View Full Version : Black Cats and Broken Mirrors-- a Hexblade fix (3.5, PEACH)

2012-03-28, 08:47 PM
Like most of the classes in Complete Warrior, the hexblade is somewhat substandard. It has an excellent list of spells, but that's really about all it has going for it. But no more! This fix started with the designer's suggestions (http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75882/19547530/Contacting_Wizards_of_the_Coast_about_Hex_Blades?p ost_id=332210466#332210466), and sort of expanded from there. I'm shooting for T3, as usual. But enough of my rambling. Time for...

The Hexblade

Any fool can have bad luck; the art consists in knowing how to exploit it.
--Frank Wedekind

Abilities: Charisma controls many of the hexblade’s special powers, including his spellcasting. Strength is important for him because of its role in combat. Dexterity and Constitution both contribute to the hexblade’s long-term survival.

Class Skills: The hexblade’s class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Bluff (Cha), Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Disable Device (Int), Disguise (Cha), Gather Information (Cha), Hide (Dex), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (Arcana) (Int), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Open Lock (Dex), Profession (Wis), Ride (Dex), Sense Motive (Wis), Spellcraft (Int), Spot (Wis), and Use Magic Device (Cha).
Skill Points at 1st level: (6+Int modifier) x4
Skill Points at each additional level: 6+ Int modifier

Hit Die: d8

{table=head]Level|BAB|Fort|Ref|Will|Special|0 lv|1st|2nd|3rd|4th
1st|+1|+2|+0|+2|Hexblade’s Curse, Trapfinding, Summon Familiar|1|—|—|—|—
2nd|+2|+3|+0|+3|Stolen Fate|1|—|—|—|—
3rd|+3|+3|+1|+3|Iron Mind|1|—|—|—|—
4th|+4|+4|+1|+4|Bonus Feat |2|1|—|—|—
5th|+5|+4|+1|+4|Curse Casting|2|1|—|—|—
6th|+6/+1|+5|+2|+5|Greater Hexblade’s Curse|2|1|—|—|—
7th|+7/+2|+5|+2|+5|Instant Misfortune|3|2|—|—|—
8th|+8/+3|+6|+2|+6|Bonus Feat, Curse Strike|3|2|1|—|—
9th|+9/+4|+6|+3|+6|Mystic Charging|3|2|1|—|—
10th|+10/+5|+7|+3|+7|Aura of Unluck|4|3|1|—|—
11th|+11/+6/+1|+7|+3|+7|Luck Drain|4|3|2|1|—
12th|+12/+7/+2|+8|+4|+8|Dire Hexblade’s Curse, Bonus Feat|4|3|2|1|—
13th|+13/+8/+3|+8|+4|+8|Armor of Misfortune|4|4|2|1|—
14th|+14/+9/+4|+9|+4|+9|Gift of Fate|4|4|3|2|1
15th|+15/+10/+5|+9|+5|+9|Cursed Aura|4|4|3|2|1
16th|+16/+11/+6/+1|+10|+5|+10|Bonus Feat|4|4|3|2|1
17th|+17/+12/+7/+2|+10|+5|+10|Cloak of Calamity|4|4|4|3|2
18th|+18/+13/+8/+3|+11|+6|+11|Dark Hexblade’s Curse|4|4|4|3|2
19th|+19/+14/+9/+4|+11|+6|+11|Final Curse|4|4|4|3|2
20th|+20/+15/+10/+5|+12|+6|+12|Dark Fate, Bonus Feat|4|4|4|4|3[/table]

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Hexblades are proficient with all simple and martial weapons, and with light armor and shields (but not tower shields). A hexblade may cast hexblade spells while wearing light armor and wielding a shield without incurring arcane spell failure.

Hexblade’s Curse (Su): As a swift action, a hexblade can unleash a curse upon a foe. The target must be visible to the hexblade and within 60 feet. The target of a hexblade’s curse takes a –2 penalty on attack rolls, skill checks, ability checks, saving throws, armor class, and damage rolls for 10 minutes per Hexblade level thereafter. A successful Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 hexblade’s class level + hexblade’s Cha modifier) negates the effect. If the opponent succeeds on his saving throw, the ability is not considered used. After a successful curse, the hexblade must wait 1d4 rounds before he can place another curse.

