View Full Version : Swiftblade before level 7?

2010-09-23, 06:41 AM
Really like the look of the Swiftblade (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/prc/20070327) PrC, wondering if there's a way to get it before Wizard5(with the other level probably being another wiz level, or a martial level for proficiencies and hit die). There anything?

Hm. Arcane Swordsage 5 would do it... Which I've got a DM that'll let me use, too! :smallamused:

Still interested in any less-alternate-class options.

2010-09-23, 07:32 AM
I don't think there's any way of being able to cast a 3rd level spell before lvl5. Trapsmith gets Haste as a 1st level spell, but I don't think you can get early enough entry to it for it to be relevant.

The Martial Weapon Proficiency can easily be fixed by being an Elf or a Neraph, so all you really have to worry about is the BAB. A Cleric of Time can get in after lvl5, though since Swiftblade only progresses Divine casting, meh. A Rogue4/Trapsmith1 qualifies as well, where Rogue can be replaced with pretty much any class that gets trapfinding, enough skill points, and has at least average BAB. Trapfinding variant Barbarian might be fun :P Although you might want to stick a full-casting dip in there with that, since Trapsmith casting progression is a bit bad.

EDIT: Getting Trapsmith after Anything 4 requires severe skill point shenanigans, i've just realised. Not really feasible. Cleric seems the cleanest early entry, weirdly.

I can't find any other way of getting in that early, most other methods (Battle Sorcerer et al.) require six levels, either for the spell level or the BAB.

Arcane swordsage is great too, but kind of hard to arbitrate since what it can do is so unclear.

2010-09-23, 08:01 AM
There are lots of ways but I'm not sure how interested you are in them; it tends to get rather cheesy when you access higher level spells before you're supposed to. Like, learning haste and Sanctum Spelling it would get it to you on level 3 and Dragonpool Shenanigans with Sorcerer could get it level 1 (along with extra spell shenanigans), but eh. Just wait until level 7 like a good boy, go Wizard 6 and profit.

2010-09-23, 08:41 AM
The best BAB you can hope for is 3/4 with Battle Sorcerer, but they don't get 3rd level spells until 6th level. Part of Swiftblade's good design is that it's very tamper-proof - you can't use Versatile Cheesecaster because you need to be casting a specific spell with your slots. Can't use Trapsmith either - your slots have to be 3rd level.

2010-09-23, 09:01 AM
Heh, yeah, it's a very well designed PrC.

Arcane Swordsage 5 seems like an amazing entry point, but of course ArcSS is rather cheesey in itself. Running with that right now, though, because it's less cheesey than my previous character for the game I'm using it in (Planar Shepherd :smalltongue:)

2010-09-23, 10:22 AM
Can't use Trapsmith either - your slots have to be 3rd level.
Not so, designers had stated that it was designed for sorc/wiz, hence the phrasing for the casting of haste. But that if they had remembered other classes getting haste at different levels, they would have rephrased the line of the entry requirements.
By your reasoning a warmage can't ever access it, because they treat Haste as a 4th level.
Common interpretation is that you must have spent the previous level using only the Haste spell at whichever level you learn it as appropriate to your class.

Yeah it doesn't flow as well as "Must have spent the entire previous level using all 3rd level spell slots to exclusively cast haste." but rule interpretations and adaptations generally don't flow well. Just ask that Radiant Servant of the Campaign Settings God of the Sun or Dawn over there.

2010-09-23, 10:27 AM
There's really no debate whether trapsmith 1 can enter it. Can I cast Haste? Yes. Did I spend all my 3rd-level spell slots last level on it? Yes. Because I had zero 3rd-level spell slots. So yes, I can enter.

Cleric 5 with Time and War domains enters at six without any racial requirements, and I can't find any other way of doing it that early without debateable cheese, like the Arcane SS or spellpool methods mentioned above.

EDIT: You do need to use the Domain Spontaneity acf from PHB2 to cast haste in all your third-level slots, however.

2010-09-23, 10:42 AM
So, in the process of building this, I realized exactly how absurd Arcane Swordsage is. I knew it was bad, but I didn't quite realize what it meant.

It means continual Alter Self. And just about any other buff worth casting. All day, every day.

Meanwhile, the more I look at it... Man, Swiftblade is such a well designed PrC, when applied to normal classes. You lose some stuff (4 levels of spells, isn't small), but get some REALLY cool features (50% miss chance. Extra standard action. Etc). And instead of requiring combat style (skirmishing) feats it gives them. It alters what you're capable of, making you worse at somethings but quite a bit better at what it's designed for. More PrCs need to be made like this.

2010-09-23, 10:49 AM
With some feats... (The one where you swap readied spells in 1 round)

You're practically a Sorcerer with unlimited Spell Slots, better BAB and class features.

2010-09-23, 10:56 AM
Adaptive Style is pretty much a feat tax for Swordsages. I assume it already.

You DO end up with fewer spells known than Sorc--15 without Master of Nine or feats, up to something like 21 with them. But you get higher level spells faster, and can retrain up...

Plus the whole no-daily-usage-limit thing. It's like an invocation user, except it draws from all arcane spells. Even if it was LIMITED to the ones mentioned in the ToB (which it isn't really), that still gives amazing spells all day every day, and you can still take maneuvers. Plus, no arcane armor failure, as you initiate them as you do your maneuvers.

2010-09-23, 11:08 AM
There's a pretty decent fleshed-out Arcane Swordsage homebrew here, and it does get Haste.

2010-09-23, 11:10 AM
...Oh hey, so it does. I like that thing, too. It looks reasonably balanced.