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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    I'm going to be playing a fighter in an upcoming campaign, sword/board or two handed I haven't decided. One thought I did have was to take the archery fighting style to offset a lower dex, I still have a 14, so that my character would be able to stay relevant in combats where you can't, or can't easily get into melee. Thoughts and opinions GITP crowd?

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    BloodSnake'sCha's Avatar

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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    Why not use a thrown weapon like javelin to attack with str at range?

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    MadBear's Avatar

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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    Doing this would definitely help make your character well rounded. For any fights that take place at a distance, getting to fire over 50 ft is usually pretty beneficial. This will come at the cost of your overall melee damage, but if your goal is to be useful in as many situations as possible (even if not as optimized) then I'd say go for it.

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    I'm playing a Barbarian right now with 14 dex and I get a surprising amount of a longbow.

    There are just times when you can't close to javelin, handaxe distance soon enough. Overall you can definitely still be effective this way

    Still losing Dueling would be pretty rough if you do end up going sword and board.

    But if you are playing with the UA optional rules you can switch fighting styles on level up (or maybe long rest?) so I say go for it!
    Last edited by GlenSmash!; 2019-12-05 at 12:21 PM.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    Quote Originally Posted by BloodSnake'sCha View Post
    Why not use a thrown weapon like javelin to attack with str at range?
    Because those don't work with archery.

    Archer is ranged weapons only, javelins are melee weapons you can throw.

    The only thrown ranged weapon is the dart.

    to the OP:

    Nothing wrong with that plan. Looks fine.
    Especially if you go battle master where Precision Strike can help a ton across the board.

    If you are ok with a somewhat shorter range you could go with a thrown weapon like a spear or javelin but not with archery, Dueling would be better.

    I don't personally like the idea but 2 levels of artificer and going Eldritch Knight could get you a throwing/returning spear/javelin to fight with a shield and you will be all set. Or just make yourself an autoloading hand crossbow with a shield with archery and CBE.

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    Pixie in the Playground
     
    DwarfFighterGuy

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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    I played a battle master fighter with 16 STR, 16 CON, 14 DEX who wielded a maul but took the archery fighting style. It was super fun for ranged attacks to scale comparably to melee attacks as I leveled up, and when the maneuvers came on line I could do super fun things like trip attack flying enemies with my bow.

    I would definitely recommend it as a fun build which ensures that your fighter always has something to do in combat - which of course, is exactly why you're playing a fighter in the first place!

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Zombie

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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    I think it's a good plan. Especially with the number of ASIs a fighter has available it seems silly to me to lock yourself into a single style of combat when you can choose to be effective at any range.
    I am the flush of excitement. The blush on the cheek. I am the Rouge!

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    ClericGuy

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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    Quote Originally Posted by Sigreid View Post
    I think it's a good plan. Especially with the number of ASIs a fighter has available it seems silly to me to lock yourself into a single style of combat when you can choose to be effective at any range.
    This is how I look at it too. Having 14 Dex and picking up the archery FS also means you aren't committed to any melee style of fighting either. Pick 2H weapons now and you can always switch to sword and shield, twf, open hand grappling, or whatever the situation calls for.

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

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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    Quote Originally Posted by Misterwhisper View Post
    Because those don't work with archery.

    Archer is ranged weapons only, javelins are melee weapons you can throw.

    The only thrown ranged weapon is the dart.

    to the OP:

    Nothing wrong with that plan. Looks fine.
    Especially if you go battle master where Precision Strike can help a ton across the board.

    If you are ok with a somewhat shorter range you could go with a thrown weapon like a spear or javelin but not with archery, Dueling would be better.

    I don't personally like the idea but 2 levels of artificer and going Eldritch Knight could get you a throwing/returning spear/javelin to fight with a shield and you will be all set. Or just make yourself an autoloading hand crossbow with a shield with archery and CBE.
    You missed the point.

    Javelins are much more limited in range than proper ranged weapons. But they can be thrown with STR, making Archery irrelevant in first place (reminder: OP was considering Archery so he could make ranged attacks with decent accuracy in spite of having only 14 DEX).

    Also, sorry but your suggestion of EK is a big trap: you can use bonus action only once, and you can get only one weapon at a time. Add to that the fact a Fighter gets more than 2 attacks (or 3 with dual-wielding), you'll easily see how bad that is.

    Of course, if OP could manage to stumble upon a Dwarven Hammer (IIRC), aka "the one thrown weapon that comes back automatically", all would be dreamy.

    @OP: consider throwing weapons first. If all you do is making a handful of ranged weapon attacks over a fight, it's enough. If you regularly find yourself in situations where you need to "stay ranged" for multiple successive attacks, or in your experience very often you'll need "true" range, then definitely pick Archery.
    (FWIW, in your place I'd definitely pick Archery, because I heavily favor versatility, and you didn't give any hint on what you'd like to pick as a feat, so it's the "lowest" investment).
    Last edited by HiveStriker; 2019-12-07 at 08:29 AM.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    Quote Originally Posted by HiveStriker View Post
    You missed the point.

    Javelins are much more limited in range than proper ranged weapons. But they can be thrown with STR, making Archery irrelevant in first place (reminder: OP was considering Archery so he could make ranged attacks with decent accuracy in spite of having only 14 DEX).

    Also, sorry but your suggestion of EK is a big trap: you can use bonus action only once, and you can get only one weapon at a time. Add to that the fact a Fighter gets more than 2 attacks (or 3 with dual-wielding), you'll easily see how bad that is.

    Of course, if OP could manage to stumble upon a Dwarven Hammer (IIRC), aka "the one thrown weapon that comes back automatically", all would be dreamy.

