(Almost) Sunday NPCs: Well-Oiled Combat Machine

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September 6, 2021 by klspeedling

Sunday NPCs has gotten away from me slightly while I work on some other deadlines, so the biweekly schedule might slip a bit, but I’ll try to keep to it on at least a reasonably regular basis!

We’re back to Pathfinder this week, and I decided to add a bit of randomness to my character creation. I used random die rolls to determine the class/theme and ancestry of my NPC, then jumped off that to create a backstory and personality. I started with the 40 classes of PF1, rolling 2d20 to narrow it down to two classes: brawler and kineticist. I then rolled another d20, deciding evens would be brawler and odds would be kineticist. Evens it was! I also rolled a d20 to determine an archetype; conveniently, there are 19 brawler archetypes, with 20 indicating no archetype. As luck would have it, I rolled a 20, so archetype-less brawler is what I went with. (Now that I think about it, I could have randomized the CR/level as well, but I just decided to do a mid-level NPC.)

As there were a lot more 1E races to choose from, I rolled a d100 and rerolled any results above the available number of races. After one reroll, I had my race/ancestry: android! Android brawler definitely raised some interesting possibilities, and fortunately, the 2E android was released as an ancestry in the 2E Lost Omens Ancestry Guide, making it pretty easy to convert. Brawler was pretty straightforward as well, using the monk as a guideline.

So, here’s a wandering android brawler for use as a friend or foe!

Iteration Karros        CR 9

XP 6,400

Male android brawler (ACG) 10

N Medium humanoid (android)

Init +2; Senses darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision, Perception +15


AC 19, touch 14, flat-footed 15 (+5 armor, +2 Dex, +2 dodge)

hp 85 (10d10+30)

Fort +10, Ref +10, Will +4; +4 vs. mind-affecting effects, paralysis, poison, and stun effects

Defensive Abilities constructed; Immune disease, emotion-based effects, exhaustion, fatigue, fear, sleep


Speed 30 ft.

Melee +1 unarmed strike +15/+10 (1d10+5) or +1 tonfa +15/+10 (1d10+5)

Ranged light crossbow +12 (1d8/19-20)

Special Attacks brawler’s flurry, knockout 2/day (DC 19), martial flexibility 8/day, nanite surge


Str 19, Dex 15, Con 14, Int 12, Wis 10, Cha 8

Base Atk +10; CMB +14 (+17 disarm, +16 grapple, +18 trip); CMD 26 (29 vs. disarm, 28 vs. grapple, 30 vs. trip)

Feats Boar Style (UC), Combat Expertise, Combat Rhythm (MAH), Improved Disarm, Improved Grapple, Improved Initiative, Improved Trip, Improved Unarmed Strike, Power Attack

Skills Acrobatics +14, Intimidate +12, Knowledge (local) +14, Perception +15, Survival +10; Racial Modifiers +2 Perception, -4 Sense Motive

Languages Common, Draconic

SQ brawler’s cunning, brawler’s strike (cold iron, magic, silver), close weapon mastery, emotionless, maneuver training 2, martial training
Combat Gear
potion of cure moderate wounds, potion of fly; Other Gear +2 studded leather, +1 tonfa (UE), light crossbow with 20 bolts, amulet of mighty fists +1, belt of giant strength +2, cloak of resistance +1, masterwork manacles, masterwork survival kit

Special Abilities

Nanite Surge (Ex) Karros’s body is infused with nanites. Once per day as an immediate action, he can cause his nanites to surge, granting a +13 bonus on any one d20 roll; this ability must be activated before the roll is made. When he uses this power, his circuitry-tattoos glow with light equivalent in illumination to that of a torch for 1 round.

Iteration Karros        Creature 9

N, Medium, Android, Humanoid

Perception +18; low-light vision

Languages Androffan, Common, Draconic

Skills Acrobatics +19, Athletics +20, Intimidation +18, Survival +17

Str +6, Dex +5, Con +4, Int +4, Wis +3, Cha +2

Items +1 explorer’s clothing, +1 striking handwraps of mighty blows, +1 striking tekko-kagi (LO:GM), crossbow

AC 27; Fort +18, Ref +21, Will +15 ; +1 vs. diseases, poisons, and radiation

HP 180

Infused Strikes Karros’s unarmed Strikes are treated as cold iron, magic, and silver.

