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Brauron
2008-10-15, 03:16 PM
I've heard a lot of people, on various message boards as well as in real life, assert that the 3.5 Warlock is somehow "broken" or "overpowered," and I've played under a couple DMs who ban the class outright. I'd never paid much care to this restriction, since I don't generally play casters anyways (though this is changing now that I've discovered the joy to be had in playing buffers/debuffers).

When I get bored, I crack open a D&D book and test myself -- to see how quickly I can generate a character of a class I've never played before and still have it be an interesting and well thought-out character who would be genuinely fun to play.

Last night, while taking a break from studying, I rolled a Human Warlock.

And maybe it's my general inexperience with casters talking, but Warlocks hardly seem overpowered to me.

Any thoughts?

The Rose Dragon
2008-10-15, 03:18 PM
They aren't. In fact, they are underpowered without the Deceive Item thingie.

Morty
2008-10-15, 03:19 PM
The simple answer is: they're not. They can use their invocations and eldrith blasts all day long, but since those are quite lukewarm, they don't come even close to being overpowered.

Starbuck_II
2008-10-15, 03:21 PM
I've heard a lot of people, on various message boards as well as in real life, assert that the 3.5 Warlock is somehow "broken" or "overpowered," and I've played under a couple DMs who ban the class outright. I'd never paid much care to this restriction, since I don't generally play casters anyways (though this is changing now that I've discovered the joy to be had in playing buffers/debuffers).

What? Are you joking with me?

Oh, yeah, there are DMs who can't fathom a non-caster doing stuff at will. Granted, even wizards can get will attacks (those reserve feats).

But before, it scared DMs due to it changed the paradigm of magic. Granted, anyone who actually sees a Warlock in action will realize they aren't that great.

More like a Magical Archer than a mage, but still the thought of a paradigm change is big.



When I get bored, I crack open a D&D book and test myself -- to see how quickly I can generate a character of a class I've never played before and still have it be an interesting and well thought-out character who would be genuinely fun to play.

Last night, while taking a break from studying, I rolled a Human Warlock.

And maybe it's my general inexperience with casters talking, but Warlocks hardly seem overpowered to me.

Any thoughts?

They aren't, but they are unique (or were at the time).

DM Raven
2008-10-15, 03:23 PM
Um, yes, what they all said...they aren't. Always feel like I'm late to the party...

However, I would argue that they are a bit OP at lower level. But as level goes up they are easily surpassed by the other casting classes.

Epinephrine
2008-10-15, 03:29 PM
Um, yes, what they all said...they aren't. Always feel like I'm late to the party...

However, I would argue that they are a bit OP at lower level. But as level goes up they are easily surpassed by the other casting classes.

Yes, OP at low levels. That Shatter-at-will power is really annoying when you are being hounded by a pixie-warlock.

AKA_Bait
2008-10-15, 03:34 PM
Just another in the parade of "but they aren't overpowered". Although I tend to think they are pretty much balanced just right.

They are thought to be, and I initially thought they were, because of the unlimited uses of their abilities. However, as pointed out, that only flies if the abilities are not weakend such that the unlimited uses is counterbalanced, which for warlocks it is.

Fostire
2008-10-15, 03:35 PM
They are a bit underpowered but can become really useful with the right optimization.

Sstoopidtallkid
2008-10-15, 03:38 PM
I see 'em as a bit weak, generally I'd say make them get a new invocation at each level and they're balanced and fun. That's what my DMs say, too, so it's fine.

Johnny Blade
2008-10-15, 03:44 PM
Although I tend to think they are pretty much balanced just right.
Eh, I don't know.
It's 3.5, so you can't really make any comments about that unless you know what kind of group the Warlock's in. (Note that this is not me bashing 3.5. I actually like it more than 4.0.)
If he ends up adventuring with a Swashbuckler, a Ninja and a Favored Soul, things look pretty good.
If he has to keep pace with a Warblade, a Spellthief/Wizard/Unseen Seer/Arcane Trickster and a Druid, it doesn't.

I think the Warlock's power level is pretty close to a Fighter most of the time.

Collin152
2008-10-15, 03:44 PM
They aren't overpowered, they're consistant!
And fun. if you don't relegate yourself to Blast Spamming.

Brauron
2008-10-15, 03:47 PM
Thank you everyone for confirming my suspicions.

As an addendum, my two current DMs (I'm gonna miss this when I graduate college) are the only two I've played under who allow Warlocks, and one of them even said, as Starbuck II pointed out, "it's really more of an archer who doesn't need a bow."

Curiously, on further reflection, the most fervent Munchkins I know IRL are the ones who are most adamantly against Warlocks. Any thoughts on if there's any correlation between dislike of warlocks and overbearing munchkinism?

Edit to take into account posts posted while I was initially writing this:
The group I would be playing a Warlock in (if, heaven forbid, my Archivist died or became unplayable), consists currently of a Goliath Fighter, a dagger-spamming Rogue who is kinda Munchkiny, a Human Warmage who has excessive blastyness covered, and an INT-rogue.

Tokiko Mima
2008-10-15, 03:50 PM
I've heard a lot of people, on various message boards as well as in real life, assert that the 3.5 Warlock is somehow "broken" or "overpowered," and I've played under a couple DMs who ban the class outright. I'd never paid much care to this restriction, since I don't generally play casters anyways (though this is changing now that I've discovered the joy to be had in playing buffers/debuffers).

