Base Requirements

  • Races: Any
  • Sub-Classes: Any
  • Ability Requirements: Muscle 13, Balance 13, Reason 13, Appearance 13
  • Alignments: Any
  • Starting Cash: 5d6 x10gp

Weapon Proficiencies

  • Weapon Slots: By class
  • Bonus Weapon Proficiencies: Fencing Blades Group
  • Required Weapon Proficiencies: none
  • Allowed Weapons: By class
  • Allowed Armors: By class

Non-Weapon Proficiencies:

  • Non-weapon Slots: By class
  • Available Categories: By class, plus Social
  • Bonus Non-weapon Proficiencies: Dancing, Etiquette, Heraldry, Tumbling
  • Required Proficiencies: none
  • Recommended Proficiencies: Acting, Alertness, Animal Handling, Appraising, Artistic Ability, Blind-Fighting, Disguise, Falconry, Fast-Talking, Forgery, Gaming, Heraldry, Intimidation, Jumping, Juggling, Land-based Riding, Literacy, Local History, Modern Languages, Musical Instrument, Navigation, Seamanship, Tightrope Walking, Trailing
  • Forbidden Proficiencies: none

Overview: Part acrobat, part swordsman, part wit, and entirely roguish—this is the Swashbuckler. He is a sophisticated city-dweller, the epitome of charm and grace. He’s fully capable of putting on heavy armor, picking up a bastard sword, and soldiering alongside other warriors—but he shines in comparison when the heroes are adventuring in the city, in light armor and with light weapons.

Every city in the Realms has its powerful or noble families that hold great sway over the guilds or even the rulers. Children of such families learn the skills of reading and writing, politics and diplomacy, ancient languages, and heraldry. Many are destined to enter the nobility, and others will become prominent council members or guild leaders. However, there are always the disappointments…The Swashbuckler is one of these. He is likely to be a younger child; one who does not appreciate the nuances of the ancient languages and is bored stiff by politics.

Description: Swashbucklers usually dress in fancy, brightly colored clothing (usually made of silk or other expensive fabrics). The typical Swashbuckler can often be found hanging around sophisticated wine bars in rich areas of cities or else dueling with other swashbucklers in the streets (legally or not), and is very rarely seen “doing a proper day’s work. They are often frowned upon for their arrogance and laziness. Even so, it is hard to dislike a swashbuckler, for the eternal optimism and wisecracking remarks are endearing, if perhaps a little annoying.

Role-Playing: In a campaign, the Swashbuckler is the happy-go-lucky hero with the ready wit and the flashing rapier. His home is the city, where he can shine amidst the squalor with his wild theatrics and displays of acrobatic skills. Enemies often underestimate him because of his charming manners and more often than not he also finds himself, justly or not, on the wrong side of the law.

Most Swashbucklers come from a wealthy or aristocratic background. Their skills of stealth and acrobatics came not from survival needs, but whim. This motivation typically remains the driving force behind the Swashbuckler’s career. Most of these young rakes retire when they get older and must assume responsibilities in the communities (family, noble title, business, and so forth). Many a Swashbuckler has kept up his activities, however, in secret; his moonlighting may even be developed (usually purposely) to a point of distinguishable alter-egos. The daytime character may be a foppish dandy, gruff businessman, or airhead noblewoman. At night the Swashbuckler emerges: a cunning, dashing, adventurous character.

The Swashbuckler, because he’s bright and well-spoken, often becomes party leader…or at least the leader’s spokesman.

Special Abilities:

  • When wielding a weapon from the Fencing Blades group, the Swashbuckler uses the attack bonus of a Warrior of his level, regardless of his class.
  • A Swashbuckler is extremely nimble and hard to hit. When he’s wearing leather or lighter armor, or no armor, a Swashbuckler receives a +2 bonus to his AC. This increases to +3 if he is wielding a Fencing Blade that he has specialized in.
  • The Swashbuckler is such a romantic figure that he always receives a +3 adjustment on his reaction roll from NPC members of the opposite sex.
  • If he wishes, the Swashbuckler, like the Noble can live with his relations indefinitely, enjoying a life of ease and luxury. Even when not living with relatives, the swashbuckler can choose to accept a stipend of 10gp per level each month from his family. Many noble families are none too pleased by the foppish behavior of their children, and swashbucklers could be disinherited, or lose their financial aid, by their kin if they overly abuse their privileges.

Special Disadvantages:

  • As a noble, and something of a fop, a swashbuckler only buys the highest quality goods. He must spend 125% of the normal price on all weapons and armor, and 200% on clothing.
  • Trouble seeks out the Swashbuckler. This is something that the DM will have to play very carefully. When there’s another Swashbuckler around, intent on proving that he’s the best swordsman in the world, it’s the PC Swashbuckler he settles upon and challenges. When a certain young lady is being pursued by the king’s guards, who are intent on stopping her from revealing secrets in her possession, it is the Swashbuckler she stumbles across when fleeing. When a prince is too drunk to attend his own coronation, miraculously he looks just like the Swashbuckler. Life conspires to make things difficult for the Swashbuckler, and the DM should always throw just a little more good-natured bad luck at these characters than at any other.

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