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The 3.5 Fighter Class

   
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheFred View Post
and you still don't have any counter to Invisibility, Fly, Incorporeality, Mirror Image, etc.
blindfighting, ranged weapons, a few splash weapons like alchemy grenades or something, as for the incorporeal monsters, if your Dm's putting you up against those he should of already given you some magic items or something... or atleast in the next couple of scenes after you have already run from them... by the time a fighter is 10th level he would have around 10 feats, and if your picking things like cleave, your wasting your time unless you plan to fight low hd monsters. You might not have abilities to heal, cast spells or turn invisible without the aid of other party members or magic items, but your character would still be just as effective in say a dead magic zone or on a different realm where spell casting or the such is hampered.

Edit: their are fighter feats and general feats found in most of the d&d suplements from psionic stuff to tome of battle stuff.

I saw something different/interesting in a game I played briefly in for the Fighter class to give it a little more mileage. YMMV though as this was a very low magic campaign (couldn't buy an HHH if memory serves)


Blind-Fight is pretty decent vs general concealment, but you still need to be able to pinpoint a foe. You need a fairly high Spot or Listen for that, so it's not a low-level tactic. Congrats, at high levels you can now sort-of get around a L2 spell (note: Wizards get See Invisibility at L3 and can put it on a scroll).

Ranged weapons are useful vs Flight so long as the flying foe doesn't have one of the many, many ways of doing over ranged attacks (Deflect Arrows, Protection from Arrows - those are the rubbish ones - Wind Wall, Wind Cloak, etc) and if you're actually decent at archery. If you're a Str-based melee Fighter, a useful Composite Longbow is expensive, it has a worse AB because you're now using Dex, and it still doesn't even do all that much damage. You also gave up your super-magic sword for this.

I'm not really sure how splash weapons are supposed to help anything. They're too weak to be useful from about L2 onwards, and pale in comparison even to a mere Burning Hands spell or similar.

Sure, a Fighter can be expected to have a magic weapon by the time he faces incorporeal foes. He still has a 50% miss chance and can't even trip or grapple. Casters have problems with these guys too but at least they have the option of taking counters. The Fighter is entirely dependent upon his gear.

Dead magic zones? Well yeah, funny that, Fighters can compete with magic-using classes... when the magic-users aren't allowed to use magic. I guess everything is balanced then!

^^ well, it goes back to the roots of a DND, a pirated war game that drew inspiration from settings like Tolkiens.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheFred View Post
but by L10 you're increasingly coming up against big, untrippable monsters with natural weapons who can't therefore be disarmed - and you still don't have any counter to Invisibility, Fly, Incorporeality, Mirror Image, etc.
Other party members?

Even Conan had trouble with big monsters. He usually had to outwit them into exposing their fleshy bits (or just ran for the hills).

I recall reading somewhere that giving all PCs something like Greater Magic Magic as an SLA (CL = PC levels) worked well for giving melee fighters that extra oomph to compete at higher levels. Has anyone done this?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheFred View Post
but you still need
their will always be times when one class is better than another, that's why we play in groups of atleast a few players. this vs that scenarios will always come up and their will always be what if and if what encounters, that's the fun of playing D&D, well you did good against that now lets see how you do against this. every class has its ups and downs but as for a fighter, their supposed to fight not turn invisible or have high skill ratings, however no matter what weapon they have or armor they are equipped in, they are still a skilled combatant no matter what the circumstance.

mirror image, These figments separate from you and remain in a cluster, each within 5 feet of at least one other figment or you. Any successful attack against an image destroys it. you can hit like 4 images with a splash attack
Attached Images
File Type: png splash attack.PNG (71.2 KB, 0 views)

Personally, I'm of the opinion that the fighter doesn't need to be changed. No, fighters aren't flashy: they can't usually kill in a single hit; they can't warp reality with a flick of the wrist; they can't bend another to their will with a thought.

But what they do do is fairly reliable and predictable. No, they don't usually do a lot of damage per hit - but a fighter will consistently do a similar amount of damage with each hit, giving them steady damage over time. A player can rely on that fact, and build and plan around it. Meanwhile, a caster's spell can certainly roll a lot of damage dice - but there's always that chance that the meteor swarm that the wizard casted rolls all 1's - and then gets saved against. A caster's damage is often based simply on a number of dice, making it more susceptible to luck, bad or good. A fighter's damage tend to be based on a die or two with a host of pluses, making it must less variable - at the cost of top end damage. Yes, there's the maximize spell feat, but it's a feat - a resource a caster is limited on. Plus it makes the spell take a higher spell slot, making the caster have to question if the maxed dice are worth the cost of the higher spell that could have otherwise been taken. The fighter's damage stays fairly consistent, even if lower - as such, there's no real for something that guarantees a max roll. If it won't add much, why does it matter?

