I won the majority of this post from mx. Numbers Aren't Real in a draft exchange. Like the Godchild class, I made out like a bandit. Assume all good ideas are theirs and all great, world-shattering ideas are mine. Also typos.
Here's the premise: a monster hunter is a D&D ranger in a modern urban context. Unfocused design (survival, dual-wielding and pet monsters) and all.
Starting skills: 1. public transit schedules, 2. forum moderation, 3. normal-animal hunting
- A Favored Prey, Bright Eyes, Become the Monster, +1 to-hit
- B Domain, +1 HP
- C Trophies, +1 AC
- D I Hate You, +1 HP
Track total kills by weapon, and the highest HD of monster you've ever slain. Wozerds and other hunters can see these numbers in your eyes. Muggles looking into your eyes are baffled, like meeting someone they're too embarrassed to admit they don't recognize. Fittingly, they can't describe your appearance very well after meeting you.
Become the Monster
You get a bonus for to-hit rolls and tracking attempts equal to the number of useful hunting facts you know about the non-human target, up to a maximum of your level. Name of their species, location of their den, diet — these are all good hunting facts.
As a journeyman monster-hunter, you have a den to fill with hidden things. It's secure enough that the Man will never find it without numinous aid, and common people avoid it like a cry for help from a nearby alley. As in the wozerds article, this is a metaphysical claim that reflects your innermost self (such as a condemned pub, a redundant sewer station, or a shady frat lodge), and thus a good place for trophies from your big fights or caged monsters to study for hunting facts.
Your domain is a place of strength, not weakness, so using it as shelter when you're injured will damage your claim to it (e.g. weakening the bonds on your monster cages. This is a cool penalty, and if you avoid putting caged monsters in your domain because of it, you are Roleplaying Wrong.)
+1 to various things for various trophies you wear on your person, negotiated with your DM. A sufficiently esoteric trophy might provide a tactical advantage against your chosen foes, like a lycanthropic fur shirt making you smell like a werewolf or a vampire-anus ring thwarting their nightvision. Given this example, I hope vampires don't turn to dust when slain.
I Hate YouFavored Prey
Keep a top ten list of your worst enemies. Don't cheat, but you're allowed to work up a rage or antagonize strangers to aid in keeping this list useful. The first time each week you successfully harm one of these enemies, they must save or reduce their HP to their standing on your list. (e.g. your #1 worst enemy is reduced to 1 HP).
- Werewolf (Superior)
The bigger and more psychotic of the werewolf hunters. Known to be sexy and cool.
Starting Items: Chainsaw, cool leather jacket with your logo, switchblade comb, fire extinguisher of colloidal silver, permanent discoloration to your soft tissue.
Perk: One point of rage, recovered after a full night's rest.
Drawback: Subtract [level] from reaction rolls, everyone always blames you. Reroll when you really impress them.
Vampire hunters are themselves slightly magical.
Starting Items: Silver crucifix, necklace of garlic, razor-edged Bowie knife.
Perk: 1 MD, know the spell Turn which you can cast with your crucifix.
Drawback: You have 1 Tower; among other penalties, pistols detonate in your hands when you roll a nat 1.
- City Bug
What's a "city bug"? Buddy, you don't even want to know. Unless you're just asking that to make it seem like you aren't a secret city bug... Wait a moment, I'm going to spray your eyes with Raid real quick.
Starting Items: Heavy rubber raincoat, fire extinguisher loaded with pyrethroids, numb face which makes you slur and tic a little
Perk: Deadly poison blood. When you take damage from a bite or a claw or such, deal as much damage as you received.
Drawback: Allergic to silver and copper alloys. Antidotes are poison to you.
- Werewolf (Inferior)
The sneakier and more sociopathic of the werewolf hunters. Known to be goth and tormented.
Starting Items: Silenced pistol, two magazines of silver bullets, cool reflective sunglasses, worn black boots, smoke machine, aesthetic anemia.
Perk: You smell like nothing, and make no noise when moving unless you wish to.
Drawback: Save vs attacking possible werewolves. Eating rare meat? Sniffing the air? Shaking water off? You're pretty dumb, so any sort of wolfy tic might set you off
Wozerd-hunters are extremely unpopular among wozerds, of course, but if you're good enough it doesn't matter.
Starting Items: three thermite charges, three napalm bombs, lighter, ratty coat covered in cat hair as a decoy for voodoo dolls.
Perk: While grappling, your forehead, teeth and boots are light weapons. you get a free attack while grappling (this is immediate. after a successful grapple, you can bash their teeth in or advance to a pin at once).
