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    Default Kensai fighter subclass, for great justice

    Because I think fighter subclasses are a bit sub-par, and a saint of blades would be awesome.

    The Kensai

    There are those who would call themselves masters of the blade, boasting and bragging about their skill and how they become one with their weapon in the midst of combat. And then there are the Kensai, who can actually back such claims up. Also referred to as a "saint of blades", the Kensai is a master of her deadly art, having literally infused her life and soul into her weapon to attain levels of mastery few can match. With her life-infused weapon she is capable of deadly and often supernatural feats, and her focus and skill with her instruments of war makes other skilled warriors look like stumbling amateurs. Much like a monk, the Kensai is able to tap into their Ki, though their techniques are more often used to enhance their craft, and are channeled through their weapon instead of their body.

    Level Feature Ki pool
    3 Spirit weapon 1
    4 -- 2
    7 Bonded fighting style 3
    8 -- 4
    10 Withstand 5
    12 -- 6
    14 -- 7
    15 Extra maneuver 7
    16 -- 8
    18 Ki warlord 9
    20 -- 10

    Ki pool: Much like the monk, a Kensai has a pool of spiritual energies that she may draw upon to augment and infuse her attacks. Starting at level 3 she gains a pool of Ki energy equal to half of her converted fighter level. She may regain all of her spent ki by taking a short or long rest, and may regain 1 Ki a round within battle by damaging a creature with her spirit weapon and spending a bonus action to refocus herself. The save DCs for abilities that draw from this pool are equal to 8+Prof bonus+Dexterity or Strength bonus (Kensai's choice).

    Maneuvers known: The Kensai may select any three maneuvers from her maneuver list at level 3. She may use these maneuvers for as long as she has the ki to activate them, and gains access to more maneuvers at higher levels. At level 7, 10, 15 and 18 she may select one more maneuver to add to this list. Every time a kensai learns a new maneuver, they may additionally exchange a maneuver they know for one they do not.

    Spirit Weapon: The core of the Kensai is the connection she shares with her weapon. Often an heirloom or somehow important to the kensai in a personal way, this blade typically has no innately magical or special properties until it is in the kensai's hands. At level 3 when she holds this weapon the kensai infuses this it with a small fraction of her own life force, either making it magic-like or improving the magic within it previously.

    A spirit weapon is treated as magical for purposes of overcoming damage resistance and what effects can damage it, even if it is a non-magical weapon. Additionally the kensai may call this weapon to her hand from any distance as a bonus action, and she gains advantage on resisting any attempts to disarm her. At level 3, this weapon gains a +1 bonus to attack and damage. At level 10 this bonus increases to +2, and at level 17 this bonus increases to +3. Only her levels in fighter count towards this attack and damage progression. If her weapon was magical before bonding and grants a bonus to attack and damage rolls, use the higher bonus.

    Only one weapon may be selected as a spirit weapon at a time, and if a spirit weapon is destroyed then the kensai loses access to this feature until she has it repaired/ reforged. She may designate a new weapon as her spirit weapon after a week of training and meditation.

    Bonded fighting style: While wielding her spirit weapon, the kensai falls into a warrior trance and has more potent fighting styles than any of her peers. At level 7, the kensai may choose one of the fighting styles to focus in from the following list:
    • -Grand Archer's Spirit: When the kensai makes a ranged attack against a creature within 30', she gains advantage on the attack roll. She must have the Archery fighting style to select this bonded style and the effects stack.
    • -Defensive spirit: As long as the kensai is equipped with her spirit weapon, she may choose to divert a part of its attack and damage bonus to her armor. On her turn, the Kensai may choose to reduce the attack and damage bonus of her Spirit Weapon, increasing her armor class by 1 for every point she sacrifices. The maximum this bonus may be reduced by is equal to the bonus provided by her Spirit Weapon class feature. If her spirit weapon is a magic weapon that has its own innate attack and damage bonus, then this bonus is also reduced (to a minimum of 0). This penalty and bonus lasts until the start of the Kensai's next turn. She must have the Defensive fighting style to select this fighting style, and the effects stack.
    • -Doubled Weapon Spirit: When the kesai wields a spirit weapon in one hand and a light weapon in the other, she treats them both as magical and grants this second weapon the magic property for overcoming damage resistance. Additionally when she spends her bonus action to make an additional attack with this weapon, the kensai may make two attacks instead. She must have the Two Weapon Fighting fighting style to select this bonded fighting style, and the effects stack.
    • -Dueling spirit: When the kensai wields a one handed or versatile spirit weapon in one hand and no weapon in the other, she adds +1 to her damage rolls with that weapon and +1 to her armor class. She must have the Duelist fighting style to select this bonded fighting style and the effects stack.
    • -Great Weapon Spirit: When the kensai wields a two handed spirit weapon or a versatile spirit weapon in two hands and misses an attack, she still deals her Strength modifier + her spirit weapon's damage modifier as damage to her target. The kensai must have the Great Weapon Fighter fighting style to select this bonded fighting style, and its effects stack.
    • -Protective Spirit: When a kensai with this bonded fighting style has both their spirit weapon and a shield equipped, melee attacks against allies adjacent to them have disadvantage. If an ally benefiting from this fighting style is hit by an enemy melee attack or fails a dexterity saving throw, the kensai may use her reaction to cause the attack to miss or to allow their ally to succeed on the saving throw instead. The kensai regains use of this reaction whenever she rolls for initiative, or when she completes a long or short rest. She must have the Protection fighting style, and this effect replaces that one.


