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View Full Version : Arcane Swordsage Fix (3.5, assistance requested)



Jarian
2010-04-14, 02:51 PM
Disclaimer: The work as of this point is not mine. This is a copy of an abandoned work found on another gaming website. The original author has given permission for this to be reposted and critiqued.


Hit Die: d6
Starting Gold: 4d4x10
Alignment: Any

The Arcane Swordsage
{table=Header]Level|BAB|Fort|Ref|Will|Special|Spell Level|Spells Known|Spells Readied
1st|+0|+0|+2|+2|Quick to Act +1, Discipline Focus, Armored Mage, Arcane Channeling|1st|6|4
2nd|+1|+0|+3|+3|AC Bonus|1st|7|4
3rd|+2|+1|+3|+3|-|1st|8|5
4th|+3|+1|+4|+4|Discipline Focus|2nd|9|5
5th|+3|+1|+4|+4|Quick to Act +2|2nd|10|6
6th|+4|+2|+5|+5|-|2nd|11|6
7th|+5|+2|+5|+5|-|3rd|12|6
8th|+6/+1|+2|+6|+6|Discipline Focus|3rd|13|7
9th|+6/+1|+3|+6|+6|Evasion|3rd|14|7
10th|+7/+2|+3|+7|+7|Quick to Act +3|4th|15|8
11th|+8/+3|+3|+7|+7|-|4th|16|8
12th|+9/+4|+4|+8|+8|Discipline Focus|4th|17|8
13th|+10/+5|+4|+8|+8|-|5th|18|9
14th|+10/+5|+4|+9|+9|-|5th|19|9
15th|+11/+6/+1|+5|+9|+9|Quick to Act +4|5th|20|10
16th|+12/+7/+2|+5|+10|+10|Discipline Focus|6th|21|10
17th|+13/+8/+3|+5|+10|+10|Improved Evasion|6th|22|10
18th|+13/+8/+3|+6|+11|+11|-|6th|23|11
19th|+14/+9/+4|+6|+11|+11|-|7th|24|11
20th|+15/+10/+5|+6|+12|+12|Dual Boost 3/day, Quick to Act +5|7th|25|12[/table]

Class Skills (6 + Int modifier per level, ◊4 at 1st level): Balance, Climb, Concentration, Craft, Heal, Hide, Intimidate, Jump, Knowledge (arcana), Knowledge (local), Knowledge (nature), Knowledge (nobility and royalty), Listen, Move Silently, Profession, Ride, Sense Motive, Spellcraft, Swim, Tumble.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Arcane Swordsages are proficient with all simple weapons plus the hand crossbow, rapier, shortbow, and short sword. Arcane Swordsages are proficient with light armor, but not with shields.

Armored Mage (Ex): Normally, armor of any type interferes with an arcane spellcasterís gestures, which can cause your spells to fail if those spells have a somatic component. An Arcane Swordsage's specialized training, however, allows you to avoid any chance of arcane spell failure as long as you restrict yourself to light armor. This training does not extend to any other form of armor, nor does this ability apply to spells gained from other spellcasting classes.

Spells: You begin your career with knowledge of six Arcane Swordsage spells. The disciplines available to you are Aeon Ascendant, Chaos Entropy, Ironscar Offense, and Shattered Mind.

Once you know a spell, you must ready it before you can use it (see Spells Readied, below). Arcane Swordsages provoke Attacks of Opportunity as normal for spellcasting, unless channeling the spell through a held weapon (see Arcane Channeling, below).

You learn additional spells at higher levels, as shown on Table: The Arcane Swordsage. You must meet a spellís prerequisite to learn it. See Table: Arcane Swordsage Spells and Disciplines, below, to determine the highest-level spells you can learn.

Upon reaching 4th level, and at every even-numbered swordsage level after that (6th, 8th, 10th, and so on), you can choose to learn a new spell in place of one you already know. In effect, you lose the old spell in exchange for the new one. You can choose a new spell of any level you like, as long as you observe your restriction on the highest- level spells you know; you need not replace the old spell with a spell of the same level. For example, upon reaching 10th level, you could trade in a single 1st-, 2nd-, or 3rd level spell for a spell of 4th level or lower, as long as you meet the prerequisite of the new spell. You can swap only a single spell at any given level.

The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against an Arcane Swordsage spell is 10 + the spell level + your Wis modifier.

Arcane Channeling (Su): As an Arcane Swordsage, you can use a standard action to cast any touch spell you know and deliver the spell through your weapon with a melee attack. Casting a spell in this manner does not provoke attacks of opportunity. The spell must have a casting time of 1 standard action or less. If the melee attack is successful, the attack deals damage normally; then the effect of the spell is resolved.

Spells Readied: You can ready four of your six spells known at 1st level, and as you advance in level and learn more spells, you are able to ready more, but you must still choose which spells to ready. You ready your spells by meditating for 5 minutes.

