Human Shaman

This is something in development. Have at it!

Human Shaman (r1)
The shaman is the spiritual advisor for the tribe, a strange and enigmatic person gifted (or cursed!) with the ability to travel between worlds and communicate with things beyond.*

Raw abilities: Distribute 8 points between Will and Health; neither stat may have a rating lower than 2 or higher than 6.

Class: Shaman

Skills: Healer 2, Mentor 2, Ritualist 4, Survivalist 2, Theologian 3
Special Tribal Skill: Cook, Peasant, Scavenger, Weaver

Special Shaman Trait: Between Two Worlds—The shaman’s role is to bridge the divide between the worlds of Man and Spirit. Because of this, shamans are able to interpret dreams and portents, commune with spirits and give wise counsel. But they’re also prone to fits of madness and confusion should they lose grip on reality.

Weapon: Dagger

Armor: None

Level Benefits

Level 1

Shaman: use dagger, enter trance, use shamanic rituals)

Enter Trance (special ability): The trance allows the shaman to part the veil separating the spirit world from the waking world, giving the shaman access to weird powers. Entering a trance may be done in the camp or town phase at no cost or penalty. During the adventure phase, entering a trance causes the shaman to become Exhausted when the ritual ends. Narcotic substances made of herbs, roots, berries and the like may be crafted using healer or cook. These act as material components (+1D) for all shamanic rituals that require tests.

Level 2

Spirit Talker: Requires a trance. The shaman speaks and understands the languages of spirits and may communicate with them. The shaman may use Manipulator to intimidate or trick a spirit and Persuader to convince a spirit of something.

Spirit Sight: Requires a trance. The shaman is able to enter an altered state by making a ritualist test. Effects are identical to to the 1st circle magician spell, Supernal Vision, except that it confers no bonus to Arcanist. The -1D penalty to all physical actions remains. Spirit sight negates the dim light penalty when Ghost Walking (see Nth level benefit below).

Levels 3+ (need to edit these down but having problems picking which ones to drop!)

Sin Eater: Requires a trance. The shaman is able to consume the fear, rage or madness of an aggrieved soul. The shaman makes a Ritualist test (ob equal to the recovery test for that condition). On a success, the shaman removes Afraid, Angry or Sick from another character and takes on that condition. Failure means the shaman faces a twist or takes an additional condition.

Frenzied: Requires a trance. The shaman is possessed by a frenzy, becoming a violent, wild, flailing apparition in fight conflicts. A frenzied shaman gains +1D to attack, -2D to defend and suffers no penalty for fighting unarmed.

Dead Stare: The shaman has seen such terrible things in the Other World that nothing in this reality could faze him. The shaman loses a point of Will (max Will is 5) but can no longer be made Afraid.

Drugged: The shaman’s reliance on narcotics has made him strange and distant. The shaman loses a point of Health (max Health is 5) but can no longer be made Angry.

Spirit Animal: You gain a spirit animal to guide your journey. Choose a mundane animal from native to your tribal lands. This spirit animal helps you with abilities native to its Nature descriptors. Add +1D to your roll when your spirit animal is helping. In a conflict against spirits, assign one of your hit points to your spirit animal. If there are no extra hit points, then your animal can’t help. Spirit animals never act on their own.

Death’s Door: When exhausted, injured or sick the shaman finds it easier to contact the spirit world. The shaman may use these conditions as level 1 traits (to gain +1D or to suffer -1D and earn a check) when making Ritualist tests. These conditions may only grant a bonus die once per game session.

Ghost Walker: Requires a trance. The shaman enters the astral plane as a spirit form and may travel instantly, invisibly and silently to any known location. Gear, loot and tools from skills may not be used or carried while ghost walking and the shaman cannot make Health tests or any test where Health is the root ability. The shaman is immune to all conditions except Angry or Afraid when earning a condition because of a failed test. Time passes normally in the real world and the shaman is susceptible to the Hungry/Thirsty condition or any other condition brought on by time. The shaman may not eat or drink to alleviate their Hungry/Thirsty condition or test to recover from any condition while ghost walking. The astral plane is always lit by dim light, the spirit sight ability negates the dim light penalty. If “killed” while in astral form, the shaman returns to his body. If his body is killed while the shaman ghost walks, the shaman loses a point of Nature each turn and at Nature 0, dissipates into nothingness.

Gilgul: If the shaman ever gains the Dead condition, a random spirit possesses the shaman’s corpse long enough to accomplish one final goal. Write down that goal. Fate and persona are no longer earned and skills may no longer advance. The reanimated body no longer suffers from effects of conditions. Roll 1D6 to determine if the spirit’s intentions are good or evil. An exorcism will drive the spirit from the shaman’s corpus.

Lawful Shaman
1: Evil spirit
2-6: Good spirit

Unaffiliated Shaman
1-3: Evil spirit
4-6: Good spirit

Chaotic Shaman
1-5: Evil spirit
6: Good spirit

I like Spirit Talker!

The failure condition for Sin Eater seems the same as what it would be in a normal failure.

Yeah it just means you can’t Twist it.

Can you banish a Ghost Walker back to their body? What skill or effect would let you know that a ghost walker is spying on you, or can they do it without risk of detection?

Hmm, a shaman isn’t necessarily a Hunter, what about Mentor as the 5th skill? Maybe you could add hunter to the tribe skill list, or let the Shaman take it as an option for their special human skill (though that would be an unusual exception to the standard human rules)?

Banishing: Only if you knew they were around (so, another spirit?). Supernal Vision would let you see them I think.

Hunter: Probably right. The tribal skills replace the “special human skill” because I didn’t dig Haggler or Criminal. BUT I figure Shaman are knowledgeable about fauna…hmm. Feel free to switch Cook and Hunter. I dunno, man.

Ah, ok, I see, I didn’t get that the Special Tribal Skill list replaces the human skills.

I like the class though, definitely has a neat vibe.

I feel like they should get Theologian, not Lore Master. Theologian covers spirits. Lore Master doesn’t.

That was a tough call. I felt Theologian is more “classical,” spheres of the heavens, circles of hell kinda stuff. This is more primal, animist stuff. But yeah, easy enough to change.

I want to play one with a high enough Ritualist to have the instinct, “When performing a physical task while injured, call on [Spirit Animal].”

Changed the Shaman’s level benefits and skills and added some new benefit ideas!

Major improvements!

Should Spirit Sight indicate that it eliminates the Dim Light penalty?
For Drugged, is Health now max 5?

Could you treat the Trance based abilities as special shaman spells and like an elf give them the option of either taking a trance spell slot or another ability? That would be more complex and require more balancing though. You’d also have to decide if they prepare spells like a wizard, a cleric, or some other way.