PEACH my Barbarian|Fighter Svirfneblin - Project Small mounted charger

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Goals:



  • Make a character who is small size who functions well as a charge-heavy striker while mounted.

  • The purpose is not to make a character which is to be used in a home game, but rather
    theorycraft about the concept of a functional small mounted charger.


Problems I thought of at first glance


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  1. For concecutive charging, the character needs a way to get 2 squares between the target and him/her every turn to be able to charge, preferably without neither the rider nor mount provoking opportunity attacks while moving away.



    • From lvl 1: The Daily power Tyrant's Rage allows the character to push enemies 1 square as a minor action every round for one encounter, which helps pave the way to get in position to charge.

    • From lvl 10 the problem is solved by power-swapping for "Rune of the Astral Winds" which is an at-will move power which slide an adjacent ally 4 squares.

    • I also considered getting a Ring of Calling and the Queen's Clemency power through Secrets of Belial (by chosing Tiefling as a past Spirit) to give the mount a teleport 5 as minor action, but then I wouldn't be able to get Brutal Charge through Gnoll past Spirit.




  2. Mount defenses and hit points in general scale badly, and there aren't that many mounts after paragon.



    • I think the poor health scaling has been solved by taking the Fey Beast Tamer theme, which gives mounts with HP equal to the character's bloodied value.

    • The survivability of the mount is further improved by equiping it with Impenetrable barding (gives +5 per tier resist all to the mount).

    • The defenses of the Fey Beast Companions don't scale too well, which could be improved by being a goblin and taking Goblinoid Mount Training so the mount can use the same defenses as the rider, but I don't think it seems neccesary with the barding.




  3. The mount don't get the benefit from Badge of the Berserker, so it will provoke opportunity attacks when it is used to charge.



    • I don't think this is such a big problem when the mount has Impenetrable barding.






  4. Badge of the Berserker don't work for mounted characters for dealing with monsters with threatening reach, etc.



    • There doesn't seem to be any easy way to amend it, so the rider and mount will just have to deal with getting punched and step while stepping on the nova buttons.




  5. If the mount is stunned/dominated/immobilized/restrained, etc. there will be no charging.



    • I think the best solution would be to have a good leader can hand out some saving throws when the mount gets shafted, but to prevent it from becomming dominated and making the character provoke a lot of opportunity attacks or run me off a cliff I took the lvl  16 "Practiced Mental Defense".




  6. If the rider or the mount is knocked prone the character looses a lot of bonuses (-2 to attacks because of lance, -4 to hit compared to charging with reckless charge).



    •  If an enemy who prone a lot  the "Rock Steady" lvl 6 fighter daily utility stance prevents the rider falling prone for one encounter - though it doesn't prevent the mount from becomming prone.




  7. Finding the best class for mounted charging.



    • Barbarians seem to have plenty of nice charge support, and fighters have Suprising Charge for 1 [W] extra damage when charging with CA, so I thought fighter/barbarian looked decent (since multiclassing into warpriest is neccesary to solve problem 1).





Notes about the result of my tinkering


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  • I ended up with a hybrid fighter|barbarian. The character focuses mostly on being a striker, while still poaching fighter goodies like Rain of Blows.



  •  Like other charging characters it takes advantage of the plethora of charge-boosters like the Horned Helm and the Vanguard lance.



  • When charging on an Owlbear, the character will always have combat advantage against adjacent enemies from lvl 5 and onward from enemy targets being in the fey beast aura, which both helps accuracy and have good synergy later on with with Suprising Charge and Armor of Dark Deeds (the later effectively gives permanent concealment).



  • At heroic tier I think it's functional, but suffers from not having an easy way to setup for repeatable charging without getting help from allies.



  • At lvl 10 this should be amended, and once Suprising Charge comes online for 1 [W]  bonus damage on chare attacks.



  • At lvl 24 the character gains a boost of 2xStr mod on every attack from Polearm Momentum+Mark of Storm+Draconic Arrogance+Lightning weapon+Rushing Cleats.



  •  At lvl 28 the character can use all the fun encounter multi-hitters on charge 1/enc through Fierce Charge+Brutal Charge. I wonder if Brutal Charge really is that good though...?




The build, from character builder


I cut out all the racial encounter powers gained through the lvl 30 Reincarnate Champion feature.

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====== Created Using Wizards of the Coast D&D Character Builder ======
Gretzlynn, level 30
Svirfneblin, Barbarian/Fighter, Kensei, Reincarnate Champion
Kensei Focus Option: Kensei Focus Lance
Hybrid Talent Option: Barbarian Armored Agility
Epic Vitality Option: Epic Vitality Strength
Past Spirit Option: Past Spirit (Gnoll)
Past Spirit Option: Past Spirit (Dragonborn)
Firepulse Option: Firepulse Strength
Earthshock Option: Earthshock Strength
Darkfire Option: Darkfire Wisdom
Razor Storm Key Ability: Razor Storm Strength
Dragon Breath Key Ability: Dragon Breath Strength
Dragon Breath Damage Type: Dragon Breath Lightning
Associate: Trained Young Owlbear
Theme: Fey Beast Tamer
 
FINAL ABILITY SCORES
STR 28, CON 14, DEX 24, INT 10, WIS 16, CHA 12
 
STARTING ABILITY SCORES
STR 16, CON 12, DEX 16, INT 8, WIS 12, CHA 10
 
 
AC: 48 Fort: 45 Ref: 46 Will: 38
HP: 203 Surges: 10 Surge Value: 50
 
TRAINED SKILLS
Dungeoneering +27, Endurance +21, Perception +27, Religion +22
 
UNTRAINED SKILLS
Acrobatics +21, Arcana +17, Athletics +23, Bluff +18, Diplomacy +18, Heal +20, History +17, Insight +20, Intimidate +20, Nature +20, Stealth +21, Streetwise +18, Thievery +21
 
