Arcane Trickster (Apath)

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Unofficial rules compendium

Few can match the guile and craftiness of arcane tricksters. These prodigious thieves blend the subtlest aspects of the arcane with the natural cunning of the bandit and the scoundrel, using spells to enhance their natural thieving abilities. Arcane tricksters can pick locks, disarm traps, and lift purses from a safe distance using their magical legerdemain, and as often as not seek humiliation as a goal to triumph over their foes than more violent solutions.

Class Information

This is a prestige class archetype.

Publisher: Purple Duck Games.

Prestige Class: Arcane Trickster.

Build Classes: Rogue, Wizard.

The arcane trickster is a mix of rogue and wizard.

Role: With their mastery of magic, arcane tricksters can make for even more subtle or confounding opponents than standard rogues. Ranged legerdemain enhances their skill as thieves, and their ability to make sneak attacks without flanking or as part of a spell can make arcane tricksters formidable damage-dealers.

Alignment: Any

Hit Die: d6.

Class Skills

The arcane trickster's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Acrobatics (Dex), Appraise (Int), Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Craft (Int ), Diplomacy (Cha), Disable Device (Dex), Disguise (Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), Fly (Dex), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (all) (Int), Linguistics (Int), Perception (Wis), Perform (Cha), Profession (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis), Sleight of Hand (Dex), Spellcraft (Int), Stealth (Dex), Swim (Str), and Use Magic Device (Cha).

Skill Ranks at Each Level: 4 + Int modifier.

Class Features

This is all the class features of the arcane trickster.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency

Arcane tricksters are proficient with all simple weapons, plus the hand crossbow, rapier, sap, shortbow, and short sword, but not with any type of armor or shield. Armor interferes with an arcane trickster's movements, which can cause his spells with somatic components to fail.


An arcane trickster casts arcane spells drawn from the sorcerer/wizard spell list. An arcane trickster must choose and prepare his spells ahead of time. An arcane trickster only ever learns to cast spells up to level 6. Sorcerer/wizard spells of level 7 or higher are not on the arcane trickster's spell list.

To learn, prepare, or cast a spell, the arcane trickster must have an Intelligence score equal to at least 10 + the spell level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against an arcane trickster's spell is 10 + the spell level + the arcane trickster's Intelligence modifier.

An arcane trickster can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. His base daily spell allotment is given on Table: Arcane trickster. In addition, he receives bonus spells per day if he has a high Intelligence score (see Table: Ability Modifiers and Bonus Spells).

An arcane trickster may know any number of spells. He must choose and prepare his spells ahead of time by getting 8 hours of sleep and spending 1 hour studying his spellbook. While studying, the arcane trickster decides which spells to prepare.

Starting Spells: An arcane trickster begins play with a spellbook containing all 0-level sorcerer/wizard spells plus three 1st-level spells of his choice. The arcane trickster also selects a number of additional 1st-level spells equal to his Intelligence modifier to add to the spellbook. At each new arcane trickster level, he gains two new spells of any spell level or levels that he can cast (based on his new arcane trickster level) for his spellbook. At any time, an arcane trickster can also add spells found in other arcane tricksters' spellbooks to his own (see Magic).


Arcane tricksters can prepare a number of cantrips, or 0-level spells, each day, as noted on Table: Arcane trickster under “Spells per Day.” These spells are cast like any other spell, but they are not expended when cast and may be used again.

Ranged Legerdemain (Su)

An arcane trickster can use Disable Device and Sleight of Hand at a range of 30 feet. Working at a distance increases the normal skill check DC by 5, and an arcane trickster cannot take 10 on this check. Any object to be manipulated must weigh 5 pounds or less. She can only use this ability if she has at least 1 rank in the skill being used and has mage hand prepared.

Trapfinding (Ex)

An arcane trickster of 2nd level or higher adds ½ her level to Perception skill checks made to locate traps and to Disable Device skill checks and use Disable Device to disarm magic traps.

Scribe Scroll

At 2nd level, an arcane trickster gains Scribe Scroll as a bonus feat.

Evasion (Ex)

At 3rd level and higher, an arcane trickster can avoid even magical and unusual attacks with great agility. If she makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save, she instead takes no damage. Evasion can be used only if the arcane trickster is wearing light armor or no armor. A helpless arcane trickster does not gain the benefit of evasion.

