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webgem
2010-01-17, 12:10 AM
Hello, I'm starting to play in a 4e campaign long time of looking at rules. We're starting up at a fairly high level, but I've played D&D for a long time, and I have the gist of things i hope. However, not actually playing 4e before I'm not sure what will be the most fun/effective to play. It seems like our group has increased from our 3.5 game to 7 with 2 for sure being a swordmage and a sorcerer. I thought I would try to bring a premade wizard, and if but I just was wondering if somebody could give me advice on how to keep a wizard alive. I'm sort of interested in the Wizard of the Spiral Tower or blood mage paragon paths, both seem fun, with a focus on orb stuff to make things get all statused up, but it seems like they need to be somewhat close to either hit things with swords or make use of thunderwave/blood pulse, and I know Swordmages like to teleport about, and I'm sure sorceres are fairly long range. Anyway, I just don't want to get bashed to death, and I'm wondering if I could get some build advice. Mainly feats/powers/equipment, but also whether I should pump int and con, or int and wis. Con mainly for hp if I get hit often, and Wisdom for obs and secondary effects. Any thoughts would be welcome. Or just some thoughts on how to have fun with wizards in 4e! Thanks for the help anyone/everyone.

LVL 15
Wizard
Human (probably)
10/11/12/13/14/16
level 16 item, level 15 item, level 14 item, cash as 15th level item.
Standard game - airship focused.

GoodbyeSoberDay
2010-01-17, 12:44 AM
Airship focused, you say? Anyone know if there's a ruling on the frame of reference of a stationary zone or wall? Because no matter what I think you're going to have some fun with them.

Touchy
2010-01-17, 12:50 AM
I'm trying to understand this, are you new to playing wizards in 4e, or 4e in general. Also, since it seems your playing with your 3.5 group, make sure you and they know that 4e is a different than 3.5. This being said, if you are new, don't expect the wizard to be the strongest person on the team, since you all have different roles in the party.
Also if you have a DM that loves minions, expect your team to love how many AoE controllers get.

Shardan
2010-01-17, 01:11 AM
Yeah, Wizard is control now, not damage. you'll be dropping walls, locking down BBEG's and flashing minions, but you won't be doing serious amounts of damage. Con really not overly important for you. If you get hit, the HP difference won't matter. The bonus at will is big for wizard because the at wills are so different, but higher levels you don't use at wills very often.

I don't know wizard very well to know which paragon to point you at though.

Mando Knight
2010-01-17, 01:24 AM
Go Int/Wis if you're going for Orbs. And don't forget that Sleep is an Orb Wizard's favorite spell in 4e.

KillianHawkeye
2010-01-17, 01:55 AM
And don't forget that Sleep is an Orb Wizard's favorite spell in 4e.

Even at 15th level??

HMS Invincible
2010-01-17, 02:16 AM
Even at 15th level??
You might retrain it at epic, maybe...

DragonBaneDM
2010-01-17, 02:17 AM
Even at 15th level??

Oh jeez of course! Anything that'll give the strikers coup de graces for more than one round is basically a monster killer. Also, knocking the boss monster out, at least for the first few rounds, is so helpful. Sleep also gets more effective the higher you build your character, so I see most Level 30 Orbizard Builds still packing Sleep.

webgem
2010-01-17, 01:37 PM
Hey everyone, thanks for the help. I appreciate the heads up about everything. Does sleep keep them sleeping if you actually hit them though, I was confused on the coup de grace for multiple rounds thing. I'll keep in mind that i'm no longer a primary damage dealer, but I was still kinda wondering aobut the squishy part. I was hoping to use thunderwave often to maybe push people off the ship. (i think, the 1s lvl wizard at will), but it is a close blast. Will I get insta killed being that close to the front lines?

Mando Knight
2010-01-17, 02:01 PM
You won't be turned to ludicrous gibs right away, but still I wouldn't do it without having a big meat-shield-y buddy nearby.

