Urban Savant

(CityScape variant, p. 100)

An urban savant is a scholar at heart, with a voracious appetite for information.


Skills: 8 ranks in any one, and 2 ranks in each of the other two: Knowledge (dungeoneering) (2 or) 8 ranks , Knowledge (local) (8 or) 2 ranks , and Knowledge (nature) (8 or) 2 ranks

Feats: Favored (League of Eyes or a similar organization)

Special: Bardic knowledge class ability (at DM's discretion, can be replaced by Knowledge (History 2 ranks).
Special: Must be a member in good standing of the League of Eyes or similar organizaion

Hit die


Skill points

6 + Int

Class Features

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: You gain no proficiency with any weapons or armor. You can cast arcane spells while wearing light armor without incurring the normal chance of spell failure, provided you are proficient with light armor. However, like any other arcane spellcaster, an urban savant wearing medium or heavy armor or using a shield incurs the normal chance of arcane spell failure if the spell in question has a somatic component.

Spellcasting: At each level, you gain new spells per day (and spells known, if applicable) and an increase in caster level as if you had also gained a level in an arcane spellcasting class to which you belonged before adding the prestige class level. You do not, however, gain any other benefi t a member of that class would have gained. If you had more than one arcane spellcasting class before becoming an urban savant, you must decide to which class you will add each level for the purpose of determining spells per day, caster level, and spells known. If you had no levels in an arcane spellcasting class before acquiring the prestige class level, this class feature confers no advantage.

Urban Savvy: An urban savant is an expert on the local community. If something has been around for a while, you've likely either heard stories about it or had direct contact with it. You can draw upon this extensive familiarity to gain certain benefits against the following types of creatures: aberrations, animals, humanoids, monstrous humanoids, oozes, and vermin (all of which are commonly found within the urban environment). The DM can modify this list as needed, replacing any creature type here with any other type appropriate to the campaign, or adding new ones. The benefits conferred are detailed in the descriptions below. As you grow in experience, you unearth new uses for your growing urban knowledge.

Using this ability requires you to succeed on an appropriate DC 15 Knowledge check (see the Knowledge skill, PHB 78), made as a move action. To draw upon this knowledge, you must be within 60 feet of a target and must be aware of its presence, though you need not have line of sight. You cannot take 10 or take 20 on this check, and it cannot be retried. Each successful check might affect a single target or all creatures of the same sort, depending on the circumstances. Your allies can benefit from your knowledge as well, provided you can communicate with them at the time you are using this ability. Each of the four varieties of urban knowledge can be invoked only once against any given target or group of like creatures.

Strengths: An urban savant first studies the power of the beings who have had an impact on the city in the past. With a successful Knowledge check, you learn the general combat capabilities of your target. Against humanoids, this check confers knowledge of the target base attack bonus, Armor Class, and combat-related feats. (The DM is the final arbiter on what constitutes a combat related feat; the list of fighter bonus feats is recommended as a starting point.) Against nonhumanoids, this check confers knowledge of all the above information plus any special attacks or options, which the DM should describe in brief. Note that the urban savant's player benefits from this knowledge as related, but obviously the character cannot relate the data to her allies verbatim. The player must roleplay any information he wishes his character to impart in the game.

Weaknesses: At 4th level, you can draw upon your urban knowledge to learn a foe's weakness in combat. Against humanoids, a successful Knowledge check reveals the target's Hit Dice, damage reduction (including the means to overcome it, if any), and saving throws. Against nonhumanoids, it imparts all of the above information plus any special weaknesses the foe might have. Again, the player must roleplay any information he wishes his character to impart within the game.

Methods: When you reach 7th level, your knowledge of your foes' methods helps direct your attacks more effectively. With a successful Knowledge check, you grant yourself and your allies a +1d6 bonus on weapon damage rolls against the target for 1 minute. If you succeed on the check by 10 or more, this bonus increases to +2d6. If you succeed by 20 or more, this bonus increases to +3d6.

True Nature: The culmination of an urban savant's studies is the ability to grasp the true nature of a target creature. When you attain 10th level, a successful Knowledge check grants you and all allies within 60 feet a mystic barrier that acts in all respects (including duration) as a protection from chaos/evil/good/law spell, granting a +2 deflection bonus to AC and a +2 resistance bonus on saves against its abilities. This protection functions regardless of the creature's true alignment (even if neutral), but its effects do not stack with any actual protection or magic circle spells in effect. Your caster level for the purpose of this ability is equal to your urban savant level. If you succeed on the check by 10 or more, the bonuses to AC and saves increase to +3. If you succeed by 20 or more, the bonuses increase to +4.

