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Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 03:24 PM
As many of you know, I'm currently planning out potential characters for an upcoming roleplay next spring, as evidenced in my previous thread "Building a Spellsword," which can be found here (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=110304).

Not wanting to be married to any one concept, I'm looking for information on another character type that I've been interested in playing. I don't have a definite build to tinker with this time, but I do know a few things that I want for this character.


The character will be using the same "15 Down" stats of the spellsword build, with a 15, 14, 13, 12, 11 and 10 to place in his stats as he chooses.
The character MUST be a dwarf
The character MUST worship Moradin. This means that any prestige classes that require a specific deity besides Moradin are not allowed.
I want this character to have at least a few levels of cleric and fighter.
I plan on the character dressing in fullplate, using a heavy steel shield and a dwarven waraxe as weapons.
I'd like it if he was able to take Craft (armorsmithing) and Craft (weaponsmithing) as well, and maybe even the Craft Magic Arms and Armor feat so he could make his own magic weapons and armor, which fits in well for a Moradin worshipper.
I want the True Believer feat in there somewhere, so the character can wield the Axe of Ancestral Virtue and the Shield of the Resolute, relics of Moradin.
I don't know what prestige classes, if any, that I can use with this that will make sense from a roleplaying perspective.


This character is much more based on a roleplaying concept than my previous one. In our current campaign, which has come to a close for me, but will have its finale on Friday that I'll learn about via e-mail, the dwarven race has recently lost almost everything. Their homeland has been overrun by fearsome constructs known as the Clockwork Servants, at the behest of a terrifying god calling itself "The Clockwork Spirit." Those dwarves not fortunate enough to escape or be killed were taken and made into Clockwork Speakers (think the Borg). By the end of the campaign, the dwarves will be refugees, a race without a homeland or a leader, their spirits broken.

That's where my character comes in. My character (the tentative name for him will be Ulek Wintervein), was a dwarf prince who was spirited away with the High King when the Clockwork Servants attacked the dwarf capitol. Too young to be a combatant, Ulek was forced to stay on the sidelines while his father was slain be a half-fiend general in the final battle against the Clockwork Servants (this half-fiend was killed by my paladin character). Ulek starts out as angry at the state the dwarves are in after the war. They are homeless and seemingly abandoned by all, their former lands either still under Clockwork occupation, or annexed by the Kingdom of Armorica, or the recently emerged United Empire in the aftermath of the war. He dreams of restoring the Dwarf Kingdoms to their former glory, and then some. Then he recieves visions from Moradin that inspire him to lead his people in reclaiming what is rightfully theirs and making the dwarf race a power again in Thule.

Basically, he'd be a sort of dwarven Joan of Arc.

How would I go about building this fellow? What would be the ideal mix of classes? What prestige classes fit well with the concept? Would something like this still be workable in a high-combat campaign? Any other questions? Comments? Concerns? Criticisms? Flames?

arkol
2009-05-04, 03:35 PM
Battlesmith. Check it out in Races of Stone.

Zaq
2009-05-04, 03:52 PM
Do you like Incarnum? Ironsoul Forgemaster (From, as you might guess, Magic of Incarnum) is a very flavorful class that fits what you mentioned very well. A Lawful Neutral or Neutral Good Incarnate would fit Moradin pretty well.

Just stay away from Soulborn. Even though the dwarf soulborn substitution levels are all Moradin this and warhammer that, soulborn is a Trap with a capital NO.

Eldariel
2009-05-04, 04:13 PM
Are you sure you want those Fighter-levels? Cleric is a martial class too; you needn't dip Fighter to be a warrior. Also, don't you use adaptation? 'Cause basically all Deity-specific classes have Adaptation and Moradin would work fine for Ordained Champion - some order of Moradin's Hammers (there's the Hammer of Moradin (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/ex/20040305a)-class too, but you can't enter it before level 8 really, and it's not a casting class so the "Cleric"-aspect is kinda lost; still, Handbook (http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=607258) exists for making them if you're interested). Because Ordained Champion sounds to be exactly what you want.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 04:15 PM
Firstly, I don't have Magic of Incarnum, and secondly, I doubt my DM would approve that supplement. I'd appreciate it if I didn't have to use very divergent books like Magic of Incarnum, Tome of Battle or Tome of Magic, or campaign setting specific books like the Forgotten Realms sourcebooks. I have the Player's Handbook, most of the Complete Series (including Complete Divine and Complete Champion.) I don't own Races of Stone, but I can check it out from the library. I also cannot use stuff from the Book of Exalted Deeds.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 04:18 PM
Are you sure you want those Fighter-levels? Cleric is a martial class too; you needn't dip Fighter to be a warrior. Also, don't you use adaptation? 'Cause basically all Deity-specific classes have Adaptation and Moradin would work fine for Ordained Champion - some order of Moradin's Hammers (there's the Hammer of Moradin (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/ex/20040305a)-class too, but you can't enter it before level 8 really, and it's not a casting class so the "Cleric"-aspect is kinda lost; still, Handbook (http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=607258) exists for making them if you're interested).

I really only want one fighter level for Martial Weapon proficiencies. A Dwarven Waraxe may not be an exotic weapon for a dwarf, but clerics aren't proficient with it, and taking the War domain (which I don't think I can do with Moradin anyway) wouldn't give me proficiency with it either (Moradin's favored weapon being the warhammer.)

Eldariel
2009-05-04, 04:29 PM
I really only want one fighter level for Martial Weapon proficiencies. A Dwarven Waraxe may not be an exotic weapon for a dwarf, but clerics aren't proficient with it, and taking the War domain (which I don't think I can do with Moradin anyway) wouldn't give me proficiency with it either (Moradin's favored weapon being the warhammer.)

Wait, you want to be a Cleric of Moradin who doesn't use Moradin's favoured weapon?! Blasphemy! Eh, anyways, Martial Weapon Proficiency is also a feat. If you want Dwarven War Axe, you can surely pick it up as a feat. I wouldn't bother soiling my feet in Fighter-levels. As a note, Ordained Champion allows trading domain granted powers for Fighter-feats. If you were a Cleric 4/Ordained Champion of Moradin..., you could trade the Domain Granted Power of anything for Martial Weapon Prof. That's what I'd do.

Of course, if the adaptation doesn't fly, you couldn't take Ordained Champion. Battlesmith is like Hammer of Moradin - it gains no spells. Too bad you can't pick up Ruby Knight Vindicator - it'd again fit straight in the eye with adaptation for Moradin. Frankly, you could consider Sacred Exorcist, Contemplative, Divine Disciple or another generic Cleric PrC since without adaptation, there's really no martially minded caster PrC for Clerics of Moradin.

Fhaolan
2009-05-04, 05:38 PM
Having read other threads you've posted to... this one's going to make you giggle.... why not a Paladin? :smallsmile:

AgentPaper
2009-05-04, 05:57 PM
Are clerics even allowed to use axes by RAW? I mean, nobody really pays too much attention to that specific part, at least that I know of, but I'm pretty sure they can't use swords or axes. Or maybe they just don't get proficiency in them? Eh.

Anyways, 1-2 fighter levels are a solid choice. More than that will make him significantly less powerful for no major return, but they won't make him explode in uselessness, like some would lead you to believe. The first level nets you full proficiencies and a feat, and another level gives you another feat, which is not to be underestimated. 3 levels gets you nothing, but if you go for 4 levels, that brings your BAB up just high enough to get you 4 iterative attacks at level 20, and another feat. You'd probably (definitely) be better off with 2 more cleric levels instead, to get 9th level spells, but it's there.

tyckspoon
2009-05-04, 06:02 PM
Are clerics even allowed to use axes by RAW? I mean, nobody really pays too much attention to that specific part, at least that I know of, but I'm pretty sure they can't use swords or axes. Or maybe they just don't get proficiency in them? Eh.


"Bludgeoning Weapons only" went out with 2nd Edition. Modern clerical weapon restrictions are indeed only by proficiency; they're normally only proficient with Simple weapons, and maybe their deity's favored weapon if they take the War domain.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 06:02 PM
Are clerics even allowed to use axes by RAW? I mean, nobody really pays too much attention to that specific part, at least that I know of, but I'm pretty sure they can't use swords or axes. Or maybe they just don't get proficiency in them? Eh.

Anyways, 1-2 fighter levels are a solid choice. More than that will make him significantly less powerful for no major return, but they won't make him explode in uselessness, like some would lead you to believe. The first level nets you full proficiencies and a feat, and another level gives you another feat, which is not to be underestimated. 3 levels gets you nothing, but if you go for 4 levels, that brings your BAB up just high enough to get you 4 iterative attacks at level 20, and another feat. You'd probably (definitely) be better off with 2 more cleric levels instead, to get 9th level spells, but it's there.

I specifically checked that. I believe that clerics can use simple weapons, of which the warhammer is one, but not martial weapons, which is what waraxes are for dwarves. Really I was only planning on taking one or two fighter levels, if any at all.

EDIT: Ninja'd. :smallamused:

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 06:05 PM
Having read other threads you've posted to... this one's going to make you giggle.... why not a Paladin? :smallsmile:

Wondering when someone'd ask this. :smallamused:

Basically because I played a paladin in the last game, and I wanna break out of my "paladin-only" habit. I know a cleric isn't really moving too far out of that, but it's at least a start.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 06:07 PM
Wait, you want to be a Cleric of Moradin who doesn't use Moradin's favoured weapon?! Blasphemy! Eh, anyways, Martial Weapon Proficiency is also a feat. If you want Dwarven War Axe, you can surely pick it up as a feat. I wouldn't bother soiling my feet in Fighter-levels. As a note, Ordained Champion allows trading domain granted powers for Fighter-feats. If you were a Cleric 4/Ordained Champion of Moradin..., you could trade the Domain Granted Power of anything for Martial Weapon Prof. That's what I'd do.

Of course, if the adaptation doesn't fly, you couldn't take Ordained Champion. Battlesmith is like Hammer of Moradin - it gains no spells. Too bad you can't pick up Ruby Knight Vindicator - it'd again fit straight in the eye with adaptation for Moradin. Frankly, you could consider Sacred Exorcist, Contemplative, Divine Disciple or another generic Cleric PrC since without adaptation, there's really no martially minded caster PrC for Clerics of Moradin.

What are some generic martially minded caster PrCs then? I know Contemplative is interesting, having read it before, but it seems more like something for a Buddhist monk-type character, rather than a Joan of Arc-like warrior priest.

What's a Divine Disciple?

