Well, I'm hopefully going into a play-by-post really soon with a character starting off as a level one swashbuckler, and I'm pondering his build... My first instinct was to target Swashbuckler 3, and then get four levels of Rogue (and Daring Outlaw) then carrying back on with Swashbuckler, turning him into the "if I have a partner to flank with and the target has a discernable anatomy, it's going to die" TWF build.

However, my character always struck me as more of a guy with just a rapier in his hand and fighting a single enemy alone with deft skill, which is just about the opposite of that. Improved Feint somewhat helps the solo situation, but it's only somewhat helpful, and gets comparatively worse on a TWF build as you still get just the one attack.

Is there anything I haven't heard of that brings single-wielding up to parity with two-handed weapons (pretty much the ideal "dueling" weapon)? You'd think the Duelist prestige class would seriously help out the single 1h weapon wielder, but that class is so laughable... I just can't find ANY way beyond going 2h weapon + high str to be effective in 1v1 combat, TWF + sneak attack doesn't really fit the character's style, and there seem to be no other practical options.

Rapier + Dagger wouldn't be a bad combination if TWF was the only problem, but the other problem is that he'd be relying on Sneak Attack for damage, which is only practical if you have someone flanking. I.e. if it wasn't 1v1. I know that DnD fights aren't 1v1, but the character really doesn't make any sense being so pitiful at it...

Thanks for any ideas you can bring to the table. If it's at all possible, I'd really rather not have to beg my DM for customized feats and prestige classes.