When I get bored, I crack open a D&D book and test myself -- to see how quickly I can generate a character of a class I've never played before and still have it be an interesting and well thought-out character who would be genuinely fun to play.

Last night, while taking a break from studying, I rolled a Human Warlock.

And maybe it's my general inexperience with casters talking, but Warlocks hardly seem overpowered to me.

Any thoughts?

A Warlock out of the box is in no way overpowered. They can basically do sneak attack damage as a touch attack using a standard action (only) without having to flank, break Dex or flatfoot their foes. They don't get to add weapon or Str bonus damage. This is great until rogues gain an additional attack or pick up TWF and effectively double and then triple their sneak attack dice and leave the warlock in the dust. Remember, Warlocks cannot make a full-attack with their Eldritch Blast.

Their invocations are fun, but none are OMGWTF?!? powerful. It's nice to be able to see invisible all day, or leave no tracks behind. Shatter at will can be used to excellent comic effect, but is generally a waste of an action in combat. A warlock can be unusually awesome at level one with the summon swarm invocation, but only because it's a better version of a 2nd level druid spell the warlock can spam without limit.

Now, like Fighters with their ubercharge Feat Chain, Warlocks can be optimized to be monstrously huge damage dealers once you start raiding splatbooks for feats, races and PrCs. Empower SLA, Maximize SLA, Quicken SLA, Hellfire Blast, and Chausibles of Fell Power all make optimized Warlocks pretty ferocious. But they really aren't that great, and are in fact a bit underpowered until you really trick them out.

Eldritch_Ent
2008-10-15, 03:54 PM
Yeah... Their abilities may be useable all dayl, but really unless they pull one of the standard Warlock power tricks (Binder 1/Hellfire warlock + Eldritch Glaive, for example), the economy of actions really cuts into their potential power. Remember, a blast invocation is usually a standard action, so that's one a round.

Johnny Blade
2008-10-15, 03:55 PM
Curiously, on further reflection, the most fervent Munchkins I know IRL are the ones who are most adamantly against Warlocks. Any thoughts on if there's any correlation between dislike of warlocks and overbearing munchkinism?
Well, the Warlock is a very unique class, and the designers played it safe, so it isn't too powerful to begin with.
Also, as its mechanisms are so unique and it was only released in a splatbook without receiving much support afterwards (though still quite a lot, comparatively), you face the problem that it doesn't mix well with other classes while at the same time having little material that augments the class.

Fax Celestis
2008-10-15, 03:58 PM
The "overpowered" notion comes from the idea that the warlock is a 'caster' (its not) that can cast magic all day long.

But the warlock isn't a spellcaster--it's an invocationist. And as such, it has a different set of powers--invocations--available to it. The warlock would be broken if it managed to get its hands on some of the things that make the wizard broken, but then again, if the fighter could stop time, he'd be broken too.

Long story short, the concept of the broken warlock stems from people who are too busy or too idiotic to read through the class' powers and actually take a look at what it does.

JaxGaret
2008-10-15, 04:21 PM
Long story short, the concept of the broken warlock stems from people who are too busy or too idiotic to read through the class' powers and actually take a look at what it does.

I'm sure that's some of it, though there is a point (levels 5-6 specifically) when the Warlock is pretty strong.

From what I could tell over on the Wizards boards, most of the "Warlocks are overpowered" threads were pretty routinely debunked by a simple question: "What level is the Warlock in question? I bet it's level 5 or 6, right?" and the answer was invariably yes. This can be exacerbated by the fact that a lot of campaigns start at higher than level 1, so it could be that what the DM is seeing is the Warlock at the highest point of its power curve right out of the gate.

Tossing 3d6 ranged touch attacks at will at level 5 is pretty good in terms of damage output, especially when compared to non-optimized builds, and then at level 6 you get a Lesser invocation to throw on top of that, which is pretty powerful at that point. Once you hit level 7 and above, the casters really begin truly dominating, and the Warlock goes back to being pretty much middle of the road. I agree with Bait that the Warlock is well balanced, and I would consider it one of the best balanced classes in 3.5.

Temp.
2008-10-15, 04:21 PM
Edit to take into account posts posted while I was initially writing this:
The group I would be playing a Warlock in (if, heaven forbid, my Archivist died or became unplayable), consists currently of a Goliath Fighter, a dagger-spamming Rogue who is kinda Munchkiny, a Human Warmage who has excessive blastyness covered, and an INT-rogue.You're playing an Archivist (y'know... the class with more spells per day, a bigger spell list, more skill points, more class abilities, better armor and better saves than the wizard) and you're worrying that a Warlock would be overpowered?

Hzurr
2008-10-15, 04:28 PM
I think that part of the problem is that it's possible to play a decent warlock without a lot of effort. I mean, yes, anyone who has ever read Logic Ninja's guide to wizards knows that you shouldn't bother with evocations, but in general it's what most people do by default. A warlock can be played fairly strong, even by a mostly incompetent player.

In addition, in non-combat situations a warlock can really shine. A least invocation that gives a +4 to bluff, diplomacy and intimidate? Yes please! A pit on the floor? Whatever, I'll walk on the wall. An ability that let's me teleport away and leaves an illusary image of myself in my place? ALWAYS USEFUL!