RagnaroksChosen
2009-05-04, 06:23 PM
I would suggest

Cleric 1/ Dwarf Paragon 1/ cleric 4/ warpriest + some other prcs

Dwarf paragon sounds like it would fit I would suggest battlesmith from ROTW as well. (asking you dm to change the hammerness to Axeness)


Also why are you going with the Axe theme rather then the more traditional hammer theme?

tyckspoon
2009-05-04, 06:28 PM
Hm. Frankly, most of the good martial spellcaster PrCs are for arcane gishes. You could try Warpriest, perhaps; it'd have pretty much the same effect as taking a couple of Fighter levels (a little rough on your skillpoints, but you could get in after level 7. D10 HD, Martial weapon profs, half casting advancement, full BAB, some abilities based around being an inspiring figure to your friends. Most of 'em can be covered pretty well by Cleric spells, tho. Mechanically a poor choice, fits your story nicely.)

Also, your backstory sounds a heck of a lot like a Favored Soul to me. I wouldn't like trying to do it on the 15-down scheme you've described, since it really wants like 3-4 16's (casting stat, Strength, Con at a minimum for pretending to be a melee fighter) but that's not all that different from the stat dependency you'd have in your current setup.

Hurlbut
2009-05-04, 06:35 PM
I specifically checked that. I believe that clerics can use simple weapons, of which the warhammer is one, but not martial weapons, which is what waraxes are for dwarves. Really I was only planning on taking one or two fighter levels, if any at all.

EDIT: Ninja'd. :smallamused:Warhammer's a martial weapon, not simple :smallsigh:

Greg
2009-05-04, 06:37 PM
The dwarven fighter 1st-level substitution level could be worth a look. You get a d12HD, and weapon focus for a few axes.

Suboptimal maybe, but it seems to fit with your concept.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 06:40 PM
I would suggest

Cleric 1/ Dwarf Paragon 1/ cleric 4/ warpriest + some other prcs

Dwarf paragon sounds like it would fit I would suggest battlesmith from ROTW as well. (asking you dm to change the hammerness to Axeness)


Also why are you going with the Axe theme rather then the more traditional hammer theme?

Because the Axe of Ancestral Virtue, one of Moradin's relics, is a dwarven waraxe, rather than a warhammer. Seems rather impractical when you think about it but dwarven waraxes ARE the signature weapon of dwarves. If you don't have one, you're not dwarfy enough!

Also I had originally planned this to be a dwarf cleric of Heironeous who uses Hieroneous's traditional weapon of the battleaxe rather than the more recently used longsword. As the concept evolved into what it is now, I dropped the Heironeous worshipping bit, since my previous character was a Heironean paladin and a dwarf who wants to rule his people probably isn't going to attract as many dwarves to follow him if he doesn't worship the main dwarf god.

AgentPaper
2009-05-04, 06:55 PM
I've always seen the hammer as basically the ultimate symbol of dwarfiness. I would suggest asking your DM if he could homebrew the axe to be a warhammer instead, to make it more dwarfy and to fit with your character, who is a dwarf (hammer!) who worships Moradin (hammer!) and is a blacksmith (hammer!) who loves hammers. (hammer!)
(hammer!)
(hammer!)

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 07:01 PM
I dunno...that might end up risking "Stop! Hammertime!" jokes.

Studoku
2009-05-04, 07:10 PM
I've always seen the hammer as basically the ultimate symbol of dwarfiness. I would suggest asking your DM if he could homebrew the axe to be a warhammer instead, to make it more dwarfy and to fit with your character, who is a dwarf (hammer!) who worships Moradin (hammer!) and is a blacksmith (hammer!) who loves hammers. (hammer!)
(hammer!)
(hammer!)
Stop. Hammertime.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 07:12 PM
I knew it!

AgentPaper
2009-05-04, 07:22 PM
Eh, fine then, but let me axe you a question. Which do you prefer, old references or bad puns? :smallwink:

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 07:26 PM
Bad puns for me any day!

Eldariel
2009-05-04, 07:39 PM
What are some generic martially minded caster PrCs then? I know Contemplative is interesting, having read it before, but it seems more like something for a Buddhist monk-type character, rather than a Joan of Arc-like warrior priest.

Pretty much the ones I listed:
Ruby Knight Vindicator [ToB] & Ordained Champion [CC]

Both are deity-specific and thus require adaptation (it's not hard to adapt either for Moradin though). That's the whole problem - other attempts at warrior clerics have been rather big failures (see: Warpriest) or uninteresting (see: Fist of Raziel (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/iw/20031012a); please note that Fist of Raziel is BoED class hence why I didn't suggest it).


What's a Divine Disciple?

Ah, it's a 5-level prestige class from Player's Guide to Faerun (yes, yes, I know, you're restricted from the source; I just brought it up as an example) that brings you closer to your deity, making you an Outsider on level 5. Now that I think about it, Church Inquisitor could sorta work. But you'd sorta have to reflavour it. It feels basically every class you could play requires some amount of reflavouring to get the "warrior priest" thing down.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 07:41 PM
Come to think of it Church Inquisitor doesn't sound so bad. They get full spellcasting and defenses against mental attacks, right?

Eldariel
2009-05-04, 07:42 PM
Come to think of it Church Inquisitor doesn't sound so bad. They get full spellcasting and defenses against mental attacks, right?

Yes, Church Inquisitor is a great class. My worries were more on the flavour-side of things. But yeah, if you can, go for it. Basically, they become more resilient to all forms of magic (gain a ton of immunities) and improved Dispelling & the ability to detect evil constantly.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 07:47 PM
Sounds swell! I'll work on a potential build, see if it'll be any good.

Eldariel
2009-05-04, 07:56 PM
Oh yeah, and those relics? Remember that you're a Cleric - Clerics can sacrifice a spell slot instead of picking True Believer to use Relics. Just FYI; you'll probably be rather feat starved so it's probably the lesser cost.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 08:07 PM
Hmm...I'll keep that in mind. Thanks for the suggestion.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 08:16 PM
Incidentally what would be a good way to reflavor the Church Inquisitor to sound less like The Spanish Inquisition? In our campaign world, Thule, Inquisitions and the execution of heretics is largely the church of Pelor's gig. One of their favorite punishments is lobotomizing adherents for minor crimes, and using a giant magnifying glass to fry people like ants for serious ones.

The church of Moradin, as far as I can tell, is not that extreme.

Also, what of the Contemplative? Any way to make it seem less Buddhist monk-like?

And what about the Divine Oracle? Is that any good?

tyckspoon
2009-05-04, 08:33 PM
Your DM believes the 'Pelor is a Neutral Evil god' argument, doesn't he.

With your backstory, I would imagine almost anything could be reflavored as further direct gifts from Moradin/manifestations of the character's belief in the righteousness of his cause. Church Inquisitor's set of abilities actually focus more around not being deceived or influenced than around making other people tell the truth; that can be rewritten as you being blessed with immunity to charm/illusion/etc so as not to be distracted or magically compelled to abandon your holy work of rebuilding the Dwarf people. Contemplative mostly grants defensive abilities, beyond the extra domain(s); that can be Moradin/Moradin's servants taking notice of your progress and tempering your soul (extra clerical power, ie, the domains, spell resistance) and body (disease/poison immunity, no aging effects) to make you better able to deal with the challenges you will no doubt encounter while carrying out your mission. Just change the name, call it Forged of Moradin or something.

And Divine Oracle is pretty nifty too, mostly for the Evasion+, Uncanny Dodge, and immunity to surprise if you end up taking all ten levels. The actual oracular stuff (the scrying and divination bonuses) is pretty blah, tho.

streakster
2009-05-04, 08:38 PM
From Dwarf Fortress - The Hammerers! They find people who do things that they shouldn't, and hit them! With hammers!

Of course, you're a Hammerer with an axe, but whatever.


As for contemplative, try forge metaphors! "I am forging my soul into a better tool for Moradin," etc.

Keld Denar
2009-05-04, 08:59 PM
You could do something like Ranger1/Fighter2/Barbarian2/Deepwarden2/EWM1/PiousTemplar10/X2. That would give you some pretty badass Con synergy, and 2x str bonus when 2handing your Waraxe and some yummy paladin spells while using that True Believer feat for something.

Or, I know didn't want FR stuff, but Runesmith would be an ideal PrC for a Fighter1/Wizard4/Runesmith5/Spellsword1/AbjChamp5/SacredExorcist4 would finish with 17 BAB and 19 CLs. Thats really good. Its a dwarf only PrC, and allows you to cast spells in ANY armor without chance of loss. That means you could break out the Adamantine Mountain Plate or such, and still cast spells like nothing happened.

RagnaroksChosen
2009-05-04, 09:06 PM
hmm what about holy liberator.
from what i remember about the fluff it might fit.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 09:17 PM
Your DM believes the 'Pelor is a Neutral Evil god' argument, doesn't he.
Actually, no. He didn't know about that until I mentioned the argument in response to his revelation of the Church's habits. His response?

"Welcome to the Crapsack World (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/CrapsackWorld)!"

Thought to be honest it's not as Crapsack as it could be. The church of St. Cuthbert, and my own church of Heironeous are pretty moderate and tolerant, and I've gotten a chance to be a champion not only of valor and justice, but social reform as well.

With your backstory, I would imagine almost anything could be reflavored as further direct gifts from Moradin/manifestations of the character's belief in the righteousness of his cause. Church Inquisitor's set of abilities actually focus more around not being deceived or influenced than around making other people tell the truth; that can be rewritten as you being blessed with immunity to charm/illusion/etc so as not to be distracted or magically compelled to abandon your holy work of rebuilding the Dwarf people. Contemplative mostly grants defensive abilities, beyond the extra domain(s); that can be Moradin/Moradin's servants taking notice of your progress and tempering your soul (extra clerical power, ie, the domains, spell resistance) and body (disease/poison immunity, no aging effects) to make you better able to deal with the challenges you will no doubt encounter while carrying out your mission. Just change the name, call it Forged of Moradin or something.

These are cool ideas!

Renegade Paladin
2009-05-04, 10:08 PM
I specifically checked that. I believe that clerics can use simple weapons, of which the warhammer is one, but not martial weapons, which is what waraxes are for dwarves. Really I was only planning on taking one or two fighter levels, if any at all.

EDIT: Ninja'd. :smallamused:
I know there have been many replies since this post, but I was replying to this several hours ago when my computer crashed, so I'm going to go ahead and post even though it's too late.