Kurald Galain
2010-01-17, 06:18 PM
I thought I would try to bring a premade wizard, and if but I just was wondering if somebody could give me advice on how to keep a wizard alive.
That is actually easier than it sounds. For starters, you get intelligence bonus to AC. Use either the Thay background or Born under a Bad Sign to also base your hit points on intelligence. Play a staff wizard, and take as your utility spells Shield and Wizard's Escape. And finally, invest in items that give you resistance. You'd be amazed at how squishy you're not.


I'm sort of interested in the Wizard of the Spiral Tower or blood mage paragon paths, both seem fun, with a focus on orb stuff to make things get all statused up,
Blood Mage is the most damaging wizard paragon path by far. WOTST is kind of obsoleted by some feats printed since. It depends on what you want, really. Do you want to deal lots of damage? Provide area control? (in which case Spellstorm Mage is probably best) Do nasty status effects? Be a secondary leader?


Mainly feats/powers/equipment, but also whether I should pump int and con, or int and wis.
Int and wis, hands down.

(re: the Sleep spell)

Even at 15th level??
Even at 30th level, yes.


Does sleep keep them sleeping if you actually hit them though,
Yes. That's because the spell doesn't put monsters to sleep, it makes them unconscious.


I was hoping to use thunderwave often to maybe push people off the ship. (i think, the 1s lvl wizard at will), but it is a close blast. Will I get insta killed being that close to the front lines?
Thunderwave is the best wizard at-will bar none (even with a wis as low as 14), and pushing people off things is both a very fun and very effective strategy. Just in case there isn't anything to push people off, you should add some zone spells to push people into, such as Wall of Fire. And note that wizards are more durable than e.g. most rogues or rangers.

For more wizardy goodness, take only area effect spells and add Enlarge Spell. Don't bother with wizard summons, they suck (if you want a summoner, play a druid). Wizards have some decent single-target spells but their area effects are huge and are so much better. Take the War Wizardry feat to avoid hitting your allies, if necessary. The best wizard spells tend to be the ones that do the least damage, because they usually add a nasty control effect. Wizards probably have the best daily powers and the best utility powers in the book, so you can have a lot of fun with that.

Take a multiclass feat. Which one is up to taste, but they're all very good feats. Also, consider taking a familiar for a feat. If you want more versatility, consider investing in Tome of Readiness and a Mnemonic Staff, or indeed anything that lets you swap out spells at the moment you need them (note that expanded spellbook doesn't do that, and is a mediocre feat in general).

Sinon
2010-01-17, 08:43 PM
Thunderwave is the best wizard at-will bar none (even with a wis as low as 14), and pushing people off things is both a very fun and very effective strategy. My issue with Thunderwave is that it targets Fort, which tends to be a tough defense. As a human, it isnít bad to have, but one other issue is that it is close blast, so youíre going to have to be up front or risk hitting allies on a regular basis.

As a human I would go with Storm Pillar, Illusory Ambush, and Scorching Burst.

Storm Pillar is a good area denial spell. Far better than Cloud of Daggers.

Illusory Ambush targets an individual (which is valuable) and it targets one of the best defenses (will) and has a nice (-2) penalty.

You could fill that role with Ray of Frost (hit fort but it can slow an opponent) or Magic Missile (reflex, force, great range). There's also Phantom Bolt (will and push).

If you want to push people off a ship, this might be a good alternative to Thunderwave.

Scorching Burst is a nice area effect, at range, for minions. Thunderwave will also do ok, but as I said above, targets a defense that might not be as good and is more likely to put allies at risk.

Dimers
2010-01-17, 09:21 PM
If your DM rules that sleep works the same for monsters as it does for PCs naturally sleeping (rules on page 263), your meatshields won't get multiple CDGs on enemies. They might not get any at all, if the enemies have allies who shout to wake them up, which is a free action. That view of how the spell works all but negates the "save ends" aspect, but some DMs will refuse to allow it to work that well, regardless. So check first.

If your party includes a warlord, you should consider taking magic missile to take advantage of free basic attacks.

