Force of Nature (Warden | Fighter/ Gladiator Champion)

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This build was inspired when I realized exactly how much power the Gladiator Champion's level 16 adds to the Warden.  What's the primary problem with your average warden?  You're a power-based defender.  

So how to fix that? Well, what if enemies couldn't shift away from you?

Hmmm.  That's fairly nice. I mean they can still walk away, but they can't shift away.  So, they take an opportunity attack to get away from you?

Well what if that opportunity attack sends them prone on a hit?  

Ow.   That's cruel.

Hello, Lashing Flail/Flail Expertise.  Can't shift away.  Can't run away.  Can't do much besides lay there and take it. 

 

Level 16 snapshot
====== Created Using Wizards of the Coast D&D Character Builder ======
Koethi, level 16
Goliath, Warden, Gladiator Champion
Guardian Might Option: Wildblood
Occupation - Hunter (+2 to Perception)
Theme: Guardian

FINAL ABILITY SCORES
STR 22, CON 15, DEX 12, INT 9, WIS 21, CHA 11

STARTING ABILITY SCORES
STR 16, CON 13, DEX 11, INT 8, WIS 16, CHA 10


AC: 34 Fort: 32 Ref: 26 Will: 30
HP: 137 Surges: 11 Surge Value: 34

TRAINED SKILLS
Athletics +19, Dungeoneering +18, Endurance +13, Nature +20, Perception +24

UNTRAINED SKILLS
Acrobatics +7, Arcana +7, Bluff +8, Diplomacy +8, Heal +13, History +7, Insight +17, Intimidate +8, Religion +7, Stealth +7, Streetwise +8, Thievery +7

POWERS
Basic Attack: Melee Basic Attack
Basic Attack: Ranged Basic Attack
Guardian Attack: Guardian's Counter
Goliath Racial Power: Stone's Endurance
Warden Feature: Warden's Fury
Warden Feature: Warden's Grasp
Warden Attack 1: Thorn Strike
Warden Attack 1: Resilience of Life
Warden Attack 1: Grasping Winds
Warden Attack 1: Form of Winter's Herald
Endurance Utility 2: Inspiring Fortitude
Guardian Utility 6: Ready for Anything
Warden Attack 7: Guardian's Pounce
Warden Attack 9: Form of the Oak Sentinel
Endurance Utility 10: Reactive Surge
Gladiator Champion Attack 11: Opening Ploy
Gladiator Champion Utility 12: Fail to Disappoint
Warden Attack 13: Healing Harvest
Warden Attack 15: Form of the Magma Brute
Warden Utility 16: Cleansing Earth

FEATS
Level 1: Battle Awareness
Level 2: Focused Superiority
Level 4: Wary Fighter
Level 6: Flail Expertise
Level 8: Improved Defenses
Level 10: Marked Fury
Level 11: Lashing Flail
Level 12: Ubiquitous Shield
Level 14: Shield Mastery
Level 16: Armor Specialization (Hide)

ITEMS

Fey Strike Flail +3 x1
Magic Hide Armor +4 x1
Heavy Shield x1
Cloak of the Walking Wounded +3 x1
====== End ======


My favorite part here is form of the magma brute/marked fury for dealing with groups of enemies.  Want to attack me?  Cool, I explode, you and all your friends take damage.

Want to ignore me and try to attack my friends?  Cool, do it at -4 to -8, and I get a chance to prone you, because you really need more penalties to hit at this point.  

So, how can I improve him at this point?  I know I can deck him out with a few extra magic items, but I think they're all just building on the chassis here.  Can that chassis be improved any?
So you've got most everything marked, they can't shift away, you've got some kind of way to make it difficult for them to move away, but you've got only one reactive "I'm getting the snot kicked out of me" ability, and you aren't earthstrength so you can't simply say neener neener neener you can't hit me except on a 19 or 20 for a round.  I don't see this guy living long as built.
So you've got most everything marked, they can't shift away, you've got some kind of way to make it difficult for them to move away, but you've got only one reactive "I'm getting the snot kicked out of me" ability, and you aren't earthstrength so you can't simply say neener neener neener you can't hit me except on a 19 or 20 for a round.  I don't see this guy living long as built.


Any ways you can see to make him more durable?  I was almost certainly going to take boots of the fencing master for the +1 AC/Reflex whenever I shift (aka fairly easy to trigger since most people will be coming to me, not visa versa), and I can also can probably power swap to a few more defensive powers.  Any you have in mind?

