Gladiator, Variant (5e Class)

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Gladiator[edit]

Gladiators are armed combatants bred to entertain audiences in the Roman Empire in violent engagements with feral animals, condemned criminals, and other gladiators. Some are even choose to participate in these games, and risk their lives and legal, or social status by appearing in the arena. Most gladiators are despised slaves socially insignificant, and segregated even in death. Their thirst for blood, glory, and vengeance fuels their battle hardened spirits.

Creating a Gladiator[edit]

When creating a gladiator take some time to conceptualize what they do in the ring. Do they go in with their trusty gladius, murderous intent supplemented with the cestus, or do they come in with a net and trident? Either way ready to put down their enemy into submission before they plunge their weapon into their opponent.

Quick Build

You can make a gladiator by following these suggestions. First, make Strength or Dexterity your highest ability score, depending on what type of weapon you wield. Your next-highest score should be Constitution. Second, choose the arena Gladiator background.. Third, choose your equipment.

Class Features

As a Gladiator you gain the following class features.

Hit Points

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

Proficiencies

Armor: All armor, and shields
Weapons: Simple & Martial weapons
Tools: None
Saving Throws: Strength and Constitution
Skills: Choose two skills from Athletics, Performance, Intimidation, and Survival.

Equipment

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

Alternatively, you can ignore the equipment from your class and background, and start with 6d4 x 10 gp.

Table: The Gladiator

Level Proficiency
Bonus
Features
1st +2 Arena Conditioning, Grappler
2nd +2 Heavy Punches, Glory Dice
3rd +2 Gladiator Archetype, Maneuvers
4th +2 Ability Score Improvement
5th +3 Unorthodox Tactics
6th +3 Encore
7th +3 Gladiator Archetype Feature, Glory Dice
8th +3 Ability Score Improvement
9th +4 Choke, Special Maneuvers
10th +4 Gladiator Archetype Feature, Grappler
11th +4 Combat Glory
12th +4 Ability Score Improvement
13th +5 Crowd Pleaser, Special Maneuvers
14th +5 Ability Score Improvement
15th +5 Gladiator Archetype Feature, Glory Dice
16th +5 Ability Score Improvement
17th +6
18th +6 Gladiator Archetype Improvement, Executioner
19th +6 Ability Score Improvement
20th +6

Arena Conditioning[edit]

At first level, choose one of the following options.

Handsome Champion: Your Gladiator makes his choice to live as a showman, giving the crowd what they want in combat, preferring to let them make the choices as to who lives and dies, rather than himself. Your Charisma score increases by 1.

Ideal Philistine: Your Gladiator loves to watch the undue suffering of his enemies, making him take extra time to perfect the shape and condition of his muscles so that he can be in complete control. Your Strength score increases by 1.

Hardened Slave: Your Gladiator has never wanted to be here. He is forced to fight in the arena by a cruel tyrant of a master. This has led to his body becoming hardened to the beatings, eviscerations, and lacerations. Your Constitution score increases by 1.

Grappler[edit]

At certain times in combat in the arena, you will lose your weapon, and be left to defend yourself without it. This is the first lesson you have learned from your rigors of combat. At 1st level, gain the grappler feat. Additionally if you’re opponent is prone, you have advantage when attempting to grapple them.

Heavy Punches[edit]

From the amount of time you have spent grappling with people, you have found the right way to swing your fist to savage effect. At 2nd level while using Caestus, or while grappling with an opponent, an unarmed strike does 1d8 + your Strength Modifier.

Glory Dice[edit]

Starting at 2nd level, you gain two glory dice, which are d6s, expending one when using a maneuver you know on a successful melee attack. You can use your action to regain one glory die. When you complete a short or long rest you regain all glory dice back.

You gain another glory die at 7th level and one more at 15th level.

In addition, you can forgo using maneuvers to use glory dice to deal extra damage on melee attacks up to the maximum of glory die allowed per gladiator level.

Maneuvers[edit]

As a gladiator, you are able to pull off exceptional maneuvers in battle fueled by dice called glory dice. At 3rd level you learn two special maneuvers. You can only use one maneuver per attack.

You learn one additional maneuvers of your choice at 9th, 13th, and 17th level. Each time you learn new maneuvers, you can also replace one maneuver you know with a different one.

The maneuvers are presented in alphabetical order.

Bee Sting: After striking your target you try to leap away. Expend one glory die, if the number rolled is equal to or greater than the target’s Dexterity modifier, you can move up to half your speed. This movement does not provoke opportunity attacks, and you can move through the target’s space during it. Otherwise, add the number rolled to the attack’s damage against the target.

Cheap Shot:When your opponent misses you with a melee attack, you can use your reaction and expend one glory die to make a melee attack against your opponent. If you hit, you add the number rolled to the attack’s damage against the target.

Deflect: When your opponent hits with a melee attack, you can expend one glory die to quickly glide your weapon against the incoming attack. If the number rolled is equal to, or greater than the target’s Dexterity modifier, you successfully deflect the enemies attack reducing the damage by the number you roll + your Dexterity modifier.

