Pale master

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[The Astrolabe]

Pale Master is a default prestige class with Arelith specific changes.


Arelith Pale Masters enjoy changes that benefit their spellcasting and necromatic skills. Mechanical changes are included in the #Class Mechanics on this page and explained in the #Arelith Changes section. Base mechanics can be found on NWNWiki. The #Roleplay Tips section provides suggestions for character development. Also, #Keep In Mind... there are some special expectations for Pale Master.

Keep In Mind...

Palemaster does not require a token. Becoming a palemaster is not an unwilling process. Any characters that suggest Palemastery was forced upon them or a cursed will likely have a DM talk to them about their concept.

Please note also that Palemasters are NOT liches, they are alive ... ish.

Finally, please keep in mind alignment. Playing a "good" PM while being a non-good alignment will have you chatting with the DM Team.

Class Mechanics


Alignment restrictions: any evil (may be any neutral with Normal Award)

Multi-classing: May not have any Druid levels

Class: Must have 3 levels of an arcane caster class (bard, sorcerer, wizard, hexblade, warlock)

Class Features

Hit die: d6

Proficiencies: no additional proficiencies are gained

Skill points: 4 + int modifier ((4 + int modifier) * 4 at 1st level)

Class Skills: concentration, craft mastery, heal, hide, intimidate, lore, move silently, sail, spellcraft

Unavailable feats: craft wand, scribe scroll, weapon proficiency (exotic), weapon proficiency (martial), weapon proficiency (simple), weapon specialization

Primary saving throw(s): fortitude, will

Base attack bonus: +1/2 level

Summon Stream: Abomination, Zombie

Level Progression

Hit points rolls on Arelith are always maximum.

Level BAB Fort Reflex Will Feats HP AC (dodge)
1st +0 +2 +0 +2 bone skin 6 +1
2nd +1 +3 +0 +3 animate dead 12 +1
3rd +1 +3 +1 +3 darkvision 18 +1
4th +2 +4 +1 +4 summon undead 24 +2
5th +2 +4 +1 +4 deathless vigor 33 +2
6th +3 +5 +2 +5 undead graft 42 +2
7th +3 +5 +2 +5 tough as bone 51 +2
8th +4 +6 +2 +6 60 +3
9th +4 +6 +3 +6 summon greater undead 69 +3
10th +5 +7 +3 +7 deathless master touch
Epic Spell Focus: Necromancy*
78 +3

Epic Pale Master

Bonus feats: The epic pale master gains a bonus feat every three levels. In other words, at levels 13, 16, and 19.

Epic bonus feats: automatic quicken spell, automatic silent spell, automatic still spell, epic energy resistance, epic spell focus, epic spell penetration, epic spell: dragon knight, epic spell: epic mage armor, epic spell: epic warding, epic spell: greater ruin, epic spell: hellball, epic spell: mummy dust, improved combat casting, Greater Spell Focus

Unavailable epic feats: epic weapon specialization, outsider shape, construct shape, dragon shape, undead shape

Level Feats HP range AC Bonus
11th 84 +3
12th 90 +4
13th bonus feat, Epic Spell: Mummy Dust* 96 +4
14th 102 +4
15th deathless mastery 113 +4
16th bonus feat, Epic Spell: Dragon Knight* 119 +5
17th 125 +5
18th 131 +5
19th bonus feat 137 +5
20th 148 +6

Arelith Changes

Change Level Description
Class Skills - Pale masters on Arelith gain access to Intimidate and Sail as class skills.
Pale masters on Arelith lose access to Listen and Leadership as class skills.
Bonus Spells - At levels 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, 15, 17, and 19 the character gains new spells per day as if the character had also gained a level in their highest caster class. No new spells granted through this ability. This does not grant spells known for spontaneous casters. More details on NWNwiki.
  • Each level of Pale Master also (unique to Arelith) adds +1 caster level for necromancy spells and every 2 levels adds +1 caster level to non-necromancy spells (level 2, 4, 6, etc).
  • Caster level works for determining the power and duration of most spells. For example, both Haste and Fear (1 round/level) from a wizard with caster level 17 would last one minute and forty-two seconds. A character with 10 Wizard levels and 7 Pale Master levels would have a total of 17 caster levels for necromancy spells (1m42s Fear) and 13 caster levels for other spells (1m18s Haste).
Dispel Resistance - Pale Master levels count as full caster levels for the purpose of resisting dispels.
Palemaster Spells - Some spells work differently for the pale master.
  • Death Armor scaling is uncapped, additional damage scales at +1 per CL instead of +1 per 2 CL.
  • Scare HD limit removed.
  • Circle of Death HD limit is equal to Caster Level, if Caster Level is above 9.
  • Horrid Wilting will only do half damage against friendly targets.
  • Energy Drain and Enervate have +4 DC.
  • For undead summons, they have a full 1/1 caster level progression.
Epic Spells - At higher levels, the Pale Master may gain the following feats for free:
  • At class level 10, the Pale Master gains Epic Spell Focus: Necromancy, so long as she already has Greater Spell Focus: Necromancy.
  • At class level 13, the Pale Master gains Epic Spell: Mummy Dust so long as she has at least 20 Intelligence or Charisma and meets all the other normal requirements.
  • At class level 16, the Pale Master gains Epic Spell: Dragon Knight so long as she has at least 20 Intelligence or Charisma and meets all the other normal requirements.
Summoning Changes - For specifics, read Summoning Changes which details how summons are changed on Arelith and Summons which details each specific summon stream and what is summoned at each tier of the stream.
Note: Pale master Animate Undead, Summon Undead and Create Greater Undead abilities can be found on the radial menu.
Note: Pale master undead summoning class abilities offer a different summoning progression than the undead summoning spells.
Undead Spell Resistance - Undead summoned by a Pale Master have scaling spell resistance equal to 6 + Pale Master level.
Dracolich Stream - Gain access to the Dracolich Stream.
Bone Skin 1 The Bone Skin bonus from Pale Master has been halved. Pale Masters now get +1 AC at level 1 and +1 AC at every fourth level. This has been implemented as a scripted Dodge AC bonus in lieu of the Bone Skin feat.
Undead Graft 6 Undead Graft's Touch is on a ten minutes cooldown.
  • The DC now scales with the Pale Master's attributes and invested spell foci in Necromancy. The DC is 14 + the higher of the Pale Master's CHA or INT + 2 per Necromancy Spell Focus. It now respects Freedom of Movement and Paralysis Immunity.
  • Heals undead NPCs and PCs for 1d5+5 per Pale Master level.
Deathless Master Touch 10 Deathless Master's Touch is on a ten minute cooldown.
  • The DC now scales with the Pale Master's attributes and invested spell foci in Necromancy. The DC is 17 + 1 every 2 Pale Master levels past 10 + the higher of the Pale Master's CHA or INT + 2 per Necromancy Spell Focus. It now respects Death Immunity.
  • Heals friendly undead NPCs and PCs for 1d10+10 per Pale Master level.
  • Casts Control Undead on hostile undead NPC or PC.
  • Only one undead can be dominated by this ability and Control Undead at a time.
  • Note: In order to release an undead dominated in this way, use Deathless Master's Touch on them again. This will also release any undead dominated by Control Undead.
Deathless Mastery 15 Deathless Mastery was moved from 10th level to 15th level.

