The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed
The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed - Coming in December and available for pre-order now
Page 1 of 15 1234567891011 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 428
  1. - Top - End - #1
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Specter's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Brazil

    Default Bellator Arcanus: The Eldritch Knight's guide


    I've been interested in this subclass for a while now, and since the other guides on the subject seemed lackluster, I decided to make one myself.

    Summary
    STYLE
    STATS
    RACES
    SKILLS
    BACKGROUNDS
    CLASS FEATURES
    FEATS
    SPELLS
    MULTICLASSING
    GENERAL STRATEGY
    MAGIC ITEMS
    SAMPLE BUILDS

    Colors:
    Gold: Mandatory for optimization.
    Blue: Very good.
    Black: Good, but there are better options out there.
    Purple: Too situational or lackluster.
    Red: Don't even.

    So...

    WHY GO FOR THE ELDRITCH KNIGHT?

    • Coolness: If you enjoy ripping heads, the Fighter class is good for you. If you enjoy ripping heads in a cool, arcane, Blade-of-Fire way, the Eldritch Knight (EK, henceforth) is for you.
    • Versatility: Magic furthers your roles both in combat (with more protection and area options) and out of it. Some of us get tired of just swinging weapons.
    • Prowess: The low-levels spells of the EK may seem lackluster (especially at high levels), but when used appropriately with their class abilities, they make for an awesome combatant.

    WHEN SHOULD YOU NOT PLAY AN ELDRITCH KNIGHT?
    • If you want to focus on magic: In that case, go for a Valor Bard, or a Bladesinger Wizard.
    • If you want the maximum raw damage: While the EK has some combos going for that, other archetypes (and classes, for that matter) will usually deal more damage than him.

    STYLE
    Here you must make a choice, which will define your entire career:
    • STR-based melee EK: By going Strenght, you can shove and grapple enemies, and also have a higher AC from the start. It will make you a little more MAD on overall, though. If you go without a shield, you will deal more raw damage due to bigger weapons, Great Weapon Master and rerolls, at the cost of -2AC.
    Go for chain mail, and upgrade to full plate ASAP. If you plan for optimal AC, take a d8 weapon and a shield. If you plan for Great Weapon Master and reach, take a halberd or a pike.
    • DEX-based melee EK: With a rapier as your main weapon, you will be less MAD, better at the important DEX saves and more efficient at the occasional ranged warfare. Important if you want to use Stealth, too.
    Go for leather armor, upgrading to studded leather ASAP. The rapier is the weapon of choice out there, and not using a shield would be disgraceful.
    • Archer: It's entirely possible, and not lacking at all. An EK archer is tougher and more versatile than those from other archetypes, as far as I can speculate. Leather armor and bow, of course. By going the bow way you'll only need Sharpshooter. Crossbows are viable, but will require Crossbow Expert too for efficiency.

    STATS
    Strenght: If you went the STR way, it must obviously be your highest stat; otherwise it can be dumped.
    Dexterity: For DEX-melee and archers this is top priority; STR guys can leave this low but not dump it, since it governs Initiative, DEX saves, some skills and (sometimes) AC.
    Constitution: Being a Fighter, taking hits is part of your portfolio. Archers can start with a 14 without much trouble; others need higher values to get in the fray consistently.
    Intelligence: This determines the efficiency of your spells, both when attacking and determining save DCs. As such, it’s essential. Start with a number similar to CON, if possible. Note that it's possible to have an EK that dumps INT and focus on no-save, no-attack spells, but that will limit your spell selection and versatility, and make Eldritch Strike less awesome. If you're interested in that, check out the last sample build for an example.
    Wisdom: You're no cleric, but important skills are keyed off this, and failing a Wisdom save can take you out of the fight in a second, so dumping this is not an option. Go for 10 on a tight build, or 12 if you have a few points to spare. If you already plan on multiclassing to another class that requires Wisdom, leave it at 12 and take Resilient (WIS) later on.
    Charisma: if you want a charismatic combatant, go for a Paladin, or a Valor Bard. That said, if you're going for a CHA multiclass (probably Sorcerer) you will have to raise this to at least 13 and dump INT. A tough choice.

    RACES
    Aarakocra (EE): Well, +2DEX and at-will flight sell this easily… if your DM approves it, that is.
    Aasimar (DMG): CHA and WIS? Not cool at all. The rest is not enough to justify picking it.
    Aasimar (Volo's): +2CHA blows, but the rest (darkvision, two resistances, some minor healing per long rest and a cantrip) is decent.
    Protector: Wisdom is ok, but flight is good. And then there's your level to damage once per turn, which is pretty good.
    • Scourge: Constitution for the win, an area damage option and the same damage by level as before. A bit better than Protector, if only because you get a stat point yu actually get to use.
    Fallen: Strenght, good! Per turn damage, okay! But flightless wings (?) for just a fear effect is kinda lame.
    • Dragonborn: Viable for for STR EKs; according to my intel, the breath weapon is more useful than it seems. The resistance to a certain energy (when in doubt, choose fire) is also very handy. It's a shame the CHA goes to waste.
    Dwarves: With a solid CON, protection from poison and stonecunning, dwarves make great EKs.
    Hill: The +1 to Wisdom is not optimal, but it's hard to say no to more HP.
    Mountain: +2 to STR? Sign me up! For STR builds, of course.
    Duergar: Unless you're in an Underdark campaign, sunlight sensitivity will wreck you. A shame, since the abilities are nice.
    Elves: Focus on DEX melee or archery here. +2DEX, trance, darkvision and Perception proficiency are great for any EK.
    High Elf: Bet these guys were the first of our kind. +1 int and a free cantrip are more valuable to an EK than to most classes.
    Wood Elf: Leave him to the ranger; the bonus speed is the only good thing here.
    Drow: +1 CHA and sunlight sensitivity kill this subrace.
    Eladrin: Pretty much like the High Elf, except for Misty Step 1/day, which is timelessly good and gives another option of 2nd-level spell at level 8.
    • Firbolg (Volo's): +2WIS and +1STR, average. The bonus spells can be a nice addition to your stock, and the emergency invisibility can't hurt, either.
    Genasi (EE): +2 to CON? Good start. Let’s look at the rest:
    Air: +1 DEX and Levitate make this a perfect fit for archers, who usually want to avoid melee.
    • Earth: +1 to STR and avoiding rocky difficult terrain is great, but chances are if you’re going for STR, Pass Without Trace won’t be of much use.
    Fire: Good for all builds with the bonus to INT, resistance to the most common elemental damage and some bonus evocation.
    Water: The bonus to WIS and the spells are lackluster for a Fighter.
    Gnomes: +2INT, darkvision and advantage on 3 magic saves? Works for me.
    Forest: More DEX is good for DEX guys; the rest is purely thematical. Up to you.
    Rock: More CON is good for all builds; the rest; as above.
    • Deep: Gets blue in a campaign with a lot of dungeoneering, due to their superior darkvision and stealth bonus in rocky terrain.
    Goliath: Amazing for those STR builds, especially for the small damage reduction. A bonus proficiency in Athletics is dandy, too.
    Halfling: +2DEX, rerolling 1’s and advantage against fear effects are good, but they lack darkvision unlike most small races.
    Lightfoot: More CHA? Bleh.
    Stout: More like DEX dwarves, huh? More CON and advantage against poison are nice.
    • Half-Elf: The CHA bonus is a waste for you, and you’re not starving for skills either. This still gives you darkvision and charm resistance, so it's not too bad. Good if you plan to multiclass Sorcerer (or even Warlock...?).
    Half-Orc: For STR builds who want to go full retard on the battlefield, negating death once per rest and critting harder will help you do that. Besides, you'll be an orc... casting spells!
    • Human: +1 to all stats is, well... meh.
    Human (Variant): Now we're talking. A bonus skill is always good, and a feat (suggestions later) is perfect for the EK, which usually boosts 3 attributes instead of 2 like the usual fighter.
    Kenku (Volo's): Good stats and skills for a DEX EK, but I don't see anything you could get with this race that a Half-Elf wouldn't give you, without the hassle of mimicking everything.
    • Lizardfolk (Volo's): The main draw of these guys is the permanent Mage Armor AC (even with a shield), which is good for the DEX folks. But I'm guessing swimming and biting won't come up too much.
    • Tabaxi (Volo's): DEX is good, CHA is bad. That bonus speed makes sure there's always something for you to smack on the field, or that you can run away safely. The rest is just okay. I really can't decide if this should be black or blue.
    Tiefling: I like Tieflings, but the Charisma bonus and most of the spells (based on CHA) are a waste for EKs.
    Feral Tiefling (SCAG): This variant gives you +2DEX instead of +2CHA; if you really want to play a Tiefling, that’s the way to go. If you also manage to get the Winged variant, do it.
    Triton (Volo's): Two good stats and a bad one for STR builds. Bonus spells: awesome! Swimming: situational. Talking to fish: meh. Cold resistance: pretty good. A solid option in land, and great in water.
    Last edited by Specter; 2017-04-24 at 11:36 AM.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Specter's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Brazil

