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De-Fragger

The fool was drunk, surrounded by “friends”, and too proud for his own good. That’s why she kept her cool for so long. But when he began spitting heresy about The Brothers all over the table, her patience ran dry. Seconds later and he was hanging in the air by his neck. His friends had drawn weapons to help, but so had she. Two arms on him and her other two defending her back. They knew now what they were dealing with and how her code forced her to eradicate corruption, and oh, was their friend corrupted.

The horde had stopped at his light and was held back, for now. Holding his brilliant De-Frag icon to the peak of his reach, he called out to any god that would listen. He was a lone candle, in a swarm of moving blackness, corrupted stretching as far as he could see. His friends, in the warmth of this respite, regathered their strength. His faith had been broken, his spirit shattered, but somewhere, something was listening to his prayer. Whoever it was, they had saved him in more than one way.

The guardian had been motionless before but crossing some invisible threshold had brought it to terrible motion. In seconds his friends had been decimated. Now he stood, the only thing between the abomination and his bleeding and broken sister. Tears fell from his own face onto hers, as he was pushed down to his knees. He strained to keep the bubble shield active, but he could already see cracks forming in its matrix. Outside, the destroyer smashed relentlessly against it. Fighting back pain, swallowing tears, he choked out the only word he could muster, the only one he really needed to say anymore. Then the shield shattered, and he stood for one final moment of glory.

The Wall Against Degradation

A de-fragger is called to stand against chaos. The world is full of corruption and they have made it their solemn duty to stamp it out to their dying breath. Most de-fraggers work towards this goal, though their methods may differ wildly. You need power to keep depredation at bay, and that power can come from many different places. Most find it through their own sense for order, some find it through a patron god, and rarely others find power within the corruption.

De-fraggers are masters of combat, cutting down swarms of enemies in brilliant flashes of retribution. They are also stalwart defenders of those within their charge. Giving them not only healing, but guidance, assurance, and compassion. They are natural born leaders and many stories end with them sacrificing their life for those they were sworn to protect.

A Cure For Corruption

De-fraggers are among the few who can actually fight against the source of corruption. Many people can fight off a data-rotted corpse, but few can expunge that rot from the corpse’s body. Because of this, they are in high demand among Retroverse adventuring parties and communities alike. None stay in one place for very long. Once the corruption has been expunged from that area, they are driven to seek out need elsewhere. Only their unbending convictions or patron god is a constant, and even then, de-fraggers have been known to abandon the gods if they find evidence of corruption within their power. Their unending quest to bring order to the world leads them on many adventures and is almost always their final undoing. There are scant tales of a de-fragger enjoying a long retirement.

A de-fragger is a frightful thing to behold in a battle. They are a terrible storm against any opposition, leaving foes broken underfoot. Troops rally behind them, adventuring parties lean on their strength, and children read stories of their deeds. Few dare to stand against them, but those who can are dangerous beings indeed.

Creating A De-fragger

De-fraggers have one goal in life, to eradicate any corruption within the world. Literal or figurative, they are drawn to it like moths to a flame. This need will eventually consume them, but they will burn brilliantly in their quest for wiping the world clean. When creating your de-fragger think about how and why you desire to keep the corruption at bay. Did you lose your family to a ravenous beast, one that shouldn’t have even existed? Did you see the exploits of other de-fraggers and wish to become like them? Were you called upon by a long-forgotten god to strike out on an obscure journey? Did you grow tired of seeing good men stand by and do nothing, deciding to take matters into your own hands? Were you trained by an aged de-fragger, assigning their unfinished business to you?

Now that you have chosen this life, what struggles have you faced? Do people run from you, fearful of your strength? Have you found fame within your deeds? If so, how does that affect your ability to truly protect? Does the thought of a normal life nag at the back of your mind? Are you good at stamping out erroneous aberrations, or do you struggle with even the simplest monsters? What have you been unable to leave behind?

Because of their devotion to eradicating chaos, de-fraggers are rarely of chaotic alignment. Most are lawful in some regard as many find it unthinkable to tolerate even a small amount of corruption. Keep in mind how your alignment influences the way you see the world and those around you. Also consider how others view you and your unbending convictions. Do these standards come from within or are they at the decree of your deity?

