Description: Monks are ascetics who learn their skills at a monastary.
Their spiritual training empasizes the simultaneous development of mind and
body as a path to understading and enlightenment. Perfection for them lies
in perfect control of their own spirit - achieving harmony between mind and
body. To this end they become masters of combat forms, both armed and
unarmed - not to become great fighters, but to learn their physical powers
and limitations. At the same time they undergo a rigorous mental discipline,
honing their minds to perceive and understand the mysteries of the cosmos.
Although they can perform incredible physical and mental feats, they cannot
perform ceremonies or cast spells. Monks are attached to a monastary but do
not receive the religous training that makes a priest, and are not considered
Monks are the guardians of knowledge, and value knowledge very highly. Monks
were originally seekers of knowledge who gathered at a monastary. Knowledge
of martial arts is especially valuable, to defend the monastary from those
who would seek to destroy the knowledge which monks hold so dear.
Requirements: Only humans can become monks. Because of the discipline
required in their training, monks must always be Lawful. Monks must also have
the following minimum ability scores: Strength 15, Dexterity 15, Constitution
11, and Wisdom 15. Monks have no prime requisite.
Character Creation: Monks have the same hit dice, THAC0, and saving
throws as Rogues. Their experience and titles are as follows:
Initiate of Rudiments
Master of Dragons
Initiate of Elements
Master of the North Wind
Initiate of Priciples
Master of the West Wind
Master of the South Wind
Master of the East Wind
Disciple of Secrets
Master of Winter
Disciple of Mysteries
Master of Autumn
Master of Summer
Master of Spring
Grandmaster of Flowers
Weapon Proficiencies: Monks may become proficient with any weapon, but
most favor exotic oriental weapons. Weapon groups are also sought,
so as to be more versatile. Monks start with two initial weapon
and gain one every 3 levels. The penalty for a monk using a weapon with
which he is not proficient is -3.
Nonweapon Proficiencies: Monks have no required proficiency, and can
choose from the general and rogue groups. Monks begin with 3 nonweapon
proficiencies and gain one every 3 levels (3rd, 6th, 9th...)
Special Benefits:Monks receive a great deal of powers from their years
of rigorous training in the monastary.
Weapon Mastery - Due to the monk's study and knowledge of
anatomy and weapons, a monk causes one extra point of damage for every two
levels of experience when using a weapon (not a natural one, such as hands
Reduced Surprise - While a monk has normal surprise at first level,
his chance to be surprised drops to 32% at second, and lowers by 2% every
level thereafter, to a minimum of 2% at 17th level.
Skills - As an effect of the monk's training, he has developed the
following thief abilities. They start at the base score listed below (bonus
for no armor is included). Monks receive 40 points to distribute at 1st level,
and 20 points every level thereafter. No skill may be raised higher than 95%.
Find Traps (but not Remove)
Hide in Shadows
Falling Technique - A monk can escape taking damage from a fall if
he has the opportunity to make periodic contact with a wall. The wall is used
by the monk to slow his fall. Any similar surface, such as a tree trunk,
cliff face, and the like, are equally useful to the monk.
At 4th level (Initiate of Principles), a monk can fall up to 20' if
he is within 1' of a wall.
At 8th level (Disciple of Mysteries), a monk can fall up to 30' if he is
within 3' of a wall.
At 12th level (Master of Dragons), a monk can fall up to 50' if he is
within 6' of a wall.
At 16th level (Master of the East Wind), a monk can fall any distance if
he is within 8' of a wall.
Chi Ability - Monks have the chi ability to reduce the amount of
damage taken by magical attacks. When making a saving throw vs. magical
attacks, the monk's chi allows him to take no damage or suffer no effect if
a successful saving throw is made. This chi ability is usable only once per
day per level of the monk, and may be declared at any time, even after the
die is rolled. At 11th level (Superior Master), this chi power improves. Even
if the monk fails his saving throw, he suffers only half damage from a magical
attack that causes damage (he must use this power, however). The monk is still
limited to a number of uses per day equal to his level.
Chi Powers -Monks have a variety of powers which develop as they
gain control of their spirit and mind and body begin to unify. At each level,
the following abilities manifest:
Feign Death - The monk is able to lower his heart rate and body
temperature. The monk is able to maintain this state for twice his level in
Mind Mask - The monk can mask his mind so that ESP has only a 30% chance
of success. For every level the monk gains past 2nd, the chance drops by 2%,
to a minimum of 2%.
Speak with Animals - As per the druid power.
Heal - The monk may heal damage on his body once per day. The amount
healed is 1d4, +1 per level above 3rd.
Immunities - The monk is not subject to diseases of any sort, nor is he ever
affected by haste or slow spells.
