The Duskblade's Handbook -- 2007

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ATTENTION!This guide is old and hasn't been updated for quite some time. You can find the latest version of this handbook here.
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The Duskblade's Handbook IMAGE(http://www.wizards.com/dnd/images/ph2_gallery/97103.jpg) [b][color=Red]


 



 


 


 

Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
Why Duskblade?

Why would anyone want to play a duskblade? They can't blast cities with the powerful spells a sorcerer gets, or have the versatility of a wizard in spell selection. He doesn't get bonus feats like a fighter or ranger for combat nor the powerful defensive abilities of a paladin. With all that in mind they are considered a below average class.

Duskblades are mainly support characters. They can't specialize in fighting or spellcasting as other classes do. However if your party already has the four main types (meaning warrior, arcane spellcaster, divine spellcaster and skill-monkey) you can really shine as the fifth member, assisting in combat while blasting things up. By selecting a few tactical spells, you will easily get the role of the leader in a party.

While duskblades can be described as arcane gish, they don't need clever dips in prestige classes to acquire as high base attack bonus and spellcasting as possible. In fact they do fine even without prestige classes and they get their most powerful ability at medium to high levels.

Basic Stats:
  • Full Base Attack Bonus
  • d8 Hit Die
  • Good Fortitude and Will saves
  • 2+int skill points

Essential Abilities:

Duskblades are arcane gish-in-a-can. As such they benefit from high:
  • Strength: Generally melee combat relies heavily on strength. After all duskblades are a melee class with a high base attack bonus.
  • Constitution: While your hit die isn't crappy, you still need all the hit points you can get. Also helps concentration checks.
  • Intelligence: Though important for your spellcasting, you actually need only 15 to be able to cast 5th level spells. You can keep it low if you don't care for spells difficulty classes. Duskblades get a huge number of spells per day, so it isn't important for bonus spells either.
  • Wisdom: Not an essential stat per se, but because the main way of expanding a spell list, without dips, is through Arcane Disciple.

Class Abilities:
  • Spells: Duskblades gain a small selection of arcane spells. They cast like a sorcerer does and their key ability for spellcasting is intelligence.
  • Arcane Attunement (Sp): Allows the use of a selection of cantrips 3+int times per day.
  • Armored Mage (Ex): This ability lets you use ignore arcane spell failure with some armor and shield types.
  • Arcane Channeling (Su): Probably the duskblade's signature ability, the one that lets you deliver a touch spell with a melee attack.
  • Quick Cast: Essentially a "sudden quicken" feat.
  • Spell Power (Ex): Gives you a bonus to overcome an opponent's spell resistance if you have hurt him with a melee attack. Handy.

Races:

Races suitable for Duskblades generally need to have melee ability while being able to backup spellcasting as well. Strength and constitution boosts are nice, as intelligence. Small races are not optimal generally for duskblades due to strength hits.
Bonus feats are welcome since duskblades though combat oriented don't get bonus feats.

  • Humans PHB: Bonus feat and skill points greatly help the duskblade who is lacking in both areas.
  • Silverbrow Humans Dragon Magic: Human bonus feat and dragonblood subtype is a nice combination if you want to choose feats available to dragonblood characters only.
  • Half Orcs PHB: The strength boost helps any melee build and duskblades can recover easily from a small intelligence hit.
  • Goliath Races of Stone: Huge bonuses for a melee build. +4 strength and +2 constitution along with powerful build is well worth the +1 level adjastment, which can be bought off.
  • Tieflings/lesser Tieflings Races of Destiny/Player's Guide to Faerun: Take boosts in intelligence and dexterity and a hit in a dump stat along with darkvision. A nice package.
  • Dragonborn of Bahamut Races of the Dragon: Con bonus is always nice and if with Mind draconic aspect duskblades gain nice bonuses, including the awesome blindsence at 15th level.
  • Half-Giants Expanded Psionics Handbook: Bonuses to strength and constitution and a minus to dexterity along with powerful build. As with goliaths it is more than worth it in a melee build. Also half-giants duskblades can use psionic feats.
  • Thri-Kreen Expanded Psionics Handbook: Although thri-kreen duskblades would be left many levels behind, their many hands synergise well with arcane channeling ability.
  • Azurins Magic of Incarnum: As humans, a nice race for duskblades with touches of incarnum.

Duskblade Level Breakdown

Duskblades are different from the rest of the base classes because of their ability to channel spells through their weapons. The rest features of this class, like casting in armor, quickening spells and overcoming spell reduction are mostly for flavour and can be achieved with other classes easily (i don't however suggest that they are weak in any way).
That said we can assume that you can use duskblade in:

  • 3 levels: Base Attack Bonus, 2 good saves, Combat Casting, Arcane Channeling (Standard Action).
  • 13 levels: Arcane Channeling (Full Attack).

Since this is a duskblade handbook, i will be focusing in duskblade-heavy builds. They may not be optimal, someone may come up with a better build, etc. I will do my best to keep up. I am not suggesting that they are the best out there, but decent the least.
Also since channeling is the basic ability of the duskblade, i will focus on optimizing it.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
General Feats
  • Arcane Disciple: A way to expand your spell list a little and enrich it with some touch spells to use with your arcane channeling.
  • Draconic Aura: Useful in many situations. If you choose energy aura you get a bonus on your spells difficulty class. If you are of the dragonblood type the bonus is dependant on your level. It is a way to have normal DCs.
  • Extra Spell: According to how your DM interprets this, it may let you choose a spell not from your spell list. Even if that isn't the case it still benefits you a lot, due to your small number of spells known.
  • Insightful Reflexes: Get your casting stat modifier to your reflex saves if you really dump dexterity.
  • Leadership: While charisma is a dump stat, cohorts are always nice.
  • Obtain Familiar: Familiars get to deliver touch spells, which duskblades have a thing for and provide you with some bonuses.
  • Practised Spellcaster: Mainly for multiclass duskblades.
  • Shape Soulmeld: There are some soulmelds that benefit duskblades. Best used with open least chakra.
  • Versatile Spellcaster: Since you already have a huge amount of spells per day, the cost is not big. In case you use cantrips to fuel 1st spells or 1st spells to fuel 2nd, you get 1-1 spell level ratio.
  • Knowledge Devotion: You have all knowledges as class skills and this feat actually connects your skills with your fighting capabilities. It's interesting and very useful.

