Talk:Daring Outlaw (3.5e Optimized Character Build)

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Alternate Build[edit]

I would like to suggest an alternate build for this. The first five levels are the same, only level 1 skips TWF in order to be an Elf for the +2 Dex bonus, and the third level takes Far Shot in order to save the level of Fighter. Level 6 would be the first level of Spellsage, taking Shadow Razor (Dex Adds to damage). Spellsage also gives you access to the Island of Blades stance, which allows you to flank enemies by having any ally adjacent to them. It also provides a number of useful Maneuvers, including Distracting Ember (swift action to cause enemy to be Flanked), Shadow Blade Technique, Sudden Leap, Wolf-Fang Strike, Burning Brand (swift action to add +5 foot range and convert to fire damage), and Cloak of Deception (swift action to become Invisible for the turn). Even further, by taking your Discipline: Weapon Focus in Shadow Hand, you get a free Weapon Focus (Dagger), which now qualifies you for Inivisble Blade. The next five levels will be the invisible blade levels, with Daring Outlaw taken at 9. Two more levels of Swordsage at 12 and 13 give you Assassin's Stance (stance providing +2d6 Sneak Attack), Wisdom bonus to AC, Shadow Blink (Swift action 50-foot teleport through Shadows), and Dancing Mongoose (the +1 attack with each hand swift action boost), as well as picking up TWF at level 12. 14-17 gives Swashbuckler level 4-7, providing 2 more Sneak attack dice, Acrobatic Charge, and Improved TWF. The last three levels should be Nightsong Enforcer, Assassin, and Spellthief (with Greater TWF at level 18), providing another 3 dice of Sneak Attack. Net result - BAB: 16/11/6/1. Saves: Fort-7, Ref-16, Will-8. Sneak Attack Dice: 11 (8 with non-Daggers), 13 with Assassin's Stance Active. Attack Bonuses: Int (up to +7), Str, Dex. AC Bonuses: Dex, Wis, Int. Attacks: 4 Mainhand, 3 Offhand (5 main, 4 off with Dancing Mongoose Boost). Free/Swift Methods of Sneak Attacking - Shadow Blink to Flank opponent engaging ally, Distracting Ember to Flank any opponent, Island of Blades to Flank opponent adjacent to ally, Cloak of Deception to become invisible, Hide/Move Silently to sneak up on something, Free Feint. Optimal Execution: Shadow Blink behind something and make a full-round attack for 7 attacks, each adding Dex, Str, Int, and 13 Sneak Attack dice. Next round, make a Free Feint on another opponent to catch them flat-footed, use a Swift Action to activate Dancing Mongoose, and make 9 attacks with all of the bonuses and 13 Sneak Attack Dice each. Repeat as necessary, Shadow Blinking out to escape situations getting too sticky. Extra Credit: Brilliant Energy Daggers can be used to bypass Armor, allowing you to hit opponents both Flat-footed and Touch, reducing their AC to 10. And they hit anything that's affected by Sneak Attacks anyways.

