Tyrant (Apath)

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Unofficial rules compendium

The tyrant is the lawful evil version of the paladin, enforcing the tyranny of hell on earth. Unlike the anti-paladin, the tyrant has some seemingly redeeming qualities and is a good team player.

Class Information

This is a paladin archetype.

Publisher: Trailseeker.

Alignment: Lawful Evil only

Hit Die: d10.

Class Skills

Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Handle Animal (Cha), Heal (Wis), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (religion) (Int), Profession (Wis), Ride (Dex), Sense Motive (Wis).

Skill Ranks per Level: 2 + Int modifier.

Class Features

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

Aura of Evil

The tyrant has an evil aura. This is a modification to aura of good.

Smite Good

The tyrant smites good instead of evil. This is a modification to smite evil.

Lay on Hands

The lay on hands ability of the tyrant heals both living and undead creatures.

Channel Negative Energy

The tyrant channels negative energy in the same manner as a paladin channels positive energy.

Order of Evil

At 3rd level, a superior of the tyrant who is capable of casting 2nd level divine spells can order him to fight against either good or chaos for one day as a full-round action when adjacent to the tyrant. All abilities that normally target good creatures instead target the selected type. This affects smite good, unholy champion, and tyrant spells he casts that has a specific effect against good creatures.

At 6th level, the tyrant can change what kind of foe he has a bonus against with a 1-minute dedication ritual.

At 9th level, the tyrant can change what kind of foe he has a bonus against as a standard action.

At 12th level, the tyrant can change what kind of foe he has a bonus against as a swift action.

At 15th level, a tyrant continuously has a bonus against both good and chaos.

This replaces mercy.


The tyrant has the following spell list:

1st level - cause fear, corrupt weapon, cure light wounds, curse water, detect good, detect poison, detect undead, divine favor, doom, endure elements, inflict light wounds, magic weapon, misdirection, protection from good, read magic, summon monster II.
2nd level - bull's strength, darkness, death knell, desecrate, eagle's splendor, hold person, resist energy, shatter, owl's wisdom, summon monster IV, undetectable alignment.
3rd level - bestow curse, contagion, cure moderate wounds, deeper darkness, dispel magic, inflict moderate wounds, magic circle against good, magic weapon, greater, prayer, protection from elements, summon monster V.
4th level - break enchantment, cure serious wounds, dispel good, freedom of movement, inflict serious wounds, mark of justice, poison, summon monster VI, unholy sword.

Corrupt weapon and unholy sword is similar to bless weapon and holy sword respectively but offer benefits against good creatures instead of evil ones.


This is the same as the paladin's divine bond ability, except as noted.

A tyrant's bonded weapon can gain the following abilities, instead of those listed for paladins: Axiomatic, brilliant energy, flaming burst, flaming, keen, menacing, speed, throwing, unholy, and vicious.

At 11th level, a tyrant's bonded creature gains the fiendish advanced template instead of the celestial template.

Aura of Faith

This is the same as the paladin ability, except that the tyrant's weapon becomes lawful and evil-aligned.

Aura of Tyranny

This is the same as the paladin ability aura of righteousness, except that that tyrant gains damage resistance 5/good and immunity to compulsion spells and spell-like abilities. Each ally within 10 feet of her gains a +4 morale bonus on saving throws against compulsion effects. This replaces aura of righteousness.

Unholy Champion

At 20th level, a tyrant becomes a conduit for the power of her god. Her DR increases to 10/good. Whenever she uses smite evil and successfully strikes a good or chaotic outsider, the outsider is also subject to a banishment, using her tyrant level as the caster level (her weapon and unholy symbol automatically count as objects that the subject hates). After the banishment effect and the damage from the attack is resolved, the smite immediately ends. In addition, whenever she channels energy or uses lay on hands to heal a creature, she heals the maximum possible amount. This replaces holy champion.

Code of Conduct

The tyrant must be part of a hierarchy. She can be on detached duty, but is never on leave. She must respect the authority of superiors in her organization, but is free to try and maneuver against them in order to advance her own position. She can head her own organization, but this must nor be a mere band of bandits but a genuine hierarchy with constructive goals. It need not be an organization devoted to evil, but neither can it be an organization devoted to good. She must not falsify reports of her activities or lie to members of her organization, but may withhold information. She must uphold the official face of her organization, and may lie, cheat, and steal as a part of the organization's agenda. Most tyrants see this as having two sets of truth; one for use inside the organization, one face to present to outsiders. When working as a group with people not from her organizations, she should place the interests of her organization first, herself second, and the team last - which still means that teamwork is valued and important, just subservient to other interests. She should constantly try to influence the attitudes of other team members trough sincere effort on team goals. The tyrant seems no inherent conflict between her own interests and those of her group or organization—the most suitable person should lead, and generally the tyrant sees herself as the most competent.

Table: Tyrant

Base Attack
Special Spells per Day
1 2 3 4
1st +1 +2 +0 +2 Aura of evil, detect evil, smite good 1/day
2nd +2 +3 +0 +3 Divine grace, lay on hands
3rd +3 +3 +1 +3 Aura of courage, order of evil (divine caster), divine health, mercy
4th +4 +4 +1 +4 Channel begative energy, smite good 2/day 0
5th +5 +4 +1 +4 Divine bond 1
6th +6/+1 +5 +2 +5 Mercy, order of evil (1 minute) 1
7th +7/+2 +5 +2 +5 Smite good 3/day 1 0
8th +8/+3 +6 +2 +6 Aura of resolve 1 1
9th +9/+4 +6 +3 +6 Mercy, order of evil (standard action) 2 1
10th +10/+5 +7 +3 +7 Smite good 4/day 2 1 0
11th +11/+6/+1 +7 +3 +7 Aura of justice 2 1 1
12th +12/+7/+2 +8 +4 +8 Mercy, order of evil (swift action) 2 2 1
13th +13/+8/+3 +8 +4 +8 Smite good 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, order of evil (continous) 3 2 2 1
16th +16/+11/+6/+1 +10 +5 +10 Smite good 6/day 3 3 2 1
17th +17/+12/+7/+2 +10 +5 +10 Aura of tyrrany 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 good 7/day 4 3 3 2
20th +20/+15/+10/+5 +12 +6 +12 Unholy champion 4 4 3 3

Summary of Changed Class Abilities

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

  • Aura of Good
  • Class Skills
  • Smite Evil
  • Lay on Hands
  • Channel Energy
  • Spells
  • Mercy
  • Divine Bond
  • Aura of Faith
  • Aura of Righteousness
  • Holy Champion
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