POWERS
Basic Attack: Melee Basic Attack
Basic Attack: Ranged Basic Attack
Svirfneblin Utility: Stone Camouflage
Fighter Attack: Combat Challenge
Barbarian Attack 1: Howling Strike
Fighter Attack 1: Threatening Rush
Barbarian Attack 1: Tyrant's Rage
Barbarian Utility 2: Shrug It Off
Fighter Attack 3: Rain of Blows
Fighter Attack 5: Rain of Steel -> Replaced by Jackal Strike at lvl 15
Fighter Utility 6: Rock Steady
Runepriest Feature: Rune of Mending
Fighter Attack 7: Hydra Charge -> Replaced by Shoulder Slam ar lvl 17
Fighter Attack 9: Oak Hammer Rage - > Replaced by World Serpent Rage at lvl 29
Runepriest Utility 10: Rune of the Astral Winds

Kensei Attack 11: Masterstroke
Kensei Utility 12: Ultimate Parry
Barbarian Attack 13: Storm of Blades -> Replaced by Hurricane of Blades at lvl 27
Dungeoneering Utility 16: Practiced Mental Defense
Fighter Attack 17: Shoulder Slam ->  Replaced by Warrior's Urging at lvl 23
Fighter Attack 19: Controlling Thrust -> Replaced by Goad of Blood at lvl 25
Kensei Attack 20: Weaponsoul Dance

Barbarian Utility 22: Unexpected Clarity
Dragonborn Racial Power: Dragon Breath
Fighter Attack 23: Warrior's Urging
Gnoll Racial Power: Ferocious Charge
Fighter Attack 25: Goad of Blood
Reincarnate Champion Utility 26: Swift Reincarnation
Barbarian Attack 27: Hurricane of Blades
Barbarian Attack 29: World Serpent Rage
 
FEATS
Level 1: Spear Expertise
Level 2: Reckless Charge
Level 4: Suprising Charge
Level 6: Powerful Charge
Level 8: Student of Divine Runes
Level 10: Acolyte Power
Level 11: Scrappy
Level 12: Weapon Focus (Spear)
Level 14: Small Warrior's Defense
Level 16: Improved Defenses
Level 18: Deadly Rage -> Retrained at lvl 21 into Mounted Combat
Level 20: Hybrid Talent: Barbarian Armored Agility
Level 21: Jousting Charge
Level 22: Epic Resurgence
Level 24: Draconic Arrogance
Level 26: Fierce Charge
Level 28: Brutal Charge
Level 30: Superior Will
 
ITEMS

Vanguard Lance +1 -> +4
Unbroken Lance +5 -> +6
Iron Armbands of Power (heroic tier) -> (epic tier)
Horned Helm (heroic tier) -> (epic tier)
Cloak of Distortion +1 -> +2
Torc of Power Preservation +3 -> +6
Boots of the Mighty Charge
Marauder's Hide Armor +1 -> 2
Hide Armor of Dark Deeds +3 -> +6
Impenetrable Barding (heroic tier) -> (epic tier)
Lancing Gloves -> Gauntlets of Brutality at lvl 24
Totemic Belt
Backlash Tattoo
Ring of Giants
Ring of Fury
====== End ======


Alternative Slayer build


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====== Created Using Wizards of the Coast D&D Character Builder ======
Gretzlynn, level 30
Svirfneblin, Fighter (Slayer), Kensei, Reincarnate Champion
Kensei Focus Option: Kensei Focus Lance
Slayer Weapon Specialization Option: Rapid Quarterstaff
Epic Vitality Option: Epic Vitality Strength
Past Spirit Option: Past Spirit (Tiefling)
Past Spirit Option: Past Spirit (Gnoll)
Dragon Breath Key Ability: Dragon Breath Strength
Dragon Breath Damage Type: Dragon Breath Fire
Firepulse Option: Firepulse Strength
Earthshock Option: Earthshock Strength
Darkfire Option: Darkfire Wisdom
Razor Storm Key Ability: Razor Storm Strength
Associate: Trained Young Owlbear (can be swapped for Trained Fey Panther if mobility proves to be a problem)
Theme: Fey Beast Tamer
 
FINAL ABILITY SCORES
STR 28, CON 14, DEX 24, INT 10, WIS 16, CHA 12
 
STARTING ABILITY SCORES
STR 16, CON 12, DEX 16, INT 8, WIS 12, CHA 10
 
AC: 45 Fort: 45 Ref: 43 Will: 38
HP: 203 Surges: 11 Surge Value: 50

TRAINED FEY PANTHER INFO
AC: 43 Fort: 43 Ref: 45 Will: 41
HP 101 Speed 8, Climb 6

TRAINED YOUNG OWLBEAR INFO
AC: 43 Fort: 45 Ref: 41 Will: 45
HP 101 Speed 6

TRAINED SKILLS
Acrobatics +26, Athletics +28, Endurance +21, Heal +25
 
UNTRAINED SKILLS
Arcana +17, Bluff +18, Diplomacy +18, Dungeoneering +22, History +17, Insight +20, Intimidate +20, Nature +20, Perception +22, Religion +17, Stealth +21, Streetwise +18, Thievery +21
 
