Blade Master, Variant (5e Class)

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Unlike the fighter or other blade-wielding classes, blademasters consider their chosen edged weapon to be a part of their very being. From a young age, blademasters spend incredible amounts of times fighting and studying, being equally educated in physical combat as well as the mental studies required to truly understand the physics of combat. They study anatomy, physics, and biology, seeking to understand their own bodies and how wielding a blade changes their movements. To them, the knowledge of combat physics is just as important as the size of their muscles. They are taught that combat requires deft mental calculations to gain advantages over their foes. Control over their emotions is emphasized, and most Blademasters will be quiet and contemplative, not often lashing out in anger or silliness. Without a weapon, a blademaster quickly falls into depression and despair, although he will try to hide it from others. Blademasters have studied the mind, allowing them to fall into a meditative trance during combat, focusing on either the Guardian Trance or Battle Trance. Blademasters typically do not do well among other warrior types who treat weapons as tools; although they will tolerate and attempt to educate those around them.

Class Features

As a Blademaster you gain the following class features.

Hit Points

Hit Dice: 1d10 per Blademaster level
Hit Points at 1st Level: 10 + Constitution modifier
Hit Points at Higher Levels: 1d10 (or 6) + Constitution modifier per Blademaster level after 1st


Armor: None
Weapons: Simple melee weapons, martial weapons
Tools: Blacksmithing tools
Saving Throws: Constitution and Intelligence
Skills: Choose two from Athletics, Acrobatics, Insight, Stealth, Intimidation, and Perception


You start with the following equipment, in addition to the equipment granted by your background:

  • (a) One simple weapon or (b) One martial melee weapon
  • (a) Dungeoneer's pack or (b) Explorer's pack

Table: The Blademaster

Level Proficiency
1st +2 Sword Focus, Unarmored Blade Defense
2nd +2 Edged Expertise
3rd +2 Blademaster Archetype
4th +2 Ability Score Improvement
5th +3 Bonded Blade
6th +3 Archetype Feature
7th +3 Opportunistic Swordsman
8th +3 Ability Score Improvement
9th +4 Archetype Feature
10th +4 Sword Flurry
11th +4 Archetype Feature
12th +4 Ability Score Improvement
13th +5 Improved Bonded Blade
14th +5 Archetype Feature
15th +5 Edged Mastery
16th +5 Ability Score Improvement
17th +6 Archetype Feature
18th +6 Blade Bond Mastery
19th +6 Ability Score Improvement
20th +6 One With the Blade

Sword Focus[edit]

At 1st level all Blademasters can only wield a single weapon. Their devotion extends to a single blade, and that blade only. A blademaster can carry multiple blades with him or her, but they tend not to, shunning other weapons they don't intend on using. In addition, a blademaster can add their dexterity modifier, rather than their strength modifier, to damage rolls with bladed weapons that do not have the heavy property.

Unarmored Blade Defense[edit]

At 2nd level while you are not wearing armor and have a sword in your hand, your AC equals 10 + your Dexterity modifier + your Intelligence modifier.

Edged Expertise[edit]

At 2nd level, you may add 1d4 slashing damage to any attack with a sword. This increases to 1d8 at 5th level, 1d10 at 12th level, and 1d12 at 16th level.

Blademaster Archetype[edit]

At 3rd level, you may select from one of the following archetypes: Guardian Trance or Battle Trance . The archetype you select grants extra features when you first select the archetype, and again at 6th, 9th, 11th, 14th, and 17th level.

Ability Score Improvement[edit]

When you reach 4th level, and again at 8th, 12th, 16th and 19th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.

Blade Bond[edit]

At 5th level, you create a bond with your blade that makes you inseparable. Choose a current blade weapon. You perform an ancient ritual taking 8 hours and costing 100 gp in herbs and incense where you spiritually bond with the weapon. This weapon now counts as a +1 magical weapon if it does not already have this feature. Once bonded with the weapon, you can spend a bonus action to cause the sword to fly into your hand, no matter the distance. The blade will go around small obstacles, such as a tree or a fence, but can be stopped by larger obstacles, such as a being inside an enclosed room. The blademaster senses if a blade is trapped or hindered in this way when he tries to summon it. In addition, you have disadvantage on any melee weapon attacks made without your bonded blade. In addition, if you are separated from your bonded blade, you have disadvantage on all Intelligence and Wisdom saving throws and ability checks, until the bonded blade returns to your hand or you bond with another weapon. A blademaster will always prefer to reacquire his original weapon if at all possible.

