splendor that draws on different traditions of fantasy and storytelling. Simple survival beneath the deep red sun is often its own adventure.
Newcomers to Athas have many things to learn about the world, its people, and its monsters, but the following eight characteristics encapsulate the most important features of the DARK SUN campaign setting.
The World is a Desert: Athas is a hot, arid planet covered with endless seas of dunes, lifeless salt flats,
stony wastes, rocky badlands, thorny scrublands, and worse. From the first moments of dawn, the crimson sun beats down from an olive-‐tinged sky. Temperatures routinely exceed 37 degrees by midmorning and can reach 54 degrees or more by late afternoon. The wind is like the blast of a furnace, offering no relief from the oppressive heat. Dust and sand borne on the breeze coat everything with yellow-‐orange silt. In this forbidding world, cities and villages exist only in a few oases or verdant plains. The world beyond these islands of civilization is a barren wasteland roamed by nomads, raiders, and hungry monsters.
The World is Savage: Life on Athas is brutal and short. Bloodthirsty raiders, greedy slavers, and hordes of
inhuman savages overrun the deserts and wastelands. The cities are little better; each chokes in the grip of an immortal tyrant. The vile institution of slavery is widespread on Athas, and many unfortunates spend their lives in chains, toiling for brutal taskmasters. Every year hundreds of slaves, perhaps thousands, are sent to their deaths in bloody arena spectacles. Charity, compassion, kindness—these qualities exist, but they are rare and precious blooms. Only a fool hopes for such riches.
Metal is Scarce: Most arms and armor are made of bone, stone, wood, and other such materials. Mail or
plate armor exists only in the treasuries of the sorcerer-‐kings. Steel blades are almost priceless, weapons that many heroes never see during their lifetimes.
Arcane Magic Defiles the World: The reckless use of arcane magic during ancient wars reduced Athas to a
wasteland. To cast an arcane spell, one must gather power from the living world nearby. Plants wither to black ash, crippling pain wracks animals and people, and the soil is sterilized; nothing can grow in that spot again. It is possible to cast spells with care, avoiding any more damage to the world, but defiling is more potent than preserving. As a result, wizards and other wielders of arcane magic are generally reviled and persecuted across Athas regardless of whether they preserve or defile. Only the most powerful spellcasters can wield arcane might without fear of reprisals.
Sorcerer-Kings Rule the City-States: Terrible defilers of immense power rule all but one of the city-‐states.
These mighty spellcasters have held their thrones for centuries; no one alive remembers a time before the sorcerer-‐kings. Some claim to be gods, and some claim to serve gods. Some are brutal oppressors, where others are more subtle in their tyranny. The sorcerer-‐kings govern through priesthoods or bureaucracies of greedy, ambitious templars, enforcers who can call upon the kings’ powers.
The Gods are Silent: Long ago, the gods left Athas. Today, Athas is a world without deities. There are no
clerics, no paladins, and no prophets or religious orders. In the absence of divine influence, other powers have come to prominence in the world. Psionic power is well known and widely practiced on Athas; even unintelligent desert monsters can have deadly psionic abilities. Priests and druids call upon the primal powers of the world, which are often sculpted by the influence of elemental power.
Fierce Monsters Roam the World: The desert planet has its own deadly ecology. Many creatures that are
familiar sights on milder worlds have long since died out or never existed at all. Athas has no cattle, swine, or horses; instead, people tend flocks of erdlus, ride on kanks or crodlus, and draw wagons with inixes and mekillots. Wild creatures such as lions, bears, and wolves are almost nonexistent. In their place are terrors such as the id fiend, the baazrag, and the tembo.
Familiar Races Aren’t What You Expect: Typical fantasy stereotypes don’t apply to Athasian heroes. In
many DUNGEONS & DRAGONS settings, elves are wise, benevolent forest-‐dwellers who guard their homelands from intrusions of evil. On Athas, elves are a nomadic race of herders, raiders, peddlers, and thieves. Halflings aren’t amiable river-‐folk; they’re xenophobic headhunters and cannibals who hunt and kill trespassers in their mountain forests. Half-‐giants are brutal mercenaries that serve as elite guards and enforcers for the sorcerer-‐kings and their templars in many city-‐states.
Abou t Th i s Docu m en t
This document sets out the house rules for a Pathfinder-‐based DARK SUN campaign. The other rules-‐relevant texts are the Pathfinder Core Rulebook, the Pathfinder Advanced Player’s Guide, Dreamscarred Press’s Psionics Unleashed and Athas.org’s Dark Sun 3 Core Rules (revision 7). This text essentially updates the Athas.org 3.5 rules to a Pathfinder-‐like standard. This means that races are converted to be on par as ECL +0 (although the power curve is greater than other campaign settings, they are broadly comparable with each other).
Classes are modified to the Pathfinder design philosophy of streamlining ability mechanics and removing ‘dead’ class levels.