The spells you choose remain readied until you decide to meditate again and change them. You need not sleep or rest for any long period of time to ready your spells; any time you spend 5 minutes in meditation, you can change your readied spells.

You begin an encounter with all your readied spells unexpended, regardless of how many times you might have already used them since you chose them. When you initiate a spell, you expend it for the current encounter, so each of your readied spells can be used once per encounter (unless you recover them, as described below). You can recover an expended spell by using a full-round action to quickly meditate. Doing this does not provoke attacks of opportunity. If you complete your meditation, you can choose one expended spell to refresh. It is now available for use in a subsequent round.

You cannot ready the same spell more than once at any time.

AC Bonus: Starting at 2nd level, you can add your Wisdom modifier as a bonus to Armor Class, so long as you wear light armor, are unencumbered, and do not use a shield. This bonus to AC applies even against touch attacks or when you are flat-footed. However, you lose this bonus when you are immobilized or helpless.

Discipline Focus (Ex): As an Arcane Swordsage, you can focus your training to take advantage of each disciplineís fighting style. Each time you gain the discipline focus ability, select one of the six Arcane Swordsage disciplines to which that focus applies. You can select a different discipline each time you gain discipline focus, but you must know at least one spell from the selected discipline. Even if you select a different discipline at higher levels, your discipline choice for earlier abilities does not change.

This focus manifests in the following ways:

Weapon Focus: At 1st level, you gain the benefit of the Weapon Focus feat for one weapon associated with the chosen discipline. You also gain proficiency with the selected weapon if you did not already possess it.

Insightful Strikes: At 4th level, you can add your Wisdom modifier as a bonus on damage rolls whenever you execute a strike from the chosen discipline. At 12th level, you can choose a second discipline to which this ability applies.

Defensive Boost: At 8th level, you gain a +2 bonus on saving throws and a +2 dodge bonus to AC whenever you use a boost from the chosen discipline. These effects last for one round for every four Arcane Swordsage levels you possess.
At 16th level, you can choose a second discipline to which this ability applies.

You gain a +2 bonus on Spellcraft checks made regarding a spell in a discipline in which you have discipline focus.

Quick to Act (Ex): You gain a +1 bonus on initiative checks. This bonus increases by 1 at 5th, 10th, 15th, and 20th level.

Evasion (Ex): At 9th level, you can avoid even magical and unusual attacks with great agility. If you make a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals damage on a successful save, you instead take no damage. Evasion can be used only if you are wearing light armor or no armor. If you are helpless, you do not gain the benefit of evasion.

Improved Evasion (Ex): From 17th level on, you gain the benefit of improved evasion. You still take no damage if you make a successful Reflex save against an attack, and even if you fail the Reflex save, you take only half damage from the attack. If you are helpless, you do not gain the benefit of improved evasion.

Dual Boost (Ex): When you reach 20th level, you can use two boost spells simultaneously. Whenever you cast a boost spell, you can also initiate any other boost spell that you know and have readied as a free action. Both boosts you initiate are expended normally. You can use this ability three times per day.

You can only gain the effects of the the Defensive Boost ability once when using Dual Boost, even if it would apply to both boost spells cast.



Spells:
Strike: Spells labeled as Strikes are generally offensive in nature. Despite the normal range of a Strike spell, they are assumed to have a range of touch. Strike spells that create an effect in an area originate from any corner of your square that you choose. You are not affected by an area of effect Strike spell that you cast unless it has a duration longer than instantaneous. This change in range does not allow you to add metamagic feats to the spell that could not be added to the original version. Unless otherwise noted, Strike spells have a casting time of one standard action and provoke attacks of opportunity. If a Strike spell has an ongoing duration, it lasts for one round per Arcane Swordsage level, unless the duration would normally be shorter.

Boost: Spells labeled as Boosts vary between being offensive and defensive in nature. Despite the normal range of a Boost spell, they are assumed to have a range of personal. This change in range does not allow you to add metamagic feats to the spell that could not be added to the original version. Unless otherwise noted, Boost spells have a casting time of one standard action and provoke attacks of opportunity. Boost spells have a duration of one round per Arcane Swordsage level, unless their duration would normally be shorter.

Counter: Spells labeled as Counters are generally defensive in nature. Despite the normal range of a Counter spell, they are assumed to have a range of personal. Counter spells that create an effect in an area originate from any corner of your square that you choose. This change in range does not allow you to add metamagic feats to the spell that could not be added to the original version. Unless otherwise noted, Counter spells have a casting time of one immediate action. Counter spells have a duration of one round per two Arcane Swordsage levels, unless their duration would normally be shorter.


