Yakuza (5e Class)

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The Yakuza[edit]

A group of thugs are harassing a merchant's stand, asking for much more money than was previously negotiated. As soon as a punch is thrown, a stocky half orc steps in to catch the fist with one hand and swiftly brings the assailant to the ground with the other. The towering man turns his piercing gaze to the other thugs and unbuttoning his dress shirt a bit, flashes them a tattoo of a raging red dragon. As soon as they see this they apologize and run off. The lone Yakuza produces a pouch of gold from his slick white suit and hands it to the merchant. "For your troubles." He lights a cigarette and walks off into the darkness of the city.

The Extreme Path[edit]

Yakuza are thought of by the public as many things. Thugs, extortionists, thieves, but they are by large, protectors of the weak, acting as an unofficial police force. Members of the yakuza belong to large crime syndicates, divided into clans, that base themselves on strict discipline and a system of hierarchy. While protecting and supporting the communities they represent, yakuza take many opportunities to get to the top of the economic food chain and increase their power and control of illegal activities. Yakuza are built upon respect and responsibility- known to be the toughest of the tough.

Creating a Yakuza[edit]

Informational Preface

This class is designed as a versatile rogue/fighter-esque unarmed class. It is highly based on strength and constitution with a few features relying on charisma. I gained inspiration for many of the features from an Oriental Adventures Yakuza subclass for the Rogue which can be found here: https://www.tribality.com/2015/02/12/oriental-adventures-yakuza/ This is very much inspired after the Ryu Ga Gotoku (or, Yakuza) video game series and it's characters and I hope to have successfully emulated the playstyle of said game.

Character Questions

As a Yakuza, you are a member of a renown criminal organization and work under a clan, a smaller piece of the national crime syndicate. Is your clan territory based in a small town or large city? Maybe they has control of a little bit of a countryside. Yakuza remain largely neutral, but will try to stay on the side of lawful or good due to their code of honor and discretion. There can be evil or particularly chaotic Yakuza however. What goal(s) does your character want to accomplish? Perhaps they went out of line in the past, was punished for it and want to rise back up the ranks to gain favor from their boss, maybe they want to overthrow the current boss, or perhaps they just want to gain enough money to pay off their debts and be able to get out of the crime game for good. Think of what kind of work they primarily do for their clan, are they a bodyguard, club owner, spy, debt collector, or hired assassin? Yakuza will usually have intricate and menacing back tattoos and body modifications that reflect their own personality and ideals. What design do they have tattooed on their back? Or is their tattoo just a fresh outline?

Quick Build

You can make a Yakuza quickly by following these suggestions. First, Strength should be your highest ability score, followed by Constitution. Second, choose the Criminal background or whatever you feel fits your character.

Class Features

As a Yakuza you gain the following class features.

Hit Points

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


Armor: light armor
Weapons: simple, unarmed
Tools: thieves' tools, gaming set
Saving Throws: Strength, Dexterity
Skills: choose two from: Athletics, Intimidation, Persuasion, Perception, Sleight of Hand


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

  • leather armor
  • (a) any simple weapon, or (b) dagger or (c) a tanto (1d6 slashing damage)
  • (a) thieves' tools, or (b) gaming set
  • If you are using starting wealth, you have 1d8 x 10 in funds.

Table: The Yakuza

Level Proficiency
1st +2 Fighter's Fists, Criminal Reputation, Yakuza Heat
2nd +2 Cho-Han
3rd +2 Grappling Expertise
4th +2 Ability Score Improvement, Ability Score Improvement
5th +3 Extra Attack
6th +3 Dynamic Intro
7th +3 Challenge
8th +3 Ability Score Improvement, Ability Score Improvement
9th +4 Uncanny Dodge
10th +4 Increased Critical
11th +4
12th +4 Ability Score Improvement, Ability Score Improvement
13th +5 Natural Armor
14th +5 Kyofu
15th +5 Cross Counter
16th +5 Ability Score Improvement, Ability Score Improvement
17th +6 Climax Move
18th +6 Mr. Shakedown
19th +6 Ability Score Improvement, Ability Score Improvement
20th +6 Kumicho

Fighter's Fists[edit]

At starting level, your unarmed attacks deal 1d4 damage + Strength modifier, this damage increases to 1d6 at level 6, 1d8 at level 11 and 1d10 at level 17.