Combat Feats
  • Arcane Strike: Duskblades with their huge number of spells per day can fuel arcane strike with little trouble. Also check this post.
  • Battle Casting: Gain some dodge bonus if you cast a spell. Since you will be melee most times this helps. Also you get combat casting as a bonus feat.
  • Battle Caster: With your Armored Mage ability maxed out and this feat you can wear any type of armor and heavy shields without arcane casting failure.
  • Cleave/Great Cleave: While these feats are under used generally, duskblades deal huge amounts of damage because of their ability to channel spells and the arcane strike feat. These may not be bad with reach weapons.
  • Combat Brute: More power attack synergy.
  • Combat Expertise: A requirement feat for improved trip/disarm. Due to your high base attack bonus you can actually benefit from it.
  • Deformity (tall): Requires willing deformity. The mechanics of this and inhuman reach are pretty much the same. It is a question of flavor which one should you use.
  • Dodge/Mobility: They are requirements for a lot of feats, including whirlwind attack. Due to dexterity requirement for dodge however, you can't really dump that stat.
  • Evasive Reflexes: Since you already have the chance to deal attacks of opportunity with your huge reach, this helps to get better positioning.
  • Exotic Weapon Proficiency: The best weapons with reach generally are exotic. Spiked chain and whip are some of the choices.
  • Improved Trip/Disarm: Tripping is considered an attack option so it doesn't interfere with your arcane channeling ability. Benefits from a high strength.
  • Inhuman Reach: Sure it requires a worthless feat to get, but reach helps you much!
  • Leap Attack: More power attack synergy.
  • Martial Study/Stance: To enchance the combat abilities of a duskblade, maneuvers and stances can provide nice benefits especialy when you can use them while channeling. One maneuver of note is White Raven Tactics that can be used on yourself. That's essentialy a double full channeling attack.
  • Power Attack: Great base attack bonus and ability to cast true strike can result to nice damage boosts.
  • Shock Trooper: As above. Domino Rush is handy with arcane channeling again.
  • Whirlwind Attack: Best used with a reach weapon and arcane channel a touch spell to crowd control. Though it is a feat intensive method that narrows the duskblade's selection.

Spellcasting/Metamagic Feats
  • Arcane Preparation: This helps you to apply metamagic to your touch spells and still be able to channel them.
  • Elven Spell Lore: Used with arcane preparation and a damaging touch spell to change the element to sonic.
  • Eschew Materials: In the case you are channeling a spell with material components and have both hands full, you still need to provide the component needed for the spell to work.
  • Practical Metamagic: Metamagic reducers come handy to duskblades who cap their spells at 5th level.
  • Rapid Metamagic: Use it with your favourite metamagic feats for channeling.
  • Somatic Weaponry: Same as eschew materials, but better depending on point of view.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
Weapons:

You have the ability to affect with a touch spell each target of your attacks through arcane channeling ability. The best way to take advantage of it with the minimum cost is using a reach weapon.

The most common reach weapons are: Guisarme, Whip and Spiked Chain.

  • Guisarme is a martial weapon, so you already have proficiency with it. It is also a trip weapon. Probably the best weapon if you don't have the feats to invest.
  • Whip needs exotic weapon proficiency, but you can use it to attack anyone 15ft away from you. It is also a tripping and disarming weapon.
  • Spiked chain normally doubles your natural reach as with all reach weapons, but you can use it to attack adjacent creatures. Requires exotic weapon proficiency and is a tripping and disarming weapon.

Enchantments:
  • Bloodstone MIC: As spellstoring but only for vampiric touch spells. It also empowers it for free.
  • Shattermantle MIC: Great for gishes. Reducing the spell resistance of your targets can help your spellcasting allies, too.
  • Sizing MIC: A nice weapon enchantment if you use reach weapons and/or change your size. According to the FAQ a reach weapon of a size smaller than your actual size doesn't give you reach benefits. So if you need to attack an adjacent enemy just lower the size of your weapon to lose reach benefits. Remember that you do get a penalty (-2) on attack rolls for wielding a weapon not of your appropriate size.
  • Speed DMG: More attacks means more targets affected with your channeling. Only useable after 13th level since you get the extra attack on a full attack action. Also doesn't stack with the speed armor enchantment.
  • Whirling MIC: Effectivelly gives you the whirlwind attack feat useable 3/day. Very nice for only +1 bonus.

Useful Rules
  • About Full Attacks: Reach is ok to have, but sometimes moving can get you more targets, as well a more strategic spot in the battlefield.
    The only movement you can take during a full attack is a 5-foot step. You may take the step before, after, or between your attacks.

  • About Two Handed Weapons: You need to provide the gestures required to channel a spell. Somatic Weaponry normally covers that. You can save a feat though by following this ruling here:
    Although the rules don't mention it, letting go of a two-handed weapon with one hand or putting a free hand back on the weapon is a free action for you.

  • About Arcane Channeling and Interaction with Trip Attacks: A part of making trip attacks is a touch attack. Consult with your DM if that attack works to channel your spell. It is a debate if it works with the standard action arcane channeling. However the full attack arcane channeling states:
    [..]and the spell affects each target you hit in melee combat that round[..]

    so i would say that this works.

Armor:

You gain the ability to ignore arcane spellcasting failure from medium armor at 4th level.
Mithral quality lets you treat an armor as one category lighter. So you can use mithral heavy armor without casting failure.
Since Duskblades are proficient with physical skills like jump, climb, swim and ride i would suggest a mithral breastplate. That way you can maintain your speed, high dexterity bonus (+5) and keep armor check penalty only at -1. After all duskblades are not tanks and frontliners, but more support characters.

Enchantments:
  • Agility MIC: If you can't afford a vest/cloak of resistance or you don't have the room for it, this is a nice way to boost your bad save. Even the greater for a +5 resistance bonus is cheap (8.000).
  • Anchoring MIC: Nice to have a special bonus on these special attack maneuvers, especially when you use them.
  • Animated DMG: If you want to use a shield make it animated. It frees your hands to use a two handed weapon and boosts your armor. Remember that armor check penalties, arcane spell failure and nonproficiency still incure.
  • Healing MIC: If you don't have a divine spellcaster to heal you, this can be useful especially when you fell to negative hit points. Even with a cleric in the party, having this will get you again into battle in most cases or in the worst case will stabilize you, probably saving a round for your spellcaster. The cost after all is negligible (8.000).
  • Quickness MIC: Boosts to speed are nice to have. Remember though that it provides an enchantment bonus. Still handy for (5.000).
  • Speed MIC: 3/day swift action you can have a haste effect on you. That means more attacks for that round so more targets for your channeled spell. Only (6.000).
  • Twilight MIC: Lets you reduce arcane spellcasting failure. Since you have spellcasting failure only with heavy armor past 4th level, only use it if you can't find a mithril piece of heavy armor. Otherwise worthless.

Miscellaneous:

  • Rings of Wizardy DMG: Probably the best rings you can wear. A ring of wizardry I, easily optainable by level 9-10 gets you 14 and 16 1st level spells per day, respectively. Can be combined with versatile spellcaster.
  • Ring of Spell Storing DMG: Assuming that you can cast the spells stored into this ring and you have a caster to load it with touch spells, this can be invaluable. After level 13 you can translate that one slot into (number of attacks) slots.
  • Runestaffs MIC: Runestaffs let you expand your spell list. While you can't channel spells from a runestaff (as they are not "known" spells) they give you some versatility. From the runestaffs available below i would choose Necromancy, size alternation or vision.
    • Abjuration: (32.000) Gives dispel magic, resist energy
    • Assasin: (10.000) obscuring mist
    • Destruction (27.000) Disintegrate
    • Evocation: (25.000) Chain Lightning
    • Eyes: (11.000) see invisibility
    • Fiendish Darkness (48.000) Dispel Magic
    • Fire (8.400) Burning Hands
    • Necromancy (32.000) Cause Fear, Ghoul Touch, Waves of Fatigue
    • Night: (14.000) darkvision
    • Passage: (75.000) Dimension Door
    • Power: (38.300) Ray of Enfeeblement
    • Size Alternation: (12.000) enlarge person Can only use it if you grab Arcane Disciple (Strength Domain)
    • Transmutation: (25.000) Disintegrate
    • Teleportation: (19.000) Dimension Door
    • Vision: (16.000) Darkvision, See invisibility

