Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Illusionists


As mentioned in the post about psionics, Dave Kenzer has said he's done a lot of work on Illusionists. As such, here's the version I came up with before he said that.

Illusionists

Illusionists supplement basic mage spellcasting with a powerful, flexible ability to create illusions… false images of light, sound, smell, even the perceptions of touch, taste, and heat… that fool the senses.

There are two basic types of illusions, with some very key differences. Mirages, also called holograms or, more confusingly, “true illusions” create and manipulate actual light, smells, and sounds for all to hear; a holographic thunderclap can be heard for miles, and might have people checking the skies briefly to see if rain is coming. It is not necessary for someone to believe a mirage for it to have an effect on them; even if you know your opponent is an illusionist, you are still being buffeted by light and sound; they simply do not have the sources you may be led to believe. Targets may realize that the image they are being shown is false, but that does not dismiss the image; an Illusionary Mural that you can’t see through still conceals anything behind it, even if you know it’s not real. Mirages are very poor at tactile sensations and heat; they can create the impression of them, but cannot generate scorching heat or the violent blow of a sword. This type of illusion is known to mages, with the simplest being Illusionary Mural and Audible Clamor.

The second type, variously called fictions, hallucinations, and phantasms, target a single individual with the perception of their senses being stimulated. Little is actually created; outsiders watching someone fighting a phantasmal warrior may see shapes and shadows engaging their ally, but will more likely see nothing at all, even as the target reels backwards from a mighty blow or curls up under a blast of phantasmal flames from a fictional fiery foe. Fictions can kill, but seldom cause wounds; a successful saving throw against them frequently dismisses the effect entirely. A simple mage spell that makes use of fictions is Phantom Irritation; no one else will hear the buzzing or feel the tickle, but it will be enough to distract the target.

Why study illusion magic? The magic of a regular mage is very powerful, and has real effects. But it is also relatively inflexible. If you do not know the spell, you cannot do the effect. A mage who does not know Illusionary Mural will not be able to create an illusionary mural. If they know it but have not prepared it, they will be unable to use it to its full effect. Illusionists, by contrast, have studied the fine art of illusioncrafting, and are able to create the mirages and fictions they wish, at the expense of the higher secrets of mage magic.

Mirages
Mirages create real light, sound, scents and tastes, and can create a slight impression of touch and heat. A single mirage of an orc can be seen by all, just as if an orc were standing there. If the illusionist speaks Orc, he can have the holographic orc speak intelligible orkin sentences in an orkin-sounding voice (or a pixie-faerie sounding voice, if he so chooses). If the illusionist does not speak Orc, then he can have the orc make a variety of sounds, or speak some other language. When the holographic orc speaks, others will hear it, just as if the orc were there. If the illusionist included scent, then it will smell like an orc, and those getting close enough may feel the heat and pressure of its breath on their neck. But reaching out to touch a mirage, they will encounter no resistance; it has no substance, and can only create the briefest of tactile and thermal senses. Mirages may soften or alter sensory input, and visual mirages block line of sight to objects on the other side. An illusionist can use a mirage to make themselves invisible, either by simply removing their image, or by creating a mirage to hide themselves… but that mirage will be just as opaque as the object they made a mirage of, so disguising oneself as a tree or rock means the illusionist is looking at the inside of a tree or rock, not observing invisibly (though illusionists are frequently clever enough to put a cleft in the rock through which they can look without being too likely to be seen).

The crafting of Mirages takes place through a special spell, Miragecrafting. All illusionists know this spell, and can cast it as anything from an Apprentice-level spell to a 20th level masterpiece, limited only by the maximum amount of spell points they are able to muster into a single spell.

