The spellblade is a magical warrior that infuses magic into his fighting style. In his hands, any weapon can be a magic weapon, and the spellblade supplements that with a few arcane spells as well. Spellblades are prized soldiers, as their spell knowledge, while useful in its own right, also indicates a high degree of intelligence.
Adventurers: Spellblades enjoy seeking challenges and unearthing forgotten knowledge. Spellblades are often valued for providing both martial and arcane support. Some spellblades are bodyguards for nobles while others roam the land to protect travelers and villagers. Others are more mercenary, fighting wars and raiding ruins for profit.
Characteristics: A spellblade is an intelligent warrior. He was not born into privilege like the knight, nor was he blessed like the paladin. A spellblade has spent years honing both his mind and body to become an arcane warrior. While a spellblade rarely has the mindset or inclination to lead, he respects leaders that have earned his trust and does not suffer fools gladly. As such he is a model soldier.
Alignment: Spellblades may be of any alignment, although they tend toward law. A spellblade must undergo rigorous training in both physical and intellectual arts, requiring a disciplined lifestyle. That said, there are chaotic spellblades that shun forced discipline, and there are as many evil spellblades as there are good ones.
Background: Spellblades come from many backgrounds, as their training requires raw talent that doesn’t always follow social class. That said most spellblade schools have a high proportion of “privileged” students, if only because it is easier for master spellblades to identify them. Still, if a poor person is deemed worthy, a spellblade school will often defer the cost until the student can repay them (usually after becoming a spellblade).
Races: While spellblades are commonly humans, half-elves, and elves, there is a large number of half-orc spellblades. With its martial prowess, the spellblade is an attractive alternative to other arcane classes. The spellblade class is an attractive option for dwarves as well. Gnome and halfling spellblades are rare as the smaller races are at a disadvantage in melee combat.
Role: Spellblades are an attractive addition to any adventuring party, especially since most other martial spellcasters (clerics, paladins, and rangers) are divine casters. Because of their limited spell lists, spellblades work best to specialize, allowing the party wizard to be a generalist.
Hit Die: d8.
The spellblade’s class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Acrobatics (Dex), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (arcana) (Int), Knowledge (history) (Int), Knowledge (nobility) (Int), Knowledge (planes) (Int), Linguistics (Int), Ride (Dex), Sense Motive (Wis), Spellcraft (Int), Swim (Str).
Skill Ranks per Level: 2 + Int modifier.
All of the following are class features of the spellblade.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Spellblades are proficient with all simple and martial weapons and light and medium armor and shields (except for tower shields).
A spellblade casts arcane spells, which are drawn from the sorcerer/wizard spell list. He can cast any spell he knows without preparing it ahead of time. Every spellblade spell has a verbal component which consists of a quick battle cry. To learn to cast a spell, a spellblade must have an Intelligence score equal to at least 10 + the spell level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a spellblade’s spell is 10 + the spell level + the spellblade’s Intelligence modifier.
Like other spellcasters, the spellblade can cast only a certain number of spells per day. His base daily allotment is given on Table: Spellblade. In addition, he receives bonus spells per day if he has a high Intelligence score. The spellblade’s selection of spells is extremely limited. A spellblade begins play knowing 4 0-level spells and two 1st level spells of the spellblade’s choice. At each new spellblade level, he gains one or more new spells, as indicated on the Spellblade Spells Known table. (Unlike spells per day, the number of spells a spellblade knows is not affected by his Intelligence score).
Upon reaching 5th level, and at every third spellblade level after that (8th, 11th, and so on), a spellblade can choose to learn a new spell in place of one he already knows. In effect, the spellblade “loses” the old spell in exchange for the new one. The new spell’s level must be the same as that of the spell being exchanged, and it must be at least two levels lower than the highest-level spellblade spell the spellblade can cast. A spellblade may swap only a single spell at any given level, and must choose whether or not to swap the spell at the same time that he gains new spells known for the level.
A spellblade need not prepare his spells in advance. He can cast any spell he knows at any time, assuming he has not yet used up his allotment of spells per day for the spell’s level. A spellblade may burn a higher level slot for a lower level spell.
The spellblade is adept at casting spells while wearing armor. At 1st level, the spellblade can reduce his arcane spell failure chance while wearing armor by 20%. This ability stacks with any other feats or abilities that reduce the chance of arcane spell failure.
