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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

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    Default Sell me Horizon Walker

    I was taking a look at the new Ranger archetypes, and I was stuck with this idea: Why go Horizon Walker over Gloom Stalker (Damage wise)?

    The Planar Warrior seems strong on a first glance for me, but I'm not sure the Bonus Action economy works quite well for it. Yes, I'm aware Force is a really good damage type, and that you can use it indefinetly as long as you're at 30 feet of the enemy.

    You have to be kitting the enemy really well to use it as an archer, and if you face multiple enemies, you kinda have to choose between Planar Warrior or moving Hunters Mark to another foe after killing the first one.

    The added spells are really good, but the other features not so much

    Detect Portal is REALLY campaing dependant, and if it doesn't fit on it, you can rarelly use it. Ethereal Step is... OK I guess, but not that great either. Spectral Defense comes REALLY late, but it's good if you do play that far...

    Also, I have a bad time thinking in a backstory for it... So, sell me Horizon Walker please

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    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    I love the Horizon Walker because it allowed me to finally bring my old 3.5 Ranger/Cleric multiclass back to the table.

    Its abilities and theme let you play a perfect "paladin of Fharlanghn" type character, which my old character essentially was.

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    hellgrammite's Avatar

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Your in a campaign that is traveling to other planes, chasing fiends and seeings the gods.

    Otherwise if you like working at night, in dungeons, or in the underdark I would choose the Gloomstalker.

    I would talk to your DM about the nature of the campaign to see if Horizon Walker makes sense.

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    NecromancerGuy

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Quote Originally Posted by trctelles View Post
    I was taking a look at the new Ranger archetypes, and I was stuck with this idea: Why go Horizon Walker over Gloom Stalker (Damage wise)?

    The Planar Warrior seems strong on a first glance for me, but I'm not sure the Bonus Action economy works quite well for it. Yes, I'm aware Force is a really good damage type, and that you can use it indefinetly as long as you're at 30 feet of the enemy.

    You have to be kitting the enemy really well to use it as an archer, and if you face multiple enemies, you kinda have to choose between Planar Warrior or moving Hunters Mark to another foe after killing the first one.

    The added spells are really good, but the other features not so much

    Detect Portal is REALLY campaing dependant, and if it doesn't fit on it, you can rarelly use it. Ethereal Step is... OK I guess, but not that great either. Spectral Defense comes REALLY late, but it's good if you do play that far...

    Also, I have a bad time thinking in a backstory for it... So, sell me Horizon Walker please
    1) Horizon Walker has the best bonus spell list of any of the new ranger subclasses, including Haste, Misty Step and Banishment, three spells that rangers normally wouldn't have access to at all.

    2) Force is one of the best damage types in the game - almost nothing resists it, and Planar Warrior converts all your damage to force damage. The 30' range admittedly isn't great, but that's not an issue at all if you're playing a melee ranger, and may not be much of an issue if you're using hand crossbow, which doesn't have very good range anyway.

    3) Yes, PW costs a bonus action, but when a marked enemy dies, it just takes an extra round to move the mark, and from then on you can use PW and mark on the same target. You can also use PW every round, no matter how long the combat lasts, whereas Gloom Stalker just gets one extra attack on the first round of combat. In a lengthy combat involving multiple enemies, PW will add far more damage than the equivalent Gloom Stalker ability (dread ambusher).

    4) Their level 7 abilities are both situational. The Gloom Stalker proficiency in wisdom saves is good, but only if you're being targeted by spells requiring wisdom saves. Ethereal Step can get you out of anything, any grapple/restraint, any locked room, even out of a pit, since you can move vertically while ethereal. Of course, that doesn't necessarily happen either, so consider which you're more likely to encounter in our campaign.

    5) You may be in a party full of humans, halflings, dragonborn or other creatures without darkvision in which case they'll need a light source during combat. In that case you'll never have the total Darkness you need for the Gloom Stalker's Umbral sight to work.

    6) Both of their level 11 abilities are very good, though completely different. A chance to reroll a missed attack every round (Gloom Stalker) will improve your damage output quite a bit, whereas the ability to teleport 10' before every attack, every round (Horizon Walker) will make you all but immune to opportunity attacks and a killer in difficult terrain, especially if you're playing melee.