A few things with this proposal:
  • You've got to keep the levels even of your base classes. The level of spellthief causes a −20% XP penalty, because of the three levels of swashbuckler and three levels of swordsage.
  • You're missing the Improved Initiative requirement for nightsong enforcer.
  • Even with the sneak attack damage as high as it is, Greater TWF is a god-awful waste of a feat. I'd rather have Deadly Precision, Improved Initiative (see previous comment), or Exotic Weapon Proficiency (bastard sword) so I can trade the level of spellthief for a level of ronin.
  • The free feint only applies to the very next melee attack, not all the attacks in full attack action.
  • You can't "repeat as necessary" with manuevers, because it takes a full round of not attacking for a swordsage to recover expended maneuvers.
  • By the same token, you can't shadow blink away if it's already been expended in the beginning of the round.
Sledged (talk) 12:54, 11 February 2009 (MST)
  • Keeping the levels even on the base classes isn't pivotal - the 20% XP penalty won't really apply since the Spellthief is the final level taken.
    The penalty will also exist at 6th level when the first level of swordsage is taken, and will persist until the next level is taken. —Sledged (talk) 12:50, 13 May 2009 (MDT)
  • I did indeed forget the improved initiative requirement for the Enforcer. I suppose it could be taken over GTWF, or the build could be reverted back to Human over Elf (though I lament the loss of the bonus Dex when it's added to Hit, Damage, and AC)
  • Improved Init seems like the best choice of those. The GTWF was mostly to show the maximum sneak attack possible, Improved Init might be preferable
  • I was under the impression that the free Feint could be used to gain Flat Footed status for a full round of attack;
    If your Bluff check result exceeds this special Sense Motive check result, your target is denied its Dexterity bonus to AC (if any) for the next melee attack you make against it. (Feinting in Combat). The opponent is not flat-footed, just denied a Dex bonus against your next melee attack. —Sledged (talk) 12:50, 13 May 2009 (MDT)
  • and even if not it's a free action, so couldn't it merely be taken between each attack?
    Unfortunately, the CW errata dictates that it can only be used once per round. —Sledged (talk) 12:50, 13 May 2009 (MDT)
  • Yes, there is a limit to the number of maneuvers used, but with the Feints it shouldn't be necessary to use too many. I believe that with this build there could be 5 queued up. Two Shadow Blinks and 3 Dancing Mongoose would probably be the optimal suggestion, as this would allow the player to blink into a group of enemies, expend the mongooses over a couple of rounds to eliminate the enemies, and Blink out as necessary, and in safety recover them
    The same maneuver can not be readied multiple times (reference). It's either readied or it's not, and once it's used, it's expended. So one shadow blink, and one dancing mongoose, but you could also ready shadow stride, and shadow jaunt. Shadow stride (move) into flanking position, single attack (standard), shadow blink (swift) out, and use uncanny feint (free) when you can't flank the enemy. But in this case I'd modify the build to focus on SA damage, at the expense of TWF. —Sledged (talk) 12:50, 13 May 2009 (MDT)
  • Also I didn't say the Blink out in the same round, merely that it was an option to escape when HP or maneuvers ran low several rounds into combat.
    I'll rephrase then; barring recovery, you can't shadow blink away if it's already been expended earlier in the encounter. Again, this can be mitigated with shadow stride or shadow jaunt. —Sledged (talk) 12:50, 13 May 2009 (MDT)
But thank you for your input --Wildfire393 —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs)11:29, 10 May 2009 (MDT). Please sign your posts.
One thing to remember, is that bonuses to attack, generally, are more valuable than bonuses to damage. (This is primarily why GTWF is one of the worst feats in the game. A secondary reason is that the feat provides a benefit that's worse than the previous feat you took to qualify for it.) My initial build idea was a strongheart halfling swashbuckler 13/invisible blade 5/nightsong enforcer 1/ronin 1 which gives 12d6 sneak attack, a +20 BAB, a Dex bonus, and a size bonus. Aside from the evasion requirement for nightsong enforcer, the problem was that even though one can qualify for Daring Outlaw without levels in rogue, I couldn't get a consensus on whether or not the benefit of the feat would be gained without the rogue levels.
So I played around with the build a number of ways, and came up with one of which was very similar to what you proposed, but I opted for a higher attack bonus, in lieu of higher sneak attack damage and more martial adepty goodness. I also decided to maximize the benefit of critical hits with kukris, Improved Critical, Telling Blow, and blood in the water. The last of which pulls double duty in increasing the attack bonus... cumulatively even. —Sledged (talk) 12:50, 13 May 2009 (MDT)

Power Critical[edit]

The Power Critical Feat from Complete warrior gives a +4 to confirm critical and it's effects stack if take for the same weapon. Take this feat 2 times and above a 3 gives you a critical, 3 and you always get criticals. Improved initiative seems expendable, throwing in a level of fighter somewhere could give a bonus feat to take it. I also don't see how you get another d6 sneak attack for swashbuckler at level 20, maybe replace that with fighter?..--Ghostie1337 16:32, 4 April 2008 (MDT)

Power Critical gives you a +4 to CONFIRM the threat roll, it doesn't give you a higher threat range. --TK-Squared 16:55, 4 April 2008 (MDT)
Nonetheless, it's probably worth mentioning under Side Notes. —Sledged (talk) 17:11, 4 April 2008 (MDT)
Okay, read it wrong. Although I still don't understand that last +ad6 to sneak attack, as it is not granted by swashbuckler, which doesn't have sneak attack.--Ghostie1337 17:12, 4 April 2008 (MDT)
Yeah, I didn't really explain that. It's the benefit from the feat from which this build is named. Daring Outlaw allows your swashbuckler and rogue levels stack for the purpose of determining sneak attack damage and grace bonus. The feat is a blatant attempt to make the swashbuckler attractive beyond 3rd level. —Sledged (talk) 17:56, 4 April 2008 (MDT)

Invisible Blade Prereqs Fixed[edit]

Invisible Blade no longer requires the ridiculous range combat feats. I would love to see this build updated to reflect that. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs)2008-04-08 23:45. Please sign your posts.

