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  1. - Top - End - #121
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by Elfin View Post
    Stances will be up in a half hour or so.
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    1st level stances are posted.

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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Excellent handbook! One comment from your recent updates...I feel like you are overselling Action before Thought. Warblades get precious few maneuvers known or readied and with their Battle Reflexes, Warblades tend to have "acceptable" Reflex under all but the lowest of point buys (elite array, for example). In addition, most reflex saves aren't the "save or lose" that fortitude and will saves can be. Eating a Fireball is bad, certainly, but eating a Suggestion or Confusion or Finger of Death is so, so much worse.

    What it comes down to is that I feel it should just be Good instead of Great; like Disarming Strike or Tactical Strike, it's a solid choice that comes up short in comparison to the rest of a Warblade's arsenal unless you're in a campaign with a ton of reflex-save attacks being tossed around and/or you are cross-classed to have Evasion and/or you have a low stat array and couldn't afford 12s or 14s on Int and Dex. Or at least a mention that if a player has to "pick" between these maneuvers and the other 2nd (and 1st, and 3rd) level options, Action before Thought places way behind.

    Of course, that's all just personal opinion after one campaign with a Warblade, so take it with a grain of salt. Fantastic work, can't wait for the rest
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    I felt the same way myself, actually, and since someone else agrees I think I will change it.

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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Thanks for posting this! I just picked up ToB for the first time and had no idea where to go. I saw that the warblade was the closest comparison to a fighter, and decided to run with it, but didn't know much of where to go. this helps greatly! thanks!
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Very glad you find it useful.

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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    You may also wish to give a nod to the 'bardblade', which is a surprisingly effective commander.

    Basically, you go with Bard4 then Warblade the rest of the way. This lets you pick up 2nd level maneuvers and stances with your first level of Warblade. More importantly, you work on focusing on improving your Inspire Courage, possibly with Dragonfire Inspiration thrown in. This synergies awesomely when you use White Raven Song so Bard and Warblade levels stack for Inspire Courage, and gives you yet another thing you do for the whole group as a White Raven commander-type build. And it effectively doesn't cost you anything to do, when it comes right down to it. Certainly not anything worth something like a +10 on attack and damage and +10d6 sonic damage on every hit.

    Also, there are three discipline-based tactical feats worth taking, for various reasons:

    1) Clarion Commander. If you have any Rogues in the party, they will love you. With a flat DC20 Intimidate check, you turn on their sneak attacks with no further requirements. Pile On also has it's uses, since you get your attack back anyways.

    2) Shards of Granite. Take a -5 on attacks. This gives you 10 temp hit points from Stone Power, so you are ignoring the first 10 damage every round, before any other considerations, since it is refreshed every round. Now you ignore all DR or Hardness. Yea, that DR 15/Magic *AND* Bludgeoning that Litches have? No problem. DR Cold Iron *AND* Good that high-end evil outsiders have? Not a problem anymore. DR 15/EPIC that the Tarrasque has? Completely ignored. For any TWF-based build, this is practically a prerequisite.

    3) Stormguard Warrior. This one takes the form of a one-two punch, and is best used against opponents with a lot of AC and a lot of hit points. Basically, your first turn, you use it to get a bunch of damage bonuses on every attack on the following turn. Then you combo with something like Karmic Strike so that every swing he hits you with also provokes an Attack of Opportunity, which you graciously decline in favor of even more attack and damage bonuses the following round. Then you unleash the storm, with +WTFBBQ to attack, and +ZOMGWTFBBQ to damage (You can easily rack up +100 or more damage per hit from this combo, with at least a +20 to attack, if you do it right and he is stupid enough to full-attack you). Obviously, it's a lot simpler to dispatch him in the first round. However, if you are waiting for the round of debuffs to land on him first, it's a great way to make sure he never gets to round 3.
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Thanks for the input; I'll definitely put the bardblade in the multiclassing section. Do you want to provide a more detailed outline I can attribute to you?

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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by Elfin View Post
    Thanks for the input; I'll definitely put the bardblade in the multiclassing section. Do you want to provide a more detailed outline I can attribute to you?
    Bard: Bards and Warblades go together like healbots and beatsticks. There's a feat that even makes this easier: White Raven Song. It lets your Bard levels and your Warblade levels stack for determining your level of Inspire Courage. There's been a lot of thought on how to maximize Inspire Courage, I suggest you look into it. While you are at it, look up Dragonfire Inspiration.

    What you loose: Two initiator levels, 1 BAB, 2 maneuvers known, 1 maneuver readied, and Stance Mastery with a traditional 4Bard/16Warblade build

    What you gain: Inspire Courage to give Morale bonuses to everyone's attack and damage, and because it is a Morale bonus, it should stack with just about everything else (other than another morale bonus, of course). Possible Dragonfire Inspiration to give a handful of d6's to everyone's damage rolls. Mind you, this includes yourself. Suddenly, you will find yourself being able to hit a lot more often, and doing a lot more damage per hit as well. And so does your allies. With Lingering Song, you can get both of them going simultaneously long enough to end the fight.

