Eldritch Knight (Apath)

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Unofficial rules compendium

Fearsome warriors and spellcasters, eldritch knights are rare among magic-users in their ability to wade into battle alongside fighters, barbarians, and other martial classes. Those who must face eldritch knights in combat fear them greatly, for their versatility on the battlefield is tremendous; against heavily armed and armored opponents they may level crippling spells, while opposing spellcasters meet their ends on an eldritch knight's blade.

The eldritch knight is superficially similar to the magus, as both combine magic and arms. They differ in that the the eldritch knight is both a competent magic user and warrior, maintaining most of the strength of each role, while the magus blends magic and swordplay into a unified fighting technique but is weaker at each separate role.

Class Information

This is a hybrid prestige archetype, a combination of fighter and wizard.

Publisher: Purple Duck Games.

Prestige Class: Eldritch knight .

Build Classes: Fighter, wizard.

Role: Eldritch knights master the abilities of both fighting and magic, hurling magic at the enemy one moment and hewing down their opponents with steel the next. They are just as comfortable in the thick of combat as they are casting spells at foes while remaining safely behind their compatriots. Their versatility makes them valuable allies.

Alignment: Any.

Hit Die: d8.

Class Abilities

These are all the class abilities of the eldritch knight.

Class Skills

The eldritch knight's class skills are Appraise (Int), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Fly (Dex), Handle Animal (Cha), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (all) (Int), Linguistics (Int), Profession (Wis), Ride (Dex), Spellcraft (Int), and Swim (Str).

Skill Ranks Per Level: 2 + Int modifier.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency

An eldritch knight is proficient with all simple and martial weapons and with all armor (heavy, light, and medium) and shields (including tower shields). Armor interferes with an eldritch knight's movements, which can cause his spells with somatic components to fail.


An eldritch knight casts arcane spells drawn from the sorcerer/wizard spell list. An eldritch knight must choose and prepare his spells ahead of time.

To learn, prepare, or cast a spell, the eldritch knight must have an Intelligence score equal to at least 10 + the spell level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against an eldritch knight's spell is 10 + the spell level + the eldritch knight's Intelligence modifier.

An eldritch knight can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. His base daily spell allotment is given on Table: Eldritch knight. In addition, he receives bonus spells per day if he has a high Intelligence score (see Table: Ability Modifiers and Bonus Spells).

An eldritch knight may know any number of spells. He must choose and prepare his spells ahead of time by getting 8 hours of sleep and spending 1 hour studying his spellbook. While studying, the eldritch knight decides which spells to prepare.

Starting Spells: An eldritch knight begins play with a spellbook containing all 0-level wizard spells (except those from his opposed schools, if any; see Arcane Schools) plus three 1st-level spells of his choice. The eldritch knight also selects a number of additional 1st-level spells equal to his Intelligence modifier to add to the spellbook. At any time, an eldritch knight can also add spells found in other spellbooks to his own (see Magic).

Spells Gained at a New Level: Eldritch knights perform a certain amount of spell research between adventures. Each time a character attains a new eldritch knight level, he gains two spells of his choice to add to his spellbook. The two free spells must be of spell levels he can cast. If he has chosen to specialize in a school of magic, one of the two free spells must be from his specialty school.

Bonus Languages

An eldritch knight may select Draconic as one of the starting languages he learns because of high Intelligence.


Eldritch knights can prepare a number of cantrips, or 0-level spells, each day, as noted on Table: Eldritch knight under “Spells per Day.” These spells are cast like any other spell, but they are not expended when cast and may be used again. An eldritch knight can prepare a cantrip from an opposition school, but it uses up two of his available slots (see below).

Diverse Training

Eldritch knight levels counts as a fighter and wizard levels for the purpose of meeting feat prerequisites.

Eldritch Ties

At 1st level, eldritch knights develop a bond with magic similar to a wizard's. The eldritch knight chooses between an arcane bond and an arcane school. Whichever option is chosen, it works just like the corresponding wizard class ability, counting eldritch knight levels as wizard levels. An eldritch knight that choose an arcane bond also gains Scribe Scroll as a bonus feat at first level.

Bonus Feats

At 3rd level, and every six levels thereafter, an eldritch knight gains a bonus feat in addition to those normally gained. These bonus feats must be selected from those listed as Combat Feats.

Eldritch Discoveries

At level 6 and 12, an elritch knight can select either a combat feat as a bonus feat or an arcane discovery (as the wizard class feature).

Spell Critical (Su)

At 18th level, whenever an eldritch knight successfully confirms a critical hit, he can cast a spell with a casting time of a standard action as a swift action. The spell must include the target of the attack as one of its targets or in its area of effect. Casting this spell does not provoke an attack of opportunity. The caster must still meet all of the spell's components and must roll for arcane spell failure if applicable.