Opportunistic Swordsman[edit]

At 7th level, when a creature enters your reach, you can use your reaction to make a melee weapon attack with advantage against that creature.

Sword Flurry[edit]

At 10th level, you gain two charges of Sword Flurry. As an action, you can expend a charge to perform three melee weapon attacks with your bonded blade. You regain all charges of this ability when you finish a long rest.

Improved Blade Bond[edit]

At 13th level, you have enhanced the bond with your blade. Your bonded blade becomes a +2 weapon if it does not already have this feature. As an action, you can animate your bonded blade and cause it to move and attack on it's own for 10 minutes. When you do so, a spectral version of your bonded blade appears in your hands. This spectral bonded blade shares the same properties as your animated bonded blade. You are not considered separated from your bonded blade in this way. You must maintain concentration on this ability, as if you were concentrating on a spell. You may roll an Intelligence saving throw, instead of Constitution, to try and maintain concentration. If your concentration breaks, the animated bonded blade immediately returns to your hand (no action) if it is able. Your spectral bonded blade disappears if your animated bonded blade returns to your hand for any reason. You can move the animated bonded blade up to 40 feet per round (no action). As a bonus action, you can cause the animated bonded blade to make a melee weapon attack as if you were wielding it, and monsters leaving it's reach can provoke opportunity attacks. You can control the animated bonded blade enough to allow it to make manuevers and perform simple tasks a blade may be capable of doing, such as knocking over objects or cutting through a rope. Your concentration breaks if the weapon moves more than 100 feet away from you. On your turn, if you cannot see the blade, you must use your action to maintain concentration to focus on the location of your blade. When you use Sword Flurry while you are animating your bonded blade, only your spectral bonded blade can benefit from it.

Edged Mastery[edit]

At 15th level, you gain another charge of your Sword Flurry ability. In addition, your Sword Flurry attacks can target one other creature within range of your weapon.

Blade Bond Mastery[edit]

At 18th level, your bonded blade becomes a +3 weapon if it does not already have this feature. You no longer need to concentrate when you animate your bonded blade, and you are able to move the weapon 60 feet per round.

One With the Blade[edit]

At 20th level, you and your bonded blade are one being. If you drop to 0 hit points, you are able to inhabit your blade and continue fighting as if your Improved Blade Bond ability was still active. Your bonded blade gains 100 temporary hit points and has resistance to all damage except force damage. In addition, any ability that would outright kill you (such as a Power Word: Kill spell) or remove you from existence (Such as a Wish spell) instead targets your blade. Your blade uses your saving throws, and has advantage on the roll.

Blademaster Archetypes[edit]

Guardian Trance[edit]

A Blademaster that focuses on the Guardian Trance is keenly aware of the need to protect himself, and his allies, during battle. While some warriors will utilize armor and shields to protect themselves, a Guardian Trance Blademaster needs only his sword to deflect attacks and keep himself alive. A practicioner of this trance tends to be quiet, contemplative, and selfless, mindful that his allies are just as important as himself. While he holds his friends and allies in high regard, his blade will always take precedence. Other Blademasters would gladly let others die if it meant the survival of their blade; the Guardian Trance Blademaster focuses on techniques to make sure that choice is never needed.

Enter Guardian Trance

When you first choose this archetype, you can use a bonus action to enter your Guardian Trance. The trance lasts until combat is over or you end it with a bonus action. All archetype features require your Guardian Trance to be active. Your hearing and sight improve, and you have advantage on Perception checks that rely on sight or hearing. You gain a +1 bonus to your AC if you are wielding a sword. If a creature attacks an ally within reach of your weapon, and your Guardian Trance is active, your ability to deflect and parry attacks also grants them a +1 bonus to their AC. This increases to a +2 at 15th level.

Sword Parry

At 6th level, your keen understanding of combat physics allow you to parry blows others could not. When a creature hits you with a melee attack, you can roll an intelligence (Insight) check vs. the creature's Strength (Athletics) or Dexterit (Acrobatics). On success, you manage to parry the attack, causing their attack roll to fail. If the attack was a critical hit, you have disadvantage on the roll. You can use this ability twice per short or long rest.

Crippling Sword Strike

At 9th level, you have mastered the art of hindering your opponents with your sword strikes. While wielding your bonded blade, if you take the Attack action on your turn, immediately following the attack you can force your target to make a Constituion saving throw. The DC equals 8 + your Strength modifier + your Intelligence modifier. On a failed save, the target cannot move or take reactions or bonus actions until the end of their next turn. On a successful save, their movement speed is cut in half until the end of their next turn. The target automatically fails the saving throw if you roll a critical strike.

