Dread Fighter, Variant (5e Class)

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Dread fighters are typically fighters who have learned to tap into power of ambient magic through various means. They prefer close combat and specialize in dealing damage and having high resistance to magic. Their combat prowess and their conduit to ambient magic make them a force to be reckoned with.

Creating a Dread Fighter[edit]

Dread Fighters are amazing at dealing damage and resisting magical effects, due in large to their link to the magic around them. They use this magic to improve themselves and their fighting abilities, they are a great force when it comes to magical hostile creatures. To become a Dread Fighter, a character needs a reason as to why they have become linked to the ambient field of magic around them. This can be explained by a accident with a magical artifact, a deal with a fiend or other powerful being, or a magic imbued tattoo. If you are seeking a high-risk class with nice flavorful combat, look no further.

Dread Fighter Concept by [1]

Quick Build[edit]

A Dread Fighter focuses on one thing, close quarters combat. Your going to want to have high Dexterity and Strength, these are going to be your two main stats as you are all about dealing that damage and evading attacks. If a enemy does land a attack on you, it's going to hurt because of your low Hit Dice, so I also suggest a higher constitution.

Class Features

As a Dread Fighter you gain the following class features.

Hit Points

Hit Dice: 1d10 per Dread Fighter level
Hit Points at 1st Level: 10 + Constitution modifier
Hit Points at Higher Levels: 1d10 (or 6) + Constitution modifier per Dread Fighter level after 1st


Armor: Light, Medium
Weapons: Simple weapons, Martial weapons
Tools: Artisan Tools
Saving Throws: Strength and Dexterity
Skills: Choose four from Acrobatics, Arcana, Deception, Insight, Investigation, Perception, Performance, Persuasion, Sleight of Hand, Stealth, and Survival.


You start with the following equipment, in addition to the equipment granted by your background:

  • (a) dungeoneer's pack or (b) explorer's pack
  • Choose two from any proficient weapon
  • Choose one from any proficient armor

Table: The Dread Fighter

Level Proficiency
Features Ambient Magic Pool
1st +2 Battle Focus, Aggressor, Ambient Magic 1
2nd +2 Aegis, Sunder 2
3rd +2 Bold Stance, Ambient Siphon 3
4th +2 Ability Score Improvement, Maelfic Aura 4
5th +3 Extra Attack, Grisly Wound 5
6th +3 Galeforce 6
7th +3 Astra, Amaterasu 7
8th +3 Ability Score Improvement, Even Keel 8
9th +4 Clarity 9
10th +4 Luna 10
11th +4 Sol 11
12th +4 Ability Score Improvement, Lethality 12
13th +5 Ambient Torrent 13
14th +5 Ignis 14
15th +5 Swordfaire 15
16th +5 Ability Score Improvement, Awakening 16
17th +6 Hoshido Bond, Nohrian Trust 17
18th +6 Slayer, Heart Seeker 18
19th +6 Ability Score Improvement, Aether 19
20th +6 Limit Break 20

Ambient Magic[edit]

Starting at 1st level, you gain the ability to collect and store an energy called ambient magic within you, allowing you to improve your body and your fighting abilities with it. Your Dread Fighter level reflects the how much ambient magic you can safely store within themselves without overloading your body with strain of wild magic.

Your access to the ambient magic is represented by a number of ambient magic charge. Your dread knight level determines the number of charges you have, as shown in the Ambient Magic Pool column on the Dread Fighter table.

You can spend these points to activate your ambient magic features. You start knowing two such features: Battle Focus and Agressor. You learn more ambient magic features as you gain levels in this class.

You recover half of your spent ambient magic points after a short rest. After finishing a long rest, a you regain all of your ambient magic charges.

Battle Focus

Focusing on the battle at hand and examining your opponent has led you to spy a weak point in your defense or attack patterns that you can exploit with a boost of ambient magic to your body. As a reaction to creature's attack against you, you can spend 1 charge of ambient magic to give a hostile creature disadvantage on that attack roll.


Ambient magic begins boiling in your blood, on the offensive your body craves to attack your opponent, your hands itch to cleave into a enemy. As a bonus action, you can spend 1 charge of ambient magic to gain advantage on your next attack roll.


At 2nd level, the ambient magic within you begins changing you on a base level. You can now see magical effects when you choose to as intricate patterns, an understanding of how these patterns fit together aids the Dread Fighter in combat or exploration. As a reaction, expending 1 charges of ambient magic allows a Dread Fighter to re-roll a Arcana checks or a save against a magical effect.


Your ambient magic flows into your weapon, condensing along it to make it heavier and deadlier to the flow of combat. As an action, you can spend 2 charges of ambient magic to make a melee weapon attack against a creature. On a hit, the target suffers -1 penalty to your AC, as your armor crumbles under your blow, the effect lasts for 1 hour or until you reduce the target to 0 hit points.