Roleplay Tips

By Lualyrr Terrana, credit -Th3Roxxorzs-

Necromancy is usually a poor choice for arcane spellcasters. Those who really want to master the deathless arts almost always pursue divine means. However, an alternative exists for those who desire power over undead, without losing too much of their arcane power. Enter the pale master, who draws on a font of special lore that provides a macabre power all its own. Sorcerers and Wizards make powerful pale masters. Additional spellcasting ability is sacrificed for a stronger melee presence.

Deathless mastery : The Roleplay of an important feat.

At level 15, a pale master gains the Deathless Mastery feat.

- In Tome and Blood (DnD book): "His body becomes partly mummified, and he is no longer subject to critical hits."
- In Libris Mortis (DnD book): "His body becomes partly mummified (though he is not truly undead), and he becomes immune to [long list - not gained in NWN]. He still needs to breathe, eat, and sleep as normal for his type, and he still ages normally."

Thus by being "partly mummified," he still needs to breathe and eat. Mummification involves the removal of organs, but breathing and eating require several organs, if not all.

Basically, the pale master is a necromancer that gives parts of their living body up for undead augmentations. For example, the natural AC bonus that the class gets is their skin turning hard and bony. As they gain levels, they look more and more like the undead that they control. In Tome and Blood actually said that at level 10, most onlookers confuse the Pale Master for an undead.

- Palemaster isn't simply mastery of the undead, it is breaking the bounds between life and death, it's in a sense, a loss of vitality, not related to the desire to control and create undeath necromancers have.
- The Palemaster is also striving to serve the existence he previously knew in reshaping his body as he sees fit, to resemble undeath (The undead graft, and the vital changes necessary for the immunities that he gains). Likewise, these changes increase his link to the undeath. Whereas a necromancer would force undeath to do his bidding through spells and the like, a Palemaster differs by being able to use his growing link with the undead to coax them into doing what he wishes. Breaking the boundaries that people usually think exist between undeath and life.

A good approach I've read might be self-mummification. Here is a caricaturization. (Mind you, this is a subjective view, but an interesting approach, give it a magical twist, dismiss it, but if it can help to give you a guideline; as long you keep in mind that the Palemaster wishes to defy/shape Death, to twist his own self to resemble it by "experimenting" on his body)

-First, the pale master makes a cut in the left side of the body and removes all of the internal organs. It is important to be well-rested and nourished before beginning the ritual.
-Second, the liver, lungs, stomach, heart and intestines are washed and packed in salt, which will dry them out.
-Third, the pale master stuffs his empty body with salt and waits for it to dry for at least 12 hours, preferably in a dry area with an abundance of negative energy.
-Fourth, after sufficient time drying, the body is washed with water, then covered with oils to help the skin stay elastic.
-Fifth, the dehydrated internal organs are returned to the body and reconnected with one another. The other organs are discarded. The remainder of the body is stuffed with dry materials such as sawdust, leaves and any linen used during the embalming process.
-Finally, the body is covered again with good-smelling oils.

In essence: taken out, semi-mummified, returned (and also reconnected). Still magically working (Organs) and are required (since the pale master isn't really undead and can breathe, eat, ect).

Keep in mind that not all mummification is done through the old Egyptian techniques. There is also natural mummification, where a corpse becomes desiccated and somewhat preserved. It's conceivable that a Pale master's body could become much drier. Picture the skin becoming leathery and creased, the eyes sinking a bit, the lips drawing back a little to expose the teeth more. Finger and toe nails would appear longer as the skin retracts, cheeks would appear a little sunken. Losing all that moisture, they'd be much leaner looking, and might actually fit the phrase, "Death warmed over."

About the dead and controlling the dead:

Animate/Create spells make a dead body into an undead creature. At some point in casting this spell, a corpse becomes undead. Whether that happens elsewhere and it's summoned to you, or whether you're carrying part or all of the corpse to be animated on you is up to you. Summon Undead abilities are summon abilities. This represents a pale master's connection with undeath, and allows him to call his undead buddies to his aid.

External Links

Information about default NWN class are available on NWNWiki.