Iron Investigator (Apath)

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Unofficial rules compendium

An iron investigator is an investigator who fights unarmed. Madcap thinkers with martial arts skills, they are often vigilantes or investigators for hire in martial arts settings. They are practitioners of the way of the void.

Class Information

This is a hybrid class, a combination of investigator and monk. It is a martial artist of the way of the void.

Alignment: Any lawful.

Starting Wealth: 2d6 × 10 gp (average 70 gp.)

Hit Die: d8.

Class Features

The iron investigator has all the standard investigator' class features, except as noted below.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency

Iron investigators are proficient with the club, dagger, hand crossbow, heavy crossbow, light crossbow, repeating crossbow, quarterstaff, shuriken, and sai. If eastern weapons are in use, they are also proficient with the butterfly sword, fighting fan, and hanbo. They have no proficiency with armor or shields.

AC Bonus (Ex)

When unarmored, unencumbered, and not using a shield, the iron investigator adds her Wisdom bonus (if any) as a dodge bonus to her CMD and Armor Class. In addition, a iron investigator gains a +1 bonus to AC at 5th level. This bonus increases by 1 for every five iron investigator levels thereafter (+2 at 10th, +3 at 15th, and +4 at 20th level).

These bonuses to AC apply even against touch attacks or when the iron investigator is flat-footed. She loses these bonuses when she is immobilized or helpless, when she wears any armor, when she carries a shield, or when she carries a medium or heavy load.

This ability replaces armor proficiency, trapfinding, and swift alchemy.


The iron investigator has a pool of brilliant inspiration equal to 1/2 his investigator level + his Wisdom modifier (minimum 1). This is otherwise the same as the investigator's inspiration ability.

Stunning Fist (Ex)

At first level, the iron investigator receives the monk's stunning fist class feature.

Unarmed fighting and stunning fist replaces alchemy. An iron investigator cannot take the alchemist discovery talent or any investigator talent that affects alchemy.

Unarmed Fighting (Ex)

A iron investigator gains Improved Unarmed Combat as a bonus feat at first level and inflicts 1d6 damage with an unarmed attack. A iron investigator's attacks may be with fist, elbows, knees, and feet. This means that a iron investigator may make unarmed strikes with her hands full. There is no such thing as an off-hand attack for a iron investigator striking unarmed. A iron inquisitor may thus apply her full Strength bonus on damage rolls for all her unarmed strikes.

Usually a iron investigator's unarmed strikes deal lethal damage, but she can choose to deal nonlethal damage instead with no penalty on her attack roll. She has the same choice to deal lethal or nonlethal damage while grappling.

A iron investigator's unarmed strike is treated as both a manufactured weapon and a natural weapon for the purpose of spells and effects that enhance or improve either manufactured weapons or natural weapons. A iron investigator can use any ability that normally requires a melee weapon with an unarmed attack.

The damage of the iron investigator increases with base attack bonus; when base attack bonus reaches +4, unarmed damage becomes 1d8. At base attack +8 unarmed damage becomes 1d10, at +12 it becomes 2d6.

This damage is for a Medium character. For Small and Large characters, see martial arts strikes.

Unarmed fighting and stunning fist replaces alchemy.

Ki (Su)

At fourth level, the iron investigator receives the monk's ki pool class feature. The iron investigator does not have a separate ki pool, he instead uses brilliant inspiration to power these abilities. He can use ki to gain an additional attack whenever he does a full attack action instead of when he uses flurry of blows. This replaces trap sense.

Table: Iron Investigator

Level Base
Special Unarmed
1st +0 +0 +2 +2 AC bonus, intuition, stunning fist, unarmed fighting 1d6 +0
2nd +1 +0 +3 +3 Poison lore, poison resistance +2 1d6 +0
3rd +2 +1 +3 +3 Investigator talent, keen recollection, trap sense +1 1d6 +0
4th +3 +1 +4 +4 Ki strike (magic), studied combat, studied strike +1d6 1d6 +1
5th +3 +1 +4 +4 Investigator talent, poison resistance +4 1d6 +1
6th +4 +2 +5 +5 Studied strike +2d6, trap sense +2 1d8 +1
7th +5 +2 +5 +5 Investigator talent, ki strike (cold iron) 1d8 +1
8th +6/+1 +2 +6 +6 Poison resistance +6, studied strike +3d6 1d8 +2
9th +6/+1 +3 +6 +6 Investigator talent, trap sense +3 1d8 +2
10th +7/+2 +3 +7 +7 Ki strike (lawful), studied strike +4d6 1d8 +2
11th +8/+3 +3 +7 +7 Investigator talent, poison immunity 1d10 +2
12th +9/+4 +4 +8 +8 Studied strike +5d6, trap sense +4 1d10 +3
13th +9/+4 +4 +8 +8 Investigator talent 1d10 +3
14th +10/+5 +4 +9 +9 Studied strike +6d6 1d10 +3
15th +11/+6/+1 +5 +9 +9 Investigator talent, trap sense +5 1d10 +3
16th +12/+7/+2 +5 +10 +10 Ki strike (adamantine), studied strike +7d6 2d6 +4
17th +12/+7/+2 +5 +10 +10 Investigator talent 2d6 +4
18th +13/+8/+3 +6 +11 +11 Studied strike +8d6, trap sense +6 2d6 +4
19th +14/+9/+4 +6 +11 +11 Investigator talent 2d6 +4
20th +15/+10/+5 +6 +12 +12 Studied strike +9d6, true inspiration 2d6 +5

Summary of Changed Class Abilities

These abilities of the original class are lost or modified in this archetype:

  • Weapon and Armor Proficiency
  • Alchemy
  • Trapfinding
  • Trap Sense
  • Swift Alchemy

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