Blackweave Warlock

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The Blackweave Warlock is a special caste of githyanki wizards in the multiverse of Dungeons & Dragons. Born out of ancient lore about the githyanki's preferred approach to wizard specializations in the Planescape splatbook "A Guide to the Astral Plane", the Blackweave Warlock is fundamentally a necromancer-evoker hybrid; specializing in the use of the various offensive spells of the necromancy school to shrive its victims souls under barrages of necrotic energy. It debuted as one of several githyanki-exclusive prestige classes in Polyhedron #159 for Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Edition, and was then presented as a monster in the splatbook "The Plane Above: Secrets of the Astral Sea" in Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition.

Great Wheel Version[edit]

The blackweave is the githyanki term for negative energy, which they view as an essential component of all matter. The blackweave warlock is an arcane spellcaster whos pecializes in harnessing thsi energy, unleashing its powerfully destructive force on the enemies of the githyanki. At the cost of progressing in her knowledge of other schools of magic, the blackweave warlock becomes a master of necromancy, to the point where her entire body becomes suffused with negative energy and her touch is as deadly as the undead.

Many blackweave warlocks are sorcerers, though a number of necromancer wizards also choose to focus on necromancy so extensively. Although blackweave warlocks are very combat-focused (like all githyanki warlocks), they almost never multiclass except with this class, choosing instead to attain the maximum development of their spellcasting ability.

Blackweave warlocks are not the sort of necromancers who hide in cemeteries performing grotesque experiments on corpses or the undead. Rather, they are respected and feared members of the githyanki armies, marching into battle in the name of the Lich-Queen. Blackweave warlocks are valued for small-scale operations, including raids and missions of assassination or terror.

Hit Die: d6

Requirements:

Race: Githyanki
Alignment: Any Evil
Skills: Knowledge (Arcana) 9 ranks, Spellcraft 9 ranks
Feats: Spell Focus (Necromancy)
Spellcasting: Able to cast Ray of Exhaustion and Vampiric Touch.
Special: Must undergo an initiation rite in which a living, intelligent humanoid is tortured and killed through the use of magic.

Class Skills: Bluff, Concentration, Intimidate, Knowledge (Arcana, The Planes), Spellcraft

Skill Points per Level: 2 + Int Modifier

Class Requirements:

Weapon & Armor Proficiency: None
Bonus Spells/Day: Each level in blackweave warlock grants bonus spells per day, which can be added to whichever spell level that the blackweave warlock desires from those she can currently cast. No more than one of these bonus spells may be added to the character's highest current spell level. If the blackweave warlock has two or more arcane spellcasting classes, they must choose which previous spellcasting class gains each bonus spell. Bonus spells cannot be added to a divine spellcasting class. Once a blackweave warlock has chosen how to apply a given bonus spell, it cannot be shifted.
Additional Spells Known: A blackweave warlock that was previously a Sorcerer or Bard gains additional spells known with each level attained in blackweave warlock. These additional spells known can be of any levels of spells that the blackweave warlock can currently cast, but no more than one can be added to the character current highest spell level. In addition, the character can never know more spells of a certain level than she does of a lower level (except cantrips).
Necromancer: A blackweave warlock adds their class levels in Blackweave Warlock to any previous arcane spellcasting levels to determine their Caster Level, but only for spells of the Necromancy school. Additionally, at every 4th level, a blackweave warlock gains a bonus caster level for Necromancy spells.
Weapon Focus: A blackweave warlock gains either Weapon Focus (Ray Spells) or Weapon Focus (Touch Spells) as a bonus feat at 1st level.
Death Touch (Su): A number of times per day determined by level, a blackweave warlock can make a melee touch attack; if it hits, she rolls 2d6 and adds her Blackweave Warlock level - if the result at least equals the target's current hit points, then the target dies. This is a death effect.
New Spell Level: At every third level, a blackweave warlock gains the ability to cast spells of one level higher than she was previously able to cast. Initially, she can cast 0 spells of this level, but bonus spells (from a high ability score or blackweave warlock bonus spells) can increase this number. She also initially knows 0 spells of this level (if a Sorcerer or Bard), so in order to cast any spells, she must allocate her additional spell known to that level.
Death Ward (Su): A blackweave warlock gains a permanent immunity to negative energy and death attacks, as if protected by a Death Ward spell, at level 7.
Energy Drain (Su): A blackweave warlock with this ability can inflict 2 negative levels with each touch attack. The Fortitude save to remove is DC 20 + (Blackweave Warlock's Charisma modifier) (+ Weapon Focus: Touch Spells, if possessed).
Level Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Special Bonus Spells/Day Additional Spells Known
1 +0 +0 +0 +2 Necromancer, Weapon Focus 2 2
2 +1 +0 +0 +3 Death Touch 1/day 2 2
3 +2 +1 +1 +3 New Spell Level 3 1
4 +3 +1 +1 +4 Necromancer (+1) 2 2
5 +3 +1 +1 +4 Death Touch 2/day 2 2
6 +4 +2 +2 +5 New Spell Level 3 1
7 +5 +2 +2 +5 Death Ward 2 2
8 +6 +2 +2 +6 Death Touch 3/day, Necromancer (+2) 2 2
9 +6 +3 +3 +6 New Spell Level 3 1
10 +7 +3 +3 +7 Energy Drain 2 2

World Axis Version[edit]

Wicked and depraved with souls as dark as pitch, githyanki blackweaves are warlocks who have dedicated themselves to Vlaakith, the lich-queen. To become a blackweave, a githyanki gives over part of its life essence to the lich-queen, sustaining her in undeath for a while. In exchange, Vlaakith bestows the ability to channel some of her dark power, giving githyanki blackweaves capabilities beyond those of other githyanki warriors. This transfer of power grants the blackweaves the ability to corrupt the bodies of their enemies, making those foes easier to slay in the name of the lich-queen. Perhaps more significant, those slain by the githyanki blackweaves do not pass into the Shadowfell as is normal; instead, their souls pass to Tu’narath, where they are claimed by the lich-queen to sustain her undead existence.

A githyanki blackweave attempts not only to kill its enemies, but to trap them nearby so that their souls might be sent to the lich-queen. The blackweave uses psychic sinkhole to slow enemies, preferring to finish them off with silver rapier or eldritch blast. If enemies get too close, the blackweave uses wracking blast before moving to a safer position.

The Gith of Dungeons & Dragons
Races: Duthka'gith - Gith - Githyanki - Githzerai - Half-Githzerai
Undead: Kr'y'izoth - Tl'a'ikith
Individuals: Vlaakith CLVII - Zaerith Menyar-Ag-Gith - Zerthimon
Places: Shra'kt'lor - Tu'narath
NPC Classes: Mlar
Prestige Classes: Blackweave Warlock - Ghustil - Gish Mindslayer - Holocaust Warrior - Sword Stalker
Adventures: Incursion - Scales of War
Miscellaneous: Crown of Corruption - Gish - Scepter of Ephelomon