Urban Empathy (Ex): You can use your knowledge to improve the attitude of creatures you encounter in urban environments. This ability applies only to animals, humanoids, and monstrous humanoids (oozes and vermin being typically mindless). At the DM's discretion, this ability could work on certain aberrations as well, though most are too violent and unpredictable for such tactics.

You can choose to substitute the appropriate Knowledge check (local for humanoids or nature for animals and monstrous humanoids) in place of a Diplomacy check to influence the starting attitudes of those you encounter in cities. If the DM opts to allow use of this ability on aberrations, the substitution would be a Knowledge (dungeoneering) check. If you prefer, you can make the usual Diplomacy checks for humanoids and monstrous humanoids instead. Against animals, this ability functions like a druid's wild empathy class feature (PH 35), adding your urban savant level to the check, or you can attempt a Knowledge (nature) check if that is likely to produce a better result.

Continuing Education (Ex): At 3rd level, you gain a +1 insight bonus on Knowledge (dungeoneering), Knowledge (local), and Knowledge (nature) checks. You gain a similar bonus on all bardic knowledge checks. This bonus increases to +2 at 6th level and +3 at 9th level.

Eyes of the City (Ex): By the time you reach 5th level, your vision has surpassed that of ther city dwelling humans. You gain low-light vision, allowing you to see twice as far and as clearly as a human in starlight, moonlight, torchlight, and similarly shadowy conditions. If you already have low-light vision, your existing ability improves, allowing you to see three times as far as a normal human in conditions of shadowy illumination.

Pierce Deception: Upon reaching 8th level, you know intuitively how the city is supposed to look. While in an urban environment, you can try to see through the deception of any object or creature that might be disguising its true appearance. Make a DC 20 Knowledge (arcana) check. If the check succeeds, you know whether or not the target's true appearance has been clouded, but not by what means, nor what its true appearance might be. If the check succeeds by 10 or more, you know by what means the target's appearance has been altered (through use of the Disguise skill, magic, a natural shapechanging ability, or the like). If the deception is magical, you can attempt a Spellcraft check (DC 20 + spell level) to determine the spell used.


Level BAB Fort Ref Will Special Spellcasting
1st +0 +0 +2 +2 Urban savvy (strengths) +1 level of existing arcane spellcasting class
2nd +1 +0 +3 +3 Urban empathy +1 level of existing arcane spellcasting class
3rd +1 +1 +3 +3 Continuing education +1 +1 level of existing arcane spellcasting class
4th +2 +1 +4 +4 Urban savvy (weaknesses) +1 level of existing arcane spellcasting class
5th +2 +1 +4 +4 Eyes of the city (low-light vision) +1 level of existing arcane spellcasting class
6th +3 +2 +5 +5 Continuing education +2 +1 level of existing arcane spellcasting class
7th +3 +2 +5 +5 Urban savvy (methods) +1 level of existing arcane spellcasting class
8th +4 +2 +6 +6 Eyes of the city (pierce deception) +1 level of existing arcane spellcasting class
9th +4 +3 +6 +6 Continuing education +3 +1 level of existing arcane spellcasting class
10th +5 +3 +7 +7 Urban savvy (true nature)

Class skills

Skill name Key ability Trained only Armor check penalty
Balance DEX no yes
Bluff CHA no no
Climb STR no yes
Concentration CON no no
Decipher Script INT yes no
Diplomacy CHA no no
Gather Information CHA no no
Hide DEX no yes
Knowledge (arcana) INT yes no
Knowledge (architecture and engineering) INT yes no
Knowledge (dungeoneering) INT yes no
Knowledge (geography) INT yes no
Knowledge (history) INT yes no
Knowledge (local) INT yes no
Knowledge (nature) INT yes no
Knowledge (nobility and royalty) INT yes no
Knowledge (psionics) INT yes no
Knowledge (religion) INT yes no
Knowledge (the planes) INT yes no
Listen WIS no no
Move Silently DEX no yes
Profession WIS yes no
Search INT no no
Sense Motive WIS no no
Speak Language None yes no
Spellcraft INT yes no
Spot WIS no no
Tumble DEX yes yes
Use Magic Device CHA yes no

Spells for Urban Savant