Mini-Guide: Bravura Warlord

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OK, so I did a long writeup on Bravura warlords over in the Leaders forum, I thought I'd tighten it up a bit and post it as a mini-guide over here. I'm not really familiar with the codes that are used to get the traditional format, so please include those with the comments and I'll pretty it up as I understand the VBB codes to do it:
The Bravura Warlord
You only regret errors of caution
IMAGE(http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y256/Cain2/web_RichardTheLionheart.jpg)

Bravura means a display of daring or dazzling skill. The Bravura warlord looks is a warlord for a bold player and a group who enjoy taking risks. It is as a class that, if played consitently with the warlord's main dump stat (wisdom), will tend to either win big or lose big. If you play one without thought, you will probably win several fights that you might otherwise lose and then get TPKed by a fight that should be easy but everything just went the wrong way. That's not the way it has to be. A prudent risk analysis and careful choice will enable you to minimize the risks and maximize the potential rewards. But no matter what you do, the Bravura warlord will remain a class for the bold as well as skillful.
What Kind of Party does a Bravura Warlord belong in?

Bravura warlord plays well with: Fighters, barbarians, wizards, warlocks, strength clerics, and, potentially brutal scoundrel or Ruthless Ruffian rogues. Basically, it wants your party members to have good basic attacks and the more accurate and higher damage those attackes, the better. If you have a tactical warlord in the party, that will also help a lot.

Bravura Presence gives characters the opportunity to take a risk (miss and grant combat advantage to all foes) in order to make an extra basic attack or a move action when they spend an action point. The move action will be occasionally useful, but in general if a party member is spending an action point for a move action, they want to definitely move, not just to get a chance to move. So, the most commonly attractive option will be the extra attack.

Now an extra basic attack is only useful if you have a good basic attack. Here are the characters who have that:
Defenders:
Fighter
Strength paladin
Swordmage with intelligent blademaster

Strikers:
Barbarian
Archer ranger
Melee Warlock (esp with a pact hammer)
Brutal Scoundrel Rogue using a double sword or rapier
Artful dodger rogue using a crossbow or shuriken (yes, the extra attack will provoke an OA, but such rogues are not always adjacent to foes when they use action points and, in any event, artful dodgers do not need to fear OAs as much as other characters)
Ruthless Ruffian Rogue using a mace
Warlock using eldritch blast

Leaders:
Strength cleric
Warlord
High dex elf laser cleric with a longbow

Controllers:
Wizard with magic missile or WotST/wannabe with multiclass swordmage and intelligent blademaster

Now that looks like a lot of character types and it is, but there are a few that may not have a useful way to benefit from the risk:
Charisma paladin
Artful Dodger Rogue with a dagger (or, worse yet, a shortsword--the dagger can at least be thrown for d4+dex+enh)
Brutal Scoundrel Rogue with a dagger--yes, he is likely to hit, but he'll only do d4+str+enh
Wizard without Magic Missile
Ordinary laser cleric
Swordmage without intelligent blademaster (I think there are some such characters somewhere)

So much for Bravura Presence. Note that there is some really nice synergy with an ordinary tactical warlord here because you need to hit with your action point attack in order to win the Bravura Presence gamble and Tactical Presence helps you hit. (And that's the conservative version. If you think that gaining an extra attack as a result of an action point constitutes "spend[ing] an action point to make an attack", the synergy gets really devastating).
Races and Statistics

Bravura warlords attack with strength and benefit from a high Charisma. Because they place themselves in high risk situations, Constitution is also important for when things don't go quite as planned, and they can leverage either Dexterity or Constitution to qualify for weapon feats. Intelligence comes up occasionally in warlord powers. If Bravura Warlords were wise, they would probably have taken up the safer path of Inspiring Warlord.

Dragonborn ****
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Recommended Stats:
Str 18, Dex 10, Con 13, Int 11, Wis 8, Cha 18
Str 18, Dex 10, Con 14, Int 13, Wis 8, Cha 16
Str 18, Dex 10, Con 15, Int 11, Wis 8, Cha 16

Advantages: Dragon Breath, a bonus to healing surges, +1 to hit while bloodied, and the best available Str/Cha combinations make Dragonborn one of the strongest available choices for a Bravura Warlord

Draconic Arrogance also makes dragonborn the best choice for a polearm momentum/opening shove warlord


Human ****
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Recommended Stats:
Str 18, Dex 10, Con 13, Int 11, Wis 8, Cha 16

Advantages: A third at-will choice from a very useful list, +1 to all defenses, a bonus feat and the availability of Action Surge make Human a solid choice for Bravura Warlords


Half-Elf ***
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Recommended Stats:
Str 18, Dex 10, Con 13, Int 10, Wis 8, Cha 16
Str 16, Dex 10, Con 15, Int 11, Wis 8, cha 18
Str 18, Dex 10, Con 15, Int 10, Wis 8, Cha 15

Advantages: Diletante, access to both human, elven, and half-elven feats including Action Surge, and qualifying for Axe (or Pick) mastery without expending excess build resources make half-elves and acceptable choice


Halfing ***
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Recommended Stats:
Str 16, Dex 15, Con 11, Int 10, Wis 8, Cha 18
Str 16, Dex 15, Con 14, Int 10, Wis 8, Cha 16
Str 16, Dex 15, Con 13, Int 12, Wis 8, Cha 16

Advantages: Halfling feats like Lost in the Crowd and Bold Command and the racial second chance ability are excellent for a bravura warlord. Sufficient starting dex to qualify for heavy blade mastery and scimitar dance without expending excess build resources make halflings and acceptable choice


Tiefling ***
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Recommended Stats:
Str 16, Dex 10, Con 13, Int 13, Wis 8, Cha 18
Str 16, Dex 10, Con 15, Int 13, Wis 8, Cha 16

Advantages: Blood Hunt and Infernal Rebuke as well as access to the excellent Hellfire Blood and Unbalancing Wrath feats make Tiefling a solid choice for a Bravura Warlord


Dwarf **
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Recommended Stats:
Str 18, Dex 10, Con 15, Wis 12, Int 8, Cha 13
Str 18, Dex 10, Con 16, Wis 13, Int 8, Cha 10
Str 18, Dex 8, Con 15, Wis 15, Int 10, Cha 110

Dwarves are not good choices for any kind of warlord, but Bravura warlords is where they fit the best since Bravura presence does not need any stats to work well. Dwarves work best as warlords who eschew Int or Charisma and focus on brute toughness and personal prowess.


Elf *
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Recommended Stats:
Not Recommended.
Well, if you insist on trying it:
Str 18, Dex 15, Con 13, Int 8, Wis 12, Cha 10
Str 18, Dex 12, Con 13, Int 8, Wis 12, Cha 13
Str 16, Dex 15, Con 11, Int 8, Wis 12, Cha 16

Elves are even worse choices for warlords than dwarves since they lack the dwarves' toughness. At least elven accuracy gives them some hope. Many bravura powers reward hitting and the ability to reroll a key miss could come in handy. But it still won't make up for being an elf


Eladrin*
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Recommended Stats:
Not recommended.
If you insist:
Str 18, Dex 12, Con 13, Int 12, Wis 8, Cha 13
Str 16, Dex 15, Con 14, Int 12, Wis 8, Cha 14

The best way to be an eladrin bravura warlord is to find a group that doesn't object if your character is substandard in every way. But if you are a bravura player and want to prove that you can defeat your enemies with one hand tied behind your back and dragging a pile of lead weights behind you, go ahead.


Non-PHB Races
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Deva *
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Recommended Stats:
Str 18, Dex 8, Con 11, Int 12, Wis 12, Cha 14

The only things that Deva have to recommend them as bravura warlords is an accuracy enhancing encounter ability and several racial feats that make them come back stronger when they have been downed in a fight. It's not nearly enough to make up for the complete lack of any statistical synergy.


Drow **
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Recommended Stats:
Str 18, Dex 12, Con 13, Int 10, Wis 8, Cha 15
Str 16, Dex 14, Con 12, Int 10, Wis 8, Cha 18

Drow have the stats to make passable second tier bravura warlords and their darkfire racial ability gives the character another way to fill the leader's bonus granting role


Genasai ***
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Recommended Stats:
Str 18, Dex 10, Con 12, Int 14, Wis 8, Cha 16
Str 18, Dex 10, Con 13, Int 13, Wis 8, Cha 16

Genasai are better tactical or resourceful than bravura warlords but that does not make them bad bravura warlords. Indeed, they are actually pretty decent and their racial powers--damaging people who hurt you, knocking enemies prone, doing lots of damage with a lightning weapon, etc--all work well with the bravura playstyle. The Int bonus is usually wasted, but you can't have everything.


Half-orc ***
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Recommended Stats:
Str 18, Dex 15, Con 11, Int 8, Wis 10, Cha 16
Str 18, Dex 15, Con 13, Int 10, Wis 8, Cha 15

If you want to combine heavy blade feats with bravura warlord, half-orcs are one of the better ways to do it.


Longtooth shifter ***
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Recommended Stats:
Str 18, Dex 10, Con 13, Int 8, Wis 12, Cha 16

A strength bump is enough to make longtooth shifters good bravura warlords (though they should probably be battle clerics instead). The regeneration and bonuses from longtooth shifting are enough to make up for a second bonus in the warlord's dump stat


Minotaur ****
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Recommended stats:
Str 18, Dex 11, Con 15, Int 10, Wis 8, Cha 16

It's hard to go wrong with a strength/con race. Minotaurs' racial bonuses to charging synergize nicely with the Bravura warlord charge focused powers.


Orc ****
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Recommended stats:
Str 18, Dex 11, Con 15, Int 10, Wis 8, Cha 16

Orcs have the stats to make excellent bravura warlords. Their Warrior's Surge power, while not as reliable as warforged resolve, is very helpful for getting a warlord back into safe hit point totals when a gamble doesn't pay off.


Razorclaw shifter *
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Recommended Stats:
Str 18, Dex 12, Con 11, Int 8, Wis 12, Cha 14

Razorclaw shifters make substandard bravura warlords. Their stat bonuses come in irrelevant places and though their racial power is useful, it is not enough for them to be recommended with anything more stirring than, "you won't completely suck if you buy the 18 strength."


Warforged ****
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Recommended stats:
Str 18, Dex 11, Con 15, Int 10, Wis 8, Cha 16

If you don't mind magic robots in your fantasy, warforged make excellent Bravura warlords. Their strength and con boosts enable them to start with a 16 charisma and still obtain plate profiency in the heroic tier and axe mastery in epic. Warforged resolve helps a bravura warlord to soldier on after taking a beating--which you most assuredly will take--and Warforged Tactics is useful in exactly the situation that a bravura warlord wants to be in: on the front line with his defender allies.
At Will Attack Powers

Wolf Pack Tactics ****
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This is always a solid at-will choice. You will not always want to give your allies a free shift, but you often will want to do so. At a minimum, this should enable you to get combat advantage for nearly every attack and to reposition wizards, warlocks and laser clerics who had to march up to the front lines in order to use their short range powers (such Thunderwave, Divine Glow, or Fire Shroud) to their greatest effect. Having Wolf Pack Tactics as an at-will power also enables you to focus your encounter, daily, and utility powers in other areas.


Commander's Strike ***
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This is also a very solid choice. A bravura warlord has a lot of powers that encourage taking risks which means that a bravura warlord is probably better off mitigating those risks through heavy shield proficiency than using a two-handed or reach weapon. Bravura Warlords also play very nicely with great weapon fighters and barbarians. Combining those two factors, it seems likely that a bravura warlord's allies will have higher weapon damage than the warlord. Additionally, a bravura warlord has a lot of incentive to take the Lend Might feat which will give an additional +1 to hit with attacks like Commander's Strike and at epic levels, Call to Glory makes this incredible.


Brash Assault -Special--****, *** or * depending upon your skill and your DM
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This is a solid, if risky choice for the Bravura Warlord (note that it is not limited to melee attacks which renders it more universally useful than Commander's Strike), but is dependent upon the enemy falling for the trick. If your DM does not have enemies take advantage of the trick, retrain this for Commander's Strike.

Note that this power is better if you have a way to eliminate combat advantage (or the benefits it grants). Bravura Warlord does not have room for a wisdom score that would support Uncanny Dodge, but other feats and powers that appear in Dragon Magazine or future supplements can mitigate the risks you take while maximizing the rewards you reap.

Also note that, unlike most powers which merely run the risk of being suboptimal, this runs the risk of being actively bad for you and your party if you use it at the wrong time and place. If you are good at evaluating the risks and using this power when it is a good gamble and not using it when it is a bad gamble, then I still believe that this is a four star power. If you are not able to weigh risks well, then stay away from this power. And, as I indicated above, if your DM is not willing to play ball, you should retrain this for something else.


Viper's Strike **
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This power is decent--a lot of the characters that a bravura warlord wants to play with will be able to take advantage of the extra stickiness. However, since it is up against strong competition, most warlords will have enough available powers to select it.


Furious Smash * or ***
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This is an interesting case. A bravura warlord doesn't get as much out of Cha as a taclord gets out of Int, and my math indicates that Furious Smash+Ally's boosted attack only turns out better than a basic attack+Ally's unboosted attack if you wield a low die weapon (and I would expect bravura warlords to go for bastard sword) and have a Cha of 18+. And even then it requires a 20+ damage attack to work. It is primarily useful for boosting attacks that have really good secondary effects other than damage and Bravura Warlords have other options for boosting those. Most Bravura Warlords will probably want to avoid Furious Smash, but due to their lower weapon die size, it will be an interesting choice for halfling Bravura Warlords. Again, however, it will run into the problem of opportunity cost. A warlord who selects Furious Smash will have to forgoe one of the more generally useful powers.


Rousing Assault (Player's Handbook Heroes minis power card) ***
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Hit with this power and add your Cha bonus to healing with your warlord powers. Hit with it in the next round and add your Cha bonus twice. The double charisma sounds good but you will often not be able to pull it off because when your allies (or you) need healing, you can't afford to wait for a round in the hope of healing an extra 3-8 hp of damage. In practice, what this power delivers is a solid option for when you want to heal an ally in a round when you would otherwise use an at-will attack--or if you are about to unload a healing party with stand the fallen or a similar power. Your charisma bonus is not a lot but it will add up. Also, this is a power that you will almost certainly use at least once every fight.

For human bravura warlords I consider this power a shoe-in for the third at-will attack slot. For those who only get two at-will powers, it is worth considering and I would probably choose it over commander's strike and brash assault for a two-handed weapon bravura warlord whose DM won't play ball with brash assault.


Opening Shove * or ****
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As a Str, [Weapon] vs NAD power, this initially looks like it might be worthwhile. However, it has two problems: it does no damage and even Str, [Weapon] vs NAD is not guaranteed to hit. Thus, it is not, as it might initially seem, a good compromise between wolf-pack tactics and Commander's Strike.

