Wildcard

As it turns out, nearly every form of magical expression requires lifelong, exclusive focus in order to wield that power in its truest sense; however, each of these forms of magical expression enables individuals who combine magic with martial prowess. Enter the wildcard, a cartomancer whose training makes it so an enemy’s fate is to have its face beaten in.

Role: A wildcard’s portents have the same potency as do a cartomancer’s. His only sacrifice is in staying power, for the loss of a single greater portent reduces his overall portentous capacity by about 20%. In exchange for this, a wildcard gains the physical skills necessary to stand on the front lines along with other dabblers in the martial arts.

Alignment: Any.

Hit Die: d6

Starting Wealth: 2d6 x 10 gp (average 70 gp.) In addition, each character begins play with an outfit worth 10 gp or less.

Class Skills: The wildcard’s class skills are Appraise (Int), Craft (Int), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (arcana) (Int), Knowledge (planes) (Int), Linguistics (Int), Perception (Wis), Profession (Wis), Spellcraft (Int), and Use Magic Device (Cha).

Skill Ranks per Level: 2 + Int modifier

Class Features

All of the following are class features of the wildcard.

Table: The Wildcard
Level Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Special Active Deck Composition (Least/Lesser/Greater) Maximum Hand Size
1st +0 +2 +0 +2 Cartomancy, dealt fate 3/1/0 2
2nd +1 +3 +0 +3 Fateseal, fatespinning, seal 4/1/0 2
3rd +2 +3 +1 +3 Martial insight +1 5/2/0 2
4th +3 +4 +1 +4 - 6/2/1 2
5th +3 +4 +1 +4 Fateseal - 2 damage 7/3/1 3
6th +4 +5 +2 +5 Martial insight +2 8/3/1 3
7th +5 +5 +2 +5 - 9/4/1 3
8th +6/+1 +6 +2 +6 Seal 10/4/1 3
9th +6/+1 +6 +3 +6 Martial insight +3 11/5/2 3
10th +7/+2 +7 +3 +7 Fateseal - 3 damage 12/5/2 4
11th +8/+3 +7 +3 +7 Cartomancy - duplicate least 13/6/2 4
12th +9/+4 +8 +4 +8 Martial insight +4 14/6/2 4
13th +9/+4 +8 +4 +8 - 15/7/2 4
14th +10/+5 +9 +4 +9 Seal 16/7/3 4
15th +11/+6/+1 +9 +5 +9 Fateseal - 4 damage, martial insight +5 17/8/3 5
16th +12/+7/+2 +10 +5 +10 - 18/8/3 5
17th +12/+7/+2 +10 +5 +10 - 19/9/3 5
18th +13/+8/+3 +11 +6 +11 Martial insight +6 20/9/3 5
19th +14/+9/+4 +11 +6 +11 - 21/10/4 5
20th +15/+10/+5 +12 +6 +12 Eternal fate, fateseal - 5 damage 22/10/4 6

Weapon Proficiency

Wildcards are proficient with simple weapons, as well as with longbows, longswords, all martial throwing weapons, and all martial weapons that are compatible with the Weapon Finesse feat. Armor Proficiency: Wildcards are proficient with light armor and shields, but not tower shields.

Cartomancy (Sp)

Overview

A wildcard's primary source of power stems from his ability to manipulate fate through the use of cards. It matters not whether or not the cards are meant to be divinatory in nature, or even if he is divining with a whole deck, for it is the meaning that he gives his cards and the story that he weaves while using them that gives the cards their power. To this end, any old deck will do, so long as the wildcard is consistent with his storytelling.

The stories of the future told by a wildcard's cards are called portents. Portents are spell-like abilities with associated schools of magic that come in three varieties, least, lesser, and greater, reflecting the increasing power level of the fate associated with that particular card. Treat portents as divine spells, and, by extension, a wildcard as a divine spellcaster. This means feats like Spell Focus (enchantment) properly increases the DCs of portents with that school, an antimagic field blocks portents, and so on. A wildcard's portents can be counterspelled by any spell of sufficient level with the same school as the portent being cast. A spell must be at least 1st level to counterspell a least portent, 2nd level to counterspell a lesser portent, and 4th level to counterspell a greater portent. Similarly, when the wildcard is forced to make concentration checks, calculate concentration DCs as though least portents were 1st-level spells, lesser portents were 2nd-level spells, and greater portents were 4th-level spells.

Regardless of level, a wildcard's collection contains all of his deck's portents. There is never any need to go hunting for portents like a wizard goes hunting for spells. Like other divine spellcasters, a wildcard simply knows all of his magic innately. He may simply be unable to place more powerful portents into his "active deck", explained below, until he reaches sufficient level.