POWERS
Basic Attack: Melee Basic Attack
Basic Attack: Ranged Basic Attack
Svirfneblin Utility: Stone Camouflage
Multiple Class Attack: Power Strike
Fighter Utility: Berserker's Charge
Fighter Utility: Mobile Blade
Fighter Utility: Battle Wrath
Fighter Utility: Poised Assault
Tiefling Racial Power: Infernal Wrath
Dragonborn Racial Power: Dragon Breath
Fighter Utility 2: Get Over Here
Fighter Attack 3: Rain of Blows
Fighter Utility 6: Dauntless Endurance
Fighter Utility 10: Fighter's Grit -> Replaced by Rune of the Astral Winds through through Acolyte Power until it is retrained at lvl 19
Endurance Utility 10: Reactive Surge
Kensei Attack 11: Masterstroke
Kensei Utility 12: Ultimate Parry
Kensei Attack 20: Weaponsoul Dance
Bard Utility 22: Queen's Clemency
Gnoll Racial Power: Ferocious Charge
Reincarnate Champion Utility 26: Swift Reincarnation
Barbarian Attack 27: Hurricane of Blades


 
FEATS
Berserker's Fury
Level 1: Spear Expertise
Level 2: Powerful Charge
Level 4: Martial Cross-Training
Level 6: Surprising Charge
Level 8: Student of Divine Runes -> Retrained into Superior Will at lvl 19
Level 10: Acolyte Power -> Retrained into Berserker's Fury at lvl 20
Level 11: Scrappy
Level 12: Weapon Focus (Spear) -> Retrained into Fiery Blood at lvl 21
Level 14: Small Warrior's Defense
Level 16: Improved Defenses
Level 18: Impaling Spear
Level 19: Superior Will
Level 20: Reckless Charge
Level 21: Hellfire Blood
Level 21: Fiery Blood
Level 22: Secrets of Belial
Level 24: Fierce Charge
Level 26: Brutal Charge
Level 28: Novice Power
Level 28: Retrain Superior Will -> Reserve Maneuver
Level 30: Superior Will
 
ITEMS

Vanguard Lance +1 -> +4
Flaming Lance +5 -> +6
Khyber Shard of the Fiery Depth (epic tier)
Iron Armbands of Power (heroic tier) -> (epic tier)
Horned Helm (heroic tier) -> (epic tier)
Cloak of Distortion +1 -> +2
Torc of Power Preservation +3 -> +6
Boots of the Mighty Charge -> Rushing Cleats at lvl 24
Marauder's Hide Armor +1 -> 2
Hide Armor of Dark Deeds +3 -> +6
Impenetrable Barding (heroic tier) -> (epic tier)
Lancing Gloves
Totemic Belt
Backlash Tattoo
Ring of Giants
Ring of Calling
====== End ======


Alternative Executioner|Warlock build


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====== Created Using Wizards of the Coast D&D Character Builder ======
Carlin, level 30
Goblin, Assassin (Executioner)/Warlock, Evermeet Warlock, Radiant One
Guild Attacks (Hybrid) Option: Red Scales (Hybrid)
Hybrid Assassin (Executioner) Option: Hybrid Executioner Will
Eldritch Pact (Hybrid) Option: Sorcerer-King Pact (Hybrid)
Eldritch Strike Option: Eldritch Strike Charisma
Hybrid Warlock Option: Hybrid Warlock Will
Arcane Implement Proficiency Option: Arcane Implement Proficiency (light blade group)
Associate: Trained Fey Panther
Theme: Fey Beast Tamer
 
FINAL ABILITY SCORES
STR 14, CON 13, DEX 18, INT 22, WIS 10, CHA 26
 
STARTING ABILITY SCORES
STR 12, CON 11, DEX 14, INT 14, WIS 8, CHA 16
 
 
AC: 41 Fort: 39 Ref: 41 Will: 45
HP: 170 Surges: 14 Surge Value: 42
 
TRAINED SKILLS
Endurance +21, Insight +20, Perception +20, Thievery +24
 
UNTRAINED SKILLS
Acrobatics +19, Arcana +21, Athletics +17, Bluff +31, Diplomacy +23, Dungeoneering +15, Heal +15, History +21, Intimidate +29, Nature +15, Religion +21, Stealth +21, Streetwise +23
 
POWERS
Basic Attack: Melee Basic Attack
Basic Attack: Ranged Basic Attack
Goblin Utility: Goblin Tactics
Assassin Attack: Poisoned Dagger
Assassin Attack: Quick Lunge
Warlock's Curse  Power: Warlock's Curse
Assassin Attack: Assassin's Strike
Warlock Attack 1: Eldritch Strike
Swap daily for poison -> Retrained at level 9 for Crown of Stars
Warlock Utility 2: Devil's Trade
Assassin Utility 2: Converging Shadows
Warlock Attack 3: Delban's Deadly Attention -> Replaced by Dark Reach of Xevut at lvl 13
Warlock Attack 5: Emerald Shield -> Replaced by Word of Sorcerer-King at lvl 25
Warlock Attack 7: Touch of Command
Warlock Attack 1: Crown of Stars -> Replaced by Armor of Summer's Glort
Assassin Attack 9: Wall of Shadows -> Replaced by Consign to Shadow at lvl 19
Warlock Utility 10: Ethereal Sidestep
Evermeet Warlock Attack 11: Blinding Beacon
Warlock Attack 13: Dark Reach of Xevut -> Replaced by Unwilling Betrayal at lvl 23
Warlock Attack 15: Armor of Summer's Glort
Warlock Attack 17: Strand of Fate -> Replaced by Maddening Whispers at lvl 27
Evermeet Warlock Utility 12: Feylights
Assassin Attack 19: Consign to Shadow -> Retrained into Shadow Puppet at lvl 29
Evermeet Warlock Attack 20: Moonflower Inspiration
Assassin Utility 22: Fortress of Shadow
Warlock Attack 23: Unwilling Betrayal
Warlock Attack 23: Maddening Whispers
Warlock Attack 25: Word of the Sorcerer-King
Radiant One Utility 26: Star Flesh
Aassassin Attack 29: Shadow Puppet -> Replaced by Kiss of Death at lvl 29
Rogue Attack 29: Kiss of Death
 