    They're both very good subclasses (heck, Monster Slayer looks quite good too).

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    PaladinGuy

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Quote Originally Posted by trctelles View Post
    I was taking a look at the new Ranger archetypes, and I was stuck with this idea: Why go Horizon Walker over Gloom Stalker (Damage wise)?
    haste. case closed. And if that's not enough, distant strike gives you yet another attack every turn, granted you have 3 targets available. I know that can be rare depending on your DM, but if you have the option it's really strong.
    Spoiler: bad tactics
    Show


    I look at the lich and smirk a bit, as I bring myself back to my feet

    "What are you smiling about?" it says

    "hehe, it looks like you've made... a grave mistake :D"

    the bard, actively bleeding out on the ground *ba-dum-tss*

    "Ha! Nice try. Telling a bad joke to try to make your opponent drop their guard. Oldest trick in the book. Trust me, I was there."

    *barbarian falling, sword in hands, from the top of the castle wall directly above the lich*


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    GnomeWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Okay here is the one and only reason to do this:

    it's 'cause you can be Horizon Walker, Texas Ranger.

    And that would make you a pseudo-Chuck-Norris.

    And then you'd be able to do things like:

    count to infinity ... twice,

    set ants on fire with a magnifying glass...at night,

    and win Connect Four in only three moves.

    It would be awesome.

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    ElfRogueGirl

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    All told, between Hunter, Gloom Stalker, and Horizon Walker that damage isn't all that disparate in fights that go a couple rounds. Gloom can get someone really good in the first round but after that their only sustained benefit is increased accuracy. HW and Hunter both have extra attack(s) every round when there are multiple enemies and every-round extra damage.

    The bonus-action "problem" between Planar Warrior and Hunter's mark really isn't a problem. Every ranger has to use their bonus action to move the Mark to a new target. If they TWF they must choose between TWF and moving the mark. If they don't TWF they don't really have a bonus action to use on extra damage after the mark is moved. The conflict is really the same either way.
    In any case, if you're having to move the Mark a lot you probably shouldn't be using Hunters Mark anyway: It means you're fighting many one-round enemies. In that case you have better spells (Ranger's decent AOE) or your spell-less bonus action options (Planar Warrior/TWF) are actually just as much damage.
    Last edited by rbstr; 2018-01-03 at 11:27 AM.

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Here's the thing with the Horizon Walker.

    Honestly, I'm a huge fan of it. It's unlike any other Ranger archetype, so its fairly unique. I love the lv7 feature especially, that's amazing for all sorts of scenarios. Even for combat, if you're swarmed, just go Ethereal and run through people to escape.

    Now, here's where it gets interesting: What builds work well with it?

    It pretty much sucks for an Archery build, unfortunately. You're very limited with the range of the HW abilities.

    Its also situational at best for TWF Rangers, due to the lv3 ability taking up your bonus action. And sure, you won't need to convert things to Force all the time. That's for certain. So it's not THAT big of a deal, until you need it, and your Fighting Style is essentially wasted.

    Duelists? You're good. IMO, most melee Rangers should go Duelist anyways, unless you're going for a Shillelagh build or something.

    GWF Rangers? That's a sticky situation regardless of your Conclave anyways, since you don't get Heavy Armor, need 14 Dex to get the most out of Medium Armor. Means you now need Strength for your weapon, Constitution, and Wisdom. That's spreading you thin. Though if you ARE going GWF, you likely want the GWM Feat, and you need as many ASIs as you can get, so now you're taking one of them with a Feat, and you're even thinner now.

    So, basically, its for Duelists. Which is fine, since the extra d8 damage helps mitigate the lack of TWF.

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    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Quote Originally Posted by jaappleton View Post
    Here's the thing with the Horizon Walker.

    Honestly, I'm a huge fan of it. It's unlike any other Ranger archetype, so its fairly unique. I love the lv7 feature especially, that's amazing for all sorts of scenarios. Even for combat, if you're swarmed, just go Ethereal and run through people to escape.

    Now, here's where it gets interesting: What builds work well with it?

    It pretty much sucks for an Archery build, unfortunately. You're very limited with the range of the HW abilities.

