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 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 43
  1. - Top - End - #1
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    DruidGuy

    Join Date
    Jul 2019

    Default Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Compared to the ranged combat and two handed combat it seems under appreciated.

    There is no GWM or Sharpshooter for that and PAM loses most of his appeal with that setup. You get that mistic +2 to AC and Shield Master is an intresting but probably niche defensive feat.

    What's your opinion?

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    San Diego
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    2 to 5 (with magic items) AC is a big deal, the defensive benefits of Shield Master are widely applicable, and the ability to shove people as a bonus action is a significant damage-per-round bonus for most martial characters (even if you use the latest ruling that the shove has to come after an attack).

    I would say, against high-AC, high-attack foes or blaster-type spellcasters and monsters, Shield Master is superior to GWM/SS from a purely mechanical standpoint.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    stoutstien's Avatar

    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    SD
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Trandir View Post
    Compared to the ranged combat and two handed combat it seems under appreciated.

    There is no GWM or Sharpshooter for that and PAM loses most of his appeal with that setup. You get that mistic +2 to AC and Shield Master is an intresting but probably niche defensive feat.

    What's your opinion?
    Short answer: no. In most games I run I see more SnB users than THF. About on par with range focused characters.

    Even without one hand PAM cheese a standard duelist fighter can push out solid damage and be less of a drain on resources by taken less damage.
    what is the point of living if you can't deadlift?

    All credit to the amazing avatar goes to thoroughlyS

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Troll in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Los Angeles

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    GWM users suffer from being strength-based and having less AC, and GWM doesnít offer as much of a damage increase as you might think if youíre not factoring in accuracy and the fact that youíre exchanging an ASI for it (so you can kinda think of it as -6/+9). So SnB comes out alright.

    For example a finesse Shadowblade EK build can outdamage many GWM users, and have a sky-high AC and Init relative to a GWMer while theyíre at it.
    Last edited by LudicSavant; 2019-11-14 at 07:54 PM.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

    Join Date
    Nov 2015

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Sure, in terms of damage potential. I wouldn't call it totally suboptimal, since as others point out there are pretty good upsides to it, but the top end damage when you have easy sources of advantage (say, as a level 2 barbarian who gets to just choose to) is in fact noticeably lower. Even more so if your class or build doesn't get access to a good bonus action (and no, I don't count shield master since the shove is only after the attacks now so you yourself can't even benefit from the advantage, as well as the fact that turn order can make it moot, and it can even hinder your allies rather than help them if they're using any ranged attacks).

    I've tried a GWM build on a Vengeance Paladin and hated it compared to all the s+b builds that I had done before and have done since, but maybe that was just an unlucky game for me.

    I've also seen people take whichever power attack feat and make everyone else at the table irrelevant in combat.
    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*


  6. - Top - End - #6
    Titan in the Playground
    Join Date
    Oct 2014

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Trandir View Post
    Compared to the ranged combat and two handed combat it seems under appreciated.

    There is no GWM or Sharpshooter for that and PAM loses most of his appeal with that setup. You get that mistic +2 to AC and Shield Master is an intresting but probably niche defensive feat.

    What's your opinion?
    It's okay as a secondary style for e.g. a Sharpshooter who's temporarily forced into a melee configuration (rapier + shield) due to close quarters combat or not having another tank PC available or really wanting to protect weaker NPCs via opportunity attacks or something.

    The nice thing about sword-and-shield is it really doesn't require any build investment at all, only equipment. You pull out your shield and don it with your action, and you're ready to go: now your party has another tank.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Halfling in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jan 2018

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    We don't see much discussion about dual weapon fighting on this board, but if the DM is gifting out strong magic items I always thought this would be preferable - i.e. wielding 2x swords which are +5 with additional damage 1-6 or 1-8 fire etc. When you want to bring down that Dragon as quickly as possible, a Shield isn't terribly useful?

