http://brilliantgameologists.com
July 28, 2014, 12:13:05 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: These boards are now READ ONLY. We've started over! So don't try posting here. Go here www.minmaxboards.com
 
   Home   Help Search Members Login Register  
Pages: 1 2 3 »
  Print  
Author Topic: 4E Cleric Handbook - the Zap: Shooting People in the Face with Lasers  (Read 27900 times)
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
Mister_Sinister
King Kong
****
Posts: 910


For some people, four walls are three too many.

rasheevkostya@hotmail.com
Email
« on: August 20, 2008, 09:45:49 PM »

Editing history: Fast Zap is complete, on Tough Zaps now.

The Zap: Shooting People in the Face with Lasers


Overview

Being a cleric in 4E is kinda cool - you have the honour of being the first class people see when they pick up the document that is 4E (and prepare for much SAN damage along the way), as well as having the whole bash-people-in-the-face-for-your-faith thing going for you. However, in 4E, as with many things, there are really two varieties of cleric; The Zap, which relies on shooting people in the face with radiant keyword powers, and the Slap, which is a melee-focused beatstick. They are two quite distinct entities, requiring rather different approaches to playing them effectively. In this guide, I will attempt to deal with the Zap approach to clerics, which relies on ranged attacks of all varieties.

This is the first guide I have ever written, so my apologies for the embryonic writing style and somewhat poor formatting, both of which I hope to have rectified in the near future. I would also like to thank veekie and DemonLord57 for their endless amounts of work to make this guide a better entity, and acknowledge them as equal contributors to this project.

Nomenclature

In this handbook, I shall label the awesome options, good options, average options and bad options, and absolutely untakeable options this way. As with much of 4E, this is full of subpar and average options, with only a few gems, which this guide will help you comprehend more fully.

Why play a 'Zap' cleric?

Playing with lasers in 4E is actually pretty cool. You get to run around and shoot people, doing good (for 4E, at least) damage, at range, with a very simple and fun playstyle. I would recommend this manner of character for people who want something easy to both build and play, as it is effective without being complex. Furthermore, the concept is rather cool - I mean, you shoot stuff! With lasers! In the face!

More seriously, this approach to clerics in 4E actually allows you quite a variety of build diversity without too much loss of efficiency, as well as being able to contribute to the party in many ways, which is never a bad thing.

The three varieties of Zap

One of the biggest differentiating points between different kinds of Zap is the choice of tertiary stat. In practical terms, four choices exist here: the Dex-tertiary builds (called Fast Zaps henceforth), the Con-tertiary builds (called Tough Zaps henceforth) and the Int-tertiary builds (called Smart Zaps henceforth). Each of these, despite having a similar playstyle (shooting people with different lasers, mainly), has widely different approaches to build, with quite different options, especially where multiclassing is concerned. Resultantly, in this guide, I will attempt to cover them all, each in a separate section.

Things to watch out for as a Zap

Unfortunately, the Zap is pretty frail. Even if you choose to build a Tough Zap, you will probably be taking a lot of smacking. As your powers have fairly short ranges (many of them being bursts of between 3 and 5 squares), you will often end up in the thick of things, although you are essentially a ranged character. All Zaps have ways to handle this, but at the same time, expect to get slapped around a fair bit for your troubles. You will usually find that one of your defences (either Fort or Reflex, depending on build) will be somewhat shot, but this can be mitigated. Furthermore, this being 4E, you will likely ride out the combat, and, being a cleric, it's relatively easy to mend yourself, and others too, while you’re at it.

What Every Zap Receives

Class Features

Ranked as per the above. In general, your features, like many in 4E, are somewhat bland, but have uses.

Channel Divinity

This is fairly average. Turning is nice, as it does radiant damage, which you will farm prostitutionally, but various divinity feats (which, by the way, are the ONLY thing which differentiates deities besides alignment restrictions) can give you options ranging from useless to interesting, and divine fortune is sucky, but useable. To quote veekie:

Quote from: veekie
After all, you can still use manure as fertiliser, no?

Healer's Lore

Now, originally, I disdained healing as a poor and weak strategy. However, I would be an idiot to ignore the multiple vociferous and extremely well-informed arguments to the contrary, and thus, am willing to concede this point. To cite DemonLord57, who put this much better than I ever could:

Quote from: DemonLord57
This is very good. If you didn't notice, there are a lot of powers with the healing keyword that are tremendously boosted by this. (Consecrated Ground, for example, actually gives 1+Cha+Wis because of this) It gets less important as you level for a lot of powers, (like Healing Word) but it's very useful at the start, possibly even doubling or tripling the healing given, depending on the power.

Healing Word

On my first pass of this, I had complete failed to notice that it's a minor action. Once again, yielding to my critics, I must say that it is very helpful, if not amazing, for what it does.

Ritual Casting

This is a terrible, cash-burning, sanity-eating trap. Do not go there, ever, as it represents the best way to set wealth on fire for effects which are not worth it and are liable to screw up and take forever. Seriously, no. And no some more. I don't care how vital those rituals look, they hurt the brain and offend the senses.

Powers

Now, being as you are playing the Zap, I will not review powers here which obviously do not fit with your shtick, to save space and sanity. Again, review method is identical, and the powers are labelled by type (AW = at-will, E = encounter, D = daily, U = utility) and level.

Lance of Faith (AW 1)

This is your workhorse laser. It's not amazing, but you'll use it lots in your career. The fact that it has a built-in markerlight makes your Zap party-friendly, too.

Sacred Flame (AW 1)

This laser, while doing less damage, is termed the Rescue Laser. Since the only limit to which ally you affect is line of sight, you can seriously help out your friends at massive range, with good temp HP or an effect-breaker. And all that for just 1 less damage on average than the workhorse laser? Sign me up!

Cause Fear (E 1)

You are shooty and squishy. Enemies wanna beat you with axes. You make enemies run away extra far. The party rejoices and buys you free beer, as well as love you long time. It farms your Wis. It makes you scary. I like it. Lots. Although the enemies may come running back very fast, as charging is a standard action now, it is still highly, highly useful.

Divine Glow (E 1)

This, on the other hand, is not that amazing. It has less range than most of your lasers, does LESS damage than your workhorse laser at high levels (because some trained monkey in R&D decided not making it scale was a brilliant idea), and about the only good thing it gives you is the ability to affect multiple enemies (and allies), which means you need to ensure this happens often. As having that many enemies near you is a Very Bad ThingTM, I would not recommend keeping this for long.

Beacon of Hope (D 1)

While my opinion of this is poor, DemonLord57 had this to say about it:

Quote from: DemonLord57
This is almost like Mass Cure Light Wounds right now in terms of the healing, except that it only affects everyone in close burst 3 immediately, which might not be everyone, (still likely to get at least 2 allies, which will likely be 27 health restored) but you can also get the +5 to all other healing powers (like the minor action Healing Words... = 1/4 health+1d6+Wis+5 = 1/4 health+12.5 ~= 17.5-19.5, which makes it almost a full heal at 1st level, up from a 1/4 restoring healing surge)

In light of this, I have revised it upward a bit.

Cascade of Light (D 1)

Piercing laser! Long range, guaranteed damage of a decent quantity, and on a hit, makes ALL your subsequent attacks better? Oh yeah, this is where it's at.

Guardian of Faith (D 1)

This is pretty useful, but not amazing by any stretch of anyone's imagination. The fact it farms your best stat and does radiant damage is nice, but the fact that it lacks reach and can just be avoided makes me wonder if just lasering someone is better than this. The fact it's uber-slow doesn't help either. Can be used to guard narrow spaces, and not much else. Once again, take it if you must, but I certainly wouldn't.

Bless (U 2)

OK, read this joke here.

[removed, with my apologies]

The father and this power taste similar. VERY similar.

Cure Light Wounds (U 2)

In my opinion, decidedly subpar for something you can only use once per day. Seriously, just use something else. This is SO not worth it. Only the fact that it's a free surge keeps it from brown-ness.

Divine Aid (U 2)

Below average, if that. Your Rescue Laser actually will tend to do more than this, and it's at-will, too. Do not bother.

Sanctuary (U 2)

Initially, I had dismissed this power. However, both veekie and DemonLord57 agree that it is definitely better than I had initially given it credit for, as the bonuses it provides, while very short-term, are extemely high, and as an encounter power, you use it regularly, either on yourself or the idiot playing the defender role. At the same time, the short duration makes it somewhat less than optimal.

Shield of Faith (U 2)

This is good, and remains good for a while. Buff your whole party, and be the friendly Zap.

Command (E 3)

This is actually pretty cool. Once again, farms your best stat, has a useful effect at good range, and sets people up to be lasered more. Seriously cool.

Daunting Light (E 3)

Markerlight Mark II! This is well-worth it, especially if you have a rogue buddy in the party. Again, the only limitation to the buff range is sight - so go forth and conquer!

Consecrated Ground (D 5)

This, which I have dubbed the Laser Field, does double-duty, which is nice, despite the low numbers. While it is not amazing and win, it is worth picking, as you can make it last as long as you need, and move it around. Sit it on your party melee guys and let the fun commence. And don't forget to toss in more lasers! Good with an idea veekie has dubbed the 'Fortress', which involves setting up this, while everyone else tosses ranged attacks from it. Not bad at all.

Spiritual Weapon (D 5)

My dismissiveness of this power was highly premature. It is damn good, especially if you have combat-advantage farmers (hello, Mr. Rogue) in your party. Additionally, as both veekie and DemonLord57 pointed out, multiple attacks >>> single attacks in this edition, so thus, this really, REALLY piles on. A solid choice.

Weapon of the Gods (D 5)

Say it with me now: "Thou shalt not use weapons, from gods or otherwise. Thy task is to own face with lasers." Now go forth and do it! Note though that you can buff other people's weapons with this, which still doesn't save it from being a sucktastic piece of crap.

Bastion of Health (U 6)

Now this is good healing. Ranged, effective, some stat farming going on, and, most importantly, EVERY ENCOUNTER. This is worth taking.

Cure Serious Wounds (U 6)

This is a big lump of healing, but the whole daily thing turns me off. Honestly, I find bastion of health to be more useful, as you'll likely output as much as 4-5 surges' worth over a single day, at range, distributed among multiple characters. This can be good for emergencies, but not much else.

Divine Vigour (U 6)

To be honest, our cousin Slap makes far better use of this power, but even a Zap can find much to like here. While I am somewhat skeptical, I believe this rating to be more accurate in light of veekie's claims of its usefulness.

Holy Lantern (U 6)

This is a pretty high-level light effect, which our wizard friend has been doing for 5 levels already. The bonuses are there, but honestly, you don't give a damn. Just buy some torches already, and spend your powers on something more useful.

Break the Spirit (E 7)

Not bad, not bad at all. Decent damage, and some attack hate, too. That said, it's nothing to write home about, either. I call this the 'Weakening Laser'. This gets more love if you happen to be a divine oracle.

Searing Light (E 7)

Blinding Laser! Learn it, love it, use it. Really.

Astral Defenders (D 9)

Pfft. This is so not worth it. It's like a slightly-better-damage, much-suckier-attack-condition version of something you could have been doing eight levels ago. Just forget it, this is akin to setting powers on fire.

Blade Barrier (D 9)

Ever heard of Murder Pinball? Now you and your friends can play too! And it farms your best stat! What's there not to love?

Flame Strike (D 9)

This is a fairly solid AoE, and does your second most favourite damage type, which is fire. Pretty useful, and a solid choice.

Astral Refuge (U 10)

So wait, let me get this quite straight. You are taking an injured party member, REMOVING HIM FROM COMBAT, and putting him in a place where all he can do is mend for three rounds? Trust me, if your games ever get to that, this is the time for keeping members in for LONGER, not removing them and having everything else pound on who's left. 3 surges is fully 3/4s of your HP; once you're at this point in 4E, things are really, really bad, which likely means that your party is inept or your DM is a douchebag. This power does not actually save you from such a situation, because you now have FEWER party members fighting against the same threat, except you have now burned a daily resource which says 'Gee, if you don't die by the time this guy returns to get gang-raped, then this is great for making your combats HARDER to win!'. Seriously, just no.

Knights of Unyielding Valour (U 10)

Now, ladies and gents, this is awesome in and of itself. However, when you are lucky enough to be graced with two clerics, you can quite honestly hedge in stuff which can't fly or teleport, preventing it from moving EVAR. And then you can both prance around and gratuitously zap them. But even without such friends, these knights can seriously help your party by creating a barrier which is impassable... to your opponents only. Way cool.

Mass Cure Light Wounds (U 10)

Again, our cousin Slap does much better with this than you do. That said, multiple-target healing is actually pretty nice even for you, as it can really help get your party back up to scratch fast. Not amazing, but I can see it being very useful, as the healing amount is BIIIIIG.

Shielding Word (U 10)

Like sanctuary, except higher-level and not so crap. Thus, useful.

Mantle of Glory (E 13)

Healing Laser Mark II, and it's not bad at all. The party can burst up a quarter of their HP is nice, and the damage, while mediocre, is not bad for its level. Worth considering.

Plague of Doom (E 13)

Again, kinda nice, but not really. Good range, good damage, halfway decent effect. If this were radiant, it would be green, but as it isn't, it's not. That said, it's not all that bad.

Purifying Fire (D 15)

Not bad, says I. This is basically flame strike with some extra healing. Much as I had ruled with flame strike, I rule with this. Also, our friend DemonLord57 had this to say:

Quote from: DemonLord57
This is a 5x5 area centered where you choose w/in 10, Seal of Warding is a 7x7 centered on you (likely to include less enemies). Advantage: This. This does 3d10+Wis+stuff + ongoing 10 fire damage, that does 4d10+Wis+stuff. Advantage: This. This gives 5+Cha+Wis (see, Wis pops up everywhere) health to allies adjacent to enemies that were hit and haven't saved yet (applies for at least one turn), that slows for a turn and gives cover vs. ranged attacks. Advantage: This.