  • Hand of Glory DMG: Lets you pick up 3 rings of wizardry. Also lets you cast see invisibility and daylight. Not bad for only 8.000.
  • Heward's Handy Haversack DMG: Normally you won't have problem with your carrying capacity, but this item comes handy if you have many runestaffs.
  • Ioun stones DMG: Pale green and orange helps your combat ability and your caster level without taking a body slot. Luxury items, but well worth it.
  • Ring of Piercing Spells MIC: A way to add a bit more damage to your channeled spells. If you catch the opponent flat-footed when you attack him you add 2d6 bonus damage to the spell's damage. (2000)
  • Crystal of Arcane Steel (Greater) MIC: Gives you 1 point of insight bonus on attack and damage when you channel a spell with a melee attack. It also includes a nice 1 point boost to the spell's difficulty class. (500, 2000, 6000)
  • Boots of Speed DMG: More attacks per round as a free action. (12.000)
  • Belt of Growth MIC: Enlarge person helps reach and trip. Nice addition for 10 minutes. (3000)
  • Belt of Battle MIC: Extra actions can be valuable. (12.000)
  • Armbands of Might MIC: They give +2 bonus on strength checks and strength skill checks, which include many of the duskblade's class skills. It also applies to trip/disarm. Gives a decent boost in power attack as well. (4.100)
  • Bracers of the Blast Barrier MIC: Cheap and it adds butterfield control. Also can be used to provide cover. (3.200)
  • Bracers of the Entangling Blast MIC: To use with chill touch. While initialy it will probably not deal much damage, it can deal 1 to 3 strength damage while entagling the subjects. (2.000)
  • Bracers of Quick Strike MIC: Another way to add more attacks. Useful for low levels. (1.400)
  • Bracers of Repulsion MIC: In the case you use a reach weapon with you can't hit adjacent creatures, this is a way to hit them, while they provoke attacks of opportunity for your allies. Note that it affects only enemies. (4.000)
  • Chronocharm of the Horizon Walker MIC: Lets you move as a swift action and then full attack. Nice if you want to get in a position for a whirlwind attack. 1/day but very very cheap (500g).
  • Deathguardian Bracers MIC: Duskblades have tons of spells to sacrifice and damage reduction, even for 1 round is very good. (6.000)
  • Greatreach Bracers MIC: Quick way to add 10ft to your reach. 3/day but only (2000)
  • Eternal Wands MIC: Eternal wands are useable 2/day and hold an arcane spell of up to 3rd level. You can use them even if the spell they contain isn't on your spell list. Best spells for these wands would include: Cure Light/Moderate/Serious wounds, Alter Self, Invisibility, knock, rope trick, shatter, Enlarge Person. Other spells that may prove useful are: Lightfoot, whirling blade. Remember that you can have multiple wands of a single spell. Also assuming you are ok with your dm, trapsmiths cast arcane spells. That means:
    • 1st level: Arcane Sight, Cat's Grace, Clairaudience/Clairvoyance, Dispel Magic, Fox's Cunning, Gaseous Form, Haste, Knock, Protection from Energy
    • 2nd level: Arcane Eye, Stoneskin, Lesser Globe of Invulnerability, Dimension Door, Stone Shape, Otiluke's Resilient Sphere
    • 3rd level: Bigby's Interposing Hand, Break Enchantment, Fabricate, Greater Dispel Magic, Wall of Stone

  • Ring of Theurgy CA: This ring adds spells known until you cast them. Great if you have spellcasters in your team. Shivering touch is a powerful third level spell that can be put in a eternal wand. Consult your dm if you can load spells into a ring of theurgy from other items.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
Builds and Multiclassing

About Multiclassing:

The main focus on multiclassing with a duskblade should be to expand their spell lists. Remember that they can channel any spell that they know.
Choose classes that have a wide selection of touch spells e.g. Wizard, Cleric.

To optimize that further you should mainly choose classes that have intelligence as a casting stat, to reduce multiple ability dependence.

Classes that have intelligence as a casting stat are: Wizard, Wu Jen, Beguiler, Archivist. Wizard and archivist are the best choices, obviously.

Prestige Classes:

Look for prestige classes that add spells known mainly. This is done in two ways: either they add spells known to your existing duskblade spell list or they have their own separate list of spells (e.g. assassin)

Some of the best choices include:
Assassin
Sublime Chord
Knight of the Weave
Chameleon
Mystic Theurge
Ultimate Magus

Builds

here you can find some damage calculations based on psionic - duskblade builds.

Standard Human Duskblade 20:
Duskblade 1 [b]Power Attack[/b], [b]Versatile Spellcaster[/b]<br /> Duskblade 2 [b]Combat Casting[/b]<br /> Duskblade 3 [b]Knowledge Devotion[/b]<br /> Duskblade 4<br /> Duskblade 5<br /> Duskblade 6 [b]Obtain Familiar[/b]<br /> Duskblade 7<br /> Duskblade 8<br /> Duskblade 9 [b]Arcane Strike[/b]<br /> Duskblade 10<br /> Duskblade 11<br /> Duskblade 12 [b]Improved Familiar[/b]<br /> Duskblade 13<br /> Duskblade 14<br /> Duskblade 15 [b]Extra Spell[/b]<br /> Duskblade 16<br /> Duskblade 17<br /> Duskblade 18 [b]Extra Spell[/b]<br /> Duskblade 19<br /> Duskblade 20

"Tripper" Human Duskblade 20:
Duskblade 1 [b]Power Attack[/b], [b]Combat Expertise[/b]<br /> Duskblade 2 [b]Combat Casting[/b]<br /> Duskblade 3 [b]Improved Trip[/b]<br /> Duskblade 4<br /> Duskblade 5<br /> Duskblade 6 [b]Battle Casting[/b]<br /> Duskblade 7<br /> Duskblade 8<br /> Duskblade 9 [b]Arcane Strike[/b]<br /> Duskblade 10<br /> Duskblade 11<br /> Duskblade 12 [b]Open[/b]<br /> Duskblade 13<br /> Duskblade 14<br /> Duskblade 15 [b]Open[/b]<br /> Duskblade 16<br /> Duskblade 17<br /> Duskblade 18 [b]Open[/b]<br /> Duskblade 19<br /> Duskblade 20

This build uses a +1 Whirling Sizing Guisarme. With belt of growth he changes his size to large and with a large guisarme he has a reach of 20ft. If he needs to hit someone 5ft or 10ft away from him he takes a swift action to reduce the weapon's size so that he lose reach benefits. When he finally gets into position to hit most enemies, he uses the whirling property of his weapon.
"Inhuman Reach" Human Duskblade 20:
Duskblade 1 [b]Abberation Blood[/b], [b]Exotic Weapon Proficiency (Whip)[/b]<br /> Duskblade 2 [b]Combat Casting[/b]<br /> Duskblade 3 [b]Inhuman Reach[/b]<br /> Duskblade 4<br /> Duskblade 5<br /> Duskblade 6 [b]Power Attack[/b]<br /> Duskblade 7<br /> Duskblade 8 <br /> Duskblade 9 [b]Arcane Strike[/b]<br /> Duskblade 10 <br /> Duskblade 11 <br /> Duskblade 12 [b]Cleave[/b]<br /> Duskblade 13<br /> Duskblade 14 <br /> Duskblade 15 [b]Great Cleave[/b]<br /> Duskblade 16<br /> Duskblade 17 <br /> Duskblade 18 [b]Open / Extra Spell[/b]<br /> Duskblade 19<br /> Duskblade 20

With 10ft reach and the whip's 15ft reach he can potencially hit anything 25ft away from him. With enlarge person he can enlarge himself to gain 30ft reach.

