For those familiar with the Nibelungenlied, I am essentially making Bruenhilde-style situation for an E6 campaign, and I need a Bruenhilde. For those not familiar with the Nibelungnlied, the players will likely try to win the hand of a princess in marriage who puts her potential suitors through some trials.

The specific trials are:

  1. Javelin throw (both distance and accuracy matter here)
  2. Footrace (There will be climbing/jumping/tumbling barriers here.)

The suitor's penalty for losing either contest is deadly, deadly no-returns death. If Bruenhilde loses, she agrees to consent to marriage. (Bruenhilde does not joke around with the dating game! She also knows what she wants.)

So I'm trying to build a 3rd level character who can give a level 5 warblade a run for his money in these contests- maybe even put him at a disadvantage so the rest of the party absolutely must help. The players start play with one of the following ability arrays:

[16, 14, 14, 13, 13, 7]

[16, 14, 14, 13, 10, 10]

Therefore I have some criteria for making Bruenhilde:

  1. Bruenhilde should rely on as little arcane/divine magic as possible. (It's a somewhat low-magic setting... just slapping on magic items seems cheap and unacceptable.)
  2. She must stand a reasonable-to-significant chance of winning against a level 5 warblade in these trials. (So range-boosting for javelins, high attack bonus, traversal skills, base speed)
  3. Splatbook material are accepted.
  4. She must have 3 levels in any non-homebrew class, ideally of tier 3.
  5. She must be a either human or half-elf
  6. Higher than "normal" charisma (>11) is a plus.
  7. Using one of the ability arrays the players used is a plus.

I feel like an easy choice here for Bruenhilde is the barbarian, but I suspect there are better choices.

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ …But …but… if drawing plots from the classics, weren't magic items the go-to method of handling such situations? \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 25, 2017 at 17:30
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ @HeyICanChan Bruenhilde didn't need magic. Gunther and Siegfried only won because Siegfried had one magic item, but that would be on the PC side, not her side. \$\endgroup\$
    – PipperChip
    Commented May 25, 2017 at 17:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ Wow the resolution of Nibelungenlied is kind of... offensive. I feel like a Fighter with 18 STR would make more sense, and I wouldn't rule out at least a STR belt; the tale is about a sometimes Valkyrie/ sometimes queen who has strength enough to throw a boulder 72 feet, when it would have taken 12 men to lift it off the ground. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 25, 2017 at 18:19
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Ifusaso If you read on, most people end up dead, dying, and in Hungry, and in part because of the 'resolution' you talk about. In any case, I'm only taking the trial-in-lieu-of-courtship part. Don't worry, our group would not go there, we're just taking the courtship-trial from this story. \$\endgroup\$
    – PipperChip
    Commented May 25, 2017 at 18:37
  • \$\begingroup\$ Oh yeah, that's not what I was getting at; that was just a general comment. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 26, 2017 at 12:24

1 Answer 1


Ersatz Bruenhilde as a barbarian/fighter

This is a dead simple build. It accomplishes what the question describes: She runs fast using the extraordinary ability fast movement and the feat Run, climbs well enough, jumps with an impressive bonus, and tumbles decently. (She also swims well because folks in these things are always swimming; feel free to trade that out for ranks in the skill Survival or Listen.) She can throw javelins with great accuracy and for distance. The feat Brutal Throw allows skimping on Dexterity so she can have a higher Charisma. Neither flaws nor character traits were used. The tricks of the build are few: using the alternative class feature skilled city dweller to get Tumble as a class skill and taking the city brawler alternative class feature to add some depth. The DM must still equip her according to the dictates of the low-magic setting.

Bruenhilde, female barbarian 1/fighter 2: CR 3; Medium humanoid [human] (5 ft.×5 ft./5 ft.); HD 2d10+1d12+6; hp 29; Init +1 (+1 Dex); Spd 40 ft.; AC 13 (+1 Dex +2 armor bonus via the leather armor), flat-footed 12, touch 11; base atk bonus +3, grp +6; atk +3 base +3 Str equals +6 melee (1d3+3 lethal or nonlethal, unarmed strike); atk +3 base +3 Str via the feat Brutal Throw equals +1 bonus via the feat Weapon Focus (javelin) equals +7 ranged (1d6+3, javelin); full atk +3 base +3 Str −2 penalty via the feat Two-weapon Fighting equals +4/+4 (1d3+3 then 1d3+1 lethal or nonlethal, unarmed strike); SA whirling frenzy 1/day; SQ barbarian alternative class feature city brawler (Dragon #349 92), barbarian and fighter alternative class feature skilled city dweller to trade Ride for Tumble as a class skill (Cityscape Web enhancement "Cityscape, Part 1: Urban Class Features"), city brawler barbarian armor and weapon proficiencies, fast movement, fighter armor and weapon proficiencies, human racial traits (PH 12-14); SV Fort +7 (+5 base +2 Con), Ref +1 (+0 base +1 Dex), Will +2 (+0 base +2 Wis); AL CN; Str 16, Dex 13, Con 14, Int 10, Wis 14, Cha 13.

Skills and Feats: Climb +9 [6 ranks +3 Str], Handle Animal +2 [1 rank +1 Cha], Jump +14 [5 ranks +3 Str +4 bonus via Spd 40 ft. +2 bonus via 5 ranks in the skill Tumble], Swim +7 [4 ranks +3 Str]; Tumble +9 [6 ranks +1 Dex +2 bonus via 5 ranks in the skill Jump]; Brutal Throw (Monster Manual V 134), Far Shot (PH 94) [bonus via the fighter 2 class feature bonus feat], Improved Unarmed Strike (PH 96-7) [bonus via the alternative class feature city brawler], Point Blank Shot (PH 98) [bonus via the fighter 1 class feature bonus feat], Run (PH 99) [bonus via the human racial trait], Two-weapon Fighting when unarmed (PH 102) [bonus via the alternative class feature city brawler], Weapon Focus (javelin) (PH 102).


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