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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    NecromancerGirl

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    Default a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Disclaimer: this thread will not be the be all and end all of threads about feats that will let you know everything their is to know about them and how to supercharge your character; I'm not that good at character building

    feats are a very different kettle of fish in 5E than they where before. Now rather than being an intergral part of the mechanics, their a replacement for something else. Instead of giving one toy, they now provide a slew of abilities each, and now none of them require you to jump through hoops to pick them up.

    But the human still gets one at first level, and the fighter still gets the most, because some things will never change

    Here, I'll be going over the feats and giving my opinion on them, their uses, the downside to using an option on them, and what sort of builds I feel they can work well in, as well as a personal rank out of 5, with a 2.5 representing what I feel the +stat is worth - I'm only going to be going over the PhB right now, not any feats - if any do indeed exist - in Hoard of the Dragon Queen as I don't own that one, merely having read a friend's copy.

    I am happy to discuss this if you disagree

    rankings:
    1: a waste of a feat slot - you'd be better of throwing the points into a dump stat than take this
    2: situational but useful - it's not exactly wasting your points, but your not getting your monies worth
    3: Solid - this feat will serve you well, being helpful most of the time and serving it's job well
    4: good - this feat is either situational but awesome, or offers a great, reliable boost
    5: Amazing - I love these feats and want to marry them, they provide great bonuses and can work well with most builds

    Alert 3/5
    Prerequisites: none - anyone can pick this up, which is a boon to it's usefulness.
    benefits: The combination of +5 to initiative and the fact you cannot be surprised compliment one another nicely. Taking this feat will help ensure you act each combat, you act quickly, and help avoid nasty surprise rounds - and with how easy folks fall in 5e, surprise rounds can be crippling, especially if your DM throws an assassin at you. This feat gets a second bonus in utility later when invisibility comes into play (or when facing lot of lightfoots), as hidden creatures no longer gain advantage to hit you - and hidden rogues still need friends to sneak attack you offensivly, you act sooner in the turn, which can be a major buff to anyone who needs to do their job quickly, such as a tank throwing themselves in harms way, or an assassin hunting down a caster
    Cons: The feat can be situational in its defensive applications; not every DM will run invisibility, and we've yet to really see if its worth maintaining invisibilty with the new concentration system, so that might not be as good. Furthermore, if you have two or more decent wis characters in your party, surprise rounds should be rather rare.
    Builds: any class can make good use of this feat (besides maybe barbarians due to getting or negating most of the bonuses already through class features) and it offers a nice boon in survivability. It also works well for characters who need to act quickly to get into position, such as caster-hunters or tanks.

    Athlete 2/5
    Prerequisites: None
    Benefits: you gain +1 to either your strength or dex -which helps negate the sting of an odd starting number, and even if it dosen't improve your modifier, it helps make a buffer or sets up some of the other feats that give +1 to str.
    The main advantages of this feat are a major boost to mobility of not speed - being tripped no longer really bothers you, and the option to go prone now provides a decent defensive option if there's a ranged attacker you can't get to. You can jump and climb with ease, meaning you can get nearly anywhere.
    Cons: Outside of being a little more agile, and maybe making a stat high enough for a multiplier, this feat doesn't change your options - you can reach new places easier, but you could reach them before. you can spring up from the ground, but you only get a small increase to movement.
    Builds: If your stats are all even except for an odd str or dex, this is a better option than taking a flat stat up and making something else odd with the remaining point, but there are better feats for that. I find it hard to pin down a build where this would be useful, instead seeing a setting - if your going to be doing a lot of movement through three dimensions, this is good to have. if your going to be sticking to corridors and castles, look elsehere

    Actor 4/5
    Prerequisites: none
    Benefits: +1 cha - a stat used for some good skills, and the most common caster stat. score.
    The advantages to being a lying git are great for any face - you can bluff yourself almost anywhere thanks to the advantage (need to get into a mansion? your a cousin of the lord, or a newly hired servant), and the ability to imitate voices can be great to sow discontent, get others to do your dirty work, and make some enemies more touchable, such as helping "expose" the scheme of the corrupt baron to the head of the guard - and unlike using spells such as friend or charm person to get the advantage, this doesn't bite into your active resources, and doesn't have the nasty fact that they now you cheated when it runs out
    Cons: This feat has very limited utility outside of social situations, and is almost useless in a hack and slash or the like. furthermore, unless you like splitting the party, layering up face skills onto two members is pretty inefficient.
    builds: This is a brilliant face skill - it will add major oomph your abilities in that role, and has a skill about talking that can boost your stealth skills If you plan to run a sneaky git, I heartily recommend this feat.

    Charger 1/5
    prerequisites: Still none - this feat has a redeeming factor
    Benefit: When you use the dash action, you can use a bonus action as well to make a melee attack, or shove the target. You also get a reasonable boost to the attack/shove, which can make shoving actually viable.
    Cons: I racked my brain for times when I'd ever want to use this in place of a regular move and attack, and all I could think of was a class that was making melee attacks but only had one attack- so either a class that shouldn't be melee attacking anyway, or a class that is 1 level away from making this feat obsolete.
    I'd never choose it over regular attacks - every melee fighter matches or outperforms the +5 damage with their second attack assuming even a +2 to the attack stat and a 1d6 weapon, and that doesn't require a bonus action.
    It does offer a little utility in mobile damage, but not enough to be worth a feat slot - you can grab mobile instead for some extra speed without needing to give up effective damage
    Builds: None. Avoid this piece of excrement. it is just not useful - I think it may be this editions dodge; looks OK on paper, but doesn't work when you think about it. Maybe on a rogue, as you get an extra bonus action** to dash (in fact, can you use cunning action to dash, then regular bonus action to use this feat, then make a normal action. hmmmmmm, maybe it might push for a 2 if that is effective enough), and your damage comes from sneak attack, but even then, what's good is cunning action, not this piece of manure.

    Crossbow Expert 3/5
    prerequisites: none. don't even need to be able to use em to be an expert
    benefits: The crossbow becomes a viable ranged weapon - you can make multiple attacks, and making attacks at melee range isn't as dangerous. Lastly, the hand crossbow becomes useful as a support weapon to a melee fighter, letting you wail on someone up close then sting someone a little further away. This feat gives you the highest damage from your ranged attacks.
    Cons: You need to take a feat to really compete with a longbow wielder, who does not need a feat to be effective, limits this - as the difference between d8 and d10 is so small on average that until you can make many, many attacks is almost unnoticeable. and for the same resources, the longbow wielder can pick up sharpshooter.
    Builds: If you want to be the best ranged attacker over all, there are better options, but if you want to be as damaging a ranged attacker as possible, then the heavy crossbow is your friend. It works better for a fighter (more attacks) than a ranger (damage comes from outside bonuses on each attack) so the higher damage dice from the heavy crossbow can come into play - though an argument can be made for volley having enough attacks to make it work.

