Classes determine important features of a character. They represent effort put into a lifestyle, beyond the being's race. Each basic class has an archetype. The archetypes are:
The archetype represents the primary function of the class within the game world. This is not a limitation on their functions, but a description of where they are likely to excel.
Each class also has a power source. They represent a wellspring of potential from which class-based beings can draw power enough to affect the world beyond the means of your average peasant, and are accessed via intense training, rigorous study, and deep introspection. The power sources are:
There are 18 basic classes, which can be organised by archetypal game function and power source. These classes can be taken whenever the user is able to level up. They are designed such that any character should be possible with a combination of them, though it may be more effective to take a Prestige class or three.
Every class has a list of expertise. When a character takes their 1st, 11th, and 21st level in a class, they may choose an expertise to train in. At levels 4, 7, and 10, their first expertise improves, the second at levels 14, 17, and 20, and the third at levels 24, 27 and 30. These expertise further define the characters' ability within the field they've chosen. Expertise features increase by class level, so there are merits to both multiclassing and sticking with the same class.
On every level that a class doesn't gain an Expertise bonus, they gain another class-related bonus. For Basic Classes, these are Basic Bonuses. Basic bonuses are categorised by archetypal game function. At levels 2, 5, 8, 12, 15, 18, 22, 25, and 28, the class gains a bonus from their primary archetype. At levels 3, 9, 16, and 23, they gain a bonus from one of the other archetypes, and at levels 6, 13, 19, and 26, they gain a bonus from the other. At level 29, they gain a bonus from each of their off-archetypes.
These archetypes are the same as those used for classes: offensive; defensive; and skillful.
You may not choose the same bonus more than once.
At level 3, you may choose which of the off-archetype categories you chose from, but each subsequent off-archetype choice must alternate. For instance, a Barbarian choosing a Skillful bonus at level 3 would need to take a Defensive bonus at 6, then a Skillful bonus at 9, etc.
|+2 to Melee Attack Rolls||+1 HP/level||+1 Proficiency|
|+2 to Ranged Attack Rolls||+1/- DR||+1 skill point/level|
|+2 to Melee Damage Rolls||+5ft to all movements||+1 PP limit to a secondary power source|
|+2 to Ranged Damage Rolls||+2 Fortitude||+1 PP/level|
|+2 to Area Attack Rolls||+2 Will||+1 to proficient Social Skill rolls|
|+2 to Single Target Damage Rolls||+2 Reflex||+1 to proficient Adventuring Skill rolls|
|+2 to Maneuver Offense rolls||+2 to saves vs Poison||+1 to proficient Education skill rolls|
|+2 to Maneuver Defence rolls||+2 to defenses vs Area attacks||+1 to Strength/Constitution checks|
|+2 to Mind Affecting attack rolls||+2 to defences vs Single Target attacks||+1 to Dexterity/Intelligence checks|
|+2 to Scrying checks||+2 to defences vs Mind Affecting attacks||+1 to Wisdom/Charisma checks|
Prestige classes are far more complex than basic classes. They all have prerequisites that must be met before taking any levels in them, and if, for any reason, a character fails to meet the prerequisites, they lose access to the special abilities and source pools of the class. They will, however, retain any Defence bonuses and Hit Dice.
Prestige classes are much more specialised than Basic classes. As such, they often do not fit neatly into an archetype. They may also use more than one source, and sometimes allow sources to be used interchangeably.