Ultimate Knight

The knight is highly trained combatant on the field of battle. Expert with variety of weapons, when under pressure he draws extra strength from his chivalric vows.

Adventures: Knights tend to adventure at the behest of their feudal lord, rather than as part of a typical party of adventurers. Adventures may consist of dealing with a traditional chivalric enemy such as an evil knight harassing travelers, a dragon laying waste to a nearby village, or an enemy lord or country attacking the land.

Characteristics: Knights are devoted combat specialists. They are well equipped, better than most starting characters, and sometimes have considerable wealth in addition.

Alignment: Knights can be of any lawful alignment, and most are good, as few evil characters will manage to follow the code of chivalry for any great length of time. Likewise, chaotic characters despise the idea of following any rules, and the dedication and training required to be a knight is anathema to them.

Religion: Most knights revere one of the main established religions of the land – gods of war, nobility, chivalry, justice, vengeance and general martial prowess are especially popular. Some knights join knightly orders devoted to the worship and service of particular god, in which case they may become paladins, blackguards, or templars.

Background: Almost all knights are the sons of knights, either inheriting wealth and lands or set on their way as armigers or knights bachelor to find feudal lords of their own. There knights knew all their lives that they were to be knights, training for the position from the age of seven and spending almost every waking minute devoted to the knightly and courtly skills. Occasionally a particularly plucky and heroic warrior will be knighted on the battlefield in reward for an incredible deed or victory, though this is a rarity. Such men may come from a much more humble background, though they are respected as well as any knight born to the role.

Races: Humans are the most likely race to have the feudal system that supports knights. All the races may join knightly orders or take service with a lord if living on human lands, so long as they can find an order or lord to take them in. Elves, half-elves, and half-orcs are best suited to knighthood from a physical perspective, and the most readily accepted by human lords. Occasionally a particular baron or country will raise a company of knights from one of these races. Dwarves make good knights but rarely decide to use mounts.

Other Classes: Most knights have a strong mutual respect for other fighting character classes. Knights tend to revere clerics, both because many knights are deeply religious and out of simple chivalry. Druids, sorcerers and wizards are generally perceived as mysterious and unnerving.

Starting Age: Moderate (same as bard, fighter, paladin, and others).

Starting Gold: 10d4 x 10 (average 250 gp)

Game Rule Information

Knights (Kni) have the following game statistics.

  • Abilities: Strength is especially important for knights because it improves their melee attack and damage rolls. Constitution is important for giving fighters lots of hit points, which they need in their many battles. Charisma is important to those knights that want to be effective leaders and it powers a number of special abilities.
  • Alignment: Any lawful.
  • Hit Points per Level: 1d12 + Con modifier.
  • Hit points are maximized at 1st character level.
  • Skill Points per Level: 4 + Int modifier.
  • Skill points are multiplied by 4 at 1st character level.

Class Skills: The knight’s class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Handle Animal (Cha), Heal (Wis), Intimidate (Cha), Jump (Str), Knowledge (History) (Int), Knowledge (Nobility and Royalty) (Int), Perform (Cha), Profession (siege engineer) (Wis), Ride (Dex), Sense Motive (Wis), and Swim (Str).

Class Table

       Base            Fort  Ref   Will
Level  Attack Bonus    Save  Save  Save  Special                   
1st    +1              +2    +0    +0    Challenge, code of conduct
2nd    +2              +3    +0    +0    Courage
3rd    +3              +3    +1    +1    Challenge ability
4th    +4              +4    +1    +1    Knightly order (1st circle)
5th    +5              +4    +1    +1    Bonus feat
6th    +6/+1           +5    +2    +2    -
7th    +7/+2           +5    +2    +2    Challenge ability
8th    +8/+3           +6    +2    +2    Knightly order (2nd circle)
9th    +9/+4           +6    +3    +3    Greater challenge
10th   +10/+5          +7    +3    +3    -
11th   +11/+6/+1       +7    +3    +3    Challenge ability
12th   +12/+7/+2       +8    +4    +4    Knightly order (3rd circle)
13th   +13/+8/+3       +8    +4    +4    Bonus feat
14th   +14/+9/+4       +9    +4    +4    -
15th   +15/+10/+5      +9    +5    +5    Challenge ability
16th   +16/+11/+6/+1   +10   +5    +5    Knightly order (4th circle)
17th   +17/+12/+7/+2   +10   +5    +5    -
18th   +18/+13/+8/+3   +11   +6    +6    Grand challenge
19th   +19/+14/+9/+4   +11   +6    +6    Challenge ability
20th   +20/+15/+10/+5  +12   +6    +6    Knightly order (5th circle)