First, a warhammer is a martial weapon, not a simple one, and Moradin doesn't offer the War domain. His clerics kind of get hosed there. :smallamused:

Secondly, I second the paladin idea, building into Hammer of Moradin from the Player's Guide to Faerun. I know the class's powers are centered around warhammers, but as a DM I would allow either a Hammer of Ancestral Virtue (rather than the axe) or permit the class's abilities to work with the waraxe, either one of which would accomplish your purposes. As an added bonus, if you use OneWinged4ngel's rebalanced paladin, one of the unintended consequences of the spell progression is that it allows entry into Hammer of Moradin a level earlier than any other build. :smallbiggrin: HoM is actually a poor choice for cleric/fighter (due to the BAB requirement, you'd have to dip a martial class to get into it in any reasonable amount of time) due to the fact that it requires casting 2nd level divine spells but does not advance spellcasting.

kpenguin
2009-05-04, 10:09 PM
There are dwarf cleric sub-levels that grant proficiency with a hammer as well as damage bonuses with it.

Magnor Criol
2009-05-04, 10:10 PM
Ragnarok's suggestion of the Dwarf paragon class (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/races/racialParagonClasses.htm#dwarfParagon) is actually a pretty good one, I think. It would fit flavorfully (who better to reunite a scattered race than a paragon of dwarfiness?) and it would pick you up the martial proficiencies you want, as well as bonuses to the craft skills you want.

And, for that matter, if you do go fighter, the dwarven substitution levels from Races of Stone would be great, too. Automatic bonuses for all axes, and a bonus to "racial foes" that I'm sure you could get your DM to refluff from orcs, goblinoids and giants to illithids and their ilk.

herrhauptmann
2009-05-04, 10:47 PM
Well, I was hoping to post this before Keld gets his dwarven flurry fury build up, but oh well.

Here's the last dwarf I played:
15th Level. (I had the second fighter level come later, so I could get access to a higher feat with it)
Bbn2 (for fast movement and more skillpoints than fighter, uncanny dodge),
Ftr 2,
Cleric 1 (dwarf cleric variant: giant smiter. Races of stone I think. War and protection domains),
Dwarf paragon 3 (+2 con),
Pious templar 4(paladin spells, smiting, and Mettle)
Deepwarden 2(Con to AC, trap sense)
Dwarven defender 1 (try to get IMproved toughness to qualify instead of regular toughness)
Base saves: Fort 20, Will 12, Ref 2. BAB 14

Dwarven Paragon lets you gain your class level as a bonus to any and all craft checks you make regarding stone/metal. So if I had maxed out craft, at level 15, I would've had 33+int bonus to my craft checks.
I think a dwarven prince, priest of the soulforger, should know his way around a forge, don't you? :smallcool:
Since I started at level 15, I didn't need to roleplay the shift from a unlawful barbarian, to a paragon of dwarven lawfulness and piety.

I did Gorm Gultyn as a deity for War domain and a battle axe weapon. Not needed if you take the Forgotten Realms Moradin.

Feats:
Dodge, Endurance Toughness,
Power Attack,
True Believer (needed for Pious Templar)
Weapon Spec: Deity favored weapon (free from Pious Templar)
Melee Weapon Mastery (Now get d.waraxe instead of battle axe)
Cleave
SLashing Fury (Meh, the extra attack was nice, but -5 to hit on all attacks sucked)
Leap Attack (useless in the campaign I did, because monsters ALWAYS got to charge us. Anything woulda been better in my case)
Weapon Focus:Axe (free)
Track (free)


Major Items:
-Custom boots of Haste (27k, act as spell, infinite uses/day. 27k)
-Soulfire armor: BoED. Immune to negative energy like inflict, deathspells, energy drain
-Blueshine armor: +2 hide, armor can't be destroyed via rust/acid
-Mask Of Synthesete (Custom psion item. If blinded OR deafened, can still hear or see. Gain +4 spot/search, OR listen, if not blind/deaf)
-Everbright weapon: weapon immune to rust/acid
-Crystal of SHielding: +10 AC vs incorporeal touch attacks
-Would have had Retribution Amulet (BoED version)- But DM declared it was a minor artifact, so only one in the world existed, and other player owned it.
-Mithral Interlocking plate- AC+8. Max dex 2, ACP -4. Move 5feet or less, and your AC goes up by 2.
-Animated Tower shield

A fight with this guy usually consisted of monsters trying to hit him a few rounds, then they switched to spells. First Fort saves, then Will saves. (Most monsters we fought didn't have effects that required Ref saves). After they realized they couldn't hurt me, all but one would leave to pick on another party member, while the last kept me tied down. My offense power was pretty low because of the equipment I chose.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 10:51 PM
I know there have been many replies since this post, but I was replying to this several hours ago when my computer crashed, so I'm going to go ahead and post even though it's too late.

First, a warhammer is a martial weapon, not a simple one, and Moradin doesn't offer the War domain. His clerics kind of get hosed there. :smallamused:

Secondly, I second the paladin idea, building into Hammer of Moradin from the Player's Guide to Faerun. I know the class's powers are centered around warhammers, but as a DM I would allow either a Hammer of Ancestral Virtue (rather than the axe) or permit the class's abilities to work with the waraxe, either one of which would accomplish your purposes. As an added bonus, if you use OneWinged4ngel's rebalanced paladin, one of the unintended consequences of the spell progression is that it allows entry into Hammer of Moradin a level earlier than any other build. :smallbiggrin: HoM is actually a poor choice for cleric/fighter (due to the BAB requirement, you'd have to dip a martial class to get into it in any reasonable amount of time) due to the fact that it requires casting 2nd level divine spells but does not advance spellcasting.

I'm pretty sure I don't want to play another paladin. PArt of the reason for the cleric/fighter plan was so I could play a holy good-guy type character that WASN'T a paladin. Plus, the "Brave Sir Robin" jokes and our kobold werewolf sorcerer's "Damn paladin!" line were getting kind of old, even if they respected my paladin as he left the campaign. Plus, I'd prefer to use stuff in the sourcebooks themselves. Having it come from a forum somewhere makes it less reputable in my eyes, and I don't know whether my DM thinks the same way or not.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 10:54 PM
You could do something like Ranger1/Fighter2/Barbarian2/Deepwarden2/EWM1/PiousTemplar10/X2. That would give you some pretty badass Con synergy, and 2x str bonus when 2handing your Waraxe and some yummy paladin spells while using that True Believer feat for something.

What's an EWM? What does the X do? How would I justify being a barbarian worshiping a Lawful Good god like Moradin?

Zaq
2009-05-04, 11:00 PM
EWM is exotic weapon master (complete warrior; passable class), and you don't have to be the exact same alignment as your god to be a follower. Even clerics, you know, the ones who are so devoted to their god that they derive amazing cool powers from him, can be one step away. You can totally be a Neutral Good follower of Moradin. (Hell, if you're not a cleric, you can be a neutral or even chaotic evil follower of him. It'd be weird, but you can just respect his non-alignment based aspects without agreeing with him completely. You love his forgework and what he does with the dwarves... just not how he handles things. Remember that you really overthink alignment!)

tyckspoon
2009-05-04, 11:00 PM
EWM is Exotic Weapon Master. In this build, taken for the Uncanny Blow trick that lets you use double your Strength bonus to damage instead of 1.5x when you use your chosen one-handed exotic weapon in two hands (meant for the bastard sword or the dwarven waraxe.) X is working as a variable here; it just means that the build doesn't have anything else it needs to specify for those levels, so you can fill it out with whatever class you like.

The Barbarian thing usually assumes an alignment change at some point if the end result is to be Lawful. You only lose Rage, which isn't that big a sacrifice when you could only do it 1/day and you didn't get the advancements that make it a bigger buff. You get to keep fast movement, the skill points, and uncanny dodge (or any alternate class features you may have chosen instead.)

Biffoniacus_Furiou
2009-05-04, 11:02 PM
I'd say go Cleric 5/ Divine Oracle 4/ Dragon Slayer 1/ Contemplative 10, he's a warrior at heart who's felt a calling to serve Moradin's will, and this connection grows stronger throughout his career. Visit the Frog God's Fane to get Skill Focus: Knowledge (Religion) without spending a feat on it, and visit the Otyugh Hole to get Iron Will without spending a feat. Dragon Slayer gives you proficiency in martial weapons and even tower shields without losing spellcasting, plus you get an Aura of Courage ability. With flaws get Extend Spell (1), Persistent Spell (1), Divine Metamagic: Persistent (1), Dodge (3), Titan Fighting (6), Heavy Armor Optimization (9), Greater Heavy Armor Optimization (12), Power Attack (15), and Quicken Spell (18). You don't need True Believer to use relics if you sacrifice one of your spells/day instead. I'd skip the Shield of the Resolute and instead get an animated shield and maybe a Gemstone of Heavy Fortification from the Draconomicon.

According to Complete Divine Moradin grants the Creation, Earth, Good, Law, and Protection domains. According to FRCS he grants the Craft, Dwarf, Earth, Good, Law, and Protection domains. Creation and Craft are a bit redundant, though I'd say Craft is the better choice. The alignment domains are all nearly identical except for the 2nd and 6th level spells, which makes Law a much better choice than Good. The Earth and Dwarf domains are usable, and Protection could be a really strong choice later on. You have some decent choices there, so it just depends on which direction you want to go with it.

Renegade Paladin
2009-05-04, 11:09 PM
Plus, I'd prefer to use stuff in the sourcebooks themselves. Having it come from a forum somewhere makes it less reputable in my eyes, and I don't know whether my DM thinks the same way or not.
The proof is in the pudding, as the saying goes. I don't care where it comes from; if it's better balanced in the game, then it's the better option. The paladin got hosed in 3e, and WotC has a frankly miserable track record of making balanced material in general. I mean, we're talking about the company that thought the Complete Warrior samurai class was even halfway viable, to say nothing of the truenamer. :smallamused: "It came out of a book" is no more an argument for a particular bit of rules than "It came from a forum" is against it; it's all in how it plays out.

As for the rest of it, the default paladin is the second-best way to get into the class, qualifying at level 8 rather than 7 thanks to the slightly slower spell progression. (2nd level divine spells and BAB of 7 means that cleric/martial class can't qualify before 8th level either.) Mainly I advocate Hammer of Moradin more than paladin, as it's just too perfect for the concept (except for the pesky hammer detail); I just think paladin is the best way to get into it, though cleric/fighter also works.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 11:15 PM
I'd say go Cleric 5/ Divine Oracle 4/ Dragon Slayer 1/ Contemplative 10, he's a warrior at heart who's felt a calling to serve Moradin's will, and this connection grows stronger throughout his career. Visit the Frog God's Fane to get Skill Focus: Knowledge (Religion) without spending a feat on it, and visit the Otyugh Hole to get Iron Will without spending a feat. Dragon Slayer gives you proficiency in martial weapons and even tower shields without losing spellcasting, plus you get an Aura of Courage ability. With flaws get Extend Spell (1), Persistent Spell (1), Divine Metamagic: Persistent (1), Dodge (3), Titan Fighting (6), Heavy Armor Optimization (9), Greater Heavy Armor Optimization (12), Power Attack (15), and Quicken Spell (18). You don't need True Believer to use relics if you sacrifice one of your spells/day instead. I'd skip the Shield of the Resolute and instead get an animated shield and maybe a Gemstone of Heavy Fortification from the Draconomicon.

