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The blessed children of Eluna, the skinwalkers are of an older tradition. Many learn to take the forms of great beasts, or those inbetween.

They are most common among the oruch, sith-makar and similar races, whose shamanistic history or outlook would find resonance with the skinwalker's discipline. Skinwalkers most often follow the faith of Eluna, Gilead, or Dana.

The term originates from the practice of some families to use magic animal skins to transform. Selkies, for example, have magical sealskins that allow them to transform into seals; mothers often fashion skins for their children, continuing their special tradition.

Please note that "animal" in this writeup can be used to mean whichever type of creature the skinwalker's skinform is tied to.

Role: The skinwalker represents a force of nature.


Alignment: Skinwalkers may be of any alignment, though those who wish to follow druidic ways must follow druidic alignment restrictions.
Abilities: The ability to reliably take on an animal shape, or possession of the feat: Aspect of the Beast
Skills: Knowledge (nature) 5 ranks
Special: Some skinwalkers enter this class through use of a shifterskin. If this is how the character has qualified for this Prestige Class, all the skinwalker abilities rely on having the skin; if the skin is damaged or unavailable, the character cannot access her skinwalker abilities. The shifterskin may be replaced, but the new skin must be of the same animal. Note: At this time, no shifterskin exists for vermin or plant types. This may change in the future, but for now this is the case.


Hit Dice: d12
Class Skills: The skinwalker's class skills are Acrobatics, Athletics, Fly, Knowledge/nature, Perception, Stealth, Survival.
Skills: Skill Ranks at Each Level: 4 + Int modifier
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Skinwalkers gain no additional weapon or armor proficiencies.

The Skinwalker
Level BAB Fort Refl Will Special
1 +0 +1 +1 +0 Skinform 1/day, Animal Affinity, Wild Oath, Hunter's Trick
2 +1 +1 +1 +1 Hunter's Trick, Skinwalker's Empathy, DR 1/Silver
3 +2 +2 +2 +1 Skinform 2/day, Partial Shift
4 +3 +2 +2 +1 Hunter's Trick, DR 2/Silver
5 +3 +3 +3 +2 Skinform 3/day
6 +4 +3 +3 +2 Hunter's Trick, DR 3/Silver
7 +5 +4 +4 +2 Skinform 4/day, Partial Shift
8 +6 +4 +4 +3 Hunter's Trick, DR 4/Silver
9 +6 +5 +5 +3 Skinform 5/day, Master of Their Kind
10 +7 +5 +5 +3 True Skinform, Hunter's Trick, DR 5/Silver

Class Abilities

Wild Oath (Ex): A character who becomes a skinwalker takes upon themselves an oath to the wild places. In return, the wild embraces her, augmenting her skinwalker powers. Over time, she becomes a force to be reckoned with; nature's wrecking ball.

This oath is similar to the druid's oath: the character swears to revere nature, and refuse the use of all use of metal armor. Should she break her oath, she immediately loses all skinwlker abilities (including her animal companion, but not including weapon, armor, and shield proficiencies). She cannot thereafter gain levels as a skinwalker until she atones (see the atonement spell description).

As a side benefit, the skinwalker gains access to spirit-touched armors and materials. Because of the (at times uneasy) alliances between skinwalkers and druids, a skinwalker is capable of learning the sacred drudic language, though she must invest the points to do so. The druids are cagey about this knowledge, however. Should she ever teach this language to a nondruid, she becomes a permanent outcast of druid circles.

Finally, the skinwalker receives the blessing of Eluna or Caracoroth. Though neither is overt, it represents more of a "background blessing" than anything else, and provides a virtual 5 RPP bonus would apply to joining any appropriate organizations related to these outlooks. The skinwalker is not required to worship either deity.

Skinform (Su): At first level, the skinwalker must select one creature from the table Skinwalker: Selectable Skinforms (when you take your first level in this PrC, please send a +request to staff with what you'd like your form to be). The creature selected becomes the skinwalker's bestial shape. Her abilities only apply to transformation to and from that animal, no other. Though their skinform may later grow in stature and abilities, treat this animal as their basic form for class abilities which rely upon it. For example, Animal Affinity.

Skinform is a polymorph effect. References to bestial form or shape refer to this ability. Unless otherwise specified, skinform does not count as wildshape for related feats and abilities. The two exceptions are Natural Spell and Wild Armor.

