I have an ECL 5th E6 character with 4 levels of artificer (and a necessary 1-level dip, in monk if you’re curious), and I want the character to hit those 3rd-level infusions from that 5th effective artificer level.

But I don’t really care about Craft Magic Arms and Armor or the craft reserve, so I’m wondering if I can do better than artificer 5th for this.

Problem is, the artificer qualifies for prestige classes awkwardly (it’s a spellcaster, but not an arcane or divine spellcaster), and I can’t find a decent artificer handbook that actually lists out my options. So I’m hoping for some help making such a list.

What prestige classes

  1. Can be qualified for with 2nd-level infusions, and nothing impossible for an ECL 5th character? (The precise skills, feats, race, etc. required should all be noted, but we aren’t filtering any out.)

  2. Will advance my artificer infusions at least at 1st?

I haven’t been able to find anything fitting the bill. Most Eberron prestige classes written with the artificer intentionally in mind require 3rd-level infusions, and anyway often don’t advance infusions at 1st. I’m expecting that most candidates will be older prestige classes that just happen to work for the artificer—it’s just finding those that is proving to be difficult. Please limit answers to Wizards of the Coast materials and Dragon and Dungeon magazines.


2 Answers 2


After a perusal of a few of the most likely-looking sourcebooks, I've turned up a grand total of three classes that meet your criteria. Their benefits range from "not bad" to "literally nothing."

Shaper of Form

(Dragon Compendium, p. 85)

  • Requires: Craft (alchemy) 5, Craft (something else) 8, Knowledge (arcana) 8, Great Fortitude, Spell Focus (transmutation), a fluff requirement, "ability to cast six spells from the school of transmutation."
    • Infusions do have schools, so transmutation ones exist, but it does mean that your DM has to rule that the "infusions work just like spells" rule means "including counting as spells for prerequisite purposes." That's how I would rule, but (say it with me) check with your DM.
  • Provides: A slightly wonky ability that lets you turn objects into other objects (but only nonmagical ones at level 1), and your choice of 1 pick from a list of permanent boosts to your character, including some decent stuff like +10 HP, +10 land speed, or +1 inherent bonus to a physical ability score. This is by far the best option I turned up.

Visionary Seeker

(Planar Handbook, p. 53)

  • Requires: Knowledge 8, Survival 8, and a fluff requirement.
  • Provides: +1 caster level to Divination infusions (which do exist), 2 extra skill ranks (probably less than the cost of meeting the prereqs).

Flux Adept

(Dragon Compendium, p. 76)

  • Requires: Heal 5, Knowledge (arcana) 8, Endurance, Great Fortitude, 1 metamagic feat, ability to cast (nonspecific) 2nd level spells.
    • No problem.
  • Provides: Literally nothing aside from advancing your infusions (the level 1 class feature gives a bonus equal to half your class level, which gets rounded down to 0).

Books I checked:

  • Complete Arcane
  • Complete Mage
  • Complete Adventurer
  • Tome and Blood
  • Magic of Eberron
  • Underdark
  • Drow of the Underdark
  • Heroes of Horror
  • Dragon Compendium

If you want to look for more, they are most likely lurking in sourcebooks beyond these. Godspeed.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Shaper of form is not bad, but damn those feat reqs are painful. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Nov 1, 2022 at 15:30

Adding my own, few results. None of these is particularly good, and I’ll probably just stick with artificer 5th if I don’t find something better.

Keeper of the Cerulean Sign (Lords of Madness)

Requires Craft Wondrous Item, obviously trivial for an artificer, and Aberration Banemagic, which is garbage, especially for an artificer (I guess it would apply to chill/heat metal? That’s about it for infusions that can directly damage an aberration, though...). And some skills, most of which aren’t artificer class skills but which an appropriate dip could mostly handle.

And at 1st, it gets detect aberrant taint as a supernatural, at-will ability. It’s OK, I guess, in a themed campaign. Not worth the feat burned on Aberration Banemagic though.

Moonstar Agent (City of Splendors: Waterdeep)

Requires not one but two of those awful +2-to-two-skills feats, in Investigator and Stealthy, and otherwise requires identify and disguise self. Artificer handles identify, of course, but disguise self will take finagling, or limit you to rather particular dips for your 1 other level. You also need bardic knowledge, lore, or similar, so really we’re talking about a cloistered cleric dip with the Trickery domain.

But if you do all that, you get (drumroll, please...) Skill Focus (any Knowledge). Hurrah.

Nosomatic Chirurgeon (Dragonmarked)

Second only to champion of Gwynharwyf in difficulty to spell, the nosomatic chirurgeon is for House Jorasco healers. You need the Mark of Healing, as well as ranks in Heal and Knowledge (nature)—that is, non-artificer skills, though Knowledge (nature) requires only 4 ranks.