Table: Eldritch Knight

Level Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Special Spells per Day
0 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
1st +0 +2 +0 +2 Cantrips, diverse training, eldritch ties 1 1
2nd +1 +3 +0 +3 2 1
3rd +2 +3 +1 +3 Bonus feat 3 1
4th +3 +4 +1 +4 4 2
5th +3 +4 +1 +4 4 2 1
6th +4 +5 +2 +5 Eldrich discovery 4 3 2
7th +5 +5 +2 +5 4 3 2 1
8th +6/+1 +6 +2 +6 4 3 3 2
9th +6/+1 +6 +3 +6 Bonus feat 4 4 3 2 1
10th +7/+2 +7 +3 +7 4 4 3 3 2
11th +8/+3 +7 +3 +7 4 4 4 3 2 1
12th +9/+4 +8 +4 +8 Eldrich discovery 4 4 4 3 3 2
13th +9/+4 +8 +4 +8 4 4 4 4 3 2 1
14th +10/+5 +9 +4 +9 4 4 4 4 3 3 2
15th +11/+6/+1 +9 +5 +9 Bonus feat 4 4 4 4 4 3 2 1
16th +12/+7/+2 +10 +5 +10 4 4 4 4 4 3 3 2
17th +12/+7/+2 +10 +5 +10 4 4 4 4 4 4 3 2 1
18th +13/+8/+3 +11 +6 +11 Spell critical 4 4 4 4 4 4 3 3 2
19th +14/+9/+4 +11 +6 +11 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 3 2 1
20th +15/+10/+5 +12 +6 +12 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 3 3 2

Notes: Overcoming Arcane Spell Failure

Eldritch knights and eldritch hunters have a problem in that both casts powerful arcane spells and wears armor. Some ways around this problem are listed here.

  • Spells Without Somatic Components: There are a few of these, and you could make it your specialty to dig them out and use them. Unfortunately, the spell tables do not mention components, so finding them is a hassle. Here is a short list of candidates:
    Cantrips: Flare, Light
  1. Feather Fall, Hold Portal, True Strike, Ventriloquism
  2. Blindness/deafness, Blur, Knock
  3. Displacement, Suggestion, Tongues
  4. Dimension Door, Geas (lesser), Shout
  5. Contact Other Plane, Teleport
  6. Geas/Quest, Suggestion (Mass)
  7. Phase Door, Power Word Blind, Teleport (Greater), Teleport Object,
  8. Charm Monster (Mass), Irresistible Dance, Power Word Stun, Shout (Greater)
  9. Mage’s Disjunction, Power Word Kill, Prismatic Sphere, Teleportation Circle, Time Stop, Wail of the Banshee
  • Mithral Buckler: Using a mithral buckler gives an armor bonus of +1, gives another spot to add enhancement bonuses to armor, and still has a free hand you can shift your weapon to when you need a free hand to cast spells. It has no chance of spell failure and no armor check penalty, but prevents you from using two-handed weapons.
  • Armored Kilt:: An armored kilt offers one point of armor with no penalties whatsoever. This is an option early on, before you can afford special materials, but mage armor is generally better.
  • Darkleaf Leather Armor: Using darkleaf cloth leather armor, you have an armor bonus of +2 without arcane spell failure, and that is before enchantment bonuses to armor.
  • Mithral Chain Shirt Using a mithral chain shirt, and with Arcane Armor Training, you have an armor bonus of +4 without arcane spell failure.
  • Mithral Breastplate Using a mithral breastplate, and with both Arcane Armor Training and Arcane Armor Mastery, you have an armor bonus of +7 without arcane spell failure.
  • Mithral Full Plate: If you are ready to accept 5% spell failure, mithral full plate gives an armor bonus of +9.
  • Free Hand Remember that you need a free hand for somatic components. A light or heavy shield means you have to drop or sheathe your weapon when casting a spell. Your best option is to use a two-handed weapon or a one-handed weapon with a buckler. It is a free action to shift the grip on the weapon from one to two hands and from hand to hand, staff-wielding spellcasters do this all the time. A weapon cord lets you release and then pick up your weapon, but spending move actions redrawing the weapon cuts down on your full attacks. The ultimate solution is the glove of storing, but it is expensive and occupies a valuable item slot.
  • Metamagic Still Spell is an option, but it reduces your spellcasting ability and unlike a normal spellcaster you do not want to hold a metamagic rod in your hand when fighting. Note that Quicken Spell is no help at all against arcane spell failure.

External Links

Spellcasting Guides

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