    Its also situational at best for TWF Rangers, due to the lv3 ability taking up your bonus action. And sure, you won't need to convert things to Force all the time. That's for certain. So it's not THAT big of a deal, until you need it, and your Fighting Style is essentially wasted.

    Duelists? You're good. IMO, most melee Rangers should go Duelist anyways, unless you're going for a Shillelagh build or something.

    GWF Rangers? That's a sticky situation regardless of your Conclave anyways, since you don't get Heavy Armor, need 14 Dex to get the most out of Medium Armor. Means you now need Strength for your weapon, Constitution, and Wisdom. That's spreading you thin. Though if you ARE going GWF, you likely want the GWM Feat, and you need as many ASIs as you can get, so now you're taking one of them with a Feat, and you're even thinner now.

    So, basically, its for Duelists. Which is fine, since the extra d8 damage helps mitigate the lack of TWF.
    Not saying that you're wrong, but I've had a ton of fun on my Half-Orc Horizon Walker Ranger that uses a Greataxe. But then again, I didn't take GWM because my group isn't really optimizers, so I didn't really feel like I had to. Left Wis at 13, since I don't take many spells that need it, and can focus on Str and Con for my ASIs. I think that the worst part about my build is that it has a LOT competing for that bonus action most rounds.

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    jaappleton's Avatar

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Quote Originally Posted by Aett_Thorn View Post
    Not saying that you're wrong, but I've had a ton of fun on my Half-Orc Horizon Walker Ranger that uses a Greataxe. But then again, I didn't take GWM because my group isn't really optimizers, so I didn't really feel like I had to. Left Wis at 13, since I don't take many spells that need it, and can focus on Str and Con for my ASIs. I think that the worst part about my build is that it has a LOT competing for that bonus action most rounds.
    I should have phrased myself better.

    You can totally utilize a Strength focused Ranger. I didn't mean to say it's impossible, or even suboptimal.

    However, I think you'll agree, while it's totally do-able, it's also somewhat limiting. By leaving your Wis at 13, you're hamstringing what spells you can utilize to their maximum potential.

    As far as the bonus action comment; Totally agreed. Between many Ranger spells requiring Concentration and many spells and abilities requiring a bonus action, it's often difficult to choose what to do. My table handwaves the Concentration aspect of most offensive Ranger spells, and they do it likewise for the Smite spells of the Paladin. Most tables don't have that luxury, though.

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    NecromancerGuy

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Quote Originally Posted by jaappleton View Post

    So, basically, its for Duelists. Which is fine, since the extra d8 damage helps mitigate the lack of TWF.
    Horizon Walker seems made for sword & board, with the open question being whether to go for strength and medium (or even heavy) armor or dex + studded leather.

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    ClericGuy

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Both Horizon Walker and Monster Slayer make me think of a melee Ranger. And when I consider a melee Ranger, I'm looking at a GWM. It might not be what others think of, but hear me out.

    A typical Ranger has Hunter's Mark as a standard bonus action. Both of the above mentioned Ranger archetypes gain an ability that's based off of bonus actions at level 3. The Horizon Walker's is a bit more "spammable," but here we're gaining another bonus action for a class that admittedly already had a pretty good one. The problem is that both gained bonus actions are pretty close range compared to Hunter's Mark. This means that either Ranger archetype now has 2 solid uses of their bonus action. Adding GWM to the mix helps the Ranger deal with large amounts of creatures by creating a "cleave" mechanic, while massively increasing the damage output of the character.

    Now my image of the character has 14 Dexterity (and Breastplate, as we still can use Pass w/o Trace should we need to sneak up on something), 14 Constitution, 13 Wisdom, and is maxing out Strength. Pick up GWM with either a Human variant feat (or level 4), grab Resilient Wisdom the following ASI, and then max out your Strength.

    Your biggest weakness for the character is potentially maintaining concentration spells and a real lack of being able to truly protect yourself while in melee range. Your focus for the character should be creating situations in which you aren't the primary focus of an enemy, hit and run tactics (which a Horizon Walker is extremely well suited for with Haste, Misty Step, teleporting before each attack, etc), or simply accepting the fact that you're still a Ranger and can use a Longbow with your 14 Dexterity and Hunter's Mark.

