The Ascendant

Each person at one time or another must come to the realization that they have physical limitations; that they can only run so fast or grow so strong.  They will only ever be the best swordsman or the sneakiest thief;  measured against others who strive for the same titles and accolades.  Many of the less physically inclined have learned to push their mental faculties beyond those of the average person and can manipulate magic, bending and weaving it to their will.  Their incantations fill friends’ hearts with wonder and strikes fear into the hearts of enemies.  Some people choose to follow a series of learned rituals and prayers to gain the favour and blessing of higher powers; remaining devoted to another’s cause, quoting “faith in the unknown” as their reasoning.

Those who regard these pursuits as ‘narrow-minded’ are Ascendants.

Ascendants are extremely rare.  They are individuals who have achieved a high level of being both physically and mentally, finding a balance where everything is in concert, and their abilities reach well beyond the confines of their mortal bodies.  Ascendants maintain that there is absolutely no limit to the evolution of self that can be achieved by each and every individual.

They can often fall in with a band of adventurers or lend their services to a monastery or school, but will only do the latter if they feel there is something to learn from the experience.  They are often loners; wandering in search of clues to further unlock their hidden potential.

They push the limitations of their body and mind so far, that they have bare those in search of personal perfection and They are more common in ; so few are willing to devote themselves so wholly to the continued improvement of self that there is no community or organization of Ascendants.  They are regarded as aloof and uncaring idealists, whose fathomless optimism and faith in each person is too obvious a fault or flaw than a redeeming quality.

Ascendants are beings that seem dissociated and careless other-worldly and distant in their pursuit of perfection.  After emerging from their mortal cocoons as beings of greater power, The Ascendant quickly realizes the scale and scope of the true path to Ascension.  Undaunted and invigorated, their pursuit carries them further within themselves to discover more of their true potential and allows them to cast aside more of their mortal limitations.

It takes a unique perspective on personal growth to adopt the mentality and perseverance that is required to be an Ascendant.  Monks and Psions are more familiar with legends of such mortals, as their studies parallel closely with the spirit of ascension.  Clerics and Druids sometimes adopt the role of Ascendant though more rarely; the commitment to one’s self can interfere and come in conflict with devotion to powers already established.  Warrior-types and arcane casters have significant difficulty even understanding the goal of Ascendants.  It’s not power or wealth, but a ‘trueness’ and ‘immaculate being’ that their studies don’t begin to touch upon.

Ascendants are extremely rare, and even less so wandering the Prime Material Plane.  Because of their other-worldly nature, Ascendants have only been encountered on other planes, often unraveling the riddles that will further unlock the mysteries of self.  However, because of their ongoing evolution of self Ascendants can assume the role of teacher and tutor; if only to show by example what they feel all creatures are capable of becoming.

Hit Die:  d6


To qualify to become an Ascendant, a character must fulfill all the following criteria.

  • Skills: Knowledge (psionics) 23 ranks or Knowledge (religion) 23 ranks, Concentration 15 ranks.
  • Feats:  Iron Will, Inner Strength or Extra Slot (any).
  • Spells:  Ability to cast at least one 6th level divine spell or one 6th level psion power.
  • Alignment: Any Lawful
  • Special: Must have attained Perfect Self (as Monk) or Transcendence (as Divine Disciple) or similar change from normal character status. (subject to DM approval).

Class Skills:
The Ascendant’s class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Autohypnosis (wis), Concentration (con), Diplomacy (cha), Gather Information (cha), Jump (str), Knowledge (all skills taken individually) (int), Sense Motive (wis), Speak Language, Spellcraft (int), Stabilize Self (con), Tumble (dex).

Skill Points at Each Level:  4 + Int modifier

Class Features:
The following are class features of the Ascendant prestige class.

Monk Attack & Defense:  Add levels of Ascendant to any existing monk or Pathwalker levels to determine unarmed attack rate, unarmed damage, ki strike ability and AC bonuses.  Note these do not increase past 20th level.  (see table 3-10: The Monk, PHB pg.38).