    Great weapons are fun, but you can only gain the benefit of using a single weapon. Two weapons may have a range of effects - i.e. Weapon one has stun, Weapon two has level drain or health drain etc.
    Last edited by Zerubbabel; 2019-11-14 at 10:31 PM.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    RedWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Canada
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    S&B is far from suboptimal. One less feat ( or shield master), you're tougher, even your damage is pretty much the same against high-AC enemies, if you have the dueling fighting style. (1d8+2 instead of 2d6 average almost the same)

    For barbarian THF is more attractive though (no fighting style, resistance to compensate for lack of shield and advantage for the to-hit penalty)

    Quote Originally Posted by Zerubbabel View Post
    We don't see much discussion about dual weapon fighting on this board, but if the DM is gifting out strong magic items I always thought this would be preferable - i.e. wielding 2x swords which are +5 with additional damage 1-6 or 1-8 fire etc. When you want to bring down that Dragon as quickly as possible, a Shield isn't terribly useful?

    Great weapons are fun, but you can only gain the benefit of using a single weapon. Two weapons may have a range of effects - i.e. Weapon one has stun, Weapon two has level drain or health drain etc.
    The big downside with dual weapon fighting is when you get more then one attack. Even worst on fighter when you're at 3 or 4. Start as +100% attack, then +50%, +33% then +25%.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Orc in the Playground
     
    DruidGuy

    Join Date
    Nov 2018

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Sword and Board is just fine. It doesnít have the max damage potential of the -5/+10 feats, but any time youíre fighting numerous opponents with modest attack bonuses you will really notice the difference.

    If your DM never sends swarms of mooks at you and you spend your time fighting giant zombies with +10 to attack and AC 10, itís not as potent.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Orc in the Playground
    Join Date
    Oct 2018

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    No. The flat +2 damage works out about equal to GWM/SS without advantage against middle of the road enemy ACs, outperforming against higher AC enemies. You also donít need a feat for it.

    In addition, an extra 2-5 AC is MASSIVE. AC experiences increasing returns as your base AC gets higher.

    In short, S&B is probably the most consistent and reliable style for melee damage and tanking.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    ShikomeKidoMi's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2010

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Also, if you ever play a published adventure, the most common magic weapons are one-handed or versatile melee weapons.

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    NecromancerGirl

    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    Subang Jaya, Malaysia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Sword and board are not suboptimal, at least not in the same way Two-Weapon Fighting is. They trade off damage for higher AC, whereas TWF just trade off damage and bonus action for nothing.

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    DruidGuy

    Join Date
    May 2019

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerrykhor View Post
    Sword and board are not suboptimal, at least not in the same way Two-Weapon Fighting is. They trade off damage for higher AC, whereas TWF just trade off damage and bonus action for nothing.
    That's just not true, you're trading your bonus for an additional attack without feat investment or requiring a class ability and the damage difference isn't much compared to GWM.

    OP: Swoard and Board isn't suboptimal at all, it's fun and proivdes a good mix of damage and defenisve ability.
    For D&D 5e Builds, Tips, News and more see our Youtube Channel Dork Forge

    Feel free to message for any build requests or challenges

  14. - Top - End - #14
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    NecromancerGirl

    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    Subang Jaya, Malaysia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dork_Forge View Post
    That's just not true, you're trading your bonus for an additional attack without feat investment or requiring a class ability and the damage difference isn't much compared to GWM.

    OP: Swoard and Board isn't suboptimal at all, it's fun and proivdes a good mix of damage and defenisve ability.
    TWF is just flat out less damage than GWM except pre level5, even without taking into consideration of feats. The more Extra attacks you get, the worse it is.

    Lets say Fighter 20 with 4 attacks. A TWF fighter can make 4+1 attacks, all with 1h weapon. But a GWM Figther makes 4 attacks with big weapon, and still have bonus action for class ability and whatever. I think its obvious which one is better.
    Last edited by Jerrykhor; 2019-11-15 at 04:02 AM.

  15. - Top - End - #15
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    DruidGuy

    Join Date
    May 2019

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerrykhor View Post
    TWF is just flat out less damage than GWM except pre level5, even without taking into consideration of feats. The more Extra attacks you get, the worse it is.