    Withstand: With the ki of her spirit overflowing, the Kensai becomes capable of deflecting harm from her body. Starting at level 10, the kensai gains advantage on her Strength, Dexterity and Constitution saving throws.

    Ki Warlord: With full mastery of her art attained, the Kensai is able to use her Ki in a more refined manner, and gains renown for her skills. Starting at level 18, the kensai reduces the cost of any of the maneuvers that have a tag which matches her chosen bonded fighting style by 1 ki (to a minimum of 0).

    Additionally, at this level her fame begins to attract attention. If she is a devout follower of a god or cause, then the deity and leaders of that cause will begin to take notice of her actions, and send emissaries to communicate and commiserate with her. Lower-level kensai and other warriors will also be attracted to her banner, hoping to be taught and associated with the saint of blades. How many and what level these warriors are is determined by how much renown she has earned through her travels, and how well she champions her cause.

    Typically, these warriors are looking for a sponsor to help them monetarily, or are looking for assistance completing tasks of their own, and they will stay for as long as their loyalty is rewarded or until they are slain in battle.

    Any allies that are aligned with the Kensai's cause will gain advantage to saving throws against effects that inflict the charmed or frightend conditions as long as they are within 30' of the kensai.

    Spoiler: Maneuvers
    Show
    Maneuvers will be sorted by their cost, and some will have a tag in [[brackets]] on the end of them to label which fighting style they are most associated with.
    Spoiler: 1 Ki Maneuvers
    Show

    -Blade Dance: With a whirling twist of her blades, the kensai is able to deflect even the most powerful of attacks. As a reaction to being damaged by any weapon or single target spell, the kensai may reduce the incoming damage by 1d6+level+dexterity bonus. [[Two weapon fighting]]
    -Dueling strike: Swinging her blade in an unexpected way, the kensai attempts to make herself appear to be more of a threat and to put herself in the way of her enemy's path. By spending ki she may designate one of her attacks as a dueling strike. If this attack hits, then any attack rolls the target creature makes against creatures other than the kensai will be at disadvantage until it is no longer within reach of the kensai. If the creature attempts to move out of the kensai's reach, the kensai may spend a reaction to follow the creature as far as her base movement speed allows. [[Duelist]]
    -Ghost run: By spending some of her ki, the kensai becomes far more aware of her surroundings, and far more nimble. As a bonus action the kensai may move without provoking opportunity attacks and she may move through spaces occupied by other creatures. Ghost run lasts until the beginning of her next turn.
    -Marking strike: After successfully damaging a creature the kensai may spend ki to make them momentarily vulnerable. The next attack roll made against this creature by an ally other than the Kensai will be made at advantage.
    -Overwhelm: Using the momentum of her rush against a creature, the kensai is capable of making even her wild dashes into a force to be reckoned with. While the kensai is dashing she may, at any point along the dash, use her bonus action and ki to make an attack roll against a creature. If the attack is successful then the target must make a strength saving throw or be immediately knocked prone. [[Great weapon fighting]]
    -Power surge: Drawing upon her ki to reinforce her strength and reflexes, the kensai becomes capable of surges of great feats. As a bonus action, the kensai may initiate a power surge. For one minute she will gain advantage on all strength and dexterity skill checks and saving throws. Each time she tries to activate this maneuver beyond the first, the kensai must make a scaling constitution saving throw (DC 10+5*# of previous surges) or the ki spent will be wasted. The DC of power surge is reset after a long rest.
    -Silver wind: Infusing her weapon with the power of her spirit, the kensai is capable of launching a bolt of pure ki. While making an attack against a creature, she may make her attack into a 15 foot long, 1 foot thick line attack that automatically hits creatures in range instead of making an attack roll. Roll damage as if you had hit with a weapon attack against each affected creature. If she was firing a ranged weapon, then the range of this bolt is increased to 40 feet and it does not consume ammunition. Creatures are allowed to make a dexterity saving throw, and on a successful save are dealt half damage. [[Archery]]
    -Warding strike: As a reaction to an adjacent creature making a successful attack against an ally, the kensai may spend her reaction to attack the creature. On a successful hit, the creature must reroll their attack roll and take the lower result.