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    SKILLS
    Class skills:
    Acrobatics: For DEX builds this is mandatory, since it will help you avoid grapples and shoves effectively. Balancing on difficult terrain and tumbling for coolness are also nice.
    Animal Handling: Plan to be mounted often? Take it. Otherwise, leave it.
    Athletics: Mandatory for STR builds for the same reasons as Acrobatics, except this time you can grapple and shove yourself. Swimming, jumping and climbing are also governed by it, which makes this interesting even for DEX builds.
    History: You have the intelligence for it, but leave it to another party member if possible; we don’t have many skills as is.
    Insight: You’re no dumb barbarian, and thus you shouldn’t be fooled by petty lies. I always take this with my characters, but it’s not mandatory.
    Intimidation: Leave it to the (insert party member of high CHA here).
    Perception: Probably the most used skill in the game; you don’t have a high WIS, but for group checks and avoiding enemy bad Stealth rolls this helps, a lot.
    Survival: If there’s no ranger/druid in the group, there still should be someone with a higher WIS than you to take it.

    Non-class skills:
    Arcana: Since this is your trade, proficiency in it is almost mandatory; problem is, if you’re not a Variant Human, it will be harder to obtain it. See Backgrounds, below.
    Deception/Persuasion: See Intimidation, above.
    Investigation: Seeing through illusions and playing detective? I like it. You have the intelligence for it, anyway.
    Nature/Religion: See History, above.
    Medicine/Performance: No.
    • Sleight of Hand: I believe you need Expertise to really rock this.
    Stealth: A good one for DEX builds. Teaming up with the rogue on an ambush is always nice.

    BACKGROUNDS
    I won’t say much about backgrounds, because they should reflect your character’s story, and no guide should help you with that. But if you want a specific skill (namely Arcana), you can, by default, create a custom background. I can see an ‘Arcane Soldier’ background with Athletics and Arcana as skills, for example. Talk to your DM.

    CLASS FEATURES
    Fighting Style
    Archery: If you want to make a living out of a bow, take it immediately. Works especially well with Sharpshooter.
    Defense: EK’s should have more protection than any other Fighter due to their spells. If you want to focus on this strength, instead of dealing more damage, take it.
    Dueling: For shield users (both in DEX and STR) who want to deal more damage consistently, as opposed to having more AC. Both are good.
    • Great Weapon Fighting: Greataxes and greatswords are more viable for Battlemasters and Champions than you, but nothing’s stopping you from shoving that arcane halberd up their stomachs.
    • Protection: It’s been said that having a high AC is worth nothing if enemies are not targeting you, and I kinda agree, but you already get two solid uses for your reaction in melee, and this makes one too many.
    Two-Weapon Fighting: No. You must use the Attack action to use the off-hand attack (no casting spells and attacking with it), you give up a shield for it and it doesn’t scale well with your many attacks. Run.

    • Second Wind: Minor healing. Save it for when you really need it (-50%HP), or before you take a short rest.

    • Action Surge: Oh yeah. Now you can not only double your number of attacks once per rest, but also attack and cast a spell. Make it count.
    A few uses of this for an EK include: Using a ranged spell after killing everyone in your vicinity, casting two spells in the same round, and doubling your speed to chase foes. Two uses per rest on level 17. We’ll be talking more about this later.

    • Weapon Bond: The main use of this feature is for the shielded without the War Caster feat; drop your weapon, perform the spell with somatic components and then conjure it back to your hand with your bonus action. Another less mentioned use is for situations where you can’t have weapons with you (parties, meetings, etc.). If hell breaks loose there, you’re not a sitting duck.

    • Spellcasting: Discussed later.

    • Ability Score Improvement: You get 7 of those in your career without multiclassing; which is good, since we also have to boost our intelligence. Max out your attacking stat first, taking care of Constitution and Intelligence later (at level 20, both Constitution and Intelligence should be from 14 to 18). Choose feats intermittently.

    • Extra Attack: The main reason we’re on this ride and not other gishes. 1 at 5, 2 at 11, 3 at 20.

    • War Magic: Offensively, there's not much difference between attacking more and than using a cantrip and one attack. The magic (!) of this is the special effects of certain cantrips: Chill Touch prevents healing and stalls undead, Frostbite gives attack disadvantage, and so on. Strategize according to your foes. (Action Surging, you can now cast a spell, a cantrip and attack on the same turn.)
    The SCAG cantrips are a prime choice for this, because you can attack twice (giving approximately the same damage as three attacks) and give them another effect along with it.

    • Indomitable: People underestimate this feature, but it remedies one of the fighter’s main problems in earlier editions: being vulnerable to magic. One use at 9, two uses at level 13, three at 17. Save it for the effects that would KO or dominate you.

    • Eldritch Strike: Remember that time in the tavern when the Sorcerer made fun of you for your crappy save DCs? No more of that. Now enemies you hit have disadvantage on the next save against your spells, and boy oh boy is it profitable. Action Surging, you can use your full attack routine, then cast a spell which your enemy (or enemies, according to how many you attacked) will probably fail. More minicombos on this later.

    • Arcane Charge: The main use of this will be to spread out your attacks more efficiently when Action Surging, since it usually doubles your speed (you can move, act, teleport and act again). Other uses include getting out of harm’s way for casting spells or attacking at range, chasing bad guys and reaching higher/lower places without effort.

    • Improved War Magic: This comes too late to be optimal in my opinion, but it’s still solid. With Action Surge, you can cast two spells and attack once, or use all your attacks, cast a spell and attack once more.

    FEATS
    As mentioned before, you need to buff 3 stats, so you probably won’t have room for as many feats as other fighters. Only noteworthy mentions here; if you think something else should be here let us know.