Every portent has a somantic component (presenting the card), as well as a verbal component (telling the story). A wildcard must have a Charisma score equal to at least 11 to play least portents, at least 12 to play lesser portents, and at least 14 to play greater portents. The Difficulty Class (DC) for a saving throw against a cartomancer's portent is 10 + 1/2 the wildcard's class level + the wildcard's Charisma modifier.

For the purpose of the magnitude of effect of his portents, the wildcard has a cartomancer level equal to his wildcard level.

Deck Selection

At 1st level, a wildcard chooses a cartomancy deck to act as his collection. Once this choice has been made, it cannot be changed. The available cartomancy decks are as follows, but nothing is stopping you from making your own!

  • Classic - Dealing with the themes of fate and the stars aligning, the classic cartomancy deck features a number of portents that manipulate rolls for good or ill. Many of its portents are extremely situational, but become quite powerful when that situation comes along. Finally, the classic deck loves big portents going down, and many least and lesser portents become more powerful if preceded by a more powerful portent, thus making it fairly easy to weave together power turns.
  • Deathdealer - In a world where gods don’t pay taxes, the one universal fate for all beings, be it man or god, is to die. The deathdealer cartomancy deck focuses on debilitation by curse, poison, and disease; raw damage; negative emotions; and vampiric effects. In order to keep the deathdealer on the offensive, many portents are more powerful the turn they are drawn, while death’s patience is represented by portents that immediately leave the hand and slowly gain counters as specific criteria are met. Fully-charged portents are, of course, a terror to behold.
  • Multitudes of Fate - While not a cartomancy deck in its own right, the Multitudes of Fate feat offers up a selection of eight portents that can be added to a wildcard's collection. These tools expand a collection's functionality beyond that of the flavor of each of the main decks, but, in doing so, the player is basically forced into using the print-and-play cards provided with Ultimate Cartomancy, for the poker equivalence tables do not take the possibility of these new cards into account.

Note: Be courteous! If your gaming group plays for absent players, leave an official print-and-play deck with your DM just in case you get sick and can't attend. None of the alternate methods of card tracking will work with Multitudes of Fate in play.

Deckbuilding

A wildcard does not use his entire card collection at once. Instead, he constructs an "active deck" that is a subset of this collection. When setting the composition of his active deck, a wildcard must fulfill the following criteria. If a character has two or more classes that grant active decks, each class maintains separate active decks and separate effective cartomancer levels.

  • No duplicate portents are allowed in an active deck. Starting at 11th level, a wildcard may include up to two copies of least portents in his active deck, but can never have duplicate lesser or greater portents in his active deck.
  • The active deck must include a number of least portents equal to 2 + the wildcard's class level.
  • The active deck must include 1 lesser portent, plus an additional lesser portent for every two wildcard levels beyond 1st.
  • Starting at 4th level, the active deck must include 1 greater portent, plus an additional greater portent for every five wildcard levels beyond 4th.

A wildcard has a maximum hand size of 2. This increases by +1 at 5th level and every five levels beyond 5th, to a maximum hand size of 6 at 20th level.

Playing Cards/Portents

All portents have an activation time, detailing what kind of action must be expended in order to play it. If the portent can be played as a swift or immediate action, playing that portent does not provoke attacks of opportunity. If the portent can be played as a move or standard action, playing it provokes attacks of opportunity.

Playing a portent simultaneously casts it. The two events, the playing of the portent and the casting of the portent, are separate triggers. If the portent is counterspelled, fails to penetrate Spell Resistance, fizzles due to a failed concentration check, or otherwise finds a way to fail, then all effects that trigger off of the portent casting fail; however, since it was successfully played even though the casting was a failure, all effects that trigger from the playing of the portent still function. A portent cannot be played if it be incapable of working, such as in an antimagic field.

Unless otherwise noted, a portent targets the caster if its range is personal and a single creature within range if its range is greater than personal

Whenever a wildcard plays a greater portent, he shuffles all lesser portents in his discard pile into his active deck.

Whenever a wildcard plays a lesser portent, he shuffles all least portents in his discard pile into his active deck. A wildcard may draw a card once per round as a move action.

