View Full Version : [Time Zone Problem] At what time do you guys play online sessions?

2015-12-27, 06:26 AM
Well, I'm not exactly sure if this is the right place to post this question, but I couldn't find anywhere better so I'm asking it here. If I'm wrong, please tell me.
I'm interested about "what time" (as well as "what day of the week") you guys most frequently play online roleplaying sessions (Roll 20, Skype sessions, and that sort).

I'm asking this because I live in Japan (btw I'm also Japanese, but I've lived in the US long enough to read/speak English). Japan is 14 hours "ahead" than NYC. Meaning, when it's 8:00PM in New York, it's 10:00AM (next day calender-wise) in Yokohama.
When it's 6:00AM in New York, it's 8:00PM (same day) in Yokohama.
Mother Earth has got to be kidding me.

So, I would like to ask ďat what time and what day of the week you guys play online sessionsĒ, to get the picture of when I should be awake on future gaming days.

I have no regrets. This is the only path
Choosing Your Spells Part 1: Sorcerer (Low Levels)

https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/5c89b06ede19d8e4389d0343aef764990559c0af13fcf907a4 171837a0e4a36a.gif
An oath shall be sworn here.
I shall attain all virtues of all of Heaven;
I shall have dominion over all evils of all of Hell.
From the Seventh Heaven, attended to by three great words of power,
Come forth from the ring of restraint,
Protector of the holy balance!
(Image Copyright Ufotable)

Confession: I am generally a very lazy person.

If I felt that the current, pre-existing guides for Sorcerers can be used straight for evaluation of Birthblade spells, instead of writing this section, I would have just wrote ďLOOK AT THE OTHER GUIDESĒ and be done with it. Thatís what I did with the core class abilities of Paladins and Sorcerers.

And indeed I will say that for Paladin spells. There are a lot of good guides about Paladins, them being listed in the 5e guides (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?377491) thread, and you can look at the stuff there for help. The spells that are important for Paladins and the spells that are important for Sorcerers are not that much different.

However, thatís not how things can go with Sorcerers.

Though I am generally very lazy, I also know when I should work hard. This is one such case, because sadly, the pre-existing evaluations of spells for Sorcerers cannot be so simply converted into the evaluations of a Birthblade spell list.

This does not mean, in any way, that the pre-existing guides suck. Theyíre indeed wonderful at evaluating the spell list of a full Sorcerer, thatís nothing to doubt. But Birthblades are, as Iíve already told you, a class of its own. Itís a lot different from Sorcerers (while itís probably a bit similar to a Paladin). Thus their selection of spells should be different from pure Sorcerers as well, meaning that the pre-existing Pure Sorcerer guides cannot be simply copy-pasted into this section.

Another thing: Iíve sorted the spells, not only by spell level, but also by their ďgenreĒ - Iíve divided the spells into 6 sections per level, based on usage (some sections are completely hollow for certain levels, and some spells belong in multiple sections).
You should have a good balance of these spells - for instance, just because you want to cripple your enemies, having 90% of your spells be spells that ďweaken your enemiesĒ will probably not be as effective as you think, because it goes against the whole Caster premise of versatility. You should always have a dozen options to choose from, so make sure to keep a good balance of these spells (with the exception of Blasting spells - you donít need any of them till you get Fireball).

Since the evaluation is too long to fit in a single post, Iíve divided this section into two parts.

NOTE 1: Since this is an optimization guide, I will NOT list all the spells that exist in the Sorcerer spell list. Generally speaking, those who are not mentioned are those who are not worth mentioning. If youíre not sure whether I missed something, please comment so and I will explain my reasons, or simply agree with you and edit this post.
If multiple people say they want a full rating of all Sorcerer spells, I might feel like doing so, but for now, Iím not doing that task.

NOTE 2: You should probably leave the situational spells, like Feather Fall and Water Breathing, to your Wizard. Remember that Sorcerers can learn only a limited number of spells.

Spell Genre
Spells like Fireball belong here. Almost all the Blasting spells you take should be AoE. This is because warriors are generally already good enough at severely damaging singular enemies, but bad at severely damaging multiple enemies in a turn, meaning that single-target damaging options will most likely be never used, while AoE options can come up to be useful every now and then.
Self Protection
Shield, Mirror Image and the sort. These spells make up for your bit-low HP and easily turn whatís a futile scrawny kid into an invincible behemoth thatís loads tankier than the average pure Fighter.
Buffing Friends (and/or Yourself)
Spells like Bless and Invisibility belong here. You have the powers required to make the Rogue even better at roguing, or make the Fighter even better at fighting. Thatís obviously extremely beneficial for the entire team. Do be aware that most of these spells require concentration, so you constantly need to make the right decisions of ďhowĒ exactly to buff your team. Do not use them randomly or without much thought.
Weaken Enemies
Some of these spells, like Hold Person, target just one enemy (unless you upcast it). Others, like Hypnotic Pattern, are AoE spells that can cripple multiple enemies at once (use together with Careful Spell for maximum efficiency). Either way, these are awesome. The former is to be used against powerful bosses, while the latter is to be used against hordes, and to adapt to all sorts of situations, you should have both of them if possible. It may be difficult depending on your spell selection - Sorcerers have a very limited number of spells they can memorize - but it is definitely worth the effort.
Field Control
Spells like Web, Stinking Cloud, and Wall of Fire belong in here. What can be said about these spells in general is that Careful Spell becomes Sky-Blue wonderful when paired with them (especially the ones that donít deal damage). Having the enemies wasting their turns coughing and reeling while your entire team (equipped with magical gas masks crafted from Careful Spell) steamrolls them is surely a hilarious moment.
If your DM uses battle grids for combat, you should always have at least 1, and preferably over 2, Field Control spells. Manipulating the field is a godly ability. If itís theater of mind, itís not as important, but if youíre good at convincing the DM that all the enemy creatures belong in the area of Wall of Fire, it might become just as important again.
Spells like Minor Illusion and Suggestion belong here (though these can actually be used in-combat as well). These spells give you role-play versatility, and if done right, can make you progress within the plot much more efficiently then mindlessly hacking your way through.
These spells can potentially turn the tides of a combat as well... Most of the time, by using it before combat. For instance, before walking into the banditsí base, you can use Minor Illusion to mimic the voice of a henchmen your team recently captured, proceed to knock on the door, and swing in with your sword the moment the bandits open and greet you. Ambushing is the most easy-to-understand way to use illusions, but thereís a lot more possibilities and technique waiting ot be discovered by you. Imagination is the key.
Luckily, being a Sorcerer, you have the right to choose 4 Cantrips - the largest number of starting cantrips for any class. You should use these to increase your utility, both in and out of combat, but there are several things to keep in mind.
First, since youíre holding a weapon - and weapons generally do more damage than damage cantrips - you should not take the non-GFB/BB damage cantrips unless you have good reason to do so. 1 at best, and most of the time, 0. You can just throw a javelin or shoot a bow if you want.
As for GFB and BB, most of the time, I advice you take them. If youíre a GWM build without War Caster, you might not need them, though.
Unless you have zero creativity, consider Minor Illusion to be something of a ďCantrip TaxĒ. It works wonders. Take it.
Most non-GWM Paladin/Sorcs will start with GFB, BB, and Minor Illusion, leaving only one free space (two spaces if Sorcerer level 4 or higher, and three spaces if Sorcerer level 10 or higher, and so on). What to do with the last slot(s) is up to you - if youíre a human you might need Light, but otherwise, perhaps take Lightning Lure for field control, or Create Bonfire for the Pyrotechnics combo, or make friends, or mend things, or send private messages to your teammates. Depends on campaign, character, playstyle, and personal preference.

Booming Blade (SCAG): TAKE THIS. Itís mandatory for S&B builds, and even GWM builds may find situations where itís useful (though this will become Black for GWM builds of level 6 and higher). Twin or use with War Casterís Opportunity Attack for maximum troll laughs.
Green-Flame Blade (SCAG): This one canít be Twinned (according to the creators of this game), but works with Elemental Affinity and can damage better than Extra Attack depending on the situation. No reason to not take this for S&B. Becomes Black for GWM builds of level 6 and higher, but even then, not a bad choice or anything, a good thing to have up your sleeve.
Fire Bolt: Its damage is worse than GFB or BB (despite being one of the best cantrips in terms of damage), but it can go ranged, with a pretty damn long distance of 120 feet, so itís possibly useful when all the enemies are afraid of your awesome melee capabilities and are attempting to slink back. If youíre a Fire Draconic Sorcerer with Elemental Affinity this becomes Blue. Otherwise, not much TBH.
Frostbite (EE): Being a CON save spell means it hardly works on certain enemies, but bestowing disadvantage on the first attack is a petty decent ability, making this a respectable back-up option. Is it worth the cantrip slot? Probably not.
Sword Burst (SCAG): Written not to say itís good, but rather written to say itís bad. If you have multiple enemies within melee range, just use Green-Flame Blade. The same can be said for Thunderclap (EE), an inferior version of this spell.

Self Protection
Blade Ward: Not a bad choice as it seems on first glance, since if youíre in a situation where you really want to survive this turn, you can Quicken this to reduce the physical damage you take next turn to half. Sadly, it doesnít work on elemental (and other non-physical) damage, and while not bad, itís not an exceptionally good choice either.

Buffing Friends (and/or Yourself)
Light: If you have darkvision, donít bother. If you donít have darkvision, you need it.
(I listed this spell here because it pretty much ďnegates a severe de-buff bestowed upon you as a terrain featureĒ.)

Weaken Enemies
Frostbite (EE): Described in ďBlastingĒ. Not bad, but not top-priority either.

Field Control
Booming Blade (SCAG): You could consider this Field Control in its own weird sort of way. Only affects one target but keeps him in place, unless he wants to take that extra damage.
Lightning Lure (SCAG): When thereís too much distance between an enemy and you, this clicks in and saves you from that problem. OR, you can actually use it to drag a friend and keep him away from an Area of Effect or help him disengage (itís possible for you to move the target just 5 feet, so that he doesnít take the Xd8 damage).
Create Bonfire (EE, Concentration): The damage doesnít matter. What matters is that Quickening this makes Pyrotechnics an AoE version of Blindness. If youíre scheduled to take Pyrotechnics, or if you find yourself in a narrow 5-feet corridor and all the enemies are coming at you from the other side of said corridor, this can be good. Otherwise, eh, donít take this.

Minor Illusion: Your imagination is the only limit to the countless uses of this spell, be it luring enemies into a trap or a different direction, hiding more effectively, scaring enemies away from something you donít wanna have them touch, making them believe youíre a nice guy or someone with great authority, ambushing them, capturing them, etc, etc, etc... Itís not the sort of versatility a Cantrip can have. If multiple characters in the group can use this, they can be combined together to create even more ďbelievableĒ situations.
Friends (Conc): Target gets angry at you after the spell ends. Depending on the DMís rulings, if youíre disguised as someone else when you cast this, the target might get angry at the guy who you were disguised as. In which case, this is Sky Blue no-questions-asked for Changeling DEX builds, and Blue for those who have Disguise Kit proficiency. I imagine most DMs will rule that using the Disguise Kit looks at CHA, and being both a Paladin and a Sorcerer, youíre quite an attractive fellow.

(Image Copyright Hirohiko Araki)

Well, that aside, itís a situational but occasionally extremely useful ability. It can greatly help you in certain situations, especially in city campaigns.
Message: Depending on the campaign this becomes Blue or possibly even Sky Blue, especially when you want to communicate to your friends without having other people overhear what you wanna tell them.
Shape Water (EE): Thereís a whole thread (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?481560-Creative-Cantrips-Shape-Water) dedicated to this cantrip that makes you want to take it. DM dependent for some rulings, but certainly looks fun.
Control Flames (EE): Thematic for certain builds, and can occasionally come in handy when, say, you want to extinguish a fire, or play tricks with stupid or easily believing NPCs. Itís still very situational.
Mage Hand: Situational, and not top-priority.
Prestidigitation: Minor Illusion is obviously better when it comes to deceiving enemies, but at least this spell lets you clean all that goblin blood off your clothes with a single snap of your fingers.
Most level 1 spells are underpowered (and they should be). Especially, Level 1 Blasting spells. Theyíre generally sub-optimal at best because of their low damage that can be easily surpassed by a well-placed GFB or BB. The AoEsí areas are small and their rider effects, if any, are not that appetizing either.
But that goes for almost all level 1 spells in general. Since the number of Spells Known you can have are limited, you will probably not have a large number of level 1 spells known at mid-to-high levels. Most of the time you will be using Shield and not much anything else.
However, I will rate the other options anyway, to give ideas on how to use them.

