Perhaps there is somthing to consider nerfing a bit. I still did not have time to test this out.
This is really more a problem with the Swordmaster than the perk. The Swordmaster is a veiled gem; you look at it and think “Well, he loses -10 fatigue, HP and initiative, so it’s balanced,” and the guy IS expensive. Normally, that’s true, but the Swordmaster has HUGE synergy with the Nimble perk.
Look at it this way: +20 inherent melee defense = +40 melee defense total with Nimble. Other characters get +5 melee defense – and there might be 1 or 2 that get +10? But for the most part they get +5, which equates to +10 total melee defense.
Essentially, rather than having 128 melee defense under the best of circumstances, most would have 98. That’s still really high, but… yeah.
Also, this sort of build takes time to feel how strong it is. If you start using an einhander build at level 5, you’ll find that you’re still very susceptible to high attack characters and you’re still scared of things like orc warriors, so you can’t just solo the game or anything. It’s not until level 11 that you start to REALLY feel how powerful it is, and you need Dodge and Confident to really get the character to feel like a powerhouse… and even then, there will ALWAYS be at LEAST a 5% chance to hit the character.
Archers are still a bane to this character. Notice that I didn’t grab Battle Forged, and that the character still only has 86 fatigue when wearing padded leather. This is the inherent weakness of the Swordmaster; I put a lot of points into Fatique and still wound up wishing I had more. If I put heavier armor on (say, the better mail shirt), I could see his fatique drop into the 70’s. Acceptable, but not ideal.
So, the character is very specialized. Graceful Gisbert tanks melee opponents and sort of dashes away from the group to do so. Other characters have to eliminate the archers or else HE has to engage the archers in melee range so as not to die. He’s very effective at what he does, but I think the inclusion of more dangerous ranged opponents and MAYBE a nerfing of the Swordmaster – a slight one – would be sufficient. The perk itself is fine.