Help my pyromancer be all he can be ;)

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Next weekend I'm probably going to introduce my tiefling pyromancer to the rest of my party (old character died horribly against a sphinx )
but seeing I usually play martial characters building him to my satisfaction is quite the challenge.

Especially chosing feats at lvl 8..... there are so many I want. I want to do more damage.. I want to be less squishy... Aaaahhhhh xD

So I'm here for some feedback seeing I am sure there are still some things that could be tweaked.

Also I had a quesstion to people here. What is the best way to give powers the Fire keyword. Especially the Evocation benefits seem to go to waste right now Ofcourse there is arcane admixture at paragon, but seeing this is one power per feat I'm only concidering this for freezing burst.

Anyhow here is my char.

Amnon, level 8
Tiefling, Mage
Level 1 Apprentice Mage: Pyromancy Apprentice
Level 4 Apprentice Mage: Evocation Apprentice
Level 5 Expert Mage: Pyromancy Expert
Level 8 Expert Mage: Evocation Expert
Background Theme: Infernal Prince

FINAL ABILITY SCORES
Str 8, Con 17, Dex 13, Int 20, Wis 13, Cha 12.

STARTING ABILITY SCORES
Str 8, Con 15, Dex 13, Int 16, Wis 13, Cha 10.

FEATS
Level 1: Staff Expertise
Level 2: Superior Implement Training (Accurate staff)
Level 4: Dual Implement Spellcaster
Level 6: Hellfire Blood
Level 8: Hellfire Arcanist

POWERS
Level 1 Mage At-Will Powers: Scorching Burst
Level 1 Mage At-Will Powers: Freezing Burst
Level 1 Mage Daily Powers: Fountain of Flame
Level 1 Mage Daily Powers: Flaming Sphere
Level 1 Mage Encounter Powers: Burning Hands
Level 1 Mage Encounter Powers: Orbmaster's Incendiary Detonation
Mage Cantrips: Light
Mage Cantrips: Prestidigitation
Mage Cantrips: Spook
Level 2 Mage Utility Powers: Moonstride
Level 2 Mage Utility Powers: Arcane Insight
Level 3 Mage Encounter Powers: Cinderfall
Level 3 Mage Encounter Powers: Shock Sphere
Level 5 Mage Daily Powers: Summon Magma Beast
Level 5 Mage Daily Powers: Bigby's Icy Grasp
Level 6 Mage Utility Powers: Glowering Wrath
Level 6 Mage Utility Powers: Dispel Magic
Level 7 Mage Encounter Powers: Fire Sea Travel
Level 7 Mage Encounter Powers: Winter's Wrath

ITEMS
Spellbook, Accurate staff of Ruin +2, Periapt of Proof against Poison +2, Cloth Armor (Basic Clothing) of Resistance +2, Magic Accurate staff +2


The rest of my party is a fighter, a shaman and a sorcerer.
Next weekend I'm probably going to introduce my tiefling pyromancer to the rest of my party (old character died horribly against a sphinx )
but seeing I usually play martial characters building him to my satisfaction is quite the challenge.

Especially chosing feats at lvl 8..... there are so many I want. I want to do more damage.. I want to be less squishy... Aaaahhhhh xD

So I'm here for some feedback seeing I am sure there are still some things that could be tweaked.

Also I had a quesstion to people here. What is the best way to give powers the Fire keyword. Especially the Evocation benefits seem to go to waste right now Ofcourse there is arcane admixture at paragon, but seeing this is one power per feat I'm only concidering this for freezing burst.



With good optimization, you'll be doing more damage, be tougher than, and more firey than your sorcerer. I'm doing this from memory, so i've tagged things that I may have misremembered the name of with a (?).

1) Well, first things first, the best way for a wizard to increase their damage is to catch fire (or turn into a ball of lightning), and go Genasi. They have a feat (Powerful Wizardry(?)) that lets them get their strength mod in bonus damage to almost all elemental wizard attacks, and they come as int + str/con. They're basically getting a striker damage feature for free. Lightning Genasi can also add another 2d8 onto an attack power once per encounter, so you can do that on wizard powers that have ridiculously large areas of effect (fireball, anyone?) The many fire-ish souls for genasi have really good defensive powers as well, so if your previous character died in battle, these might be worth a look (they're also thematically appropriate)

I Know the +1 bonus to damage/ attack rolls with fire keyword powers is very potent, but +3-4 to damage (that only gets better, because you put your stat boosts into it) is still better. It also effects all elemental wizard powers, giving you better options (unless you take piece of advice 3, and get a flaming staff.) Putting points into STR also gives you a great fort, and lets you run and jump with the best of them (as well as giving you a passable MBA, which you can make FIRE.)

