Looking for a fighter-type variant class with some of these possible features (in order of importance):

  • Full BAB
  • Bluff as a class skill
  • Concentration as a class skill
  • Weapon Finesse for free at level 1
  • Reflex saves
  • Sneak attack

Looking for base classes, not prestige, and it doesn't have to be an actual variant class, just something flavor and/or mechanically related to a fighter that has most of those features. Maybe even like a stronger melee rogue without trapfinding.

I am already aware of the Tome of Battle classes as well as the Swashbuckler.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Also, does the class have to have these features inherently? For example, there are feats that make a skill into a class skill - is that an acceptable way of gaining that feature, or does it have to be part of the class itself? \$\endgroup\$
    – Miniman
    Aug 24, 2016 at 0:21
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Miniman the build I'm going for is feat starved, and would prefer not to use a feat on class skills. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 24, 2016 at 0:23
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Why do you want Concentration as a class skill if you're not a spellcaster or a Tome of Battle class? \$\endgroup\$ Aug 24, 2016 at 0:26
  • \$\begingroup\$ Hmmm...does it have to get all these features at level 1? For example, if it gets Sneak Attack a bit later, is that acceptable? \$\endgroup\$
    – Miniman
    Aug 24, 2016 at 0:27
  • \$\begingroup\$ I am going to multi into warblade around level 5. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 24, 2016 at 0:27

3 Answers 3


There is one way, but it's highly unlikely to work for you. The generic Warrior gets full BAB, can choose their own class skills and good saving throw progression, and can get Weapon Finesse at level 1, and Sneak Attack at level 2. Note: There are some minor skill requirements to get Sneak Attack.

If you can talk your DM into allowing these and ignoring the advice Unearthed Arcana gives:

If you use these generic classes, you shouldn't also use the standard character classes (or variants of those classes).

Then this does, technically, fulfill all your requirements.

Assuming your DM isn't a goldfish and therefore that's not going to work, you're not going to get any closer than Swashbuckler. It has full BAB, Bluff as a class skill, and free Weapon Finesse at level 1. It also has access to the Daring Outlaw feat, which has Sneak Attack as a prerequisite, but it allows Swashbuckler levels to stack with Rogue for the purpose of sneak attack progression. You can also use the Martial Study feat to gain Concentration as a class skill. As far as I'm aware, there's nothing you can do about the Reflex save, though.

Alternatively, there's the option of combining the Thug and Sneak Attack fighter variants. This is the next closest thing, but it's already pretty far from everything you want. It has full BAB, Bluff as a class skill, and Sneak Attack. You can once again make Concentration a class skill with Martial Study, but you lose the bonus feat that would make Weapon Finesse "free", and there's nothing to be done about Reflex saves here, either.

Our next contender is the Rokugan Ninja. They get full BAB, Sneak Attack, and Bluff as a class skill. It's effectively the same as the Sneak Attack Thug Fighter for your purposes, but you might find it interesting.

Moving on, we have the Compete Adventurer Ninja. It gets both Bluff and Concentration as class skills, and has a good Reflex save. It also gets Sneak Attack...sort of. Sudden Strike is a pretty crappy version of Sneak Attack, but it does count as Sneak Attack for prerequisites if that's why you wanted Sneak Attack. On the other hand, it's 3/4 BAB, which is probably a deal-breaker for you, and it also doesn't get free Weapon Finesse.

One more - the Sleeping Tiger Monk. Yeah, I know. But it does hit some of your requirements that the other suggestions haven't been. It gets Concentration as a class skill, free Weapon Finesse at level 1, and has good Reflex saves. No Sneak Attack, Bluff, or full BAB - it's basically the exact complement to the Thug Sneak Attack Fighter as far as your requirements are concerned.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ It goes without saying, but if anyone can think of something I've missed, I'm open to suggestions. \$\endgroup\$
    – Miniman
    Aug 24, 2016 at 1:25
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ If there's something I can improve here, please let me know. On the other hand, I did mention both generic classes and Monks, so I can't say I don't deserve downvotes. \$\endgroup\$
    – Miniman
    Aug 24, 2016 at 1:51
  • \$\begingroup\$ Consider mentioning that a second martial study nets qualification for assassin's stance, which removes the need for rogue levels. Though that's rather feat heavy; M. Study, M. Study, M. Stance, Daring Outlaw... \$\endgroup\$
    – Chemus
    Aug 24, 2016 at 3:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Chemus It also can't be done until a much higher level, because of initiator level - so I'm inclined to leave it out. \$\endgroup\$
    – Miniman
    Aug 24, 2016 at 3:06
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Miniman Unearthed arcana allows you to get sneak attack in place of warrior's bonus feat, but you must meet the Prerequisites. You should note that. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 24, 2016 at 10:24

No class meets all of your requirements. I have conferred with numerous resources on the subject, and I am very confident in this statement.

The closest I can find for meeting them is Zhentarim kensai fighter.

Fighter is, of course, a full-BAB class.

Dragon vol. 310 has a kensai fighter that gets Concentration as a class skill, and Weapon Finesse is on its bonus feat list.

Champions of Valor Web Enhancement has a Zhentarim soldier fighter variant that gets Bluff as a class skill, and is compatible with kensai. Technically, Zhentarim soldier provides substitution levels rather than a class variant—which makes how it treats things like class skills that are part of the class’s chassis a question. If you rule that they apply to the entire class, then Zhentarim works wonderfully. If you don’t, then they only get Bluff as a class skill at 3rd, 5th, and 9th. This still may be sufficient for you.

Nothing can get a fighter good Reflex saves, and it does not get sneak attack. Sneak attack fighter replaces bonus feats, and would lose Weapon Finesse.


The closest I find is the Hexblade, from Complete Warrior, perhaps with the Dark Companion ACF from PHB II, giving enemies adjacent to it -2 to AC and Saves. Hexblade gets the top 3 requirements of Full BAB, Bluff and Concentration as class skills, but not the other requirements of Weapon Finesse as a bonus feat, good reflex saves, or sneak attack. Though it's not on your list, this also net you Mettle if you take 3 levels. This presumes that non-good alignment is OK for you...

If you weren't stuck on human, and can convince your DM that it's fair play, as it appears that the Sub-level was printed as if for 4th level Rogue, Changeling Rogue Substitution level 3 from Races of Eberron is printed with a better than normal BAB +3, and +1/4/1 F/R/W Saves. You still wouldn't have Concentration as a class skill, or Weapon Finesse as a Bonus Feat. Since the Sneak attack appears to be a lower requirement, then using the Fighter Feat Rogue ACF from Unearthed Arcana might suit you, getting you the Weapon finesse, and Martial Study (Diamond Mind), as 2nd and 1st bonus feats, respectively. Note that you only get the +3 at Rogue 3rd if you use this, so multiclass to something else; perhaps Hexblade. Interestingly, Rog3/Hex3 Would net you +6 BAB, with both Evasion and Mettle...

Consider taking the Able Learner feat from Cityscape, which has an aside that suggests that changelings be able to take Able Learner as well, if they are in the campaign. It could help with the skills, though it's yet one more feat...


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