Where was it updated? There's nothing about its requirements in the errata. —Sledged (talk) 08:16, 9 April 2008 (MDT)
Apparently, there was a version of the Invisible Blade in Wizards' Dragon Magazine that had only Weapon Finesse and Weapon Focus: Dagger/Kukri/Katar as the feat requirements. Everything else appeared the same, but it'd probably be DM-dependant whether or not this would be accepted, even though it was Wizards-released. Without those two feats as requirements, you could either work in two additional feats of choice or cut the Fighter level and the requirement to be Human (as Elf adds a greatly appreciated 2-point bonus to Dex), or mix and match one of those with one extra feat. --Wildfire393, 14:17, 06 July 2009
I try to avoid using any Dragon Mag material, unless it's reprinted in a rulebook. However, feel free to add a note in the Miscellaneous section. —Sledged (talk) 02:52, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

Where is this Invisible Blade fix? Which dragon magazine issue is it in?

How the?[edit]

how did you pick pouncing charge and dancing mongoose with only a level in warblade when it says they need to be lvl 5 to pick them?

Don't tell me daring warrior stacks with this.

I won't, but I will tell you that martial adepts add half their levels outside their adept class to determine from what level of abilities their allowed to choose. In this case the character takes 16 levels in various classes before taking a level of warblade: 16/2 + 1 = 9. A 9th level warblade may choose any 5th level maneuver or stance for which he qualifies. I don't have my book in front of me, but this is explained in the section where it details what levels a martial adept may choose what level stances and maneuvers. —Sledged (talk) 12:54, 11 February 2009 (MST)
However, there are a couple problems with the maneuver choices. Both Pouncing Charge and Dancing Mongoose require two other Tiger Claw Maneuvers, meaning there is no way to get both of them with just a single level of Warblade.
Yes, they both require two other tiger claw maneuvers, which makes it fortunate that
Stances are considered maneuvers for the purpose of meeting a prerequisite to learn a new maneuver.
Tome of Battle, page 44
Sledged (talk) 02:52, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
Additionally, the Stance chosen by the first level of any Martial Class MUST be a first level stance, meaning you cannot take Blood in the Water with a single level of Warblade.
Where does it say it must be a first-level stance? And even if that is the case, according to my copy of Tome of Battle, blood in the water is a first-level stance. —Sledged (talk) 02:52, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
Additonally, since the Warblade does not get a second stance until 4th level, this requires either a 4-level dip or the investment of another feat.
Since only one stance is used (blood in the water), this observation does not invalidate the build. —Sledged (talk) 02:52, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
If you choose this path, I suggest taking Martial Stance over the Improved Crit feat (as its benefits can be granted with the Keen Edge Spell or a Keen Enchanted Weapon) or just taking two Levels of Swordsage, which has so many better benefits despite losing one BAB. Like another stance that grants 2d6 Sneak Attack and qualifies you for Shadow Blade, which gives Dex to damage. --Wildfire393 10:08, 12 August 2009 (MDT)


Has 3/4 BAB Ghostwheel 14:51, 6 July 2009 (MDT)

Indeed, If the author is still around, please fix that. If not, well, I'll give it a week. --Ganre 00:52, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
I can only conclude that the two levels of assassin at 13th and 14th levels (both of which show BAB increases) make it very easy to overlook the first level of assassin gained at 6th level (which does not show a BAB increase). —Sledged (talk) 02:52, 1 January 2010 (UTC)


I'd take Swordsage over Warblade, mainly for Island of Blades to allow you to SA more consistently and Shadow Blade to raise your damage by a decent amount Ghostwheel 14:52, 6 July 2009 (MDT)

Already been suggested, mentioned in the miscellaneous section, and discussed in this talk page. —Sledged (talk) 02:52, 1 January 2010 (UTC)


Wouldn't ambidexterity (+2 on Attack) be better then Weapon Focus (+1)? Also I read that the prerequisites for Invisible Blade are supposed to be without Far Shot and Point Blank shot, because the class was was planned to have ten levels (which included ranged combat then) and was cut to five. But they forgot to cut the prerequisites as well. These two extra Feats will surely help this build a a lot. (Like Improved Initiative and Ambidexterity and/or skipping the Fighter Level)

Ninja Instead of Assasin[edit]

Getting 3 levels of ninja would give the same amount of sneak attack and wouldn't require evil alignment. Would also give Wis to AC since you already aren't wearing armor because of Invis Blade. It also gives some Ki abilities, at 3 levels it's only Invisibility for 1 round usable 3+Wis Mod/Day. You lose death attack but gain more AC and the Ki Invis thing.

Might also looking to Vicious Would feat in savage species to increase the bleed from 1 hp/round to 2 hps/round. Beldex 20:51, 3 May 2012 (EST)

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