In general, my opinion is that, if you want to allow an ally to shift, you are better off with Wolf Pack Tactics which will allow the shift every time and deal damage, and if you want to give an ally an extra attack, you are better off with Commander's Strike or Brash Assault which likewise deal damage on every hit rather than requiring two successful rolls to be effective (thus commander's strike or brash assault will yield more damage than a basic attack, but Opening Shove will generally yield less). For the few situations where you really want to push an enemy, you still have bull rush available to you.

So, where does the **** rating come from? It comes from characters who are specifically built towards using the power. The Draconic Arrogance feat allows a dragonborn to deal his strength damage any time he pushes or knocks prone an opponent. Polearm Momentum allows a character to knock an opponent prone any time he slides or pushs a foe 2 or more squares. Spear Push lets you add one square to any push generated by a spear or polearm power. (Gauntlets of the ram will substitute if you want more pushy goodness or if you want to save a feat). These change the power dramatically. Instead of push an enemy and then either let an ally shift or get a free attack, it becomes:
Push an enemy and knock them prone, do damage, let your ally get an attack (now with combat advantage) or shift. If your DM is generous and applies the Draconic Arrogance damage to apply twice, it is even better. (My reading is that, like the Iron Vanguard, Trample the Fallen ability, Draconic Arrogance deals its damage only once per power and if a power both pushes and knocks prone it still merely qualifies for the damage rather than applying it twice; other people seem to differ on this regard)

You could also use a glaive, Polearm Gamble, and Heavy Blade Opportunity to use this power every time a foe moved adjacent to you and, if you hit, end their movement, prevent any attack they had planned to make on you, and leave them prone and damaged next to an ally who gets to smack them for free. At epic levels, another option would be to use a halberd and Knock Back Swing so that, hit or miss, on the OA, the foe is still pushed back two or three squares, is knocked prone and takes Draconic Arrogance damage. (That trick, does not require opening shove however, everything that makes it work also makes opening shove great and the power lets you get some use out of the abilities before epic levels so you might as well have the power if you go that route)

You could also combine this with the Iron Vanguard paragon path for even more damage on your pushes and knock prones.

So, if you can do all of that, why is my default rating one star rather than making sure that the default bravura warlord uses all of those abilities in tandem? Quite simple: opportunity cost.

First, the manuever takes at least four (Polearm Momentum requires the fighter class which adds Student of the Sword as a hidden prerequisite), more likely six (Polearm Gamble and either Heavy Blade Opportunity or Knockback Swing) feats to pull off properly. That is a lot of feats that could have been Lend Might, Saving Inspiration, Improved Inspiring Word, etc.

Secondly, and more importantly, those feats have hefty ability score prerequisites in stats that would normally be a Bravura Warlord's dump stats. Polearm Momentum requires Dex 15 and Wis 15. Spear Push requires Dex 13 (and Str 15, but you've probably got that anyway), Polearm Gamble requires Wis 15, Knockback Swing requires Con 17. And Draconic Arrogance requires that you be dragonborn so any other race can look elsewhere.

In order to meet those prerequisites by paragon levels, a dragonborn would need to find at least 5 build points to dump into Wisdom, and, assuming that he left Con at 10, he would need to find one more build point to put into Dexterity as well. Thus, Str 18, Dex 14, Con 10, Int 8, Wis 14, Cha 15 is the build that sacrifices the minimum of cha to qualify for Polearm Momentum at paragon levels. Such a character is significantly behind a standard Bravura warlord in terms of durability (both healing surges and armor feats that he qualifies for) and hit points as well as Will Defense and the benefit that he grants his allies with powers like Sacrificial Lure and Instant Planning. Thus while you can make this a very good power, it takes a lot of effort and sacrifice to do so and you come out behind a standard Bravura warlord in most other regards.
Powers
Level 1 Encounter exploits:
Top powers: Hammer and Anvil, Myrmidon Formation (****)

for full evaluations see below
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Hammer Formation. **
There has been rather significant errata to this power that makes it clear that it does not help implement attacks. This, in turn, implies that the W added to your allies' attacks is their weapon--but that still does not make this power work for you. A mathematical comparison with hammer and anvil--another power that exists to deal damage--reveals that unless you have an unusually large party and everyone in the party will benefit from this, you will get more damage from hammer and anvil. Since you don't get the resourceful warlord bonus and probably use a sword or flail rather than a spear, it will be even worse for you than the linked comparison indicates.

Hammer and Anvil. ****
A very solid attack against a NAD that enables you to deal some serious damage and double dip on any attack bonuses or damage bonuses you are giving your allies--note that this will also benefit from Lend Might.

Luring Focus: *
You give up damage in order to pull an enemy to you. Not a good deal.

Myrmidon Formation ****
Standard 2W damage and a bunch of allies get 5 temp hp whether or not you hit. That's a top tier power.

Nimble Footwork *
Shift people around. I suppose it has its uses, but you can accomplish most of that with careful positioning and Wolf Pack Tactics (which doesn't require you to hit).

Guarding Attack *
Without Inspiring Presence it isn't a big bonus to AC, and the foe will probably just attack someone else anyway.

Leaf on the Wind **
This is better than Nimble Footwork because at least you don't sacrifice damage to get it. It also moves an enemy which can be advantageous.

Warlord's Favor **
This is great for Tactical warlords but at a mere +2, the bonus isn't big enough for it to rate highly. On average, you increase your party's damage more with Hammer and Anvil.




Level 1 Daily:
Top powers: Bastion of Defense

for full evaluations see below
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Bastion of Defense ****
This is a very solid PHB power. Temp HP as an effect, 3W damage, and +1 to all defenses if you hit. That's a lot to match up to:

Fearless Rescue **
This is keyed to the Bravura Warlord's schtick and any 2W immediate reaction attack power with an effect at level 1 deserves looking at. The better your AC is, the more likely Fearless Rescue is to work out for you. (A halfling Bravura Warlord might do this very well, but you will at least want a heavy shield and scale armor). I want to like this power. Unfortunately, you have to wait for an attack to drop an ally before you can use the power. If you are doing your job correctly, that shouldn't happen every session and even when it does occur, there is a good chance that you will not want to take the OAs necessary to get to where you need to be. In short, the triggering conditions are too limited for this to be a good choice as your first daily. It might be worth retraining into when you have several dailies, but it's not an obvious top choice.

Lead by Example ***
Again, this is a solid power. 2W and grants CA until the start of your next turn. It is not going to be mistaken for Lead the Attack, but it is an acceptable for a daily, and the Miss result is still really good enough that you may even be disappointed that you hit. (Not as disappointed as you would be if both of your allies missed too though--so don't intentionally miss). And that's the problem with this power: it may never be bad but it's very underwhelming when you hit. Since a lot of optimizing your character involves building him so that you usually do hit, that is problem for this power.


Utility: 2
Top power: Shake it Off (****)

for full evaluations see below
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Knight's Move ***
An extra move action for an ally, every encounter is a very good power

Shake it Off ****
A minor action saving throw with your (considerable) Cha bonus to an ally will probably result in an extra attack every other encounter--even at low heroic levels when you're dealing with gnome arcanists, gobin hexers, and hobgoblin warcasters. At higher levels when aboleths start dominating your party, a save with a massive bonus is invaluable. If you don't take this at level 2, you may well want to retrain into it by level 9 or 10.

Heroic Effort ***
If you don't mind staying bloodied for quite a while, this is a very solid power. My observation, however, is that the line between bloodied and dead (or at least unconscious) is pretty narrow. The temporary hit points, however, may help make being bloodied more survivable. Getting the most out of this daily is too risky for me to recommend it as highly as Shake it Off, but if you're a dragonborn or just like living dangerously, this could be worth a second look.

Rub Some Dirt on It ***
A decent amount of temporary hit points for a minor action make this a solid choice for low levels. As you gain levels, 5+ cha modifier will not be as significant, so you will probably retrain it, but it's not a bad choice at level 2.

Adaptive Stratagem *
Without a high Int modifier, this is a poor choice. If you want to give an ally a bonus to saves, use Shake it Off and give them an actual save along with the bonus.

Covering Manuever *
A free shift and a free mark when an ally uses second wind is not worth passing up any of the good powers for.

Inspired Belligerence *
If you had Inspiring Presence, this would be a four star power. Since you only give combat advantage and don't get the damage bonus, however, you have better options.

Motivated Recovery **
Regaining second wind and a good bonus to the next attack roll is a good set of abilities. But this is a daily competing with encounter utilities, so that won't cut it.

Reckless Opportunity *
This gives you a good chance (probably around 66% against most foes) of giving yourself or one ally CA against a foe. On the other hand, if you can manage getting just one ally or yourself CA against a foe, Inspired Belligerence gives a 100% chance for ALL of your allies to gain CA against a foe. Don't waste your time here.


L3 Encounter:
Top powers: Flattening Charge (****)

for full evaluations see below
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Dicey Predicament. ***
You have to be flanked which is not a good place to be and will not be possible in some encounters. (Though it can be mitigated through marks, etc). But, you get full 2W damage plus some and give allies +2 to hit and any CA dependent advantages against a bunch of enemies. Not bad at all

Flattening Charge ****
1W but you knock the target prone. Not a terrible deal. If the attack hits, you get to use it again. Now, that's happy time. Grant CA to the enemy if you miss--if you weren't a risk taker, you wouldn't be a bravura warlord.

Shielding Retaliation:**
A 2W immediate Interrupt that lets an ally shift? Excellent. Your ally has to be hit by an OA and you have to take the damage? Oh well. It would be a lot nicer if it didn't depend upon you taking damage. As it is, you can do much better.

Hold the Line *
A +2 power bonus to AC and negating pushes, pulls and slides is not worth giving up 1W to get.

Inspiring War Cry ***
2W and you grant an ally a saving throw. If you picked up Saving Inspiration, you probably don't need this, but if you don't have that feat, this is very solid.

Steel Monsoon *
2W and one ally shifts. Since the shift only occurs on a hit, you're better off using Wolf Pack Tactics if you want an ally to shift. That leaves you room for an encounter power with more to recommend it than 2W

Warlord's Strike **
+2 to damage rolls is nice, but you can do better. Since you don't have Inspiring Presence, Hammer and Anvil does the same job better and even hammer formation is somewhat close.



Level 5 Daily:
Top powers: Stand the Fallen, Staggering Spin (****)

for full evaluations see below
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Stand the Fallen ****
It's hard to pass up Stand the Fallen. Mass healing and 3W to boot.

Staggering Spin ****
This gives Stand the Fallen a run for its money. Multiple targets, and you can give a bunch of allies melee basic attacks on it. Hit a brute, push it next to the fighter, barbarian, and tactical warlord, and watch it die. Well, that's how you hope it works.

Turning Point *
If you wanted this, you should have taken Inspiring War Cry. The same thing, but better and as an encounter Power

Villain's Nightmare ***
3W Str vs. Ref is the basis of a solid power. Unfortunately, a lot of enemies will not particularly want to move and some woud rather shift, fly or swim. Additionally, you have to stay adjacent to the enemy so it will always have the option to beat on you.

Pike Hedge *
It's not a lot of damage, and IMO, enough of your powers require you to be next to your enemies that you should probably not have a reach weapon, but rather be using a sword and shield.

A Rock and a Hard Place *
The Tactical Presence bonus is what makes this a good power. You don't have Tactical Presence so, for you, it's not a good power.

Scent of Victory *
So the enemies have to be bloodied or it's no good. And your allies all have to be adjacent to them or they don't get the attacks. And it's a standard action rather than an attack, so you don't contribute any damage yourself. Do yourself a favor and pick something else. Any 3W power will likely result in more damage than this and you're not limited to using them against bloodied foes.

Situational Advantage *
Well, it's better than Scent of Victory, but gaining your Int bonus to damage when hitting with Combat Advantage is only nice if you actually have an Int bonus. If you had that, you'd be a Tactical or Resourceful warlord.



Level 6 Utility:
You've a lot of good choices here.
Top powers: Inspiring Reaction, Stand Tough, Tempting Target, Enduring Stance (***2/3 or ***)

for full evaluations see below
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Guileful Switch *
Dramatic errata has turned this from a top shelf power to a bottom shelf one. No longer can you take an extra action as a result of using this power. Shuffling yourself around in the initiative order will occasionally have benefits (it might enable you to get another save or to evade an "end of the monster's next turn" effect but that is weak sauce when you compare it to your other options. Pick a power that is unambiguously useful--not which might be useful if you are really clever and creative and the right situation comes up. If you use a good power in clever and creative ways in the right situations it won't merely be adequate; it will be awesome. The new guileful switch, on the other hand struggles to achieve adequate status.

Stand Tough ***
This is solid temp hp for the whole party. On the other hand, it is a daily.

Inspiring Reaction *** 1/2
Rousing Words ***
Inspiring Reaction and Rousing Words is a difficult choice. Both fill similar roles, but you will want to wait until an ally is bloodied until using Rousing Words (which doesn't net you Cha modifier because you're not an inspiring warlord). On balance, I would prefer Inspiring Reaction.

Tempting Target *** 1/2
The Stance keyword is almost always a good sign. Granting CA to your allies is a great thing and hopefully your allies' marks and the bravura presence healing will mitigate the disadvantage of granting CA to enemies (Some kind of armor or shield that reduces ranged damage would probably be helpful here). Regaining hp will also reduce the risk of his and all of your other bravura presence manuevers.

Tactical Supervision *
You don't have an intelligence modifier; keep looking

Encouraging Stance ***
This would be a great stance if the allies did not have to be bloodied. Since they do have to be bloodied, you need to ask a few questions: 1. How many times are you likely to be able to grant the temp hp in the combat where you use this. 2. Is that going to be enough to make the 5+cha temp hp per round to a bloodied ally model of Encouraging Stance outweigh the 10+cha mod to everyone once model of Stand Tough

Forward Observer *
How often does this come up?

Phalanx Formation *
You and your ally get a +1 power bonus to AC and reflex? It's likely to take 20 attacks total against either of you before it comes up more than once. When it does, is it really going to prevent more damage than Encouraging Stance or Stand Tough?


Level 7: Encounter powers
Top power: Sacrficial Lure (****)

for full evaluations see below
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Lion's Roar ***
this is a basic 2W healing power. Always a solid choice

Deadly Returns ***
This can help mitigate some of the risks you might take with (for instance) Dicey Predicament or Tempting Target. It's especially nice if you use it to hit a target marked by a fighter. Attack the fighter and eat an OA (with Combat Superiority no less). Attack you, and eat the OA AND a Combat Challenge attack. Attack someone else and eat the Combat Challenge Attack. Shift to a more advantageous situation and eat a Combat Challenge Attack.

Provoke Overextension ***
Risky, but potentially very rewarding. Use it on a target marked by a fighter or paladin and the attack is more likely to miss, and the fighter or paladin will get their Divine Challenge damage/combat challenge attack in addition to the attack that they get from the enemy missing.

Sacrificial Lure ****
Better than usual damage and a very good scaling bonus to attack for your ally. All told, a very solid power.

Sunder Armor **
Mathematically, this is a little bit better than it looks because there is a 47% chance that this will generate a critical that would not otherwise have occurred if you and four allies each attack the target once. If you spend action points or have multiattack powers like Twin Strike, that number goes up. However, you are still gambling on long odds here and I recommend that you stick with more reliable ways to increase damage.