Miragecrafting
Base SP Cost: 30
Components: V, S
Casting Time: 2 seconds
Range: 30’
Volume of Effect: Special
Duration: Concentration
Saving Throw: Special
Additional Spell Point schedule: See below

The default for mirages is a single sense and the magnitude of about four men; so a scent equal to four men on a hot day, the vocal range of four men shouting, or enough area to cover four men standing comfortably; about 150 cubic feet, or 170 square feet if laid flat. The range on the spell is 30’ away, and it will last for as long as the illusionist concentrates; concentration precludes more spell-casting or attacking physically, but allows the illusionist to move at walking speed and defend themselves at -3.

Mirages have a special saving throw. Unless they are “Flat”, holograms are automatically believed. Someone choosing to examine an illusion may make an opposed Scrutiny test versus the Illusionist’s d100p + (level*5) + 3 per mastery level in Arcane Lore and + 5 per mastery level in a relevant skill (such as painting or drawing for visual illusions, or Disguise for vocal imitations, Animal mimicry for animal noises, usw). If successful, this will determine that the mirage is a false image, scent, or sound, but will not dispel the image, scent, or sound itself. In some cases, the GM may rule that the spell allows for another sort of saving throw to avoid the effects; a bright flash of light or deafening thunderclap may allow a Physical saving throw to negate, for example. The illusionist’s player should be informed of this before the spell is cast, however.

On to this, however, are additional options. Unlike standard Mage Spells, Miragecrafting’s 30 point base SP cost does not dictate the maximum SP that can be pumped into a mirage; only the illusionists level does this (q.v. Illusioncrafting class ability). Depending on the desire of the illusionist, additional SP are added to create the final cost of the spell, and its effects. All of these effects must be decided when the illusion is cast; if an illusionist creates an illusion to last for 20 seconds, the illusionist cannot pump additional SP in at 18 seconds and have it last longer; the spell will have to be cast again. No Mirage will have a cost of less than 10 SP.

Senses:
Each additional Sense +10

Available senses are sight, hearing, scent/taste, and touch/thermal. Scent/Taste and Touch/Thermal are package deals; if you make an extreme scent, it will carry with it a taste, and if you make a sensation of touch, it will have a thermal component. Touch and thermal senses are always ephemeral with mirages; they cannot cause direct damage or penalties.

Magnitude and Area of Effect:
Each additional “four men” +10

When dealing with simple illusions, this can be relatively easy to ajudicate; if a illusionist wants to create the illusion of 20 soldiers, then the illusionist needs to spend at least 70 SP. However, if an illusionist seeks to cause some penalty to their foes (say through a bright light or loud noise), then count each magnitude as a -1 (so that same 70 SP could create a -5 penalty, to approximately 150 cubic feet). Penalties decrease by 1 at 10’ from the origin, and by 2 points every time you double that distance (so by 3 points at 20 feet, 5 points at 40 feet, 7 points at 80 feet, and so on).

Note that, with sound, “four men” is up to 85-90 decibels; four men being as loud as they can manage with their voices. This level of noise can be harmful if exposed to long enough. However, decibels work on a logarithmic scale; to reach 100 decibels, an illusionist must create, not 8 men, but 40.

Reducing to a single target -10 SP

An illusionist seeking only to affect a single man-sized target (disguising himself or another person, creating a single voice, or even just the scent of wafting bread) can greatly reduce the cost of the spell. Note that this is not a cheap way to create a skunk spray; its magnitude is determined by its effect, not its size.

Flat -5 SP
An illusionist can create a flat sensory impression; it will not hold up to basic scrutiny. All who experience the illusion receive an Average Observation attempt against the illusionist’s d100p + (level*5) + 3 per mastery level in Arcane Lore and + 5 per mastery level in a relevant skill (such as painting or drawing for visual illusions, or Disguise for vocal imitations, Animal mimicry for animal noises, usw). Any who examine the illusion will discover it on an Easy Scrutiny test.