He can use a +1 Whirling whip-dagger to deal lethal damage and attack everyone in his huge reach. Combined with great cleave and his huge damage due to arcane strike he can kill large amounts of enemies easily.
"The Blaster" Silverbrow Human Duskblade 20:
Duskblade 1 [b]Empower Spell[/b], [b]Versatile Spellcaster[/b]<br /> Duskblade 2 [b]Combat Casting[/b]<br /> Duskblade 3 [b]Split Ray[/b]<br /> Duskblade 4<br /> Duskblade 5<br /> Duskblade 6 [b]Practical Metamagic (Split Ray)[/b]<br /> Duskblade 7<br /> Duskblade 8<br /> Duskblade 9 [b]Rapid Metamagic[/b]<br /> Duskblade 10<br /> Duskblade 11<br /> Duskblade 12 [b]Practical Metamagic (Empower Spell)[/b]<br /> Duskblade 13<br /> Duskblade 14<br /> Duskblade 15 [b]Extra Spell[/b]<br /> Duskblade 16<br /> Duskblade 17<br /> Duskblade 18 [b]Arcane Thesis (Polar Ray or disintegrate)[/b]<br /> Duskblade 19<br /> Duskblade 20

At low levels operates as any other duskblade build but with lesser melee ability.
At high levels he can drop split ray, empowered polar rays or disintegrate bombs, multiple times per round because of quick cast.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
I believe that arcane chanelling requires an attack or full attack action. Whirlwind Attack is a full-round action, and if you check the wording, I don't believe you can arcane channel WWA.
Class Skills:

Duskblades receive a small amount of skill points per level, but one of their best attribute is intelligence, so you are going to receive a decent amount. Your best bet is probably concentration and knowledges.
  • Climb: This skill is situational. You aren't going to be using it constantly, but is useful to have in stressful situations.
  • Concentration: This skill's usefulness is highly debated, since a spell casted through arcane channeling isn't normally subject to concentration checks, even if you are threatened. However, since you are a spellcaster and you actually have spells that can't be channeled, this may come handy.
  • Craft: Nah. Leave this to peasants.
  • Decipher Script: Get the ability to understand scriptures. Unfortunately it's limited to the campaign and it has no general use. However keep in mind that this is listed often as a requirement.
  • Jump: As with climb.
  • Knowledge: Intelligence will be one of your highest attributes and knowledges provide useful information on your opponents. The best course of action is for the party to split the various knowledges that creature types are related to. However since you have the skill points to spend, you can take quite a few. Consult the chart below for creature types and areas of knowledge relation:
    • Arcana: Constructs, Dragons, Magical Beasts.
    • Dungeoneering: Aberrations, Oozes.
    • Local: Humanoids (Native local humanoids probably)
    • Nature: Animals, Fey, Giants, Monstrous Humanoids, Plants, Vermin.
    • Religion: Undead.
    • Planes: Outsiders, Elementals.

  • Ride: Not required, since you aren't going to be mounted probably.
  • Sense Motive: Avoid being bluffed or that something is wrong. I can see no other applications than enemies using feint attacks, so this is probably not worth having.
  • Spellcraft: No ranks required here, unless you want to fulfill a certain requirement. You are not going to need spellcraft, as you won't use counterspell or similar techniques.
  • Swim: Ditto for climb.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
1- May want to mention ring of piercing spells from MiC. for only 2,000 gp it is the low level dusckblades best friend.

What does it do: Use, swift action 3/day. Effect, when delivering a touch attack spell (IE channeling) against a target that is denied their dex to AC (flat footed, flanked, etc) you add 2d6 bonus damage to the spell. So at 5th level it will up your shocking grasp from 5d6 to 7d6 3/day.

2- For spells you should:
- Drop waves of fatigue in favor of slashing dispell
- Add enervation to 4th level
- Mention DMG rules for researching spells so that you can get spells like combust (SC) and wraithstrike (SC) on your spell list.

3- Add rapid metamagic (complete mage) to the feat list as it is highly recommended for the duskblade and every spontaneous caster.

4- Cleave and great cleave are huge bonuses to the inhuman touch build when used in conjunctino with arcane strike as dumping multiple spells to arcane strike will let you essentially 1 shot everything within 25-30 ft of you.

5- Bloodstone (MIC) weapon enhancement is dammed nice for dusckblades. +1 enhancement that acts as spellstoring but only holds vampiric touch spells. However any vampiric touch spell placed in it is empowered fr free.
Spells:

Duskblades have a limited list, so it's easy to comment on every spell they get. Remember not to get many spells that require saving throws to affect their targets and to avoid spells that you are not going to use much. Those are better on a wand or eternal wand. Here is a small analysis and tips for each spell, listed by level:

0-Level

Not much to say here. You get acid splash, disrupt undead, ray of frost and touch of fatigue. Eventually you'll get most of them, but be sure to grab touch of fatigue, the only spell that you can channel from this level. Unfortunately, when you get your channeling ability at 3rd level, 0-level spells lack significantly in power, but you can see it as an extra effect on your spells.
1st level:

