Lucky Daggersage (3.5e Optimized Character Build)
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 The Lucky Daggersage
The Lucky Daggersage is a master of stealth and assassination. His luck allows him to twist the balance of the combat, giving him a better chance to move first and increasing his hitting chance. He's got several skill possibilities from the Rogue and Human Paragon levels, making him very versatile out of combat. Also, due to his insightful strike and his shadow blade feat, his damage output can pretty much surpass the one of most melee specialists such as fighters. The Daggersage main goal is to catch the opponent flat-footed and finish him before he even has the chance to react.
 The Lucky Daggersage in the society
Since it's rare and mostly unknown profession, the Lucky Daggersage is often thought to be a "fancy rogue". Huge and deadly mistake. Rogues tend to be skillful robbers, while the Daggersage is not only skillful, but is a master of shadows, using his maneuvers and spells to pull the balance of the combat. While treated with
Player's Handbook II
Tome of Battle
 Game Rule Components
 Spells, Powers, Soulmelds, Stances, etc...
At level 5 (initiator level 3):
Desert Wind: Distracting Ember, Burning Blade, Zephyr Dance
Shadow Hand: Shadow blade technique, Cloak of Deception, Strenght Draning Strike
At level 9 (initiator level 5):
Shadow Hand: Shadow Garrote
At level 11 (initiator level 7):
Shadow Hand: Obscuring Shadow Veil
At level 13 (initiator level 8):
Desert Wind: Searing Blade
At level 5 (initiator level 3): Child of Shadows
At level 9 (initiator level 5): Assassin Stance
Level 1: Since you start the assassin in level 16th, spells that allow saves aren't effective anymore. Go for Critical Strike, True Strike, Ebon Eyes and Lightfoot.
Level 2: Here you have more options. Invisibility, Swift and Invisibility are a must. Darkness is also a good option. Blade of Pain and Fear, Absorb Weapon and Fire Shuriken can also help a lot.
 Items at level 10
+2 Deadly Precision Dagger (18000)
+2 Mithral Chain Shirt (5000)
Gloves of Dexterity +2 (4000)
Headband of Intellect +2 (4000)
Periapt of Wisdom +2 (4000)
Ring of Protection +2 (4000)
Boots of Speed (8000)
 Items at level 20
+4 Deadly Precision Brilliant Energy Keen Dagger (200000)
+7 Armor Bracers (49000)
Wand of Greater Invisibility (21000)
Gloves of Dexterity +6 (36000)
Headband of Intellect +6 (36000)
Periapt of Wisdom +6 (36000)
Ring of Protection +5 (50000)
Belt of Dwarvenkind (15000)
Cloak of Resistence +5 (25000)
Boots of Speed (8000)
Manual of Quickness in Action +5 (137500)
Tome of Clear Thoughts +2 (55000)
Tome of Understanding +2 (55000)
Starting Ability Scores (Before Racial Adjustments): 32 Points: 8 16 10 16 16 8
Race (Templates): Human
Starting Racial Traits: Extra Feat, Extra Skill
|Saving Throws||Feats|| Class|
|1st||Swashbuckler||+1||+2||+0||+0||Lucky Start, Improved Initiative||Weapon Finesse|
|3rd||Swashbuckler||+3||+3||+1||+1||Unbeliaveble Luck||Insightful Strike|
|4th||Human Paragon||+3||+3||+1||+3||Adaptive Learner|
|5th||Swordsage||+3||+3||+3||+5||Quick to Act +1, Discipline Focus (Weapon Focus)|
|6th||Human Paragon||+4||+3||+3||+6||Fortuitous Strike||Bonus Feat (Shadow Blade)|
|7th||Human Paragon||+5||+4||+4||+6||+2 Dex|
|8th||Rogue||+5||+4||+6||+6||Sneak Attack +1d6, Trapfinding|
|9th||Swordsage||+6/+1||+4||+7||+7||Improved Diversion||AC Bonus|
|12th||Rogue||+9/+4||+6||+8||+8||Hamstring||Sneak Attack +2d6, Penetrating Strike|
|13th||Swordsage||+10/+5||+6||+9||+9||Discipline Focus (Insightful Strike)|
|15th||Nightsong Enforcer||+12/+7/+2||+6||+12||+9||Daring Outlaw (sneak attack +4d6, grace +2, Dodge bonus +1)||Sneak Attack +5d6, Teamwork (Hear/See Allies)|
|16th||Assassin||+12/+7/+2||+6||+14||+9||Sneak Attack +6d6|
|17th||Fortune's Friend||+12/+7/+2||+6||+16||+9||Easy Luck, Extra Fortune, More Luck than Skill|
|18th||Fortune's Friend||+13/+8/+3||+6||+17||+9||Persistent Attacker||Bonus Luck Feat (Survivor's Luck)|
|19th||Fortune's Friend||+13/+8/+3||+7||+17||+10||Extra Fortune, Fortune's Favorite|
|20th||Fortune's Friend||+14/+9/+4||+7||+18||+10||Bonus Luck Feat (Better Lucky than Good)|
Raise Dexterity in 4th, 8th, 12th, 16th and 20th level.