And you get +1 to the caster level of your Mark of Healing spell-like abilities, +1 to saves against disease, and +1 to Heal checks. And the ability to spontaneously convert spells into the inflict spell of the same level. All-in-all, not good.

Paragnostic Apostle (Complete Champion)

I rather like this prestige class. Just sayin’.

Problem is requirements: “Ability to cast 3rd-level spells or use spell-like abilities of equivalent level.” Obviously, by definition, 3rd-level spells are out, but 3rd-level spell-like abilities are much more easily obtained. If nothing else, a dip in dragonfire adept allows you to select endure exposure as a least invocation that counts as a 3rd-level spell-like ability. There may also be racial options here.

Anyway, what you get is... decent. It stacks with other classes for turn/rebuke undead, but since it explicitly doesn’t grant those abilities, probably not useful to us. It also grants lore, and its levels count double for the check, which is nice. And then you get your choice from a fairly-lengthy list of options, most of which are +1 to spell DC or caster level in certain situations. Nice, though nothing amazing.

Sentinel of Bharrai (Book of Exalted Deeds)

Requires Sacred Vow—so you already know it’s going to be bad—and Vow of Obedience. I don’t remember exactly which one that was, but the Vows are all pretty bad. Also requires 8 ranks in Knowledge (nature) (along with Arcana and Spellcraft), which is a minor problem for an artificer.

Anyway, you get the ability to make your energy-damage spells do nonlethal damage to plants and animals—I’m not sure any infusions are at all likely to benefit from that. And you get Track as a bonus feat.

Stormsinger (Frostburn)

As you might expect, requires bardic music, so almost-certainly combined with a dip in bard, though I guess you could use Augustinius’ Folly, a “slightly-cursed” magic armor from Dragon vol. 324 that grants “inspire courage once per day as an 8th-level bard.” Would be difficult to justify coming across by ECL 5th, though.

Other requirements aren’t much better, with a ton required and many of them not being class skills for artificers. The 8 ranks in Perform are the most problematic, though; the other cross-class skills require 4 ranks each, making it easier to cover them with a dip, and the other 8-rank requirements are in skills that are in-class for the artificer. As a high-Int class, probably do-able. But it gets worse, because we require Magical Aptitude—another +2-to-two-skills feat, our favorite—and Storm Magic—+1 CL in a storm, which isn’t entirely awful, but is pretty niche. In all, pricey entry.

In addition to progressing our infusions, stormsinger 1st also gets another daily use of bardic music, and a bardic music effect to use gust of wind as a spell-like ability. Hard to imagine many days go by where you’d prefer to do that over inspire courage, at least with only two daily uses of bardic music.

Thrall to Demogorgon (Book of Vile Darkness)

Requires BAB +4 (so artificer 4th and a full-BAB dip) along with 2 ranks in each of a few knowledges (arcana, religion, any one other), and the Willing Deformity and Thrall to Demon feats. You also have to be Chaotic Evil and perform a ritual sacrifice, natch.

1st level grants, along with spellcasting, proficiency with all simple and martial weapons, and all types of armor and shields. Which is, actually quite good. Probably not worth the feats; certainly not worth dealing with Demogorgon, and dragonslayer does the same thing with better other features and more conveniently for most gishes who care about those proficiencies, but ya know, in a vacuum, good. Oh, and also +1 natural armor bonus to AC, which is yawn.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Verdant Lord also requires the two feats Plant Control and Plant Defiance. Nothing some Retraining or Chaos Shuffle can't handle, but still worth mentioning. Realmshelp.net also mention that Wilderness Lore should be swapped with Survival, rather than stricken, though I don't know where they get that from: realmshelps.net/charbuild/classes/prestige/general/… \$\endgroup\$
    – From
    Nov 1, 2022 at 18:13
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    \$\begingroup\$ @From Whoops, the source I was using for search capabilities didn’t have the complete requirements—it only listed the skills and alignment, not the feats or spell. Yup, that’s no longer any good as an option. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Nov 1, 2022 at 19:04
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    \$\begingroup\$ @From The Dragon #357 Sage Advice column “Official Answers to Your Questions” includes this exchange: "[Question:] Can a changeling… with the Racial Emulation feat… take dragonmark feats as if he were a member of a dragonmarked race? [Answer:] No" (84). For serious. But, to be fair, I did have to look at my notes for the feat to confirm. ;-) \$\endgroup\$ Nov 1, 2022 at 22:32
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    \$\begingroup\$ @HeyICanChan On second thought, that puts your final level of Nosomatic at character level 19, bar skill ranks cheese. Might as well consider the Cataclysm Mage route, then, which would delay Nosomatic-5 one level, to level 20, but leave you with a character able to appear as any humanoid race and manifest any Dragonmark of any level on a daily basis. \$\endgroup\$
    – From
    Nov 1, 2022 at 23:14
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    \$\begingroup\$ By that point, reincarnating is easier. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 2, 2022 at 0:44

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