These changes are not set in stone, consider them a proposal for a fun, heroic, mechanical framework around which to forge your stories of the heroes, villains or survivors you will play.
H ow to U s e th i s Docu m en t
If in doubt as to which conflicting rule should apply from amongst these texts, the hierarchy of precedence is as follows: House Rules Document (DSHR) > Pathfinder Core Rulebook (PCR) & the Pathfinder Advanced Player’s Guide (APG) & Psionics Unleashed (PU) > Athas.org’s Dark Sun 3 Core Rules (revision 7) (DS3r7).
In terms of flavour and descriptive text the Dark Sun 3 Core Rules (revision 7) should be taken as the guide.
Ch aracter Creati on
Generating Attribute Scores: Characters can either be created according to the Pathfinder 25-‐ point buy method (Heroic), or by rolling 4d6 for each attribute and dropping the lowest die. If using the dice-‐rolling method, total ability scores of less than 66 should be re-‐rolled.
Starting Level and Hit Points: Following DARK SUN tradition, all characters start at 3rd level. Award full hit points for these initial levels. Subsequent levels can either take ¾ of a hit die per level (carry over fractions to the next level), or roll your hit die for hit points ignoring all 1’s and 2’s.
Skills Note – Literacy: Writing and literacy is illegal within the Tyr Region with the exception of nobles, templars, and sorcerer-‐kings. No PC starts with any literacy in languages they know. Literacy must be purchased with skill points. Wizards do not keep written spellbooks. They develop coded means of recording spells.
Caste: Decide the strata of the social hierarchy from which your character hails. In descending order Athasian city-‐state society is structured as follows: Sorceror-‐King, templars, nobles, freemen, merchants, slaves and outsiders (e.g., elves, halflings, thri-‐kreen).
This will have role-‐playing and minor mechanical implications. Note that all gladiators are slaves, although it is possible that a freeman gladiator could engage in a debt-‐contract to re-‐enter the arena, provided a trustworthy patron is found.
Starting money: Freemen: 300 Cp; Slaves: nothing, in-‐game assignment of gear by DM. What you can spend it on: No magic items. Masterwork items permitted. Special materials, including iron weapons, generally not available, check with DM. Inferior materials freely available. Don’t forget water and supplies if you plan on leaving town!
TABLE 1: RACIAL ABILITY MODIFIERS
Dwarf +2 Constitution; +2 Wisdom; -‐2 Charisma
Elan +2 to any attribute
Elf +2 Dexterity; +2 Charisma; -‐2 Constitution
Half-elf +2 to any attribute
Half-giant +4 Strength; +2 Constitution; -‐2 Dexterity; -‐2 Intelligence
Halfling +2 Dexterity; +2 Wisdom; -‐2 Strength
Human +2 to any attribute
Mul +2 Constitution; -‐2 Intelligence; +2 to any other attribute
Thri-kreen +2 Dexterity; +2 Wisdom; -‐2 Charisma
Note: Modifiers are applied AFTER any ability purchase. Forbidden Races, The Extinct
On Athas certain standard or common D&D races are not available as PC races as they are now extinct, they never existed, or because Athas’ connections to the Outer Planes have been long severed. These include: Aasimar, Drow, Gnomes, Half-‐orcs, Tieflings.
General Athasian Race Traits
Psionics are prevalent on Athas. Even the humblest slave has some psionic talent. All characters have the following option:
• Psionic Aptitude: When an Athasian takes a level in a favored class, she can choose to gain an additional power point instead of a hit point or skill point.
Every playable race receives a racial psionic power as detailed below.
Dwarf Racial Traits
• +2 Constitution, +2 Wisdom, –2 Charisma: Dwarves
are strong, sturdy, and perceptive, but their
single-‐mindedness hinders them when dealing with others.
• Medium: As Medium creatures, dwarves have no
special bonuses or penalties due to size.
• Darkvision: Dwarves can see in the dark up to 60 feet. Darkvision is black and white only, but it is otherwise like normal sight, and dwarves can function just fine with no light at all.
• Slow and steady: Dwarven base land speed is 20 feet. However, dwarves can move this speed even when wearing medium or heavy armor or when carrying a medium or heavy load (unlike other creatures whose speed is reduced in such situations).
• Stability: A dwarf gains a +4 racial bonus to their Combat Maneuvre Defence when they are bull rushed or tripped when standing on the ground (but not when climbing, flying, riding, or otherwise not standing firmly on the ground).
• Hardy: +2 racial bonus on saving throws against poison, psionics, spells and spell–like effects.
• Weapons Familiarity: To dwarves, the urgrosh is treated as a martial rather than exotic weapon.
• Focus: +1 morale bonus on all checks directly related to their focus. This includes a skill bonus, an attack bonus, a damage bonus, or a saving throw bonus, or even a bonus to manifestation or spell save DCs. Dwarves also gain a +4 racial bonus on Will saves against charm or compulsion effects that would change, delay, or distract from their focus.