Edit: Thought about it some more, and swapped the Guardian theme for the earthforger one, since +1 to defenses during second wind is all good, as I am the only person everyone will be targeting.  Replaced the Guardian power with Third Wind, always a good option. 

What else can I do to improve my survivability?  I could replace Form of the Oak Sentinal with Form of the Stalwart Mastedon for a +2 to all defenses for 1 encounter/day.

Other than that, my 34 AC (35 on shift) is about as high as I sensibly can make it.  I can take that at-will that gives me a +1 AC.
Any reason you are set on wildblood?  Earthstrength + parrying gloves = foolish AC on a second wind.  Endure pain can buy a lot of time also.  Bear's endurance can turn a hit that would drop you into a hit that takes you well over bloodied (with some 2nd wind optimization).
Any reason you are set on wildblood?  Earthstrength + parrying gloves = foolish AC on a second wind.  Endure pain can buy a lot of time also.  Bear's endurance can turn a hit that would drop you into a hit that takes you well over bloodied (with some 2nd wind optimization).



I need to multiclass fighter anyway, and it gives me:

Enormous will defense (Earthstrength can never touch my will defense ever)
Great initiative boost (+5 right now, higher later) and +2 Perception/Insight (never bad)
A good feat for replacing Crippling Crush with flails (+Wis on all OAs)
Second Wind makes it virtually impossible for marked monsters to touch anyone who is not me (-7), and if I take the earthforger theme I get +1 to all defenses (which is not +6, to be sure, but is pretty nice anyway).  

Is bear's endurance better than third wind?  

Parry Gauntlets are pretty good for a hand slot item, and might be worth taking in any case.

P.S.  I don't think Bear's Endurance will ever take you over bloodied since it doesn't count as a second wind, and thus doesn't get Cloak of the Walking Wounded.  Neither does Third Wind, so that's pretty moot there.
Hmm, after some research Bear's Endurance can completely negate attacks that target bloodied PCs if it brings you up to above bloodied when it triggers.  It can also kick down some rider powers on bloodied.

That's probably better than Third Wind.   
Yeah I derped on that one, It'll take you well over surge value with healing surge optimization I should have said.  Belt of blood, toughness, armor of durability all affect it, plus a few other feats like dwarven durability.  I play a dwarven earthstrength warden myself, and my DM has found it very difficult to even come close to dropping me.  I once tanked 2 soldier mobs with impaling spear attacks (grab/immobilize when hit, then do autodamage every round) for the entire fight.  I didn't even try to break the grabs, I just soaked the damage and drunkenly made fun of them (My dwarf is a consumate drunkard... his entire character can be summed up to his response when the parties gnome wizard threatened to purify his alcohol to water.... "You don't wanna do that runt, I'm a mean sober).

Bear's Endurance might be a little too much, I've only had to use it once, and that was a level +4 encounter with some DM tweaks to the mobs like at will daze o.O
Earthstrength is definitely not a bad option, and I'd never pretend it was, but I don't think that it's the beginning and end of Warden.  
Feyslaughter weapons are popular for these complete lockdown builds.  That would cover movement away from you, shifting away from you, and prevent teleportation on at least one enemy.

Bargle wrote:
This is CharOp. We not only assume block-of-tofu monsters, but also block-of-tofu DMs.
 

Zelink wrote:
You're already refluffing, why not refluff to something that doesn't suck?
Earthstrength is definitely not a bad option, and I'd never pretend it was, but I don't think that it's the beginning and end of Warden.  

For a build that will be eating as much punishment as this one you are making, I don't think there IS another viable option other than earthstrength.  They are made to take a beating. 
Earthstrength is definitely not a bad option, and I'd never pretend it was, but I don't think that it's the beginning and end of Warden.  

For a build that will be eating as much punishment as this one you are making, I don't think there IS another viable option other than earthstrength.  They are made to take a beating. 


Okay, that's just plain ridiculous.
Look at the wildblood powers.  Now look at the earthstrength powers.  Which says to you "mobility" and which says "keep stuff here and stay alive"?  Which goes with your build? Shore up the downsides of earthstrength with items/feats and be done with it.  I'm telling you that the best choice for what you want to do is Earthstrength.  ANY other warden option is INFERIOR.  Ask any of the long timers around here, they'll ya the same thing.
that makes no sense at all. i played with an earthstrenght dwarf side by side, and yes, its almost imposible to kill, but again, it was not that good at tanking mobs, since mobs could ****/charge without problem. and the point of this build is not to "survive", wich he can only by virtue of being a warden, its to "lock down an entire battlefield" and to do that, nothing is better than wildblood. 

