View Full Version : [3.5] Beguiler questions

2009-05-06, 07:13 PM
Well guys, I know my Druid will get toasted in a couple of sessions (my DM confirmed the Campaign would end soon). So I decided to get out of my comfort zone and roll up a Beguiler. Aaaaannnd, I'm at a loss... I don't know what that guy's role is. I mean, I've read the class and stuff, I know he's a spell caster, but should I aim at Crowd Control or debuffing the enemies?

I'm also really wondering what kind of build I can do with that. I know right know he'll be human (that cannot be changed, or more like, I don't want to change it) and I'm not even sure I wanna PrC. But I could be convinced.

As for House Rules and such, there are none that I know of. The only thing is, we can't use campaign specific stuff (Feats, items, etc) and it's only Core (including DM2 and PH2) and Completes. Oh, and we're starting level one, 25 point buy.

Right now, here's what I have:
Str: 8 Dex: 13 Con: 14 Int: 16 Wis: 10 Cha: 10
Feats: Spell Focus (Illusion and Enchantment)

I'm kinda aiming at getting Conceal Spellcasting and Swift Concentration as Skill tricks to make it easier to use Cloaked Casting. I'm sot really sure I'll use Surprise Casting much, since it requires me to be in melee.

I also know I won't have to be the face of the party, someone in the team is rolling a Witch Doctor (search these boards) so he'll do all the Diplo and stuff. Bluff I can cover with Glibness. I'll be the skill monkey tho, as in, I'll cover for skills others won't have, which means Search and DD for sure.

And this is where I stop. I don't know where to go from that point on. Any hint or suggestion would be welcome.

2009-05-06, 07:19 PM
The nice thing about beguilers (well, one of the nice things) is that they automatically know their entire spell list (except for Advanced Learning, but that's only a handful of spells). You don't really have to specialize in anything, because you can just do whatever's most useful at the moment.

2009-05-06, 07:24 PM

You may not need this level of optimization, but it's a useful read

2009-05-06, 07:28 PM
Beguilers, with their slight DC edge over regular casters, are very useful with low-level So_s. You have access to the excellent Sleep, Color Spray and Charm Person right off the bat. Hypnotism is also a useful spell for that, and you get Silent Image in case you want to play some tricks. So you're a competitive caster, but you also have the skills to spare when it comes to trapfinding and such. Pour your feats into things that increase Spell DCs, since without them you are nothing. Use your Hide and Move Silently to get into position to drop Color Sprays if you can afford the risk, or Sleep them from a distance. Attacking is not for you, don't even bother with that, but do invest in some nice Mithril armour when you can afford it.

2009-05-06, 07:38 PM
So, basically, investing in Greater Spell Focus isn't a bad idea at all, as was my idea of using Spell Focus?

And for immune monsters? UMD + Wands/staff/runestaff?

Anyone played one and noticed shortcommings I should know, or traps I shouldn't fall into? Suboptimal choices?

2009-05-06, 08:25 PM
Yes, UMD is going to be your friend, so raise that CHA and buy drinks for the Artificer.

You can take the Mindbender dip for 100ft Telepathy, so you can use your Language-Dependent spells on anything that talks.

There aren't many shortcomings or traps, other than the Advanced Learning spells that you choose. Not a very large choice at 1st level, pretty much just Power Word Stun, Net of Shadows and Distract Assailant (which can be sweet with Unsettling Enchantment). Just use your tactics and make sure there are beatsticks where you need things beaten.

2009-05-06, 09:00 PM
noticed shortcommings I should know

Otherwise, great class. ;)

2009-05-06, 09:07 PM
I had one of these a while back, if you want to get some back in combat, take the Mind Bender PrC. You loose a couple of levels of casting, but the whole minions to do your bidding thing is fun. Only issue is if you are in a good-based campaign its a fine line to tread.

2009-05-06, 09:10 PM
Ok, so I guess I looked at it the wrong way and thought this guy would get is share of battles, but it seems it's a caster class, with a lot of skills, nothing else.

So for stats, would this be better than what I had planned?
Str: 8 Dex: 10 Con: 13 Int: 16 Wis: 10 Cha: 14
instead of
Str: 8 Dex: 13 Con: 14 Int: 16 Wis: 10 Cha: 10

A bit squishier, with less AC, but I guess I'll have to rely on the other party members to cover up for me.

2009-05-06, 09:19 PM
So, basically, investing in Greater Spell Focus isn't a bad idea at all, as was my idea of using Spell Focus?

And for immune monsters? UMD + Wands/staff/runestaff?

Anyone played one and noticed shortcommings I should know, or traps I shouldn't fall into? Suboptimal choices?
Do what you'd do as a rogue against a creature immune to your main trick (sneak attack). Distance yourself, attack from behind the though guys, and yes, UMD your way around.

Think of the Beguiler as a How-should-be Bard, only without music.

2009-05-06, 10:01 PM
I am playing a beguiler right now, in a 3 person party, and it is probably the most fun I've ever had with a character. It is exactly what I think an "arcane trickster" should be, but without stupid clunky multiclassing.

If you have access to the book, Races of the Dragon (or maybe it's Dragon Magic), you want the feat versatile spellcaster. It lets you turn two lower level spells into a higher level spell, and, due to the wording of feat and beguiler casting, gives you access to the next level of spells (so a 4th level beguiler could cast 3rd level spells). Otherwise, you can't really go wrong with the spell focuses.

You will always have glitterdust to use against immune foes, such as golems. You also get slow, haste, and solid fog, as well as illusions you can use to great effect. Getting a wand of web may be useful, as it is a cheap way to slow things down, or do a bunch of fire damage to everyone.