    Defensive Duelist 1/5
    Prerequisites: 13+ dex - our first feat with a prerequisite! does this limited availability make it more amazing that it's peers? hah no
    Benefits: A minor increase in survivability - you can, once per turn, add your proficiency bonus to your AC. I do like that you can choose to use this after the attack roll, so your not risking it.
    Cons: lIt requires a finesse weapon, which are generally worse than non-finesse weapons, and it's limited to melee attacks. Furthermore, it can only be used against a single attack per round due to needing a reaction. Not even a single attack action, a single attack. Going off how most monster's work in the currently published materials, they either rely on a large number of weaker AC attacks (hordes), a moderate amount of mid-strength attacks (things like the vamp or dragon) or just skip AC all together - defencive duelist os of no use in two of those situations, and of limited use in one.
    Builds: Like charger, just don't - it costs too much, for much to little. Maybe when more splatbooks come out to give more reactions and/or more monsters that focus one one big hit, it might jump in viability, but right now it's just not good

    Dual Wielder 2.5/5
    Prerequisites: none
    Benefit: You become all around better at fighting with two weapons. Using two weapons nets you half the bonus of a shield, you can use d8 weapons in place of d6, and you no longer need to take two turns to get both weapons ready. so good things all round, right?
    Cons: Even with the feat, dual wielding is less effective for most classes than using a two handed weapon, due to being stuck with weaker weapons for only 1 extra attack, and that attack doesn't even get stat bonuses. You'll match the performance of someone using a sword and shield, but you'll have lower AC and have used your bonus actions. You'll be slightly tougher than the chap with a great weapon, but he deals around 1.5 times as much damage a turn and has bonus actions. and both those other options have a feat free
    Builds: if you decide to go two weapons, this feat is a must. It works best with classes that get bonus damage on each of their attacks, such as a ranger hitting hunters mark, or a paladin with no sense of self-control, as extra attacks means extra triggers of these abilities.
    Another thing to consider is comboing it with mounted combat and grabbing two lances - it negates the issue of your weapon being weaker, and your much nastier to people your own size; 3-5 attacks with advantage and d12 damage can wreck peoples shizz, but if your mount bites it, you'll be in a fair amount of trouble

    Dungeon Delver 3/5
    prerequisites: none
    Benefits: Dungeon delver lets anyone take over one of the rogues's roles from older editions - sniffing out traps and secrets. A dungeon delver in the party will help make sure no-one misses any secret areas in both a dungeon, and in something like a rogues hideout or other stealty-investigaty type games. The bonus to saves, and the resistance to traps, means you can likely rest easy when exploring dangerous areas without having to worry to much about triggering something and killing your chara with a random spike pit.
    Cons You get no advantage to disabiling traps when you have found them - your better at clearing them than anyone else, but you still have to use your face.
    Builds: Much like Athlete, this seems more appropriate to suggest for campaigns than character builds, but unlike Athlete, traps and secret doors show up fairly commonly in settings using them, and the benefits gained are much more tangible - defending your precious hit points and ensuring you don't miss something - than the improvement to secondary movement from athlete this one gets a 3 from me.

    Durable 1.5/5
    Prerequisites: none
    Benefit: you gain a small boost to con, and your healing during a short rest is more reliable, which can be a major boon to the healer's limited resources
    Con: Healing potions and healing spells are much more effective and don't need a 1 hour break to work - the fact you need to survive the encounter for this to even have a chance at taking effect can be worrisome for your tank. Your still limited by the downsides of the hit dice system, so your not going to heal too much damage, and you need a good con score to make it really worth having
    Builds: Not Many. Durable works best with characters that take a fair number of short rests anyway, so your not slowing the group down as much and can refesh multiple features at once - Fighter and Warlock spring to mind most here. It scores lowly due to overall inefficiency, and much better defensive options for feats. It's nice if you no healer, but if you have one it quickly looses effectiveness.

    Elemental Adept 4/5
    Prerequisites: able to cast a single spell
    Benefit: You ignore resistance for your chosen element - this is pretty awesome, as from what I've seen so far, most high level monsters are resistant to everything. You also make your damage with the chosen element much more reliable, which is good, because the changes to spell mechanics make evocation more useful than ever.
    cons: your limited to the basic elements, which means some classes don't get much from this. most elemental types tend to stay grouped together in effect radius (lightning is lines, fire is bursts etc), so you do risk pidgeonholing your shot's if you specialize completly with the chosen element. lastly, it only negates resistance, not immunity - but since right now immunity is rare, that's less of a concern
    Builds: I feel Elemental Adept adds a kick to any caster - even the best caster can only maintain on real CC/buff at a time, so they may as well spend the rest of their turns blasting. I feel fire is the best choice here as it's the element that most uses lots of d6s, rather than d8s or above, and thus you guarantee at least 1/3 max damage it also combo's brilliantly with the dragon sorceror, as he already specializes in a single element. tieflings need to remember that if they do pick up fire adept, they loose the relatively safe option of fireballing themselves as a last resort

    Grappler 3/5
    prerequisites: str 13 or higher, though if your planning to grapple, you should have this anyway
    Benefits: you can grapple with anyone, and if you do succeed on grappling a creature, are capable of locking them down and wailing on them with everything you've got. The attack advantage on creatures your grappling can rack up some serious damage for a foe that can't escape, and you can take a hit yourself to really pull something out of the fight.
    cons: Your not actually any better at grappling, odd as this seems, and even if you can grapple a dragon/giant etc, chances are their strength will be high enough to not even bother. Furthermore, since the victim gets to choose it's save between dex and str, it's only gonna work about 50% of the time
    builds: any high strength melee build can make good use of this feat, but I find barbarian best due to advantage to str rolls. Catching a foe may not be too common, but if you do catch them they're either going to need to waste their turn escaping, or they're going to take a crap-ton of damage the next turn and possibly be dragged out of position. I can see this being effective on a high speed assassin - zip next to the target as quick as you can, hit em with a grapple as one of your attacks (most priority targets will be squishy but deadly), and go to work
    Odd as it may seem, it does not combo all that well with tavern brawler, as tavern brawler requires you to limit your attack damage to 1d4... even for a monk, they can just use martial arts to make a bonus grapple anyway.

    Great Weapon Master 5/5
    prerequisites: None
    Benefit: Cleave and Power Attack in a single feat, where do I sign this makes the already very effective great weapon combat style even greater - the additional attack, if unreliable, is nice and doesn't suffer from TwFs downside of low damage per hit and no bonus attribute. The real selling point is how flat out painful this can be - a +10 bonus to damage and I can still make my full number of attacks, meaning redundancy due to hit penalty. from monsters so far, hit bonus still seems to scale faster than AC, so your attacks are still pretty reliable when you take the penalty, and the damage is tremendous
    cons: the additional attack is unreliable, and you might find yourself avoiding the big hit if your fighting lots of high AC enemies - but most nastly enemies this edition have average AC and a crapι ton of health, so its less of a downside.
    Builds: much like crossbow master and twin wielder, if your using that weapon type pick this up! unlike the other two however, Great weapon fighting is as standard the top of it's class, so when buffed up its outstanding. as stated before, attack bonus still outscales AC, so the huge, ridiculously powerful hit, is still brilliantly effective. I see no reason not to use this

    Spoiler: numbers
    Show
    the barbarian has advantage, so the -5 ends up giving the same hit chance as if he didn't have either. plus, potential 24 str
    The fighter does take the penalty to hit, but he also has the most attacks
    Ranger and paladin can both use bonus actions to boost their accuracy, thus negating the penalty - though ranger is still most likely better off at range with a bow and hunters mark
    and this boosts the average damage (assuming 20 str) from 12 per hit, to a whopping 22 per hit


    Healer 2/5
    prerequisites: None
    Benefits: When you save someone using a healer's kit, they get back a hit pint and as such are no longer at death's door and can get back in the fight, boosting the party's action economy. Furthermore, once per long rest, you can spend a healer's charge for a fairly stable, if none to impressive, healing shot.
    Cons: You get someone with 1 hp back in the fight - which risks them being knocked back down to 0 straight away and you starting up a never ending loop of you using your turn. The heal isn't good enough to be more than a desperate patch up, and much like Durable, anyone capable of using healing spells - or healing potions - drastically out performs you. Lastly, most people proficient with the healer's kit can cast healing spells, bringing up the problem from a second ago.
    Build: Like Durable, this can be useful in a party without a healer, but if you have one it's kinda terrible. The fact you need to be a healer and thus have little reason to want this, or choose it through your origin, also lowers it's viability.