Suprise Attack **
Granting a basic attack with CA is not a bad plan. However, you give up 1W vis a vis Deadly Returns or Provoke Overreaction and you don't get to exploit the synergy that those powers have with marks

Surround Foe *
Occasionally this will do something (other than 2W) that Wolf Pack Tactics will not do. But not often enough to be a good choice

Phalanx Assault **
At least you don't sacrifice damage for this +2 power bonus to AC and reflex. It's still not a good power though

Stirring Force **
It's Inspiring War Cry only not as good (unless you are a resourceful warlord, which you are not)

War of Attrition *
+1 to hit and damage with basic attacks and at will powers is better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick, but it is not nearly as good as the other options. Now, if you had Inspiring Presence, this would be very very different.


Level 9: Daily
I don't believe this level has a clear top power:
Top powers: White Raven Strike, Denying Mark, Disheartening Flurry, Walord's Recovery (***)

for full evaluations see below
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Knock them Down **
Decent damage and you are guaranteed to knock your target prone. Your allies might knock other targets prone too. However, while on message boards, it is easy to assume that your allies will all attack and step back and cost their foes an entire round of actions, it is more likely in play that the foes will simply stand up and attack your allies and be none the worse for having been knocked prone or that they will stand up and used ranged attack powers.

Iron Dragon Charge **
If you are leading a legion of barbarians (OK, so one or two or just a charge focused fighter, cleric, or warlord would do), this could be great. In practice, it will probably not net you many extra attacks.

White Raven Strike ***
A good preventative mass healing power. I would guess that this will usually prevent more damage than Knock them Down.

Denying Mark ***
This a very potent anti-elite and anti-solo power (though you need to use it early or they will have already spent their action points). If your DM likes elites and solos, go for this. If he doesn't or you are in a campaign like Living Forgotten Realms, where each author has different preferences, there are other competitive choices.

Disheartening Flurry ***
is a solid 2W burst comparable to Thicket of Blades, but area damage isn't usually a warlord's specialty. Still, your powers encourage you to be in places where this will be useful, so it's a solid choice.

Warlord's Recovery ***
This is an interesting one, but a bit tricky since giving an ally another encounter power will rarely be as good as a level 9 daily. Now, getting one of your own encounter powers back as well (especially a higher level encounter power) may be worth it but you would need to wait until you were out of encounter attack powers to pull that off. It will get better as you level up though, so even if you pass it up initially, you may consider retraining into it later.

Stay on Target **
This is another Heavy Thrown power that is really nice if you have a solidly coordinated party, all of whom have decent ranged basic attacks and who are willing to wait and use them. In most parties, however, this will be difficult to use.


Level 10 Utility:
Top power: Instant Planning (****)

for full evaluations see below
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Tactical Shift ***
This is a solid, get an ally out of an attack card, but it is a daily.

Bolstering Shout ***
This is not as good healing as Defensive Rally, but it is encounter rather than a daily.

Instant Planning ****
+Cha to all attacks you and your party makes until the end of your next turn is well worth a daily

Unintended Feint ***1/2
give an ally a reroll at +2. If used on a daily or really important encounter, that's well worth a daily--or it would be if Instant Planning weren't around.

Rallying Deflection **
This could be nice if you have a charge focused character (maybe a barbarian) but you won't be hit with a ranged attack every encounter.

Strider Stance ***
this is an interesting option that could really add up over the course of an encounter, but it is still only a +2 bonus. (It's probably best in conjunction with a multiattacking character like an area attacking wizard or a tempest fighter or ranger, but would also be good in conjunction with your various attack granting abilities).

Marked Revelation *
So you get to arrange your party's marks the way you want them. Too bad it doesn't arrange Divine Challenge the way you would like it or make the mark an aegis of shielding/assault mark.

Defensive Rally ***
Mass healing and mass saving throws is a very solid choice

Ease Suffering *
At least it doesn't cost you a real action. Too bad it doesn't give a real benefit.



Level 13 encounter:
There are a lot of good choices here, in fact, even many of the three star powers are worth considering again at levels 17 and 23
Top powers: Headstrong Bravery, Pincer Manuever, Unified In Blood (****)

for full evaluations see below
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Befuddling Cry ***
This is great for a high accuracy great weapon fighter or barbarian who provokes OAs as a part of his standard strategy. (The Resourceful presence bonus is just gravy; any interrupt that negates a hit on an ally and can result in two hits on enemies is worth considering).

Headstrong Bravery****
now this is Warlord's Strike for Bravura Warlords. 2+Cha mod is a big damage bonus. The ability to use the power on a charge is icing on the cake. It also targets a NAD (though Fortitude is sometimes worse than AC).

Pincer Manuever ****
Reshapes the battlefield, and gives two allies basic attacks with bonuses to attack and likely damage? And you don't even have to give enemies attacks against you or Combat Advantage? That's nice

Unified in Blood****
Another 2W interrupt and this one gives your ally an attack against the target too. In terms of the damage your action is likely to cause, this is probably up there with Headstrong Bravery (since it is an interrupt, you get your normal standard action PLUS this 2W plus your ally's basic attack as your damage for the round) and you don't need help from your allies to exploit it either.

Grim Mark *
Without the Resourceful Presence bonus, this is just an ordinary 2W that sacrifices damage for daze + mark

Ventured Gains *
There are a fair number of "bet if this attack will be the one that bloodies the opponent" powers in Martial Power. They should all be evaluated on the assumption that you won't be able to properly time the attack. Unless you properly time the attack, this does less damage than headstrong bravery, Pincer Manuever, or Unified in Blood.

Withdrawal Gambit ***
A good mass saving throw+shift power that is overshadowed by the other excellent powers available.

Beat them Into the Ground ***
Similar to Knock them Down, but now as an encounter and with ranged attacks allowed. Allowing ranged attacks is a big deal because they enable this power to knock flying foes to the ground. Even so, without the bonus to hit, this is probably only going to net a 45-50% success rate and even then the power generally suffers the same tactical difficulties as Knock them Down. I'm not saying it's not good--just that it's not all it's cracked up to be in other warlord threads and especially that it is not all that for Bravura warlords

Bolstering Blow **
Ten temporary hit points by this level is a lot less healing or damage prevention than a healing surge. I would be tempted to go back to level 7 for Lion's Roar if I wanted something like this.

Denying Smite **
If you play it right, this could prevent an enemy from attacking at all and is almost certainly to let you trigger a paladin or fighter's mark. But it's still not as good as the alternatives.

Fury of the Scirocco **
As a bravura warlord, odds are good that you will be in positions where a close burst 1 will be useful. But sliding a bunch of bad guys 1 square and doing middling damage to them is not nearly as good as your other options.


Level 15 Daily:
Top powers: Renew the Troops, Infectious Determination, Warmaster's Assault (****)

for full evaluations see below
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Renew the Troops ****
This may be vanilla, but it is a very solid power. Good single target damage and a surge-free mass heal. But I think that other powers give it a run for its money.

War Master's Assault ****
Your whole party charges or makes a basic attack with your charisma to hit and damage (by level 15, this should be at least +5). That's at least one round of offense for your party, right there.

Infectious Determination****
This is aimed at Resourceful Warlords but it is still good even without their bonuses. You get solid and reliable damage (a 2W+bonuses and 1W+bonuses vs fortitude) with half damage on a miss for the first attack and a chance to knock the target prone on the second and each ally gets to make a saving throw and spend a healing surge as an effect.

Anticipate Attack ***
This is a good, solid way to turn the action point powered double and triple dipping that you were probably doing with headstrong Bravery or Instant Planning into quadruple dipping. (Add in Victory Surge to make it quintuple dipping . Even without the tactical presence bonus, using it at the right time can result in a lot of damage.

Arkhosia's Fury **
A bit of extra damage and shiftiness that you can use on a charge. Not the best use of a level 15 power.

Formiddable Smash **
An attack penalty for the enemy is never a bad thing, but you can do better.

Grim Instruction ***
Decent damage, a debuff, and a small bonus (combat advantage is not that hard to get) with save ends. Not bad, but you've got better powers.

Make them Bleed **
On a solo, this will add up to a lot of damage. But you have other options that are really good.

Warlord's Gambit *
This seems like a power built for a Bravura warlord, but the limitation to your Int modifier in squares kills it for you.


Level 16 Util:
Top powers: Flanking Stance, Side By Side, Warlord's Banner (***)

for full evaluations see below
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Flanking Stance ***
With Bravura presence, this seems pretty solid. +2 to hit/+5 to damage for allies' melee damage rolls until the end of the encounter--use powers like Deadly Returns and allies' marks to mitigate the risks.

Decisive Timing **
Rearranging initiative could be useful, even without the tactical presence bonus. But not as useful as some of the alternatives

Encouraging Remark *
It wouldn't be a bad effect for a minor action. As a standard... you've got better things to do.

Side by Side ***
+2 to attack AC, and reflex for you and someone else is less aggressive than Flanking Stance, but as it lacks the disadvantage, it could end up being similarly useful.

Warning Shout *
If you had a good Int modifier, this might get an ally out of a burst. You don't, so don't bother.

Hero's Defiance *
Good effect, but not worth a standard action

White Raven Formation **
Granting all your allies a move action is powerful, but this isn't 3.5 where it will dramatically increase your offense.

Warlord's Banner ***
A healing surge for everyone and a +2 power bonus to attack rolls IS worth a standard action--especially as an encounter power.

Note that some of the level 10 powers--such as Instant Planning are worth considering at this level if you didn't get them before.


Level 17 Encounter:
This is not one of the best levels for Bravura Warlords, so you might want to look back at level 13 again. The good powers there are still competitive choices against most powers that level 17 has to offer. Only Hail of Steel stands out as clearly better than the level 13 powers and it requires setup to blow them out of the water.
Top powers: Hail of Steel (****)

for full evaluations see below
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Battle On **
Without Inspiring presence, this is like Withdrawal Gambit but without the shift and with more generous targetting. All allies within 5 squares is better than all allies adjacent to the target, but the shift from Withdrawal Gambit makes it a viable alternative.

Hail of Steel ****
Another way to capitalize on Flanking Stance, Headstrong Bravery, and/or Instant Planning. Use it normally and your allies will deal a boatload of damage for you; use it at the right time with the right setup and you can watch your enemy disappear in an instant.

Deadly Inspiration *
Too bad it's limited to at will and weapon attacks, but even if it were not so limited, it would still require allies spending action points before it got better than Hail of Steel.

Girding Strike *
Regaining second wind may be equivalent to mass healing if you have dwarves in your party, but in general, you want to avoid using second winds since that kind of healing comes with an opportunity cost of offense and thus does not serve to reduce the damage coming at you.

Into the Breach **
You get reduced damage in return for an ally charging the target. With a charge focused character (or I guess a warlord ally who used iron dragon charge and several charge focused characters), it could be ok. Even in that situation, however, hail of steel is going to yield more damage with fewer restrictions.

Bloody Termination *
For a resourceful warlord, this is a very high damage encounter and is worth considering. For you... forget it.

Thunderous Fury *
2W + daze is not a good encounter power at this level. This is for tactical warlords who give bonuses to their allies too.

Warlord's Rush **
Rearranging your allies on the battlefield could be nice, but it's still not noticeably better than the level 13 choices.


Level 19 Daily:
Top power: Victory Surge(****)

for full evaluations see below
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Victory Surge ****
Storm of Carnage **
If you hit, victory surge will end up granting quite a few basic attacks. The question is whether 1/ally who hits in the first round+1/hit in subsequent rounds is more than 1/missed daily or encounter power in your group. If Storm of Carnage were not limited to adjacent allies, I think it might have a chance. As it stands, I think it is probably inferior to Victory Surge though I should hasten to note that they serve different purposes: Victory Surge lets you take advantage of good or average luck to make a tough encounter easy; Storm of Carnage helps to mitigate the effect of bad luck on a tough encounter

Inspiring Charge ***
This is in an entirely different category it is a mass healing and rearrange the battlefield power combined with typical damage for a level 19 daily. If you've avoided healing powers up to this point, it may be a good choice.

Unleash Hell ***
This heavy thrown power is worth mentioning if you can coordinate your party to stand firm and make a bunch of ranged attacks. The attack and damage roll bonus means that it will yield a more concentrated damage burst than Victory Surge... if your party can coordinate well enough to all have a basic ranged attack available. (The synergy with Relentless Assault should not be overlooked either).

Break the Tempo **
It inflicts a penalty equal to your Int bonus, which in your case, isn't worth mentioning. Still, I suppose the damage will add up eventually.

Windmill of Doom *
This is hail of steel as a daily and it's not even beefed up. In fact, the restriction to melee basic attacks makes it worse than hail of steel.

Exhorted Counterattack ***
It's not as good for you as for an Inspiring Warlord, but if you don't take Victory Surge, two out of turn attacks (which could exploit any short duration damage boosts you have going) and healing your ally as an immediate reaction is a significant change in the battle.


Level 22 Util:
Top powers: Bloodthirsty Offensive, Stirring Declaration, Rush of Battle, Heart of the Titan (***)

for full evaluations see below
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Bloodthirsty Offensive ***
This really ups the ante on action points--especially if your allies have abilities like the Pit Fighter or Warpriest's Extra Damage Action. The bonus against bloodied enemies is icing on the cake.

Stirring Declaration***
This could add up to a whole lot of damage mitigation over time even if you don't get the full Inspiring Presence benefit.

Rush of Battle ***
If your allies are all in place, this probably adds up to one extra basic attack for you and one or two extra basic attacks for each of your allies. But without the resourceful presence benefit, it's not a must-have.

Quickening Order *
For you, this does very little

Avenge me *
If you go down, this looks like a good power. But if that happens, something is wrong.

Heart of the Titan ***
Immunities are hard to come by and Temp hp are nice.

Heroic Surge **
Mass surge based healing. OK, but nothing special

Own the Battlefield *
If you had an Int modifier this might be good. You don't, so it's not.


Level 23 Atk:
This is another level full of weak encounter powers for Bravura Warlords. All of the powers that were compelling choices at level 13 are still competitive choices at this level and the three star powers here only earn that third star by virtue of comparison to a very weak field (and in some cases, with assumed synergy)
The best of a weak field: Shutdown Smite, Wounding Focus, Pillar to Post, Rabbits and Wolves (***)

for full evaluations see below
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Blood Begets Blood *
Another "guess if this attak will kill or bloody the target" powers.

Daring Display *
Make that "Dumb" display. You mark and grant combat advantage to all foes within two squares and in return your allies get combat advantage--but only if the enemies attack you. It costs too much and does too little.

Quickening Force **
This is better than Battle On because it does more damage. You might still prefer Withdrawal Gambit though.

Ringing Clarity *
Ending marked conditions is nifty but not gamechanging. Automatically saving is nice, but charm and fear effects is a pretty limited subset. All told, I'd rather have Quickening Force.

Shutdown Smite ***
Str vs. Will and the target can't use action points or recharge powers. Even without tactical presence, this is a decent power.