Criminal Reputation[edit]

At starting level, you are more effective when dealing in the art of criminal trade. You gain advantage to any checks made to buy or sell illicit goods. Additionally, you will not get in trouble with the law when caught for minor crimes such as not paying for food, or breaking small property. Consult your DM about what situations would apply to this Feature.

Yakuza Heat[edit]

At starting level, a Yakuza gains power referred to as "heat" through extensive fighting, glowing with a colored aura of their choosing. When releasing your heat on a bonus action, you gain these features for 1 minute: - Advantage on Strength Checks - +2 to melee attacks using Strength - +2 AC - unable to use spells if possible - unable to use the Uncanny Dodge or Cross Counter actions You can release heat once a day before taking a long rest. This is increased to twice per long rest at level 5, and three times per long rest at level 10.


At 2nd level, on any attack roll, saving throw, or ability check, you have the chance to roll an additional D20 and declare even(Cho) or odd(Han). If it lands on what you predicted, you add the score of the dice to your roll. Otherwise it is discarded. You can do this action twice until completing a short or long rest.

Grappling Expertise[edit]

At 3rd level, you gain Advantage on all Grapple checks. All creatures rolling to grapple you have Disadvantage and you gain Advantage when attempting to escape a grapple. This Feature applies only to being grappled through physical means, no outright Advantage against being held by spells or other magic.

Ability Score Increase[edit]

When you reach 4th level, and again at 8th, 12th, 16th and 19th level, you can increase one ability score of your 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.

Extra Attack[edit]

At 5th level, you can Attack twice, instead of once, whenever you take the Attack action on Your Turn. (you gain a third Attack later through the Rush Archetype)

Dynamic Intro[edit]

At 6th level, you are used to getting into fights and eager to end them. You gain +5 to any Initiative rolls as well as gain Advantage on your first attack action unless otherwise under a Condition preventing Advantage.


At 7th level, you may use an action to challenge any humanoid enemy your size or smaller that understands any language you can speak to a 1-on-1 bout. Make a Charisma check + Intimidation Modifier and the enemy must combat it with a Wisdom saving throw. On success, the targeted enemy will only attack you and the bout ends when one combatant is Incapacitated, Surrenders, or if you Attack another enemy.

Uncanny Dodge[edit]

At 9th level, when an attacker that you can see hits you with an Attack, you can use your Reaction to halve the attack's damage against you. Due to the restriction of using your Reaction, only one attack per round can qualify for Uncanny Dodge.

Increased Critical[edit]

At 10th level, you gain critical hits on Attack rolls of 19 and 20.


At 11th level,

Natural Armor[edit]

At 13th level, while not wearing either armor or a shield, your Armor Class is equal to 10 + Constitution modifier + Strength modifier. You are vulnerable to piercing damage while without armor.


At 14th level, you have become a truly intimidating character and are more able to instill fear into any intelligent creature your size or smaller. Whenever you perform an Attack action that results in a critical hit, those creatures in a 30 foot radius must save a Wisdom saving throw (DC 8 + Proficiency Bonus + Charisma Mod), or drop whatever it is holding and suffer the frightened condition until the end of your next turn. You can also choose to perform Kyōfu against one creature with a successful Intimidate skill check against the creature’s Wisdom score. You furthermore gain proficiency in the Intimidation skill if not already.