    Alert: Initiative is cool, not being surprised is cooler and negating advantage from invisible creatures is ice cold. Put it on the 'later' list.
    • Great Weapon Master: Makes True Strike a bit better, and is especially good with Hold Person (heard you like crits, so you get another crit on top of all those crits as a bonus action!). If you went for reach weapons, there's no reason not to take it. You will want some attack bonus from your buddies, like Bardic Inspiration, to enjoy it.
    Lucky: Is there a character that wouldn’t make good use of this feat?
    Mage Slayer: Thanks to their defensive capabilities and fast movement/teleportation, EKs make some of the best mage slayers out there. With this, casters will think twice before leaving your grasp, and you can stand within 5 feet of them fully relaxed with the advantage on your saves.
    Magic Initiate: One of the (many) uses of this feat is to become a Panzer tank: pick up Shield of Faith from the cleric’s list and boost your AC even further. You can also use it for an extra daily spell and two cantrips from any class. I’ve actually made an entire thread on this feat, if you’re interested. Also, as seen here, you can use your own spell slots to cast the spell you learned.
    There's also nothing wrong with using this feat for Wizard spells; grab yourself cantrips that improve your battlefield strategies, like Lightning Lure and Sword Burst, and another school-free spell you need.
    • Mobile: Good for small races not to lag behind on a chase, and any other EK who wants to get to the baddest villain in the field more easily.
    • Resilient (DEX): For DEX builds who have an odd Dexterity and really want to make those area saves.
    Resilient (WIS): Since you can handle attack damage and area damage well, the obvious next step is to reinforce your mental defenses. You don't want to be dominated and kill your buddies, or run away like a little kobold. Start with 11 or 13 WIS if planning for this.
    Sentinel: If you feel the bad guys are avoiding you and targeting your fragile companions, take this to show them some respect.
    Sharpshooter: A must for archers. Also makes True Strike a bit better. As with GWM, beg for Bless or Faerie Fire from your comrades.
    Shield Master: If you're using a shield, you may take this if you want to make the most of it. Beware, the bonus action competes with War Magic, and the reaction competes with Absorb Elements.
    War Caster: EKs don’t need this as fast as Valor Bards because of Weapon Bond, but this frees your bonus action, and you will need those bonus actions later on. This makes you a better tank with GFB and BB as opportunity attacks, and never failing a concentration save is aces too (never is too much, but with proficiency you'll have around 98% chance of keeping it). If you're not using a shield, this isn't mandatory.
    Last edited by Specter; 2017-04-17 at 03:42 PM.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Specter's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Brazil

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    SPELLS
    Rules of the class:
    - Your spell list is the wizard spell list.
    - You may only choose evocation and abjuration spells for most of your spells (except for cantrips, those can come from any school).
    - Whenever you get a Fighter level, you can swap one spell you know for another. So if a given spell is not working in your campaign, go for something else.
    - One spell you pick at level 3, 8, 14 and 20 can come from any school. Choose them wisely, Padawan.

    Cantrips
    • Acid Splash - d6 damage, but you can target 2 close foes with it.
    Blade Ward - There are niche situations where this can be good, but usually the Dodge action (or getting the hell out of the way) are better. Still, if you're going against many enemies or guarding a tight space...
    Booming Blade - Very nice if you're playing a defender, since this damages foes who move. If you have the Mobile feat or a rogue multiclass this goes to gold, due to practically forcing the damage on the enemy. With War Magic, you're the best user of this, and at some levels it will be better to use this than attacking. Protecting allies gets easier with this because enemies will think twice before moving and getting boomed.
    Chill Touch - d8 damage, good range, and no healing for the target for 1 round. It gets better when used against undead, especially with War Magic.
    Control Flames - Mostly for roleplaying purposes. As for all cantrips in this category, only take it if you find it really cool.
    Create Bonfire - A little battlefield control paired with convenience.
    Dancing Lights - A bit fancier than Light, but requiring concentration and providing dim light. I'll take Light over this any day.
    • Fire Bolt - A staple for the pyromaniac in all of us. Blue if you dumped DEX, because it gives you an at-will ranged attack.
    Friends – You have the Charisma of a chair, pass.
    Frostbite - A CON save for d6 damage, giving disadvantage on the foe’s next attack. I like it. With War Magic, you can effectively stall folks who only have one attack. Also remember to use this if someone's destroying your frail friends.
    Green Flame Blade - Basically you attack as part of casting it, and another foe close to the target gets some damage (equal to your spellcasting modifier). You have better ways of dealing with grouped enemies, but this one doesn't cost you a spell slot, and War Magic is always around the corner. As with Booming Blade, sometimes this is better than attacks. After getting this, you should be looking for enemies that are next to each other to deal as much damage as possible. Taking either this or BB is mandatory for melee.
    Gust - Minor pushing, object-throwing and fluff. Pass.
    Infestation: Bad range, bad damage and a mild effect that will be more useless than useful. Whatever.
    • Light - The utility of this over a torch is that a torch needs a free hand, while this can be cast at anything, anywhere. Still, you have few cantrips, so this is better left to other casters (BLTOC, from now on).
    • Lightning Lure - Minor damage while pulling the enemy closer. This is what you want to pull enemies away from the flimsy team members and towards your robust self. From SCAG.
    • Mage Hand - 30 feet of distance between yourself and what you're handling is the difference between life or death, sometimes. BLTOC, though.
    Mending - Has its uses in breaking and entering, or if the DM insists on tearing the party's equipment. BLTOC
    • Message - Silent, precise and tactical communication, with good range. Great for dungeon exploring and sneaking.
    Minor Illusion - It seems 5e is really about rewarding creative players, since free illusions forever is probably as good as a cantrip gets. There are many threads with uses of this, with alley screams and a chest of treasure being my favorites.
    • Mold Earth - Some good uses of this include hiding treasure, bringing down walls and creating foxholes. BLTOC
    Poison Spray - The d12 damage looks pretty neat, until you realize it targets Constitution, those who succeed on it take no damage, and poison is the most resisted damage type in the game.
    Prestidigitation – BLTOC. But really, beg someone to take it to clean your bloody clothes.
    • Ray of Frost - If you prefer to attack from range, this can be better than Fire Bolt because it slows the enemy. Might be worth a look for archers.
    Shape Water - Mostly a thematical cantrip, which has the same flavor of Control Flames and a bit more utility. Iced drinks, baby! BLTOC
    • Shocking Grasp - I'm really not into damage cantrips if there's no utility involved, but this one is a bit better because it removes reactions from the enemy.
    Sword Burst – If you’re surrounded by more than 3 enemies, this is good, but that’s not your everyday situation. From SCAG.
    Thunderclap - For this to be optimal, you need to be surrounded. Very similar to Sword Burst.
    Toll the Dead: Enemies are more often wounded than not, so the d12 damage should be easy to reach. Also, with War Magic and Eldritch Strike, you can ensure they will be wounded and saving with disadvantage. A solid pick for your 10th level cantrip.
    True Strike – With War Magic you’re actually the only guy who can pull this off, but it’s still the most poorly designed cantrip ever.

    So the basics for cantrips: if you're on melee you have to take either Booming Blade or Green-Flame Blade if you want to make the most of your damage. After that seek some utility or a way to deal with foes that would be hard for you (like Fire Bolt for flying enemies). If you're an archer, focus on stuff that will get you out of a jam or hinder your enemies with specific effects (Ray of Frost, Sword Burst, etc.).

    LEVEL 1
    Absorb Elements – A must for any EK. Halve the damage from five kinds of energy, and add 1d6 of that energy to your next attack. What can you say about a spell that mitigates most of your worries from the omnipresent area spells?
    Alarm – For a sound night of sleep? Unless you’re in a solo campaign, there should be a nightwatch going on.
    Burning Hands – A bit of crowd damage at early levels. It’s a shame the cone isn’t bigger.
    Chromatic Orb – The fact that you can choose from six different energy types for this spell makes it good for exploiting vulnerabilities, and 3d8 is no joke, especially at early levels. Note the material component is not consumed.
    Earth Tremor – Up to 16 creatures make saves. If they fail, they take damage and fall. Good for giving advantage and setting up difficult terrain.
    • Mage Armor – DEX builds can get more AC from this than from studded leather. However, it lasts for 8 hours, and spell slots are a thing.
    Magic Missile – Ah, the old classics. The damage from this is pretty lame, but with your average Intelligence, you can benefit from something that hits your target from afar no matter what.
    Protection from Evil and Good – This is a very situational spell, but when the situation arises, accept no substitute.
    Shield – Another must for any self-respecting EK, +5AC is huge, and it lasts until your next turn. With your great AC, few things should be hitting you with this in effect. Furthermore, this spell is fun: turning a killing blow against you into nothing is a warm and tender feeling. Note that this is best used right after your turn (or during your turn, if you take attacks of opportunity), for longer duration.
    • Thunderwave – So, up to 9 guys make saves and failing take damage and are moved; this is obviously oriented towards crowd control, and can be good in these situations. Also, never underestimate a noise that reaches out to 300 feet.
    Witch Bolt – Bad range and bad action economy are all that’s going for this spell.
    (Remember you can use higher level slots for Shield and Absorb Elements, kids.)

