"Tsk tsk tsk, Such vulgar movements, you look like a pregnant yak out there. C'mere, lemme show you how to really fight."

The swashbuckler embodies the concepts of daring and panache. Favoring agility and wit over brute force, the swashbuckler excels both in combat situations and social interactions, making her a versatile character indeed.

Adventures: Swashbucklers adventure for a variety of motivations, based on their alignment and background. Some seek to right injustices, while others seek only fame and fortune. All swashbucklers, however, share a tendency to leap into action when the call comes, regardless of their personal views.

Abilities: The lightly armored swashbuckler depends on a high Dexterity for her Armor Class, as well as for many class skills. High Intelligence and Charisma scores are also hallmarks of a successful swashbuckler. Strength is not as important for a swashbuckler as it is for other melee combatants.

Alignment: Any.

Hit Die: d10.
Skill Points at 1st Level: (4 + Int modifier) × 4.
Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 4 + Int modifier.
Class Skills:The swashbuckler’s class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Balance (Dex), Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), Jump (Str), Profession (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis), Swim (Str), Tumble (Dex), and Use Rope (Dex).

Level B.A.B Fort. Save Ref. Save Will Save Special
1st +1 +2 +0 +0 Weapon Finesse
2nd +2 +3 +0 +0 Grace +1
3rd +3 +3 +1 +1 Insightful Strike
4th +4 +4 +1 +1 -
5th +5 +4 +1 +1 Dodge Bonus +1
6th +6/+1 +5 +2 +2 -
7th +7/+2 +5 +2 +2 Acrobatic Charge
8th +8/+3 +6 +2 +2 Improved Flanking
9th +9/+4 +6 +3 +3 -
10th +10/+5 +7 +3 +3 Dodge Bonus +2
11th +11/+6/+1 +7 +3 +3 Grace +2, Lucky
12th +12/+7/+2 +8 +4 +4 -
13th +13/+8/+3 +8 +4 +4 Acrobatic Skill Mastery
14th +14/+9/+4 +9 +4 +4 Weakening Critical
15th +15/+10/+5 +9 +5 +5 Dodge Bonus +3
16th +16/+11/+6/+1 +10 +5 +5 -
17th +17/+12/+7/+2 +10 +5 +5 Slippery Mind
18th +18/+13/+8/+3 +11 +6 +6 -
19th +19/+14/+9/+4 +11 +6 +6 Wounding Critical
20th +20/+15/+10/+5 +12 +6 +6 Dodge Bonus +4, Grace +3

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Swashbucklers are proficient with all simple and martial weapons, and with light armor. Some of the swashbuckler’s class features, as noted below, rely on her being no more than lightly armored and unencumbered.

Weapon Finesse (Ex): A swashbuckler gains Weapon Finesse as a bonus feat at 1st level even if she does not qualify for the feat.

Grace (Ex): A swashbuckler gains a +1 competence bonus on Reflex saves at 2nd level. This bonus increases to +2 at 11th level and to +3 at 20th level. A swashbuckler loses this bonus when wearing medium or heavy armor or when carrying a medium or heavy load.

Insightful Strike (Ex): At 3rd level, a swashbuckler becomes able to place her finesse attacks where they deal greater damage. She applies her Intelligence bonus (if any) as a bonus on damage rolls (in addition to any Strength bonus she may have) with any light weapon, as well as any other weapon that can be used with Weapon Finesse, such as a rapier, whip, or spiked chain. Targets immune to sneak attacks or critical hits are immune to the swashbuckler’s insightful strike. A swashbuckler cannot use this ability when wearing medium or heavy armor or when carrying a medium or heavy load.

Dodge Bonus (Ex): A swashbuckler is trained at focusing her defenses on a single opponent in melee. During her action, she may designate an opponent and receive a +1 dodge bonus to Armor Class against melee attacks from that opponent. She can select a new opponent on any action. This bonus increases by +1 at every five levels after 5th (+2 at 10th level, +3 at 15th, and +4 at 20th). A swashbuckler loses this bonus when wearing medium or heavy armor or when carrying a medium or heavy load. If the swashbuckler also has the Dodge feat, she need not designate the same target for this ability as for the Dodge feat. (If she designates the same target, the bonuses stack.)

Acrobatic Charge (Ex): A swashbuckler of 7th level or higher can charge in situations where others cannot. She may charge over difficult terrain that normally slows movement or allies blocking her path. This ability enables her to run down steep stairs, leap down from a balcony, or to tumble over tables to get to her target. Depending on the circumstance, she may still need to make appropriate checks (Jump or Tumble checks, in particular) to successfully move over the terrain.

Improved Flanking (Ex): A swashbuckler of 8th level or higher who is flanking an opponent gains a +4 bonus on attacks instead of a +2 bonus on attacks. (Other characters flanking with the swashbuckler don’t gain this increased bonus.)

Lucky (Ex): Many swashbucklers live by the credo “Better lucky than good.” Once per day, a swashbuckler of 11th level or higher may reroll any failed attack roll, skill check, ability check, or saving throw. The character must take the result of the reroll, even if it’s worse than the original roll.

Acrobatic Skill Mastery (Ex): At 13th level, a swashbuckler becomes so certain in the use of her acrobatic skills that she can use them reliably even under adverse conditions. When making a Jump or Tumble check, a swashbuckler may take 10 even if stress and distractions would normally prevent her from doing so.

Weakening Critical (Ex): A swashbuckler of 14th level or higher who scores a critical hit against a creature also deals 2 points of Strength damage to the creature. Creatures immune to critical hits are immune to this effect.

Slippery Mind (Ex): When a swashbuckler reaches 17th level, her mind becomes more difficult to control. If the swashbuckler fails her save against an enchantment spell or effect, she can attempt the save again 1 round later at the same DC (assuming she is still alive). She gets only this one extra chance to succeed at a certain saving throw.

Wounding Critical (Ex): A swashbuckler of 19th level or higher who scores a critical hit against a creature also deals 2 points of Constitution damage to the creature. (This damage is in addition to the Strength damage dealt by the swashbuckler’s weakening critical class feature.) Creatures immune to critical hits are immune to this effect.

Alternate Class Features

Shield of Blades

The typical swashbuckler is best suited to fighting a single foe. Some, however, pracice using a pair of light weapons to fend off attacks from all around them. The shield of blades alternative class feature is designed for swashbucklers who fight with two weapons. Though it requires a full attack action to use the ability, the AC bonus applies against all attackers (even invisible ones), unlike the dodge bonus gained by the traditional swashbuckling style.

Class: Swashbuckler (PHB2; pg. 63)
Level: 5th
Replaces: If you select this feature, you do not gain the dodge bonus class feature (or its improvements at 10th, 15th, and 20th level)
Benefit: Beginning at 5th level, you become adept at defending yourself when wielding a pair of light weapons. You gain a +2 shield bonus to your AC whenever you attack with at least two light weapons during your turn. (Despite the name of this class feature, you can use any light weapon to gain the benefit, even unarmed strikes or natural weapons.) This AC bonus lasts until the start of your next turn. This is an extraordinary ability.

This bonus increases by 1 for every five levels beyond 5th (+3 at 10th level, +4 at 15th level, and +5 at 20th level). You lose this bonus when wearing medium or heavy armor or when carrying a medium or heavy load.