Don't worry too much about your squishiness. Even if you don't take feats that buff you up, you'll have six allies damaging/containing enemies and buffing/healing you. Having even a couple tactically-minded people on the team will keep your safe enough. And as pointed out before, your Int gives you a big bonus toward the most common defense targeted. Leather armor proficiency has no prerequisites and adds at least another +2 to AC.

HMS Invincible
2010-01-17, 10:51 PM
Does nobody have love for chilling cloud? -2 to attack rolls, hits enemies only, and is a burst spell. Plus the -2 to attack rolls happens even if you miss. My spells are thunderwave, stormpillar and chilling cloud.

Kurald Galain
2010-01-18, 08:28 AM
My issue with Thunderwave is that it targets Fort, which tends to be a tough defense.
This is the unfortunate result of charop: the notion that "targeting fortitude is bad" gets quoted way too often, and usually out of context. In practice, fortitude is only marginally higher on average than reflex or will; the only exception is big hulking brutes. Don't bother thunderwave big hulking brutes (which are obvious to spot anyway), and you can have a fun pushing everything else into nasty places.


one other issue is that it is close blast, so youíre going to have to be up front or risk hitting allies on a regular basis.
As I pointed out in my previous post, wizards are probably the least squishy class other than defenders. It is not a problem to be on the frontline. Furthermore, TW works from as far as four squares away (assuming enlarge spell, which is an awesome feat) and pushes people away from you. Seriously, using TW does not mean you ever have to move closer to the frontline, and it is a lifesaver if and when the frontline moves closer to you. The first time an enemy pins you against the wall (which will happen, and soon) you'll be glad to have a close attack.

In short, (1) being on the frontline isn't a problem, (2) you don't have to be on the frontline to use TW, and (3) when the frontline moves to you, you want a close attack.



As a human I would go with Storm Pillar, Illusory Ambush, and Scorching Burst.
Storm pillar got nerfed. It is still better than Cloud of Daggers though, albeit rather situational. Scorching burst is obsoleted by Winged Horde, and Illusory Ambush is also one of those things that charop vastly overrates and that doesn't well in practice, because giving an enemy a -2 penalty does exactly nothing exactly 90% of the time.

I would suggest Thunderwave and Winged Horde for any wizard, and Storm Pillar as the third for humans. Then you have all your bases covered. You don't need single-target spells since Winged Horde is an enemies-only area effect.

Ray of Frost is really bad at level 3 and above. Magic Missile is decent if combined with Wizard's Fury and/or Irresistible Force, and bad otherwise. Phantom Bolt is pretty good and certainly better than Illusory Ambush.


If your DM rules that sleep works the same for monsters as it does for PCs naturally sleeping (rules on page 263), your meatshields won't get multiple CDGs on enemies.
If your DM does that, then that makes the Sleep spell pretty much worthless. Yes, check first. Even so, wizards can still use e.g. Flaming Sphere or Grease as very nice level-1 spells.


If your party includes a warlord, you should consider taking magic missile to take advantage of free basic attacks.
Nearly all warlord powers grant basic melee attacks, though.


Does nobody have love for chilling cloud?
It's not that bad, but the point is that pushing people is much more effective than giving a minor attack penalty. Also, it's not enlargeable.

Reverent-One
2010-01-18, 08:54 AM
Illusory Ambush is also one of those things that charop vastly overrates and that doesn't well in practice, because giving an enemy a -2 penalty does exactly nothing exactly 90% of the time.

And yet Weapon/Implement Expertise, which for half the game and through the most common levels in the game does nothing for the player 95% of the time and does nothing 90% of the time for another third of the levels, is one of the best feats in the game. Interesting.

BobTheDog
2010-01-18, 09:35 AM
And yet Weapon/Implement Expertise, which for half the game and through the most common levels in the game does nothing for the player 95% of the time and does nothing 90% of the time for another third of the levels, is one of the best feats in the game. Interesting.

It's not so much the attack bonus or penalty, but the "controllerism" of it.

All at-wills can be "nullified". If you're fighting at short range (>10 squares), Magic Missile's extra range is not a factor. This is rather common, hence MM is not a great power. If you slow a monster with Ray of Frost, but he manages to reach someone and attack, the condition was wasted. If you push them back with TW, but they move back to you and punch you in the face, the push effect was useless. So on, so forth etc etc.