    Level 3 spell - suggestions
    • Charm Person - Good for social situations, and a few combat ones.
    • Disguise Self - This is not your trade, but I have yet to see a campaign where this is not good.
    • Expeditious Retreat - If you want to really rack up that speed.
    • Find Familiar - Scouting? Yes. Advantage on one attack per turn? Yes. Flavor? Yes. Archers must remember the familiar can cast touch spells for you.

    LEVEL 2
    • Aganazzar’s Scorcher – For those of you waiting for Fireball. A bit better than Burning Hands, but not great either.
    Arcane Lock – It’s a shame to see that the only 2nd-level abjuration spell is for locking doors. BLTOC.
    • Continual Flame
    – I can’t think of many situations where this would be useful.
    • Darkness – Think of this as a panic button against melee and ranged attacks; if they can’t see you or know where you are, they can’t hit you either, and meanwhile you can drink potions or otherwise prepare yourself (did I say yourself? Your wounded friends can hide here too). If you’re going for some insane warlock multiclass, this goes up in rating.
    • Gust of Wind – Good for control in corridors and tight spaces, but frankly not much else.
    • Melf’s Acid Arrow – Decent damage against one target, who then takes mediocre damage on its next turn. The brightside is that it gives some damage even if you miss.
    Scorching Ray – Good damage to one foe, or decent damage to three foes? The fact that you can choose makes it decent.
    Shatter – The best in terms of area damage you can have at this point. Remembers it makes a boom.
    Snilloc’s Snowball Swarm – Shatter is better.
    (If most level 2 spells look a little meh, it’s because they are. But once you get third level spells, you can start swapping them for those.)

    Level 8 spell – suggestions
    • Hold Person – Discussed on Strategy.
    • Blur/Mirror Image – If you want even more dodginess, that’s the way to go. Mirror Image requires no concentration, but with Blur you can kill a 20th-level rogue all by yourself. Up to you.
    • Blindness/Deafness – Solid debuffing. With Eldritch Strike coming in two levels, you can attack them and Action Surge to give them disadvantage on the save.
    • Levitate – For archers to avoid melee. If you reach lvl14, swap it for Fly.
    • Misty Step – For extra mobility.
    • Shadow Blade - If you just want a damage increase, this is for you. If you already have a magic weapon, though, it's slightly less valuable.

    LEVEL 3
    • Counterspell – This is a great spell, but unfortunately not so much for you. You should be using your reaction often, and full casters should be using level 17 spells at this point (which would require a DC17INT check to counter). But still, it’s nice.
    • Dispel Magic – Very similar to the former, but it can end a magical effect that’s already cast. I would choose only one of the two, if any.
    Fireball – Oh yeah. Even at level 13, 8d6 is a lot of damage to be spread out (optimally) to a lot of foes. Plus, it’s a classic.
    Lightning Bolt – I find this one cooler than Fireball, and also easier to avoid friendly fire. Pick your favorite.
    • Glyph of Warding – With this, you can become a trapmaster. Whether that’s useful in your campaign or not, you tell me.
    Leomund’s Tiny Hut – I like it, but it’s very BLTOC.
    Magic Circle – Think of it as ‘Protection from Evil and Good 2.0’. If you found the first one useful, take this one as well.
    Melf’s Minute Meteors – On the turn you cast it, you may be let down by it, but on the next two you will be performing all your attacks AND still damaging them in area. Definitely a damage booster.
    Nondetection – Why?
    Protection from Energy – This was meant to be ‘Absorb Elements 2.0’, but it requires concentration, uses an action and protects against only one kind of energy. Unless you know what you’re going to face, pass.
    Remove Curse – Pretty sure the cleric can prepare this when needed.
    • Sending – Kinda situational, kinda cool, kinda BLTOC.
    • Wall of Sand – An efficient way to shut down archers and slow the enemy down when escaping (in escapes smaller than 30 feet, of course).
    • Wall of Water – Use this to stall archers and to protect your group from flamy creatures (you don’t care about them, you absorb the fire and give it back as damage).

    Level 14 spell – Suggestions
    • Haste: An extra attack and +2AC is hard to turn down. If you didn’t go for my Magic Initiate strategy (covered on feats), take it. BUT, don't ever use this against mages, because they will easily dispel you and make you waste another turn.
    • Flame Arrows – Archers may find it nice. Would be better if the casting time were a bonus action.
    • Fly – Archers will profit from it. If you already know Levitate, swap that for this instead.
    • Slow – If you prefer some debuffing instead of buffing yourself. Especially useful with Eldritch Strike (attack many foes, use this and watch them cry on the save).

    LEVEL 4
    (most of us won’t get this far, but still…)
    Banishment – A good spell, but I would leave it to other casters. Oh wait, they’ve had this for 12 levels now? OK.
    Fire Shield – The fact that this doesn’t require concentration makes it all worthwhile.
    Ice Storm – A bit less damage than Fireball with more battlefield control.
    Mordenkainen’s Private Sanctum – What?
    Otiluke’s Resilient Sphere – The ultimate panic button. Or, the ultimate panic prison.
    Stoneskin - This is great! If you get it at level 7 and later dump it, that is.
    Storm Sphere – So, difficult terrain where chumps take damage along with bonus action lightning attacks? Bring it on!
    • Vitriolic Sphere – Good range on this one, but the damage is obsolete by now, I guess.
    • Wall of Fire – Damage and battlefield control paired together. Feel free.

    Level 20 spell – suggestions
    Mobility? Dimension Door. Dodging/advantage on attacks? Greater Invisibility. Control? Evard’s. Why am I telling you this? If you’re a level 20 character, do whatever you like!
    Last edited by Specter; 2017-12-21 at 07:56 AM.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Specter's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Brazil

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    MULTICLASSING
    Two things are worth noting: first, there is nothing wrong with going pure EK, mainly because you will get four attacks, great HP, more ASIs than anyone and extra Action Surge. Second, I would suggest taking at least 12 EK levels to build one, since three attacks and extra ASIs speak volume. That being said...

    Barbarian: Not casting spells while in a rage? Forget it. If you're going for Great Weapon Master, you could grab 2 levels for Reckless Attack, but that hardly seems worth it.
    Bard: You don't have the CHA for it. Go Wizard instead. If you do have the CHA, Bardic Inspiration will interfere with War Magic, and their best spells are also on the Wizard list.
    • Cleric: If you happen to have 13 WIS, a few War Cleric levels gets you nice offensive features, along with good spells and extra spell slots. Arcana cleric gets you more cantrips as well. Shield of Faith and Bless can't hurt either.
    Druid: The spells aren't bad, but... nothing's very good either.
    Monk: Nothing of value to you going on here.
    Paladin: CHA and STR required. The only good thing I can see going on for it is Divine Smite.
    • Ranger: For archer builds who can bother with a 13 WIS, this will give you another fighting style, spell slots that progress at every two levels and some more DPR with Hunter's Mark/Colossus Slayer. No more than 4 levels, Extra Attack won't stack.
    Rogue: Viable for DEX builds not only for Sneak Attack, but also due to their extra defensive abilities. It's worth noting that by going Arcane Trickster, you can get spell slots as if you were taking one-third of your level in the wizard class (So EK9/AT9/Wiz 2 would have the spell slots of an 8th-level wizard, for instance).
    • Sorcerer: With Quickened Spell/Twinned Spell and Action Surge, you can completely destroy the action economy of the game, but that would require boosting CHA and forgetting INT. Up to you.
    Warlock: More CHA, this time without much use to anything. Also, few spell slots, unlike other casters. If you really want to do this, do it for the invocations, not the spells.
    Wizard: Extra slots and extra spell selection based on any school are good enough by themselves, and the school features make it better. If you're not an elf you should choose between the schools of Divination (Portent for glory) and Abjuration, but if you are...
    Bladesinger. Gents, throw your shields away. You're now adding INT to your AC. Oh yeah! The bonus on speed and concentration is also aces. Don't take more than five levels, though, since Extra Attack goes to waste.