Downside: You don't have suave horns anymore and lose out on Icy Clutch of Stygia (though you should have a low cha mod, so it wouldn't be doing much damage), hellfire blood, and the other teifling fire support/ infernal wrath. Plus side, Fire-ish genasi all get comperable fire resist to teiflings, if you're concerned.

2) You are on the right track with Dual Implement Spellcaster and Staff of Ruin. If you want to skip out on the +item bonus to NADs in paragon, you can get a staff of defense for your offhand, or if you'de rather save item-space, you can pick up staff fighting for your staff of ruin, giving you +1 AC, and still proccing your DIS. It will be hella cheaper, and gives you a +1 to a defense that blaster wizards have a rough time with.

Downside: No bonus to NADs later on when you turn your magic offhand into a staff of defense. There are some other off-hand items that have good properties as well (Tomes!)

3) As for adding the fire keyword, the most effective way of doing so is a flaming staff. To be honest, I think you actually might be better served with a flaming weapon (over the staff of ruin) in heroic teir, as it will allow you to pick up any and all wizard powers regardless of keyword, because the at-will power on flaming weapons lets you add the fire damage type and keyword to any attack you channel through it.


Good feats to have that you don't yet:

Unarmored Agility: +2 AC. People will try to stab/shoot/claw you for the rest of your adventuring career. Snap this sucker up, it will address your squishing problem.  

Crazy ridiculous Mage fire combo feats: There are two or three feats as a fire mage that let you ignore all resistance, treat targets that have immunity as having resist 25, and that let you do bonus damage to targets equal to their resistance values. it gives you WTF dmg.

Arcane Familiar (This seems like a trap!): Some of the familiars are extremely good for saving you time on positioning. A Hawk or a Dragon Whelp could serve you well as flying cannons. They also give good passive benefits (like Fire resist), or you can snap up a tome caddy to get a third implement slot for a tome.

White Lotus anything: There's an entire school of feats for arcane casters that are just insanely good. Read carefully, and pick things that will make you OP.


Paragon feats:

Firey blood (?) (Not sure about the name. It's from Heroes of the Elemental Chaos.): +3/4 Feat bonus to fire damage. It's the highest feat bonus to damage you can get to elemental damage, period. Doesn't effect firey magic missile though (:<)

Arcane Admixture: Don't use this on freezing burst. Use it on Magic Missile. Magic Missile normally isn't actually cast through implements, and giving it the fire keyword is really hard normally. After you AA it, your magic missile does a gazillion more damage, ignores resistance, and is made of fire.

Crazy paragon teir mage fire support feats: There's a bunch of other ones worth taking. Check the wizard's handbook for more info on these.


Take a couple mandatory wizard powers:

You're a wizzard 'ary. Take wizard powers.

You aren't limited to just powers from the Essentials books for Mages, and Wizards have one of the most expansive power lists in 4e. There are a huge number of options for them, most of which are spectacularily good. If you're using Character Builder, it's a dumby, and won't show you your other choices by default. Click the box that says "show other options" or whatever. You'll discover a zillion new powers.

Take shield as your level 2 utility, and forget that they even gave you other options. Shield is the number one way for Wizards to not get steamrolled in encounters.

Take Fireball as your level 5 daily. It's fireball. A ball of fire. Fire in a ball. No reason not to have it. Flaming sphere is also a good choice.

Take Firescythe at level 9. It's Firescythe. A scythe of fire. You get the picture.

Take Fireburst (?) at level 7. It's basically baby fireball, but an encounter power.

Take Burning hands at level 3. Gigantic fire blast. Works especially well if you have a dragonling to shoot it for you, so you can stand well away from the front lines.  
My attacks already ignore fireresistance because of my pyromancy feature of the mage.
Have looked at Burn Everything as a definate feat option, but at lvl 8 I don't expect to many immunities to show up and as I said soooo many feats I want including ofcourse Unarmored agility and Improved Defences.

