What's the best class for a "pointless" character?

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My wife used to play old-school 2nd edition with me, and would always play a chaotic neutral bard.  Basically she would use her magic and other skills to just do whatever the hell she wanted, usually to play some sort of prank or otherwise entertain our party.  She was never disruptive and would help out if the party was in trouble, but basically she enjoys the role playing and doesn't focus on having a character that is powerful.  She used cantrips more than the more potent spells.  

I'm struggling to find a class that fits this sort of play in 4e.  She's become interested in playing as I've been playing with our 14 and 11 year old kids, but she wants the same sort of character that she used to play.  Any suggestions? 
4E is not well suited toward that sort of character, although I do have some ideas.  Thinking them through, providing a better explanation of why those characters are rare/awkward in 4E, and providing other ideas on handling the situation are all things I would like to do, but not until after I get some sleep.

In the meantime, don't get discouraged by naysayers.

t~
Some sort of lazylord variant?
In the meantime, don't get discouraged by naysayers.


You mind find better responses in a different forum. While there have been threads about "optimize badness", but just a "pointless char" is not really in the realm of CharOp.

 Mechanically speaking, there are no really "pointless" characters in 4E. Everybody does something useful every turn. Most of the non-combat spells have become rituals or utility powers in 4E.

But, if you're looking for something that can be entertaining both in and outside combat... Bard, still.

 Or a bard|wizard hybrid, since they still get the wizard cantrips even as a hybrid... Ghost Sound, Mage Hand and Prestidigitation are your major "prank" spells, more useful outside combat than in it. Take a lot of illusion spells and bard powers that mess with opponents and reflavor them as magical tricks and practical jokes.
Pump Int and Cha, and play a race that gets a bonus to at least one of those - changelings and gnomes have the possibility of getting bonuses to both and are full of role-playing potential. Eladrin, kalashtar and shardminds also can get bonuses to both abilities.

There are a number of bard-specific feats that will be useful for increasing the character's utility outside combat.
If you're using themes, go for wizard's apprentice...

From an optimization standpoint a bard|wizard hybrid isn't exactly a prize-winner, but it should be a decently competent character while still being focused on out-of-combat roleplaying and hijinks - as a leader|controller you can't really build another character with more potential for screwing around with people in a fight.


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Considering you describe she does pull her weight when the team is in trouble, there is nothing really to stand in her way to play any class she wants.

However, she may have to fluff her pranks to suit the race and class of her choice, or alternatively, think of which kind of behavior she wants to portray, and choose a race and class accordingly.

My personal opinion is that knowledge of how 4e works will go a long way to help her know when, and when not, is a suitable time to deviate from the team goal. So, for starters, I would suggest PHB 1, cover to cover.
I'm going to support that a Bard would still be good for this type of character. Be the Charisma & Intelligence build (Cunning Bard I think). Before level 10, take expertise and 4 multiclass feats (Arcane Initiate, Pact Initiate, Arcane Prodigy and Blade Initiate). When you get a Paragon path, pick Resourceful Magician.

You're not a Bard/Wizard/Sorcerer/Warlock/Swordmage that can do a little bit of everything. You get the wizard cantrips at-will, eldritch blast at-will, some reisistance and the ability to use heavy/light blades as implements.

This gives a lot of variety to play with and is truly about as much of an intended jack of all trades character as you can get.
This isn't a class, but the feat Wild Talent Master from DSCS gives you three very cantrip-like powers (from a list of ten), regardless of class.
Lazylord can be really really good.  +Init bonus for just standing there.  +N/M to action points just cause she's standing there.  She can do something, or just tell someone to hit something.  (reflavor it as pranks on the monsters)  At paragon: +2 to attack rolls in round one just from standing there.  Init bonus goes from +2 to +Lots.  With the right feats, she can give someone else her OAs....

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I think the best option here would be an "campaionion NPC".

Simply buids a "character", give wizard cantips. Some defense and HP, high stealth and encounter invis (sustain standard), and a daily mass heal+mass teleport. But no attack.

She'll be able to do all sorts of pranks, avoid battle, and act as an emergency backup.

guides
List of no-action attacks.
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Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
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The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

I'm not clear on why such a character needs to conform to the rules at all, considering it's designed to never interact with them whatsoever.
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My wife used to play old-school 2nd edition with me, and would always play a chaotic neutral bard.  Basically she would use her magic and other skills to just do whatever the hell she wanted, usually to play some sort of prank or otherwise entertain our party.  She was never disruptive and would help out if the party was in trouble, but basically she enjoys the role playing and doesn't focus on having a character that is powerful.  She used cantrips more than the more potent spells.  

I'm struggling to find a class that fits this sort of play in 4e.  She's become interested in playing as I've been playing with our 14 and 11 year old kids, but she wants the same sort of character that she used to play.  Any suggestions? 

I love this type of character as well. I would suggest a high INT and CHA wizard, because you get mage hand and prestidigitation(which are awesome), alot of summoning spells to get little buddies, as well as access to rituals, which can be awesome.
I appreciate all the great suggestions.  
I'd second most of these ideas. Somewhere between bard, warlord, and wizard you can make a nice character who doesn't overtly use powerful attacks themself, but had a subtler effectiveness. Artificer also has some really nice support for that sort of thing and can at least be somewhat of a skill-focused character. The pacifist cleric build likewise has a lot of `indirect' support for the party without being particularly active or heavy handed. The Invoker also comes to mind, but the flavor of most invoker powers is a bit over the top for this type of character.

Ritual caster, alchemist (the feat or theme), a familiar, skill power, or wild talents from Dark Sun might help out too.
Wizards. Easily

Plenty of fluffy powers from Ghost Sound, Prestigitation to Pinioning Vortex, a host of other funky utilities and easy access to rituals for all sorts of potential. Speak to who evers DMing an see if you cant fluff removing damage and target restrictions from some powers to give wider use of effects.
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Try bola training - do no damage to immobilise (prone on a crit) and refluff to wish.
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