FEATS
Light Blade Expertise
Cursed Shadow
Adept Power
Level 1: Light Blade Expertise
Level 2: Arcane Implement Proficiency (light blade)
Level 4: Nimble Blade
Level 6: Mindbite Scorn
Level 8:  Superior Will
Level 10: Improved Defenses
Level 11: Student of Divine Runes -> Retrained into at lvl 17
Level 12: Acolyte Power -> Retrained into Cursed Shadow at lvl 16
Level 14: Deft Blade
Level 16: Silvery Glow
Level 18: Suprising Charge
Level 20: Killer in the Crowd
Level 21: Cursed Spells
Level 22: Quickened Spellcasting
Level 24: Powerful Charge
Level 26: Starfire Womb
Level 28: Epic Fortitude -> Retreined into Adept Power at lvl 29
Level 30: Superior Initiative

 
ITEMS
Vanguard Rapier +1 -> +2
Radiant Rapier +3 -> +6

Vicious Rod +1
Rod of Brutality +2 ->-> +4 (no need for +3 as it's only used to improve curse damage)
Rod of Ulban +5
Siberys Shard of Radiance (paragon tier) -> (epic tier)
Iron Armbands of Power (heroic tier) -> (epic tier)
Horned Helm (heroic tier) -> (epic tier)
Leather Armor of Dark Majesty +1 -> +6
Cloak of Distortion +1 -> +2
Cloak of Translocation +4 -> +6
Boots of the Mighty Charge x1
Lancing Gloves -> Hands of Hadar
Riding Boots -> Eladrin Boots
Diamond Cincture (heroic tier) -> (epic tier)
Ring of the Radiant Storm
Ring of Tenacious Will
Tattoo of the Escape Artist

====== End ======



PS: I apologize beforehand for bad formatting of this post, I'm not so used to posting on forums.

Edits


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- I forgot to mention that I have not at all looked at how many of the items listed in the build which would be affordable at various levels, so most probably some items would have to be replaced with cheaper ones or left out.

- Added alternative Slayer build. It has a gap from lvl 19-20 where it can't get a good setup for charge (no Rune of Astral Wind), and it needs to change feat or two somewhere to cope with fire resistance from using a flaming weapons, but apart from that I think it would prove quite effective. Once again I haven't quite looked at the item budget, so some items would probably have to be cut. I also added the HP/speed/defenses of the Trained Young Owlbear and Trained Fey Panther in the new build.

Changes in "problems at first glance":
- Put strikethrough font on misinformed info about Badge of the Berserker, added new note about it just below.

Changes in original build:
- Retrain Deadly Rage into Mouned Combat at lvl 21
- Train Jousting Charge instead of Mark of Storm at lvl 21

Items:
- Changed from Badge of the Berserker +1 -> +6 to Cloak of Distortion +1 -> +2  , Torc of Power preservation +3 -> +6
- Changed from Lightning Lance +5 -> +6 to Vanguard Lance +5 -> +6







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- Added new Executioner|Warlock build as an alternative.

Changes in the original build:


items:
added gauntlets of brutality at lvl 24
changed Vanguard Lance +5 -> +6 to Unbroken Lance +5 -> +6
removed Rushing cleats

feats:
lvl 22: Changed Polearm Momentum into Epic Resurgence
moved Suprising Charge to lvl 4
moved Powerful Charge to lvl 6
moved Scrappy to lvl 11
moved Weapon Focus (Spear) to lvl 12


Changes in the slayer build:


Changed Past Spirit lvl 24 to Gnoll
Changed Behemoth Wrath into Rain of Blows (obtained through Martial Cross-Training)

feats
moved Suprising Charge to lvl 6
moved Scrappy to lvl 11

items:
removed Rushing cleats

Feats:
lvl 24: Changed Mounted Combat with Fierce Charge
lvl 26: Changed Jousting Charge with Brutal Charge
lvl 28: Changed Polearm Momentum into Novice Power
lvl 30: Changed Draconic Arrogance into Reserve Maneuver
You don't need Mark of Storm+Lighting Weapon since you can instead take Mounted Combat plus Jousting Charge (Dragon 401, not in compendium for some reason) to get a push on every mounted charge and still get to use a vanguard weapon. It costs an extra feat, but Deadly Rage is a good candidate to cut, since this would get you an extra damage instance from Draconic Arrogance since it would be a push instead of a slide (which does not trigger DA).

There are also a number of different ways to go about this with differing results. You picked up on the need for Rune of Astral Winds for repeated mounted charging, so to really work they will all need some runepriest in there. Some of the other versions I like are Svirfneblin Slayer/MC Runepriest with a fey panther mount since slayer has build in power bonus stance, or any of the +Cha small races as a Blackguard|Executioner/MC Runepriest. All getting potent charges but with different sets of non-charge options.
One of your other issues is going to be that when your mount provokes the DM is going to punch you, regardless of your badge of the berserker.

Provoking Opportunity Attacks: If the mount’s movement provokes an opportunity attack, the attacker chooses to target either the mount or the rider, since the two of them move together. However, if the mount or the rider provokes an opportunity attack by using a ranged or an area power, the attacker must target whichever one of them provoked the opportunity attack.

So worry about your mount's survivability is less a problem, and worrying about how you are going to get your head caved in and have a nearly useless neck slot is more of a problem.

Edit: Also you can look at Executioner|Warlock/Rogue as your base.  You don't get the stuff from fighter, but you can stay Dex/Cha which matches up well with smaller races. 
Currently working on making a Dex based defender. Check it out here
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Rune of Astral Winds means Badge of the Beserker is not needed. You slide your mount, which slides you, out to charge distance and charge in a path that won't provoke. So only threatening reachers will really be an issue for that.
Rune of Astral Winds means Badge of the Beserker is not needed. You slide your mount, which slides you, out to charge distance and charge in a path that won't provoke. So only threatening reachers will really be an issue for that.



