Hoplite


HOPLITE



The hoplite is a heavily armored, spear-wielding soldier of the Greek City-States, renowned for his bravery and skill. Most hoplites are part of large standing armies, or occasionally part of a mercenary company. Although formidable alone, the hoplite truly comes into his own when arrayed with his brothers, shields locked, advancing on an enemy line. The hoplite also possesses a semi-mythical fighting spirit, called dynamis, which grants him precision, endurance, and above all, the will to triumph over his enemies. Some hoplites have a second career that they pursue in peacetime, such as basket weaving or brewing, only donning their armor and taking up their spear when the call to arms is sounded.

The crucial difference between the hoplite and the warrior is that the hoplite fights in groups, relying on formation tactics, while the warrior engages in single combat with other socially elevated opponents. Hoplites are most effective when fighting side by side with others of their kind; while warriors mostly fight alone. The warrior really represents a much older style of combat, in which the clash of two champions would decide the day. The hoplite sets the example for what is to come, for a historical era in which ranks of fighting men would eclipse the old heroic standard, leading ultimately to the Roman legions and their domination of much of the world.

A hoplite can rise through the ranks, acquiring prestige, renown and authority. It is not unknown for a hoplite of humble origins to sit side by side with a noble, both of them generals, discussing the plan of battle. In the siege of Megiddo led by the Pharaoh Tuthmosis, one of his generals was born to the nobility while another was of common stock, yet both were treated with equal respect.

Role:
Hoplites are invariably professional soldiers, either serving in their city-states army or acting as paid mercenaries. Hoplites, however, are rarely encountered alone, even when not part of a large military force. Most enjoy, and depend on, the company of their brothers in arms, and will rarely be found apart from their unit.

Note:
See the Hoplite Combat section for tips on playing as a hoplite and in a phalanx.





Deity: Patrons of the Hoplite.
Greek: Ares, Apollo, Athena, Nike, Zeus.

Hit Die:
d10

Skill Points at 1st Level:
(2 + Int modifier) x 4.

Skill Points at Each Additional Level:
2 + Int modifier.


Skills
The Hoplite class skills are


Weapon and Armor Proficiency
A Hoplite is proficient with all simple weapons and with all armor (heavy, light, and medium) and shields. He is proficient with one or more martial weapons, as determined by his background.


Formation Feat:
Hoplites gain a good deal of Formation Feats. These feats must be Formation Feats as listed in their title. A Hoplite must still meet all prerequisites for a bonus feat, including ability score and base attack bonus minimums. These bonus feats are in addition to the feats gained through character advancement. A Hoplite is not limited to this list of Formation feats when choosing those feats.



Teamwork Feat:
The hoplite gains another bonus feat, but it must be one that is listed as a Teamwork Feats.


Phalanx Focus:
The Hoplite must choose between the short-spear, spear, or long-spear. He gains the weapon focus feat for his chosen weapon. In addition, he gains the shield focus feat for the Hoplon shield.


Phalanx Formation:
The Hoplite gains the Phalanx Front Rank and Phalanx Rear Rank formation feats for free.



Hoplite:
When a Hoplite wields a shield, he can use any polearm or spear of his size as a one-handed weapon. Treat this ability as the Spear Combat feat.


Bravery:
The Hoplite gains a +1 bonus on Will saves against fear. This bonus increases by +1 for every four levels beyond 2nd.


Steadfast Spear:
The Hoplite gains a +1 bonus on attack rolls with readied attacks and attacks of opportunity made with a spear or polearm.


Phalanx Fighter:
The Hoplite refines his skills as a warrior of the Greek phalanx, gaining the Short Haft feat for free.



Armor Training:
Starting at 3rd level, a Hoplite learns to be more maneuverable while wearing armor. Whenever he is wearing armor, he reduces the armor check penalty by 1 (to a minimum of 0) and increases the maximum Dexterity bonus allowed by his armor by 1. In addition, a Hoplite can also move at his normal speed while wearing medium armor. At 7th level, a Hoplite can move at his normal speed while wearing heavy armor.


Spear Training:
The Hoplite gains a +1 bonus on attack and damage rolls with spears and polearms.


Stand Firm:
The Hoplite gains a +1 bonus to opposed roles against bull rush, drag, overrun, and trip attempts. This bonus also applies on saves against trample attacks. The bonus increases by +1 for every four levels beyond 2nd.



Dynamis:
The Greek word dynamis means “will to fight”, and the hoplite has this in abundance. Once per day, the hoplite may enter a state of total concentration, focusing his awareness into a single pinpoint of martial precision. While under the effects of dynamis, the hoplite gains a +2 morale bonus to attack rolls, damage rolls, saving throws, and skill checks. In addition, the hoplite is considered to have the Improved Critical feat for any melee weapon he wields, even if he does not normally qualify for the feat. Dynamis lasts for one round per hoplite level. The hoplite may use dynamis one additional time per day at 5th level.