Sword Flurry Retaliation

At 11th level, you gain the ability to lash out at attackers who target your allies. When a creature you can see hits an ally with a melee attack, you can use your reaction to move up to your movement speed and expend a charge of your Sword Flurry ability.

Extreme Sword Parry

At 14th level, your Sword Parry improves and extends to your allies. You can now use your Sword Parry ability four times per short or long rest. Additionally, if a creature hits an ally within 10 feet of you or your bonded blade with a melee attack, you can roll an Intelligence (Insight) check vs. the creature's Strength (Athletics) or Dexterity (Acrobatics). On success, you parry the attack for your ally, causing the attack roll to fail. You can use your reaction to gain advantage on the roll.

Guardian Trance Aura

At 17th level, your mastery over your Guardian Trance emanates in a magical aura from you. Yourself and all allies within 30 feet of you and your bonded blade gain a +3 bonus to their AC.

Battle Trance[edit]

Blademasters that focus on the Battle Trance utilize the inner peace and connection to their blade to perform powerful attacks in combat. While a barbarian will rage to become a furious beserker on the battlefield, the Battle Trance Blademaster utilizes swift, precise strikes fueled by an inner peace that comes from a tangible connection to their weapon. It is often said a Battle Trance Blademaster looks like the complete opposite of a barbarian; their breathing is slowed, they remain still, their eyes tend to glaze over, and they become impossible to communicate with until they snap out of it.

Enter Trance

When you first choose this archetype, you can use a bonus action to enter your Battle Trance. The trance lasts as long as you are in combat, or until you end it with a bonus action. All archetype features require your Battle Trance to be active. Your Battle Trance prevents you from being frightened or charmed, and you attain the blind and deaf conditions. You sense all objects and creatures around you, as if you have a sixth sense, and therefore do not suffer disadvantage on attack rolls, nor do attack rolls have advantage against you as a normal blind condition would indicate. While in your battle trance, your movement speed increases by 10 feet and you ignore difficult terrain. All Wisdom (Perception) checks that rely on smell or touch are made with advantage.

Blades of Precision

At 6th level, you can use your action to briefly meditate and enhance the precision of your upcoming sword strikes with your bonded blade. When you use the Blades of Precision ability, you may not move until the beginning of your next turn, and you enter a concentration state, as if you were concentrating on a spell. Abilities that move you break your concentration. You may roll an Intelligence saving throw, instead of Constitution, to try and maintain your concentration. You can spend your reaction to gain advantage on the roll. You automatically fail any dexterity saving throws until the start of your next turn. Until the end of your next turn, you can roll 3d20 with any melee weapon attacks you make with your bonded blade, taking the highest roll. If you have disadvantage when using this ability, roll 2d20 and take the highest roll. Having advantage while using this ability grants no additional benefit. This extends to both your animated bonded blade and spectral bonded blade at level 13. You automatically maintain concentration on your animated bonded blade while using this ability.

Enhanced Senses

At 9th level, you can use your bonus action to focus on the weak points of a single enemy. Make an intelligence (Insight) check vs. the creature's Charisma (Deception). On success, you know any vulnerabilities or other weaknesses the target may possess, including mental weaknesses. Your attacks also ignore worn armor for that enemy for the rest of the turn. If the target has natural armor, such as a basilisk's scales, your attacks have advantage against that target.

Battle Speed

At 11th level, your speed and agility on the battlefield increase. You gain 10 movement speed, and you do not provoke opportunity attacks. In addition, you have advantage on opportunity strikes against targets leaving your reach while wielding your bonded blade.

Vicious Bonded Blade

At 14th level, your strikes with your bonded blade cut through flesh like paper. Your bonded blade weapon attacks score a critical hit on an 18, 19, or 20. In addition, when you use your bonus action to allow your animated bonded blade to attack on it's own, it may attack twice, instead of once.

Vicious Sword Flurry

At 17th level, you gain a fourth charge of your Sword Flurry ability. In addition, you can use a bonus action to expend a charge of Sword Flurry, granting your animated bonded blade the ability to benefit from Sword Flurry.


Prerequisites. A Blademaster may never multi-class. The focus required from a Blademaster forbids delving into other studies. Similarly, another class may not multi-class into Blademaster.

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