According to Complete Divine Moradin grants the Creation, Earth, Good, Law, and Protection domains. According to FRCS he grants the Craft, Dwarf, Earth, Good, Law, and Protection domains. Creation and Craft are a bit redundant, though I'd say Craft is the better choice. The alignment domains are all nearly identical except for the 2nd and 6th level spells, which makes Law a much better choice than Good. The Earth and Dwarf domains are usable, and Protection could be a really strong choice later on. You have some decent choices there, so it just depends on which direction you want to go with it.

Half these things I don't understand. Frog God's Fane? Otyugh Hole? Flaws? What books are these in? How does this build work mechanically? Remember, I need my DM to approve stuff. Technically he was VERY generous with my paladin by allowing the use of feats and PRCs from the Complete books. Most everyone else built their characters using the corebooks.

Renegade Paladin
2009-05-04, 11:19 PM
You know, I just looked on a whim, and it turns out that Hammer of Moradin was actually the sample PrC in the PGtF preview. What are the odds? :smallsmile: Link. (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/ex/20040305a)

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 11:21 PM
The proof is in the pudding, as the saying goes. I don't care where it comes from; if it's better balanced in the game, then it's the better option. The paladin got hosed in 3e, and WotC has a frankly miserable track record of making balanced material in general. I mean, we're talking about the company that thought the Complete Warrior samurai class was even halfway viable, to say nothing of the truenamer. :smallamused: "It came out of a book" is no more an argument for a particular bit of rules than "It came from a forum" is against it; it's all in how it plays out.

As for the rest of it, the default paladin is the second-best way to get into the class, qualifying at level 8 rather than 7 thanks to the slightly slower spell progression. (2nd level divine spells and BAB of 7 means that cleric/martial class can't qualify before 8th level either.) Mainly I advocate Hammer of Moradin more than paladin, as it's just too perfect for the concept (except for the pesky hammer detail); I just think paladin is the best way to get into it, though cleric/fighter also works.

How exactly do truenamers suck again? I keep hearing it but I think they're kinda cool.

My biggest issue with this is that anything outside the corebooks will only be allowed into the game under DM approval, and if my DM thinks the way I think he will, the more non-core material I present to him, the less that will be approved.

And why did they have to create animated shields. It just seems like cheating to me, and it looks ridiculous, wielding a weapon in two hands while you have a shield floating around next to you.

Eldariel
2009-05-04, 11:25 PM
Half these things I don't understand. Frog God's Fane? Otyugh Hole? Flaws? What books are these in? How does this build work mechanically? Remember, I need my DM to approve stuff. Technically he was VERY generous with my paladin by allowing the use of feats and PRCs from the Complete books. Most everyone else built their characters using the corebooks.

Frog God's Fane and Otyugh Hole are magical locations found in Complete Scoundrel. Basically, they're places you visit and endure some tests and gain some perks, some permanently, others for a time. Both, Otyugh Hole and Frog God's Fane give permanent feats.

In Otyugh Hole, you'll strengten your will gaining one of a choice of feats including Iron Will. In Frog God's Fane, you'll gain knowledge. These are all given a "gold piece value" so they can effectively become parts of your character wealth; that way you can give them to a character you make. The price of Frog God's Fane is 2000gp and Otyugh Hole is worth 3000gp.


Flaws are in Unearthed Arcana and WoTC SRD (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/buildingCharacters/characterFlaws.htm). Basically, you choose a bunch of simple weaknesses for your character; flaw -3 to some save, -X to certain attacks, -something to vision, -something to some skill categories, roll twice for miss chances, worse stats, some such. In return for each flaw, you'll get an extra feat on character creation. Normally you're allowed to take two of them.

Basically, they're used to add some weakness with mechanical drawbacks to a character, and on the other hand, to mitigate problems some characters may have getting enough feats to do what they want. A fine system, although some Flaws aren't big enough; what does a caster care about his melee attack rolls, or a Paladin about his Spot/Listen-checks? Still, the idea is sound.

EDIT:

How exactly do truenamers suck again? I keep hearing it but I think they're kinda cool.

Simple: The checks are too high for you to consistently make (15+2xCR+2 for each additional use on same target vs. your Level+3+Int+Item+d20); biggest problem is that boosting/healing the party is nigh' impossible as the the DCs on party members are always level-equivalent. Worse, the DCs are derived off CR so you'll never catch a break in that regard.

Basically, Truenaming is just too difficult, and even if you do manage to pimp out your Truenaming check (it's possible; you can easily get +100 to any skill by level 20), it's just not worth the effort as you become a mediocre caster. But yeah, the problem is the difficulty of Truenaming; if the DCs for the checks were rational, Truenamers would be a decent class.

Zaq
2009-05-04, 11:28 PM
In a nutshell, truenamers suck because they have to make a skill check to cast. That in itself wouldn't be so bad, but the check is equal to 15 + (2xCR of opponent.) See the problem? The difficulty goes up by 2 every level, but you can only add one skill rank per level. So you have to start in on the optimization (pulling bonuses from fifteen different sources, dipping into thematically inappropriate classes, using variant rules from Unearthed Arcana, and so on) to be even remotely viable.

They have other problems as well (many of their tricks have three separate chances to fail, they use a stupid mechanic for save DCs, the prestige classes work better with non-truenamers than with truenamers, etc. etc. etc.) but that's the big one. It's possible to make a truenamer not awful, but you have to put a really disproportionate amount of effort into it, and the results aren't even anything special.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-04, 11:28 PM
Frog God's Fane and Otyugh Hole are magical locations found in Complete Scoundrel. Basically, they're places you visit and endure some tests and gain some perks, some permanently, others for a time. Both, Otyugh Hole and Frog God's Fane give permanent feats.

In Otyugh Hole, you'll strengten your will gaining one of a choice of feats including Iron Will. In Frog God's Fane, you'll gain knowledge. These are all given a "gold piece value" so they can effectively become parts of your character wealth; that way you can give them to a character you make. The price of Frog God's Fane is 2000gp and Otyugh Hole is worth 3000gp.


Flaws are in Unearthed Arcana and WoTC SRD (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/buildingCharacters/characterFlaws.htm). Basically, you choose a bunch of simple weaknesses for your character; flaw -3 to some save, -X to certain attacks, -something to vision, -something to some skill categories, roll twice for miss chances, worse stats, some such. In return for each flaw, you'll get an extra feat on character creation. Normally you're allowed to take two of them.

Basically, they're used to add some weakness with mechanical drawbacks to a character, and on the other hand, to mitigate problems some characters may have getting enough feats to do what they want. A fine system, although some Flaws aren't big enough; what does a caster care about his melee attack rolls, or a Paladin about his Spot/Listen-checks? Still, the idea is sound.

I would need to get my DM to approve of all this, though flaws are in the SRD, so that may help them a bit. I like the idea, don't get me wrong, but I've got to remember that all this is subject to my DM's approval, and furthermore, I think a few of the other players might sneer, or at least comment on the build because the min/maxing is so blatant and obvious.

herrhauptmann
2009-05-05, 12:25 AM
And why did they have to create animated shields. It just seems like cheating to me, and it looks ridiculous, wielding a weapon in two hands while you have a shield floating around next to you.

It is ridiculous, especially when it's a tower shield. But it's an option that's available. Anyway, it's really a logical extension of the Dancing weapon. And better than the Grinding weapon.

edit: A house rule I used last time I DM'd for a bunch of minmaxers, you can take a flaw at creation, but it must be one which actually affects your character.
So that dwarf I posted above couldn't take a negative to his fort save as a flaw.
You also had to play through 5 levels before you could gain the feat.
Was contemplating a further clarification on that, but the game only lasted for 3 levels

Myrmex
2009-05-05, 12:37 AM
If you are trying to build a viable sword and board fighter (or gish), in a party with any full casters, I think multi-dipping prestige classes is perfectly ok. You're taking all the prestige classes for the right reasons- you need the flavor.

I would suggest runesmith, from forgotten realms. It's an arcane casting class, unfortunately. And from FR.

Are you allowed to use divine metamagic: persist? If you burn three feats, you can put divine power up all day (or righteous might?), that one spell that gives you BAB = to character level. Without nightstick abuse, it's not THAT min/maxed. You'll still be subject to getting dispelled, which will make you useless all day (wasted feats), and you can only do it at most a couple times. Charisma now becomes an important stat, on top of con, wisdom, and strength. If you go Favored Soul instead, you could basically run off charisma, but get pretty lame casting for a divine caster (like a sorcerer, but less impressive spells).

An alternative to going cleric would be to go Divine Bard (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/classes/variantCharacterClasses.htm#bardVariantDivineBard) . The MAD is even worse for divine bard, as you now have class abilities running off of charisma, wisdom, int, and need con and str.

However, the flavor is pretty cool. You are repository of information (knowledge skills, bardic knowledge), an inspiration to others (inspire courage), and have the favor of the gods (spells). You also get 3/4 BAB, can cast in the heaviest of heavy armor with no spell failure (need proficiency, though). There are some ways to get your inspire courage bonuses through the roof, then turn it into mad damage.

Big problems are serious MAD, lack of weapon & armor proficiencies, reduced casting, and lack of access to sweet cleric buffs.

Anyone know of any ways to make a divine bard work?

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-05, 12:59 PM
I'd say go Cleric 5/ Divine Oracle 4/ Dragon Slayer 1/ Contemplative 10, he's a warrior at heart who's felt a calling to serve Moradin's will, and this connection grows stronger throughout his career. Visit the Frog God's Fane to get Skill Focus: Knowledge (Religion) without spending a feat on it, and visit the Otyugh Hole to get Iron Will without spending a feat. Dragon Slayer gives you proficiency in martial weapons and even tower shields without losing spellcasting, plus you get an Aura of Courage ability. With flaws get Extend Spell (1), Persistent Spell (1), Divine Metamagic: Persistent (1), Dodge (3), Titan Fighting (6), Heavy Armor Optimization (9), Greater Heavy Armor Optimization (12), Power Attack (15), and Quicken Spell (18). You don't need True Believer to use relics if you sacrifice one of your spells/day instead. I'd skip the Shield of the Resolute and instead get an animated shield and maybe a Gemstone of Heavy Fortification from the Draconomicon.

