Feral Shifter (3.5e Optimized Character Build)

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Author's Note: So... what do you call a flying rat?

Author: Ghostwheel (talk)
Date Created: July 30th, 2009
Status: Complete
Editing: Clarity edits only please
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"I'm the goddamn Manbat!"


The ultimate in shifter savagery, your twin daggers become a part of your body as you tear through foes.


  • Unearthed Arcana
  • Eberron Campaign Setting
  • Races of Eberron
  • Tome of Battle
  • Complete Warrior
  • Magic Item Compendium

Game Rule Components[edit]


Starting Ability Scores (Before Racial Adjustments): (Assuming 32 Point Buy) 10 16 14 12 16 8

Race: Swiftwing Shifter

ECL Class/HD/LA Base
Attack Bonus
Saving Throws Feats Class
Fort Ref Will
1st Swordsage 1 +0 +0 +2 +2 Two-Weapon Fighting, Shadow Blade, Adaptive Style, Weapon Focus (Shadow Hand) Quick to Act +1
2nd Swordsage 2 +1 +0 +3 +3 AC Bonus
3rd Swordsage 3 +2 +1 +3 +3 Weapon Finesse
4th Swordsage 4 +3 +1 +4 +4 Insightful Strike (Tiger Claw or Diamond Mind)
5th Swordsage 5 +3 +1 +4 +4 Quick to Act +2
6th Swordsage 6 +4 +2 +5 +5 Shifter Agility
7th Bloodclaw Master 1 +4 +4 +7 +5 Shifting +1/day, Claws of the Beast
8th Bloodclaw Master 2 +5 +5 +8 +5 Superior Two-Weapon Fighting, Tiger Claw Synergy
9th Weretouched Master 1 +5 +7 +10 +5 Two-Weapon Defense Weretouched I (Rat Weretouched Master)
10th Weretouched Master 2 +6 +8 +11 +5 Healing Factor Wild Empathy
11th Weretouched Master 3 +7 +8 +11 +6 Weretouched II
12th Weretouched Master 4 +8 +9 +12 +6 Improved Two-Weapon Fighting, Shifter Defense Frightful Shifting
13th Weretouched Master 5 +8 +9 +12 +6 Alternate Form
14th Bloodclaw Master 3 +9 +9 +12 +7 Pouncing Strike, Low-Light Vision, Shifting +2/day
15th Bloodclaw Master 4 +10 +10 +13 +7 Improved Two-Weapon Defense Tiger Claw Synergy (Strike)
16th Bloodclaw Master 5 +10 +10 +13 +7 Rending Claws, Scent, Shfiting +3/day
17th Swordsage 7 +11 +10 +13 +7 Sense Magic
18th Swordsage 8 +12 +10 +14 +8 Greater Two-Weapon Fighting Defensive Stance (Shadow Hand)
19th Swordsage 9 +12 +11 +14 +8 Evasion
20th Swordsage 10 +13 +11 +15 +9 Quick to Act +3

At level 20: Swordsage 10 / Bloodclaw Master 5 / Weretouched Master 5

Items of Note[edit]

  • +5 Mithral Shirt of Nimbleness
  • +5 Shadow Hand Frost Flaming Shocking Corrosive Dagger (x2)


  • Assumed stats at level 20:
    • Dex: 16 (Base) + 2 (Racial) + 2 (Shifting) + 2 (Weretouched I) + 6 (Alternate Form) + 5 (Level) + 5 (Tome) + 6 (Item) = 44 (+17)
    • AC: 10 + 8 (Bracers of Armor) + 17 (Dex) + 6 (Wis) + 5 (+5 Ring of Protection) + 5 (+5 Amulet of Natural Armor) + 2 (Improved Two-Weapon Defense) + 1 (Shifter Agility) = 54
    • Attack Bonus: 13 (BAB) + 17 (Dex) + 8 (+5 Shadow Hand Daggers) + 1 (Weapon Focus) = +40/+40/+35/+35/+30/+30
    • Damage: 1d4 (Dagger) + 17 (Shadow Blade) + 4d6+5 (Magic) + 2d6 (Assassin's Stance) = 6d6+1d4+22
    • Total damage per attack comes out to 45.5 (on average).
    • Sample Attacks:
      • Time Stands Still + Raging Mongoose (+6 damage from Insightful Strike): +40/+40/+40/+40/+40/+40/+35/+35/+30/+30 x2 (51.5) does 896.1 damage when weighted against AC 40
      • Pouncing Charge + Inferno Blade: +42/+42/+37/+37/+32/+32 (73) does 371.3 when weighted against AC 40

Combat Sequence[edit]

  • Shift, charge, and rip the opponent to shreds.

Further Optimization[edit]

  • Add the effects of the Sword of Subtlety to your daggers for an increase to attack and damage when Assassin's Stance activates.
  • Spiritual Weapon to Dex instead of Weapon Finesse


  • Creatures with a lot of DR or those immune to Sneak Attack

DM Counters[edit]

  • Usual melee defences apart from AC (illusions, concealment, distance, etc)


  • Can pick up Swiftwing Elite instead of Healing Factor for better maneuverability.
  • Taking the Longstride trait will give you a great move speed, which gives you better jump checks, which makes many of your Tiger Claw maneuvers more effective.
  • Two-Weapon Defense and Improved Two-Weapon Defense are basically filler feats; you can trade them out for any others that you like better. Some of these include...
    • Exotic Armor Proficiency for Twist Cloth armor (Races of Stone) for a greater AC at higher levels when your Dexterity bonus far outstrips the max allowed in most armor. You can also get this armor without taking the feat (see the particulars of the armor for details)
    • Close-Quarters Fighting (Complete Warrior) for defense against grapplers
  • Add in the Healing Factor feat (perhaps instead of Shifter Agility) to become... WOLVERINE-MANBAT. (After all, Bloodclaw Master gives you claws.) Pick up Shadow Jaunt to become... WOLVERINE-MANBAT-NIGHTCRLAWER. Add in proficiency with cards, a wand of Control Weather, and a level of Warlock to shoot beams from your eyes and you become... WOLVERINE-STORM-CYCLOPS-MANBAT-NIGHTCRAWLER-GAMBIT! And don't forget Shifter Defense; the DR allows us to be... COLOSSUS-WOLVERINE-STORM-CYCLOPS-MANBAT-NIGHTCRAWLER-GAMBIT!