The thing is, a -2 to attacks is a controller effect that you don't have much control over. Except in situations where a brute (or other low accuracy monster) is targetting a defender and you KNOW he'll keep at it (marked with a nasty rider for disobeying, that target is the only one the monster can reach etc.), the odds of your control effect being useless depend on the DM's dice. If he needs a 6 to hit normally, he'll need an 8. If your DM rolls anything other than 6 or 7, you didn't change the outcome of the attack.

Unless your DM is like me, who's constantly barely hitting the players. Then a -2 is excellent. :smalltongue:

Kurald Galain
2010-01-18, 09:57 AM
And yet Weapon/Implement Expertise, which for half the game and through the most common levels in the game does nothing for the player 95% of the time and does nothing 90% of the time for another third of the levels, is one of the best feats in the game. Interesting.
Yes. It is a matter of opportunity cost: you get eighteen feats over the course of your career, very few of which are better than Expertise. On the other hand, you get two at-wills over the course of your career, several of which are much better than illusory ambush.

Furthermore, the game runs on action economy. Most feats (including expertise) are always in effect and cost you no action. Most powers (including ambush) require a standard action to use. And since you only get about five standard actions per combat, the power has to compete with all the other things you could have done with a standard action.

And yes, very few combats last longer than five rounds, not counting "cleanup" (i.e. the part where it is obvious the players have already won and the monsters are no longer a thread; what you do during cleanup isn't exactly relevant so most DMs here "call off" the combat at that point). Incidentally this is also why a human's third at-will isn't all that relevant from level 7 onwards.

It should be obvious that a combat modifier that costs a feat and is always in effect is much much better than an identical modifier that (1) costs a power slot, (2) requires a standard action to activate for one turn, and (3) requires an attack roll.

webgem
2010-01-18, 02:55 PM
Hello everyone, I appreciate the help that everyone has given me so far, especially Kurald has put in a lot of effort, or at least sizable posts :smallsmile: which have been very helpful. We did end up making characters and having one fight last night. We ended up losing one player, having a swordmage (captain) 3 strikers (Ranger, Sorcerer, Avenger) and myself. Still, we're able to change things a bit if necessary, so this advice is still very helpful. The one downside for when our ship is in combat, is our defender is busy driving, while I was getting pounded on. And not having a cleric or something was a bit scary. I might try to find out about these hybrid classes (With DM approval) I've heard about, and find one that meshes. I got down to about 30 hitpoints, even though it was hard to hit me. (stupid auto hit fire elementals walking on me) I think it was just bad luck hopefully. I did have a blast pushing things around/minion killingthough with thunderwave, and I'll have more with some of the stuff I've learned here.

Sinon
2010-01-19, 07:43 AM
Illusory Ambush is also one of those things that charop vastly overrates and that doesn't well in practice, because giving an enemy a -2 penalty does exactly nothing exactly 90% of the time.Thatís sort of a misleading way to phrase it. Iím not arguing with your math, but how you put it out there.

It is equally true (and equally skewed) to say that it can save your butt 20% of the time. If you assume that your opponent will normally hit on ~50% of his rolls, -10% to that means heís only ~40% to-hit when affected by a -2 penalty.

As you gain levels, monsters get better at hitting you and you get worse at hitting them. Little things like a +2 here, a -2 there are significant. Thatís also why Iím not as immediately dismissive of the lower probabilities associated with targeting Fort defenses.

That said, it can be a good idea to have a Fort option, because for some creatures, it is their worst defense. It can be nice to target that.

Regardless: if you want versatility, I think it wise to have an attack that focuses on single opponents. The three I know of are Illusory Ambush, Phantom Bolt, and Magic Missile. All three are pretty good, but I like Illusory the best.


As I pointed out in my previous post, wizards are probably the least squishy class other than defenders. It is not a problem to be on the frontline.When it comes to your defenses, thatís true. You are pretty good.
But, remember youíve only about 70% of the defenderís hp and fewer surges.