how can an earthstrenght give a penalty greater than -3 (asuming he MC fighter for the feat that gives -3, or mark of warding)? i would like to know how..................... what i saw with the dwarf warden was really simple: he was imposible to kill, but all other players where hacked to death by monsters, since he got +6,+2 of normal secon wind, +2 parrying gauntlets: +10 to all defenses: no sane monster attacks that, so monsters run away, and kill the squishy guys, simple.
and it gets worst: if a moster teleports, with wildblood, if he is marked, he takes the enormous penalty anyways. if he is earthstenght................bam, free monsters to kill squishies................... 
Look at the wildblood powers.  Now look at the earthstrength powers.  Which says to you "mobility" and which says "keep stuff here and stay alive"?  Which goes with your build? Shore up the downsides of earthstrength with items/feats and be done with it.  I'm telling you that the best choice for what you want to do is Earthstrength.  ANY other warden option is INFERIOR.  Ask any of the long timers around here, they'll ya the same thing.



I think you're missing the point that his power-dependency stops the moment Gladiator Champion's 16F kicks in. And let's be real here, you're auto-picking Guardian's Pounce at 7, and you're autopicking Warden's Lure at 17. You're going to maybe have only one power with an Earthstrength kicker, and meanwhile, you know Guardian's Pounce works waaaay better as a Wildblood. Which really leaves Second Wind optimization, which some people (read: non-dwarves) tend to avoid, with the very legimate reason that nobody actually second winds if they can help it. 

@GreyICE: Bravo, I've always held that Gladiator Champion was a perfect PP for Wardens, I'm glad you think similarly. Neat trick with Belt of Raging Endurance. Pop it immediately to gain resist 15 as an interrupt and take 10 damage at end of next turn - except you don't because on your next turn, you pop Stone's Endurance for Resist 10. With a goliath, a Belt of Raging Endurance becomes a free resist 15 as an interrupt.

Gladiator Champion's L16 feature means that nothing can shift away from him. Combine that with Lashing Flail/Flail expertise to prone with OAs and a feyslaughter weapon to prevent teleports, and almost everything that touches him is going to stick to him. Monsters don't run away from his massive AC because they quite simply aren't capable of doing so.


It's basically an earthstrength warden coated in crazy glue.

@khizan: teleporting monsters will run away from earthstrenght.nothing happens.  teleporting mosnters are still marked and wildsblood second wind kicker still affects them, no matter how far away they are. and plus, you can optimize second wind better with wildsblood, since optimizing second wind for earthstrenght is just an unnecesary overkill of resources.
I am so confused by this thread. Assuming you make it literally impossible to get away from a character (and proning OAs that don't miss+can't shift+no teleport does, in fact, do that and is the whole concept behind The Inescapable Fisherman, one of the Ultimate Defenders) the mark penalty is irrelevant: the rest of your party stands in the back or grabs a reach weapon. So the only thing left is whether you can survive it. A Dwarf with Earthstrength optimization does in fact do this better than any other Warden possible, so it is a non-choice from an optimization perspective.....
what prevents enemies from teleporting? feyslaughter needs to hit for that, and flails are +2 prof bonus, and warden builds cannot start with 18 str, so they need to be 16/16 at lv 1. there is a miss chance, and, as i said, with only parryng gauntlets and the new theme, its already a +5 to all defenses, i think thats pretty good. one does not need to be "unhittable", only very well guarded.
what prevents enemies from teleporting? feyslaughter needs to hit for that, and flails are +2 prof bonus.



Alhulak or Triple-headed flail come in +3s. Strikebacks and Yakuza theme (even with 14 Cha) can pick up the rest of the slack.
what prevents enemies from teleporting? feyslaughter needs to hit for that, and flails are +2 prof bonus, and warden builds cannot start with 18 str, so they need to be 16/16 at lv 1. there is a miss chance, and, as i said, with only parryng gauntlets and the new theme, its already a +5 to all defenses, i think thats pretty good. one does not need to be "unhittable", only very well guarded.

Every build, barring some very cheesy ones, depends on hitting. So that is a non-starter, as arguments go. Now obviously if you are going for strict accuracy, you play a Fighter and this argument is moot. And in fact a Fighter does the inescapble vortex shtick better by a margin so large that even discussing the Warden is silly. But, in the context of which Warden build does this better, the answer is Earthstrength.