One lesser (I think) invocation from complete mage gave me the ability to take my eye out of my skull, have it grow spider legs
(climb speed!), and let it scurry about. Honestly, it was one of the best scouts we could have hoped for. If something happened to it, eh, I'll re-grow it in 1d4 hours. That's not even a really powerful invocation, but in the hands of the right player, it's awesome.

Warlocks are great. They can be played very powerful, but hardly to the degree that one could do with a druid, cleric, or wizard.

Fostire
2008-10-15, 04:38 PM
In addition, in non-combat situations a warlock can really shine. A least invocation that gives a +4 to bluff, diplomacy and intimidate? Yes please!

Actually that's a +6. But I agree, warlocks are really useful in non-combat situations.

Person_Man
2008-10-15, 05:02 PM
In general, they're not. But there are a few doors open for high cheese.

They can get Hide in Plain Site at first level (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=57352). A low level Whisper Gnome Warlock/Whatever (anything with Hide as a class Skill) can be nearly impossible to target. At higher levels you can combine it with Setting Sun Ninja with some potent results (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=4666858&postcount=5).

A Warlock/Marshal can boost their social Skills to ridiculous heights at low levels. This lets you talk your way out of many encounters. It also opens up a potent Demoralize combo (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?p=5099701) Fearsome armor + Imperious Command feat) very early in your progression, when its most useful, especially if you then go into any psionic class for Hustle.

A Glaivelock (http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=820872) is a serviceable melee build with some interesting effects. In the same strain, Hellfire Warlock (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/ex/20061207a&page=3) is a solid blaster. With the right items and feats (like Quicken Spell Like Ability) either is a solid build choice.

But similar Cheese can be brought to bear on almost any class. There's nothing inherently broken about the class. If anything, EVERY class in 3.5 should have been built on the "I can do it all day model" because that's essentially what full casters can do by mid levels anyway.

Fostire
2008-10-15, 05:07 PM
But similar Cheese can be brought to bear on almost any class. There's nothing inherently broken about the class. If anything, EVERY class in 3.5 should have been built on the "I can do it all day model" because that's essentially what full casters can do by mid levels anyway.

That's what they did in 4.0

Brauron
2008-10-15, 05:52 PM
You're playing an Archivist (y'know... the class with more spells per day, a bigger spell list, more skill points, more class abilities, better armor and better saves than the wizard) and you're worrying that a Warlock would be overpowered?

Well...I'd never been told by people who've practically made an unpaid career out of studying D&D books that the Archivist should be banned due to brokenness.

Heh...actually I'd be more concerned about the other PCs killing my Archivist. I basically play him as a Cthulhu Cultist and use my impression of Peter Lorre's voice when I'm in character...even the DM is occasionally disturbed by my Archivist, and I walk a fine line between acceptably creepy and "Kill it with fire before its taint spreads"

Jack_Simth
2008-10-15, 05:53 PM
The "overpowered" notion comes from the idea that the warlock is a 'caster' (its not) that can cast magic all day long.

But the warlock isn't a spellcaster--it's an invocationist. And as such, it has a different set of powers--invocations--available to it. The warlock would be broken if it managed to get its hands on some of the things that make the wizard broken, but then again, if the fighter could stop time, he'd be broken too.

The Warlock can, by taking one feat and spending some resources. See below.


Long story short, the concept of the broken warlock stems from people who are too busy or too idiotic to read through the class' powers and actually take a look at what it does.
There are a handful of circumstances under which the Warlock is powerful.

1) Endurance runs. The Warlock is the king of endurance (if you ignore Reserve feats, DMM(Persistent Spell), and similar). If healing is available, he doesn't "run out". Huge mobs of low-level opponents, a few at a time, are pretty much his specialty.
2) Artificer-lite. The Warlock eventually picks up the ability to fake spell requirements. The Warlock still needs the feat to do it, but the Warlock can pull a great many of the same tricks the Wizard can, simply by investing in UMD, Scribe Scroll (also sometimes Craft Wand, Craft Wondrous, Craft Staff, or Craft Ring, depending on what exactly you want to do), and taking a lot of down-time to use them.
3) Unexpected combinations. The Warlock with the Hellfire Warlock PrC that picked up the feat to get the Tome of Magic binding that reduces Con damage means he can use as an at-will ability a nifty that's normally limited based on your Con score. Combine with things like Maximize Spell-Like ability, or other PrC's, and the Warlock can get rather strong.

Fax Celestis
2008-10-15, 05:59 PM
There are a handful of circumstances under which the Warlock is powerful.

1) Endurance runs. The Warlock is the king of endurance (if you ignore Reserve feats, DMM(Persistent Spell), and similar). If healing is available, he doesn't "run out". Huge mobs of low-level opponents, a few at a time, are pretty much his specialty.
2) Artificer-lite. The Warlock eventually picks up the ability to fake spell requirements. The Warlock still needs the feat to do it, but the Warlock can pull a great many of the same tricks the Wizard can, simply by investing in UMD, Scribe Scroll (also sometimes Craft Wand, Craft Wondrous, Craft Staff, or Craft Ring, depending on what exactly you want to do), and taking a lot of down-time to use them.
3) Unexpected combinations. The Warlock with the Hellfire Warlock PrC that picked up the feat to get the Tome of Magic binding that reduces Con damage means he can use as an at-will ability a nifty that's normally limited based on your Con score. Combine with things like Maximize Spell-Like ability, or other PrC's, and the Warlock can get rather strong.
Oh, entirely granted that the Warlock has some things that's it's very very good at. But then again, so does the rogue, the wizard, and the druid. That doesn't make the warlock broken, that makes it specialized.

