The later years of D&D 3.5 produced some interesting experiments, from Pact Magic, Shadow Magic, to the wushu stylings of Book of Nine Swords. One of my personal favorites was Magic of Incarnum, by James Wyatt, Richard Backer, Frank Brunner, and Stephen Schubert. The beautiful art by Wayne Reynolds was a big part of that, but also the completely different approach to magic and classes. The look and feel never meshed well with the high fantasy worlds of main D&D, but seems like it could be an interesting addition to the Sci-Fantasy world of Starfinder. With that in mind, here is my homage to the totemist incarnum class.
TOTEMIC MYSTIC CONNECTION
Whether you are part of a tradition that honors totemic beliefs, encountered strange magic that infused the spirits of arcane beasts within you, or simply feel called to them on your own, you have learned to invest a portion of your soul into magic that allows you to take on aspects of magical creatures. Visually this may appear as astral shadows of the totem overlaying your own features, your body warping to actually take on the traits of the totem, or even more unusual effects, but whatever the effect it is not subtle and cannot be concealed.
Associated Deities: Eldest, Eloritu, Green Faith (Philosophy),Lamashtu, Oras
Associated Skills: Life Science and Survival
Spells: no bonus spells
Soul Fusion (Su) – 1st Level
You gain the ability to infuse some portion of your spirit into the totemic concepts of magical beasts. You gain one less spell per level. Instead, you may invest Resolve Points into your augment slots every day when you regain spells. You must not have an augment in a slot in order to invest Resolve Points into it, and may only have one totem invested in any one augment slot. Resolve Points must be invested at the start of a day when you regain spells, and cannot be used for any other purpose once invested. You can only ever have half of your total Resolve Points (rounded down, minimum 1) invested at any point in time. Your augment slots are as follows: Arms, Brain, Ears, Eyes, Feet, Hands, Heart, Legs, Lungs, Skin, Spinal Column, and Throat.
Soul of the Beast (Su) – 3rd Level
You gain a unique weapon specialization with your natural weapons, allowing you to add 1–1/2 × your character level to your damage rolls for your natural weapons (instead of just adding your character level, as usual). Your natural weapons gained from your totems are always considered magic weapons.
Animus Epiphany (Su) – 6th Level
You gain access to an additional augment slot, your Animus, to invest Resolve Points into. You may only have one point invested in your Animus slot.
Evolution Arcana (Su) – 9th Level
You take on the basic traits of the magical creatures. You gain the Magical Beast type in addition to your existing type and subtype, gaining a +2 racial to Fortitude and Reflex saves and a +1 racial bonus to hit with natural weapons. Triple the damage dice for all natural weapons you gain from your totems (eg. from 1d6 to 3d6).
Animus Expansion (Su) – 12th Level
You may have up to 2 Resolve Points invested in your animus slot. Quintuple, instead of triple, the damage dice for all natural weapons you gain from your totems (eg. from 1d6 to 5d6).
Adaptive Soul (Su) – 15th Level
Once per day, as long as you have rested for 8 hours, you can reinvest your Resolve Points as a full round action. Och-tuple, instead of quintuple, the damage dice for all natural weapons you gain from your totems (eg. from 1d6 to 8d6).
Animus Mastery (Su) – 18th Level
You may have up to 3 Resolve Points invested in your animus slot. Multiple by 12, instead of och-tuple, the damage dice for all natural weapons you gain from your totems (eg. from 1d6 to 12d6).
The noble bulette is a creature of legend, a shark like land predator known for it’s ability to swim through earth like water, and take prey by surprise.
Animus – You gain earth glide and a burrow speed equal to 20 ft. × the number of Resolve Points investedin Animus.
Ears – You gain a +2 insight bonus to sound based Perception checks.
Legs – You gain the ability to leap as part of a charge, making a DC 20 Athletics check. On a success you may full attack at the end of the charge, taking the normal penalties to hit for a full attack but no penalty from charging.
Throat – You gain a bite attack as a natural weapon that deals 1d6 P.
A horror out of myth, the chimera encompasses as many abilities as it has heads
Animus – You gain a breath weapon. As a standard action you can expel your breath weapon in a (15 ft. × the number of Resolve Points investedin Animus) cone as an extraordinary ability. Choose the damage type when you invest your Resolve, picking from the following list: acid, cold, electricity, or fire. You are not harmed by using your own breath weapon. Once you’ve used your breath weapon, you can’t use it again for 1d6 rounds. This breath weapon deals 3d6 plus 5d6 additional damage per Resolve Points investedin Animus. Targets in the area can attempt a Reflex save (DC = 10 + half your level + your Wisdom modifier) to take only half damage.
Arms – You gain a +2 insight bonus to Athletics checks.
Heart – You gain a +2 insight bonus on Fortitude saves vs Poison and Disease.
Hands – You gain claws as a natural weapon that deals 1d4 P & S.
Sometimes regarded as vermin, none can deny the electrovore’s penchant for survival and ability to spread wherever civilization has grown.