And when the target you want to kill is in the back.  Granted Rune of the Astral Winds goes a good way towards fixing the problems, but it should still be changed in the OP to prevent confusion (and he should pick a new neck slot item).
Currently working on making a Dex based defender. Check it out here
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Need a few pre-generated characters for a one-shot you are running? Want to get a baseline for what an effective build for a class you aren't familiar with? Check out the Pregen thread here If ever you are interested what it sounds like to be at my table check out my blog and podcast here Also, I've recently done an episode on "Refluffing". You can check that out here
Thanks for the detailed replies! I would never have found the Jousting Charge feat on my own. Without Mark of Storm the attacks of Opportunity won't get the nifty slide+prone effect, but I suppose it's better to have + Str mod on charge attacks.

I'll update the OP in a sec with changed feats, in addition to changing the neck slot for something more usefull.

I haven't heard of the Executioner|Warlock/Rogue combo for chargers, I suppose it's all built around boosting Eldritch Strike? If you have an example of how that spesific combo works together that would be much apreciated


Edit: Never mind I found it a post with links  with  Executioner|Warlock/Rogue builds.

Edit 2: I have failed to find a proper way to move the mount away without getting loads of AoO without "Rune of the Astral Winds" or "Queen's Clemency", or if I find an ally buddy to devote his powers to getting me out of harms way. . If only the "Saddle of the Nightmare" worked both ways (because when the mount teleports the rider can teleport with it, but when the rider teleports the mount can't follow).

Slayer/MC Runepriest seems like a quite more accurate (+2 from stance, +1 from weapon talent) and damaging build in general (Dex mod + X extra on all damage rolls), especially in long encounters, but I don't know if I like the feeling of giving up the ability to nova with encounter and daily powers (and particularly not the ones which can be used on charge attacks).


Well for the slayer route, you can at least grab martial cross training to pick up rain of blows, and then whatever you get from you PP/ED.
You might want to try to fit in the pixie charging feat, streak of light, to get very easy CA for any charge you do.  It makes it much easier to trigger suprising charge since you need CA for that extra damage.
You might want to try to fit in the pixie charging feat, streak of light, to get very easy CA for any charge you do.  It makes it much easier to trigger suprising charge since you need CA for that extra damage.



Not needed with CA from fey beast tamer.
but I don't know if I like the feeling of giving up the ability to nova with encounter and daily powers (and particularly not the ones which can be used on charge attacks).

There are surely powers worth taking, but they pull your character away from your stated goals. If you're just doing theorycraft to see the best charger you can make, all your decisions should be based around "does this make my charge better?" So I'd either toss out the consideration of non-charging powers or reconsider your true goals for this build.
but I don't know if I like the feeling of giving up the ability to nova with encounter and daily powers (and particularly not the ones which can be used on charge attacks).

There are surely powers worth taking, but they pull your character away from your stated goals. If you're just doing theorycraft to see the best charger you can make, all your decisions should be based around "does this make my charge better?" So I'd either toss out the consideration of non-charging powers or reconsider your true goals for this build.



The intention with the non-charging encounter powers was to be able to use them on charge attacks for extra punch through feats/items, but I suppose it doesn't really prove truly effective until epic tier with the Brutal Charge feat. Tyrant's Rage could also of course be retrained into something more useful for charging post obtaining Rune of Astral Winds, like Life-Ending Strike perhaps.

In any case, here's what I found for that purpose of using encounter powers on charges: Boots of the Mighty Charge (1/day, heroic and paragon tier), Brutal Charge (1/encounter, epic tier), Goad of Blood (1/day use encounter powers on charges for the whole encounter, epic tier). Encounter recycling powers items/feats would of course also prove useful (Power Jewel, Salve of Power, Reserve Maneuver, Primal Resurgence, Epic Resurgence, etc.)

I also realized that the "Unbroken Lance" gives proning on charge attacks, which could free up a feet slot (no need for Polearm Momentum) and get back Boots of the Mighty Charge in epic tier for an extra encounter-as-charge/day, but it would be at the cost of 1d8 damage, so it would probably not worth it.


Considering the above, I agree that the Slayer chassis show much more promise for the charge build even without the big dailies and fewer encounter (also; there's no way for small races to use two-handed axes or blades, right?). Thus I made a new build with the Slayer chassis, which has about +4 more to hit in epic and should have loads more damage on basic attacks from Heroic/Paragon/Epic Slayer class feature. As I mentioned in edit it still needs a feat to cope with fire resistance (Hellfire of Mephistopheles looks like a good feat for that, if I can just decide which feat to swap it with), and it doesn't have a proper way of setting up charge attacks at lvl 19-20, but apart from that I think it's a quite sound build. Please do critique it if you may .


Edit: Do anyone know of some ways to exploit the fact that as long as I get to attack something I'll have permanent CA against it (Fey Beast aura) and have pretty much permanent concealment (from Armor of Dark Deeds from mid paragon)?
On the alternate build, why no surprising charge in heroic?  Seems to be something you would want as soon as you are level 5.

The Boots of the Mighty Charge need not be understated.  Tripling up on charge modifiers makes for a pretty devastating attack.  Not sure how many ways there are to recharge daily item powers, but it might be worth taking a look at (not many in this build that is).  You won't have access to a fighter daily this way, which is sad as Brutal Advance is a decent daily for a charge build (tap + Charge).  It also has a built in way of getting things away from you so you can charge the target you want to.

