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DnD4e: Shifter Cleric

   
Shifter Cleric

Well, I'm not looking to change his stats or anything like that just yet; basically I want to be sure that my character that I've been making the past few days or so is correct. This is like the first time I've made one completely on my own, so you can imagine the headache I'm having figuring things out.

Basically, can someone review this sheet to not only make sure it's legal, but up to date. Oh, and if you want to know, I used the PHB 1 and 2... 1 for the Cleric class, 2 for the Shifter race. Nothing else, though... I think. I'm sure you think there are better race/class combos, but I'm not interested in the best combo at this time (though advice for future characters would be ok).

The link to his character sheet:
http://www.myth-weavers.com/sheetvie...sheetid=373631

If you would be so kind to help me out, I'd be extremely grateful. I'm not exactly planning on playing this guy in a game (though it's still an option), but I'm just basically familiarizing myself with the character creation process right now. I'm like, very very new to this game still, haha. My main concerns are the powers and his attacks; I'm not sure I got them right. Oh, and he's using a Mace two-handed, which apparently gives a +1 bonus to damage or something... so yeah...

Oh, and I used a 22 point buy with the starting 100 gold pieces, already completely spent on gear.

Define "got it right".

You have the bits and pieces put together correctly, yes, but the mechanics are all over the map. A few notes:
  • As a Cleric, you fill the party role of Leader. This means the rest of the party will primarily expect you to do two things: Heal your allies and grant them bonuses to hit your enemies.
  • Consider replacing Cause Fear (bar none the weakest of the four Cleric encounter powers in the PHB) with either Healing Strike or Divine Glow. The former grants healing without burning one of your Healing Words, the latter grants your allies a flat +2 bonus to hit.
  • Decide whether you're going to be a melee cleric or a ranged one. Contrary what the PHB has to say on the subject, splitting your ability array between two attack abilities is a poor choice mechanically. Your powers typically need to hit in order to be effective (however, that bonus from Divine Glow works hit or miss!), so you want your attack bonus to be as high as possible. If you split your attacks between Str (melee) and Wis (ranged), you'll find as you level that one falls farther and farther behind as your magic items don't keep pace. When using two ability scores for your attacks, you'll need a magic weapon and a magic implement to keep up. This gets difficult to manage as the game progresses.
  • Leave Toughness to the party's Defender. You have better things to do with that feat slot, like Implement Expertise to boost your implement attacks.
  • Leave damage concerns to the party's Striker(s). You'd be better off with a shield (+1 to AC and Reflex) than that measly +1 damage from your Versatile mace. Focusing on boosting your allies' attack bonuses (or removing effects from them) will cause more damage faster.
  • A quick note on the ability array. You can drop your Cha to 14, still have a respectable Diplomacy bonus, and increase either Str or Wis to 18. Trust me here: That extra +1 to hit makes a HUGE difference! It's absolutely essential if you're not going to boost your attack with an Expertise feat.
  • Don't bother with a crossbow. With a flat +2 to hit (no Dex bonus, weapon proficiency bonus only), you're not going to be hitting anything. If you can't use a Move Action to get in range of Sacred Flame, use your Standard Action and Aid Another to give one of the party's ranged characters +2 to hit. Alternately, swap the crossbow (a Dex-based weapon) or a javelin or a spear. Both are "Heavy Thrown" weapons that use Str for the attack and damage roll.
  • Righteous Brand was adjusted in a rules errata shortly after the PHB's release. Scaling bonuses on At-Will powers were quickly identified to be problematic at higher levels. It now grants a flat +2 bonus to hit. Reference the Official D&D Rules Updates Page for more.

Hmmm, I see. Well I just wanted to make sure it was a legal character in that I had the bits and pieces put together, yes. Now that I know, I can work on fixing him so that he'll be better than he was. To be honest this was more for fun/practice; however, part of building a character is getting the rough concept, then fixing it. I like to think of this as my 'first draft', after all.

I'll probably do what you suggested with Charisma, and boost Wisdom up to 18. I may also change some of my powers to focus on Wis. As for the ranged thrown weapon, that's a good idea, so I'll keep it in mind. For his gear, I'll probably just start over and rebuy his stuff, and a shield will probably be included.