Duration:
Every 3 seconds beyond concentration: 1 SP

Default Mirages last only as long as they are concentrated upon and remain in range. Illusionists can add duration that will begin once concentration ends, or when the illusion moves out of range. As with Audible Clamor, Mirages can be made to do simple things on their own, but more complex actions and reactions require concentration; so a group of soldiers can be made to walk and talk (indistinctly; think crowd background noise in a movie) without much concentration, but the illusionist must concentrate to make them attack, or say anything coherent. An illusionist can resume concentration on a spell at any time to direct it, but it does not increase duration. For an additional 60 SP, “seconds” can be changed to “minutes”, so an investment of 80 SP would result in an hour’s duration (20*3, with an additional 60 SP turning the seconds into minutes).

Breaks when touched: -5 SP
Visual illusions can be woven weakly, so that when they are physically touched by someone other than the illusionist, they are dispelled entirely, with unused duration being wasted.

Deep Concentration: -10 SP
The illusionist must concentrate deeply to maintain the spell. The illusionist cannot move or defend themselves while concentrating, and if concentration is dropped so the illusionist can mount a defense, the first defense is at a -3. This also doubles the cost of any duration increase.

Range:
Each Doubling of Range: +10 SP.

Range only applies to how far away from the illusionist the mirage can appear, not from what distance it can be seen sensed; a thunderclap may be heard for miles. This may be applied no more than 4 times to a single mirage.

Touch range only: -10 SP
The illusionist can only place the mirage on something touched, or create the illusion in contact with themselves. Note that illusions out of range are also no longer maintained by concentration.

Sample Mirages:
Cacophony: 30 points (base), +90 (increase of volume, -5 to attack and defense), -5 (Flat; no need to conceal that this is an illusion), +10 (double range to 60’). Total is 125 points. This will create a cacophonous noise for as long as the illusionist concentrates at a range of 60’. This noise will be about 100 Decibels at the point of origin; at 60’, the illusionist will have no penalties (since the penalty dropped to -4 at 10’, and -2 at 20’, and 0 at 40’).

Concealing Wall: 30 points (base), +10 (increase in surface area to 340 square feet), -10 (Touch range), +80 (one hour duration). Total is 110 points. This will create a wall under the illusionist’s hand that will last for one hour after the illusionist leaves.

Simple Invisibility: 30 Points (base), -10 (Single Target), -10 (Touch Range), +20 (one minute duration). Total is 30 points. This spell will turn the illusionist, or one person the illusionist remains touching, invisible for one minute. Note that moving away from the illusionist will break the touch range, and begin the one minute of duration, so the spell loses a degree of usefulness for others. For 90 points, the illusionist can have one hour of duration, far more useful on another person.

Spectral Force: 30 Points (base), +20 (two additional senses; scent/taste and sound), +20 (a total of 12 men), +20 (range doubled twice), for a total of 90 points. This will create the illusion of 12 men, armed and armored as the illusionist wishes, up to 120’ away. The illusionist must remain concentrating on this illusion, and so cannot move faster than a walk.

Fictions
Mirages create real light, sound, and scents. Fictions, however, create phantasms in the heads of their targets; sights no one else can see, noises no one else can hear, and sensations no one else can feel. Because these act on the mind of the target, they can have great effects if the target believes them; if the target does not believe the phantasm, however, then they are less than smoke, since real (or even holographic) smoke will at least conceal something.

Consider again the illusionary orc, but instead of a mirage, this orc is a hallucination. Unless the illusionist wills otherwise, the orc will speak in what the target believes an orc voice will sound like, in what the target believes orcish… or an orc-accented version of another language... will sound like. It will smell like an orc, look like an orc, and behave like an orc, depending upon the illusionist and the target’s perception of what an orc is like. If neither the illusionist or the target have anything connected with the idea “orc”, then the image will fail; an illusionist with only a vague idea of a grevan, though, can still inflict one on someone who’s experience them. With a fiction, an illusionist can alter or remove sensory information; an illusionist can turn the target’s friends into orcs, or render themselves invisible to their enemies.

