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Bladesinger Character Class (2e)
In Audalis, Bladesingers are the keepers of the yaara'menie (old ways), and their home is Megilindar Nost (Bladesinger Keep), found in the southern Sylvarian kingdom of Maelamin. They maintain a rich oral history of the Sylvari, and know many of even the most obscure legends and myths. This small, elite group is highly regarded by aristocracy and commoner alike, as they are seen as some of the most "pure" Sylvari left in existance. Bladesingers work in service of the Sylvarian crown and people, and are often chosen for missions of utmost importance. Their loyalty lies solely with Sylvaria, and with each other.
The most noted capability of the Bladesinger, however, is their prowess in combat. They practice a special fighting style known as the "bladesong," which emphasizes beauty and economy of movement over sheer destructive force, and is easily among the most effective fighting techniques in the world. The style is so named due to the strange music caused by the wordless, soulful tunes which are sung as these warriors rip their whistling blades through the air. The bladesong uses the momentum of an opponent against him, causing him to be off-balance and opening him to attacks. Practicioners of this art must have extreme balance, coordination, and skill. The bladesong is a secret fiercely guarded by the bladesingers, and takes many years to perfect. It is not to be taught to non-bladesingers, and certainly never to non-Sylvari. The bladesong is but a portion of what it means to be a Bladesinger. A character who is chosen to become a Bladesinger will literally spend years perfecting the bladesong and the steps of the dance before he or she is judged capable of passing the order's tests.
Class Requirements: Alignment: LG, NG only (character must have a large measure of discipline, and bladesingers are carefully selected, usually only of "pure" blood.)
Minimum requirements: STR 12, DEX 14, CON 12, INT 12, WIS 10, CHA 13
Experience: Use the ranger table
Hit dice: Use the warrior table
Race: Sylvari only
Weapon restriction: A bladesinger may only use swords, and these must always be of the highest quality the character can afford (quality, not necessarily cost). While the bow is a classic elven weapon, bladesingers do not use it, as all of their training focuses on the bladesong in combat. Moreover, a level one bladesinger selects her weapon of choice to be proficient with; until level five, she may not add another (although all swords are counted at half the normal penalty for non-proficient attacks, due to training). Additional weapon slots are gained at levels 9, 13, and 17. A bladesinger endeavors to never allow their weapon to touch the ground, as this dishonors the blade. If this happens, the blade must be discarded, and a new weapon must be found. (In the event of a fumble, however, the Bladesinger may, in lieu of any further actions that round, make a dexterity check. If successful, the weapon is retained prior to touching the ground.)
Armor restriction: The only armors allowed to a bladesinger are leather, studded leather, or elven chain (no restrictive armor allowed). A shield may not be used. As their attacks do not focus on damaging strikes, bladesingers may not use the extra damage/to hit bonuses associated with exceptional strength.
Class restriction: Bladesingers may not multi-class, as they must spend years of dedicated training to acheive the necessary skill level to pursue their chosen class.
Combat bonuses: Bladesingers get an automatic -1 adjustment to their armor class to reflect their adeptness at dodging/deflecting attacks. Each four levels of advancement gives an additional -1, to a maximum of -5. Note that this bonus only applies to melee opponents that the bladesinger is aware of. During combat, a bladesinger can choose one of the following, per round: * Add -2 to their own armor class. * Add +2 to their own attacks. * Parry and attack in the same round.
Disarm: A bladesinger may, at any time, attempt to disarm an enemy. A "called shot" is rolled with a +1 bonus; if the attack hits, the enemy is not harmed, but their weapon is flung from grasp.
Bladesingers are considered specialized in their chosen weapon (for the purpose of # of attacks per round) at level one. As additional weapon slots become available, the Bladesinger may elect to further concentrate in their chosen weapon to the same degree that a normal fighter can.
At fourth level, the Bladesinger can, once per day, imbue their weapon with an enchantement that makes it effectively +1 for an hour.
A ninth level Bladesinger has become so "in tune" with the dance that they no longer rely on sight. Therefore, darkness (normal or magical), fog, and even blindness fail to hamper their combat ability.
Bonus Proficeincy: Ancient History (elven)
Required Proficiencies: Reading and Writing, Etiquitte
Equipment: Bladesingers live light. Eqipment should cover necessities, but surplusses are to be avoided, and lighter equipment should be used in place of heavier alternatives.
Appearance: Bladesingers have no standard dress code, but it is accepted that they normally dress in muted, taseful garb, as befits an elf.
Code: The Bladesinger must live up to the strict standards of their own code. Discipline is usually ingrained to the point where any individual would rather die than break even the smallest tenet (i.e., a dishonored sword is left on the battlefield, regardless of immediate danger). However, a Bladesinger that breaks his or her vows can expect to be hunted down and executed by the rest of the order.
Thanks to t_catt11 for this contribution!