    Really, the biggest selling point of the Horizon Walker is it's tons of extra mobility granted both through spells and archetype abilities. If you don't want to play a much more mobile Ranger, play a Hunter.
    Be excellent to each other.

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Theyíre both highly effective ranger archetypes. Mechanically, theyíre not too far apart in strength so choose whichever fits the fluff/flavor or your character more.

    I play a Githyanki Horizon Walker in my campaign and I donít really care if the race choice is optimal or not...a Githyanki Horizon Walker that specializes in killing mind flayers and Aberrations is cool af. Detect Portal can be pretty useful even if youíre not playing a Planescape/plane-hopping campaign. Need to go off-grid during an adventure to be safe from pursuit, find yourself a safe portal to hop into and poof, you and your party are gone. Iím not going to even start talking about Ethereal Step, it allows you to do so many things in combat and in exploration. Itís what would edge the subclass for me over Gloom Stalker. Better, more flavorful and cool ribbons than just one-trick pony mechanics.

    Also, as mentioned before in previous posts, Horizon Walker with GWM (Githyanki Silver Swords ftw!) and Zephyr Strike, Misty Step, Ethereal Step and Distance Strike lets you be the ultimate heavy-hitting melee skirmisher. If playing Revised Ranger, the alpha strike advantage from high initiative and advantage from Zephyr Strike can also help you land those GWM strikes easier. Throw in Haste at later levels and youíre downright beastly and fun to play. My pet peeve with melee characters is stagnant movement and trading blows with an enemy. One of the few things I liked about 4e was the dynamic in-combat movement offered by some abilities. Horizon Walker letís you be all over the battlefield.

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    DrowGuy

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Haste at level 9? Misty Step at level 5? Walker has an insane spell list, prob the greatest 'selling point' from a pure optimizer perspective.

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    JakOfAllTirades's Avatar

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    I've long held the opinion that one can never have too much teleportation, so Horizon Walker is my new favorite Ranger.

    It would be my favorite archetype of all, but the new Warlock Invocation Relentless Hex is like at will teleport on a stick.
    I'LL CAST POWER WORD: THRILL!


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    ElfRogueGirl

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Sure, Haste is good fun, but the real gem for GWM Rangers is Guardian of Nature.
    That's always-on advantage and an additional d6 per hit with strength attacks and there's no downside to losing concentration. And it's a bonus action!

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    People are comparing Planar Warrior to Hunterís Mark, and they are dead wrong: HM needs to be casted once per target, PW needs to be used every turn.

    Compare that to Colossus Slayer, which is literally free damage that lets you cast HM freely and also works on Opportunity Attacks, contrary to PW.

    Horizon walkerís redeeming features are the spell lists and the free teleports, no doubt. Itís still a strong option but damage-wise I still feel like Hunter is the best archetype for constant damage.
    I wrote a lil' guide on how to build an archer in D&D 5e here (WIP).

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    NecromancerGuy

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Quote Originally Posted by TheBirba View Post
    People are comparing Planar Warrior to Hunterís Mark, and they are dead wrong: HM needs to be casted once per target, PW needs to be used every turn.

    Compare that to Colossus Slayer, which is literally free damage that lets you cast HM freely and also works on Opportunity Attacks, contrary to PW.

    Horizon walkerís redeeming features are the spell lists and the free teleports, no doubt. Itís still a strong option but damage-wise I still feel like Hunter is the best archetype for constant damage.
    I'd agree that Colossus Slayer is the more appropriate comparison to Planar Warrior, because both subclasses get Hunter's Mark on top of that.

    CS is simpler and easier. It doesn't cost a bonus action and just happens automatically as long as the target has already taken damage. But it also does only 1d6 extra damage, whereas Planar Warrior does an extra d8 initially, then eventually, an extra 2d8. PW also converts the entire attack's damage to force damage, which means you'll basically never have to worry about it being resisted. But the price for all this is a fairly short range (just 30') and it costs you your bonus action every round.

    I've seen more than a few people who think that the Hunter is inferior to the Horizon Walker, Gloom Stalker and Monster Slayer. But I think the impression exists because the other three subclasses are still shiny and new. Once they've been around for a while and their novelty has faded, I think they won't look as superior to the Hunter as they do to some people right now.