Also, a spell caster has a limited number of spells. Now yes, I know at high levels, most casters won't run out before the next time they rest. But there is a limit. And it's something that has to be considered - because a memorizing caster can only take so many copies of a select spell with them, and a spontaneous caster has a limited selection to bring. Every choice matters. Because intelligence opponents can use that fact against a caster. A well-prepared enemy with enough resources at their disposal has the option, when the PCs invade their lair, of forcing them to take on the entirety of their defenses in one go. No rest, no chance for replenishment - do or die.

And why wouldn't they? If they lose, it means the end of everything they've worked for - and they have no real reason to play fair, especially, if they're evil. A spell caster in that kind of scenario has to manage his spells wisely; even if he never uses them all. Meanwhile, the party's fighter can just keep swinging, so long as his weapon doesn't break and he doesn't die.

Players retreat from the dungeon so the casters can replenish safety? Ok; NPC takes that time to resupply and fortify. When the party comes back, the place is even harder than the last time.

Casters also have to think about their spell selection when they memorize - having the wrong spells for the situation can be very lethal, regardless of how powerful those spells are. Death spells are worthless to those immune to death. illusions are ineffective if the opponent doesn't rely on the affected sense(s). Being able to fly doesn't get you away from the dragon that wants to eat your face. A caster is only as good as the spells they have at that moment, regardless of how large their spell list is.

A fighter? His selections are set; now it's just a matter of adapting them to the situation at hand. To this end, potions are a wonderful thing. Up again flying opponents and you're melee? Bring a few potions of flying. Invisible enemies? Potions of see invisibility. If the fighter finds themself consistently in need of any spell effect of 3rd level or lower, he can just get a potion to cover it. They're easy to use, and at high levels, are pretty cheap in comparison. Yes, they're one use only, which is a drawback.

But so isn't a scroll, or a spell slot until the caster rests.

Plus, D&D is a team game; in the end, if the party whole isn't greater than the sum of its individual players, then I'd said something's wrong. Yeah, a buffed caster can be scary - but sometimes the fighter given the same buffs would be even scarier. Party up against a group of flying opponents who are weak at melee but strong at range? Cast fly on the melee fighter, and let them go tear into them. Got a big nasty monster you need to drop quickly? Give the rogue improved invisibility, let the fighter take the heat, and watch that rogue rip the creature a new one.

All I'm saying is, if the casters are dominating the game, the fault may not be on the fighter not being good enough - but the DM not keeping the encounters balanced. In the few games that I've run, I found that the it wasn't the casters that were the ones that I struggled to challenge, but the melee combatants. I could build encounters that tested the casters' abilities and make them sweat - up until the fighter step up and tore whatever they were facing apart. And it happened to me time and again.

For example, I had a psion, who had an item the party was after, guarded by sixteen nightwalkers. The party's level was I think maybe 10ish, low-teens top. Now, this wasn't an encounter they were suppose to take on - the players were suppose to see they were out-matched, and the psion was suppose to get away. However, before anyone else could act, the party's melee member leapt in, tumbled past every nightwalker between him and the psion, one-shot killed the NPC, took the item, and tumbled back past all the nightwalkers.

In a single round. Using only his own abilities.

Next round, he ran, fleeing the scene with the item - after passing every Reflex save from the eight cones of cold the closest nightwalkers unleashed. And thanks to evasion, he took no damage.

The wizard in the party? Died before even getting a spell off.

Admittedly, I was a green DM - but the player wasn't cheating, or sliding one past me. He simply was making excellent use of the options I gave at character creation. I learned that game that you never let a player use material from the Oriental handbook unless everyone is using it. As least for my group. There's some real unbalancing stuff in that book if everyone's not using it.

Now, I know I'm likely in the minority when it comes to 3.5 fighters, and that's fine. In my gaming group, they work as-is, and that's all that matters. I just felt the need to say my peace on the matter; even if it doesn't change anyone's opinion.

so going of optimized wizard and optimized fighter a wizard can do everything a fighter can plus much more. A wizard casting damage spells is not optimized in the least bit, which balances the game.

Without optimizing, a wizard's spell's damage still increases with level. Swords don't.

like a wizard preparing spells for a battle, so to should the fighter prepare for a battle.

you don't go fighting a dragon without have some defensive magic items, just like you don't go fighting a high level any class with out being properly prepared.. but either way random encounters or unknown planned encounters can happen and will of course catch any player off guard... charge attacks work good, readying is always great to do for any character class. idk, if your comparing wizards to fighters, both of which are in my top 3 theirs a big difference, wizards casts spells and fighters fight with weapons, the better the wizards spells are the better he is, the same goes for the fighter, the better the fighters weapons are the better he is.

wizards get free spells per level (this is based on the fact that your not supposed to gain multiple levels during a single adventure and your character would have "down time" to do research... something that always gets looked over.) but either way any creature or character at high level will most likely have some sort of magical attack, even a fighter with his magic items, its still a fantasy RPG and at the end of the day it all depends on whats in your bag of tricks during the encounter.

like a mage slaying arrow with true strike readied from a window in the inn lol





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