Fictions, though, are not real. Damage from a fiction is tracked, but once the fiction ends (either through expiration or a successful saving throw), all hit points lost to the fiction are restored. If a combination of real and fictional wounds cause a target to drop below zero hit points, they are incapacitated for 1d6 full minutes. Fictional wounds large enough to cross the Threshold of Pain will also force trauma saves.

The crafting of fictions takes place through a special spell, Fictioncrafting. All illusionists know this spell, and can cast it as anything from an Apprentice-level spell to a 20th level masterpiece, limited only by the maximum amount of spell points they are able to muster into a single spell.

Fictioncrafting
Base SP Cost: 30
Components: V, S
Casting Time: 2 seconds
Range: 30’
Area of Effect: Special
Duration: Concentration
Saving Throw: MENTAL Negates
Additional Spell Point schedule: See below

The default for fictions is a single sense, with a single target. The range on the spell is 30’ away, and it will last for as long as the illusionist concentrates; concentration precludes more spell-casting or attacking physically, but allows the illusionist to move at walking speed and defend themself at -3.

The illusionist’s player must convincingly describe their phantasm and how the phantasm will have the effect that they are specifying. It is not enough to declare what will happen, but they must also declare how it will happen, because the target will react according to what it knows about itself; an illusionist who declares a fiction of throwing firebolts will have little effect on someone who is secretly immune to fire.

All fictions allow Mental Saves; they are mental attacks, an attempt to fool the target into believing something that simply isn’t true. If the save is successful (from the target’s point of view), the hallucination failed to take hold. There will be a brief flicker, some shadows that stir oddly where the hallucination was supposed to appear, a whisper of a voice, but nothing to frighten even the most cowardly barbarian. If a fiction is missing some necessary sense, then the target receives +2 per sense not included; this is up to the Game Master, but the illusionist should be warned if a necessary sense is missing. It’s very hard to argue that a phantasmal firebolt will be as effective without a sense of heat, but it does not necessarily need scent or sound.

On to this, however, are additional options. Unlike standard Mage Spells, Fictioncrafting’s 30 point base SP cost does not dictate the maximum SP that can be pumped into a fiction; only the illusionists level does this (q.v. Illusioncrafting class ability). Depending on the desire of the illusionist, additional SP are added to create the final cost of the spell, and its effects. All of these effects must be decided when the illusion is cast; if an illusionist creates an illusion to last for 20 seconds, the illusionist cannot pump additional SP in at 18 seconds and have it last longer; the spell will have to be cast again. No Fiction will have a cost of less than 10 SP.

Senses:
Each additional Sense +10

Available senses are sight, hearing, touch, thermal, and scent/taste. Scent/Taste is a package deal; if you make an extreme scent, it will carry with it a taste. Unlike mirages, touch and thermal components from a fiction feel fully real; a fictional fire feels like it warms you, a hallucinatory dagger can still cause you pain.

Magnitude:
Fictional Combat:
Saving Throw, not combat: 25 SP
Each bonus to Attack or Defense, or Speed: 2 SP
Each point of Threshold of Pain: 1 SP
If the illusion allows a Dodge saving throw instead of standard combat, then any Dodge save that succeeds by more than 10 points allows another Mental Saving Throw against the hallucination. Fictions that force Dodge saving throws have a speed of 6 which cannot be reduced.

Fictional creatures created for combat have Attack and Defense bonuses, and a wound threshold. Fictional creatures have a base speed of 7, and can be decreased (but are subject to minimum weapon speeds). Each hit that exceeds the Threshold of Pain of a fictional creature allows the target to make another Mental saving throw to resist the hallucination.

Fictional Damage: Each potential point of damage: 2 SP; each bonus point of damage: 3 SP
Fictions can cause damage through any means the illusionist desires; a fictional minotaur may wield a massive axe, or the illusionist may wield hallucinatory firebolts. Penetrating dice of damage cost 2 points per side; flat bonus points of damage cost 3 points each. A dagger, for example, does 2d4p damage, so would cost 16 SP to arm a fiction with; with a +3 damage bonus, it would cost 25 SP. Phantasmal damage is not reduced by armor.