  19. - Top - End - #19
    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Quote Originally Posted by TheBirba View Post
    People are comparing Planar Warrior to Hunterís Mark, and they are dead wrong: HM needs to be casted once per target, PW needs to be used every turn.

    Compare that to Colossus Slayer, which is literally free damage that lets you cast HM freely and also works on Opportunity Attacks, contrary to PW.

    Horizon walkerís redeeming features are the spell lists and the free teleports, no doubt. Itís still a strong option but damage-wise I still feel like Hunter is the best archetype for constant damage.
    I would agree but in terms of fun or effectiveness, DPS might not be the most important measure. I think in terms of fun, versatility and out of combat effectiveness, I think Horizon Walker and Gloom Stalker trumps Hunter. I donít really think of DPS when I evaluate which class I want to play.

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    ElfRogueGirl

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Quote Originally Posted by Strangways View Post
    I've seen more than a few people who think that the Hunter is inferior to the Horizon Walker, Gloom Stalker and Monster Slayer. But I think the impression exists because the other three subclasses are still shiny and new. Once they've been around for a while and their novelty has faded, I think they won't look as superior to the Hunter as they do to some people right now.
    Really, the Hunter's only deficiency is that it doesn't have the bonus spells. Everything else balances out pretty well.

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    HalflingRogueGuy

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    I freaking love the favor of the Horizon Walker and I'd love to play a "man out of time" type character who screams WHAT YEAR IS IT at people when he shows up.

    BUT, the HW's awesomeness seems hit rather hard by the limiters of Planar Walker, which seems like it should be the main feature. Limiters on range, bonus action economy, and even action order seem to really try and fence you in to a particular fighting style. Which is a shame, because dual wielding seems like a natural thematic fit for a rapidly teleporting death dealer.

    I get that they wanted to differentiate it from other subclasses but I really do feel like they went too far. Considering that Slayer's Prey is nearly identical to Hunter's Mark, they should have devised something more flexible for PW. If I'm DMing I'm removing the range requirement to alleviate the frustration a little. Balancing the bonus action/power tradeoff would be trickier.

    Worth noting that Hunter's Mark+a bonus action Attack (2d6+5 vs. 2d8) does more damage unless the target has resistance. Heck, even without Hunter's Mark the average damage is nearly even. If you're two-weapon fighting, you're usually not even using this ability.

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    HalflingRogueGuy

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Thinking it through, I'd probably change Planar Warrior to something like:

    "As a bonus action, you imbue your weapons with planar energy. For the next minute, your weapons deal force damage instead of their regular type, and each hit deals an additional 1d4 damage.
    You can use this ability a number of times equal to your Wisdom modifier per long rest."

    Similar damage that only surpasses the original if you land two or more hits Levels 5-10 and the full four at 11+, in exchange for limited uses, no range limit, and the return of bonus actions.
    Last edited by Nidgit; 2018-01-06 at 04:51 PM.

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    ElfRogueGirl

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    Default Re: Sell me Horizon Walker

    Nidgit I think your desire to change things is misguided, at least in damage/balance terms.
    Worth noting that Hunter's Mark+a bonus action Attack (2d6+5 vs. 2d8) does more damage unless the target has resistance. Heck, even without Hunter's Mark the average damage is nearly even. If you're two-weapon fighting, you're usually not even using this ability.
    Basically you're simply not trading 2d6+5 for 2d8 with TWF+Hunter+ColossusSlayer versus Dueling+HorizonWalker. It's not a truthful accounting of damage by including TWF style but not including dueling style or upgraded damage die for the Planar Warrior user. It's more like 2d6+d8+5 for 2d8+4. (I included colossus slayer for the hunter)

    Round 1, bonus action used on hunter's mark for both:
    TWFHunter - 2x(d6+d6+5)+1d8 = 28.5
    DuelingHW - 2x(d8+d6+7) = 32

    round 2
    Hunter - 3x(d6+d6+5)+d8 = 40.5
    HW - (d8+2d8+d6+7)+(d8+d6+7) = 39

    So it'll be round 4 on the same target before the TWFHunter actually pulls ahead of the DuelingHW. The reality is those numbers are very close but the HW gets to wear a shield.
    Last edited by rbstr; 2018-01-07 at 12:05 AM.

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