    If you are considering being the 'party leader' who wants to help and support the party as a whole in a meaningful way, and already considering White Raven to do so, then this is definitely a very viable option for you.

    While we're at it, let's get the Barbarian out of the way as well...

    Barbarian: Unfortunately, it doesn't give you much you don't have already. Full BAB? Got it. D12 HD? Got that too. Hulk smash? No problem for ya. DR? You have Stone Dragon for that. Rage? Maneuvers are a much more effective way of increasing damage output.

    In fact, there's only one real thing you can get from it. A single-level dip with the Spirit Lion Totem from Complete Champion lets you trade out the 10' speed bonus for Pounce. That means you don't need to wait to get Pouncing Strike, and can use it more frequently. Of course, since you've already got it, you may as well pick up Intimidating Rage and the skill trick Never Outnumbered for some battlefield control to go with your pounce. Other than that? Give this a pass.
    Last edited by ShneekeyTheLost; 2010-12-06 at 01:23 AM.
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Claw at the Moon is awesome for characters who multiclass into Warblade at later levels. A Jump check that will beat AC is not hard to get for most characters. Hunter's Sense is often the most useful Level 1 stance for such a multiclasser, and to take it, first you have to take Wolf Fang Strike, Claw at the Moon, or Rabid Wolf Strike. Some characters never TWF and aren't particularly reckless, but have ranks in Jump, so CatM is their best option. YMMV though.

    Leading the Charge is pretty decent even if the Warblade is the only charger in his party. It's a scaling flat bonus to charge damage, and since it's a stance, you can combine it with other maneuvers that involve charging -- or, if you want to be really nasty, combine it with Pounce. I'd say it should be at least Black rather than red.

    Bolstering Voice -- I love the flavor of this stance, and at low levels it's indeed as awesome as you say. But since it's a morale bonus, it quickly loses its impact if your party has any buff-focused character, such as a Bard or Cleric.

    Quote Originally Posted by ShneekeyTheLost View Post
    Rage? Maneuvers are a much more effective way of increasing damage output.
    Eh, Whirling Frenzy is still pretty nice. Not worth it by itself, still, no. But if you're dipping for Pounce, I'd suggest taking Whirling Frenzy instead of Rage + Intimidating Rage.

    A second Barbarian level is also pretty viable, since it doesn't lose you any Initiator levels, if you use some other ACFs. (In particular, the Wolf Totem gives you Improved Trip instead of a redundant Uncanny Dodge. Of course, you have to ask your DM if he'll allow you to take Lion Spirit Totem from CChamp and Wolf Totem from UA.)
    Last edited by Draz74; 2010-12-06 at 01:42 AM.
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Thanks both of you. Right now I've just done two separate halves of the barbarian section, one from Draz and the other from Shneekey, but I'll make it more coherent ASAP.

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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    I'd add that 2 levels in a full BAB class are always worth considering since they will allow you to get a 3rd level stance at warblade 4.
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by Boci View Post
    I'd add that 2 levels in a full BAB class are always worth considering since they will allow you to get a 3rd level stance at warblade 4.
    Fighters can be a good start here. Because hey, bonus feats!

    Factotum has a sort of synergy, but if you want the nicest bit you have to take it to at least level 4/5. Int as a bonus to jump checks can be pretty nice, if you've got the Int to make it worth the levels.
    Last edited by Reynard; 2010-12-07 at 06:42 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Deophaun View Post
    It doesn't so much as demean the celestial monkey's existence, so much as fulfill it. Without the ability to be summoned to set off traps, retrieve objects from dangerous situations, and all and all be a party's guinea pig, the Celestial Monkey would languish in obscurity in the MM and do nothing more legendary than eat celestial bananas.
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    If you have access, Strongarm Ranger 2 might be the ideal dip, for skill points and Power Attack.
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by Reynard View Post
    Fighters can be a good start here. Because hey, bonus feats!

