Hello everyone and welcome to another exciting edition of Extraordinary Feats. As I mentioned in yesterday’s article, we’re celebrating the release of our newest book, A Necromancer’s Grimoire: The Book of Martial Action, a fantastic title filled with all sorts of awesome feats and class features ready to revolutionize how fighters go about fighting. How does it go about doing that? I’m glad you asked.
The Book of Martial Action introduces a new resource: martial action points. Characters have martial action points in a martial action pool, which works a lot like hit points, in that you can only have so many at any given time, and the number of martial action points you have at a given moment varies, though in this case it’s because you’re spending and regaining points, instead of being hit and getting healed. Characters can gain access to martial action pools in a variety of ways, but the easiest one is with the Combat Artist feat.
Combat Artist (Combat, Technique)
You seek to master every facet of combat, striving to achieve martial perfection.
Benefit: You gain a martial action pool which has a number of martial action points equal to 4 + your base attack bonus. You can use these martial action points in order to perform a number of special actions during combat. The action required to perform a given special action is described in the feat or class feature which gives you access to that particular martial technique. You may never spend more martial action points in a single round than your total base attack bonus, even if you have enough points to do so. You regain any spent martial action points by spending 1 minute meditating and regaining your focus. During this time you cannot perform any strenuous activity. For more information on martial action points and martial action pools, see Martial Techniques, at the beginning of this book.
Additionally this feat grants you access to the focus strike martial technique. As a swift action, you can spend 1 martial action point. If you do, you gain a +1 competence bonus on all weapon damage rolls until the beginning of your next turn.
Obviously, though, martial action points aren’t that much good without something to do with them (which is why even Combat Artist comes with an outlet for martial action points). As much fun as gaining a bonus on damage rolls is, the book contains over 50 feats, which, with a few minor exceptions, are all about providing new and exciting ways to spend those martial action points. The goal here is to give fighters more meaningful choices than whether or not to charge as part of their full attack, so characters who bother to take more than a couple of technique feats will have access to a dizzying array of different combat options each round, limited only by how many points they have to spend. But, rather than tell you about it, why don’t I show you some of these feats?
Blade Grasp (Combat, Technique)
With lightning speed, you can intercept incoming melee attacks with your bare hands, avoiding bodily harm.
Prerequisites: Martial action pool, base attack bonus +4.
Benefit: You gain access to the blade grasp martial technique. As a swift action, you may spend 4 martial action points. If you do, then the first melee attack made against you before the beginning of your next turn automatically misses you. Any subsequent melee attacks made against you are unaffected.
Bulldoze (Combat, Technique)
You can knock your opponent back with great force and drive him to the ground.
Prerequisites: Marital action pool, base attack bonus +1.
Benefit: You gain access to the bulldoze martial technique. Whenever you use the bull rush combat maneuver, you may spend any number of martial action points as a free action (up to a maximum amount equal to your base attack bonus). If you do, you gain a bonus on the combat maneuver check equal to the number of points you spend this way. Additionally, if the check is successful, the target is knocked prone at the end of the bull rush.
Double Blow (Combat, Technique)
You strike with a tornado’s speed, delivering two precise attacks in the same time an ordinary warrior could levy one.
Prerequisites: Martial action pool, base attack bonus +6.
Benefit: You gain access to the double blow martial technique. As a full-round action, you may spend 6 martial action points. If you do, you may immediately make two melee attacks at your highest base attack bonus. These two attacks can be against the same target, or against different targets. You do not need to declare the target of the second attack until after you know the result of the first attack.
You may have noticed that many of these require a certain base attack bonus as part of their prerequisites. Not only does this mean that you’re always gaining access to new and more powerful martial techniques as you level up, it also means that while fighters, rangers, barbarians, and other full-base-attack-bonus classes will gain the most benefit out of this book, other classes definitely have the option to dip into martial techniques and take a few that appeal to them (and there are definitely some feats in this book designed with non-fighters in mind, especially rogues, who are also among the seven classes that get expansive archetypes in the book). But enough about that, you want more martial action feats, don’t you? And, what’s that, you want higher-level ones this time? Well, who am I to argue?
Hurricane Strike (Combat, Technique)
In the space of a breath, you can strike with speed and violence of gale force winds.
Prerequisites: Any three technique feats, base attack bonus +11.
Benefit: You gain access to the hurricane strike martial technique. As a swift action, you may spend 5 martial action points. If you do, you may make a single melee attack at your highest base attack bonus. You may not use the attack, charge, or full attack actions in the same round that you use the hurricane strike martial technique, but you may use other martial techniques to make attacks.
Demon’s Fury (Combat, Technique)
Through careful focus, you can attack at impossible speed with all the fury of a demon.
Prerequisites: Any six technique feats, base attack bonus +20.
Benefit: You gain access to the demon’s fury martial technique. As a free action, you may spend 20 martial action points. If you do, you may make an additional full attack action this round (for example, you could move, make a single attack, and then make a full attack action, or you could make two full attack actions, etc.).
Okay, there’s your teaser. Want more (who am I kidding? Of course you do!)? You’ll have to pick up A Necromancer’s Grimoire: The Book of Martial Action, available now for only $4.99 (or $7.49 in print!).