Dirty Trick: You try to throw your target off guard. Expend one glory die, if the number rolled is equal to, or greater than the target’s Wisdom modifier, you have an advantage on your next melee attack against the target. Otherwise, add the number rolled to the attack’s damage against the target.

Disarm: When you hit an opponent with a weapon attack, you can expend one glory die to attempt to disarm the target. If the number rolled is equal to or greater than the target’s Strength modifier, you force it to drop one item of your choice that it is holding. Otherwise, add the number rolled to the attack’s damage against the target.

Gloat: When you hit an opponent with a weapon attack, you can expend one glory die to attempt to goad the target into attacking you. If the number rolled is equal to, or greater than the target’s Wisdom modifier, you provoke an attack with disadvantage. If the target misses, as a reaction you perform a counter attack with advantage. Otherwise, add the number rolled to the attack’s damage against the target.

Sucker Punch: When you make an unarmed strike against your opponent you can expend one glory die to sucker punch your opponent. If the number rolled is equal to or greater than the target’s Constitution modifier, you have stunned your opponent. Otherwise, add the number rolled to the attack’s damage against the target.

Trip: Expend one glory die. If the number rolled is equal to, or greater than the target’s Strength modifier, you knock the target prone. Otherwise, add the number rolled to the attack’s damage against the target.

Gladiator Archetype[edit]

At third level, you choose an archetype that you strive to emulate in your combat styles and techniques. It grants you a feature at 3rd level, and again at 7th, 10th, 15th and 18th level.

Gladiator Archetype Features

Ability Score Improvement[edit]

When you reach 4th level, and again at 8th, 12th, 14th, 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.

Using the optional feats rule, you can forgo taking this feature to take a feat of your choice instead.

Unorthodox Tactics[edit]

At 5th level, if you are wielding an improvised weapon, a shield, net, thrown weapon, or lasso, you make two attacks with it as a bonus action. In addition, the next attack you make against the same opponent gains disadvantage.

Encore[edit]

Beginning at 6th level, you can attack three times, instead of once, whenever you take the Attack action on your turn, however the first two attacks must be one handed, and the last must either be two handed, or a second weapon attack, adding the ability modifier to the damage of the second attack. You can choose to bash your opponent with a large or medium shield as an improvised weapon, dealing 1d4 + your Strength modifier to the creature. Alternatively as a free action, you can drop the shield as a free action allowing your now free hand to assist in a two handed attack.

Choke[edit]

At 9th level Once you make a successful grapple check, you can attempt to choke your opponent. The save DC is a 8 + your proficiency modifier + your Strength modifier. 1st failed save Target falls prone. 2nd failed save Target becomes incapacitated, and next save has a disadvantage 3rd failed save Target falls unconscious.

Combat Glory[edit]

At 11th level, you revel in the excitement of battle. You gain an additional 10ft movement speed while in combat and have advantage on dexterity saving throws. You also now regain one glory die upon slaying or criting a target.

Crowd Pleaser[edit]

At 13th level, your performance is explicitly tied to your combat prowess. When making an attack you lunge off of your rear leg striking an opponent with a powerful attack from above, plunging deep into the neck of the opponent causing them to hemorrhage. Until the creature makes a Constitution saving throw (DC 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Strength modifier), the creature is now bleeding and takes 2 damage per round. If left unattended for 2 successive rounds damage increases to 3 damage per round, and the creature must make two consecutive Constitution saving throws (DC 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Strength modifier). You can use this feature once between long rests starting at 13th level and twice between long rests starting at 17th level.

Executioner[edit]

At 18th level, when an enemy is knocked prone within 5ft. of you, you can use your reaction to make a melee attack against it. If the attack hits, you deal an additional 2d6 damage of the weapon’s damage type.

Gladiator Archetype[edit]

At third level, you choose an archetype that you strive to emulate in your combat styles and techniques. It grants you a feature at 3rd level, and again at 7th, 10th, 15th and 18th level.

Thraex[edit]

Renown

Gain an additional glory die at 7th level, and two additional glory die at 15th level.

Testudo

Starting at 3rd level, if you are using a shield you can, as a reaction, interpose your shield between yourself and the enemy. Your AC is increased by 3, and movement halved until the end of their next turn.

Wicked Edge

Starting at 7th level, you learned that if you don’t fail your equipment, it will never fail you. You spend an extra 2 hours every night maintaining your weapons, and they have a wicked edge, that lesser weapons do not. At 3rd or 11th level if you spend an extra 2 hours with your weapons only, you can have them deal an extra weapon die of damage per hit.

Note: You cannot do this for others weapons. If you try to, the blade will not be sufficiently sharpened to have the bonuses of a wicked edge. This is because neither you, nor the owner has become intimate enough with their weapon.

Exhaust

At 10th level, as combat continues, you can tire out your foe. You must melee weapon attack the same opponent for at least 3 consecutive rounds. The target must be no more than one size larger than you and must be within your reach. After your third attack, your opponent must make a Constitution saving throw (DC 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Constitution modifier) to avoid taking 1d6 damage from Exhaustion for each consecutive round you continue to attack them. The DC for this save starts at 8 and increases by 1 for every round after the third. If you do not attack for one round, the count resets to zero.