Jack_Simth
2008-10-15, 06:17 PM
Oh, entirely granted that the Warlock has some things that's it's very very good at. But then again, so does the rogue, the wizard, and the druid. That doesn't make the warlock broken, that makes it specialized.
True - but to someone who's used to lots of down-time, and sees what the Warlock can do during such times, or someone who loves throwing 6-HD skeletons and the Wizard-10 until he runs out of spells, or to someone who's used to working with players who play core Bards, Monks, and Paladins, the Warlock will seem somewhat over-strong.

Fax Celestis
2008-10-15, 06:25 PM
True - but to someone who's used to lots of down-time, and sees what the Warlock can do during such times, or someone who loves throwing 6-HD skeletons and the Wizard-10 until he runs out of spells, or to someone who's used to working with players who play core Bards, Monks, and Paladins, the Warlock will seem somewhat over-strong.
Yeah, but all that really indicates is an uninventive/unadaptable DM.

ShneekeyTheLost
2008-10-15, 06:25 PM
True - but to someone who's used to lots of down-time, and sees what the Warlock can do during such times, or someone who loves throwing 6-HD skeletons and the Wizard-10 until he runs out of spells, or to someone who's used to working with players who play core Bards, Monks, and Paladins, the Warlock will seem somewhat over-strong.


Not really. A melee charge build has better damage output than a lock and can also go all day long. A two-handed weapon, Power Attack, and Shock Trooper are all I need, although tossing in EWP: Spiked Chain, Combat Reflexes, Karmic Strike, and a way of increasing size make it even more broken.

WitchSlayer
2008-10-15, 07:26 PM
Their crafting ability is pretty cool. No XP or gold to craft things? Yes please!

Starbuck_II
2008-10-15, 07:30 PM
Their crafting ability is pretty cool. No XP or gold to craft things? Yes please!

Wait, only Artifacers can do that (since they use Crafting Reserve).

Jack_Simth
2008-10-15, 07:30 PM
Not really. A melee charge build has better damage output than a lock and can also go all day long. A two-handed weapon, Power Attack, and Shock Trooper are all I need, although tossing in EWP: Spiked Chain, Combat Reflexes, Karmic Strike, and a way of increasing size make it even more broken.
Potions of Enlarge Person. List price in the DMG is 300 gp, for some odd reason, even though as a first level spell at caster level 1, it'd be 50 gp. Move to retrieve, standard to drink. Per the rules of potions, takes effect immediately with a full-round action, despite the 1-round casting time of the spell. Enlarge Person can also be made Permanent with a Permanency spell for 500 xp (with a 9th level caster, that is). Don't forget a one-level dip into Lion Totem Barbarian for Pounce, so you can Full Attack at the end of that charge.

That's not, however, the point.

Compare the Warlock to a Core-build Monk, or a Core-build Bard, or even a Core-build Paladin, at 5th, 10th, and 15th. The Warlock, with access to just the book you find the Warlock in, can seriously beat up a lot of Core builds ... and continue to do so all day long (Spiderclimb to avoid melee, magical darkness, the ability to see through magical darkness, plus archery abilities can make for a rather annoying opponent for someone without flight or dispel abilities).

The Warlock can play much like an artificer - played that way, the Warlock can be around the power of a Wizard... better, in some ways, as the Warlock also has ready access to Divine spells, and can do such things as a Contingent Heal with some work (in the same way the artificer does), although the Warlock is only an artificer-lite, and can't keep up with the Artificer's Gatling-ray type abilities and doesn't have the craft reserve to avoid the slower level advancement (but then, the Warlock also get at-will fallback abilities and some nifty stealth/maneuvering capabilities, so....) ... all without going outside (Core + The book you find the Warlock in).

Now, granted, the Warlock is mostly only overly-strong when compared to certain types of low-power campaigns or low-power playstyles. In those campaigns, or compared to those playstyles, the Warlock is overpowered.

Fostire
2008-10-15, 07:31 PM
Their crafting ability is pretty cool. No XP or gold to craft things? Yes please!

:smallconfused: but they do pay gold and xp. Their ability makes it so that they can use their UMD skill to emulate having a spell when creating an item. Basically a warlock can make a wand of cure light wounds (with "craft wands") without the need to hire a cleric to cast the spell

sonofzeal
2008-10-15, 07:44 PM
Well...I'd never been told by people who've practically made an unpaid career out of studying D&D books that the Archivist should be banned due to brokenness.
Seriously? Archivists are considered one of the "Big 5" - specifically, #2 on the list of the most gamebreaking classes ever printed (second only to Wizards). The power of the Archivist comes when you realize just how insane their class spell list is, since "any divine spell" includes Cleric spells, Druid spells, Paladin/Ranger spells, Shujenja spells, Divine Bard spells, Domain spells, etc. There are very few spells in the game that a sufficiently clever Archivist can't pick up somewhere, making them possibly the most versatile spellcasting class ever printed, lacking only the Wizard's "Spells Known" mechanic to rule the roost as #1 best class evar.

...that said, if you're just going for basic Cleric/Druid spells, it's merely "powerful", and only particularly so at higher levels.