It isn't a matter of being "unhittable." ES Wardens takes a beating better. All their feat support is oriented towards it. Just the nature of their shtick.
According to you guys, Earthstrenght is the only build that should be played at all. so no other build should even exist,...............................hahahhah
According to you guys, Earthstrenght is the only build that should be played at all. so no other build should even exist,...............................hahahhah

? I don't think anyone said. It isn't true, in any case. While ES is probably the generically strongest Warden option (it certainly has the most support) Wildblood is a very capable mobile defender with a secondary in striker. But we are discussing a build who ideally stands next to something and doesn't move as long as you stay there. Now if Wildblood's advantage is mobility, and it is, and you're making a build that doesn't move.... why would you pick Wildblood? On the flip side, you are making a build that is going to get beat on. Often. Taking a fair amount of damage and having multiple attacks rolls per round made against you. This is the area ES builds excel at and is, indeed, the only thing any Warden build arguably does better then a Fighter. So, again, from an optimization perspective, it is a non-choice. This is Character Optimization.

Any part of that unclear?
Okay, I have a problem with the idea that the Warden does nothing better than the fighter.  Because Wardens are just plain more durable than fighters.  It's in their class features.  And it does NOT require any one build.  It's every build.

Fighters get heavy armor.  Cool stuff.  Wardens get Wisdom/Con to AC.  That quickly outstrips heavy armor in the AC department.  
Fighters get 15 hp base and 6 per level.  Wardens get 17 base and 7 per level.  

Fighters get the sort of durability that Wardens do only through using defensive powers, and that's ANY build of Warden.  At all.  Period.  

Go check out Mr. Smith, a well accepted ultimate defender.  He has 31 AC at level 16.  Even assuming he grabs an armor upgrade, he only goes up to 32.  His HP hovers at 126.  Again, respectable, but doesn't stand up to what a Wildblood Warden has.  

community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/758...

The Warden class does NOT need to eschew all other concerns in a quest for more durability.  There's no use being the last person standing when your entire party is slaughtered.  Here's a fact of life: Opportunity attacks miss.  The DM can make crawl actions, even if I'm surrounded by difficult terrain.  Elites have action points they can use to get out of the way even proned, stand, and charge.  

Wildblood gives me a way to go after the threats that do get out of control.  Wildblood gives me a way to shut way to down any ability to hurt my team for an entire round (giving them all defender level AC).  Wildblood gives me a will defense that is non-suck, keeping some nasty controller abilities off of me.  And I STILL am more durable and better able to take hits than Mr. Smith.  

Optimization and min-maxing are not the same thing.  They're not even close to the same thing.  

Now, outside of a better Second Wind, what does Earthstrength really give me?  

P.S.  Boots of the Fencing Master are so very good, ensuring that I very likely will be at least shifting about, unless I get the dreamed of 8 grid around me.   

P.P.S.  If an enemy does teleport away, once per encounter I can close with him and potentially shut down his attack anyway.  Earthstrength can't reliably do that.
You can't lock down everything.  You can't tank everything.  4E is not designed for it, it isn't WOW.  The rest of your party has surges and defenses for a reason.   If you are going to try it, and it's suicide for most defenders, ES is the way to go.

Also min/max and charop are the same bloody thing. 

Oh lord the WoW comparisons start. Just when I thought char op had some hope of being a halfway useful place that lacked the usual mouthbreathers.

Min/maxing is the art of sacrificing a lot to achieve the highest possible value in a certain area. Optimizing is the art of taking the best value-for-money feats and skills to accomplish your role in the party.

A melee striker who can nova burst an elite dead in one round but who has neglected defenses to the point where they get hit on 4s is very min/maxed, but also highly unlikely to be optimal.

/basic education
You're working under the assumption that HP and defenses are what make an Ultimate Defender: They aren't. You will note that that Warden and a couple of eDefenders are the only Defenders who do not have an Ultimate build. And it isn't for lack of trying. Battlemind|Warden is the only one that even involves a Warden at all, and it is on the lower end of the spectrum for Ultimate Defenders (and frankly has a better variant that is a pure Battlemind).

Fighters, in no uncertain terms, do everything better than Wardens except for have large HP pools. Which is completely useless, as you can just make a Revenant Fighter that is outright unkillable. Or any of hundreds of other nifty tricks, like for instance being a Battlerager and having an enormous amount of THP effectively doubling your HP pool, or, or, or, or, or. None of which is available to a Warden.

Which is not to say people shouldn't play Wardens. They are a fun class and have some fun/cool mechanics/powers. But from a strict optimization point of view? Fighter. Every time. Hell, you can barely make a Warden that has any claim to being optimized without MCing Fighter. That ought to tell you something.