Terminology

  • Active Deck - The active deck is the deck with which you play a cartomancer. The rules for constructing an active deck are listed above.
  • Collection - Your collection is the sum of all cards that a cartomancer knows, but does not include in a deck. Remember, cartomancers begin play with all cards, even though they do not have the ability to put all of those cards into their active deck at 1st level. By extension, since cartomancers eventually gain the ability to put a duplicate copy of least portents into their decks, that least portent is considered to be in both a deck and in the collection should only one copy be in a deck.
  • Discard - A card that goes to your discard pile without being played is considered discarded. A card that is discarded, usually by the effects of a portent or as an additional cost of using a seal ability, (see the seals class feature) does not trigger on-play abilities. For example, a discarded greater portent does not shuffle all lesser portents from the discard pile into the active deck.
  • Discard Pile - Cards that are played or discarded go to the discard pile.
  • Draw - To draw a card, take the top card of your active deck and put it into your hand. You cannot draw a card if drawing a card would make you exceed your maximum hand size.
  • Hand - When a card is drawn, it goes to your hand. A card must be in your hand in order to play it. Before you create a cartomancer, speak with your GM to determine whether the contents of your hand will be public information or private information. Other options, such as showing the contents of your hand to your party, but keeping it hidden from the GM, are possible, but may upset people. Precisely how your group chooses to work it is immaterial, so long as it works for your group and you follow it once chosen. Consistency between NPC cartomancers and PC cartomancers is also immaterial. If your group decides to make your hand public, there is no obligation on your GM's part to make a cartomancer villain play with a public hand.
  • Maximum Hand Size - Unless a portent says otherwise, you cannot have more cards in your hand than your maximum hand size, which is 2 + 1 for every five class levels.
  • Monty Deck - A Monty deck is granted by the Three Card Monty feat. The Monty deck never interacts with the active deck or discard pile unless otherwise specified.
  • Reveal - To reveal a card, flip the top card of your active deck face-up onto the table (or other playing surface). This mechanic is usually used in two-step abilities with an if/then approach to their functionality.

Dealt Fate (Su)

At 1st level, whenever the wildcard plays a least or lesser portent, he may choose not to cast it. If he chooses not to cast the portent, it does not go to the discard pile; instead, place the portent face up in front of you and choose a weapon, shield, or suit of armor on the wildcard’s person. The chosen piece of equipment is now associated with the portent you just placed face up in front of you and becomes fatecharged. A piece of fatecharged equipment cannot have a second portent become associated with it.

The wildcard’s maximum hand size is reduced by 1 for each portent placed face up in front of you with dealt fate. Further, fatecharged equipment may only have associated portents cast from them if wielded by the wildcard who played the portent to begin with. Finally, only a single associated portent may be cast each round. As such, if the wildcard deals damage with a fatecharged weapon and casts its associated portent, he does not cast another portent if he is wearing fatecharged armor and takes damage the same round. If two or more portents are eligible for triggering at once, the wildcard chooses the portent that is cast from among them. All associated portents are cast as a free action.

Whenever a fatecharged weapon deals damage to a creature, if the damaged creature is within range of the weapon’s associated portent, then the wildcard casts that portent upon the damaged creature. After resolving the portent, put it in the discard pile. The weapon is no longer fatecharged. If multiple creatures are damaged by a single attack, choose one to be the subject of the associated portent.

Whenever the wearer of a fatecharged shield or suit of armor takes damage in melee, if the attacking creature is within range of the shield or armor’s associated portent, then the wildcard casts that portent upon the attacking creature. After resolving the portent, put it in the discard pile. The armor or shield is no longer fatecharged.

Each morning, just before refreshing his portents for the day, all portents associated with the wildcard’s equipment are discarded, and any such equipment is no longer fatecharged.

Fateseal (Su)

At 2nd level, a wildcard can overload his fatecharged equipment for 1 round as a swift action. If he possesses a fatecharged shield or suit of armor, he deals 1 force damage to creatures within 30 feet that deal damage to him, and if he possesses a fatecharged weapon, he deals an additional point of force damage on a successful hit with it.

At 5th level and every five wildcard levels thereafter, the wildcard’s fatecharged equipment deals an additional point of force damage, to a maximum of 5 at 20th level.

Fatespinning (Su)

Starting at 2nd level, a wildcard gains a pool of fate points, which measures his capacity to follow and manipulate the skeins of fate. Given this sort of work requires actual understanding of how the world works rather than sheer force of will, the number of points in a wildcard's fate pool is equal to 1/2 his wildcard level + his Wisdom modifier.

Seal (Su)

Starting at 2nd level, a wildcard gains access to general expressions of fate and probability, also known as seals. Seals require that the wildcard discard a card, as well as spend a number of fate points in order to twist the power held in the discarded card to another purpose. To that end, the power of the seal is dependent on the power level of the portent contained in the discarded card. By this logic, a discarded greater portent will have a greater effect than a discarded lesser portent. See each individual seal for the effects elicited by each power level of portent. The Difficulty Class (DC) for a saving throw against a wildcard's seal is 10 + 1/2 the wildcard's class level + the wildcard's Wisdom modifier.

