And now, after a modest wait, part III, Paragon Tier:
Level 11(Paragon Path+Feat)--Here begins the controversy. It is widely held that Battle Captain is the best Paragon Path for Tactical Warlord. I don't dispute this. What I will say that Battle Captain is more than a little guilty of being boringly effective. It does have some of the most incredible nova generating powers in the game with some great static ally boosts, but its powers aren't terribly interesting. Eladrin have an alterative Paragon Path called the Spiral Tactician. It doesn't have the supernova generation of Battle Captain, but its still fairly solid in that department, has greater ability to manipulate initiative and party positioning, and the powers are really fun. Because of our goal to balance the fun to play factor with optimization, we're going to take Spiral Tactician here. At level 11, this Path gives us the ability to recharge Fey Step when we spend an Action Point(and one level from now we start doing flippy tricks with it), the ability to allow one ally to reroll initiative with a sizable bonus at the start of every fight, and Fey Step Assault, an accurate and hard hitting Encounter Power that is boosted by your Fey Step. Our feat for this level is Combat Commander, one of the most powerful feats in the entire game. Adding your Intelligence modifier to the initative rolls of the entire party is an incredible advantage, and we want it right now.
Level 12(Paragon Utility+Feat)--At Level 12, Spiral Tactician gives us Convey Ally, an Encounter Ranged Teleport of one of our allies. Knight's move, only better. Our feat for this level is Fey Tactics, which allows you to teleport an ally within 5 squares when you Fey Step. Combined with the fact that your Action Point recharges Fey Step, there is no end to the fun here.
Level 13(Encounter)--Our Encounter power is Beat Them Into the Ground(trading out Warlord's Favor). Its a lesser version of Knock Them Down, but as an Encounter power. Your allies get a big boost to their knockdown attempts, and this should be able to knock a good number of enemies prone. Nothing really special, just more interesting and appropriate for this build than any other choice.
Level 14(Stats+Feat+Retraining)--Our stats are increased to 20 Str and 22(+6) Intelligence here. At this point we choose to up the damage we deal with attacks by taking Weapon Proficiency: Bastard Sword. We would have taken this sooner, but Fey Tactics and Combat Commander were priorities, and there isn't anything at Heroic that we would have been willing to trade out. Seeing that we aren't using it anymore, we also retrain Eladrin Soldier to Weapon Focus: Heavy Blades. We wait until Paragon to switch to Bastard Sword as this is when we get the ability to have +2 damage with it. We lose our Tratnyrs for this, but its a small price to pay.
Level 15(Daily)--We take an interesting power here, Anticipate Attack. Its an interrupt attack in response to being hit with a melee attack, accurate(targets reflex), than gives us a free shift if we hit that can nullify the attack if we can shift out of reach. In addition, hit or miss every adjacent ally gets to beat on it. Timed right, this is amazing, so look for the right moment. Also note that you can provoke an Opportunity Attack to try to force the issue with this. No way we're trading out Lead the Attack for this, its just too good. As good as Stand the Fallen is, we let go of it at this time, as we have another mass heal as an Encounter Utility(Bolstering Shout).
Level 16(Paragon Feature+Utility+Feat)--Our Paragon Feature for this level is Fey Tactics(not to be confused with the feat of the same name we took at level 12). Its our consolation prize for taking Spiral Tactician, as it changes our Tactical Presence feature from half Int mod bonus to allies Action Point attacks to a bonus equal to our full Int mod. Its not as good as adding our Int mod to attacks and damage until the end of our next turn of allies we heal with Inspiring Word(what we would get from Battle Captain), but that's the price we pay for having more interesting things to do. Our Utility power for this level is Warlord's Banner. Its an Encounter mass heal spell, and gives a +2 bonus to attack rolls to all effected(whether they choose to spend a surge or not). Its a Standard action, but it does enough to justify the cost. This gives us two mass heals per encounter, which combined with three Inspiring Words is the definition of overkill, but I'm not really sure there's anything else we want. Bolstering Shout is more flexible, being a minor action instead of a standard, and if we were going to trade out Bolstering Shout it would be for a level 2 Utility, and with a lack of conviction we're going to stick with Bolstering Shout. As our Feat for level 16, we take Iron Will, to buff our terrible Will defense that we've suffered with long enough.