Back to Main Page3.5e HomebrewCharacter Optimization

Ghostwheel's Homebrew (263 Articles)
Classes Berserker, Cosplayer, Daywalker Paragon, Iaijutsu Master, Magus Portalus, Marshal, Rage Mage, Reaper, Sharpshooter, Thaumaturge, Toxinblade, Trapsmith, Xenophile
Feats Access Divine Power, Access Divine Spells, Accomplished, Acolyte of the Skin, Adaptable Technique, Adjusted Accuracy, Aegis of Health, Tome, Arcane Champion, Barreling Charge, Bladeblast, Blood of Stone, Bolster Technique, Careful Movement, Charismatic Prodigy, Cleave, Grimoire, Close Miss, Combat Reflexes, Greater, Combat Reflexes, Grimoire, Combat Reflexes, Improved, Compensate for Size, Copy Technique, Cross-Style Training, Dabbler, Danger Intuition, Dash, Death From Afar, Defensive Roll, Defensive Strike, Deft Opportunist, Diehard, Grimoire, Distracting Barrage, Divine Stalker, Dragoon Charge, Endurance, Grimoire, Extended Psychic Strike, Focused Energy, Fortune's Friend, Furious Blow, Gatecrasher, Goad, Greater Spring Attack, Gripping Vise, Heavy Build, Heedful Charge, Hidden Manifestation, Hostile Mind, Improved Charge, Improved On Your Knees, Improved Wild Talent, Intervene, Intimidating Brute, Iron Tide, Last to Fall, Living Weapon, Mage Knight, Magekiller, Tome, Master Blaster, Master of Concoctions, Mystic Theurge, On Your Knees, Overwhelming Blow, Penetrating Strike, Phantom Health, Pounce, Power Attack, Grimoire, Power Charge, Precise Marksman, Primal Enchanter, Purple Dragon Knight, Quick Reconnoiter, Ranged Feint, Ranged Flanking, Ranged Threat, Renewed Zealousness, Shadow Pounce, Sharpshooter, Shielded in Life, Short Haft, Spell Parry, Spell Reflection, Spellcutting Strike, Spiritual Weapon, Spring Attack, Grimoire, Spymaster, Stand Still, Grimoire, Stand Still, Tome, Startling Opportunist, Steadfast Prodigy, Steadfast Zealousness, Still Teleport, Stilled Charge, Stone Power, Grimoire, Stone Power, Pathfinder, Strike of the Believer, Strong Grip, Suppress Chi, Surging Inspiration, Tattooed Monk, Toughness, Grimoire, Unconventional … further results
Traits Ambidextrous, Avenger, Exceptional Luck, Hulking Brute, Mixed Blood, Opportunist, Psychic Potential, Radical Upbringing, Raised by Wolves, Sight Without Sight, Skilled, Trapspringer, Unnatural Aura, Versatile, Void Born
ACFs Barrage Sharpshooter, Grimoire Fighter, Grimoire Paladin, Grimoire Ranger, Grimoire Rogue, Grimoire Soulknife, Grimoire Tenken, Grimoire Totemist, Trapspringer Bard, Trapspringer Sharpshooter, Wildmagic Thaumaturge
Variant Rules Alternative Iterative Attacks, Background-Based Skills, Balanced Skills, Balanced Wealth, Condensed Skills, Custom Weapon Creation, Dual Preparation Casting, E20, Expanded Movement Options, Failure is not the End, Grace Points, Healing Surges, Lengthened Spellcasting, Limited Spell Levels, Masterwork Variant, New Level-Dependent Benefits, Original Race Rebuilding, Prepared Spontaneous Casting, Recharging Magic, Recharging Power Points, Rituals, Simplified Experience, Simplified Races, Simplified Skills, Simplified Social Interaction, Simplified Special Attacks, Taking Stock, The Edge, Turn Undead, Vow of Poverty, Wounds
Optimized Builds Arcane Warrior, Basic Blaster Wilder, Basic Combat Rogue Guide, Bladesinger, Clever Critfighter, Dragoon, Eternal Blade of the Revenant, Feral Shifter, Glaive of the Dungeon Crasher, Glaive of the Hellfire Warlock, Grapplemancer, Healing Personified, Hero of Time, Knightly Charger, Low Level Nova, Machine Gun Assassin, Mindspider Infiltrator, Mobile Blender, Mobile Glaive, Nightcrawling Shadowpouncer, Psionic Monk, Righteous Rager, Sacred Fist of the Silver Flame, Shower of Arrows, Sublime Singer, Ubermount, Whirling Eater of Souls
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Facts about "Feral Shifter (3.5e Optimized Character Build)"RDF feed
Article BalanceHigh +
AuthorGhostwheel +
Final Class ProgressionSwordsage 10 / Bloodclaw Master 5 / Weretouched Master 5 +
Identifier3.5e Optimized Character Build +
RaceSwiftwing Shifter +
RatingUndiscussed +
SummaryThe ultimate in shifter savagery, your twin daggers become a part of your body as you tear through foes. +
TitleFeral Shifter +