Wounding Focus ***
Str vs. Reflex and by now you should have a +1 Int bonus. You grant your allies combat advantage against the target and a small damage bonus. That by itself makes this better than Daring Display.

Great Dragon War Cry **
Weaken the target for one round. It's not much without inspiring presence, but these are slim pickings

Pillar to Post ***
Potentially lots of damage. Requires set up. Synergizes with the feats you already have (Lend Might and Call to Glory). Especially with Call to Glory, this is worth considering. (Then again, the level 13 powers still look decent so that tells you something)

Rabbits and Wolves ***
Good damage. Completely rearrange your allies. I'm not a big fan of shifting powers in general since in my experience, skilled players can usually get where they need to be without much help. Still, this stands out amid very weak competition.

Sudden Assault *
Unfortunately, your ally will need to use an encounter power in order to make up for the fact this is a 1W attack. Sure, he might have a useful encounter power, but if you hadn't picked this, you could have one too.


Level 25 Daily:
At last we're back to some good powers.
Top powers: Precision Stance, Victorious Destiny, Relentless Assault (****)

for full evaluations see below
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Precision Stance ****
Even with a mere +1 Int bonus, one reroll per round for your party is a solid daily exploit

Priomordal Onslaught *
Str vs Will is good, but in the end, it's just encounter level damage and a little bit of sliding

Sleeping Dragon Lure *
Overly complex and quite possibly won't do anything. If it does do something you still only end up netting the equivalent of a 7W or 8W attack. You can do better.

Victorious Destiny ****
6W, reliable, and allies gain a stacking +2 bonus to all attack rolls (no matter the target) until the end of the encounter. Solid

Warlord's Resurgence ***
Slightly improved Warlord's Recovery and with the same potential to improve as you improve in level. Recharging Rabbits and Wolves and Thunder Smite is one thing; recharging Stunning Smite or Incite Heroism is another.

Wave of Defeat **
Decent damage and your allies attack again. If you need still more ways to exploit time limited attack or damage bonuses, this will do it.

Relentless Assault ****
If your allies have high crit ranges, this is an incredible power. In fact, if you have a lot of extra attack type powers (and bravura presence specializes in extra attacks) this has the potential to cascade into incredible amounts of damage.

Stir the hornet's nest*
Another heavy thrown power--this time with Int bonuses.

White Raven's call **
Good damage and mass saving thows--not bad but I think you can do better (especially with Saving Inspiriation)


Level 27 Encounter:
Top powers: Incite Heroism, Warlord's Doom, Warlord's Indignation, Eye of the Storm, Uplifting Assault (***)

for full evaluations see below
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Incite Heroism ***
A solid +20 temp hp to your whole party

Warlord's Doom ***
An automatic failed save from a foe can be gold in the right party.

Abrupt Skirmish*
This is a tricky power to use. Since you only get to attack one target, and your allies are each limited to one opportunity action per creature's turn, you probably only want to pull one opponent--either it will attack you or it won't. If it does attack you, all of your allies getting basic attacks with your Cha to hit and damage is a very solid burst of damage--especially when added to the 4W initial hit from you. If your allies don't attack, you don't get much out of the power.

Warlord's Indignation ***
On the other hand, this is an immediate reaction that does 2W and knocks the target prone. Then each of your allies gets a basic attack against the target as an opportunity action. Since some of them will probably be ranged attacks against a prone opponent and there is no bonus to atk or damage like Abrupt Skirmish, this won't kick out as much damage, but it will do so more reliably.

Brutal Setup *
Without tactical Presence, this is just a two target attack for at-will damage with daze attached.

Eye of the Storm ***
This is a setup burst that gives surge based healing or saving thows.

Uplifiting Assault ***
An extra inspiring word is not bad--especially if you have Saving Inspiration and the feat that lets you use Inspiring Word on two targets.

Chimera Battlestrike *
now that it's been fixed to a standard action, substandard damage plus a 2 square slide is not worth your level 27 encounter

Devastating Charge **
If you have a party that likes to charge, this probably still won't net the damage of Warlord's Indignation.


Level 29 daily:
Top powers: Perfect Front, Stand Invincible, Deny Death (****)

for full evaluations see below
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Flawless Snare ***
This is a beefed up Abrupt Skirmish that encourages the target to attack you by marking it and can be triggered a second time if you provoke an OA (or use Brash Assault). It could kick out some really serious burst damage and is well worth considering. Taking Soldier of the Faith for Divine Challenge will help encourage the enemy to attack you on their turn.

Inexorable Surge ***
This is safer, reliable, and gives a big damage boost till the end of the encounter. With the number of extra attack abilities that Bravura Warlords get, that will add up even more quickly than you would think.

Perfect Front ****
Rolling twice is roughly equivalent to a +4 or +5 bonus. It synergizes very nicely with a abilities like Force the Battle which grant extra attacks.

Wake of Devastation**
A 3W burst that does ongoing damage. Not bad damage, but you can do better.

Stand Invincible****
+4 to all defenses and Resist all 5 for the whole party plus a 7W attack is good stuff.

Deny Death ****
As an interrupt, you heal good damage, heal your ally and make an enemy's attack miss. You can't do much better than that. It also has the advantage of being a beefed up Fearless Rescue--character continuity, here we come!)
Paragon Paths

A few thoughts on Paragon Paths:

Knight Commander
would work even better for Bravura Warlords than for inspiring warlords. The bravura warlord has a lot of powers that encourage allies to be adjacent and also has a number of powers that grant basic attacks as opportunity actions. If those count as Opportunity Attacks, then Press and Slash offers some serious synergy.

Battlelord of Kord is also a very solid paragon path. Tempestous Inspiration is not the Battle Captain's Battlefield Inspiration, but it's still quite good (and in flavor with Bravura presence too). Mighty Action is solid, and Path of The Storm looks heinously powerful. Tempest of Triumph may even be good for clearing minions (and triggering Relentless Assault while you are at it).

Borderlands Marshal is not terrible, though the action point defense boost will often not matter. Since it gets two ways to designate quarry other than the multiclass feat, you can expect Grim Satisfaction to come into action more often than it might initially appear.

Commando Captain doesn't look especially bad either. You gain a lot of ways to gain or grant combat advantage and all of your shifting or movement powers grant concealment. That's worth something.

Concordant Leader is for Genasai only which should rule out Bravura Warlord as they are set up to be tactical (or possibly Resourceful) warlords, but if for some reason you were playing a Genasai Bravura Warlord, it still wouldn't be as good as Knight Commander or Battlelord of Kord.

Dujun of Erathis
looks quite decent. The action point option is more powerful than it initially looks (every ally gets an extra move action), Communal Aid is probably more useful for other kinds of warlords since you probably need all your healing surges yourself, and Solidarity's Virtue is a small but incremental bonus... The powers, on the other hand. Graded Assault is very likely to hit and while it does no damage on its own, it pretty much guarantees that all the at wills your allies use for one round will hit the target.
Diplomacy of Steel is likewise an extremely reliable attack that does better than average damage for a level 20 daily.

Earthfast Brigadier. Bravura Warlords do want Con in order to survive the risks they take, but since Bravura Warlords get a lot out of Charisma, I think this is probably a better paragon path for a multiclassed defender or striker. Still, if you are playing a bravura warlord who ignores all of the powers that grant bonuses based on charisma and you buff Con instead, Earthfast Brigadier was made for you. It just doesn't make up for the fact that you are ignoring a lot of the best powers.

Flamebrow Commander is built for Bravura Warlords: That said, its powers and abilities benefit your party primarily when they/you are bloodied or dying which is not the position you want to be in. I think Knight Commander, Battlelord of Kord, and even Borderlands Marshal and Dujun of Erathis are better.

Infernal Strategist: Resourceful Warlords only--look elsewhere.

Longarm Marshal: There are lots of bonuses equal to your intelligence modifier. Tac-lords and maybe Resorceful warlords may want this. (Heck, Polearm Master (welcome to fighter level stickiness at level 16) or Kensai (+1 to hit AND +4 to damage) would be better choices if you're a spear-wielding Bravura warlord.

Platinum Warlord:
A bonus feat, marking and radiant damage equal to your charisma modifier. Defenses for your allies, and some bloodied ally/you are bloodied powers. You could probably make this work. IMO it's better than Flamebrow Commander, but still not top shelf.

Spiral Tactician: Tac-lord only. Move along

Twiceborn leader: This is more tied together by numerology than by any other discernable theme, but still works out to be quite decent. Assault action and twiceborn recovery are both nice (other warlords need to wait until level 21 for a similar (if superior) abiltiy). Twofold defense is good for a party with lots of dwarves; merely ok for other characters.
Reserved for Epic Destinies
[size=4]Feats

Heroic tier: PHB
Four star feats: Action Surge, Armor Proficiency: Scale/Plate, Dwarven Weapon Training, Enlarged Dragon Breath, Heavy Shield Proficiency, Hellfire Blood, Lost in the Crowd, Superior Weapon Proficiency

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Action Surge ****
If you are a human or half elf, take this. Your powers depend upon hitting to grant their bonuses

Agile Hunter *
Even if you are a MC ranger, this is too random to be worthwhile

Alertness *
Not a terrible feat, but Wisdom is your dump stat so the +2 Perception is wasted

Armor proficiency: Scale/Plate ****
Take at least one of these. Consider taking both. Since you are going to be in the monsters faces and will pull extra attacks with your powers, every bit of AC will help.

Channel Divinity feats: *
You don't qualify. Move along

Astral Fire/other energy damage feats: *
You use weapons for damage; take Weapon Focus instead.

Backstabber: *
A few extra points of damage once per combat for a couple feats and a suboptimal weapon choice? Just say no. (Also, dex is a dump stat).

Blade Opportunist: **
Not a bad feat--monsters will provoke some OAs from you, but you are probably good enough already and there are more attractive options out there.

Combat Reflexes: *
Like Blade Opportunist but not as good.

Defensive Mobility: *
You will probabaly not provoke too many OAs and even if you do, this is fourth on the list of AC improving feast after scale proficiency, plate proficiency, and heavy shield proficiency (and an armor/shield mastery feat when you reach paragon or epic)

Dodge Giants: *
If you are a dwarf... you should start over. But if you don't want to do that, you should still pick up armor or shield proficiencies first.

Dragonborn Frenzy: **
I don't like a character staying bloodied. But dragonborn have plenty of incentive to do so and there are quite a few Bravura Warlord powers that reward it. If you are going to go down that route, this is a good feat.

Dragonborn Senses: *
Remember how you are not trained in perception and Wisdom is a dump stat?

Durable: **
In general, I prefer toughness to durable since getting knocked unconscious by burst damage in a particular fight is a more common occurence than running out of surges. (Also, unless you need both of the surges from Durable, Toughness is likely to result in more hp/day). However, you will take damage so durable is not a bad feat choice.

Dwarven Weapon Training: ****
If you are a dwarf, start over. If you still insist on playing a dwarf, take this feat.

Eladrin Soldier: ***
If you are an eladrin, start over and play a tactical warlord. If you insist, this is still a good feat for you. Upgrade your javalins to tratnyrs and pick up a greatspear or get a damage bonus with your longsword. (Or, I suppose, you could pick up an Urgrosh to maximize your damage without harming your AC, though I think you are better off sticking with +3 proficiency weapons).

Elven Precision: *
If you are an elf, start over. If you insist on playing an elf, don't waste your time with this. If we assume a base 50% hit chance, this only changes your total chance of hitting with the power you really want to hit from 75% to 80%. You can do better with your feat choice than +2 to hit once per combat.

Enlarged Dragon Breath: ****
If you are a dragonborn, you will want to take this feat before 10th level. Blowing away more minions is a good thing.

Escape Artist: *
If you are escaping a grab, use Athletics.

Far Shot: *
Warlords use heavy thrown weapons, not projectile weapons. If you somehow have enough free feats to feal tempted, pick up Tratnyr proficiency instead.

Far Throw: **
You can throw your weapons further... and this will come up once every ten levels--if you are lucky. If you somehow have enough free feats to feal tempted, pick up Tratnyr proficiency instead.

Fast Runner: **
You may well want to charge from time to time, but even if you do, feats like Powerful Charge should come ahead of this one.

Ferocious Rebuke: *
I suppose there are times you might want to push the target of your infernal rebuke. But they will be few and far between.

Group Insight: **
Another bonus to initiative and a bonus to insight may be helpful. But there are better choices

Halfling Agility: *
Again, the bonus is too small to be worth it. Spend the feat on armor or shield proficiency instead and reduce the chances of every attack per combat by 5% rather than just reducing the chance of one attack per combat hitting by a 5-10% (depending upon whether you figure the odds of hitting on either attack roll or just the reroll).

Hellfire Blood: ****
This is why you picked Tiefling and bought that flaming weapon isn't it?

Human Perseverance: ***
+1 to saves will never go awry. However, there are a lot of attractive feats out there.

Improved Initiative: **
Some people swear by initiative. I'm not one of them--especially not for warlords.

Jack of All Trades: *
You're a master of one trade. Let Jack keep the rest.

Lethal Hunter: *
Hunter's Quarry is at most twice per combat. You can do much better (unless you are a borderlands marshal and you can do much better than borderlands marshal).

Light Step: *
So, first you picked a race that is almost singularly unsuited to any kind of warlord and now you are picking a feat that does nothing for you in combat? Try again.

Linguist: *
Int is a dump stat for you. And even if you qualify, your DM will either make an interpreter available to your party or you won't need one.

Long Jumper: *
How hard is it to get a running start?

Lost in the Crowd: ****
As a Bravura warlord, the only time this should not come up is in solo encounters.

Mounted Combat: **
If you are going for the knight image, you can probably do some nasty stuff with high end mounts and the mounted combat feat. On the other hand, most mounts do not fit in dungeons.

Nimble Blade: * (or ***)
In general, you should not be using a light blade. They do less damage and the potential of +1 extra to hit when you have Combat Advantage is not enough to make them worthwhile. If you are a halfling, however, you may well be using a short sword anyway. (And you may even have the prerequisite dexterity). If you are and you qualify, this is a solid feat.

Power Attack: *
This only gets good when you do damage on a miss. Since you won't be doing that, it won't ever be great. Additionally, most of your attacks have important secondary effects. You don't want to give those up for an extremely marginal increase in damage.

Powerful Charge: **
If you build around charging, this is a solid choice.

Precise Hunter: *
Even if you MCed to ranger, this is too random to be of use.

Press the Advantage *
Even if you MCed to rogue, this is too random to be of use.

Quickdraw **
If you have the dexterity, this can be useful for switching to javalin/tratnyrs and popping your healing potions. It also comes with an init bonus.

Ritual Caster: *
Leave it to the wizard/cleric/warlock/tactical warlord/paladin

Shield Proficiency heavy: ****
If you use a one-handed weapon, you will want to take this feat eventually.

Skill Focus: *
If you are trained and it's based off of one of your good stats, you're already good enough. If it isn't, this won't change things.

Skill Training: *
Take an appropriate MC feat instead and get skill training plus a bonus.

