"Martial Artist" Fighter Variant


Homebrew and House Rules

Liberty's Edge

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So I thought about the idea of making a martial artist style character. No supernatural or mystical abilities, just a lot of skill with using their body as a weapon. Also, I wanted them to keep full BAB.
I basically came up with the following fighter variant:

variant:

Lose: Armor Training, Armor Mastery and Weapon Training class features; Martial Weapon Proficiency; All Armor Proficiency; and Shield Proficiency.

Gain: Unarmed Strike class feature using your Fighter level as Monk levels for determining damage (fighter levels stack with monk levels for this purpose). AC Bonus class feature using your Fighter level as Monk levels for determining AC bonus (fighter levels stack with monk levels for this purpose). Reflex is now a good save.

What you end up with is a character with Monk AC, Monk damage, bravery and a bunch of bonus feats.

It could also be split into "lose armor stuff, gain monk AC and reflex" and "lose weapon stuff, gain unarmed strike" for higher granularity.

Begin the criticism:

Dark Archive

add the lose a feat, gain 4 skill points per level variant with this and its perfect for any unarmed/duelist type that doesnt want to be an actual monk.

i like it.

instead of giving them full str on off hand attacks with the unarmed strike (and effectively getting a free feat) i'd like to see the ability to use strx1.5 on non twf attacks

Liberty's Edge

Sounds more like a "no frills" monk.

That said, I think it would be an interesting alternative/variant, though I can see this outmatching a monk with correct feat selection.

Liberty's Edge

Yes, it ends up matching Weapon Master, Bravery, full BAB and better bonus feat progression versus move speed, evasion, good will save, and misc. special abilities.
This fighter does inherit the trouble with material and aligned DR without getting a class feature that makes up for it.

Actually, I might build a couple level 4-5 characters, one each of Monk and Martial Artist (this variant) and see how they compare.
Human, 20 pt buy, 0 traits. Both will have the same stat spread (since they should be dependent on the same stats).


StabbittyDoom wrote:


This fighter does inherit the trouble with material and aligned DR without getting a class feature that makes up for it.

I'd have to start digging through my books, but I'm sure there have to be some feats that can help with that.

If not, it shouldn't be to difficult to whip up some homebrew feats to cover the situation.


I like the idea, I've always felt that some class (or variant) should get the ability to add "punching weapon" damage to unarmed strikes. That could possibly solve your DR problem. Bring down their unarmed damage by 1 step and allow them to add unarmed strike damage to punching daggers, gauntlets, spiked gauntlets, and any other punching type weapons. That even lets them have magical weapons, the only thing is you'd probably want to restrict the alignment to any nonlawful to keep Monks from dipping to get that class feature.


Well I've always thought that an armored fighter with weapon training in unarmed would pretty much be the coolest thing since sliced bread :D
It would be to "monk-ish" to have no armor me thinks.


Well ... the concept itself *is* eastern flavor ("martial artist" typically conjures images of asian-flavored combat, no?).

I like it ... It's not all *that* different from most things, but certainly a different enough mix to be it's own entity.


As a DM who is a fan of "swap class abilities" over "make a PrC for it", I'd totally allow this option in my games.

Amulet of mighty fists might allow getting past a fairly large amount of DRs (core rules).
There might be Cestus weapon enhancement options if you allow unarmed strike damage to apply instead of the base weapon damage.

I've always liked the idea of a non-mystical unarmed fighter, or "martial artist".

Back in the hey-day (3.5e era), I wrote a Martial Artist PrC that had some nifty combination attack routine ideas. I might try and find that thing again and post it, see if anyone likes the mechanics.


There is a feat somewhere, I forget where, the gives you a ki pool like a monk that lets you penetrate certain types of damage reduction.

Liberty's Edge

Sooperspook wrote:
There is a feat somewhere, I forget where, the gives you a ki pool like a monk that lets you penetrate certain types of damage reduction.

Secret of Steel-Shattering Spirit from Jalmeray in the Campaign Setting.


If you get this to a final version, would you be interested in posting this over at the Pathfinder Database?

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Database Pimp wrote:
If you get this to a final version, would you be interested in posting this over at the Pathfinder Database?

I generally keep things on my personal wiki and let people view it from there if they like it, but I might submit it. I did submit my Devout Wizard variant on there. The race I have on there has been modified a decent amount since I submitted it.

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