Psionic Powers / Spellcasting:  The Ascendant continues to hone the powers of her mind and spirit as she goes up in level.  For every Ascendant level, she gains an effective manifester level in whatever psionic class she belonged to previously or a level in whatever divine spellcasting class she previously belonged to. She does not gain any other class benefits (bonus feats, turning undead, psionic combat modes, improved psicristal abilities, etc.)  Simply put, add her Ascendant levels to her previous psionic or divine spellcasting class levels to determine total PSPs and powers discovered or spells per day.  If she belonged to two psionic or divine spellcasting classes, she must decide which level goes up between the two.  This ability continues until the Ascendant has reached 20th level manifesting or spellcasting equivalent.  At levels past 20, this ability only increases caster/manifester level.

Bonus Feats:  The Ascendant gains a bonus feat at 4th level and every 4 levels afterwards from the following list:  Blinding Speed, Damage Reduction, Energy Resistance, Epic Endurance, Epic Fortitude, Epic Reflexes, Epic Spellcasting, Epic Speed, Epic, Will, Exceptional Deflection, Extended Life Span, Extra Domain, Fast Healing, Improved Manifestation, Improved Ki Strike, Improved Spell Capacity, Improved Stunning Fist, Infinite Deflection, Keen Strike, Legendary Leaper, Penetrate Damage Reduction, Perfect Health, Self Concealment, Shattering Strike, Spontaneous Domain Access, Vorpal Strike.

The Ascendant

Diamond Soul (su.): The Ascendant gains spell resistance equal to 20+class levels.  Note: For this purpose, class levels includes Pathwalker levels and levels in any class that eventually grants the diamond soul ability.

Healing Touch (su.): The Ascendant gains the ability to impart some of her knowledge of perfection to others by repairing their physical bodies.  She can heal by touch a number of hit points equal to 3x class levels. Note: For this purpose, class levels includes Pathwalker levels and levels in any class that eventually grants the wholeness of body ability.

Timeless Body (su.): The Ascendant finally realizes that muscle strength pales before inner strength.  She no longer suffers ability penalties for aging and cannot be magically aged.  She still receives bonuses from aging and will still die at the end of her normal lifespan.

Empty Body (Su.): As the monk ability, stacking with any previously gained ability.

Energy Resistance:  The Ascendant’s resistance to all energy types increases by 5.  This stacks with any previously gained ability as well as the Energy Resistance feat.  It increases by 5 for every five levels.

Mind Blank (sp.): As the sorcerer spell with caster level equal to character level.  Increases in usage once per five levels.

Ordered Body (ex.): The Ascendant’s discipline infuses her with an inner resilience to everything but the most antithetical to her.  She gains damage reduction 10/anarchic.

Mettle (ex.): Any time the Ascendant is subjected to a spell that offers a saving throw of Will or Fortitude partial or half, she suffers no effect upon a successful save.

Self Sustenance (Ex.): The Ascendant now realizes that all things are one.  She no longer needs to eat, sleep or breathe.  She is immune to sleep-type effects, starvation and dehydration.

Blindsight (ex.): The Ascendant’s hyper senses and attunement allow her to detect creatures without sight up to 30 feet away.  This ability increases by 10 feet per five levels.

Level Special Manifester/Spellcasting Level
1 Diamond Soul +1 Manifester/Spellcasting Level
2 Healing Touch 1/day +1 Manifester/Spellcasting Level
3 Timeless Body, Empty Body +1 Manifester/Spellcasting Level
4 Energy Resistance +5, Bonus Feat +1 Manifester/Spellcasting Level
5 Mind Blank 1/day, Ordered Self +1 Manifester/Spellcasting Level
6 Mettle, Self Sustenance +1 Manifester/Spellcasting Level
7 Blindsight 30’ +1 Manifester/Spellcasting Level
8 Bonus Feat +1 Manifester/Spellcasting Level
9 Energy Resistance +5 +1 Manifester/Spellcasting Level
10 Mind Blank 2/day +1 Manifester/Spellcasting Level
Author: Turnerbuds

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