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Skip Navigation LinksHigh Fantasy HERO>Conversions>D&D>D&D 3rd Edition>Class Conversions>Paladins
PALADINS
FROM: D&D 3rd Edition
TO: HERO System 5th Edition
Sample Paladin: Sir Beck from Ptolus, City by the Spire
Paladins are devout warriors who devote their lives to service to some greater being or a transcendent ideal. Their faith is rewarded with the gifting of supernatural abilities which better enable them to serve the subject of their faith.
Paladins combine the fighting skills of a dedicated warrior with the Divine magic use of a Cleric. They can be dangerous opponents, particularly to Evil entities. Paladins concentrate on improving their martial and Divine casting skills.
In the HERO System, a Paladin would be well advised to harbor some Points with which to buy and expand a Divine Magic VPP rather than just constantly buying up Characteristics and more Combat Skill Levels. Fighting skill alone does not a Paladin make.  
Fictional and mythical characters that can fit the Paladin archetype range from Lancelot to...uh...well, Lancelot really.
The following guidelines provide advice on how to take D&D Paladins and convert them into the HERO System.
Paladin Class Ability Considerations
ATTACKS PER ROUND
Some Characters and Monsters get more Attacks per Round than others in D&D 3e, and this bears special consideration when converting into the HERO System.
For starters, all Characters are going to get more "attacks per round" (or per six seconds to be more accurate) in the HERO System because the basic design of the combat system revolves around twelve second Turns in which all Characters make at least one action, and often many more than one.
However there are several mechanisms available to ensure that those that have a lot of Attacks in D&D 3e maintain their edge in melee nonetheless.
SPEED Figured Characteristic
The most direct method of increasing one's actions in the HERO System is to simply buy more SPEED. However since Fantasy HERO is a Heroic level game with Normal Characteristic Maxima in place this can get expensive once the Maxima has been hit. Due to the "force multiplying" effect of SPEED, many GM's will actively resist Character concepts pertaining to increasing it too far.
 But, if your GM is amenable, even a single point of SPEED over the Characteristic Maxima can give a definite edge in combat and should be considered.
MORE ATTACKS AS SPEED OVER NCM
Killing Machine: +1 SPD (Over Characteristic Maxima)
Real Cost: 20 points
Sweep
Sweep is an Optional Combat Maneuver which is accessible to all Characters for free if it is allowed at all. 
Sweep allows a Character to attack multiple opponents in HtH as long as they are within melee range, but at a stiff to hit penalty. To ensure superiority at it a Character could buy several +2 OCV Combat Skill Levels with Sweep.
MORE ATTACKS AS CSL's WITH SWEEP
Willow parted Four Times: +6 OCV with SWEEP {allows four strikes without penalty}
Real Cost: 12 points
NPA Autofire
Alternately, with your GM's permission, you can buy an Autofire Naked Power Attack (NPA) usable with any weapon of up to a certain amount of Active Points.
This is a personal ability inherent to the Character, and it is usable with any weapon of the appropriate type. This will enable your Fighter to strike multiple times with each attack as described under Autofire. However few GM's would permit NPA's  taken to be applied to free Equipment; due to their overpowering efficiency.
If their use is common place then it likely balances out but if only a few characters have access to such abilties (such as the PC's for instance), it can be very unbalancing. Check with your GM prior to taking any NPA based ability to determine whether or not the allow them in their campaign.
MORE ATTACKS AS NPA AUTOFIRE
Flurry of Strikes: Naked Modifier, Autofire (3 shots; +1/4) for up to 4d6 HKA (15 Active Points); OIF (Sword of Opportunity, -1/2) Costs 1 END
Real Cost: 10 points
Signature Power
With your GM's permission you could buy a special Attack Power that allows your Character to do damage to more than one opponent at a time.
You can use variations on Area of Effect: Any Area with No Range to indicate an ability to accurately attack all the hexes adjacent to your character, for example.
This is a more expensive option, but it makes for interesting flavor for a given Character; also, don't forget the advantage of only needing to hit a hexes DCV of 3.
MORE ATTACKS AS SIGNATURE AOE POWER
Reaping the Whirlwind: Killing Attack - Hand-To-Hand 2d6 (plus STR) (vs. PD), +1 STUN Multiplier (+1/4), Area Of Effect (4" Any Area; +1) (67 Active Points); OIF (Sword of Opportunity; -1/2), All hexes must be adjacent to own hex (-1/2) Costs 7 END
Real Cost: 33 points
DIVINE SPELLCASTING
Paladins gain the ability to cast some Holy/Good oriented Spells as early as fourth Class Level with good statistics, or sixth Class Level otherwise. This ability was not particularly defining for Paladins, but did give them some flexibility.