Fictional Penalties:
Each point of combat penalty: 5 SP
Each point of penalty to Threshold of Pain: 15 SP
Every 1% of skill penalty: 1 SP

Fictions can cause a wide variety of penalties, in a wide variety of ways. A fictional web might entangle, causing debility in attack, defense, initiative, or any combat bonus, or penalties to skills. The illusionist can also increase the perception of pain for the target, reducing their threshold of pain. Each combat bonus or skill must be affected separately; a 50% penalty to both Observation and Listening will cost 100 SP.

Duration:
Every 3 seconds beyond concentration: 1 SP

Default fictions last only as long as they are concentrated upon and remain in range. Illusionists can add duration that will begin once concentration ends, or when the illusion moves out of range. Fictions do not require concentration to act, but the illusionist must concentrate for 1 second (dropping defenses and reseting weapon speeds) to change the fiction’s orders; a fictional monster will continue to attack, but the illusionist can “call it off” with that concentration. An illusionist can resume concentration on a spell at any time to direct it, but it does not increase duration. For an additional 60 SP, “seconds” can be changed to “minutes”, so an investment of 80 SP would result in an hour’s duration (20*3, with an additional 60 SP turning the seconds into minutes).

Deep Concentration: -10 SP
The illusionist must concentrate deeply to maintain the spell. The illusionist cannot move or defend themselves while concentrating, and if concentration is dropped so the illusionist can mount a defense, the first defense is at a -3. This also doubles the cost of any duration increase.

Range:
Each Doubling of Range: +10 SP.

The target of the fiction cannot be further away than this, and cannot move further away than the range and let the illusionist maintain the spell with concentration; once the target moves beyond range, the spell must rely on any added duration. This may be applied no more than 4 times to a single mirage.

Touch range only: -10 SP
The illusionist can only place the mirage on something touched, or create the illusion in contact with themselves. Note that illusions out of range are also no longer maintained by concentration.

Area of Effect:
Per additional Target: +10 SP

Sample Fictions:

Amplify Pain: 30 points (base, tactile sense), +30 (decrease Threshold of Pain by 2 points). Total is 60 points. So long as the illusionist maintains concentration, the target will lose 2 points of Threshold of Pain.

Hallucinatory Bug: 30 points (base, tactile sense), +20 points (-2 to Attack and Defense), +10 points (30 second duration). Total is 60 points. The target feels a large bug crawling around inside his armor, causing a -2 penalty to Attack and Defense for 30 seconds.

Phantasmal Foe: 30 points (base, visual sense), +20 points (two additional senses; sound and touch), +24 points (+6 to Attack and Defense), +10 points (10 point Threshold of Pain), +31 points (4d3p+3 damage), +5 points (15 seconds duration). Total is 120 points. An axe-wielding warrior appears, engaging a single target. This tough opponent can disable a lesser foe.

Secret Fire: 30 points (base, thermal sense), +10 points (one additional sense, vision), +24 points (1d3p+6 damage), +25 points (Saving throw, not combat). Total is 89 points. So long as the illusionist maintains concentration, the target will be hit targeted by a firebolt every 6 seconds.

Illusionist Class

Illusionists receive one purchase in Literacy (in their native language) for free, as well as one purchase of Arcane Lore. They receive bonus points in Arcane Lore equal to their Intelligence mastery die modifier at every even level. They also receive one purchase in Acting, Disguise, Pick Pockets, and Resist Persuasion for free, and receive 3 free points in each of these every odd level, and either +3 or their mastery die modifier from attributes whenever mastery dice in these skills are purchased. All are proficient in Magical Transcription, and receive the Skill Specialty talent in Arcane Lore (Illusions) for free.

