Grifter, confidence man, scam artist — the Con Artist goes by many different names, none reputable. He is the modern-day snake oil salesman, a shifty rogue always ready to part a rube from his hard-earned cash. The Con Artist plies his trade behind a wink and a smile, all the while scheming for his next big score. Despite his universally reviled profession, he makes an excellent friend or ally, his gift of gab making him an outstanding deceiver, information gatherer, and ‘front man’ for teams of all stripes.
Bluff: 6+ ranks.
Feats: Mark, any style feat.
The Con Artist’s class skills are Blend, Bluff, Bureaucracy, Falsify, Impress, Investigation, Manipulate, Notice, Search, Sense Motive, Sleight of Hand, and Streetwise.
Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 6 + Int modifier.
|Table: The Con Artist
|1||+0||+0||+2||+2||+1||+1||1||1T||Short con I (1/2 time), Two-faced|
|2||+1||+0||+3||+3||+1||+1||2||1T||A sucker born every minute I|
|3||+1||+1||+3||+3||+2||+2||2||1T, 1R||No hard feelings|
|4||+2||+1||+4||+4||+2||+3||2||1T, 1R||Cool customer (mellow), Shill|
|5||+2||+1||+4||+4||+3||+3||3||2T, 1R||Bait and switch, Short con II (1/4 time)|
|6||+3||+2||+5||+5||+4||+4||3||2T, 1R, 1S||Shortest way to the heart|
|7||+3||+2||+5||+5||+4||+4||4||2T, 1R, 1S|
|8||+4||+2||+6||+6||+5||+5||4||2T, 2R, 1S||Cool customer (standard scene), Long con|
|9||+4||+3||+6||+6||+5||+5||4||2T, 2R, 1S|
|10||+5||+3||+7||+7||+6||+6||5||3T, 2R, 1s||100 moves ahead|
Short Con I: You begin cons by creating a sense of urgency in your target, and consequently close many deals in just one sitting. At Level 1, you may increase your error range by 1 to decrease the time required to make any Impress, Intimidate or Manipulate check to 1/2 standard (rounded down, minimum 1 round).
A Sucker Born Every Minute I: You have a keen sense about others, and can quickly pick the rubes out of the crowd. At Level 2, when you target someone with the Mark feat, your error ranges with Bluff and Manipulate checks made against that person decrease by 1 for the duration of the current mission.
A Sucker Born Every Minute II: At Level 7, when you target someone with the Mark feat, your threat ranges with Bluff and Manipulate checks made against that person increase by 1 for the duration of the current mission.
No Hard Feelings: You smooth ruffled feathers in such as way that you retain your good name even after you’ve run roughshod over someone. At Level 3, each time a character’s disposition toward you is worsened, the disposition shift decreases by 1 grade.
At Level 7, no character’s disposition toward you may be worsened permanently in any way (i.e. all negative disposition shifts are reversed at the end of each mission).
Cool Customer: Through careful planning and artful negotiation, you ensure that potentially sticky situations don’t get out of hand. At Level 4, once per session at the beginning of a scene, you may impose the mellow campaign quality until the end of the scene (see page 407). If the quality is already in play, all stress damage decreases to 1/4 standard (rounded down, minimum 1).
At Level 8, when you use this ability, this scene is also considered standard, and may not be converted to a dramatic scene by any means (see page 424 for more about dramatic scenes).
Shill: You’re a valuable ally when deceiving others. At Level 4, when you successfully make any cooperative Charisma-based skill check (as a helper or leader), you may reduce the number of action dice required to activate a critical success with that check by 1 (minimum 0). You may use this ability a number of times per session equal to your starting action dice.
Bait and Switch: People can never be sure that anything they discover about you isn’t just what you want them to know. At Level 5, each time an opponent succeeds with an Investigation or Sense Motive check targeting you, you gain 1 bonus d4 action die. If this die is not spent by the end of the current scene, it is lost. At Level 9, each time an opponent succeeds with an Investigation or Sense Motive check targeting you, he suffers a –2 insight penalty with all attack and skill checks targeting you until the end of the current scene.
Shortest Way to the Heart: You worm your way into people’s good graces with a variety of ploys. At Level 6, before Strategies are chosen during each Conflict round of a seduction (see page 387), you may force your opponent to choose a different Strategy than he chose during the last round. This ability may not be used if they have no other option available to them. When you use this ability, you must also choose a different Strategy than you chose during the last round.
Long Con: While many Con Artists work the short term, most consider the ability to run a long con — sometimes over weeks or months — to be the mark of a true master. At Level 8, when you must make a Charisma-based skill check as part of a Complex Task or Dramatic Conflict, you may set your result to the check’s DC + 1. This may not result in an error or threat. Further, if you have successfully seduced the check’s target, the starting Lead or the number of Challenges decreases by your Wisdom bonus (minimum 1). You may use this ability a number of times per Task or Conflict equal to your Charisma modifier (minimum 1).
100 Moves Ahead: The confidence game is like chess — the best players can see the end of the game after they’ve played the opening moves. At Level 10, when an opponent targets you with an Investigation or Sense Motive check, that opponent’s threat range decreases by 2 and the check becomes passive (see page 89). Further, if the check fails, you decide what information is revealed about you and your activities (if any), and none of this information needs to be accurate. You may use this ability even if you’re unaware that you’re being targeted with the skill check.