Strikes:
1st: Sleep, Burning Hands, Magic Missile, Shocking Grasp, Color Spray, Chill Touch, Ray of Enfeeblement, Kelgore's Firebolt, Persistent Blade, Sonic Blast, Ray of Clumsiness,
2nd: Blinding Color Surge, Bigby's Striking Fist, Glitterdust, Touch of Idiocy, Gust of Wind, Scorching Ray, Seeking Ray, Distracting Ray, Baleful Transposition, Ice Knife
3rd:
4th:
5th:
6th:
7th:

Boosts:
1st: Obscuring Mist, Shield, Mage Armor, True Strike, Blade of Blood, Nightshield, Blades of Fire, Accelerated Movement, Expeditious Retreat, Fist of Stone,
2nd: Dimension Hop, Cloud of Knives, See Invisibility, Invisibility, Bear's Endurance, Bull's Strength, Cat's Grace, Eagle's Splendor, Fox's Cunning, Owl's Wisdom, Cloud of Bewilderment,
3rd:
4th:
5th:
6th:
7th:

Counters:
1st: Feather Fall, Protection from X, Lesser Deflect, Benign Transposition, Insightful Feint, Nerveskitter
2nd: Wings of Cover, Deflect, Blur, Mirror Image
3rd:
4th: Greater Mirror Image
5th:
6th:
7th:


Disciplines:Aeon Ascendant

Followers of the Aeon Ascendant discipline learn spells that protect themselves from harm. The discipline contains little offensive capability, the vast majority of which is retributive in nature. Many followers of the Aeon Ascendant discipline learn spells from the Ironscar Offense or Shattered Mind disciplines to shore up this weakness.

The Aeon Ascendant discipline's favored weapon is the morningstar.

(Incomplete)

1st: Lesser Deflect, Mage Armor, Nightshield, Protection from X, Shield

2nd: Bear's Endurance, Deflect, See Invisibility, Wings of Cover

Chaos Entropy

The Chaos Entropy discipline focuses on spells that beguile and deceive. The discipline is balanced between a focus on offense and defense, but few of its spells deal any form of damage. Followers of this discipline often learn many Shattered Mind spells as well.

The Chaos Entropy discipline's favored weapon is the shortsword.

(Incomplete)

1st: Accelerated Movement, Benign Transposition, Expeditious Retreat, Feather Fall, Insightful Feint, Ray of Clumsiness, Ray of Enfeeblement

2Nd: Baleful Transposition, Blur, Cat's Grace, Dimension Hop, Eagle's Splendor, Gust of Wind, Invisibility, Mirror Image

Ironscar Offense

The Ironscar Offense discipline focuses on overwhelming one's opponents through superior force, even at the cost of one's own vitality. Followers of this discipline often learn spells from either the Aeon Ascendant or Chaos Entropy disciplines to prolong their lives.

The Ironscar Offense's favored weapon is the longsword.

(Incomplete)

1st: Blade of Blood, Blades of Fire, Burning Hands, Chill Touch, Fist of Stone, Kelgore's Firebolt, Magic Missile, Persistent Blade, Sonic Blast|

2nd: Bigby's Striking Fist, Bull's Strength, Cloud of Knives, Ice Knife, Scorching Ray, Seeking Ray

Shattered Mind

The Shattered Mind discipline is the flipside of the Chaos Entropy discipline. Where the Chaos Entropy discipline is defensive in focus, followers of the Shattered Mind discipline learn the most offensive of Illusions, breaking minds with little more effort than a thought.

The Shattered Mind's favored weapon is the dagger.

(Incomplete)

1st: Color Spray, Nerveskitter, Obscuring Mist, Sleep, True Strike

2nd: Blinding Color Surge, Cloud of Bewilderment, Distracting Ray, Fox's Cunning, Glitterdust, Owl's Wisdom, Touch of Idiocy

Suggestions for higher level spells in keeping with the original author's intent are welcome. Suggestions for balancing tweaks and editing for clarity are also welcome.

Runestar
2010-04-14, 05:46 PM
Changing the boosts to personal range and shortening their duration appears to have solved some of the more problematic balance issues plaguing an arcane swordsage. Thumbs up for that.

Seems okay at 1st glance. Will return to examine it in further detail after work. :smallbiggrin:

playswithfire
2010-04-14, 09:09 PM
I'll also take a more in depth look, but it seems fairly reasonable.

As for higher level spells, I'd just been thinking that one could make an arcane swordsage (swordmage) fairly simply and not-too-brokenly by using the warmage spell list rather than the wizard/sorcerer one, as almost all of those spells map neatly to strikes. There are a few problematic ones, not in terms of power but in terms of conversion. I think I was also going to make you give up 2 or 3 disciplines in exchange for the spells, but that doesn't hurt much as people tend to specialize anyway.

DaTedinator
2010-04-15, 12:38 AM
Alright, normally I hate it when people plug their own stuff when the OP wasn't specifically asking for it, but I'm making an exception this time. I wrote up the Arcane Swordsage as a PrC here (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?p=7656954#post7656954).

The reason for the plug is so you can compare the spell lists and how I converted spells, hopefully it'll help you fill this one out. I meant to add in Spell Compendium stuff, but never did. Maybe one day.

Feel free to rip class features or whatever, too, I don't care.

Jarian
2010-04-15, 09:14 PM
Nudge. ten