The Kensai, or Sword Saint, is a class kit for fighters in Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn, Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition and Baldur's Gate II: Enhanced Edition. This class kit has some major disadvantages and advantages, as they cannot wear any armor or arm protection, helmets/headgear, shields and they can't use any ranged weapons except throwing axes and daggers.
Their only character ability is Strength. The advanced weapon specialisation allows them to spend over two points on weapons skills, which only single- or dual-classed fighters may do. The major advantages of this class are that they gain every three levels, a bonus to damage and THACO of +1 and -1 speed factor bonus for weapon every four levels. They also have -2 armor class bonus right from the start. Also, they can use the ability Kai, which temporarily maxes their weapon damage.
The inability to wear armor or use shields makes Kensai very similar to monks, but while the Kensai has more health due to a better hit dice and benefitting from extra hitpoints with a 17+ constitution and becomes steadily more accurate and damaging with his melee weapons, the monk gains access to steadily more immunities, magic resistance and special abilities.
The Kensai is perhaps the most popular choice for dual-classing into a mage since they have some of the highest damage in the game but lack the ability to equip armor. This works well with mage dual-classing as magic will provide most of the protection and immunities the Kensai lack. Their disadvantage is that they don't become particularly powerful until fairly high level. At the recommended dual-classing levels (9 or 13) the Berserker's enrage ability and ability to wear helms, shields and bracers (including the Legacy of the Masters and the Gauntlets of Extraordinary Specialization) gives him comparable to-hit/damage bonuses to a mid-level Kensai as well as having a host of incredibly useful immunities, so can be argued to be the superior choice. At higher levels and with the increased level cap in Throne of Bhaal, you can wait longer before dual-classing, giving the Kensai much higher damage without relying on a limited-per-day ability like Enrage, which also have some negative effects. They can also further increase their damage with Kai. Furthermore, they will now have access to all the magic they need for almost absolute protection, especially with the right equipment.
A Kensai dual-classed into a Thief becomes deadly at high levels, as his Kai ability works well with Thief's backstab attacks and the Use Any Item high level thief ability allows you to override all of a Kensai's armor and weapon restrictions.
The Shield Amulet is the most popular item used to improve the Kensai's defenses.
Character abilities tableEdit
|Min. requirement||Max. requirement|
Note: For the information of this table, the human race was used, as humans don't have any bonuses or penalties to their primary abilities and thus make a good base. For all other races, these numbers will be slightly different.
Advanced Weapon SpecializationEdit
Advanced Weapon Specialization raises the number of points that can be invested into a specific proficiency from one point to five points. As a result, fighters may do more damage and hit more often with weapons from the specific proficiency. For more information on proficiency points, see Weapon proficiency.
|Level of proficiency||Points spent||Bonus to hit||Bonus damage||Attacks per round+|
Kai allows the Kensai's weapons to do maximum damage for ten seconds after the activation of the ability. The effect is instant, there is no casting time.
High-level class abilitiesEdit
High level class abilities are added the expansion Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal. For all warrior classes and Monks, the pool of abilities consists of abilities which can be accessed from the special abilities menu which can be used during battle. These abilities are available to fighters when they are level 18.
- Power Attack, this ability can be selected as many times as you like.
- Critical Strike, requires power attack. This ability can be selected as many times as you like.
- Smite, requires power attack and critical strike. This ability can be selected only one time.
- Deathblow, this ability can be selected as many times as you like.
- Greater Deathblow, requires deathblow. This ability can be selected as many times as you like.
- Whirlwind, this ability can be selected as many times as you like.
- Greater Whirlwind, requires whirlwind. This ability can be selected as many times as you like.
- War Cry, this ability can be selected as many times as you like.
- Hardiness, this ability can be selected as many times as you like.
- Resist Magic, this ability can be selected as many times as you like.
Table for experience, weapon proficiency points and hitpointsEdit
For more information, see Experience tables.
|Level||Required experience||Weapon proficiency||Attacks per round||Hit Dice __(d10)__||THAC0 and Damage||Speed Factor|
|10||500,000||9 + 3|
|11||750,000||9 + 6|
|12||1,000,000||+1||9 + 9||+1||-1|
|13||1,250,000||+1||9 + 12|
|14||1,500,000||9 + 15|
|15||1,750,000||+1||9 + 18||+1|
|16||2,000,000||9 + 21||-1|
|17||2,250,000||9 + 24|
|18||2,500,000||+1||9 + 27||+1|
|19||2,750,000||9 + 30|
|20||3,000,000||9 + 33||-1|
|21||3,250,000||+1||9 + 36||+1|
|22||3,500,000||9 + 39|
|23||3,750,000||9 + 42|
|24||4,000,000||+1||9 + 45||+1||-1|
|25||4,250,000||9 + 48|
|26||4,500,000||9 + 51|
|27||4,750,000||+1||9 + 54||+1|
|28||5,000,000||9 + 57||-1|
|29||5,250,000||9 + 60|
|30||5,500,000||+1||9 + 63||+1|
|31||5,750,000||9 + 66|
|32||6,000,000||9 + 69||-1|
|33||6,250,000||+1||9 + 72||+1|
|34||6,500,000||9 + 75|
|35||6,750,000||9 + 78|
|36||7,000,000||+1||9 + 81||+1||-1|
|37||7,250,000||9 + 84|
|38||7,500,000||9 + 87|
|39||7,750,000||+1||9 + 90||+1|
|40||8,000,000||Max: 17 points.||9 + 93||Max: +13||-1Max: -10|