Rei_Jin
2008-10-15, 07:51 PM
The warlock is only overpowered if you consider the amount of damage that they can deal over a whole day.

They have a much, much higher damage capability than any other character in the game, but that damage capability is over a longer period of time.

In an endurance style campaign, they are going to be overpowered. In a low level campaign, they'll be able to go for longer than a wizard or sorceror.

But in a standard campaign, they're fine, if a little underpowered. They serve best as the fifth wheel, like a bard. They don't really replace any of the core four roles, but they are a helpful addition to a party.

The more splat books you add to this though, the higher and higher their power level gets.

Fax Celestis
2008-10-15, 07:56 PM
Potions of Enlarge Person. List price in the DMG is 300 gp, for some odd reason, even though as a first level spell at caster level 1, it'd be 50 gp.

Actually, it's listed at 250 gp, and that's because it appears to be a L1 spell cast at CL 5 for a 5 minute duration on the effect, for a result of 1*5*50=250 gp.

Though why they wouldn't specify this is beyond me.

Duke of URL
2008-10-15, 07:59 PM
I think they're a bit underpowered and somewhat inflexible. But I like them anyway, and I'm working on fixing those problems.

sonofzeal
2008-10-15, 08:36 PM
Warlocks are not unlike hummus - both are better as a dip than as a main course.

Almost any character would be significantly improved by access to a Least Invocation of their choice, from Spiderclimb, to Beguiling Influence, to Summon Swarm, to Shatter. They're like Fighter bonus feats that way - you can easily dip for one or two as needed, and there's enough options that you can probably find something to make it worthwhile. Not worth the lost CL for straight casters, but a seriously decent option for everyone else... especially Rogues, who will love getting Sneak off their 1d6 Blast.

Starbuck_II
2008-10-15, 09:23 PM
Warlocks are not unlike hummus - both are better as a dip than as a main course.

Almost any character would be significantly improved by access to a Least Invocation of their choice, from Spiderclimb, to Beguiling Influence, to Summon Swarm, to Shatter. They're like Fighter bonus feats that way - you can easily dip for one or two as needed, and there's enough options that you can probably find something to make it worthwhile. Not worth the lost CL for straight casters, but a seriously decent option for everyone else... especially Rogues, who will love getting Sneak off their 1d6 Blast.

Hummus isn't bad as a main dish though.

sonofzeal
2008-10-15, 09:42 PM
Hummus isn't bad as a main dish though.
And neither is Warlock. Both make respectable main dishes... but excellent sides. The parallel is complete. :smallwink:

Tokiko Mima
2008-10-15, 09:47 PM
Compare the Warlock to a Core-build Monk, or a Core-build Bard, or even a Core-build Paladin, at 5th, 10th, and 15th. The Warlock, with access to just the book you find the Warlock in, can seriously beat up a lot of Core builds ... and continue to do so all day long (Spiderclimb to avoid melee, magical darkness, the ability to see through magical darkness, plus archery abilities can make for a rather annoying opponent for someone without flight or dispel abilities).

The Warlock can play much like an artificer - played that way, the Warlock can be around the power of a Wizard... better, in some ways, as the Warlock also has ready access to Divine spells, and can do such things as a Contingent Heal with some work (in the same way the artificer does), although the Warlock is only an artificer-lite, and can't keep up with the Artificer's Gatling-ray type abilities and doesn't have the craft reserve to avoid the slower level advancement (but then, the Warlock also get at-will fallback abilities and some nifty stealth/maneuvering capabilities, so....) ... all without going outside (Core + The book you find the Warlock in).

Now, granted, the Warlock is mostly only overly-strong when compared to certain types of low-power campaigns or low-power playstyles. In those campaigns, or compared to those playstyles, the Warlock is overpowered.

Right, but look at what you have to compare a Warlock to in order to make it seem overpowered: a core-only Monk, Paladin, and Bard. Most classes you pick are going to compare favorably to that, excepting Samurai, Truenamer, and Soulknife, I suppose. Bard is the only one in that bunch that might be worth progressing past level 5, and only for a very specific type of character build.

If you are playing in a low optimization, low power, endurance campaign, then Warlock might be a little much for you, but then so is any ToB class, a rogue, or a factotum. Frankly, if I'm going to be limited to only classes on par with the three examples, I'd kinda rather not play. I can't think of one that wouldn't be boring in and out of combat.

I dont need for my character to be powerful, but I'd like it to be useful enough to keep me engaged in thinking about the game, rather than alternately sleeping and rolling dice when prompted. Warlock is good at being useful all the time 24/7. That's just my personal play preference, I know. YMMV

WitchSlayer
2008-10-15, 10:19 PM
:smallconfused: but they do pay gold and xp. Their ability makes it so that they can use their UMD skill to emulate having a spell when creating an item. Basically a warlock can make a wand of cure light wounds (with "craft wands") without the need to hire a cleric to cast the spell

I'm quoting from Complete Arcane so correct me if I'm wrong

"Imbue Item (Su): A Warlock of 12th level or higher can use his supernatural power to create magic items, even if he does not know the spell require to make an item (although he must know the appropriate item creation feat). He can substitute a Use Magid Device check (DC 15 + spell level for arcane spells or 25 + spell level for divine spells) in place of a required spell he doesn't know or can't cast. If the spell check succeeds, the warlock can create the item as if he had cast the required spell. If it fails, he cannot complete the item. He does not expend the XP or gp costs for making the item; his progress is simply arrested. He cannot retry this Use Magic Device check for that spell until he gains a new level.

