Primal Guardian

"The world has suffered more than any slave, yet life still flowers in a few places. I have vowed to protect these places of pristine nature, and it’s a promise I intend to keep."

Much of Athas is desolate and defiled, but the life of a world is difficult to quench altogether. In spite of the supernatural ruin visited over so much of the planet thousands of years ago, the vital force of Athas still flourishes in a few places—the rain-misted jungles of the Forest Ridge, the green palm groves of hidden oases in the Tablelands, the majestic stands of giant cactus that dot the stony barrens in the wilds south of Tyr, creek-fed mountain vales, the dazzling blue waters of the Dragon’s Bowl, and a thousand more secret refuges and lost springs.
    Across the Tyr Region, sentinels stand watch over these surviving treasures, protecting them from pillaging or defiling at the hands of people too careless, desperate, or wicked to care whether their actions might murder one more piece of a gravely wounded world. These watchers and sentinels are the world’s primal guardians, chosen by the spirits or selfappointed to defend the life of Athas.
    Many primal guardians are hermits who live in or near the lands they guard. Legendary druids such as Enola, the mul guardian of the Dragon’s Bowl, and Mearedes, the protector of the island of Shault, are excellent examples. Some of these individuals choose their tasks for themselves, freely taking up the mantle of guardianship over some rare and precious verdant patch hidden in the desert. Others are possessed by the primal spirits, haunted or maddened by visions and bound to the place of the land’s need. Still other primal guardians belong to circles or brotherhoods collectively sworn to defend a wide area. Several such circles, consisting mostly of halfling druids and wardens, are scattered throughout the Forest Ridge. Another band known as the Crescent Circle works to defend the Crescent Forest between Gulg and Nibenay. Finally, a few circles are free-roaming orders or societies that keep watch over the whole of the Tyr Region, passing messages to each other and gathering to oppose great dangers when they arise.
    Even if a primal guardian chooses a single locale to protect, he or she is free to wander the rest of the world. In fact, many guardians begin their careers with an extended time of wandering, learning the secrets of nature’s balance throughout Athas and searching for the place of their calling. But even after this time comes to an end, the needs of all of Athas often draw a primal guardian into long journeys away from the place he or she wards.
    Even more so than elemental priests, primal guardians are people of the deep desert and the remote wilderness. Where the elemental priests seek to instill reverence for the primal elements in the peoples of Athas, primal guardians seek to keep verdant lands hidden and unspoiled. Some conceal trails or wield magic to obscure their warded places, some lure dangerous beasts to lair in the right spot, some spread rumors of death and desolation, and a few kill anyone who comes across the place they are sworn to protect. A few lives are nothing when weighed against the life of the world, after all.

Primal Guardian Feature Mark of Thunder

You invoke the fading power of the world as you strike.

Encounter        Primal, Thunder, Weapon
Standard Action      Melee weapon

Target: One creature

Attack: Primary ability vs. AC

Hit: 1[W] + ability modifier thunder damage.
Level 11: 2[W] + ability modifier thunder damage.
Level 21: 3[W] + ability modifier thunder damage.

Effect: You mark the target until the end of your next turn.
Until the mark ends, if the target makes an attack that does not include you, it takes 5 thunder damage.
Level 11: 10 thunder damage.
Level 21: 15 thunder damage.


Primal Guardian Utility 2Sandstep

In a swirl of wind-driven sand, you move across the battlefield, and the sand obscures you and nearby allies.

Encounter        Primal
Move Action      Personal

Effect: You shift 3 squares. Until the end of your next turn, you gain concealment, as do your allies while they are adjacent to you.


Primal Guardian Attack 3Armor of the Land

The land’s blessings wrap themselves around you, encasing you in a shell of wood and stone and thunder.

Encounter        Polymorph, Primal, Thunder, Weapon
Minor Action      Personal

Effect: You assume the armor of the land form until the end of your next turn. While in this form, you gain resist 5 to all damage. Once before the end of your next turn, you can make the following attack as an immediate interrupt.

  Trigger: An enemy adjacent to you moves willingly.

  Target: The triggering enemy

  Attack: Primary ability vs. Fortitude

  Hit: 2[W] + ability modifier thunder damage, and you knock the target prone.