Body Equilibrium - As per the psionic power, duration - one round per
level, usable once per day.
Mind over Body - As per the psionic power, duration - one day per level.
Empathy - As per the psionic power, usable once per day.
Invisibility - As per the psionic power, duration - one turn per level
past 6th, usable once per day.
Molecular Manipulation - As per the psionic power (inanimate objects
only), at 8th level ability, usable once per day.
Charm Resistance - Beguiling, charms, hypnosis, and
suggestion spells have omly a 50% chance of affecting the monk. For
every level after, the chance decreases by 5%, to a minimum of 5%.
Mental Defense - Telepathic and mind blast attacks are made
against the monk as if he had an 18 Intelligence, due to the monk's mental
Retarded Aging - As if the monk had a phalactery of long years.
Immunities - The monk is not affected by poisons of any type, and is immune
to geas and quest spells.
Body Control - As per the psionic power, duration - one turn per level
past 10th, usable once per day.
Speak with Plants - As per the druid power.
Levitation - This requires the utmost of concentration and mental
discipline. Daily the character practices at making his body feel lighter,
using his mental power to negate his own weight. Finally, the monk succeeds
in overcoming all his weight. At this point the character can levitate. This
power requires a turn of concentration before it can be done. Thereafter the
monk can move up, down, or sideways, at five feet per round. He can take no
actions while levitating, and if his concentration is broken, he falls to the
ground. After levitating, the monk must rest for a round.
Dimension Door - Once per day.
Mind Bar - As per the psionic power, 100% success, duration - one hour
per level, once per week.
Object Read - As per the psionic power, once per day.
Dimension Walk - As per the psionic power, duration - 1 hour per every two
levels, once per day.
Astral Projection - As per the cleric spell, once per week.
Premonition - The monk recieves a premonition of death or serious harm
about to occur to him 1 - 4 turns in advance. This works 90% of the time.
Mental Defenses - The monk can use Tower of Iron Will or
Intellect Fortress once per day. Duration - one round per level. The
monk may take no action other than walking slowly while using this power.
Plane Shift - As per the cleric spell, twice per day.
Chi Hands - At 10th level (Master), a monk using open hand attacks
may strike and damage creatures requiring +1 weapons to be hit. This ability
improves to +2 at 18th level (Master of Autumn).
Martial Arts - The major benefit monks possess is their fabled
martial skills. These are outlined on the Monk Martial Arts page.
Special Hinderances: For all their abillities, monks must abide by
Ability Scores - Monks receive no "to hit" or "damage" bonuses
from a high Strength score, and do not roll for exceptional Strength. Also,
they do not receive the "AC adjustment" from a high Dexterity score.
Armor Prohibition - Monks may not wear armor or use a shield.
Armor restricts natural movement, and a shield prevents the use of one of the
monk's arms, a more formidable and versitile weapon.
Detachment - In general, monks view the world as a transitory and
ephemeral place, without constants. As such, emotional attachments - greed,
anger, and other passions - are obstacles placed in the path of true
perfection. To achieve the ultimate enlightenment, the monk must force
himself to dispose of these feelings and all things associated with them.
While they do not deny that these passions exist within themselves, they seek
to control and moderate them.
Possessions - Monks must avoid too many attachments to the
material world. To this end, monks may not retain more than a small fraction
of the treasure they recover: only enough to cover their needs for food and
clothing for the next few days. They may not own horses. They can never hold
land or property. They can retain only two magical weapons and three other
Magical Item Use - Severe limits are imposed on the use of magical
items, as too much reliance on them weakens the monk's spiritual strength.
Magical weapons, rings, and any other items usable by rogues can be used
by a monk.
Family - Once the monk enters the monastary, he must sever all ties
to his family. Such fetters attach him to the material world and prevent
ultimate enlightenment and transcendence. A monk does not use his family
adopting instead a name appropriate to his monastary. Monks cannot hire
Limited Advancement - There can only be a limited number of monks
above 11th level (Superior Master). There are three 12th level (Master of
Dragons), and but one of each higher level. When a monk gains enough
experience points to qualify for 12th level (or beyond), he temporarily gains
the abilities of that level. Before the level is permanently aquired, the
monk must find and defeat the monk (or one of the monks) of that level. The
duel must be fought in the martial style of the monastary and is strictly
between the two monks; no one can intervene. The duel need not be fought to
the death; the first person stunned usually acknowledges defeat. The character
knows the general whereabouts of the monk he must duel. Any intentional delay
(or being defeated in the duel) readjusts the character's experience points
to the minimum need to attain the last level he held permanently. For example,
a 12th level monk defeated in a duel drops to 220,000 experience points. He
must work his way back up to 12th level all over again.