    Heavily Armoured 2/5
    Prerequisite: Can wear Medium Armour
    benefit: you gain the ability to wear heavy armour, potentially allowing you the highest AC (+3 armour = 24) in the game - tied with Medium Armour mastery, but without needing 16+ dex, or a barbarian with maximum dex and con. In a game with bound AC and so far the proficiency system compared to the AC scores putting you more likely to get hit in the face than not even at max, the benefit really helps. Oh, you also get some strength.
    drawbacks: plate mail is expensive, and all heavy armour gives disadvantage to stealth. Lastly, if you don't have the strength for it, it slows you down, but the str requirements are pretty low and since it gives a point of str anyway... so if it offers such good buffs, and so few drawbacks, why is it rated so low? see below
    builds: if you have the gold to spare for platemail and already know how to use medium armor, you would do well to pick this one up - unless your a fighter or paladin, where you already have it, or a monk or barbarian where it would screw over your class features, or a druid who can't wear any heavy armor due to metal. it also doesn't work if you have a decent dexterity score and thus can get the same effect with medium armour master, and not get the disadvantage to stealth or more expensive gear. It's pretty good for valor bards and clerics, however, as well as mountain dwarf locks, sorcs and wizzers, or if you multi-classed and gained med armour that way, though you may take a hit to movement. It's a good feat, but spoiled by availability.

    Heavy Armour Master 3.5/5
    Prerequisites: Can wear heavy armour
    Benefit: you can safely stand against the horde, reducing all non-magical physical damage you take by 3 along with the aforementioned max AC, meaning it takes magic or something big to really rile you. You also buff your str some more, so by now you should be able to walk full speed in heavy armour
    cons: Magic and big things become pretty common later on in the game, so depending on the foes this risks becoming dead weight
    builds: If you plan on tanking in early game, this is a great feat and even late game it will save your ass from a lot of situations.

    Inspiring Leader 4/5
    Prerequisite: Cha 13
    benefit each long or short rest you grant your party - unless said party is huge - bonus hit points with which to survive getting their face walloped. Since character in 5e are squishy and there is less CC flying around, bonus health is a great boon.
    drawbacks: It takes 10 minutes game time, and your limited to 6 targets - don't forget the enemy can be preparing as well whilst you are . it also dosen't work if your party is deaf
    builds: Bards, locks and sorcerors can make good use of this since they'll have high cha anyway. You don't even really need all that good charisma to make this one work, but it definably helps, so if you have a floating feat slot and want to help out I'd recommend picking this one. This also has good syenergy with classes that want to make a lot of short rests anyway - such as the lock or fighter - and ritual casters, as it takes just as much time.

    Keen Mind 1/5
    Prerequisites: None
    Benefits: You get a point of intellect. that's about it really; OK, you know which way is north - which is a 1gp compass - you know exactly how long it is till dawn dusk, which is pretty useless save for a vampire with no patience, and you can recall everything you read in the last month, so you can be a little more lazy
    drawbacks: seriously, besides having odd intellect and wanting to buff it, when would you use this? maybe the memory part might be useful once in a blue moon, but if you need to remember something and the DM says "it was a week ago, you can't remeber it" he deserves food throwing at his face
    builds: technically, if you just need to get your int up one and all your stats are even, this would be better than just taking +1 int and throwing the other half away - in the same way getting a book with a fancy sleeve version of the front cover is technically better than the one without it. and even then, there are better feats for +1 int.

    Lightly Armoured 1/5
    Benefit: the wizard or sorcerer doesn't need to spend on of their limited spell slots on mage armor - and sets up getting medium armour if you want it, but that's a lot of feats. you also get a point of dex, because why would a wizard or sorcerer spend it on strength...
    Drawback: light armour is pretty useless if you have mage armour, or if your a dragon sorcerer as they have base AC of 13 when not wearing armour anyway, and you can use the same feat slot to get Magic Initiate and use that to learn Mage Armour AND two cantrips - so taking this feat for just light armour is automatically inefficient, so its only worth having if you want medium armor.
    Builds: Unless you don't want mage armour for some reason, or your planning to build up to better armour and don't want to multi-class*, I'd avoid this like the plague

    *
    Spoiler
    Show
    I'm sure if your DM is letting you use feats, they'll let you multi-class, and cleric/druid will get you flat medium armour, more cantrips and you don't even give up a spell-slot, and neither of the classes have the best capstone - so if you want armour on a wizard, be a cleric


    Linguist 2/5
    Benefits: Like - but much better than - Keen Mind, you get +1 int. You also get the ability to speak more languages, and languages are brilliant to be sneaky sneaky, or spy on people, or to talk the orc tribe out of eating your skin. Lastly, and just as good at helping you be stealthy, is the ability to make hidden messages.
    Drawbacks: like Keen Mind, the other abilities aren't the best skills, but they're better than keen mind XD the hidden message is pretty easy to decipher, and probably won't see much use.
    build: Like Keen Mind, this is really only for a character that needs the +int but it's much more flavorful and useful than Keen Mind

    Lucky 4.5/5
    Benefit: You can be a halfling without needing to be 3 feet tall! This is pretty much the same as the halfling racial feature - between each long rest you get 3 rerolls you can spend on any d20 OR for your opponents attack rolls to screw them over this lets you make those horrible natural 1s a thing of the past.
    drawbacks: you can only reroll d20s - they're likely the more important one for mechanics, but nothings more annoying than having floating rerolls you can't use on other things.Furthermore, the feat dosen't offer any new options, just gives a security blanket
    Builds: do you roll dice? if so, this feat is good for you - if nothing else it provides a nice saftey net on your saves from being fried by the dragon, but it also lets you reroll something like initiative, or any over vital 1d20 that's going to stick your ass if it dosen't work

    Mage Slayer 4/5
    Benefits: You can work as an effective neutralized to mages with CC spells or the like - casters have a disadvantage on concentration checks and since most caster's aren't proficient in Con Saves, this can lead to a very good chance of them blowing the check and loosing the spell. Better yet, you can use your reaction to hit them and make them take a save as soon as they cast anything that needs concentration, and since you can only cast a single spell a turn without a fighter multi-class, if you can reach them they're likely limited to blasting or disengaging them bonus spells. Furthermore, if they get frustrated at you and try to fry you, you have advantage on saves if your within punching distance
    Drawbacks: Most mages are ranged fighters - and spells such as expeditious retreat or flight will help keep them out of your reach, though since maintaining those still prevents concentration spells, I suppose your still doing your job.
    Builds: If you can get good mobility - such as a monk (way of shadows optional but optimal for this), barbarian or the like - you might do well by picking this feat up. It goes a long way in preventing mages from being able to wreck your day as eaisily - they'll still be able to wreck your day, but it's harder for them. This is useless for anyone who's not a melee fighter though, as its limited in its entirety to 5ft. As I said earlier, this combined with Alert will let you get to your target as soon as the fight starts and lock it down quickly.

