It’s Werewolf Week here at Necromancers of the Northwest, and while the rest of this week will be all about expanding on and supporting the mechanics and concepts introduced in Marchen der Daemonwulf and Marchen der Daemonwulf II, today is going to be a little different, because today I’m going to focus on giving you everything that you need to play a werewolf character…even if you’ve never picked up either book.
The core of Marchen der Daemonwulf and its sequel is simple: there are over 50 werewolf-related feats in each book, each of which ties into a specific power or ability that werewolves in media and myth possess. Pick the ones you want, ignore the rest. The following handful of feats include the most important werewolf feat (Curse of the Beast), as well as a few others that I think are particularly important to have. Working with just these, you can make a fairly passable werewolf character, but if you really want to capitalize on being a lycanthrope, you can find dozens more feats like these in the books from which they were culled.
And for those of you who already have the books, and are disappointed that there’s nothing new here for you: fear not. Next week’s Extraordinary Feats will feature several brand new werewolf-themed feats just for you.
Curse of the Beast (Werewolf)
Benefit: You can transform into a wolf through a variety of ways. While transformed, your racial bonuses to Dexterity and Constitution (if any) increase by +2, as does your natural armor bonus. The transformation also grants you low-light vision and the scent special quality, a +4 bonus to CMD versus trip attacks, and increases your base movement speed to 50 feet (or increases it by 10 feet, if your movement speed is already 50 feet or greater). Further, the transformation grants you a bite attack as a primary natural attack. This attack deals 1d6 points of piercing and slashing damage. Unlike most natural attacks, you apply only your Strength bonus, not 1.5 times your Strength bonus, to damage rolls made with this bite.
This is a polymorph effect. Unlike other polymorph effects, your gear does not meld into your body with this transformation, but instead falls to the ground around you. While transformed, for the purposes of spells or effects that affect creatures of different types differently (such as charm person, or banishment), you are treated as amagical beast instead of your normal creature type. If you are an undead creature, you are instead treated as a magical beast in addition to being treated as undead. Your type does not actually change, and neither do your subtypes (if any).
There are three ways in which you can transform into a wolf using this feat. Each method is outlined below:
Willing Transformation: You can willingly choose to transform into a wolf as a move action. You can use this ability a number of times per day equal to 1/4your character level (minimum one). When you willingly transform, you remain lucid and self-aware throughout the transformation, and can act normally. When you transform in this way, the transformation lasts up to one minute per two character levels you possess (to a maximum of 10 minutes at 20th level). You cannot perform a willing transformation while exhausted or fatigued.
Battle Transformation: Whenever you are reduced to less than 1/2 your maximum hit points, you automatically transform into a wolf as a free action. You have no control over this transformation, and cannot prevent it (unless you have the Resist Transformation feat, or are prevented from changing shape by a spell or magic item). When you transform in this fashion, you are overcome by a powerful bloodthirst, and are not fully in control of your actions. Each round, you must attack at least one creature if able, and if no creatures are within your reach, you immediately begin searching for targets, moving towards them as fast as you are able and attacking them as soon as you reach them.
Once per minute, including the round you initially transform, you may make a Will save (DC 20) to become lucid, in which case you control your actions as normal, instead. You may also make a new Will save to become lucid each time you attack an ally (a successful save prevents the attack). Finally, each creature you kill while transformed grants you a cumulative +2 bonus on Will saves to become lucid. These bonuses last until you successfully become lucid. This transformation lasts indefinitely as long as you remain bloodthirsty, but once you become lucid, the transformation lasts up to one minute before ending.
Nighttime Transformation: Every night, you automatically transform at sunset. This transformation takes a full minute, during which you are staggered. As this transformation takes place, you may make a Will save (DC 20) to become lucid, in which case you control your actions as normal. Otherwise, your predatory instincts take over, and you rush out into the night, traveling 1d6 miles and then hunting for a sentient creature to slay. If you fail to become lucid, you have no control over your actions during this time, and do not remember them after the transformation is over. See Sidebar: Handling Nighttime Transformations for more information on these excursions. If you are already transformed when sunset occurs, you remain in wolf form but must still makethe Will save to stay (or become) lucid. Whether you become lucid or not, your nighttime activities do not prevent you from gaining the full benefits of a night’s rest.
This transformation lasts until sunrise, though if you successfully become lucid you can end it at any time as a full-round action. Once your transformation ends, you are exhausted for one minute, after which you are fatigued for 10 minutes.
Special: If you are afflicted by the curse of 1ycanthropy, you may choose to retrain a feat you possess and take this feat, instead. If you do so, you no longer suffer from the curse of lycanthropy. The Curse of the Beast feat cannot be retrained without aid of spells such as remove curse or heal, regardless of how it was gained. Finally, if you have the curse of lycanthropy, you count as having this feat for the purpose of anything that lists it as a prerequisite.
Special: For the purposes of prerequisites for feats or prestige classes, you count as possessing all the attacks and special abilities which you possess while transformed (such as a bite attack, the scent special quality, and so on). If you only possess such abilities while transformed, you only gain the benefits of feats or prestige classes which have those abilities as a prerequisite while you are transformed, however.
Cursed Bite (Werewolf)
Prerequisite: Curse of the Beast.