  • Bigby's Tripping Hand: This is a bad spell. You effectively trade a standard action for a crappy trip attack at range. The numbers are not worth it. +1 on the trip attempt for every three caster levels, to a maximum at +5, is the equivalent of a first level tripper roughly.
  • Blade of Blood Touch: You can already channel a spell and deal more than 3d6 and without hurting yourself. The duration is limited, so it isn't useful even as a pre-combat buff.
  • Burning Hands: It's a low level area spell. The damage isn't impressive and it requires a saving throw. It is wise to avoid this spell.
  • Cause Fear: Another spell you are most likely better without it. It's mind-affecting and fear. Moreover it requires a saving throw. The worst part is that it has a close range, so you cannot channel it.
  • Chill Touch Touch: This should be one of your first choices. It deals negative energy damage, which is useful in many situations. It has an option of dealing strength damage, which is a great thing. Reducing the strength of key enemies can reduce their fighting capabilities, or even disable them.
  • Color Spray: If your intelligence score is big enough to provide a decent difficulty class, this can be a low level gem. However at later levels it gets increasingly less useful, so get rid of it as soon as possible.
  • Jump: Get an enchantment bonus to your jump check. This is a bad spell choice. First the skill in question is a class skill for duskblades, second your spell list is extremely limited and third you don't have to make big jump checks.
  • Kelgore's Fire Bolt: It's a trap! Just channel a spell and deal damage. If you strike and spell resistance blocks your spell, you still deal your weapon damage, which is probably more than 1d6.
  • Lesser Deflect: An immediate action that grants you an AC bonus and hopefully prevents opponents from hitting you. The bonus is crappy though and it lasts only for one round.
  • Magic Weapon Touch: Make your weapon magical for a short period of time. This helps at low levels, but make sure that you swap it for something better later.
  • Obscuring Mist: This is usually used to gain strategic advantage, but since you are actually a melee character that needs to pick targets, you don't have much synergy with it. Better pass.
  • Ray of Enfeeblement: Now this is a ray that helps you. Unfortunately it bestows a strength penalty, but it has no saving throw and your BAB is great, so it can support nearly any touch attack. Usually a great pick.
  • Resist Energy Touch: Nice buff for your whole career. It has no damage cap, so it can potentially absorb large amounts of elemental damage. Duskblades are full casters, so you will quickly upgrade it to open up higher resistance numbers. The duration is great.
  • Rouse: Another bad spell. The listen check to wake up is not great, so this is actually the same as spending a standard action making noise.
  • Shocking Grasp Touch: Another great first level offensive spell, this will add a bit of electricity damage on your attacks. However it adds a little bit of extra synergy, as if your opponent wears metal armor, you get a +3 unnamed bonus on attack rolls. Now it mentions that you get it when you are delivering the spell, but since the arcane channeling's effect states [...]any touch spell you know and deliver the spell through your weapon[...] it most probably works. Thus it can help as a small power attack boost for you occasionally.
  • Stand: This is most helpful if you are dealing with trippers. If you are worried about tripper builds, better get the skill tricks from complete scoundrel that do the exact same thing and skip this.
  • Swift Expeditious Retreat: Huge amount of bonus to your speed, this spell gives you a variety of options. Escape easily from a tight battle, get into better position for channeling tour spell, etc.
  • True Strike: Sometimes it is crucial that you strike true, and this spells does exactly that. Not only it gives you a +20 insight bonus on attack rolls, but it also gives you the ability to avoid miss chance if your opponents have concealment. Actually, this is an average spell, but since you have many abilities that involve hitting your opponents' AC, you will probably not regret taking it.

2nd Level:

  • Animalistic Power Touch: It's nice if used as an all-around boost, but it will quickly diminish in power. It's probably equal to the bear's endurance series of spells.
  • Bear's Endurance Touch: It's a nice buff for low levels, but once you get an item to boost the attribute in question, you should get rid of it. The same goes for the other stat buffs (bull's strength, cat's grace, etc).
  • Bigby's Striking Fist: As with the previous fist, this isn't worth the trouble.
  • Bull's Strength Touch: See Bear's Endurance.
  • Cat's Grace Touch: See Bear's Endurance.
  • Darkvision Touch: You shouldn't spend a spell known for an effect like this.
  • Deflect: Same with the previous version, but worse, since you add just 1/2 of your caster level to the next attack that targets you.
  • Dimension Hop Touch: This is a great all-around spell. You teleport the subject of this spell 5ft per two caster levels. You can use it on yourself for better positioning, easy escape, to move pass barriers or difficult terrain. You can channel it, knocking enemies back (and possibly down a cliff :D), closer to you, to a flaning position or behind your lines, dividing the opponents' set up. You can probably save a friend from danger in-battle by attacking and teleporting him. The same goes if you want to provide strategic advantage (e.g. giving up one of your attacks and teleporting your barbarian/charger to a charge position before his turn comes). The uses are probably endless, so this is a great pick. The problem is that it requires a will save, but that doesn't limit its uses.
  • Ghoul Touch Touch: This will probably be your main low-to-mid channeling spell. It paralyzes for a great duration creatures you touch and it doesn't list a saving throw for the paralysis. As a side bonus, all living creatures in a 10ft radius of the paralyzed target become sickened (saving throw allowed). Paralysis is a condition. Paralyzed creatures have effective dexterity and strength scores of 0 and are helpless. This spell is too great to pass by, as it helps your allies take care of enemies more easily and it has great strategic uses. One less enemy, even paralyzed, can turn the tide of battle.
  • Melf's Acid Arrow: This is a strange spell, but the best plus is that it doesn't require a saving throw or spell resistance. It's not the best pick for this level, but if you choose to go with it you won't be disappointed. This spell however should only be used if you can't meet the spell resistance of your opponents and your intelligence is low.
  • Scorching Ray: The damage output is nice, but once you get to 13th level, even a lowly shocking grasp will probably deal more damage.
  • See Invisibility: Great spell, but unfortunately it's better on a eternal wand as it has a pretty big duration.
  • Seeking Ray: This is possibly useful to other arcane spellcasters that make heavily use of rays, but it isn't going to help duskblades (remember that your BAB is full, while normally arcane casters have half BAB. A +4 bonus is next to nothing for touch attacks if you have perfect BAB). Skip this.
  • Spider Climb Touch: Can be used as a tactical spell for ambushes and attacks from unexpected positions. Unfortunately this isn't useful to you as duskblades are purely melee characters and by the level you will be able to buff your party, there will be lots of other ways to move tactically, possibly through flight.
  • Stretch Weapon: Self-explanatory. It is obviously bad to trade one of your few 2nd level spells for a situational +5ft of reach.
  • Sure Strike: It's like true strike, but worse. There is no reason to get this.
  • Swift Fly: Nice ability, but unfortunately the duration is too limited. Still it has its uses and is the only way to fly with your class abilities alone. If you get another way for an alternative movement mode, absolutely retrain this.
  • Swift Invisibility: As above, this is the only way to turn invisible with your class abilities. This invisibility has various uses, from a power attack boost (targets are possibly flat-footed, you gain a +2 bonus to your attack roll) to an escape mechanism.
  • Touch of Idiocy Touch: It's a touch spell, so you can undermine enemy spellcasters with this, but note that it is a mind-affecting spell.

3rd Level:

  • Crown of Might Touch: I don't think that this spell is worth it. It even occupies space as an item.
  • Crown of Protection Touch: As above, the bonuses are too lousy for a 3rd level spell.
  • Dispelling Touch Touch: You can end ongoing spell effects with this dispel-like spell. Unfortunately, you can't treat it like a targeted dispel magic, but it is a touch spell, so you can channel it. It has quite a few uses and serves as a debuff on your attack.
  • Doom Scarabs: Deal some non-impressive damage in a 60ft cone and gain some situational temporary hit points. Not worth it, choose it only if you want some crude crowd control.
  • Energy Aegis: Bad spell. Just cast resist energy that lasts a lot more and is a 1st level spell.
  • Energy Surge: Use your swift action to surge your weapon to deal extra elemental damage. I am against this spell, because first of all you are going to duplicate it even better through arcane strike (3d4 + 3 attack roll against 2d6 elemental damage). Second it eats your swift action, which you are going to need.
  • Greater Magic Weapon: Not a touch spell, but you are a full caster with full BAB, upgrading your weapons is almost always a good tactic. You can go even further with this, using a rod of extend, lesser to make several of your party members' weapons magical.
  • Halt: Roughly, stop an opponent from moving. The range is close and you can't channel it. Also it requires a saving throw. Its tactical uses aren't impressive either. I'd avoid this.
  • Keen Edge: Note that this spell isn't a range:touch one. You can have multiple weapons receiving the benefit with a rod of extend, lesser, but generally you should leave this spell to those that aren't so tight with their selection, as it isn't going to play a major role in your party tactics.
  • Protection from Energy Touch: This spell is a better version of the 1st level resist energy spell. This is because it completely protects you against damage until it absorbs a specific amount of damage. However i would aim for resist energy and pass on this one. Resist energy doesn't have a cap in the amount of damage it can protect you from, and the 30 elemental damage protection of the last upgrade, are pretty much more than enough. At any event, don't take both spells, but choose between the two.
  • Ray of Exhaustion: A ray spell, but it has great tactical uses. First of all even if your target fails his save, he becomes fatigued. That means that he receives a penalty in two attributes and he cannot run or charge, which is going to hurt specific builds a lot. The exhausted condition is even worse for the fighting types, reducing dexterity and strength by 6.
  • Regroup: There are many uses to this, defensive mainly, but can be used as an offensive spell, too (as in charging the enemy and then swift regrouping to bring tanks and your melee focused characters in position for full attacks). This is a nice spell that will get you out of difficult and stressful situations, i'd almost always get it.
  • Vampiric Touch Touch: Enter you main damage dealing spell for mid-to-high levels. No saving throw listed, deals damage and you gain temporary hit points. It's pretty straightforward and simple, but note that you can gain the temporary hit points only one time, as they don't stack.