    Magic Initiate: 3/5
    Benefit: Upon taking this feat, you gain access to two cantrips of your choice from any of the primary casting classes, as well as a single first level spell you can cast once per long rest. This helps expand your options, as well as provides spell's you want but wouldn't need to cast more than once a day (mage armour springs to mind) without eating a spell slot.
    Drawbacks: You cast the chosen spells using the stat from that class, rather than your own casting stat (if any) - so chances are it'll be rather low unless you go for another class that uses the same stat - tough luck wizards
    Builds: As cantrips are infinite use tricks for anyone, everyone can get a slight boost to their versatility with this. Clerics can make good use of it as it lets them get an attack cantrip besides Sacred Flame - and attack rolls are better than saves against single targets.
    As for good cantrips; Blade Ward gives anyone beside barbarians some defence against melee attacks, Chill touch can negate enemy creatures from healing themselves - eldritch blast and fire bolt are good attack spells, choice depending on if you'd rather have fire or force damage, poison spray and divine flame are powerful if unreliable, and thorn whip messes with your enemies formation.

    Martial Adept 2/5
    Benefit: you learn two manouvers from the battlemaster, and can use one of them each rest as a D6. This can add some versatility to a class, but less than Magic Initiate I feel, as it's one action per short rest. The Manouvers are pretty nice, however, so this can give some nice tricks.
    Drawbacks: you only get 1 action dice, and it's a D6. that means you won't get to use this much, and the extra kick it provides is pretty small if you choose the wrong manouvres. Furthermore, the save DC is str/con based, so a caster can't really make use of this in place of cantrips for a turn.
    Builds: funnily enough, the build to get the most out of this is the Battlemaster - his class features already buff the size of his dice up to a d12 at high levels as opposed to the D6, he has a great range of options due to the number of manouvres he already has, and the bonus dice per short rest makes it almost feel like you can do things. Locks and other characters who make a lot of short rests can rock this as well. As for manouvres to take, Menacing Strike, commander's strike and distracting strike can provide good party buffs, parry will help save your skin, and riptoise can ruin someones day. Like I said before, however, for providing utility Magic Initiate works better and is useable more often.

    Medium Armour Master 4/5
    Prerequisite: can wear medium armour
    Benefit: You join the ranks of the heavy armoured and the barbarian who dislikes his str based class features as tied for highest possible AC for player characters. As AC is limited this edition and PCs are squishy, this is brilliant as you might survive. In fact you have an advantage of the heavy armoured version due to no stealth disadvantage, and your gears cheaper.
    Drawbacks: you need dex 16 to really make this worth it - otherwise all you get is to drop the disadvantage, which is less of an issue with group checks. If you fit the other prerequisites, I'd recommend looking at heavily armoured instead
    Builds: If you have medium armour and decent dex, I see no reason not to pick this one up. You only get one life outside a diamond supply, after all sure the AC bonus is only the same as say TwF, but unlike there you don't shackle yourself into something otherwise sub par. however, if you already have heavy armour proficiency outside feats an can afford full plate, I'd reccomend skipping this - if the choice comes between the two of them, then I recomend this one unless you also want Heavy Armour Master
    Last edited by Beige; 2014-09-14 at 01:46 PM. Reason: rewording some old feats because blech...
    "This aint no game, Time to make history, yeah"

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  2. - Top - End - #2
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    NecromancerGirl

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Mobile 3/5
    Benefits: As the name may imply, this feat makes you much faster overall, netting you +10 movement and the ability to dash through difficult terrain without penalty – with the easy flow of movement in 5e, the extra speed in nice. Furthermore, upon taking this feat Disengage and Attack are fused into the same action – as anyone you [i]target[/it] with a melee attack cannot make OAs against you until the next turn
    Cons: The extra speed falls short compared to beasts or flyers, meaning they can keep you pinned down just as easily, and there's not enough difficult terrain in most games to make the dash boost as nice as it could be.
    Builds: This feat does exactly what it says on the tin – your mobility skyrockets, and you have an effective safety net for hit and run attacks, or to slip past a tricky foe without having to blow extra movement. A melee rogue with this feat can pretty much ensure their safety – run in, sneak attack, slip out with your remaining move then use your cunning action to dash or hide depending on position, rather than needing to use it to disenage. It can also work well for a tanking fighter, letting you hit a foe with one of your attacks, slip past it safley then park yourself where you wanted to be without eating an attack or wasting movement.
    Sadly, the AO denial only works on a melee attack, so this won't work as a replacement for Crossbow Expert, and mages will probably get the same benefit from a flat disengage.

    Moderately Armoured 2/5*
    *4/5 without multi-classing in game
    Benefit: You gain both medium armour (pretty funky) and shields (also funky) in a single feat, giving you a potential increase to AC compared to just light armour of an outstanding +5 – survivability ahoy!
    Drawbacks: Taking the best med armour will impose a disadvantage to your stealth, but group checks can help get around that. More damning is you can pick up proficiency, along with other goodies, from multi-classing if your not to bothered by your capstone without giving up one of your four stat/feat slots.
    Builds: If your running a game without multi-classing, I'd probably recommend this for anyone with light armour proficiency, as the boost to defense is brilliant (unless your a dex char, where its the same). If you are running multi-classing – which I'd assume you would be if you have feats – it's not as useful as most classes with just light or worse would benefit more from mutli-classing to a class with this as standard as their capstones aren't that impressive.

    Mounted Combat 5/5
    benefits: You become a true terror whilst mounted, with one of the few feats where all of the bonuses are truly useful – netting yourself an advantage against foes smaller than your mount with melee attacks, your mount take zero damage on dex saves, in place of half, and even a random horse can survive as you can take hits for it.
    Drawbacks: You need some reliable way to get yourself a steed that sticks to your level – regular horses might work at low levels, but by level 4-5ish, their going be too squishy to really be worth it when AoEs start flying (you can only retarget attacks that target it - AoEs don't). By mid-high level, only very few classes can really make use of this as a single fireball will put most of the steeds from the PhB in mortal danger
    Builds: Find Steed + this feat = nastiness. Netting a mount that will be reliably survivable at any level negates the one real limiting factor on this feat. A paladin or bard (particularly valour, but even lore will like the extra health) with find this a great bonus, especially since it lets you use a lance – a reach weapon tied for the highest damage – single handedly, for great melee damage and survivability with a shield, or with two lances to make dual wield almost competitive. and that's not even getting into the fun find steed can already do
    This can also be pretty good for a small-sized beastmaster ranger – they get the boosted survivability, they have the scaling mount if they choose to ride it, and only having to make one move between the two of them will help remedy the movement issue they have. The only downside is since animal companion is limited to medium, you won't be getting advantage too often.
    Lastly, if you have a moon druid in the party who doesn’t mind ferrying you around, this'll net him evasion and you a mount. just, ask first XD

    Observant
    Benefits: One of only two feats that give a +1 wisdom, A buff to your passive perception and investigate helps ensure you spot anything important along the way, and should help ensure your whole party avoids surprise attacks. Perception may be boring, but it's vital, and this feat combined with proficiency will gave you a passive perception of 21 minimum, 26 if you have max wis; people without stealth prof can't get past you, and even people with proficiency besides a rogue/bard are gonna find it hard. oh, and you can read lips I suppose...
    Drawbacks: The lip reading won't be of the best use, and Alert will let you personally reap the main benefit of high passive perception much better, even if the rest of the group falls behind.
    Builds: If you need to up your wisdom by a point, this is probably the best choice in the game – resilient is nice, but of the three classes that use Wisdom, cleric and druid have save prof as standard, and monk gets every proficiency at lvl 14, and a blown perception check can be much more painful than a blown wisdom save. Besides that, this feat will ensure you don't miss much of anything, detecting secrets, traps and hidden doors thanks to higher passive investigate, and ensuring your rarely surprised due to super high perception – though as noted if you don't care about the rest of the party, Alert will do that better. Do note, however, if you don't have proficiency in investigate/perception, then from 8th level onwards Skilled will net you nearly the same benefits plus and additional skill.