Thanks for your time. I'll refer to this thread for your notes, as well as any other suggestions people might make.

I'm not sure what Feat to take instead of Toughness, though I only took that feat to boost his HP in the first place since I wasn't sure what to use in place of it. I'll probably look around in my books and maybe Google a few ideas later, who knows.

Here is a guide that you can use to get more familiar with the class.
http://community.wizards.com/go/thre...erics_Handbook

It does a great job of an overview and explains each choice that is available. It is quite a long read, but you can skim it at your leisure and still be able to pick up quite a bit of information.

And always listen to the good DrMorganes. His advice is spot on.

I'll have to bookmark that guide, Fish. Thanks. It seems familiar; I may have skimmed it or an older version at some point in time, but idk. Anyway, it would really help if I had a complete list of errata for my class that I could easily refer to, instead of googling for it and *hoping* it's an up to date version. My head is still swimming from all the corrections I'm going to have to make, haha.

It'd be nice if I had a working Character Builder, sure, but I don't have the money to invest in a DDI subscription, and besides that I'd like to learn how to make a character myself. Ah well, I'll work with what I have, and that guide should help considerably.

Oh and I know you linked me to the official 'updates' page, but there's so much there that I'm kinda getting lost. I'll probably bookmark that still, Morganes. I DID find some "Cleric (Templar)" thingie, but I'm not sure if it's what I need or not.

I thought that errata was freely available off of the Wizards site... I will try to track down a link.

EDIT
Here ya go.
http://www.wizards.com/dnd/Article.a...updatesarchive

Thanks. I'm just a bit over my head atm, sorry. I'll probably review what's been given in this thread so far, but if I have any other problems I'll let you guys know. I won't make any changes to my sheet just yet until I feel confident that the changes I'm making are up to date ones. And I'll be sure to snag the errata for what I have, for sure.

Thanks again for being patient, haha.

Quote:
Originally Posted by littlefish View Post
And always listen to the good DrMorganes. His advice is spot on.
Yeesh! Now the pressure's on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by littlefish View Post
I thought that errata was freely available off of the Wizards site... I will try to track down a link.

EDIT
Here ya go.
http://www.wizards.com/dnd/Article.a...updatesarchive
Whoops! That's what I get for not double-checking my links. Fixed in my post above. Thanks, littlefish!

Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkCoffeeJazz View Post
Thanks. I'm just a bit over my head atm, sorry. I'll probably review what's been given in this thread so far, but if I have any other problems I'll let you guys know. I won't make any changes to my sheet just yet until I feel confident that the changes I'm making are up to date ones. And I'll be sure to snag the errata for what I have, for sure.

Thanks again for being patient, haha.
Don't stress. If one is honest about 4E, it's actually kind of hard to seriously mess up a character build at Level 1. It's a matter of "Choice A is more optimal than Choice B" (as I noted above). It's only once you start reaching Paragon levels and above that the combat math begins to get squicky.

As for feats to replace toughness? If you're limited to options in PH1 and PH2, here are a couple:
  • Weapon Expertise (Mace). Pick this if you're going the Str/melee route. The errata has also updated the bonuses to apply sooner; you go to +2 at Level 11 and to +3 at Level 21.
  • Implement Expertise (Holy Symbol). Pick this if you're going the Wis/ranged route. Same note on the errata.
  • Improved Initiative is never a bad choice.
  • Wild Senses gives nearly the same initiative boost, but has a bit more flavor if you're playing up your shifter's animal instincts.
  • Defensive Mobility. Decent defensive option if you opt for the ranged route.

Sadly, Clerics don't get much feat-related love from just PH1 & PH2.

I'll take those feats into consideration, then, thanks again. I think I'll put 16 in Wisdom (18 after racial bonus), and 14 in Strength (16 after racial bonus). Leaving Charisma at 14, Constitution at 13, Dex at 10 and Int at 8. Technically this leaves Strength and Charisma with the same total without racial bonuses, so I figure I might as well utilize the free +2 to my guy's strength.
So an array of 16, 14, 14, 13, 10, 8, basically. I think that's legal, right?




 

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