• Naturally Psionic: Dwarves receive Wild Talent as a bonus feat at 1st level. If an dwarf takes levels in a psionic class, he may replace Wild Talent with Psionic Talent instead.
• Dwarven Psionics: Dwarves gain the following psionic power: vigor. The manifester level for this effect is equal to the dwarf’s level. The DC for this power is equal to 10 + the power’s level + the dwarf’s Charisma modifier (unless the dwarf has psionic class levels, in which case a more favourable ability score is used).
• Automatic Languages: Common and Dwarven. Bonus Languages: Elven, Giant, Gith, Kreen,
Behind the Veil: The Dwarven Focus
A dwarf’s focus is the central point of his existence. Nothing is more rewarding to a dwarf than to complete his focus. A focus must take at least a week to complete; anything less than that is too simple a task to be considered a focus. Dwarves receive a morale bonus working to complete a focus. The task must be directly related to the completion of the focus, however.
For example, Grelak, protector of his Dwarven community, makes the retrieval of a sacred book stolen during a raid his focus. After a week of gathering clues, he sets out to retrieve the artifact from its current possessor, who hides in a trading post two weeks away. On the way to the outpost, he encounters a wild lirr; while battling this foe, he receives his morale bonus, because he is trying to reach the book. Later, Grelak stops in Nibenay for some rest, and gets in a brawl. He doesn’t receive any bonuses, because he isn’t actively pursuing his focus.
Elan Racial Traits As per Psionics Unleashed.
• +2 to one ability score: Elans gain a +2 bonus to one ability score chosen at creation to represent their varied nature.
• Aberrant Blood: Elans are of the humanoid (aberrant) subtype.
• Medium: Elans are Medium creatures and have no bonuses or penalties due to their size. • Normal Speed: Elans have a base speed of 30 feet.
• Aberrant Nature: Although human in appearance, elans suffer from a nature slightly off from the rest of the non-‐elan society. They suffer a -‐1 penalty to Charisma-‐based skill checks when dealing with non-‐elans.
• Naturally Psionic: Elans gain the Wild Talent feat as a bonus feat at 1st level. If an elan takes levels in a psionic class, he may replace the Wild Talent feat with Psionic Talent instead. • Resistance (Su): Elans can use psionic energy to increase their resistance to various forms
of attack. As an immediate action, an elan can spend 1 power point to gain a +4 racial bonus on saving throws until the beginning of her next action.
• Resilience (Su): When an elan takes damage, he can spend power points to reduce its severity. As an immediate action, he can reduce the damage he is about to take by 2 hit points for every 1 power point he spends.
• Repletion (Su): An elan can sustain his body without need of food or water. If he spends 1 power point, an elan does not need to eat or drink for 24 hours.
• Psionic Aptitude: When an elan takes a level in a favored class, he can choose to gain an additional power point instead of a hit point or skill point.
• Languages: Elans begin play speaking Common. Elans with high Intelligence scores can choose any languages they want (except secret languages, such as Druidic).
Elf Racial Traits
• +2 Dexterity, +2 Charisma, and -2
Constitution: Elves are agile and manipulative, but less sturdy than humans.
• Humanoid (elf): Elves are humanoid creatures
with the elf subtype.
• Medium Size: As Medium creatures, elves have no special bonuses of penalties due to size. • Swift: Elven base land speed is 40 feet. At 10th
level this increases to 50 feet.
• Low-light vision: Elves can see twice as far as a human in moonlight and similar conditions of poor illumination, retaining the ability to distinguish color and detail.
• Weapon Familiarity: All elves treat the elven longblade (page 115) as a martial weapon. Elves are also proficient with all bows.
• Keen Senses: +2 racial bonus to Bluff, Perform and Perception checks.
• Temperature resilience: Elves have a natural
resistance to extreme temperatures and aren’t adversely affected by the heat of the day or the chill of the night. They treat extreme heat or cold as if it were only very hot or cold, but suffer normally from abysmal heat, or from magical supernatural heat and cold.
• Desert Craft: Elves have a +4 racial bonus on Hide checks in sandy or arid areas. • Elf Run: After a minute of warm–up and a Concentration check (DC 10 against character
level plus Charisma bonus), elves can induce an elf run state. This state allows elves to hustle for long distances as easily as a human can move normally, and run for long distances as easily as a human can hustle. Each day that an elf continues the elf run, he must make
additional Concentration checks to maintain his elf run state: A trivial check (DC 10) on the second day, an easy check (DC 15) on the third day, an average check (DC 20) on the fourth day, a difficult check (DC 30) on the fifth day, and an heroic check (DC 40) on the sixth day. Once the elf fails his Concentration check, he loses the elf run benefits and suffers normal penalties for extended hustling and running. After a full day’s rest, the elf may attempt again to induce an elf run state. With a group of elves, runners add their leader’s Charisma bonus both to their movement rate and to any Fortitude checks related to movement.
