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Beast Jockey O.C.C.

Optional Class


These individuals are naturals at riding animals of all kinds. It is not uncommon to see one becoming a racer of these animals while another becomes a fierce warrior that specializes in mounted combat akin to a knight or palladin. They have incredible reflexes and reaction time making them fierce opposition in either direction they choose to go. While they have an affinity for going fast and taking risks is fun and exhilarating, their top priority will always be to their mount. There may be times when risks are required, life and death being at stake, but it is only in these extreme situations that the Beast Jockey will ever put the riding beast into serious harms way (minor scrapes and bruises are more acceptable).

Beast Jockeys are born as one. It is not a training someone could undertake. They have simply always had a close connection with animals since they were young. Beast Jockeys often treat their mounts as close friends and equals. Some Beast Jockeys actually feel a closer kinship to riding animals rather than members of their own species. These men and women are commonly mistaken as Druids or some other type of class with an affinity towards animals. Those that know of such things speculate that turbo-jockeys and Beast Jockeys are only minor variations of each other that have altered to find a place for themselves in very different worlds.

Note: The Beast Jockey is the only other O.C.C. that is allowed to take the lance weapon proficiency. Typically this is a skill limited only to knights and palladins. See the descriptions under The Way of the Lance in each of the respective O.C.C.s. Equivalent of the knight ability costs one "other" skill and palladin costs two "other" skills. Not all Beast Jockeys are skilled in the use of a lance, but many do as a result of a tendency to join various types of mounted tournaments.


Beast Jockeys & Armor

Beast Jockeys typically prefer light armor as this does not weigh down the beast as much, but more importantly it allows the Beast Jockey to be closer to the mount, even if only a little. On the other hand, the Beast Jockey does favor barding for the animal even over personal armor, especially when going into a situation they know may have combat.


Special Abilities of the Beast Jockey

1. Animal Communication: The Beast Jockey is able to communicate with animals simply by talking to them. Any language can be used to speak and the animal will understand it as if it were a member of the same animal type. Similarly, when the animal responds, the Beast Jockey will hear it as if the animal were speaking in his/her native language. Only the Beast Jockey can be understood by the animal, and vice versa. It is important to note that this only allows for communication and does not enslave the animal or force it to obey. Frightened or angry animals may still attack or carry out other actions. Unlike some other classes, the Beast Jockeys get no type of kinship with the animal. This means friendship with the animal is based solely upon the skill and attitude of the Beast Jockey.

2. Beast Racing: Typically, when racing, a character must roll on the second, lower percentile for coaxing the animal to full speed and/or beyond. Due to extra skill and animal affinity though, the Beast Jockey can roll on the first, higher percentile for purposes of gaining the speed of the animal. In addition, instead of just being able to get the horse, or other animal, to go 25% above maximum speed the Beast Jockey is capable of getting just a bit of extra speed for up to 35%. However, this added push can only be maintained for 30 seconds (2 melee rounds) as opposed to the usual full duration. Due to the shorter duration, this is best only used sparingly. But, when used at key moments, can be very effective.

3. Beast Familiar: This ability is not the same as the wizard spell. Most notably, the Beast Jockey does not see and hear everything the familiar experiences. The only real connection between the Beast Jockey and the animal is a strong connection of their spirits. As a familiar, the animal will allow him/her to ride on its back, will offer protection, unwavering loyalty, and even sacrifice its life to protect its friend; not that a Beast Jockey would ever make such a request (the friendship tends to act both ways). Due to the link, the beast familiar gains the following abilities:

1. If the two are within 600 feet (183 m) the two can sense the location of one another. Once the two are beyond that range, they can not sense where the other is. However, both Beast Jockey and familiar will be able to sense if the other is in danger or hurt regardless of range. Despite knowing the other is in trouble, unless they are within range of each other they cannot sense the location, merely that there is danger.

2. The beast receives an additional 2D4+2 Hit Points. This becomes added M.D.C. if the familiar is an M.D.C. creature.

3. The familiar also gains an additional 1D4 to P.E. and 2D4 to Speed. When the familiar reaches third level there is a bonus of 1D4+2 to I.Q. due to contact with the Beast Jockey. At level 5 the familiar receives an additional 1D4 to speed.

4. While not technically a form of mind control, the link provides the familiar with a +3 to save vs. mind control of all kinds, with an additional +3 at level 6 and +1 at levels 9, 12, and 15. The beast also gets a +1 to save vs. horror factor at levels 2, 5, 8, 11, and 14 and a +1 to save vs. psychic attack at levels 1, 4, 8, and 12.