    Factotum has a sort of synergy, but if you want the nicest bit you have to take it to at least level 4/5. Int as a bonus to jump checks can be pretty nice, if you've got the Int to make it worth the levels.
    Agreed. Factotum also really shines with warblade when you're playing in gestalt, as do bard and wizard.
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by Reynard View Post
    Fighters can be a good start here. Because hey, bonus feats!
    The standard build is Warblade 1/Fighter 2/Warblade 3. Compared to a single-classed Warblade you lose one initiator level, but in exchange you get two bonus feats and your second stance is 3rd-level instead of 1st-level. Not a bad deal.
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by Akal Saris View Post
    Agreed. Factotum also really shines with warblade when you're playing in gestalt, as do bard and wizard.
    If we're talking Gestalt, a fun, simple, decent build is just Diamond Mind Warblade 20//Psion 20. There is little you won't be able to do, you'll be a full caster with the HP of a tank, and with a couple of feats (Instant Clarity and maybe Psychic Renewal) you can give a real, consistent beatdown on everything you can see.
    Quote Originally Posted by Deophaun View Post
    It doesn't so much as demean the celestial monkey's existence, so much as fulfill it. Without the ability to be summoned to set off traps, retrieve objects from dangerous situations, and all and all be a party's guinea pig, the Celestial Monkey would languish in obscurity in the MM and do nothing more legendary than eat celestial bananas.
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by Reynard View Post
    If we're talking Gestalt, a fun, simple, decent build is just Diamond Mind Warblade 20//Psion 20. There is little you won't be able to do, you'll be a full caster with the HP of a tank, and with a couple of feats (Instant Clarity and maybe Psychic Renewal) you can give a real, consistent beatdown on everything you can see.
    Not to mention the psionic focus + Diamond Mind synergy. One of my favourite gestalt combos.
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by Saph View Post
    The standard build is Warblade 1/Fighter 2/Warblade 3. Compared to a single-classed Warblade you lose one initiator level, but in exchange you get two bonus feats and your second stance is 3rd-level instead of 1st-level. Not a bad deal.
    Or swap one of the Fighter levels for the Pouncing Barbarian dip option. Not that I'd allow this, as a DM.
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Why not, Draz?

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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Cheeeeeeese.

    And becuase a 1-level dip in Lion Totem Barbarian is a key feature in pretty much all ubercharger builds.

    At least, that's what I assume.
    Quote Originally Posted by Deophaun View Post
    It doesn't so much as demean the celestial monkey's existence, so much as fulfill it. Without the ability to be summoned to set off traps, retrieve objects from dangerous situations, and all and all be a party's guinea pig, the Celestial Monkey would languish in obscurity in the MM and do nothing more legendary than eat celestial bananas.
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by Saph View Post
    The standard build is Warblade 1/Fighter 2/Warblade 3. Compared to a single-classed Warblade you lose one initiator level, but in exchange you get two bonus feats and your second stance is 3rd-level instead of 1st-level. Not a bad deal.
    You also get Heavy Armor Prof, which can be convenient. Though I personally prefer Fighter 1/Barbarian 1 or so, but that's not nearly as neutral with regards to character abilities as Fighter/Warblade (which, for all intents and purposes, is really just a Warblade).
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by Reynard View Post
    Cheeeeeeese.

    And becuase a 1-level dip in Lion Totem Barbarian is a key feature in pretty much all ubercharger builds.

    At least, that's what I assume.
    I'd actually disagree that it's dairy at all; really most melee characters need Pounce to be effective. Honestly, I think it's something they should have had from the outset.

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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by Elfin View Post
    I'd actually disagree that it's dairy at all; really most melee characters need Pounce to be effective. Honestly, I think it's something they should have had from the outset.
    Not necessarily true, as that's assuming you're fighting in an area clear of obstruction, which is hardly an universal truth. Being able to move and attack can be covered in other manners as well, such as Travel Devotion, Sparring Dummy of the Master, Tumble DC 40, etc.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cieyrin View Post
    Not necessarily true, as that's assuming you're fighting in an area clear of obstruction, which is hardly an universal truth. Being able to move and attack can be covered in other manners as well, such as Travel Devotion, Sparring Dummy of the Master, Tumble DC 40, etc.
    So you'd rather all melee characters took a level dip into cloister cleric/used UMD to pretend to be a monk/minmaxed a skill check than take a level dip as a barbarian? I understand those options are generally more powerful than pounce, but doesn't it generally mesh with the character concept better?
    Last edited by Boci; 2010-12-08 at 03:41 PM.
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by Boci View Post
    So you'd rather all melee characters took a level dip into cloister cleric/used UMD to pretend to be a monk/minmaxed a skill check than take a level dip as a barbarian? I understand those options are generally more powerful than pounce, but doesn't it generally mesh with the character concept better?
    Actually, I think maximized Tumble fits a Warblade a lot better than wild fighting. Specially when you consider you can't use strikes in a charge.

    Really, you don't even need pounce, you can gain free movement from cheap items. Anklets of Translocation, Bloodspike Tempo, Quicksilver Boots, Chronocharm of the Horizon Walker; that's just the tip of the iceberg, really. The most expensive of the bunch costs 3200gp only.