Your example with Mr. Smith is flawed. Con-Wardens, who can grab Second Skin, will have 49 AC at 30, Wis Wardens will have 48, exactly the same, if they started with an 18 and boosted it and took an ED that boosted their Wis. Mr. Smith has 48 and more flexibility with stats/ED. But he doesn't have an auto-hit NAD, Wardens always will. Past level 11 NADs become increasingly more important and AC becomes increasingly less important and Wardens cannot patch their weak NAD without so many resources invested that they fall behind. Wildbloods are off-strikers and cannot even make striker benchmarks while still being defenders, every Fighter build can do so and still be a Defender.

Plus Mr. Smith is still kicking any Warden's builds ass and he is almost a year out of date from new options. The gap is enormous, Fighters are the best supported class of the best supported power source. The only class even close to comparable is Wizards and they aren't a defender.
The survivability of the fighter has kept me away from it this far, done a chaladin and ES warden thus far, both of whom have decent oh sh¥£ abilities. Arena fighter is next on the list. We'll see, if he dies, I'll just make him come back as a revenant :p
i disagree with most about the figther. its true that he hits hard, but that requires a strong investment in wisdom, therefore sacrificing the supposed flexibility of stats. also, the feat support is strong, yes, but its also based on mob being next to fighter. if he somehow gets away,  nothing to do. and most of the damage from fighter comes from slashing storm/pit fighter. other than that, damage support is general. and paladin with weakening challenge is way better defender than any fighter, punishing the opponent and reducing damage dealt by HALF, to ALL opponents marked (this can be as large as burst 5, larger than ANY fighter power, and can be done many times with the proper powers)and, hell, he can even be stunned, unconcious or half dead and still be defending (and the does not need an specific ED to defend while stunned or dominated). and paladins with arden vow and some good PP, can outdamage a figther any day, not to say they tend to have better defenses.

Mr.Smith has good defenses based on feats, wich are all general feats. I crafted a Shaman (yes, a leader) with better defenses, save for AC, wich is not that neccessary for a leader. nothing prevents a warden from taking such feats and have even greater defenses............
and, remember that, wardens have font of life, wich is a better survival power than ANY of those in the figthers arsenal. hell, its even a 29.lv feature for slayers and knights, wardens have it at lv 1

Mr.Smith has good defenses based on feats, wich are all general feats. I crafted a Shaman (yes, a leader) with better defenses, save for AC, wich is not that neccessary for a leader. nothing prevents a warden from taking such feats and have even greater defenses............




You're working under the assumption that HP and defenses are what make an Ultimate Defender: They aren't.


...

Sigh. Was a straight comparison to Warden vs Fighter, but if you'd like to bring in Paladins: at Epic, Paladins become competitive with Fighters. Except Fighters can be built to invalidate attacks completely, Paladins can make them do 1/2 damage, but you still take all the status effects (and at epic, those matter more).

No straight Paladin will outdamage a Fighter. Sorry, you're flatly wrong. Straladins can't make Striker benchmarks past Paragon while still being reasonable Defenders, Fighters can make them all the way up. Fighters can exceed the optimized Striker benchmarks (30/60/90) while still being full-time Defenders if you really want to go in that direction with them.

Marks end if you fall unconcious, so no, the Paladin can't defend while unconcious. This is going to sound mean, but you have a very limited knowledge of the rules, let alone the potential for each individual class relative to each other class. The Fighter has the most Ultimate Defender builds for a reason.
a fighter can invalidate ONE attack, not ALL the battlefield. the can mark with ONE attack. how is this the best the game can offer??
a fighter can invalidate ONE attack, not ALL the battlefield. the can mark with ONE attack. how is this the best the game can offer??

They mark everything they attack, hit or miss. They have bursts that attack everything within four squares of them. They also have powers, utilities, and a number of other options for marking everything (just like every defender worth mentioning). They are actually quite capable of invalidating more then one attack per round, especially at Epic. /shrug. Go check out some of the UD builds.

I suppose technically the sheer exploitiveness of Mellord's Super Duper Knight is actually the strongest defender build atm. Still a Fighter sub-build, of course.
I was operating under the assumption you wanted to play a warden. The best warden for your concept Is earthstrength. Call me a mouthbreather all you want, I'm right.
Yeah, okay, so my advice so far is 'omg fighters are better than wardens in every single way' and 'roll earthstrength because that second wind bonus is INSANE.'

Thanks but no thanks.  