Bold Stance[edit]

Your stance grows stronger as your power grows, your muscles grow stronger and your eyes fiercer. Infusing your body with ambient magic causes your eyes to glow briefly and your muscles grow more rigid giving your a hardened appearance. You can expend 2 ambient magic charges to gain advantage on a Charisma (intimidation checks for 1 hour.

Ambient Siphon[edit]

A Dread Fighter can focus on his or her surroundings and mediate for ten minutes, absorbing the ambient magic around them and regaining 1 points to your pool. If the process is interrupted, no ambient magic is gained however and the dread fighter loses 1 points to your pool. If a Dread Fighter can touch the body of a spell caster for 5 minutes and focus, a Dread Fighter siphon the arcane energies inside the spell caster and regain 3 points of your ambient magic pool. If this process is interrupted, no ambient magic is gained or lost. The spell caster being drained can not cast spells for 1d4 hours if the Ambient Siphon suceeds.

Ability Score Improvement[edit]

When you reach 4th level, and again at 8th, 12th, 16th and 19th level, you can increase one ability score of you choice by 2, or you can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.

Malefic Aura[edit]

Upon command, ambient magic surrounds the Dread Fighter in a aura, wisps of the magic flit through the air around you as the magic begins attacking enemies by breaking apart armor as well as flesh. A Dread Fighter can use 3 charges of ambient magic to give themselves the aura for 5 minutes or until the aura is dispelled. The aura deals 5 damage to a creature that begins or ends your turn within 5ft of the Dread Fighter, they also suffer a -1 to your total AC if they end your turn within the aura. The negative effect disappears once a enemy ends your turn outside of the aura.

Extra Attack[edit]

Beginning at 5th level, you can attack twice, instead of once, whenever you take the Attack action on your turn.

Grisly Wound[edit]

As a bonus action Dread Fighter can expend 4 charges of ambient magic to improve your weapons attack power. Giving your weapon a wounding effect on the Dread Fighter's next attack action with that weapon. On a successful attack with the weapon, the creature attacked takes 1 point of constitution damage. This effect only lasts 1 attack action after applying it.

At the start of each of the wounded creature’s turns, it takes 1d4 necrotic damage for each time you’ve wounded it, and it can then make a DC 15 Constitution saving throw, ending the effect of all such wounds on itself on a success at the end of the creature's turn. Alternatively, the wounded creature, or a creature within 5 feet of it, can use an action to make a DC 15 Wisdom (Medicine) check, ending the effect of such wounds on it on a success.

Gale Force[edit]

The ambient magic has shaped a character's body to be faster and stronger, it seeps into your bones and blood, seeking only to help by improving the Dread Fighter's body. A Dread Fighters natural movement speed is now improved by 10 and they can expend 3 ambient magic to gain advantage on a athletics check.


Ambient magic surrounds you and your weapon and time seems to slow down as your vision hyper focuses on the enemy. You move with fluid grace as ambient magic enhances your form, everyone around seems to be moving in slow motion while to them you are moving rapidly. As a action, a character can use 4 ambient magic points to perform 4 basic melee attacks at half damage.


Ambient magic seeps from you on your command and covers your body protectively, hardening and ready to withstand blows. As a action, a character expends 4 ambient magic points to coat themselves in ambient magic. The protective coating gives them a magical enhancement of +2 to your AC until the coating is broken by attack or dispelled. If the coating remains unbroken for 2 minutes, the ambient magic begins healing the Dread Fighter by (1d4 + Con Mod).

Even Keel[edit]

The ambient magic shapes you even further, you can now see magic and it's effects even easier now. The patterns and intricate webs that casters weave seem plain as day when you choose to view them. You gain your proficiency bonus on Arcana checks, and you can expend 2 ambient magic to enhance your eyes for 10 minutes. During the 10 minutes you can sense the presence of magic within 30ft, and you can see a faint aura around any visible creature or object in the area that bears magic.


Time slow as ambient magic fills your mind with soothing energy. Reality seems easier to understand, problems present your solutions, and riddles are less of a hassle. As a immediate reaction to rolling a saving throw before they roll, a Dread Fighter can spend up to 5 ambient magic points to increase your roll by the amount of ambient magic spent.


You imbue your weapon with the power of ambient magic, focusing on piercing power and driving edge. The weapon glows with a blue light as it awaits your attack. As a bonus action, a Dread Fighter can expend 8 ambient magic points to enhance your attack roll with +3 on a roll. The coating only lasts for 1d4 minutes.


You imbue your weapon with the power of ambient magic, focusing on draining and leaching essence. The weapon glows with a orange light as it awaits your attack. As a bonus action, a Dread Fighter can spend 8 ambient magic points to gain half the damage dealt to a enemy on your next attack action, back as Temporary HP. The coating only lasts for 1d4 minutes.


Using ambient magic, you burn a magical rune onto a creature, the rune burning harder every time you attack. As a bonus action, a Dread Fighter spend 8 ambient magic points to mark an enemy within 5ft of themselves. So long as the Dread Fighter or the enemy does not leave combat range, the creature will take an additional (1d8 + 1/2 Dread Fighter Level + Str Mod) force damage from the Dread Fighter attacks.

