May 6, 2016


Martial Archetype
Note from the Palm: Unlike a few builds I've seen for hexblades, this one is a merging of the fighter and the warlock with the primary emphasis being on fighter. While this is a ready substitute for the Eldritch Knight, it's focus is more about debilitating and locking down single targets in lieu of straight damage.


Much like eldritch knights, hexblade mix skilled martial prowess with arcane powers. But unlike eldritch knights, these powers come not from study, but from pacts made with a shadowy, eldritch entity. Originally, the hexblades formed a knightly order dedicated to hunting down wayward, dangerous spellcasters, using their pacts to gird themselves against their enemies’ magic and to enhance their own deadly skills. Now, they exist as a mere remnant of that storied order, shadowy hunters giving any mage with a bad name reason to look over their shoulder.

Hexblade Spellcasting
 Fighter Level  Cantrips Known  Spells Known  Spell Slots  Slot Level 

Pact Magic
When you reach 3rd level, you forge a pact with an eldritch being, augmenting your martial prowess with the ability to cast spells.
     Cantrips. You learn two cantrips of your choice from the warlock spell list. You learn an additional warlock cantrip of your choice at 10th level.
     Spell Slots. The Hexblade Spellcasting table shows how many spell slots you have. The table also shows what the level of those slots is; all of your spell slots are the same level. To cast one of your Hexblade spells of 1st level or higher, you must expend a spell slot. You regain all expended spell slots when you finish a short or long rest.
     Spells Known of 1st-Level and Higher. You know three 1st-level warlock spells of your choice.The Spells Known column of the Hexblade Spellcasting table shows when you learn more warlock spells of 1st level or higher.
     Whenever you gain a level in this class, you can replace one of the warlock spells you know with another spell of your choice from the warlock spell list. A spell you choose must be of a level no higher than what’s shown in the table's Slot Level column for your level.
     Spellcasting Ability. Charisma is your spellcasting ability for your Hexblade spells, so you use your Charisma whenever a spell refers to your spellcasting ability. In addition, you use your Charisma modifier when setting the saving throw DC for a Hexblade spell you cast and when making an attack roll with one.

Spell save DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Charisma modifier

Spell attack modifier = your proficiency bonus + your Charisma modifier

Pact Weapon
At 3rd level, your new patron grants you a Pact Weapon. You can use your action to create a pact weapon in your empty hand. You can choose the form that this melee weapon takes each time you create it. This weapon counts as magical for the purpose of overcoming resistance and immunity to non-magical attacks and damage.
     Your pact weapon disappears if it is more than 5 feet away from you for 1 minute or more. It also disappears if you use this feature again, if you dismiss the weapon (no action required), or if you die. You can transform one magic weapon into your pact weapon by performing a special ritual while you hold the weapon over the course of 1 hour, which can be done during a short rest. You can then dismiss the weapon, shunting it into an extradimensional space, and it appears whenever you create your pact weapon thereafter. You can’t affect an artifact or a sentient weapon in this way. The weapon ceases being your pact weapon if you die, if you perform the 1-hour ritual on a different weapon, or if you use a 1-hour ritual to break your bond to it. The weapon appears at your feet if it is in the extradimensional space when the bond breaks.

Hexblade's Curse
Starting at 7th level, you can channel your patron's power into a wretched curse. As an action, select a creature you can see within 30 feet: that creature must succeed on a Wisdom saving throw or be Cursed. Select one option from the list below:
  • Choose one ability score. While cursed, the target has disadvantage on ability checks and saving throws made with that ability score.
  • While cursed, the target has disadvantage on attack rolls against you.
  • While cursed, the target has disadvantage on attack rolls against your allies.
  • While cursed, the target must make a Wisdom saving throw at the start of each of its turns. If it fails, it can either take an action or move that turn, not both.  
  • While cursed, the target cannot take reactions.
  • While the target is cursed, your attacks and spells deal an extra 1d8 necrotic damage to the target.
A remove curse spell ends this effect. This curse lasts for 1 minute; this duration increases to 10 minutes at 10th level, 8 hours at 15th level, and 24 hours at 18th level.
     Once a creature has been the target of this effect, it cannot be affected by your curse again for 24 hours. If the cursed creature dies before the curse duration expires, the curse immediately ends.
     Once you use this ability, you must take a short or long rest before you can do so again. At 15th level, you can use this ability an additional time between rests.

Eldritch Aura
Starting at 10th level, you learn to use your patron's power to shield you from other spellcasters. You can add your proficiency bonus to all saving throws you make against spells.

Distortion Ward
At 15th level, you learn to use ambient magical energy to wrap yourself in a distorting field, making you harder to hit in combat. As a bonus action, you can activate or dismiss your ward. While active, it grants you constant half-cover against ranged attacks.
   While your ward is active, you can use an action to boost its power for a short time: doing so imposes disadvantage on all ranged attack rolls against you for 1 minute, after which your ward is dispelled. Once you use this ability, you can not summon your ward again until you take a short or long rest, and you can not boost its power again until you take a long rest.

Dire Curse
At 18th level, the power of your curse increases. When a creature fails it's Wisdom save against your curse, you can select two options from the curse list; if it succeeds, its is still affected by one curse of your choice, though only for half the duration.

