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View Full Version : 4th ed - Shieldmage help: final deadline. samurai/jedi



SylvanPrincess
2011-03-13, 11:19 AM
http://www.freewebs.com/swfj/Female%20Jedi.bmp

"Tomoe was especially beautiful, with white skin, long hair, and charming features. She was also a remarkably strong archer, and as a swordswoman she was a warrior worth a thousand, ready to confront a demon or a god, mounted or on foot. She handled unbroken horses with superb skill; she rode unscathed down perilous descents. Whenever a battle was imminent, Yoshinaka sent her out as his first captain, equipped with strong armor, an oversized sword, and a mighty bow; and she performed more deeds of valor than any of his other warriors."
The Tale of the Heike[3]

"hey all, starting my first 4th ed game, and i have to be a defender. im trying to be samurai-y with a healthy dose of jedi thrown in, so im thinking swordmage for the win. my concept is Tomoe Gozen as jedi/samurai, with a fighting style sorta like oldschool samurai warriors the video game. swordmage seems perfect."

[edit]i have decided on shieldmage, and i am starting at level 1. i really like the swordmage conceptually, and it fits with my character concept. ive listened to you all and will not be hybriding, though i still want to multiclass later, and am still unsure as of yet what that mc class will be. something that opens up a cool paragon for me. i am playing tonight (mon 3-20-11) and must have my character done by 9 est! lol. youve all given me a lot of good help, thanks bunches! i am sitting here trying to figure out my character sheet to write things down, but dont know what feats i want, etc.

i have good numbers so a lil mad is ok: 18,16,16,15,12,11, and i think i want to be human

ninja_penguin
2011-03-13, 11:22 AM
You probably want to avoid doing much with hybridization, although I think some people have made it work, and I think there is a known swordlock hybrid, but I honestly don't know it.

My suggestions is stick mostly with swordmage. Are you going assault swordmage or shielding swordmage? The first is more strikery, and the second is more leadery overall.

Kurald Galain
2011-03-13, 11:23 AM
starting my first 4th ed game, ... should i hybrid?
No, most definitely not. Whenever it's your first 4E game, do not hybrid until you've played a few "regular" characters and gotten the hang of the system. There are many hybrid combos that are rather ineffective at both of their roles.

Multiclassing is fine, though. For example, MC warlock gives you a bit more damage once per encounter, as well as a free skill. MC wizard is probably better for you.

If you're going human, recent errata allows you to take the "heroic effort" racial power, which is a much stronger option than a third at-will. Once per encounter, it gives you a retroactive bonus to an attack or saving throw.

SylvanPrincess
2011-03-13, 11:24 AM
You probably want to avoid doing much with hybridization, although I think some people have made it work, and I think there is a known swordlock hybrid, but I honestly don't know it.

My suggestions is stick mostly with swordmage. Are you going assault swordmage or shielding swordmage? The first is more strikery, and the second is more leadery overall.

pretty sure i want to be assault swordmage. i really think i want to MC, but not hybrid

No, most definitely not. Whenever it's your first 4E game, do not hybrid until you've played a few "regular" characters and gotten the hang of the system. There are many hybrid combos that are rather ineffective at both of their roles.

Multiclassing is fine, though. For example, MC warlock gives you a bit more damage once per encounter, as well as a free skill. MC wizard is probably better for you.

If you're going human, recent errata allows you to take the "heroic effort" racial power, which is a much stronger option than a third at-will. Once per encounter, it gives you a retroactive bonus to an attack or saving throw.

what about psion? battlemind?

SylvanPrincess
2011-03-13, 11:26 AM
shoot, i suck, always with the double posting! (sorry, reposted in previous reply)

ninja_penguin
2011-03-13, 11:30 AM
Well, for assault swordmage, just make sure you have decent strength as well. You'll probably want to make sure that you grab intelligent blademaster anyway, so that you can keep your int high for attacking and damaging.

otherwise for multiclassing, just take a look at what you get, see if you like it, and then if you want to steal one of their paragon paths, that's what I've kind of always done for these things.

SylvanPrincess
2011-03-13, 11:52 AM
Well, for assault swordmage, just make sure you have decent strength as well. You'll probably want to make sure that you grab intelligent blademaster anyway, so that you can keep your int high for attacking and damaging.

otherwise for multiclassing, just take a look at what you get, see if you like it, and then if you want to steal one of their paragon paths, that's what I've kind of always done for these things.

i just came upon ensnaring swordmage, that sounds good too, cuz we have a rogue in our party. also, mc rogue might be ok too...

gourdcaptain
2011-03-13, 12:03 PM
While I'd probably agree that a Hybrid isn't something to play first, it works EXCEEDINGLY well with Swordmages, as long as you hybrid talent Swordmage Warding. Swordmage/Wizards or Swordmage/Conlocks and such are actually pretty good, since all you trade out is a feat and a small amount of mark versatility, in exchange for getting a better power pool (swordmage attacks are kinda meh) or a massive boost to durability for the other class. There's also some cool shenanigans I can think of with a Swordmage/Shaman, but I've never seen them done in practice so I don't know how viable that is.

If you're MC'ing, Wizard is the old standby - same prime stat, nice powers, and you already have an implement. (Artificer, Warlord, or possibly Psion also work well). If you're an Assaultmage, though, you NEED to take Intelligent Blademaster feat at LV 1 or very soon after that - without a proper AoO, you get laughed at a lot as a defender. Sheildmages are different - they work best with MC'd or hybrid ranged powers so they can mark and use their superior punishment range to their advantage. If you're playing an Entangler.... go back and pick another one, they're just awful. Really, really awful.

