SWASHBUCKLER (Complete Warrior 11-12)
The swashbuckler embodies the concepts of daring and panache. Favoring
agility and wit over brute force, the swashbuckler excels both in combat
situations and social interactions, making her a versatile character
Adventures: Swashbucklers adventure for a variety of motivations,
based on their alignment and background. Some seek to right
injustices, while others seek only fame and fortune. All swashbucklers,
however, share a tendency to leap into action when the call comes,
regardless of their personal views.
Characteristics: The swashbuckler combines skill and finesse with
sheer combat prowess. Though swashbucklers can't dish out quite as much
damage as a typical fighter or barbarian, they tend to be more agile and
mobile than most melee combatants. When she can pick her battles
carefully, a swashbuckler becomes a very deadly opponent (not to mention
hard to pin down). Swashbucklers also hold their own in social
situations, unlike most fighters.
Alignment: Like rogues, swashbucklers tend to be diverse in their
outlooks, and thus in their alignments. Those who chafe under societal
restrictions tend to be chaotic, while those who uphold honorable
traditions may well be lawful.
Religion: Most swashbucklers pay at least some small amount of
homage to Olidammara (deity of thieves), since that deity is renowned as
being lucky. Lawful or chivalrous swashbucklers may revere Heironeous
(deity of valor) or even St. Cuthbert (deity of
retribution). Swashbucklers who choose the open road over a fixed
residence often worship Fharlanghn (deity of roads).
Background: Many swashbucklers come from affluent backgrounds,
but anyone valuing finesse over force can become a swashbuckler,
regardless of background. A common shared element among swashbucklers'
backgrounds is life in an urban environment, whether the back alleys of
a slum or the cultured halls of royalty.
Swashbucklers tend to see other swashbucklers as rivals rather than
allies, even when sharing similar goals. The swashbuckler's need for
attention often outweighs her better judgment, leading either to
friendly competition or even outright distrust and antipathy.
Races: Swashbucklers are most often humans, elves, or
half-elves. Humans and half-elves tend to have the daring nature
required of a swashbuckler, and the natural grace of elves makes them
well suited for the class. Halflings and gnomes often have the
temperament to become a swashbuckler, though their slower speed works
against them. Dwarves tend to prefer fighting in heavy armor with big
weapons, and thus rarely become swashbucklers.
Among the savage humanoids, swashbucklers are virtually unknown.
Other Classes: Swashbucklers prefer to work with other quick,
lightly armored characters. They get along best with rogues and bards,
and appreciate the agility and combat talents of the monk (though
chaotic swashbucklers may chafe at the monk's ascetic nature). Lawful
good swashbucklers often share the paladin's honorable nature, but
otherwise the classes tend to clash in their approach to
life. Swashbucklers have no particular distaste for spellcasters, and
they appreciate the utility of a cleverly chosen, well-timed spell. They
don't interact with barbarians, druids, or rangers very often, since
these characters tend to prefer natural settings to the typical urban
environment of the swashbuckler.
Role: The swashbuckler is an able melee combatant, particularly
when paired with a fighter or rogue. She can also make a fine party
leader or spokesperson, thanks to her access to Charisma-based skills.
GAME RULE INFORMATION
Swashbucklers have the following game statistics.
Abilities: The lightly armored swashbuckler depends on a high
Dexterity for her Armor Class, as well as for many class skills. High
Intelligence and Charisma scores are also hallmarks of a successful
swashbuckler. Strength is not as important for a swashbuckler as it is
for other melee combatants.
Hit Die: d10.
The swashbuckler's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are
Balance (Dex), Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha),
Escape Artist (Dex), Jump (Str), Profession (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis),
Swim (Str), Tumble (Dex), and Use Rope (Dex). See Chapter 4 in the
Player's Handbook for skill descriptions.
Skill Points at 1st Level: (4 + Int modifier) × 4.
Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 4 + Int modifier.
||Dodge bonus +1
||Dodge bonus +2
||Grace +2, lucky
||Acrobatic skill mastery
||Dodge bonus +3
||Dodge bonus +4, grace +3
All of the following are class features of the swashbuckler.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Swashbucklers are proficient with
all simple and martial weapons, and with light armor. Some of the
swashbuckler's class features, as noted below, rely on her being no more
than lightly armored and unencumbered.
Weapon Finesse (Ex): A swashbuckler gains Weapon Finesse as a
bonus feat at 1st level even if she does not qualify for the feat.
Grace (Ex): A swashbuckler gains a +1 competence bonus on Reflex
saves at 2nd level. This bonus increases to +2 at 11th level and to +3
at 20th level. A swashbuckler loses this bonus when wearing medium or
heavy armor or when carrying a medium or heavy load.
Insightful Strike (Ex): At 3rd level, a swashbuckler becomes able
to place her finesse attacks where they deal greater damage. She applies
her Intelligence bonus (if any) as a bonus on damage rolls (in addition
to any Strength bonus she may have) with any light weapon, as well as
any other weapon that can be used with Weapon Finesse, such as a rapier,
whip, or spiked chain. Targets immune to sneak attacks or critical hits
are immune to the swashbuckler's insightful strike. A swashbuckler
cannot use this ability when wearing medium or heavy armor or when
carrying a medium or heavy load.
Dodge Bonus (Ex): A swashbuckler is trained at focusing her
defenses on a single opponent in melee. During her action, she may
designate an opponent and receive a +1 dodge bonus to Armor Class
against melee attacks from that opponent. She can select a new opponent
on any action. This bonus increases by +1 at every five levels after 5th
(+2 at 10th level, +3 at 15th, and +4 at 20th). A swashbuckler loses
this bonus when wearing medium or heavy armor or when carrying a medium
or heavy load.
If the swashbuckler also has the Dodge feat, she need not designate the
same target for this ability as for the Dodge feat. (If she designates
the same target, the bonuses stack.)
Acrobatic Charge (Ex): A swashbuckler of 7th level or higher can
charge in situations where others cannot. She may charge over difficult
terrain that normally slows movement or allies blocking her path. This
ability enables her to run down steep stairs, leap down from a balcony,
or to tumble over tables to get to her target. Depending on the
circumstance, she may still need to make appropriate checks (Jump or
Tumble checks, in particular) to successfully move over the terrain.
Improved Flanking (Ex): A swashbuckler of 8th level or higher who
is flanking an opponent gains a +4 bonus on attacks instead of a +2
bonus on attacks. (Other characters flanking with the swashbuckler don't
gain this increased bonus.)
Lucky (Ex): Many swashbucklers live by the credo "Better lucky
than good." Once per day, a swashbuckler of 11th level or higher may
reroll any failed attack roll, skill check, ability check, or saving
throw. The character must take the result of the reroll, even if it's
worse than the original roll.
Acrobatic Skill Mastery (Ex): At 13th level, a swashbuckler
becomes so certain in the use of her acrobatic skills that she can use
them reliably even under adverse conditions. When making a Jump or
Tumble check, a swashbuckler may take 10 even if stress and distractions
would normally prevent her from doing so.
Weakening Critical (Ex): A swashbuckler of 14th level or higher
who scores a critical hit against a creature also deals 2 points of
Strength damage to the creature. Creatures immune to critical hits are
immune to this effect.
Slippery Mind (Ex): When a swashbuckler reaches 17th level, her
mind becomes more difficult to control. If the swashbuckler fails her
save against an enchantment spell or effect, she can attempt the save
again 1 round later at the same DC (assuming she is still alive). She
gets only this one extra chance to succeed at a certain saving throw.
Wounding Critical (Ex): A swashbuckler of 19th level or higher
who scores a critical hit against a creature also deals 2 points of
Constitution damage to the creature. (This damage is in addition to the
Strength damage dealt by the swashbuckler's weakening critical class
feature.) Creatures immune to critical hits are immune to this effect.