Have looked at Flaming weapon, but as I read it it only changes untyped damage and most wizardpowers aren't untyped as far as I can see. Did I miss an errata?

Haven't checked the white lotus feats yet. Will have a look. (Argh more goodies in the feat section xD )

There are about three varieties of Firey weapons (only one has the name, but there are a number of weapons that do roughly the same thing.)

I'm perusing some of the Vault books, and it's not in AV 1 or 2, however I know for a fact that there are a number of weapon enchantments that give you an at-will power that changes all damage dealt by the weapon to fire damage. It's not a property, but an item power. Firey, Flaming, etc. If you really can't find one, grab a Ki-Focus of the emerald flame, and pick up Ki-focus proficiency (with MC assassin, monk, or the Elemental Initiate theme), and use that. DIS still works, even if you use a ki-focus to cast, as you still have an implement in your off-hand.

Using a Ki-Focus in this way actually opens up some other staff options too, as you can take staff fighting to get a +1 to AC from defensive, and then pick up a defensive staff, which would give you a +1 to all defenses.

Your power selection does need work though, keep an eye on it. You have a very small number of actual fire powers for a pyromancer, especially considering that they're going to do the most damage, the most reliable damage, and that wizards get at least one fire option minimum every level. Basically, you need more burning.
I admit I'm a newbie at charOPing and never really played a wizard, but here's some items I picked up (mainly from the outdated "It's Elemental: A Guide to Damage Types.")


Weapons/implements
Hellfire Staff (lvl 4+)
Activate/deactivate it with minor to add the fire keyword to melee and close spells like Color Spray (lvl 3 evocation encounter) or Thunderstaff (lvl 5 daily).
 
Staff of Acid and Flame (lvl 10+ though)
Makes spells with acid keyword, like Acid Arrow (lvl 1 daily) and Tomebound Ooze (lvl 7 encounter), do fire damage and get the fire keyword.

Flaming weapons
They don't work on powers already having damage keywords post erreta, so I don't think it would work with most non-charm wizard powers.

Wonderous items
Khyber Shard of the Fiery Depth (lvl 2/12/22)
It could be advisable to get hold of one of these to augment your chosen staff to permanently add some damage with your fire attacks.

Flame Rose(s) (lvl 10/20/30)
These gives a ongoing fire effect on every target struck by your fire powers. Cool for when you really want to set the scene on fire .


If you have the time to spare and haven't checked it out yet, here's a link to the most recently updated wizard's handbook: community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/758...


Getting Burning Hands and Shield, and swapping Cinderfall for Fire Shroud would seem like a good idea for optimization based on the recommendations in the handbook.

About feats I got the impression that tiefling has a lot cool feats like Secrets of Belial (letting you get the utility power of any other class is pure win!). Genasi seem far superior to tieflings if one wish to play blasters blasters with multiple damage type powers, but in that case wouldn't it be better to be an arcanist rather than a pyromancer?

And lastly, isn't Magic Missile quite lackluster by CharOP standards since it drops out on a lot of damage bonuses due to not having a damage roll? I got the impression its best use was to get rid of minions far away who would otherwise be hard to hit, but that it never was preferable to use damage-wise.

Getting Burning Hands and Shield, and swapping Cinderfall for Fire Shroud would seem like a good idea for optimization based on the recommendations in the handbook.

About feats I got the impression that tiefling has a lot cool feats like Secrets of Belial (letting you get the utility power of any other class is pure win!). Genasi seem far superior to tieflings if one wish to play blasters , but in that case wouldn't it be better to be an arcanist rather than a pyromancer?

And lastly, isn't Magic Missile quite lackluster by CharOP standards since it drops out on a lot of damage bonuses due to not having a damage roll? I got the impression its best use was to get rid of minions far away who would otherwise be hard to hit, but that it never was preferable to use damage-wise.



Tieflings also get imperious majesty, which is ludicrously good unto itself, especially for somone who wants to lob a giant gout of flame. Tieflings make better controllers than Genasi, Genasi make better strikers than Teiflings, and are significantly harder to kill.