Nanite Surge (reaction) Frequency once per hour; Trigger Karros attempts a skill check requiring three actions or fewer; Effect Karros stimulates his nanites, forcing his body to temporarily increase its efficiency. He gains a +2 status bonus to the triggering skill check. In addition, his circuitry glows, lighting a 10-foot emanation with dim light for 1 round.

Powerful Fist Karros doesn’t take a circumstance penalty to deal lethal damage with his fists or other unarmed attacks.

Speed 25 feet

Melee (one action) fist +22 (agile, finesse, nonlethal, unarmed), Damage 21d0+13 bludgeoning

Melee (one action) tekko-kagi +22 (agile, disarm, finesse, parry, trip, uncommon), Damage 2d4+13 slashing

Ranged (one action) crossbow +21, Damage 1d8+9 piercing

Knockout (two actions) (incapacitation) Frequency once per day; Effect Karros makes a single devastating melee Strike to instantly knock a target unconscious. He must decide to use Knockout before attempting his Strike. If his Strike is a success and the target takes damage, it must succeed at a DC 26 Fortitude save or fall unconscious for 1d6 rounds. Each round on its turn, the unconscious target may take three actions to attempt a new Fortitude save to end the effect, without provoking attacks of opportunity. Creatures immune to critical hits or nonlethal damage are immune to Knockout.

Shifting Flurry (one action) Frequency once per round; Effect Karros makes two Strikes, using any combination of weapons in the Brawling group or attempts to Disarm, Grapple, or Trip. If he Strikes twice and both hit the same creature, combine their damage for the purpose of resistances and weaknesses.

Iteration Karros knows nothing of how he came to be. He only knows that he woke up in a metal room full of strange machinery, much of which seemed to be destroyed. Though he had a sense of what his name should be, he knew little else of his origins. After making his way aboveground, however, he soon realized that he was different than others around them. The strange patterns on his body didn’t seem to be the tattoos he sometimes saw on others, and when they bled, their blood was far brighter than his own. It’s been over two decades since Karros awoke, and in that time, he can tell he hasn’t physically aged.

Karros largely lives a nomadic lifestyle, wandering from settlement to settlement without staying in one place too long. To make ends meet, he takes jobs as a bounty hunter, bringing in quarries to any with the money to pay. He is keenly interested in strange ruins like the one he awoke in, however, and is willing to pay handsomely to those with information about more such locations. He has a somewhat detached and aloof manner, and is typically a man of few words, preferring to let his actions speak for him.

PCs could encounter Karros as either an adversary or an ally. If the PCs get on the wrong side of a person or group, Karros might be hired to bring them in; it doesn’t make much difference whether the PCs are good or evil, as Karros’s only hard line is that he won’t bring people to slavers. The PCs could also encounter him while investigating an odd ruin, which could give them the opportunity to work together or view him a rival explorer. If he finds a bounty is above his ability to bring in alone, Karros might contact adventurers such as the PCs, offering them a cut of the bounty in exchange for their assistance.

Sources Used

First Edition:

Pathfinder Core Rulebook (Jason Bulmahn et al.), Pathfinder Advanced Class Guide (Jason Bulmahn et al.), Pathfinder Bestiary 5 (Dennis Baker et al.), Pathfinder Ultimate Equipment (Dennis Baker et al.), Pathfinder Ultimate Combat (Jason Bulmahn et al.), Pathfinder Player Companion: Martial Arts Handbook (Thurston Hillman et al.)

Second Edition:

Pathfinder Core Rulebook (Logan Bonner, Jason Bulmahn, Stephen Radney-McFarland, and Mark Seifter), Pathfinder Gamemastery Guide (Logan Bonner, Jason Bulmahn, Stephen Radney-McFarland, Mark Seifter et al.), Pathfinder Lost Omens: Gods and Magic (Robert Adducci et al.), Pathfinder Lost Omens: Ancestry Guide (android section by Jessica Catalan)

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