Burning Hands: Starts off nice due to its range (large for a level 1 AoE I guess) but quickly gets bad, especially for Birthblades which have another good damaging option (simply attacking with your sword doesnít cost you any resources, and if multiple enemies are standing together, GFB can burn two of them at once).
Magic Missile: I honestly am not a big fan of this spell from the start, and itís even less so with Birthblade builds. Being guaranteed to hit is a good thing, but the damage is simply abysmal and itís often better to just attack with your sword. However, if your DM constantly shows the players how much HP the monsters have remaining, this might become better. Another way to utilize this is to use against enemy Casters to make them automatically make three Concentration-maintaining saving throws, most likely ending in a failure. In which case this works sorta like Dispel magic.
Itís not a really amazing spell, especially for you, but it still does have its uses.
Thunderwave: The damage is meh, but it allows you to blast a good number of enemies away. This is something normal attacks cannot do, and having a spell-exclusive rider is a good thing. However, Warlocks can do similar stuff with Repelling Blast, so you might as well leave this job to them and just use your level 1 slots for Shield.
Ice Knife (EE): Look, the general rule here that Iím trying to explain here is that you should try to keep away from damaging spells that donít have insanely large areas of effect. They generally arenít worth belonging in Spells Known.
Chromatic Orb: Just attack with your frigginí sword you coward, why are you even holding it in your hand in the first place. These sorts of spells that can ďhave their effects be achieved by non-magical meansĒ should be kept away from, especially for a master swordsman like you. Youíre delving into magic to find new possibilities, and getting to deal damage to a singular target is not a new possibility.
The same can be said for Catapult. I just supposed I should note these here because these sorts of spells are often rated good for Sorcerers in their guides. These spells may be good for Sorcerers, but not for you.

Self Protection
Shield: Become invincible for a round at the laughably low cost of a reaction and one level 1 spell slot. There is no excuse to not taking this spell.
Mage Armor: Most characters donít need it (including DEX builds, since most have Draconic Resilience). If youíre a non-Draconic Bloodline DEX build, sure, take it.
False Life: Just pointing out you have no reason to take this, since you have Cure Wounds as a spell of the same level.

Buffing Friends (and/or Yourself)

Weaken Enemies

Sleep: As often said, itís devastating at low levels, making enemies unconscious without a save, but it quickly starts to suck from around level 5 and higher. This is because the inflation of the enemy monstersí general HP is extremely high-paced, especially at low levels, and the HP limitation of Sleep quickly becomes too small for the monsters to fit into.
The same can be said for Color Spray.

Field Control
Fog Cloud (Concentration): Everyone in a certain area gets Blinded (wind may move around the cloud). Itís similar to Darkness, except you canít see through it with Devilís Sight or Eyes of the Dark.
The really weird thing about being Blinded is that when two creatures within darkness or heavy fog are both Blinded, both gain advantage on attack against each other, but at the same time both bestow advantage on attacks against themselves, meaning that both sides will make attack rolls as normal (by RAW, due to advantage/disadvantage not stacking, it does nullify any other advantages and disadvantages, though). Thus this isnít as much of a ďdefensive optionĒ as one may hope.
Then what is it good for?
There are two main things here. The first is that opportunity attacks can only be done against targets you can see, meaning that within the area of Fog Cloud, no one can make opportunity attacks (unless they have Blindsight or something). Within the area of Fog Cloud, you, and everyone (including your enemies) can freely move around without caring about opportunity attacks, making the combat situation a lot different than it normally is.
Combining this with Booming Blade is a pretty damn nice combo. Jump into the fog, hit an enemy, and retreat without provoking OAs. If the enemy wants to move and chase you, he must take the extra damage.
The second thing is that 99% of target spells cannot target people the Caster cannot see, meaning that using Fog Cloud on an enemy Caster basically renders him useless. HOWEVER, if cast using a level 1 slot, the Caster is free to escape the area of Fog Cloud on his next turn, and no one can stop him from doing that (because he doesnít provoke OAs either). Upcasting can make the radius 40 feet (at level 2), or perhaps larger, in which case the Caster cannot move out of the obscured range, and for a turn, cannot use some of his spells (he can still use attack roll spells and AoE spells. However, some DMs, including I, will rule that he will be confused and that if he wishes to use an AoE spell, he will hurl it in a random direction).
Or, simply use it when your parts wants to hide.
Fog Cloud is the only Field Control spell of the ďfield-affecting typeĒ (Wall of Fire, Evardís Black Tentacles etc.) you get at this level, and itís not a bad option to use. However, once you go to higher levels, chances are you will want to swap this out due to the limited number of Spells Known (even if you originally chose it).
Be aware that this ability completely kills the party Rogue since it makes using Sneak Attack impossible.
Thunderwave: Detailed in ďBlastingĒ. Not bad, and can move people around, but not that amazing.

Charm Person: For all your role-playing needs. Itís pretty much limited to outside combat, but you get to be able to make an enemy a friend with just a single WIS save. Wonderful in infiltration and various other situations.
Disguise Self: I think getting proficiency in the Disguise Kit is a generally better option (by RAW Disguise Self has a lot of limits on what you can become, and most importantly itíll be difficult to impersonate other people). Either way, combine with Friends for maximum effect.
Silent Image (Concentration): Minor Illusionís older brother, which is a good thing. It uses a slot, which is a bad thing. If you want to be that good at illusions, just take Warlock 2 or 3 for the Misty Visions invocation. This isnít what you use Sorcerer Spells Known for.
Ha-ha-ha-ha-ha. Now weíre talking. Level 2 introduces a lot of spells that slowly start to draw out the outline of the Birthblade build - from the defensive spells like Mirror Image, to the major debuffs like Hold Person, and the field controllers like Web. Suggestion and Phantasmal Force are dazzling both in and out of combat, and are sure to affect your partyís approach to the problems they face.
The damaging spells are yet to be worth taking, though. We will need to bide our time till level 3 for that.

Shatter: Best AoE damage spell for this level. Not that thatís really something to boast about, given how the others really, really suck. Another level and you get Fireball, from which is where the Blasting spells finally get a rating of over Blue... Actually, Fireball suddenly gets it to Sky Blue, but thatís that.
Looking at the stuff unique to this spell, Shatter one can destroy nonmagical objects within the area as well. Whether thatís a good thing or bad thing depends on the situation, but you might be able to be creative with it.
Scorching Ray: As always, simple damage can be replaced by the SCAG cantrips for you. Depending on how your DM rules Elemental Affinity, it might become ďadd CHA modĒ or ďadd CHA mod x3Ē. Creators seem to have intended the former, which sucks hard, but even with the latter, not an ideal option for Birthblades.
The reason why Iím posting these here is because I really want to emphasize that being a Birthblade, you should not take these. Many spells that are good for pure Casters become terribad for gish builds.

Self Protection
Mirror Image: The fact this doesnít require concentration is either a misprint or a result of a troll lurking in the writers of WotC. Itís really damn useful, and you should put it to your advantage.
Misty Step: I listed it in here because it can get you out of dire situations and help you slink back into the backrow when you desperately need it, but it also can be used for various other purposes. The fact itís a Bonus Action is what really makes it shine.
Blur (Concentration): Pretty good defensive spell for this level. If it didnít require concentration it wouldíve been insanely powerful. But thereís absolutely no way thereís a level 2 spell that buffs your defenses by a ton and doesnít require concentration, right? I mean, if such thing existed it would be really powerful, so you should take it, but...owait.
(Starts to becomes redundant after you hit Sorcerer 7 and gain Greater Invisibility.)

Buffing Friends (and/or Yourself)
Misty Step: Technically not a buff, but it increases your combat versatility by using for purposes such as ďdisengageĒ and ďdashĒ. Think of it sorta like Cunning Action. For both offensive and defensive purposes, this spell is solid and good.
Invisibility (Concentration): Best used on an Assassin (if your party includes one, this becomes Sky Blue). It can also be useful in RP situations, but in combat, itís a bit of a pain how the effect ends so easily. You better use it on someone who isnít wearing heavy armor, meaning that unless youíre a DEX build you should cast it on someone else.
Levitate (Concentration): Poor manís Fly. Does allow someone to engage in melee with flying monsters to lock them down with OAs, but generally, the thing to say is ďjust frigginí use FlyĒ.
Enlarge/Reduce (Concentration): Basically allows anyone to be good with grappling and also inflicts a bit of extra damage. Itís probably not the best way to use your precious Concentration, though.

Weaken Enemies
Hold Person (Concentration): Quickening and proceeding to Crit-Smite the hell out of the poor humanoid is almost sure to kill the guy on the spot. Even if he doesnít die there, chances are he will die within the round. A truly devastating spell, and while it doesnít work on all enemies, you should still have it due to its hilarious synergy with Divine Smite.
Suggestion (Concentration): With a bit of creativity, you can subdue not one, but multiple enemies with this spell, or perhaps even end the encounter with the enemies fleeing and running for their lives. Since this spell heavily relies on DM discretion, you should ask your DM beforehand about his definition of a ďsuggestion that sounds reasonableĒ, and make sure everyone in the party is okay with what you do before using it.
This spell is also listed in ďOut-of-CombatĒ, since itís extremely versatile.
Phantasmal Force (Concentration): Taking one monster out of the fight (be it freeze on the spot or run away for dear life) is easy with this spell, but with the right situation and the right imagination you can make the enemy pretty much kill himself, or even make him go on your side, acting like Dominate Monster. An excellent spell, and even if the enemy is dubious, he must use an action (or several actions if heís unlucky or stupid) to realize the illusion is a fake.
Pyrotechnics (EE): Use together with Create Bonfire (perhaps Quickened) for maximum versatility. Used as a Debuff spell, itís like Blindness/Deafness, except it is an AoE (which is a seriously good thing). Do keep in mind that Pyrotechnics can blind the targets for only 1 turn, opposed to how Blindness/Deafness persists till the guy succeeds on his save.
This spell can also be used as a Field Control spell that resembles Fog Cloud, except without requiring concentration. Itís also extremely thematic for Fire Draconic Sorcerers.
Levitate (Concentration): This is rated Purple for when helping friends and for using outside combat, but when used on enemies, itís possible to make this like a really poor manís Banishment, albeit restricted to monsters with only melee attacks, by sending him floating into the air where he can harm nobody. Not that it will come up very often, especially with it requiring concentration, but being able to pepper him with arrows while heís raging and screaming, suspended mid-air, might be a nice thing to have. The problem is that you probably donít have the Spells Known capacity.
Maximillian's Earthen Grasp (EE, Concentration): STR saves may be resisted by large foes, but being Restrained is a pretty nasty condition. The fact it requires concentration makes it a mediocre choice at best, optimization-wise, but itís not like itís bad, so if you think itís thematic I guess you can take it.

^ Example of someone with this spell being thematic. MY BRAIN TREMBLES!! ^
(Image Copyright Tappei Nagatsuki)

Blindness/Deafness: Itís a debuff that doesnít require concentration (thatís a rare thing), but itís a CON save (commonly resisted, especially by the powerful, burly bosses that you really wanna Blind), the target re-rolls it every turn, and while the Blinded condition is indeed crippling, there are worse. You can Twin it if you want, but if you want to affect multiple enemies at a time, Pyrotechnics is another option.
It is really thematic for an Evil or Chaotic Neutral character though.

Field Control
Darkness (Concentration): If youíre a Shadow Sorcerer, this becomes Gold - though itís only when you cast it using Eyes of the Dark, and casting it with a level 2 slot is unthinkable. Together with Eyes of the Dark, you can completely lock down an enemy Caster.
For other people, Darkness is generally a variation of Fog Cloud. This one has a smaller area, but it can be moved around the battlefield (although depending on the target from which the darkness originates, enemies can move it around as well).
Web (Concentration): Crowd control is a good thing, and it becomes astonishing when combined with Careful Spell. If you donít have Careful Spell, this becomes a bit less attractive, but if you do, you must take it.
Pyrotechnics (EE): Use together with Create Bonfire (perhaps Quickened) for maximum versatility. Used as a Field Control spell, itís like Fog Cloud, except it doesnít require concentration (which is a seriously good thing).
This spell can also be used as an AoE debuff spell that makes Blindness/Deafness cry his eyes out and go blind. Itís also extremely thematic for Fire Draconic Sorcerers.
Cloud of Daggers (Concentration): Requires concentration and is far too easy to avoid. It should be noted, however, that its damage requires no save, meaning itís sorta like Magic Missile in how it inflicts damage no matter what. The image created by this spell is rather nice.

