Shield Maiden (Apath)

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Unofficial rules compendium

Many shield maidens use a shield, but they earn the name because they are the shield of the faithful. A shield maiden operates incognito and independently of regular church authorities. She protects the faithful from danger, or if this fails, avenges them and in doing so prevents further evil. The shield maiden is a martial artist of the Way of Force.

Class Information

This is a force armor archetype.

Publisher: Purple Duck Games.

Class: Paladin.

Starting Money: 2d6 × 10 gp (average 70 gp)

Hit Die: d10.

Class Skills

Add Disguise (Cha) and Intimidate (Cha). Remove Knowledge (nobility)(Int).

Class Features

This archetype has all normal paladin class features, except as noted.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency

Shield maidens are proficient with all simple and martial weapons, and with shields (except tower shields). They are not proficient in any armor.

Aura of Faith (Su)

A character with this ability can project a powerful protective aura that functions as armor and becomes an expert at using bracers of armor. This aura is force armor, and protects against incorporeal touch attacks. It can be activated at will as a swift action, and the protection stays up until deactivated or as long as the user is conscious. At class level 4, this armor can be used alongside bracers of armor, with stacking benefits. It does not otherwise stack with armor, either normal or force. It can be affected by armor-enhancing effects like magic vestment, but such enhancements do not stack with braces or armor. This counts as heavy armor to abilities that require or work with armor and suffers a 25% chance of arcane spell failure. It provides an armor bonus of +7. The armor created by shield maidens is clearly visible as a nimbus of light. The shield maiden can choose for this aura to hide her appearance, granting a +10 bonus on Disguise checks to conceal her identity.

Shield Aura (Su)

Any shield the shield maiden uses gains the ghost touch property. This replaces the detect evil ability normally gained at level 1.

Sacred Bond (Sp)

At 5th level, if the shield maiden chooses to bond with her weapon using the divine bond ability, she can also use this ability to bond with a shield she wears. This works in the same way as a bond with a weapon except that it is based of the shield's defensive enchantment, and when the shield maiden gains multiple uses of divine bond, she can improve both her weapon and shield simultaneously by using the ability twice. She can give her shield the champion, fortification (light, medium, or heavy), invulnerability, or spell resistance (any type) properties. This is in addition to the ghost touch property conferred by the shield aura class ability, above.

Winged Protector (Sp)

At 8th level, the shield maiden can use fly as a spell-like ability with a caster level equal to her shield maiden level. The target of this ability gains majestic wings.

Normally, the shield maiden can only affect herself with this ability, but if she has a mount from her divine bond ability, she can use its share spells ability to give the benefit of winged protector to the mount instead of herself. Two uses can give the ability to both the shield maiden and her mount.

A shield maiden can use this once per day at level 8, and gain an additional daily use of this ability every 2 levels after level 8. This replaces the aura of resolve ability normally gained at level 8.

At 11th level, the shield maiden can use overland flight instead of fly if desired. This replaces the aura of justice ability normally gained at level 11.

At 17th level, the shield maiden can use winged protector at will. This replaces the aura of righteousness ability normally gained at level 17.

Table: Shield Maiden

Base Attack
Special Spells per Day
1 2 3 4
1st +1 +2 +0 +2 Aura of faith, aura of good, shield aura, smite evil 1/day
2nd +2 +3 +0 +3 Divine grace, lay on hands
3rd +3 +3 +1 +3 Aura of courage, divine health, mercy
4th +4 +4 +1 +4 Channel positive energy, smite evil 2/day 0
5th +5 +4 +1 +4 Sacred bond 1
6th +6/+1 +5 +2 +5 Mercy 1
7th +7/+2 +5 +2 +5 Smite evil 3/day 1 0
8th +8/+3 +6 +2 +6 Winged protector (fly) 1 1
9th +9/+4 +6 +3 +6 Mercy 2 1
10th +10/+5 +7 +3 +7 Smite evil 4/day 2 1 0
11th +11/+6/+1 +7 +3 +7 Winged protector (overland flight) 2 1 1
12th +12/+7/+2 +8 +4 +8 Mercy 2 2 1
13th +13/+8/+3 +8 +4 +8 Smite evil 5/day 3 2 1 0
14th +14/+9/+4 +9 +4 +9 Aura of faith 3 2 1 1
15th +15/+10/+5 +9 +5 +9 Mercy 3 2 2 1
16th +16/+11/+6/+1 +10 +5 +10 Smite evil 6/day 3 3 2 1
17th +17/+12/+7/+2 +10 +5 +10 Winged protector (at will) 4 3 2 1
18th +18/+13/+8/+3 +11 +6 +11 Mercy 4 3 2 2
19th +19/+14/+9/+4 +11 +6 +11 Smite evil 7/day 4 3 3 2
20th +20/+15/+10/+5 +12 +6 +12 Holy champion 4 4 3 3

Alternate Shield Maidens

Divine liberators, tyrants, and antipaladins can also be shield maidens. Abilities should be renamed as appropriately, but continue to function normally. Their aura of faith and winged protector powers manifest in a way suited to their alignment, the wings of the winged protector ability appearing as bat wings for tyrants and reptile wings for antipaladins. All variants use the shield maiden's class skills and armor proficiencies.

  • Divine liberators give up their aura of freedom ability.
  • Tyrants give up their aura of tyranny and unholy champion abilties.
  • Antipaladins give up their detect good, aura of cowardice, aura of despair, aura of vengeance, aura of depravity, and unholy champion abilities. Fiendish boon is modified as per divine bond, and the antipaladin can share her winged protector ability with a fiendish servant.

Summary of Changed Class Abilities

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

  • Class Skills
  • Weapon and Armor Proficiency
  • Detect Evil
  • Sacred Bond
  • Aura of Resolve
  • Aura of Justice
  • Aura of Righteousness
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