This all begins to change if you create a virus de-fragger as your lifestyle goes against the symbol of righteousness that other de-fraggers fight so hard to maintain. What would drive you to such a decision?

Balance in all Things

Users playing this class are often those who seek out leadership positions. They should have the ability to support and embolden their team members. A selfless attitude will go a long way in ensuring you can play this class to its full effect. New Users may find comfort in the balance of this class. Experienced Users will be able to use this class to carry their team through challenges that would be impossible without them.

Pre-Gen Character

You can make a de-fragger quickly by following these suggestions. First, Constitution should be your highest ability score, followed by Wisdom. Second, choose the Mercenary background. When a skill refers to corruption it is speaking of the literal game mechanic, not to the figurative corruption that lies within one’s soul, though the latter kind is insufferable to a de-fragger as well.

Table: De-Fragger
De-Fragger Level Proficiency Bonus Features Spell Slots per Spell Level
1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th
1 2 Sense Degradation, Array of Hands
2 2 Cure Corruption, Spellcasting 2
3 2 Compiler Type 3
4 2 Power Up, Incorruptible 3
5 3 Stalwart Shield 4 2
6 3 Compiler Type Feature 4 2
7 3 Defense Expert 4 3
8 3 Power Up 4 3
9 4 Incorruptible Improvement 4 3 2
10 4 Compiler Type Feature 4 3 2
11 4 Stable Core 4 3 3
12 4 Power Up 4 3 3
13 5 Flashback 4 3 3 1
14 5 Compiler Type Feature 4 3 3 1
15 5 Incorruptible Improvement, Stalwart Shield Improvement 4 3 3 2
16 5 Power Up 4 3 3 2
17 6 Empowering Shout, Assembled Magic 4 3 3 3 1
18 6 Compiler Type Feature 4 3 3 3 1
19 6 Power Up 4 3 3 3 2
20 6 Final Stand 4 3 3 3 2

Class Features

As a De-fragger, you gain the following class features.

Hit Points

  • Hit Dice: 1d12 per De-Fragger level
  • Hit Points at 1st Level: 12 + your Constitution modifier
  • Hit Points at Higher Levels: 1d12 (or 7) + your Constitution modifier per De-Fragger level after 1st. (Stable Core feature doubles modifier bonus)

Proficiencies

Equipment

You start with the following equipment, in addition to the equipment granted by your background:

  • a martial weapon and a shield
  • (a) a Great Shield or (b) four short swords
  • (a) a priest’s pack or (b) an explorer’s pack
  • Ring mail and a De-Frag Icon

Sense Degradation

Your oath to stamping out decay has made you acutely aware to corruption within creatures. If you are within 60 feet of a creature, you can sense their corruption if it is 3 layers or higher. At 6th level you can detect if a creature within 60 feet is suffering from 2 layers or more of corruption. At 12th level you can detect if a creature within 60 feet is suffering from 1 layer of corruption or more. You do not know exactly how many layers they have, just that they have enough to trigger your senses.

Array of Hands

One unique trait of a de-fragger is an additional set of arms. Decide how you received your extra arms and what they look like. You could have acquired yours from your god, spiritual arms that sprout from your back when needed. Maybe you designed a robotic set that spring to life at your call. You could have come into contact with some unstable magic, giving you control over the new gorilla arms hanging on your form. The exact style and origin of your extra arms is up to you.

Controlling and “activating” these arms is extremely taxing on your body and mind. For this reason, de-fraggers only use them when they have to. When you activate them, by using a bonus action, you can control them just as well as your normal arms. You can only sustain their energy for a number of turns equal to your proficiency bonus before you finish a short or long rest. You must decide at the beginning of your turn, while they are active and before you take any actions, to continue using this feature or to deactivate it. If you end the feature before you have reached a number of rounds equal to your proficiency bonus, you may use the remaining rounds later, before taking a short or long rest. The mental and physical focus required to keep these arms active and useful is so great that you may not use any features from other classes (such as if you are multi-classed) while they are active.

