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    Halfling in the Playground
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    Default Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Is there any effective way to make a low to mid level blind melee fighter? My dm might do some limited houseruling to make my life easier, and most splatbooks, ToB included, are open to me.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Call him blind, but use the regular mechanics. Fluff does not necessarily equate crunch, or vice versa.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    The best you can do is get one of the dozen or so magic items that grant Blindsight from the MiC. The headband, IIRC, is the best one.

    Hearing the Air stance, from the Bo9S, is the next best thing. But you still have to put up with a 50% miss chance.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Odd that no one mentioned Blind-Fight...

    Mix that with Hearing the Air, and that's two chances of succeeding on the miss chance vs. concealment.

    Though it can be two misses, as well.

    Blindsight is awesome if you get it, as well as either tremorsense, mindsight or even good ol' blindsense.
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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Quote Originally Posted by T.G. Oskar View Post
    Odd that no one mentioned Blind-Fight...

    Mix that with Hearing the Air, and that's two chances of succeeding on the miss chance vs. concealment.

    Though it can be two misses, as well.

    Blindsight is awesome if you get it, as well as either tremorsense, mindsight or even good ol' blindsense.
    Blind Fight effectively reduces the miss chance to 25%, so he's still missing on a quarter of his attacks that would have hit. Combine this with the fact that iterative attacks usually don't matter once you've gotten to the third attack (assuming 20th level for this part), and he's effectively missing every other round and only getting in an average of 3 hits/2 rounds. In other words, a 20th level Fighter is suddenly doing the damage his 10th level counterpart and that counterpart's Rogue Cohort are doing, over the course of two rounds.

    Blindsight is really the only option here for a non-caster. The good news is the items in the MIC are cheap, especially the Blindfold of True Darkness (IIRC, it's about 8K).

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    You could treat it as a super flaw that grants you 2-3 bonus feats; that would allow you to afford Blind-Fight which is practically a must, and a bunch of other stuff to actually get something for it.

    That said, yeah, as you can't see, you can't be making Spot-checks and more importantly, have to use Listen to locate opponents until you gain access to alternative senses. Things that cannot be heard, such as incorporeals, would be the bane of you. You could also ask for a sanction of a feat such as "Improved Blind-Fight" which allows you to effectively treat Listen-checks/Blindsense [Hearing the Air] as allowing you to see an opponent and thus negating the miss chance entirely.

    I'd actually consider just going for a high Listen-type, using some of the bonus feats to gain bonuses to Listen (after all, it's a studied fact that other senses become sharper when you're deprived one). And yeah, Hearing the Air would be sorta ultimate in overcoming this weakness, though you'd still have to put up with a 50% miss chance in every attack (25% with Blind-Fight).
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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Quote Originally Posted by Fax Celestis View Post
    Call him blind, but use the regular mechanics. Fluff does not necessarily equate crunch, or vice versa.
    Except that something like pitch darkness or (oddly enough) the spell blindness would effect a pure fluff blindness.
    Last edited by deuxhero; 2009-09-01 at 08:58 PM.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Peruse this thread for my Blind Character Starting Package, tips on how to succeed as a blind PC and how to approach your DM on the subject.

    Note that if you somehow heal your blindness, you lose the benefits of the Blind Character Starting Package, so it is not a source of freebies.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Touch sight.

    :: best clippy impression ::

    It sounds like you're trying to avoid building a psychic warrior!

    Alternatively, hilariously enough, this is yet another problem solved by the mask of visual insight.
    Last edited by Doc Roc; 2009-09-01 at 09:01 PM.
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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Didn't 3.0 have Blindsight as a feat?

    Wis 13, Blind-Fight, Alertness

    You gain Blindsight 30'.


    I'm probably mixing things up... in any case, try implementing something like the above. Otherwise, magic or psionics will let you do it. Physchic Warrior, Warblade or Swordsage is probably the way to go, as a bonus they kinda follow the 'Blind Warrior' theme.

    Psionics can do it from level 1, too. Pretty much exactly what you're looking for.
    Last edited by Sophismata; 2009-09-01 at 10:28 PM.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Quote Originally Posted by Sophismata View Post
    Didn't 3.0 have Blindsight as a feat?

    Wis 13, Blind-Fight, Alertness

    You gain Blindsight 30'.


    I'm probably mixing things up... in any case, try implementing something like the above. Otherwise, magic or psionics will let you do it. Physchic Warrior, Warblade or Swordsage is probably the way to go, as a bonus they kinda follow the 'Blind Warrior' theme.

    Psionics can do it from level 1, too.
    You mean this?

    Blindsight, 5-Ft. Radius [General]
    Prerequisites
    Base attack bonus +4, Blind-Fight, Wisdom 19.