^ If youíre a vampire with Time Stop, this spell becomes Gold. ^
(Image Copyright Hirohiko Araki)

Suggestion (Concentration): Also listed in ďWeaken EnemiesĒ. Used right, this can alter the course of an entire campaign. Be it gaining loads of wealth or accelerating the downfall of the evil aristocrat, this spell has the power to do it on its own. Since this spell heavily relies on DM discretion, you should ask your DM beforehand about his definition of a ďsuggestion that sounds reasonableĒ, and make sure everyone in the party is okay with what you do before using it.
Phantasmal Force (Concentration): Use in RP moments with the right set-up and imagination, and you almost automatically get an NPC on your side, or alternatively, force him into getting a mental breakdown. Use Heightened Spell to make sure the enemy doesnít realize heís being tricked.
Invisibility (Concentration): Also listed in ďBuffing Friends (and/or Yourself)Ē. You better use it on someone who isnít wearing heavy armor, meaning that unless youíre a DEX build you should cast it on someone else.
Alter Self (Concentration): Allowing yourself to breath underwater is really pointless when the rest of your party canít, and the Natural Weapons arenít that attractive either. The way this effect is written I think you can impersonate as other people as well, but Iíd just use the Disguise Kit if I wanted to make such a character.
Enhance Ability (Concentration): Advantage on checks. Generally better to just be a Bard and inspire your friends.
Knock: Can become Blue depending on the campaign, but regardless of whether the campaign needs it or not, the Wizard does it better. Just politely ask him to prepare it, wait till next morning, and itís job done.
Levitate (Concentration): Wanna retrieve that item hanging 50 feet above you? Yeah, well, ask the Wizard. You donít get that many Spells Known.

This is the level where warriors get Extra Attack and their DPR becomes doubled. Meanwhile, Casters get access to the grand collection of these uber-powerful spells that already start making you look godly.
This is the level at which the classic Fireball finally, comes storming into the battlefield, roasting an entire horde of goblins and calling it a day. This is the level at which you start to fly through the air, hypnotize an entire encounter, get to say ďNOĒ to the enemy caster and waste his turn, and get to do a bunch of other awesome stuff.
There are not as many broad options as the level 2 spells, though. The real goodies come online at level 4.

Fireball: THIS is from where the damaging spells actually get into the level that itís impossible to mimic with just normal attacks and cantrips (which means you now have better versatility). The damage itself is just ďgoodĒ for a character of this level, but Fireballís insanely large area of effect means it can incinerate an entire horde on its own (low-CR monsters like Goblins and Kobolds may die even if they succeed on the save). Thereís almost no excuse to not taking this spell, more so if you have Elemental Affinity.
HOWEVER, you may also note that having just 1 AoE is not enough in certain cases. Fireball specifically states in the text that any flammable objects within range start to burn, and this means that, say, if youíre fighting in a forest or in a town with a lot of wooden buildings, depending on the judgments of the DM (the pace at which the fire spreads etc.), this spell can potentially kill yourself as well. This does not necessarily mean you need over 2 damaging AoEs - rather, you should take at least 1 ďnon-damaging but crippling AoE with a large areaĒ, like Hypnotic Pattern, and make sure that even if you face a horde in a place where hurling a Fireball may damage the environment too much, you have means of counter-measure.
Lightning Bolt: Itís a bit difficult to get over 3 monsters into the area, unlike Fireball (in which case itís actually harder to not get over 3 monsters into the area). The damage is the same, and contrary to popular belief, Lightning damage is just as commonly resisted as Fire damage (though more enemies are immune to Fire). Overall, not worth taking.
Melf's Minute Meteors (EE, Concentration): Does same damage as Fireball over the course of two turns, becomes better with three. However, the area is depressingly small (ďany creatures within 5 feet of the pointĒ), and it allows the low-HP enemies to take more turns before theyíre burned to death. Itís not bad, but generally not good enough to belong in your readied list either.
Erupting Earth (EE): While magical bludgeoning damage is never resisted, the average damage of this spell is 18.5, whereas Fireball is 28 (14 even if resisted), meaning that the merit gained when used on a monster with fire resistance is only 4.5 - not something that makes this worth taking, especially when its area is considerably smaller than Fireball. The only situation in which you should take this is when all your opponents are immune to fire, but even then, Lightning Bolt exists if you want.
The part about turning the area into difficult terrain is... Not bad, I guess, and it might be useful in certain situations, but most of the time, not worth throwing this into Spells Known.

Self Protection
Protection from Energy: This is not your job. At least you can Twin it, but really, this is not your job.

Buffing Friends (and/or Yourself)
Fly (Concentration): Not only do you get to move at double the speed, you can also fly over traps, cripple earthbound enemies by raining death from above, get into melee range of flying enemies, and even upcast it to affect multiple friends as well. Always beware of losing concentration and falling to your death.
Haste (Concentration): Twin for maximum effect. Be careful when using it, however, since once youíve chosen to cast it, you cannot cast other Concentration spells for the remainder of the fight.
This blue rating assumes you already have War Caster or Resilient (CON) as well as Aura of Protection by the time youíve took it, and if you do not, this becomes a trap option.
Flame Arrows (EE, Concentration): On first glance itís like giving your friend archer Hex. Then you realize it becomes double the Hex when you combine it with Elemental Affinity for an additional 1d6 + CHA mod damage per hit. If your DM permits it and thereís two archers in your party, it becomes quadruple the Hex when you combine it with Twinned Spell (by RAW, Twinned Spell only works on spells that target ďcreaturesĒ, not ďobjectsĒ). Itís normally not worth taking, but if thereís at least two archers in your party, youíre a Fire Draconic Sorcerer, and you have Twinned Spell, itís good. The problem is that you might as well leave someone else in the party to do that job for you, since your concentration is precious indeed.

Weaken Enemies
Hypnotic Pattern (Concentration): Massive range, save-or-suck. If the still-awake enemies waste their turns shaking their friends awake, just smash their heads while they waste their precious actions. Itís a nice option for when your enemies are pretty tough, or when you donít want to burn everything around you. If you took the Careful Spell Metamagic option, this spell becomes mandatory.
Counterspell: If multiple characters in your party already have this, you might want to skip this and go for more versatility instead, leaving that job to your friends (unless your DM has a habit of throwing in lots of Casters). Remember that you have a lot of good uses for your reaction, like opportunity Booming Blade or Shield.
However, this spell can cripple encounters on its own, and every party should have at least 1 or 2 characters who can use it.
Fear (Concentration): This spell is quite interesting and powerful. Any creature who fails his WIS save drops whatever weapon he is holding and then proceeds to run away as fast as possible using his action. And he cannot repeat the save until he canít see you anymore. This means that:
Monsters who rely on weapons to attack are completely disarmed and rendered powerless (someone in your party can pick up the discarded weapon and put it into his bag or something)
The affected monsters waste their actions doing nothing harmful for your team
The affected monsters provoke opportunity attacks from you and your friends
If the fight is in a place without any ways to hide from you, the target cannot do anything until he hits a wall, and even after he does, he had disadvantage on all his attacks (and in many cases, he can only make futile fist attacks)The only downside is that its range is a cone, and that it doesnít work on Constructs and some other big monsters.
Combine with War Caster + Booming Blade for massive guaranteed damage. If you really want to kill somebody for running away, also use your bonus action that turn for Quickened Spell + Booming Blade, and inflict him twice the damage (this should be done after Fear goes off successfully, since otherwise you might sorta waste the Booming Blade if the enemy succeeds on the WIS save).
However, be aware that this spell may be anti-synergetic with the fact youíre mostly gonna fight in melee. If your enemies dash away, you cannot catch up to them unless you want to spend your actions Dashing as well. This goes for your friends too. Barbarians, for instance, may get angry at you for using this spell because he has no enemies he can attack near him, and his Rage ended earlier than originally assumed.
Dispel Magic: Itís costly, requiring an action and a level 3 slot, but solid and good when you need it. DMs like I often introduce battlefields where the enemies have already set up magical traps (the ground in front of the enemy frontline is the area of Evardís Black Tentacles etc.), so if your DM is one of those people, this becomes Sky Blue.
Stinking Cloud (Concentration): The Blue Rating assumes you took the Careful Spell Metamagic option. If you didnít, then this is Purple.
Bestowing disadvantage on your opponentís attacks is one thing. Getting to waste the actions of your opponents is another. Itís truly hilarious when paired with Careful Spell, the only downside being that CON saves are often resisted by bulky foes.

Field Control
Stinking Cloud (Concentration): Detailed in ďWeaken EnemiesĒ.
Sleet Storm: Huge area, lots of debuffs. Can be Careful Spelled, but ehhh.... Iíd just go for Web or Stinking Cloud.

Daylight: One of those spells that are mostly useless, but extremely useful in the right situation (such as when youíre fighting a vampire). Interestingly, Wizards do not have access to this spell,but Druids do, so just leave it to them if you need it.
Major Image (Concentration): You can learn only a limited number of spells. If you want to be an illusionist just go Wizard or Warlock. Or use Phantasmal Force.

2015-12-27, 06:33 AM
Yeah, I moved to Japan a bit over a year ago and tried to retain contact with my former group in Illinois. It's pretty annoying to schedule. Basically it means someone is going to be playing super-early in the morning, and/or someone is going to be playing super-late at night. We used to do Saturday morning/Friday night (Saturday 11am in Japan) but the people in our group in the US often had plans for Friday night, things like that. Now we're doing Sunday night at 11pm in Japan, which is early morning on Sunday for people in the US, which personally I find easier to do (the 11am game felt like it took up my entire Saturday), but there have been attendance issues as a result.

So, no great solution I'm afraid.

2015-12-27, 08:28 AM
Whoa, never expected someone else from Japan to reply...thanks!

I see, that probably seems like the best solution for me too. Either way it's got to be Sat/Sun... I know there would be attendance issues, but. Can I ask another question pertaining to that?

Well, as far as I read the D&D 5e threads in the "Finding Players" section of this forum, there's generally a dozen applicants for each group where the DM's saying only 3~5 can join. Does this mean that the members actually playing generally change every session (based on who's there on time)? If so, wouldn't that be a good solution for the "attendance issues"?
Or, are things more complicated?

Choosing Your Spells Part 2: Sorcerer (High Levels)

I cast a spell!
And itís pretty high-level for sure!!
(Image Copyright Hiromu Arakawa)

Level 4 is where you get various powerful control, buff, and debuff spells like Wall of Fire, Greater Invisibility, Banishment, and Polymorph. Most of the powerful level 4 spells require concentration, and at the same time, are most definitely worth it.
This is also the level where Twinned Spell starts to get super gravy, with Greater Invisibility and Polymorph, uber-powerful spells that cannot benefit from upcasting like Banishment can.

Wall of Fire (Concentration): Crowd control and good damage that also gets bonuses from Elemental Affinity. Cutting the enemy team in half, combining with your party Warlockís Repelling Blast, thereís lots of stuff you can do with this spell. Fire damage is of course often resisted, so be careful not to use this against a group of Devils or anything.
Vitriolic Sphere (EE): Itís like a less-resisted Fireball with a bit more damage, except it divides the damage into two turns and does less than half damage on a successful save. Which is better is up to you and the campaign, but most of the time I say Fireball.
Blight: If you happen to often fight Plants, this is Sky Blue. Thing is, at least I havenít fought plants with that much frequence. Damaging with spells is the least of your priorities, unless itís an AoE. This has good damage, but itís not what you seek for in level 4 spells.
Ice Storm: Worse damage than Fireball. Ew. Pass.
Storm Sphere (EE, Concentration): A really interesting spell. A shame itís an unoptimized option, especially for a Bladelock like you whoís going to use your action for a plethora of good techniques.

Self Protection
Greater Invisibility (Concentration): This will be explained more in ďBuffing Friends (and/or Yourself)Ē.
Stoneskin (Concentration): On first glance itís good for frontline builds. Then again, This is the same level spell as Greater Invisibility, so why in the world would you ever want to use this?

Buffing Friends (and/or Yourself)
Greater Invisibility (Concentration): Get ready for the lolz. This is a mandatory choice for all GWM builds, and arguably so even for S&B builds. All the merits of the Darkness + Devilís Sight combo, except it doesnít hinder your friends. How awesomesause is that?
Use together with Twinned Spell to make it double the awesomesause.
Polymorph (Concentration): You know Bob the Fighter always wanted to roleplay a T-Rex. Let him turn into a T-Rex. Enjoy.

^ Bob the Fighter, currently roleplaying as a T-Rex. ^
(Copyright Steven Spielberg, Universal Studios)

Wait, what? Sam the Fighter also wants to roleplay into a T-Rex? Fine, then. Use Twinned Spell.

^ Thanks to you, now both Bob and Sam can roleplay a T-Rex at once. ^
(Copyright Steven Spielberg, Universal Studios)

Giving 136 temporary HP to the frontline warrior and making his average DPR 53 is a bad joke. Giving 136 temporary HP to two frontline warriors and making both or their average DPR 53 is the worst joke ever. Somehow you have access to this joke, so I advice you use it. Since itís already a bad joke from the start, overusing it wouldnít really make it worse.
16 CON + War Caster/Resilient + Aura of Protection pretty much guarantees you can keep concentration on this spell for as long as you want.
Stoneskin (Concentration): Look, just become invisible instead, because that way, you donít even get hit in the first place.