    GENERAL STRATEGY

    - Armor class: As you’ve noticed, EKs are the best defensive Fighters out there. I have mentioned the use of two-handed weapons, but they really shine with a shield in hand. Here’s how AC can work for a STR build (DEX builds should be one point behind with max DEX):
    Full plate + shield: 20
    Full plate + shield + Defense fighting style: 21
    Full plate + shield + Defense fighting style + Shield (spell): 26
    Full plate + shield + Defense fighting style + Shield (spell) + Haste or Shield of Faith (obtained through Magic Initiate): 28
    Very few builds have this much AC without magic items.

    If you have Blur up instead of Shield of Faith, it makes them attack you with disadvantage. If you have Mirror Image, they have to gamble to hit you and not one of your three copies. Both spells are available at level 8, or maybe even earlier if you multiclass Sorc/Wizard.

    - Damage: War Magic with SCAG cantrips is better than attacking from levels 7-10, and in some situations even further down the road. The main question is: how many bonus action uses you have other than Second Wind? If you plan on keeping it busy, then go for another attack at level 11. If not, then stick with War Magic.
    In some fights you will prefer to concentrate on damaging spells rather than defensive ones. The best of those will be the ones that use your bonus action to deal damage (such as Melf’s Minute Meteors and Storm Sphere). If your targets have monstrous AC like you, forget attacking and go for save cantrips (Frostbite, Acid Splash, etc.) or save spells (Shatter, Fireball, etc.).

    - Actions: A good player must always know what to do with its actions. Since you're a fighter, most of your actions will be spent attacking, but cantrips and spells will also be there for you when you need them. As for your bonus action, you've got Second Wind and Weapon Bond (situational), and later on War Magic. If possible, find other uses like Misty Step, Shield of Faith and Quickened Spell. For your reaction, you've got Shield and Absorb Elements, which should be plenty, so don't bother hunting down others.

    - Diversification: As you might have noticed, 90% of your saves target DEX, and you need to add diversity to that. Shatter is a good start, since it targets CON. Frostbite too. When possible, also grab one that requires a WIS save (good example below). That way, you won’t be extremely pigeonholed. The same goes for energy types, too.

    - Hold Person + Eldritch Strike + Action Surge (or The EK Annihilation): On the first round, attack a humanoid in any fashion you like. On the second one, cast Hold Person (they will save with disadvantage). On that same round, Action Surge to perform your regular attack routine, except this time with advantage… and critting on every hit. Who needs a Champion?

    - Teamwork: Your job is very simple, kill all enemies without getting killed, and if possible protect your comrades. Really, that’s it. Use stuff like Booming Blade and Lightning Lure to make them focus on you if needed.
    EKs enjoy being buffed. A lot. Some of the things they enjoy are Bless, Warding Bond (if the cleric is not taking damage too), Haste, Greater Invisibility and of course, Bardic Inspiration.
    It’s also important to note that they require less healing than the average combatant, simply because they take less damage. For this same reason, healing spells are more valuable on them than say, a Ranger or a Paladin. Whenever possible, show love to your EK neighbor, and they shall reward you.

    MAGIC ITEMS
    If your DM gives you a say on magic items, this is what you should look for. This is a list tailored to EKs; not all good items will be here, just the ones you can benefit from the most. Gold shows something that is too good to pass.

    UNCOMMON
    - Adamantine armor: If you've followed the steps towards having a monstrous AC, you should also negate crits entirely to annoy your DM even further! Preferable for STR builds.
    - Boots/Cloak of Elvenkind: For those who want to rock Stealth.
    - Cloak of Protection: +1 AC and saves? Why not?
    - Gauntlets of Ogre Power: STR builds can use these to pump their strenght at the beginning of their career (or indefinitely), while DEX builds can always appreciate carrying more weight and wearing any kind of armor.
    - Goggles of Night: For those without Darkvision. Yes, it's important.
    - Headband of Intellect: Oh yeah. With this, you can focus on your attacking stat and constitution while still having an amazing to-hit and DC for spells.
    - Mithral Armor: For STR builds who don't want to clank their party out of a surprise round. Get Stealth while you're at it.
    - Necklace of Adaptation: Anything that protects you from area effects and terrain hazards (one of EK's weaknesses) is good.
    - Pearl of Power: For someone whose spell list rarely goes beyond 3rd level, this is fitting.
    - Periapt of Health: Same as Headband of Intellect, but pumping a different (and equally important) stat.
    - Shield +1 (and further): Obviously oriented towards the shield builds. The more AC, the merrier.
    - Spell scrolls: Some DMs will let you cast any spell from a scroll if you have spellcasting, while other will only let you cast spells from your own class (in your case, wizard). In any case, pick all the good, non-abjuration-non-evocation stuff you normally wouldn't have access to.
    - Weapon +1 (and further): The cornerstone of being effective at higher levels. You want at least a +1 bonus to avoid nonmagical weapon resistance, which gets progressively more common.
    - Winged Boots: Say goodbye to the impotence of doing mediocre damage to flying creatures.

    RARE

    - Armor +1 (and further): Read "Shield +1", above.
    - Bracers of Defense: If you get ahold of Mage Armor, this will provide your DEX build with tremendous AC.
    - Boots of Speed: More speed is more speed.
    - Cloak of Displacement: Disadvantage on attacks against you? I guess you can solo a whole army now.
    - Flame Tongue: A solid damage boost to both two-handers and shielders.
    - Ioun Stone
    Agility: For DEX builds.
    Awareness: Eat your heart out, Assassins.
    Protection: You know the deal.
    Reserve: This is basically either giving yourself more daily spells (if you cast spells in it after the end of a day, or on downtime) or having other spell choices (if your buddies cast spells into it). Can't go wrong either way.
    - Mantle of Spell Resistance: No reason not to have advantage on all magical saves.
    - Ring of Evasion: Very nice for DEX builds.
    - Ring of Protection: Just like a cloak of protection.
    - Ring of Spell Storing: The same as a Reserve Ioun Stone, except with better spell levels.
    - Shield of Missile Attraction: If you're using a shield, you should take those arrows instead of your frailer buddies.
    - Sun Blade: The lightsaber you've always wanted.

    VERY RARE
    - Animated Shield: Greatsword users can now enjoy all (or most) of a shield's benefits.
    - Frost Brand: Another 'can't go wrong' weapon.
    Ioun Stone
    - Agility: For DEX builds.
    - Intellect: For all builds.
    - Strenght: For STR builds.
    - Manuals/Tomes: If you're the guy to use them, then use them all.
    - Oathbow: A great weapon for archers focusing on one enemy. Don't let him get away, or else!
    - Ring of Regeneration: Free hp? Sign me up.
    - Robe of Scintillating Colors: Cloak of Displacement, remix.
    - Robe of Stars: +1 to saves, powerful auto-hit attacks and planar travel, huh? Cool.
    - Spellguard Shield: Pretty much a Mantle of Spell Resistance put on a shield.
    Staff of Power: Probably the ultimate reason to take a wizard dip, and the ultimate shielded EK weapon (but also good for two-handers), a +2 magic weapon that gives +2AC is as good as it gets. That, plus a small smite ability and tons of spells is a godsend. Kill the sorcerer if he wants to take it from you. And god no, don't break it.
    Staff of Striking: More damage, more damage, more damage.