At 7th level, the recharge time improves to 1d4-1 rounds. At 14th level, it improves to 1d4-2. The recharge time cannot be less than 0; however, if it is 0, the hexblade may attempt to place another curse that same round, if circumstances allow. Any effect that removes or dispels a curse eliminates the effect of a hexblade’s curse.

Familiar: A hexblade can acquire a familiar in exactly the same manner a sorcerer can.

Trapfinding: Hexblades can use the Search skill to locate traps when the task has a Difficulty Class higher than 20. Finding a non-magical trap has a DC of at least 20, or higher if it is well hidden. Finding a magic trap has a DC of 25 + the level of the spell used to create it.

Hexblades can use the Disable Device skill to disarm magic traps. A magic trap generally has a DC of 25 + the level of the spell used to create it. A hexblade who beats a trap’s DC by 10 or more with a Disable Device check can study a trap, figure out how it works, and bypass it (with her party) without disarming it.

Spells: A hexblade can cast a small number of arcane spells, which are drawn from the hexblade spell list. He can cast any spell he knows without preparing it ahead of time, just as a sorcerer can.

To learn or cast a spell, a hexblade must have a Charisma score equal to at least 10 + the spell level (Cha 11 for 1st-level spells, Cha 12 for 2nd-level spells, and so forth). The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a hexblade’s spell is 10 + the spell level + the hexblade’s Cha modifier.

Like other spellcasters, a hexblade can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. His base daily spell allotment is given on Table 1–1. In addition, he receives bonus spells per day if he has a high Charisma score.

The hexblade’s selection of spells is extremely limited. A hexblade begins play knowing no spells, but gains one or more new spells at certain levels, as indicated on Table 1–2.

Upon reaching 4th level, and at every even numbered hexblade level after that, a hexblade can choose to learn a new spell in place of one he already knows. In effect, the hexblade “loses” the old spell in exchange for the new one. The new spell’s level must be the same as that of the spell being exchanged, and it must be at least one level lower than the highest-level hexblade spell the hexblade can cast. A hexblade may swap only a single spell at any given level, and must choose whether or not to swap the spell at the same time that he gains new spells known for the level.

Hexblade Spells Known
{table=head]Level|0 lv|1st|2nd|3rd|4th

Stolen Fate(Su): At 2nd level, a hexblade gains a luck bonus equal to his Charisma bonus (minimum +1) on all saving throws.

Iron Mind (Ex): At 3rd level and higher, a hexblade can resist magical and unusual attacks with great willpower. If he makes a successful Will save against an attack that normally would have a lesser effect on a successful save (such as any spell with a saving throw entry of Will half), he instead completely negates the effect. An unconscious or sleeping hexblade does not gain the benefit of iron mind.

Bonus Feat: At 4th level, and every subsequent 4th level, a hexblade gains a bonus feat. These feats can be drawn from the list of fighter bonus feat, one of the new feats described below, or the following list: Combat Casting, Arcane Strike (CWar), Arcane Toughness (PHB 2), Battle Caster (CArc), Bonded Familiar (PHB 2), Combat Familiar (PHB 2), Dampen Spell (PHB 2), Great Spell Focus, Greater Spell Penetration, Improved Counterspell, Improved Familiar (CWar), Lurking Familiar (PHB 2), Spell Focus, Spell Penetration or any of the Sudden Metamagic feats (CArc).

Curse Casting (Su): Starting at 5th level, a hexblade may expend one use of his hexblade curse in order to cast a hexblade spell as a swift action.

Greater Hexblade’s Curse: Starting at 6th level, the penalty from a hexblade’s curse improves to -4.

Instant Misfortune (Su): Starting at 7th level, a hexblade may use his hexblade curse as an immediate action.

Curse Strike (Su): Starting at 8th level, when attacking the victim of his hexblade curse, a hexblade deals one point of extra damage per hexblade level.

Mystic Charging (Su): Starting at 9th level, a hexblade may expend spell slots as a free action to make his hexblade curse recharge faster. For every level of spell he expends in this fashion, he reduces the recharge time of his curse by one round, to a minimum of zero rounds.