A spellblade can channel arcane energy into a single melee weapon. At 1st level, the spellblade can make any single melee weapon a magic weapon for purposes of overcoming magic resistance. He can perform this 2 + ½ spellblade level + Intelligence modifier times per day. The effects last for 3 rounds + highest spell level known + Intelligence modifier.
While a spellblade often chooses a single weapon to use this ability, he may switch weapons throughout the duration of the ability (although he cannot infuse more than one weapon in a single round). Should a spellblade let go of a weapon (e.g. throwing or dropping it) then it loses its infusion prior to the spellblade’s next turn.
At fourth level and every four levels thereafter, the spellblade may infuse a cumulative bonus to attack and damage into his weapon. The spellblade may infuse a previously enchanted weapon as well, provided that the total bonus does not exceed half of the spellblade’s class level (round down). For example, a 6th level spellblade could add his +1 bonus to a longsword +2, since at 6th level any weapon he wields can have a total bonus of +3. A 6th level spellblade could not, however, add his +1 bonus to a dagger +2, giant bane, since it is already a +3 weapon.
At 3rd level, the spellblade may add special abilities to his infused weapons. A special ability functions the same as if were enchanted on the weapon. Unlike a magic weapon, however, the special ability may be infused without the minimum +1 requirement (although it is considered a +1 or +2 enhancement for purposes of adding it to an existing magic weapon).
At 3rd level, the spellblade may choose one of the following +1 enhancements: Bane, Defending, Flaming, Frost, Shock, Ghost Touch, Keen, Merciful, Mighty Cleaving, and Thundering. Mighty Cleaving requires the spellblade to have the Cleave feat.
The spellblade may select an additional +1 enhancement at 6th and 9th levels. Some enhancements, such as Bane, are actually several enhancements. The spellblade will need to select a specific enhancement within the group, although he may select another enhancement from within that group later. For example, at 3rd level a spellblade may select Bane (aberrations) and then select Bane (elf) at 5th level.
A spellblade must keep his total limit of enhancements (1/2 spellblade level, round down) in mind when adding a special ability. Thus, a 4th level spellblade could create a dagger +1, orc bane, but a 9th level spellblade could not put all three of his special abilities into his +2 infused weapon (as he is limited to a total of +4 enhancements). A spellblade may sacrifice some of his infuse weapon bonus in order to attach extra special abilities.
Like the Infuse Weapon bonus, special abilities may be attached to a magic weapon that the spellblade is holding, as long as it does not violate his enhancement limit. A spellblade may not take away enhancement bonuses or special abilities built into the magic weapon to make room for his own. For example, a 6th level spellblade is holding a morning star +3. He cannot drop the enhancement bonus to +2 in order to make room for his flaming ability.
Instead of receiving an additional skill rank or hit point whenever they gain a level in a Favored Class, some races have the option of choosing from a number of other bonuses, depending upon their Favored Classes. The following options are available to the listed race who have spellblade as their Favored Class, and unless otherwise stated, the bonus applies each time you select the listed Favored Class reward.
When a character selects a class, he must choose to use the standard class features found or those listed in one of the archetypes presented here. Each alternate class feature replaces a specific class feature from its parent class. For example, the elemental fist class feature of the monk of the four winds replaces the stunning fist class feature of the monk. When an archetype includes multiple class features, a character must take all of them—often blocking the character from ever gaining certain familiar class features, but replacing them with equally powerful options. All of the other class features found in the core class and not mentioned among the alternate class features remain unchanged and are acquired normally when the character reaches the appropriate level (unless noted otherwise). A character who takes an alternate class feature does not count as having the class feature that was replaced when meeting any requirements or prerequisites.
A character can take more than one archetype and garner additional alternate class features, but none of the alternate class features can replace or alter the same class feature from the core class as another alternate class feature. For example, a paladin could not be both a hospitaler and an undead scourge since they both modify the smite evil class feature and both replace the aura of justice class feature. A paladin could, however, be both an undead scourge and a warrior of the holy light, since none of their new class features replace the same core class feature.
Archetypes are a quick and easy way to specialize characters of a given class, adding fun and flavorful new abilities to already established adventurers. Characters may take more than one archetype if they meet the requirements.