There is no way for a small race to get two handed axes normally although if you took bugbear somehow you could get the ability to use a normal sized weapon that way.
Currently working on making a Dex based defender. Check it out here
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Need a few pre-generated characters for a one-shot you are running? Want to get a baseline for what an effective build for a class you aren't familiar with? Check out the Pregen thread here If ever you are interested what it sounds like to be at my table check out my blog and podcast here Also, I've recently done an episode on "Refluffing". You can check that out here
On the alternate build, why no surprising charge in heroic?  Seems to be something you would want as soon as you are level 5.



I didn't think through the sequence feat sequence properly - both builds would indeed benefit greatly from getting Suprising Charge at lvl 4 when it becomes possible with the Dex boost.


The Boots of the Mighty Charge need not be understated.  Tripling up on charge modifiers makes for a pretty devastating attack.  Not sure how many ways there are to recharge daily item powers, but it might be worth taking a look at (not many in this build that is).  You won't have access to a fighter daily this way, which is sad as Brutal Advance is a decent daily for a charge build (tap + Charge).  It also has a built in way of getting things away from you so you can charge the target you want to.

There is no way for a small race to get two handed axes normally although if you took bugbear somehow you could get the ability to use a normal sized weapon that way.



About the Bugbear, did you mean if I took it as a Past Spirit? The Past Spirit feature only makes the character count as a member of the chosen race for feat prerequisites and (unless I die and swift reincarnate as a Bugbear, but that would kind of defeat the point of being small and it would probably be too much of a hassle with retraining all the feats with "small" prerequisite. And then my mount would be too small. I must have misunderstood).

Teaming up with an artificer is the easiest way I can think of to regain item powers.

Edit: Also, take heed of that at lvl 25+,  with the "Goad of Blood" any Encounter attack power can be used in stead of a melee basic attack, and if I take Primal Resurgence with the feat which opened up by taking (only requires getting bloodied lol) this can be used 2x day

So to sum up the # of encounter power-charging:
Lvl 10+: 1/day (2/day with artificer) with Boots of Mighty Charge.
Lvl 25+: 2 whole encounters with encounter power-charging all the time (Goad of Blood+Primal Resurgence).
Lvl 26+: Every encounter : 1x encounter with Brutal Charge.
Further encounter recycling for more Brutal Charge: Salve of Power (item)/Epic Resurgence (feat).

I don't know if the above is enough to make up for the inherent higher accuracy of the Slayer though, and the big crunch doesn't come online until mid-epic for the original build.



You might want to try to fit in the pixie charging feat, streak of light, to get very easy CA for any charge you do.  It makes it much easier to trigger suprising charge since you need CA for that extra damage.



Not needed with CA from fey beast tamer.




I'm wondering about this. When you start your turn, the enemy is in the aura1, but if you shift back 2, so you can charge, the enemy is no longer in the aura, and therefore no longer giving you CA.
The feature from FBT gives your owlbear an aura that makes things grant CA.  It has nothing to do with where YOU are.
Oh, right. For some reason I thought he was riding his medium creature as a mount.
Oh, right. For some reason I thought he was riding his medium creature as a mount.



That was indeed the intention, and the target of the charge will grant combat advantage when the rider becomes adjacent, before attack power is initiated.

One thing I kind of forgot that using Draconic Arrogance on multi-attacks won't work more than once against single targets as the target will be pushed away, out of range without throwing in some aditional ... wait a second, I caught something of interest in the description of the "Jousting Charge" feat :


If you hit a target with a charge attack
while you are mounted, you can push the target 1
square and then shift 1 square into the square the
target vacated.

Can the mount shift when the rider shifts Surprised ? I have up until now thought that that the mount can't shift when the rider does, even though the mount is moved along the rider when when the rider is affected by forced movement. Am I wrong or is it just the feat which is badly written and/or outdated?

Edit: Typo
Edit 2: I posted the question about Jousting Charge in the "4e ask a simple question" sticky thread where it might be more fitting.
Edit 3: Yep, after some research I conclude that the shifting part of Jousting Charge feat is indeed borked RAW. Which is quite a shame, as otherwise DA from pushing would work on multi-attacks while mounted without having to invest heavily into means to slide the target back after the initial push/prone (like by getting Pushing Spear+Polearm Momentum+Mark of Storm+Lightning Lance+Rushing Cleats ... yeah, definetly a bummer).

Edit 4: Going tiefling as past Spirit could salvage it with Tail Slide (one could always chose to shift 0 squares, right?). Tail Slide would also make certain other shifting powers more viable. It would mean bye bye to Brutal Charge though, which would be a huge drawback (then we're only left with 2x encounters + 2x times per day with charging multi-attack, instead of in addition having 1-2 uses every encounter).

Feat is written poorly and fails to function.
Feat is written poorly and fails to function.



Of course in any reasonably environment, the intent is painfully obvious to allow the mount to make the shift.
I added a executioner|warlock build, if it is of interest to anyone.

It's an alien combo for me though, so I'm sure it can be improved in several ways. For instance, I think it could be improved by getting Two-Fold pact, but I just wasn't sure which other pact to pick as I thought. I was also unsure of whether Two-Fold Pact added a pact boon if I didn't already have one.

Another critical question is whether Evermeet Warlock feature allows proper teleportation of the mount while the warlock is mounted on it.

Lastly I believe the build may be slightly hard pressed to keep up the various powers I picked as a lot of them needs to be sustained...
I had a huge post that got deleted due to a misclick.

But the essence is this:

Your exe|lock build needs to be Cha/Dex.  Start with 20 CHA and use Eldritch Strike as your MBA.  Then add all your riders to it.