Level 17(Encounter)--Thunderous Fury is our level 17 Encounter power, and its a non-choice. It deals big damage, it dazes, and our allies get to rip the target to shreds until the end of your next turn. It does it all, and theres nothing else we even think about taking here. We happily drop Steel Monsoon for this.
Level 18(Stats+Feat)--Intelligence and Strength go up to 23 and 21 here. We take the time to buff our AC at this level, with the Shield Specialization feat. We could take Heavy Shield Proficiency here for an extra boost to Reflex we won't loose at Epic, but taking Shield Specialization keeps our armor check penalty lower. We could go either way with this, but I personally prefer not to penalize skills.
Level 19(Daily)--For level 19, we take Break the Tempo, which lets us chase enemies around, smack them with free out-of-turn attacks, and penalize their attacks. We don't interfere with Defender marks to do this, either. This even works if the enemy chooses to attack us, so there is no avoiding us short of moving more than 4 squares away. More or less, a no-brainer choice. We again choose to keep our awesome level 1 Daily, and dump Knock Them Down instead. We have its lesser cousin as an Encounter power anyway.
Level 20(Paragon Daily+feat)--Spiral Tactican lets us go supernova at level 20, with Spiral of Fey Death. We hit an enemy for solid damage, then get to choose to either slide them or apply ongoing 10 damage, and then we teleport and do it again, and again, and again... For our final Paragon Tier feat, we look to choose between Heavy Shield Proficiency and Heavy Blade Opportunity. Heavy Shield further boosts our AC, while Heavy Blade Opportunity gives us some fun options with Opportunity Attacks. Our AC, while it could stand being higher, is fairly solid, while Opportunity Attacks aren't exactly our specialty. We choose Heavy Blade Opportunity, simply because its more interesting, as our At-Will Warlord attacks slide our allies and let them hit for us.
Next up: We take on Epic Tier and pass on Demigod. Sort of.
====== Created Using Wizards of the Coast D&D Character Builder ======
Eladrin Warlord, level 20
Eladrin, Warlord, Spiral Tactician
Commanding Presence: Tactical Presence
Background: Society - Noble (+2 to Diplomacy)
FINAL ABILITY SCORES
Str 21, Con 11, Dex 16, Int 23, Wis 9, Cha 12.
STARTING ABILITY SCORES
Str 16, Con 10, Dex 13, Int 16, Wis 8, Cha 11.
AC: 35 Fort: 32 Reflex: 32 Will: 29
HP: 118 Surges: 9 Surge Value: 29
Religion +21, Endurance +14, Athletics +19, Diplomacy +18, History +23
Acrobatics +12, Arcana +18, Bluff +11, Dungeoneering +9, Heal +9, Insight +9, Intimidate +11, Nature +9, Perception +9, Stealth +12, Streetwise +11, Thievery +12
Level 1: Eladrin Soldier (retrained to Weapon Focus (Heavy Blade) at Level 14)
Level 2: Tactical Assault
Level 4: Weapon Expertise (Heavy Blade)
Level 6: Tactical Inspiration
Level 8: Durable
Level 10: Saving Inspiration
Level 11: Combat Commander
Level 12: Fey Tactics
Level 14: Weapon Proficiency (Bastard sword)
Level 16: Iron Will
Level 18: Shield Specialization
Level 20: Heavy Blade Opportunity
Warlord at-will 1: Wolf Pack Tactics
Warlord at-will 1: Commander's Strike
Warlord encounter 1: Warlord's Favor
Warlord daily 1: Lead the Attack
Warlord utility 2: Knight's Move
Warlord encounter 3: Steel Monsoon
Warlord daily 5: Stand the Fallen
Warlord utility 6: Guileful Switch
Warlord encounter 7: Surprise Attack
Warlord daily 9: Knock Them Down
Warlord utility 10: Bolstering Shout
Warlord encounter 13: Beat Them Into the Ground (replaces Warlord's Favor)
Warlord daily 15: Anticipate Attack (replaces Stand the Fallen)
Warlord utility 16: Warlord's Banner
Warlord encounter 17: Thunderous Fury (replaces Steel Monsoon)
Warlord daily 19: Break the Tempo (replaces Knock Them Down)
Adventurer's Kit, Light Shield, Magic Bastard sword +4, Magic Javelin +4, Magic Feyhide Armor +4, Amulet of Protection +4
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