But more than that, even though you may be hardy enough to be up front, you will probably still have allies trying to get in front of you, melee strikers, most defenders, some leaders, ranged strikers with Prime Shot.

I donít know the specifics of Winged Horde, but one reason I prefer a spell like Scorching Burst over Thunder Wave is that it is typically easier to place a ranged burst where it wonít hit an ally.


It does look though that given the OP's specific situation (on boat, fire elementals) the advantages of pushing and disadvantages of a fire attack do shift things in favor of Thunderwave for him.

Kurald Galain
2010-01-19, 07:59 AM
It is equally true (and equally skewed) to say that it can save your butt 20% of the time. If you assume that your opponent will normally hit on ~50% of his rolls, -10% to that means heís only ~40% to-hit when affected by a -2 penalty.
No, that's not true. Because if the monster is attacking you and would have missed even without the penalty, then the penalty isn't saving your butt.

{table]Monster rolls|1|2|3|4|5|6|7|8|9|10|11|12|13|14|15|16|17|18 |19|20
Hit with penalty|no|no|no|no|no|no|no|no|yes|yes|yes|yes|ye s|yes|yes|yes|yes|yes|yes|yes
Hit without penaltyCA|no|no|no|no|no|no|yes|yes|yes|yes|yes|ye s|yes|yes|yes|yes|yes|yes|yes|yes
Did penalty save your butt|no|no|no|no|no|no|yes|yes|no|no|no|no|no|no|n o|no|no|no|no|no
[/table]


The point is opportunity cost. Theoretically, you can look at the outcome of consistently applying a -2 penalty to the monster, and do statistics on that. But that's all theoretical, and in a vacuum. In practice, you as a player have to pick an action for that turn, and at the end of the turn you can see whether your action for that turn was effective. If it was not, then you could have done something else. The question isn't whether a -2 is bad; the question is whether you can do something better than that.



Regardless: if you want versatility, I think it wise to have an attack that focuses on single opponents. The three I know of are Illusory Ambush, Phantom Bolt, and Magic Missile. All three are pretty good, but I like Illusory the best.
There's four, the fourth being Winged Horde (which is an area, but enemies-only). Magic Missile isn't "pretty good" by a long shot, though.



I donít know the specifics of Winged Horde, but one reason I prefer a spell like Scorching Burst over Thunder Wave is that it is typically easier to place a ranged burst where it wonít hit an ally.
True, but I find that often, allies don't mind being thunderwaved. For instance, it can get them out of grabs, or can get them next to their target if they're immobilized.

cupkeyk
2010-01-19, 11:38 AM
with your cash get three orb of ultimate imposition +1's, maybe four, and a cunning longsword +3(level 13). shimmering cloth +3 (level 14), level 15... hmmmn, i dunno. level 16 is probably a cloak of protection +4. for ability scores: 10(11), 13(14), 11(12), 16(22), 14(20), 12(13) . feats, spell focus, arcane familiar(spider), focused expertise(heavy blade), enlarge spell???. spells: definitely sleep and face of death. at wills are thunderwave and your choice of winged horde or chilling cloud.

consider white lotus hindrance and its master version.

Dimers
2010-01-19, 02:37 PM
Nearly all warlord powers grant basic melee attacks, though.

I was going to argue the point, but I realized this: while the powers that specify melee basic attacks account for a bit more than half, the warlord also grants allies more melee basic attacks by moving them into OA range. So magic missile isn't as beneficial as I'd imagined. (Although it also does benefit from Bracers Of The Perfect Shot, if you happen to have 'em.)


We ended up losing one player, having a swordmage (captain) 3 strikers (Ranger, Sorcerer, Avenger) and myself.

... No healers? You poor bastards ...


Still, we're able to change things a bit if necessary ...

Well, wizard, avenger and ranger all multiclass nicely with cleric, since Wisdom is either secondary or primary for each of them. (Don't know about swordmages yet -- I don't have that book.) I may be overestimating the value of healing, but with your current lineup, it sounds like it'd be pretty valuable for one or two of you to redesign or retrain into a multiclass cleric.