4th Level:

  • Bigby's Interposing Hand: Create a large hand that provides you cover against one opponent. It's better than the previous hands, but remains an average spell.
  • Channeled Pyroburst: It's a trap! Crappy spell, not worth the trouble.
  • Dimension Door: Saves you a lot of trouble and it's one of the best arcane spells. You already have dimension hop, but they are both worth it.
  • Dispel Magic: Every caster should be able to use dispel magic if he is able to, it's just too good to pass on it.
  • Enervation: A strong debuff that has no saving throw. If you are having troubles with the high saves of a potential target, this is an option.
  • Fire Shield: Various fire and cold related abilities. Unless you know what you're doing, don't get this.
  • Phantasmal Killer: You are going to get this spell so late that the odds to get one through are minimal. It's mind-affecting, fear, requires two saving throws and spell resistance check.
  • Shout: This should be your choice if you need an area damaging spell. It can apply a condition to the affected targets and destroy items. It isn't exactly duskblade style, but gets the job done.
  • Toxic Weapon Touch: This seems like a nice choice, but it requires a saving throw. What is great is that you can apply it to different weapons (as if you have access to this level of spells, you probably have arcane channeling of full attack, too).

5th Level:

  • Bigby's Clenched Fist: This is actually a nice spell, contrary to the other hands/fists. Note that is normally a 8th level spell for sorcerer/wizards.
  • Chain Lightning: A blasting spell, almost perfect for high area damage. Although it's not actually your style, it is helpful sometimes to have bombs like this. Note that it's normally a 6th level spell for sorcerer/wizards.
  • Disintegrate: Although this is a ray, it deals heavy damage to specific targets and serves as a good swift casting. Again this is 6th level normally for sorcerers and wizards.
  • Hold Monster: I usually don't pick this. You already have ghoul touch that paralyzes unconditionally, and they both target living targets.
  • Polar Ray: As with disintegrate, but no save and close range. I'd get one of the two, but personally i prefer disintegrate.
  • Slashing Dispel: It's a nice spell, but you already have two dispel effects, there is no reason to get this. If you really want this, retrain the dispel magic spell. However note that the damage this spell deals won't be that important (dispelling 10 spell levels result in only 20 damage).
  • Sonic Shield: This is actually good if you are wielding a reach weapon which can't strike on your adjacent squares. The duration is extremely limited though, but the effect has no save. Sonic damage is good.
  • Waves of Fatigue: Great tactical spell. Choose between this and ray of exhaustion, as they don't stack unfortunately. What is great about this, is that it has no save, and can really disable some characters that depend on movement.

Level by Level Analysis:

  • Level 1: Color Spray 1st, True Strike 1st
  • Level 2: Magic Weapon 1st
  • Level 3: Shocking Grasp 1st
  • Level 4: Resist Energy 1st
  • Level 5: Dimension Hop 2nd, Swap Color Spray 1st for Ray of Enfeeblement 1st
  • Level 6: Ghoul Touch 2nd
  • Level 7: Touch of Idiocy 2nd, Swap Magic Weapon 1st for Chill touch or Swift Expeditious Retreat 1st
  • Level 8: Swift Invisibility or Fly 2nd
  • Level 9: Vampiric Touch 3rd
  • Level 10: Greater Magic Weapon 3rd
  • Level 11: Dispelling Touch 3rd
  • Level 12: Regroup 3rd
  • Level 13: Enervation 4th
  • Level 14: Dispel Magic 4th
  • Level 15: Dimension Door 4th
  • Level 16: Toxic Weapon 4th
  • Level 17: Waves of Fatigue 5th
  • Level 18: Disintegrate 5th
  • Level 19: Bigby's Clenched Fist 5th
  • Level 20: Open



touch of fatigue, chill touch, shocking grasp, resist energy, dimension hop, ghoul touch, touch of idiocy, dispelling touch and vampiric touch are all range:touch spells.

Shocking grasp, chill touch, vampiric touch are the main damaging spells of the duskblade.
Touch of fatigue, ghoul touch, touch of idiocy, dispelling touch are mainly used to debuff.
Dimension Hop is interesting when you want the enemies away from you, or throw them down a cliff.
Greater magic weapon and resist energy are buffs.

Now, while the offensive uses are pretty straightforward, there can be defensive/buffing uses as well.

e.g. you can channel resist energy and buff your party or greater magic weapon. That way you affect multiple targets per casting instead of just one. Use a weapon that deals nonlethal damage such as a whip or your unarmed strike.