5. Combat: While the Beast Jockey may never ask a familiar to engage in combat, there are times when it is unavoidable (the animal is trying to protect its friend, someone is trying to hurt it, etc.). During these times, the animal receives an additional +2 to strike and +3 to dodge. In addition, the beast gets a +1 to initiative at levels 1, 5, 9, and 14. These combat bonuses apply only to the animal, and do not add to the rider's combat abilities even if mounted. However, if the type of animal has bonuses naturally, these new bonuses are in addition to the animal's natural talents.

6. Limit: A Beast Jockey can only have one familiar at a time. For no reason will a Beast Jockey ever replace a familiar short of death. Even if the familiar is maimed and movement is impaired, the Beast Jockey will not be able to break the link. Trying to do so would be like cutting off an arm, something no Beast Jockey would ever do (this is about friendship, not convenience!). If the familiar dies, a Beast Jockey must wait 1D4 months before a new familiar can be attempted. The new familiar is not selected by conscious choice, it simply is. This is done through sensing a strong bond to the other regardless of practicality. Note: Just because the Beast Jockey can only have one familiar does not mean that they cannot have other animal friends. A Beast Jockey can have an entire farm of animals that are his/her friends, but the familiar will always be viewed as the favorite even if one of the other animals is statistically superior.

7. Note: Any sized animal is capable of becoming a familiar, but should be large and strong enough for the Beast Jockey to ride upon. The type of animal can be determined by player, with G.M. approval, but should be limited to those available to the geography of the land. Often, the familiar will have been raised since birth by the Beast Jockey. Creatures of magic are typically unable to become a beast familiar unless the G.M. allows it.

4. Bonuses: Beast Jockeys receive an additional +1D4 to the P.P. attribute,


Beast Jockey O.C.C.

Alignment: Any, but most commonly good, unprincipled, or aberrant. The other alignments do not have as strong of loyalty to friends, and animals can sense this causing it to be more difficult for any type of beast to trust them.

Attribute Requirements: P.P and P.E. of 12 or higher. A high M.A. and M.E. are also suggested, but not required.

O.C.C. Skills:

Native Language (98%), plus two of choice (+10%)

Horsemanship: Knight

Horsemanship: Exotic (+20%)

Trick Riding

Land Navigation (+15%)

Prowl (+10%)

Tracking Animals (+15%)

Cook (+15%; professional quality)

Play Musical Instrument of choice (+20%; professional quality for soothing animals)

Wilderness Survival (+10%)

W.P. One of choice

Hand to Hand: Basic

Hand to hand: basic can be upgraded to hand to hand: expert at the cost of one O.C.C. Related Skill, or to hand to hand: martial arts at the cost of two O.C.C. Related Skills.

Horsemanship: knight can be upgraded to horsemanship: palladin for the cost of one "other" skill.

O.C.C. Related Skills: Select five other skills, plus two additional skills at levels three, seven, eleven, and fifteen. All new skills start at level one proficiency.

Communications: Any

Domestic: Any (+5%)

Espionage: Detect Ambush, Detect Concealment, and Intelligence only.

Horsemanship: Palladin only (see above for details).

Medical: First Aid and Animal Husbandry only (+10%)

Military: Camouflage (+5%) and Falconry (+15%) only.

Physical: Any

Rogue: Streetwise only (+6%)

Science: Any (+10% to Mathematics only)

Scholar/Technical: Any (+10%)

Weapon Proficiencies: Any

Wilderness: Any (+10%)

Secondary Skills: The character also gets to select five secondary skills from the previous list and one at levels four, eight, and twelve. These are additional areas of knowledge that do not get the advantage of the bonus listed in the parenthesis. All secondary skills start at the base skill level. Also, skills are limited (any, only, none) as previously indicated in the list.

Standard Equipment: Two sets of traveling clothes and work/riding clothes, two pairs of soft leather gloves, leather boots, belt, bedroll or sleeping bag, a couple blankets (more for the familiar than the individual), a high quality saddle, two saddlebags, two small sacks, a backpack, a water skin, 100 feet (30.5 m) of rope, a lantern, one week's rations for the Beast Jockey and the familiar, and a tinder box.

                Plus a riding animal/familiar of good to excellent quality, probably raised by the Beast Jockey. Stats are dependent upon the type of animal used as a familiar.

Armor: Starts with soft leather (A.R. 10, S.D.C. 20).

Weapons: Starts with a dagger or a hatchet (mainly for utilitarian purposes rather than combat) and two weapons of choice. All are basic S.D.C. weapons of good quality. Magic and other items must be acquired later.

Money: The character starts with 110 gold.


Experience Point Table: Same as the Psi-Mystic & Warlock.