    I'm not a fan of lots of dips and we should realize not all DMs like the view that classes are metagame concepts. Specially with a Barbarian that worships a specific animal totem, this can get ugly. "Oh, so your urban swashbucklign Warblade suddenly acquired an spiritual connection to the Lion totem? Care to explain how?" Unless you shout 'just refluff it!' at your DMs face and he accepts, I'm guessing that won't fly. Buying a pair of magical boots and/or maximizing Tumble? Yeah, that makes a lot more sense.

    ...and Warblades don't even need free movement as much as other melee classes anyway.

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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by Boci View Post
    So you'd rather all melee characters took a level dip into cloister cleric/used UMD to pretend to be a monk/minmaxed a skill check than take a level dip as a barbarian? I understand those options are generally more powerful than pounce, but doesn't it generally mesh with the character concept better?
    Minmaxing a class skill shouldn't be that bad, really. Plus, Rage doesn't mesh terribly well with Diamond Mind, given you can't make any Concentration checks while raging, which disables a good many of that discipline's maneuvers. As shinken's pointed out, not every Warblade needs to embrace their inner beast, plus, how are you gonna get to Dual Stance otherwise without locking in a bunch of your feat slots to go MoN?
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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by true_shinken View Post
    Actually, I think maximized Tumble fits a Warblade a lot better than wild fighting.
    Counter argument DC: 40 check.

    Quote Originally Posted by true_shinken View Post
    I'm not a fan of lots of dips and we should realize not all DMs like the view that classes are metagame concepts. Specially with a Barbarian that worships a specific animal totem, this can get ugly. "Oh, so your urban swashbucklign Warblade suddenly acquired an spiritual connection to the Lion totem? Care to explain how?" Unless you shout 'just refluff it!' at your DMs face and he accepts, I'm guessing that won't fly.
    Please, be polite. I don't claim your a foaming mouth zealot who believes it is their life's goal to defend WotC's fluff from the unworthy heavans, so I'd take it kindly if you just you made your point by saying "not all DMs permit refluffing" rather than implying that anyone who does so isn't going to bother trying proprerly and will just be rude about it.

    Quote Originally Posted by true_shinken View Post
    Buying a pair of magical boots and/or maximizing Tumble? Yeah, that makes a lot more sense.
    Counter argument: DC 40 check.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cieyrin View Post
    Minmaxing a class skill shouldn't be that bad, really.
    To a reliable get a DC 40 check?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cieyrin View Post
    Plus, Rage doesn't mesh terribly well with Diamond Mind, given you can't make any Concentration checks while raging,
    There are alternatives.
    Last edited by Boci; 2010-12-08 at 04:24 PM.
    "It doesn't matter how much you struggle or strive,
    You'll never get out of life alive,
    So please kill yourself and save this land,
    And your last mission is to spread my command,"

    Slightly adapted quote from X-Fusion, Please Kill Yourself

  28. - Top - End - #148
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    NecromancerGuy

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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    In the campaign I run, one of the players is a single class Warblade and he uses a Glaive to great effect. The ability to deliver Strikes at reach range seriously destroys his enemies.
    Just because I abuse the system doesn't mean I cannot use role play to justify my atrocities.

    +5 Banishing Warhammer = Banhammer

  29. - Top - End - #149
    Banned
     
    true_shinken's Avatar

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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by Boci View Post
    Counter argument DC: 40 check.
    How is that even a counter argument? Yes, it's somewhat hard to do. Imight have to spend resource on it. What's the problem with that?

    Quote Originally Posted by Boci View Post
    Please, be polite. I don't claim your a foaming mouth zealot who believes it is their life's goal to defend WotC's fluff from the unworthy heavans, so I'd take it kindly if you just you made your point by saying "not all DMs permit refluffing" rather than implying that anyone who does so isn't going to bother trying proprerly and will just be rude about it.
    That's not what I said, that's not what I meant and I take offense at you suggesting so. I just said 'not anyone will accept refluffing'.

  30. - Top - End - #150
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    DrowGuy

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    Default Re: Masters of the Sword: A Warblade's Handbook [Under Construction]

    Quote Originally Posted by true_shinken View Post
    How is that even a counter argument? Yes, it's somewhat hard to do. Imight have to spend resource on it. What's the problem with that?
    Level 10, 13 ranks, dex mod 5, synergy 2, +10 from magical items, total modifiers +30, no ACP, I can suceed 50% of the time. Before that the chances are even less.

    Quote Originally Posted by true_shinken View Post
    That's not what I said, that's not what I meant and I take offense at you suggesting so. I just said 'not anyone will accept refluffing'.
    No, you said "Unless you shout 'just refluff it!' at your DMs face" which has different implications.
    "It doesn't matter how much you struggle or strive,
    You'll never get out of life alive,
    So please kill yourself and save this land,
    And your last mission is to spread my command,"

    Slightly adapted quote from X-Fusion, Please Kill Yourself

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