With it your encounter nova looks like this:
Charge @ +18 to hit (+15 base, +charge, +CA)
1d10 (Lance) + 1d10 (Mounted Lance) + 1d10 (Surprising Charge) + 3d10 (Assassin's Strike) + 1d8 (Attack Finesse) + 1d8 (Curse) + 1d8 (Mindbite Scorn) + 1d8 (Vanguard Weapon) + 1d6 (Horned Helm) + 2d6 (Sneak of Shadows) + 6 (Charisma) + 2 (Lancing) + 2 (Iron Armbands) + 1 (Spear Expertise) + 2 (Enhancement) + 2 (Owlbear) = 6d10+4d8+3d6+15 ~ 6*5.5+4*4.5+3*3.5+15 ~ 33+18+10.5+15 ~ 76.5

Averages out to about 77 damage, which is just slightly below SMHP for level 8.  A crit, since you have so many dice, does a stupidly high amount of damage (2d8+125).  Also you have a daily stance and an encounter pair of boots to help you shift out to charge again.  And... you get to toss a silly amount of dice which is fun.  You can up things by using Mercurial Rod 1/day to give you an extra 2d8 damage or using your armor to give you an extra Eldritch strike at the end of a charge.  Another route to go with the armor is Armor of Dark Majesty which gives you +2 defenses against your cursed target and lets you curse the right thing a little easier (doesnt stack with boots sadly).

Here is a barebones outline you can build from / modify
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====== Created Using Wizards of the Coast D&D Character Builder ======

level 8
Goblin, Assassin (Executioner)/Warlock
Guild Attacks (Hybrid) Option: Red Scales (Hybrid)
Hybrid Assassin (Executioner) Option: Hybrid Executioner Fortitude
Eldritch Pact (Hybrid) Option: Sorcerer-King Pact (Hybrid)
Hybrid Warlock Option: Hybrid Warlock Reflex
Eldritch Strike Option: Eldritch Strike Charisma
Associate: Trained Young Owlbear
Born Under a Bad Sign (Born Under a Bad Sign Benefit)
Theme: Fey Beast Tamer

FINAL ABILITY SCORES
STR 10, CON 11, DEX 18, INT 10, WIS 8, CHA 22

STARTING ABILITY SCORES
STR 10, CON 11, DEX 14, INT 10, WIS 8, CHA 18


AC: 22 Fort: 16 Ref: 21 Will: 21
HP: 69 Surges: 6 Surge Value: 17

TRAINED SKILLS
Acrobatics +13, Bluff +17, Thievery +13

UNTRAINED SKILLS
Arcana +4, Athletics +4, Diplomacy +10, Dungeoneering +3, Endurance +4, Heal +3, History +4, Insight +3, Intimidate +10, Nature +3, Perception +3, Religion +4, Stealth +10, Streetwise +10

POWERS
Basic Attack: Melee Basic Attack
Basic Attack: Ranged Basic Attack
Goblin Utility: Goblin Tactics
Warlock's Curse Power: Warlock's Curse
Assassin Attack: Assassin's Strike
: Assassin's Strike (Additional Damage)
Warlock Attack 1: Eldritch Strike
Assassin Utility 2: Contrivance of Speed
Warlock Attack 3: Delban's Deadly Attention

FEATS
Mindbite Scorn
Level 2: Sneak of Shadows
Level 4: Surprising Charge
Level 6: Spear Expertise
Level 8: Killing Curse

ITEMS
Vanguard Lance +2 x1
Horned Helm (heroic tier) x1
Bestial Leather Armor +2 x1
Lesser Badge of the Berserker +1 x1
Iron Armbands of Power (heroic tier) x1
Boots of the Fencing Master x1
Lancing Gloves x1
Mercurial Rod +2 x1
====== End ======



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As the Executioner|Warlock (or any non-fighter, non-runepriest combination), it's really tough to choose between fighter and runepriest MC. Fighter MC really only gets you the extra d10 damage with surprising charge, while Runepriest MC gives you at-will charge setup. It doesn't really matter how much charge damage you can tack on if you can't reliably charge to begin with...
As the Executioner|Warlock (or any non-fighter, non-runepriest combination), it's really tough to choose between fighter and runepriest MC. Fighter MC really only gets you the extra d10 damage with surprising charge, while Runepriest MC gives you at-will charge setup. It doesn't really matter how much charge damage you can tack on if you can't reliably charge to begin with...



With what I listed you have a 1/day "I can charge all combat no worries" button and a 1/enc get out and charge option.  I haven't played it, but I wonder how much more often than that you will need to get out to charge (I have played other chargers before and generally boots is enough).
Currently working on making a Dex based defender. Check it out here
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Need a few pre-generated characters for a one-shot you are running? Want to get a baseline for what an effective build for a class you aren't familiar with? Check out the Pregen thread here If ever you are interested what it sounds like to be at my table check out my blog and podcast here Also, I've recently done an episode on "Refluffing". You can check that out here
As the Executioner|Warlock (or any non-fighter, non-runepriest combination), it's really tough to choose between fighter and runepriest MC. Fighter MC really only gets you the extra d10 damage with surprising charge, while Runepriest MC gives you at-will charge setup. It doesn't really matter how much charge damage you can tack on if you can't reliably charge to begin with...

....Um, Ethereal Sidestep+any of more than two dozen teleport boosters. You can now charge at-will. What is the issue, exactly? Also Warlock|Exe usually MCs Rogue for the one/encounter use of SA+Surprising Charge, not Fighter, because it contributes to their poor nova.
As the Executioner|Warlock (or any non-fighter, non-runepriest combination), it's really tough to choose between fighter and runepriest MC. Fighter MC really only gets you the extra d10 damage with surprising charge, while Runepriest MC gives you at-will charge setup. It doesn't really matter how much charge damage you can tack on if you can't reliably charge to begin with...