• Naturally Psionic: Elves receive Wild Talent as a bonus feat at 1st level. If an elf takes levels in a psionic class, he may replace Wild Talent with Psionic Talent instead.
• Elven Psionics: Elves gain the following psionic power: conceal thoughts. The manifester level for this effect is equal to the elf’s level. The DC for this power is equal to 10 + the power’s level + the elf’s Charisma modifier (unless the elf has psionic class levels, in which case a more favourable ability score is used).
• Automatic Languages: Common and Elven. Bonus Languages: Dwarven, Entomic, Kreen,
Gith, Saurian, and Terran.
Half-elf Racial Traits
• +2 to One Ability Score: Half-‐elf characters get a +2 bonus to one ability score of their choice at creation to represent their varied nature.
• Medium: Half-‐elves are Medium creatures and have no bonuses or penalties due to their size.
• Normal Speed: Half-‐elves have a base speed of 30 feet.
• Low-Light Vision: Half-‐elves can see twice as far as humans in conditions of dim light. See Chapter 7, Pathfinder Rulebook.
• Adaptability: Half-‐elves receive Skill Focus as a bonus feat at 1st level.
• Elf Blood: Half-‐elves count as both elves and humans for any effect related to race. • Keen Senses: Half-‐elves receive a +2 racial
bonus on Perception skill checks.
• Child of two worlds: Half-‐elves gain a +2 racial bonus to Disguise checks when impersonating elves or humans.
• Tablelander: +2 racial bonus on all Survival and Handle Animal checks. Half-‐elves spend a lot of time in the wilds of the tablelands.
• Multitalented: Half-‐elves choose two favored
classes at first level and gain +1 hit point or +1 skill point whenever they take a level in either one of those classes. See Chapter 3 for more information about favored classes.
• Naturally Psionic: Half-‐elves receive Wild Talent as a bonus feat at 1st level. If a half-‐elf takes levels in a psionic class, she may replace Wild Talent with Psionic Talent instead. • Half-elven Psionics: Half-‐elves gain the following psionic power: empathic connection. The manifester level for this effect is equal to the half-‐elf’s level. The DC for this power is equal to 10 + the power’s level + the half-‐elf’s Charisma modifier (unless the half-‐elf has psionic class levels, in which case a more favourable ability score is used).
• Languages: Half-‐elves begin play speaking Common and Elven. Half-‐elves with high Intelligence scores can choose any languages they want (except secret languages, such as Druidic).
Half-Giant Racial Traits
• +4 Strength, +2 Constitution, -2 Dexterity, -2 Intelligence: Half-‐giants are incredibly strong and hardy, but are also slow-‐witted and find maneuvering difficult due to their impressive size.
• Humanoid (giant): Half-‐giants are humanoid
creatures with the giant subtype.
• Medium Size: Half-‐giants are medium-‐sized
creatures but are subject to the special rules below on account of their greater size.
• Normal Speed: Half-‐giants have a base speed of 30 feet.
• Low-Light Vision: Half-‐giants can see twice as far as humans in conditions of dim light. • Powerful Build: The physical stature of half-‐
giants lets them function in many ways as if they were one size category larger.
Whenever a half-‐giant is subject to a size modifier or special size modifier for a Combat Maneuver Bonus or Combat Maneuver Defense (such as during grapple checks, bull rush attempts, and trip attempts), the half-‐giant is treated as one size larger if doing so is advantageous to him.
A half-‐giant is also considered to be one size larger when determining whether a creature’s special attacks based on size (such as improved grab or swallow whole) can affect him.
They also are considered large for the purposes of their carrying capacity (i.e. x 2 carrying capacity).
A half-‐giant can use weapons designed for a creature one size larger without penalty. However, his space and reach remain those of a creature of his actual size. The benefits of this racial trait stack with the effects of powers, abilities, and spells that change the subject’s size category.
• Big britches: Half-‐giants have greater girth than most other medium-‐sized humanoids and find it hard to fit into armor and clothing designed for medium creatures. Half-‐giants are treated as Large creatures for the purposes of determining what they can wear, including how much it costs and weighs (PCR: Armor for Unusual Creatures; x 2 cost, x 2 weight). • Large and in charge: Half-‐giants are very unstable and can be very intimidating, gaining a
+2 bonus to their Intimidate skill to smaller creatures. As humanoids with the giant sub-‐type, half-‐giants treat Intimidate as a class skill.
• Looming Presence: Due to their greater-‐than-‐medium build, half-‐giants incur a -‐2 penalty to Stealth checks.
• Large appetite: Half-‐giants also require lots of food and water to sustain their massive stature and take twice the amount of food and water that normal medium creatures require. • Axis Alignment: One aspect of the half-‐giant’s alignment must be fixed, and chosen during
character creation. The other half must be chosen when they awake each morning. They are only bound to that alignment until they sleep again. For example, a half-‐giant may have a fixed lawful alignment. Every morning, he must choose to be lawful good, lawful neutral or lawful evil. This alignment change is not mandatory.