Class Features

All of the following are class features of the knight.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A knight is proficient with all simple and martial weapons and with all armor (heavy, medium, and light) and shields (including tower shields).

Knight and [Conduct] abilities: A number of abilities have conduct descriptor. If a knight violated his code of conduct, he cannot use or benefit from any such ability until he attones.

Challenge (Ex): A knight can challange an enemy to a duel. Entering duel is a move action that does not provoke attacks of opportunity. A knight designates one intelligent opponent (Int score 3 or higher) who can see and hear him. A knight in duel gains +3 bonus on attack and damage rolls against his challenge, but the challenge also gains +3 bonus on attack and damage rolls against the knight. Duel ends with the encounter. In addition, if any of the knight's allies attacks the challenge, knight loses the benefits for the remainder of the duel. A knight can duel while mounted, but only if his challenge is also mounted, or if it's at least as big as knight's mount.

Code of Conduct: A knight’s life is regulated by set of duties. Upon 1st level, a knight usually chooses 3 commandments from the list below, but particularly devoted knights may take more (which will bolster few special abilities). Those become his personal code of conduct. Although knight may be evil, most knights aren’t since commandments require much sacrifice from individual, something an evil person is not likely to get used to. If a knight grossly violates any of his chosen commandments, he loses confidence and courage abilities, and some of the special abilities. Ex-Knights are stripped of their title until they can atone for their violations. Unintentional or compelled violations are considered a dishonor, but not enough to strip a knight of their honor. Commandments are as follow:

  • Courage: A knight may not show signs of cowardice. He cannot retreat from conflict he has real chance to win. A knight must face death bravely and accept it at any time.
  • Courtesy: A knight must be polite and courteous to others. Male knights must be especially polite and courteous to women.
  • Fairness: A knight cannot attack from surprise or without good reason, possess concealed weapon, or use poison.
  • Generosity: A knight must be generous to those in need.
  • Goodness: A knight must never commit evil act.
  • Justice: A knight must obey laws of the land, and pursue and punish (according to law) those who break it.
  • Mercy: A knight may not attack the helpless, or those who surrender themselves.
  • Obedience: A knight serves his lord best way he can. A knight must avenge any dishonor to his lord.
  • Piety: A knight must obey deity’s will and her clerics’ decrees.
  • Protection: A knight must actively protect those, whose deeds do not cross knight’s beliefs (code of conduct). He must defend his friends, his family, and everyone related to his other commandments.
  • Revenge: A knight must avenge all wrongness done to those he cares about (protects, obeys, honors, etc).
  • Truth: A knight may not tell a lie and must do anything to fulfill any oath he swears.

Bravery [Conduct] (Ex): Beginning at 2nd level, a knight gains a bonus on saves fear effects equal to twice the number of commandments he has. If he has courage commandment, he becomes immune to fear instead.

Challenge Ability: As the knight grows in power, he learns how to duel his enemy most effectively. At 3rd level and every 4 levels thereafter, a knight gains special ability from the list below.