Ambient Torrent[edit]

A Dread Fighter can focus for two minutes on your surroundings and exert control of the ambient magic around them. you can either absorb the surrounding magic, regaining 6 ambient magical energy; or you expend 6 ambient magical energy which pushes your own ambient magic out and cause a explosion of magical energy centered on themselves. The explosion causes no damage to the Dread Fighter but any creature within a 10ft radius must make a Dex Save DC (8 + Proficiency Bonus + Strength Mod of the Dread Fighter). you take (4d8 + Dread Fighter Level + Strength Mod) force damage, or half as much on a successful save.


You coat your weapon in ambient magic, focusing on damaging and tearing, the magic reacting in a furious coating. Your weapon glows a radiant green while in it's coating. As a bonus action, a Dread Fighter can use 8 ambient magic points to add a coating of your own ambient magic to your weapon. your strength and wisdom mod are added to the damage roll and the required roll for the weapon's critical is lowered by one. The coating lasts for 1d8 minutes.


A Dread Fighter learns how to channel your ambient magic into your weapon and connect the weapon to your magical core. To attune a weapon, a Dread Fighter must meditate with the weapon for 3 hours and expend 2 ambient magic every hour that passes. Only one weapon can be attuned to a Dread Fighter at a time. Attacks made with a weapon that has been in tuned to the Dread Fighter have your damage and attack rolls increased by +1.


When the character's hit points are under 1/4th your ambient magic begins empowering the Dread Fighter to save your lives, fill the air around them with a oppressive aura against hostile creatures. Enemies within 5ft have disadvantage on attacks against the Dread Fighter, and the character regains 2 ambient magic at the end of your turn until your health points are above 1/4th.

Hoshido Bond[edit]

Hoshido Ambient Magic begins creating itself within you, giving your spiritual body a empowerment as the cool waves of Hoshido ambient magic begin circulating through your body. You can expend 5 points of ambient magic in order to project a square aura of 10 ft. Any creature or individual within this aura, that the Dread Fighter deems an ally, gains advantage to your attack rolls.

Nohrian Trust[edit]

Nohrian Ambient Magic begins creating itself within you, giving you physical body a push beyond itself as rapid lightning strikes of power begin striking through your body. The ambient magic from the foreign land fills you with Assurance and Determination. As a reaction, as you perform a bonus action you can expend 2 ambient magic to perform another bonus action.


Upon killing a creature's level is below the Dread Fighter's level, you can now absorb it's ambient magic as you slay it. The wisps of ambient magic leave it's dead body and flow into you, empowering you even as you use the ambient magic to kill more creatures. You regain 1 ambient magic for every creature killed in this fashion.


A bright glowing rune can now adorn your attuned weapon, further empowering it and bringing it closer into attunement with you. The rune is created from the combination of ambient magic from within you and the ambient magic you empowered the weapon with. The runes design reflects the energy type chosen and the person who marked it. A Dread Fighter can use 8 ambient magic to place of rune upon your attuned weapon that last 1d8 days. The rune enchants the weapon with +5 energy damage of a chosen type. The damage can be cold, fire, radiant, lightning, necrotic, or thunder.


Your mastery of ambient magic has increased so much that you now know how to coat your attuned weapon with a very powerful effect that combines the previous coatings. It only lasts one minute, specifically one round of actions, but the weapon glows a radiant silver in anticipation of cleaving your enemies with the power of ambient magic. As a bonus action, a Dread Fighter can use 14 ambient magic to add a special coating of your ambient magic to your attuned weapon. The weapon gains the effects of the previous abilities Sol and Luna. The coating only lasts for one round of actions and with Aether applied to the attuned weapon, Sol and Luna can not be applied to stack your effects.

Limit Break[edit]

At 20th level, expending 20 ambient magic and flooding your body with it causes the Dread Fighter to gain a temporary aura of power. The aura is a reflection of the Dread Fighter, thus evil tends to be black and red spooky lightning and good tends to be blue and yellow wafts of power. It is based on the character themselves and is usually different from creature to creature. For up to 1 hour, you gain the following effects:

  • Your strength, constitution, and dexterity receive a magical enhancement of +5.
  • Your movement speed is doubled while under the effects of the aura, and your jumping distance is also doubled.
  • your pool of ambient magic recharges 4 points every minute while the aura is active.
  • Your basic weapon attacks also deal an additional 2d10 Force damage with every hit.

After the 1 hour is up, until you receive a long rest, you receive the following effects:

  • Your strength, constitution, and dexterity receive a magical debuff of -5.
  • Your movement speed is halved.
  • You have no access to ambient magic.


Prerequisites. To qualify for multiclassing into the Dread Fighter class, you must meet these prerequisites: Cannot be True Neutral Must have at least 13 Str or Dex, and at least 13 Wisdom.

Proficiencies. When you multiclass into the Dread Fighter class, you gain the following proficiencies:

  • Light armor
  • One skill from the Dread Fighter skill list
  • Artisan Tools

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