    Polearm Master 4/5
    Benefits: You can use the bonus reach of your polearm on opportunity attacks for creatures entering your reach as well as leaving, and can spend a bonus action to make an additional melee attack at D4 damage plus strength modifier, so another feat that lets you dual wield better than dual wielder.
    Drawbacks: Not much, really, but to note your still limited to one opportunity attack a round, and as should be obvious, you need to be using a polearm, so I hope you like D10s.
    Builds: This combos brilliantly with sentinel – you can hit things as soon as they come into your range, and if you do they stop dead, meaning you and your allies should hopefully be safe.
    Due to adding your ability modifier, you can spend any spare bonus actions for a nice solid whack that'll outdamage TwF any day of the week (except for fighters). If your using a glaive or halberd, this is a brilliant feat

    Resilient 4/5:
    benefits: +1 to one score of your choice, and proficiency to the save tied to that score. picking this up means youll be much more resilient to many more types of attacks.
    drawbacks: most score your interested in buffing will already have save prof for most classes, meaning chances are you waste half the feat, and some scores that are vital to some classes are pretty useless for saves (looking at you, intellect)
    Build: This really depends on what score your using it on. Dex saves are the most common, followed by wis/con around equal, then cha/strength, then the very rare intellect. Still, if you have a stat to boost and don't have save prof in it, this is brilliant for making you live longer. Its also helpful for casters to pick up con, so they can hold on to their spells. It's probably not that good if your playing a monk you know will hit 14th level, as when you do this feat becomes obsolete.

    Ritual Caster 3.5/5
    Benefits: This one is going to take a deep breath. Upon taking this feat, you gain the ability to learn and cast a wide range of helpful utility spells drawn from wizard a class of your choice (so wizard, or maybe cleric for divination) without needing to expand a spell slot, or even have a spell slot, at the same level a full caster would get access to them. Yes please! This feat dosen't offer power, but it does explode with versatility.
    Drawbacks: you pick a single class when you take this feat, and you only get their rituals, so you don't get all rituals – furthermore, a three (well, four, because feat) level dip into 'lock of tome can net you every ritual for the ultimate utility caster, which would make this obsolete, but that's a big dip so...
    Builds: if you don't have a member of the class you chose in your party – or if the ritual in question is one that will last a full day anyway so preparing it would be a waste of a spell slot - this will grant the entire team some great downtime versatility to perform during short/long rests. It's more useful for a class that doesn’t need to many of said short rests, of course, but even then I'm sure the party wouldn't mind to much waiting 10 minutes afterwards for buffs

    Spoiler: rituals by class
    Show
    sorcerer and warlock are not listed because every one of their ritual spells is also on the wizard list

    Bard
    Animal Messenger, comprehend languages, detect magic, feign death, identify, illusory script, leomund's tiny hut, magic mouth, silence, speak with animals, unseen servant

    Cleric
    Augury, Commune, detect magic, detect poison and disease, divination, feign death, forbiddance, gentle repose, meld into stone, purify food/drink, silence, water walk

    Druid
    Animal Messenger, Commune with Nature, Beast Sense, detect magic, detect poison and disease, feign death, locate animals and plants, meld into stone, purify food/drink, silence, speak with animals, water breathing, water walk

    Wizard
    Alarm, comprehend languages, contact other plane, detect magic, Instant Summons, feign death, find familiar, gentle repose, identify, illusory script, leomund's tiny hut, magic mouth, phantom, steed, telepathic bond, Floating Disk, Unseen Servant, water breathing, water walk


    Savage Attacker 3/5
    Once per turn, you can reroll the dice from a melee weapon attack, and choose which of the two to stick with. It's not the best, but will probably give better overall damage than taking the +2 to your melee stat – though you'll hit less often. About draws even
    Drawbacks: melee only and only one attack per turn, so quite a few characters can't benefit from it
    Builds: This is alright for any melee attacker, letting you ensure you do some damage. It's best for folks with bigger weapons so the result of the dice matters most, but if it comes to a toss up between this and great weapon master, go for the later

    Sentinel 5/5
    Summary: Who says you can't effectively tank in tabletop? Sentinel disagrees – their opportunity attacks lock down the targets movement, and they laugh at someone trying to disengage. Furthermore, if a critter attacks a non-sentinel in your reach, they can use a reaction to hit it for being rude – though this isn't an opportunity attack (or a typo, as the feat obviously knows what an OA is), so they can still try and run afterwards. If only combat reflexes was in 5e, this would make anyone's day, but right now you can only bully one target a turn
    Builds: This is the tanking feat in 5e – you can ensure a creature stays where you want it too, letting your allies position themselves safely to take it down. This combo's well with mage slayer, as even then trying to cast a spell ends up with them not moving the rest of the turn to get pummeled. Lastly, and perhaps best, you can create the ultimate roadblock with this and Polearm Master, since you get an opportunity attack when something enters you reach, which will then stop them in their tracks 5 feet away from you and your allies (and thus out of range for most melee attacks) wondering what happened.

    Sharpshooter 5/5
    Summary: Hitting people with arrows has never been better than 5e, and this feat just makes it even better. You no longer get disadvantage from long range, letting you pick people off from ridiculous ranges where they can do little to retaliate, and even if they hide like cowards, they need full cover for it to matter any more. Lastly, when your certain you can hit the target – say when your 360 feet away with them unaware – you can take a -5 penatly to hit for a +10 penalty for damage; which could be even nicer than Great Weapon Mastery, because the archery combat style gives bonuses to hit
    Builds: Are you using a ranged weapon as your primary means of attack? If the answer is yes, get this. That is all

    Shield Master 3.5/5
    Summary: Shields are great, they provide a good bonus in this edition of bound accuracy, they look stylish, and with this feat you can use them to knock people over and block fireballs. Upon learning this feat, you can add your shield bonus to a save against something targeting just you, and you have evasion if you have a shield, though you still need to be able to make the dex save in the first place for that to matter. Lastly, you can spend a bonus action when attacking to try and knock your foe down – useful to set up your allies, or yourself if your DM lets you make the bonus attack first. Though since you need to use both a shield and weapon for this, casters need not apply until they get War Caster, and of course shields aren't as damaging as great weapons even with advantage.
    Builds: This a good boost to your survivability against things that would normally ignore your AC, meaning you can tank better than ever, and grants a bonus buff against save or die effects. If you use a shield, this is a good thing to pick up.

    Skilled 3/5
    summary: Pick three skills of your choice and gain proficiency in them. Can be nice depending on the skills, and this will help buff your out of combat usefulness as well as some in combat support. Perception and hide are the skills that jump to mind as the most useful, as surprise rounds are nasty, but the others are good as well.
    Builds: how useful this is depends on the group. Stealth is nice, but if your in a stealthy group, a group check should see you through fine, so that falls short. if you already have someone with perception and good wis, then a second eye won't really help, and two people trying to face it up leads to confusion. It's best use is to patch holes the party has, but that can feel like a bit of a let down from your limited feat options. Bards should really avoid this, due to jack of all trades meaning you end up with +3 not +6 compared to anyone else.

