Doppelsoldner (Apath)

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Unofficial rules compendium

Doppelsoldners master combat maneuvers with two-handed weapons.


An infantry army needs an elite on the first rank to take the brunt of an enemy charge. This becomes doubly true when facing large creatures and mounted troops. Traditionally called doppelsoldners (double-pay soldiers, but the name can also refer to the two-handed weapons they use), these soldiers fight with heavy weapons such as longspears and greatswords, disrupting enemy formations and breaking enemy ranks. Doppelsoldners also make formidable individual warriors, eschewing shields to develop an overwhelming counterattack to break an enemy charge and settle the combat fast.

Greyhawk Doppelsoldners are common in egalitarian countries where they make up a professional core of their militia forces. Perrenland and the Yeomanry are places associated with doppelsoldners, but their true home is in mercenary companies world-wide.

Class Information

Publisher Purple Duck Games, Author Aaron Hollingsworth, development Carl Cramér.

Alignment Any. Doppelsoldners are professional warriors and many shy away from chaotic and good alignments as they impair their professionalism. Knights and traditional warriors often see doppelsoldners as dishonorable for the methods they employ, but their cunning and daring in the face of larger and faster threats earn them great respect from their fellow foot soldiers.

Class Features

Doppelsoldners have all the class features of fighters, except as noted.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency

A doppelsoldner is proficient with simple and martial melee weapons, simple ranged weapons, light armor, medium armor, and heavy armor, but not with shields. This alters weapon and armor proficiencies.

Doppelsoldner Drill

Doppelsoldners drill extensively with two-handed weapons, learning special maneuvers that exploit the power and reach of such mighty implements. These abilities have synergies, enabling more and more combinations as the doppelsoldner's weapons gain additional abilities. All doppelsoldner drill abilities require the doppelsoldner to be standing on the ground and using a two-handed melee weapon. A flying, swimming, or mounted doppelsoldner cannot use these abilities, but using abilities like air walk and water walk that allows walking in unusual situations allows the use of doppelsoldner drill. This replaces lost proficiencies and the bonus combat feats gained at 2nd, 6th, 12th, and 18th level.

At 1st level, when a charging enemy triggers an attack of opportunity from the doppelsoldner, that attack deals double damage. If the doppelsoldner uses this attack of opportunity to perform a combat maneuver, he can affect an opponent regardless of relative size. (Normally a disarm, sunder, or trip combat maneuver can be made as an attack, but see the level 4 ability below.) The doppelsoldner can only use this ability with a melee weapon with the brace quality.

At 2nd level, a charging enem triggers an attack of opportunity after moving into a space the doppelsoldner threatens. The doppelsoldner can only use this ability once per round against each opponent.

At 4th level, a doppelsoldner treats any two-handed melee weapon as if it had the brace and trip special qualities. The doppelsoldner can use a two-handed weapon to perform a bull rush, dirty trick, or reposition maneuver in place of a melee attack (these combat maneuvers are normally standard actions that do not use weapons). Using a weapon for a combat maneuver allows use of the weapon's reach (if any) and the weapon's enhancement bonus and other weapon-related bonuses, such as weapon training and Weapon Focus, to his CMD check. These combat maneuvers trigger attacks of opportunity normally based on the feats the doppelsoldner knows.

At 6th level, a doppelsoldner can attack enemies in his normal threatened space with a reach weapon at no penalty. When wielding a two-handed melee weapon without reach, a doppelsoldner can perform bull rush, disarm, reposition, sunder, and trip combat maneuvers as if the weapon had the reach special quality, but only on his own turn.

At 12th level, the doppelsoldner can treat any two-handed weapon as if it had the reach special quality.

At 18th level, when the doppelsoldner inflicts damage with an attack with a two-handed melee weapon, he can immediately make a bull rush, disarm, sunder, or trip combat maneuver against that opponent as a free action. He does not suffer any consequences if he fails such a combat maneuver. He can only do this once per round against each opponent.

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