    Lets say Fighter 20 with 4 attacks. A TWF fighter can make 4+1 attacks, all with 1h weapon. But a GWM Figther makes 4 attacks with big weapon, and still have bonus action for class ability and whatever. I think its obvious which one is better.
    GWM IS a feat and unless you're a V. Human you're delaying primary stat progression for it. Separately that bonus damage relies on taking a -5 penalty, not a big deal on a SS build with Archery to compensate, but on a GWM when you're already delaying your attack stat how often is it going to be a viable tactic? You've sunk a feat into a situational damage boost that you can't guarantee vs just picking up another weapon.

    It consuming a bonus action isn't really much of a factor, of the three classes that get fighting styles none of them have a consistent bonus action like a Monk or Rogue and if you choose to use a bonus action feature then it's no loss. You simply don't make your additional attack that turn.

    When you get GWM off it's certainly a nice damage boost, but to say in comparison TWF fighting is a waste is just silly. An extra attack is still ANOTHER attack, it's another die+mod damage, another chance to smite or drop a maneuver.
    For D&D 5e Builds, Tips, News and more see our Youtube Channel Dork Forge

    Feel free to message for any build requests or challenges

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

    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    Subang Jaya, Malaysia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dork_Forge View Post
    GWM IS a feat and unless you're a V. Human you're delaying primary stat progression for it. Separately that bonus damage relies on taking a -5 penalty, not a big deal on a SS build with Archery to compensate, but on a GWM when you're already delaying your attack stat how often is it going to be a viable tactic? You've sunk a feat into a situational damage boost that you can't guarantee vs just picking up another weapon.

    It consuming a bonus action isn't really much of a factor, of the three classes that get fighting styles none of them have a consistent bonus action like a Monk or Rogue and if you choose to use a bonus action feature then it's no loss. You simply don't make your additional attack that turn.

    When you get GWM off it's certainly a nice damage boost, but to say in comparison TWF fighting is a waste is just silly. An extra attack is still ANOTHER attack, it's another die+mod damage, another chance to smite or drop a maneuver.
    I was saying even without the GWM feat, 2h weapon style is still better. Bonus Action is not much at low levels, but at higher levels its a big resource. Action Economy is a thing, and some magic items require bonus action to activate/use. An extra attack with a small weapon cannot make up for all the other attacks with a big weapon, especially when things that give extra attacks like Haste or Action Surge are involved. TWF simply get less mileage out of them.

    Then there's also opportunity attack. TWF only do OA with their small weapon, while 2h guy hit with their big weapon. You can't argue against math.
    Last edited by Jerrykhor; 2019-11-15 at 04:21 AM.

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    DruidGuy

    Join Date
    May 2019

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerrykhor View Post
    I was saying even without the GWM feat, 2h weapon style is still better. Bonus Action is not much at low levels, but at higher levels its a big resource. Action Economy is a thing, and some magic items require bonus action to activate/use. An extra attack with a small weapon cannot make up for all the other attacks with a big weapon, especially when things that give extra attacks like Haste or Action Surge are involved. TWF simply get less mileage out of them.
    For each increase in die size you essentially gain a point of average damage, before 5th level TWF surpasses that. After 5th level, mod+average damage on a shortsword/scimitar is still keeping up with/ahead of that (average damage difference between Greatsword and d6 1hander is 3 points, TWF attack hitting at lvl 5-7=7.5dmg).

    Rangers don't get the GWF style but even if they did both they and Paladins are limited to 2 attacks. Fighters at lvl11+ would certainly get more mileage out of a bigger weapon, and at this point things certainly tip more towards GWF. Most play takes place below that level, a lot of campaigns don't even get to that level.

    In regards to the action economy thing, it certainly is a thing, a magic item requiring a bonus to activate seems like to much of a niche thing to really factor in here but alright. Taking magic items into consideration, what do you think will be more common: magical great weapons or magical one hand/versatile weapons?

    To clarify though, I'm not saying TWF is better than GWF, nor am I under that impression. It just irks me that people treat TWF as worthless when it is anything but.
    For D&D 5e Builds, Tips, News and more see our Youtube Channel Dork Forge

    Feel free to message for any build requests or challenges

  18. - Top - End - #18
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    NecromancerGirl

    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    Subang Jaya, Malaysia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dork_Forge View Post
    For each increase in die size you essentially gain a point of average damage, before 5th level TWF surpasses that. After 5th level, mod+average damage on a shortsword/scimitar is still keeping up with/ahead of that (average damage difference between Greatsword and d6 1hander is 3 points, TWF attack hitting at lvl 5-7=7.5dmg).