Sinon
2010-01-19, 07:25 PM
No, that's not true. Because if the monster is attacking you and would have missed even without the penalty, then the penalty isn't saving your butt.


You changed the to-hit probability from my suggested 50% to 60%. That is probably more accurate at that level though.

Still, with the penalty, youíre hit seven times while Iím hit 6. 85.7% as often as you. Not the 20% I suggested, but thatís due to your (likely more accurate) to-hit probability at level 15.

And it isnít just less damage; it is also fewer secondary effects, which at his level are going to start to suck. (Especially with no leader.)

Iíd also like to point out that the penalty applies to all attacks they make that round, including multiple attack rolls for area effects or other multiple attacks and on opportunity actions.


The point is opportunity cost.
I understand the concept. But really, ok, sure. A spell like Phantom Bolt will always slide 1, so I never actually ďloseĒ anything, but I would say that I actually ďgainĒ anything in those many situations where sliding isnít necessary?

Yes, it is advantageous in many, many, many situations. (Boats are one.) But is also grants nothing of value in quite a few.


There's four, the fourth being Winged Horde (which is an area, but enemies-only). As I said, I donít have access to that at the moment. I am perfectly willing to concede that it is in all ways the bombdiggity.



True, but I find that often, allies don't mind being thunderwaved. For instance, it can get them out of grabs, or can get them next to their target if they're immobilized.I can see that, occasionally, it could be of value to do this. But not hurting your allies is frequently appreciated as well.

This is all just my opinion. I've gotten great mileage from Illusory Ambush, but also with Magic Missile. Thuderwave has always been a disappointment, if not an irritation. But that's my experience. I don't claim that it is universal.

Yakk
2010-01-19, 07:53 PM
Things/feats you need:
15 dex for "arcane reach".
13 dex for "dual implement spellcaster".
High wis for orb-based control effects.
High int ... for being a wizard.
"Psychic Lock"
Winged Horde ranged burst at-will.
Thunderwave close blast at-will.
"Enlarge Spell"
Illusory Ambush ranged at-will

This gives you:
Thunderweave can start 2 squares away from you, and cover up to a 4x4 area.
Winged horde can be a 5x5 area, and everything hit takes a -2 penalty to their attacks.
Illusionary Ambush places a -4 (!) penalty to attacks on the target.

You'll have a +3 implement in your off-hand, and a +4 in your main hand. Your int will be (16+2+4 = 22), for a +6 stat bonus to damage. At least one of your implements will be a weapon, so you can take weapon focus for another +2.

This gives you a +3+4+2+6 = +15 static bonus to damage on all of your attacks. Toss in enlarge spell, and you give up -2 per die in exchange for huge blasts and bursts.

Your AC, in +3 masterwork cloth, is:
6+7+10+1+3 = +27, or your level+12.
This is only mediocre. Going leather armor for +2 AC is popular, but costs you access to cloth armor enchantments (which tend to be good for wizards).

You'll want implement expertise for a +2 bonus to hit, plus your +4 implement, plus +7 from level, +6 from int, gives a +19 to hit (or level+4).

I'm giving you "level +X" values for your modifiers to d20 rolls and defences, because that is a good relatively level-agnostic way of looking at your defences. Ie, it is hard to remember what a level 15 wizard should have for attacks -- but it is easy to remember that going below level+3 on implement attacks is a bad thing.

AC: Level+14 is standard.
Reflex/Will/Fort: Level+12 is standard (but really hard to pull off)
Attacks: Level+3 for Implement, and Level+5 for Weapon, is standard.

Think about arcane admixture (thunder) and dragonmark of thunder: any power with thunder keyword you can slide hit targets 1 square.

A dragonmark of thunder winged horde with enlarge spell is a 5x5 area in which targets hit take 1d6+13 damage, are slid 1, cannot do OAs, targets enemies only, and take a -2 penalty to attacks.

Bump your charisma up to 13 and take phantom echos, and you gain combat advantage against everyone you hit with an illusion power (such as illusionary ambush). Add in Phantasmal Destruction, and you get 19-20 threat range if you have combat advantage...