• Naturally Psionic: Half-‐giants receive Wild Talent as a bonus feat at 1st level. If a half-‐giant takes levels in a psionic class, he may replace Wild Talent with Psionic Talent instead.
• Half-giant Psi-like Ability: Half-‐giants gain the following psi-‐like ability: 1/day—stomp. The manifester level for this effect is equal to 1/2 the half-‐giant’s level (minimum 1st). The DC for this power is equal to 10 + the power’s level + the half-‐giant’s Charisma modifier (unless the half-‐giant has psionic class levels, in which case a more favourable ability score is used).
• Automatic Language: Common. Bonus Languages: Dwarven, Giant and Gith.
Halfling Racial Traits
• +2 Dexterity, +2 Wisdom, –2 Strength: Halflings are nimble and strong-‐willed, but their small stature makes them weaker than other races.
• Small: Halflings are Small creatures and gain a +1 size bonus to their AC, a +1 size bonus on attack rolls, a –1 penalty to their Combat Maneuver Bonus and Combat Maneuver Defense, and a +4 size bonus on Stealth checks.
• Slow Speed: Halflings have a base speed of 20 feet.
• Fearless: Halflings receive a +2 racial bonus on all saving throws against fear. This bonus stacks with the bonus granted by Halfling Luck.
• Feral: Halflings receive a –2 penalty to all Diplomacy skill checks when dealing with other races. Halflings have a reputation for cannibalism and disdain for settled societies. • Halfling Luck: Halflings receive a +1 racial bonus on all saving throws.
• Magic Haters: +2 racial bonus on saving throws against spells and spell-‐like effects. Note: this stacks with Halfling Luck.
• Keen Senses: Halflings receive a +4 racial bonus on Perception skill checks. Halflings have keen ears. Their senses of smell and taste are equally keen; they receive a +4 to all Wisdom checks that assess smell or taste. This does not stack with the aforementioned Perception bonus.
• Sure-Footed: Halflings receive a +2 racial bonus on Acrobatics and Climb skill checks. • Weapon Familiarity: Javelins and slings are common weapons in feral halfling society, and
many halflings are taught to throw at an early age. They receive a +1 racial attack bonus with a thrown weapons. Halflings are proficient with javelins and slings and treat any weapon with the word “halfling” in its name as a martial weapon.
• Naturally Psionic: Halfings receive Wild Talent as a bonus feat at 1st level. If a halfling takes levels in a psionic class, he may replace Wild Talent with Psionic Talent instead.
• Halfling Psionics: Halflings gain the following psionic power: mindling. The manifester level for this effect is equal to the halfling’s level. The DC for this power is equal to 10 + the power’s level + the halfling’s Charisma modifier (unless the halfling has psionic class levels, in which case a more favourable ability score is used).
• Automatic Languages: Halfling. Bonus Languages: Common, Dwarven, Elven, Gith, Kreen,
Human Racial Traits
• +2 to One Ability Score: Human characters get a +2 bonus to one ability score of their choice at creation to represent their varied nature.
• Medium: Humans are Medium creatures and have no bonuses
or penalties due to their size.
• Normal Speed: Humans have a base speed of 30 feet. • Bonus Feat: Humans select one extra feat at 1st level.
• Skilled: Humans gain an additional skill rank at first level and one additional rank whenever they gain a level.
• Naturally Psionic: Humans receive Wild Talent as a bonus feat at 1st level. If a human takes levels in a psionic class, she may replace Wild Talent with Psionic Talent instead. At 5th level if a human does not already have the Psionic Talent feat, she gains it in addition to the Wild Talent feat gained at 1st level. If she already possesses the feat she gains an additional 2 power points. (In total, a human will gain 4 power points as a racial bonus).
• Human Psionics: At 1st level humans can choose any single 1st-‐ level power from the psion/wilder list. The manifester level for this effect is equal to the human’s level. The DC for this power is equal to 10 + the power’s level + the human’s Charisma modifier
(unless the human has psionic class levels, in which case a more favourable ability score is used). At 5th level a human gains a 2nd-‐level power from the psion/wilder list.
• Languages: Humans begin play speaking Common. Humans with high Intelligence scores
can choose any languages they want (except secret languages, such as Druidic).
Mul Racial Traits
• +2 Constitution, –2 Intelligence, +2 to any other attribute: Born of two peoples Muls inherit the robustness of Dwarves. Though they are often bred for strength, player character Muls inherit the variability of humankind. However, their status as bred slaves deprives them of opportunities for intellectual development.
• Humanoid (dwarf): Muls are humanoid creatures with
the dwarf subtype.
• Medium: As Medium creatures, muls have no bonuses or penalties due to size.
• Normal Speed: Mul base land speed is 30 feet. • Darkvision: Muls can see in the dark up to 60 feet.
