Thri-kreen Dervish (3.5e Optimized Character Build)

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Deep in the desert live the mysterious Thri-Kreen, insect nomads. Seven-foot four-armed Mantis Warriors are terrifying on the face of it, but the deadly Thri-kreen dervish is frightening even to others of his race.


Player's Handbook Version 3.5

Oriental Adventures

Unearthed Arcana

Expanded Psionics Handbook

Optional: The Walking Lands (WL) (

Game Rule Components[edit]

This build requires non-lawful alignment.

Race and Templates[edit]



This build uses the Berserker (WL, but substainally the same as the Barbarian of the PHB).


Deflect Arrows

Improved Initiative

Multiweapon Fighting

Fast Healing



Spring Attack



Aggressive (+2 initiative, -1 AC)

Quick (base speed +10ft., -1 hp per level)


Murky-eyed (role miss chance for concealment twice)

Shaky (-2 to ranged attacks)

Spells, Powers, Items[edit]

Gythka (deep crystal): 1d10/1d10

Chatkcha (deep crystal): 1d6 (20ft.)


This build makes use of several optional rules from Unearthed Arcane including the use of traits, the use of flaws, and a variant rule for a barbarian's rage ability.

This build also makes use of the "monster class" rules. The build takes four levels of Thri-kreen over the course of its development in lieu of LA.

The Berserker is substantially identical to the Barbarian, with the following exceptions; instead of trap sense, the Berserker gains "frentic reflexes" which make it harder to avoid his or her attacks of opportunity. Use the Barbarian exactly as written in the PHB, if desired, and for "Berserker" read "Barbarian."

The Thri-kreen deverish uses the Whirling Rage variant described on page 66 of UA (+4 Str., +2 AC, +2 Reflex saves, may chose to make +1 attack with -2 penalty to all attacks).


Initial scores (28 point buy):


At ECL 1: Str: 16 Int: 6 Wis: 16 Dex: 16 Con: 14 Cha: 4

ECL Class/HD/LA Feats Special
1st Thri-Kreen 1 Multiweapon Fighting, Deflect Arrows, Improved Initiative, Thri-kreen base traits, natural armor +1,
2nd Thri-Kreen 2 +2 Dex, natural armor +2
3rd Thri-Kreen 3 Dodge natural armor +3, Psi: chameleon 3/day, know direction 3/day
4th Thri-Kreen 4 poison bite, psionic displacement 1/day, metaphysical claw 1/day
5th Thri-Kreen 4 /Berserker 1 Rage, Fast Healing
6th Thri-Kreen 4 /Berserker 2 Mobility Uncanny Dodge
7th Thri-Kreen 4 /Berserker 3 Frenetic reflexes (withdraw)
8th Thri-Kreen 4 /Berserker 4 Rage 2/day
9th Thri-Kreen 4 /Berserker 5 Spring Attack Improved unncanny dodge
10th Thri-Kreen 4 /Berserker 6 Frenetic reflexes (leaving)
11th Thri-Kreen 4 /Berserker 7 Damage reduction 1/—
12th Thri-Kreen 4 /Berserker 8 Cleave Rage 3/day


Base speed is 60ft. (Thri-kreen 40 + 10 (Quick) + 10 (Berserker/Barbarian)).

The build's AC is helped by the +3 natural armor.

Thri-kreen have a racial bonus of +30 to Jump checks, and the build adds a speed bonus of +12.

Thri-kreen are able to charge their deep crystal weapons for an additional 2d6 damage on their next successful hit (or until one minute has passed: cost of 2 power points.)

Munchkin-Size Me[edit]

Lose the deep crystal weapons.

Side Notes[edit]


Clearly not the character you want as the party's ambassador. Armor is not really in the character of this build, and in addition it wastes the Thri-kreen natural armor bonus, but the player does not have a lot of feats with which to improve it.

DM Counters[edit]

I love flaws, but allowing them gives 2 extra feats at first level, which goes a long way to making this build possible.


This is a very simple and satisfying character to play; a child of the desert, uncomfortable in civilization; a hunter, a tracker, and in battle, a fearless and deadly attacking machine.

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