Mystery Meep
2008-10-15, 10:27 PM
That line under Imbue Item means that the Warlock doesn't pay the cost if she fails the check--if she makes it, she still pays.

monty
2008-10-15, 10:28 PM
I'm quoting from Complete Arcane so correct me if I'm wrong

You're wrong.:smalltongue:

WitchSlayer
2008-10-15, 10:28 PM
Right, well I feel stupid now. Up up and away!

sombrastewart
2008-10-15, 11:00 PM
The warlock is only overpowered if you consider the amount of damage that they can deal over a whole day.

They have a much, much higher damage capability than any other character in the game, but that damage capability is over a longer period of time.

In an endurance style campaign, they are going to be overpowered. In a low level campaign, they'll be able to go for longer than a wizard or sorceror.


Those also go for comparable level melee classes. Full attack from a melee class will deal more than a warlock of the same level with eldritch blast.

I've seen a warlock get harrassed by a DM before, but first of all, he was simply cagey with his use of invocations, and second, the level of Mindbender and Mindsight were more to blame.

There's nothing overpowered about them, they just have a means to sidestep one of the big problems of casting classes: running out of spells. And that isn't even so much a disadvantage as you go up in level.

Waspinator
2008-10-16, 01:04 PM
I'm quoting from Complete Arcane so correct me if I'm wrong

"Imbue Item (Su): A Warlock of 12th level or higher can use his supernatural power to create magic items, even if he does not know the spell require to make an item (although he must know the appropriate item creation feat). He can substitute a Use Magid Device check (DC 15 + spell level for arcane spells or 25 + spell level for divine spells) in place of a required spell he doesn't know or can't cast. If the spell check succeeds, the warlock can create the item as if he had cast the required spell. If it fails, he cannot complete the item. He does not expend the XP or gp costs for making the item; his progress is simply arrested. He cannot retry this Use Magic Device check for that spell until he gains a new level.

The sentence right before the one you bolded is very important.

graymachine
2008-10-16, 07:01 PM
I like the Warlock a lot and I think that the class is stronger than it's being given credit for, although I agree it's nowhere near Wizard or Druid. To point out some other handy invocations: Fell Flight means flying all the time with a standard action to refresh if it gets dispelled. Also, Warlock has several invocations that apply negative effects. A little work getting your save DCs up and you can spam status effects all day long. Word of Change: The super-beefy barbarian on the ground is going to roll a 1 on his Fortitude save sooner or later, while you hover out of reach. Curse of Despair works just like Bestow Curse but the target takes a negative to attack if the curse fails. And again, eventually that target is going to roll a one. Furthermore, warlocks can get the paladin bonus to saves with minimal effort and can get rid of it when it no longer is as useful.

Most of the invocations mimic a spell, but in the description will typically have a little extra with it, since Warlock get so few invocations.

Asheram
2008-10-16, 08:04 PM
Hmm. warlocks and crafting... now where did I find those feats?

Ah yes. Transference (http://www.dandwiki.com/wiki/Transference_(DnD_Feat)) and (Since I can't find it online) The Ebberon campaign setting; Extraordinary Artisan.
Take these two and your party will offer you their firstborn in exchange.

JaxGaret
2008-10-16, 08:12 PM
Transference (http://www.dandwiki.com/wiki/Transference_(DnD_Feat))


This feat may be used as a house rule in some campaigns.

I do use that as a house rule, I don't see the need to make any of my PCs waste a feat on it.

Cuddly
2008-10-16, 08:29 PM
Seriously? Archivists are considered one of the "Big 5" - specifically, #2 on the list of the most gamebreaking classes ever printed (second only to Wizards). The power of the Archivist comes when you realize just how insane their class spell list is, since "any divine spell" includes Cleric spells, Druid spells, Paladin/Ranger spells, Shujenja spells, Divine Bard spells, Domain spells, etc. There are very few spells in the game that a sufficiently clever Archivist can't pick up somewhere, making them possibly the most versatile spellcasting class ever printed, lacking only the Wizard's "Spells Known" mechanic to rule the roost as #1 best class evar.

...that said, if you're just going for basic Cleric/Druid spells, it's merely "powerful", and only particularly so at higher levels.

I believe it's generally Artificer, Archivist, Wizard.

ShneekeyTheLost
2008-10-16, 09:26 PM
Potions of Enlarge Person. List price in the DMG is 300 gp, for some odd reason, even though as a first level spell at caster level 1, it'd be 50 gp. Move to retrieve, standard to drink. Per the rules of potions, takes effect immediately with a full-round action, despite the 1-round casting time of the spell. Enlarge Person can also be made Permanent with a Permanency spell for 500 xp (with a 9th level caster, that is). Don't forget a one-level dip into Lion Totem Barbarian for Pounce, so you can Full Attack at the end of that charge.

That's not, however, the point.

Compare the Warlock to a Core-build Monk, or a Core-build Bard, or even a Core-build Paladin, at 5th, 10th, and 15th. The Warlock, with access to just the book you find the Warlock in, can seriously beat up a lot of Core builds ... and continue to do so all day long (Spiderclimb to avoid melee, magical darkness, the ability to see through magical darkness, plus archery abilities can make for a rather annoying opponent for someone without flight or dispel abilities).