Seal of Warding (D 15)

It does our favourite type of damage, which is always nice, and does decent amounts of it. The range may be bad, but the Cover Laser's cover trick isn't too shabby. Overall, it has uses, and I can certainly see myself using it, although Purifying Fire makes it less amazing in comparison.

Astral Shield (U 16)

Why oh why do these monkeys insist on this garbage! Shield of faith is basically better than this in almost every way, except for the part where it can't be used every encounter. That said, encouraging your party to all stand in a clump is silly. Don't take this.

Cloak of Peace (U 16)

Super-super-powered sanctuary. Or not. That said, the fact it has range, and grants damn impressive numbers, makes me think of it as being a little bit better. Even with that said, though, who the hell do you use it on? Who can actually meaningfully contribute to a combat without, you know, attacking? The Intimidate-farming Bullysaurus? I guess so... Makes for an odd image, though. "I come in peace... and I'm gonna kick the crap out of you now! Run away in fear!". Fucking 4E...

Divine Armour (U 16)

Another variant on shield of faith. However, DR 5 against anything is damn good. Minion attacks turn into fail, and ongoing damage becomes a joke. Definitely worth taking.

Hallowed Ground (U 16)

Again, our cousin Slap gets far, far more mileage out of this in my opinion. That said, this isn't bad at all for almost any Zap build, and helps with the 'Fortress' strategy outlined by veekie.

Enthrall (E 17)

You shoot things. Things running up to you and hitting you is not conducive to this. Things shooting back at you are less conducive to this. This deals with both, and throws in some damage, too, though not of the laser type. I believe this to be worthwhile, simply because of the immobilisation and attack prevention.

Thunderous Word (E 17)

Seriously, not that bad a deal, folks. Some damage of a type we don't care much about, average range, and an effect we've been using for a damn while already, albeit super-sized. Nothing to much to see here, although the push can be conditionally very useful, such as for those people who can like their Murder Pinball, and for clearing out melee, too.

Fire Storm (D 19)

This is yet another take on flame strike. Our second favourite damage type, HUGE area of effect, lotsa damage rolls. Use this. Divine oracles go orgiastic over this.

Knight of Glory (D 19)

This is an amped version of something you've been doing since level 1. The damage is somewhat bigger and not laser. Overall - average.

Angel of the Eleven Winds (U 22)

Now, this would be good, really, except another power at the same level totally kills it at its own game. Thus, I see no reason to ever take this, ever.

Clarion Call of the Astral Sea (U 22)

Despite my extreme dislike of its younger brother, veekie's arguments in its favour makes me think otherwise. Due to the one-round delay, as opposed to three rounds, this can be very useful in a massive emergency, the likes of which shouldn't occur often. But hey, if you've been playing this long, you likely know if you need this or not.

Cloud Chariot (U 22)

Congratulations, you and your party now fly all day, every day. Just pure awesome, and not to be missed, particularly since you can totally zap people from your indestructible flying machine.

Purify (U 22)

I admit my initial evaluation of this may have been premature. However, at the same time, while purging everyone's status effects MIGHT have some use against something. If you are finding this a regular problem, feel free to disagree. However, I cannot actually say if this is of any use at all without more play experience, which living in a town of 150, 000 in Hicksville Japan is not conducive to. At all.

Spirit of Health (U 22)

While my disdain for in-combat healing is legendary, but thanks to veekie and DL57, I am fully sold. This can be used as part of the 'Fortress' strategy to create a zone of healy, killy death which craps out lasers and other projectiles nonstop. It is nice.

Astral Blades of Death (E 23)

I just wish that this power, dubbed Ubar Laser had something else on it, too. Otherwise, its damage is a bit disappointing, especially compared to what else is available at this level.

Healing Torch (E 23)

Just... wow. Ranged AoE with decent damage of the right kind and a stapled on AC boost and healing, tapping that Cha like a drunk cheerleader? Hell yeah, gimme more of that!

Sacred Word (D 25)

Not too bad, but nothing amazing. The stunning is nice, and the half damage on a miss is nice too, but it's psychic, which means no crazy laser farming for us. I would say it's worth picking, but not that brilliant.

Seal of Binding (D 25)

OK, this officially makes clerics brilliant. Using either demigod or a power like consecrated ground, you can totally ignore the sustain damage. If you can get something locked, you can just sit there while the rest of your party build a campfire around its feet, toast some marshmallows and generally have a great time. Yes, this is totally legal, and CustServ approved, too! But seriously, take this.

Scourge of the Unworthy (E 27)

Out of nowhere, we have necrotic damage of moderate amount, with a penalty we could have seriously been handing out at level 1 attached. This has but one redeeming quality - its range. Don't bother.

Sunburst (E 27)

I will hand the floor to DemonLord57, because he just put it better than I ever could:

Quote from: DemonLord57
Did you notice that it doesn't spend any party resources to heal and an encounter power? Meaning: Outside battle? Yes --> Full health, no healing surges spent. Besides that, it's nice in battle, since you get 10+Cha+Wis (don't forget the Wis) and a saving throw for your allies in addition to hitting enemies for decent damage.

Astral Storm (D 29)

Congratulations, you made it to your capstone. And it's decidedly average. And doesn't do the good damage type. The fact it lingers doesn't make up for it much. Really.

Paragon Paths

Angelic Avenger

In terms of abilities, Astral Vibrance is definitely sexy (set to radiant damage, of course), as it farms your secondary and damages everything within laser range with more laser, even if it has to be bloodied to work. This has good synergy with the 'Fortress' approach, as it means you can pretty much ignore bloodied opponents, who will soon die to a combination of this ability and the 'Fortress' power. Angelic Action also has its uses, and is quite a significant bonus to a class which makes lots of attack rolls like you do. Weapon Training is something you will never need, as Str is a dump stat for you. Blood and Radiance has its uses, but is very conditional, favouring rogue-heavy parties, but it does require putting your ass on the line of fire, which is generally not a great idea. Fast Zaps, however, can find a land of opportunity here, especially when combined with a rogue multiclass.

Powers-wise, astral wave is actually not bad, as it can be used to open a battle and start off your Astral Vibrance (I nickname this one 'Scatter Laser'). Angelic presence is well-worth your time, especially as it affects everything attacking you irrespective of range, but angel ascendant is highly sucktastic, as you do not use melee weapons or Str, like, at all.

Overall, this path works better for our cousin Slap. However, I can see Tough Zaps (mainly) making use of this, as it requires being quite close to the front lines, and others may even find much to like, although careful use is encouraged.

Divine Oracle

This is prostitutionally good, causing me to label this the 'divine whoracle'. I would like to issue a public apology to DemonLord57 for ever doubting its amazingness. Really really.

Foresight is a start ability, and not just for the surprise negation alone; the initiative double-up is delicious, as it allows your party to nearly always act first. A Fast Zap with this WILL go first. Prophetic Action is also hawt, although both Fast and Smart Zaps get more out of it. Terrifying Insight is one of the things which pushes this over the top. To quote veekie:

Quote from: veekie
Something like 70-80% of your mainstay attack powers target Will. Any questions?

And, to make everyone's lives happier, DemonLord57 has even compiled us a nice list which we can use with this (although you don't have to use them all):

Quote from: DemonLord57
Encounter 1: Cause Fear
Encounter 3: Command
Encounter 7: Admittedly, you have to choose the suboptimal Break the Spirit here
Encounter 13: Mantle of Glory
Encounter 17: Enthrall
Encounter 23: Healing Torch
Encounter 27: Sunburst
All vs. Will, almost all optimal.

Daily 1: Beacon of Hope
Daily 5: Consecrated Ground doesn't attack
Daily 9: Blade Barrier doesn't attack
Daily 15: Admittedly, I'd choose Purifying Fire over Seal of Warding
Daily 19: Fire Storm doesn't really need to hit. The cool part is the auto-secondary damage every round
Daily 25: Seal of Binding makes you laugh
Daily 29: You don't really need to hit with Astral Storm. The secondary damage is the really cool part.
Less vs. Will here, but less that actually attack/need to hit.

So yeah, that's that.

As for powers, prophecy of doom is absolutely screaming to be abused the life out of. Your whole party will be buying you free beers and offering to have your children (or offering you their anal virginity) for this power. It makes an otherwise decent path into a monstrosity, and should quite rightly be (ab)used by everyone. Good omens is a bonus which would normally require sex acts on the designers which I quite frankly do not wish to describe here, but those so inclined can read all about them can do so here, and bear in mind that you'd be on the receiving end. This is very, very good with the 'Fortress' strategy, as well as generally. And, just in case that wasn't enough, we also have hammer of fate, which, despite being single-target, hits like a tonne of bricks, basically cannot miss if it tried, and even if it did, you get a do-over. In short, to cite Frank Trollman, "fvcking insane".

You take this path. You really do. You really, REALLY do.

Radiant Servant

As Improved Critical is so an epic feat now, Illuminating Attacks, which makes all your lasers get Improved Critical, at level 11, is damn nice. However, rogue and warlock multiclasses can pull these kinds of tricks too, and damn well, so it is hardly a unique ability. Radiant Action, however, is damn nasty. Ongoing damage of that amount, even with a save to end it, is a big deal, especially when it's also a laser and has no chance of missing whatsoever. Lasting Light, while seemingly decent, is far too conditional, and should only be considered if you expect to face many of that type of enemy.

Powers-wise, solar wrath does good damage of the type we love at a nice range, and, being the Holy Hand Laser, also brings on extra hurt for certain enemies. This laser bomb is good, and good for those who have limited mobility, such as the Tough Zap. Healing sun is only something you use if you have run out of everything else, and your party is dropping, thus, essentially, only when you are sucking hard, and the most likely scenario in which you will use this is one where you are injured yourself, and its special quality really does shit on it hard. So yeah, bother with this not. As far as radiant brilliance is concerned, opponents who hang around long enough to explode all over their buddies frankly deserve it, thus making it a long-ranged, low-damage laser.

Overall, this is decidedly average, best for Tough Zaps who lack in mobility without dipping warlock. The power of this paragon path is basically nonexistent after level 11 - your have everything you want already. I would recommend this for a PbP game that starts at level 11, and even in that case, it's not all that impressive anyway.

Warpriest

Extra Damage Action is always nice, as damage in 4E tends to be rather low, and is best tacked onto an area effect, to spread the effect around as much as possible. This is very nice when combined with the ranger, as you can open a fight with a very, very impressive hosing of damage. Warpriest's Strategy is basically a weak-ass version of the divine oracle reroll, which also requires you to clump with your friends or helping your lasers not uber-miss. Warpriest Training is liked by Tough Zaps, who have a natural incentive to armour-up. Warpriest Challenge gets ignored, as you don't make melee attacks ever.

Battle cry is interesting, but both too close for comfort and confusing even with errata, so we'll ignore it. Battle favour is melee, so we shall never use it, but battle pyres should basically be called 'set everyone on fire and then burn them again'. This power has high damage and the ability to deal ongoing damage, which is even better, but the small range probably needs some working to be used most effectively. Additionally, the various damage boosters you can pick up (such as via ranger levels) are double-tapped here, which makes it even better.

Essentally, you are in this for the capstone, and not much else. While you can deal close-range massive damage well, in reality, I would only recommend this path for someone starting at level 20 or above, when you can skip past the uselessness.
« Last Edit: February 17, 2010, 05:21:55 PM by Mister_Sinister » Logged


Everything I learned about DnD I learned from Frank Trollman at The Gaming Den... but nowadays, my work space is the New DnD Wiki.

Check them both out!

Mister_Sinister
King Kong
****
Posts: 910


For some people, four walls are three too many.

rasheevkostya@hotmail.com
Email
« Reply #1 on: August 20, 2008, 09:46:04 PM »

The Fast Zap: The Elf with the Golden Cannon

Overview of the Fast Zap

By choosing to have your tertiary stat in Dex, you are actually doing pretty well. This opens up the rogue and the (sadly-stupidly-nerfbatted-by-WotC-which-is-fail) ranger as potential, multiclasses, both of which give you access to many different (and interesting) ranged options. Additionally, being able to access the deadly trickster epic destiny can be very, very useful. High Dex also gives you a good Ref defence, and allows you to run around in light armour, which means that you are also extremely fast.

Proper Care and Feeding

Stats

Your priority stat is Wisdom, followed by Charisma, with Dex as your tertiary. The rest are pretty much irrelevant, although Strength is most definitely your dump stat, and you should consider Constitution above Intelligence.

Suggested Arrays

Standard: Str 10, Dex 13, Con 12, Int 11, Wis 16, Cha 14
Custom: Str 8, Dex 14, Con 11, Int 10, Wis 16, Cha 15
Rolled: Wis-> Cha -> Dex -> Con -> Int -> Str

Race

Your choices of races are pretty much limited to elf or elf here. While there are some other options for Fast Zaps, there aren't many of them.

Dragonborn

Let's see... you get boosts to your secondary and dump, which is overall quite poor, a bonus to a skill you cannot train without a feat, a bonus to attack rolls that's tiny enough to forget about, slightly bigger surges, and a racial ability based on either your tertiary or a stat you don't care about, which doesn't do radiant damage. Umm, no. Plus, the whole scaly thing is unpleasant.