    Skulker 3.5/5
    Prerequisite: Dex 13+
    Summary: Stealth is nice – its fun to use, it saves your skin, and advantage is devastating in the right hands. Skulker lets you be as stealthy as possible, netting the ability to hide when lightly obscured – so no more searching high and low for a hiding spot – budget darkvision, and lets you make ranged attacks with less risk of blowing your cover if you blow the attack. It won't cover for you if your a clunker with no dex in full plate, but if you could hide before, your better than ever at it now.
    Builds: Rogues with this feat are scary as heck; you can almost guarantee advantage on your attack roll, which means an almost guaranteed sneak attack – and even if you fail the sneak attack, you don't give yourself away. This can combine will with Sharpshooter to make a reliable and deadly ranged assassin. Even for everyone else, the ability to hide when lightly obscured is nasty for setting an ambush or sneaking past a guard etc

    Spell-sniper
    Prerequisite: at least one spell
    Spellcasters can get in on this long range action as well – their spells with attack rolls get double range (240 ft eldritch blast... mmmmmmm), and they can ignore all but full cover when shooting folks with spells for maximum chance to hit. Lastly, to ensure you can use this ability, you learn eldritc one cantrip that requires an attack roll.
    If your playing a blast-caster, particularly a 'Lock, this will make you more effective as foes will find it harder to avoid your attacks. It doesn’t combo very well with a caster focusing on buffs, or on spells that give saves, such as a cleric, but it's nice if you do plan to make attack rolls.

    Tavern Brawler 1/5
    this, despite the cool idea, is a terrible feat. You get proficiency with improvised weapons – but improvised weapons suck even if they can look awesome. Your unarmed attacks deal the same damage as a 1st level monk, but you lack martial arts to make the unarmed attack in addition to your weapon attacks all low level monks use, and lastly when you use your low damage unarmed strike, you can use a bonus action to try and grapple the foe. You do get a point of str or con, though, so it's not a complete waste, I guess
    Builds: I can't recommend a tactical build for this feat – the abilities don't synergise to well, as to make use of any of them you need to limit yourself to 1d4 damage per attack. This dosen't even combo well with Grappler, as you give up to much damage the advantage is next to useless. It's not even good for a monk to help em grab people, as they can use martial arts for that already.

    Tough 3/5
    summary: you gain +2 hit points per level – equal to +4 con points, though with the bonus to con saves or the rare effect tied to constitution. This can help add beef to any squishy character, and will at later levels contribute more than the +1 save for survivability, in my opinion.
    Builds: If you want more HP and have a decent enough con score, this is the best bet for survivability. If you want more HP and only have a con of like 10-12, I'd say the extra save point to at least get +1 would serve you better. overall though, it's about equal to +2 con.

    Warcaster 3/5
    summary: Concentration means most mages need to avoid the front lines like the plague lest they loose their fancy spells – the warcaster feat helps get around that, granting advantage to concentration saves. Beyond that, it grants the ability to use somatic spells with your hands full, but that's really only useful for eldritch knights, war clerics, arcane tricksters and the occasional valor bard – everyone else either dosen't use somatic parts, or would be better of using cantrips for turn to turn stuff than weapons. Lastly, to greatly expand your tactical repertoire , you can use a 1 action spell in place of opportunity attacks, so long as it hits only one critter
    Builds: if your worried about concentration, resilient (con) will probably work better to buff it against the occasional hit, leaving this feat more useful for someone who expects to get hit a fair bit and wants some reassurance – same with the ability to have weapons and spells. It's definatly designed for front line fighters with magic support, rather than primary mages.
    Putting that aside, this could make an interesting combo with polearm master to spell things that get close – charm on a creature in the middle of its action trying to hit you can make a lot of changes, or just four full rays of eldritch blast to the face for maximum pain to hopefully drop em before they hit you. Now if only sentinel gave full opportunity attacks, ah well, the ability to blast people running and root em in place is still a nice extra

    weapon master 1/5
    summary: you gain +1 str/dex, and get proficiency with four weapons of your choice. This could be nice, but weapons are too samey right now for options to matter, and almost all available classes right now start with all the weapon profs they need – or pick them up based on their archetype for melee clerics and bards.
    Builds: none whatsoever – every melee class already has the weapons it needs as standard, and every caster shouldn't be using weapons. The only class where an argument could be made is for the rogue to pick up a longbow/heavy crossbow for the bonus range over their simple versions (the potential 2 higher damage from the weapon means next to nothing to a rogue), but even then you could spend this feat on sharpshooter for better overall range, better accuracy and better damage - so a case cannot be made for it

    and thats all the feats in the PhB. thank you for reading :)
    Last edited by Beige; 2014-09-14 at 09:44 AM.
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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Man you were needlessly harsh to Alert. It makes you immune to Assassins and considering they are pretty much the scariest thing in the game, that reason alone is to make it one of the best Feats around. Placing it below average is criminal.

    Also, Dual Wielder isn't really about Dual Wielding... It is about getting a bonus to AC on characters that can't use Shields.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Quote Originally Posted by Giant2005 View Post
    Man you were needlessly harsh to Alert. It makes you immune to Assassins and considering they are pretty much the scariest thing in the game, that reason alone is to make it one of the best Feats around. Placing it below average is criminal.
    I think someone's mothers have been telling them scary bed-time stories assassins are gonna be just as dangerous with or without this feat because what kind of sucky assassin attacks someone when they're awake and looking around.

    and like I said, someone with good wis and perception in your party should nullify most sneak attacks whilst awake, making the worry of the death attack even rarer

    plus, considering PCs as your most common enemy in place of monsters is misguided for most campaigns. At most you'll likely face 1 or 2 assassins high enough leveled to really be a bother, and a rare - albeit dangerous - enemy that you can use a limited option of customasability to counter is situational - which is 2 out of 5

    I also still maintain it's best for the assassin in the odd case he is spotted to shiv someone before he gets fried

    Also, Dual Wielder isn't really about Dual Wielding... It is about getting a bonus to AC on characters that can't use Shields.
    no, no it's really not it's a full package that must be judged all together, including the viability of the combat style from all angle, not just the AC - and the full package is something cool but ineficient compared to a two handed weapon (1 less ac, greatly increased damage, no need to burn bonus actions) or sword and shield* (save average damage, better AC, no need to burn bonus actions). I rate it at 2.5 because even though the feat itself is good, the fighting style you need to use it is sub-par compared to the others, and that limits duel wielder to being sub-par regardless.

    especially since 1 point of AC over someone hitting 1.5 times as hard and having a feat/stat points to spend on say +2 dex for the same amount of AC, and the much stronger force, is not as good. Also, I'm assuming you meant chose not to use shields, because there are much more efficient defensive feats and options for a character without shield prof other than duel wield;
    tough gives you many more hit points with which to survive attacks, which is much more efficient overall than +1 to ac (dual wield gives 19 ac max (outside magic things), but hit rolls cap at +11, meaning a roll of 8, or 60%, will hit. ac 18, or a 7, will be hit 65% of the time, BUT the extra 40 hp increases the resilience of even the toughest character by around 16% - a 5% drop in evasion for a 16+% boost in resilience is a good trade)
    resilient will give you bonus saves, which will save your ass much more often against attack types of your choice than being 5% dodgier
    med armour master also gives you +1 overall DC, but dosen't sacrifice attack effectiveness
    heavy armour master grants damage res, which helps tank through swarm attacks
    or you can spend the +2 stat on +2 dex (if you don't have shield prof, you don't have medium armour, so every drop of dex helps) for +2 dex without having to give up your free hand -and thus still being able to cast spells.

    if we just look at it defensively, duel wield is literally the second worst defensive feat in the game, after defensive duelist

    * assuming character has access to combat styles, otherwise dual wield is better in a vacuum of other bonus actions, but most classes have combat style or better uses for bonus actions)
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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Mistake on the Dual Wielder feat: it Actually does allow you to add your attribute to damage with off hand attacks because your no longer using light weapons.
    Last edited by LordVonDerp; 2014-09-04 at 08:21 AM.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Just speaking as someone who has written a lot of guides, I would suggest that you be much more succinct in your analysis, and use color coding. The Wall of Text repels casual reading, which is what most people do on a forum. Also, posts have a maximum number of characters, and its not a lot. So you're unlikely to be able to provide a summary and analysis of every feat if each of them is as long as the ones you've posted so far.