While they are active you gain the multi-attack option and can use each arm to attack,; suffering no penalty from dual-wielding or quad-wielding. Depending on what is in each hand determines how you attack within that round. For example, while this feature is in use, if you are wielding 4 short swords (or some other one-handed weapon) you may attack 4 times that turn, once with each arm, adding your modifier to the damage of each attack. If you have one shield, one one-handed weapon, and one-two handed weapon, you gain +2 to your AC, can strike once with the two-handed weapon and strike once with the one-handed weapon.

Cure Corruption

By 2nd level you have found another way to restore the broken creatures you encounter in the world. If a creature has a layer of corruption, you may use an action to touch them and spend 20 of your own hit points to try and fix their erroneous framework. For every 20 hit point you sink into the creature, you erase one level of corruption. If you heal a creature one or more layers of corruption, and they are still corrupted, you instantly learn how many layers they have remaining. If you are reduced to 0 hit points this way, you are considered stable but unconscious. If you are reduced to 0 hit points and the corruption is not completely cured, it is instead cured 1 layer for every 20 hit points you expended before reaching 0 hit points. You can use this feature on yourself for the same hit point cost.

Doing this against an unwilling creature requires you to make an unarmed attack against the creature. If you succeed on the attack, you can cure only one layer per turn unless you are able to maintain the connection, such as if the target is restrained or paralyzed. Curing a corrupted creature does not mean it will no longer be hostile, simply that it has been restored to normal.

For example, a corrupted dragon is attacking your party. It is suffering from 5 levels of corruption. You use this ability to try and cure all of it and are instantly drained of 100 hit points, curing the creature. It is still hostile to the party and continues to attack but is no longer corrupted and does not suffer or benefit from any corruption effects, nor does it spread corruption with its attacks.

Spellcasting

By 2nd level, you have learned to draw from your reinforced faith and usher forth magic from the divine might of your god or inner flame. You channel this energy through your de-frag Icon and expel it with same force of a cleric or paladin.

Preparing and Casting Spells

The de-fragger table shows how many spell slots you have to cast your spells of 1st level and higher. To cast one of these spells, you must expend a slot of the spell’s level or higher. You regain all expended spell slots when you finish a long rest.

You prepare the list of de-fragger spells that are available for you to cast, choosing from the de-fragger spell list. When you do so, choose a number of de-fragger spells equal to your Wisdom modifier + half your de-fragger level, rounded down (minimum of 1 spell). The spells must be of a level for which you have spells slots. Casting a spell does not remove it from your list of prepared spells.

You can change your list of prepared spells when you finish a long rest. Preparing a new list of de-fragger spells requires time spent in communion with your patron and/or meditating to re-center your hardened ideals. You must do this for at least 1 minute per spell level for each spell on your list.

Spellcasting Ability

Wisdom is your spellcasting ability for de-fragger spells because your magic comes from your own inner mental fortitude or reliance on faith. You use your Wisdom whenever a spell refers to your spellcasting ability. You also use your Wisdom modifier when setting the saving throw DC for a de-fragger spell you cast and when making an attack roll with one.

Spell save DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Wisdom modifier

Spell attack modifier = your proficiency bonus + your Wisdom modifier

Spellcasting Focus

You can use your de-frag icon as a spellcasting focus for your De-Fragger spells.

Compiler Type

When you reach 3rd level, your ideals have crystalized into a driving force and determined your path as a de-fragger. Different de-fraggers are separated into groups called Compilers. The type of Compilers are: Vaccine, Data, and Virus. Your Compiler type is greatly influenced by how you handle corruption and should reflect your views on it.

Your choice grants you features at 3rd level and again at 6th, 10th, 14th, and 18th level.

Power Up

When you reach 4th level, and again at 8th, 12th,16th, and 19th you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. Alternatively, you can gain one feat. You cannot increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.