Dwarf

You get a bump to your primary and a stat you don't care about, which is nice, but not that amazing. You're slow, which is ungood, and while low-light vision helps some, most of the stuff you get by being a dwarf wants you to wear heavy armour, which, as we are not stupid, we will not be doing with a Fast Zap. So give this a pass; you're better off being a Tough Zap as a dwarf.

Eladrin

OK, let me get this straight. It boosts your tertiary and a stat you don't care about? Check. Some proficiencies you couldn't care less about? Check. A bonus to your most God-awesome save, which hardly needs it? Check. Seriously, why are we still reading? About the only halfway decent things here are the extra skill training and the 1/encounter teleport. Gimping yourself for two features... no.

Elf

I would honestly have to say that elves are by far the best race for Zaps of any stripe but Fast Zaps just go orgasmic over them instead of being merely happy. You get a boost to primary and tertiary, which is basically the best we can get until the monkeys at WotC publish a Wis/Cha race, move faster than any other race in the book, a small grouphelp tricks, and elven accuracy, which on a character that will spend most of its life making ranged attacks... yeah, no brainer, much? The Dex boost from being an elf also makes accessing Astral Fire incredibly easy, and, while that feat doesn't look too awesome, this is 4E, and even 1 point of damage is something we're supposed to fellate the designers for. Seriously, best choice by far.

Half-elf

If you were a Tough Zap, this race would be ideal. However, as your are not, this is only a decent choice, boosting your secondary and a stat you don't care much about. Low-light vision never hurts, and the skills boosted are ones you are likely to have as a cleric. Dilletante can also net you something useful (like eyebite), which is also damned tasty. If it were not for the stats, this would be a very, very good choice, but unfortunately, Fast Zaps don't get as much from this as their Tough cousins.

Halfling

Not a bad choice. You get a boost to your secondary and tertiary, which is decent, being Small doesn't rape you in most of your orifices, and second chance is actually pretty useful on something that'll get smacked around lots. While I still believe elf to be superior, I can certainly see this being very, very good for a Fast Zap build.

Human

Ah, yes, the stellar race of 3E. Unfortunately, in this build, they are distinctly subpar. The fact that they boost only one stat of your choice actually doesn't mean much, since no race boosts your primary and secondary, but even so, it is a definite step back. Knowing an extra at-will actually means jack shit, as your class only has two you actually give a flying fuck about, and the bonus feat is nice, but as most 4E feats aren't worth taking, it's not all that amazing. Seriously, don't bother.

Tiefling

This is not so hot on a Fast Zap, although Smart Zaps like it. You get a boost to your secondary and a stat you don't care about, boosts to skills you cannot train without feats, and a bonus you could forget. The fact that you get fire resistance and infernal wrath makes it a bit less of a total suckfest, as you can at least Cha-farm somewhat. However, if you wanna be a tiefling, making a Fast Zap is a pretty poor build direction in general; Smart gives you everything this path would, and more.

Monster Manual Races

In general, my reaction was 'meh'. In all honesty, none of these races really grant you much in the way of anything useful to any Zap build, and since they require DM approval to boot, I really don't see a point. That said, there are decent choices there, but they don't really offer you anything new or different anyway, so honestly, just don't bother.

The Art of Correct Multiclass Feats

Essentially, as a Fast Zap, you are looking at two potential choices for multiclass feats: Warrior of the Wild and Sneak of Shadows. Now, these options are not totally equal, but at the same time, are deserving of equal consideration, as they do quite different things.

Warrior of the Wild

Now, if you are a Fast Zap, you're an elf. As you're an elf, having a 13 in your tertiary is remarkably, no, ridiculously easy. And what do you get for such an easy req? Well, plenty of nice things. Or, at least, you would have, except those fucking idiots nerfed it (page 9). As it stands, this is now a lot less effective, as it gives you a very minor benefit damage-wise, because it seems the designers insist that if 1 damage requires a fellatio, then 1d6 would need something like being on the receiving end of an iron dildo. You do, however, net training in a ranger skill, which is nice, as it can either give you access to the deadly trickster epic destiny. At the same time, for 1st level characters, and characters who don't plan on slogging through the paragon tier (either going straight to epic or never going above heroic), this is a definite green.

Skill to pick: Essentially, you get a pretty good list to choose from, as the two classes overlap only on Heal. My suggestions would be to further prostitute out Wis, and take either Dungeoneering, Nature or Perception. However, since your Dex will likely be at least reasonable, Acrobatics or Stealth may help too, and will actually get you into deadly trickster, which makes them well worth considering. Under no circumstances do you pick Athletics, for obvious reasons.

Class feature gained: Hunter's Quarry would be great on you. If you could use it as a ranger. Which means that, instead of being good, it is now, at best, something like some extra damage on two attacks. Better than absolutely nothing, I suppose, but really, the nerf was like a kick in the jewels.

Novice Power Picks

Fox's Cunning (E 1)

This is in direct competition with cascading light, which make this a somewhat inferior option. However, allowing you to basically ignore a single attack without reach, and then nail them with the crossbow (or longbow) you will pack, with your whore stat as a bonus... yeah, very very nice nonetheless. Use it to coast low levels if you must.

Disrupting Strike (E 3)

Remember Foil Action, as written in the Frank and K fighter (page 39)? Well, this is the closest you're gonna get in 4E to that, and, quite frankly, were it not for the hitting issues, this would be navy. You can use it to monkeywrench a lot of nasty abilities, provided you can get it to connect, as it inflicts a highly crippling penalty and essentially farms your highest stat, to boot. Although it competes with command and daunting light, it is easily worth it.

Adept Power Picks

Confounding Arrows (D 15)

While this is up against purifying fire, which is quite stiff competition, this thing is a very strong control element at extremely good range. While farming off a tertiary is usually asking for trouble, this can set up a foe for a very long-term lasering, which is never a bad thing.

Acolyte Power Picks

Crucial Advice (U 2)

Remember divine insight from 3E? Well, this is the closest thing to it you'll get in this edition. While it doesn't contribute to killing stuff, it is still damn useful, and useable every encounter. To quote veekie:

Quote from: veekie
It helps your allies achieve a check modifier about 2-3 levels ahead of when normally possible.

Unfortunately, you need to be trained in the skill you want to use this. However, as feats generally suck now, setting one on fire to help one of your party members is certainly not a bad move. The only things you're really competing with are shield of faith and sanctuary, so you can likely take this quite safely.

Yield Ground (U 2)

The bad news about this is that someone has to hurt you for it to work. The good news is, it gets you out, and keeps you fairly safe for a while. Overall, not bad, and certainly has its uses. It would easily be green were it not for the annoying trigger condition.

Evade Ambush (U 6)

Now, this is really damn useful - I call it 'divine oracle lite', as it basically means (with your Wis, anyway) that your allies are never, ever getting surprised. However, it is both a) daily and b) very very conditional. It's also up against bastion of health and divine vigor, so take that for what you will.

Weave Through the Fray (U 6)

This is really, really good. It basically gives you the abrupt jaunt ability of the 3E conjurer, or the closest to that this edition's gonna give us anyway. Simply walk out of melee, foul up charges, and generally keep out of the reach of big nasty ugly things. Definitely worth it.

Open the Range (U 10)

Like its younger brother weave through the fray, this is useful. Unlike its younger brother, it is both level 10 and daily. I really don't think it's worth that, especially when you're competing with knights of unyielding valour. Unless you really, really have a paranoid fear of getting hit, don't take this.

Forest Ghost (U 22)

This is really, really sexy. This thing has endless uses, and makes you into a pretty darn deadly sniper. Were it not for the cover/concealment requirement, this would be a very, very definite navy. It does, however, compete with cloud chariot, thus limiting it to multiple-cleric parties in most cases.

Master of the Hunt (U 22)

Now, having looked at the cleric, I swore that there would be nothing that could compete with the sheer bullshit power of cloud chariot. I am seriously proud to have found something which can. Whoring your best stat to damage, in many cases again, to damn near everything you do, is worth it, and is actually serious competition to the other 22s. A long, hard consideration, but once again, very suited to multiple-cleric parties.

Paragon Paths

Nothing to see here, move along. No, seriously, the ranger basically offers you nothing paragon path wise. At all. If you wanna take clerical stuff, consult the post above. Really, that is all.

Epic Destinies

Deadly Trickster

As a cleric-ranger Fast Zap, the requirements are easy, although it requires forgoing Perception unless you wanna burn a feat on Skill Training (something I recommend you do in any case, but if you are going that way, pick up Perception off the multiclass feat, and then pick up Skill Training later). Sly Fortune's Favour is pretty good, but divine oracles hardly need more re-rolls, making this more useful on angelic avengers and warpriests. Trickster's Control, however, is disgustingly good with divine oracle, as it essentially gives you twice the normal odds to retain a power. While the 'bone the DM anally' Trickster's Disposition is nice, it will mostly be used to avoid you getting hit by big and nasty, which, if combined with Foil Action... umm, I mean, Disrupting Strike, makes for a damn good monkeywrenching shtick. Epic trick, especially when combined with divine oracle and Trickster's Control, gives you amazing nova potential, as it can basically totally reload you in one shot, which can average out to more firepower per day than the steady stream provided by the demigod. Overall, a very solid choice, and one of the strongest reasons to take the Fast Zap.

Demigod

As stats are everything in 4E, getting more statbumps than everyone else off Divine Spark is sex. Divine Recovery, giving you more 'I don't die', while nice, is not really something you should need, as hitting 0 HP as a cleric is... pretty much failure in a box, and you need to seriously get your head checked for trauma (no, YOUR head, not your PC's). Divine Miracle, unlike the insane nova engine that epic trick happens to , is a slow, steady stream of help. At the same time, by the time you get it, you won't have much use for it, simply because your career is almost over. Divine regeneration is yet more 'I don't die', and combos very nicely with seal of binding to give you one of the few save-or-dies this game actually has. This is best for those games that you know will last until the highest levels of epic; otherwise, go with the deadly trickster. This is also better for angelic avengers and warpriests, as they will find themselves hurting more often, and this can iron out a lot of their kinks.

Eternal Seeker

OK, Seeker of the Many Paths is your excuse to dumpster-dive through all the lists we have compiled here, and basically pick and choose whatever cool shit you wanna take. Eternal Action is crazy-good with divine oracle, and can fuel some crazy action novas. Seeker's Lore gives you more dumpster-diving power: get that cloud chariot AND that master of the hunt! Seeker's Destiny is best with either Trickster's Control or Starburst (found here (page 51 or 9, depending on how your read it), followed by Divine Recovery. All up, this could have a lot of potential once more material is printed, but even with what we have now, this is a very strong choice all-around, despite the fact that Smart Zaps get boatloads more mileage out of it.

Sneak of Shadows

Now, at first glance, this is actually harder to use than the ranger. However, the powers this option provides, especially at high levels, are very, very enticing, making this an easy green for those starting at high levels, as well as being much less top-heavy than the ranger. Additionally, having Thievery as a class skill gives you deadly trickster access, which is always nice. In general, this is a strong, synergistic choice in general. Your weapon of choice will be a crossbow, as you have no business being near slings or light blades whatsoever. Skill Training for Stealth is highly recommended for this build, as it gives you a lot of very powerful options, and a very potent defensive mechanism. In general, you really, really want to be a divine oracle for this, although angelic avengers do have a use here too.

Skill gained: Thievery, which is nice, as it taps your tertiary, and gives you some very useful powers, including this one. In fact, thanks to the errata, you can totally steal Orcus' panties with only a DC 35 check. This also neatly qualifies you for deadly trickster, which is a very nice bonus.
Class feature gained: Although Sneak Attack is not half the awesomeness it was in 3E, and making it 1/encounter doesn't help matters. Additionally, since it requires set-up, this is actually less useful than the Hunter's Quarry feature given to you by the ranger. Thus, this is nice, but don't count on it winning you anything. Fucking 4E...

Novice Power Picks

Dragon Tail Strike (E 17)

Now, this power is pretty terrible overall, but, since you'll be using a crossbow with this, it is possible to deter charges with it damn effectively, and the damage is respectable. However, as a tertiary stat power, and given what it's against, I would only recommend it if you really, really fear charges.

Perfect Strike (E 27)

Despite coming off your tertiary, the triple attack rolls, good range and potential stunning is damn nice. Despite being in direct competition with sunburst, this is worthly of at least a second look.

Adept Power Picks

Blinding Barrage (D 1)

For a level 1 power, this is not bad at all. Mass blinding, decent damage, and even a miss effect for your trouble. Sadly, this does have to compete with cascade of light, which, despite serving a different function, is very, very strong, and is also very short-ranged. However, for area control, this can be extremely effective, and should be considered on that basis.

Easy Target (D 1)

Now, despite the orange rating this power has, in a mostly ranged party, this a very potent long-range monkeywrench, since you can basically dance out of the range of stuff constantly while you and your friends pepper it with lasers and other nasty things. The combat advantage is also nice, although not as amazing for you as it would be for a rogue. Essentially, in a range-heavy party, this is green.

Trick Strike (D 1)

Now, this is the most impressive power here damage-wise. If your party likes playing Murder Pinball, they will enjoy this very much. In a pinball-focused party, this is definitely green.

Walking Wounded (D 6)

This power basically allows you to, at damn impressive range, turn a monster into a stumbling cripple. Unless the target has some kind of ungodly movement speed, this basically lets you dance around him like a little bitch and laugh at how he repeatedly falls over, while pasting face with laser. The only thing keeping this from navy-hood is the fact that it runs off a tertiary. The competition is stiff, though: consecrated ground and spiritual weapon. Consider this if your sustain powers are getting too many in number, as it is very, very strong.