Sidebar: Pact magic Multiclassing
This class uses the alternate form of spellcasting shared by the Warlock, Pact Magic. Should a Hexblade wish to multiclass as a warlock, his Pact Magic is altered in the following ways:
  • Number of Pact Magic slots is the higher of either Warlock or Hexblade
  • Level of pact magic slots is the higher of either his Hexblade or his Warlock levels.
  • Number of spells known can not be higher than 15, excluding your patron's spells

Changelog: 6/25/16: Entropic Ward: Name changed to Distortion Ward
General language: 'can' exchanged with 'may'


  1. This is an awesome flavor... I need to play this. I love the idea of being a mage hunter using a taste of their passion to get at them.

  2. This is an awesome flavor... I need to play this. I love the idea of being a mage hunter using a taste of their passion to get at them.

  3. This gets way to much spell casting. Considering eldrich knight only gets so many 4 level spell slots this easily gets more casting. Plus its spell known is along the line as half casters when it is aupposed to be considered a third caster. The rest seems fine.

    1. While it's true that he will eventually get 3 slots that can be used on 4th level spells if he so wishes, hexblades are limited just like warlocks in that they only have three slots at maximum to use.

      Also, the cantrips known and spells known columns are ripped directly from the Eldritch knight table, so...yeah.

    2. considering the difference in power between a 4th and 3rd level spell, the additional 4th level slots damage over powers the consistency of the additional spell slots an eldritch knight has, from a dps stand point the hex-blade has an increased initial, with a greater fall off

  4. Love it. This would be the perfect alter ego for my favorite character, a tiefling EK fighting against his demonic heritage.

    I think I understand entropic ward, but just to be clear: it is activatable at will until you power it up, at which point you must rest. Right?

    1. Correct. Until you use the boost, you have a general low-level entropic effect. Once you use the boost, the entire ability goes away until you rest.

  5. Was there any consideration to add the expanded spell list from the Warlock Patron for that extra bit of "I serve THIS patron" flavor?

    1. I remember there being a similar debate with the divine bard getting cleric domain spellcasting, and I seriously think it's a bag of worms. After all, if something was written to give a warlock access to a spell, it almost certainly take into consideration if a fighter should be able to use that spell. Even more importantly, I don't think that this subclass needs to be even more complex.

    2. TBH, no, there wasn't. Thematically, Hexblades all serve the same patron, but it's inconsistent and vague enough that you could argue it to be any one of the three standard types (or even something else entirely). Having access to the warlock spell list is more than enough options for any fighter.

    3. TBH, no, there wasn't. Thematically, Hexblades all serve the same patron, but it's inconsistent and vague enough that you could argue it to be any one of the three standard types (or even something else entirely). Having access to the warlock spell list is more than enough options for any fighter.

    4. I have to make a comment on this: The use of Entropic Ward suggests the patron is The Great Old One. If you want a different patron, switch out the equivalent feature relevant to the patron. Dark One's Own Luck for the Fiend, and Misty Escape for the Archfey. Unsure about the balancing, but adjustments should be about the same as the ones made to Entropic Ward.

    5. You know, it never occurred to me that these share the same name. That's rather problematic indeed, especially given how related the warlock and hexblade are. I suppose I'll have to switch the name.

  6. The 'number of known spells should not be higher than 15' is good, but should exclude a Warlock's Expanded Spell list give by the patron.

    1. That's a good point. Implemented.

    2. hang on aren't warlock patron spells added to the list of chooseable spells, rather than the spells known?

  7. The fluff for the class and the mechanics are great. Though i think giving it the bonus action to return the pact weapon similar to what the Eldricht Knight has wouldn't be so bad.

    Love the idea from this since it was anoying me to have to play with a fighter/warlock to get this kind of flavor and still not end up with what i intended to.

  8. Why is the saving throw on the Hexblade Curse of the Wisdom attribute?

    1. A few reasons. Firstly, and most important, is that the curse spell in the Player’s Handbook uses Wisdom. Secondly, resisting a curse is a matter of willpower, for which Wisdom is a good attribute. Lastly, imposing conditions mentally tends to use Wisdom saving throws, and this definitely fits in that category.

    2. This is all correct, primarily the first reason (Bestow Curse is a Wis save)

    3. Thanks for the quick answer! And now that you guys mention it, it all makes sense.

  9. I think Number of Pact Magic slots should be the total from both classes -1. At best this gives a Warlock heavy multiclass character one extra spell slot, but I think it's a bit fairer on the character.

    Same with the level of their slots, the total from both classes - 1 (maxed at 5). So for example, a Warlock 7/Hexblade 7 would finally get 5th level slots at 14th level (4+2-1), which, while miles behind a pure warlock, is still, I believe, fair and not overpowering.

  10. I don't think the multiclassing rules are currently very appropriate. To make it more consistent with the way multiclassing works for ordinary spellcasting, I would consider editing as follows:

    "You determine your available spell slots and their slot levels by adding together your levels in the warlock class, and your fighter levels minus 2 if you have the Hexblade feature. "

  11. Why not just add 1/3 your Hexblade level (round down) to your Warlock level?