Card Dealer, Variant (5e Class)

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Card Dealer, Variant[edit]

Utilizing cards imbued with various reactants and reagents, the Card Dealer is a master of creating chaos on the battlefield in his own favor.

Quick Build

You can make a Card Dealer quickly by following these suggestions. First, Dexterity should be your highest ability score, followed by Charisma. Second, choose the Charlatan background.

Class Features

As a Card Dealer you gain the following class features.

Hit Points

Hit Dice: 1d8 per Card Dealer level
Hit Points at 1st Level: 8 + Constitution modifier
Hit Points at Higher Levels: 1d8 (or 5) + Constitution modifier per Card Dealer level after 1st


Armor: Light armor
Weapons: Simple weapons, Finesse weapons
Tools: Playing card sets
Saving Throws: Dexterity, Charisma
Skills: Choose two from Acrobatics, Deception, History, Insight, Perception, Performance, Persuasion, and Sleight of Hand.


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

  • A dagger, leather armor, and a deck of playing cards
  • (a) A diplomat's pack or (b) An explorer's pack
  • (a) A dagger or (b) Any simple weapon
  • If you are using starting wealth, you have 6d4 × 10 gp in funds.

Table: The Card Dealer

Level Proficiency
Features Gambit Dice Gambit Die Size Gambit Feature
1st +2 Casino Combat, Dealer's Gambit 4 d6 3
2nd +2 Imbued Deck 4 d6 3
3rd +2 Choose Suit 4 d6 4
4th +2 Ability Score Improvement 4 d6 4
5th +3 5 d8 4
6th +3 Card Dealer Suit feature 5 d8 4
7th +3 Expertise 5 d8 5
8th +3 Ability Score Improvement 5 d8 5
9th +4 Imbued Deck Upgrade 6 d8 5
10th +4 Card Dealer Suit feature 6 d8 5
11th +4 6 d10 6
12th +4 Ability Score Improvement 6 d10 6
13th +5 Stacking the Decks 7 d10 6
14th +5 Card Dealer Suit feature 7 d10 6
15th +5 Gambler's Intuition 7 d10 7
16th +5 Ability Score Improvement 7 d10 7
17th +6 8 d12 7
18th +6 Card Dealer Suit feature 8 d12 7
19th +6 Ability Score Improvement 8 d12 8
20th +6 Shifty Shuffle 8 d12 8

Casino Combat[edit]

Not many people can fling a playing card at a straight line while maintaining the appropriate velocity for slashing the target. This is one prominent talent you acquired during your life as a gambler. With an appropriate adjustment on the card beforehand, a deck of playing cards is an ammunition for you.

You are proficient with combat cards, a deck of cards with sharpened edges for the purpose of combat weaponry. A combat card is a simple ranged weapon with the light, finesse, two-handed, and thrown (30/60) properties, and it deals 1d4 slashing damage on a hit. You cannot make a weapon attack with a combat card to a creature that is within 5 feet from you.

You can spend half an hour to prepare a deck of playing cards into combat cards. This process can be performed during a short rest or long rest. One deck of playing cards can be prepared into 52 combat cards this way (13 cards per suit, 4 suits*).

*Note that there exist decks with different numbers of Jokers, as they are non-standard. I will list a few examples if you are taking inspiration from other cultures. 6 Jokers specific to Zwicker decks (making your ammunition 58) and should only be accounted for if your campaign has ties to Germany. Certain German, Austrian, and Polish decks include 3 jokers, bringing your ammunition to a nice 55. However, typical decks that you may find will only include 2 Jokers, bringing your Ammunition to 54.

Dealer's Gambit[edit]

Gambit is not only your profession but also your style of life. You have a certain number of gambit dice that represents your wits and resolves that you can utilize to overcome a tight corner.

At 1st level, you have three gambit dice. You gain additional gambit dice when you reach 5th level, and again at 9th level, 13th, and 17th level.

At 1st level, your gambit dice are d6s. When you reach 5th level, your gambit dice turn into d8s. They turn into d10s when you reach 10th level, and d12s when you reach 16th level.

You can expend gambit dice to fuel various gambit features. You start knowing three such features. Select three features from the following list. You may learn additional gambit features as you gain levels in this class, gaining one feature when you reach 3rd level, and again at 7th level, 11th, 15th, and 19th level. You regain all expended gambit dice when you finish a short rest or long rest.