Darkvision is black and white only, but is otherwise like normal sight, and muls can function just fine with no light at all.
• Tireless: Muls get a +4 racial bonus to checks for performing a physical action that extends over a period of time (running, swimming, holding breath, and so on). This bonus stacks with the Endurance feat. This bonus may also be applied to savings throws against spells and magical effects that cause weakness, fatigue, exhaustion or enfeeblement.
• Extended Activity: Muls may engage in up to 12 hours of hard labor or forced marching without suffering from fatigue.
• Incredible Toughness: 1/day a Mul may remove one of the following conditions: Fatigued, Sickened or Dazed as an immediate action.
• Dwarven Blood: For all effects related to race, a mul is considered a dwarf. Muls, for example, are just as vulnerable to effects that affect dwarves as their dwarf ancestors are, and they can use magic items that are only usable by dwarves.
• Nonlethal Damage Resistance 1/–: Muls are difficult to subdue, and do not notice minor bruises, scrapes, and other discomforts that pain creatures of other races.
• Naturally Psionic: Muls receive Wild Talent as a bonus feat at 1st level. If a mul takes levels in a psionic class, he may replace Wild Talent with Psionic Talent instead.
• Mul Psionics: Muls gain the following psionic power: precognition, offensive. The manifester level for this effect is equal to the mul’s character level. The DC for this power is equal to 10 + the power’s level + the mul’s Charisma modifier (unless the mul has psionic class levels, in which case a more favourable ability score is used).
• Automatic Language: Common. Bonus Languages: Dwarven, Elven, and Giant.
Thri-kreen Racial Traits
• +2 Dexterity, +2 Wisdom, -2 Charisma: Thri-‐kreen are fast, but their alien mindset makes it difficult for them to relate to humanoids; furthermore, their “clutch–mind” instincts leave them with a poor sense of themselves as individuals.
• Monstrous Humanoid:
Thri-‐kreen are not subject to spells or effects that affect humanoids only, such as charm person or dominate person.
• Medium: Thri-‐kreen receive no
advantages or penalties due to size. • Swift: Thri-‐kreen base land speed
is 40 feet.
• Darkvision: 60 feet.
• Sleep Immunity: Thri-‐kreen do not sleep, and are immune to sleep spells and similar effects. Thri-‐kreen spellcasters and manifesters still require 8 hours of rest before preparing spells. • Natural Armor: Thri-‐kreen have a +3 natural armor bonus to AC due to their naturally
tough and resistant chitin. This bonus does not stack with the AC bonus provided by armor. • Non-humanoid shape: Due to their six-‐limbed forms, thri-‐kreen cannot easily wear armor designed for four-‐limbed creatures. Armor can be converted to fit a thri-‐kreen by spending an additional 50% of its cost.
• Multiple Limbs: Thri-‐kreen have four arms, and thus can take the Multiweapon Fighting feat (Bestiary) instead of the Two-‐Weapon Fighting feat. Thri-‐kreen can also take the Multiattack feat. (These are not bonus feats).
• Natural Weapons: Thri-‐kreen may make bite and claw attacks as a full round action. Their primary claw attack does 1d4 points of damage for each of their four claws. Their secondary bite attack, deals 1d4 points of damage, and has a chance to poison. A thri-‐kreen can attack with a weapon (or multiple weapons) at its normal attack bonus, and make either a bite or claw attack as a secondary attack (at a -‐5 penalty).
• Leap (Ex): At 3rd level, a Kreen adds his HD to all Acrobatics checks made to jump, both for vertical jumps and horizontal jumps. In addition, he always counts as having a running start when making jump checks using Acrobatics. By spending 1 Power Point as a swift action, a thri-‐kreen gains a +20 bonus on Acrobatics checks made to jump for 1 round.
• Poison (Ex): Starting at 7th level, a mature thri-‐kreen delivers its poison (Fortitude save DC 11 + Con modifier) with a successful bite attack. A thri-‐kreen produces enough poison for one bite per day.
Thri-Kreen Poison Bite:
Type poison, injury; save Fort DC 11 + T-‐K con mod; frequency 1/round for 4 rounds; effect 1d3 Dex and paralyzed 1 min.; cure 1 save.
• Weapon Familiarity: To thri-‐kreen, the chatkcha and gythka are treated as martial rather than exotic weapons. These weapons are more common among thri-‐kreen than among other races.
• Desert Craft: Thri kreen have a +4 racial bonus on Hide checks in sandy or arid areas. • Naturally Psionic: Thri-‐kreen receive Wild Talent as a bonus feat at 1st level. If a thri-‐kreen
takes levels in a psionic class, he may replace Wild Talent with Psionic Talent instead. • Psi-like Abilities: 3/day – chameleon, know direction; and, at 7th level: 1/day – greater
concealing amorpha, metaphysical claw. These abilities are manifested as a psychic warrior of
half the thri-‐kreen’s hit dice, rounded down (minimum 1).