Aura of Unluck (Su): Starting at 10th level, a hexblade may take a swift action to create a baleful aura of misfortune. All creatures within 30 feet must make a Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 hexblade’s class level + hexblade’s Cha modifier) or be affected by his hexblade curse, albeit at one half the normal penalty. (For example, a 10th level hexblade's curse would normally impose a -4 penalty to the target. His aura of unluck would impose a -2 penalty). The effect ends if they move more than 30 feet away, but creatures re-entering the aura must make a new save. The aura lasts for 1 round per hexblade level, but may be dismissed as a free action. A hexblade cannot use his hexblade curse while projecting an aura of unluck, nor may he expend it to use abilities such as Curse Casting. A single creature can only be affected by one version of a hexblade’s curse at a time.

Luck Drain (Su): Starting at 11th level, any time a victim of a hexblade’s curse fails an attack roll, skill check, ability check, or saving throw by less than the penalty imposed by the curse, the hexblade gains a luck bonus to the next roll he makes of the corresponding type equal to the magnitude of the failure. For example, if the affected creature failed an attack roll by 2 points, a hexblade would gain a +2 luck bonus to his next attack. These bonuses lasts for 1 round per point of the hexblade’s Charisma modifier if unused. A hexblade may only have one such bonus at a time; if the foe fails another check, he must choose whether or not to gain the new bonus.

Dire Hexblade’s Curse: Starting at 12th level, the penalty from a hexblade’s curse improves to -6.

Armor of Misfortune (Su): Starting at 13th level, a hexblade gains a 25% miss chance against all melee and ranged attacks.

Gift of Fate (Su): Starting at 14th level, a hexblade may expend a use of his hexblade curse as a swift action to transfer the luck bonus from his luck drain ability to a willing ally within 60 feet. A single target may only have one bonus from this ability at a time.

Cursed Aura (Su): Starting at 15th level, a hexblade continually projects his aura of unluck. He may use his hexblade curse and other such abilities freely while the aura is active. He may dismiss or resume the aura as a free action. He may expend a use of his Hexblade curse to extend the aura to a radius of 10 feet per point of his Charisma modifier for one round per hexblade level, but he cannot use his hexblade curse while projecting this enlarged aura, nor may he expend it to use abilities such as Curse Casting

Cloak of Calamity (Su): Starting at 17th level, the miss chance from a hexblade’s armor of misfortune expands to include any spell which specifically targets the hexblade. In addition, any attack or spell deflected by this ability rebounds on the attacker, using the original attack roll or saving throw DC. You may choose to allow beneficial spells to pass through your defenses without being subject to this miss chance.

Dark Hexblade’s Curse: Starting at 18th level, the penalty from a hexblade’s curse improves to -8.

Final Curse(Su): Starting at 19th level, a hexblade may, as an immediate action, dismiss his curse. The formerly cursed creature must make a Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 your hexblade level + your Charisma modifier) or take a penalty on the next attack roll, skill check, ability check, or saving throw he makes equal to your hexblade level. However, after using this ability, the foe cannot be affected by another curse or aura of unluck from the same hexblade for 24 hours.

Dark Fate (Su): Starting at 20th level, whenever an enemy affected by a hexblade’s curse makes an attack roll, skill check, ability check, saving throw, or rolling damage, he must roll twice and take the lower result. When he is attacked, the attacker rolls twice and takes the higher result.  

New Feats
Mystic Curse [Curse]
Prerequisite: Hexblade Curse
Benefit: Instead of the normal effect of your curse, you may impose a -2 penalty to the target’s caster level, and a -1 penalty to saving throw DCs against their spells.
Special: When you gain the Greater Curse ability, the caster level penalty improves to -4, and the save DC penalty to -2. The penalties further improved to -6 and -3 when you gain the Dire Curse ability, and -8 and -4 when you gain the Dark Curse ability.