Select a single seal listed below at 2nd level, as well as an additional seal for every six levels beyond 2nd.

Seal of Arbitrary Possibilities

Cost: 2 Fate Points
Requires: Wildcard 8

As a standard action, the wildcard reveals a number of cards from the top of his active deck. Shuffle all greater portents revealed in this way back into the wildcard's active deck. Keep these revealed cards face-up on the table. They can be played and discarded as though they were in the wildcard's hand, but do not count toward maximum hand size. If not played or discarded within 1 minute per wildcard level, all cards revealed in this way go to the wildcard's discard pile. The number of cards revealed is dependent upon the power level of the portent discarded; if the wildcard's active deck does not contain enough cards, reveal all of them.

  • Least - 1 card
  • Lesser - 3 cards
  • Greater - 4 cards; do not shuffle revealed greater portents back into the active deck

Seal of the Cartomancery

Cost: 4 Fate Points
Requires: Wildcard 8

The wildcard asks his deity, or Fate itself, questions, as the cartomancery spell. The number of questions he can ask is dependent upon the power level of the discarded portent. The wildcard may ask one question per round; if he is interrupted in between questions, the remaining questions are lost.

  • Least - 1 question
  • Lesser - 3 questions
  • Greater - class level questions

Seal of the Blinking Eye

Cost: 2 Fate Points
Requires: Wildcard 14

As a standard action, the wildcard alters the universe's recent history slightly in order to change his physical placement in it, as the dimension door spell. The maximum distance he can move in this manner is dependent upon the power level of the discarded portent. (As many anti-teleportation methodologies only function against spells, this seal is likely to work in all sorts of odd edge cases.)

  • Least - 5 feet per two class levels
  • Lesser - 5 feet per class level
  • Greater - 10 feet per class level; used as a move action instead of a standard action

Seal of the Cups

Cost: 1 Fate Point

As a swift action, the wildcard grants himself a number of temporary hit points for 1 round. The magnitude of the temporary hit points gained in this manner is dependent upon the power level of the discarded portent. At 9th level, the wildcard may increase the fate point cost of this seal by +1 in order to use it as an immediate action. At 13th level, the wildcard may increase the fate point cost of this seal by +1 in order to use it on an ally within 30 feet.

  • Least - 5 + 1/2 class level temporary hit points
  • Lesser - 5 + class level temporary hit points
  • Greater - 5 + 3*class level temporary hit points

Seal of Entropy

Cost: 2 Fate Points
Requires: Wildcard 8

As a standard action, the wildcard manipulates local probability to make unlikely events unlikelier and likely events likelier. All creatures within 30 feet of the wildcard, including the wildcard himself, get a luck bonus to their highest saving throw and a penalty to their lowest saving throw. Creatures that leave the area of effect of this ability immediately lose the effects of this ability, while creatures that enter it immediately gain the effects. The magnitude of the bonus and the penalty is dependent upon the power level of the discarded portent. This ability lasts for 1 round per wildcard level.

  • Least - +1 bonus and -1 penalty
  • Lesser - +2 bonus and -2 penalty
  • Greater - +4 bonus and -4 penalty

Seal of Fate Respun

Cost: 1 Fate Point

As an immediate action, the wildcard grants a retroactive insight bonus to the attack roll or skill check of an ally within 30 feet. If the bonus is enough to turn the failure into a success, the roll succeeds. The magnitude of the retroactive bonus is dependent upon the power level of the discarded portent.

  • Least - +1d3 insight bonus
  • Lesser - +1d6 insight bonus
  • Greater - +1d6 insight bonus; can be applied to a failed saving throw

Seal of Militant Probability

Cost: 2 Fate Points
Requires: Wildcard 14

As a standard action, the wildcard adjusts the behavior of fate to actively punish those with bad luck and reward those with good luck. Whenever a creature within 30 feet of the wildcard, including the wildcard himself, rolls a natural '1' on a d20 roll, it takes force damage; similarly, whenever a creature within the same area of effect rolls a natural '20' on a d20 roll, it is healed. This healing is positive energy if applied to living creatures, negative energy if applied to undead creatures, and magically repairs constructs to which it is applied. The magnitude of the damage and healing effects are dependent upon the power level of the discarded portent. This ability lasts for 1 round per wildcard level.

  • Least - 1 point of damage or healing per two class levels
  • Lesser - 1 point of damage or healing per class level
  • Greater - 1d4 points of damage or healing per class level

Seal of the Pentacles

Cost: 1 Fate Point

As a full-round action, the wildcard draws power from the discarded card, granting an ally within 30 feet an improved ability to produce mundane equipment. The ally's mundane equipment production speed is multiplied by a factor that is dependent upon the power level of the discarded portent. This ability lasts for 1 day.