• Automatic Languages: Kreen. Bonus Languages: Common, Dwarven, Elven, Halfing, Giant
PERMITTED CLASSESAllowed classes include:
• Anti-paladin (Knight-Templar) – Alignment: Any evil. Martial servants of the sorceror-‐ kings. [APG]
• Athasian Bard [DS3r7]*
• Barbarian [PCR]*
• Cleric, Elemental [PCR]
• Druid [PCR + DS3r7] – Druids should consider the Desert Druid archetype from the APG
• Fighter [PCR]
• Gladiator [DSHR]*
• Inquisitor (Templar) [APG]*
• Psion [PU]
• Psychic Warrior [PU]*
• Ranger [PCR + DS3r7]*
• Rogue [PCR]
• Templar [DS3r7]*
• Wilder [PU]*
• Wizard [PCR + DS3r7]*
* See Revised Classes below for specific changes to Core Rules.
These can be found in this House Rules document (DSHR), the Pathfinder Core Rulebook (PCR),
Advanced Player’s Guide (APG), the 3.5 Expanded Psionics Handbook or Dreamscarred Press’ Psionics Unleashed (PU), and the Athas.org Dark Sun 3 rules, revision 7 (DS3r7).
DS3r7 should be referred to for Athas-‐specific details on animal companions, bonus feats, favoured enemies, favoured terrain, cleric domains, additional weapon proficiencies and additional spells.
Since skills have been streamlined and condensed in Pathfinder, the section below also translates and lists changes where relevant for Athasian classes.
The following classes are not available on Athas:
• Cavalier • Monk • Oracle • Paladin • Sorceror • Soulknife • Summoner • Witch
Athasian BardHit Die: d8
Class Skills: The bard’s class skills are Acrobatics (Dex), Appraise (Int), Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Disguise (Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), Heal (Wis), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (all) (Int), Linguistics (Int), Perception (Wis), Perform (Cha), Profession (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis), Sleight of Hand (Dex), Stealth (Dex), and Use Magic Device (Cha).
Skill Ranks per Level: 6 + Int modifier.
Class Skills: Escape Artist and Profession are class skills for Athasian barbarians. Swim is not.
Athasian elemental and paraelemental clerics should select two domains from DS3r7 and can furthermore receive the special abilities described in the 2nd edition Earth, Air, Fire, and Water supplement. Players should check with DM in the event of any cross-‐edition incompatibilities.
Class Skills: Stealth is a class skill for Athasian druids. Swim is not.
Class Skills: Knowledge (warcraft) is a class skill for Athasian fighters. Swim is not.
Role: Gladiators are martial entertainers who excel at using their talents to demoralize their enemies and inspire their allies. They employ exotic weapons to better amuse crowds, whilst their training in defensive maneuvers allows them to survive the long battles demanded by the bloodthirsty arena-‐goers of Athas. In and out of the arena, an Athasian gladiator is tough to take down.
Character build: Strength and Constitution are key abilities to let you hit your enemies and survive punishment. You will need Charisma to take full advantage of all your Gladiatorial Performance powers, as well as for Bluffing and Intimidating foes. Dexterity is useful to boost the meagre armors of Athas and bolster acrobatic maneuvers.
Alignment: Any. Hit Die: d12.
Class Skills: The gladiator’s class skills are Acrobatics (Dex), Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Intimidate (Cha), Perception (Wis), Perform (Cha), Profession (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis). Skill Ranks per Level: 4 + Int modifier.
TABLE 2: THE GLADIATOR HIT DIE: D12
Level Base Attack
Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Special
1st +1 +2 +2 +0 Gladiatorial performance; Mercy; Exotic
2nd +2 +3 +3 +0 Arena Guile; Improved unarmed strike
3rd +3 +3 +3 +1 Taunt; Improved feint
4th +4 +4 +4 +1 Uncanny dodge; Exotic weapon
5th +5 +4 +4 +1 Armor training 1
6th +6/+1 +5 +5 +2 Shake Off; bonus feat
7th +7/+2 +5 +5 +2 No mercy
8th +8/+3 +6 +6 +2 Improved uncanny dodge; Exotic
9th +9/+4 +6 +6 +3 Trick; Armor training 2
10th +10/+5 +7 +7 +3 Bonus feat
11th +11/+6/+1 +7 +7 +3 Parry
12th +12/+7/+2 +8 +8 +4 Chant; Exotic weapon
13th +13/+8/+3 +8 +8 +4 Armor training 3
14th +14/+9/+4 +9 +9 +4 Bonus feat
15th +15/+10/+5 +9 +9 +5 Threatening Glare; Superior feint
16th +16/+11/+6/+1 +10 +10 +5 Exotic weapon
17th +17/+12/+7/+2 +10 +10 +5 Armor training 4
18th +18/+13/+8/+3 +11 +11 +6 Dragon’s Fury; bonus feat
19th +19/+14/+9/+4 +11 +11 +6 Improved parry
20th +20/+15/+10/+5 +12 +12 +6 Armor mastery; bonus feat
The following are class features of the gladiator.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: You are proficient with all simple and martial weapons, light armor, medium armor and shields (except tower shields).