    Benefit
    Using senses such as acute hearing and sensitivity to vibrations, you can detect the location of opponents who are no more than 5 feet away from you. Invisibility and darkness are irrelevant, though you cannot discern incorporeal beings. (Except for the decreased range, this feat is identical to the blindsight special ability.)
    That's from Deities and Demigods. General feat, not Epic or Salient, so fair game seeing as it's been printed in the SRD.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Quote Originally Posted by deuxhero View Post
    Except that something like pitch darkness or (oddly enough) the spell blindness would effect a pure fluff blindness.
    It's magic. If a spell is intended to interfere with one's ability to locate objects or creatures, one would expect it to be more effective than merely blocking one's vision. A blindness/deafness spell would not blind a fluff-blind character in that he would not be able to not see any worse than he already could, but it would make him unable to perceive in the method he trained himself in to compensate.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    1. Play a grimlock. LA +2 and 2 HD, but the stats alone make it worth it (don't forget natural armor, full BAB racial HD, etc.). Daredevil superpowers are an added bonus.

    2. Invisibility / darkness / blindness isn't actually as big of a problem in D&D as people think. With a pumped listen modifier and the blind fight feat, you can still be a semi-effective combatant. And the upside is that you are well prepared against invisible foes, visual illusions, glitterdust, fog, darkness, etc.
    Last edited by ericgrau; 2009-09-01 at 10:40 PM.
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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Quote Originally Posted by Fax Celestis View Post
    It's magic...
    Well darkness doesn't have to be magical.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Quote Originally Posted by ericgrau View Post
    2. Invisibility / darkness / blindness isn't actually as big of a problem in D&D as people think. With a pumped listen modifier and the blind fight feat, you can still be a semi-effective combatant. And the upside is that you are well prepared against invisible foes, visual illusions, glitterdust, fog, darkness, etc.
    Actually, it is a big deal for a melee or non-caster in general. Rogues in particular hate the thought, as Sneak Attack won't function if the opponent has any form of Concealment no matter your Listen modifier or Blind Fight feat. The 25% chance of missing on every single attack even with Blind Fight is enough to ensure the enemy lives another round, something the PCs should be trying to avoid as much as possible.

    For every round the opponent survives, the odds of a PC needing a Rez increases. If the combat lasts more than 5 rounds, the PCs are risking their characters more than strictly necessary. I don't know about you lot, but I hate it when people have to reroll a character sheet or sink more than 1200gp into keeping their character (that's a Revivify+full HP). It means the players are that much weaker for the next encounter, and the odds of finishing a campaign diminish dramatically each time they have to bring in another character. I make exceptions for my little brother, but that's because offing his characters often proves the benefit the party and the players more than his rerolls tend to slow down the game.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Would you like a nice juicy build? What's your target level?
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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Quote Originally Posted by Sinfire Titan View Post
    Actually, it is a big deal for a melee or non-caster in general. Rogues in particular hate the thought, as Sneak Attack won't function if the opponent has any form of Concealment no matter your Listen modifier or Blind Fight feat. The 25% chance of missing on every single attack even with Blind Fight is enough to ensure the enemy lives another round, something the PCs should be trying to avoid as much as possible.
    It still has utilities. It's great at least at first level, since it has no requirements, and it covers where Listen doesn't. Later, it may not see that much use, but wherever there's concealment which you may not cover with tremorsense (because the character is flying), or perhaps even blindsense/blindsight (however bizarre that may be).

    By the time Blind-Fight may no longer be needed, there's the chance of getting that Blindfold of True Darkness, and getting Hearing the Air, so there's almost no way to miss the individual, even if for some reason there's an AMF nearby or the Blindfold gets suppressed somehow. You might want to peg the Blindsight, 5 ft. feat just for kicks.

    Making it just fluffy seems to miss the point. Perhaps it would be awesome if it were just a Bluff, but Blindness affecting the fluffy "blind" guy just doesn't cut it. Blindness is Blindness; perhaps if the fluffy Blind guy would be affected by Deafness and then lose his ability, then it would make sense. But that way...I dunno, simplicity says he'd get immunity to Blind if he were fluffy blind. Being truly blind makes getting stuff such as Blind Fight, Hearing the Air, Blindsight: 5 ft., and wearing a blindfold while beating people with a katana even fluffier with the added crunch (however bizarre that may be), since it implies you are taking the mechanics in consideration, and you slowly work to improve towards that, gaining superior tactics than creatures that could see cannot.