    LEGENDARY

    Armor +3: HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    Defender: I don't know why this is legendary, since a Staff of Power is better than it, but it's okay.
    Robe of the Archmagi: If you're a DEX EK and have a caster dip, this will give you good AC while still boosting your spellcasting capability immensely.
    Sword of Answering: Reaction attacks with advantage? Please.

    SAMPLE BUILDS

    • Tank
    Variant Human EK20
    ST20, DX8, CO18, IN16, WI11, CH8 (racial stats on ST and CO)
    Starting feat: Resilient (WIS)
    ASI's (3): ST+4, CO+2, IN+2
    Feats (4): War Caster, Mage Slayer, Tough
    Spells: C - booming blade, fire bolt, frostbite; 1 - shield, absorb elements, expeditious retreat, protection from good and evil; 2 - shatter, darkness, hold person; 3 - lightning bolt, haste, melf's minute meteors; 4 - fire shield, ice storm, greater invisibility

    Defense/dueling fighting style, full plate ASAP and shield. I'd go for a Warhammer. Mad AC. Tough makes you TOUGH. Spells to deal with hundreds of situations. Simple and fun.

    • Arcane Archer
    Eladrin EK12/Diviner Wizard 8
    ST8, DX17, CO14, IN16, WI10, CH8
    ASI's (3): DX+2, IN+2, CO+2
    Feats (3): Sharpshooter, Resilient (DX), Lucky/Mobile
    EK spells: C - ray of frost, shocking grasp, thunderclap; 1 - absorb elements, shield, mage armor, expeditious retreat, protection from evil and good; 2 - hold person, darkness
    Wizard spells: C - light, message, mage hand, frostbite; 1 - detect magic, tasha's hideous laughter; 2 - blindness/deafness, darkvision, magic weapon, mirror image, see invisibility; 3 - fly, slow, fireball; 4 - greater invisibility, polymorph

    Sharpshooter and five fighter levels ASAP, the rest of the progression is up to you. The wizard school is just a suggestion, but Portent and Lucky save all your bad rolls and almost assure enemies will fail your saves. Arcane Recovery and Expert Divination also help you to recover spell slots, making longer days easier. If you don't care too much about a third feat, go for Wizard 9 and grab 5th-level spells.

    • THE DESTROYER
    Half-Orc EK18/War Cleric 2
    ST20, DX10, CO16, IN14, WI14, CH8
    ASI's (3): ST+4, CO+2
    Feats (3): Great Weapon Master, Resilient (WIS), Sentinel
    EK spells: C - booming blade, green-flame blade, ray of frost; 1 - shield, absorb elements, find familiar; 2 - hold person, scorching ray; 3 - fireball, dispel magic, haste;
    Cleric spells - Any including Divine Favor and Healing Word

    This is a build for those who want to deal more damage and draw more aggro. Cast Divine Favor, let your familiar give advantage on your first attack and smash away with -5/+10. Whenever possible, do the Hold Person gag with Eldritch Strike, for those sweet Half-Orc crits (with five attacks [Action Surge + bonus from War] on the -5, that would be 15d12+5d4+25+50, averaging 185dmg). When in need, add War's +10 to one hit or fire away with those couple bonus action attacks.

    • Dumb Eldritch Sorcerer
    Mountain Dwarf EK11/Wild Magic Sorcerer 9
    ST20, DX10, CO16, IN9, WI12, CH16
    ASI's (3): ST+4, CH+2
    Feats (2): Resilient (WI), Great Weapon Master/Sentinel
    EK spells: C - booming blade, green flame blade; 1 - absorb elements, find familiar, protection from evil and good, shield; 2 - darkness, see invisibility
    Sorcerer spells: C - frostbite, fire bolt, light, minor illusion, shocking grasp; 1 - charm person, expeditious retreat; 2 - blindness/deafness, mirror image; 3 - fear, lightning bolt; 4 - banishment, watery sphere; 5 - animate objects, hold monster

    For those who plan on dumping INT. Quicken/Twin Spell and Eldritch Strike go hand in hand, and Action Surge makes you a behemoth (casting a spell and doubling your attacks). Obviously don't take EK spells that require saves or attack rolls. Two-handed weapon recommended to forgo War Caster.
    ___________
    Thank you for your time.
    Last edited by Specter; 2017-05-08 at 08:34 AM.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    TheTeaMustFlow's Avatar

    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Perfidious Albion

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Aasimar probably shouldn't be gold. Also, Flying and Abyssal Tieflings, Minotaurs, and the Eberron Races.

    I really don't think Half-Elves should be red. If nothing else, +1 to any two attributes should get them up to purple. Furthermore, it's entirely possible to play an EK while dumping INT (by focusing on buffs rather than attack spells), so I'd hardly say it's 'essential'.

    Edit: And Duergar. Also, I'm not sure Bellator Arcana is grammatically correct.
    Last edited by TheTeaMustFlow; 2016-02-23 at 09:30 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Toby Frost
    `This is just the beginning, Citizens! Today we have boiled a pot who's steam shall be seen across the entire galaxy. The Tea Must Flow, and it shall! The banner of the British Space Empire will be unfurled across a thousand worlds, carried forth by the citizens of Urn, and before them the Tea shall flow like a steaming brown river of shi-*cough*- shimmering moral fibre!`

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Specter's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Brazil

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    My bad. It was meant to be red. Thanks for the tip on other races, I'll update when possible.

    While it is possible to play without boosting INT, that will limit their spell selection even further, and that playstyle works best with only a few levels of EK. If that's the intention, well... this guide won't help much.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Corran's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Greece
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Quote Originally Posted by Specter View Post
    STYLE
    Here you must make a choice, which will define your entire career:
    1) STR-based melee EK: By going Strenght, you can shove and grapple enemies, use reach weapons and also have a higher AC. It will make you a little more MAD on overall, though.
    2) DEX-based melee EK: With a rapier as your main weapon, you will be less MAD, better at the important DEX saves and more efficient at the occasional ranged warfare. Important if you want to use Stealth, too.
    3) Archer: Yes, it's entirely possible, and not lacking at all. An EK archer is tougher and more versatile than those from other archetypes, as far as I can speculate (never seen one).
    I think you need to analyse this a bit more in depth. For example, different choice of weapon makes different use of the class features, and that influences up to a certain degree your stat distribution and your spell selection. For example, a dex-based melee EK is most likely to go S&B, so he is most likely to use warmagic more often. While on the other hand, a sharpshooter or GWM EK is more likely to just take the attack action instead of using warmagic. That in turn influences your intelligence score, meaning that a GWM or SS EK is less likely to want to use his action on casting a spell, just because he is missing on his attacks which deal a heck lot of damage, thus it is entirely possible (perhaps maybe even better) to not invest in intelligence (especially in the case of a GWM EK, who needs con), and focus on spells that are not based on intelligence. My point is, that build optimization must go through a lot of such details in order to be accurate, and that all these options interact with each other so you have to find the right synergy if you want to call yourself optimised. Thus begin with the basics, which is weapon of choice, that will railroad each such build up to a significant extent.

