Not that people particularly celebrate Flag Day, but it is federal holiday and thus has some meaning. The American flag to me represents freedom, sacrifice, and equality, even when the historical actions haven’t achieved these ideals. Part of our national myth is a kind of underdog mentality as well, which has shifted in the recent decades to include a hegemonic protection of chosen allies around the world.
I can therefore think of no archetype more fitting for an American patriotic holiday than something that represents that greatest of heroes: Captain America. Currently, no one’s very good at throwing a shield or being extremely defensive (a feat or two aside), so I hope this archetype remedies that. I did give it a generic name, however.
New Fighter Archetype: Bulwark
Fighters are the masters of weaponry, skilled at making any device a deadly instrument of war. A few eschew such implements, however, working instead to make the shield their weapon of choice. These warriors provide a powerful front line, efficiently protecting weaker allies.
Shield Bash: At 3rd level, you can use your shield as a weapon. You can treat it as a martial melee weapon with the following properties: 1d6 bludgeoning damage, light, thrown (range 20/60), versatile (1d8). Additionally, you may add any magic bonus the shield possesses to its attack and damage rolls and treat it as a magical weapon.
Stand Behind: At 7th level, you can use your action to provide cover with your shield for yourself or an adjacent creature. If you do so, you can make one weapon attack as a bonus attack.
Shield Ricochet: At 10th level, when you make an attack with your shield as a thrown weapon, you can cause it to immediately return to you after the attack. This allows you to make additional thrown weapon attacks with that same shield.
Interpose: At 15th level, when an adjacent ally makes a Dexterity saving throw, you can use your reaction to grant them advantage on the saving throw. You must be wielding a shield to use this feature.
Reflection: At 18th level, when you or an ally affected by your Interpose feature succeeds on a Dexterity saving throw against a magical effect with a single target, you can reflect that spell onto the caster. The spellcaster must make a Dexterity saving throw with a DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Strength or Dexterity modifier (your choice). It then suffers the effects of the spell as if it had been cast on itself.
Like this archetype? You can additional player options content in Exemplars of War at the DM’s Guild.