College of Swords

Bards of the College of Swords are called blades, and they entertain through daring feats of weapon prowess. Blades perform stunts such as sword swallowing, knife throwing and juggling, and mock  combats. Though they use their weapons to entertain, they are also highly trained and skilled warriors in their own right.

Their talent with weapons inspires many blades to lead double lives. One blade might use a circus troupe as cover for nefarious deeds such as assassination, robbery, and blackmail. Other blades strike at the wicked, bringing justice to bear against the cruel and powerful. Most troupes are happy to accept a blade’s talent for the excitement it adds to a performance, but few entertainers fully trust them.

Blades who abandon lives as entertainers have often run into trouble that makes maintaining their secret activities impossible. A blade caught stealing or engaging in vigilante justice is too great a liability for most troupes. With their weapon skills and magic, these blades either take up work as enforcers for thieves’ guilds or strike out on their own as adventurers.

College of Swords Features

Bard Level Feature
3rd Bonus Proficiencies, Fighting Style, Blade Flourish
6th Cunning Flourish
14th Master’s Flourish
Bonus Proficiencies

When you join the College of Blades at 3rd level, you gain proficiency with medium armor and scimitars.

If you’re proficient with a simple or martial melee weapon, you can use it as a spellcasting focus for your bard spells.

Fighting style

At 3rd level, you adopt a style of fighting as your specialty. Choose one of the following options. You can’t take a Fighting Style option more than once, even if something in the game lets you choose again.

Dueling. When you are wielding a melee weapon in one hand and no other weapons, you gain a +2 bonus to damage rolls with that weapon.

Two-Weapon Fighting. When you engage in two-weapon fighting, you can add your ability modifier to the damage of the second attack.

blade flourish

At 3rd level, you learn to conduct impressive displays of martial prowess and speed.

As an action, you can make one melee weapon attack, and your walking speed increases by 10 feet until the end of the current turn. Whenever you use this action, you can also use one of the following Blade Flourish options as part of it.

Defensive Flourish. You spin your weapon in circles, creating a hypnotic display. You can expend one of your uses of Bardic Inspiration, rolling a Bardic Inspiration die and adding the number rolled to your AC until the start of your next turn.

Slashing Flourish. If the attack hits its target, you can expend one of your uses of Bardic Inspiration to cause the weapon to damage each creature of your choice, other than the target, that you can see within 5 feet of you. The damage equals the number you roll on the Bardic Inspiration die.

Mobile Flourish. If the attack hits its target, you can expend one of your uses of Bardic Inspiration to push the target up to 5 feet away from you, plus a number of feet equal to the number you roll on the Bardic Inspiration die. You can then immediately use your reaction to move up to your speed to an  unoccupied space within 5 feet of the target.

cunning flourish

Beginning at 6th level, you can attack twice, instead of once, whenever you use the Blade Flourish action on your turn. You can, nevertheless, still use only one Blade Flourish option when you take that action.

Master’s flourish

Starting at 14th level, whenever you use a Blade Flourish option, you can roll a d6 and use it instead of expending a Bardic Inspiration die.