    Rangers don't get the GWF style but even if they did both they and Paladins are limited to 2 attacks. Fighters at lvl11+ would certainly get more mileage out of a bigger weapon, and at this point things certainly tip more towards GWF. Most play takes place below that level, a lot of campaigns don't even get to that level.

    In regards to the action economy thing, it certainly is a thing, a magic item requiring a bonus to activate seems like to much of a niche thing to really factor in here but alright. Taking magic items into consideration, what do you think will be more common: magical great weapons or magical one hand/versatile weapons?

    To clarify though, I'm not saying TWF is better than GWF, nor am I under that impression. It just irks me that people treat TWF as worthless when it is anything but.
    IMO it is kind of worthless when its simply "melee but worse than 2h". The bonus action requirement is bad enough, and the feat support is even worse.

    Taking magic items into consideration, one can also argue that TWF might need 2 slots of attunement for 2 magic weapons, but a 2h only needs 1 attunement slot for his weapon.

    There are other things like a TWF eldritch knight dont have a free hand to cast spells if they dont have Warcaster, but 2h style dont have that problem.

  19. - Top - End - #19
    Orc in the Playground
     
    DruidGuy

    Join Date
    Nov 2018

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerrykhor View Post
    I was saying even without the GWM feat, 2h weapon style is still better. Bonus Action is not much at low levels, but at higher levels its a big resource. Action Economy is a thing, and some magic items require bonus action to activate/use. An extra attack with a small weapon cannot make up for all the other attacks with a big weapon, especially when things that give extra attacks like Haste or Action Surge are involved. TWF simply get less mileage out of them.

    Then there's also opportunity attack. TWF only do OA with their small weapon, while 2h guy hit with their big weapon. You can't argue against math.
    Have you done the math for Halfling two-handed fighters? Or are you arguing that small races should never be a valid choice for a melee combatant?

  20. - Top - End - #20
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    stoutstien's Avatar

    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    SD
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zuras View Post
    Have you done the math for Halfling two-handed fighters? Or are you arguing that small races should never be a valid choice for a melee combatant?
    As far as the math goes a d8 weapon plus the duelist style is on par with a d12 damage but with a higher floor of damage.
    what is the point of living if you can't deadlift?

    All credit to the amazing avatar goes to thoroughlyS

  21. - Top - End - #21
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

    Join Date
    Nov 2016

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Trandir View Post
    Compared to the ranged combat and two handed combat it seems under appreciated.

    There is no GWM or Sharpshooter for that and PAM loses most of his appeal with that setup. You get that mistic +2 to AC and Shield Master is an intresting but probably niche defensive feat.

    What's your opinion?
    It really depends on what you're after in a character. Damage wise, Two handed weapons will do more flat damage then a sword and board, especially if they have GWM and hit. However, Two Handed fighters give up quite a lot of defense in exchange for that damage. Sure, the Barbarian is gonna be fine since Barbarians tank with HP. But Fighters and Paladins aren't going to last nearly as long since they tank through AC.

    As for ranged combat, most combat styles are weaker then ranged combat because Ranged combat tends to be strictly better. Paladins are really the only class that loses out in ranged combat. Fighters and Barbarians can still be extremely effective at their job no matter their range, and when you mix the Archery Fighting Style with Sharpshooter, you can make a really deadly sniper.

    That said, PAM does work with SnB. I'd take that and Magic Initiate for Shillelgah in order to have a nice d8 weapon that you can use PAM with. Because remember, just because Shillelgah says "you can use your spellcasting ability instead of Strength for the attack and damage rolls", it doesn't mean you have to. You can cast it, continue to use Strength, or Charisma if you're a Hexblade, and keep the benefits of having a non-concentration d8 magical quarterstaff to make bonus action attacks with.

  22. - Top - End - #22
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    BlueKnightGuy

    Join Date
    Jul 2017

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    In general, characters at 0hp have terrible dps.