    You should also be mindful about using Fair Use summaries instead of actual bonuses and exact descriptions, because its against forum rules and copyright law, and the thread will be locked.


    For example:

    Alert: Provides a large bonus to Initiative, and you cannot be surprised. 5E combat is quick and deadly, so this provides a useful benefit to any class. If you act first, you can kill an enemy before they can act at all. Its particularly worthwhile for Assassin Rogues or any character with a particularly low Wisdom (Perception) check. Its even more useful when Invisibility becomes a common problem at mid-high levels.


    Now obviously you might disagree with my analysis. But I get my entire point and recommendations across in five sentences.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Quote Originally Posted by LordVonDerp View Post
    Mistake on the Dual Wielder feat: it Actually does allow you to add your attribute to damage with off hand attacks because your no longer using light weapons.
    No, it doesn't. The Fighting Style Option Two-Weapon Fighting (PHB p. 72, 91) grants that ability. The Dual Wielder feat grants a +1 AC bonus when wielding two separate melee weapons in each hand; allows a character to fight with two separate weapons in each hand even if they aren't light weapons; and allows a character to draw or stow two one handed weapons rather than one.
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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Quote Originally Posted by LordVonDerp View Post
    Mistake on the Dual Wielder feat: it Actually does allow you to add your attribute to damage with off hand attacks because your no longer using light weapons.
    no, you don't

    You don’t add your ability modifier to the damage of the bonus attack, unless that modifier is negative.
    the feat allows you to not use light weapons, but this statement - that you don't get your stat bonus, is an entire different sentence. The feat removes the restriction to light weapons, but does nothing for the bonus damage.
    Last edited by Beige; 2014-09-04 at 10:12 AM.
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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    WRT Charger and Defensive Duelist:

    Charger is intended to be used when a move doesn't get you all the way to your foe. That's why you charge.

    Also, Defensive duelist is, by level 9, almost an at will shield spell, the wizard capstone. It's vs one attack instead of all round, but I want to see the MM before determining how much that matters.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Elemental Adept is 4/10, when it should be 4/5.
    Other than that, good list.
    I usually post from my phone, so please excuse any horrendous typos.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Re: Durable

    Wizards and sorcerers have d6 hit die now, not d4.
    Last edited by eastmabl; 2014-09-04 at 02:05 PM.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    You're undervaluing Crossbow Expert, IMO. First, you get your stat mod to damage on your bonus attack. Second, you can - in theory - only use a single crossbow in your off-hand. And at higher levels, Sharpshooter exists.

    I'm also puzzled as to why Elemental Adept is continually rated so highly, here and elsewhere. I'm not seeing it.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Another thing to think about with Crossbow Expert is flexibility.

    If you have it, a Heavy Crossbow is basically a 1d10 weapon (one step below the heaviest two-handed weapons) that you can use with your Dex bonus, and that works just as well in melee and ranged (Except you can't make Attacks of Opportunity with it). With 5e's greater focus on mobility, you may find yourself switching between ranged and melee combat quite frequently, Crossbow Expert lets you instantly engage at melee without dropping your ranged weapon.
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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Quote Originally Posted by obryn View Post
    You're undervaluing Crossbow Expert, IMO. First, you get your stat mod to damage on your bonus attack. Second, you can - in theory - only use a single crossbow in your off-hand. And at higher levels, Sharpshooter exists.

    I'm also puzzled as to why Elemental Adept is continually rated so highly, here and elsewhere. I'm not seeing it.
    Pretty much my thoughts here. Crossbow Expert only really shines with a hand crossbow and the sharpshooter feat so it is fairly situational but I was expecting 4/5. I could see it being rated 3/5 overall but then Elemental Adept being even more situational and generally weaker getting a 4/5 makes no sense.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    I'm not so crazy about Elemental Adept myself. The damage boost is pitiful (#Dice/DieSize), and it doesn't do anything to help with immunity.

    On the other hand Alert seems very strong due to the large initiative bonus and other goodies. Tough also seems really good at first glance.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    I rate crossbow expert as a 3 rather than a 4 or higher because the bonus damage isn't enough to really make it more viable than a longbow - because for the same number of feats, a longbow user already has sharpshooter. The fact you can use the crossbow in combat is nice, but with the 100 ft range of crossbows now and the ability to run and shoot, I doubt your going to be in too many situations where it comes up - and the lack of ability to shoot safely in close combat is less of a problem for the 150ft longbow. It's still a 3, so it's still good - just not outstanding

    Defensive Duelist does not match the shield spell at all - as its only 1 single attack as opposed to an entire round and whatever is thrown at you - and shield does not require you to stym your damage by having a finesse weapon. I know we can't judge everything right now, but based off the stats in hoard of the dragon queen online supplement and my own limited experience with the campaign, most monster's don't got for single big hits but several smaller one, or they skip AC all together for their big show stopper - so your left blowing a feat and an action to negate a small fraction of the enemies damage per turn

    toughness should indeed have said d6 for wiz/sorc. 3e still on the brain
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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Quote Originally Posted by DeAnno View Post
    I'm not so crazy about Elemental Adept myself. The damage boost is pitiful (#Dice/DieSize), and it doesn't do anything to help with immunity.
    it's more for reliability than damage boosts - the most common dice are d6s (which do benefit from always having at least 1/3 damage) and d8s (not as good, but still nice) - plus, resistance is rather common in the printed monster so far. the only thing printed with an immunity to any of the listed elements is the leaked terrasque, and the ancient red dragon, with its fire immunity

    On the other hand Alert seems very strong due to the large initiative bonus and other goodies. Tough also seems really good at first glance.
    everyone praising it is pushing it further forward for me
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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Quote Originally Posted by Beige View Post
    I rate crossbow expert as a 3 rather than a 4 or higher because the bonus damage isn't enough to really make it more viable than a longbow - because for the same number of feats, a longbow user already has sharpshooter. The fact you can use the crossbow in combat is nice, but with the 100 ft range of crossbows now and the ability to run and shoot, I doubt your going to be in too many situations where it comes up - and the lack of ability to shoot safely in close combat is less of a problem for the 150ft longbow. It's still a 3, so it's still good - just not outstanding
    You're assuming the fight is taking place in an open field where the Longbowman can shoot and move as they wish, easily staying out of range. There are plenty of circumstances where an archer does not have the luxury of staying out of melee reach of enemies (Ambushes, fights in confined quarters, lack of sightlines, ect).

    Not saying Crossbow Expert needs to be more than a 3, but I wouldn't say Longbows invalidate it. Especially with how rare Magic Items are in 5e, a Crossbow Expert is the only character who can use a single weapon for every situation, that weapon also happens to be the most powerful dex-based weapon in the game.