    Spoiler: 2 Ki Maneuvers (requires level 10)
    Show

    -Infuse: Sharing the power of her spirit with an ally, the kensai can sacrifice her own strength to make others more competent. As an action, the kensai may split off any amount of the damage and attack bonus her spirit blade possesses to enhance the weapons of her allies within 30'. Each point diverted increases the attack and damage bonus of an ally's weapon by +1, possibly increasing the target weapon's enhancement bonus beyond the +3 cap. Infuse lasts for up to one minute, unless the kensai ends it as a free action.
    -Precise blow: Sacrificing rapidity for accuracy, the kensai learns how to focus her attacks to deal more damage. When making the attack action and after landing a hit, the kensai may sacrifice any number of her remaining attacks to add 1 extra damage dice to her current damage roll for each attack sacrificed. If all remaining attacks are sacrificed, then the kensai adds double her dexterity or strength bonus (her choice) to the damage roll. On a critical hit, all damage dice are doubled for this attack. [[Archery]]
    -Retaliatory stance: Setting her feet and drawing upon her ki, the kensai uses her spirit and energies to retaliate against anyone who would dare strike her. As a reaction to being damaged, the kensai may activate retaliatory stance. Every time she is dealt damage, the creature that damaged her is immediately dealt an amount of radiant damage equal to her level. Retaliatory stance lasts until the beginning of the kensai's next turn. [[Duelist]]
    -Vital strike: Sending a jolt of spirit energy into her blade, the kensai is able to inflict more damage than a normal swordsman. After hitting with an attack, the kensai may spend ki to increase the number of damage die rolled by 2. [[Great weapon fighting]]
    -Whirlwind blades: As an action, the kensai may make one attack against all enemies in reach with the weapon in her main hand, and one with the weapon in her off hand (if any). She may move up to 15' as part of this ability, attacking all creatures with both of her weapons as she chooses along this path. Creatures may only be attacked by both weapons a single time during this movement. [[Two weapon fighting]]


    Spoiler: 3 Ki Maneuvers (requires level 18)
    Show

    -Avalanche of blades: Using her Ki to accelerate the speed of her sword arm, the kensai may make more attacks than should normally be possible. As an action, the kensai may initiate this maneuver. With her action she must direct all of her attacks against a single target, making one more attack than she normally would be able to. If at least two attacks hit, she may use her bonus action to make two more attacks against any creature in her reach. [[Duelist]]
    -Flash assault: Seeming only to take a single step, the kensai's form blurs and she seems to just teleport to a near bye location in the blink of an eye, shredding whoever is standing there with her blades. As part of this maneuver, the kensai's movement speed is reduced to 0. In return, the kensai may teleport to any space she can see within 300 feet without provoking any opportunity attacks. If a creature is adjacent to the space she jumps to, she may make her attacks against it as normal, but with advantage applied to the attack rolls. Each attack that hits deals an extra 1d6 damage. [[Two weapon fighting]]
    -Companion weapon: The kensai is a master of her weapon and will, and may control them such a degree that she does not need to stand beside her allies to back them up. She may mark an ally within 30 feet, or 60 feet for a kensai with the archery fighting style, to receive the benefits of companion weapon. As long as the ally stays in range the weapon then acts on its own, making one attack against the first creature the marked ally attacks each round. If the weapon has the ammunition property, then it expends ammunition as normal. Attacks made in this manner are made with the kensai's full proficiency, magic enhancement and ability modifiers, and the damage rolls add in the kensai's dexterity or strength modifier and her weapon's enhancement bonus. Companion weapon lasts for up to 1 minute at a time. [[Archery]]
    -Sweeping blow: Swinging out with a blade full of cracking energy, the kensai releases a blast of energies to knock her foes aside. While making the attack action, the kensai may replace one of her attacks with a sweeping blade. This attack sends out a 40 foot cone of energy that deals triple her proficiency bonus in magical slashing damage to creatures in its radius and knocks them back 20 feet. If they collide with a wall, creature or other solid object along the way, they stop in that space and are dealt an additional 2d6 bludgeoning damage. Creatures in this radius are allowed a strength saving throw to resist being knocked back. [[Great weapon fighting]]
    Last edited by Gnomes2169; 2017-04-26 at 10:22 AM.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Kensai fighter subclass, for great justice