Martial Curse [Curse]
Prerequisite: Hexblade Curse
Benefit: You may attempt to curse a target as a free action after striking them with a ranged or melee attack. If you do, the save DC is equal to to 10+1/2 Hexblade level + Strength modifier (for a melee attack) or 10+1/2 Hexblade level + Dexterity modifier (for a ranged attack)

Heighten Curse[Curse]
Prerequisite: Hexblade Curse
Benefit: You can increase the save DC of your curse by any number up to a maximum of your Charisma modifier. For each point by which you increase the save DC, add 2 to the number of rounds you must wait before using your curse again.

Physical Curse [Curse]
Prerequisite: Hexblade Curse
Benefit: You may choose to force targets of your hexblade curse make a Fortitude save instead of a Will save. If you do so, you must wait one additional round before using your curse again.

Bleeding Curse [Curse]
Prerequisite: Hexblade Curse
Benefit: You may choose to make your hexblade curse a bleeding curse. If you do so, the duration of the curse becomes one round per caster level, and the target takes one-half your Charisma modifier damage per round for the duration of the curse. After using a bleeding curse, you must wait one additional round before using your curse again.

Persistent Curse [Curse]
Prerequisite: Hexblade Curse
Benefit: You may choose to make your hexblade curse a persistent curse. If you do so, the curse effect becomes extraordinary-- it cannot be dispelled and is not suppressed by an anti-magic feat. Casting the curse is still an extraordinary action. After using a persistent curse, you must wait two additional rounds before using your curse again.

Lingering Curse [Curse]
Prerequisite: Hexblade Curse
Benefit: You may choose to make your hexblade curse a lingering curse. If you do so, the curse effect lasts for the normal 10 minutes per hexblade level, plus an additional 1 hour per hexblade level at one-half the normal penalty. After using a lingering curse, you must wait two additional rounds before using your curse again.

Curse-Channeled Spell
Prerequisite: Curse Casting class ability
Benefit: As a full-round action, you may place your hexblade curse on a single foe and cast a single spell with a target of one or more creatures, targeting the same foe. If he fails his save against your curse, he does not receive a saving throw against the spell.

Veil of Tears
Prerequisite: Aura of Misfortune class ability
Benefit: You may choose to have your aura of misfortune radiate from any point within 100 feet.

Controlled Misfortune
Prerequisite: Aura of Misfortune class ability
Benefit: You may exclude any targets you wish from the effects of your aura of misfortune or similar effects.

Hexblade Spell List

0 level Hexblade Spells
Arcane Mark: Inscribes a personal rune (visible or invisible).
Detect Magic: Detects spells and magic items within 60 ft.
Light: Object shines like a torch.
Mage Hand: 5-pound telekinesis.
Mending: Makes minor repairs on an object.
Message: Whispered conversation at distance.
Prestidigitation: Performs minor tricks.
Read Magic: Read scrolls and spellbooks.
Touch of Fatigue: Touch attack fatigues target.

1st-Level Hexblade Spells
Alarm: Wards an area for 2 hours/level.
Augment Familiar*: Your familiar becomes more powerful.
Cause Fear: One creature of 5 HD or less flees for 1d4 rounds.
Charm Person: Makes one person your friend.
Disguise Self: Changes your appearance.
Entropic Shield: Ranged attacks against you have 20% miss chance.
Expeditious Retreat: Your speed increases by 30 ft.
Identify: Determines properties of magic item.
Magic Weapon: Weapon gains +1 bonus.
Mount: Summons riding horse for 2 hours/level.
Nystul’s Magic Aura: Alters object’s magic aura.
Phantom Threat*: Subject thinks it’s fl anked.
Protection from Chaos/Evil/Good/Law: +2 to AC and saves, counter mind control, hedge out elementals and outsiders.
Sleep: Puts 4 HD of creatures into magical slumber.
Tasha’s Hideous Laughter: Subject loses actions for 1 round/level.
Undetectable Alignment: Conceals alignment for 24 hours.
Unseen Servant: Invisible force obeys your commands.