    If anything, giving it levels in Spot is pointless (automatic failure on Spot checks), but you could get some benefit out of it (+1/2 character level bonus to Listen checks? Blind people have sometimes slightly heightened senses...)
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    Quote Originally Posted by firebrandtoluc View Post
    My friend is currently playing a paladin. It's way outside his normal zone. I told him to try to channel Santa Claus, Mr. Rogers, and Kermit the Frog. Until someone refuses to try to get off the naughty list. Then become Optimus Prime.
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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Quote Originally Posted by Sinfire Titan View Post
    You mean this?
    [...]
    That's from Deities and Demigods. General feat, not Epic or Salient, so fair game seeing as it's been printed in the SRD.
    That's the one, I had a feeling the Wisdom requirement was higher. The version I was remembering was adapted for a D20 Roguelike.

    Thankyou.
    Last edited by Sophismata; 2009-09-01 at 11:58 PM.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Don't forget there's also Hunter's Sense from ToB, a 1st level Tiger Claw stance, that grants the Scent special ability. It can help a blind character, most certainly.

    This actually has me all riled up! I want to play a blind swordsage now!

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Quote Originally Posted by CockroachTeaParty View Post
    Don't forget there's also Hunter's Sense from ToB, a 1st level Tiger Claw stance, that grants the Scent special ability. It can help a blind character, most certainly.

    This actually has me all riled up! I want to play a blind swordsage now!
    If you can get to Master of Nine and have two stances at a time, that would be awe-inspiring. Several techniques, blind, but capable of seeing through magic and maneuvers what's around it, and with Shadow Hand and Diamond Mind maneuvers to boot.

    Only you? I also would like to play a blind swordsman too! Though...maybe TWF as well...just for the heck of it (not for optimization issues)
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    Quote Originally Posted by firebrandtoluc View Post
    My friend is currently playing a paladin. It's way outside his normal zone. I told him to try to channel Santa Claus, Mr. Rogers, and Kermit the Frog. Until someone refuses to try to get off the naughty list. Then become Optimus Prime.
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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Quote Originally Posted by Sinfire Titan View Post
    Blind Fight effectively reduces the miss chance to 25%, so he's still missing on a quarter of his attacks that would have hit. Combine this with the fact that iterative attacks usually don't matter once you've gotten to the third attack (assuming 20th level for this part), and he's effectively missing every other round and only getting in an average of 3 hits/2 rounds. In other words, a 20th level Fighter is suddenly doing the damage his 10th level counterpart and that counterpart's Rogue Cohort are doing, over the course of two rounds.

    Blindsight is really the only option here for a non-caster. The good news is the items in the MIC are cheap, especially the Blindfold of True Darkness (IIRC, it's about 8K).
    Frankly I see extremely little point in making a blind character that isn't blind. Replacing normal sight with blindsight does not achieve the goal of a bliind fighter.

    Personally I'd go with blind, blindfight, and ask my GM for a solid buff to damage.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Quote Originally Posted by Acromos View Post
    Frankly I see extremely little point in making a blind character that isn't blind. Replacing normal sight with blindsight does not achieve the goal of a bliind fighter.

    Personally I'd go with blind, blindfight, and ask my GM for a solid buff to damage.
    Most characters that are represented as blind in comics and such actually have some form of other sense that assists them. Daredevil, for example, has Echolocation. Dozens of them have such abilities, and are not hindered by their lack of vision as a result.

    Actual blind characters would be poor combatants unless they focus on AoEs that require no attack rolls, thus ruling out Swordsmen. No amount of damage buffing can offset a string of missed attacks caused by your character's flavor. That 50% with reroll will come up more often than it should in practice, never mind creatures with a built-in miss chance.

    In other words, you'd be turning your character into a major liability unless you invest in Blindsight. The extra rolls slow down combat and increase your odds of missing (an optimized fighter can hit 95% of the time on the first attack; the miss chance alters this to 70%, not counting the penalty to attack rolls caused by being blinded to begin with).

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Quote Originally Posted by ericgrau View Post
    1. Play a grimlock. LA +2 and 2 HD, but the stats alone make it worth it (don't forget natural armor, full BAB racial HD, etc.). Daredevil superpowers are an added bonus.
    I'll second this. Is the most quick and RAW solution.

    Failing this, take a look on the monsters qualities. Blindsense, Blindsight and maybe Tremorsense and Scent are good "Bonus Feats" for this "Super Flaw", as stated above.
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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    The character needs to find a darkness x/day item as part of the gimmick. Centered on himself, the effect would significantly hinder alot of his melee opponents and make him hard to snipe with arrows or spells. Opponents would need to get close and then be fighting in his preferred environment.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Quote Originally Posted by Zen Monkey View Post
    The character needs to find a darkness x/day item as part of the gimmick. Centered on himself, the effect would significantly hinder alot of his melee opponents and make him hard to snipe with arrows or spells. Opponents would need to get close and then be fighting in his preferred environment.
    You know? That's an excellent point. This idea screams for Shadowsun Ninja levels. Here's why:

    Quote Originally Posted by Me, regarding the Shadowsun Ninja
    The thing is, the healing ability is based off of the damage you deal, not the base unarmed damage for a creature of your size. If it intended to only be the base unarmed strike damage, it would have said to exclude your IUS damage entirely (thus it would be 1d3+Wis). Because it doesn't say this, it goes off of full unarmed damage. Dman has proven that this is easy to boost to the point where every attack deals a ton of damage.