    Yes, Longbows have more range, but most combats take place at significantly shorter range. As much fun as sitting back and sniping from max distance sounds, it's often a bad idea in regular play. Even if you can do it, the rest of your party probably can't engage from those ranges.

    So while YOU are safely shooting from 150 away, the rest of your party is mixing it up in melee (taking more damage, since the enemies are splitting their attention between a smaller number of viable targets). If you want to get close and lend some form of support (Stabilizing a dying ally with a heal check, covering the retreat of a wounded ally, interacting with the environment in some way, ect) you are three rounds of movement away from the fray. Most combats take place at ranges less than 60 feet in my experience.

    Crossbow Expert seems underwhelming at first, but the ability to have a single, all-purpose weapon (The heavy crossbow) should not be underestimated.
    Last edited by BRC; 2014-09-04 at 04:14 PM.
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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Quote Originally Posted by BRC View Post

    Crossbow Expert seems underwhelming at first, but the ability to have a single, all-purpose weapon (The heavy crossbow) should not be underestimated.
    While true, the main advantage for Crossbow Expert is really getting a bonus attack with a hand crossbow. It's by far the easiest way to get a bonus attack with a ranged weapon and once sharpshooter comes into play it is a huge damage boost.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Quote Originally Posted by Dark Tira View Post
    While true, the main advantage for Crossbow Expert is really getting a bonus attack with a hand crossbow. It's by far the easiest way to get a bonus attack with a ranged weapon and once sharpshooter comes into play it is a huge damage boost.
    As somebody currently playing a swashbuckling rapier-and-hand crossbow fighter, I Can also confirm it is stylish as any hell you care to name. It's ALSO basically duel wielding, but you get your dex to damage on both attacks even without the fighting style, and you can use your bonus attack to hit anybody within range.

    The only downsides compared to duel wielding are you lose out on +1 AC, an average of one damage, some flexibility in terms of the damage types you can deal, and the ability to draw/sheath two weapons instead of one.
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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Quote Originally Posted by Dark Tira View Post
    While true, the main advantage for Crossbow Expert is really getting a bonus attack with a hand crossbow. It's by far the easiest way to get a bonus attack with a ranged weapon and once sharpshooter comes into play it is a huge damage boost.
    For any dex-based character, it also out-damages any other off-hand weapon choice. You wouldn't get your stat bonus to damage with a shortsword, but you will get it with that hand crossbow.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    On the Two Weapon Feat. You forgot the note that the character no longer has to use Light Weapons with it. Added on Several classes can choose a feature that lets them add their mod to the off hand weapon.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    OP updated - both a few changed opinions, and hopefuly improved readability
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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Quote Originally Posted by BRC View Post
    Another thing to think about with Crossbow Expert is flexibility.

    If you have it, a Heavy Crossbow is basically a 1d10 weapon (one step below the heaviest two-handed weapons) that you can use with your Dex bonus, and that works just as well in melee and ranged (Except you can't make Attacks of Opportunity with it). With 5e's greater focus on mobility, you may find yourself switching between ranged and melee combat quite frequently, Crossbow Expert lets you instantly engage at melee without dropping your ranged weapon.
    You could use the heavy crossbow as a improvised weapon for Opportunity Attacks(Under ammunition it specifically talks about this). Of course without tavern brawler you wouldn't be proficient, and it would be strength based but better than nothing. Although there would be a case that a crossbow expert should be more proficient at beating someone up with the crossbow than a tavern brawler. But you still wouldn't be able to use your dexterity. You could also maybe make a case for using a bolt as an improvised finesse weapon.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Not that this should adjust your ratings on this, but Defensive Duelist is one of the few ways to get a reliable AC boost; something that can mean a lot more in the world of Bound Accuracy

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Quote Originally Posted by Naanomi View Post
    Not that this should adjust your ratings on this, but Defensive Duelist is one of the few ways to get a reliable AC boost; something that can mean a lot more in the world of Bound Accuracy
    And a big, scaling reliable AC boost at that. Basically it will allow you to ignore one attack every round if you have any sort of defense to begin with.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    I disagree with you on Charger.

    First of all, there are situations for certain classes and class builds where Charger allows you to actually attack when you otherwise would not have been able to. Most characters have a speed of 30 feet, which means any time you want to hit someone ~40-60 feet away with a melee attack, Charger allows you to do so where you would otherwise need to wait until next round (and that's assuming that your target doesn't retreat). Furthermore, I would expect this to come up quite often, because 40 feet is actually quite a short distance in reality, and most ranged attackers (both mundane and magical) will be at least that far away. The extra damage at this point is just a nice bonus that you will almost always qualify for (10 feet is only a few steps).

    Now, there are certain classes and class builds were this is not the case. For example, Monks can spend a ki point to Dash as a bonus action (leaving their regular action for a normal attack), and Barbarians that take the Eagle totem at level 3 can also Dash as a bonus action while raging. Fighters, Paladins, and Rangers can all only do this through Expeditious Retreat (for Eldritch Knights) or multiclassing.

    Second, this is a straight damage increase for a Rogue. There is no opportunity lost by a Rogue using Dash as their action with a single Attack as a bonus action, because they only get a single attack anyway. Even if a Rogue was to dual wield, and even if they took the Dual Wielder feat, they are at best adding an average 4.5 damage to their attack, at the cost of not being able to take any other action that turn. Now, this changes a bit when you include multiclassing, because a single level of Fighter allows for the Two-Weapon Fighting style, which increases the bonus action attack's damage by at least 1, but more likely 3-5, putting it over the damage gained by the Charger taking the Duelist style.

    Of course, the Charger still gets a 1 AC advantage from a shield (in this case from the Fighter level), and never has to give up their extra damage if they need to close the distance to an enemy (and gives up less damage if they want to use their Cunning Action to do something other than Dash and still Attack on the same round). Then you can throw in the Mobile feat and the Rogue can charge the same enemy every round without worrying about AoO...

    Anyway, I wouldn't say Charger is great, but it can be useful.
    Last edited by Symphony; 2014-09-04 at 10:14 PM.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Any rogue that takes charger is a fool.
    Quote Originally Posted by Charger
    When you use your action to Dash, you can use a bonus action to make one melee w eapon attack or to shove a creature.
    You're using an action and a bonus action to use Charger. Or you're using an action and a bonus action to Dash and attack as a rogue.
    The only difference is the +5 damage (or shove), which is good, but isn't worth wasting a feat on considering the situational use of it IMO.
    Last edited by Shadow; 2014-09-04 at 10:20 PM.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Quote Originally Posted by Naanomi View Post
    Not that this should adjust your ratings on this, but Defensive Duelist is one of the few ways to get a reliable AC boost; something that can mean a lot more in the world of Bound Accuracy
    Yeah, and in some contexts (like, say, an actual duel), it can be extremely helpful.

    It's just too bad it takes your reaction, but weighing it against other reactions, it looks like a solid option.
    Last edited by obryn; 2014-09-04 at 10:39 PM.

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    Default Re: a feat analysis; first impressions of a wannabe optimizer

    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow View Post
    Any rogue that takes charger is a fool.

    You're using an action and a bonus action to use Charger. Or you're using an action and a bonus action to Dash and attack as a rogue.
    The only difference is the +5 damage (or shove), which is good, but isn't worth wasting a feat on considering the situational use of it IMO.
    It's a consistent damage increase. Combined with Mobile you can do it every single round without drawbacks. How is that situational?

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