Fighter Samurai 5E: Exploring the Ultimate Warrior Class in Dungeons and Dragons

When it comes to Dungeons and Dragons, the fighter class is the ultimate warrior archetype. With their superior combat skills and weapon mastery, fighters are always at the forefront of any battle. Among the different subclasses available for fighter characters, samurai stands out as a unique and powerful option. In this article, we will explore everything you need to know about the fighter samurai subclass in D&D 5E, including their abilities, advantages, and role in a party.

What is a Fighter Samurai in D&D 5E?

A fighter samurai is a subclass of the fighter class in Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition. As the name suggests, this subclass is inspired by the samurai warriors of medieval Japan. Fighters who choose this subclass specialize in the use of katana swords and other traditional Japanese weapons. They also have a strict code of honor and discipline, which adds depth and complexity to their character.

Fighter Samurai Abilities and Features

Level Feature
3rd Bonus Proficiencies, Fighting Spirit
7th Elegant Courtier
10th Tireless Spirit
15th Rapid Strike
18th Strength Before Death

As shown in the table above, the fighter samurai subclass gains several unique abilities and features. Here is a brief explanation of each:

Bonus Proficiencies: At 3rd level, the fighter samurai gains proficiency in one of the following skills: Animal Handling, Insight, Intimidation, or Persuasion. They also gain proficiency in either the calligraphy or painting kit.

Fighting Spirit: Also at 3rd level, the fighter samurai can use a bonus action to gain temporary hit points and advantage on all weapon attack rolls until the end of their turn. The number of temporary hit points increases as the character gains levels.

Elegant Courtier: At 7th level, the fighter samurai gains proficiency in the Performance skill and one of the following languages: Chinese, Korean, or Vietnamese. They can also use their Wisdom modifier instead of Charisma when making Persuasion or Performance checks.

Tireless Spirit: Starting at 10th level, the fighter samurai can spend hit dice during a short rest to recover some of their Fighting Spirit uses. This allows them to use this ability more frequently without running out of resources.

Rapid Strike: At 15th level, the fighter samurai can make an extra weapon attack as a bonus action on their turn. This can be used once per turn.

Strength Before Death: At 18th level, the fighter samurai can delay their death when reduced to 0 hit points. Instead of falling unconscious, they can remain conscious and take an extra turn before dying at the end of their next turn. This ability can only be used once per long rest.

Advantages of Playing a Fighter Samurai

Now that we know what fighter samurai are capable of, let’s explore some of the advantages they offer to players:

  • Powerful Combat Abilities: As with any fighter class, samurai are extremely skilled in combat. Their Fighting Spirit ability gives them an extra edge in battle, while Rapid Strike adds even more damage potential.
  • Unique Flavor: The samurai subclass adds a unique flavor to the fighter class, allowing players to create characters inspired by Japanese lore and culture.
  • Roleplaying Opportunities: The code of honor and discipline that samurai must follow can create interesting roleplaying opportunities for players, as they must make choices based on their character’s honor and principles.

Playing a Fighter Samurai in a Party

While the fighter samurai is a strong class on its own, it also offers several advantages when playing in a party:

  • Damage Dealer: As a fighter class, samurai are the primary damage dealers in any party. Their combat abilities make them a force to be reckoned with on the battlefield.
  • Tank: Samurai also make excellent tanks, as they have high hit points and can use their Fighting Spirit ability to gain temporary hit points and advantage on attack rolls. This makes them a formidable opponent for enemies to face.
  • Support: The Elegant Courtier ability allows samurai to shine in social situations, making them valuable members of a party when diplomacy or negotiation is required.

Frequently Asked Questions

What weapons can a fighter samurai use?

While samurai are known for their use of katana swords, they can also use other traditional Japanese weapons such as wakizashi, naginata, and yumi bow.

Can a fighter samurai multiclass?

Yes, a fighter samurai can multiclass into other classes as long as they meet the requirements for each class. However, it’s important to note that multiclassing can affect a character’s abilities and progression.

What is the role of a fighter samurai in a party?

A fighter samurai’s role in a party can vary depending on the situation, but they are primarily damage dealers and tanks. They can also provide support in social situations due to their Elegant Courtier ability.

What is the code of honor that samurai must follow?

The code of honor, known as bushido, emphasizes traits such as loyalty, courage, and self-discipline. Samurai must follow this code or face dishonor and shame.

How do I create a fighter samurai character?

To create a fighter samurai character, you must choose the fighter class and the samurai subclass. From there, you can customize your character by choosing their race, background, abilities, and equipment.

Can a fighter samurai be a female character?

Yes, a fighter samurai can be played as a female character. In fact, there were several female samurai warriors in medieval Japan.

What level do I need to be to play a fighter samurai?

The fighter samurai subclass becomes available at 3rd level, so you must be at least level 3 to play a fighter samurai character.


The fighter samurai subclass is a powerful and unique option for players who want to create a warrior character inspired by Japanese culture. With their combat abilities, code of honor, and roleplaying opportunities, samurai characters can be a valuable addition to any party. We hope this article has provided you with a comprehensive understanding of the fighter samurai subclass in D&D 5E. Happy gaming!

Until we meet again, happy adventuring and may the dice be in your favor!

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