Sneak Attack (Ex)

At 3rd level, when an arcane trickster can catch an opponent when he is unable to defend himself effectively from her attack, she can strike a vital spot for extra damage.

The arcane trickster's attack deals extra damage anytime her target would be denied a Dexterity bonus to AC (whether the target actually has a Dexterity bonus or not), or when the arcane trickster flanks her target. This extra damage is 1d6 at 3rd level, and increases by 1d6 every two arcane trickster levels thereafter. Should the arcane trickster score a critical hit with a sneak attack, this extra damage is not multiplied. Ranged attacks can count as sneak attacks only if the target is within 30 feet.

With a weapon that deals nonlethal damage (like a sap, whip, unarmed strike, or frostbite)), an arcane trickster can make a sneak attack that deals nonlethal damage instead of lethal damage. She cannot use an attack that deals lethal damage to deal nonlethal damage in a sneak attack, not even with the usual –4 penalty.

The arcane trickster must be able to see the target well enough to pick out a vital spot and must be able to reach such a spot. An arcane trickster cannot sneak attack while striking a creature with concealment. Sneak attack from several sources stacks.

Rogue Talents

At 4th level, an arcane trickster starts to learn a number of rogue talents that aid her and confound her foes. Starting at 4th level, an arcane trickster gains one rogue talent. She gains an additional rogue talent for every 4 levels of arcane trickster. An arcane trickster cannot select an individual talent more than once. An arcane trickster can select advanced rogue talents at level 16 or higher.

Talents marked with an asterisk add effects to an arcane trickster's sneak attack. Only one of these talents can be applied to an individual attack and the decision must be made before the attack roll is made.

Trap Sense (Ex)

At 4th level, an arcane trickster gains an intuitive sense that alerts her to danger from traps, giving her a +1 bonus on Reflex saves made to avoid traps and a +1 dodge bonus to AC against attacks made by traps. These bonuses increase by one for every four arcane trickster levels. Trap sense bonuses gained from multiple classes stack.

Arcane Bond (Ex or Sp)

At 6th level, arcane tricksters form a powerful bond with an object or a creature. This bond can take one of two forms: a familiar or a bonded object. A familiar is a magical pet that enhances the arcane trickster's skills and senses and can aid him in magic, while a bonded object is an item an arcane trickster can use to cast additional spells or to serve as a magical item. Once an arcane trickster makes this choice, it is permanent and cannot be changed.

Rules for bonded items are given below, while rules for familiars are located here: Familiars. Arcane tricksters who select a bonded object begin play with one at no cost. Objects that are the subject of an arcane bond must fall into one of the following categories: amulet, ring, staff, wand, or weapon. These objects are always masterwork quality. Weapons acquired at 1st level are not made of any special material. If the object is an amulet or ring, it must be worn to have effect, while staves, wands, and weapons must be held in one hand. If the object is a ring or amulet, it occupies the ring or neck slot accordingly. If an arcane trickster attempts to cast a spell without his bonded object worn or in hand, he must make a concentration check or lose the spell. The DC for this check is equal to 20 + the spell's level.

A bonded object can be used once per day to cast any one spell that the arcane trickster has in his spellbook and is capable of casting, even if the spell is not prepared. This spell is treated like any other spell cast by the arcane trickster, including casting time, duration, and other effects dependent on the arcane trickster's level. This spell cannot be modified by metamagic feats or other abilities.

An arcane trickster can add additional magic abilities to his bonded object as if he has the required Item Creation Feats and if he meets the level prerequisites of the feat. For example, an arcane trickster with a bonded dagger must be at least 5th level to add magic abilities to the dagger (see Craft Magic Arms and Armor feat). If the bonded object is a wand, it loses its wand abilities when its last charge is consumed, but it is not destroyed and it retains all of its bonded object properties and can be used to craft a new wand. The magic properties of a bonded object, including any magic abilities added to the object, only function for the arcane trickster who owns it. If a bonded object's owner dies, or the item is replaced, the object reverts to being an ordinary masterwork item of the appropriate type.

