The Long Blade of the Law: human runepriest-warlord polarm build

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The Long Blade of the Law

human runepriest-warlord
rune shield
"polearm build"

Here's an interesting polearm leader I've been playing around with.  I'm at the early stages with this one, but I have a full Level 30 draft available for review.  The design focuses on utilizing the polearm as a control tool to balance/support his function as a leader.  His powers and feats together focus on lending bonuses to defense and/or attack to adjacent allies and acting as a strong party healer.  Let me know what you think

[sblock Level 30 draft 10/11/2010]
====== Created Using Wizards of the Coast D&D Character Builder ======
Scrag, level 30
Human, Runepriest|Warlord, Rune Shield, Demigod
Hybrid Talent: Rune Master
Runic Artistry: Defiant Word
Warlord Leadership: Battlefront Leader (Hybrid)
Hybrid Warlord: Hybrid Warlord Will
Versatile Expertise: Versatile Expertise (Spear)
Versatile Expertise: Versatile Expertise (Axe)
Divine Spark: Divine Spark Strength
Divine Spark: Divine Spark Wisdom
Background: Missing Master, Officer Who Came Out of Retirement, Scion of an Ancient Bloodline (Officer Who Came Out of Retirement Benefit)

Str 26, Con 16, Dex 16, Int 12, Wis 24, Cha 11.

Str 16, Con 13, Dex 12, Int 10, Wis 15, Cha 9.

AC: 44 Fort: 42 Reflex: 39 Will: 42
HP: 173 Surges: 11 Surge Value: 43

Religion +21, Insight +27, Athletics +28, History +22, Endurance +23

Acrobatics +18, Arcana +16, Bluff +15, Diplomacy +15, Dungeoneering +22, Heal +22, Intimidate +17, Nature +22, Perception +22, Stealth +18, Streetwise +15, Thievery +18

Human: Hybrid Talent
Level 1: Improved Defenses
Level 2: Battle Awareness
Level 4: Mark of Warding
Level 6: Longhand Student
Level 8: Armored Warlord
Level 10: Hafted Defense (retrained to Polearm Gamble at Level 11)
Level 11: Polearm Momentum
Level 12: Heavy Blade Opportunity
Level 14: Fight On
Level 16: Inspirational Attacker
Level 18: Armor Specialization (Scale)
Level 20: Avenging Spirit
Feat User Choice: Versatile Expertise
Level 21: Shift the Field
Level 22: Epic Reflexes
Level 24: Superior Initiative
Level 26: Martial Mastery
Level 28: Divine Mastery
Level 30: Perceptive Leadership

Bonus At-Will Power: Viper's Strike
Hybrid at-will 1: Word of Binding
Hybrid at-will 1: Word of Exchange
Hybrid encounter 1: Divine Rune of Thunder
Hybrid daily 1: Rune of the Undeniable Dawn
Hybrid utility 2: Shield of Sacrifice
Hybrid encounter 3: No Gambit Is Wasted
Hybrid daily 5: Stand the Fallen
Hybrid utility 6: Rousing Words
Hybrid encounter 7: Gathering Storm Intonation
Hybrid daily 9: Unconquered Redoubt
Hybrid utility 10: Rune of the Astral Winds
Hybrid encounter 13: Beat Them Into the Ground (replaces Divine Rune of Thunder)
Hybrid daily 15: Infectious Determination (replaces Rune of the Undeniable Dawn)
Hybrid utility 16: Rune of Reinvigoration
Hybrid encounter 17: Mark of Battle's End (replaces Divine Rune of Thunder)
Hybrid daily 19: Rune of Warding Light (replaces Stand the Fallen)
Hybrid utility 22: Harrying Warhound
Hybrid encounter 23: Hold that Thought (replaces No Gambit Is Wasted)
Hybrid daily 25: Precision Stance (replaces Unconquered Redoubt)
Hybrid encounter 27: Word of Divine Battle (replaces Gathering Storm Intonation)
Hybrid daily 29: Stand Invincible (replaces Infectious Determination)