Bad Beat

When a creature you can see makes an attack roll, an ability check, or a saving throw, you can use your reaction and expend one gambit dice to hinder its attempt. Roll a gambit dice and subtract the number rolled from the creature's roll. You can choose to use this feature after the creature makes its roll, but before the GM determines whether the attack roll, the ability check, or the saving throw succeeds or fails.

Counter Play

When you see a creature within 20 feet of you casting a spell, you can expend one gambit dice as a reaction to interrupt its spellcasting process. If you do so, make an attack with a combat card on the creature.


When you take the attack action, you may flourish your deck of cards before you draw. Expend one gambit dice and add it to all your damage rolls as additional slashing damage for the action.

Dancing Cards

As an action, you can expend one gambit dice to perform a flamboyant card trick, dazzling all spectators. Each creature you choose within 15 feet around you is immediately distracted by your performance. They receive disadvantage on all ability checks until the start of your next turn, and the first attack roll against them receives advantage.

Deck Turnover

As an action, you can expend one gambit dice to make a combat card attack against any number of creatures within 20 feet of you. You must make a separate attack roll for each target, as normal, with a separate combat card. You cannot target a single creature more than once.

Know when to Hold Them

As a bonus action, you can expend one gambit dice to attempt a grapple.

Know when to Fold Them

As a bonus action, you can expend one gambit dice to take the disengage action.

Rogue Ace

As a bonus action, you can expend a gambit dice to take the dodge action.

Lucky Throw

Immediately, when you fail an attack roll, you can expend a gambit dice to make the combat card thrown past the face of your target, causing that creature to look away, giving advantage to anyone who attempts an attack on that creature until the start of your next turn.

Mucked Deck

You may throw a minimum of 26 combat cards into the air to distract your target. As an action, expend one gambit dice to throw cards into the air and then attempt to hide. You must throw a minimum of 26 cards, but if you throw 39 or more, add the gambit dice on your hide roll. If you roll a complete deck, you receive advantage on this roll. The cards thrown this way are lost, and may not be used as ammunition unless collected after combat.

Trick Shot

If you know the location of a creature that you cannot directly attack, you can use your action to expend 1 gambit die when you make an attack roll against the creature. The combat card can attack creatures by arching over and under cover, turning around corners at a 90 degree angle, or bouncing off of environment to reach unusual angles. Trick shots have their range increased by a number of feet equal to 5 x the gambit die's rolled number, doubling this number for long range.

Imbued Deck[edit]

Starting at 2nd level, you can imbue your cards with various reactants, causing pseudo-magical effects. You can spend 8 hours imbuing an entire deck with one ability. You may spend 1 Gambit Die to activate one of the following effects, though only 1 effect at a time. At 11th level, you may add a second effect to your cards.

Many of these effects and future abilities require creatures to make a saving throw. Your save DC is 8 + proficiency bonus + your Charisma modifier

  • Charcoal Do I feel a hot streak coming up, or is it just my cards? When you hit a creature, you light it on fire for 3 rounds. It takes 1d4 fire damage at the start of its turn. Hitting a flammable object that is neither being held nor worn causes it to combust. Damage increases to 1d6 at 5th level, 1d8 at 11th level, 1d10 at 17th level. Any cards used this way cannot be recovered after combat.
  • Venom Not poison! Well, it's poison, but the mode of delivery is what makes it venomous! Hit targets must succeed a Constitution saving throw or receive the Poisoned condition. Starting at 11th level, the creature takes half of the rolled Gambit Dice in poison damage (rounded down) at the start of their turn, continuing until they recover at least 1 hit point. Any cards collected after battle are no longer imbued.
  • Flash Paper Suddenly, gone. When you hit a target with this attack, they must succeed a Wisdom saving throw or received the Stunned condition until the start of your next turn. Any cards used this way cannot be recovered after combat.
  • Razorblades Certainly gluing small razors to your cards counts as imbuing them, yes? Roll a Gambit die and add it to the damage of your cards. Your target also takes the rolled Gambit Die in slashing damage at the start of their turn for 3 rounds or until they recover at least 1 hit point, due to blood loss.
  • Hissing Cards Honestly, it's amazing the cards are even staying together. Starting at the 9th level, you may imbue your cards with acid! Add one Gambit Die of Acid Damage to your attack. Any hit creature must make a Constitution Saving Throw or have its AC reduced by 1 (to a minimum of 10). Add another Gambit Die to damage at 17th level. Any cards used this way cannot be recovered after combat.

Card Dealer Suit[edit]

When you reach 3rd level, choose one of the following suits: the Ace of Spades, Queen of Hearts, Jack of Diamonds, King of Clubs or The Wild Card. Your choice grants you features at 3rd level, and again at 6th, 10th, 14th, and 18th level.