Incorruptible

By 4th level you have become resistant to the effects of corruption. You have advantage on corruption saving throws. You can use this feature a number of times equal to your Constitution modifier before finishing a long rest. By 9th level you are nearly immune to corruption, except in extremely overwhelming cases. You always have advantage on corruption saving throws and have advantage on saving throws against the spells and effects of corrupted creatures. By 15th level you are no longer bothered by average corruption and can only be harmed by extreme corruption at the GM’s discretion. You automatically succeed on corruption saving throws, have advantage on saving throws against the spells and effects of corrupted creatures, and take half damage from attacks made by corrupted creatures. If a corrupted creature hits you with a spell or effect that requires a saving throw, you take half damage on a failed save and no damage on a successful one.

Stalwart Shield

At 5th level you can summon a barrier to protect yourself and those close to you. Using an action, you spread two of your arms wide and summon a sphere shield with a 10-foot diameter around yourself. Your movement speed is reduced to 0 and you must concentrate as if you were casting a spell, it also requires two of your arms to be occupied to keep the shield’s integrity. If two non-hostile creatures, of Medium size or smaller, are within 5 feet of you when this feature is used, they can choose to be inside the sphere with you. If there are more than two non-hostile creatures then all but two are pushed out, you decide which two remain. If a hostile creature is within 5 feet of you, they must succeed on a Dexterity saving throw versus your spell save DC or be pushed out to the nearest unoccupied space, otherwise they are trapped in the sphere with you. The shield can be maintained a number of rounds equal to your Constitution modifier (minimum of one) and disappears after that.

The sphere has hit points equal to your maximum hit points, an AC of 10, cannot move, and automatically fails any saving throws. Nothing can pass through, in or out, even creatures on the ethereal or astral plane. The sphere is not considered magical and is not subject to any anti-magic spells or effect. Once the shield drops to 0 hit points, it shatters. Any excess damage from the attack that destroyed the shield, is transferred to you, without saving throws, even if the attack had an area of effect.

You can use this feature once before finishing a long rest. Creatures inside the shield have full cover and creatures behind it have half cover. Once you reach 15th level in this class, this feature can be used as an action or bonus action.

Defense Expert

When you reach 7th level, you have begun to truly understand your role as a protector. You have the ability to wield two shields at a single time. One shield grants its normal AC bonus, while the other is considered your off-hand shield and can be used for the following actions:

  • You can use a reaction to gain the shield’s AC bonus or to give the AC bonus to an ally within 5 feet of you
  • You can use the shield as a weapon. You are proficient with it and it deals 1d6 + your Strength modifier bludgeoning damage on a hit.

Stable Core

By 11th level your solid convictions have not only changed your spirit, they have changed your body. Your incredibly stable form grants you advantage on Constitution saving throws and doubles the hit point increase you receive from your Constitution bonus from this level onwards. When you receive this feature, you do not gain the bonus to your hit points for each level under 11, only for levels 11 and above in this class.

Flashback

At 13th level your Stalwart Shield has become so strong that it can knock attacks back at opponents. If a creature makes a melee weapon attack against your Stalwart Shield, they must make a Dexterity saving throw against your spell save DC or take damage equal to half the damage they dealt to your shield. Your shield still takes full damage regardless of if they fail the save or not.

Assembled Magic

At 17th level you have been able to heal the Code in such a way that you are granted an additional spell of 6th level from the de-fragger spell list. This bonus slot cannot be used to cast a lower level spell. Once you finish a long rest, you can prepare a new spell for this bonus slot.

Empowering Shout

At 17th level, as a bonus action, you bellow a war cry or words of encouragement to you allies. Any allies that can hear you within 30 feet gain advantage on all saving throws, until the end of their turn. You can use this feature once before finishing a short or long rest.

Final Stand

At 20th level your body and spirit have become far too stubborn and refuse to go down quietly. When you are reduced to 0 hit points but are not immediately killed due to a spell or effect, you can call upon the deepest reserves of your energy and are instead dropped down to 1 hit point, gain resistance to non-magical damage until the end of your next turn, regain the use of your Array of Hands feature as if you had taken a short rest, can spend any number of remaining Hit Dice to heal, and can immediately use a bonus action, even if you have already used one on your turn. You must finish a long rest before you can use this feature again.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Lasers & Liches: Tales from the Retroverse - Test Wave 3 Player's MTX Creator(s) Chris Lock, Lluis Abadias Copyright 2021