Animus – You also gain the ability to release an electric discharge as a standard action. All creatures within (10 ft. × the number of Resolve Points investedin Animus) of you take 1d6 plus 4d6 additional damage per Resolve Points investedin Animus, and are staggered for a number of rounds equal to Resolve Points investedin Animus. Once you’ve used your electric discharge, you can’t use it again for 1d4 rounds. Targets in the area can attempt a Reflex save (DC = 10 + half your level + your Wisdom modifier) to take only half damage and negate the staggered effect.
Arms – You gain a +2 insight bonus on Acrobatics checks.
Eyes – You gain blindsense (electric fields) 10 ft.
Heart – You gain resistance to electricity equal to half your mystic level.
A massive colossi from the ruined planet of Daimalko, the Kyokor is synonymous with implacable strength.
Animus – You gain DR/ 5 × the number of Resolve Points investedin Animus. If you have 2 or more Resolve Points invested in Animus, increase your size by one step.
Hands – You gain claws as a natural weapon that deals 1d6 S.
Legs – You gain a +1 insight bonus on Athletics checks and a +5 ft. enhancement bonus to your movement speed.
Skin – You can spend a move action to harden your skin, gaining a +1 insight bonus to KAC until the start of your next turn.
The white apes of Akiton are famous for their ferocity in battle, able to tear their foes asunder in a matter of moments.
Animus – You gain the ability to enter a fearsome altered state of consciousness as an immediate action that hyper-focuses you in a fight. For a number of rounds equal to your mystic level you gain an insight bonus equal to your Resolve Points investedin Animus to hit rolls, damage rolls, and a number of temporary hit points equal to twice your character level. You may not choose to end this state, and after the effect ends you gain the fatigued condition for an equal amount of time. You cannot use the ability again until the duration of fatigue has expired.
Arms – You gain an additional pair of arms, granting you the Four-Armed trait as a Kasatha, or if you already have four arms, allows you to interact with an additional pair of arms worth of weapons and equipment.
Legs – You gain a +2 insight bonus to Athletics checks to climb and Acrobatics checks to balance.
Spinal Column – You gain a slam attack as a natural weapon that deals 1d6 B.
The glass serpents of Eox are terrible creatures that have become emblematic of that blasted planets fearsome fauna.
Animus – You gain the ability to disappear like a glass serpent. For a number of times per day equal to your Resolve Points investedin Animus you can become invisible, as the spell, as part of any other action. For a number of times equal to your Resolve Points investedin Animus, when you make an action that would cause an invisibility spell to end, you may make a Will save (DC = 15 + half your level). If you succeed you remain invisible, but if you fail, the invisibility ends. You can turn invisible again on your turn in the next round, but it counts against your limit for the day.
Arms – You gain crystal tipped tentacles as a natural weapon with the reach property that deals 1d4 P.
Eyes – You gain a +2 insight bonus to sight based Perception checks.
Skin – You gain a +2 insight bonus to Stealth checks.
The majestic griffon still appears in heraldic designs, evoking the concepts of honor, strength, and courage.
Animus – You gain a fly speed equal to 30 ft. × the number of Resolve Points investedin Animus, with maneuverability based on your Resolve invested in Animus (1 = poor, 2 = average, 3 = excellent).
Arms – You gain a +2 insight bonus on Pilot checks.
Eyes – You gain low-light vision if you do not already have it, and a +1 insight bonus to Perception checks. If you already have low-light vision, you gain Darkvision 30 ft. If you already have Darkvision as well, increase the range of your Darkvision by 15 ft.
Hands – You gain claws as a natural weapon with the operative property that deals 1d4 S.
Another beast from myth, the manticore’s fearsome tail and foul disposition are still spoken of.
Animus – You gain a barbed tail as a natural weapon (or your existing tail becomes barbed). Each turn you may decide whether to make a melee attack with it, or to snap your tail and loose a volley of spikes as a standard action. If you loose a volley you release a number of spikes equal to the number of Resolve Points investedin Animus (make an attack roll for each spike). This attack has a range of 90 feet and all targets must be within 30 feet of each other. However you choose to employ your tail spikes, they are natural weapons with the operative property that deal 1d6 P.
Lungs – You gain blindsense (scent) 15 ft.
Brain – You gain a +2 insight bonus on Survival checks.
Throat – You gain a +2 insight bonus on Intimidate checks.
The unicorn is synonymous with noble majesty and pure heartedness.
Animus – You may cast teleport as a spell-like ability a number of times per day equal to the number of Resolve Points investedin Animus.
Brain – You gain a gore as a natural weapon with the breach property that deals 1d6 P.
Heart – You gain a +2 insight bonus on Diplomacy checks and your natural weapons are considered Good aligned for the purposes of overcoming DR.
Legs – You gain a +1 insight bonus on Athletics checks and a +5 ft. enhancement bonus to your move speed.
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Until next time Starfinders!
Artist and Writer