Ability Score Increase[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.


Starting at 7th level, choose two skill with which you are not proficient and gain proficiency with that skill. Alternatively, you can choose two skill you are already proficient with and your proficiency bonus is doubled for any ability checks you make with that skill.

Stacking the Decks[edit]

Starting at 13th level, you have learned to hold a deck of cards in one hand and throw with the same hand. Your Combat cards now count as a 1 handed weapon for you. You may also dual wield combat cards if you so choose. You may make a second deck of cards to hold or just split your current one. (If you split it, remember to watch your ammunition.) Either way, you still follow the normal rules of dual wielding. You may also imbue both decks of cards with different effects, but it will cost you one extra Gambit Die.

Gambler's Intuition[edit]

Starting at 15th level, your wits as a gambler are enhanced to the point that your mind cannot be easily swayed by tricks, optical illusions, and spells. When you make an Intelligence, Wisdom, or Charisma saving throw, you can expend one gambit die to lower the DC for you and your allies.

Shifty Shuffle[edit]

Starting at 20th level, you have practiced a rather interesting trick: throwing your entire deck and seeming to just appear at the other end, catching every card you threw! As an action, use a Gambit Dice to teleport up to 25 feet away from where you were before. Any targets between your original location and your target location roll a Dexterity saving throw. On a failed save, they are hit by three attacks from your deck. On a passed save, they are hit by only one attack.

Card Dealer Suits[edit]

When you reach 3rd level, you may choose a path which suits you best: the Ace of Spades, the Queen of Hearts, the Jack of Diamonds, or the King of Clubs. You receive Suit upgrades at 6th level, 10th level, 14th level, and 18th level.

Ace of Spades[edit]

You're at the top of your game! Some say your arrogance will be the death of you. You say you've earned the privilege after proving your skills.

Eagle Eye

At 3rd level, you throw your cards with increased velocity. Your Combat card now deal 1d6 slashing damage and their range increases to 60/120.

Extra Attack

At 6th level, you have become such a fast dealer, two cards seem to fly from your hands at the same time! You can Attack twice, instead of once, whenever you take the Attack action on Your Turn.

Push... then Push On

At 10th level, any attacks that do not hit circle back toward you and are returned to your deck. Gain Advantage to your next attack roll with a card.


At 14th level, you may spend one Gambit Die to make the card ricochet off one hit creature and hit another within 20 feet of the first. Make an attack roll as a free action against the new creature. You may continue to do this so long as your previous attack hit and you have Gambit Die to spend.

All In

At 18th level, you may roll all of your Gambit Dice remaining as a bonus to a single action (does not apply to damage rolls). All of them count, and any 12's are returned to you afterward.

King of Clubs[edit]

There are those who rely on charm, skill, and even cheat to put the odds in their favor. You prefer a more dominant approach. The King of Clubs is a frontal combat focused archetype that relies on powerful, armor piercing attacks and the use of Intimidation to "Dominate the Playing Field."

Combat Dealer

At 3rd level, Combat and Dominance in battle has become your specialty. You can spend up to two of your Gambit dice, adding the result to any rolls using Strength or Constitution. You can also choose to have your card attacks inflict bludgeoning damage instead of slashing damage at any time.

Poker Face

At 6th level, you hold a sullen and calm glare that enemies cannot easily read. You gain proficiency in Intimidation or Deception, instead gaining expertise if you already have proficiency in these skills.


At 10th level, you can perform a special attack as an action. Roll 1d10, taking the effect from the list below. You must have at least 5 cards to use this feature. You regain use of this feature after completing a short or long rest.

1. Royal Flush: You toss out 5 cards in a 15 foot cone. All targets within that cone must make a dexterity save, taking half damage on a passed save and double damage on a failed save.

2. Straight Flush: You toss out 5 cards in a straight line. They count as 5 separate attacks and deal twice their normal attack damage.

3. Four of a Kind: You choose four enemies within range of your Combat Card attack. They each take damage equal to the sum of two gambit dice. The points they lose are given to your party as temporary HP.

4. Full House: Choose up to 3 enemies and up to 2 allies within range. You make a ranged card attack against the three enemies. On a hit, they take normal damage. On a miss, the card is lost but can be recovered later. Your two remaining cards are given to each of your allies, and they gain advantage on their next attack roll.

5. Flush: 5 cards are sent out, each in a direction of your choosing, but you cannot do more than one in a single direction. On a hit, whether it hits an ally or an enemies, they take normal card damage.