It may not be much, but it becomes really interesting with spells with expensive material components. An example of this is Raise Dead. With just a whip you pay the material component of one spell (5.000) and raise 4 subjects which would normaly cost 4x the price (20.000).
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
Will you be going over multiclassing and PrC options? As far as the second one goes, I can recommend the Sublime Chord, Chamaeleon, and Bladesinger.
  • Power Attack + Attack Boosting spell/ability: Pretty straightforward. Use true strike, shocking grasp or knowledge devotion and similar effects to really boost your attack roll. Then transform that attack bonus into damage.
  • Dimension Hop + Arcane Channeling (standard action): Attack a single enemy and move him on a failed save. You can lead the enemy right next to your melee destroyer, enabling him to full attack or throw your enemy off a cliff. You can even move him back, making this combo act like a strong knockback effect. You can use the same combo on your ally. Attack an ally and channel the spell to effectively "throw" him to an enemy. Really helps shadowpouncers and melee destroyers with low mobility.
  • Dimension Hop + Arcane Channeling (full attack): Somehow move towards your opponents (with a swift action dimension hop for example) and full attack channel dimension hop to scatter your enemies. If the two parties are mixed together you can attack your allies to move them to strategic positions (such as to a flanking position). You can even full attack your party members to teleport them to nice positions in the battlefield.
  • Helpless Enemies + Coup de Grace: You have various ways of rendering your opponents helpless (ghoul touch, color spray). You can just incapacitate an enemy and leave him to an ally to take care of him later.
  • Debuffing Enemies: Various duskblade spells are adept to debuffing your enemies (Ray of Enfeeblement, Ghoul Touch, Touch of Idiocy, Chill Touch, Dispelling Touch, Enervation, Dispel Magic, Toxic Weapon, Waves of Fatigue, Ray of Exhaustion). Clever use of these can easily turn the tide of battle. Arcane spellcasters and skill-monkeys should be the targets of strength reducers, as they most likely will end incapacitated by them. Living spellcasters can be harmed by Touch of Idiocy. Melee warriors and tanks that carry heavy equipment targeted by strength reducers can easily be disabled. Spring attackers and mobility characters are harmed by Waves of Fatigue and Ray of Exhaustion. Enervation and a well placed Ghoul Touch can reduce the saving throws of your enemies, making it easier for your fellow spellcasters to land a spell. Dispelling Touch works wonders against buffed up spellcasters and a targeted Dispel Magic can easily deny a target access to his magic items.
  • Regroup (Defensive Uses): Use this when you can't win a battle. You can easily move away from your enemies and then regroup your allies back to you. The range is close, but by the level you will get it you are easily move your allies 45-50ft away. You can even regroup in battle, if your allies are scattered for whatever reason, or incapacitated (grappled, paralyzed, unconscious, etc). Outside battle, this helps overcoming traps and escaping from similar situations.
  • Regroup (Offensive Uses): Having a character that can regroup, your allies can easily be brought together or teleported in a large body of enemies, saving them the actions to move closer. You can move towards your opponents (by using dimension hop, charging, moving) and regroup to bring your friends close to you on-the-fly. Again, this is a teleportation effect, so it really helps shadowpouncers and classes that love to full-attack. Another option, when you have a ranged damage dealer in the party, is to waves of fatigue/exhaustion your enemies, move away and regroup, making sure that your opponents can't reach you.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
Bladesinger as a PrC for a Duskblade? Apart from the AC bonus, is the hit in Caster level worth it? I'd only consider it combined with the Abjurant Champion, since that makes up for the hit in Caster level.
Bladesinger as a PrC for a Duskblade? Apart from the AC bonus, is the hit in Caster level worth it? I'd only consider it combined with the Abjurant Champion, since that makes up for the hit in Caster level.

bladesinger is not worth it.

Chameleon, Sublime Chord and generally prestiges that have a separate spell list with lots of useful touch spells will probably benefit a sublime chord.

Abjurant champion isn't that good. You don't have enough protective abjuration spells to benefit from him and your caster level is already good since duskblade is a full caster.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
I agree, Duskblade 13 / Chameleon 7 Would be a good starting point.

Bladesinger is not worth it.

Remember that duskblades generally need 13th level to be effective due to the Arcane Channeling ability.
i found this link which helps a lot!

check it out.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
Smiting Spell from PHB2 will allow you to get another spell off per round against a target.

Same thing with Item Familiar

http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/magic/itemFamiliars.htm

Damn I never even thought of a ring of wizardy for a duskblade, that is damn nice.
I don't think a runestaff would be very effective for a duskblade, as they only use ones that have spells from their spell list. As small as that is, I don't think it adds much versatility.
As a suggestion for good possible PrC have a look at the Jade Phoenix Mage (ToB). You can combine that classes Arcane Strike (sorry i can never remember the name) like ability with Arcane Strike feat for some super goodness
I don't think a runestaff would be very effective for a duskblade, as they only use ones that have spells from their spell list. As small as that is, I don't think it adds much versatility.

I don't agree.

Even if some hold the same spells as you do, runestaffs are spells known for gp and some of them are very cheap.

Also there are runestaffs with a completely different list than your spells available.

As a suggestion for good possible PrC have a look at the Jade Phoenix Mage (ToB). You can combine that classes Arcane Strike (sorry i can never remember the name) like ability with Arcane Strike feat for some super goodness

Yes that is a very good class, especially with a martial adept class, which will probably let you use your channeling while initiating a maneuver.

Note however that you need 13 level duskblade to channel on a full attack, so that limits PrC
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
I don't agree.

Even if some hold the same spells as you do, runestaffs are spells known for gp and some of them are very cheap.

Also there are runestaffs with a completely different list than your spells available.

He was pointing out that you can't use a spell that's in a Runestaff if you don't have that spell on your class spell-list. Hence most Runestaffs are worthless to a Duskblade.

You might be able to get around this with UMD, but you'd have to get a high UMD to manage that.

-Drachasor
He was pointing out that you can't use a spell that's in a Runestaff if you don't have that spell on your class spell-list. Hence most Runestaffs are worthless to a Duskblade.

You might be able to get around this with UMD, but you'd have to get a high UMD to manage that.

-Drachasor

whoops

i missed that part about spells on your spell list and runestaffs :P

//edit: fixed
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
potentialy broken stuff:

Duskblade 13/Teflamar Shadowlord 4/xxx 3

Quick cast Dimension Hop and teleport to a space from where you could hit most enemies. Get a full attack for free with shadow pounce and channel a spell. Then full attack again for another channel. You can Arcane strike also and double benefit from it.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
"Wisdom: Not an essential stat per se, but because the main way of expanding a spell list, without dips, is through Arcane Disciple."

What are good domains for a classic damage-focused duskblade? Is it perhaps worth being an Arcane Disciple of Pelor (think, BAB/HP/Armor/Damage Spell/Healing Spell all at 1st level)? What domain fills in some spells that Duskblade can use effectively?
"Wisdom: Not an essential stat per se, but because the main way of expanding a spell list, without dips, is through Arcane Disciple."

What are good domains for a classic damage-focused duskblade? Is it perhaps worth being an Arcane Disciple of Pelor (think, BAB/HP/Armor/Damage Spell/Healing Spell all at 1st level)? What domain fills in some spells that Duskblade can use effectively?

since you will be able to cast the spells from arcane disciple only 1/day it is not reccomended for blast spells.

Select domains with nice buffs with long durations (e.g Magic Vestment) that can prove helpful. Most buffs have a range of touch so you will be able to channel them, too.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
potentialy broken stuff:

Duskblade 13/Teflamar Shadowlord 4/xxx 3

Quick cast Dimension Hop and teleport to a space from where you could hit most enemies. Get a full attack for free with shadow pounce and channel a spell. Then full attack again for another channel. You can Arcane strike also and double benefit from it.

can you attack yourself?

if you can when you get the full attack after teleporting just channel again dimension hop on yourself and take the rest on your opponents.

if this works you can keep doing that until you are out of spells.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
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So far, so good. However, I do have a 'small' disagreement with you.

Small races are not optimal generally for duskblades due to strength hits.

I'd say this class is OPTIMAL for small melee types. For a fighter or barb the difference in damage is significant, but for a Duskblade there's really not much difference between 1d6+4 plus 5d6 damage and 1d8+5 plus 5d6 damage.

But a Gnome has the same chance to hit as a Human despite the lower Str. He also has a +1 to AC and a +2 Con.

A Halfling has the same chance to hit and a +2 to AC. Give him weapon finesse and he has a +2 to hit!

The main damage is coming from the spells, the little guys can keep up just fine. Give them thier due!!

Has the battlecaster feat (CoA) been brought up yet? After all Duskblades are proficient with all armour and by 4th lvl can cast spells in medium armour. For a Duskblade with a low DEX being able to cast in Adamantium Fullplate may prove invaluable.