    The important part is that it's At Will. Get the party Wizard to use wands of Summon Undead 1 (or Animate Dead on a Frog), punch it once to inflict and then punch your buddy to heal them a ton of damage.

    The Darkness trick works like this:

    Round 1) Swift action, activate the Child of Shadow and Light and start with the Darkness sphere. Also, use the Darkness Within Light feature (and maybe a Scroll of True Strike or something that negates the 50% miss chance that round). Make a Hide check within the Darkness sphere. Hit the enemy once. Enemy is effectively blinded unless they have Blindsight (specifically). Darkvision doesn't see through this, though Baatezu probably can (won't matter next round). Effectively, this is imposing a 50% miss-chance on any enemy within the sphere, and your allies can just use a Blindfold of True Darkness or something to become immune (making sure the Wizard disables the enemy's magic items is a good idea for this trick, though it may not be needed unless the DM remembers to hand-pick their equipment).

    Round 2) Invert Child of Shadow and Light, maintain Darkness within Light. Trigger Light Within Darkness. Every enemy within 60ft needs to save or be blinded for 1 round.

    Round 3) Repeat from Round 1.



    Effectively, you are forcing them to Save or Suck every other round, and forcing them to Be Prepared or Suck every other round. Mass Blindness is awesome to have at will, and the Darkness sphere is also effectively a Blindness ability. Your allies can be made immune using spells/magic items (so can the enemy, but that's why you have a Wizard).



    Finally, Shadow Hand has some great maneuvers for mobility. You can easily use some of those boosts to sneak up on an enemy, then drop a sphere of darkness on their asses (or try Blinding them on round 1). The Dark Creature template (Collar of Umbral Metamorphosis) makes this PrC incredible. And Setting Sun has some of the best reactive maneuvers in the game, allowing you to play minor Battlefield Control if the enemy can't be blinded.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    You should play a race that has either scent or blindsense in-class, then get the other one through Hearing the Air or Hunter's Sense. Savage species has 3 feats that improve your scent quality to let you actually detect location. Keen Eared Scout lets you pretty much actually see the people you hear. I suggest that you make use of your HUGE wisdom modifier you need to be effective at this by playing a Swordsage or a Monk. A Soulbow dip would be wonderful as well.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Take the recently blind flaw for 3 bonus feats.

    Then buy a headband of blindsight from MiC. Done.


    Or go with the psionic thing, you can probably get a relevant item from somewhere.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Quote Originally Posted by Powerfamiliar View Post
    Well darkness doesn't have to be magical.
    Right, like giving blindsight 60' out for free is broken.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    I'd like to play this as either a Psychic Warrior, a dip into that class, or if you can persuade your DM, the Wild Talent feat. (If I remember Wild Talent right, it gives you a couple of power points and lets you have a low-level psionic power). Use Synthesete or a similar power.

    The effect is your character can tap into his psionic powers to "see" for short periods of time (ie a couple of combats each day), but is functionally blind most of the time.

    I like this option for striking a balance between a genuine drawback for the character without being game-crippling. Plus, "blind swordsman" always makes me think Asian-style Zen master, and I think this build suits that fluff.

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    Default Re: Blind swordsman? 3.5

    Personally, I like the flavor of the Listening Lorecall (Spell Compendium, p 133) spell a little better than some of the other solutions. If your character has 5+ ranks of listen, he's got Blindsense 30, if he has 12+ ranks of listen he has Blindsight 15.

    It's a spell with a medium-long duration, available to rangers at level 8, druids at level 3.
    A blind swordsman ranger/TOB makes perfect sense, actually, and he gets a helpful guide dog animal companion. A blind swordsman druid makes only slightly less sense (Ranger 2/ Druid 4) would be great, or Druid 4/Warblade X)

    His animal companion guide dog/face ripper would be enough to get him through day-to-day activities, and he'd swiftly be able to build up an absolutely absurd listen check. If he hears anything out of sorts, he can cast Listening Lorecall and be ready to pwn some noobs.

    If you're not down with minor casting ability, see if you could work something into your backstory where you were raised by a kindly old yamabushi (Spirit Shaman/Sword Sage) who, before sending you out into the world, gave you a magic tattoo which grants you Listening Lorecall as a permanent effect. If dispelled, you can raise it again as a standard action.
    Last edited by OverdrivePrime; 2009-09-02 at 10:54 AM.
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