I'm going to link you to the Teifling and Genasi racial guides, both of which will go in depth as to how to best utilize their awesome features.

Teiflings: community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/758...
Genasi: community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/758...(or_Woman):_A_Genasi_Handbook

Forgot about Fire Shroud, and now I feel bad. Fire-shroud is insanely good, especially if you have a familiar grenade.

Magic missile is quite terrible for DPR unless you pick up Wizard's Fury at 1 (which is still worth it as a mage, as you get MM anyways.), and if you can figure out a way to add a damage roll onto your Magic missile, with Assassin's shroud for example (depending on how your DM interprets the damage roll rules.)

Additionally, playing a mage is perfectly acceptable for fire-blasters, because the pyro tree is just so insanely powerful, and Evo gives you nice effects as well. Losing the +1 to hit sucks, but gaining free bonus damage and resist ignore is usually worth it.
Genasi only really make better blasters for Thunder/Lightning builds. Tieflings are very competitive for Fire.

There is actually a good Fire power at every level of daily/encounter, so the need to use a conversion weapon for a Wizard blaster is pretty nil. Pick native fire powers, use a Staff of Ruin. Add a Siberys Shard, as well.

You ought to start with a 20 Int (so 22 at 8). You will probably also want to at least consider 14 Cha, so you can pick up Superior Will in Paragon. At a minimum it should be 13, so you can get it in Epic. You could do it with Wis instead, but I personally think Cha is more useful for a Tiefling. Obviously boost Con/Int. Also Tieflings have flex stats now, they can be Int/Cha or Int/Con.

Your first five feats should be expertise, Hellfire blood, Accurate Staff, Unarmored Agility, and then either Enlarge Spell or Improved Defenses. DIS is nice, but after you reallocate your stats for the 20 int you won't qualify till Paragon (12 in Dex). And even then it won't be better then one of the new HoEC feats for typed damage that are +2/3/4 to damage till you get a +4 Implement in late Paragon.
First of thanks for all the advice so far it's definately helping me decide what I should take

I'm reading through all the guides and definately getting a lot of new ideas.
@Alecestis

I'm running through your suggestions, but running into a few things. First of Tieflings do have flex stats but it's Cha/int or Cha/con as far as I know. Obviously int was the nobrainerchoice there, but sadly can't chose int/con.

Also I am a bit confused how you see the attributepoints. If I put two more points in intelligence that doesn't leave much for the others and I count cha wisdom and dex that need points for requirements and such.

Are you thinking of something along the line of this?

FINAL ABILITY SCORES (race int/cha, level4&8 int/con)
Str 8, Con 12, Dex 12, Int 22, Wis 12, Cha 14.

STARTING ABILITY SCORES
Str 8, Con 10, Dex 12, Int 18, Wis 12, Cha 12.

Definately see what you mean with DIS.

The reason I was wondering about a conversion weapon or something similar was to get evocation powers with the fire keyword. Seems like such a shame to let that evocation apprenticefeature go to waste ;)

Still Staff of Ruin is hard to beat on a blaster.
Evocation is not that great, tbh. Brutal is worth .5 damage per die. As an Implement user you get nearly all your damage from static mods. I'd go with Nethermancy over that (though the benefits there are also fairly marginal). Though as I recall several powers were errata'd/republished to add the Evocation keyword that did not previously have it. You might look into that. Remember you can use the Compendium search function even without a DDI sub. "Fire Evocation Wizard" returns 31 powers. Flaming Sphere is on there, as are several other top tier powers.

Yeah, that array looks right. Not sure why I thought Tieflings were Int/Con as an option... just messed that up.
As an example I can give you the template of the Tiefling Pyromancer I made, here's the link:  community.wizards.com/jasonite75/go/char...

For some reason I can't seem to copy/paste the pdf I made of her character summary but hopefully you can get the gist from this. Your starting stats are exactly the same as mine at lvl 1, you may want to review spell selection differences. I chose Enlarge Spell at level 8 as a feat and I don't think you need DIS until you're into paragon. I chose Primordial Adept as a theme, and if you're in FR the Akanul Benefit can be nice. I planned her out to level 30, so if you want to optimize her at level 8 there may be some differences.


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