The Sniper
[D&D Prestige Class]

The Sniper
Snipers specialize in stealth and delivering death from a safe distance. Both sneaky and deadly with ranged weapons, a well-placed sniper can bring down entire groups of enemies without ever being seen.

Snipers are most often archers, fighters, or rangers. Elves and half-elves favor this class.

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

Alignment: Any nongood.
Archery/Base Attack Bonus: +4.
Feats: Point Blank Shot, Precise Shot, Stealthy.
Skills: Climb 2, Hide 8, Move Silently 6, Spot 8.
Special: The character must have Sneak Attack +3d6.

Game Rule Information
Snipers have the following game statistics.

Archery Attack Bonus: Good (as a horizon walker).
Base Attack Bonus: Average (as an assassin).
Hit Die: d6.
Saves: Good Reflex / Poor Fortitude and Will.
Class Skills: The sniper's class skills are Balance (Dex), Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Hide (Dex), Jump (Str), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Spot (Wis), Survival (Wis), and Use Rope (Dex). Skill Points at Each Level: 6 + Intelligence modifier.

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

Weapons and Armor Proficiency: Snipers are proficient with all Simple weapons and all Martial ranged weapons. They gain no additional armor proficiencies.

  1. Bow Prowess, Sniper's Eye, Take Aim
  2. Ranged Sneak Attack [+1d6]
  3. Archery
  4. Death from Above [+1], Ranged Sneak Attack [+2d6]
  5. Assassination
  6. Archery, Ranged Sneak Attack [+3d6]
  7. Insidious Arrow
  8. Death from Above [+2], Ranged Sneak Attack [+4d6]
  9. Archery, Greater Sniper's Eye
  10. Assassination, Ranged Sneak Attack [+5d6]

Bow Prowess
He excels at archery at the expense of combat with other weapons. When wielding any bow, such as the shortbow or composite longbow, the archer uses her Archery Attack Bonus (AAB) for attack rolls. When wielding melee weapons and all other ranged weapons, he uses her standard Base Attack Bonus (BAB).

The archer may use his AAB in lieu of his BAB when qualifying for any archery-based feat or prestige class, such as the Zen Archery feat or arcane archer prestige class, with the DM's approval.

Sniper's Eye
He can sneak attack enemies from the safety of distance with deadly accuracy. The sniper can inflict ranged sneak attack damage against targets within 60 feet. This is extraordinary.

Take Aim
By aiming carefully, the sniper can dramatically increase the accuracy of his arrow. As full-round action, the sniper can Take Aim at a stationary target with a single arrow, granting him a +4 circumstance bonus to his attack roll. He can choose to continue to Take Aim for an additional number of rounds equal to his sniper level. Each additional round spent Taking Aim requires a Concentration check (DC 15 + 2 for each round aiming beyond the 1st round); success adds another +2 bonus to his attack roll with the pending arrow, failure requires that he let loose his arrow the round she fails the check or lose any accumulated bonuses. The sniper can accumulate a maximum Aim bonus no higher than 4 + his sniper level.

While aiming, the sniper is considered to have a readied action to fire his arrow should the target move or attempt to move out of range. He loses all aiming bonuses if the target moves more than 5 feet from its position when the sniper began to Take Aim.

If he takes damage while Taking Aim, the sniper must succeed at a Concentration check (DC 10 + damage dealt) or lose any accumulated Take Aim bonuses and have his aim disrupted. Even succeeding at the check requires that he let loose his arrow that round or lose his accumulated bonuses. Take Aim does not stack with other bonuses based on aiming at a target; if he already has the Take Aim class feature, only half his sniper level stacks with that class for determining level-based bonus of this ability.

Ranged Sneak Attack [2nd/4th/6th/8th/10th level]
He focuses his talents on firing missiles against unsuspecting foes, and his ranged attacks deal extra damage against the target denied its Dexterity bonus to AC (even if it has no bonus to lose). At 2nd level and every two levels thereafter, his Sneak Attack damage increases by +1d6 when using a ranged weapon. This is extraordinary.

Archery [3rd/6th/9th level]
The sniper masters the bow and arrow. At the indicated levels, he gains the benefit of one of the following feats for which he qualifies: Deflect Arrows, Far Shot, Improved Critical (Any bow), Improved Precise Shot, Manyshot, Mounted Archery, Precise Shot, Rapid Shot, Shot on the Run, Snatch Arrows, or Weapon Focus (Any bow).

Death from Above [4th/8th level]
He relies on remaining unseen and out of reach to succeed in her mission. At 4th level and every four levels thereafter, the sniper receives a +1 competency bonus to Climb, Hide, and Spot checks.

Assassination [5th/10th level]
So deadly are his ranged sneak attacks that he can fell the mightiest foe with a single, well-placed missile. If the sniper studies his victim for 3 rounds and then makes a sneak attack with a ranged weapon that successfully deals damage, the sneak attack has the additional effect of possibly killing the target, similar in effect to the assassin's Death Attack ability. While studying the victim, the sniper can undertake no other actions, including Taking Aim, so long as his attention stays focused on the target and the target does not detect him. If the victim of such an attack fails a Fortitude save (DC 10 + sniper level + Intelligence modifier), it dies. If the victim's saving throw succeeds, the attack is just a normal ranged sneak attack. Once the sniper has completed his 3 rounds of study, he must make the assassination attempt within 1 round.

If an assassination is attempted and fails (the victim makes its save) or if the sniper does not launch the attack within 3 rounds of completing the study, 3 new rounds of study are required before he can attempt another assassination.

The sniper can attempt Assassination a number of times per day equal to 1 + any Intelligence bonus. At 10th level, there is no limit to the number of times per day she may attempt this extraordinary ability.

Insidious Arrow [7th level]
His ranged sneak attacks are uncanny in their deadly accuracy. When he makes a successful ranged sneak attack against a target, the threat range of the weapon is doubled, as if the missiles were keen. Insidious Arrow only applies to piercing ranged weapons, such as crossbows and bows. It is extraordinary.

Greater Sniper's Eye [9th level]
The sniper's ability to make sneak attacks with ranged weapons is no longer limited by the distance of the target. This is extraordinary.

Epic Sniper: The epic-level sniper continues his Hit Die, skill point, Death from Above, Ranged Sneak Attack, and Take Aim progressions. In addition, he receives bonus epic feats at 13th level and every three levels thereafter (13th, 16th, 19th, 22nd, etc.).

History: Originally posted on the Wizards of the Coast message boards in February of 2004.

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


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