Eclipse – The Hotshot Pilot First Level Build

   Our next sample classless Eclipse d20 character is the Hotshot Pilot – whether of sailing ships, cars and trucks, helicopters, light spacecraft, or planes. This character is actually pretty simple; he or she has excellent reflexes and, behind the controls of his or her chosen type of vehicle, can make said vehicle do things that it’s designers wouldn’t believe.

   Of course, that may have to wait a bit – there’s only so good you can be at first level – but a true Hotshot Pilot is already pretty good on natural talent alone, and may be astoundingly good given time to build up his or her actual skills a bit.

  • Disadvantages: (Select three disadvantages for 10 CP).
  • Duties or Restrictions (A Hotshot Pilot usually has some fairly extensive obligations: vehicles are not cheap, and repairs aren’t much cheaper, +2 CP/Level).
  • Total available character points: 48 (Level One Base) + 10 (Disadvantages) +2 (Duties) + 6 (Level One Bonus Feat) = 66, 18 of which (from disadvantages, duties, and the bonus Feat) may be spent outside of the Adventurer framework restrictions.

   Basic Attributes: Str 10, Int 12, Wis 14, Con 10, Dex 16, Chr 12 (28 point buy).

   Basic Purchases (30 CP):

  • Proficient with All Simple, Martial, and Gunnery Weapons (15 CP) and Light Armor (3 CP).
  • +2 Skill Points (2 CP)
  • +2 on Reflex Saves (6 CP)
  • d8 Hit Die (4 CP)
  • Initial BAB +0 (0 CP).

   Special Abilities (36 CP):

  • Rider (6 CP), with Vehicle (6 CP), Sharing (3 CP), Ward (6 CP), Battle Dance (3 CP), Spirited (3 CP), and Stable Seat (3 CP), all Specialized in a particular group of vehicles (cars and trucks, helicopters, etc… The Hotshot Pilot will probably want to buy off this limitation shortly, at least on some of these abilities, but – at level one – he or she will just have to specialize for lack of points, reducing the overall cost to (15 CP). Details on these abilities can be found in Eclipse: The Codex Persona, available in print HERE and in a shareware .pdf version HERE.
  • Block/Missile (6 CP). The Hotshot Pilot may attempt to dodge ranged attacks – and may attempt to use this ability on behalf of his or her vehicle as well.
  • Luck with +4 Bonus Uses, Specialized/only for rerolls (6 CP).
  • Improved Initiative +2 (3 CP).
  • Skill Emphasis (relevant ride, pilot, or drive skill, 3 CP).
  • Reflex Training/three actions per day variant, Specialized/only while piloting a vehicle (3 CP).

   Further Advancement: The Hotshot Pilot is going to want mechanical and piloting skills, more BAB – if only to use vehicle-mounted weapons – a better Reflex Save, some way to defend themselves while NOT operating a vehicle, to buy off the restrictions on – and the remaining items in – the Rider progression, and to pick up abilities such as Opportunist (can use vehicle weapons while piloting), Reflex training/the combat reflexes variant (to improved the number of attacks he or she can dodge), Augmented Bonus (to increase his or her abilities with vehicles), and a variety of other abilities – including, hopefully, something useful to do while not actually in a vehicle. You can’t take them everywhere. Other than that, of course, hit points are not a big priority. That’s what vehicle armor is for.

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