Knockout (D 9)

This gets an honourable mention here, purely because of the sheer potential power of its effect. That said, it is melee, which means that you'll be in a very unhappy place, and the solution is only semi-permanent. That said, you don't get effects this often, so if you have some kind of crazy build that can take advantage of this, feel free to consider it. But this is also up against blade barrier, so do keep this in mind.

Bloody Path (D 15)

This is mostly a lolmention, but this is a minion massacring device also. That said, though, this is a waste of a daily, or at least, feels like one. Especially when one is in competition with purifying fire, one has to do a lot more than this power to look impressive.

Slaying Strike (D 15)

An example of competing with purifying fire correctly can be found here. If you can autocrit this off divine oracle, you can basically achieve a longer-ranged point version of seal of warding. Although this is a low green because the tertiary stat, it is definitely, DEFINITELY worth looking into.

Feinting Flurry (D 19)

Divine oracles love this long-time. The fact it also prostitutes your secondary is also damn good, and the damage, as you're using a crossbow, is both respectable and long-ranged. This is in competition with fire storm, but fortunately, they serve rather different purposes, so you can select this power with pride and be the ultimate sniper bastard.

Snake's Retreat (D 19)

Now, the ability to stay out of nonreach melee is damn nice, and the damage is also long-ranged and respectable, but unfortunately, this power is in direct competition with feinting flurry, which unfortunately wins out. Nonetheless, this is worth considering as a defensive countermeasure, if you can make it hit reliably.

Biting Assault (D 25)

Now, if this didn't attack Fort off a tertiary stat, it would be an easy green. If you can get this to connect, it turns a monster into a snivelling, bleeding weakling. Even if you miss, the ongoing damage still happens, which makes it at least worth considering. That said and done, though, it is up against seal of binding, so take that into consideration.

Hamstring (D 25)

Guaranteed slow is no joke, and when you add guaranteed ongoing, turning monsters into lame cripples has never been so much fun. The fact it uses a tertiary is the only thing keeping this from green-hood.

Assassin's Point (D 29)

This. Is. Awesome. Divine oracles autocrit this for great justice (and high damage). Its competition is also not too significant in comparison (astral storm), which makes us very happy indeed. This would be blue were it not for the hitting issues, but the autocrit nicely gets around that for us. Remember, milk this for all it's worth - fully-enhanced weapon with a crit effect, combat advantage for sneak etc. You can easily break 200 damage with this, and we're not even kidding.

Immobilising Strike (D 29)

Even if this misses, you have made a cripple out of an opponent. If this hits, upgrade that to 'retarded cripple'. If this didn't have such stiff competition, it would honestly deserve a higher rating.

Moving Target (D 29)

Remember, a lot of attack lines specify a 'creature', not an 'opponent'. Now, this is great, because suddenly, you can turn a monster into an emo. It is a bit anticlimatic for a 29th level daily, but I can certainly see its uses, especially when you make someone like Orcus suddenly start cutting himself.

Acolyte Power Picks

Fleeting Ghost (U 2)

Although this requires burning a feat on Skill Training, for someone using Dex, more farming never hurt. Being able to move at normal speed while sneaking around is never a bad thing for a Fast Zap. This is competing with stuff like cure light wounds and sanctuary, so these aren't terrible picks.

Quick Fingers (U 2)

Luckily, this doesn't require setting any feats on fire, unless you like stealing Orcus' panties mid-combat, it has mostly laugh potential. That said, situations can come up where this is darn useful, so bear this in mind.

Chameleon (U 6)

While this also requires feat-burning, it is an extremely big buff to Stealth, which is noticeable. If you really need to sneak around, this is one to go for. However, you're up against bastion of health here, so this is really a very narrow choice.

Dangerous Theft (U 10)

Now you can steal Orcus' panties in combat at no penalty! But seriously, hilarity aside, that is not something that will come up too often, especially when it competes with knights of unyielding valour.

Shadow Strike (U 10)

Much like its younger Stealth-related brothers and sisters, this power can be of great help. However, unless you really, really need to play the sniper, this is just not necessary.

Hide in Plain Sight (U 16)

This is almost green. This is damn good for divine oracle uber-laser setup, and opponents will usually get shot at least three or so times before they figure out where you are. While farming Stealth is a good call, ultimately, it's not a primary strategy for you. So go figure.

Raise the Stakes (U 16)

The uses of this power are damn obvious. If you are a divine oracle, however, skip this - you really, REALLY don't need it.

Hide from the Light (U 22)

This is up against cloud chariot, which means that it has to be awesome. Unfortunately, while this can facilitate a grind strategy using only at-wills and shuffling around like a cripple, it will likely send the DM, as well as most of the party, to sleep. This is damn strong, but unless you enjoy 5-hour combats, I would distinctively not recommend it, hence its low rating.

Paragon Paths

The rogue offers you one paragon path you even remotely care about: the shadow assassin. Shadow Assassin's Action is a big and useful boost, especially if you plan to let off a tertiary-base attack, and farming out your tertiary when escaping from melee (which you'll have to do lots anyway) is nice. Bloody Evisceration means that you really wanna save your single use of sneak attack to a mid-battle boost, and this ability also helps assassin's point go that much further.

As you are a Fast Zap, you really will act before people, and, at crossbow range, killer's eye is not too horrid. Bad idea, friend, contrary to its name, is a very good idea, and, while it is no shielding shades, it definitely could be just as useful. Sadly, being unselectable and daily, it is decidedly average. Final blow, despite doing good damage, puts you exactly where you least want to be, and that is ungood, making it somewhat subpar to say the least.

Feats

To save my sanity, only feats which are orange or above will be mentioned unless there is a very good reason otherwise.

Heroic Tier

Action Surge

Now, this feat requires being a human (which is sucktastic) or half-elf (which, for a Fast Zap, is not so hot), which makes it kinda weak already. However, if you happen to be a warpriest (and clearly like burning hammers to your nutsack) , this can be used to get some quite substantial bonuses, which can be used to help those tertiaries connect. Thus, overall, take it if you can, but don't jump through any hoops for it.

Alertness

This is very, very red if you are a divine whoracle, so retrain it then. Otherwise, marginally helpful.

Armour of Bahamut

Instead of speaking myself, I will give the floor to my co-authors:

Quote from: DemonLord57
Crits may not happen to you with any reasonable frequency, but they'll happen decently frequently to someone in the party. If you're facing anything with a magic weapon, (especially a vicious or otherwise nasty-critting one) it will hurt a lot when it happens. Getting rid of that much damage could be like a healing surge's worth of healing per crit prevented.
Quote from: veekie
When it does work, it's usually worth a couple of healing surges.

So there you have it. What's with the dragonlove in this edition? Fucking 4E...

Astral Fire

You qualify easily, and, although the damage boost is minor, it is well-worth it for you. Take it.

Backstabber

While this is not as good for you as it is for a rogue, it is still extra damage, and since designers must be fellated, go and take this feat.

Corellon's Grace

The elf god is actually damn good to choose, because free moves for someone who operates at your range is damn useful. That said, unless you're gonna fuel some kind of crazy action nova, this is not anything amazing.

Defensive Mobility

As you are within 5 squares of an opponent most of the time, the odds of having to leave melee and provoke an AOO (no, I don't give a flying fuck what those retard monkeys call them now) are high. As this helps you avoid them, it is good. Ranger or rogue multiclasses do eliminate much of the need for this feat, but a straight cleric Zap should definitely look into it.

Durable

While preventing damage is better than fixing it, this can come in quite handy as a space-filler if you find your surges lacking in number. Good early in the game.

Elven Accuracy

Yet more reason to be an elf right here. On a character that will spend damn near their whole career shooting things, this is very, very handy.

Escape Artist

Note that the colour is conditional upon actually being trained in Acrobatics for whatever reason. The grab escape is niche, but useful.

Far Shot

If you happen to use a longbow (as a ranger multiclass) or a crossbow (as a rogue multiclass), this is definitely for you, as this is quite honestly the best range you'll ever get in your career.

Fast Runner

DO NOT stretch yourself to qualify, but if you do, go for it. It probably means your DM grew half an ounce of sense and decided to let you roll stats and keep decent rolls to compensate for the fact that stats are everything in this game and prereqs are daft.

Ferocious Rebuke

Our Smart brothers love this far more. This is good for the pinball game, but being a tiefling Fast Zap kinda sucks.

Group Insight

Initiative good, any questions? No, seriously, if you are playing a half-elf, take this. TAKE THIS.

Halfling Agility

Now, halflings make good Fast Zaps, and this makes you even harder to hit in combat than you are already. This is a very good thing.

Harmony of Erathis

As worshipping lawyers is clearly a good thing for us, this is good. No, really, this is very, very party-friendly, and they will like you for it.

Hellfire Blood

As this adds to attack rolls, it helps. Being a tiefling Fast Zap blows, though, so it's not so hot.

Human Perseverance

Of course, if you're looking at this, you're a half-elf. This is something which you almost never get bonuses to, making this very, very tasty indeed. Consider it extremely important and useful.

Improved Initiative

This really is an amazing feat, especially for you. I can scarce think of a reason NOT to take this feat. It is a massive bonus by 4E standards, and this, combined with your high Dex, means you WILL go first. Always nice to get thr drop on your enemy.

Jack of All Trades

Although Smart Zaps like this far more, even Fast ones can use it as space-filler. Don't stretch yourself for it, though.

Lethal Hunter

See the earlier entry titled 'Backstabber', but replace instances of 'rogue' with 'ranger'.

Light Step

If your DM is anal about tracking travel times, this is useful. If not, it's not bad filler.

Linguist

Read the entry above, replacing 'tracking travel times' with 'throwing languages you don't know at you' and 'not bad filler' with 'terrible filler'.

Lost in the Crowd

After you take Defensive Mobility, you take this feat. It is a low orange, but seeing as you are a cleric, this may happen to you, and that much AC cannot be ignored. All notes on Defensive Mobility also apply here.

Melora's Tide

This feat can quite honestly double or even triple party endurance, and ensures that you are never below bloodied out of combat. Definitely, definitely worth your time, and worth being the cleric of a hippie goddess for. At least no-one can complain about the lazy hippie... for you are a LASER hippie!

Mounted Combat

Press the Advantage

If you are a whoracle deadly trickster, using assassin's point with this becomes prostitutionally good, since you can epic trick yourself a reload and go crazy. Otherwise, not so hot.

Quick Draw

This can be useful if you use a weapon. And no, this does not stack with Improved Initiative. Fucking 4E...

Skill Focus

If you are a rogue multiclass, you can use this to make up for a poor stat. And steal Orcus' panties more easily, but we don't talk about that.

Skill Training

If you need some diversity, this is worth it. Good filler, really.

Toughness

This is better than Durable, as it actually reduces the odds of you dropping. The benefits are also big, but then again, this is 4E. I need not make another bad fellatio or sex act joke here.

Weapon Focus

I gettest this not. Does this or doesn't this add to [W] damage? If it does, this is a hell of a lot more useful. However, since this is 4E (or the bend-over-bitch-edition), I will assume it doesn't, thus making it mildly useful at best.

Weapon Proficiency

If you are a ranger multiclass Fast Zap who is not an elf for some reason, get the longbow. Everyone else, please ignore.

Paragon Tier

Action Recovery

Pretty darn useful, although you, once again, will not be a human to take this, instead choosing the more sensible half-elf.

Agile Athlete

This is never a bad pick, but it's not stellar either.

Combat Anticipation

While the benefit is small, it's pretty wide-ranging, covering a very large number of attacks you are likely to see. Definitely worth taking.

Danger Sense

More initiative is good. Better initiative is also good. This is actually better than a re-roll, as you pick the highest of the two. Take this, you know you want to.

Defensive Advantage

While this is normally nice to have in general, rogue multiclass builds can seriously call this green. Comboes very nicely with hide in plain sight, even if they know your square.

Devastating Critical

Whoracles love this. Other people just like it. Never bad to have, no matter what build you are.

Distant Shot

You will only be taking this as a rogue multiclass, as everyone else simply doesn't care. This improves your range of effectiveness by quite a bit, and, as you cannot afford to take the penalty, makes you substantially better.

Evasion

This is a true no-brainer.

Fleet-Footed

You take this on everything. You really do. More speed is always good.

Great Fortitude

Since you are dumping Str, and your Con is not all that hot, this is not a bad feat to pick. However, the bonus isn't amazing either. Filler, basically.

Improved Second Wind

To cite veekie:

Quote from: veekie
Again, why not?

Lightning Reflexes

This is again useful, as clerics generally have poor defences. Not as needed as Great Fortitude, but still very helpful.

Mettle

See Evasion above.

Point Blank Shot

As you are a Zap, a large majority of your powers function at a range of 5 squares or less, making this feat very, very useful. Ignoring cover and concealment is helpful in the extreme.

Running Shot

As an elf, you have speed. This helps you use it. Better, right?

Secret Stride

If you're trained in Stealth, this is damn useful for being a cool sniper-type. No reason not to take it, really.

Seize the Moment

If you have been taking earlier advice about being an initiative prostitute, this feat lets you exploit it. For rogue multiclasses, this is green.

Uncanny Dodge

While this is conditional, it's a common condition, and negating the most common benefit of this condition helps. Plus, you qualify easily enough. For divine whoracles, this is very green.

Underfoot

As you are a shooty person, being able to dash through big people (and non-people) is a helpful shtick to have. Worth taking, even as filler.

Epic Tier

Blind-Fight

This is a really easy qualification, and even though you don't melee much (read: at all), it is nice to have nonetheless.

Epic Resurgence

Ahh, finally, a feat we can give some damn about. If you happen to be a whoracle, this is definitely navy, but even if you're not, more encounter powers is very, very nice indeed.

