Maximal Swashbuckler

The most swash I can talk myself into is 18 bard. +5 to dodge cap seems decent, maybe not worth 18 levels of bard.

Why does swash have zero melee power? That's absolutely brutal for cap.

I do like the sonic imbue combined with a dip in fatesinger for easy access to sonic vulnerability. There is not much for imbue support in the bard trees. Best case, post new epic destiny, you score 6(9 if you full comit) from destinies. So, I'm looking at 20-25 imbue dice at cap, with heavy investment. Not that much damage.

The melee side of things are pretty grim. No baseline melee power. Does that mean you have no other choice than 41(40 with tome) in VKF? I think that's probable.

For splashes in an 18 bard build I think you go 1 warlock 1 favored soul. Aura+arcane warrior, and best of charisma trance.

Merit in racial choices is worth considering. PDK works for non VKF builds to double down on charisma stuff. Drow for imbues. Human especially if you can make that extra feat work. Tabaxi is great...

I'm an always fit a trance in there builder, and the dex trance works fine... but it's expensive.

Just having a think.


Well-known member
I think swashbuckler was one of the early ones introduced when they moved to the current enhancement system & added the single weapon fighting line but before they introduced melee/ranged power, it was a very solid tree then & while it still holds up decently now it's definitely in need of some updating.

Personally, i'm fond of the handaxe-using frenzied berserker approach & on mine it maxes out at tier 3 thanks to the points in vanguard & shadar-kai racial enhancements; I ditched the rogue level though with newer imbues that'd be useful again i guess, but i prefer having missile shield & stunning shield. Definitely looking forward to trying a rune-arm version with the new destiny though.