Sure Climber: *
You have better things to do with your feats

Suprise Knockdown: *
Again, even if you MC:ed to rogue, this is too random to be a good choice

Toughness: ***
A solid choice. You are going to get beat up. Be prepared.

Two Weapon Defense: *
If you insisted on playing that urgrosh wielding eladrin, this is for you. For everyone else, forget it.

Two weapon fighting *
If you insisted on playing that urgrosh wielding eladrin, this is for you. For everyone else, forget it.

Weapon Focus: ***
Extra damage is always a good thing. If you can find a way to squeeze this into your feat progression, do it.

Weapon Proficiency: ****
You'll be spending a lot of time with your weapon and dishing out a lot of Ws. It is well worth it to have the best you can get--bastard sword, triple headed flail, waraxe, executioner's axe, fullblade, greatspear, or rapier (if you're a halfling and want a one handed +3 proficiency weapon with better dice than your shortsword).

Wintertouched: **
Does nothing by itself. If you get lasting frost later or some party members do, and you use a frost weapon, this is worth it.


Multiclass feats:
Recommended feats: Student of the Sword, Soldier of the Faith, Sly Dodge (Martial Power--requires 13 Dex)

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PHB:
Student of the Sword: ***
+1 to hit, a mark, and skill training. Not too shabby. You might even want a fighter paragon path too (though you're probably satisfied with Knight Commander and Battlelord of Kord to choose from).

Sneak of Shadows: * (*)
If you are a halfling who wields a light blade anyway and has the dex to qualify from racial bonuses, you may find the extra damage useful. Most warlords, however, are sabotaging themselves by taking this because they encourage weapon choices that will reduce their overall damage output over a combat, and they had to sacrifice a more useful stat than Dex to qualify.

Soldier of the Faith: ***
A combat long mark that keys off of charisma and skill training. No complaints here. You could even swing some paladin paragon paths like Champion of Order, though again, Knight Commander and Battlelord of Kord are already pretty darn good).

From Martial Power:
Battle Acumen: *
This is not a sufficient reward for paragon multiclassing

Battle Awareness: ***
If you can swing the required 13 Wisdom, this is an excellent feat. You should not qualify, however.

Courageous Shooter: *
Prime shot is not worth paragon multiclassing into ranger

First In: *
First Strike is not worth paragon multiclassing as a rogue (especially since you can duplicate it with a PHB feat)

Ruthless Efficiency: *
If you were set up with lots of rattling attacks, gaining Ruthless Ruffian would give enough bonus damage to make the mace worthwhile. With no rattling attacks, however, it is not worth it.

Sly Dodge: ***
If you are going to multiclass to rogue, this is likely the best way to do it. You will provoke some OAs and you have the charisma to make it a worthwhile bonus.

Two blade warrior: *
Two weapon fighting is not your forte... and it won't be, even if you MC to ranger.


Martial Power Heroic tier feats:

Four star feats: Bold Command (halfling), Bolstering Inspiration (dwarf), Improved Inspiring Word, Lend Might, Saving Inspiration, Polearm Momentum (opportunity cost is very high, but it deserves the stars because it is the feat (along with draconic arrogance) that makes a polearm gamble bravura warlord possible)

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Bloodied Invigoration: *
Obviously you multiclassed your dragonborn to fighter. But that does not explain where you picked up Invigorating powers.

Bold Command: ****
If you are using Brash Assault, this may well happen 2/3 rounds. Not bad at all.

Bolstering Inspiration: ****
It's not enough to save your dwarven warlord, but you should take this feat if you insist on trying.

Bracing Breath: *
Again, where did your dragonborn warlord get Invigorating powers?

Bravura Spirit: **
Well, it is better than Improved Bravura, but it's still only coming up 4 times per combat, max.

Brutal Teamwork: ***
If for some inscrutable reason, you multiclassed to rogue, this is not a bad reward. You should be adjacent to your allies most of the time.

Command the Darkness: *
If you were looking for something to save your drow warlord concept--keep looking. Better to totally blind your enemies.

Cunning Ambusher: *
If you MC:ed to rogue, this will still not give you an appreciable bonus since Int is a dump stat for you.

Darkfire Targeting: *
Even if you MC:ed to qualify for this, you shouldn't have a Wis modifier worth mentioning.

Deep Gash: *
Maybe you MC:ed to fighter. But you still won't have many powers that deal ongoing damage.

Defensive Resilience: *
Remember how you are not a dwarf. Well this is only good for a dwarf.

Dirty Fighting: *
You could MC to fighter or rogue, but how often do you make a melee attack in a surprise round?

Dragging Flail: *
Even if you have the dex and for some strange reason MC:ed to fighter, you don't have many attacks that knock prone and even if you did, do you really care about sliding your foes one after knocking them prone. Most attacks that you get that have a chance to knock prone already slide or push.

Group Assault: **
If you have a way to mark targets for more than one round, this could make a MC: Fighter worth it for your half-elf.

Group Quarry: **
If you are a half-elf borderlands marshal, this is up your alley.

Group Rattling: *
How many rattling powers do you have again? That's right. None.

Halfling Stalwart: **
A great benefit for MC:ing fighter. Unfortunately, you don't have many options for marking with the fighter MC. (Now a halfling paladin who MCed fighter... that's another story).

Improved Bravura: **
I've changed my mind on this feat. It won't come up enough times per combat to be worth the feat.

Improved Inspiring Word ****
Take this feat. A big bonus to your healing is always good.

Inspired Defense: ***
+1 to defenses for your ally is a pretty decent bonus--even if it is a power bonus, most of your power bonuses from actual powers are to attack or damage.

Leading Fire: *
So, you're an elf warlord (fail) using a bow (fail) and you have a good feat available to you. It does not matter. You still fail. (Now, on the other hand, if you are an elf ranger who multiclassed into warlord and chose the paragon multiclass warlord feat to get Combat Commander, this is a really good feat--not good enough to justify paragon multiclassing but still good).

Lend Might ****
As a Bravura warlord, you are all about granting extra attacks. Take this feat and don't look back.

Longsword Finesse **
You've already insisted on playing an eladrin bravura warlord. Apparently, you also insisted on multiclassing to rogue. Well, here's a feat you can take so you can at least use your sneak attack with a decent weapon (that you got a big damage bonus with from Eladrin Soldier). You still sabotaged your character to get here though.

Lucky Skirmisher **
If your halfing multiclassed to ranger or rogue, you could grant a lot of bold command bonuses by running by foes and using this to mitigate the risk. But that's a lot of feats for a trick that is still risky and you are probably taking enough risks already.

Martial Alacrity: *
If you have a 15 Dex and want a +2 init bonus... take Quickdrawn Instead. The side benefit is more useful.

Martial Freedom: *
Slowed and immobilized come up a lot in your game? Thought so. By the way, how did you get that 13 Wisdom? Shouldn't those points be in Strength, Charisma, Constitution, Dexterity, or Int, instead?

Master of Rumbling Earth: ***
So if you are a genasai warlord with the fighter MC: feat, this will make your earthshock power a good deal more useful.

Offensive Resilience: *
Remember that bit about you not being a dwarf? If you ignored it, this is another way you can try to stop sucking. It's actually good for you. For everyone else, taking this will make you suck more.

Polearm Momentum: * (****)
I am of the opinion that you sacrifice too much to qualify for this feat. If you ignored me and took a high Wisdom and Dex, however, this, in combination with Draconic Arrogance, Lend Might, Call to Glory, Polearm Gamble, Uncanny Dodge, and Heavy Blade Opportunist (plus glaive) or Knockback Swing (plus halberd) and Spear Push or Gauntlets of the Ram will make Opening Shove into an incredible power. This is the feat that makes it work. But it still has too high of an opportunity cost.

Predatory Action: **
If you are a warlord/ranger/borderlands marshal, this is still not an incredible feat. But it does let you pump out a bit more burst damage.

Rash Sneak Attack: *
Remember how multiclassing to rogue is probably not a good idea? At once per combat, this doesn't make the idea any better.

Rattling Wrath: *
Again, even if you MC to rogue, how many rattling powers do you have?

Reaping Blade: **
If you MCed to fighter and wield a heavy blade, this will come up often enough. However, most of those times, you either won't want to shift or will be able to afford the move action.

Saving Inspiration: ****
Take this feat before you hit paragon levels. Granting saves will often be more important than an extra 3.5 to 7 points of healing.

Shield Defense: *
You could MC to fighter but you wouldn't have any powers that require a shield.

Slaying Action: **
If you MCed to rogue, this could let you sneak attack a second time per combat. It's still not a good idea, but if you wield a light blade anyway, you may be able to make it work.

Sneaky Accuracy: **
If you are an elf warlord who multiclassed into rogue, you are obviously not following my advice. But if you did that and you're still reading, this is a better choice than Elven Precision. It grants (effectively) a 25% attack bonus to another attack if you miss on the reroll (which will happen roughly half the time). About half your combats (the half where whatever miss you use elven accuracy on still misses) you will get an extra hit out of this.

Speedy Response: *
Just say no. You don't need the speed that much--and if you do, your enemies will probably miss you and you won't be able to get where you wanted to go. If you could get where you wanted to go anyway, then you did not need this feat. Considering that you multiclassed to rogue to get this pile of garbage...

Street Thug: *
Take the Ruthless Efficiency Multiclass feat instead.

Surprising Charge: ***
If you charge a lot and have the prerequisite dex, then this is quite a good feat. However, unless you are an epic level warlord from a race that grants a dex bonus, you shouldn't qualify.

Take Measure: *
Even if you MC:ed to fighter, this is way too random.

Thunder Hammer: *
And how often does your warlord/fighter make attacks that inflict those (save ends) conditions? Thought so.

Trap Sense: *
Traps aren't that common and even if you MC:ed rogue, your perception is still lousy.

Tunnel Stalker: *
You're a dwarf warlord/rogue? You are a glutton for punishment.

Two-fisted shooter: *
You're a warlord/rogue using a hand crossbow? Something is wrong somewhere. Your dex should not be high enough for that to work. If it is, you went wrong somewhere.

Unbalancing Wrath: ***
Another good reason to be a tiefling warlord. If you were a fighter/warlord instead of the other way around, this would be a great combo with Lingering Wrath.

Victor's Confidence: **
If you MCed to fighter, this is like a conditional human perseverance. If you are human, take human perseverance instead.


PHB Paragon Tier feats:

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Action Recovery: ***
If you are human, making a bunch of saving throws can be nifty. Too bad you will often want to use your action point before you have a chance to acquire nasty conditions

Agile Athlete: *
You get better at Athletics and Acrobatics--much better than you need to be. Either you were probably good enough already or this won't make you good enough. Sure, it would help you get out of grabs, but how often does that come up?

Arcane Reach: *
Not for you

Armor Specialization: Scale **** or Plate ***; and shield specialization ***
Scale specialization is better than plate--the only problem is that 15 dex requirement. If you can't swing that, take plate proficiency instead and, then take plate specialization when you have a chance. You could have taken shield specialization, but if you had the dex, you probably would have specialized in scale.

Back to the Wall: ***
A small bonus when you are adjacent to a wall is nice and it stacks with everything. But there are less situational options out there

Blood Thirst: ***
+2 damage against bloodied foes is nice and will add up but there are less situational feats available.

Combat Anticipation: **
As a front line combatant, you'll be absorbing a lot of attacks this won't help against. Think about Iron Will/Great Fortitude/Lighting Reflexes instead.

Combat Commander: ****
Grant your allies your charisma bonus to init instead of +2. That's like Improved Init for the whole party.

Danger Sense: **
If you must take another initiative improving feat, this is the one to select.

Deadly Axe: ***
If you wield an axe, take this feat... eventually.

Defensive Advantage: **
Odds are good that you don't have the 17 Dex and odds are also good that your enemies will have combat advantage on you more often than you have it on them.

Devastating Critical: *
Take Blood Thirst instead. It is more reliable and will add more damage per combat.

Distant Shot: *
If you insist on improving your ranged capability, you should still take Tratnyr proficiency instead. d8s at close range is better than no -2 at long range (which will not come up often).

Dwarven Durability: ****
You shouldn't be a dwarf warlord, but if you are, this IS all that and a bag of chips. Take it.

Empowered Dragon Breath: ***
Extra damage on your dragon breath attack is nice. It still won't be a lot but every bit helps.

Evasion: *
How often will attacks miss your reflex defense? And how many of those will do half damage? That's what I thought.

Feywild Protection: **(*)
If you are an eladrin bravura warlord (and I'm still not sure why you didn't go tactical like everyone else--you're actually optimal in that role), this can be a good feat in combination with fey charge and fey tactics.

Fiery Rebuke: ***
Add a lot of extra damage to your Infernal Wrath attack.

Fleet-footed: **
If you find yourself needing more speed, you can take this feat.

Great Fortitude/Iron Will/Lightning Reflexes: ***
+2 to a defense is never a waste. Just keep in mind that it will not stack with other feat bonuses. You will have to decide also whether to improve your good defenses (Fort and Will) or your bad defense (Reflex).

Hammer Rhythm: ****
If you are a dwarf (fail) or half-elf (pass) bravura warlord you can qualify with no excess build point expenditure and you should take this feat. It's not worth building towards, but if you qualify, take it.

Heavy Blade Opportunity: **(**)
In theory, this is a good feat. In practice, you probably won't gain much by making an at-will attack instead of a melee basic. The only exception is a polearm gambler using opening shove with polearm momentum and draconic arrogance. For such a character, feats don't get much better.

Improved Second Wind: *
If you are a dwarf, it may rate two stars but it is still a poor choice. Everyone else should try to avoid using their second wind in the first place.

Lasting Frost: ***
If you are going for the Wintertouched/Lasting Frost combo, this is the key feat. But there are other good weapon choices, so I have trouble rating this higher than three stars.

Light Blade Precision: * (**)
If you use light blades (possilby because you are a halfling) this is at least as good as the other damage feats.

Mettle: **
If you are going to take a feat to negate miss damage, this is the one to do it--Fort and Will are both good defenses for you. There are still only so many such attacks though.

Point Blank Shot: *
Ranged attacks are not your specialty.

Polearm Gamble: * (****)
If you are doing Polearm Momentum/Opening Shove/Glaive/Heavy Blade Opportunity, this is another key feat. It's a great combo, but I still believe that qualifying for it is too onerous.

Psychic Lock: ***
Another feat that can work well in combination with a specific weapon choice. Githyanki silver sword+psychic lock=-2 to attack for any foe you hit. Not too shabby. (Maybe 4e Githyanki won't hunt you down anymore, but I wouldn't count on it).

Resounding Thunder: *
You can have a few close burst attacks. You can give your powers the thunder keyword. And no, it is still not worth it.

Scimitar Dance: ***
This is a feat to consider if you qualify for it (and halfling warlords will without excess build point expenditure). However, I do not believe it is an automatic choice because while it substantially boosts DPR, it also requires using a +2 proficiency weapon and the on-hit effects of the various warlord powers can be very dramatic. (One extra hit in twenty with Hail of Steel or Victory Surge may well be worth all of the bonus damage from Scimitar Dance and that is just one power in one round of combat).

