Blade (Bard talent)

Written by Martin K.

This talent is based on the AD&D Blade Bard Kit. It's also the kit that Haer'Dalis uses in Baldur's Gate II.

From Complete Bard:

HaerDalisSo you want to know about Blades, eh? Well, keep out of the way and I can show you about myself and those like me. My name's Dark and I'm a Blade. I take my name from the black garb that I wear at all times. I'm actually not exceptional in this, as all Blades dress in dark clothing. But the name has stuck, and I like it. I currently work for a small carnival that travels around the mid-Flanaess, entertaining the local crowds and thrilling the women. I perform sword dances, swallow sabers, put on weapon displays, and perform feats of knife throwing. Most crowds are especially enthralled when I strap Tatanna, a young-looking elf maiden, to a wooden plank, blindfold myself, step back 12 paces, then encircle her body in a wall of knives.

Entertaining fools is only my surface career. On the last day of a performance, a half dozen of my fellow performers and I stage the real entertainment-at least from my point of view. We slip into the upper class section of town and relieve some pompous wealthy dupe of his family fortune. Although these "side shows" are very profitable, they still don't give me the old thrill that I used to get. Thus, I've turned to a more daring hobby - assassination. I'm not a "Blade for hire," what I do is feel out a town to discover who's oppressing the populace the most. Once I've found the biggest bully in town, I slip into his residence, spy on him, and plan his untimely demise. Then I perform my greatest solo act. I slip into the fellow's bedroom, poison him, cast sound bubble, wake him, and then share in his last few moments of life.

Blades are master artisans with bladed weapons. They are the knife throwers at fairs and carnivals who pop balloons while blindfolded and swallow slender sabers. Blades also perform amazing displays of weapon skill and control as they flash various weapons all about their bodies with deadly precision. Besides rapid displays of weapon skill, Blades also perform slow, elegant dances, involving incredibly precise movement and timing. These dances include thrusts, lunges, leaps and graceful arcs. If there is a showy way to wield, throw, or perform with a weapon, a Blade knows how to do it better than anyone.

To complement their entertainment image as mysterious and fearsome men, Blades often dress in black garb, even going so far as to wear masks, facial wraps, or black headgear. Their weapons are always kept in perfect condition and highly polished for maximum effect during a performance. A man dressed in solid black, flashing gleaming silver blades, is truly an awesome sight.


You gain the Weapons Display, Handle Weapon, Juggling, Trick Throw and Blind-Fighting abilities. You also gain Offensive Spin and Defensive spin as bonus flexible attacks, which you can use in the same way as your battle cries.

Weapons Display: Once per day, you can use this ability as a standard action in the first round of combat (while there is no escalation die). You can only use this ability while not engaged to an enemy. By whirling a melee or hurled weapon about, you affect the morale and courage of others. Such a display of skill, precision, and deadly grace lowers opponents' morale and inspires allies. Immediately set the escalation die to 1.

Handle Weapon: Blades train and perform with weapons in both hands. When two-weapon fighting, reroll natural 2 and 3 on the attack roll.

Juggling: When you are attacked with a thrown weapon, and the attack is an odd miss, you can catch the weapon if you have a free hand.

Trick Throw: As a quick action, you can throw a knife that misses a target on purpose. This requires the target to stand completely still. 

Blind-fighting: You can make melee attacks as well as ranged attacks against nearby enemies blind-folded without penalty.

Defensive Spin

The Blade whirls his weapon to create a deadly shell about his body.

Flexible melee attack

Triggering Roll: Natural odd roll

Effect: You gain a +1 bonus to AC until the end of your next turn or until you are hit by an enemy. If an enemy attacks you in melee with a natural odd attack roll, deal damage to the target equal to your level.

Champion feat: Increase the AC bonus to +2.

Epic feat: You gain a +2 bonus to all defenses instead.

Offensive Spin

The Blade creates a fearsome-looking display of skill directed at a specific opponent.

Flexible melee attack

Triggering Roll: Natural even roll

Effect: The enemy pops free from you and cannot engage you (save ends).

Adventurer feat: On a natural 18+, you also put the fear condition on the target.

Champion feat: You cause fear on a natural 14+.


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