The Fighter (Playtest Packet 03.20.13)

I am slowing going through the packet.  It isn’t as bad as it first looked at it and I think (at least initially) it looks pretty good, but it does need some cleaning up.


I will start with the fighter.  I like what I see and here is how I would clean it up.  First, Multiattack and Deadly Strike need to be combined and tweaked so that each round you have x[W] to spend on attacks and you can spread those around to as many targets as you want but only attack each target once.  For example, if you have 3[W] then you can make a 3[W] attack against a single target, a 1[W] attack against 3 separate targets, or a 1[W] attack against one target and a 2[W] attack against another.


Second, Death Dealer, Superior Defense, Unerring Attack, and Unstoppable need to be combined into a single fighter-only maneuver list that you send XD on.  Then create fighting styles or those that want quick character creation and level-up.  I think that would simplify things a lot.


Third, eliminate bonus feats.  Fighters should get the same number of feats as everyone else so if you decide not to use feats then all classes are affected the same.  On this topic no class should have bonus feats.  Something like Martial Artist should be a Monk class feature and the feat (Martial Artist) should just give another class access to that feature.


The biggest issue with the Fighter is the lack of obvious modularity.  The original XD system for fighters was very easily modular.  I wonder how the XD system will be simplified for the basic game.  Will it still be an encounter resource that make just adds to damage?  I am not sure how non-4e fans will like having an encounter resource in the fighter.  As a 4e fan I like the XD and I would like to play this fighter (as I have tweaked him).

 Any Edition

I was thinking more or less the same thing; I thought we were going to get a chart where Martial Damage Dice were replaced with Weapon Damage Dice, which would read 1[W] until level 5, say, at which point it'd read 2[W], and so on. Deadly Strikes and the various multiattack features are a bit rough to read, and could afford some simplification.

And yeah, Fighters could use some room to stretch. The options presented aren't as bad as they appeared at first glance, but getting only four over your career and being forced to only have one of each vague category is very tight constraint. As a side note tangential to what's said here, I also think that the action to recharge dice should be something beneficial and distinct that you pick at level 1, and get more options of as you go.

Right now, the Fighter definitely could use some refinement. 
I don't use emoticons, and I'm also pretty pleasant. So if I say something that's rude or insulting, it's probably a joke.
I agree that WDD and Deadly Strike/Multiattack should all be the same mechanic. The character gets to choose how each WDD is applied (multiple attacks to one taarget or to multiple targets).

I also think that one option for Death Dealer and Superior Defense is a bit limited; I would rather that Fighters get to choose additional options to those as they level up. 
Yes more maneuvers from death dealer/superior defense/etc. in place of bonus feats.

 Any Edition

Time to get my char-op on.

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Expertise dice:  Given that combat lasts only 2-3 rounds, and you start with 2 of these, you generally want to spend them.

Death Dealer:  Damage doesn't scale, so these really are only good from level 1-4, or if your know your really really close to killing something.  Slam saves it from being a total dud with a very nice disavantage.

Deep Wound: Only useful if you fight 1 not-quite-killable-in-1-hit monster at a time, or can't find another use for your dice.
Ricochet: Useful for killing a minion, though you get volly.
Slam: Disavantage is a big penalty.  Looses a little steam vs claw+claw+bite, but still good.
Stike Command: More flexible then deep wound, but it aslo takes your reaction.
Wide Arc: Useful for minions, though.


Superior Defenses:  Most of these are "would be hit", so you know what your chances are, and avoiding an attack is huge.  The only down side is that they won't always show up.  Still i recommend always saving 1 die for defenses.  Not dying is pretty importaint.

Block Missile: I'm not sure how bad clumping up is, or how common ranged attacks are, but the fexibility means it's much more likely to be used.
Nible Dodge: Free movement isn't bad.
Parry: Only if you don't have a shield and are in heavy armor.
Warning Shout:  While the flexibility on this certainly good, it's not "would be hit".  So it's value drops alot.