Illusioncrafting
Illusionists may craft any illusion with a cost of 40 + (their level*10) spell points without risk of mishap (barring injury, armor, or other mishap-causing events). If they exceed this threshold, they run the usual chance of mishap as a mage. As with a mage, they may invest no more than 80 + (their level*20) points in a single illusion, or the spell will simply spiral beyond their control, resulting in a mishap. As with mage spells, illusions are subject to spell fatigue.

Mage Spells
Illusionists may also cast standard mage spells. At 1st level, an illusionist will know two Apprentice-level mage spells, rolled at random (the illusionist may reroll if either Illusionary Mural or Phantom Irritation are rolled). At level 2, they may begin to cast journeyman mage spells; at level 3, they may begin to learn 1st level mage spells, and at level 4, 2nd level mage spells. Thereafter, they gain a new spell level at every even level (3rd at 6, 4th at 8th, usw). Illusionists do not gain free spells at each new spell level; all of their spells, save their first two Apprentice spells, must be acquired through other means. Illusionists also reduce the maximum number of spells known for each level by 1 (so an illusionist with less than a 12 intelligence will know only a single Apprentice spell, and only one spell of subsequent levels). Unlike multiclass mages, illusionists always add their full level when determining saving throws, however.

Illusionists use the Mage Advancement table from page 59 of the Player’s Handbook.

BP Cost by Race
Dwarf 75
Elf 25
Gnome 30
Gnome Titan 50
Grel 35
Half-elf (elf-reared) 20
Half-elf (human reared) 25
Half-hobgoblin 50
Half-orc 75
Halfling 60
Human 20

***

New Talent: Minor Illusionist (20+)

Prerequisites: Advanced mastery of Arcane Lore or Skill Specialty: Arcane Lore in Illusions, some innate store of spell points

The character has had basic training as an illusionist, and may use either Miragecrafting or Fictioncrafting. The talent has a base cost of 20 (10 for gnomes, but not gnome titans). For every 1 BP invested beyond that, the mirage or fiction may have a spell point cost of 2 SP. No more than 15 BP may be invested in the talent above the base cost (a total of 25 for gnomes, or 35 for everyone else). Note that mirages and fictions with less than a 10 SP cost cannot be cast. After the base of cost has been spent, additional BP can be spent on subsequent levels, up to the maximum for the talent.

This talent may be purchased a second time to allow the other illusionist spell. The second purchase has a base of 30 (15 for gnomes) points, and a maximum of 45 BP investment (30 for gnomes). Not that SP capability for these spells is purchased separately for each skill; it is possible to have Fictioncrafting at a maximum of 14 SP and Miragecrafting at 20 SP, for example.

New Talent: Skill Specialty (varies)
Prerequisites: Average or better mastery in the skill to be specialized in.

Skill Specialty represents a specific concentration in using a skill, allowing a far greater ability than one’s experience might indicate. A specialty is selected for a skill, but must, in the GMs estimation, not be too broad as to constantly or usually apply; a rake cannot specialize his Seduction skill to women, for example, because that is when it will almost always apply, but he may have a particular affinity for dwarven women. An Arcane Lore specialty in Illusions is sufficiently narrow, as there are a number of types of spells that are not illusions; a specialty in Spells, however, is too broad to be allowed.

Specialties confer a +10+Mastery Die Modifier bonus on the mastery level of the skill when applicable, which can increase the effective mastery level. However, they reduce mastery in other aspects of the skill by 5-Mastery Die Modifier (so someone with a 20 in the relevant attribute will have no penalty, while someone with a 12 will have a 5-1 or 4 point penalty); this, however, does not affect mastery level. Specialties cost one and a half times (rounded up) as a single mastery die, and may only be purchased once per skill.