Gladiatorial Performance: Once per day per gladiator level, you can use your talents to affect enemies and allies. Each ability requires both a minimum gladiator level and a minimum number of ranks in the Perform skill to qualify.
Starting a gladiatorial performance effect is a standard action unless otherwise stated. Some effects require concentration, which means you must take a standard action each round to maintain the ability.
Combat Stance: A gladiator with 1 or more ranks in Perform can
assume a combat stance, showing off to spectators and displaying a warning to opponents. You receive a +2 competence bonus to AC against the first attack made against you within 5 rounds after assuming the stance. At 6th level combat stance can be assumed as a move action, and at 12th level as a swift action.
display. At 6th level martial display can be assumed as a move action, and at 12th level as a swift action.
Team Strike: A gladiator with 1 or more ranks in Perform can distract an enemy so an ally can
exploit a vital spot when making a melee attack. Team strike can only be used against an enemy you threaten with a melee weapon. The ally must act on the same initiative as you or before your next turn to gain the benefit of team strike. The ally receives a +1 bonus to hit and inflicts an additional 1d4 points of damage on the next melee attack against the target. If the enemy moves out of your threat range before your ally attacks, the ally does not receive the benefits of team strike. Creatures immune to sneak attack damage and critical hits are immune to team strike. At 7th level and every six levels thereafter these bonuses increase by +1 to attack and +1d4 to damage (+2 attack and +2d4 damage at 7th, +3 attack and +3d4 at 13th, +4 attack and +4d4 at 19th).
Taunt: A gladiator of 3rd or higher level with 3 or more ranks in Perform can demoralize enemies
by verbal ridicule. Enemies must be within 30 feet of the gladiator and capable of hearing you, and you must be able to see your enemies. Each enemy affected suffers a –1 morale penalty to attack and damage rolls, and a –1 morale penalty on saving throws versus charm and fear effects. The effect lasts as long as enemies hear your taunts and for 5 rounds thereafter. At 8th level and every six gladiator levels thereafter, the penalties increase by 1 (–2 at 8th, –3 at 14th and –4 at 20th). Taunt is a mind-‐affecting ability.
Shake Off: A gladiator of 6th or higher level with 6 or more ranks in Perform can try to end a
mind-‐affecting effect in play on himself or an ally. You shake your head violently to clear your mind, or slap an ally to bring her back to her senses. The recipient of the shake off can reroll a single failed save or opposed skill check (with the same DC as the failed roll) to end a
mind-‐affecting effect. If there is no save or check to avoid the mind-‐affecting effect, the effect ends automatically,
Trick: A gladiator of 9th or higher level with 9 or more ranks in Perform can temporarily confuse
an adversary through the use of ploy and deception. The creature to be tricked must be within 30 feet, able to see and hear you. You must also be able to see the creature. You make an opposed Bluff check (vs. Sense Motive) as a move action. If the creature succeeds on the opposed roll, you cannot attempt to trick that creature again for 24 hours. If its roll fails, the creature becomes dazed (unable to act, but can defend normally) for 1 round. For every three gladiator levels attained beyond 9th, you can target one additional creature with a single use of this ability (two at 12th level, three at 15th, four at 18th).
Chant: A gladiator of 12th or higher level with 12 or more ranks in Perform can start a chant. The
chant boosts the gladiator or an ally’s abilities, granting a +2 competence bonus to AC, skill checks and saving throws. To be affected an ally must be within 30 feet of you. For every three levels attained beyond 12th, you can affect one additional creature within 30 feet (two creatures at 15th level, three at 18th). Combat chant is a mind-‐affecting ability which lasts as long as you chant and for 5 rounds thereafter.
Threatening Glare: A gladiator of 15th or higher with 15 or more ranks of Perform can panic
enemies with his mere gaze. Creatures within a 30 feet radius that can see you must make a Will Save (DC 10 + half your class level + your Charisma bonus). On failing, creatures with less HD than you are affected as if under the effects of a fear spell for 5 rounds. Those with equal to or more than your HD become shaken for 5 rounds. If the creature succeeds on the save you cannot attempt to affect that creature again for 24 hours. Threatening Glare is a mind–affecting gaze affect.
Dragon’s Fury: A gladiator of 18th or higher level with 18 or more ranks in Perform can enter a
trance-‐like state in which his full offensive gladiatorial potential is unleashed. You are immune to fear effects, receive a +4 competence bonus to attack rolls and damage rolls, and an additional attack per round made at your highest base attack bonus. In addition, you gain two temporary hit points per class level. Dragon’s fury lasts for 10 rounds.