  • Bastion of Strength (Ex): A knight in duel can make Fortitude save instead of any other save.
  • Best Judgment (Ex): A knight in duel ignores all glamers on his challenge.
  • Blood and Pain [Conduct] (Ex): When a knight in duel deals damage to his challenge, he can suffer a number of damage up to the number of commandments he has. If he does, he deals extra damage equal to that amount.
  • Close and Dirty (Ex): A knight in duel gains extra move action each round that can only be spend on moving as close to his challenge as possible.
  • Complete Focus [Conduct] (Ex): A knight in duel gains a bonus equal to the number of commandments he has on skill checks made against his challenge.
  • Determination [Conduct] (Ex): A knight in duel gains a bonus equal to the number of commandments he has on saves against abilities and spells of his challenge.
  • Heroic Resolve [Conduct] (Su): A knight beginning duel chooses one supernatural or spell-like ability of his challenge he is aware of (he might guess correctly an ability if he isn't sure). Only offensive abilities that allow Spell Resistance can be chosen. The knight has unbeatable SR against that ability until the end of duel.
  • Heroic Strife [Conduct] (Ex): A knight in duel gains a +3 bonus on damage rolls against his challenge as long as it has more hit points than the knight.
  • Last Effort [Conduct] (Ex): Once per duel, when knight is reduced to 0 or negative hit points (but not killed) by the challenger’s attack, he can draw from his inner reservoirs of conviction and heal a number of hit points equal 10 x the number of commandments he has.
  • Mettle (Ex): A knight in duel who succeeds at a Fortitude: Partial or Will: Partial save ignores the effect as if he was immune.
  • One Foe (Ex): A knight in duel gains Damage Reduction 1/- for every 2 class levels against attacks made by anyone except his challenge.

Knightly Order

Every knight of 4th or higher level belongs to a chivalric order of knights. A knight can belong to one of the following orders: dragon knights, knights of the lady, knights of the unicorn, and paragons.

Dragon Knights: Knights of the Dragons are considered bravest warriors in the known world and are known to lead by example.

  • Heroism (Ex): At 4th level, the knight and his allies within 60 ft. are immune to fear. In addition, whenever any such character would have to normally make save against fear, he instead gains +2 morale bonus to Strength for 1 minute.
  • Role Model (Ex): At 8th level, a dragon knight gains +4 bonus to damage when charging. In addition, whenever he charges, all allies within 60 ft. that saw that gain a +4 bonus on damage if they charge within 3 rounds.
  • Frighten [Conduct] (Sp): At 12th level, whenever a dragon knight charges or draws a melee weapon, opponents within 30 feet must succeed on a Will save (DC 10 + half knight’s level + knight’s Cha modifier) or become panicked for 1 minute. If they have more Hit Dice than the knight has class level, they become shaken instead. Creatures with two times as many HD as knight's levels are unaffected. Any foe that successfully resists the effect cannot be affected again by the same knight’s frightening startle for 24 hours. This is fear effect.
  • Give Pause [Conduct] (Su): At 16th level, whenever a dragon knight charges or draws a melee weapon, opponents within 30 feet must succeed on a Will save (DC 10 + half knight’s level + knight’s Cha modifier) or move 5 ft. as far away as possible from the dragon knight. Creatures with two times as many HD as knight's levels are unaffected. Any foe that successfully resists the effect cannot be affected again by the same knight’s frightening startle for 24 hours. This is fear effect. In addition, a dragon knight can run and move up to his speed x4 when charging in medium or heavy armor.
  • Dragon of Vengeance [Conduct] (Su): At 20th level, whenever a creature attacks dragon knight in melee she is affected by phantasmal killer (DC 10 + half knight level + knight's Cha modifier). Any creature that survives the effect is forever immune to this effect of that particular knight.

Knights of the Lady: Knights of the order of the Lady are sworn defenders of whoever might need their protection. Some uphold idealized image of chivalric knight and serve the good of their king, others have no problem with fighting and dying for their tyrannical masters.

  • Champion (Ex): At 4th level, a knight chooses a place or group of people to protect. This devotion must not contradict or oppose the principles of his code of chivalry. The lady knight sometimes chooses a place of great significance, either real or symbolic in its importance: an ancient castle with its own magical legacy, the throne of a line of emperors, a great and noble city, or a small island. He could also choose a group of traveling mystics, all worshipers of a single deity, all members of the royal family, or the like. The knight gains a +2 circumstance bonus on Diplomacy, Gather Information, and Intimidate checks made against creatures that know of and either respect or fear the subject of his devotion. While fighting in defense of his championed cause, the knight gains +2 morale bonus on attack and damage rolls, and +2 bonus on Fortitude saves. This ability counts as commandment for purposes of other special abilities that rely on number of commandments a knight has.
  • Defender (Ex): At 8th level, a knight can designate any creature not larger than he as his protectee. As long as his protectee remains within 5 ft. from the lady knight, whenever she takes any damage from an attack or spell, the knight can take half the damage on himself.
  • Retribution (Ex): At 12th level, whenever an enemy attacks one of lady knight's allies, she provokes an attack of opportunity from the lady knight.
  • Moving Wall (Ex): At 16th level, a knight's protectee can use him as cover.
  • Embodiment of Sacrifice (Ex): At 20th level, knight's bonuses granted from champion ability increase to +4. In addition, knight's protectee can use his saves instead of her own if they are higher.