    Quote Originally Posted by Specter View Post
    Wisdom: You're no cleric, but important skills are keyed off this, and failing a Wisdom save can take you out of the fight in a second, so dumping this is not an option. Go for 10 on a tight build, or 12 if you have a few points to spare.
    This is just my opinion, but since fighters get so many feats, I always thought that especially for a melee fighter, resilient wisdom is a feat that sooner or later will be selected. Hence I think it is best to plan for this and start with an odd score to your wisdom (or a 12 so that resilient will pump it to 13, if you plan to multiclass with sth that has a 13 wis requirement and you plan on taking resilient wisdom before that multiclass taking place).
    Quote Originally Posted by MaxWilson View Post
    I hereby bestow upon you a magic sword, the Sword of Corran, which will henceforth be the only thing that can permanently destroy my withered undead hand and nose.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Imp

    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Location
    Canada
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Greenflame blade and booming blade should be at least blue. At low levels, before you get your extra attack, they are awesome. Not as good for high levels, but you have no better option for melee one weapon attacking at levels 1-4, and it stays decent at higher levels as well.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Specter's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Brazil

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Well spoken, Corran. Will add depth to it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Belac93 View Post
    Greenflame blade and booming blade should be at least blue. At low levels, before you get your extra attack, they are awesome. Not as good for high levels, but you have no better option for melee one weapon attacking at levels 1-4, and it stays decent at higher levels as well.
    That's fair, except with the few cantrips we get, don't you think it's a trap to get a cantrip which will decrease in use more and more?

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Bellator is Latin for warrior. Arcana is Latin for secret. So this is like secret warrior. Perhaps bellator magus would be closer to what you're going for?

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Specter's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Brazil

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Quote Originally Posted by rtrnofdmax View Post
    Bellator is Latin for warrior. Arcana is Latin for secret. So this is like secret warrior. Perhaps bellator magus would be closer to what you're going for?
    It can also mean 'esoteric'. Anyway, the title is just an attempt at being cool, ignore it.

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    HalflingRangerGuy

    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    where South is East

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    BB / GFB are gold with war magic.

    Warcaster is only gold if you have a shield.

    Most blaster spells come in too late to be of value. You have a weapon for that.


    The best fighter races should be able to start Str16 / Con16 or Dex16 / Con16, that means:
    - Str+2 Con+2 mountain dwarf
    - Dex+2, Con+1 stout halfling
    - Str+2 Con+1 goliath and half-orc
    - Any+1 Any+1 variant human and half-elf
    None of those have any special feature for EK but some have strong combat features.

    High elf cantrip adds a 3rd/4th cantrip and Int+1 might be useful in some build.
    Aarakocra flight has some value.
    Forest gnome saves and Int+2 are great of you got for high Int.


    Str builds are more likely to dump Int and use spells defensively. Since they have a free hand, they can avoid the warcaster tax.
    Trust but verify. There's usually a reason why I believe you can't do something.

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    pwykersotz's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Western Washington
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    All you can upgrade is
    Quote Originally Posted by Specter View Post
    Strenght:


    Sorry, that typo forcibly reminded me of this video.
    Attacking the darkness since 2009.

    List of Unearthed Arcana, Sage Advice, etc.
    Spoiler: Quotes I like
    Show
    Quote Originally Posted by icefractal regarding What would a Cat Lord want? View Post
    She wants the renegade Red Dot brought to her court in chains.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dimers regarding a description of Stygia View Post
    Yes, I believe you have won GitP for the day.
    Quote Originally Posted by pwykersotz regarding randomly rolling edgelord backstories View Post
    Huh...Apparently I'm Agony Blood Blood, Half-orc Shadow Sorcerer. I killed a Dragons. I'm Chaotic Good, probably racist.

  14. - Top - End - #14
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Kobold

    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Euphonistan
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Booming blade gets a lot better with war magic and a multiclass into rogue. Rogue boosts one hit damage and while warmagic reduces your number of attacks booming blade and sneak attack can make up the difference and if you pick up mobile or swashbuckler you can attack and run forcing the enemy to potentially take more damage or use a less effective strategy (if it is a ranged enemy then stay close instead). The ranged version requires giving up 2 levels of rogue to pick up 2 levels of warlock but then you get even more damage using eldritch blast (also hex for a lot of hits). Crossbow expert makes the combo melee friendly too and helps you in the early game.


    Also rogue does not need to be dex primary just 13 dex. Finesse weapons work just fine with strength and it has advantages (expertise with athletics yes please combo with shield master) and you can use plate armor for more defense if you don't care about stealth.

    Also isn't greater invisibility a 4th level spell? I would think that is a very nice spell for offense, defense, and utility.

  15. - Top - End - #15
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    SolithKnightGuy

    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Interesting guide. I might disagree with a few choices here and there but that's mostly opinion.

    One omission: You do get a choice of "any school" 1st level spell at level 3. Might be worth noting some of the interesting choices there. IMO some good ones are Find Familiar (for utility/scouting) and Expeditious Retreat (battlefield mobility).

    Another thing: How does Warcaster free up your bonus action? Not quite sure what that means.

    Also agreed with others that Booming Blade + Warcaster is extremely awesome. A tanky character can slam Booming Blade on a retreating foe and keep them from running. With Sentinel, that character can keep them from attacking others, and the damage after level 5 is much higher than any normal weapon strike. The addition of the SCAG cantrips has really made me like the High Elf, because the extra cantrip can go a really long way on the cantrip-starved EK, and you don't need to burn a cantrip on Fire Bolt as you are a Dex character (so good with bows already).

  16. - Top - End - #16
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    DruidGuy

    Join Date
    Oct 2015

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    True Strike doesn't synergize with War Magic, it activates on your next turn.
    Last edited by Saggo; 2016-02-24 at 12:24 AM.

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Kobold

    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Euphonistan
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Also if you do use war magic it makes the AC boosting fighting styles better for you. What makes dueling so good is getting the bonus 1-4 times every round but with war magic it only goes up to two which is worth not quite as much. Defensive with other boosts to AC can be very effective.

    Also for the rogue multiclass action surge can be used to reserve your action to use a booming blade on another turn thus getting sneak attack again with an additional bonus of booming blade damage. Worth more than an additional attack action or standard use of a cantrip (except for perhaps the version using EB as it may deal more damage by just using EB).
    Last edited by MeeposFire; 2016-02-24 at 12:36 AM.

  18. - Top - End - #18
    Troll in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Massachusetts

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    I like it, very useful guide.
    And good talk on spells and thier saves, and having a variety.
    Agree resilient wisdom is a must, many failed saves there.
    And I like your detailed use of action surge, in fact more is better.

    War cleric/EK is awesome, especially for archers who can now get an extra chance to land sharpshooter.

    A very tanky class, and 7 feats, no reason not to have a maxed attack stat pronto and magic initiate is great.

    A mini thread on how to really exploit action surge legitamitely would be nice. Bravo

  19. - Top - End - #19
    Troll in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    Finland
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    I might add that Protection Style with Alert feat might be even gold. Or Protection style blue with Alert. Those two complement each other so well.
    Last edited by Arkhios; 2016-02-24 at 04:57 AM.
    My 5th Edition D&D Homebrew:
    Don't look for an insult when there is none.


    Quote Originally Posted by Anon von Zilch View Post
    Words actually mean things, people!

  20. - Top - End - #20
    Troll in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Massachusetts

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Quote Originally Posted by Arkhios View Post
    I might add that Protection Style with Alert feat might be even gold. Or Protection style blue with Alert. Those two complement each other so well.
    And an excellent use for your reaction to boot. You know we are running the new Ravenloft, and an EK may be a good addition to the party.

  21. - Top - End - #21
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

    Join Date
    Feb 2016

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Throw on another vote for making Green Flame Blade and Booming Blade at least blue. They're awesome for low level play, and in particular shine for players who are only ever going to take 7 levels of this class, which is a relatively common plan (because 13 levels of wizard after 7 levels of EK still gets you 7th level spells). In that world you've only ever got two attacks, so War Magic with a weapon attack cantrip means you're still making two attacks, plus the effect of the cantrip (either damage to another target or damage if they move). They're kind of sketchy from level 5-6, but still very worth it IMO.