    That is a ton of bonuses to hit and damage in an edition that is trying to get away from them.

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    Default Re: Kensai fighter subclass, for great justice

    Spirit Weapon has a pretty high enhancement bonus. So far, the best weapons and armor have a +1 bonus on them, and nothing higher than a +3 (based on playtests), so a +4 to damage is a bit too much. There are no hard and fast rules for when you get progressions; granting the bonus at 7th level is fair enough, but the subsequent progression is a bit too much. 17th level should be the moment where you get the +3 bonus, definitely, but not earlier. That leaves when you should get the +2 bonus, which is harder to adjudicate because of the irregularity of the progression.

    Bonded Fighting Style is pretty cool, but somewhat incomplete and focused on bonuses. The Archery Spirit is missing, for example. Work with the tools provided by the system (advantages, mostly) to your benefit. I can't say how I'd work each, but at least Duelist Spirit could have a method of gaining advantage on attacks if you fight with a one-handed weapon (in the spirit of precision, mostly).

    The Silver Wind feature doesn't seem to work tied to Fighting Styles. I could see a Two-Weapon specialist doing a "cleave", for example. In fact, when I think of "Silver Wind", I think mostly of Dueling Strike rather than Power Attack (as mentioned, this is a hefty bonus to damage on a system that's trying to simplify things), and Ghostly Run is WAY too powerful (the effect of Disengage is one; not breaking Stealth while moving, though, is too good particularly on a class that has no innate Stealth proficiency and that probably depends on heavy armor, which provides disadvantage on Stealth). Blade Dance and Warrior Spirit suffer from a similar problem, and actually looks like an attempt to upstage the Battlemaster (honestly, I'd add those as new maneuvers for the Battlemaster, who definitely needs them). I'd reconsider the two.

    It's a shame I don't see Power Surge or Withstand as features. Power Surge could provide double proficiency bonus on Strength checks, rechargeable on short rests and usable a few times (other than one). Withstand could easily be getting advantage on Constitution checks. I like the idea of Instill, particularly if you could make it so that it grants advantage rather than a fixed bonus. Binding Instill to a fighting style (and to Duelist, which is mostly a solitary fighting style that relies on precision strikes to an extent) makes little sense. Finally: Ki Warlord could be a cool 17th level class feature.

    Question: have you considered adding Ki to the Fighter via the Kensai? Maybe you could have all those abilities require using 1 point of Ki, and have a weaker progression than that of the Monk, with Ki Warlord offering a cool benefit. That way, you can have an alternative Blademaster, with slightly better techniques (which is what this Martial Archetype seems, besides the free magic weapon) and with a slight Monk flavor but without upstaging the Monk in its entirety (a Way of the Elements Monk would surpass you without even thinking about it), sorta like the Eldritch Knight archetype. This could be a more elegant way to deal with the Kensai than having three "trees" of arbitrary abilities that just seem like adding more numbers.