Font of Radiance

This is damn insane. It is basically a sticky laser bomb which happens to light up invisible stuff. With divine whoracle, this becomes incredibly, insanely, ridiculous. Take this, you really, really want to.

Irresistible Flames

Since you do use fire a fair bit, this is useful for those opponents who happen to resist it. Since 20 is a big number here, you can burn away almost, if not all, resistance to your second favourite damage type. Yay!
« Last Edit: September 05, 2008, 08:44:00 AM by Mister_Sinister » Logged


Everything I learned about DnD I learned from Frank Trollman at The Gaming Den... but nowadays, my work space is the New DnD Wiki.

Check them both out!

Mister_Sinister
King Kong
****
Posts: 910


For some people, four walls are three too many.

rasheevkostya@hotmail.com
Email
« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2008, 09:46:16 PM »

The Tough Zap: I Swear Them Beards are Fiber-Optic Cables!

Overview of the Tough Zap

By choosing to focus on Con, you take the build in an interesting direction, opening up the paladin and the warlock. Unlike the Fast Zap, who spend his life zooming around the battlefield while poking people with lasers, you do another way: you are a tank, slower, but grinding things underfoot while never dying. Unlike the Fast Zap, who avoids melee like a third-grade weakling, at least one Tough Zap build can be at least reasonably decent there. Your focus on Con gives you a high Fort defence, not to mention more hit points (although, as ever, WotC decides to make it worthless again). You will be packing heavy armour, of course.

Proper Care and Feeding

Stats

As ever, your priority stat is Wisdom, followed by Charisma. However, this is where things get complex, because your next priority will depend on which way you plan to go. For those wishing to use the paladin multiclass, you prioritise Strength, followed by Constitution, with Dexterity and Intelligence being stats you don't care about. However, for warlock multiclassers, there is a direct switch, as you focus on Constitution, followed by Intelligence, with Dexterity and Strength being stats you don't care about.

Suggested Arrays for Paladin Multiclassers

Standard: Str 13, Dex 11, Con 12, Int 10, Wis 16, Cha 14
Custom: Str 13, Dex 11, Con 10, Int 8, Wis 16, Cha 16
Rolled: Wis->Cha->Str->Con->Dex->Int

Suggested Arrays for Warlock Multiclassers

Standard: Str 10, Dex 11, Con 13, Int 12, Wis 16, Cha 14
Custom: Str 8 Dex 10 Con 13 Wis 16 Int 11 Cha 16 (for Cha-focused warlock)
Str 8 Dex 10 Con 15 Wis 16 Int 11 Cha 14 (for Con-focused warlock)
Rolled: Wis->Cha->Con->Int->Dex->Str

Race

Unlike the Fast Zap, you get some variation in races due to the stat distribution. Thus, almost all the races here have two colours: one for paladin multiclasses, one for warlock multiclasses.

Dragonborn (paladin, warlock)

Continuing their unconditional dragonlove, those scaly (as in, the dragonic equivalent to furry) designers made dragonborn pretty much the best race for paladins (and hence, you multiclass Zaps) out there, boosting your secondary and tertiary stats. The fact you get a boost to Intimidate is actually a good thing, as it is very easy to farm with such builds, and you can do a whole lot worse than farming Intimidate. The breath is something you likely wanna key off Str in this case. The extra surge value is just icing.
For warlock multiclassers, this is a decidedly average choice, as you really don't care much about Str, and would be far better off with a different race. However, the additional Intimidate farming, as well as a Con-based breath weapon, can be darned useful.

Dwarf (paladin, warlock, infernal warlock)

Where paladin multiclasses go, dwarfs aren't bad, boosting your primary and a stat you don't care too much about. The extra surge power and the heavy armour benefits are also ni

Eladrin

Elf

Half-Elf

Halfling

Human

Tiefling (paladin, warlock)

Monster Manual Races

The Art of Correct Multiclass Feats

As a Tough Zap, you have a choice between either Soldier of the Faith or Pact Initiate. Now, as you pretty much have to make this decision by the time you assign stats, it is quite important to understand that Soldier of the Faith creates a very different build, and requires a very radical (and quite unique) play approach for the Zap in general. On the other hand, Pact Initiate takes what you do and makes it better. The choice is yours.

Soldier of the Faith

Skills to pick: Unfortunately, the skill lists of the cleric and the paladin overlap substantially, which means that only Endurance or Intimidate are actually something you couldn't just get off your base class. Since you will be a dragonborn for this, Intimidate is damn powerful here (and is likely the most potent skill in 4E). It also prostitutes your secondary (and a boosted one, at that), so why ever not?

Class feature gained: Divine challenge, even 1/encounter, is incredibly sexy. It matches your lasers for range, does your favourite kind of damage, and can be kept up virtually indefinitely by smacking that opponent every round. Additionally, while it will draw substantial heat, if the opponent cannot move, he cannot engage you, causing your God Laser to slap them every turn. Very solid indeed.

Novice Power Picks

Fearsome Smite (E 1)

Now, this here power is melee. While those who have been reading this from the beginning will note that Zaps do not like going into melee, this certainly makes it worthwhile. It runs off your secondary, does impressive damage compared to cleric encounter powers of the same level, and also farms your whore stat to turn your opponents into drooling combat idiots. While I wouldn't charge in to use it, it can certainly give people who melee you a nasty surprise in the butt.

Invigorating Smite (E 3)

The more I read, the less faith I have in the sanity of 4E's designers, or in their capability for higher brain function. This power proves it, as it gives us yet another 'bag of rats' trick, of which DnD has a long and proud history. Early-on, you can just smack bunnies for health, to ensure that you are never, ever bloodied, by using this power. While it is not amazing, it is useful, especially if you can pick it up early. Oh, and your friends will enjoy you whoring out your Wis to their benefit. The only problem? It's melee.

Righteous Smite (E 3)

Now, while this lacks bag-of-rats-age, veekie and I spent a long time arguing over which of the smites at this level is superior. I am of the opinion that this power is actually superior, as, despite not targeting Will, it has a secondary effect which is always useful, as opposed to being only useful some of the time. However, targeting Will makes the whoracles scream for more, and, when the bag-of-rats is taken into account, this power falls below. However, it is still extremely useful, if melee.

Beckon Foe (E 7)

Now, this contains the words 'Charisma', 'Will' and 'Wisdom'. Normally, we'd be going orgiastic over this, but sadly, we are not, as it requires dragging an opponent into melee, which is not a place even you like to be in for long. However, those who sure play a mean pinball may want to consider it as something useful, possibly for dragging people into other, more melee-inclined, friends.

Benign Transposition (E 7)

Now, this power looks like some kinda funky teleportation charge trick. However, we won't be using it like that. No, instead, we will use it to swap OUT of melee, likely better than we could normally move. This also farms Wis, which makes us happy campers.

Divine Reverence (E 7)

Now, the range and damage are both sucktastic, but the daze is quite significant. If this were not up against searing light, it might have been so much more. The fact it ticks off your secondary doesn't really save it from mediocrity.

Renewing Smite (E 13)

Remember what we said about invigorating smite? This does the bunny farming better, as it is not conditional. It can only heal your friends, though, so bear this in mind.

Hand of the Gods (E 17)

Damn mighty farming here, ladies and gents. The range and damage are unimpressive, but the bonus to attack rolls for allies is ridonculous, and serves as a good time to break out the action points. Since this is up against thunder wave, these is little reason not to take it, although I believe our cousin Slap makes this even more ridonculous.

Here Waits Thy Doom (E 23)

Aside from the somewhat wacky name, this is actually not bad at all. While it suffers from the same flaws as beckon foe, it farms your secondary very nicely, for the right damage, and for those whoracles out there reading this, yes, it targets Will. Happy birthday. For those of us who enjoy their pinball, this is a green.

Sublime Transposition (E 23)

Now, unlike benign transposition, this has a lower range (or presumably so, anyway), and the massive defence boost should not really be needed for whatever you're swapping into the nasty combat you were in. While it has serious farming potential, we were not too impressed.

Brand of Judgment (E 27)

Now, this here power targets Will, all you whoracles, farms Cha, which is also nice for all you scalies, and it is a perfect rescue card for being trapped in melee. Pity that's it's both melee and subpar compared to healing torch.

Deific Vengeance (E 27)

This is something veekie and I like to call 'Counterfire'. It is a potent retalliation, as the +2 is almost certain to make this come close, if not matching, your primary, and the damage is nasty. The fact that is also cripples your opponent, if only for a short time, makes it even better. Definitely worth it, even bearing the competition in mind.

Adept Power Picks

On Pain of Death (D 1)

Now, even though this is up against cascade of light, it can be well worth taking, and almost as good, especially if you intend to provoke the hell out of the target with AoOs. Whoracles should also bear this power in mind, as it targets Will.

Radiant Delirium (D 1)

This deals the damage we like best, and has a surefire daze effect attached, with a small AC penalty being merely icing. This is good to use on a target that has just been challenged, which enables some very nice farming, if you are so inclined. This is in direct competition with cascade of light, though.

Hallowed Circle (D 5)

This is a good supplement to the 'Fortress' strategy, being bigger than consecrated ground, although with a less impressive effect. It is also sustain-free, which is never a bad thing. The damage is damn nice, too. Well-worth considering.

Sign of Vulnerability (D 5)

This is one of the cooler contributions a paladin multiclass can give to a Zap build. Since you are farming hard off radiant damage, increasing almost all the damage you do by 5 points is like adding an additional d8 or so of damage to every power you use, almost. This is not bad at all. However, it does use a secondary and targets Fort, so you may have trouble getting it through.

Crown of Glory (D 9)

This has a nice effect, deals our favourite kind of damage, but unfortunately falls short due to the burst being so unimpressively small. Our cousin Slap would like this far more, and the fact that it requires sustaining doesn't help matters. When we throw in blade barrier as competition... yeah, no contest.

One Stands Alone (D 9)

Now, this here power is designed for ass-saving, giving a powerful condition right when you need it most. Despite being up against blade barrier, this power targets Will (whoracles rejoice) and does our favourite kind of damage. Once again, for use in emergencies only.

Break the Wall (D 15)

This has a nice effect and decent damage, but honestly, seal of warding is ways better.

True Nemesis (D 15)

Another form of counterfire, this can be damn impressive, as 5 squares is the range at which most of your lasers operate. Both initial and secondary target Will AND possess miss effects, which makes this pretty darn reliable, especially against elite or solo monsters.  Although this is up against seal of warding, I believe this to be more impressive in solo combat, but it is a difficult call to make.

Corona of Blinding Radiance (D 19)

Another ass-saver, this has a tiny radius in comparison to fire storm, this power (seemingly) allows you to add your weapon enhancement to the attack roll, which should go a long way to mitigating the fact that it's coming off a secondary. While damage is also weak, the effect is very strong, but the difficulty lies in lining up our targets.

Righteous Inferno (D 19)

Now, the competition (being fire storm) blows this away in every respect but one: the area debuff, which makes it serve as a rogue firing range. I would only recommend this if you really, really need this much farming.

To The Nine Hells With You (D 25)

This is damn good. The range is all-too-familiar now, the damage is good, and it targets Will (for the love of the whoracle). The fact it sets everyone on fire and sets them up to be lasered more is really that awesome. Unfortunately, it is up against seal of binding.

Even Hand of Justice (D 29)

Now, this is damn respectable comparing to the competition, as it can totally trainwreck solo monsters, who now essentially cannot advance the game state until they save. The damage is nice, too, and it targets Will, so whoracles love this power long time.

Acolyte Power Picks

One Heart, One Mind (U 6)

This is highly situational, ranging all the way from amazing to near-worthless, depending on the DM. I see this primarily as an out-of-combat trick designed for social games. What kind of crazy DM uses 4E for a social game, I really wouldn't know.

Wrath of the Gods (U 6)

While this is not as cheese-tastic as master of the hunt, it is still a massive party damage booster, and you get it a whole heap of levels earlier, too. Take this, it is well, WELL worth it.

Angelic Rescue (U 22)

Now, competing with cloud chariot was always gonna be hard, and this power still has a hard time doing it. But at the same time, ignoring its amazing usefulness is a bad call, as it can be used to resue friends, put melee guys where they should be, and it comboes well with the 'Fortress' approach.

Gift of Life (U 22)

Return people to life without a ritual. Need I say more?

Paragon Paths

As with the rogue, there is only one paragon path here which you really give a damn about: the justiciar. The rest give you very, very minor benefits in exchange for a lot of suck which you truly don't require. Just Action is beautiful, except it requires you to be in melee, which is not an ideal thing to have happen. Just Spirit works well in a 'Fortress' strategy, as well as boning over controlling opponents. Just Shelter is a brilliant bit of defence which, for some bizzare reason, does not extend to you.

Powers-wise, just radiance (Justice Laser!) is sadly totally useless to us, as we mark a whole 1 opponent per encounter. Strike me instead is best in a 'Fortress', which is vulnerable to AoEs, but don't soak individual attacks unless they would have been lethal. The capstone, challenge the unjust, has very nice range, does the right damage, and the marking helps (and makes Justice Laser useable as such).

Overall, this path is about as good as the radiant servant: worth taking, but not spectacular.

Pact Initiate

Skills to pick: The warlock and cleric vary by four skills: Bluff, Intimidate, Streetwise and Thievery. In general, Thievery is something you don't want to pick unless you really, really need it, and by the end of heroic tier, it becomes totally subpar, being based on a stat you generally don't care about. Bluff, while being less amazing than Intimidate, does get you into deadly trickster, so it is worth considering on that basis alone.