Weaken Enemies
Banishment (Concentration): So, you see, encounter difficulties are calculated based on the number of enemies on the map. This spell changes the number of enemies on the map. What does that mean? It means this spell is awesome.
Some enemies are erased off the material plane with this spell, regardless of its CR (be careful of losing concentration in that case, though). Others disappear from the map for a minute, and when they return, they first see their comradesí dead bodies sprawled across the floor, and then they look around and see the entire adventuring party encircling them, all readied for the grand ambush with the ever-so-useful Ready action. Either way it spells death for any opponent, and Charisma saves are uncommon.
Do note that this spell can be upcast to affect more than 2 targets, without even using Twinned Spell. If anything, you can Heighten this for maximum effect.
Polymorph (Concentration): Turn a raging monster into a harmless frog, throw him into a bin, and proceed to let it go flow down a river. Or simply use it in a way similar to Banishment, and kill him at once after the rest of his friends have been cleaned up.
Of course, this spell can also be used as an amazing buff.
Confusion (Concentration): Not that this is bad, but that Hypnotic Pattern is better.
Dominate Beast (Concentration): How often do you run into Beasts? And even if you did, this spell allows the target to re-make a save every time he takes damage, making him hardly a trustable ally. Mind-controlling is a good ability, but this one is too limited in its uses.

Field Control
Wall of Fire (Concentration): Set up the map so that your enemies are cut off from each other, or encircle the big bad so he canít get out. Either way it works amazing.
Watery Sphere(EE, Concentration): As with many EE spells, full of creativity and potential. Not exactly optimized, but fun.

Dimension Door: Only a range of 500 feet, and you canít take your entire party with you. If you had 30 spells known you mightíve wanted to take it, but you only have 15 at best.

Level 5 introduces a lot of debuffs and control spells, but the main two things to look for in this level are Animate Objects and Hold Monster. Hold Monster is a wonderful upgrade of Hold Person, complete with abusability via Divine Smite Crit (if abusability is even a word), while Animate Objects opens up the door for a completely new option that can damage, defend, and control, all in the same golden package: minionmancy.
Interestingly enough, there is not a single level 5 Sorcerer spell that directly boosts your defenses or buffs your friends. Not that thatís ever a problem, though, since Greater Invisibility is pretty much the best Sorcerer spell ever in that regard, and you already have it.

Cone of Cold: The damage is 36 average, which is no different from a Fireball of the same level (average 35, better with Elemental Affinity), but this spell has a much wider area of effect. Contrary to popular belief, cold damage is more commonly resisted than fire damage, but on the other hand, less creatures are immune to it.
The real thing here is the insanely large area, so if you often fight bunches and bunches of monsters (too much to fit even in a Fireball), this can be a good choice.
Cloudkill (Concentration): Concentration requirement, CON saves and Poison damage make this a somewhat bad choice for this level. The fact it forces damage every turn is interesting, though. Use together with a necromancer in your party for the lolz (zombies donít take poison damage).
Immolation (EE, Concentration): The damage is low and it takes several turns to be effective enough. It even requires concentration. The idea is interesting but the numbers are sadly not.

Self Protection

Buffing Friends (and/or Yourself)

Weaken Enemies
Hold Monster (Concentration): This spell was already good for Sorcerers. Itís an absolute boner for you. Combine with Divine Smite for the trollolololz.
Being a multiclass Caster, you have high-level spell slots for which you donít have actual spells to match (for instance, 6/14 nets you level 8 and 9 slots, while your highest level spell is level 7). Of course these can be converted into Sorcery Points, but another way of using them is to upcast your spells.
Like Hold Person, Hold Monster can be upcast. And when itís upcast, it allows you to select extra targets. All in all, Iíd say this is near mandatory for you.
Dominate Person (Concentration): This rating assumes you have some trick up your sleeve that makes the Humanoid believe youíre not hostile when you first cast him this spell (disguising as a friend etc. ) If you do not have such a trick, this becomes Red as a combat spell.
Used for combat (combined with some sort of way to assure the Humanoid youíre not hostile), this spell can possibly get a powerful NPC with class levels on your side. If the enemies focus fire on him, chances are heíd eventually break free of the charm, but you force your enemies to waste their actions attacking a friend. Either way itís beneficial for you.
However, not all DMs introduce a lot of powerful humanoids, so as with all ďSomething PersonĒ spells, this spell is campaign-dependent.
Telekinesis (Concentration): Moving around and restraining creatures is interesting. However, Hold Monster exists as a spell of the same level. Itís not that this spell is bad, itís just that thereís a similar option, and you donít have that many Spells Known.

Field Control
Animate Objects (Concentration): If your DM uses flanking rules, this spell becomes pure gold. However, chances are, the moment you start using this spell, your DM will stop using flanking rules.
Minionmancy is a broken concept in itself, because it goes against the main game premise of controlling just ďone characterĒ. Be it Animate Dead, or Conjure Animals, or Conjure Woodland Beings, or this particular spell, you should always first ask your DM beforehand if youíre okay to use it. This is not a matter of whether itís RAW or not, but rather part of table-talk manners. Minionmancy tends to result in one player rolling the dice a dozen times per round, which can get tedious and slow down the game. And since theyíre overall broken in the first place, itís perfectly reasonable for the DM to perhaps set a limit on the number of monsters you can summon, or create special rules for minionmancy (you cannot animate more than 5 objects with this spell etc.).
Mechanic-wise, Tiny is the only choice for the objects you animate, but for the aforementioned reasons, you should consult your DM before drawing out ten trinkets from your pockets and animating them at once. The image of having ten knives float around you and stab into enemies with your commands is badass, though. Other ideas include quills, skulls, and spinning tops.

^ The right way to animate spinning tops.^
(Copyright Takara Tomy)

If you want, you can upcast this spell. Two extra objects per additional spell slot level is not a really ďgiganticĒ deal, but itís still good.
Cloudkill (Concentration): Detailed in ďBlastingĒ. As a control spell, this spell may be a bit meh in how it slowly moves around against your will.
Wall of Stone (Concentration): The control effect is the strongest you can get (it doesnít harm people for moving, it instead just robs the whole option of moving in the first place), but it requires concentration, and most of the time youíd probably use Wall of Fire instead. This spellís true potential lies in out-of-combat situations.
Insect Plague (Concentration): Magical piercing cannot be resisted except by very special foes, but the damage itself is meh. It does serve its job as a battlefield control spell, but if you want something along these lines, other options exist from level 3 and 4, like Stinking Cloud or Wall of Fire.
Control Winds (EE, Concentration): This spell is like a representation of the EE spell list. Theyíre really fun and creative, but also really, really underpowered. This should have been a level 3, or even a level 2 spell or something.

Wall of Stone (Concentration): What was rated Black in ďField ControlĒ becomes Blue in Out-of-Combat situations - perhaps even Sky Blue depending on the campaign (War Campaigns and City Campaigns come to mind). This spell allows you to create bridges or huts, or if you have several days of downtime activity, even fortresses. If used right, itís a campaign-changing spell, and the possibilities are endless.
However, it should be noted that Druids and Wizards - both of them able to change their spell lists every day - also have access to this spell, meaning that if thereís already such a character in your party, you wouldnít need to take it.
Dominate Person (Concentration): Itís like Charm Person, except you donít become the guyís friend, you become the guyís master. This spell has hilarious potential in any campaign, but becomes especially godly in city campaigns. However, it competes with other spells for your Spells Known list, and you might as well have other guys in the party do it for you. Also, be aware that the duration is only one minute, which means its uses are not as broad as one may expect (unless you upcast it). In some cases, the level 1 Charm Person - having a duration of 1 hour and not requiring concentration - might be actually the better option.
Teleportation Circle: Itís basically the Fly move from Pokemon. Anyone who has played Pokemon knows how useful the Fly move is.

Teleportation Circle!
(Image Copyright Nintendo)

However, do you want to have your most powerful Pokemon learn Fly and use it in battle? Probably not. Thatís what itís like to make a Sorcerer learn Teleportation Circle. Leave the Hidden Machines to the Wizards. They deserve to be the HM slaves!
Creation: Yeah, if you want to use a level 5 slot to create a rope or something. I honestly think they should have made it possible to make the created object permanent (albeit at a cost) - this is a 5th level spell - but it seems the creators didnít allow that.
Seeming: The effect is basically ďMass Disguise SelfĒ, except they didnít name it that way because itís impossible to disguise over two ďselvesĒ No concentration is a good thing, and you can perhaps infiltrate the enemy ranks with this spell alone, but these sorts of situational spells are meant more for Wizards, not for Sorcerers.
Whereas all the good Level 4 and 5 spells required concentration - ta-da! The level 6 goodies generally do not.
Here we get good Blasting options for the second time in our career, namely Chain Lightning and Disintegrate. The former is a wonderful finishing move that scales hilariously effectively (synergetic with Birthblades, given how we always have high-level leftover spell slots), while the latter is of an almost never resisted damage type and can wipe off an enemy (or two enemies, with Twinned Spell) clean off the battlefield.
This level is also where we get access to Mass Suggestion, one of the most broken spells in the entire game. And here, look. It doesnít even require concentration. Youíd think it was a typo, but looking at the ďAt Higher LevelsĒ column, it seems itís on purpose. Feel free to abuse it as much as you like.
The Investiture spells are thematically fun, but as options, are honestly not that optimized.

Chain Lightning: Deal average 45 (or half of that) damage to up to 4 targets that are standing near each other. Which is a pretty good deal.
Based on the rulings for GFB, I suppose most DMs will not allow you to Twin this. If he says itís okay... well, have fun.
One thing to note is that this spell scales like no other - while most damage spells increase only 1d8 or something per level, when upcast, Chian Lightning increases the number of the extra leaping bolts, meaning +10d8 damage per extra spell slot level (albeit if there are that many targets within range). Together with the fact that Birthblades will always have a really high-level slot that they canít use except for converting into Sorcery Points or Upcasting, this spell has special meaning for you.
Disintegrate: Deals average 75 damage of an almost-never resisted damage type, if the enemy fails his saving throw. Sadly, it has no effect if the enemy succeeds on his save, meaning you should think twice before using this spell on a guy with a high DEX score or the Magical Resistance ability. Works better with Heightened and Twinned spell.
Sunbeam (Concentration): Blinding and inflicting 27 (or half that) damage average every turn is nice, especially with its damage type being something thatís virtually never resisted, but it uses up concentration. I confess I havenít testplayed this spell before so I donít know how good it will be, but I think youíd probably use your concentration for something else.
If you have played this spell before in a Birthblade build, please tell me your experiences.
(If your campaign is about fighting vampires or drow, this becomes Sky Blue.)
Circle of Death: Anger. My heart is filled with anger. And that anger comes from how WotC created a spell with a really badass sounding name and gave it an absolutely abysmal effect. The same damage as Fireball, with a CON save, and itís supposed to be a level 6 spell. At least itís a less resisted damage type and the radius is huge, but even so, I mean... this is terrible. It should have had a rider effect like, say, Ray of Enfeeblement.

Self Protection
Globe of Invulnerability (Concentration): Look at ďBuffing Friends (and/or Yourself).Ē
Investiture of Wind (EE, Concentration): This spell probably has the most self-contained synergy of the four Elemental Investiture spells. Itís like the Fly spell, except you bestow disadvantage on ranged weapon attacks - which happen to make up for the majority of the attacks that can actually hit you. Thatís a pretty good set of abilities, isnít it? Whoever created this spell was obviously good at designing high-level spells, and I think this is actually a decent pick for Casters (though it does eat at Concentration).
However, you are a frontline warrior, meaning you need to engage in melee range of opponents to be truly effective. This spell has self-contained synergy, but sadly, that synergy does not extend to the basic idea of the Birthblade itself.
Investiture of Stone (EE, Concentration): Itís like a Stoneskin with a bit more benefits, except itís also a level 6 spell that requires concentration. Ew. The extra benefits are too situational as well.

Buffing Friends (and/or Yourself)
Globe of Invulnerability (Concentration): You become sorta like a Rakshasa (though as not as good). And it extends that benefit to anyone within a 10 feet radius.
This is a tricky one. If thereís a friend within 10 feet, this means he also gains the benefits. But unlike Aura of Protection, this affects your enemies as well. What if the enemy boss comes over to sit right next to you? Perhaps the Wizard in the backrow might start calling you names. Do keep in mind that if required, you can always drop concentration at any desired timing - though you will waste that level 6 spell slot of the day.
Of course, however, if the frontline warriors become invincible from a majority of the attacks of the evil mastermind mage, thatís fun. This spell is campaign-dependent, but if used right in the right situation, it can save everybody around you.
Becomes a bit less attractive for those who went Oath of the Ancients 7, since they already have overlapping benefits. Also, do keep in mind that this spell is a bit anti-synergy with the Paladin levels in itself, because you can already protect your friends with Aura of Protection, and this spell has the downside of helping your enemies as well.
If itís just you that you want to protect yourself from spells, better to simply use Greater Invisibility. You canít target people you canít see with your spells, and the enemy Caster has to guess where you are when hurling AoEs. This spell is most meaningful if you can get your friends into the area as well.
You might want to consider slinking back into the backrow and defending your party Caster as you use this.
Investiture of Flame (EE, Concentration): Self only. The fire immunity, cold resistance and Heat Aura are all nice benefits. Having an unlimited supply of magical fire attacks is not bad for a Sorcerer, but meh for Birthblades which already have other good methods of dealing damage. All in all, the packaging itself is not bad, but if asked whether itís worth your concentration, Iíd say no. Self-Buff sorta hits the capstone with Greater Invisibility.
...Of course, unless the campaign is mainly about fighting Red Dragons or something.
If youíre a Fire Draconic Sorcerer, this spell is thematic and cool. Whether that counts as a reason to take this, you decide. I might take it.
Investiture of Ice (EE, Concentration): This Investiture revolves around field control. However, itís mostly too situational to be worth taking.

