The Hillbilly
[D&D Prestige Class]

The Hillbilly
Hillbillies hail from rural, even primitive societies. Often brutish, powerful, and quite dim, hillbillies are feared for their strength, greatclubs, and odor.

Most hillbillies are barbarians, fighters, and rangers. Half-orcs, humans, and monstrous humanoids also favor this prestige class.

To qualify to become a hillbilly (Hilb), a character must fulfill all the following criteria.

Race: Dwarf, Giant, Half-Orc, Human, or Monstrous Humanoid.
Base Attack Bonus: +8.
Skills: Intimidate 5, Survival 5.
Feats: Power Attack, Toughness, Unsophisticated, Weapon Focus (Greatclub).
Special: The character must have an Intelligence modifier no greater than +1.

Game Rule Information
Hillbillies have the following game statistics.

Base Attack Bonus: Good (as a dwarven defender).
Hit Die: d12.
Saves: Good Fortitude / Poor Reflex and Will.
Class Skills: The hillbilly's class skills are Climb (Str), Craft (Wis), Handle Animal (Cha), Intimidate (Cha), Jump (Str), Survival (Wis), and Swim (Str). Skill Points at Each Level: 2 + Intelligence modifier. A negative Intelligence modifier does not adversely affect a hillbilly's skill points but restricts him to taking ranks only in hillbilly class skills.

Class Features
All of the following are class features of the hillbilly prestige class.

Weapons and Armor Proficiency: Hillbillies gain no additional weapon or armor proficiencies.

  1. Puny Weapons [1/-], Smart Enough
  2. Bear Hug
  3. Smash
  4. Puny Weapons [2/-]
  5. Brutish
  6. Smash
  7. Puny Weapons [4/-]
  8. Sniff
  9. Smash
  10. Big Like Mountain, Puny Weapons [8/-]

Puny Weapons [1st/4th/7th/10th level]
The hillbilly hardly notices melee blows; sometimes they make him chuckle a big, hearty laugh that causes birds to take flight. He enjoys the indicated damage reduction. This is extraordinary.

Smart Enough
Intelligence is overrated. In fact, dim-wittedness benefits the hillbilly in a variety of ways. If he is illiterate, he gains a +3 bonus to Survival checks. In addition, the hillbilly enjoys a bonus to all Will saves against fear, pain, and similar spells and effects equal to any negative Intelligence modifier. If he has a positive Intelligence modifier, he gains no bonus.

Bear Hug [2nd level]
As if overripe tomatoes, the hillbilly can literally squeeze the life from his foes with his powerful arms. If he pins an opponent while grappling in light or no armor, he deals critical damage each round he maintains the pin.

Smash [3rd/6th/9th level]
Carry a big stick. At 3rd level and every three levels thereafter, the hillbilly enjoys the benefits of one of the following feats as a bonus feat. If the feat requires the character to designate a specific weapon (such as Improved Critical), the hillbilly must designate the greatclub; if the feat applies to all weapons wielded (such as Cleave), it only applies as a virtual feat when the hillbilly is fighting with the greatclub: Cleave, Great Cleave, Greater Weapon Focus, Greater Weapon Specialization, Improved Charge Attack, Improved Critical, Improved Rapid Strike, Improved Sunder, Rapid Strike, Stunning Blow, or Weapon Specialization. The hillbilly must otherwise qualify for any feat chosen. However, at 9th level, he can select Greater Weapon Focus or Weapon Specialization even if he does not qualify for the feat.

Brutish [5th level]
The hillbilly is a lumbering, imposing presence. He receives a +2 inherent bonus to Strength and a +4 bonus to Intimidate checks. However, he suffers a -2 penalty to Diplomacy and Gather Information checks and, if he has a positive Intelligence modifier, a -2 reduction to Intelligence.

Sniff [8th level]
Time in the wild and his primitive nature has sharpened his feral senses. The hillbilly gains the Scent special quality. This is extraordinary.

Big Like Mountain [10th level]
The hillbilly is as towering a presence as the mountains from which he hails. His type changes to Monstrous Humanoid, granting him darkvision up to 60 feet, and his size increases by one rank (to a maximum of Large), causing a –1 penalty to both his AC and attack rolls. In addition, he gains a +2 inherent bonus to both Strength and Constitution and a -2 reduction to Dexterity and Intelligence.

Epic Hillbilly: The epic-level hillbilly continues his Hit Die, Smash, and skill point progressions. In addition, he receives bonus feats at 15th level and every five levels thereafter (15th, 20th, 25th, 30th, etc.).

History: Originally posted on the Wizards of the Coast message boards in October of 2003. Some people were appalled that I made low Intelligence a positive attribute for the class; others found the concept and name offensive. I disagreed. Updated a few times over the years to correct errors.

Board Link: To feedback on this class posted on the Wizards of the Coast message boards.


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