    Still: it's an interesting premise. The Bonded Fighting Style is a very creative mechanic: while the Champion diversifies its fighting styles, the Kensai focuses on them, making them opposites but part of the same class. Spirit Weapon also provides a much-needed benefit to the Fighter in a sensible way. Deal with the other class features with some creativity, and you have a winner.
    Retooler of D&D 3.5 (and 5e/Next) content. See here for more.
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    Default Re: Kensai fighter subclass, for great justice

    Quote Originally Posted by T.G. Oskar View Post
    Spirit Weapon has a pretty high enhancement bonus. So far, the best weapons and armor have a +1 bonus on them, and nothing higher than a +3 (based on playtests), so a +4 to damage is a bit too much. There are no hard and fast rules for when you get progressions; granting the bonus at 7th level is fair enough, but the subsequent progression is a bit too much. 17th level should be the moment where you get the +3 bonus, definitely, but not earlier. That leaves when you should get the +2 bonus, which is harder to adjudicate because of the irregularity of the progression.
    You're right about the magic bonus, though I think the scaling can be pretty evenly scaled... +1 at 7 (or 3, which is the earliest level you can find a magic weapon, according to Hoard of the Dragon Queen), +2 at 12 (or 10), and +3 at 17. I think I'll try out the 3, 10, 17 loadout, since those run in line with the wonky leveling system...

    Quote Originally Posted by T.G. Oskar View Post
    Bonded Fighting Style is pretty cool, but somewhat incomplete and focused on bonuses. The Archery Spirit is missing, for example. Work with the tools provided by the system (advantages, mostly) to your benefit. I can't say how I'd work each, but at least Duelist Spirit could have a method of gaining advantage on attacks if you fight with a one-handed weapon (in the spirit of precision, mostly).
    I was trying to focus more on melee, but with the class redesign, I'll be trying to figure out something for ranged... but if you will note, this is an improved fighting style, and fighting styles are all based around giving a static bonus of some kind. I gave back the damage on a miss for great weapons fighting, and tried to fix the "massive" damage gap between the fighting styles by giving twf the second strike (they actually average out to be 65.2 (Gwf), 62 (Duelist) and 67 (twf) if all of the attacks hit, though Gwf will do 24 damage on 0 hits. So not exactly 100% equal in that respect. ) Archery... I do not know what to do. Maybe gaining advantage on attacks within 30', and having no disadvantage on attacks made in melee?

    Quote Originally Posted by T.G. Oskar View Post
    The Silver Wind feature doesn't seem to work tied to Fighting Styles. I could see a Two-Weapon specialist doing a "cleave", for example. In fact, when I think of "Silver Wind", I think mostly of Dueling Strike rather than Power Attack (as mentioned, this is a hefty bonus to damage on a system that's trying to simplify things), and Ghostly Run is WAY too powerful (the effect of Disengage is one; not breaking Stealth while moving, though, is too good particularly on a class that has no innate Stealth proficiency and that probably depends on heavy armor, which provides disadvantage on Stealth). Blade Dance and Warrior Spirit suffer from a similar problem, and actually looks like an attempt to upstage the Battlemaster (honestly, I'd add those as new maneuvers for the Battlemaster, who definitely needs them). I'd reconsider the two.
    Yeah, most of it is going to be cut, except as maybe a few maneuvers. Dueling Strike and Avalanche of Blades (the second one as a very nerfed version of itself) will likely reappear as maneuvers that can be purchased for Ki, and I'm debating adding Whirlwind Blade a well...

    Quote Originally Posted by T.G. Oskar View Post
    It's a shame I don't see Power Surge or Withstand as features. Power Surge could provide double proficiency bonus on Strength checks, rechargeable on short rests and usable a few times (other than one). Withstand could easily be getting advantage on Constitution checks. I like the idea of Instill, particularly if you could make it so that it grants advantage rather than a fixed bonus. Binding Instill to a fighting style (and to Duelist, which is mostly a solitary fighting style that relies on precision strikes to an extent) makes little sense. Finally: Ki Warlord could be a cool 17th level class feature.
    Power Surge will likely appear as a maneuver (spend Ki to use it once, then spend ki and make a constitution check to get it more times until after a long rest kind of thing...), Withstand is going to be the level 10 ability (though just granting advantage would become worthless at later fighter levels due to indomidable, so I'll add something more to that... also remember, withstand is for dex-based saves in 3.5), Instill (aka infuse) will be moved to level 15 and grant advantage instead of a +3 bonus, and Ki warlord will be level a 17 that interacts with the ki pool in a new (and hopefully interesting) way and gives the Kensai some story powers.