Benefit: While transformed with the Curse of the Beast feat, your bite attack can transmit the curse of lycanthropy. Whenever you damage a humanoid creature with your bite attack, he must succeed on a Fortitude save (DC 15) or contract the curse of lycanthropy (see the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook for more information on the curse of lycanthropy). If the target is more than one size category larger or smaller than you, this ability has no effect.
Special: Natural lycanthropes count as having this feat for the purposes of feats or prestige classes which list this feat as a prerequisite.
Special: If you have the Greatwulf Form, Hybrid Form or Master Greatwulf Form feats, this also affects your bite attack when in those forms.
Extended Transformation (Werewolf)
Prerequisite: Curse of the Beast.
Benefit: When you make a willing transformation with the Curse of the Beast feat, the transformation lasts up to one minute per character level you possess.
Normal: When you make a willing transformation with the Curse of the Beast feat, the transformation lasts up to one minute per two character levels you possess (to a maximum of 10 minutes at 20th level).
Greatwulf Form (Werewolf)
Prerequisites: Curse of the Beast, character level 6th.
Benefit: When you transform with the Curse of the Beast feat, you may choose to adopt a greatwulf form—the form of a huge and primal wolf—instead of the form you normally transform to. You make this choice each time you transform, even if the transformation is involuntary.
In addition to all the normal benefits and drawbacks of the normal transformation (as described under Curse of the Beast), while in greatwulf form, you gain a variety of benefits, and grow to Large size. These benefits, including the benefits from increasing in size, are as follows: you gain a +4 bonus to Strength and Constitution, your natural armor bonus increases by +6, your base land speed increases to 50 feet, and you gain a +1 size bonus to CMB and CMD. Your size does impose some penalties however, and you suffer a -1 size penalty to attack rolls and AC, a -2 size penalty to Fly skill checks, and a -4 size penalty to Stealth skill checks while in greatwulf form. Your bite attack in greatwulf form deals 1d8 points of damage instead of the normal 1d6. As a Large creature, you take up a 10-foot square, rather than a 5-foot one.
Hybrid Form (Werewolf)
Prerequisites: Curse of the Beast, character level 6th.
Benefit: When you transform with the Curse of the Beast feat, you may choose to adopt a hybrid form—a monstrous beast that is a cross between a human and a wolf—instead of the form you normally transform to. You make this choice each time you transform, even if the transformation is involuntary.
When you transform into hybrid form, you do not gain the normal benefits of transforming with the Curse of the Beast feat. Instead, you gain the following benefits: your racial bonuses to Strength and Constitution increase by +2, you gain the low-light vision and scent special qualities, and you gain a primary bite natural attack and two primary claw natural attacks. All three of these attacks deal 1d6 points of slashing damage (the bite attack deals piercing and slashing) on a successful hit, and apply your Strength modifier as a bonus to damage rolls. Because your claws are clumsy and ill-equipped to wield weapons while in this form, you suffer a -2 penalty to attack rolls made with manufactured weapons. If you do wield a manufactured weapon, any natural attacks you make are treated as secondary attacks, instead.
This is a polymorph effect. Unlike other polymorph effects, your gear does not meld into your body with this transformation, but instead remains equipped and functions normally. While transformed, for the purposes of spells or effects that affect creatures of different types differently (such as charm person, or banishment), you are treated as amonstrous humanoid instead of your normal creature type. If you are an undead creature, you are instead treated as a monstrous humanoid in addition to being treated as undead. Your type does not actually change, and neither do your subtypes (if any).
Improved Scent (Monster)
Prerequisite: Scent special quality.
Benefit: Your scent ability functions at twice the normal range (including the ranges for upwind, downwind, and pinpointing a scent’s location). Further, you gain an additional +4 bonus to Survival skill checks made to track a creature using scent.
Additionally, as long as you can smell a creature, you may make a Knowledge skill check of the appropriate type (arcana for dragons, planes for outsiders, religion for undead, etc.) to identify the creature, even if you are not trained in the skill. You gain a +5 bonus on such checks.
Finally, your sense of smell allows you to recognize individuals whose scent you are familiar with, which may foil disguises that do not include a scent component (if the disguise does include a scent component, you make a Perception check opposed by the target’s Disguise check, as normal). Additionally, you gain a +4 bonus on Will saves made to disbelieve illusions that do not possess a scent component.
Lycanthropic Toughness (Werewolf)
Prerequisites: Curse of the Beast, character level 7th.
Benefit: You gain damage reduction 2/silver while you are transformed with the Curse of the Beast feat.
Special: You may take this feat multiple times. Each time you take it, increase the damage reduction the feat grants by 1 (for example, a character who took the feat twice would have DR 3/silver, while a character who took the feat five times would have DR 6/silver).
Resist Transformation (Werewolf)
Prerequisite: Curse of the Beast.
Benefit: When you would make a battle transformation or a nighttime transformation with the Curse of the Beast feat, you may make a Will saving throw (DC 20) to resist the transformation. If you succeed, the transformation is completely negated. Even if you fail the saving throw, you may still make a separate Will saving throw to remain lucid, as normal.
Normal: You cannot resist a battle transformation or a nighttime transformation. You can only attempt to remain lucid after the transformation occurs.