Secret Stride: *
Even if you are trained in stealth, you won't get much out of this. Bravura warlords are up front and in their enemies faces not hiding in order to snipe. If you try to use it, it will be at the cost of your powers.

Seize the Moment: ***
If you qualify for it, take it, but don't go out of your way to qualify for it.

Sly Hunter: *
If you are using a bow, somethig is wrong

Solid Sound: ***
If you have a weapon that gives your power the force or thunder keywords, this is like a free +2 defense.

Spear Push: *(***)
This is the least essential part of the Opening Shove/Draconic Arrogance/Polearm Momentum/Heavy Blade Opportunist (or Knockback Swing) combo since Gauntlets of the Ram can substitute for it. Still, it is a valuable part of the combo since it frees up the hand slot for something better.

Sweeping Flail: **
Even if you use a flail, this is too situational to be worth the feat slot

Uncanny Dodge: ****
If you qualify for it, you should take it. Unless you are going for the Opening Shove/etc combo, however, you should not qualify.


Martial Power paragon feats:
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Arvandra's Gift: **
If you are a halfing warlord/rogue, you an still do better than this.

Avenging Spirit: ***
This would be four stars if it were not for the fact that there is a good chance you already used your one action point per combat before the ally went down. If you use you action points to power veteran's armor, or something else, however, this can easily be a four star power.

Bleeding Backstab: *
You will at most have one rogue daily but you shouldn't even have that.

Bleeding Precision: *
You will at most have one ranger daily attack power and you shouldn't even have that.

Bloody Inspiration: ***
If you are a dragonborn who likes living on the edge, this makes your party noticeably more durable.

Bloody Tenacity: **
+2 defenses once per encounter for one round (because you know you will be bloodied in most encounters). Not terrible, but it will be mostly wasted when the attack that bloodies you is the last one before your turn.

Chainmail Agility: *
Even if you multiclassed to fighter, you should take scale proficiency and scale specialization instead. Unlike fighters, you do not have class features that reward you for sticking with crappy armor.

Cull the Weak: *
If you are a halfling warlord/rogue and have combat advantage against a bloodied or weakened target, you get the same advantage that Bloodthirst would give you all the time against a bloodied target. Take Bloodthirst instead.

Darkhunter: **
Drow warlord/ranger is a combo that is made of fail, but at least this gives you extra quarries.

Darkjumper: ***
Drow warlord/rogue is not a combo that screams bravura warlord either, but if you already did that to yourself, this is actually a pretty good feat.

Defensive Surge: *
If you are a dwarf warlord, this is useful. But something is wrong if you are playing that character. (I think, however, that a dwarf fighter/warlord, could do quite well).

Draconic Arrogance: ****
If you multiclassed to fighter and are dragonborn, take this feat. Even if you do not go all the way to the polearm momentum/opening shove combo, you still have a fair number of powers that push or knock prone. (Flattening Charge comes to mind).

Dragonbreath Warrior: ***(*)
An extra W once per combat? A pretty good deal. When you get abilities that let you use dragonbreath more than once per combat, it gets to be a really good deal.

Enduring Wallop: *
You will at most have one daily fighter attack power. That is not enough to make this feat worth it.

Evasive Footwork: *
If you are a multiclass rogue/warlord with the prerequisite dex, this would be a good feat if you had a reliable way to shift multiple squares. Odds are good that you don't, however.

Fey Charge: ****
If you are an eladrin warlord/fighter, I'm still not sure why you didn't go tactical. However, this is an excellent feat that has nice synergy with feywild protection, fey tactics as well as feystep Trailblazer (from Dragon Magazine).

Fey Gambit: **
If you are an eladrin warlord rogue, the combat advantage is juicy but not nearly as good as getting multiple fey steps per combat--go the fighter route instead. At least fey charge opens up a little synergy with the bravura warlord's style.

Fey Tactics: ****
Moving your allies around the battlefield when you fey step is a golden opportunity. Don't pass up this power. Doing it multiple times per combat thanks to fey charge is even better.

Grit: ***
If you have the 17 con and are a MC: Fighter, this feat is well worth it.

Group Flanking: **
Half-elf warlord/rogue is a combo made of failure. Don't do it.

Hunter's Resurgence: ***
If you are a borderlands marshal, this will actually make your second wind useful. For other bravura warlords, however, you are unlikely to reduce your single quarry to zero hp in one of two attacks.

Impetuous Charger: ****
This is an excellent feat that enables your allies to capitalize on you charging a target. (If you can swing the dex and MC:ed fighter or rogue, it also synergizes very nicely with Surprising Charge--halfing and eladrin warlords take note).

Infernal Sneak Attack: *
Tiefling bravura warlord can work. Tiefling Bravura warlord/rogue not so much. And even then, it is only an extra d6.

Opportunistic sneak attack: *
Even rogues rarely will be able to deal sneak attack on OAs. Your one sneak attack per combat will almost never be on an OA.

Phalanx Warrior: **
If you use a shield and are frequently adjacent to allies that don't use shields this is a great feat. If your allies do use shields, however, this is worthless.

Preternatural Senses: *
Wisdom is a dump stat for you, even if you are a warlord/ranger trained in perception. Leave this to real rangers.

Prime Quarry: *
You could paragon multiclass and take a feat to get Prime Shot, but it's not a good idea.

Prime Slayer: *
Elf warlord is a bad idea. Elf rogue/warlord is a bad idea. Bravura Warlord specializing in ranged attacks is a bad idea. There is nothing good about this for you.

Reckless Attacker: *
If you had fighter powers, this could be good, but even as a MC: warlord/fighter, you will not have enough fighter powers to make this worthwhile.

Roundabout Charge: ***
If you are that warlord/rogue, this seriously increases your options for charging and with Surprising Charge, you will usually be able to charge into combat advantage for the extra W. However, it will cost most non-halflings too much to be able to pull this off and even halflings will have to sacrifice to get the Dex required for surprising charge.

Steadfast Tactics: *
How often are your allies pushed, pulled or slid on the same round that you used Inspiring Word? I thought so.

Stonefoot Reprisal: ***
If you are a dwarf warlord something is wrong but a dwarf warlord/fighter can get a lot out of this feat.

Vital Inspiration: **
If you are a half-elf warlord in a party of dwarves (or if you took powers that let your allies second wind as a minor action) this is quite good. Otherwise, it's a waste because you want to avoid using second wind in combat if at all possible.

Warlords Formation: *
You don't have the Int and this doesn't change the fact that Aid Other is a lousy option in combat.

Wrathful Hunter: **
Tiefling warlord/ranger is not a good combo and this feat won't save it.
Note that for artful dodgers, they're under no requirement to take the basic attack as a melee attack, so they could easily toss a dagger or shoot a hand crossbow. It would provoke an OA, but an enemy is very likely to miss the artful dodger, and if you're drow, you can take that feat that avoids OAs for using the hand property. Alternatively you can get that ranged weapon property in the AV that prevents OAs.

Also, it seems that all you need to do to trigger the basic attack is to hit, so if you use an AOE power, you'd only have to hit one opponent to get your free attack.
Bravura Warlords work well with:

Hexhammer/Any warlock wielding a Pacthammer: best basic attack in the game :D
Polearm Gamblers: They're often yielding combat advantage anyways so there is no disadvantage to gaining the extra attack
Characters with the feat Uncanny Dodge: negates the negative effect of combat advantage
True. I would add that the artful dodger who has a hand crossbow (or a superior crossbow for that matter) is going to land a significantly better basic attack than the one who is tossing a dagger.

Note that for artful dodgers, they're under no requirement to take the basic attack as a melee attack, so they could easily toss a dagger or shoot a hand crossbow. It would provoke an OA, but an enemy is very likely to miss the artful dodger, and if you're drow, you can take that feat that avoids OAs for using the hand property. Alternatively you can get that ranged weapon property in the AV that prevents OAs.

Also, it seems that all you need to do to trigger the basic attack is to hit, so if you use an AOE power, you'd only have to hit one opponent to get your free attack.

Reserved for a list of sample Bravura Warlords
Sample Bravura Warlords:

Tarmindon Crimsonscale

Dragonborn Warlord/Battlelord of Kord/Demigod

Level 1:
Stats
STR: 18
CON: 15
DEX: 10
INT:. 11
WIS: 08
CHA: 16

Hit Points: 27
Healing Surges: 9
Healing Surge Value: 8

AC: 19
Fortitude: 14
Reflex: 11
Will: 13

Feats:
1st - Armor Proficiency: Scale

Powers:
At-Will - Brash Assault, Wolf-Pack Tactics
Encounter - Dragon Breath (racial), Myrmidon Formation
Daily - Lead by Example

Equipment: Longsword, light shield, scale armor, 2 javalins, dagger, adventuring kit

Attack: +7 1d8+3

Progression:
Feats:
1st - Armor Proficiency: Scale
2nd - Improved Inspiring Word
4th - Saving Inspiration
6th - Improved Bravura
8th - Lend Might
10th - Bravura Spirit
11th - Combat Commander
12th - Heavy Shield Proficiency
14th - Plate Proficiency
16th - Armor Specialization: Plate
18th - Dragonbreath Warrior
20th - Back to the Wall
21st - Call to Glory, retrain lvl 20 feat to Supreme Inspiration
22nd - Bold Spirit, Retrain Dragonbreath Warrior to Dragon Warrior
24th - Rattling Exploit
26th - Axe Mastery
28th - Irresistable Flame
30th - Aggressive Leadership

Powers:
2nd - Shake it Off
3rd - Flattening Charge
4th - retrain Shake it Off for Heroic Effort
5th - Staggering Spin
6th - Tempting Target
7th - Sacrificial Lure
9th - Warlord's Recovery
10th - Instant Planning
11th - Tempest of Triumph (Battlelord Attack 11), Mighty Action, Tempestous Inspiration (+2 atk / +4 dmg)
12th - Blood-Tested Inspiration (Battlelord Util 12)
13th - Replace Myrmidon Formation with Pincer Manuever
15th - Replace Lead by Example with War Master's Assault
16th - Flanking Stance
17th - Replace Flattening Charge with Hail of Steel
19th - Replace Staggering Spin with Victory Surge
20th - Path of the Storm (Battlelord Attack 20)
21st - Divine Spark (Str and Cha +2)
22nd - Rush of Battle
23rd - Replace Sacrificial Lure with Headstrong Bravery
24th - Divine Recovery
25th - Replace Warlord's Recovery with Warlord's Resurgence
27th - Replace Pincer Manuever with Warlord's Indignation
29th - Replace Victory Surge with Stand Invincible
30th - Divine Miracle

Recommended Items:
Vanguard Longsword (replace with Vanguard battle axe at level 26; you will be using the daily regularly with Flattening Charge and Warmaster's Assault and, at level 17 you can let everyone double dip on the damage bonus by spending an action point for Hail of Steel; at level 22, you can let people snag the bonus even more times with Rush of Battle)
Horned helm


Arkhosia

Arkhosia
Dragonborn Warlord/Battlelord of Kord 11

Str 21, Dex 12, Con 16, Int 11, Wis 9, Cha 19

Init +8 (+5 lvl, +1 dex; +2 power bonus)

HP: 88; Surges 10; Surge value: 26 (22 +3 dragonborn, +1 belt of vigor)

AC: 27; Fort: 23; Ref 18; Will 22; Resist 10 necrotic, resist 5 fire, cold

Feats: 1. Scale armor proficiency, 2. Superior weapon: fullblade, 4. Weapon Focus: heavy blades, 6. Soldier of Faith, 8. Expanded Dragon Breath, 10. Improved Inspiring Word, 11. Toughness

Skills:
Athletics: +15
Diplomacy: +15
Endurance: +13
Intimidate: +17
Religion: +10

Atk--melee basic: +16 vs AC 1d12+12 high crit +3 magic fullblade
Atk--ranged basic:+14 vs AC 1d6+7 +2 magic javalin

Powers:
At-Will:
Brash Assault +16 vs AC 1d12+12 high crit
Wolf Pack Tactics +16 vs AC 1d12+12 high crit

Encounter:
Dragon Breath: close blast 3 or 5 +14 vs. Reflex, 2d6+3 cold damage
Hammer and Anvil: +16 vs Reflex 1d12+12 high crit and ally makes attack with +4 damage bonus
Flattening Charge: +16 vs Fortitude 1d12+12 high crit, target is knocked prone, and the power is not expended; miss: the target gains Combat Advantage against Arkhosia until the start of her next turn.
Provoke Overextension: +16 vs AC 2d12+12 high crit, and the target must make a basic attack against Arkhosia as a free action. Arkhosia receives +4 AC against this attack. If the attack misses, an ally may make a basic attack against the target as a free action with a +4 unnamed bonus to the damage roll.
Tempest of Triumph: +16 vs AC 1d12+17. If this attack reduces the target to 0hp, an ally within 5 squares may make a basic attack against a different target as an immediate action with +4 damage. If that ally's attack reduces the target to 0hp, a different ally within 5 squares of you gains the same benefit. Repeat until an attack fails to reduce its target to 0hp or until you run out of allies within 15 squares.
Inspiring Word (2/combat) target spends a healing surge and adds 3d6+5 to the hp gained; the target also gainst a +2 bonus to hit and +4 to damage until the end of your next turn. If the target's first attack misses, the target grants Combat Advantage to attackers until the end of your next turn.
Shake it Off: minor action, range 10. One ally makes a saving throw with a +4 power bonus.
Guileful Switch: minor action. You and an ally you can see trade places in the initiative order. Your ally immediately takes his or her next turn and you act when your ally would have acted.
Divine Challenge: minor action, one target within a close burst 5; target is marked until no longer engaged by Arkhosia and takes 10 damage if it makes an attack that does not include Arkhosia

Daily powers:
Bastion of Defense: +16 vs AC 3d12+12; all allies w/in 5 squares gain a +1 power bonus to all defenses. Effect: All allies w/in 5 squares gain 9 temporary hit points
Villain's Nightmare: +16 vs Reflex 3d12+12 damage; effect: until the end of the encounter, when you are adjacent to the target and it walks or runs, you can cancel that movement as an immediate interrupt
Denying Mark: +16 vs AC 3d12+12 damage and the target is marked (save ends); miss: half damage and the target is marked until the end of its next turn. Effect: the target cannot recharge its powers or spend action points as long as it is marked by this power.
Instant Planning: Minor action, close burst 5, you and each ally in the burst gain a +4 power bonus to attack rolls or a +4 power bonus to speed or a +0 power bonus to defenses until the end of your next turn.


