Thursday, November 27, 2014


In  honor of the release of Chris Kutalik's Slumbering Ursine Dunes project, and inspired by his War Bears - meet their sneakier, stabbier colleagues...

More than one usurper noble, crooked merchantman, or criminal lord has been caught unawares upon finding a Ninja-Bear padding within their quarters, their guards nowhere to be found. The image of the boisterous, and occasionally bumbling, War-Bear does not correlate to such stealthy actions.

As such, many a final thought/word has been, "Where did that bear come fr...."
although he'd prefer fresh ground
To add insult to injury, they have a tendency to infiltrate and/or escape through palace or manor kitchens, walking off with delicacies and any whole-bean coffee.

Requirements: STR 12, DEX 14
Prime Requisite: DEX
Hit Dice: 1d10
Maximum Level: 8

Somewhat smaller and more dexterous than their War-Bear cousins, the Ninja-Bears concentrate their skills on stealth, infiltration or misdirection, and striking from the shadows. This is not a path to be taken lightly, as it requires that a bear abandon his beloved polearm for more compact weaponry. Only a very few lay down their Bohemian Ear-spoons for this livelihood.

Favored weapons include the short sword (for close-in work), as well as the more exotic metal fighting claws (+2 to unarmed damage), kusarigama, and chain-flails.

The kusarigama sickle causes 1d6 slashing damage or 1d4+1 bludgeon damage (if the weighted chain is used for attack) per round.  The chain-flair causes 1d4+1 bludgeon damage and is allowed up to two attacks per round.  In addition, the chains on both weapons allow up to 10 feet reach, and may be used to entangle or strangle an opponent on a successful hit of a roll of at least 2 points above the minimum to-hit.

Bears are not prone to throwing, but they may take up a heavily-modified crossbow or prod-bow for missile weaponry (3x base price).

Additionally, any ninja-bear may take up a staff at a +1 proficiency bonus due to his early martial training with the polearm. And if a Ninja-Bear were to disarm a guard of his halberd, well... that's just peachy...

Ninja-Bears can wear no armor and instead have a base armor class (in addition to any DEX bonus). 

However, due to their lack of digital dexterity (and digits), ninja-bears are not capable of picking locks or other similar dexterous feats, making them an inappropriate contractor for thefts, unless is is an item that may be easily removed, or is secured somewhere that may be pried open. Because of these manipulation limits, their preferred method of stealth entry is through climbing. Any Ninja-Bear may climb as thief of 2 levels higher.  Likewise, they listen, move silently and hide in shadows as a thief of equivalent level.  

Ninja-Bears prefer to work incognito, and will be hooded or masked while in action. Unfortunately, they are not quite clear on the concept, and the hoods tend to be in festive colors, such as periwinkle, cerise and chartreuse.

They will often work in pairs or small groups, with one or more creating diversions (noise, fire, food-fights, etc.) while their peers press on to the target.

Ninja-Bears save as Dwarves and fight as Thieves of the same level. If they gain the element of surprise/initiative, any first strike by the Ninja-bear gains the thief's backstab to-hit and damage bonus.

ExperienceLevelHit Dice (1d10)Armor Class

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