Help me rebuild my Human Cleric from the 80s!

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Back in the 80s, one of my first 2 characters was a Cleric named Barymore.  This was Basic D&D, so he had the following attributes...

Melee combatant (preferred Maces & Hammers, but would also use a Staff if a good one showed up in the loot)
Turning/Damaging Undead
All-around Healer

...and now a fellow player is talking about running a ToEE campaign, so I'd really like to bring this character back.  Can we bring him back to life under 4E rules?
Well, you can play a wisdom-based melee cleric who has the power "Turn Undead" as well as reasonable healing, and a few simple weapon-focused powers (read: staff or mace).  Also, clerics tend to deal radiant damage, which can pack extra punch against undead since they are often vulnerable to radiant damage. Does that sound close enough to you?

As many will inform you, this is not the most mechanically effective character to play, but I think he could be reasonably good if built properly.

Here's the cleric handbook:

Follow the guidelines for a Zealot or perhaps a Warpriest, depending on your preference. 

Instead of going full Cleric, I'd go the Essentials Warpriest route.

For the OP, the Essentials line is a simplifed version of 4e D&D that harkens back to an older school feel at times while still embracing the design philosophy of 4e.

The Warpriest is this version of the Cleric. It's entire schtick is being a melee attacker. Depending on the domain you choose, you do slightly different things, but the main thing about it is melee attacking, turning (in this case Smiting) Undead, and healing your party.

This is everything you are looking for.

  • Wis-based? Check

  • Human? Easily done! Go with Heroic Effort as your racial power, and you are more effective/accurate once per Encounter.

  • Melee combatant? Check. You can easily use hammers and maces (and staffs if you so choose.)

  • Turning/Damaging Undead? Check. You get to Smite Undead once per Encounter. If you choose the Sun Domain (typically Pelor worshipping) your attacks mostly do Radiant damage with is deadly to Undead due to vulnerability.

  • All-around Healer? Check. You get to heal your allies as a Minor twice per Encounter and with certain power selection and domain selection your healing potential can be boosted.

The Warpriest can be found in Heroes of the Fallen Lands with two domains, Storm and Sun. More domains can be found in other books, such as Heroes of the Fallen Lands, the Neverwinter Campaign Guide, and several issues of Dragon Magazine. If you (or a group member) have (/has) a DDI Subscription you will have access to all of the Warpriest domains.

Good luck and happy gaming! 

Edit: I should note since you came to the CharOp boards that the Warpriest isn't as optimal as some Cleric builds. It is effective and simpler howerver and likely more akin to what you played in the 80s.
I'd also suggest warpriest. It was designed with people like you in mind - old-schoolers being introduced to 4e.

Once your foot is in the door and you have this character figured out, you may want to come back and look around to see what other leaders can do in 4e. There are some pretty interesting mechanics that can really make for cool character concepts.
You could worship a re-fluffed WeeJas ... and call her "Madonna".  I'm sure she won't mind.

5E mini- SRD available now in HTML here:


If you are primarily using a mace, I would put Wis on the backburner and just make a Str-using templar or some kind of hybrid. Old school clerics didn't use wisdom for melee attacks anyway and in 4th it seems if you don't attack much with your holy symbol, maxing out your wisdom doesn't seem practical. Warpriests make me sad.
While I'm not looking to min/max my Cleric 100%, i figured CharOp would know best what's available to fit my description as best as possible.  I do use a CharOp'd Rogue, but for this character I was thinking just going for recreating a blast from my past.

Thanks all for your input!
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