6. Straight: You toss out 5 cards in a straight line, but they only do half their normal damage, each.

7. Three of a Kind: You make a ranged card attack on three different enemies, but the other two cards are lost. They can be recovered later.

8. Two Pair: Pick a pair of enemies that are within 10 feet of each other, and do the same with a pair of allies. You make an attack on each of the enemies that deals half its normal damage, each ally has advantage on their next skill roll. The last card is dropped, and is lost permanently.

9. Pair: Make ranged attacks against two enemies, each taking half damage, and the other 3 cards are lost.

10. High Card: You make a normal attack with half damage, the other four cards are lost permanently.

Cut the Deck

At 14th level, as an action you can take half of your remaining cards and toss them out in a 30 foot cone. Each card does twice the damage they would do normally.

Fifty-Two Pickup

At 18th level, If you're carrying a full deck of cards, you can spend your action to toss the entire deck into the air. The cards rain down and deal damage equal to 1d12 times your remaining gambit dice, plus your Charisma and Dexterity modifier, to everyone in a 30 ft square centered on you. You do not take any damage from this attack.

Queen of Hearts[edit]

Schmoozing everyone who gives you trouble, you have certainly captivated and ruled our hearts! You instantly gain proficiency in Persuasion and Charisma saving throws when you take this Suit.

Kiss for Luck

At 3rd level, you may add your Charisma Modifier to all your rolls involving your cards or other gaming sets, including Combat Cards and damage rolls.


At 6th level, your words carry quite a bit of weight. You may choose to use your Charisma modifier for any History, Insight, Investigation, or Religion checks instead of Wisdom or Intelligence.

Captivating Personality

At 10th level, you have become rather charming. As a bonus action, you may attempt to charm a creature within 10 feet of you. The creature must succeed a Charisma saving throw with DC 10 plus your Persuasion bonus.


At 14th level, you have become quite adept at using your charms to get what you want. Add half of one Gambit Die to your Charisma score for 1 hour. You regain use of this feature after completing a long rest.

Heart of the Cards

At 18th level, you have thought to imbue your perfume into your combat cards. On a successful hit, any creature hit with your Combat cards must succeed a Charisma saving throw with DC 8 plus your proficiency bonus plus your Charisma bonus. A fail causes the creature to become charmed as well as defend you. You may charm up to 2 targets at once.

Jack of Diamonds[edit]

Baby, the odds may look long, but that's just because we ain't done rigging them. I won't toss the dice until we are.

–Benny, Fallout New Vegas

Some people rely on charm or skill. Peh, who needs that when you can rig the game to be in your favor? The Jack of Diamonds ensures that their foes stay two steps behind.

Snake Eyes

At 3rd level, any time you roll a 1 on your gambit dice rolls, you regain 1 Gambit Die.

The House Always Wins

At 3rd level, whenever you partake in a game where you can cheat, you can expend up to 3 gambit dice to stack the deck in your favor. For each die spent, you can give an additional player other than yourself advantage or disadvantage. If you are the dealer, you can automatically pick who wins.

Rigging the Odds

At 6th level, you gain extra Gambit Dice based on 1/4 of your Card Dealer level, rounded down (1 extra Gambit Die at 6th level).

Craps Master

At 10th level, you may choose to reroll one of your gambit dice, but you must take the new roll even if it is lower than your previous. You regain use of this feature after a short or long rest. (If either roll was a 1, you cannot use this with Snake Eyes to regain more than 1 Gambit Die)

Counting Cards

At 14th level, you may take a bonus action and choose any one Imbued Card effect for your next attack, replacing any effect(s) currently active.

Pocket Aces

At 18th level, you keep a few cards ready for when you need them. On any failed d20 roll, you may spend 3 gambit die to turn your roll into a natural 20.

The Wild Card[edit]

Who needs skill and rigging when you can do anything with just the right amount of luck. The Wild Card thrives living life like one huge gamble. You like taking risks, and you live for the thrill of putting your life on the line.


You forgot what effect you imbued your cards with and just imbued then with random effects, preferring to like the idea of gambling even in combat. At 3rd level, when you imbue your deck with an effect, you instead imbue multiple cards with different effects. This replaces your Imbued Deck ability.

When you decide to spend 1 Gambit Die to activate one of the card's effects, roll 1d6 and 1d10, subtracting 1 from their sum. (This ability works best with a deck of cards, but if you do not possess a deck, adding the d6 and d10 will work). The roll or the card drawn will determine the effect.