Hoplon Bash:
The Hoplite gains the Improved Shield Bash feat when wielding a Hoplon shield.


Mighty Thrust:
When using the Power Attack feat while wielding a spear or polearm with one hand, the hoplite adds 1.5 times the number subtracted from his melee attack rolls to his damage rolls.


Officer Rank:
Note: This ability may or may not be applicable to your campaign, consult the DM.
The Hoplite is of officer rank from this level onwards. He is entitled to command a group of Hoplites on behalf of his family, city-state or ultimate overlord. The officer commands a retinue of ten 3rd level Hoplites. The Games Master shares control of these warriors as Non-Player Characters with the player. These Hoplites advance in level as the character does, gaining one experience level for every two levels gained by the player. Although these Hoplites are available to the player, they are not automatically present wherever he is. If he takes them away from their home region, they must be provided for. If the Hoplites are killed, they are not automatically replaced. The player must return to his command headquarters in order to be issued with more.



Hoplon Training:
The Hoplite gains the Shield Specialization feat for the Hoplon. If he already has this feat, he instead gains the Active Shield Defense feat.


Spear Twist:
A Hoplite has the ability to bleed a creature damaged by his polearm weapon by twisting it once it has struck an opponent during an attack. The Hoplite can use this skillful attack once per round, but no more than a number of times per day equal to the Hoplite class level. A foe struck by the Hoplite can be forced to make a Fortitude saving throw (DC10 + the number of Hoplite levels + Strength modifier), in addition to receiving normal damage. If the saving throw fails, the opponent suffers damage equal to the Hoplite’s Strength modifier for a number of rounds equal to her Hoplite levels. If the opponent passes the save DC, that use of the spear twist is wasted. The effects of spear twist do not stack, an additional spear twist on an opponent already affected by it would only reset the amount of time that the effects last for. A Hoplite can only use this attack a living creature with a discernible anatomy—undead, constructs, oozes, plants, and incorporeal creature lack blood to lose.


Skewer:
When a hoplite scores a critical hit with the spear, he forces the opponent to make a Fortitude saving throw (DC = 10 + hoplite level plus + hoplite Strength modifier) or be impaled. The hoplite can choose to leave his weapon in the body of his opponent, or, as a free action, he can attempt to rip the weapon free, which requires a DC 10 Strength check and inflicts full weapon damage plus Strength modifier on the impaled foe.



Spear Master:
The Hoplite adds 1.5x his Strength modifier to damage rolls made when attacking with a spear or polearm which he has taken weapon focus for.


Glorious Advance:
The Hoplite gains a bonus on bull rush and overrun checks of +4 when wielding a Hoplon shield.


Sweeping Strike:
The Hoplite may choose any square adjacent to him and treat that square as his location for determining who he is flanking, even if that square is occupied by a creature, object, or solid barrier.



Flexible Flanker:
The Hoplite may choose any square adjacent to him and treat that square as his location for determining who he is flanking, even if that square is occupied by a creature, object, or solid barrier.


General Rank:
Note: This ability may or may not be applicable to your campaign, consult the DM.
The Hoplite is entitled to command an army in service to his city-state or overlord. The size of the army is left to the Games Master to determine, dependent upon the campaign background. As a rule of thumb, assume that the player can call upon five hundred 1st level Hoplites in the course of his duties.


Step Aside:
When a creature threatened by a Hoplite takes a 5-foot step into a square adjacent to him, he can take a 5-foot step as an immediate action. This 5-foot step must be subtracted from his movement on the next turn. He also gains a +2 dodge bonus to his Active Defense against that opponent until the end of his next turn.



Spear Parry:
When an opponent threatened by a Hoplite makes a melee attack against an ally, he may take an immediate action to grant his ally a +2 shield bonus to Active Defense and DR 5/— against that attack. He may use this ability to protect himself, but only if the attacking creature is not adjacent to him.


Fearless Resolve:
The Hoplite is immune to all fear effects as long as he is part of a formation or currently using a teamwork feat with an ally as determined by the feat.


Armor Mastery:
The Hoplite gains Damage Reduction 5/— whenever he is wearing armor AND using the Hoplon shield.


Weapon Mastery:
The Hoplite chooses one weapon, such as the Kopis, Shortspear, or Xiphos. Any attacks made with that weapon automatically confirm all critical threats and have their damage multiplier increased by 1 (×2 becomes ×3, for example). In addition, he cannot be disarmed while wielding a weapon of this type.


Shield Fortress:
The Hoplite’s shield cannot be disarmed or sundered. He gains evasion (as a rogue) when using a shield (improved evasion when using a Hoplon). As a move action, a Hoplite can provide evasion to all adjacent allies until the beginning of his next turn. As an immediate action, he can provide improved evasion to an adjacent ally against one attack.










Hoplite

Age of Heroes WolfLord