You must plan your attacks and catch your opponents off-guard. In case you're caught off-guard, unless your friends help you out until you can plan your counter, you must escape the battle.
Always enter the combat under the effect of greater invisibility. This way, you can get your opponents flat-footed. Begin using the searing blade boost and the assassin stance, to increase your damage. You can also use the shadow garrote to render your opponents defenseless and do some minor damage.
Also make good use of your spells. The invisibility, swift spell can give you the edge over an opponent when you can't find another way to sneak attack him, true strike allow you to hit even the hardest opponents and ebon eyes + darkness can prove a good alternative to the invisibility.
From 6th level on, the Daggersage becomes a specialist killer. He can do massive damage because of his dexterity and intelligence, hit most attacks due to his luck (rerolling misses), and on 8th level, he can quickly finish his opponents with his sneak attacks (improved by a deadly precision weapon.)
 10th Level
at 10th level, with the items described before, you'll have:
AC: +6 Dex / +4 Wis / +6 Armor / +2 Deflection = 28 AC
Attack Bonus: +7 BAB / +6 Dex / +1 Focus / +2 Enhancement = +15/+10 Attack Bonus (+15/+15/+10 if hasted)
Damage: 1d4 +6 Dex / +4 Int / +2 Enhancement / +1d6+6 Fire / +5d6 Sneak Attack = 1d4+18+6d6 (average 125/round if hasted)
 20th Level
at 20th level, with the items described before, you'll have:
AC: +12 Dex / +7 Wis / +7 Amor / +5 Deflection = 41 AC
Attack Bonus: +14 BAB / +12 Dex / +1 Focus / +4 Enhancement = +31/+26/+21 (+31/+31/+26/+21 if hasted)
Damage: 1d4 +12 Dex / +7 Int / +4 Enhancement / +2d6+12 Fire / +10d6 Sneak attack = 1d4+35+12d6 (average 318/round if hasted)
 Munchkin-Size Me
An interesting thing would be starting with a rogue level, to get the 8+int skill points multiplied by 4 instead of the 4+int from the swashbuckler. You could also drop some classes with 3/4 BAB (like the human paragon and the assassin dips) to get 4 levels of warrior, giving you a 16/11/6/1 BAB, which gets you an extra attack. It also gives you weapon specialisation and 2 other bonus feats.
 Side Notes
This build creates a low HP PC. It'll work if you have a party with one tanker (fighter, barbarian or other high HP PC) to take the damage while you kill. Also, buffers like a cleric or a bard greatly improve the efficience of this build.
As a Lucky Daggersage you can solo, but mainly on 1x1 fights. This means that if you're going solo you'll have to plan your fights ahead of time, ambush your enemies when they're alone and take down one by one.
 DM Counters
Not needed, since this class isn't designed to abuse the rules.
Here you can keep track of what has been done in each version:
0.9: Added Nightsong Enforcer for better sneak attack
0.8b: Penetrating strike variant, disruptive attack variant.
0.8: Rough concept created, slightly optimized, untweaked game rule components added, mechanics and power tested and approved.