If anyone has any comments on feats, powers, or other useful suggestions I would love it.  

If your comments are 'you can't SURVIVE without that +6 on second wind once per combat' and 'roll a fighter, fighters are broken-good especially in epic tier where they get Overwhelming Impact (broken feat is broken)'  kthxbai  There are plenty of feats in that build that rely on Wisdom, and your only suggestion for replacing them is to 'well find replacements because you must have that +6 on Second Wind, that extra +5 makes all the difference!' then I suggest you get right out.  
 

So...Warden's Lure as your E17 is basically locked in, right? The way I envision it, your Turn 1 is to walk into a bunch of enemies, Warden's Lure, then Stone's Endurance for resist 10. Done. They're now locked down with terrible options either way.


Couple of things:


1. Strikebacks. They're locked down next to you with no better option, you're bound to get hit at least once. Put your immediate action to good use. And actually, you care much more abou the +hit bonus on OAs.


2. Belt of Raging Endurance. As mentioned by Jugulator, its another way to mitigate the beatdown you'll surely be taking. With goliath, you may even hold off on Stone's Endurance til after you activate your belt - this mitigates the 10 delayed damage you take from the belt next turn, such that it becomes a free resist 15 as an interrupt.


3. Guardian is probably not that useful of a theme to you. Between your mark and lockdown, and Guardian's Pounce E7, I hardly see Guardians' Counter actually activating. I much prefer something like Ironwrought, or that one other theme that gives you a personal counterattack.

As far as Wis-based feats go, I'm actually not convinced on the value of Marked Fury. I originally read that as +Wis to hit on OAs, which would have been awesome, but its actually +Wis on damage, which is decidedly less so, especially since I doubt enemies actually would take OAs at this point.  I dunno, see how it stacks up in play, my impression is that its retrain bait.

Yeah, okay, so my advice so far is 'omg fighters are better than wardens in every single way' and 'roll earthstrength because that second wind bonus is INSANE.'

Thanks but no thanks.  

If anyone has any comments on feats, powers, or other useful suggestions I would love it.  

If your comments are 'you can't SURVIVE without that +6 on second wind once per combat' and 'roll a fighter, fighters are broken-good especially in epic tier where they get Overwhelming Impact (broken feat is broken)'  kthxbai  There are plenty of feats in that build that rely on Wisdom, and your only suggestion for replacing them is to 'well find replacements because you must have that +6 on Second Wind, that extra +5 makes all the difference!' then I suggest you get right out.  
 

Sigh.

One more time: Your build revolves around taking a beating. Of the Warden builds, ES does this the best. Period. Particularly as a Goliath, you can add your Con to the resist granted by your racial. Resist 10+con is kind of good for getting hit by everything, which you will because your opening move is Warden's Lure. You are in CharOp and asked for advice on optimizing the concept. Which is a Warden gravity build.

Now the build as a whole is basically an inescapable vortex. That is something that Fighters straight up do better, as evidenced by the fact that their is an UD based around it that is a Fighter and no amount of similar attempts with a Warden have been UDs. That was my entire point. If you want to play a Warden, I don't care (I have played four of them in paragon/epic campaigns and I like them). If you want to come in and ask how to optimially do something, don't be terribly surprised if people answer you with the right answer, regardless of it matches what you thought the best answer was.
Alcestis, this is for for my own curiosity than anything else, but from your play experience, how often do actually take a second wind on a non-dwarven warden? Or is earthstrengthn still valued over Wildblood, for factors other than Second Wind optimization?
Alcestis, this is for for my own curiosity than anything else, but from your play experience, how often do actually take a second wind on a non-dwarven warden? Or is earthstrengthn still valued over Wildblood, for factors other than Second Wind optimization?

MC Fighter > make an MBA when you SW. Usually at least once a fight. But yes, as mentioned: ES feat support is oriented towards survivability (+con to all defenses on the second wind, racial feats that increase resist all, etc.,). Also just being focus fired by the DM because you make it the best option, the extra surges canbecome relevant.

On Dwarves it is riduclous though, particularly when all the SWs were minor actions and I had 3-4 of them.
Ah, right. Striking Resurgence. For some reason, I keep thinking it was an epic feat.
I know Alcestis.  The first time he's got 3 brutes with a few minions giving flanking surrounding him and gets his sh!t pushed in, he'll realize, hey those guys that were kinda dicks in the CO forums and didn't tell me what I wanted to hear... they were TOTALLY RIGHT!  Done here, horse, water, drinking, all of that.