    So, I have seen characters at mid to high tier with that +4 AC that comes from a magic shield, still stand tall when facing foes that are auto-hitting the GWFs.

    It helps that our GM rules that Shield Master works in a functional fashion.

  23. - Top - End - #23
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Petrocorus's Avatar

    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    France
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    SnB is fine. And Shield Master can profit your party. You will on average do less damages than GWM and SS, except against high AC, but still do damages, and this is probably the best style against swarm of mooks and blasters.

    The one issue i see with this is that it's basically the "Tank" configuration, but your tankiness doesn't directly profit your party if enemies can just past beyond you to attack your wizard/bard/etc.

    So this is a fighting style that you will want to use if you have other features that make it punishing for your foes to not attack you. Whether because you do a lot of damages thanks to divine smite / manoeuvers / magic or because you directly punishes them it they attack other party member with Sentinel or class feature that allows attack or gives disadvantages.
    ------- 5E MM Resistances, Immunities, Vulnerabilities, and Damage. - - Petrocorus' Paladin Builds List. - - 3.5 Reference Index

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam K View Post
    Sun Tzu never had tier problems. If he had to deal with D&D, the Art of War would read "Full casters or GTFO".
    Quote Originally Posted by King Louis XIII in The Musketeers
    Common sense is for commoners, not for [ PC ].

  24. - Top - End - #24
    Troll in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Massachusetts

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    well now, you can switch it out. Yeah for UA

    You can begin S&B and at later levels switch.

    The reality is you are not always going to be able to use a particular setup, its why you have multiple weapon and armor proficiencies.

    You might be a S&B warrior but the only silvered weapon is a pike, or perhaps you have a magic great club and you are fighting werewolves

    But yes it is lower damage on average than using a greatsword/longbow

  25. - Top - End - #25
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    DruidGuy

    Join Date
    May 2019

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerrykhor View Post
    IMO it is kind of worthless when its simply "melee but worse than 2h". The bonus action requirement is bad enough, and the feat support is even worse.

    Taking magic items into consideration, one can also argue that TWF might need 2 slots of attunement for 2 magic weapons, but a 2h only needs 1 attunement slot for his weapon.

    There are other things like a TWF eldritch knight dont have a free hand to cast spells if they dont have Warcaster, but 2h style dont have that problem.
    To say that it's worthless because it doesn't match the damage potential of a Fighter at greater than 11th level is ridiculous and ignores not only personal preference but basically says all small races are worthless.

    If you can't provide a consistent use for a bonus then please stop saying it's such a bad cost, bonus attacks seem just fine when gained from PAM.

    There's plenty of feats compatible with fighing with two weapons, there's only two feats specific to 2H and one of those needs a Glaive or Halberd specifically. Dual Wielder is not the best of feats, but it still provides an AC boost over 2H and a damage boost (as well as making more magical weapons available). Otherwise? Sentinel works just fine and even Defensive Duelist is on the table.

    Not all magic weapons take an attunement slot (+x are probably going to be the most common encountered), but a martial spending attunment slots on weapons is hardly a bad thing?

    There's plenty of reasons for an EK to want Warcaster, a TWF has no more motivation for it than a sword and board.
    For D&D 5e Builds, Tips, News and more see our Youtube Channel Dork Forge

    Feel free to message for any build requests or challenges

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

    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Trandir View Post
    Compared to the ranged combat and two handed combat it seems under appreciated.

    There is no GWM or Sharpshooter for that and PAM loses most of his appeal with that setup. You get that mistic +2 to AC and Shield Master is an intresting but probably niche defensive feat.

    What's your opinion?
    Depends on the class. For a class like barbarian, I'd skip sword & board (bar niche builds), cause reckless attack works just too well with GWM, and the class gets too few damage boosts over the levels to make S&B keep being worth it. For classes like paladin, melee cleric or melee rogue, yes please. Damage will come from other sources anyway (smite, divine strike, sneak attack, the latter 2 if possible in combination with a SCAG-cantrip) so the extra AC is more important.

    In the end it all depends on the specific build, party composition etc., but in short, the answer is "no".