Weaken Enemies
Mass Suggestion: Itís like suggestion, except it works on up to a dozen targets and doesnít require concentration.
Yes, Iím deadly serious, and itís WotC who forgot to be serious this time.
How to use it in combat is easy - you use it, and at that moment, the combat is already over. Of course it can be used out of combat as well. Either way, this spell is amazing in how itís several spells in one (VERSATILITY dudes!!), meaning it makes a truly wonderful Sorcerer spell.
Eyebite (Concentration): Visually awesome, but requires concentration and all of the effects are duplicates of lower-level spells. Generally Iíd pass.

Field Control
Investiture of Ice (EE, Concentration): Also listed in ďBuffing Friends (and/or Yourself)Ē. It makes the ground you difficult terrain, and also halves the speed of enemies with a magical attack. Both of these abilities are geared towards ďnot letting enemies come within melee range of youĒ, and thatís natural, given this spell was meant to be given to backrow Casters, which donít want to be hit. Unfortunately, youíre a frontline warrior who just happens to be so awesome that you can also cast high-level spells, so this spell is somewhat anti-synergetic with your combat style. And it also requires concentration...

Mass Suggestion: This spell has the potential to change the course of a campaign - something Suggestion already had, but this does it even better. Since you have leftover high-level spell slots from multiclassing, itís one option to upcast this spell and keep a certain group of people charmed for ten days, a month, or possibly even an year.
If you followed the basic guidelines of this guide and went 6/14, this is the farthest you can go with spell levels. Does it have a lot of good options, enough to call it a capstone?
Most certainly yes.
The main thing at this level is Reverse Gravity, which is versatile, full of fun possibilities, and overall extremely powerful. Apart from that, you also gain access to pretty good blasting spells like Fire Storm, Finger of Death, Delayed Blast Fireball, and Prismatic Spray. Note that these are not rated Blue or Black because theyíre bad - theyíre only rated so because Reverse Gravity is so strong. The other Blasting spells are pretty powerful too, and depending on your DM, Finger of Death can become a terrifying spell...

Reverse Gravity (Concentration): Detailed in ďField ControlĒ. This spell inflicts minimum 10d6, maximum 20d6 damage to all creatures in the massive area without a save, and by strict RAW, this damage cannot be resisted by 99% of your enemies. Of course, thinking logically, most DMs will rule that Demons, Devils and other dudes that have resistance to non-magical bludgeoning that comes from hammers will also probably have resistance against the damage that comes from smacking into the ground, but in the MM it states ďdamage from non-magical weaponsĒ, so...
Fire Storm: And you thought Fireballís area was already large. This spellís area is colossal. It basically inflicts average 38.5 (or half of that) damage to every single enemy in the battlefield, which is a grand opening to any encounter. For some weird reason you also have the option to not harm plant life, meaning you can feel free to use it in a forest without fear of eventually immolating yourself.
If you look at just the damage, a level 7 Fireball does it better with 12d6, average 42 damage, so the main reasons to take this would be the insanely wide area, and how it can be more easily used in forest areas. When it gets this large, it even gets possible to use it out of combat to destroy an enemy base.
Finger of Death: Less damage than Disintegrate, but unlike it, you can always deal at least half damage. Like Disintegrate, you can Twin for profit. But the damage part isnít the important part, itís the zombie part that is.
The zombies created by this spell are permanently under your control, meaning that you can control as many as the DM permits, and by RAW, it seems you donít need a bonus action to control them either (unlike in the case with Animate Dead). If your DM permits you to create a gigantic army of zombies with this spell as downtime activity, and you donít get punished for it, this spellís rating can range from anywhere between Blue to Gold, but most DMs will probably set a limit, or tell the players to not overabuse it.
Delayed Blast Fireball (Concentration): A really fun and well-designed spell that works as both AoE and field control in its own weird sort of way.
If someone in the party is godly at DEX saves (for instance, a level 17 Rogue with 20 DEX has a +11 bonus from the start, and it gets even better when you add Aura of Protection for +3 or +4 - chances are it surpasses your DC of 17 or 18), you might try throwing it far for massive damage (to lessen the risk, perhaps use Inspiration or something for advantage on the save). In which case Extended Spell adds 10d6 to the damage... but sadly, since you went Sorcerer 13 to get this, you cannot go Paladin 9 for Aura of Vitality. Thus, chances are, you donít have Extended Spell.
Overall itís a good spell, but I still rated it Black in here because itís not that important an option. Itís not that this is weak at all. Itís just that the other level 7 Sorcerer spells are insanely good.
Prismatic Spray: Consider this spell mandatory for Wild Mages, not because it has synergy but because itís thematically awesome. Itís not an optimized choice but I like it just for the visuals.

Self Protection
Teleport: More of ďParty ProtectionĒ than ďSelf ProtectionĒ - more like, if you use this spell just on yourself, chances are, your party will not consider you a party member anymore. But itís not really a buffing spell either, so I listed it in here.
Another note: this rating assumes your party does not have a Wizard. If your party does, just let him be the HM slave.
Now, so, onto the effects. This spell is like the Fly move from Pokemon, except you can use it in the middle of a fight as an emergency button, and if you have something related to your desired destination, you can go to even places that donít have Pokemon centers (or teleportation circles - thatís how you call them in D&D). As long as your friends huddle around you, you can teleport them as well. If you think a TPK is nearing, call over your friends and use this spell.
As a DM, Iíd like to someday have the players roll on the ďSimilar AreaĒ in the destination list...

Buffing Friends (and/or Yourself)

Weaken Enemies
Reverse Gravity (Concentration): Monsters with only melee attacks are surprisingly common, even at high levels. Use this spell. Cripple them all. Detailed in ďField ControlĒ.
Plane Shift: This rating assumes you use it as a save-or-suck spell. It certainly is save-or-suck, but the target gets two chances to escape, leaving you with a level 7 spell slot expended and nothing happening whatsoever. The risks are too high to consider using this, especially when lower-level spells can also do save-or-suck.

Field Control
Reverse Gravity (Concentration): Visually, awesome. Mechanically? Beyond awesome. This is one example of a well-designed and powerful high-level spell that really gives you the feeling that youíre a man (or woman) of absolute power. The ultimate Field Controll spell. Yeah, I spelled that right.
The spell starts off by smacking the entire enemy party onto the roof of the citadel, or cavern, or tavern, or whatever place you happen to be fighting within. If itís a low ceiling, not much damage, but if itís a high ceiling, this ďfallĒ alone is enough to turn most minions into ground beef, or at least make them really close to becoming ground beef. Monsters with only melee attacks are completely left to the mercy of your partyís archers and Casters (keep in mind that if there is no ceiling, or the ceiling is extremely high, archers may have disadvantage on the attacks due to attack range issues), so feel free to call them names while theyíre forced to walk around the ceiling and being able to do nothing.
And when you lose concentration - be it forced or be it on purpose - all creatures in the area fall to the ground, taking 10d6 bludgeoning damage, no save (unless the DM rules that resistance to non-magical weapon attacks can extend to falling damage, this damage cannot be resisted). Even the guys who werenít ground beef before.... Well, now they are. To add, theyíve falled prone, meaning that once theyíve smacked onto the floor, the melee guys in your party can rush in and stab them with advantage all they want (and remember, youíre also one of these melee guys).
This spell is probably best to use at the start of an encounter, when the enemies and friends are far apart, but if your friends happen to be already in the area, tell them to grab onto something nearby and combine this spell with Careful Spell.
Now, thinking logically, I think most DMs will rule that the people grabbing onto the things nearby cannot move from that point willingly, unless they want to experience the 100-foot fall and smack onto the roof. In which case this spell can debuff even the guys who succeeded on the save, since most monsters cannot attack without using at least one hand.
Then again, if the DM rules that one DEX save is enough to completely resist the gravity thereafter for some weird reason, use that to your advantage by using Careful Spell and having your friends march into the area of this spell while declaring ďOH MY GOD I AM PINCHING THE GROUND WITH MY FINGERS, DEX SAVE DONEĒ.
Either way, this spell is boss. Consider taking this almost mandatory.
Delayed Blast Fireball (Concentration): Detailed in ďBlastingĒ. In short, it basically makes everyone flee from the area.

Fire Storm: Itís originally meant to be an AoE blasting spell, but when the area is this large you can burn down entire buildings, depending on how your DM rules destroying architecture. Consult the DM beforehand if you plan to use this spell in this way. If he says yes to this option, how to use that to your advantage, you decide.
Teleport: Detailed in ďSelf ProtectionĒ. Go anywhere at any time. It needs to be the same world as the one youíre in, though.
Etherealness: Be a good scout, or escape prison. Sadly, Wizards have good scouts via Find Familiar from level 1. This is a level 7 spell. Also, if youíre a character of this level, you honestly probably have some other ways to escape prison (well, to be fair, at least this spell requires no material components, only Verbal and Somatic, so if you happen to be in a situation where your party is in jail, robbed of all armor and weapons and spellbooks, but are somehow not handcuffed nor gagged, you can cast this to slip away. Whether or not you should Know this spell just for that particular situation is a different matter).
Plane Shift: If your campaign is about traveling across the multiverse, or if your DM says that you can now go magic-item shopping in the City of Brass or the demonic capital of Zeletar, this becomes Sky Blue. Then again, if your campaign is about traveling across the multiverse, most of the time Iíd assume the DM has given the party ways to travel without using this spell. The idea of a high-level campaign involving epic adventurers traveling across the planes with this spell does seem really interesting, though.

You never get access to Level 8 and 9 spells unless you went 2/18 or 3/17, but since this guide assumes you go 6/14, I will not detail those levels in this guide. Look at the other class guides for info about them.
The only thing I can say here is that if you can take Wish, you must take it.

2015-12-27, 08:37 AM
I have a similar issue myself, living in Finland and gaming with people in the States. We currently play at 5PM gmt on Sundays, which is early evening in Europe and late morning in States. This time was after a lot of hassle and making sure it doesn't interfere with the schedules of any of the 4 players. We used to have more players and pay at 3AM GMT which was 5 in the morning for me, and had the game end up around midnight for the Americans.

I'd personally recommend a time that ends up in the Saturday evening to Sunday morning axis for everyone, as at those times, most people could change around their sleeping schedule a little without interfering with school or work.

2015-12-27, 08:40 AM
Whoa, never expected someone else from Japan to reply...thanks!

I see, that probably seems like the best solution for me too. Either way it's got to be Sat/Sun... I know there would be attendance issues, but. Can I ask another question pertaining to that?

Well, as far as I read the D&D 5e threads in the "Finding Players" section of this forum, there's generally a dozen applicants for each group where the DM's saying only 3~5 can join. Does this mean that the members actually playing generally change every session (based on who's there on time)? If so, wouldn't that be a good solution for the "attendance issues"?
Or, are things more complicated?

It is my understanding that it means that they take 3, 4 or 5 players depending on the number of applicants (at least that's the way it went with Pathfinder games, can't say about D&D 5th).

It could work around the attendance issue, but might cause issues with a more plot-focused games. a series of shorter adventures wouldn't suffer so much from it. I am by no means a veteran gamer however, so I can't say more than my inexperienced views.

EDIT: I wanted to reply at once, but realized too late that I could have just edited the first post. Oh well...

2015-12-27, 08:43 AM
Whoa, never expected someone else from Japan to reply...thanks!

I see, that probably seems like the best solution for me too. Either way it's got to be Sat/Sun... I know there would be attendance issues, but. Can I ask another question pertaining to that?

Well, as far as I read the D&D 5e threads in the "Finding Players" section of this forum, there's generally a dozen applicants for each group where the DM's saying only 3~5 can join. Does this mean that the members actually playing generally change every session (based on who's there on time)? If so, wouldn't that be a good solution for the "attendance issues"?
Or, are things more complicated?

Well, I'm playing with a specific group, so its not just a pickup game with changing membership. What I found was that while people said they wanted to have Friday free for other things, the reality was that waking up at 7 or 8am on the weekend to play a tabletop game was the more difficult thing to actually do consistently - or so it seems at least.