Knights of the Unicorn: Knights belonging to this order specialize in mounted combat. They have no equal when dueling other riders and constantly win any tournaments or feuds their magnificent animals might participate in.

  • Tall in the Saddle (Ex): At 4th level, an unicorn knight gains a +2 bonus melee weapon damage rolls from his mount and a bonus on Ride checks equal to half his knight level.
  • Impending Doom (Ex): At 8th level, a mounted unicorn knight can charge through difficult terrain at no penalty. In addition, when he charges over normal terrain, his mount's speed doubles for the duration of charge action.
  • Impale (Ex): At 12th level, a unicorn knight ignores dodge and shield bonuses when making an attack at the end of charge with a piercing weapon.
  • Path of Blood (Ex): At 16th level, a charging mounted unicorn knight may make one extra attack with full attack bonus against every opponent within reach he moves by when closing on his charge's target. An unicorn knight can make one such attack per 5 points of base attack bonus he has.
  • Pegasus Charge [Conduct] (Su): At 20th level, knight's mount can jump as a part of charge and gains +3 bonus on this Jump check for every knight level.

Paragons: Paragon knights believe in upholding legends about greatest knights ever known to history. They excel at impossible tasks and their goal is to be remembered for most astonishing feats of courage and skill.

  • Amazing Effort [Conduct] (Su): At 4th level, a paragon knight can add a +4 morale bonus on any single skill check. He can use this ability a number of times per day equal to his commandments.
  • Impossible Strain [Conduct] (Su): At 8th level, a paragon knight can add a +4 morale bonus on any ability score for 1 minute. He can use this ability a number of times per day equal to his commandments.
  • Hero of a Tale [Conduct] (Ex): At 12th level, whenever a paragon knight rolls a natural 20 on ability or skill check, or initiative roll, he rolls another d20 and adds the results together. Should he score another natural 20, keep rolling until the result is something else.
  • Mythic Inspiration [Conduct] (Su): At 16th level, a paragon knight can roll 3d20 instead of d20 and choose best result when making an ability or skill check, or initiative roll. He can use this ability a number of times per day equal to his commandments.
  • Place in Legends (Su): At 20th level, bonuses of amazing effort and impossible strain increase to +6.

Bonus Feats: At 5th and 13th level, a knight gains a bonus fighter feat.

Greater Challenge (Ex): A 9th level knight's challenge is a deadly sport. Attack and damage bonuses granted to both the knight and his enemy increase to +6.

Grand Challenge (Ex): A 18th level knight's challenge is an extremely deadly competition. Attack and damage bonuses granted to both the knight and his enemy increase to +9.

Epic Knight

The epic knight’s devotion to his code of conduct is unequaled and his combat prowess unmatched. He can bolster his troops to amazing things on the field of battle and is undefeated champion to his cause. Code:

Level    Special         
21st     -
22nd     Bonus feat
23rd     Challenge ability
24th     -
25th     Bonus feat
26th     Challenge ability
27th     -
28th     Bonus feat
29th     Challenge ability
30th     -

Bonus Feat: An epic knight gains bonus fighter feat at 22nd level and every 3 levels levels thereafter (25th, 28th, 31st, and so on). Whenever he gains a bonus feat from this ability, he may either take an epic feat, or two non-epic feats.

Challenge Ability: An epic knight gains extra ability related to duels at 23rd level and every 3 levels thereafter (26th, 29th, 32nd, and so on).