According to Complete Divine Moradin grants the Creation, Earth, Good, Law, and Protection domains. According to FRCS he grants the Craft, Dwarf, Earth, Good, Law, and Protection domains. Creation and Craft are a bit redundant, though I'd say Craft is the better choice. The alignment domains are all nearly identical except for the 2nd and 6th level spells, which makes Law a much better choice than Good. The Earth and Dwarf domains are usable, and Protection could be a really strong choice later on. You have some decent choices there, so it just depends on which direction you want to go with it.

What would be a level by level plan for something like this?

streakster
2009-05-05, 01:11 PM
If you want to make an Animated Shield sound less stupid, you could pretend that the enchantment merely makes it lighter - so you grab it, block an attack, and put it back without requiring actions. Or have it project a magical forcefield instead - thus shielding you without needing to wielded.

daggaz
2009-05-05, 01:26 PM
Surprised nobody's mentioned this, maybe DMs are getting soft or folks are too wrung up in the PrCs but...

Sword and board clerics cannot cast without a free hand. Meaning they need to sheathe their weapon or drop their shield or whatever. This sucks in battle, where you will be doing the majority of your casting anyhow.

Its really best to go twohanded for this one, I prefer taking the war domain for the martial abilities with an apropriate god/weapon combo, and as well I have yet to meet a DM who wouldnt houserule the dwarven waraxe in for various dwarven deiteis (look, NOT one dwarven god uses it, its an obvious oversight when they moved to 3.5). But since you are using Moradin, you are kinda boned... Honestly if you cannot get your DM to finangle some way for you to be able to use your deities holy hammer, it is far better to burn a feat for it than to take a level of fighter.

When are you going to get the hammer anyhow? If its later in the game, chances are you have your PrC requirements already, but if it is from the start, pure cleric is plenty good, so waiting another three levels for whatever PrC you are looking at is not going to hurt that much. (honestly, most of the cleric PrC's really arent all that hot anyhow, and many down right suck.)

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-05, 01:32 PM
Why does everyone keep talking about hammers?! I know they're Moradin's favorite weapon, but Moradin doesn't have the War domain anyway, so they aren't a requirement, and the relic I want to use this build with is a DWARVEN WARAXE.

Faulty
2009-05-05, 01:35 PM
Isn't there a feat that lets you cast spells with somatic components while holding a weapon?

Starbuck_II
2009-05-05, 01:55 PM
Isn't there a feat that lets you cast spells with somatic components while holding a weapon?

Somatic Weaponry: Complete Mage.

Telonius
2009-05-05, 02:06 PM
Thinking about the premise here ... have you considered Artificer as an alternate possibility? Some of the "Inflict Damage" infusions would be nasty against the clockwork foes. It's not a specifically martial build. But, you could play it up as the, "Know your enemy" sort of martial planner.

Self-plug, but awhile back I homebrewed a Theurge-ish PrC that combined Artificer and Cleric. Link to it is here (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/archive/index.php/t-40330.html). It could fit into your theme - rebuking Constructs would be something Moradin would probably want to do in this situation.

You would need to spend a Feat on proficiency for that Waraxe, unless you took a level in a martial class. If you're just doing a one-level dip, I prefer Ranger to Fighter (for the skill points and saves).

Adumbration
2009-05-05, 02:16 PM
Why does everyone keep talking about hammers?! I know they're Moradin's favorite weapon, but Moradin doesn't have the War domain anyway, so they aren't a requirement, and the relic I want to use this build with is a DWARVEN WARAXE.

Wait. Are you actually saying we should listen to the OP, and respect his wishes requirements? Really? Really?!

BLASPHEMY!!!!

Anyway, if you don't care for too much powergaming or minmaxing, the simplest solution is to simply take Cleric levels. The spellcasting, decent HD and BaB will carry you with ease even without funny prestige classes or obscure feats. Cleric is not in vain among the most powerful classes; my first character was a simple Half-orc Cleric, and I loved it. As others have said, you can get the weapon proficiency with a feat.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-05, 02:26 PM
I'll probably do just that then.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-05, 03:27 PM
How would that cleric/divine oracle/dragonslayer/contemplative build work if flaws and magic locations were not allowed? Would it be feasable? Would it be able to include Somatic Weaponry, which will make it easier to use a weapon and a shield?

tyckspoon
2009-05-05, 03:44 PM
You'd probably need to drop Dragonslayer. It's mostly a filler level anyway, and it requires two feats that you really don't want to take if you can't get them for cheap/free somehow. Cleric/Oracle/Contemplative will work just as well, and the only feat you need for certain is Skill Focus: Religion to get into Contemplative.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-05, 03:50 PM
Out of curiosity, what are the requirements for Dragonslayer? What does the first level give anyway, aside from proficiencies?

I presume I'd have to take Martial Weapon Proficiency (dwarven waraxe) as well?

A friend reccomended the Warpriest PRC of Complete Divine, as well as the Ollam PRC from Complete Adventurer (at least I think it was Complete Adventurer).

Eldariel
2009-05-05, 04:09 PM
Don't take Warpriest. It sucks. It's basically a cleric with casting that gets some spells as spell-like abilities. In other words, you give up multiple spell levels and extra slots for few specific spells once per day. The epitome of "trading down"! It's also a leader-themed class (all of the spells it gets are mass buffs) rather than a warrior class.

And Ollam is a scholar/bard-like class (it has BAB). Doesn't sound like what you want, even if it is dwarf-specific. Also, it loses two casting levels. I'd personally go Cleric 4/Church Inquisitor 10/Contemplative 6. Divine Oracle is a fine class, but meh, feels slightly off (although it does give you Uncanny Dodge & Evasion).

And Dragonslayer requires Iron Will and Dodge. Gets Aura of Courage and bonus damage vs. Dragons. It's less expensive to just pick Martial Weapon Proficiency as a feat than to qualify; even with Otyugh Hole, you'd need to pick up the useless Dodge so you trade feats 1-for-1 anyways (you pick Dodge instead of MWP). So leaving it away and picking MWP is no penalty.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-05, 04:23 PM
I think that'll work. It only multiclasses twice, so my fellow players won't comment on it being blatantly min/maxed anyway.

Paul H
2009-05-05, 07:17 PM
Hi

Just done couple Martial Cleric builds recently. One was Pelor (Radiant Servant), the other might suit you.

Try Clr 6/Divine Oracle 4/Contemplative xxxx

The Extra Turning/DMM Persist Spell combo can keep your BAB to that of a fighter. If you haven't got the feats, then Martial Wpn prof Dwarf Waraxe, Imp Crit Dwarf Waraxe, Imp Toughness (plus Skill Focus prereq).

Just buff before combat & charge! The Imp Toughness should help mitigate some of the HP loss (compared to Fighter). You've got Uncanny Dodge, Divine Health, etc.

Chhers
Paul H

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-05, 07:25 PM
I'll assemble a rudimentary build then. Divine Oracle and Contemplative seem like such passive PrCs though. This is the character's stated goals:

1. Recover the Axe of Ancestral Virtue and the Shield of the Resolute.

2. Reunite the now-broken and scattered dwarf clans to become High King.

3. Reclaim the former Dwarf Kingdoms from both the remnants of the Clockwork Army that destroyed it, and their former allies, the United Empire and the Kingdom of Armorica, who've annexed what they took back from the Clockworks.

4. Make the refounded Dwarf Kingdoms into a powerful nation again.

He believes that Moradin is guiding him to do these things, and that Moradin actually talks to him.

Divine Oracle and Contemplative conjures up images of the Buddhist monk wearing homespun robes and meditating on the nature of the universe, rather than an ambitious soldier of the faith.

Renegade Paladin
2009-05-05, 09:47 PM
Why does everyone keep talking about hammers?! I know they're Moradin's favorite weapon, but Moradin doesn't have the War domain anyway, so they aren't a requirement, and the relic I want to use this build with is a DWARVEN WARAXE.
Now let's be fair here; I specifically said you'd have to ever so slightly reflavor the Hammer of Moradin. :smallamused: There's no reason the abilities wouldn't work with an axe; it would just take the DM's approval.

It's not a spellcasting build by any means, but I think it would be great for your concept because it's just what it says on the tin: The tools of Moradin himself.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-05, 09:59 PM
Here's the build:

Race: Dwarf

Stats: 14 STR, 11 DEX, 15 CON, 10 INT, 15 WIS, 10 CHA

Skills: Knowledge (religion), Concentration

Cleric 1 Martial Weapon Proficiency (Dwarven Waraxe)
Cleric 2
Cleric 3 Skill Focus (Knowledge [religion])
Cleric 4
Cleric 5
Cleric 6 Extend Spell
Divine Oracle 1
Divine Oracle 2
Divine Oracle 3 Divine Metamagic: Extend Spell
Divine Oracle 4
Contemplative 1
Contemplative 2 Improved Toughness
Contemplative 3
Contemplative 4
Contemplative 5 Improved Critical (Dwarven Waraxe)
Contemplative 6
Contemplative 7
Contemplative 8 Craft Magic Arms and Armor
Contemplative 9
Contemplative 10

It really sucks that this build doesn't have the Intelligence to take Craft (weaponsmithing) and/or Craft (armorsmithing). Plus he doesn't have the Diplomacy or Knowledge (nobility and royalty) skills that I think a would-be high king would find important. I can't afford to gimp anything though.

Also, I don't know if Improved Critical (Dwarven Waraxe) is worth it, since the Axe of Ancestral Virtue has a keen enchantment.

So...how does this measure up?

Renegade Paladin
2009-05-05, 10:28 PM
Under 3.5 rules, Improved Critical and keen don't stack. This is stupid, (http://seankreynolds.com/rpgfiles/rants/keenimprovedcritstacking.html) but it's the case. Assuming that this isn't house-ruled for some reason, I wouldn't take Improved Crit.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-05, 10:54 PM
Under 3.5 rules, Improved Critical and keen don't stack. This is stupid, (http://seankreynolds.com/rpgfiles/rants/keenimprovedcritstacking.html) but it's the case. Assuming that this isn't house-ruled for some reason, I wouldn't take Improved Crit.

I know, that's why I brought it up. I was thinking of True Believer, but everyone here seems to think that sucks for some reason. I personally wonder what's not to like, since it frees up spell-slots so I can cast more buffs or healing spells, which will likely endear me to the party very quickly.

How essential is Spellcraft for clerics? I've always gone for the one-two punch of Constitution and Spellcraft when playing spellcasters of any kind, Arcane or Divine. Kind of makes me feel naked without it, since I can only afford Knowledge (religion), which I need for the prestige classes anyway, and Concentration, since I'll likely be casting in the midst of combat.

