Bladesinger (3.5e Optimized Character Build)

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"By song and steel--you will fall!"

Introduction[edit]

Boost your whole party's damage to impressive heights using your bardsong while being a formidable foe yourself.

References[edit]

  • Unearthed Arcana
  • Dragon Magic
  • Complete Warrior
  • Dungeon Master's Guide II
  • Tome of Battle
  • Magic Item Compendium
  • Races of the Dragon
  • Spell Compendium
  • Dungeonscape
  • Player's Handbook II
  • Eberron Campaign Setting

Game Rule Components[edit]

Spells[edit]

  • Inspirational Boost

Progression[edit]

Starting Ability Scores (Before Racial Adjustments): (Assuming 32 Point Buy) 16 14 12 15 8 13

Race: Draconic Human (Mostly for the stat bonuses, buy off +1 LA. Need 15 Intelligence and Charisma for Words of Creation)

ECL Class/HD/LA Base
Attack Bonus
Saving Throws Feats Class
Features
Special
Fort Ref Will
1st Bard 1 +0 +0 +2 +2 Dragontouched, Draconic Heritage (Battle), Power Attack, Dragonfire Inspiration Bardic Music, Countersong, Inspire Courage +1, Lore Song
2nd Warblade 1 +1 +2 +2 +2 Battle Clarity, Weapon Aptitude
3rd Bard 2 +2 +2 +3 +3 Song of the White Raven
4th Warblade 2 +3 +3 +3 +3 Uncanny Dodge
5th Warblade 3 +4 +3 +4 +4 Battle Ardor
6th Bard 3 +5 +4 +4 +4 Song of the Heart Inspire Competence
7th Warblade 4 +6 +5 +4 +4
8th Warblade 5 +7 +5 +4 +4 Iron Heart Aura Inspire Courage +2
9th Warblade 6 +8 +6 +5 +5 Words of Creation Improved Uncanny Dodge
10th Warblade 7 +9 +6 +5 +5 Battle Cunning
11th Warblade 8 +10 +7 +5 +5
12th Warblade 9 +11 +7 +6 +6 Stormguard Warrior, Combat Reflexes
13th Warblade 10 +12 +8 +6 +6
14th Warblade 11 +13 +8 +6 +6 Battle Skill, Inspire Courage +3
15th Warblade 12 +14 +9 +7 +7 Robilar's Gambit
16th Warblade 13 +15 +9 +7 +7 Improved Initiative
17th Warblade 14 +16 +10 +7 +7
18th Warblade 15 +17 +10 +8 +8 Optional Battle Mastery
19th Warblade 16 +18 +11 +8 +8
20th Warblade 17 +19 +11 +8 +8 Diehard Inspire Courage +4

At level 20: Bard 3 / Warblade 17

Optional Feats[edit]

  • Defensive Sweep to generate another Attack of Opportunity with Stormguard Warrior, especially if you have a Zone Controller in the party
  • Improved Buckler Defense for extra AC
  • Close-Quarters Fighting for excellent defense against grapplers

Items of Note[edit]

  • Badge of Valor
  • Vest of Legends
  • Wand of Inspirational Boost

Highlights[edit]

  • Must be good (Exalted)
  • Assumed stats at level 20:
    • Inspire Courage: 4 (Base) x 2 (Words of Creation) + 1 (Song of the Heart) + 1 (Inspirational Boost) + 1 (Badge of Valor) = +11, Dragonfire Inspiration + Draconic Heritage (Battle) = 11d6 Sonic damage
    • Strength: 16 (Base) + 2 (Race) + 6 (Item) + 5 (Tome) + 5 (Level) = 36 (+13)
    • Attack Bonus: 19 (BAB) + 14 (Str) + 5 (Magic) = +38/+33/+28/+23
    • Damage: 2d6 (Greatsword) + 19 (Str) + 5d6+5 (Magic) + 11d6 (Bardsong) = 18d6+24
    • Total damage per attack comes out to 87 (on average). Should all attacks hit that's 348 damage. (200.1 when weighted against AC 40)
  • Shore up the low Will save with Moment of Perfect Mind

Note[edit]

That's with a regular full attack. Add extras (such as Time Stands Still, Raging Mongoose, Diamond Nightmare Blade and others) and you can reach far higher damage.

Combat Sequence[edit]

  • Charge
  • Full attack and maneuvers

Munchkin-Size Me[edit]

  • Get another bard or use a wand to cast Creaking Cacophony to double your Sonic damage.
  • At high levels, Diehard can be used to good effect when combined with the Delay Death spell (Spell Compendium).

Limitations[edit]

  • Creatures with resistance/immunity to Sonic damage. Fortunately, not many of these exist.
  • Bardic Music quota is equal to Bard class level.

DM Counters[edit]

  • Usual melee defences apart from AC (illusions, concealment, distance, etc)
  • Silence

Variants[edit]

  • If you're willing to give up on the awesomeness that is Stormguard Warrior when combined with Robilar's Gambit, you can pick up the Two-Weapon Fighting tree for extra attacks. Take Two-Weapon Fighting instead of Power Attack, Improved Two-Weapon Fighting instead of Robilar's Gambit, and Greater Two-Weapon Fighting as the optional feat. If you choose to go this route, a few levels of Bloodclaw Master may be appropriate.
  • You can switch in Crusader instead of Warblade. If you do so, take Stone Power instead of Power Attack (combines incredibly with Steely Resolve), Endurance instead of Stormguard Warrior, and Steadfast Determination instead of Robilar's Gambit to shore up the low Will save. Finally, as the optional feat pick up Stand Still and combine with Thicket of Blades and a glaive + armor spikes for good Zone Control.
  • It's possible to switch the three Bard levels and one of Warblade for Paladin and insert the From Smite to Song feat (Champions of Valor) instead of Song of the Heart to achieve full BAB with this build.
  • Alternatively, one can pick up the From Smite to Song feat (Champions of Valor) in place of Song of the White Raven to switch out the Warblade levels for Paladin, the build becoming Bard 3 / Paladin (probably of Freedom) 17. If you do so, also consider picking up Initiate of Milil (Champions of Valor) to get all the bardic songs which the Bard gains access to.

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