New Talent: Somatic Concealment (25 BP)
Prerequisites: Novice or better mastery in Pick Pockets

Careful practice of subtle somatic components, combined with a fair degree of natural or acquired dexterity allows a spellcaster to hide some of the tell-tale gestures of spellcasting and palm smaller material components. If the character is using Somatic Concealment, they must make a Pick Pockets test with each spell they cast (they may choose not to use Somatic Concealment on any given spellcasting and avoid the check). If they fail the test, but do so by less than 15%, then the spell is cast, but the gestures are not concealed. If they fail the check by more than 15%, then the spell is simply not cast, if a clerical spell, or has an increased chance of mishap (if a mage spell), with each 5% by which the check failed increasing the chance of mishap by a like amount. If they succeed the test, the spell is cast successfully, and the spell is concealed unless the spellcaster is being actively monitored. If they are being actively monitored, the roll used for the check is likewise used for the opposed roll for the observer’s Observation skill.

Sidebar: Sorcerers and Illusions
Sorcerers, even those merely skilled in the art and not of the sorcerer class, do not require Minor Illusionist talents to emulate illusionist magic; their freewheeling magics are such that they can effectively function as illusionists, though they’re subject to the restrictions of the sorcerery skill.

Marshal

Marshal
The Marshal is envisioned as a fighter/rogue; someone who combined martial talent with the ability to command troops, be it a brigade of warriors or a small unit of tomb-robbers and temple-despoilers. Many Marshals will be officers, commissioned or non-commissioned, but others will have gathered their knowledge more haphazardly, in kobars and barracks, wherever warriors congregate, talk shop, and look to others to make the decisions and take the blame.

Marshals tend to be Lawful, but are not restricted from other alignments. Many favor the Old Man, but his worship is likewise not required.

Hit Die (d8)
Attack Bonus
Speed
Initiative
Initiative Die
1




1+rr




2
1

-1

2+rr
1

-1

3
2

-1
1 die better
3+rr
2

-1
1 die better
4
2
-1
-1
1 die better
4+rr
3
-1
-2
1 die better
5
3
-1
-2
1 die better
5+rr
3
-1
-2
1 die better
6
4
-1
-2
1 die better
6+rr
4
-1
-2
1 die better
7
4
-1
-2
1 die better
7+rr
5
-1
-3
1 die better
8
5
-1
-3
2 dice better
8+rr
6
-2
-3
2 dice better
9
6
-2
-3
2 dice better
9+rr
6
-2
-3
2 dice better
10
7
-2
-3
2 dice better
10+rr
7
-2
-4
2 dice better


Combat:
Like a thief or rogue, a Marshal learns to react quickly, gaining improved initiative dice and a reduction of initiative. Their skill at arms also results in a sizable attack bonus, and an eventual speed reduction. Adept at exploiting an opening, they may strike Fleeing Opponents like a thief (effectively allowing a backstab on fleeing opponents with whatever weapon the Marshal wields; see page 52 of the PH).

Weaponry and Armor
Weapons: Marshals may learn proficiency in any weapon at half the usual BP cost.
Armor: Marshals begin with proficiency in shields and all armors.
Specialization: Marshals may specialize in any weapon they are proficient in at an initial cost of 6 BP for Attack, Defense, Speed and Damage. Further purchases cost 2x, 3x, and 4x, as normal.

Talents and Proficiencies
Marshals have reduced cost access to a variety of talents. Any of the below talents may be purchased at half the usual cost; those marked with an asterisk may only be purchased at the lower cost twice each:
Hiking/Roadmarching, Polyglot, Laborer, Phalanx Fighting, Attack Bonus*, Parry Bonus*, Swiftblade*, Damage Bonus*, Crack Shot*, Greased Lightning*.

Marshal's Command

As much as anything, good leadership involves capitalizing on opportunities; Marshals and their allies seem to have more than their share of these. Each level, Marshals have 12 command points (+1 per even level). These command points may be spent by the Marshal similarly to a thief's luck points (see pages 52 and 53), either to their own benefit or to the benefit of anyone whose Honor score affects them through group honor, including those in their chain of command (either above or below them) and fellow adventurers. Note that no individual may benefit from more than 5 command points at a time; if you have 10 Marshals in your service, you cannot get a +120 to your defense roll just because they all love you and want to protect you.