Class features:
Bravura Presence When an ally spends an action point to make an extra attack, that ally may choose to use Bravura presence. If the attack hits, the ally may make a basic attack as a free action. If all attacks from the extra action miss, the ally grants combat advantage to his enemies until the start of his next turn.
Combat Commander Arkhosia and her allies gain a +2 power bonus to initiative
Mighty Action (when you spend an action point to take an extra action, any ally who can see and hear you gains a +1 bonus to attack rolls and damage rolls until the start of your next turn).
Tempestuous Inspiration (included in Inspiring Word description above)

Equipment:
+3 wyvernscale armor of resistance (lvl 12)
+3 magic fullblade (lvl 11)
+2 cloak of survival (lvl 9), resist 5 fire and resist 5 cold
+2 javalin (lvl 6)
Iron Armbands of Power (+2--lvl 6)
+1 holy symbol of hope (lvl 3)
Belt of Vigor (lvl 2)
Acrobat Boots (lvl 2)
Adventurer's kit
520 gp

Sample Bravura Warlords from other posters:

Bloodwrath Braver, Dragonborn Warlord/Platinum Warlord/Warmaster courtesy of Crimson Lancer
Bloodwrath Braver
Bloodwrath Braver
Dragonborn Warlord/Platinum Warlord/Warmaster

Stats -- Final Stats
STR: 18 -- 26
CON: 13 -- 17
DEX: 14 -- 16
INT:. 10 -- 12
WIS: 08 -- 10
CHA: 16 -- 22

Hit Points: 203
Healing Surges: 10
Healing Surge Value: 53

AC: 44
Fortitude: 42
Reflex: 34
Will: 40

Feats:
1st - Weapon Proficiency (Lochaber Axe)
2nd - Empowered Dragon Breath
4th - Dragonborn Frenzy
6th - Power Attack
8th - Lend Might
10th - Quick Draw
11th - Blood Thirst
12th - Combat Commander
14th - Weapon Focus (Axe)
16th - Scale Specialization
18th - Dragonbreath Warrior
20th - Supreme Inspiration
21st - Irresistible Flame
22nd - Triumphant Attack
24th - Martial Mastery
26th - Dragon Warrior
28th - Call to Glory
30th - Axe Mastery

Powers:
At-Will - Brash Assault, Wolf-Pack Tactics
Encounter - Daring Display, Devastating Charge, Hail of Steel, Platinum Blood Smite
Daily - Defy Death, Exemplar's Talon, Victory Surge, Warlord's Resurgence
Utility - Bahamut's Liberation, Heart of the Titan, Shake it Off, Spring the Trap, Tempting Target, Unintended Feint, Warlord's Banner

Suggested Equipment:
Battlecrazed Weapon - Not only does this deal extra damage when you're Bloodied, it has a Daily Power that allows you to take half your level in damage, and then be considered Bloodied for all purposes until the end of your next turn. This means you can basically control when to use many of your items or Feats or even Powers to maximum effect for a Minor Action.

Bloodiron Scale - This Enhancement can only be cast on Scale or Plate, but Scale is WELL worth it for a Braver, especially with this on it. It has a property that, whenever you hit an enemy, you gain a +2 item bonus to AC against attacks from that enemy until the end of your next turn. So basically, Brash Assault becomes a Win-Win situation for you, and many of the CA-granting Powers lose some of their edge.

Luminary Ring - Every Braver or Bardlord should have one of these puppies. "Increase the range of your powers that restore hit points or provide a bonus to your allies by a number of squares equal to your Charisma modifier." Also has a Daily that increases Power bonuses.

Ring of the Dragonborn Emperor - Kind of a given, really. Very useful, very effective.

Belt of Mountain Endurance - Not many people know about this item, as it's from one of the Dragon Mags. "When you spend a healing surge, add your Strength modifier to the surge value." Fairly high-level, however, but still VERY good.
Brash Assault gets one star from me, if that. The thing to realize about it is that it is strictly worse than a basic attack, since it has the exact same attack roll and damage, but offers your opponents a choice they wouldn't otherwise have. Sure, if your enemies are dumb it can pay off; but any power that relies on either GM generosity of GM stupidity is a terrible one.
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Like Viper's Strike? Which is universally recognized as awesome?

In any case, Brash assault is a solid three star. It is only a four star if you take Exotic Fighting Style from Dragon's gladiator article, which nullifies the CA enemies get, while still retaining it for your ally. Then, it rocks.
Mountain Cleave Rule: You can have any sort of fun, including broken, silly fun, so long as I get to have that fun too (e. g., if you can warp reality with your spells, I can cleave mountains with my blade).
I disagree that powers which rely upon DM generousity/stupidity are necessarily poor ones. (The case of Viper's Strike is slightly different since it modifies the risk/reward ratio for the DM and exerts a level of control over his actions even if he is not generous/stupid). First, it may be arrogant, but there is always the possibility that you are a better tactician than your DM. If that is the case, you may be able to set up situations where the DM who is not being intentionally generous thinks that an action is in his monsters best interest, even when it is not really in their best interest. Second, a good DM should not be running all of his monsters as though they were pieces on a chessboard. D&D is a role-playing game and a good DM should have the dumb ogres of the world be willing to make poor choices and fall into traps from time to time. That's part of what makes fighting ogres different from fighting drow.

Additionally, there is a decent chance that, when the risk/reward is not absolutely clear cut ("let's see, I take a weak basic attack on the warlord at -2 from divine challenge, take 10 points of radiant damage, and absorb an attack from the Mordenkrad wielding barbarian who is flanking me--I think not"), the DM might err on the side of taking the attack simply on the grounds that he gets to roll dice and there is a chance he could crit and win his bad gamble. Personally, as a DM, I would usually take that chance even when the odds are, say 60% that it will work out in the players' favor, 40% that it will work out in mine because I only need it to land on the 40% once or twice to have a combat work out to be more challenging for the players and more interesting for me. (Note, that this is only likely to result in a TPK if the player consistently did it in situations where it was a bad gamble--for good players, the likely result of this philosophy is that every now and then, misfortune would get them into a bad spot and the law of averages would get them out of it).

In any event, Brash assault is not strictly worse than a basic attack. It has the same chance to hit and damage as a basic attack, so, absent bracers of mighty striking, it is equivalent to a basic attack if your DM does not choose the option to make an attack on you.

Where it has the potential to be worse than a basic attack is when you use it a position where the enemy's attack is better than the retribution your party can inflict. So, if you are not a good tactician, stay away from it. (In fact, if you're given to taking bad risks, you should probably stay away from Bravura Warlord alltogether. Bravura warlord is for a player who enjoys taking good risks). Likewise, if your DM won't play ball, stay away from it. On the other hand, if your DM is willing to play ball, it has the potential to be a great power.

All that said, I'm revising the rating and adding some of this commentary above.

Brash Assault gets one star from me, if that. The thing to realize about it is that it is strictly worse than a basic attack, since it has the exact same attack roll and damage, but offers your opponents a choice they wouldn't otherwise have. Sure, if your enemies are dumb it can pay off; but any power that relies on either GM generosity of GM stupidity is a terrible one.

Like Viper's Strike? Which is universally recognized as awesome?

In any case, Brash assault is a solid three star. It is only a four star if you take Exotic Fighting Style from Dragon's gladiator article, which nullifies the CA enemies get, while still retaining it for your ally. Then, it rocks.

Viper's Strike is an irrelevant comparison.

If your enemies choose to never ever provoke Viper attacks, that means your attacks are stopping enemies from shifting. That's a pretty powerful a powerful effect.

If your enemies chose to never ever take the free attacks from Brash Assault that they wouldn't have gotten if you hadn't used the power, then the effect of your swings is quite literally identical to the effects of melee basic attacks.

Of course, the enemies are choosing whether or not to take your attack, so if the attacks would hurt you more than it would hurt them, they'll swing; if it won't, then you're making basic attacks. Strictly worse than a basic attack unless you're relying on GM kindness.
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No, you're just relying on the GM not metagaming, which he shouldn't be doing anyway.
How about no? Would you consider an extra shot at SA (and possibly double SA, if your rogue uses a Wraithblade), Curse, or Hunter's Quarry a bad thing?

And Viper's strike does the same thing. If the attack will barely scratch them, enemies WILL shift, and to hell with whatever your plan is. Brash assault works similarly, only you can make it better much easier using Exotic Weapon Style.
Mountain Cleave Rule: You can have any sort of fun, including broken, silly fun, so long as I get to have that fun too (e. g., if you can warp reality with your spells, I can cleave mountains with my blade).
Vipers Strike does NOT do the same thing. Vipers Strike choices are a) Don't Move, or b)Free Attack. Both of the enemies choices are always bad. Yes, how bad varies situationally, and more often than not the enemy will choose the one that is least severe, but you are guaranteed to do something unpleasant to the enemy beyond [w]+str damage.

Brash Assaults choices are a) nothing or b) swing-for-swing trade. The first choice is by definition neutral; the second can be good or bad for the enemy situationally. In other words, the enemy can always choose for your attack to do nothing, and they can choose for the effect to happen only when they believe it will benefit them.

Now yes, some enemies are stupid and good GMs should have them make sub-optimal choices; furthermore, some GMs are stupid themselves and will choose sub-optimally for all of their monsters. It doesn't change the fact that mathematically the power is strictly inferior to basic attacking, and that the only thing that conceivably makes it good is stupidity.
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Your post is full of contradictions. If it is, at least, as good as a basic attack, how can it possibly be inferior?

Additionally, in many cases, Viper's Strike won't do jack. If an enemy teleports, it's useless, and if the enemy has reach (and most do), it can probably ignore movement as soon as you close in on it, to say nothing of any attack that stops you from OA'ing. It's actually pretty situational, especially as you climb up in levels.
Mountain Cleave Rule: You can have any sort of fun, including broken, silly fun, so long as I get to have that fun too (e. g., if you can warp reality with your spells, I can cleave mountains with my blade).
There are two possibilities: enemies think the free attack is two risky, in which case Brash Assault = Basic Attack, or enemies think that the free attack is a good tradeoff, in which case (assuming smart monsters) Brash Assult < Basic Attack. Since Brash Assualt is sometimes worse and never better than a Basic Attack (except, again, against stupid monsters/GMs), the power on the whole is atrociously bad.
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Not really. It's all about playing mind games with your DM. He only needs to SEE the BA tradeoff as good, it doesn't HAVE to be. Thus, it IS better than a basic attack, provided you can make the DM believe it is. Just like Viper's Strike, again.
Mountain Cleave Rule: You can have any sort of fun, including broken, silly fun, so long as I get to have that fun too (e. g., if you can warp reality with your spells, I can cleave mountains with my blade).
Viper's Strike remains a terrible comparison. If your enemy chooses never to provoke attacks from Viper's Strike, then they never move while adjacent to your allies. This is more powerful than the attacks would be. If your enemy chooses to never provoke Brash Assault attacks, all he loses are attacks that you gave him for free in the first place.
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O RLY? Then, pray tell, what happens with all those enemies that can push, slide, stun, daze, blind (trivializes attacks), teleport, have reaction abilities, reach, etc.? Those don't NEED to move, not before trivializing VS.

Let's face it, BA is just as good as VS, because both rely on the DM seeing the tradeoff as advantageous when it isn't to be good, so if one gets rated one way, the other should too.
Mountain Cleave Rule: You can have any sort of fun, including broken, silly fun, so long as I get to have that fun too (e. g., if you can warp reality with your spells, I can cleave mountains with my blade).
The ability to take advantage of opposing stupidity and weakness is a very good thing. If Pompey had been better at doing so, he might well have defeated Ceasar and the history of our entire world would be different. (Instead, Pompey let Ceasar's moment of weakness pass). To use a different analogy, that was exactly what I loved most about Elusive Target in 3.5. Cleverly move between two zombies, provoke the OA, watch them hit each other, and get a chance to trip both of them.

That said, it is also worth noting in counter to your argument that the only thing that will make Brash Assault worse than a basic attack is stupidity in the party of the player. If it's not likely to be good for you if the opponent takes the attack, don't use Brash Assault. If you discover that the DM never lets his monsters fall for it, retrain it. However, if you are not stupid and the DM either is stupid himself, sometimes lets his monsters be stupid, has his monsters play to win rather than play to lose slowly*, or takes a long term view of the gamble that enables him to make individually suboptimal choices on the view that, sooner or later they will work out for his monsters and that will be more fun, then Brash Assault will be a solid and fun power.

*More on that in the last paragraph of this post. D&D is designed for the monsters to lose every time, so it makes tactical sense for them to take even some bad risks provided there is a potential upside for them.

I fully anticipate that using Brash Assault will take a bit of getting used to. I'm quite certain that there are DMs who will sometimes take the bait no matter how bad a deal I offer them. (I remember a certain DM who let his orc be kited into provoking an OA and walking into a flank by a 2 damage divine challenge from my strength paladin). For most DMs, I anticipate having to offer them a situation where there is something like a 33% chance that they'll come out ahead. But if it comes to that, I'll take a 66% chance to come out ahead.

There will also be more rare situations, but ones that can be planned where the hit on me is essentially free. If my warlord is uninjured and the situation is such that either I or another leader is going to pop a mass-healing power such as Beacon of Hope, Stand the Fallen, Mass Cure Light Wounds, or Strengthen the Faithful, then even if I come out worse on the damage trade, I still come out ahead in terms of the tactical situation because the enemy ends up more damaged than it would be otherwise and the party gets to erase the damage that was done to me at no additional cost in actions or powers.

It is also worth noting that there are times when the tactical situation calls for a gamble that is obviously disadvantageous.

On the player's side, if my party is losing the fight with average rolls and retreat is not an option then a power that offers to a possibility to let me win if I get lucky is better than a power that lets me lose safely. Brash Assault is such a power.

Note that this also works for the bad guys. The hope of pulling even in a fight that they are losing may be sufficient to lure them into taking a 25/75 or even a 10/90 gamble. Note that I'm maintaining that it is a good deal for the bad guy. So, how is that a good deal for me too? Simple. Our goals are different. The bad guy is looking for a long-shot way to improve his position in this individual fight. I am not worried about this individual fight. If the gamble doesn't work out for me, I stop taking chances before I give the bad guys a chance to actually win my party knuckles down and we expend a few more resources than we would otherwise in order to win anway. In the 75% or the 90% of the time that the gamble works out for me, however, my party ends up winning bigger. Now, from the monster's perspective, losing big, or losing narrowly doesn't make too much different. What he is concerned about is the certainty of losing. On the other hand, from the party's perspective, winning big can make a difference. If 75% of the time, taking that risk enables us to walk into the next battle with an extra healing surge on the striker and the defender, that's worth the 25% of the time when it ends up costing my warlord a healing surge. As long as you are smart enough to know when to stop giving the monsters that chance before they acquire a non-negligible chance of actually winning, you come out ahead.

Now yes, some enemies are stupid and good GMs should have them make sub-optimal choices; furthermore, some GMs are stupid themselves and will choose sub-optimally for all of their monsters. It doesn't change the fact that mathematically the power is strictly inferior to basic attacking, and that the only thing that conceivably makes it good is stupidity.

For you, E_B. You explained what I was trying to say much better than I could.
Mountain Cleave Rule: You can have any sort of fun, including broken, silly fun, so long as I get to have that fun too (e. g., if you can warp reality with your spells, I can cleave mountains with my blade).
Actually, it's a little better than that. In the case of Viper's Strike, the lure that you get to set before the DM is one that he might not care about. "My monster will provoke an OA if he shifts. But why would he want to shift? He's fine with where he is right now." There are a fair number of times where the monster wasn't going to shift even if you hadn't hit him with Viper's Strike. Likewise, the hammer that gets to hit the DM is more limited. It needs to be a melee attacker adjacent to the bad guy with a strong melee basic attack. (And, if the bad guy has a target next to him, that reduces the odds that he will want to shift).