A skinwalker possesses rudimentary speech in this form: enough to communicate basic concepts with difficulty, but not enough for spellcasting. They may loosely hold an item, but not grip well enough to wield weapons or perform acts requiring fine manipulation, as they're considered to possess talons, paws, and so forth.

At every odd level, the skinwalker gains an additional use of their skinform.

As they progress in this PrC, this skinform grows in both power and stature. Each use of a skinform lasts up to an hour per skinwalker level. Once within their skinform, skinwalkers may swap between a hybrid and animal form using the same type of action required to transform. For example, if transforming into their skinform is currently a standard action, then it would take a standard action to go from animal to hybrid, once transformed.

1st Level: At first level, changing is a standard action which does not provoke Attacks of Opportunity. The skinwalker's form at this time is medium-sized. It gives the skinwalker a +2 size bonus to to their Strength and a +2 natural armor bonus. While in this form, the skinwalker's land speed becomes 40', and she possesses both the lowlight vision and scent abilites. She possesses three natural attacks, each doing 1d6+Str. This is true even if the original creature did not possess these attacks: a wolven form of a skinwalker is more powerful than average.
A skinform may not have more than 2 of any single type of NA. The wolf skinwalker could possess one bite and two claw attacks at d6+Str, two bites and a slam, or some mixture thereof. A snake could have two slams and a bite. In addition, if a base form possessed a certain type of attack, such as a bite, the skinform must select from those attack types first, before adding others. For example, the wolf skinwalker would need to select the bite attack first, but thereafter would be able to add a slam or claw.
Damage type is determined by the type of attack used.
3rd Level: At third level, the skinform's size increases to large and she gains a +4 size bonus to Strength, a –2 penalty to Dexterity, and a +4 natural armor bonus. The form possesses three natural attacks, each doing 1d8+Str. They gain darkvision out to 60' when in this form.
At any time, the skinwalker may choose to reduce their skinform to medium size, instead. Increasing or decreasing size takes the same type of action that it took to transform in the first place. However, when medium-sized they suffer a -2 to Strength in comparison to the power of their full form and a +2 to Dexterity. In their smaller version, they do not receive the size increase to their natural attacks (they remain at 1d6).
5th Level: At fifth level, her size bonus to strength increases to +6, her con bonus by +2, and the natural armor bonus to +6, although she does not increase in size. The dexterity penalty remains at -2. Finally, changing shape to and from skinform becomes a swift action.
7th Level: At seventh level, she gains a reach of 10' when in skinform, and a fourth natural attack. A skinform in medium size does not gain this reach.
9th Level: At ninth, her strength bonus increases to +8.

What does it look like?: The short answer to this is: we don't care if it looks like the regular creature, or a were-form of the regular creature, or somewhere in between. Or, even if it alternates or changes back and forth. The mechanics were built the way they are to give you maximum coolness flexibility. So long as the creature is recognizable as say, "badger/werebadger" it is just fine. What not to do would be something dumb like giant furry breasts bouncing around like inflated balloonocopters. Wolves don't have those unless they're pregnant; neither do you, and fur, scales, etc. is assumed to cover everything else.

Skinwalker: Selectable Skinforms

When selecting their skinform, the Skinwalker may select one of the forms below as theirs. Once selected, this may not be changed.

Regardless of the form's natural abilities, the skinwalker only gains the abilities listed under Skinform. This is true even if the form possesses a tail, for example. The Skinwalker could use the tail as one of their 3 natural attacks, but would not gain a 4th through it, and could not use the tail to manipulate devices or otherwise gain additional attacks and actions. A werewolf Skinwalker would possess three natural attacks...but would be unable to weild weapons when in their skinform, and so on.

Abuse of these guidelines would mean making skinwalker into "animal forms only," and this is much more fun. So, please don't.

Skinwalker Selectable Skinforms
Form Compatible Animal Companions
Any one animal Any animal of same type
Any one vermin Any vermin of same type
Any one plant Any plant of same type
Any one werecreature* Any animal of same base as the were
Any one magical beast** Any animal that is an obvious source or component of the magical beast (such as a bird of prey or a lion for a griffon); some beasts may have no source creatures; in which case, there is no compatible animal companion
* Requires pre-approval. Because they've been villains for a long time, were-creatures will have difficulties in skin forms in towns, villages, and cities or other populated areas. To many people, werecreatures are the servants of Caracoroth. The Elunan Temple provides arm bands that transform with the were for free, which can help with some of these difficulties, though not will not remove them completely.
** Requires pre-approval. Some magical beasts may have no compatible animal companion. If this is the case, certain features may not work, such as skinwalker's empathy or animal empathy. Some magical beasts may not be approved.