The Warlock can play much like an artificer - played that way, the Warlock can be around the power of a Wizard... better, in some ways, as the Warlock also has ready access to Divine spells, and can do such things as a Contingent Heal with some work (in the same way the artificer does), although the Warlock is only an artificer-lite, and can't keep up with the Artificer's Gatling-ray type abilities and doesn't have the craft reserve to avoid the slower level advancement (but then, the Warlock also get at-will fallback abilities and some nifty stealth/maneuvering capabilities, so....) ... all without going outside (Core + The book you find the Warlock in).

Now, granted, the Warlock is mostly only overly-strong when compared to certain types of low-power campaigns or low-power playstyles. In those campaigns, or compared to those playstyles, the Warlock is overpowered.

The problem is that you're comparing a) a core class with a non-core class, and b) the WEAKEST core classes with it, and c) Your example STILL doesn't pan out.

Core Monk can out-damage the Lock if it can find a way to use Flurry, with it's already high melee damage. A four level dip in Fighter, then 16 levels of Monk (with monk's belt), can easily dish out more damage than a straight 20 Lock, simply because he'll be having a lot more attacks for significant damage.

Core Bard doesn't need to out-damage a lock, he's an even better Party Face, complete with Facination and Glibness (and Charm Person) to make everyone his best friend.

Core Paladin isn't supposed to out-damage a Lock, instead he can also act as a healbot and tank. He can take a hell of a lot more abuse than a lock can, and gets his Cha to all saves without having to blow one of twelve Invocations on it.

Hell, a straight 20 Fighter will out-damage the Lock, particularly if you go with Spike Chain and Combat Reflexes, and good positioning. When you pair it with Great Cleave, it is just as good as Whirlwind Attack, only better.

Let's use Core + Completes to make a fair example (since Lock is in a Complete book). Standard charge build. Shock Trooper + Leap Attack using PsiWar/Slayer for Expansion and Psionic Lion's Pounce. This will generate a HELL of a lot more damage than a 'lock does. Or the pure melee version with Lion Totem Barbarian dip for the same effect. Or, if you're wanting to quibble about ranged damage, Scout/Ranger with Swift Hunter and Greater Manyshot, which blows the Lock way out of the water with damage output per shot much less all the shots together.

Cuddly
2008-10-16, 09:44 PM
Or a paladin using a lance two handed, spirited charging.

I'd say a Paladin has more going for it than a Warlock, in damage, durability & versatility departments. Expanded spell lists for the pally have sure added a lot, and getting a special mount can really round it out. Though a lot of those spells I'm thinking of may be from Complete Champion & SpC.

sonofzeal
2008-10-16, 10:06 PM
I believe it's generally Artificer, Archivist, Wizard.
I'm going by this (http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=968062). It seems to be the most authoritative source I've seen.

JaxGaret
2008-10-16, 10:09 PM
I'm going by this (http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=968062). It seems to be the most authoritative source I've seen.

While that is a good overall guideline, those numbers should definitely not be taken as canon. As the OP of that thread themselves stated, a lot of the responses were a ways off from what is generally accepted from CO folks.

So, it's a good list, but take it with a grain of salt.

EDIT: Also, memories... I miss ye, old Wizards boards.

Temp.
2008-10-16, 10:16 PM
So, it's a good list, but take it with a grain of salt.Example: The Psion is above Erudite... You know, the one that manifests whichever powers it wants... And the Web Alternate Class feature to manifest any spells it wants...

Tokiko Mima
2008-10-17, 10:34 AM
Hmm. warlocks and crafting... now where did I find those feats?

Ah yes. Transference (http://www.dandwiki.com/wiki/Transference_(DnD_Feat)) and (Since I can't find it online) The Ebberon campaign setting; Extraordinary Artisan.
Take these two and your party will offer you their firstborn in exchange.

You know, the moment I read that feat (Transference (http://www.dandwiki.com/wiki/Transference_(DnD_Feat))), I thought: You know who's automatically considered willing? Unconscious foes. This must be how Freddy Krueger enchanted those claws of his. :smalltongue:

graymachine
2008-10-17, 10:43 AM
You know, the moment I read that feat (Transference (http://www.dandwiki.com/wiki/Transference_(DnD_Feat))), I thought: You know who's automatically considered willing? Unconscious foes. This must be how Freddy Krueger enchanted those claws of his. :smalltongue:

Are they really? I never thought about it like that before.

Are you perhaps some evil mastermind? :smalleek:

Starbuck_II
2008-10-17, 10:59 AM
You know, the moment I read that feat (Transference (http://www.dandwiki.com/wiki/Transference_(DnD_Feat))), I thought: You know who's automatically considered willing? Unconscious foes. This must be how Freddy Krueger enchanted those claws of his. :smalltongue:

Too bad that unconscious people count as willing doesn't apply to the real world :smallbiggrin:

Tokiko Mima
2008-10-17, 11:05 AM
Are they really? I never thought about it like that before.

Are you perhaps some evil mastermind? :smalleek:

Yeah, really!



Aiming a Spell: Target or Targets (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/magicOverview/spellDescriptions.htm#targetorTargets)

Some spells restrict you to willing targets only. Declaring yourself as a willing target is something that can be done at any time (even if youíre flat-footed or it isnít your turn). Unconscious creatures are automatically considered willing, but a character who is conscious but immobile or helpless (such as one who is bound, cowering, grappling, paralyzed, pinned, or stunned) is not automatically willing.