Cross Counter[edit]

At 15th level, your Uncanny Dodge feature is improved to Cross Counter. When an attacker that you can see hits you with a melee Attack, you can use your reaction to instantly land a melee attack of your own back to your attacker. Like Uncanny Dodge, you only take half damage. Only one (melee) attack against you per round can qualify for a Counter Attack. You may still use Uncanny dodge against attacks other than melee.

Climax Heat Move[edit]

At 17th level, as an action, you may attempt a powerful attack on an enemy that is grappled, or under the effects of a condition, to deal 3d12 magical bludgeoning damage + your Strength or Dexterity modifier. (magical damage to overcome resistances) If the enemy is dropped to 0 hit points, your use is not expended. You may use this Feature once per short or long rest.

Mr. Shakedown[edit]

At 18th level, you have learned how to effectively shake down your enemies. Whenever an enemy that is holding money is reduced to 0 hit points in combat, you gain 1d12 x 10 gp.


At 20th level, you have proven through your own prowess to be worthy of becoming Kumicho- a Yakuza boss. As the boss, while rolling for initiative, you may choose whether to take first or last initiative, or to roll for it regularly as long as you are not already incapacitated. On top of this, you have built resistance to all forms of poison damage.



Lvl 3[edit]

When in combat your speed is halved you gain an extra Fighters Fist die.

Lvl 6[edit]

When 3 or more people are surrounding you, roll a d4 and add 2 to your strength mod. You also get the tavern brawler feat.

Lvl 10[edit]

When performing an attack with your fists, you can brutalize an enemy and choose to roll a strength check, if you win everyone in the surrounding area has to roll a wisdom saving throw. If they lose, the enemies in the surrounding area will run away. Only works on things your size, and smaller.

Lvl 14[edit]

Increased strength in heat mode, +2 to strength. You can use a heat attack to defeat two opponents at half hp.


Lvl 3[edit]

+10 speed in combat. You can roll a dex check to dodge an attack, this can only occur once a round. Fails do increased damage.

Lvl 6[edit]

After a long rest you can choose to have a dex advantage on all your rolls in combat, but you have a strength disadvantage. Or you can gain a +2 to your DEX.

Lvl 10[edit]

You can use use uncanny dodge or cross counter in a round of combat while in heat.

Lvl 14[edit]

When attacking an opponent one on one you gain +2 to your rolls, the opponent gains a -2 to their rolls.


Lvl 3[edit]

In combat you can choose to not move and your attacks have a chance to stun enemies, must roll con throw to see if stun or not.

Lvl 6[edit]

When in combat you can choose to drink booze, roll a cons save, if you win you can roll an extra D4(scales with lvl) till the end of combat. If you fail, you will take one D4 (scales) of poison damage. After combat you get disadvantage on CHR. This can only be used once per day.

Lvl 10[edit]

If an enemy attacks you, you can counter them for half the damage they did to you. This can only be done once per combat encounter.

Lvl 14[edit]

You can taunt an enemy, CHR saving throw, and if you succeed you gain increased heat duration (30 seconds), but enemies target you.

Mad Dog[edit]

Lvl 3[edit]

You get the ability to cast spells with your dagger, but this uses up 20s of heat. You also get dagger prof.

Lvl 6[edit]

Instead of using a spell you can take out up to 2 enemies at half health with your dagger.

Lvl 10[edit]

When in combat, you can use your legs to attack everyone within a 5ft radius. Uses same Dice as fist.

Lvl 14[edit]

When you kill an enemy in combat you gain half the heat you used back.

Dexterous Fighter[edit]

Upon choosing this Archetype at 3rd level, you may switch out any attack action using the Strength modifier with your Dexterity modifier. Additionally, You can take a Bonus Action on each of your turns in Combat. This action can be used only to take the Dash, Disengage, or Hide action.


Prerequisites. To qualify for multiclassing into the Yakuza class, you must meet these prerequisites: 15 strength, 14 constitution

Proficiencies. When you multiclass into the Yakuza class, you gain the following proficiencies: none

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