I'm wanting to build a GMPC Duskblade character for a gestalt game.
I've read different sources with spells and thought of a number to add. Here's the complete spell list (regular Duskblade spells provided for comparison, added ones are bolded)...

0 Level: acid splash, disrupt undead, ray of frost, touch of fatigue.

1st Level: Bigby’s tripping hand, blade of blood, bloodletting, burning hands, cause fear, chill touch, color spray, jet of steam, jump, Kelgore’s fire bolt, lesser deflect, magic missile, magic weapon, obscuring mist, ray of enfeeblement, resist energy, rouse, shocking grasp, stand, swift expeditious retreat, true strike,

2nd Level: animalistic power, bear’s endurance, Bigby’s striking fist, bull’s strength, cat’s grace, darkvision, deflect, dimension hop, escalating enfeeblement, ghoul touch, Melf’s acid arrow, scorching ray, see invisibility, seeking ray, spider climb, stretch weapon, sure strike, swift fly, swift invisibility, touch of idiocy.

3rd Level: animate weapon, crown of might, crown of protection, dispelling touch, doom scarabs, energy aegis, energy surge, greater magic weapon, halt, keen edge, protection from energy, ray of exhaustion, regroup, vampiric touch.

4th Level: Bigby’s interposing hand, channeled pyroburst, dimension door, dispel magic, enervate, fire shield, phantasmal killer, shout, toxic weapon.

5th Level: Bigby’s clenched fist, chain lightning, disintegrate, hold monster, lightning leap, polar ray, slashing dispel, sonic shield, waves of fatigue

So far, have I unbalanced the class? and also, if it isn't, how close is it to being so? If It is, what could I change?


2 Answers 2


No, but it does seem like you're asking the wrong question. Making changes before you know how to assess those changes worth is asking for trouble.

You're running a gestalt game, combining house rules with pathfinder and 3.5 and you haven't actually sat down at a session yet. If this was a pure duskblade, there would be no problem adding some extra spells that they'd never use to their spelllist. Given that this is gestalted with a tome of battle character, there's no risk, because the duskblade side of things will almost never see play (and is redundant save for its spells, which simply add to complexity of character without any real payoff.)

The amount of hacking you're trying to do to these systems suggest that you're using the wrong systems. In software development, there is a practice called iterative development. Start with a known state of affairs, figure out what you like and don't like. Then figure out what change you want to make and how you want to assess that change. Make a small change (add a single feature or two), then play again. Repeat slowly, so as to not disrupt play.

For the power level you seem to want to play at, 3.5 adds the wrong types of complexity, especially for a "GMPC". (Related: don't play as a gmpc, you'll have enough to do. Especially a complex character.) Instead, try to find a game system that supports what you want to do. Perhaps one of the more complex board games that supports this sort of power-fantasy without adding the load of GMing narrative complexity on top of that.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Well, I used Duskblade and Warblade together because I wanted to be a gish whilst getting an added bite to normal combat, I also couldn't specifically see a lot of things I could get specifically to this character. The sorceress is part wizard, and the ranger and cleric are part fighter for bonus feats and type bonuses. I want the characters to be able to safely play diversely and creatively, which is why the "power fantasy" as you said comes into play. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Mar 30, 2015 at 1:55
  • 8
    \$\begingroup\$ @CataruMoore I think the point Brian is trying to make is that before you start hacking 2 systems together, adding your own houserules all over the place, and in general continually searching for ways to complicate your life, it might be a good idea to have played one or both of those systems in their vanilla state to get an idea of what you're actually doing. As it is, you seem to have a huge mishmash of rules that you don't really understand. \$\endgroup\$
    – Miniman
    Commented Mar 30, 2015 at 3:17
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    \$\begingroup\$ Related to this, in questions about social problems (and [problem-gm] questions), a fairly common subject of complaint and social problems is a GM who has very little vanilla experience and system mastery who has house-ruled the heck out of D&D for whatever reason, without fully understanding what they're doing (due to lack of vanilla experience and system mastery). That's not to say it always leads to problems, but when there are social problems, this is a fairly common factor. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Mar 30, 2015 at 3:26

Your changes are not likely to unbalance the class in play, though they do seem sort of pointless, to be honest.

Jet of Steam and Magic Missle aren't really any better than Kelgore's Fire Bolt, and neither can be used with Arcane Channeling. Bloodletting is strictly less powerful than Shocking Grasp once you hit level 3.

Escalating Enfeeblement is... alright. On average, it gives a penalty 2 points higher than Ray of Enfeeblement does, but requiring a higher level slot for such a minor benefit makes it not that great of a choice.

Animate Weapon doesn't make a lot of sense as a Duskblade spell. It takes concentration, so you can't make your regular attacks with it, and you can't use any of your Duskblade abilities through the animated weapon. The weapon basically counts as a separate creature. Using this spell seems like a really bad idea for a Duskblade.

Lightning Leap is interesting. I think this works as a pretty cool and moderately useful Duskblade spell, while not being worse than existing spells of the same level.

If you add these spells to your Duskblade list, you're not going to be significantly more powerful than a standard Duskblade in any case, and you will often be weaker. Adding these isn't going to make you overpowered.


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