2015-12-27, 09:23 AM
Have you tried play-by-post games? They tend to move at a slower pace, allowing players in different timezones to participate. It is worked well for me. ^_^ (I live in Norway, so my timezone isn't so crazy as yours in comparison to the US).

2015-12-27, 10:51 AM
Our group games through Roll20, but we are separated by latitude and not longitude, so we are all still in the same time zone. However, our group's average age is around 30, so we have jobs and kids which can make scheduling a challenge.

Honestly, we make it work by having too many players (seven plus a GM), and every week we determine availability over the weekend. Whatever time period has the most people available is the game time that week, and we just play with however many can make it - and have players who can jump in and GM if our main GM is one of the not-available.

2015-12-27, 11:41 AM
It varies. I'm in the U.S, but the online groups I've been in generally have a mix of gamers from the U.S., Scandinavia, and the Phillipines. Timezones cause trouble. What usually happens is that we schedule weekends, and someone is getting up early while someone else is staying up late.

2015-12-27, 10:43 PM
It seems time zones are a perplexing problem for many people... I guess I'd have to work it around with whoever I eventually get to play with, depending on what they'd want (prolly more Americans and Europeans than Asians, I suppose, so gotta stick to what they say). Thanks for the advice.

Have you tried play-by-post games? They tend to move at a slower pace, allowing players in different timezones to participate. It is worked well for me. ^_^ (I live in Norway, so my timezone isn't so crazy as yours in comparison to the US).
This seems interesting - but does it really "work"? I mean, for instance, wouldn't simple battles become week-long and stuff?

Waiting for one's arrival
Feats and More Multiclassing

Blade Mastery.
...Yeah, I think thatís Blade Mastery all right...
(Image Copyright Ufotable)

Now, the first thing I must mention here is that ASIs are amazing for Birthblades. If youíre using a Greatsword, pumping your STR is top priority, and if youíre using a Rapier, youíd want good DEX for all the associated benefits, as well as good CHA. And if your weapon is a Longsword, while you may not need that much STR to be effective, you will want to use those leftover ASIs for pumping CHA, possibly to max.

Even if you have nothing in particular to do, pumping CHA to improve your Sorcerer Spellcasting DC and Aura of Protection, or taking additional STR to get your GWM attacks to be more accurate, or improving DEX for better AC, Stealth checks, initiative, and DEX saves is probably more important than becoming a bit lucky or getting able to cast rituals. It is generally not a good idea for Birthblades to take many Feats (unless it comes from being Variant Human, to get +1 to a particular odd ability score - as in the cases with Heavy Armor Master, Gourmand, and the lot. The Feats for Variant Human are already rated in post #3, Part 2 of the guide, ďRaces and StatsĒ, in ďRace Evaluation (STR Build)Ē).

Thus, I think this part of the guide is honestly close to unneeded. But letís do it anyway, picking up just the important choices.

Also adding in ASIs to explain how important they are.

War Caster: Mandatory if youíre holding stuff in both hands during combat. Combine with Booming Blade to crisp fleeing foes. And it improves your concentration as well.
CHA +2: F*** YEAH. Make your spells harder to resist, prepare more Paladin spells, improve ALL your saving throws, and if you have Elemental Affinity, boost your DPR as well. You should have at least 18, and if possible 20 CHA, by the time you hit level 20 (if you ever do). For you, this is more important than pumping STR.
+1 to two stats: This rating assumes that two of your STR, CON and CHA are odd numbers before you took it, and you boosted those odd stats. Thereís no reason not to do this, since having odd ability scores is nothing but a pure waste in 5e mechanics.
Blade Mastery (UA): Iíd say this is generally better than STR +2 for you, because while it improves your bonus to hit just like a normal ASI, it also gives you the option to get +1 AC as a bonus action. You will not be using Quickened Spell every single turn, so itís very nice to have another way to use up your bonus actions, which will be otherwise wasted for nothing. You aim to get strong defenses, and this is one of the few Feats that allow that. Take it. AC +1 is better than increasing your average DPR by only 1 or 2.
Oh, and advantage on opportunity attacks may not come up that often, but itís still great to have.
Inspiring Leader: Iíd say this is generally better than CON +2 for you, because it basically increases your - and your entire partyís - HP by your level + your CHA mod in-between every single short rest (whereas CON +2 does improve your concentration, but in terms of HP, increases it by your level only once per long rest, and itís also limited to yourself). You donít have any abilities related to temporary HP, so no anti-synergy issues (the Bladelock in your party might develop an inferiority complex though).
Heavy Armor Master: This rating assumes your STR was odd and your CON and CHA were even before you took it (the easiest way to create this situation being taking this at level 1 using Variant Human). Otherwise, do not take this.
This Feat improves your tankiness, especially useful against low-CR hordes. While it does not scale, it certainly stays good till high levels.
Resilient (CON): This rating assumes your CON was odd and your STR and CHA were even before you took it (the easiest way to create this situation being taking this at level 1 using Variant Human). Otherwise, do not take this.
This Feat and War Caster somewhat overlap in usage, but this also helps you fight Drow and other monsters which have nasty abilities that require CON saves. Getting Poisoned is honestly not that much of an issue for you (you can use Lay on Hands to end it), but getting paralyzed or fainting can be dreadful, so this is somewhat good for those situations.
This spell scales quite nicely. Starts off at 4 temporary HP per short rest to everybody, but at level 20, it becomes 25 temporary HP per short rest (perhaps less if your CHA is not maxed out, but still, itís good).
STR +2: For reasons stated above, Blade Mastery is better. If you really want more accuracy and damage, feel free to boost your STR, but in all honesty, itís not the most optimized option.
CON +2: For reasons stated above, Inspiring Leader is better. If you really want more accuracy and damage, feel free to boost your STR, but in all honesty, itís not the most optimized option.
Great Weapon Master: This isnít really something you need, itís the thing everything in this part of the guide assumes you already have.
Resilient (CON): Since the creators of the game declared that you can hold a greatsword in one hand while performing somatic and material components for a spell, War Caster is not mandatory for Greatsword builds. You might as well take this feat that makes you better at CON saves in general, not only concentration saves.
Monster abilities that paralyze or poison (both fatal for GWM builds) generally use CON saves. Making yourself better against these crippling debuffs is very important for you. War Caster doesnít give you that benefit.
Starting Variant Human with 15-8-15-8-8-15, +1 STR and +1 CHA, and eventually getting this feat to get 16 STR, CON, and CHA is the easiest way to optimize a GWM Birthblade.
Blade Mastery (UA): +1 to hit, +1 AC as a bonus action, advantage on opportunity attacks. Each merit is only ďgoodĒ on its own, but they add up to be an amazing Feat thatís much better than going +2 STR. You should get STR 20 and this Feat, if possible.
STR +2: Take this at least once, and preferably twice. Increasing your bonus to hit is top priority.
Notice that adding up GWM, Resilient (CON), Blade Mastery, and two STR ASIs, youíve already used up all possible ASIs/Feat slots you get over the course of your entire career. Taking other options requires you to skip at least one of these.
War Caster: This rating assumes you went Resilient (CON), in which case this Feat becomes not very appealing - especially since you want to max out STR and donít have that many left.
(As aforementioned, I have not played this build much, so consider these ratings to be mere assumptions. Will edit later in accordance to personal experience and opinions gathered from people on these forums.)

War Caster: Same as Longswords: Mandatory if youíre holding stuff in both hands during combat. Combine with Booming Blade to crisp fleeing foes. And it improves your concentration as well.
DEX +2: Improving DEX also means improving your AC, Stealth, initiative, and DEX saves. This is a case where itís better than taking Blade Mastery. Your DEX should be minimum 18. 20 is probably a good idea as well.
CHA +2: Improve your spellcasting and all your saving throws. Solid choice.

Because real casters learn Kung-Fu.
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Yeah, youíre already a multiclass build. Iím talking about taking levels in the other ten classes.

Most of the time, multiclassing will probably result in a reduction of Sorcerer levels. However, when doing so, do keep in mind that Sorcery Points rise together with Sorcerer level, meaning that if you have only a few levels in Sorcerer and go multiclass into a lot of other classes, you cannot use Metamagic as often as a normal Paladin/Sorcerer build. While Quickened and Careful spell are relatively economical, options such as Twinned and Heightened spell may eat through Sorcery Points too quickly to be chosen as Metamagic options in these cases. While multiclass of course has its benefits, it will reduce your resources, and no one can say that it will be ultimately a good idea (of course, no one can say that it will be always be a bad idea though).

For most builds, Paladin 6 / Sorcerer 6 is a pretty important milestone. You get Aura of Protection, level 3 spells, your level 6 Sorcerous Origin ability, and the spell slot equivalent of a level 9 Caster (four level 1s, three level 2s, three level 3s, three level 4s, and one level 5).

However, thereís a quite lot of powerful level 4 Sorcerer spells, like Greater Invisibility and Polymorph. Going 6/8 gives you level 4 spells, one ASI/Feat, and the spell slot equivalent of a level 11 Caster (four level 1s, three level 2s, three level 3s, three level 4s, two level 5s, and one level 6). This is another good place to start multiclassing.

If you start multiclassing into a third class before these levels, you will suffer from having very little Sorcery Points. I advice you do not do this.
The first thing to note is that the classes that have restrictions pertaining to INT and WIS can never, ever be taken. That means no multiclassing into Cleric, Druid, Monk, Ranger, and Wizard. This leaves Barbarian, Bard, Fighter, Rogue, and Warlock (Rogue is exclusive to DEX builds).

For Longsword + Shield builds, youíre honestly better off not multiclassing IMO. You want that Animate Objects (Sorcerer 9), and so do you want a third Metamagic option (Sorcerer 10). Then you feel you want Sorcerer 11 for Mass Suggestion, and Sorcerer 12 for an extra ASI... When you realize, the next level in Sorcerer gives you level 7 spells, and the final level gives you at-will flight, or something just as awesome. Overall I would not recommend it.
But if you really want to, thatís your choice.