Provocator

At 15th level as a Bonus action, you can provoke to a creature within 30ft. The creature must succeed on a Charisma saving throw (DC 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Charisma modifier), or take disadvantage on attack against creatures other than you. You may also choose to expend a glory die to increase your AC. Add the number to your current AC for the rest of the battle. You can use this feature twice between long rests starting at 15th level and three times at 17th level.

Retiarius[edit]

Renown

Gain an additional glory die at 7th level, and two additional glory die at 15th level.

Fast Movement

Starting at 3rd level, your movement speed increases by 10ft. You can only use this feature while you are in combat.

Fuscina Ictus

At 7th level Hamstring you opponent with a full attack action. This cripples the enemy in one leg, only allowing them to move at half speed. The effect wears off after a long rest or 10 minutes with a successful medicine check. If both legs are crippled knocking your opponent prone unless they make a Strength saving throw (DC 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Strength modifier).

Skewer

At 10th level you can use your Attack action to use your Trident and attempt to pin your opponent. The creature can be shoved, pushed, or pulled unless the creature makes a Strength saving throw (DC 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Strength modifier). The target must be no more than one size larger than you and must be within your reach. If the creature fails, they are pinned for the round but are not knocked prone. If the creature is pinned they must make another Strength saving throw (DC 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Strength modifier), if the creature fails they fall prone.

Dominus Rete

At 15th level you can wield both a net and shield in your off hand, your AC is increased by 1. Additionally, when your opponent hits with a melee attack you can use your net as a reaction to deflect that attack. The damage you take from the attack is reduced by 1d6 + your Dexterity modifier. You may also choose to expend a glory die to pin the opponent's weapon. If the number rolled is equal to or greater than the target’s Strength modifier, you force it to drop the weapon used in the attack. You can use this feature twice between long rests starting at 15th level and three times at 17th level.

Murmillo[edit]

Renown

Gain an additional glory die at 7th level, and two additional glory die at 15th level.

Side Step

Starting at 3rd level, during your turn, if you make a melee attack against a creature, that creature can’t make opportunity attacks against your for the rest of your turn.

Gravitas Ictus

At 7th level Pommel strike your opponent in the head, momentarily stunning them allowing you to leap and arc your blade high above your opponent letting gravity and momentum take the blade deep into their chest. This knocks your opponent prone unless they make a Strength saving throw (DC 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Strength modifier).

Critical Strike

At 10th level, when you score a critical hit with a weapon attack, you roll an additional damage die. Additionally until the creature makes a Constitution saving throw (DC 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Strength modifier), the creature is now bleeding and takes 2 damage per round. If left unattended for 2 successive rounds damage increases to 3 damage per round, and the creature must make two consecutive Constitution saving throws (DC 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Strength modifier). This also stacks with Crowd Pleaser.

Lupus Fortitudo

At 15th level the Strength of a wolf sharpens your ability. On a turn when you use Crowd Pleaser you gain an additional bonus action, and you gain an additional action which can be used to attack (one weapon attack only), dash, disengage, hide, or use an object. You may also choose to expend a glory die to increase your speed. The number you roll x 5 + your speed is now your current speed. You can use this feature twice between long rests starting at 15th level and three times at 17th level.

Centurion[edit]

Renown

Gain an additional glory die at 7th level, and two additional glory die at 15th level.

Lion’s Claws

Starting at 3rd level, gains Improved Unarmed Strike as a bonus feat. This means that a centurion may even make an unarmed strike with their hands full. They may also make one unarmed strike as a bonus action and may apply their full Strength bonus on damage rolls for all unarmed strikes.

Lion’s Bite

At 7th level, after making a successful attack and unarmed strike as a bonus action your opponent is knocked prone unless they make a Strength saving throw (DC 8 + your proficiency bonus + your strength modifier).

Lion’s Roar

At 10th level on a successful grapple you pommel strike your opponent in the head, momentarily stunning and exhausting your opponent. Your opponent must make a Constitution saving throw (DC 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Constitution modifier) to avoid taking 1d6 damage from exhaustion for each consecutive round you continue to attack them. The DC for this save starts at 8 and increases by 1 for every round after the third. If you do not attack the same target for one round, the count resets to zero.

Imperial Might

At 15th level the might of the empire courses through you. On a successful attack you can attack again and add +2 to your Strength modifier on that attack. You may also choose to expend a glory die to jab your opponent. If the number rolled is equal to or greater than the target’s Strength modifier, knock the enemy prone. You can use this feature twice between long rests starting at 15th level and three times at 17th level.

Multiclassing[edit]

Prerequisites. To qualify for multiclassing into the Gladiator class, you must meet these prerequisites: Strength and Constitution 13

Proficiencies. When you multiclass into the Gladiator class, you gain the following proficiencies: Any three simple or martial weapons of your choice

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