Unerring Attack: With only 2 dice, you might want to be more judicous about using them, but as you level, just consider your attack permanatly boosted.

Attack Orders: If someone (rogue), has a big attack lined up, giving them a boost is a pretty good deal.  Otherwise keep it for yourself.
Careful Attack: Get's better when "wasting" dice becomes less of an issue.
Glacing Blow: Half damage is a good use of the die.
Nick:  Half damage is a good use of the die.
Shield Swipe:  Unless your DM regularly provokes OA's...


Multi Attack: Your AoE

Volly: Given the targeting flexibility, this wins.
Whirl Wind:  Only if your ranged attack is bad.


Unstoppable:  Defense boost against magic.

Bolster Allies: Any saving throw for any ally.  Far far ahead of any of the rest.
the rest:  I don't know if any of them is attacked more then others, but really only take it if you don't have allies.

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

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

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

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Oh, and i agree that the manuvers should be in 1 big pool.

I mean, if i want block missile, nible dodge, warning shout, and bolster allies, for a defensive type, that should be ok.

Or perhaps the 4 unstoppable manuvers to be a "mage killer" type.

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

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

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

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

I rather like the Deadly Strike / Multiattack distinction. Every round, you either use one ability (single target) or the other (multiple targets). Not all classes who get Deadly Strike get a Multiattack, which enforces the idea that fighters, rangers, and (higher-level) rogues are good at handling swarms. Since every class with Multiattack gets different types of abilities, they don't all need to be unified in a single ability. Monks should probably get flurry of blows as a multiattack, but the packet states they are in transition.

Death dealer is great at level 1 but quickly trails off. I love the different choices, but the devs forgot that this is bounded accuracy, not bounded damage, so any class abilities that deal a set amount of damage need to scale in some way.

In a nutshell, the fighter gets expertise dice for +damage and +AC at level 1, +attack at level 4, and +saves at level 7. They can also focus on a single enemy (deadly strike) or groups (multiattack). Finally, they get 3 bonus feats, which correspond to maneuvers. Unfortunately, the martial feats are seriously unbalanced with one another and some lack that maneuver-y feel.
Oh, and i agree that the manuvers should be in 1 big pool.

I mean, if i want block missile, nible dodge, warning shout, and bolster allies, for a defensive type, that should be ok.

Or perhaps the 4 unstoppable manuvers to be a "mage killer" type.



This. 

Just like feat, they also should be in a pool that is access to all level. 
How you pick them determine what type of fighter you have. 

Is he all out attack? Is he defensive? Or does he shout out orders? 


Death Dealer:  Damage doesn't scale, so these really are only good from level 1-4, or if your know your really really close to killing something.  Slam saves it from being a total dud with a very nice disavantage.



This is a really basic problem both for the leveling problem, but also because this is a resource-pool class. Only being able to spend a single die per ability is really weak and prevents these abilities from having the encounter-power-level feel they should have. 


Block Missile: I'm not sure how bad clumping up is, or how common ranged attacks are, but the fexibility means it's much more likely to be used.
Nible Dodge: Free movement isn't bad.
Parry: Only if you don't have a shield and are in heavy armor.
Warning Shout:  While the flexibility on this certainly good, it's not "would be hit".  So it's value drops alot.


I think the commonness of ranged attacks that aren't spells is an issue. Also, it's very strange that Parry can't protect an ally within 5 feet, so that you have to go with Warning Shout if you want to tank. 


Unerring Attack: With only 2 dice, you might want to be more judicous about using them, but as you level, just consider your attack permanatly boosted.

Attack Orders: If someone (rogue), has a big attack lined up, giving them a boost is a pretty good deal.  Otherwise keep it for yourself.
Careful Attack: Get's better when "wasting" dice becomes less of an issue.
Glacing Blow: Half damage is a good use of the die.
Nick:  Half damage is a good use of the die.
Shield Swipe:  Unless your DM regularly provokes OA's...



Shield Sweep is lamentably bad, and runs into the Reaction bottleneck. 


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