Drawback: Your soul is inert. Art you attempt, even a diagram or doodle, is hopeless in conveying emotion or meaning. You experience others' art on a surface level and cannot discern quality or intent from it. If you are religious, your faith is watery and shallow as a puddle. If you are political, your ideology is murky and reflective of your immediate surroundings, like a puddle.
Some people don't believe you're serious.
Starting Items: EMF reader, parabolic microphone, blacklight, four nightvision cameras.
Perk: 30' field of heavy reality. Illusions are misty and unconvincing, ghosts are visible, mind-altering effects are weakened.
Drawback: Save or take [dice] damage when a spell is cast in your field.
There is a cosmic irony in the fact that the beasts of utter tyranny will only be opposed by deranged loners but can only reliably be harmed by feats of logistics and collective effort.
Starting Items: 1200lb arbalest, quiver of steel bolts, big sack with a dollar sign.
Perk: Receive a to-hit bonus equal to the target's HD with ranged attacks, and ignore any penalties related to shooting at fast-moving targets. You can count any amount of money with a glance, and identify gemstones by taste.
Drawback: Hoo boy do dragons hate you. They've got their claws in a lot of mortal institutions; expect to always have trouble with the TSA, traffic cops, any sort of paperwork, and don't even try calling an ambulance or anything like that.
The favorite target of those who want to be utterly sure that when they hurt someone again, their victim will utterly deserve it. It must then follow that anyone possessed by a demon is already lost.
Starting Items: katana (heavy), sack of blessed salt (3 doses), vial of holy chrism (3 doses)
Perk: Conversational in Latin, pre-dynastic Egyptian, Aramaic and Koine. You have a [level]-in-6 chance of knowing the name of any monster older than 500 years. You are very good at causing incredible pain without indefinite injury.
Drawback: Scarred mind. Children and animals can tell you're all fucked up and such, and you yourself have disadvantage on saves vs. mind-altering effects
Those children who are lucky enough to escape Fairy-Land are often left with a bluebird-sized chip on their shoulder and a song in their hearts.
Starting Items: sack of lollipops (10 doses), cold iron knife (light), shotgun, 10 shells loading with ball bearings.
Perk: Sense for double-dealing. You get a warning from the DM if you're about to accept a deal with a major loophole, or trust someone who's been talking around a big important detail, although they don't have to tell you what the loophole/detail is.
Drawback: Save to tell a direct lie, stuttering awkwardly if you fail. Disadvantage on attacks against people you have sworn not to harm.
Sometimes an older relative drunkenly explains your family has a terrible destiny serving as mediators between worlds. Sometimes you just want to kill everything.
Starting Items: Horrible Amazon print-on-demands of tomes with basic monster-hunting information (sorted alphabetically by type), shotgun, 10 shells filled with a little bit of every relevant material (silver, salt, blessed oil, garlic, exc).
Perk: +1 to HP, AC, save
Drawback: You see when a harmless civilian, like the guy selling newspapers, is a harmless magical civilian, like an elf selling newspapers, which tends to distract investigations. If they notice, they'll try to get your help de-gnoming their garden or borrow some mortal money. This sight never works for real threats, unless you start to rely on that fact.
You ever seen Eyes Wide Shut? Wouldn't it be funny if someone just came crashing through the roof and started hitting the rich people with hammers?
Starting Items: stab-proof vest, animal mask, satellite phone, advertisement-proof glasses.
Perk: If a mind-altering effect gives you a save you pass it automatically. If it doesn't give you a save, you get one anyway. If you meditate on a lie for a minute you can fool any lie-detector, supernatural or otherwise.
Drawback:You're an obnoxious straw atheist. You have a tattoo of Christopher Hitchen's face on one butt cheek, which might give you away if anybody checks, and you are required to be very rude to religious figures or hunters who use religious symbols, like the Vampire Hunter. When you see something obviously supernal, you have to explain it away before you can interact with it.
- Sewer People
The Cabal meets in high places because the low places are groddy. The Sewer People meet in low places because the low places are groddy. The Cabal controls a populace through unabashed intelligence. The Sewer people controls a populace through desperate stupidity.
Starting Items: rubber wading gear, powerful waterproof flashlight, 50' roll of tin foil, harpoon, blackmail evidence against a locally-owned laundromat.
Perk: If you hold still and focus, you can tell the difference between a empty room with ambient sound and a room with ambient sound concealing someone or something.
Drawback: You smell like a latrine, like axe body spray, like bleach, or like a melange of all three. Anything and anyone with three or more HD can track you like a bloodhound when outside your Domain.