    Thanks for writing this, there's basically no other guides out there that really think about EKs, so it was definitely needed.

  22. - Top - End - #22
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    SolithKnightGuy

    Join Date
    Nov 2015

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Hey man, coffee tables can be pretty charismatic. They bring the whole room together.

  23. - Top - End - #23
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Specter's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Brazil

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Quote Originally Posted by miburo View Post
    Interesting guide. I might disagree with a few choices here and there but that's mostly opinion.

    One omission: You do get a choice of "any school" 1st level spell at level 3. Might be worth noting some of the interesting choices there. IMO some good ones are Find Familiar (for utility/scouting) and Expeditious Retreat (battlefield mobility).

    Another thing: How does Warcaster free up your bonus action? Not quite sure what that means.

    Also agreed with others that Booming Blade + Warcaster is extremely awesome. A tanky character can slam Booming Blade on a retreating foe and keep them from running. With Sentinel, that character can keep them from attacking others, and the damage after level 5 is much higher than any normal weapon strike. The addition of the SCAG cantrips has really made me like the High Elf, because the extra cantrip can go a really long way on the cantrip-starved EK, and you don't need to burn a cantrip on Fire Bolt as you are a Dex character (so good with bows already).
    First of all thanks for reminding me of the level 3 spell. Completely forgot about it.
    By 'freeing' the bonus action, I mean you can cast the spell with weapon and shield, instead of dropping the weapon and using Weapon Bond to summon it back to your hand.

  24. - Top - End - #24
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    ClericGuy

    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    California
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    First of all, this is a fantastic guide. Well done mate. One of the things I'd like to bring up is you not including Inspiring Leader on your list of feats. I know you advise to dump charisma, but you could play a 10 int EK with 14 charisma and all of a sudden you're providing a nice little temp hp bonus to your entire party that is useful throughout the entire length of the game.

    Thoughts?
    Be excellent to each other.

  25. - Top - End - #25
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

    Join Date
    Aug 2014

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Quote Originally Posted by Biggstick View Post
    First of all, this is a fantastic guide. Well done mate. One of the things I'd like to bring up is you not including Inspiring Leader on your list of feats. I know you advise to dump charisma, but you could play a 10 int EK with 14 charisma and all of a sudden you're providing a nice little temp hp bonus to your entire party that is useful throughout the entire length of the game.

    Thoughts?
    I'd leave charisma at 10-12 in favor of str/dex, con and int and still take the feat. Your cha modifier matters less and less as levels increase.

  26. - Top - End - #26
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    ClericGuy

    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    California
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Quote Originally Posted by CantigThimble View Post
    I'd leave charisma at 10-12 in favor of str/dex, con and int and still take the feat. Your cha modifier matters less and less as levels increase.
    To be able to access Inspiring Leader in the first place, you need at least 13 charisma. I only suggested 14 so that you're getting the +2 mod for skill checks, and that 1 extra temp hp per party member per short rest.
    Be excellent to each other.

  27. - Top - End - #27
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Kobold

    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Quote Originally Posted by Specter View Post
    Half-Elf: The CHA bonus is a waste for you, and you’re not starving for skills either.
    Quote Originally Posted by Specter View Post
    Human (Variant): Now we're talking. A bonus skill is always good, and a feat is perfect for the EK, which usually boosts 3 attributes instead of 2 like the usual fighter.
    Quote Originally Posted by Specter View Post
    SKILLS
    Class skills:
    History: You have the intelligence for it, but leave it to another party member if possible; we don’t have many skills as is.

    Non-class skills:
    Arcana: Since this is your trade, proficiency in it is almost mandatory; problem is, if you’re not a Variant Human, it will be harder to obtain it. See Backgrounds, below
    That's a pretty small value range on skill proficiencies. 4 proficiencies = tight, 5 proficiencies (one of choice) = great, 6 skills (two of choice) = too many?

    The drawback of the half-elf is the +2 in a dump stat. The upside is +1 to two stats of choice (as Variant Human), two skills of choice (as variant human +1), Darkvision, and resistance to charm. Oh, and with SCAG, you can trade those extra skills for an elf subclass trait (like that additional cantrip from High Elf, or Drow magic if you go Captain Charisma). Seems more of a purple-to-black given it matches vuman in all things except the feat - which is where vuman wins out.
    Why yes, Warlock is my solution for everything.

    Quote Originally Posted by obryn View Post
    Active Abilities are great because you - the player - are demonstrating your Dwarvenness or Elfishness. You're not passively a dwarf, you're actively dwarfing your way through obstacles.

  28. - Top - End - #28
    Orc in the Playground
     
    joaber's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2015

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    EK/sorcercer is probably the best gishe possible in later game (suck if you start from lvl 1, but every EK suck in early game).

    ek 7/ sorc 3 you can twin booming blade
    ek 11/ sorc 3 you can do 3 attacks and than cast a spell as bonus action

    you can dump int totally since you only use buff spells from EK
    you even can dump Cha (only 13) if you only twin/quick BB, and Buffs.

    But this is stupid, because you can attack 4 times in a round, more 3 in the other and than cast a spell that the targets (up to 7) will save with desadvantage.

    with 3 lvls of warlock you could dump strenght and dex with Cha shillelagh. With quick dissonant whisppers (lvl 1 great old one) and booming blade war caster reaction is (lvl 17th+) +8d8 +3d6 +5 in your bonus action for just a 1st lvl spell slot and 2 SP, you have short rest spell slots with warlock.

    Seriously, if you want to optimize you EK to the max, dump Int, go only to lvl 11 or 12 and multiclass with a Cha class (bard/sorc/warlock).

  29. - Top - End - #29
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Specter's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Brazil

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe the Rat View Post
    That's a pretty small value range on skill proficiencies. 4 proficiencies = tight, 5 proficiencies (one of choice) = great, 6 skills (two of choice) = too many?

    The drawback of the half-elf is the +2 in a dump stat. The upside is +1 to two stats of choice (as Variant Human), two skills of choice (as variant human +1), Darkvision, and resistance to charm. Oh, and with SCAG, you can trade those extra skills for an elf subclass trait (like that additional cantrip from High Elf, or Drow magic if you go Captain Charisma). Seems more of a purple-to-black given it matches vuman in all things except the feat - which is where human wins out.
    What we really need is Athletics/Acrobatics, Arcana and Perception, with another skill of your choice. A feat at 1st-level is entirely gamebreaking, since all other races need to wait 4 levels to take it, and trading their score boost for it. +2 CHA is a dump stat, no matter what build or multiclass you're planning, because if you want the benefits of CHA, you can simply go for other classes that would do the job better. The only exception I can see is for Sorcerer to completely break the action economy with Metamagic (Quicken or Twin) and Action Surge.

  30. - Top - End - #30
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Kobold

    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Bellator Arcana: The Eldritch Knight's guide

    Quote Originally Posted by Specter View Post
    +2 CHA is a dump stat, no matter what build or multiclass you're planning, because if you want the benefits of CHA, you can simply go for other classes that would do the job better. The only exception I can see is for Sorcerer to completely break the action economy with Metamagic (Quicken or Twin) and Action Surge.
    You're out the gate with 2 16's wherever you want them, you can see in the dark, and you can take any background you like. That's not a horrible setup. It's not perfect, but it gets you out the gate as well as wood elf.
    Why yes, Warlock is my solution for everything.

    Quote Originally Posted by obryn View Post
    Active Abilities are great because you - the player - are demonstrating your Dwarvenness or Elfishness. You're not passively a dwarf, you're actively dwarfing your way through obstacles.

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •