Some alternative options to enable the rogue class to more effectively emulate classic swashbuckler heroes like Zorro or D'Artagnan. I believe the added versatility (no longer having to rely on allies' positioning) is counterbalanced by the need for a high Charisma, which many rogue builds can otherwise ignore.
Special: This talent may be selected in place of the rogue's Sneak Attack class feature. Powers and talents that require you to be able to deal Sneak Attack damage (Flying Blade, Sure Cut, the Improved Sneak Attack talent) provide no benefits.
You lure your opponents into making mistakes with your quips and feints. Once per round when you make a rogue melee weapon attack, you can add damage to the attack equal to your Charisma modifier, if the attack hits. (Double your Charisma modifier at 5th level; triple it at 8th level.)
However, your flashy, bombastic style keeps your enemies' attention focused on you; you cannot perform Sneak Attacks! When you roll initiative, declare whether you are going to use Brilliant Bladework this battle. If you do, you are unable to inflict Sneak Attack damage during this battle.
Champion Feat: When you inflict Brilliant Bladework's bonus damage, you may also add damage equal to your level.
Special: This talent may be selected in place of the rogue's Trap Sense class feature.
If a rogue rolls a natural even failure on a skill check involving non-violent interaction with a creature, the rogue can reroll the skill check once. The reroll will always be based on Charisma, regardless of which ability the first skill check was based on, as the rogue uses their charm to cover their initial faux pas.
Additionally, if the rogue is affected by a fear ability, they can roll a hard save (16+) to become immune to fear abilities for the rest of the battle. The rogue may add their Charisma modifier to this roll.
Class Powers - 1st Level
As you may notice, Fencer's Flourish does not work with the Brilliant Bladework talent. This is an alternative method of enabling your rogue to fight more like a traditional swashbuckler (albeit at the cost of more dice rolls), while still leaving room open to perform Sneak Attacks when the need arises.
Target: One enemy
Attack: Charisma + Level vs. MD
Hit: Until the start of your next turn, you may add Sneak Attack damage to a successful melee attack against the target. (You can still only deal Sneak Attack damage once per round.)
Adventurer Feat: On a hit, the enemy is also vulnerable to your attacks until the start of your next turn.
Champion Feat: If you are engaged with multiple enemies, this power now targets every enemy engaged with you.
Epic Feat: All effects of fencer's flourish now last until the end of your next turn.
For those curious, a comparison of the average damage of a rogue sneak attack (with and without the Improved Sneak Attack talent), and Brilliant Bladework with three possible Charisma modifier values. Note that a +5 Charisma at 1st level is extremely unlikely using 13th Age's default point buy values, but the rogue's Charisma modifier will likely improve by at least 1 over the course of the game thanks to ability boosts. The values in parentheses list the Brilliant Bladework damage after taking the talent's champion tier feat. As you can see, this feat is necessary to keep damage roughly on par with Sneak Attack:
|Level||Sneak Attack||Improved SA||BB - Charisma +3||BB - Charisma +4||BB - Charisma +5|
|5||7||9||6 (11)||8 (13)||10 (15)|
|6||10.5||13.5||6 (12)||8 (14)||10 (16)|
|7||10.5||13.5||6 (13)||8 (15)||10 (17)|
|8||17.5||22.5||9 (17)||12 (20)||15 (23)|
|9||17.5||22.5||9 (18)||12 (21)||15 (24)|
|10||24.5||31.5||9 (19)||12 (22)||15 (25)|