Humans who take fighter dips really do get all the goodies. :smallfrown:

herrhauptmann
2009-05-05, 11:30 PM
I know, that's why I brought it up. I was thinking of True Believer, but everyone here seems to think that sucks for some reason. I personally wonder what's not to like, since it frees up spell-slots so I can cast more buffs or healing spells, which will likely endear me to the party very quickly.

How essential is Spellcraft for clerics? I've always gone for the one-two punch of Constitution and Spellcraft when playing spellcasters of any kind, Arcane or Divine. Kind of makes me feel naked without it, since I can only afford Knowledge (religion), which I need for the prestige classes anyway, and Concentration, since I'll likely be casting in the midst of combat.
Humans who take fighter dips really do get all the goodies. :smallfrown:

If one of the reasons you're taking Divine Oracle is because you get the evasion feature, I recommend thinking again. Without some serious magic buffs, your reflex save will be in the gutter, Not Cleric, D.O., or Contemplative get it as a good save. So your chances of actually using it will be pretty low. The biggest reasons I see to take D.O. are that you gain the uncanny dodge features while retaining your spellcasting, without level dipping into barbarian or rogue.

If you really plan on getting True Believer, I again highly recommend taking Pious Templar. Yes your spellcasting will suffer, but it gets other abilities that I believe make up for it. (1) Mettle at PT1 (like evasion, but will and fort saves, which you'll have up to wazoo). (2)Weapon spec with deities favored weapon at PT3, (3)A bonus feat PT4, as well as(4)Smite and Dr 1/- (both meh).

If you time your PT levels so that you gain PT 3 (weapon spec) when you reach level 12,15,18 AND have a BAB of 12, you can also take Melee Weapon mastery, which allows you to use weapon focus/spec with any weapon of the same type.
I don't remember off the top of my head which axe the Axe of Ancestral Virtue is, but should it be different from your god's favored axe, you can now use the axe using all your feats.

Will your DM allow variant class features? If so, with a 10 charisma, I recommend the variant dwarf cleric. Races of Stone 146. The 4th and 8th level versions would be useless to you (won't reach cleric 8, and the 4th is about hammers). But the first level is nice, Giant smiting. Would a large sized bipedal clockwork automaton count as a giant? If so, you're now especially uber against it.

Renegade Paladin
2009-05-05, 11:36 PM
I hesitate to say this, but you don't have to go for max ranks. You could get all the Knowledge ranks you need for the PrC and then start taking Spellcraft instead. There's just not a lot of options when playing a non-human, non-INT based, 2 skill points per level character. Frankly, I house rule all classes except wizard to get 2 more skill points per level, but you're not playing with my house rule set. Spellcraft isn't as thematically essential for clerics as it is for arcane casters, but it's still handy.

I'd take True Believer, but then I readily admit that for me optimization takes a back seat to character thematics, so if you're looking to build the most effective character for effectiveness' sake, I'm not the one you should be listening to.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-05, 11:55 PM
Thematics is more what I'm going for in this build, actually. I like the fluff of the Warpriest, but everyone here has so far pooh-poohed it, so I'm not sure.

As I've said, what I want to create is a sort of dwarf priest king. A warrior who recieves divine guidance like Joan of Arc, but is not a paladin, because I don't want to play the same class twice in a campaign setting.

I'm only asking for build advice because I don't know how to discern the gold from the garbage, and I don't want to end up with a character that keeps dying because he was poorly built.

Renegade Paladin
2009-05-06, 12:46 AM
Well, warpriest isn't thematically what you're going for either, I think. Half casting aside (which is why everyone hates it; the golden rule of optimization is Thou Shalt Not Lose Caster Levels), it mainly gives abilities designed to boost allies, abilities that, with the exception of haste, a cleric can do better with his spells. Furthermore, barring some cheesy method of entry, you don't get haste until 14th level, long after a wizard can sling it around almost as an afterthought. You get mass heal a level earlier than you'd get it as a cleric (1/day only, instead of as many times as you care to prepare it if you really want it), but the others, mass cure light wounds and heroes' feast are actually castable sooner as a straight cleric. The Rally ability can be duplicated at much lower level with the remove fear spell, the fear aura expressly duplicates the fear spell (so why not just cast it?), Inflame is nice but very, very specific (only applies against charm and fear effects), and the capstone ability is a great way to get your allies killed, much the same as the Diehard feat. Mechanically it sucks, and thematically the only thing that matches what you're looking for is the name.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-06, 07:09 PM
So then, what am I looking for thematically? I've listed his goals but I can't think of any class/prestige class combo that fits what I'm looking for.

kpenguin
2009-05-06, 08:31 PM
A marshal or a bard might be more appropriate than a fighter. I doubt Joan d'Arc was an incredibly talented fighter, but she certainly inspired morale.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-06, 08:43 PM
I don't have the Miniature's Handbook, so marshal is out of the question...but I have been pondering a possible Bard 1/Fighter 2/Bard 4/Squire of Legend 3/Mythic Exemplar 10 build. I wasn't planning on applying it to a dwarf, but I think it'd work in this case. Maybe he grew up raised on tales of ancient clan heroes, and wishes to be just like them, taking the Disciples of Legend prestige classes following the "Reikhart" path which is made for marshals and bards. He couldn't be Lawful Good though, which may be problematic for a Moradin worshipper. Plus I would definately need to take True Believer, since I wouldn't get any divine spells.

kpenguin
2009-05-06, 08:45 PM
The WotC site's Miniatures Handbook excerpt has the marshal class (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/ex/20030906b).

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-06, 08:46 PM
I'll have to see if my DM goes for it. How does the build I just posted look?

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-06, 09:36 PM
On second thought, I should probably actually BUILD it before asking questions.

Race: Dwarf

Stats: 13 STR, 10 DEX, 14 CON, 14 INT, 11 WIS, 13 CHA

Skills: Craft (armorsmithing), Craft (weaponsmithing), Diplomacy, Knowledge (history), Knowledge (nobility and royalty), Knowledge (religion), Perform (oratory), Sense Motive

Alignment: Neutral Good

Deity: Moradin

Bard 1: True Believer
Fighter 1: Weapon Focus (dwarven waraxe)
Fighter 2: Battle Caster, Improved Initiative
Bard 2:
Bard 3:
Bard 4: Leadership
Bard 5:
Squire of Legend 1:
Squire of Legend 2: Improved Toughness
Squire of Legend 3:
Mythic Exemplar 1:
Mythic Exemplar 2: Extend Spell
Mythic Exemplar 3:
Mythic Exemplar 4:
Mythic Exemplar 5: Blind-Fight
Mythic Exemplar 6:
Mythic Exemplar 7:
Mythic Exemplar 8: Improved Shield Bash
Mythic Exemplar 9:
Mythic Exemplar 10:

How does this look? Doable? What should my stat boosts be to? I'm thinking Charisma, but Strength could probably use some boosting too.

I know I'm gonna need me some mithral fullplate for this build!:smallbiggrin:

VirOath
2009-05-06, 09:49 PM
Just for fluff purposes, and even though it is from a completely different campaign world, you might want to check out the Alliance Handbook for the Warcraft RPG. It's prettymuch 3.5 D&D, with tweaks.

But the Mountain King PrC would fit with what you are after, IIRC. Giving up spell casting progression, but quite martial focused, with bonuses to racial weapons.

Your mileage may vary though.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-06, 10:52 PM
Thank you for the suggestion, but I'm sorry to say I don't think that class would have a chance of getting approved. In any case, I think the build I've written up is actually much closer to what I wanted thematically. An exemplar of ancient dwarven heroes and is the kind of guy who is an inspiring leader. No one's sure if Jeanne d'Arc recieved divine guidance or not, so it doesn't really matter if I have cleric levels or not.

Still can't take Craft Magic Arms and Armor though, and frankly, I wouldn't want to with this setup, since bards don't exactly have the most stellar list of crafting spells.

kpenguin
2009-05-06, 11:44 PM
What about a divine bard?

Since divine bard spells are divine and not arcane, they wouldn't suffer from arcane spell failure. Thus, the dwarf can wear full plate.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-06, 11:54 PM
There's a divine bard? Where? Also, I don't think ASF is going to be that much of an issue. Bards can cast in light armor without penalty, and with Battle Caster that extends to medium armor as well, and mithral fullplate is medium armor.

kpenguin
2009-05-06, 11:56 PM
You can find it at d20srd.org here (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/classes/variantCharacterClasses.htm#bardVariantDivineBard) .

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-07, 12:13 AM
I could certainly see it working, but that'd be subject to DM approval. I think it'd need a different name than "Divine Bard" though. That broadcasts its variant rule status like a neon light. What'd be a good substitute name for it? Remember that I specifically didn't place his perform skill in any instrument, but rather oratory, so he can make St. Crispin's Day style speeches instead of singing.

kpenguin
2009-05-07, 12:44 AM
If Evangelist wasn't already the name of a prestige class, I would suggest that.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-07, 01:16 AM
Does the build hold up though? I keep hearing that Complete Champion sucks.

Renegade Paladin
2009-05-07, 02:34 AM
I could certainly see it working, but that'd be subject to DM approval. I think it'd need a different name than "Divine Bard" though. That broadcasts its variant rule status like a neon light. What'd be a good substitute name for it?
Cantor. This is in fact the alternate name in the book, but the SRD strips out fluff, including that.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-07, 10:01 AM
Ah, I see.

How does the build itself look though? I keep hearing that the stuff in Complete Champion sucks, but the Mythic Exemplar and Squire of Legend look pretty solid to me.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-07, 02:12 PM
So...no one has any opinion about the effectiveness of this build?

Keld Denar
2009-05-07, 02:17 PM
Complete Champion doesn't suck. In fact, most of the stuff in it tends to lean toward the high end of the power curve. Just look at things like Knowledge Devotion, Animal Devotion, Law Devotion, Travel Devotion, the whole Ordained Champion PrC, Fist of the Forest (drool), and a few other things. Its strong. Thats the problem most people have with it, is that they think the devs were under the influence of various illicit materials when they dreamed up half of that stuff. Also...poor editing.

Its NOT because its weak.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-07, 02:23 PM
Complete Champion doesn't suck. In fact, most of the stuff in it tends to lean toward the high end of the power curve. Just look at things like Knowledge Devotion, Animal Devotion, Law Devotion, Travel Devotion, the whole Ordained Champion PrC, Fist of the Forest (drool), and a few other things. Its strong. Thats the problem most people have with it, is that they think the devs were under the influence of various illicit materials when they dreamed up half of that stuff. Also...poor editing.

Its NOT because its weak.

Poor editing I can understand. It IS rather difficult to find everything, but how do they figure that the developers were on drugs when they were creating it?