To add Spellcasting of this sort to your Paladin simply add the "Invested" Extension Package Deal provided in the Package Deals section.
Paladin Spells were ranked Levels 1 thru 4 in the source material, which is handled as 15, 30, 45, and 60 Active Point Spells in the Divine Magic System set forth by this conversion resource. This also corresponding to Spell Levels 0 thru 3 for a Cleric or Druid.
It is assumed that Paladins use a Variable Power Pool defined as follows for their Spellcasting abilities.
D&D 3rd EDITION PALADIN DIVINE MAGIC VPP CONTROL COST
  • Only Divine Magic (-1/2)
  • Very Limited List of Spells (Investiture Magic) (-1; can't be removed)
  • Only Change Spells With Meditation (Requires unmodified Faith Roll and 1 hour of Meditation;-1/2)
  • All Spells Must Have 1 Charge Each (-1/4)
  • Only Usable While In Good Standing With Faith (can't be removed; -1/4)
  • Variable Limitation (-1/2; each Spell must take -1 of Limitations from Focus (Holy Symbol), Extra Time, Concentration, Incantation, or Gesture in any combination at a MINIMUM)
Total Control Cost Limitation: -3
Control Cost per Spell Level (15 Pool) = 1.75 Real Points
Total Cost per Spell Level (15 Pool) = 17 Real Points
EXPANDED REAL COST LIMIT
Paladins have an Expanded Real Cost Limit on their Magic VPP's; a Paladin may prepare Spells with a Real Cost equal to or less than their Magic Pool times 3 (RC Limit = Pool x3) each day. The Pool size is still the upper limit on Active Points however.
EXAMPLE: Lord Yarovik is a powerful Paladin with a 60 Pool Divine Magic VPP; he may prepare up to 180 Real Cost worth of Spells that each have one Charge every day, all of which must have 60 or less Active Points.
CAST SPELL POOL LOCKOUT
When a Spell is cast from a Paladin's VPP, it locks out a portion of the VPP equal to its Real Cost. A Paladin cannot prepare a Spell, cast it, and then prepare another Spell using the portion of the Pool previously occupied by the first Spell.
EXAMPLE: If Lord Yarovik were to cast a Spell with has a Real Cost of 30, he would have 150 Real Cost worth of Spells remaining in his Pool. He may not prepare another Spell using the 30 Pool previously occupied by the Spell he cast until the following day; it has been expended by casting the Spell.
INVESTITURE MAGIC
A selection of Paladin Spells has been made available on the Spells Page.
NOTE: As an organizational aid, Paladin Spells have been designated "Investiture" Spells on the Spells Page. This is simply a programmatic convenience so that the Spell page's logic did not have to deal with Paladin Spells as a special case. Ignore the term or use it as you prefer. 
SPEED OF SPELL PROGRESSION
There is nothing preventing a Paladin Character from starting play with Paladin Spells, not having any at all, or advancing them to a much higher degree in the HERO System. It is up to the individual GM to determine at what rate a character may progress their Spellcasting; in my own campaigns I allow the point expenditure to dictate the rate. If a players wants to spend the points on it, then I allow them to advance their Spellcasting as quickly as they can afford and prefer.
PALADIN  MAGIC SCHOOL SKILLS
Paladins work magic via their faith in their patron deity. They use a EGO based Power Skill called Faith, which also serves as both a KS: Religion, and PS: Paladin for the Paladin in addition to being used whenever a Spell Skill Roll is needed..
FAITH AS POWER SKILL
Faith: Power Skill: Faith
Real Cost: 3 Points
SPELL SELECTION AND CREATION
Paladins cannot create new spells by default; their Spell List is fixed, and well defined. Paladins may only select Spells from the Paladin Spell List and only the GM may alter this list.
When a Paladin character has obtained sufficient Pool in their Magic VPP to cast the next higher Spell Level of Spells, the Character instantly and automatically knows all Paladin Spells of that Spell Level, but the first time they attempt to prepare a new Spell of that Level to their VPP the Paladin must make a PS: Faith Skill Roll at -1 per 10 Active Points in the Power.
If the roll is failed the Paladin may not prepare the Spell, and must roll again each following day they wish to prepare the Spell, trying no more than once per day. Once the Paladin has successfully prepared the Spell once, they never need to roll to add it to their VPP for the day again..
DETECT EVIL
Paladins have the ability to tell if a person or thing is Evil. This is easily handled as a custom Detect in the HERO System.
DETECT EVIL AS A SPECIAL DETECT
Detect Evil: Detect Evil [Sight], Sense; Only When Serving The God's Purposes (-1/2)
Real Cost: 3 Points
DIVINE GRACE
Paladins are particularly resistant to undesirable effects, shielded by their faith.  Consider the following options with or without a "Only When Serving The God's Purposes (-1/2)" Limitation applied.