Class feature gained: Although you do gain access to a pact, its only real benefit is the at-will power that is attached to it (as a per-encounter), as you actually don't have access to the class feature that enables the rest of the pact's benefit and, although the RAW is not clear on this, the benefits of the pact on other powers that you may pick up with multiclassing feats are going to be negligible at best, as you hardly have the Int to power them anyway. The powers you have to pick from are:

Dire Radiance

Despite doing damage of the type we like, this requires Con to hit, which is painfully difficult, especially later-on, and, while the trigger condition is respectable, if you can't make this connect, it will never trigger. Especially as a /encounter power, this is nothing to write home about, although I could see it being used.

Eldritch Blast

Now, you can use your Cha to hit with this, and it still doesn't make it that good. The damage is pretty ineffectual, and the fact that it counts as a basic attack means precisely diddly-squat to you anyway, as you were never gonna be making them anyway. Give this a pass.

Eyebite

This is likely the best choice out of the lot. Although the damage is low, and not of a type we like, its secondary effect has many, many uses, and whoracles love how it targets Will. This remains useful for a damn long time, and can be used to escape from tight spots, too.

Hellish Rebuke

...And this would be the worst. The stat is wrong, the damage is pretty low, and the repeat effect requires you to take damage? Why anyone would want this is beyond me.

Novice Power Picks

Note that, with all these powers, we have assumed that your pact DOES give you the additional benefits printed in the power. If this is not the case, ignore that section.

Diabolic Grasp (E 1)

This is generally unimpressive unless you happen to be the more Con-focused infernal warlock, in which case it has pinballing applications, and is orange. The damage is somewhat unimpressive, too.

Dreadful Word (E 1)

This is a potent enabler for subsequent attacks against Will, and is thus liked by whoracles. Those who took the star pact option will like this a lot more, as the penalty will be a bit bigger, which is even better. The damage is also quite nice, at a very familiar range.

Glow of Ulban (E 1, findable here, on page 5 or 47, depending on how your read it)

This is really damn good. The damage is our favourite type, it targets Will, so whoracles love it, and those who have the star pact get a potent debuff effect on top of that. It is in competition with cause fear and divine glow, though, and is a fair bit narrower. At the same time, Debuff Laser IS green for star pact warlock multiclassers, so it may be worth considering if your party has a lot of save-ends effects (or an orbizard).

Witchfire (E 1)

Dealing our second favourite form of damage is helpful, and the messing up of attack rolls is also nice. If you happen to have the feypact, this is green.  The range is damn big, too.

Fiery Bolt (E 3)

« Last Edit: September 07, 2008, 04:11:14 AM by Mister_Sinister » Logged


Everything I learned about DnD I learned from Frank Trollman at The Gaming Den... but nowadays, my work space is the New DnD Wiki.

Check them both out!

Mister_Sinister
King Kong
****
Posts: 910


For some people, four walls are three too many.

rasheevkostya@hotmail.com
Email
« Reply #3 on: August 20, 2008, 09:46:33 PM »

[reserved]
« Last Edit: September 04, 2008, 09:20:35 PM by Mister_Sinister » Logged


Everything I learned about DnD I learned from Frank Trollman at The Gaming Den... but nowadays, my work space is the New DnD Wiki.

Check them both out!

Mister_Sinister
King Kong
****
Posts: 910


For some people, four walls are three too many.

rasheevkostya@hotmail.com
Email
« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2008, 09:46:48 PM »

And one more for luck.
Logged


Everything I learned about DnD I learned from Frank Trollman at The Gaming Den... but nowadays, my work space is the New DnD Wiki.

Check them both out!

Mister_Sinister
King Kong
****
Posts: 910


For some people, four walls are three too many.

rasheevkostya@hotmail.com
Email
« Reply #5 on: August 21, 2008, 05:36:32 AM »

And one more for overspill, which this is rapidly getting into.
Logged


Everything I learned about DnD I learned from Frank Trollman at The Gaming Den... but nowadays, my work space is the New DnD Wiki.

Check them both out!

Tshern
Clown Prince of Crime
Organ Grinder
*****
Posts: 5726


Aistii valoa auttavasti

miikamartemo@hotmail.com
Email
« Reply #6 on: August 21, 2008, 08:38:26 AM »

Might want to explain the colors you are using. If you need help, you know how to reach me.

Edit: Oh yeah, you are in the Handy Links now.
« Last Edit: August 21, 2008, 08:41:30 AM by Tshern » Logged

Ja vuosia myöhemmin
kalvas kaksikko lattialla motellin tihrustelee,
kun sama keiju katossa leijailee.
Kyselevät: "Mikä päivä nyt on?
Tiedätkö sen?"
Kuiskaten laulaa keiju:
"Tämän elämän viimeinen."

Handy Links
DemonLord57
Barbary Macaque at the Rock of Gibraltar
***
Posts: 164



Email
« Reply #7 on: August 21, 2008, 08:52:38 AM »

I vehemently disagree with so much of this that it cannot be expressed in a timely manner...

The most egregious error you made was misspelling Divine Oracle as Radiant Servant here:
Paragon Paths

Basically, for you, this choice is pretty much a no-brainer: Radiant Servant or Radiant Servant.
Oh, you want Improved Critical? How about on all of your attacks vs. Will? And how about I throw in a ~+4-5 to hit on top? And how about some really nice powers? Is that enough? Probably not.... And never being surprised, for the entire party? And a feat for free? (it doesn't stack according to CS, anyway.... not that I put much faith there) Ah, that seems about right. Just broken enough to be completely ridiculous.

Just the part about getting +4-5 to hit is so ridiculous as to be broken. +1 to hit is good enough to be a Paragon Path Feature, or even a class Feature (see numerous examples, and they're actually good features.) Everything else (including the improved critical on it) is just gravy.
« Last Edit: August 21, 2008, 09:04:15 AM by DemonLord57 » Logged
Mister_Sinister
King Kong
****
Posts: 910


For some people, four walls are three too many.

rasheevkostya@hotmail.com
Email
« Reply #8 on: August 21, 2008, 09:59:09 AM »

OK, DemonLord57. If you feel that there's a lot you disagree with, please voice it! I'm all for input if people feel I am in the wrong on anything.

Now, as for what you're saying about Divine Oracle, alrighty, let's examine it.

Foresight at level 11: Ok, party cannot be surprised, as long as they're all within 5 squares of you. That is good, granted. The double-tapping of initiative is basically a paragon-level feat for free (Danger Sense, IIRC). That is nice.

Prophetic action is just very similar to the Eternal Action, just a lot earlier. Cool too, I agree.

Now, Terrifying Insight is NOT Improved Crit, or, at least, not exactly. As you will astutely note, not all, and, in fact, not even most lasers actually target Will. Many target Reflex instead, which makes this quite plainly useless here. Additionally, if you miss, you end up dazed, even though you do get a reroll. I would rather get more dependable benefits on what I'm trying to farm, as opposed to crazy-good stuff on some of what I'm trying to farm with the chance to screw myself for the coming round. Additionally, you get it MUCH later, and the majority of Will-targeting powers quite simply are not that hot on a Zap.

Now, prophecy of doom is damn sexy, granted, and good omens does give sexy bonuses too, while hammer of fate has the best damn miss effect I've ever seen.

I admit that it is a good alternative, sure, but I cannot dismiss the focused benefits of Radiant Servant here. Radiant Servant gives more synergy, whereas Divine Oracle has a lot of raw power. As a result, I stand by my stance, although I am willing to admit Divine Oracle as an orange to the Radiant Servant's green.

Could you please present the remainder of your arguments against my stuff as presented? I would very much like to hear your input.

@Tshern: I did explain my colours, right at the beginning. Maybe I didn't make it clear enough...
« Last Edit: August 21, 2008, 10:12:13 AM by Mister_Sinister » Logged


Everything I learned about DnD I learned from Frank Trollman at The Gaming Den... but nowadays, my work space is the New DnD Wiki.

Check them both out!

Tshern
Clown Prince of Crime
Organ Grinder
*****
Posts: 5726


Aistii valoa auttavasti

miikamartemo@hotmail.com
Email
« Reply #9 on: August 21, 2008, 10:39:40 AM »

Oh yeah, so it seems. The explanation itself wasn't coloured back then, so I didn't spot it. This looks so much better.
Logged

Ja vuosia myöhemmin
kalvas kaksikko lattialla motellin tihrustelee,
kun sama keiju katossa leijailee.
Kyselevät: "Mikä päivä nyt on?
Tiedätkö sen?"
Kuiskaten laulaa keiju:
"Tämän elämän viimeinen."

Handy Links
DemonLord57
Barbary Macaque at the Rock of Gibraltar
***
Posts: 164



Email
« Reply #10 on: August 21, 2008, 12:08:25 PM »

OK, DemonLord57. If you feel that there's a lot you disagree with, please voice it! I'm all for input if people feel I am in the wrong on anything.
Okay... this is going to be large. See bottom of post.

Now, as for what you're saying about Divine Oracle, alrighty, let's examine it.

Foresight at level 11: Ok, party cannot be surprised, as long as they're all within 5 squares of you. That is good, granted. The double-tapping of initiative is basically a paragon-level feat for free (Danger Sense, IIRC). That is nice.

Prophetic action is just very similar to the Eternal Action, just a lot earlier. Cool too, I agree.

Now, Terrifying Insight is NOT Improved Crit, or, at least, not exactly. As you will astutely note, not all, and, in fact, not even most lasers actually target Will. Many target Reflex instead, which makes this quite plainly useless here. Additionally, if you miss, you end up dazed, even though you do get a reroll. I would rather get more dependable benefits on what I'm trying to farm, as opposed to crazy-good stuff on some of what I'm trying to farm with the chance to screw myself for the coming round. Additionally, you get it MUCH later, and the majority of Will-targeting powers quite simply are not that hot on a Zap.

Now, prophecy of doom is damn sexy, granted, and good omens does give sexy bonuses too, while hammer of fate has the best damn miss effect I've ever seen.

I admit that it is a good alternative, sure, but I cannot dismiss the focused benefits of Radiant Servant here. Radiant Servant gives more synergy, whereas Divine Oracle has a lot of raw power. As a result, I stand by my stance, although I am willing to admit Divine Oracle as an orange to the Radiant Servant's green.
Not too many Will attacks? O rly? Look again.
Encounter 1: Cause Fear
Encounter 3: Command
Encounter 7: Admittedly, you have to choose the suboptimal Break the Spirit here
Encounter 13: Mantle of Glory
Encounter 17: Enthrall
Encounter 23: Healing Torch
Encounter 27: Sunburst
All vs. Will, almost all optimal.

Daily 1: Beacon of Hope
Daily 5: Consecrated Ground doesn't attack
Daily 9: Blade Barrier doesn't attack
Daily 15: Admittedly, I'd choose Purifying Fire over Seal of Warding
Daily 19: Fire Storm doesn't really need to hit. The cool part is the auto-secondary damage every round
Daily 25: Seal of Binding makes you laugh
Daily 29: You don't really need to hit with Astral Storm. The secondary damage is the really cool part.
Less vs. Will here, but less that actually attack/need to hit.

Read Terrifying Insight again. It's making two attacks, not a re-roll. Two attacks = two chances at critting ~19-20. Not exactly, though, it's a little less. Also, being dazed is entirely too light an effect for getting two attacks. How often are you even going to care about using your minor or move action? Not that much. (don't abuse when sustaining powers or when you need to heal, though...) For most values (6-15) needed to hit, this will provide effectively a +4-5 hit bonus. That's wayyy too good. Everything else being sexy is just gravy to this. Can't argue with it being later, though. Except to say that everything else it has is still sexy before that.

Could you please present the remainder of your arguments against my stuff as presented? I would very much like to hear your input.
Okay. It'll be long.

Short ones first:
Feats
Armor of Bahamut - I like this. Crits may not happen to you with any reasonable frequency, but they'll happen decently frequently to someone in the party. If you're facing anything with a magic weapon, (especially a vicious or otherwise nasty-critting one) it will hurt a lot when it happens. Getting rid of that much damage could be like a healing surge's worth of healing per crit prevented. (without having to use the healing surge, which is nice)
Human Perseverance - It's even better than that. It gives +1 to saves, not defenses. There's almost nothing that gives bonuses to saves.
Warrior of the Wild - If you didn't see the errata, they changed the Quarry to last only until the end of your next turn.  Sad For the skill, I suggest Perception, as it makes you into a Radar. Perception is amazingly important, and with your Wisdom and probable racial bonus, you can see *everything* with some training. Also, Disruptive Strike is hilariously awesome if you've got decent Dex.
Lethal Hunter - See above. +1 damage on 2 attacks/enc is not very good.

Class Features
Healer's Lore - This is very good. If you didn't notice, there are a lot of powers with the healing keyword that are tremendously boosted by this. (Consecrated Ground, for example, actually gives 1+Cha+Wis because of this) It gets less important as you level for a lot of powers, (like Healing Word) but it's very useful at the start, possibly even doubling or tripling the healing given, depending on the power.
Healing Word - This is also very good. Just because healing used to be a waste of time doesn't mean it still is. It's now a minor action, which largely goes unused, and so doesn't even take up your actions to do it. In fact, without a healer in the party your effectiveness is reduced by a crapload. (you can't heal in battle too much, nor effectively, and your healing surges are worth less)

Powers
Encounter 1:
Cause Fear - While I won't debate the value of this, keep in mind that they can charge as a standard action, meaning they effectively have double their move speed in distance they can travel.
Divine Glow - This is quite good, IMO. Close blast 3 isn't too far off from Ranged 5, and hitting your allies is very good for you. It's not the same as the 'workhorse', since it applies to all attack rolls, not just those against the target. Wizards like this, for example. You'll only use this when you'll get at least 3-4 enemies/allies in the blast, (not too hard) so it'll be quite nice.  Green, IMO.