Myrmex
2009-05-07, 02:40 PM
Poor editing I can understand. It IS rather difficult to find everything, but how do they figure that the developers were on drugs when they were creating it?

Giving wizards the ability to spontaneously cast divination spells for the cost of their fifth level feat and giving barbarians pounce in exchange for fast movement at level one are the two biggest problems I can remember. Both of those are insanely good.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-07, 03:40 PM
I see. So it's the "It's broken, therefore it sucks" argument then?

Also, how good IS my Bard 1/Fighter 2/Bard 4/Squire of Legend 3/Mythic Exemplar 10 build hold up? Is it a good build? Can it be improved by changing some of the feats? Are there other skills I should consider? Where should I place my stat boosts?

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-08, 12:14 AM
Attention Ladies And Gentlemen! This Is A Bump!

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-08, 08:08 PM
So...what? Have I come up with the perfect build or something? I'm looking for feedback, and I don't know where to find it!

Goatman_Ted
2009-05-08, 11:19 PM
So...what? Have I come up with the perfect build or something? I'm looking for feedback, and I don't know where to find it!
What kind of feedback are you looking for?
It doesn't sound like you want optimization advice. It doesn't sound like your group is the type to deal well with optimization.

Anyway, here's my critique (assuming Reikhart on both Prestige classes:)
Mythic Exemplar is a definite step down from Bard levels in all respects power-wise. You lose Bardic Music, you lose bardic casting, you lose bardic skills. All you gain in return are the level 20 abilities (and by then the benefits are inconsequencial).
Unless you do something tricky with Bloodlines or multiple Extraordinary Auras, that class throws your useful abilities away for 1 HP/level.

Squire of Legend is a bit better. If your group has a Dweomerkeeper or Archmage using Wish or Miracle as a Supernatural or Spell-like ability, great. If not (and it sounds like you won't), the 1/day abilities are a bit lack-luster. On the bright side, you don't lose much in those 3 levels.

You spend feats concentrating on three mutually exclusive options:
Spellcasting (with Battlecaster and Extend Spell), Shield Bashing (with ISB) and Waraxe use (with True Believer and Weapon Focus).
I don't see how you plan on combining these. Until you do, you're wasting feats from a min-maxing perspective.

But Leadership on its own might be broken enough to compensate. Take a Cleric cohort with Spell Compendium group buffs like Righteous Wrath of the Faithful, Recitation, Mass Shield of Faith, Mass Aid, etc. and you'll be a bona fide party support engine.
(And if you go this route, give Heroes of Battle a gander for both characters. The Dread Commando's Initiative Aura is one of the few abilities improved by Mythic Exemplar's Archetype Advancement and the War Weaver is the best buffing Prestige class in the game.)

edit: That looked harsh the first time.
double edit: does war weaver work with clerics? I'll pretend I know it does.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-08, 11:27 PM
Yes, Reikhart was my idea.

To be honest then, I'm not sure what to go for. I want to be an inspiring leader, like a 4e warlord, but I also want to use those relics. I don't know how to optimize the concept I have without turning to books that I don't have and are now out of print. :smallsigh:

Goatman_Ted
2009-05-08, 11:33 PM
To be honest then, I'm not sure what to go for. I want to be an inspiring leader, like a 4e warlord, but I also want to use those relics. I don't know how to optimize the concept I have without turning to books that I don't have and are now out of print. :smallsigh:
Here's a build that's been repeated to death because it's so perfect for your goal, both in efficiency and in elegance:

Cleric 20.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-08, 11:35 PM
But can it use a waraxe? It seems so plain, and it doesn't have the right skills to be a dwarf king.

tyckspoon
2009-05-08, 11:40 PM
Yes, Reikhart was my idea.

To be honest then, I'm not sure what to go for. I want to be an inspiring leader, like a 4e warlord, but I also want to use those relics. I don't know how to optimize the concept I have without turning to books that I don't have and are now out of print. :smallsigh:

Straight-up Fighter/Bard will do that alright. Fighter gets you your axe and some basic martial skill, Bard gets your inspiration (keep in mind you can use Bardic 'Music' with almost any variety of Perform skill, so pick whatever seems appropriate.) Apply a little Inspire Courage optimization to make that buff more relevant and enjoy (sources needed: 1 feat from Eberron Campaign Setting, 1 item from Magic Item Compendium, 1 Spell Compendium spell. The Eberron feat is the best, but you can get by with the SC + MIC things if you have to.)

Alternately, run a Cleric like you were originally planning to. Get some points in Perform (Oratory) and Diplomacy so you can give inspiring speeches and argue your case. When you want more divine inspirations that literally lift spirits & strengthen sword-arms, well, those are your spells. You won't have the 'traditional' Cleric skills, but your concept isn't a traditionally trained Cleric as I understand it (and you can generally get by as long as one person in the party has a good Spellcraft; it doesn't have to be you.)

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-08, 11:44 PM
What about crafting? And Knoweldge (Nobility and Royalty)?

Goatman_Ted
2009-05-09, 01:27 AM
What about crafting? And Knoweldge (Nobility and Royalty)?
The Spell Compendium has domains that would take care of that. If SpC is banned, check Complete Warrior or Complete Divine. If those don't work, take the Knowledge Devotion (CC) or Education (setting specific, but whatever) feats. If those don't work, buy the ranks crossclass.

And Craft is an in-class skill.

I'm pretty sure you can afford one feat for axe proficiency if it's as central to your concept as you let on.

If any of this is really a holdup, just dip a level of Fighter, Paladin, Knight or somesuch.
If lack of skill ranks is an issue, go Cloistered Cleric (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/classes/variantCharacterClasses.htm#clericVariantCloistere dCleric) (Unearthed Arcana) with an early Fighter dip.

Or ask the DM to let you modify your skill list (a few Craft or Sense Motive ranks will hardly break the game).

You don't need complex over-elaborate builds to play the game. Especially in a group that frowns upon them.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-09, 02:31 PM
Actually that Cloistered Cleric idea looks pretty good. Couple that with an early fighter dip, like you suggested, and I won't even need to take Weapon Proficiency or True Believer. Plus, I can be Lawful Good like I always wanted! I think my DM will be willing to approve the Cloistered Cleric, especially since my other option required a lot of approval for stuff.

Kylarra
2009-05-09, 02:47 PM
Depending on how much you need the feats from the fighter dip, Dwarf Paragon (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/races/racialParagonClasses.htm#dwarfParagon) might be more flavorful for your savior idea, plus it means no multiclassing issues too.

Myrmex
2009-05-09, 03:38 PM
But can it use a waraxe? It seems so plain, and it doesn't have the right skills to be a dwarf king.

Weapon Proficiency: Waraxe.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-09, 03:40 PM
Depending on how much you need the feats from the fighter dip, Dwarf Paragon (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/races/racialParagonClasses.htm#dwarfParagon) might be more flavorful for your savior idea, plus it means no multiclassing issues too.

Looks like a good idea. I'll have to check with my DM.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-11, 09:02 PM
Another rudimentary build!

Race: Dwarf

Stats: 13 STR, 11 DEX, 14 CON, 14 INT, 15 WIS, 8 CHA

Alignment: Lawful Good

Skills: Concentration, Craft (armorsmithing), Craft (weaponsmithing), Diplomacy, Knowledge (history), Knowledge (mystical), Knowledge (nobility and royalty), Spellcraft.

Cloistered Cleric 1 Combat Casting
Dwarf Paragon 1
Dwarf Paragon 2 Weapon Focus (dwarven waraxe)
Dwarf Paragon 3
Cloistered Cleric 2
Cloistered Cleric 3 Extend Spell
Cloistered Cleric 4
Cloistered Cleric 5
Cloistered Cleric 6 Improved Toughness
Cloistered Cleric 7
Cloistered Cleric 8
Cloistered Cleric 9 Leadership
Cloistered Cleric 10
Cloistered Cleric 11
Cloistered Cleric 12 Craft Magic Arms and Armor
Cloistered Cleric 13
Cloistered Cleric 14
Cloistered Cleric 15 Craft Wondrous Item
Cloistered Cleric 16
Clositered Cleric 17

How's this look? Are there better feat options?

Myrmex
2009-05-11, 09:27 PM
If you get leadership, I recommend giving your cohort the crafting feats. There is a great spell called Spikes that gives a wooden weapon +10 damage. Cast that on your wooden shield and use improved shield bash and TWF to beat the snot out of everything as a CoDzilla.

[edit]
Shield specialization and shield ward will give you +1 to your shield's AC and your shield's AC to your touch AC, respectively. Pretty useful if you DM likes to use stuff that targets touch AC.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-11, 10:48 PM
I don't know if I'll be able to go CoDzilla with this build. Remember that Cloistered Clerics get the attack bonus progression of a wizard.

Furthermore, the shield I have my heart set on is made of mithral. Spikes won't affect it, and frankly I find the image you describe to be ridiculous.

I'm also pondering the domains I should take. Good and Law don't look very interesting to me, and Creation doesn't look too useful, so I'm thinking of Earth and Protection. Because this build is Cloistered Cleric, I get the Knowledge Domain for free. I'm also pondering using the Divine Restoration ACF to replace the domain power of the Earth Domain. I doubt we'd be running into many air-based creatures to turn, and the ability to swap out spells for restoration as well as healing sounds both versatile and useful.

kpenguin
2009-05-11, 10:50 PM
I don't know if I'll be able to go CoDzilla with this build. Remember that Cloistered Clerics get the attack bonus progression of a wizard.

Doesn't matter. Divine power (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/divinePower.htm) gives you full BAB

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-11, 10:58 PM
Would this build have the health to tank though? Cloistered clerics get a d6, and the dwarf paragon gets a d10, plus an ultimate 20 extra hit points from Improved Toughness, and some extra from the +2 permanent Con boost from Dwarf Paragon. I don't know if that'd add up to the kind of tanking my paladin could do.

And even with a full BAB, I doubt the Spikes idea would be effective with a mithral shield, and I think it sounds silly, and I don't want my character to look silly.

Myrmex
2009-05-11, 11:44 PM
You have, on average, 30 fewer HP than a d8 cleric tank. That's one to two hits from a big monster at level 20. At any given level, you are probably 2 hits closer to death, but with a shield and full plate, and cleric spells, you should be pretty hard to hit. If you use anything that gives you a % chance to be missed, even better.

Sword-and-boarding, though, means you will be incapable of dealing any sort of meaningful damage. Using an extra damage source with TWF could make up for it. I mean, if you want a character that does stuff in combat. You could just spend 4 rounds buffing yourself to be as good as the fighter in time for combat to end. Or throw a bunch of buffs up on party members. Get a bard follower with inspire courage and song of the heart to give you more +damage and +hit.

