March 9, 2009
Word of Wizards - Excerpts: Sky Hunter
Player's Handbook 2 Excerpts: Sky Hunter
It's a bird, it's a plane........it's the Sky Hunter!
Sorry, I couldn't help it when I first read this. The Sky Hunter is druid paragon path that also requires the wild shape power to take the form of various birds of prey.
When a Sky Hunter spends an action point to gain an extra action, they can fly at their speed before that action with Sky Hunter Action (11th level path feature).
A Sky Hunter is a Master of Wings (11th level path feature) and knows the weakness of flying creatures. Therefore they gain a +2 bonus attack against flying creatures.
Sky Hunters also have enhanced Beast Senses (16th level path feature) which grants them a +5 power bonus to Perception checks until the end of the encounter when they use a beast form daily power.
A common tactic used by Sky Hunters in beast form is they transform into an eagle and swoop down on an opponent with Blinding Talons (Level 11, Encounter). While in beast form, the Sky Hunter can transform into an eagle of their size and can fly twice their speed. At any point of the movement, they can attack one target that deals 1d10+Wis mod and blinds the target until the end of the Hunter's next turn. They do not provoke an opportunity attack from the target when the Hunter moves away and returns back to his beast form at the end of the attack.
Sky Hunters can also transform into a tiny Soaring Falcon (Level 12, Daily) with their wild shape power. When in this form, they gain a fly speed equal to their speed, +4 AC against opportunity attacks and +5 bonus to Perception checks but cannot attack, pick up or manipulate objects. The Sky Hunter can interchange between this form, their beast form or their humanoid form until the end of the encounter.
The most powerful of Sky Hunters can transform into a Primal Eagle (Level 20, Daily) from their beast form. When first assumed, the Primal Eagle flies at its current speed and deals 4d6+Wis mod thunder damage to enemies within a 5 burst and slows them then the Hunter returns to their beast form. Until the end of the encounter, the Hunter can switch to this eagle form and fly at their speed as a move action but must return to their beast form at the end of the movement.
Overall I like this idea but the powers and mechanics didn't really bring out the flavor of this paragon path. I'll admit that giving any character wings is potentially game-breaking but interchangeably switching between beast and bird forms really kills the expectation that you get from a name like Sky Hunter.