2nd-Level Hexblade Spells
Alter Self: Assume form of a similar creature.
Blindness/Deafness: Makes subject blind or deaf.
Bull’s Strength: Subject gains +4 to Str for 1 min./level.
Darkness: 20-ft. radius of supernatural shadow.
Eagle’s Splendor: Subject gains +4 to Cha for 1 min./level.
Enthrall: Captivates all within 100 ft. + 10 ft./level.
False Life: Gain 1d10 temporary hp +1/level (max. +10).
Glitterdust: Blinds creatures, outlines invisible creatures.
Invisibility: Subject is invisible for 1 min./level or until it attacks.
Mirror Image: Creates decoy duplicates of you (1d4 +1 per three levels, max 8).
Protection from Arrows: Subject immune to most ranged attacks.
Pyrotechnics: Turns fire into blinding light or choking smoke.
Rage: Gives +2 to Str and Con, +1 on Will saves, –2 to AC.
Resist Energy: Ignores first 10 (or more) points of damage/ attack from specified energy type.
See Invisibility: Reveals invisible creatures or objects.
Spider Climb: Grants ability to walk on walls and ceilings.
Suggestion: Compels subject to follow stated course of action.
Summon Swarm: Summons swarm of bats, rats, or spiders.
Touch of Idiocy: Subject takes 1d6 points of Int, Wis, and Cha damage.

3rd-Level Hexblade Spells
Arcane Sight: Magical auras become visible to you.
Charm Monster: Makes monster believe it is your ally.
Confusion: Subjects behave oddly for 1 round/level.
Deep Slumber: Puts 10 HD of creatures to sleep.
Dispel Magic: Cancels magical spells and effects.
Hound of Doom*: Creates shadowy protector.
Invisibility Sphere: Makes everyone within 10 ft. invisible.
Magic Weapon, Greater: +1/four levels (max. +5).
NondetectionM: Hides subject from divination, scrying.
Phantom Steed: Magic horse appears for 1 hour/level.
Poison: Touch deals 1d10 points of Con damage, repeats in 1 min.
Protection from Energy: Absorb 12 points/level of damage from one kind of energy.
Repel Vermin: Insects, spiders, and other vermin stay 10 ft. away.
Slow: One subject/level takes only one action/round, –2 to AC and attack rolls.
Stinking Cloud: Nauseating vapors, 1 round/level.
Vampiric Touch: Touch deals 1d6 points of damage/two levels; caster gains damage as hp.
Wind Wall: Deflects arrows, smaller creatures, and gases.

4th-Level Hexblade Spells
Baleful Polymorph: Transforms subject into harmless animal.
Break Enchantment: Frees subjects from enchantments, alterations, curses, and petrifaction.
Contact Other Plane: Lets you ask question of extraplanar entity.
Cursed Blade*: Wounds dealt by weapon can’t be healed without remove curse.
Detect Scrying: Alerts you of magical eavesdropping.
Dimension Door: Teleports you short distance.
Dominate Person: Controls humanoid telepathically.
Enervation: Subject gains 1d4 negative levels.
Fear: Subjects within cone fl ee for 1 round/level.
Invisibility, Greater: As invisibility, but subject can attack and stay invisible.
Phantasmal Killer: Fearsome illusion kills subject or deals 3d6 points of damage.
Polymorph: Gives one willing subject a new form.
Scrying: Spies on subject from a distance.
Sending: Delivers short message anywhere, instantly.
Solid Fog: Blocks vision and slows movement.

2012-03-31, 03:45 PM
Added a few more feats, and changed one that made me worry about over-poweredness and dip-ability. Any thoughts? I'm mostly afraid that I made the curse too good now, especially with the saving throw penalty, as at higher levels it practically turns the curse into "save or die on the next save-or-die."

2012-03-31, 04:07 PM
A few copypasta issues:

Iron Mind mentions "mettle".

The text of "bleeding curse" talks about crippling curse.

More substantive issues: It isn't clear what you mean by half strength in aura of unluck.

Lifetime of woe has a strange name given what it does.

Dark Fate is a really good capstone.

Overall, this looks like it is T3 which is what you were aiming for.

2012-03-31, 07:39 PM
A few copypasta issues:
Whoops. Thanks for typo catches.

Lifetime of woe has a strange name given what it does.
The idea was "an entire lifetime of bad luck all at once."

Dark Fate is a really good capstone.

Overall, this looks like it is T3 which is what you were aiming for.
Thanks! Glad you like it.