  27. - Top - End - #27
    Orc in the Playground
     
    DruidGuy

    Join Date
    Nov 2018

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by sithlordnergal View Post
    However, Two Handed fighters give up quite a lot of defense in exchange for that damage. Sure, the Barbarian is gonna be fine since Barbarians tank with HP. But Fighters and Paladins aren't going to last nearly as long since they tank through AC.
    Even Barbarians end up wanting decent AC vs hordes of enemies in most campaigns. Especially at higher levels, swarms of enemies with more than a Fireballís worth of HP but only a modest attack bonus can really challenge a low AC Barbarian. In Undermountain, the S&B Paladin had a lot less trouble with hordes of Drow Elite Warriors than the 2H Fighter and Barbarian. Even the regular Drow, with their pathetic damage, ended up causing the Barbarian problems because he faced so many low DC Con saves vs Drow poison he eventually got poisoned.

    Granted, part of this was due to recklessly attacking in situations where a 16 AC is still relatively stout, but still...

    AC is important, even to a raging Barbarian.

  28. - Top - End - #28
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

    Join Date
    Nov 2016

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zuras View Post
    Even Barbarians end up wanting decent AC vs hordes of enemies in most campaigns. Especially at higher levels, swarms of enemies with more than a Fireballís worth of HP but only a modest attack bonus can really challenge a low AC Barbarian. In Undermountain, the S&B Paladin had a lot less trouble with hordes of Drow Elite Warriors than the 2H Fighter and Barbarian. Even the regular Drow, with their pathetic damage, ended up causing the Barbarian problems because he faced so many low DC Con saves vs Drow poison he eventually got poisoned.

    Granted, part of this was due to recklessly attacking in situations where a 16 AC is still relatively stout, but still...

    AC is important, even to a raging Barbarian.
    True, even a Barbarian will want some sort of AC, and they need to know when to recklessly attack and when to be more defensive. But still, a Raging Barbarian with 16 AC will usually last a bit longer then a PAaladin of the same level with a 16 AC.

  29. - Top - End - #29
    Titan in the Playground
    Join Date
    Oct 2014

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zuras View Post
    Even Barbarians end up wanting decent AC vs hordes of enemies in most campaigns. Especially at higher levels, swarms of enemies with more than a Fireballís worth of HP but only a modest attack bonus can really challenge a low AC Barbarian. In Undermountain, the S&B Paladin had a lot less trouble with hordes of Drow Elite Warriors than the 2H Fighter and Barbarian. Even the regular Drow, with their pathetic damage, ended up causing the Barbarian problems because he faced so many low DC Con saves vs Drow poison he eventually got poisoned.

    Granted, part of this was due to recklessly attacking in situations where a 16 AC is still relatively stout, but still...

    AC is important, even to a raging Barbarian.
    Agreed, but note that an alternative approach is to exploit Barbarian's high-ish mobility and learn to strafe instead of trying to tank the whole horde at once. Even a Barbarian needs to use smart positioning.

  30. - Top - End - #30
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    AssassinGuy

    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Houston, Tx
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Is sword and board combat suboptimal?

    The answer to your question is: whether snb is suboptimal or not depends on the build.

    Consider a paladin framework mixed with hexblade. If you go vhuman, and an 8 pally 12 hexblade mix, snb with two weapon fighting, shield master, dual wielded and tavern brawler gets pretty interesting, especially when you view each attack as a smite delivery vehicle to be combined with hexblade curse, hex, and the warlock invocations superior pact weapon and lifedrinker.

    Hex warrior lets you use cha for attack and damage, pact weapon shenanigans can get you +2 to attack and damage with your weapon and your shield with both acting as spellcasting foci, AND you can use hex to add a d6 damage to each attack, and the hexblade curse to add your proficiency bonus as damage to each attackwhile also allowing you to crit on a 19 or 20 while life drinker adds your charisma mod in damage to each attack AGAIN as well.

    Add into that your ac bonus, the bonus to dex saves which stacks nicely with cha to saves and the ancients oath shenanigans, as well as the ability to turn all dex saves for half damage into dex saves for none, and a winner is you.

    Itís all about the build.
    Last edited by ravenkith; 2019-11-15 at 11:36 PM.

Posting Permissions

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