The HERO System lacks the "Saving Throw" concept. However, a similar ability can be modeled using Damage Reduction that allows a Character to take less damage or effect based upon a die roll. There are many options to contend with if taking this approach; the following list shows only a few of them.
STRONG SAVES AS DAMAGE REDUCTION OPTIONS
7 Basic Fortitude: Physical Damage Reduction, Resistant, 25%; Requires A CON Roll (-1)
7 Basic Reflex: Energy Damage Reduction, Resistant, 25%; Requires A DEX Roll (-1)
7 Basic Will: Mental Damage Reduction, Resistant, 25%; Requires An EGO Roll (-1)
15 Fortitude: Physical Damage Reduction, Resistant, 50%; Requires A CON Roll (-1)
15 Reflex: Energy Damage Reduction, Resistant, 50%; Requires A DEX Roll (-1)
15 Will: Mental Damage Reduction, Resistant, 50%; Requires An EGO Roll (-1)
30 Advanced Fortitude: Physical Damage Reduction, Resistant, 75%; Requires A CON Roll (-1)
30 Advanced Reflex: Energy Damage Reduction, Resistant, 75%; Requires A DEX Roll (-1)
30 Advanced Will: Mental Damage Reduction, Resistant, 75%; Requires An EGO Roll (-1)
15 Spell Resistance: Magic Damage Reduction, Resistant, 25%
30 Spell Resistance: Magic Damage Reduction, Resistant, 50%
60 Spell Resistance: Magic Damage Reduction, Resistant, 75%

NOTE : The RSR Limitation values will be lower for Characters with higher values in their CON, DEX, and / or EGO Characteristics.

NOTE: Other Limitations can be applied instead of or in addition to the ones indicated. Consult your GM with any ideas you might have.
POWER DEFENSE AND MENTAL DEFENSE
Alternately Divine Grace might be represented with Power and Mental Defense instead.
DIVINE GRACE AS EXOTIC DEFENSES
Divine Defense: (Only When Serving The God's Purposes (-1/2))
+5 Mental Defense
+5 Power Defense
Real Cost: 6 Points
LAY ON HANDS
Paladins are able to heal by touch alone, channeling their holy energies into the touched subject. They can also heal themselves if they wish.
LAY ON HANDS AS HEALING POWER
Lay On Hands: Healing 4d6, Simple Healing Option; Extra Time (Full Turn, -1), 4 Charges (-1), Only When Serving The God's Purposes (-1/2)
Real Cost: 6 Points
DIVINE HEALTH
Paladins are immune to diseases, including those of magical origin.
IMMUNE TO DISEASE AS LIFE SUPPORT
Immune to Disease: LS: Immune to Disease; Only When Serving The God's Purposes (-1/2)
Real Cost: 7 Points
AURA OF COURAGE
Paladins are highly resistant to fear, and also help those near them resist fear (with a PRE attack vs. his comrades to bolster their spirits).
AURA OF COURAGE AS EXOTIC DEFENSES
Stalwart: (Only When Serving The God's Purposes (-1/2))
+10 Mental Defense
+10 Power Defense
+10 PRE; Only to Resist Fear (-2)
Real Cost: 7 Points
SMITE EVIL
Paladins are able to inflict great damage upon those of Evil bent. There are many ways to handle this in the HERO System, but I recommend using a variation of Deadly Blow combined with modified Overall Skill Levels.
Limited Overall Levels
Using Limited Overall Levels allows a Paladin to be good at whatever they need to be to defeat a particular foe. This grants a good deal of flexibility in combating "Evil" no matter what threat they pose.
SMITE EVIL AS LIMITED OVERALL LEVELS
Smite Evil: +1 Overall, Only vs. Evil (-2)
Real Cost: 3.3 Points per level
Deadly Blow
There is a specific version of Deadly Blow listed in Fantasy HERO for Paladins to use vs. Evil, and it is the most straightforward means of enabling them to do more damage vs. Evil opponents.
SMITE EVIL AS DEADLY BLOW
Smite Evil Wounding: +1d6 Killing, only vs. Evil Creatures  (+1d6 HKA; OIF: Weapon of Opportunity (-1/2))
Real Cost: 7 Points per die; Costs 1 END per die
REMOVE DISEASE
Paladins are able to cure other people of disease. There is no direct way to do this in the HERO System as there are many of different Power Constructs which might have a SFX defined in whole or in part as "Disease". Thus, I recommend using a form of Transform to turn the infected person into a non-infected version of the same person.
REMOVE DISEASE AS TRANSFORM
Remove Disease: Minor Transform 3d6 (Diseased Person To Healthy Person, Magic, Other Transforms), Lingering up to 5 Minutes (+1) (60 Active Points); Extra Time (1 Turn (Post-Segment 12), Character May Take No Other Actions, -1 1/2), 1 Continuing Charge lasting 5 Minutes (-1), OIF (Holy Symbol; -1/2), Concentration (1/2 DCV; -1/4), Incantations (-1/4), Gestures (-1/4)
Real Cost: 13 Points
REMOVE DISEASE MULTIPLE TIMES
As Paladins progress in power and ability, they are able to Remove Disease multiple times per day. Just increase the number of charges, paying the difference in points as needed.
TURN UNDEAD
Paladins are able to repel and even destroy the Undead. Referring to the most recent edition of Fantasy HERO for HERO System 5th Edition, Undead Turning is handled as a form of Presence Attack in the HERO System; refer to Fantasy HERO 5e pg 128 for the specifics of this ability, but a summary follows.
TURN UNDEAD AS BONUS PRE (FANTASY HERO 5e)
Turn Undead: +50 PRE Only To Make PRE Attacks (-1), Only vs. Undead Creatures (-1), Full Phase, Delayed Phase (-3/4), Limited Effect (-1), Only Usable While In Good Standing With Faith (can't be removed; -1/4)
Real Cost: 10 Points; +5 PRE for 1 point
SPECIAL MOUNT
Paladins often have a special mount with unusual abilities, for reasons that have never been very clear to me.
To model this ability, simply use the Follower rules to make an appropriate mount.
CODE OF CONDUCT
In the source material, Paladins have to comply with a strict Code of Conduct, or lose all of their special Class abilities. With GM Permission a Paladin may take some or all of the following Disadvantages as Personal Disadvantages to define a default Code of Conduct.
GENERIC CODE OF CONDUCT AS DISADVANTAGES
Vow of Asceticism: May only keep 10% of income; must give the rest in service to whatever church or cause the Paladin serves (Frequently, Limiting); Disadvantage Value: -10 Points
Vow of Association: May not willingly associate or tolerate Evil individuals  (Frequently, Limiting); Disadvantage Value: -10 Points
Vow of Acknowledgment: Must obey members of the clergy in a position of authority in whatever church or cause the Paladin Serves  (Frequently, Limiting); Disadvantage Value: -10 Points
Vow of Accordance: Must act in accordance with the precepts of the religion the Paladin serves or loose all special "Only While Serving The God's Purposes" abilities.  (Infrequently, Severe); Disadvantage Value: -10 Points
Vow of Atonement: Must go through lengthy quest or some other form of personal sacrifice to regain abilities if the Vow of Accordance is violated.  (Infrequently, Severe); Disadvantage Value: -10 Points
CUSTOM CODE OF CONDUCT
With GM approval, you may design a custom Code of Conduct for your Paladin. This is particularly appropriate if your Character is not a generic "force of good" and instead serves a specific deity. If the GM has made custom Package Deals for different sorts of Paladins that exist in their setting, you should probably use one of them instead. There is an almost infinite variety of things that can be done with the general concept of "holy warrior", and different Packages for such "invested" martial representatives of a deity or power can run the gamut.
EXAMPLE: Maya the GM has developed an involved cosmology for their setting, and has redefined the idea of a Paladin as a "holy warrior" invested with special abilities by whichever entity they serve.
One of the religious organizations he has defined for his settings is dedicated to Nantunas, a deity of mercantilism, and he has made several Package Deals to suit various roles within that organization; the priestly Tradesmiths and Tradesmith Acolytes, a more Rogue oriented Envoys, as well as a group of warriors invested with special abilities called Tradewardens.
As the Tradewardens don't have the same moral and ethical restrictions as some more strongly aligned "holy warriors", Maya has defined only very mild restrictions for them in the form of a Social Limitation that requires service to their organization. Individual Tradewardens might have more extreme Disadvantages, but as a whole the only thing their deity requires of them is that they serve the will of the Tradesmiths.
Paladin Package Deals
Paladins are holy warriors that couple martial and spiritual might.
Compared to other professions they emphasize piety and strict adherence to a rigid moral code.
Presented below are an assortment of Basic Packages, Extension Packages, and Composite Packages for your use.
BASIC PACKAGES
Heavy Foot Medium Foot Behemoth    
EXTENTION PACKAGES
Invested Mounted Fighting Winter Fighting Forest Fighting Mountain Fighting
Command Verbal Sparring Urban Survival Self Defense Guildmember
COMPOSITE PACKAGES
Paladin (3e) Paladin (Cavalier) Paladin (Spellcaster) Paladin (War Deity)