    @OP: consider throwing weapons first. If all you do is making a handful of ranged weapon attacks over a fight, it's enough. If you regularly find yourself in situations where you need to "stay ranged" for multiple successive attacks, or in your experience very often you'll need "true" range, then definitely pick Archery.
    (FWIW, in your place I'd definitely pick Archery, because I heavily favor versatility, and you didn't give any hint on what you'd like to pick as a feat, so it's the "lowest" investment).
    The issue with javelins is how many are you going to have around.

    You can also only draw 1 a turn without a feat so you arenít multi attacking with them, you can with an actual ranged weapon.

    That is why archery is great. With a 14 dex and archery they are just as good as someone with 18 dex.

    Also the reason artificer is so great with it is returning weapon which actually makes throwing possible for a combat build. I never said anything about using the EK to make the weapon return. Artificer is for getting it back from attacks, ek is for if it is just not with you at all like it is confiscated or something.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Orc in the Playground
     
    RangerGuy

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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    Quote Originally Posted by Misterwhisper View Post
    The issue with javelins is how many are you going to have around.

    You can also only draw 1 a turn without a feat so you arenít multi attacking with them, you can with an actual ranged weapon.

    That is why archery is great. With a 14 dex and archery they are just as good as someone with 18 dex.

    Also the reason artificer is so great with it is returning weapon which actually makes throwing possible for a combat build. I never said anything about using the EK to make the weapon return. Artificer is for getting it back from attacks, ek is for if it is just not with you at all like it is confiscated or something.
    Oh, ok my bad, I was the one misunderstanding. Didn't know about the artificer "autoreturn" weapon. Interesting. VERY interesting indeed...

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Orc in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    Playing Asmodeus' advocate here, but with 14 Dex, Defense is better than Archery for your main purpose as a Fighter--dealing damage and tanking. You didn't specify what Fighter Archetype you are taking, but I suggest Battle Master for Precision Attack (+Superiority Die to hit)/Trip Attack (Large or smaller enemy forced to make a save or fall prone).

    For example, in an encounter where you cannot get into melee with flying enemies, do the following: See that the encounter has flying enemies and pull out a ranged weapon in response; Attack 1-4 times depending on Fighter level (+1 Bonus Action attack if you take the UA Snipe maneuver--you cannot use Trip Attack with this attack) and as long as the enemy is large or smaller, Trip Attack them (they're forced to make a save based on your Str or Dex--your choice); Assuming you have the movement speed to reach them, move up to them and drop your ranged weapon while pulling out your melee weapon and make the remaining attacks at advantage (Action Surge is useful here if you want to Nova them).

    In cases, where they are Huge or bigger, rely on UA Snipe for bonus action attacks and Precision Strike for accuracy for regular attacks.

    There's an opportunity cost for choosing Archery (+2 to ranged attacks) over Defense (+1 AC when wearing armor)--GWF's impact is negligible and therefore shouldn't even be considered as an option. In fact, if your table allows UA, you are able to switch Fighting Styles per long rest so switch to Archery if you know you'll be facing a dragon. If your table does not allow UA, disregard this suggestion as well as the suggestion to use Snipe.
    Last edited by Expected; 2019-12-07 at 11:40 AM.

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    Quote Originally Posted by HiveStriker View Post
    Oh, ok my bad, I was the one misunderstanding. Didn't know about the artificer "autoreturn" weapon. Interesting. VERY interesting indeed...
    Yeah I really hope it becomes a main magical property, they also have one that makes it where your ranged weapons make their own ammo. This is on top of then both becoming +1 weapons at level 2.

  14. - Top - End - #14
    Ettin in the Playground
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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    You can have any weapon layout.

    Archery style just helps you increase your damage output before getting into melee.
    Your 14 dex is basically an 18 now to hit.

    Now instead of charging into battle... let them come to you... And then pull out the big sword.

  15. - Top - End - #15
    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    First, thank you for all the feedback. I've narrowed down my character mechanics since the op. I'm playing a beasthide shifter from e:rlw, and plan on going battlemaster with a PAM/Sentinal build. So my only question is would the defensive fs play out better over the long term? Math is not my strong suit.
    Last edited by wiaa44; 2019-12-08 at 12:26 PM.

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    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    ClericGuy

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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    Combining the beasthide shifter with a battlemaster PAM/Sentinel build means you'll be wearing plate and have 18 AC or 19 AC while shifted (pretty sure the +1 AC from Beasthide made it to the official Eberron book). If things are going how you want them you will likely be the focus of many attacks so having that +1 AC will save you hit points in the long run. I know others have done the math but the basic takeaway is each point of AC gives you greater returns than the previous point. So increasing an already high AC will produce dividends for you.

    I like the variety the Archery FS brings and that would be my vote. But your play style will likely get way more use out of the Defense FS if you know you'll be in close quarters a lot. Knowing what your everyday encounters look like (lots of narrow dungeons vs wide open spaces) and the prevalence of magical items (Magic Armor, Rings/Cloaks of Protection, Bracers of Archery, etc.) may shift things for you.

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

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    Default Re: Archery FS for Melee Fighter

    If you want to be versatile/useful with a ranged weapon sword and board is out as the action economy of swapping between ranged weapon and sword shield doesn't work out well.
    PAM/sentinel may also have problems. If you have your bow out you won't get your PAM AoO when someone enters your reach, and sentinel AoO will also be gimped to an unarmed attack.
    Your probably better of dashing to get into range to melee rather than having to swap weapons, or throw a spear which works with PAM as well.

    If your really worried about struggling at range, take magic initiate for a cantrip linked to your best mental stat.
    Last edited by Aussiehams; 2019-12-10 at 03:25 PM.

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