When playing Starfinder, consider building a Lashunta Envoy Outlaw like this:
- Pick the Damaya lashunta subtype
- Choose the Outlaw theme
- Pick Envoy Improvisations that create advantage
- Choose Expertise Talents around deception
The Envoy class in Starfinder is your typical starship captain archetype. Sometimes, that looks like an admiral or negotiator, and sometimes it looks like a cunning space pirate with a loyal crew. Think Han Solo or Firefly.
Sure, I could have gone with the basic human for this class—using captain Reynolds and Han Solo as inspiration. But there’s a certain beautiful, naturally magical class that would fit this trope in a cool way. Plus, they come with inherent psychic abilities, a natural benefit to any ambassador or starship captain.
Pick the Damaya lashunta subtype
Lashunta could be considered Starfinder’s version of elves. They’re intelligent, beautiful, charismatic and innately magical (or psychic, in this case). Antennae on top of their heads signal an extrasensory ability, which can be coupled with the Envoy class to great effect. On top of that, they receive a +2 Charisma bonus—the key stat for my class.
Being Dimorphic, the lashunta can be broken down into 2 different subraces: Korasha and Damaya. These subraces generally fall into cultural roles of soldier or scientist in lashunta society, but I like to imagine they are enlightened enough to fill whatever role they choose. Either could potentially make a solid Envoy, but let’s break down their strengths and weaknesses.
Korasha lashunta are built to be strong and decisive. They gain a +2 to Strength, but also suffer a -2 penalty to Wisdom. They tend to be brash, confident and courageous, but sometimes they don’t make the best decisions.
Damaya lashunta are the clever ones, the scholars and scientists. Though they are slightly delicate, receiving a -2 to Constitution at character creation, they are also enhanced with a +2 Intelligence bonus. This is prime scoundrel territory—a weak constitution with a clever mind.
Lashunta magic and skills
Any way I choose, I’ll gain the benefits of Lashunta Magic, Limited Telepathy and Student capabilities. The Student ability is straight-forward enough, granting me a +2 bonus to any 2 skills of my choice.
Limited Telepathy allows me to communicate with any creature within 30 feet of me that speaks my language. This means I can silently speak with my crewmates at any given time without signaling the communication to anyone else. Talk about manipulating a social situation.
Lashunta magic grants me 3 spells at 1st level, with the caster level equal to my level: daze, psychokinetic hand, detect thoughts.
Daze can be cast at will from 25 feet, stunning an opponent with a CR rating of 3 or lower for 1 round. Will can negate this effect, and so can opponent over CR of 4. Robots and androids could a problem here too, but there are plenty of organics to mess around with in the galaxy. What am I, a hacker?
Psychokinetic hand is straight-up telekinetic, pick-stuff-up-with-your-mind goodness. Another at-will spell, the range of this spell is 15 feet. So, if the object finds itself out of range, then the spell drops. Also, complex tasks can’t be performed with this spell, like firing a gun or operating a computer. Think of it like a poltergeist—smacking things around, throwing things around and closing doors.
Once a day, I’ll be able to cast detect thoughts, which is a bit more complicated than it sounds. For up to a minute, I can detect surface thoughts of intelligent creatures. The amount of information I gleam is dependent on how long I focus. The first round allows me to detect the presence or absence of thoughts from conscious creatures with Intelligence scores of at least 1. The second round allows info on how intelligent the creature is (with a backlash involved for super intelligences). Round 3 gives me those sweet, sweet surface thoughts.
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Choose the Outlaw theme
Now that I’m charismatic with a few aces up my sleeve, it’s time to learn a few criminal tricks.
The Outlaw theme gives me a +1 bonus to my Dexterity, which is nice on the gunslinging side of things. But I also get a few cultural benefits that can contribute to the story in unique ways. I gain these abilities at 1st, 6th, and 12th, and 18th level.
At 1st level, I’ll gain my base outlaw abilities. Outlaws are masters of back-alley deals, shady hangouts and weird secrets. Gangsters, key players and informants could all be a part of this character’s connections. I’ll reduce the DC of my Culture checks by 5 when dealing with knowledge of the criminal underworld. Sleight of Hand is a bonus trick for Outlaws, but because I already have it, I’ll receive an extra +1 bonus to that skill.
Legal Corruption is a trick I learn at level 6 and is kind of hilarious. I have good connections with shady lawyers. It’s like I have my own Better Call Saul situation. I could also turn this element into an interesting backstory of criminal life.
Black Market Connections comes in at level 12. This ability has a couple of cool aspects. The first is that I can sell illegal goods in any given town. I’m good at swindling and haggling. The second is that I can have goods discretely delivered to a location for 10% increase in cost. For example, I could smoothly drop off extra ammunition in the journey ahead of me—something my party could fall back on.
The Master Outlaw is my granddaddy Outlaw ability. I can plan a caper, heist or other crimes and automatically accomplish at least one task in the plan.
Pick Envoy Improvisations that create advantage
In many ways, the Envoy class is similar to a bard—cunning, skillful and charismatic. Starfinder paints this class as a starship captain, whether outlaw or officer. In the depths and strangeness of outer space, leaders have to think on their feet.
Therefore, I want to pick Improvisations for this class that play into that character archetype—with a dash of outlaw. These Improvisations grant me special abilities based on creative cunning. Envoys learn these at level 1, 2, and every 2 levels after. For the first 2 Improvisations, I chose Clever Feint and Not in the Face.
Clever Feint can fake out an enemy within 60 feet, making them vulnerable to my pistol blasts. It works on the same DC as a regular feint, with added benefit. Even on a fail, the opponent is flat-footed against my attacks. But if I succeed, they enemy is flat-footed against my allies as well.
Not in the Face is a bit more defensive in nature—as I’m sure I’ll be right in the thick of any sudden barroom ambush. As a move action, I can choose an enemy within 60 feet of me and give them a -4 penalty to attacks made against me. This lasts until the end of my next turn.
At level 4, I’ll pick Duck Under. This clever move allows me to dodge melee attacks and move to a more favorable position. I like to think of this guy as the face man, the talker. He has to be able to at least slip a punch. I must make a full defensive action to use this, but I’ll have advantage on any foe until the end of my next turn. As a response to enemy attack, I can attempt a reposition combat maneuver with a +8 bonus to my attack roll against the foe.
Choose Expertise Talents around deception and negotiation
The Envoy comes with a general Expertise and specific Skill Expertise choices.
Expertise gives me a general sense of my surroundings, giving me advantage in social situations. When attempting a Sense Motive check, I can roll a 1d6 inspiration die and add the result as an insight bonus. At level 5, this builds to a +1 bonus to any expertise die roll. These bonuses continue to grow as I level.
Skill Expertise gives me expertise with one additional class skill. This occurs at 1st level and every 4 levels afterward.
At 3rd level and every 4 levels after, I receive a bonus effect from the list of Expertise Talents.
The first Expertise Talents I’ll go with is Convincing Liar. This talent comes into play whenever I use the Bluff skill. As an effect, I can choose to withhold my 1d6 expertise die roll until after I see how events play out. It’s kind of like knowing the future as the player. As the character, I’ll be a fantastic liar in a tight spot.
The next Expertise Talent should be something like Slick Customer. Like Convincing Liar, I get to hold off on rolling the inspiration die until after the outcome is seen. This time, however, it is with Diplomacy checks, so maybe I can further squeeze my way out of tight situations if the lying doesn’t work.
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