Ace Card (1): The Ace is about speed, precision, and killing them quickly. When you draw the Ace and throw it, it conjures 4 other cards as it flies towards its target. Each card automatically hits and each card deals 1D6 + Dex mod slashing damage.

2 Card: The 2 card offers no effect and is treated as a simple combat card.

3 Card: The 3 card offers a riposte! You make an attack roll against yourself.

4 Card: The 4 card carries a dangerous pathogen to infect its foes. When you hit a creature with this card, roll your spent Gambit Die. The creature takes that rolled Gambit Die of poison damage and must make a Constitution saving throw. On a fail they receive the poisoned condition.

5 Card: The 5 card carries a static shock to strike those who come near. When you hit a creature with this card, the target takes 2d12 lightning damage, and 3 creatures within 10 ft of the original creature that was hit (chosen randomly) also take 2d12 lightning damage. You are included in the list of creatures which can be hit, regardless of how far away you are from your target.

6 Card: It would seem the number 6 card is afraid of the number 7 card and does not like to be seen by it. When this card hits a creature, it has the effects of the Fog Cloud spell.

7 Card: The 7 card really like to eat other cards and steal their life force. When you hit a creature with this card,the creature that was hit and each creature within 30 ft of the target that was hit takes 1d10 Necrotic damage. You regain hit points equal to the sum of the necrotic damage dealt.

8 Card: The 8 card seems to betray its fellow numbers, and it might even betray you. When you hit a creature with this card, you are struck with lightning as if the gods themselves are punishing you. You take 4d10 force damage.

9 Card: The 9 card takes up measures to avoid being eaten by the number 7 card again. When you hit a creature with this card, all creatures in a 10 ft radius and the creature that was hit must make a Wisdom saving throw. On a fail, they are Stunned until their next turn.

10 Card: The 10 card grants excellent mobility, but maybe no the way you want. When you hit a creature with this card, you teleport to an empty space 5 ft near the creature.

Jack Card (11): The Jack card has pledged loyalty and service to the King card. When you hit a creature with this card, you can choose a creature you can see within 30 ft of you and give that creature the effects of the Shield spell until the start of your next turn.

Queen Card (12): The Queen gives her blessing and essence to those in need. When you hit a creature with this card, choose another creature you can see within 30 ft of you. Roll your spent Gambit Die and that creature regains that amount + your Charisma mod to their hit points. If it goes over their hit point maximum, they gain it as temporary hit points.

King Card (13): The King card is the ruler of all the cards, and he demands his subjects loyalty. When you hit a creature with this card, that creature and any others that are within 10 ft of it must make a Charisma saving throw. On a failed save, they are frightened of your for 3 turn.

Joker Card (14): The Joker sees anything as a laugh, no matter what happens or who gets hurt. He just wants to see the world burn. When you hit a creature with this card, the card explodes into a giant flame and nearly incinerates anything around it. This card has the effects of the Explosion spell.

Unlucky Shot

Sometimes you have to thank your luck that an attack barely missed you. At 6th level, when a creature hits you with an attack, you can spend 1 Gambit Die to turn that hit into a miss. This ability however does not work against critical hits.

Luck of the Draw

If your luck didn't get you anything, just try your luck again. At 10th level, you may regain expended Gambit Die any time you roll a 2 or lower with any dice.

Stroke of Luck

You have an uncanny knack for succeeding when you need to, almost like you can control your own luck. At 14th level, if your attack misses a target within range, you can spend 2 Gambit die to turn that miss into a hit. Additionally, if you fail an ability check or a saving throw, you can spend 2 Gambit die to turn that fail into a pass.

All or Nothing

You've learned that the best way to get out of a tough situation is to bet everything on luck. At 18th level, when you make any roll with a d20, you can instead make a coin flip in place of the d20, spending one Gambit Die to do so. Take your pick between heads or tails, then flip the coin. If the coin lands on what you picked, you treat it as a natural 20, but on the other hand if you fail the coin flip then you treat it as a natural 1.


Prerequisites. To qualify for multiclassing into the card dealer class, you must meet these prerequisites: 13 Dexterity.

Proficiencies. When you multiclass into the Card Dealer class, you gain the following proficiencies: Simple weapons, Finesse weapons, Gaming set (deck of cards)

Of course, credit is due to the author of the Card Dealer (5e Class). I felt there were things that I could tweak about it, though just enough to turn it into a unique enough class to be considered a variant. This has been built specifically for a more Low-Magic setting, similar to my Doctor (5e Class)

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