A possibly interesting feat is "Illusionary Stealth", which could be fun!

Going further, at paragon you can grab a 2nd implement mastery. Grab orb of deception, and then improved orb of deception. . .

Now you:
1> If you with an illusion power miss, you get to repeat the attack on a new target
2> If you hit with an illusion power, you gain combat advantage, the next ally gains combat advantage, you get to crit on a 19-20 on the target, and the target gets a -2 penalty to its attack.

...

Alternatively, given your shortage of melee characters, you could build a summoning-build wizard. Drop summons to tank for your party.

webgem
2010-01-20, 12:13 AM
Hello again. I like the sound of many of the ideas placed here, so I might just put up a couple of builds and see how it turns out. I'll have to see if the non book stuff is allowed, because psychic lock with winged horde seems pretty nice. Especially the fact that it doesn't hit allies.

Thanks for suggesting arcane reach Yakk, that sounds nice, but do you think it is worth having to get up to 15 dexterity? DM is having us to 10,11,12,13,14,16, and my quick build I went str 10, dex 11, con 13, int 16(18 for human), wis 14, cha 12 - then by level 15 11, 12, 14, 22, 18, 13 so I could get spell focus in cha. Is it worth losing out on some of my points in wisdom perhaps? I could also use another race, which wouldn't be my ideal, but maybe somebody could suggest a good replacement. Elf hits the dex stuff, and adds to wisdom too. I lose out on int, which sucks, but I get some fun reroll jazz. I don't mind the loss of the skill or the at will so much as the loss of the human defense bonuses and the extra feat hurts a bit. Also the human feat that gives you a +3 to hit on the action point attack is very nice. Anyway, I'm going to try to distill this all out and put up a couple builds tomorrow, see if anyone is still interested in helping me by then. If not I appreciate everything so far. I'm going to try to put up a Build that at least trys to help the party's healing situation, take multi class cleric and feat or two to get some healing powers, then probably go divine oracle. It seems a pretty straightforward Paragon Path, and I'd probably do the Winged Horde/psychic lock thing to help things out as well. I'll probably do another one that is more damaged focused, and either stick with Wizard of the spiral tower (I like the idea of running around with a Staff in one hand and a sword in another - very gandalf, and we have the minature too!:smallsmile: It at least gets a couple sword powers), or go with blood mage to key off my thunderwave fun. Thanks again all.

Sinon
2010-01-20, 12:26 AM
Human is a good way to go I think. It's hard to get all those ability scores where you want, but the other advantages are hard to ignore.

I'll throw this out there: I have a half-elf wizard I'm playing now.

Pros: Con boost and Cha boost are good for defenses and some stuff like Staff of Defense. Having a couple more healing surges than the average is nice. Dilettante power is nice if you choose wisely.

Cons: He started life with a 17 Int. I considered that extravagant, but a lot of the other characters had a 20 in their primary stat at level 1; so I feel a little weak.

AgentPaper
2010-01-20, 01:09 AM
with your cash get three orb of ultimate imposition +1's, maybe four...

I hope you're not suggesting he do this so he can use the daily ability multiple times, because you can't do that.

Kurald Galain
2010-01-20, 09:38 AM
Iíd also like to point out that the penalty applies to all attacks they make that round, including multiple attack rolls for area effects or other multiple attacks and on opportunity actions.
That's true, attack penalties are better against multi-attacking monsters. They also become noticeably better with psychic lock.



I understand the concept. But really, ok, sure. A spell like Phantom Bolt will always slide 1, so I never actually ďloseĒ anything, but I would say that I actually ďgainĒ anything in those many situations where sliding isnít necessary?
Well, usually, you'll start the combat by firing off your encounter powers, plus a daily if you are going to use one that encounter. A level-7 character has three encounter powers; a level-11 character has four, plus whatever items or feats he has that grant extra encounter powers, plus that he may be forced to spend a turn stunned or unconscious.

In my experience, combat lasts four or five rounds, not counting cleanup. Cleanup is the part where the party has already won and the monsters are no longer a threat; not all combats have cleanup but most do. What exactly you do during cleanup isn't relevant, and most DMs in this area skip it.