And I'm not an evil mastermind, but I play one in RPG (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/ImNotADoctorButIPlayOneOnTV). :smalltongue:


Too bad that unconscious people count as willing doesn't apply to the real world :smallbiggrin:

:smalleek: I would never sleep if that were the case! :smalleek:

Animefunkmaster
2008-10-17, 11:13 AM
People fear what they don't understand.

I would like to throw in the idea that they aren't overpowered, just very front ended. 1 level for +6 to social skill, shatter at will (second level spell no one in the party can caste), and spider climb. Eldritch blast is a weaker point of the class, low level dips is the most useful for a quick bump in power.

They are the strongest class at level 1 (when not including feats, or racial abilities).

ashmanonar
2008-10-17, 11:16 AM
Warlocks are not unlike hummus - both are better as a dip than as a main course.

Almost any character would be significantly improved by access to a Least Invocation of their choice, from Spiderclimb, to Beguiling Influence, to Summon Swarm, to Shatter. They're like Fighter bonus feats that way - you can easily dip for one or two as needed, and there's enough options that you can probably find something to make it worthwhile. Not worth the lost CL for straight casters, but a seriously decent option for everyone else... especially Rogues, who will love getting Sneak off their 1d6 Blast.

It took me 3 times to realize you were saying Hummus, not Humans.

I was mildly perturbed.

Tokiko Mima
2008-10-17, 11:28 AM
People fear what they don't understand.

I would like to throw in the idea that they aren't overpowered, just very front ended. 1 level for +6 to social skill, shatter at will (second level spell no one in the party can caste), and spider climb. Eldritch blast is a weaker point of the class, low level dips is the most useful for a quick bump in power.

They are the strongest class at level 1 (when not including feats, or racial abilities).

Don't forget Summon Swarm as an invocation. A standard action generates a 10' by 10' shapable swarm that automatically does 1d6 damage and forces two save or sucks on enemies. At level one, it's extremely formidable: Most melees at that level are still as likely to miss as hit, and if a CR appropriate NPC requires more than a couple rounds to reach the warlock (the warlock still has a move action, and the swarm blocks most charges) then the swarm will eat them alive.

Also, remember that a first level warlock can do only ONE of these things. It's not the same as a wizard, who can do all of their nasty tricks as long as they haven't banned the school and have enough spell slots.

I actually had a conversation about this with a wizard, who felt that an Hellfire Glaive combo was too powerful compared to high level Evocation spells. I explained that Wizards are magical generalists: They have unlimited access to most of the good arcane spells and can cast a very large number of them per day.

Sorcerer's are magical specialists in they still have unlimited access to the Sor/Wiz spell list, but recieve a much smaller selection of spells that they have to limit themselves to, whilst casting spontaneously more times a day than a wizard.

Warlocks take that a step further: they can only pick from the dramatically smaller invocation list, have much fewer spell-like abilities than sorcerers have spells known, but can cast their spell-like abilities an unlimited number of times in a day. Granted, this comparison puts Warlock on a level with wizard and sorcerer, two top tier classes, but it illustrates the direction Warlocks are taking: even more specialist than Sorcerer is.

graymachine
2008-10-17, 11:41 AM
Too bad that unconscious people count as willing doesn't apply to the real world :smallbiggrin:

Um.. That's a mildly disturbing statement. :smallconfused:

Starbuck_II
2008-10-17, 02:10 PM
Um.. That's a mildly disturbing statement. :smallconfused:

I should hope so.


Yeah, Warlock's Summon Swarm is better than a Druid/Wizards: Their casting is full round action.

EvilElitest
2008-10-17, 03:40 PM
wait, when were warlocks overpowered? I'm really confused now and i remember teh monk thread all to well
from
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Sstoopidtallkid
2008-10-17, 04:19 PM
I honestly can't think of anyone that would love you for taking this feat.

If everyone was fair-minded and said, "Sure, I'll pay for a new nifty item with my own exp" it would work out well. But I can't easily imagine it, and I can't think of where other willing people would come from off the top of my head.

Can anyone give examples for instances that would bring willing volunteers for the XP cost?

Besides the unconcious thing, because I don't think that counts. At best it that would fall under a DM ruling.Item crafting for the party. When the options are either pay full cost, pay 75% for you to craft it, or pay 60%+XP for you to craft it(you have to be reimbursed for your time), a lot of people will prefer to spend the XP.

graymachine
2008-10-17, 04:22 PM
I honestly can't think of anyone that would love you for taking this feat.

If everyone was fair-minded and said, "Sure, I'll pay for a new nifty item with my own exp" it would work out well. But I can't easily imagine it, and I can't think of where other willing people would come from off the top of my head.

Can anyone give examples for instances that would bring willing volunteers for the XP cost?

Besides the unconcious thing, because I don't think that counts. At best it that would fall under a DM ruling.

You pay commoners with multiple levels to help you out. They're much more concerned with eating consistently than maintaining their BAB. Capitalism, go!:smallcool:

Tokiko Mima
2008-10-17, 08:11 PM
I should hope so.


Yeah, Warlock's Summon Swarm is better than a Druid/Wizards: Their casting is full round action.

Plus their duration is shorter, meaning that the problem with the swarm going out of control for 3 rounds is totally negated since the swarm disperses the moment the warlock breaks their concentration.