Barbarian 1: Being able to tank better than any other class is a good thing, and itís also synergetic with your concept. Sadly, not being able to use, or even concentrate on spells during the duration of Rage and not being able to wear Heavy Armor while you do so is too much of a drawback to be considered ďgoodĒ. Besides, your selling point is versatility, being able to choose the best option for every turn. While raging, if you want to use a spell to help your friends, you need to end the Rage (by using up a Bonus Action).
Since your DEX will be either 8 or 10, your AC without heavy armor will be beyond terrible.
If you want to be tanky, just use Greater Invisibility, or Polymorph into a T-Rex, instead of delaying your Caster level progression.
I think Paladin/Barbarian (no levels in Sorcerer) is a pretty interesting combination (Iíve seen a friend use it and it worked out better than on first glance), for the aforementioned reason that you can use Divine Smite while raging (Reckless Attack for more crits). It does require you to have 13 STR and CHA though, and you still canít wear Heavy Armor. My friend had no problems because it was stat-rolling, but in point-buy, will probably be worse.
Bard 1: Gain 5 Bardic Inspiration Dice that can help your friends make attack rolls or saving throws. Good ability to have, but 5 per day is honestly not that much (can be a lesser number if your CHA is lower), and this ability requires Font of Inspiration (the level 5 ability) to be something that can be considered truly powerful. Of the level 1 spells, Healing Word is a good choice.
Bard (Lore) 6: So itís Paladin 6 / Sorcerer 8/ Bard 6. I have not played this build before, but since it does seem fun, I want to use it someday.
You never gain level 5, 6, or 7 spells (while you gain the spell slots of a Level 17 Caster), but you instead gain 9 extra choices of level 3 or lower spells, which can improve your versatility in certain situations. You also get Font of Inspiration, meaning you can buff your friends all day. You will never run out of level 1 to 3 spells to cast due to Font of Magic and Upcasting, and to be honest, a lot of the low-level spells remain powerful even at high levels, so this probably isnít that bad of an option as it might seem on first glance. You also become darn good with Skills.
Going Lore Bard also allows you to debuff your enemies, and also gives you access to any two level 3 or lower spells of your choice. Some good choices are Conjure Animals (upcast for absolute insanity) and Aura of Vitality.
No, this is not your most optimized Birthblade build, itís rather something of its own... But it truly does seem interesting.
Fighter 2: Gain an ability that heals you once per short rest, and also another ability that allows you to take an extra action. What it says on the package is pretty good, but sadly, itís not worth taking less Caster levels. And as for Action Surge, you can already do similar stuff with Quickened Spell.
Warlock 2 (not Undying Light): A lot of people dip Warlock 2 for better Blasting. You are mainly a frontline warrior, but having an alternative attack option is useful for when you donít want to expend a spell slot but the enemies are over 30 feet away from you (this can happen).
Certain invocations are interesting, but IMO not worth the 2 level lag in Sorcerer progression. The only reasons this is not red is because now you get to heal uses of the Shield spell twice per short rest, and because the Fiendish Vigor Eldritch Invocation allows you to heal either 1d4+4 or 8 temporary HP in-between every single battle (8 if your DM rules by RAW that you can re-cast it as many times as you want in-between fights till you roll a 4 with 1d4, and 1d4+4 if your DM rules that you cannot re-cast it till ití s gone).
Warlock 1 (Undying Light @Draconic Sorcerer): I do not allow the Undying Light (UA) warlock patron in my games for two reasons. The first is that itís overpowered. The second is that the idea of commiting your soul to this vague concept of ďpositive energyĒ is not only really hard to understand but also dull and overall not so ďeldritchyĒ, if eldritchy is even a word. Anyhow, I think it doesnít mesh with the core concept of Warlocks, this eerie, creepy guy who makes contracts with these unfathomable beings of great power. So I really hate it.
But if your DM allows it, youíre an optimizer at heart, and you have a good character idea and/or an explanation as to how this guy gained the powers of this ďUndying Light WarlockĒ, itís a strong choice.
Apart from the extra use of Shield per short rest, Draconic Sorcerers get a massive boost from this dip - one that most DMs will frown upon as too excessive power-gaming. The Radiant Soul ability of Undying Light is honestly terribly designed in how it by RAW stacks with the Elemental Affinity of Draconic Sorcerer for just a 1 level dip. It should be a level 6 ability or something, but whoever created this was f***ing stupi... Okay, I mean, not very smart, so itís pretty damn overpowered right now.
Combined with Elemental Affinity, you have +10 damage to all your GFBs and Fireballs and Walls of Fire, as well as the Firestorm you gain at your last level. Are you really serious? I mean, is there actually any reason to take Great Weapon Master when this exists? I really hope they fix this problem by the time they release this as an official product.
BTW, the Paladin spell Divine Favor becomes a decent use of a level 1 slot if combined with Radiant Soul (though concentration issues and the fact it works better with Extra Attack than GFB keep it from becoming as effective as one may think). Hellish Rebuke also becomes a pretty interesting option, and itís listed in the Warlock spell list, so you might as well take it.
Warlock 2 (Undying Light @Draconic Sorcerer): You gain Eldritch Invocations, like Agonizing and/or Repelling Blast which can boost your Blasting (as a secondary option), or Fiendish Vigor, which makes you tankier.
BTW, at level 11 to 16, your Eldritch Blasts deal 3d10+15 damage, spread over 3 attacks, while Green-Flame Blade inflicts 3d8+13 to one target and 2d8+5 to another, all in one attack roll. Eldritch Blast is a better damaging option if no two creatures are standing next to each other, and the risk of all three blasts missing is not very high. GFB does more damage, but is rather unreliable unless you have advantage on the attack (if you do, itís amazing).
Warlock 3 (Undying Light @Draconic Sorcerer): Comes at the cost of one ASI. You get level 2 slots, which can be used for Mirror Image, Web, Misty Step, and upcasting Hellish Rebuke. If they end up not being used when you take a short rest, convert them into Sorcery Points.
Pact of the Blade is redundant, so letís go with either Chain or Tome. If your DM rules that Chain allows you to get the Imp or Quasit familiar that gives you Magical Resistance, I advice you take Chain. Otherwise, Tome opens up a lot of versatility options.
Warlock 6 (Undying Light @Draconic Sorcerer):
On first glance, it seems like this build can hurl around Fireballs better than normal Sorcerers. However, since you took 6 levels in Warlock, you lose access to level 5, 6, and 7 spells, and also do not gain level 7, 8, and 9 slots. That plus, you lose 6 points from going 6 less levels in Sorcerer. The lost slots and the lost levels accumulate to be 32 Sorcery Points, and re-converting these to level 3 spell slots (each one being ), thatís 6 of them. Which means that if you take only 2 short rests per adventuring day, pure Birthblades can fire Fireballs just as frequently.
What made me mention this as a valid option (not an optimized one, but still) is the Searing Vengeance ability that is amazing for any frontline tank. Basically, when you faint, you regain half your HP and come back to life, while blinding the foes around you as well. This is a perfect example of an ability that shows how Unearthed Arcana is really in ďtest-play modeĒ, and in all honesty itís bad design.
Is it worth all the spellcasting? Probably not. But you also do gain the Pact abilities (Tome or Chain) as well, so if you want, you could.

Barbarian: Look at ďLongswordĒ for my rambling. The fact Rage requires you to not wear heavy armor makes this ability pointless for you, especially since your DEX is either 8 or 10 and you will be terrible with Unarmored Defense.
Reckless Attack (gained at level 2) seems like it could be good, but bestowing advantage on all your enemiesí attacks is too much of a cost unless you also use Rage together with it... And if you try using Rage, your AC will be as bad as that of a pure Caster. Overall meh.
Bard: Your CHA is probably only 16, meaning these sorts of multiclassing are as not as effective as they are for Longsword builds.
Fighter 3 or 4 (Battle Master): Battle Master increases your attacksí accuracy (very important for a GWM build) and also gives you new interesting options such as Riposte. Superiority Dice are regained on a short rest, so no fear of running out of them.
Going Fighter 4 gives you an ASI in exchange for 1 Caster level progression and level 6 spells.
You do lose 3 or 4 Caster levels, but you still get 10 or 11 Sorcerer levels and 13 or 14 Caster levels, so not that bad. If you compare yourself to the Eldritch Knight, you can see that you remain pretty powerful (not that youíre absolutely superior to them, but rather that delayed spellcasting progression isnít that much of a problem, since Eldritch Knights, with worse spellcasting, are still considered good).
Warlock: For the same reasons as Bard, not so effective.

Barbarian 1: This actually might be a good dip, though I have not testplayed yet so I cannot say for sure. You donít wear heavy armor from the start, so you essentially gain the benefits of Stoneskin as a bonus action (it doesnít cost concentration, but you canít concentrate on or even activate spells while Raging). Bear Totem gives you resistance to almost everything at level 3, but the extra two levels are probably better off used to invest in Sorcerer for more casting high-level spells and more Sorcery Points.
Bard: Just like Greatsword builds, your CHA is not maxed out, meaning the benefits of going Bard are somewhat lessened.
Fighter 2, 3: On its own, honestly not that much. But they synergize quite a lot with the Assassin. This build is more of an Assassin variant than a Birthblade variant, though.
Rogue 3 (Assassin): I am yet to actually play this, so this rating is only a temporary one, but I think Paladin 6 / Sorcerer 8 / Assassin 3 / Fighter 3 makes a pretty interesting Assassin variant that has good AC, healing, half-casting, and over-the-top nova. Critical Hit + Divine Smite + Superiority Dice add up to be quite a something, you know.
For instance, Rapier + Sneak Attack + Level 2 Divine Smite + Fighting Maneuver is 2d8+6d6+6d8+2d8 = 6d6 + 10d8 = 21 + 45 = 66 damage average, and together with your DEX bonus, becomes about 70 damage on hit. Using Action Surge you can do three more attacks (they donít benefit from Sneak Attack though), which, assuming DEX 18, do 6d8+12=39 damage without adding anything. But you will probably add superiority dice (2d8, average 9 damage) and Divine Smite (4d8, average 18 damage with a level 1 slot, and average 9 damage higher per extra level), so that will probably amount to be something around 150 damage in a single round. Even more, if you use Sorcery Points to fuel bonus action Green-Flame or Booming Blade.
Warlock: For the same reason as Bards, this is not a very good choice for you.

2015-12-28, 12:11 AM
Yes, it is a lot slower. This means less battles with more streamlined battle mechanics that are friendly to PbP. For example, the GM can roll (e.g. initiative, spot checks, saves) for the players - since all rolls are in the open and done by the forum's dice roller, it doesn't matter who starts the rolling. Better yet, use group intiative or somesuch.

Here's a list of PbP tips (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?181993-Long-Signature-Thread/page5&p=18934840#post18934840).

-D&D PbP tips-

DM tips:

- DM rolls initiative twice. Once for the party once for the enemies. The winner goes first and everyone acts following their initiative bonus.
(When combat starts, it takes too much time to ask for everyone to make an inititive check and then wait for every player to take their turn in that order. A faster method is for the DM to roll once for the enemies and once for the group. The winner faction starts and then everyone just follows their initiative bonus in order. Is best if the DM makes the rolls, as most of the time it's the DM who decides a combat has started. This also helps create a dynamic where players know when is their turn to post.)

-Or don't follow a turn order.
(Every player posts their actions when they can. Then it's up to the DM to either take their actions in the order they were written, or to organize them by initiative order and resume what happened.)

-Don't punish the players for that 5 step they are away of the monster because they moved poorly.
(If you do, next time they will wait until everyone else has posted so they have a clear view of where everybody is on the map before moving. And waiting is bad.)

-Allow a small degree of godmodding involving the terrain/furniture but not the NPCs.
(PbP is slow enough as it is, don't make the players ask for every little detail. Either describe it completelly, or allow them to interact with expected items that you did not mention. Like a chair on a tavern, or a torch on a mine.)

-Avoid asking for individual spot/listen rolls. Let the DM roll it.
(This just makes the game come to an alt until every player has posted a single roll. Instead, make a table with the most common skills, like spot, listen, search, and knowledges, and the bonuses each player has. Then just roll once and apply the individual bonuses. This speeds the game up a lot.)

-Trust your players with spoilered information.
(Make it clear that in PbP you expect them to not open a spoiler tag if it is not marked for them. If you can't trust a player, convice him or replace him, because this is a big time saver. Post spoliers like "If you speak draconic you heard that..." and "if Your spot roll was 15+ then..." By adding the Dc on the spoiler you let your players know if it was a failure or a success while making their posts, so they can edit them with that new information.)

Player tips:

-Roll attack, damage, critical threat, and extra damage in the same roll.
(Just ignore the extra rolls if it's not a crit. Much better than having to make a double post with only more rolls.)

Formatting tips:

-Write the OOC actions, notes, and rolls inside a spoiler tag at the end of your IC post.
(Instead of rolling everything on the OOC. This way the DM doesn't have to figure out which roll is for what. Always add what the roll is for. "Spot" or "Attacking the giant 2")

-It's a good idea to start your IC posts with your characters name.
(Either in the description of your actions "Mr.Paladin decided to..." or just plain bold before your actual post. Mr.Paladin)

-It's commonly accepted that you use italic for your character thoughts and double inverted commas for speech.Sometimes bolded too.
(Mr. paladin was sad. I wish I wasn't sad. He thought. "I'm so sad." he said.

2015-12-28, 06:59 PM
I see - looks nice. Definately want to participate......once these friggin' entrance exams are finished.

Can I ask another question, though it rather goes off track - what is the "general 'level' of participants" in the average Roll20 game? I don't mean the Character Levels 1~20, I mean whether all the guys on Roll20 are nice and humorous, or just simply uncaring and stupid. Because I found many online gaming sites (Yugioh's Dueling Network, for example) to be rather leaning to the latter.
The whole reason I asked this question here was because I supposed people on forums like these would be overall more nice and caring, but since I found 5e games were actually rare in the "recruitment" section, and I want to participate in several games before playing with irl friends (since I'm the only one able to become the Dungeon Master) - if those sites are actually "helpful", I might want to check them out as well in the future.

(Contrary to what it says in the guide, I have only created two level 20 builds so far. Also, these are rough drafts, so might require some tweaking.)

My whole life was - Unlimited Blade Works
Sample Builds

Show me your moves!
(Image Copyright Ufotable)

Now, the first thing I must say is that most characters do not actually get to level 20. Thus I know that just posting level 20 builds will be not very helpful for a majority of the people.

Here I will post Level 12 and 20 builds meant for 6/14 or 7/13 Paladins. Level 12 is where you get 6/6 and your Paladin/Sorcerer gish starts to get really nasty, while Level 20 is your ďideal way to perfect your characterĒ.

Apart from that, I will also post level 6 and 8 builds that have only Paladin 2 or 3, these meant for when your campaign starts at level 6 or higher and will end before going level 12 or higher, in which going Paladin 6 might slow down your Caster progression a bit too much, and it can be better to go just Paladin 2 or 3.