Sorry re-read the posts, this was already mentioned in post #2
So far, so good. However, I do have a 'small' disagreement with you.

The main problem of duskblades is that you have to use a melee attack to channel a spell.

If you could hit multiple times with the same a spell a single target, that wouldn't normally be a problem. But unfortunately you can't.

So duskblades need to hit as many targets they can with melee attacks.

To my opinion the best way to do it is through reach.

But small races have 5ft reach, as do medium ones.

The main disadvantage of small races is that even if you enlarge them they become medium. So they retain their 5ft reach. Medium ones become large.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
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The main problem of duskblades is that you have to use a melee attack to channel a spell.

If you could hit multiple times with the same a spell a single target, that wouldn't normally be a problem. But unfortunately you can't.

So duskblades need to hit as many targets they can with melee attacks.

To my opinion the best way to do it is through reach.

But small races have 5ft reach, as do medium ones.

The main disadvantage of small races is that even if you enlarge them they become medium. So they retain their 5ft reach. Medium ones become large.

I'm sorry but your post is rather bizzare and I don't know where to begin a response.

Could you give me a concrete example of what you mean, ie with actions and spells and numbers and such?

~
I personally want to try a Duskblade/Swordsage/PrC build. Lesser Tiefling if possible as the race. Taking the Swordsage allows for Dexterity to be used for both damage and an attack roll modifier.

Unfortunately I have no group....
I'm sorry but your post is rather bizzare and I don't know where to begin a response.

Could you give me a concrete example of what you mean, ie with actions and spells and numbers and such?

~

i'll try.

  • small race duskblade with reach weapon and enlarge person active = 10ft reach
  • medium race duskblade with reach weapon and enlarge person active = 20ft reach
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
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Could you possibly give a build for a Human Duskblade, level 4, 28 Point buy and 5,400 gold, with not spending over half of that on 1 item. If you can, thanks.
so, just looking for a few thoughts and suggestions on my duskblade build.

(side note, i can only build from the PHB 1 and PHB 2, DMG for items, we were giving 3k gold to spend)
We're starting at level 3, ive rolled an 18, 16, 15, 13, 12, 10
im wanting to play an Elf who uses a greatsword but im unhappy as to how my stats will turn out if im an Elf.

my idea sofar:
STR = 18
DEX = 18 (the 16)
CON = 13 (the 15)
INT = 13
WIS = 12
CHA = 10

HP = 25 (8, 8, 6, +3)
Feats : Luck of Heroes (Both myself and my DM (my girlfriend :P) absolutely love this feat so shes allowing it)
and Weapon Focus Greatsword.

not the best of choices but i kinda like how it turns out, save the stats :/

anyways, if anyone has any suggestions please feel free!

P.S. if anyone knows the stats or the Forgotten Realms book that "Silver Elfs" come from please let me know ...
Could you possibly give a build for a Human Duskblade, level 4, 28 Point buy and 5,400 gold, with not spending over half of that on 1 item. If you can, thanks.

yes

Duskblade 1 [b]Power Attack[/b], [b]Combat Expertise[/b]<br /> Duskblade 2 [b]Combat Casting[/b]<br /> Duskblade 3 [b]Somatic Weaponry[/b]<br /> Duskblade 4

Str 14<br /> Dex 14<br /> Con 14 <br /> Int 15 (+1 level)<br /> Wis 8<br /> Cha 8

  • Eternal wand of Enlarge Person- 820gp
  • Bracers of the Entagling Blast- 2000gp
  • Crystal of Arcane Steel (least)- 500gp
  • Masterwork Guisarme- 309gp
  • Masterwork Chain Shirt- 250gp
  • Cloak of Resistance +1- 1000
  • 521 remaining gp.


  • Chill Touch
  • True Strike
  • Resist Energy
  • Swift Expeditious Retreat
  • Ray of Enfeeblement


Tactics:

You are wielding a two handed weapon. Remeber that you add x(1+1/2) your power attack and strength mod to damage.
True Strike + Power Attack + Combat Expertise: Bonus on damage and AC without hurting your attack roll.
Power Attack + Crystal of Arcane Steel + Spell Channel: Bonus on attack from crystal can offset the attack penalty when you channel a spell for added damage.
Enlarge person + Reach Weapon: 20ft reach, can strike targets 10ft away from him only.
Chill Touch + Bracers of the Entagling Blast: Deal 1 strength damage and entagle targets for 1d3 rounds. No Save. Can be used with channeling.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
As an alternative class feature (from Dragon Magic): Dragonscale Husk. No ASF. Counts as medium armour.
As an alternative class feature (from Dragon Magic): Dragonscale Husk. No ASF. Counts as medium armour.

I think it is mediocre.

I don't like it for many reasons:
  • You already have resist elements for the elemental resistances (and spells are not a problem for duskblades).
  • You don't worry about armor ASF past 4th level. You can wear any armor (and mithral heavy) and ignore ASF.
  • You can't wear armor (since you lose proficiency) and can't benefit from the armor enchantments.
  • You have a lot of movement-based skills and dragonhusk has -4 check penalty.


I would however use it if i was sort of gp. On the other hand a +5 Mithral Breast is around 30.000.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
I have a question. Everyone mentions two-handed weapons as being perfect for a duskblade. How do you get around the somatic component of the spells when you are using a two handed weapon?
I have a question. Everyone mentions two-handed weapons as being perfect for a duskblade. How do you get around the somatic component of the spells when you are using a two handed weapon?

somatic weaponry feat from CM
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
i'll try.

  • small race duskblade with reach weapon and enlarge person active = 10ft reach
  • medium race duskblade with reach weapon and enlarge person active = 20ft reach

OK. I guess I'll ask it a different way.

Why is increasing reach the primary concern of the Duskblade?

It doesn't increase your # of attacks. It allows you to make an AOO once in a while but you can't do any extra spell damage when you make the AOO.

It doesn't increase damage. Being larger lets you do few more points of damage but it also means lowering your AC and taking more damage.

Why is reach such a big deal to a Duskblade?
~
OK. I guess I'll ask it a different way.

Why is increasing reach the primary concern of the Duskblade?

Duskblades are not frontliners. I wouldn't expect enemies' first priority to crawl around a duskblade. Also it is hard being in melee with a duskblade. You can't stay in the back and shoot rays if you want to use arcane channeling and it's frustrating rolling always concentration checks.

Using reach weapons lets you staying a little further from melee danger, while being able to use your class feature.

Now about increasing reach, i wouldn't say reach is a main priority, but a way to optimize (maximize) your arcane channeling.
If on your turn you are able to hit one or two enemies with an arcane channeling attack, while you get more attacks on full attack, you are damaging less targets. (assuming you can hit of course)

It's like a wizard casting a fireball. Usually he will try to hit as many enemies as he can.
Dictum Mortuum's Handbooks - My personal Character Optimization blog. 
Nerdy Meeples - A blog about reviewing and providing strategies on boardgames. 
The point about using reach to avoid concentration checks is solid.

How are you getting more arcane channeling attacks because you have reach?

You are getting one channeling attack as a standard action at 3rd level. Why does it matter if you have reach or not? Are you always attacking over the fighter's shoulder in a 5-ft corridor?

Wouldn't attack bonus or armor class or hit points be something better to concentrate on?
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