    Quote Originally Posted by T.G. Oskar View Post
    Question: have you considered adding Ki to the Fighter via the Kensai? Maybe you could have all those abilities require using 1 point of Ki, and have a weaker progression than that of the Monk, with Ki Warlord offering a cool benefit. That way, you can have an alternative Blademaster, with slightly better techniques (which is what this Martial Archetype seems, besides the free magic weapon) and with a slight Monk flavor but without upstaging the Monk in its entirety (a Way of the Elements Monk would surpass you without even thinking about it), sorta like the Eldritch Knight archetype. This could be a more elegant way to deal with the Kensai than having three "trees" of arbitrary abilities that just seem like adding more numbers.
    I've considered it now... and I have to agree. I'm thinking that the combo of a Monk's ki progression (with a pool of 1/2 level) and a battlemaster's (Or more, just a set of class-unique spirit and mobility-themed) maneuvers could be interesting. The monk would have more Ki to throw around, but the Kensai would have a few more options and a way to save on spending/ recovering it. And yes, variable costs of the ki abilities sort of necessitates the recovery method. Also, I'm thinking of making this class more based around dexterity and mobility, trying to capture the essence of a fighter/ monk hybrid than a walking block of wall that can do some Ki stuff. As such, I'm going to make the save DCs scale off of Dexterity instead of strength... any thoughts/ concerns about that?

    Quote Originally Posted by T.G. Oskar View Post
    Still: it's an interesting premise. The Bonded Fighting Style is a very creative mechanic: while the Champion diversifies its fighting styles, the Kensai focuses on them, making them opposites but part of the same class. Spirit Weapon also provides a much-needed benefit to the Fighter in a sensible way. Deal with the other class features with some creativity, and you have a winner.
    Thank you for the complement, and hopefully I'm thinking of a way to do so. XD

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    Default Re: Kensai fighter subclass, for great justice

    There we go, overhaul finished. Comments?

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    Default Re: Kensai fighter subclass, for great justice

    And reopened to see what people think of a few changes.

    First and foremost, magic weapons may now be spirit weapons. Now that the DMG is out, it would just be too major of a nerf to disallow the bonding of a magic weapon. A +3 weapon for free is nice, but it wouldn't have any of the hundreds of possible riders the weapons in the DMG. The ability still gives a bonus to attack and damage rolls if the weapon is bonded, but it does not stack with any possible attack or damage bonuses on the magic weapons (you use either the weapon's bonus or the ability's, whichever is higher).

    Some fighting styles are changed as well, namely Archery, Great Weapon Fighting and Two Weapon Fighting. Archery style no longer negates penalties for shooting in melee (though it still grants advantage to attack rolls made within 30'), GWF has been modified to only deal damage on a miss (the infinite rerolls of 1's has been cut) and TWF no longer necessitates that the offhand weapon needs to be non-magical.

    Instill is changed slightly as well, advantage is no longer applied to damage rolls (... because that isn't a thing )

    And then a few maneuvers have been modified.

    And comments, questions or concerns on how things stand?

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    Default Re: Kensai fighter subclass, for great justice

    I love this, and will be stealing it for my next game. It feels like the warblade, and i loved the warblade.

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    Default Re: Kensai fighter subclass, for great justice

    In my endless quest to make the things I have made more balanced with the existing system, I have come back to this little beauty and polished it off/ brought it in line. For the most part, I just fixed a few language problems and tweaked and a few things have been weakened or removed outright to bring the class more in-line with other fighter classes.

    Most importantly, Instill has been removed entirely. It just added a bit too much on top of the maneuvers kit that the subclass already had.

    On the 2 ki maneuvers front, Avalanche of Blades had its language changed a bit, and allows you to make a second off-hand attack with your bonus action if two attacks hit the target before hand. But there is also a buff in that Vital Strike adds 2 damage dice, not just one.

    On the 3 ki front, there were two actual buffs! Flash Assault changed to a 300 foot teleport that allows you to take an attack action with a melee weapon at the end of the movement, and in addition to the advantage each hit deals 1d6 extra damage (making it perfect for a twf character, since they've got 5-6 attacks with this particular subclass). The other buff was that Sweeping Blow's cone was increased from 20 to 40 feet. One nerf was present, however, as the Companion Weapon was fusted as buck, and needed to be toned waaaay down. Now Companion Weapon only makes an attack the first time your ally attacks/ round, and the first time they are attacked/ round, instead of each instance. Finally, there was a clarification; Retaliatory Stance's damage type was changed from untyped to radiant damage.