If a bonded object is damaged, it is restored to full hit points the next time the arcane trickster prepares his spells. If the object of an arcane bond is lost or destroyed, it can be replaced after 1 week in a special ritual that costs 200 gp per arcane trickster level plus the cost of the masterwork item. This ritual takes 8 hours to complete. Items replaced in this way do not possess any of the additional enchantments of the previous bonded item. An arcane trickster can designate an existing magic item as his bonded item. This functions in the same way as replacing a lost or destroyed item except that the new magic item retains its abilities while gaining the benefits and drawbacks of becoming a bonded item.

Tricky Spells (Su)

Starting at 6th level, as a free action, an arcane trickster can cast her spells without their somatic or verbal components, as if using the Still Spell and Silent Spell feats. Spells cast using this ability do not increase in spell level or casting time. She can use this ability once per day at 6th level and one additional time per every three levels thereafter, to a maximum of 6 times per day at 18th level. The arcane trickster decides to use this ability at the time of casting.

Impromptu Sneak Attack (Ex)

Beginning at 10th level, once per day an arcane trickster can declare one melee or ranged attack she makes to be a sneak attack (the target can be no more than 30 feet distant if the impromptu sneak attack is a ranged attack). The target of an impromptu sneak attack loses any Dexterity bonus to AC, but only against that attack. The power can be used against any target, but creatures that are not subject to precision damage take no extra damage (though they still lose any Dexterity bonus to AC against the attack).

At 14th level, an arcane trickster can use this ability twice per day.

Surprise Spells

At 14th level, an arcane trickster can add her sneak attack damage to any spell that deals damage, if the targets are flat-footed. This additional damage only applies to spells that deal hit point damage, and the additional damage is of the same type as the spell. If the spell allows a saving throw to negate or halve the damage, it also negates or halves the sneak attack damage.

Advanced Talents

At 16th level, and every four levels thereafter, an arcane trickster can choose an advanced talent in place of a rogue talent.

Invisible Thief (Su)

At 18th level, an arcane trickster can become invisible, as if under the effects of greater invisibility, as a free action. She can remain invisible for a number of rounds per day equal to her arcane trickster level. Her caster level for this effect is equal to her class level. These rounds need not be consecutive.

Table: Arcane Trickster

Base Attack
Special Spells per Day
0 1 2 3 4 5 6
1st +0 +0 +2 +2 Cantrips, ranged legerdemain 3 1
2nd +1 +0 +3 +3 Scribe scroll, trapfinding 4 2
3rd +2 +1 +3 +3 Evasion, sneak attack 1d6 4 3
4th +3 +1 +4 +4 Rogue talent, trap sense 4 3 1
5th +3 +1 +4 +4 Sneak attack 2d6 4 4 2
6th +4 +2 +5 +5 Arcane bond, tricky spells 5 4 3
7th +5 +2 +5 +5 Sneak attack 3d6 5 4 3 1
8th +6/+1 +2 +6 +6 Rogue talent 5 4 4 2
9th +6/+1 +3 +6 +6 Sneak attack 4d6 5 5 4 3
10th +7/+2 +3 +7 +7 Impromnitou sneak attack 5 5 4 3 1
11th +8/+3 +3 +7 +7 Sneak attack 5d6 5 5 4 4 2
12th +9/+4 +4 +8 +8 Rogue talent 5 5 5 4 3
13th +9/+4 +4 +8 +8 Sneak attack 6d6 5 5 5 4 3 1
14th +10/+5 +4 +9 +9 Surprise spells 5 5 5 4 4 2
15th +11/+6/+1 +5 +9 +9 Sneak attack 7d6 5 5 5 5 4 3
16th +12/+7/+2 +5 +10 +10 Advanced talents, rogue talent 5 5 5 5 4 3 1
17th +12/+7/+2 +5 +10 +10 Sneak attack 8d6 5 5 5 5 4 4 2
18th +13/+8/+3 +6 +11 +11 Invisible theif 5 5 5 5 5 4 3
19th +14/+9/+4 +6 +11 +11 Sneak attack 9d6 5 5 5 5 5 5 4
20th +15/+10/+5 +6 +12 +12 Rogue talent 5 5 5 5 5 5 5

Summary of Changed Class Abilities

Compared to the rogue:

  • Will Saving Throws
  • Armor Proficiency
  • Sneak Attack
  • Evasion
  • Rogue Talents (Level 2, 6, 10, 14, 18)
  • Advanced Talents
  • Trap Sense
  • Uncanny Dodge
  • Improved Uncanny Dodge
  • Master Strike
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