Personally, I imagine a cleric of earth and protection with a spiky shield and brutal axe bludgeoning monsters to death ruthlessly as totally bad ass. Get your DM to rule that your spell only works on your shield or something. You're building your character around mechanically poor ideas. Maybe he could throw you a bone.

[edit]
You can flavor the spikes however you want, whether it's a short, dense layer of rock like protrusions or huge glassy spikes.

You could also sink a feat into getting mountain plate, which is +10 AC, 0 max dex. Alternatively, mithral plate and cats grace. Either way, you'll have a fighter's AC. Mechanus Gear, from one of the Planar books, can be made from mithral, which means +10 AC with 2 max dex. You could say each piece was forged by an expert dwarven smith, and it was designed by gnomes, if you don't want the planar flavor.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-11, 11:51 PM
You have, on average, 30 fewer HP than a d8 cleric tank. That's one to two hits from a big monster at level 20. At any given level, you are probably 2 hits closer to death, but with a shield and full plate, and cleric spells, you should be pretty hard to hit. If you use anything that gives you a % chance to be missed, even better.

Sword-and-boarding, though, means you will be incapable of dealing any sort of meaningful damage. Using an extra damage source with TWF could make up for it. I mean, if you want a character that does stuff in combat. You could just spend 4 rounds buffing yourself to be as good as the fighter in time for combat to end. Or throw a bunch of buffs up on party members. Get a bard follower with inspire courage and song of the heart to give you more +damage and +hit.

Personally, I imagine a cleric of earth and protection with a spiky shield and brutal axe bludgeoning monsters to death ruthlessly as totally bad ass. Get your DM to rule that your spell only works on your shield or something. You're building your character around mechanically poor ideas. Maybe he could throw you a bone.

[edit]
You can flavor the spikes however you want, whether it's a short, dense layer of rock like protrusions or huge glassy spikes.

You could also sink a feat into getting mountain plate, which is +10 AC, 0 max dex. Alternatively, mithral plate and cats grace. Either way, you'll have a fighter's AC. Mechanus Gear, from one of the Planar books, can be made from mithral, which means +10 AC with 2 max dex.

I suppose it could work. According to the fluff, the Shield of the Resolute is made from the broken pieces of the shields of ancient dwarven heroes riveted together into a new shield. All those pieces must have some sharp edges. I think my DM would allow me to take a feat for Mountain Plate. The Arms and Equipment Guide is one of the books he actually has.

Myrmex
2009-05-12, 12:50 AM
I ran a mostly core game a year ago, from level 1 and ended at 10. The dwarven cleric went clericzilla, but most fights he had to spend 2-3 rounds putting his buffs up before he got his murder on. If he had a chance to put buffs up before, he was a murder machine. Otherwise, it wasn't until round 4 that he started doing damage. He was a cleric of the god of travel, and later, as I opened the game to more sources, he started using a quarterstaff (two handed) with spikes cast on it. This was a nice buff, as it lasted all day and greatly improved his damage.


Oh wait. I just realized. You won't have the dex to TWF.

Myrmex
2009-05-12, 01:54 AM
I know you're really set on using these relics of moradin, but is there any particular reason you're so attached to them? You could have a chat with your DM to get the weapons to do something else, so your character's fluff and mechanics are more coherent. Have the weapons treat you as a bard 5 levels higher than you actually are for the purposes of bard song and bardic knowledge, for instance. That way you can inspire and know things, without actually having to all sorts of weird multiclassing.

You could also go with TWF instead of axe and board. Go waraxe + hand ax, and play bard/barbarian. Your ferocious warcries inspire your allies to fight on, and you have much lore that has been passed down. You may be a noble's son, but you are no weakling or one to shrink from a fight. You can survive in the wilderness as well as any ranger and strike as true as the best of warriors. But beneath the battle-scarred exterior of finally crafted dwarven plate, lies the heart of a {scholar, poet, musician, learned dwarf} who yearns to restore his kind to their former glory.

Get your DM to waive the non-lawful requirements and multiclass issues. See if you can't get pounce as lion totem barb :smallbiggrin:

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-12, 12:36 PM
Well, the main reason I'm interested in them is because they're powerful symbols of the dwarven people. Recovering them would result in a big boost to dwarf morale, and it would lend credibility to the character's claim to High Kingship.

And while the idea looks pretty good, remember that there's also the idea that he recieves guidance from Moradin, just like Joan of Arc claimed that God spoke to her.

herrhauptmann
2009-05-12, 01:05 PM
Interlocking armor is also a decent choice. Especially if you don't expect to be moving too much in combat.
Move 5 feet or less, and your AC goes up by 2. Very defendery to me.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-12, 01:23 PM
I just double-checked the Arms and Equipment Guide, and realized I was barking up the wrong tree. The armor I was thinking of when you said Mountain Plate was actually Dwarven Stone Plate. :smallredface:

Still looks interesting though, as well as that Dendritic armor too.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-12, 07:56 PM
How well would a Crusader work? They look pretty solid, but the only style that has dwarven waraxe is Iron Heart, which only Warblades get. None of the other Devoted Spirit, White Raven or Stone Dragon (which all fit my idea swell, by the way) weapons really seem very dwarfy, and there's no one weapon that all of them share.

tyckspoon
2009-05-12, 08:24 PM
The discipline favored weapons don't have any relevance to like 80% of the Tome of Battle. You can use the martial maneuvers with any weapon you feel like; I think the Swordsage has some minor class abilities that only work with a discipline's favored weapons, and some of the new feats in the book only work with and/or grant better benefits for using the appropriate weapon, but that's about it. Go ahead and use a dwarven waraxe if that's what you want to use.

Edit: Oh yeah. Mechanically, all of the ToB classes work just fine. They're valid choices all the way clear to 20, and the 1/2 IL advancement thing makes them work pretty well if you decide to go into a different class or PrC for a while, too. There's only two things I can think of that don't really work out- trying to use Desert Wind to imitate a blaster caster, and Stone Dragon in a high-mobility game thanks to the must-touch-ground thing and the stances that end if you move. It just recreates the Dwarven Defender problem, but at least you can be ineffectual in style.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-12, 08:41 PM
Cool! That's a big relief, since I'm not playing a swordsage anyway. I know Diplomacy will be necessary, since that's the required skill for White Raven, which fits well with his role as an inspiring leader. I understand there's something in Stone Dragon that is a must-have for anyone who can access Stone Dragon, but I'm not sure what it is. He'll at least be socially adept, but will I be able to fit any of the following skills in there too?

Craft (armorsmithing)
Craft (weaponsmithing)

As a member of the church of Moradin and a prime example of dwarfiness, it would make sense for him to be able to forge implements of war, even if he can't enchant them. Plus, the Anvil of Creation looks favorably upon you if you make and donate stuff the church can use.

Knowledge (history)
Knowledge (nobility and royalty)

This dwarf wants to be king, so he would probably want to be knowledgeable about clan history and their acomplishments, and what clans are still around in the wake of the Sundering of the World. He'd probably also want to use these things to his advantage by invoking historical ties between clans and reminding them that "the dwarves are for the dwarves" and that they need to be able to stand on their own, rather than lose their culture by integrating with whatever nations are still standing amidst the demi-apocalypse.

EDIT: I just double-checked my TOB, and the crusader has all of those skills except Knowledge (nobility & royalty).

tyckspoon
2009-05-12, 09:23 PM
People are usually thinking of the Mountain Hammer strike. It's a level 2 maneuver that ignores all hardness and DR and gives +2d6 damage. You can go mining with your bare hands with that if you really want to. There's also a couple of higher-level maneuvers that have no prerequisites beyond having a suitably high initiator level that are kind of nice- Mountain Tombstone Strike (level 9, hit causes 2d6 Con damage) and Irresistable Mountain Strike (level 6, Fort save vs. lose standard action.)

If you really want Know (nobility) as a class skill, try for the Educated feat (Eberron campaign setting, Player's Guide to Faerun). Makes all Knowledge skills class skills. There's probably a few other ways to do it (including taking a level of Cleric/Cloistered Cleric and getting the Knowledge domain- it'd be a good lead to Ruby Vindicator) as well that I'm not remembering.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-12, 09:44 PM
Ruby Knight Vindicator looks cool, don't get me wrong, but it's not quite what I'm looking for. Even if I reflavor it to get a Moradin worshiping one, it feels more like Batman than Jeanne d'Arc.

EDIT: What's the Dwarven Defender problem?

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-12, 11:11 PM
Come to think of it, why the heck do I need to be married to those relics anyway. I think any sort of "dwarfy" weapon would be appropriate. I think I'll try and make a Stone Dragon crusader/Deepstone Sentinel who uses a greataxe, which IS a Stone Dragon Weapon.:smallbiggrin:

tyckspoon
2009-05-12, 11:29 PM
EDIT: What's the Dwarven Defender problem?

In short, you can negate their class features by walking around them at a brisk pace. It works alright in stereotypical Dwarf surroundings, like mine workings or carved dungeon-like hallways, but completely fails in open space, or tall spaces with flying enemies, or once you start fighting things that can make tactical teleports (lots of outsiders have Teleport at will, for example, and there are a number of low-level short-range teleport effects in the Spell Compendium and Magic Item Compendium) or that can Earth Glide or.. well, you probably get the point. The Stone Dragon discipline and the Deepstone Sentinel share a lot of the same problem, although they do it in a far more awesome fashion.

As for the relics: you could also strive to acquire and bear the relics as tokens of your divine mandate to lead the dwarves. Doesn't mean you have to actually wield them. Most of the relics are somewhat less than impressive mechanically anyway, IIRC. Shouldn't be a major problem unless your DM gets strict about counting them against your wealth.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-12, 11:51 PM
I don't think he's that strict. I mean, he gave my last character a big pile of stuff free of charge, including the Book of Exalted Deeds, and somehow manages to engineer circumstances that prevent my character from suffering the effects of death too much. He's pretty damn generous.

He even nerfed the freakin' Tarrasque to allow our party to stand a chance against it.

SolkaTruesilver
2009-05-13, 12:36 AM
Have you thought about Kensai? a good mix of pure Fighter (with nice feats from the PHB2 and alternate class feature for Fighter Dwarf) and Kensai goes a long way toward an interesting, powerful and playable character.

I should know, one of my character, Torgo Stoutshield, was it :smallbiggrin:

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-05-13, 12:41 AM
Isn't the Kensai mostly about upgrading your weapon without needing to be a spellcaster though? I'm not sure how the mechanics of that would work, since that usually burns XP, and our DM doesn't use XP, simply letting us level up after we make it through the session. If we've died and been brought back, we simply don't level up at the end.