ITEMS: (Note - I haven't worked out the $$ accounting yet)
Weapon:  Shepherd's Arms Glaive +6
Body:  Bloodiron Titanscale Armor +6
Head:  Helm of Able Defense (paragon tier)
Neck:  Cloak of Distortion +6
Waist:  Cord of Divine Favor (paragon tier)
Arms:  Iron Armbands of Power (epic tier)
Hands:  Gloves of the Healer (epic tier)
Ring:  Golden Ring of Teros (epic tier)
Ring:  Ring of Free Time (epic tier)
Feet:  Rushing Cleats (heroic tier)
Tattoo:  Resurgence Tattoo (epic tier)
Wondrous:  Battle Standard of Healing (heroic tier)
Wondrous:  Shepherd's Battle Standard (paragon tier)
Wondrous:  Bag of Holding (heroic tier)
====== Copy to Clipboard and Press the Import Button on the Summary Tab ======

If you're multi-classing into a Rune Priest and are planning on using a reach weapon.  Be sure you double check your Rune Priests powers.  Some of those powers require you to be adjacent to your target.

Prime example of this is Hybrid at-will 1: Word of Binding.  For the immobolize effect to go off and stay on the target the Rune Priest needs to be adjacent to the target.  Not adjacent, target not immobilized.

You sure you want to go Hybrid?
I'm seeing a lot of people Hybrid into a Rune Priest and I have to keep asking - Why?

The Rune Priest has two great class features (Do extra damage when you're hit / Do extra damage when you're missed), Nice Rune states that effect the party, and some very nice powers.  Only thing they're lacking is good feat support and a exciting Paragon path.

I suggest you build a Rune Priest (Can take a MC feat and paragon path if you want).  Then build a Warlord (Can take a MC feat and paragon path if you want).  Then match those up against your Hybrid build here and see how they compare against each other.
About 6/7 out of 10 times, the non-hybrid builds will just work better.

Only thing they're lacking is good feat support and a exciting Paragon path.

Hammer of Vengeance is an absolutely exciting PP. It's overwhelmingly exciting, I'd even say. Rune Shield is also a fantastic PP. What I like about both of these PPs is that they're inherently useful without being overpowered or being poachable. If you'll pardon a localism, you can't 'half-elf' your way into the Runepriest benefits without being a Runepriest. With some more feat support, Runepriests would be intensely interesting. Having played one, I'd go so far as to say they rival the Warlord in terms of overall effectiveness in terms of leadership.

Personally, I find that Runepriests hybrid very well. They bring up the average armor type of the hybrid, add healing, a useful class feature, and have strong powers that are almost universally effetive.

That said, this build would be a stronger Runepriest than Runepriest hybrid, I'll agree to that.


Lastly, I'm gonna take a sec to say something about Runepriests. We see a ton of crappy character/build design sometimes with the Dragon material, and even a few of the core books (Psion and Monk leap to mind).  Runepriest is an example of an extremely well-designed class, in my opinion. It does its job (leading), has a unique mechanic that is attractive in its own right, and can back-up as a defender, as a striker, or even as a controller by specializing in particular ways.

You sure you want to go Hybrid?
I'm seeing a lot of people Hybrid into a Rune Priest and I have to keep asking - Why?

Because rune priest doesn't loose alot for hybriding, Ya they loose the buff to your allies through rune master woo...  and you get one heal instead of two.

To be honest the power of a runepriest is in its powers not in its class abilities which makes it great for hybriding. Also having a main state of STR makes it easy to hybrid with other melee types.
re: "Why Hybrid Runepriest?"-- another answer is that they have fantastic base Armor Proficiency. When you combine this with Str Primary and their powers, they become a great option for going Hybrid.

@ this build-- I'd really like to see some more in-depth write up so I know what it's going for, specifically. The Polearm stuff is evident, as it always is when it shows up in a build. The other perks are what I'm looking for, at the moment.

So far, I'm seeing worthwhile perks being:

Battlefront Leader's shift-at-initiative
Rune Mastery, which I love when used with the two base runestates
Polearm stuff
available powers

Generally speaking, those should be enough to do it, provided you leverage the power selection right. Am I missing any other perks you were going for?

One other note-- I would suggest aiming for a bit more AC. 44 at 30th is L+14, and L+16 is a better benchmark for melee Leaders and Strikers. I think you could be right around there by re-aquiring Hafted Defense (trained away at L11), and possibly adding Plate/Plate Spec.