Dipping a level of Mindbender gets you 100ft of telepathy, which makes sneaking around and staying in contact with your party very easy. It also gets you a bunch of in class knowledge spells. I'm not sure what makes up your party, but you could then dip a level of Sandshaper (Sandstorm) to get a bunch of really useful known spells- bull strength, etc as first level spells, as good buffs to use in case you are fighting a lot of undead or something. You also get summon desert ally, which is essentially like summon nature's ally, except with desert themed monsters. Sandshaper loses you one caster level, which would hurt, except you get +1 CL whenever you are carrying at least 15 lbs of sand, and Versatile Spellcaster makes up for it. Putting more levels into that class would actually give you a lot of neat, versatile abilities, but cost you many skill points.

Most prestige classes will make you give up a whole lot of skill points, so prestige classing out may not be that attractive if you have to fill a lot of roles. If you have another trap finder in your party, you can easily fill the social niche and just give him +2 on his checks with aid another, while still dipping a prestige class or two.

How not to invest too much in trapfinding skills:
Since int is your highest ability, search doesn't need to have max ranks, and with magic items from the SRD, you can easily get +5 to +15 to search. With aid another, that can be as much as +17 to finding traps, not counting int or ranks.

Disable device can be used to pick locks. The only problem is that "disarming" a lock basically means you break it. This can save you from investing (any) ranks in Open Lock. In order to bypass a lock without setting it off, you need to beat the lock DC by 5, which can be difficult.

Tumble, concentration, and escape artist are all must have skills, even if you only put one rank in either tumble or escape artist. The DCs for tumble are quite low, so putting a few ranks in it early pays off. Even making half your tumble checks is better than not being able to tumble (there isn't any penalty for failing a tumble check).

Social skills needn't necessarily be maxed out. You get glibness, which gives you +30 to bluff, as a third level spell. Diplomacy is useful, but you can always fire off a silent charm person. Sense motive and gather information are both useful to have, especially since wisdom is typically a dump stat. Spot and listen are always handy, but with all your spells, you can handle being surprised, since you get immediate cast spells like stay the hand or greater mirror image.

Hide and move silently are must haves, in my opinion, and the feat Darkstalker from Lords of Madness lets you hide from scent, darkvision, tremorsense, and a bunch of other abilities that usually circumvent hiding. Both skills are relatively easy to get to high levels, especially if you play a small race. A wand of shrink person, for 750 gp, gives you +4 on hide checks.

Beguilers are naturally tricky characters, so try thinking out side the box. Use illusions and caltrops at low levels to lure things into bad situations. Flasks of alchemist fire, combined with lantern oil (which is dirt cheap) go along way for doing damage or forcing monsters down certain paths. Smokesticks can be very useful for getting out of melee or tight situations. Hide in the smoke, make an illusion of you fleeing, then when they give chase, run out the opposite side. Beguilers can wreck social situations with charm person and glibness, and the relative ease at getting a massive diplomacy check. Make sure your DM is cool with you being a social butterfly before you invest to many resources in being awesome.

2009-05-06, 10:04 PM
If you can get them, eternal wands will help your versatility a lot. Any arcane caster can use them, regardless of whether the spell's on their list, so it can give you options you otherwise wouldn't have.

2009-05-06, 10:14 PM
Try reading this (http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=986810).

It's a more recent, comprehensive, and easy to read handbook than the one Seatbelt linked to.

2009-05-06, 10:19 PM
If you can get them, eternal wands will help your versatility a lot. Any arcane caster can use them, regardless of whether the spell's on their list, so it can give you options you otherwise wouldn't have.

Good call.

Bracers of Entangling Blast can be really useful with the Whelm spells, since anything that takes damage will get entangled. Of course, the Whelm spells are all enchantments, do don't try using it on undead, etc.

Legion of Sentinels (you'll have to look up the errata) is an unbelievably good battlefield control spell. Basically you get 12 incorporeal warriors that make AoO touch attacks that do 1d8 damage. Combine that with a tripper in your party, and you can easily murder someone. I use that spell against large creatures that like charging around, since they provoke more attacks. In one battle, with two uses of that spell, I did something like 20d8 damage, and forced the monster to spend his time punching through walls rather than go through my murder field.

If you are going to be in a campaign that is purely undead and constructs, I would probably recommend against going beguiler.

Though, you could start taking levels in Rainbow Servant at level 5, and by level 14, get to spontaneously cast from the air, law, good domains, and all cleric spells. Make sure you go by text-trumps-table; that way you get full casting.

2009-05-06, 10:56 PM
OK well after reading all the stuff you guys wrote (or linked :P) I'm now sure I don't want to go into PrCs. Aside from Mindbender of course! Even if the 4 Intimidate ranks hurt.

As for feats, thanks Myrmex, but I thought about those feats, I just can't take them since they aren't in the Complete books. It'll be the Greater Spell Focus for both schools.

I think I've got things planned up for the first 10 levels, and I'm not even sure the campaign will last that long, so I'll stop worrying about it now :smalltongue:

Thanks guys for helping a guy that has no clue about what he's doing :smallwink: !!

2009-05-06, 11:12 PM
Beguiler is a good class to take straight through, since nothing will give you the same skills and spells. At most, you might dip one or two levels in PrCs for things like Mindbender telepathy, but you'll be mostly a Beguiler.

If you don't have another skillmonkey in the party, you can pretty much entirely take on that role: The Beguiler is nearly as good at is as the Rogue is. If you do have another skillmonkey, as Myrmex says, you can help him out a bit and take over the social skills (which you can do better than the rogue, thanks to your spells). Which of these two routes you go will determine whether your Dex or Cha should be higher (whichever it is should be your #2 priority stat). Even if you do go primarily social, it's not a bad idea to keep Hide and Move Silently high, as well as at least one of Listen or Spot.