Ninja: Shinobi


Many people mistake ninjitsu for a style of combat, like karate or jujitsu. In reality, it was a complex art, consisting of many areas of knowledge and skill that an upcoming assassin would need to perfect before becoming a ninja. Stealth, disguise, survival, deception, psychology and diplomacy are just a few of those, aside from expertise in many kinds of weapons, poisons and other means of dealing death. One could only be born a ninja, it was impossible to become one. Extreme training began the moment a future assassin started talking and placing his first steps, and lasted for many years. The process itself was extremely secretive, and all ninja were taught that death, be it by the hand of another or one's own, was the only way in a situation that could jeopardize any of the secrets of ninjitsu. Traitors were tracked down and murdered without any hesitation. There were several kinds of ninja, of which the most notable were shinobi (assassins focused mainly on stealth and combat) and kunoichi (female assassins who specialized in diplomacy and intelligence).

Character Concept

The shinobi is an invisible stalker and silent assassin. Tireless and persistent, he watches his prey for hours, days, even weeks on end to find the best time and place to deal swift death. The shinobi stops at nothing to get the job done, employing a number of dirty tricks to boost his already considerable fighting prowess - knocking the enemy down, administering unexpected and crippling blows, even calling the very darkness to his aid.

In Neverwinter Nights, this amounts to high stealth (Hide and Move Silently), high sneak attacks (10d6 or more) with a chance to paralyze opponents (Death Attack), high enough Strength (general combat prowess) and a high Dexterity (high armor class, bonuses to skills). Because of game limitations (no possibility to wield a katana as a two-handed weapon), you will be using two katanas instead of the customary longsword (ninja-to) and thrown weapons (shurikens, darts), which would require too many feats to make both effective.

The character's alignment must be evil because of the Assassin class requirements. Which of the three evil alignments you choose is up to you - read the descriptions carefully and decide which fits your character best. The alignment I found most fitting was Lawful Evil.

This character requires a decent Strength and a high Dexterity, and as such you will be taking Strength for your extra attribute points at levels 4, 8, 36 and 40, while raising Dexterity at levels 12, 16, 20, 24, 28 and 32.

When you level as a Fighter (character levels 1-13 and 21), max out Discipline and Lore, leaving the rest of the skill points recieved for later, except for raising the Hide and Move Silently skills (by 2 points at character creation and 1 point each at levels 3, 5, 7, 9, 11 and 13) to meet the requirements for the Assassin class. Also, during character creation, you are forced to use all points. I suggest you think about the skills you'll be getting later and spend the left-over two points wisely. When you level as an Assassin (character levels 14-20 and 22-40), choose your skills carefully, because you won't be getting as many as you would expect with a Rogue type character (you'll be getting 8 per level, to be exact). Besides putting all you can into Hide and Move Silently, I recommend Lore, Tumble (+8 natural AC by the end), Search, Disable Trap, Use Magic Device (to use scrolls and other class-restricted items) and Spot.

Character Statistics And Feat Progression

RACE: Human
CLASS: Fighter
ALIGNMENT: Lawful Evil
ATTRIBUTES: Str 14, Dex 16, Con 12, Wis 8, Int 16, Cha 8
SKILLS: Discipline 4, Lore 4, Hide 2, Move Silently 2, Tumble 2, Disable Trap 2

Level 1: (Fighter 1) Ambidexterity, Two Weapon Fighting, Weapon Proficiency (Exotic)
Level 2: (Fighter 2) Weapon Focus (Katana)
Level 3: (Fighter 3) Power Attack
Level 4: (Fighter 4) Weapon Specialization (Katana)
Level 5: (Fighter 5) --
Level 6: (Fighter 6) Knockdown, Dodge
Level 7: (Fighter 7) --
Level 8: (Fighter 8) Improved Knockdown
Level 9: (Fighter 9) Improved Two Weapon Fighting
Level 10: (Fighter 10) Improved Critical (Katana)
Level 11: (Fighter 11) --
Level 12: (Fighter 12) Mobility, Spring Attack
Level 13: (Fighter 13) --
Level 14: (Assassin 1) --
Level 15: (Shadow Dancer 1) Toughness
Level 16: (Assassin 2) --
Level 17: (Assassin 3)
Level 18: (Assassin 4) Blind Fight
Level 19: (Assassin 5) --
Level 20: (Assassin 6) --
Level 21: (Fighter 14) Epic Weapon Focus (Katana), Epic Weapon Specialization (Katana)
Level 22: (Assassin 7) --
Level 23: (Assassin 8) --
Level 24: (Assassin 9) Great Dexterity I
Level 25: (Assassin 10) --
Level 26: (Assassin 11) --
Level 27: (Assassin 12) Great Dexterity II
Level 28: (Assassin 13) --
Level 29: (Assassin 14) Epic Skill Focus (Hide)
Level 30: (Assassin 15) Great Dexterity III
Level 31: (Assassin 16) --
Level 32: (Assassin 17) --
Level 33: (Assassin 18) Great Dexterity IV, Epic Skill Focus (Move Silently)
Level 34: (Assassin 19) --
Level 35: (Assassin 20) --
Level 36: (Assassin 21) Epic Prowess
Level 37: (Assassin 22) Improved Sneak Attack
Level 38: (Assassin 23) --
Level 39: (Assassin 24) Improved Sneak Attack
Level 40: (Assassin 25) --

Submitted By: Aremah

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