Animal Affinity: Skinwalker levels stack with other classes that grant an animal companion to determine her effective druid level, so long as the companion is the same kind of animal as the animal form of the skinwalker (see table above, under "Compatible Animal Companions"). If the Skinwalker has no animal companion from any other source, she instead gains one of the appropriate type.

Skinwalker's Empathy (Ex): The skinwalker she gains the ability to speak with animals of the same type as her base skinform, and receives a +4 to diplomacy or wild empathy checks with these types of creatures.

Hunter's Tricks: Over time, the skinwalker learns to use their natural cunning to greater advantage. At alternating levels, the skinwalker learns 1 new trick, selected from the list, below. The skinwalker may use these tricks a total number of times per day equal to her skinwalker level, plus her wisdom modifier. Tricks are usually swift actions, but sometimes move or free actions that modify a standard action, usually an attack action. Once a trick is chosen, it can’t be retrained. A skinwalker cannot select an individual trick more than once.

Partial Shift (Su): Over time, a skinwalker grains greater control over their shifting capability, and may channel it more accurately. She may spend a use of her skinform to force a partial shift, instead. Doing this consumes the same sort of action as assuming her skinform does, and makes her appearance slightly more bestial. Ears elongate, facial hair becomes more pronounced, the tip of the nose darkens, and so on. When in a partial shift, the skinwalker gains a +2 strength, lowlight vision, darkvision out to 60', and scent while in her base form.

At seventh level, a skinwalker may force an even finer transformation, giving herself a single natural attack when in base form. This natural attack does 1d6 if the skinwalker's humanoid form is of medium size.

Damage Reduction (Ex): The skinwalker gains DR 1/Silver at level 3. This ability improves over time. At this point, their natural weapons also count as silver for purposes of damage reduction.

Master of their Kind (Sp): Once per day, the skinwalker can use animal messenger, animal trance, or charm animal as a spell-like ability, using their skinwalker level plus your Charisma modifier. These abilities affect only animals of your companion type, and you gain only one use of this ability per day (not one of each ability). Classes that stack with the skinwalker's Animal Affinity ability also stack with this ability for purposes of caster level.

True Skinform: You may use your skinform ability at-will.

Hunter's Tricks

The following is a list of hunter tricks and their effects. Tricks marked with a * work only in skinform.