Daily 1:
Beacon of Hope - What are you talking about? Healing 5+Wis to everyone in the party is more healing than a healing surge at 1st level! Then you even get +5 to all your other healing for the encounter. In short, (as Borat would say) is very nice. The weakened effect just adds to the awesome, as it reduces damage on the party even further. I think this a lot better than Cascade of Light, but Cascade of Light is still quite good. (deserving of green, I'd say) Green.

Utility 2:
Cure Light Wounds - Meh, it's a free surge. Better than Bless or Divine Aid. Use outside of battle, otherwise it's kind of a waste of a standard action unless you're already screwed. Remember, add +Wis to health regained. Brown.
Sanctuary - I have a fun strategy with this. It's called: Either you or the Defender delays until you are right after the Defender. Then, you cast this as they surround themselves with enemies, preferably ones that can't get away/attack others for some reason or another. He now gets +5 to all defenses against most of the attacks that round. Fun if it works. Brown/Green if you can use it effectively.
Shield of Faith - Takes a standard action to activate, which is a standard action spent not hitting enemies. It's a nice benefit, but 1/day and only +2 to AC. Brown/Green.

Daily 5:
Consecrated Ground - 1+Cha+Wis is a lot of healing. You annoyingly have to move it to the front lines, but it's still a lot of healing. Probably enough to keep the Defender up indefinitely against all the enemies of the encounter with some temporary hp (Sacred Flame.) Combine with Come and Get It to great effect. Also note that the damage is a damage roll, and so benefits from implement damage, Astral Fire, and other stuff that boosts damage rolls. Green.
Spiritual Weapon - This is very nice. 1d10+Wis isn't much for 1 attack, but you get an almost free attack every turn afterwards as well. Also, free CA (+2 to attacks to everyone against this enemy) is very nice, especially for Rogues. Relative importance of stuff is important. 2*(1d10+Wis+other stuff) = 2*(5.5+4+2 implement +1 Astral Fire) = 25 > 3d10+Wis+other stuff = 16.5+4+2+1 = 23.5. 2 attacks of this is better than 1 attack of a 3d10+Wis+stuff attack, and you can make quite a few more than 2 attacks. Damage roll increasing things end up with multiple attacks being much more damaging than they look. Green.
Weapon of the Gods - Just as a note, you can put this on an ally's weapon. I still agree with your rating, though, since it's crap compared to the others on this level.

Encounter 7:
Just as a note, Break the Spirit gets better with Divine Oracle.

Daily 9:
Blade Barrier - You need a higher rating for this. Super Green?

Utility 10:
Mass Cure Light Wounds - This is a lot of healing.... it's all free, too, so it goes a long way towards extending your party endurance. +Wis to each healing adds a lot of extra healing, too. Sum of healing surge values + 5*(Cha+Wis) is a lot of free health... Green.
Shielding Word - +4 to AC is a lot of protection. If they hit ~40% of the time on your Defender, this halves the chance that they'll hit. (and if it's a crit, you'll know, so it's even more than that) You may even know if this will protect them, depending on DM. Completely negating 1 attack/enc is quite nice, though you can't choose which one. Green.

Encounter 13
Mantle of Doom - Will is the weakest defense and blast 5 is quite large. The healing effect isn't as important as the damage, though it is useful if you need it. (only when more than one person needs healing) Remember, add +Wis to healing. Best option this level, don't know if it deserves a green.

Daily 15:
Purifying Fire - I much prefer this to Seal of Warding. This is a 5x5 area centered where you choose w/in 10, Seal of Warding is a 7x7 centered on you (likely to include less enemies). Advantage: This. This does 3d10+Wis+stuff + ongoing 10 fire damage, that does 4d10+Wis+stuff. Advantage: This. This gives 5+Cha+Wis (see, Wis pops up everywhere) health to allies adjacent to enemies that were hit and haven't saved yet (applies for at least one turn), that slows for a turn and gives cover vs. ranged attacks. Advantage: This. Green.

Utility 16:
Cloak of Peace - This seems less useful than Sanctuary to me... Red
Divine Armour - Resist 5 is pretty nice. Think of all the ongoing damage that doesn't even matter anymore, and all of the nearly negated minion attacks! (OAs from minions likely don't matter, either) The problem is that it's 1/day and a standard action to activate. Green.
Hallowed Ground - Nice. Bigger burst than Divine Armour, and a different defensive effect and a more offensive effect. The problem is the same, it's 1/day and a standard action to activate. Green.

Encounter 17:
Thunderous Word - This isn't as terrible as you make it out to be. That's a lot of push, (over a cliff 7 spaces away, maybe?) and shifting is nice. Enthrall is very nice, though. Brown, bordering on green.

Daily 19:
Both of these are green, IMO. They both get the advantage of many damage rolls, but I'd probably take Fire Storm over Knight of Glory, since Knight of Glory has to move adjacent, attacks AC, and has to hit before dealing damage, whereas Fire Storm creates a massive effect area.

Utility 22:
Purify - This is quite a bit better than Sacred Flame.... Remove all effects on all allies within 5 squares can be very good if you're riddled with effects. Brown/Green, depending on how often your party gets hit with lots of effects.
Spirit of Health - This could be useful for a battle you would otherwise lose. Lots of healing available at the cost of party endurance. Brown.

Encounter 23:
Astral Blades of Death - This isn't as good as Enthrall. Or Thunderous Word, IMO. 6d6+Wis+stuff = 21+8+5+3 = 37 vs. 3d6+Wis+stuff = 26.5. 26.5/37 = 71.6% damage. The 26.5 can hit multiple targets, and also pushes, not to mention lets allies shift. Brown.
Healing Torch - Pure win. Super Green.

Daily 25:
Seal of Binding - Super Green.

Encounter 27:
Sunburst - Did you notice that it doesn't spend any party resources to heal and an encounter power? Meaning: Outside battle? Yes --> Full health, no healing surges spent. Besides that, it's nice in battle, since you get 10+Cha+Wis (don't forget the Wis) and a saving throw for your allies in addition to hitting enemies for decent damage. Green.

Phew.
« Last Edit: August 22, 2008, 02:39:17 AM by DemonLord57 » Logged
Mister_Sinister
King Kong
****
Posts: 910


For some people, four walls are three too many.

rasheevkostya@hotmail.com
Email
« Reply #11 on: August 21, 2008, 09:44:06 PM »

As far as Divine Oracle goes, I admit, yes, it is worthwhile. I'll rewrite the paths section to take this into account. However, it does involve playing a Zap quite differently to how it is usually, which doesn't mean it's not good, just very different.

To make the rest of this easier for you to read, I will highlight points of agreement in green, and points of disagreement in red.

Armour of Bahamut: Good point, didn't think about that. Do you believe it should be an orange?

Human Perseverance: It's already green. There is, sadly, no super-green category, although I wonder if there should be.

Warrior of the Wild: Are those idiots TRYING to make anything but rigid concepts unplayable?! In that case, I don't even see the point of being a Fast Zap in general, because a Tough Zap does everything better than you anyway, as they actually get to pick something decent. Good call on Disruptive Strike, but you have to replace a 3rd level power, which is a pretty hard call for a Zap, and it also keys off [W] damage, although that is less of a problem. Even so, with this errata, I basically see no point playing a Fast Zap, like ever, since the Tough Zap just plainly outshoots them at his own game.

Lethal Hunter: Yeah, as above. I'm seriously considering dumping the Fast Zap as a concept wholesale having heard of this idiotic errata. Thoughts?

On healing period: Yes, healing may be better in this edition. Yes, it serves an important role. No, it is not a valid combat strategy. Let me explain precisely why I think so.

Healing in combat effectively uses resources to return the game state to what it had been previously. It is a form of action denial, except that it's reactive, rather than proactive. I would rather that my character denied actions proactively (such as by stunning, or better, KILLING his opponents), as this would achieve the same goal, but it advances, rather than resets, the game state. This is why I rate healing so low throughout - I do not believe that in-combat healing is an effective strategy. That said, you are the second person to argue this point with me, and I am slowly beginning to be convinced.

Divine Glow: What you say is true, I guess - both are within easy charge range in any case. The nonscalarity of it is what bothers me, and catching 4-5 enemies in the blast would be... tricky, considering its range. I can justify it being an orange, but not a green.

Beacon of Hope: See above for my opinion on in-combat healing. Additionally, if your whole party is in close burst 3, I honestly have to wonder how you ended up with the damage you're healing anyway. You're not a frontliner, so you'd probably be better off Rescue Lasering your melee buddy, who can be reached from LOS away. Seriously, I cannot see it.

CLW: You're the second to argue this, and I think you have a point. I still think it sucks as a daily, so I would call it at borderline red.

Sanctuary: One person already convinced me to bump it to borderline red, your idea makes it solid orange. That's all the credit I'm willing to give it.

Shield of Faith: My main reason for making it green is that it affects your entire party, at a range which could realistically encapsulate them all. Once again, you are the second person to mention this, and thus, borderline orange seems fine.

Consecrated Ground: Are you my advisor's alter-ego or something?! He said pretty much the same thing. For a Zap especially, I think you're both right - he had argued that it creates a powerful fortress-type effect to fight from. Green it is.

Spiritual Weapon: Again, you and my advisor are in agreement. I cannot argue with two sources of logic without looking like an idiot, so granted.

Break the Spirit: I will note this in the guide, but I don't believe it deserves a rating change. The penalty is not major enough to matter, nor long-term enough for me to care about. Searing Light, while less damaging, is much, much nastier.

Blade Barrier: Oh yeah. Need to look into getting a super-green rating.

Mass CLW: Again, my disdain of in-combat healing is what keeps this down, but you do make a very convincing argument. I still believe it to be good, but not a solid green. Borderline orange?

Shielding Word: You do make a valid point here, but once again, I don't believe it to be a solid green, due to the short duration. Again, borderline orange?

Mantle: Agreed. It may be relatively good, but is not absolutely so.

Purifying Fire: Points taken. Green it is.

Cloak: Heck, agreed. Never liked it much anyway.

Divine Armour + Hallowed Ground: I think they are both green-borderline-orange having heard your arguments.

Thunderous Word: I would agree, but a push effect is both highly conditional (who says there'll be cliffs anyway?), and something that the rest of your party have been doing for so many levels already, I don't really see a need to try and imitate them now, especially when you have a much, much better choice at this level. I can justify orange-borderline red, but certainly no more.

On the 19s: Good point, though Astral Fire makes Fire Storm even more good. I would say it deserves green, and the Knight can stay orange.

Purify: I see it as a brown. I cannot imagine a situation in 4E where you would have enough save-effects active at one time to warrant this. Orange.

Spirit of Health: While you and my advisor have both told me to reconsider this as useful, I cannot see how slow, in-combat healing which forces you all to clump around something can be anything other than a liability. This is orange, at best, in my view, and even then, I'm pretty unconvinced.

Astral Blades: Point taken, especially when contrasted with Healing Torch at the same level.

Sunburst: Yeah, I guess you do have a point there. Will change.

I will make these changes as soon as I can, which will probably be at work today.
Logged


Everything I learned about DnD I learned from Frank Trollman at The Gaming Den... but nowadays, my work space is the New DnD Wiki.

Check them both out!

DemonLord57
Barbary Macaque at the Rock of Gibraltar
***
Posts: 164



Email
« Reply #12 on: August 22, 2008, 01:17:59 AM »

Armour of Bahamut: Good point, didn't think about that. Do you believe it should be an orange?
I actually think green would be more suited for it. I think it's one of the best Channel Divinities right now, even if that doesn't say too much.

Warrior of the Wild: Are those idiots TRYING to make anything but rigid concepts unplayable?! In that case, I don't even see the point of being a Fast Zap in general, because a Tough Zap does everything better than you anyway, as they actually get to pick something decent. Good call on Disruptive Strike, but you have to replace a 3rd level power, which is a pretty hard call for a Zap, and it also keys off [W] damage, although that is less of a problem. Even so, with this errata, I basically see no point playing a Fast Zap, like ever, since the Tough Zap just plainly outshoots them at his own game.

Lethal Hunter: Yeah, as above. I'm seriously considering dumping the Fast Zap as a concept wholesale having heard of this idiotic errata. Thoughts?
Well, I still like Elf a lot.. and besides, Disruptive Strike + decent Dex = amusing. I think you should be carrying around a Longbow regardless, as it has extremely long range (40 squares?!) and your Dex isn't terrible. (don't bother getting a good one, though, just a really cheap one, with 'cheap' changing in meaning as you level) I definitely think Disruptive Strike is worth a trade of your encounter 3, especially because your at-wills are so nice. I'd like to use Sacred Flame as much as possible to keep the Defender alive, (very nice # of temp hps, compare to Paladin's Bolstering Strike. Sacred Flame can negate most of 1 hit ~= 2 attacks) and the ability to use a power as an immediate action (one which will have a very nice chance of stopping their attack if it hits, btw) leaves me free to use more Sacred Flame/Lance of Faith. It's no excuse for having a bad Con, but having a decent one instead of an awesome one is fine, I think. In any case, I think that the only reason you'd ever want good Dex is if you wanted to be effective with Ranger powers. I still think that Ranger is a good multiclass, if only because nothing else is too good, and I still personally prefer Elf to Dwarf (faster movement, shifting on difficult terrain, and the awesome Elven Accuracy are all good reasons.)

On healing period: Yes, healing may be better in this edition. Yes, it serves an important role. No, it is not a valid combat strategy. Let me explain precisely why I think so.