  • Least - 2x
  • Lesser - 4x
  • Greater - 10x

Seal of Persistent Fate

Cost: 1 Fate Point

As a standard action, the wildcard returns a card from his discard pile to his hand. The card returned must cast a portent of the same power level as the discarded portent.

Seal of the Swords

Cost: 2 Fate Points

As a standard action, the wildcard twists the power of the discarded card and uses it to lash out at a single creature within 30 feet. That creature takes an amount of slashing damage based on the power level of the discarded portent with a Reflex save for half damage.

  • Least - 1d6 slashing damage + an additional 1d6 slashing damage for every two class levels
  • Lesser - 1d6 slashing damage per class level
  • Greater - 6 slashing damage per class level

Seal of the Wands

Cost: 3 Fate Points
Requires: Wildcard 14

As a standard action, the wildcard pulls a wand out of thin air. This wand persists for 1 minute before vanishing and contains a single charge of the discarded portent with a caster level equal to the wildcard's class level. Treat a wand containing a least portent as 1st-level (DC 11), a wand containing a lesser portent as 2nd-level (DC 13), and a wand containing a greater portent as 4th-level (DC 16). The portent is treated as though it were on the spell list of any divine caster for the purpose of using the wand without using the Use Magic Device skill.

Martial Insight (Ex)

Starting at 3rd level, whenever the wildcard plays a lesser or greater portent, he gains a +1 insight bonus to CMD for 1 round. This bonus increases by +1 at 6th level and every three wildcard levels thereafter, to a maximum of +6 at 18th level.

Eternal Fate (Su)

At 20th level, the wildcard treats the fateseal class feature as though it were always active. He may suppress or resume fateseal’s effects as a standard action.

In addition, you may have up to two portents placed face up in front of you with the dealt fate class feature without reducing the wildcard’s maximum hand size. If you ever have three or more portents placed face up in front of you in this manner, the wildcard’s maximum hand size is reduced as normal.


Favored Class Bonuses

Instead of receiving an additional skill rank or hit point whenever they gain a level in a Favored Class, some races have the option of choosing from a number of other bonuses, depending upon their Favored Classes. The following options are available to the listed race who have wildcards as their Favored Class, and unless otherwise stated, the bonus applies each time you select the listed Favored Class reward.

Aasimar

Add +1/6 of a seal.

Drow

Every 6 times this bonus is selected, select a seal. The fate point cost of that seal is reduced by 1, to a minimum of 1.

Dwarf

Every 3 times this bonus is selected, the wildcard may use the dealt fate class feature without treating the resulting face-up card as though it were in his hand once per day.

Elf

Add +1/3 of a point to the fate pool.

Gnome

Once per day for every 5 times this bonus is selected, the wildcard may change the damage type dealt by a portent he casts to cold or fire as he casts it.

Half-elf

Add +1/3 of a point to the fate pool.

Halfling

Every 3 times this bonus is selected, the wildcard is healed of 1 hit point of damage whenever he plays a greater portent. Every 6 times this bonus is selected, the wildcard is healed of 1 hit point of damage whenever he plays a lesser portent.

Half-orc

Whenever the wildcard casts a greater portent, he gets a bonus to his next weapon damage roll equal to the number of times this bonus has been taken. This bonus lasts for 2 rounds or until discharged.

Hobgoblin

Add +1/2 to Intimidate and Perception checks.

Human

Every 5 times this bonus is selected, the wildcard's fatecharged armor deal an additional point of fire damage.

Kitsune

Add +1/3 of a least portent with the enchantment or necromancy schools to the active deck.

Kobold

Add +1/4 to the Difficulty Class of all seals if the victim is a gnome.

Orc

Every 5 times this bonus is selected, the wildcard's fatecharged weapons deal an additional point of fire damage.

Puddling

Once per day for every 8 times this bonus is selected, the wildcard may shuffle up to two lesser portents in his discard pile into his active deck whenever he discards a greater portent to power a seal.

Tiefling

Add +1/6 of a seal.


Archetypes

-Ace

Aces are particularly good at detecting foes of certain alignments - and changing their own in order to make the most of certain types of magic items.

-Dealer (Wildcard)

Dealers specialize in providing power to others through their Ante Up ability, allowing allies to cast portents as if they were Cartomancers as well.

-Joker

Jokers are random even by Cartomancy's standards, gaining the ability to cast Wizard and Cleric spells that may or may not actually be helpful.

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