So the point is that starting from high heroic levels, you're not going to use your at-wills a lot, unless you're in a situation where your at-will is better than an encounter power. Or if you end up in grinds against a 800-hp solos, but few players appear to like those.

Phantom Bolt and especially Thunderwave are potentially better than an encounter power whenever you can push enemies into damaging terrain, or off a cliff, or away from grabs, or into a zone effect you created. Wizards get a whackload of zone effects. In fact, a good wizard strategy is to drop a sustainable zone on turn one, and spend turns two to whenever pushing enemies into the zone. My best shot so far is thunderwaving an enemy through a thorny bush, away from two swordmage allies that had a "hit you if you move away" power running, over a grasping shadows and into a stinking cloud. Pretty good for an at-will, no? :smallbiggrin:

Storm Pillar is potentially better than an encounter power whenever a melee enemy is at the far end of a passage up to three squares wide. Situational, but it will happen.

Magic Missile is potentially better than en encounter power whenever you're facing insubstantial enemies (assuming Irresistible Force) or when you cast Wizard's Fury. If you want a damaging wizard build, this is a pretty good choice.

Illusory Ambush... if that is ever better than your encounter powers, then I think you need to pick different encounter powers.

Of course, it does depend on playstyle and on your group. For instance, I have never yet had a problem with my utter lack of single target spells.



Thanks for suggesting arcane reach Yakk, that sounds nice, but do you think it is worth having to get up to 15 dexterity?
If you have a +dex race and/or use the wand implement, then yes. Otherwise, no.


13 so I could get spell focus in cha.
Spell focus is only worth it if you plan on using lots of (save ends) spells. Note by the way that numerous items also penalize enemy saving throws.


I could also use another race, which wouldn't be my ideal, but maybe somebody could suggest a good replacement.
The best wizard races are probably eladrin, gnome, dragonborn, deva, and genasi. Elves are always good if only because elven accuracy is awesome. For humans, their racial features are overrated (you'll use fey step or fade away much more often than a third at-will), but they get some pretty good feats.


It seems a pretty straightforward Paragon Path, and I'd probably do the Winged Horde/psychic lock thing to help things out as well.
Divine Oracle + Psychic Lock is a good combo. It also meshes well with being a gnome illusionist.

Yakk
2010-01-20, 09:43 AM
I didn't say the choices where easy. :-)

It is very good that Wizards have feats that key off every ability except for Strength. ... It means you have to make meaningful choices with your attributes!

Arcane Reach is really nice, but it requires a relatively high dex. Cha gives a bunch of toys. Wis gives a bunch of toys. Con gives a bunch of toys.

You cannot have all of the toys!

cupkeyk
2010-01-20, 12:27 PM
I hope you're not suggesting he do this so he can use the daily ability multiple times, because you can't do that.

Why not? The (updated) orb's daily power doesn't scale with level so he's better off having three +1's of them at paragon he gets two magic item daily uses. One for the first encounter, the second for the second encounter. For the third encounter, he gets another use from his milestone. A fourth orb isn't optimal until epic. Power Salve dependent builds do it all the time.

AgentPaper
2010-01-20, 07:33 PM
Why not? The (updated) orb's daily power doesn't scale with level so he's better off having three +1's of them at paragon he gets two magic item daily uses. One for the first encounter, the second for the second encounter. For the third encounter, he gets another use from his milestone. A fourth orb isn't optimal until epic. Power Salve dependent builds do it all the time.

Ah, right, you get another daily usage after a milestone. Forgot about that bit.

cupkeyk
2010-01-20, 08:23 PM
I didn't say the choices where easy. :-)

It is very good that Wizards have feats that key off every ability except for Strength. ... It means you have to make meaningful choices with your attributes!

Arcane Reach is really nice, but it requires a relatively high dex. Cha gives a bunch of toys. Wis gives a bunch of toys. Con gives a bunch of toys.

You cannot have all of the toys!

But you can have the best toy. It's the ball.