It shines bright... It is the true embodiment of the sad yet noble dream of all soldiers, past, present, and future, who lie dying on the field of battle...
Clutched to their hearts with their last breath, holding aloft their dying wish, making certain that their loyalty will not be in vain...
The Invincible King is about to cry out the true name of the miracle she wields in her hands. That name is...
(Image Copyright Ufotable)
Artorius the Dragon King
Concept: Longsword + Shield
Class: Paladin (Crown) 6/ Sorcerer (Draconic, Gold) 14
Race: Variant Human
Final HP: 10+5d10+14d6+3x20+1x14=170
Final AC: 21 (Plate + Shield + Defense), +1 with Blade Mastery (Bonus Action), +5 with the Shield spell (Reaction)
Start Stats: 16-8-16-8-8-16
Final Stats: 16-8-16-8-8-20
Feats: Heavy Armor Master, War Caster, Blade Mastery (UA)
Paladin (the ones that she constantly prepares)
Level 1: Command*, Compelled Duel*, Bless, Command, Cure Wounds
Level 2: Warding Bond*, Zone of Truth*
*Oath Spells
(She can also prepare 5 extra spells in addition to the above every day)

Cantrips: Booming Blade, Friends, Green-Flame Blade, Lightning Lure, Message, Minor Illusion
Level 1: Shield
Level 2: Mirror Image, Web
Level 3: Fireball, Hypnotic Pattern
Level 4: Greater Invisibility, Polymorph, Wall of Fire
Level 5: Animate Objects, Hold Monster
Level 6: Mass Suggestion
Level 7: Fire Storm, Reverse Gravity

Quickened Spell... Obvious choice for any Birthblade
Careful Spell... Use together with spells like Web, Hypnotic Pattern and Reverse Gravity
Heightened Spell... For when you want to really make someone paralyzed, hypnotized, or turned into a frog

The basic premise is to lock down all your enemies. This build does not have the devastating DPR of GWM builds, but makes up for that with amazing defense, field control and better spellcasting, not to mention better saving throws.

This build is extremely defensive (this does not mean at all that it has weak offense, though). With base AC 21 via Plate, Shield and Defense (AC 22 if you use your bonus action for Sword Mastery), on top of Mirror Image, the Shield spell, and possible disadvantage on your attacks due to Greater Invisibility, you are a wonderful tank.
This build also includes Heavy Armor Master. For one itís a means of getting +1 to STR using Variant Human, but for another, it adds to the tankiness - even if you do take damage from enemy weapons, it will be reduced by 3 every time (monsters with magical weapons are surprisingly rare, even at high levels). The reduction may seem small on first glance, but it will eventually accumulate to be a lot over the adventuring day, and will most definitely save your skin - or at least keep you from using up too much Cure Wounds and Lay on Hands.

To keep your enemies constantly fixed on you and protect your partyís backrow, utilize the Champion Challenge ability of Oath of the Crown. Your enemies will be forced to attack only you, but when they do, you can just use Shield[b/] to ward them all off (the effectiveness of Shield has already been explained in the ďLongswordĒ column of this guide), [b]effectively rendering all the enemiesí attacks useless. When you run out of level 1 spell slots, depending on how often you use high-level slots (this is a matter of playstyle), you can perhaps use Font of Magic to re-gain them. Donít bother converting level 2 slots for this usage though, since creating a level 1 spell slot requires 2 Sorcery Points, and itís better to simply keep that level 2 slot (in case youíre not going to use Shield).

Since the enemies are all fixed in melee range around you, possibly standing together, Green-Flame Blade becomes more effective than under normal circumstances (better chances of there being two enemies within range - of course, unless youíve already killed all of them but one). And since youíre going to use GFB a lot, why not give it a damage boost? Oh, and, if itís gonna be a damage boost, why not base it off your ,maxed-out casting stat? Yeah, I know - my point is that Draconic Sorcerer is a wonderful combination in that regard, with Elemental Affinity adding +5 damage to all your GFB attacks. Lots of interesting synergy here.

Since a lot of enemies will be encircling you, Careful Spell becomes a pretty good Metamagic choice - better than it is for other builds. Feel free to use spells like Web and Hypnotic Pattern, centered around you. Except oh wait, you donít get affected at all! The lolz. The trollololz. Enjoy as your enemies all get restrained while you and your friends do not.

Another thing about Careful Spell is that it requires only 1 Sorcery Point to use, and compared to how easily Heightened or Twinned spell can eat through Sorcery Points, you can say itís really, really economical. If you still remember what I said in the first section of this guide, the weakness of Birthblades is that they canít do anything after theyíve used up resources, but Careful Spell is unlikely to become the reason for that problem.

Bit off-track: Perhaps someone said something about how spells like Fireball are anti-synergetic with Careful Spell, because you still take half damage. Well then, if you really want to minimize the damage, you can use the secret hidden ability of Elemental Affinity to gain fire resistance for 1 hour at the cost of just 1 Sorcery Point. Both Careful Spell and Elemental Affinity cost only 1 Sorcery Point, so use whichever is better in the particular situation. In short, when using Fireball on your area:
If youíre not the only guy in the area: Careful Spell
If youíre the only guy in the area: Elemental Affinity
Is the way to go. Either way, you take only half damage - or if you used Elemental Affinity and succeeded on your DEX save, only a quarter of the damage. Technically you can spend 2 Sorcery Points to guarantee you take only 1/4 damage, but honestly, itís probably a bit too high-priced.

Now, of course, just because you have Shield, doesnít mean youíre invincible from all enemy attacks, especially critical hits. Iíve equipped this build with Heavy Armor Master to mitigate that problem as much as possible, but if you still find yourself a bit too wounded after a fight is over, just use (a possibly upcast version of) Cure Wounds, or Lay on Hands.

Here I threw in Animate Objects as another way to maintain the frontline and make you better at your job, this spell being considerably good at being a damage sponge. If you have low HP but want to keep on fighting, Polymorph into a T-Rex (or whatever the equivalent of a T-Rex is in your campaign world) with Quickened Spell, and essentially gain 136 temporary HP. Not getting able to cast spells is bad, but the DPR is higher than your normal self, and you get to keep on doing your job to help your friends. If you use Champion Challenge just before activating Polymorph, your enemies will be forced to stay within 30 feet of a T-Rex. Isnít that quite terrifying?

With a CHA score of 20, you are also a wonderful Caster, your saving throw DC being 19, the highest number possible for a normal character. Web, Hypnotic Pattern, Hold Monster, and Mass Suggestion especially benefit from this. Elemental Affinity also gets yummier from the +5 damage, and especially since you will be using Green-Flame Blade often, you can say this is an important part of this build.

Your maxed-out CHA boosts not only your Sorcerer spellcasting. It also makes Champion Challenge and Turn the Tide better, and allows you to choose more Paladin spells (most Paladin spells are situational, but this pretty much means that you get to be more adaptable to all sorts of niche situations). And the best part is that with maximum benefits from Aura of Protection, you get +5 to all saving throws.

The saving throws of this build are like the following:
STR: +8
DEX: +4
CON: +8
INT: +4
WIS: +10
CHA: +16

Yeah, thatís awesome.

If you want your CON saves to be better, take Resilient (CON) instead of Heavy Armor Master, and spend that Variant Human +1s on STR and CHA. That way you get the same ability scores as this original build, except with +6 to CON saves instead of a -3 cushion from all physical attacks.

Generally speaking, if your party has a Bard, you donít need Resilient (CON). If your party does not, it might be pretty good, especially if your DM has a habit of throwing in Beholders, Demiliches and the sort as boss monsters.

(Copyright Aniplex)
Oktavia the Witch Hunter
Concept: Great Weapon Master
Class: Paladin (Devotion) 6/ Sorcerer (Shadow) 14
Race: Variant Human
Final HP: 10+5d10+14d6+3x20=156
Final AC: 19 (Plate + Defense), +1 with Blade Mastery (Bonus Action), +5 with the Shield spell (Reaction)
Start Stats: 16-8-15-8-8-16
Final Stats: 20-8-16-8-8-16
Feats: Great Weapon Master, Resilient (CON), Blade Mastery (UA)
Paladin (the ones that she constantly prepares)
Level 1: Protection from Evil and Good*, Sanctuary*, Bless, Command, Cure Wounds
Level 2: Lesser Restoration*, Zone of Truth*
*Oath Spells
(She can also prepare 3 extra spells in addition to the above every day)

Cantrips: Booming Blade, Friends, Lightning Lure, Message, Minor Illusion, Shape Water
Level 1: Shield
Level 2: Hold Person, Mirror Image
Level 3: Counterspell, Fireball, Fly, Hypnotic Pattern
Level 4: Banishment, Greater Invisibility
Level 5: Hold Monster
Level 6: Chain Lightning, Mass Suggestion
Level 7: Reverse Gravity

Quickened Spell... Because almost every Action will be Extra Attack
Heightened Spell... To compensate for bit-low saving throw DC
Twinned Spell... To abuse Greater Invisibility, because you use it so often
There was once a girl who prayed to the gods, prayed to save her love. There was once a girl who sold her soul for justice, in exchange for her humble life.
Then, after being entangled within the strings of cruel fate, there was a girl with a broken heart, left with nothing in her but the hollowest vengeance and the deepest of despairs.
Long ago, they called her the Witch Hunter. But after all these years of mindless massacre and bloodshed, who can say for sure that she is now not a witch herself?
This build is focused on GWM through getting bonuses to hit and gaining advantage.
At level 17 and higher, your normal attack rolls will have a +12 bonus to hit. Add Sacred Weapon for +3, and the end result is an attack roll of +15. If someone in your party is casting Bless on you (which they should), add extra 1d4. In the below math, Iíd just consider Bless +2 to make math simpler.
AC 15
Normal Attack without GWM (+12): 90%
Normal Attack with GWM (+7): 65%
Advantage and GWM (+7 twice): 87.75%
Sacred Weapon with GWM (+10): 80%
Sacred + GWM + Adv. (+10 twice): 96%
Sacred + GWM + Bless + Adv. (+12 twice): 99%

AC 17
Normal Attack without GWM (+12): 80%
Normal Attack with GWM (+7): 55%
Advantage and GWM (+7 twice): 79.75%
Sacred Weapon with GWM (+10): 70%
Sacred + GWM + Adv. (+10 twice): 91%
Sacred + GWM + Bless + Adv. (+12 twice): 96%

AC 19
Normal Attack without GWM (+12): 70%
Normal Attack with GWM (+7): 45%
Advantage and GWM (+7 twice): 69.75%
Sacred Weapon with GWM (+10): 60%
Sacred + GWM + Adv. (+10 twice): 84%
Sacred + GWM + Bless + Adv. (+12 twice): 91%

AC 21
Normal Attack without GWM (+12): 60%
Normal Attack with GWM (+7): 35%
Advantage and GWM (+7 twice): 57.75%
Sacred Weapon with GWM (+10): 50%
Sacred + GWM + Adv. (+10 twice): 75%
Sacred + GWM + Bless + Adv. (+12 twice): 84%

Taking a look at these numbers, you can say that ď-5 to hitĒ and ďadvantageĒ pretty much cancel each other out. If you put Sacred Weapon or Bless on top of that, the chances of hit become even higher than normal while getting +10 damage per hit.

Whether Sacred Weapon and Darkness cancel each other or not depends on the rulings of the DM, but if the DM says they canít work together, all you have to do is use Greater Invisibility. Darkness is there as a much more ďcheapĒ option, but it can possibly hinder your friends and thus requires caution to use.

Of course, Darkness is better for when youíre attacking a Caster, though (blinding works amazing on Casters).

When using GWM builds, make sure to be careful of monsters that have Truesight and Blindsight. Neither Darkness nor Greater Invisibility will work on them, so you need to use spells like Hold Monster to gain advantage on attacks against them. You could say dragons are the worst foes of GWM Birthblades in that regard, since they have high AC and blindsight on top of the ever-so-annoying Legendary Resistance, but at least you can Smite against boss monsters like them, and the breath weapon becomes a bit better with Aura of Protection.

2015-12-29, 12:31 AM
Well, all my games on roll20 were technically started off of it, so that I knew that the players in it were from a forum with fairly good moderation, so they were likely to be okay people. I have no idea about recruiting directly from roll20, but the one time I tried to find a game on there directly, it didn't work out, so yeah. Maybe you could get a gaming group from a forum more focused on 5e?

Also, going back to the OP's question, I'm actually in Taiwan right now while my gaming groups are in America, and most of our games are in the evening for them and the morning/close-to-afternoon for me. However, it's also winter break for me, and I'll be going back to America once school starts, so the disparity is only for a while.

2015-12-29, 09:06 AM
By other forums, sorry, which forum do you mean? I mean, I google'd a bit, but couldn't find an active forum pertaining to D&D 5e save for EN Worlds, which didn't have an "Online-Gaming Recruitment" section (as far as I searched - could be mistaken. Found only those to gather IRL).

Yeah, for the time zone problem, I suppose it's best if I go morning and the others go evening. Others prolly wouldn't like it if it's the other way around, especially when it's mainly Sat and Sun.

2015-12-30, 12:12 AM
Ah, okay, sorry about that. I don't know much about 5e, so I was kind of making assumptions. I wish you luck in finding a group, though!

Joe the Rat
2016-01-04, 11:13 AM
What's going on with the Aussies and Kiwis? I'd be surprised if nobody is playing 5e online down there. I remember discussion on the now-defunct wotc forums on issues with shipping and finding materials.

Having someone a few hours away (if New Zealand shows any signs of players) can work, but it can make for odd schedules. My Saturday night group (1AM GMT / 8PM GMT-5) is mostly US-based, with the exception of one player from Sweden (GMT+1 - starting at 2AM!). It's definitely an odd hour for him, but it works. He's kind of crazy, though.