Healing in combat effectively uses resources to return the game state to what it had been previously. It is a form of action denial, except that it's reactive, rather than proactive. I would rather that my character denied actions proactively (such as by stunning, or better, KILLING his opponents), as this would achieve the same goal, but it advances, rather than resets, the game state. This is why I rate healing so low throughout - I do not believe that in-combat healing is an effective strategy. That said, you are the second person to argue this point with me, and I am slowly beginning to be convinced.
The thing is that healing barely uses up your actions now. Having your minor action available will not enable you to stun or kill your opponents any better most of the time, so you're not wasting anything and 1) letting your teammates stay alive and fighting without them wasting their actions on second winds, (important, as you not only aren't wasting anything, you're effectively granting actions to your party members that either would've been spent healing themselves... or possibly unconscious) and 2) getting better-than-second-wind value out of your party's healing surges, adding to party endurance.

I'd say that's good.

Divine Glow: What you say is true, I guess - both are within easy charge range in any case. The nonscalarity of it is what bothers me, and catching 4-5 enemies in the blast would be... tricky, considering its range. I can justify it being an orange, but not a green.
Non-scaling isn't a problem, you'll be trading it out when you get your level 13 encounter power. (I think you would, anyway)

Beacon of Hope: See above for my opinion on in-combat healing. Additionally, if your whole party is in close burst 3, I honestly have to wonder how you ended up with the damage you're healing anyway. You're not a frontliner, so you'd probably be better off Rescue Lasering your melee buddy, who can be reached from LOS away. Seriously, I cannot see it.
This is almost like Mass Cure Light Wounds right now in terms of the healing, except that it only affects everyone in close burst 3 immediately, which might not be everyone, (still likely to get at least 2 allies, which will likely be 27 health restored) but you can also get the +5 to all other healing powers (like the minor action Healing Words... = 1/4 health+1d6+Wis+5 = 1/4 health+12.5 ~= 17.5-19.5, which makes it almost a full heal at 1st level, up from a 1/4 restoring healing surge)

CLW: You're the second to argue this, and I think you have a point. I still think it sucks as a daily, so I would call it at borderline red.
I was just saying I think it's more useful (since it has use all the time) than some others. Looking it over again, I guess I have to agree with red, actually.

Sanctuary: One person already convinced me to bump it to borderline red, your idea makes it solid orange. That's all the credit I'm willing to give it.
That's fine. I just think it can be useful, and it's an encounter power, so you get to use it quite a bit more than others.

Break the Spirit: I will note this in the guide, but I don't believe it deserves a rating change. The penalty is not major enough to matter, nor long-term enough for me to care about. Searing Light, while less damaging, is much, much nastier.
Whoops, didn't mean to suggest a rating change. Unless you have really good Cha, it's going to be almost strictly worse than blinded, so I agree. Just pointing out it might be more useful if you're going into DO. Still don't know if I'd pick it over Searing Light.

Blade Barrier: Oh yeah. Need to look into getting a super-green rating.
Try 5 colors instead of 3. It's easier to put into: (crap, bad, okay, good, awesome) than it is to put into (crap, okay, awesome) Perhaps purple for bad and sky blue for awesome.

Mass CLW: Again, my disdain of in-combat healing is what keeps this down, but you do make a very convincing argument. I still believe it to be good, but not a solid green. Borderline orange?
Okay, but I still think it's better than most level 10 utilities in most classes.

Shielding Word: You do make a valid point here, but once again, I don't believe it to be a solid green, due to the short duration. Again, borderline orange?
Meh, I think of it like a 1/encounter either negate their attack or halve the chance of actually hitting after they've hit.

Mantle: Agreed. It may be relatively good, but is not absolutely so.
Yeah, and remember that you could always choose a lower level encounter power if you like one of those more than the ones at the level you're at.

Divine Armour + Hallowed Ground: I think they are both green-borderline-orange having heard your arguments.
That's fine, I don't like the standard action activation, as it makes it much less valuable than one that doesn't have such an action cost.

Thunderous Word: I would agree, but a push effect is both highly conditional (who says there'll be cliffs anyway?), and something that the rest of your party have been doing for so many levels already, I don't really see a need to try and imitate them now, especially when you have a much, much better choice at this level. I can justify orange-borderline red, but certainly no more.
Meh. I think the push can be quite useful, as you can move any enemy up to 3+Cha away in a 45 degree arc. (diagonally right, diagonally left, and straight away at any move) Even if you don't want to push, (you don't have to) you give all allies in a close blast 5 the ability to shift 1, and you don't have to hit for that. Shifting is good.

On the 19s: Good point, though Astral Fire makes Fire Storm even more good. I would say it deserves green, and the Knight can stay orange.
That's fine. I don't like the attacking AC (not to mention only against one opponent) part of the Knight.

Purify: I see it as a brown. I cannot imagine a situation in 4E where you would have enough save-effects active at one time to warrant this. Orange.
I honestly don't have enough experience to say anything about it, I just saw it as possible. For example, an AoE with a nasty effect (daze maybe?) on it hitting 3 of your teammates, I'd like to have this instead of giving 1 ally a 55% chance of getting rid of it if I manage to hit, which is ~50% chance.

Spirit of Health: While you and my advisor have both told me to reconsider this as useful, I cannot see how slow, in-combat healing which forces you all to clump around something can be anything other than a liability. This is orange, at best, in my view, and even then, I'm pretty unconvinced.
I see it as orange, simply because 1/4 of someone's health/round is not slow. It's slower than some things you can do, but if you're losing 1/4 of your health every round, you're going to need a lot of help, and this is one of those things that would help, as it'll let you get craploads more health than you normally have available in any given encounter. I don't like that it hurts daily endurance, though. (since they're not getting your Healing Word and Healer's Lore bonus on their healing surges) I'd prefer simply having encounter powers that let them heal when necessary, or even heal without using healing surges or having to target enemies (Sunburst is nice.) Also, you don't need to clump up at all. Only one person can gain the benefit each round, so only one person even needs to be near it to gain the full benefit of the power, and you won't even necessarily need the healing each round. Think of it more like a first aid station.

You should listen to your advisor, he sounds like he knows what he's talking about (since he agrees with me.... and I'm extremely modest.) But more seriously, getting a solid guide on Clerics should be good. Also, it'd be interesting to include a section multiclassers multiclassing into Cleric should get. The most obvious ones would be Wizard, (extremely obvious) Fighter, Paladin, and Feylock. I admittedly haven't looked too deeply at the Paladin, though. Wizards will often want to take DO, (which is even better for them, since they have even less use for their minor action most of the time) possibly pick up Enthrall, and pick up Seal of Binding for the lulz. Some Fighters may want to even paragon multiclass into Cleric, obviously picking up Righteous Brand, but they might also want to go for Warpriest, which is nice for them. They all like both Divine Power and Holy Wrath, as well as Blade Barrier 'coz it's awesome. An especially nice combo is for an off-tank Fighter wielding a Glaive, who has HBO and Polearm Gamble, paragon multiclassing for the awesome Righteous Brand on every OA, (which will be a lot) also picking up the two above and some other good stuff (like Mass Cure Light Wounds, free healing is good for everyone, but especially a Defender) Feylocks will like DO.
« Last Edit: August 22, 2008, 02:56:15 AM by DemonLord57 » Logged
tsuyoshikentsu
Bi-Curious George
****
Posts: 468


tsuyoshikentsu
WWW Email
« Reply #13 on: August 22, 2008, 07:15:04 PM »

Read the Star Pact article.  Note the Paragon Path.  Also the feats.  See what you think.
Logged

Anyway, this cake is great!  It's so delicious and moist.

Stalk me on Twitter!  Validate my existence!  Maybe Even Get An Optimization Tip!
Mister_Sinister
King Kong
****
Posts: 910


For some people, four walls are three too many.

rasheevkostya@hotmail.com
Email
« Reply #14 on: August 22, 2008, 10:51:18 PM »

The amount of info I have to process and the amount of editing I have to do of this article is monumental. I will likely not have it all done until at the very least the end of this weekend, possibly even not then. So I have listened, and will be making a lot of changes, but they may take time.

@Tsuyo: Oh. Yeah. Baby. Big Grin
Logged


Everything I learned about DnD I learned from Frank Trollman at The Gaming Den... but nowadays, my work space is the New DnD Wiki.

Check them both out!

veekie
Organ Grinder
*****
Posts: 9034


WARNING: Homing Miko


« Reply #15 on: August 23, 2008, 01:03:21 PM »

The amount of info I have to process and the amount of editing I have to do of this article is monumental. I will likely not have it all done until at the very least the end of this weekend, possibly even not then. So I have listened, and will be making a lot of changes, but they may take time.

@Tsuyo: Oh. Yeah. Baby. Big Grin

I just added several pages more typing for him off on msn RE viable multiclass builds and stuff(though I see a lot of the comments on the existing writeup are along the same lines). There blows the weekend for him. 

EDIT: Just seen the star warlock article, sinister, theres gonna be a couple more additions to the multiclassing options section I think.
« Last Edit: August 23, 2008, 02:17:48 PM by veekie » Logged

The mind transcends the body.
It's also a little cold because of that.
Please get it a blanket.

I wish I could read your mind,
I can barely read mine.

"Skynet begins to learn at a geometric rate. It becomes self-aware at 2:14 a.m. Eastern time, August 29th. At 2:15, it begins rolling up characters."

"Just what do you think the moon up in the sky is? Everyone sees that big, round shiny thing and thinks there must be something round up there, right? That's just silly. The truth is much more awesome than that. You can almost never see the real Moon, and its appearance is death to humans. You can only see the Moon when it's reflected in things. And the things it reflects in, like water or glass, can all be broken, right? Since the moon you see in the sky is just being reflected in the heavens, if you tear open the heavens it's easy to break it~"
-Ibuki Suika, on overkill

To sumbolaion diakoneto moi, basilisk ouranionon.
Epigenentheto, apoleia keraune hos timeis pteirei.
Hekatonkatis kai khiliakis astrapsato.
Khiliarkhou Astrape!

There is no higher price than 'free'.

"I won't die. I've been ordered not to die."
Mister_Sinister
King Kong
****
Posts: 910


For some people, four walls are three too many.

rasheevkostya@hotmail.com
Email
« Reply #16 on: August 24, 2008, 09:48:36 PM »

Nice to see you on here, veek! This, by the way, is my advisor, whose opt-fu is only exceeded by his awesomeness.

As far as the editing is concerned, I have about five hours at work I could fill with this stuff, but it will likely not even be half of the required edits. I also have to think about formatting, perhaps even dedicating a post to each strategy: the Fast Zap, the Tough Zap and the newly-discovered (and oddly efficient) Smart Zap. Also, Radiant Servant is now made of fail, as the new warlock paragon path totally blows it out of the water.
Logged


Everything I learned about DnD I learned from Frank Trollman at The Gaming Den... but nowadays, my work space is the New DnD Wiki.

Check them both out!

brislove
That monkey with the orange ass cheeks
****
Posts: 240



Email
« Reply #17 on: August 25, 2008, 05:03:02 PM »

Quote
Human Perseverance

You will, of course, only take this as a half-elf, as human Zaps are shockingly shocking and suck much penis. However, getting all defences amped like that is damn good, making your Tough Zap even tougher, or, if you went with a Fast Zap, a little more durable.

This feat does not effect defenses. it gives a bonus to saving throws. as in you need a 9 to save before other modifiers instead of a 10.

Also. Ritual caster isn't a bad class ability, rituals are useful. expensive sure, but they are a party effort primarily, and sometimes they are good solutions to problems. Like scrying, scrying is good, raise dead is good, floating disc can be good if your DM cares about the weight of things. Also its a free, but not as useful as the others.

Also, how is it possible that healing word isn't green? You are in the wrong edition my friend, healing is good in 4e. The problem with healing in 3.5 was twofold. 1) it didn't keep up with the damage. in 4e healing word is usually healing up at least 2-3 hits from enemies.
2) Healing took up your standard action, and prevented you from doing large amounts of damage.

When healing is a minor action, or part of another action (such as an effect of a power) Healing becomes GOOD.

In 4e healing is nearly always worthwhile. health out races damage in 4e, healing scales very well (1/4 HP+x amount). If an ability heals more then 3-4 actions of damage will deal it's worth a standard as you are trading your standard action for 34 enemy standard actions.

Please look outside your paradigm, healing is good this edition, very good.
Logged
awaken DM golem
Organ Grinder
*****
Posts: 3294


PAO'd my Avatar


« Reply #18 on: August 25, 2008, 05:34:42 PM »

Minor Grumble : The filter I'm on, wouldn't let me see this, due to excessive filter activating. And then it did. Did you un-dick it ??

Cleric + Rituals, are almost entirely DM fiat, unless there's a Wizard in the party.

Rituals are somewhat necessary, and a few tricks are in there. I agree they suck, but 8 to 10 levels later they become ~cheap.

MS - you got a link to Frank's stuff?  I figure it's at least entertaining, and likely much better ...
« Last Edit: August 25, 2008, 05:36:48 PM by awaken DM golem » Logged
Mister_Sinister
King Kong
****
Posts: 910


For some people, four walls are three too many.

rasheevkostya@hotmail.com
Email
« Reply #19 on: August 25, 2008, 07:53:15 PM »

I have read some, but not all, of Frank's stuff relating to 4E. I am in the process of rewriting this thing, but it's taking a lot more time than I would like, as I have reanalysed things substantially since then. Massive reformatting later, this should hopefully be better. Sorry about the wait.
Logged


Everything I learned about DnD I learned from Frank Trollman at The Gaming Den... but nowadays, my work space is the New DnD Wiki.

Check them both out!

Pages: 1 2 3 »
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2008, Simple Machines LLC Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!