Kurald Galain
2011-03-13, 12:13 PM
While I'd probably agree that a Hybrid isn't something to play first, it works EXCEEDINGLY well with Swordmages, as long as you hybrid talent Swordmage Warding. Swordmage/Wizards or Swordmage/Conlocks and such are actually pretty good,
You seem to be contradicting yourself here: if it's "pretty good" (which I agree with) then it's not "EXCEEDINGLY well" (which strikes me as quite the exaggeration).

Just because certain hybrid combo can be made to work well by an experienced player doesn't mean I would recommend them to a first-time player.


what about psion? battlemind?
Depends on what you want. Psion multiclass gives you a ranged attack once per encounter; Battlemind lets you mark more enemies. Both also give you a free skill. The latter is probably better for a swordmage.

Surrealistik
2011-03-13, 12:18 PM
Shielding Swordmage FTW; easily the best in breed amongst the variants.

That said, pure Swordmage makes for a very strong and competent defender, and I highly recommend it if you're new.

As was recommended, if you're going Human, take Heroic Effort; best racial power in the game bar none, and you don't have a 3rd At-Will that even begins to stack up. Sword Burst and Booming Blade will be your go-to powers, unless you're aiming for (early) DPR with the Arcane Fire + Wintertouched + Greenflame/Frigid or Frostwind Blade combo.

SylvanPrincess
2011-03-13, 02:38 PM
thanks for all the advice! so, shielding swordmage is better eh? jedi-gaurdianesque? and no hybrid, ok, fine, im ok with that, ive seen the darth vader swordmage/warlock hybrid, and it seemed pretty good, but i wouldnt want to be evil.

multiclass feats still seems like a neat thing, especially if i i do any of the power swapping feats later. might not be the best thing to do, but it seems neato!

thanks much!

Dusk Eclipse
2011-03-13, 02:41 PM
I'll just leave this little link here :smallwink: (http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75882/19648554/Swords_and_Sorcery_A_Swordmage_Manual)

SylvanPrincess
2011-03-13, 02:59 PM
I'll just leave this little link here :smallwink: (http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75882/19648554/Swords_and_Sorcery_A_Swordmage_Manual)

and what a great link it is! thank you!

Dalek-K
2011-03-13, 03:04 PM
If the white lotus feats are availible or able to still be taken by a swordmage then I highly suggest you take that... Playing by the book back in fall/winter of 09 the party swordmage was almost keeping up with a sorcerer on damage per encounter... It was quite scary. (almost kept up btw not equal).

White lotus
Find some items that make terrain difficult around you
Teleporting powers

No shifting around you and if someone gets away you can go get them again :smallamused:

Zaydos
2011-03-13, 03:07 PM
I took one of the white lotus feats (something about dealing damage if I was attacked by something I basic attacked... I didn't have Dragon but my DM did and suggested it)... nothing ever hit me in melee. That might have been because my AC was several (4?) points higher than anyone elses and only my Will defense wasn't the highest in the party.

It's a good feat I'd advice taking it, and I'd say that Shielding Swordmages are awesome fun.

Surrealistik
2011-03-13, 03:21 PM
Anything that increases your to AC (e.g. Improved Swordmage Warding) and to hit (Heavy/Light Blade Expertise) is generally a priority; next comes your NAD defenses (Improved Defenses or the Superior Will/Reflex/Fortitude line). Finally, Improved Initiative is always worth a look.

Intelligent Blademaster, so you can make effective melee basic attacks is basically mandatory.

Rose King's Shield is ridiculously good in Heroic if you have the very awesome Booming Blade power. 10 temporary hit points for hitting with one of your best At-Wills? Yes please.

NMBLNG
2011-03-17, 02:19 PM
+1 for Shielding Swordmages, my favorite class.

However, if you're looking for something more Jedi-like, I'd actually suggest either an Avenger or Battlemind. Avengers have the robes and awesome sword thing going for them, and I think Battlemind powers are very Jedi-like.

SylvanPrincess
2011-03-21, 11:29 AM
+1 for Shielding Swordmages, my favorite class.

However, if you're looking for something more Jedi-like, I'd actually suggest either an Avenger or Battlemind. Avengers have the robes and awesome sword thing going for them, and I think Battlemind powers are very Jedi-like.

true, but the swordmage canthrow its weapon and call it back :D

i HAVE decided on shielding swordmage, but it says they should have a hand free to get the def bonus, and i want a katana. well on second thought, the katana is a bastard sword right? i could switch my hand on and off it...

Surrealistik
2011-03-21, 12:16 PM
true, but the swordmage canthrow its weapon and call it back :D

i HAVE decided on shielding swordmage, but it says they should have a hand free to get the def bonus, and i want a katana. well on second thought, the katana is a bastard sword right? i could switch my hand on and off it...

Yes, bastard sword shouldn't cause problems since it's a versatile weapon, and you can benefit from its two-handed damage while simultaneously having a hand free. That said though, you could easily flavour a longsword as a katana; I don't find a bastard sword is really worth the feat.

SylvanPrincess
2011-03-21, 12:29 PM
Yes, bastard sword shouldn't cause problems since it's a versatile weapon, and you can benefit from its two-handed damage while simultaneously having a hand free. That said though, you could easily flavour a longsword as a katana; I don't find a bastard sword is really worth the feat.

oh yeah, forgot it was exotic or whatever the 4th ed term is. good point.

Yakk
2011-03-23, 07:59 PM
How did the game go?