Skills
Marshals need to fill multiple roles and oversee different aspects of campaigning, and study extensively. As such, they have a variety of skills.

At 1st level, a Marshal receives the following skills for free:
Literacy (Native Language, or another language they speak if the native language is not written)
Appraisal: Arms and Armor
Leadership
4 rolls of the mastery dice for History, Ancient, either in different eras or several for the same era.

And four Skills from the following list:
Administration, Diplomacy, Engineering, First Aid, Intimidation, Interrogation, Language, Literacy, Oration, Recruiting

At each subsequent level, they may make 2 free rolls from their core skills (Administration, Diplomacy, Engineering, First Aid, Intimidation, Interrogation, Language, Leadership, Literacy, Oration, Recruiting), as well as a free mastery die in any History, Ancient skill they possess or have been exposed to.

Other Skills: Marshals are exposed to a large number of other skills. These are secondary areas of specialization that they have some familiarity with: Appraisal, Arcane Lore, Blacksmithing/Metalworking, Carpentry/Woodworking, Cartography, Current Affairs, Divine Lore, Fire Building, Leatherworking, Listening, Mathematics, Mining, Monster Lore, Musician, Observation, Religion, Resist Persuasion, Riding and Torture. If the Marshal purchases one of these skills, or one of the ones from their class lists, they receive a +2 modifier to the mastery die (or their attribute modifier, whichever is better). Furthermore, all purchases of Appraisal: Arms and Armor are made at half price.

Knowledge
A Marshal is a learned individual who has been exposed to a great deal of information; as such, they may use the Knowledge ability as a rogue (page 56), though Marshals are less likely to exaggerate their knowledge.

Influence

Marshals have a way with words. They may, by addressing troops, attempt to bolster or restore their morale. If they address common (non-player character) troops for five minutes within a day before a battle, they may increase their effective morale for that battle by one level if the troops fail a saving throw; if the Marshal rolls a 1 for their opposed roll, the troop morale instead decreases by one level (this may be avoided by spending a command point). If a unit begins to break or rout during battle, a Marshal may attempt to rally them. This 5 second action resets the Marshal's and the unit's count, but stops the break or rout for those five seconds, and allows a new morale check (using any Charisma modifier the Marshal gains to Morale). This may only be done once per unit per battle, and has no effect on magical losses of morale.

Cost by race:


Dwarf
35
Elf
30
Gnome
35
Gnome Titan
35
Grel
50
Half-elf (elven)
30
Half-elf (human)
30
Half-Orc
50
Halfling
40
Human
20
Pixie-Faerie
50
Sil-Karg
35
 

Design notes:
This version incorporates a lot of comments from its initial posting. I removed some free TPs, but gave them a big list that they can get for a reduced cost. Their luck points were changed into command points, with a similar function but a broader application (they don't get any more, but they can also spend them to help allies). I limited them like luck points instead of Chivalry points, both because it's less useful offensively and because a Marshal will wind up in situations where they're overseeing skill-based situations (sapping, siege engine or field fortification construction), rather than purely combat.

To that end, I also rearranged some skills. I incorporated Leadership as a core skill for them, and put Engineering in the core list instead of Torture (which got downgraded to an "other" skill). I was reluctant to include something as useful as Engineering, but given the steep prerequisites (Literacy, Mathematics, and Cartography), I figured it as something like Trap Design for thieves... something on their core list, but that they're unlikely to take advantage of early. I also removed Animal Training from their list of "Other" skills, though I kept the variety of crafting skills

I specifically allowed them to take any of the standard weapon talents at half cost, which may seem like a big advantage. However, it makes up for their higher cost of specialization than a regular fighter, or the great talents of a ranger or knight within their sphere of weapons, without allowing them to get really cheap mastery. Limiting them to only 2 weapons mimics the effects of having culturally favored weapons without having to make a specific list for every culture. It does have the side effect of making certain weapons REALLY cheap for some demi-humans (like a dwarf with hammers or axes).