....Um, Ethereal Sidestep+any of more than two dozen teleport boosters. You can now charge at-will. What is the issue, exactly? Also Warlock|Exe usually MCs Rogue for the one/encounter use of SA+Surprising Charge, not Fighter, because it contributes to their poor nova.



They key note here is to remember we are talking about a mount build.  Which causes all sorts of problems.  So all the teleports you do make charging with your mount a bit more awkward.  And it is to be noted that my suggestion was MC rogue not fighter.
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Well, you are. He applied it to all Exe|Warlocks, with no caveats. But the mounted options blow in general, just due to the way the mount rules work.
Well, you are. He applied it to all Exe|Warlocks, with no caveats. But the mounted options blow in general, just due to the way the mount rules work.



This is true, but the thread we are on is dedicated to the idea of a small mounted character... so a lot of things go out the window.
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Thanks for the detailed build & explanation Martyr!

How did you mean that the 1/day charge all you want and get out and charge 1/enc if you're mounted? I suppose if it's to be used on the ground as a backup plan there should really be a backup weapon in there, like a vanguard longspear +1 or similar.

Vaporous Step could prove an alternative to keep charging for one encounter, until we can teleport the mount with us at lvl 16 with the Evermeet Warlock paragon path feature.

In adition we could swap Vanguard Lance into Unbroken Lance in early paragon to be able to mess up enemies with no ranged attack (slide+prone).

Thanks for the detailed build & explanation Martyr!

How did you mean that the 1/day charge all you want and get out and charge 1/enc if you're mounted? I suppose if it's to be used on the ground as a backup plan there should really be a backup weapon in there, like a vanguard longspear +1 or similar.

Vaporous Step could prove an alternative to keep charging for one encounter, until we can teleport the mount with us at lvl 16 with the Evermeet Warlock paragon path feature.

In adition we could swap Vanguard Lance into Unbroken Lance in early paragon to be able to mess up enemies with no ranged attack (slide+prone).




Contrivance of Speed.  The stance.  It lets you shift 2 as a move action.

Boots of the Fencing Master let you shift 2 once per encounter.

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None of those would work while mounted though, and lances get -2 To-Hit  while not being used on a mount, and lose the 1 [W] bonus, so a backup Vanguard Spear would in that case be quite warranted.

One intersting question though: Can you shift 0 squares while on your mount and still remain mounted, and thus benefit from Boots of the Fencing Master (since Goblins has an at-will shift when they get missed).

Another moore critical question is whether it is possible to remain mounted after the rider teleports and bring the mount along through the Evermeet lvl 16 feature. It says "Your ally appears in any square of your choice adjacent to your ending location", but when you're mounted you share the same square as your mount, so per RAW my gut feeling is that it would not work, as you'd end up in a different square than the mount. In that case we could throw in a Saddle of the Nightmare, which I think would make it work.

If it finally works after the above investements, all the nice teleport support from warlocks/assassins though suddenly became available and some of the hassle with being mounted would be solved.
TBH I didn't know I had houseruled that to work.  After discussing it with some people who apparently have far better system mastery than myself I'm at once ashamed that I've been doing it wrong this long without knowing it, and happy that I have been making a lot of things work that shouldn't.

So, basically, you are pretty much screwed there. 
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None of those would work while mounted though, and lances get -2 To-Hit  while not being used on a mount, and lose the 1 [W] bonus, so a backup Vanguard Spear would in that case be quite warranted.

One intersting question though: Can you shift 0 squares while on your mount and still remain mounted, and thus benefit from Boots of the Fencing Master (since Goblins has an at-will shift when they get missed).

Another moore critical question is whether it is possible to remain mounted after the rider teleports and bring the mount along through the Evermeet lvl 16 feature. It says "Your ally appears in any square of your choice adjacent to your ending location", but when you're mounted you share the same square as your mount, so per RAW my gut feeling is that it would not work, as you'd end up in a different square than the mount. In that case we could throw in a Saddle of the Nightmare, which I think would make it work.

If it finally works after the above investements, all the nice teleport support from warlocks/assassins though suddenly became available and some of the hassle with being mounted would be solved.

You can teleport off your mount and bring your mount with you, but you can't remount and saddle of the nightmare doesn't fix it, because you are no longer mounted by the time the mount teleports.... Mounted builds simply do not function without houserules in 99% of cases.
None of those would work while mounted though, and lances get -2 To-Hit  while not being used on a mount, and lose the 1 [W] bonus, so a backup Vanguard Spear would in that case be quite warranted.

One intersting question though: Can you shift 0 squares while on your mount and still remain mounted, and thus benefit from Boots of the Fencing Master (since Goblins has an at-will shift when they get missed).

Another moore critical question is whether it is possible to remain mounted after the rider teleports and bring the mount along through the Evermeet lvl 16 feature. It says "Your ally appears in any square of your choice adjacent to your ending location", but when you're mounted you share the same square as your mount, so per RAW my gut feeling is that it would not work, as you'd end up in a different square than the mount. In that case we could throw in a Saddle of the Nightmare, which I think would make it work.

If it finally works after the above investements, all the nice teleport support from warlocks/assassins though suddenly became available and some of the hassle with being mounted would be solved.

You can teleport off your mount and bring your mount with you, but you can't remount and saddle of the nightmare doesn't fix it, because you are no longer mounted by the time the mount teleports.... Mounted builds simply do not function without houserules in 99% of cases.



Thanks for your insight, as of yours Matyr. I realize that a functional mounted & charging & small race relies on allies who can help them shift/slide away prior to that they would be able to set up charges on their own at lvl 10/11 with Astral Wind. I do not think I'll have time to make a proper exe|'lock build in the near future, but thanks a lot for the assistance I've been granted!