Deep in the Abandoned Lands, between the rivers Selwheyha and Nyanshsha, two dozen small villages hang suspended in the jungle canopy. They are home to the Mafri, a people known for their fierce jungle hunters and their worship of strange, elder snake-gods.
Devotion to snakes of all stripes permeates Mafri’s culture. For instance, snakes roam the Mafri’s villages unmolested, and the Mafri’s hunters keep sacred snakes as bonded companions. These snakebound hunters are feared and, in many cases, reviled throughout the Southlands.
Below is a sneak peek of the snakebound hunter ranger archetype. Keep in mind that this is only part of the archetype; its final two features are called serpent shape and scalechanger, and they truly bring this serpentine concept home.
For more details, be sure to check out the Southlands core book!
Snakebound Hunter (ranger)
Snakebound hunters exemplify the ability to adapt to their environment and their foes, and for this reason these canny individuals are respected and feared throughout the world.
Serpent Companion (Ex) A snakebound hunter forms a bond with a serpent that becomes a loyal companion and accompanies him on his adventures. This functions like a druid’s nature bond with an animal companion, with the snakebound hunter’s level as his effective druid level. He must choose a viper or constrictor as his animal companion.
This ability replaces wild empathy and hunter’s bond.
Adaptive Hunting (Su) At 1st level, the snakebound hunter learns to mimic the abilities of creatures around him. As a full-round action once per day (and a number of additional times equal to 1 for every 2 points of his Wisdom bonus) the snakebound hunter can duplicate an extraordinary ability or feat from an animal, vermin, humanoid, or monstrous humanoid within 30 ft. The ability may not come from class levels, and the snakebound hunter must have line of sight and see the ability he wishes to copy in use. Then he must succeed at a Knowledge (nature) check with a DC equal to 10 + the number of HD of the creature he is mimicking. The copied ability is available to the snakebound hunter for a number of rounds equal to 2 + half his snakebound hunter levels. If the mimicked ability allows a saving throw, it has a DC equal to 10 + half the snakebound hunter’s level + his Wisdom modifier.
At 1st level, he can only have one mimicked power active at a time. When he reaches 12th level, this increases to two mimicked powers at a time.
At 10th level, the snakebound hunter adds aberrations, plants, fey, and magical beasts to the list of creature types whose abilities he can mimic. Additionally, he can choose to mimic supernatural abilities as well as extraordinary ones.
At 15th level, the snakebound hunter adds constructs and outsiders to the list of types he can mimic. Additionally, he can choose to mimic spells and spell-like abilities he witnesses.
This ability replaces favored enemy and favored terrain.