Aiding Attack (Ex): The skinwalker can use this trick as a free action when he hits a creature with an attack. The next ally who makes an attack against the target creature before the start of the skinwalker's next turn gains a +2 circumstance bonus on that attack roll.
Beastial Utterance (Su):* When in skinform, your control of your vocal cords parallels none, and you are able to speak normally in any language you know. This allows you to cast spells with verbal components, speak command words, and activate spell completion and spell trigger items. However, it does not give you the ability to cast spells requiring somatic components unless you also have the Natural Spell feat, or cast spells with material components merged into your form. In addition, the skinwalker may communicate with creatures of the same type as her skinform as though using speak with animals, with a caster level equal to her skinwalker level.
Bolster Companion (Ex): The skinwalker can use this trick as an immediate action when his animal companion is hit with an attack or a combat maneuver. The companion's AC and combat maneuver defense increase by +4 for the purposes of that attack. If the attack still hits, the animal companion only takes half damage (if any). The animal companion must be able to see and hear the skinwalker to benefit from this trick.
Burrowing Form (Ex):* You gain a burrow speed of 30 when in skinform.
Catfall (Ex): The skinwalker can use this trick as an immediate action when he falls 20 or more feet, ignoring the first 20 feet of the fall when calculating the falling damage. If the skinwalker takes no damage from the fall, he does not fall prone.
Chameleon Step (Ex): The skinwalker can move up to twice his speed as a move action. The skinwalker does not take any penalty on Stealth checks for movement during this move. This move provokes attacks of opportunity as normal.
Climbing Form (Ex):* You gain a climb speed of 40 when in skinform.
Cunning Pantomime (Ex): As a standard action, the skinwalker can communicate with a single creature as if using the tongues spell for 10 minutes. Because the communication is slow and lacks subtlety, the skinwalker suffers a –4 penalty on all Bluff and Diplomacy checks relating to the creature he is communicating with when using this trick.
Deft Stand (Ex): The skinwalker can spend a move action to stand up without provoking attacks of opportunity.
Distracting Attack (Ex): The skinwalker can use this trick as a free action before he makes an attack. If the attack hits, the target takes a –2 penalty on all attack rolls for 1 round.
Ferocity (Ex): You gain the ferocity universal monster ability, allowing you to continue fighting at negative hit points. This is a permanent ability.
Heel (Ex): The skinwalker can use this trick as an immediate action when his animal companion moves. When the companion moves, the square it starts out in is not considered threatened by any opponent it can see, and therefore visible enemies do not get attacks of opportunity against it when it moves from that square. The companion must end this movement in a square adjacent to the skinwalker. The animal companion must be able to see and hear the skinwalker to take this movement.
Hobbling Strike (Ex):* The skinwalker can use this trick as a free action when he hits with an attack. The target of the attack's land speed is reduced by 1/2 for 1d4 rounds.
Quick Climb (Ex): The skinwalker can climb at his full speed as a move action without penalty.
Quick Healing (Ex): As a swift action, the skinwalker can make a Heal check to administer first aid on an adjacent dying character. Alternatively, the skinwalker can administer a potion to an unconscious character as a move action.
Quick Swim (Ex): The skinwalker can swim at his full speed as a move action without penalty.
Rattling Strike (Ex):* The skinwalker can use this trick as a free action before he makes a melee attack. If the attack hits, the target is shaken for 1d4 rounds.
Second Chance Strike (Ex): When he misses with a melee attack, the skinwalker may reroll his attack at a –5 penalty. Using this ability is an immediate action.
Sic 'Em (Ex): The skinwalker can use this trick as a swift action. His animal companion makes one melee attack against an adjacent creature. The animal companion must be able to see and hear the skinwalker to make this attack.
Skill Sage (Ex): As a free action, the skinwalker can roll twice on any one skill check and take the better result. He must have at least 1 rank in that skill to use this ability.
Skilled Claws (Ex): Your claws are more nimble, or you may force a partial transformation. The SFX is up to you. In either case, you may use tools or perform skills which require fine manipulation, though at a -4 penalty. This is not enough to wield weapons, though you may hold them. This is a permanent ability.
Spirit Jaws (Su):* When using skinform, your natural attacks are considered to be magic for the purposes of overcoming damage reduction. This is a permanent ability.
Stag's Leap (Ex): As a free action, the skinwalker can attempt a running jump without moving 10 feet before the jump.
Surprise Shift (Ex): The skinwalker can move 5 feet as a swift action. This movement does not provoke attacks of opportunity and does not count as a 5-foot step.
Swift Tracker: You may move at normal speed when tracking while using Survival to follow tracks without taking the normal –5 penalty. You take only a –10 penalty (instead of the normal –20) when moving at up to twice normal speed while tracking.
Swimming Form:* You gain a swim speed of 40 when in skinform.
Tangling Strike (Ex):* The skinwalker can use this attack as a free action when he makes an attack. If the attack hits, the target is entangled for 1 round.
Trample (Ex):* You gain a trample attack when in skinform. The damage for your trample is 1d8 + 1.5 Str. This otherwise follows the universal monster rules for the trample special attack.
Tough Hide (Ex):* Your natural armor when in skinform improves by 2. This is a permanent ability.
Uncanny Senses (Ex): As an immediate action, the skinwalker gains a +10 insight bonus on Perception checks for 1 round.
Upending Strike (Ex):* The skinwalker can use this trick as a free action just before he makes a melee attack. If the attack hits, he may make a free trip combat maneuver against the target.
Vengeance Strike (Ex): The skinwalker can use this trick as an immediate action when an enemy adjacent to him hits an ally with a melee or ranged attack. The skinwalker can make a single melee attack at his highest base attack bonus against the creature who attacked his ally.
Winged Form (Ex):* Your skinform now possesses wings or if it possessed them before, they become functional. You gain a flight speed of 40' (average maneuverability). You must be level 3 before selecting this trick.
Wild's Wisdom (Ex): As a swift action, the skinwalker can grant all allies within 30 feet that are within line of sight and can hear him a +2 bonus on skill checks with a single skill of his choice. The skinwalker must have at least one rank in the chosen skill. This bonus lasts for 1 round.
Woodland Stride (Ex): A skinwalker may move through any sort of undergrowth (such as natural thorns, briars, overgrown areas, and similar terrain) at his normal speed and without taking damage or suffering any other impairment. This is a permanent ability.