Level 13:

  Hit: As above, but 3[W] + ability modifier thunder damage.

Level 23:

  Hit: As above, but 4[W] + ability modifier thunder damage.


Primal Guardian Attack 5Storm of Debris

Splinters of wood, serrated leaves, and thorny brush whirl around you with thunderous fury, striking your foes and preventing their escape.

Daily        Polymorph, Primal, Thunder, Weapon
Minor Action      Personal

Effect: You assume the form of a storm of debris until the end of the encounter. While you are in this form, each enemy that starts its turn within 2 squares of you takes 5 thunder damage and is marked by you until the end of your next turn.
    Once during the encounter while in this form, you can use the Storm of Debris Attack power.

Level 15:

  Effect: As above, but 10 thunder damage.

Level 25:

  Effect: As above, but 15 thunder damage.


Storm of Debris Attack

Daily      Polymorph, Primal, Thunder, Weapon
Standard Action      Close burst 2

Requirement: The power Storm of Debris must be active in order to use this power.

Target: Each creature in the burst

Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex

Hit: 1[W] + ability modifier thunder damage, and you slide the target 1 square. The target is also slowed (save ends).

Level 15:

  Hit: As above, but 2[W] + ability modifier thunder damage.

Level 25:

  Hit: As above, but 3[W] + ability modifier thunder damage.


Primal Guardian Utility 6Lifting Winds

Primal spirits riding fierce winds propel your ally into battle.

Encounter        Primal
Move Action      Close burst 10

Target: You or one ally in the burst

Effect: The target flies a number of squares equal to your primary ability modifier and lands at the end of this movement. Until the end of your next turn, when the target hits an enemy with a melee attack, he or she also pushes the enemy 1 square.


Primal Guardian Attack 7Armor of Living Dunes

Primal spirits of sand, stone, and wood infuse your body with energy, transforming you into a creature of desert life and giving you the ability to hurl a blast of sand from your weapon.

Encounter        Polymorph, Primal, Weapon
Minor Action  

Effect: You assume the armor of living dunes form until the end of your next turn. While in this form, you are immune to forced movement. Once before the end of your next turn, you can use the Armor of Living Dunes Attack power.


Armor of Living Dunes Attack

Encounter      Polymorph, Primal, Weapon
Standard Action      Close blast 3

Requirement: The power Armor of Living Dunes must be active in order to use this power.

Target: Each creature in the blast

Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex

Hit: 1[W] + ability modifier damage, and you push the target 2 squares. In addition, the target is blinded until the end of your next turn.

Level 17:

  Hit: As above, but 2[W] + ability modifier damage.

Level 27:

  Hit: As above, but 3[W] + ability modifier damage.


Primal Guardian Attack 9Of Wood and Stone

Angry primal spirits bind themselves to you, transforming your body into a hulking mass of rock and wood.

Daily        Polymorph, Primal, Weapon
Minor Action      Personal

Effect: You assume the form of wood and stone until the end of the encounter. While you are in this form, you and all allies adjacent to you gain resist 5 to all damage and cannot be pulled, pushed, or slid unless you or the ally adjacent to you chooses to be.
    Once before the end of the encounter while you are in this form, you can use the Of Wood and Stone Attack power.


Of Wood and Stone Attack

Daily      Polymorph, Primal, Weapon
Standard Action      Close burst 1

Requirement: The power Of Wood and Stone must be active in order to use this power.

Target: Each enemy in the burst you can see

Attack: Primary ability vs. Fortitude

Hit: 2[W] + ability modifier damage, and the target is weakened until the end of your next turn.

Level 19:

  Hit: As above, but 3[W] + ability modifier damage.

Level 29:

  Hit: As above, but 4[W] + ability modifier damage.


Primal Guardian Utility 10Balm of the Guardian

You leech the moisture from the area around you, directing it to your allies and creating kindling for the fire.

Daily        Healing, Primal, Zone
Minor Action      Close burst 3

Effect: You spend a healing surge. You regain hit points as normal, and each ally in the burst gains temporary hit points equal to one-half your level. The burst creates a zone that lasts until the end of your next turn. Each enemy within the zone gains vulnerable 5 thunder while it is within the zone.


Published in Dark Sun Campaign Setting, page(s) 58.