    On review, Retaliatory Stance and Avalanche of Blades should actually be switched, since those 2 extra attacks against a single target is massive force-multiplication with the Duelist fighting style (and the extra super duelist fighting style), while Retaliatory Stance seems to be about as useful as the other 2-ki abilities.

    Yaaaaaaay for changes almost years later! \o/

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    Default Re: Kensai fighter subclass, for great justice

    So, is there a limit to the "level" of maneuvers you can learn when you learn them?

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    Default Re: Kensai fighter subclass, for great justice

    Quote Originally Posted by Sicarius Victis View Post
    So, is there a limit to the "level" of maneuvers you can learn when you learn them?
    I should likely add one, with the highest ki being limited to level 18, and 2 ki being limited to level 10. I should also probably allow players to exchange one of their maneuvers once they can learn a new one with the restrictions that would bring... yay, change.
    Last edited by Gnomes2169; 2017-01-16 at 03:12 AM.

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    Question Re: Kensai fighter subclass, for great justice

    So, I have to ask. When I get to level 7 and I have Defensive or protection fighting style, what do I do?

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    Gnomes2169's Avatar

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    Default Re: Kensai fighter subclass, for great justice

    Quote Originally Posted by thegreatsemaj View Post
    So, I have to ask. When I get to level 7 and I have Defensive or protection fighting style, what do I do?
    No idea. Maybe Defensive would be able to take the Dodge action as a bonus action, and Protection would grant +1 AC to allies within their reach? This is much more a "Saint of blades" you know, so those two styles don't really fit the original theme. Though now I'm thinking about it and it's keeping me up at night. Thank you, oh Great Maj. Now I have another reason to ruin my sleep schedule along with reading the Malazan Book of the Fallen series.

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    GreataxeFighterGuy

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    Default Re: Kensai fighter subclass, for great justice

    Sorry for keeping you up at night.

    But for real, the things I would address is adding something for both of those. I already don't like Protection as written. (Why can't I already just use my sword for that, right? Maybe make that a thing with some bonuses?) And as a great weapon fighter right now I would NEVER take the great weapon style over Defensive, very small damage boost vs +1 ac, no brainer. Even with the boost from your subclass I would not take Great weapon style.

    Also Mariner from Unearthed Arcana, we are homebrewing, add something for that too.

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    Default Re: Kensai fighter subclass, for great justice

    Well, after having a little while to think about it, Protection and Defense have pretty simple Bonded fighting styles.

    Protective Spirit: When a kensai with this bonded fighting style has both their spirit weapon and a shield equipped, melee attacks against allies adjacent to them have disadvantage. If an ally benefiting from this fighting style is hit by an enemy melee attack or fails a dexterity saving throw, the kensai may use her reaction to cause the attack to miss or to allow their ally to succeed on the saving throw instead. The kensai regains use of this reaction whenever she rolls for initiative, or when she completes a long or short rest. She must have the Protection fighting style, and this effect replaces that one.

    Defensive spirit: As long as the kensai is equipped with her spirit weapon, she may choose to divert a part of its attack and damage bonus to her armor. On her turn, the Kensai may choose to reduce the attack and damage bonus of her Spirit Weapon, increasing her armor class by 1 for every point she sacrifices. The maximum this bonus may be reduced by is equal to the bonus provided by her Spirit Weapon class feature. If her spirit weapon is a magic weapon that has its own innate attack and damage bonus, then this bonus is also reduced (to a minimum of 0). This penalty and bonus lasts until the start of the Kensai's next turn. She must have the Defensive fighting style to select this fighting style, and the effects stack.

    For the mariner, well... I really have no idea what to do with that one other than make you into Aqua Man. I also don't feel like I should make UA fighting styles in this subclass, if only because then I have to include ALL OF MY HOMEBREW FIGHTING STYLES and that would be god awful 5-ever. Seriously, I made too many of those and it's terrible. Pity me for I have sinned.

    As for maneuvers for these more defensive bonded fighting styles, well... maybe they don't need them? After all, they are rather powerful as it stands, and while they do require the use of the spirit weapon, perhaps that is just the price for becoming more tanky/ more supportive? I mean, fighters are supposed to tank I suppose (and deal a LOT of damage), but support is definitely something they should struggle with. So Protection for certain is out of the running, while Defensive... well, it might get the ability to spend ki to increase the kensai's saving throws? Not sure. Will have to think more when sleep madness is not imminent.

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