On the other hand, Brash Assault offers the DM an attack. There's no question about whether the monster would like a free attack. There are very few situations where the monster would not take a free attack that came at no cost. The thing that can make it a bad deal is the retribution. (And depending upon your DM's willingness to go for the bait, you can set it up so that the retribution is far, far more than the single basic attack with Combat Advantage that the power grants).

To put it more clearly, Viper's Strike lets you gamble with the DM sometimes.

Brash Assault lets you gamble with the DM every time. If you're smart, you'll only try when the odds are in your favor, but you can set it up so that they're in your favor if you want to.

O RLY? Then, pray tell, what happens with all those enemies that can push, slide, stun, daze, blind (trivializes attacks), teleport, have reaction abilities, reach, etc.? Those don't NEED to move, not before trivializing VS.

Let's face it, BA is just as good as VS, because both rely on the DM seeing the tradeoff as advantageous when it isn't to be good, so if one gets rated one way, the other should too.

I have to agree with Reyemile. Viper's Stike may not be better than a basic attack most of the time, but it's never worse.

As you said, Brash Assault is like making a basic attack, and then offering a bet to the monster.

Think about it this way. Lets say that I came up to you and said, "lets make a bet, we roll this (fair) d6, and if it comes up a 6, I give you a dollar, and if it comes up anything else, you give me a dollar." You wouldn't take that bet. Now lets say that I made the opposite bet "if it comes up a 6 you pay me a dollar, otherwise I pay you a dollar". You'd take that bet every time (assuming fair dice).

This is basically what Brash Assault does. Depending on the circumstances of the battle, it maybe advantageous for the monster to take the bet, or it may not. However, the monster always has the option of not taking the bet, so any time they take the bet, it's because it's a good deal for them. Now combat is often complicated, and it may be difficult to determine what the exact odds are, so maybe the DM will make a mistake and take the bet when the odds are against them, or maybe they'll take it just because they determine that the monster is not bright enough, but that's exactly what Reyemile is talking about -- you're relying completely on the DM to determine if this power is good or not.

Now Basilisk, I agree with your analysis with the long vs short run, and the taking risks if you're behind. However, if monsters have the same information that you do, then they'd also know that if they stick to playing it safe, they'll win, so they won't take the bet.
...Except not, because monsters are expected to lose, so the gamble is attractive.

And, more importantly, your DM is controlling the monsters. As I said, it doesn't HAVE to be a good deal, it just has to LOOK like it.
Mountain Cleave Rule: You can have any sort of fun, including broken, silly fun, so long as I get to have that fun too (e. g., if you can warp reality with your spells, I can cleave mountains with my blade).
Now Basilisk, I agree with your analysis with the long vs short run, and the taking risks if you're behind. However, if monsters have the same information that you do, then they'd also know that if they stick to playing it safe, they'll win, so they won't take the bet.

Except for a few things:
1. The monsters are usually the ones behind the 8 ball. D&D is set up for the players to win every time--encounters that the monsters actually have a non-negligible chance of winning are the extremely rare. (Heck, encounters where the monsters have a chance of even actually killing any one of the PCs are quite rare). So, tactically, it does actually make sense for monsters to take even bad bets that you offer them even though the DM should know that you can pull the rug out from under them any time by ceasing to offer the bet if long odds start paying off for them.

2. Situations where the cost is eliminated by future actions--particularly mass healing should not be overlooked and enable you to offer deals that are, on the face of it, bad deals for you but actually work out well for you because you have the resources to support the trade and the monster does not. (Using Brash Assault when not significantly injured immediately before you plan to pop an action point for Stand the Fallen (because the rest of your party needs it) is a good example of this. Though it looks like you are gambling with your hit points at the time, you are really only gambling with a healing surge that you won't miss and which it costs you no resources to expend). Monsters and to a lesser extent the DM cannot reliably see how you plan to mitigate the costs through future actions.

3. Desperate situations. You maintain that in the few situations where the monsters are actually ahead, they will simply refuse to play the game. I think this unlikely. The situation with the $1 bet is instructive. If I offer a bet where you win 1-4, but I win 5-6, most people will take it regardless of whether taking that bet increases or decreases the chance that they will win the big jackpot in the broader context of the game. Considered by itself, it is a good bet and that is enough for most people.

But when it comes down to it, I like the power, because I believe, that with most of the DMs I play with, I will be able to outplay them and make the gamble work to my advantage more often than not. There will be DMs who simply stop taking the bait entirely (especially in home games; RPGA DMs are more likely to be goaded into a false sense of security by other players who use the power poorly). But, I think most DMs will, be willing to go for a string of "I win, 3-6, they win 1-2" bets, especially with low-int or low-wis monsters. Maybe they'll only go for 1 or 2 per encounter, but that is enough to make the power a good third power. It's also worth noting that calculating the effects of the power isn't always straightforward. If you happen to beat the rogue on initiative, for instance, it is a very good opening gambit. It looks like the monster will only be taking one attack worth of damage, but if the rogue drills the target with his crossbow or thrown dagger, the target takes sneak attack damage. What's better, on the rogue's initiative, it's a new turn so he gets to deal sneak attack again.
In Re: Viper Strike, consider this: a Kobold Skirmisher is adjacent to one of your allies. Next turn he will use a minor action to shift to flank that ally, attacking with CA and sneak attack damage. You hit him for Viper Strike.

One of two things happen. A) he does not shift, losing combat advantage, or B) he shifts and takes an opportunity attack. In this situation, Viper's Strike is guaranteed to be better than a Melee Basic attack--either choice the skirmisher makes is worse than if you had just whacked him with a sword.

Now, try to find a situation--any situation--where Brash Strike is guaranteed to be better than a melee basic attack. Go ahead.

You can't. You know why? Because one of the choices enemies get to make is just getting hit by a basic attack.

Now, enemies are stupid. They make provoke attacks they shouldn't, they may make swings that they shouldn't. But relying on that stupidity is terrible game design. I can think of no other published at-will power whose utility is solely at GM discretion.

The power is really easy to fix. Give the enemy some minor penalty-- -1 to attack, -1 to defenses, Int mod extra damage--for choosing not to take the attack. Now, you can come up with a situation where Brash Assault is guaranteed better than a Melee basic attack. Whether the power ends poor, good, or overpowered after the change, I won't have anything to complain about any more.
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5 attempts at brash strike. The goblins took the bait three times--(two warriors and one (non-bloodied) beserker, I wasn't about to try it on a blackblade). In the first encounter, one refused because he saw the first guy go down in a bloody mess due to the retaliation. In the last encounter the goblin hexer refused to try it--presumably because he was smart and his melee basic attack was garbage).

The goblins hit all three times.
The first time, it ended up costing me a surge, but it also killed the goblin before he got another attack so the net result was that:
A. I took an attack that would have otherwise had an extra d6 of skirmish on it
B. We got one shot in on another goblin that would have otherwise gone to finish off the first goblin.

The second time, most of the damage was absorbed by the swordmage's aegis of shielding.

The third time, all of the damage was absorbed by the swordmage's aegis of shielding and we got to kill the goblin before he acted. If, as I suspect, the goblin was a warrior, he probably would have shifted and then mobile melee attacked, so I avoided the d6 of skirmish by killing him early and bought my party an extra action that would otherwise have been used to kill that goblin off.

That's not bad results for an at-will that would otherwise have been Viper's Strike. Viper's Strike would probably have been useful in the last situation, but and the time in the first fight that the goblin declined to take the free attack, but in the other situations, it wouldn't have done us any good. (I suppose, I might have used Viper's Strike instead of Commander's Strike on the Ochre Jelly since we knew it had a lot of shift movement).
If the DM is willing to play ball, it seems to be a great power (both theoretically and in (limited) practice). If the DM isn't, you should train it to something else.

If it were going to be fixed, Int mod wouldn't be the way to go. Bravura warlords typically don't have an int mod and it is set up to be a bravura power, not a taclord power. +cha mod would make it quite powerful, but no more than Brash Strike or the new invigorating fighter at will. -2 to all defenses or -2 to attack would make the power more complex, which it doesn't need to be.

But it's still a good power as written... provided the DM will play ball.

The power is really easy to fix. Give the enemy some minor penalty-- -1 to attack, -1 to defenses, Int mod extra damage--for choosing not to take the attack. Now, you can come up with a situation where Brash Assault is guaranteed better than a Melee basic attack. Whether the power ends poor, good, or overpowered after the change, I won't have anything to complain about any more.

On Commander's Strike:

This power is im my mind a poor choice for a bravelord, as you need a decent Int Score to make it work well, as it's you Int that is added to the damage roll. Having the ally only deal [W] +0 to +2 damage makes taking the risk of using Brash Assault instead more worth it (especially in combination with the sweet gladiator feat and an exotic weapon).

The Bravelord also seems the warlord most likely to ever acquire Armor Proficiency (Plate), due to the high con needed for this build. On a related note, I think that an Earthfast Brigadier makes a solid choice for a bravelord, as the Bravelord needs a decent Con Score anyways (but works better for any Fighter/Ranger who wants Warlord powers)...

Speaking of Abilities: How do the following arrays look for a Bravelord?
St 16 Con 15 Dex 14 Int 10 Wis 8 Cha 16
This is for Half-Elves, Warforged, Hobgoblins, Minotaurs, Orcs, and Dragonborn*, while I 'd switch Con and Dex for Halflings, Goblins, and Drow*.
Both arrays qualify for scale/plate prof (the first only) and heavy shield prof in heroic, and for heavy blade opportunity, plate prof (the 2nd), armor spec (scale/plate) and shield spec in paragon. I guess the first array could aim for axe mastery in epic, the later 'd go for heavy blade mastery, and all 'd have well-rounded defenses (just my school of thought when it comes to optimization. And as you may noted I don' believe that 18 is necessary in a primary stat)

*(Playable races from PHB and other sources listed first, followed by MM races and races I don't like listed last)

Cheers!

Captn M.

Better to fight windmills than become a miller!

Reposted here because I think it's worth mentioning.

The new MP polearm shenagins would fit perfectly from a thematic standpoint. Warlords are very effective with reach, and polearm gamble just screams Bravura. However, this is walking on a razor's edge, as to get gamble you need Wis, a stat outside the Warlord's expertise. To get polearm momentum, you need Dex, another stat unusual to Warlords. To get these stats to where you want em, you gotta sacrifice Con, which takes away your toughness. Still, the end effect would be very cool. Polearm Gamble, Polearm Momemtum (MC Fighter), Spear Push, HBO (Glaive) + Opening Shove, and Draconic Arrogance (double Str damage) would rock. If you hit with Polearm Gamble, you won't ever be touched by anything save other monsters with reach. If you miss...well you're probably already granting CA from Bravura powers anyway!:D

Only the crazy brave need apply (and/or those of Auspicious Birth or Born Under a Bad Sign)

I also want to toss Dwarves in the mix for Bravura Warlords. With natural Con, and minor action second wind, they are definitely tough enough to hack the Bravura schtick, and in my opinion, could excel at it. A 16 Str isn't that big of a deal. Spend for Str, Con, and Cha; focus on defense with your feats. Your offense, after all comes from your party kicking ass while you get your ass kicked. The tougher you are, the greater the risk you can take seems to be the Bravura way.
I also want to toss Dwarves in the mix for Bravura Warlords. With natural Con, and minor action second wind, they are definitely tough enough to hack the Bravura schtick, and in my opinion, could excel at it.

I like the idea! What stat array would you use for that build?

Better to fight windmills than become a miller!

I like the idea! What stat array would you use for that build?

Probably one of these two:

Str 16 Con 15 Dex 11 Int 10 Wis 10 Cha 16

or

Str 16 Con 14 Dex 12 Int 10 Wis 10 Cha 16 (Spear Push)

possibly if the right PP was chosen

Str 16 Con 17 Dex 11 Int 10 Wis 10 Cha 14 (Earthfast Brig or Combat Vet)

last

Str 16 Con 12 Dex 14 Int 8 Wis 14 Cha 14 (polearm shenanigans, but Con is way low...serious case of MAD here)

Using the top two arrays, you'd miss out on HBO and one or two to reflex, but that's definitely not the end of the world. You'll be far tougher than any other race save Dragonborn. Let's face it though, Bravura was made for Dragonborn; they fit the best by far in my opinion.

The biggest upside of the Dwarf isn't the natural Con, but the minor action second wind. This is what you're trading for lower Dex with the races above in your post CaptnMorgrim. Not only can Dwarves get a really high surge value, they can captilize on it using their own ability. Also, your Inspiring Word would heal you nicely. Cha, up to triple Con with the right PP (maybe x4 Con or more, haven't researched that fully yet), plus toss some dice and add any magic item bonuses. Of course Dragonborn can do the same with the Word, but I'm not saying Dwarves are better than Dragonborn. Dragonborn cannot, however, use second wind and not miss a beat (unless you go Platinum Warlord). Finally, you'll be up two healing surges vs any other race (Dwarven Durability). This is the only area where the Dwarf is superior to the Dragonborn really, but it's an important area...toughness. I guess it's a question of how tough do you need to be? Or, how many risks are you willing to take, and how great a risk are you willing to endure?

Warforged would be really good too methinks.

Oh, one last thing (if this was mentioned already and I missed it sorry). Soldier of the Faith seems to be really good for Bravura Warlords.
On Commander's Strike:

This power is im my mind a poor choice for a bravelord, as you need a decent Int Score to make it work well, as it's you Int that is added to the damage roll. Having the ally only deal [W] +0 to +2 damage makes taking the risk of using Brash Assault instead more worth it (especially in combination with the sweet gladiator feat and an exotic weapon).

The secret to Commander's Strike is that you don't need any Int at all in order to make it work well. All you need is an ally with a stronger basic attack than you have. (Or a potentially stronger basic attack than you have--it offers the largest DPR increase when used on a brutal scoundrel rogue who missed on his sneak attack). I think Bravura warlords are very likely to want to take Lend Might as a feat for use with powers like Hail of Steel, etc. That makes Commander's Strike a basic attack at +1. Similarly, at epic tier, I anticipate that most Bravura Warlords will take the Call to Glory feat which makes Commander's Strike a basic attack at +1 to hit with +1 damage (your int should be 12 at epic tier) that grants temporary hit points.


The Bravelord also seems the warlord most likely to ever acquire Armor Proficiency (Plate), due to the high con needed for this build. On a related note, I think that an Earthfast Brigadier makes a solid choice for a bravelord, as the Bravelord needs a decent Con Score anyways (but works better for any Fighter/Ranger who wants Warlord powers)...

I would agree on the plate armor proficiency. However, I can't see earthfast brigadier. Even at epic, I think that any bravura warlord with a Con higher than 17 (15 starting con (with racial bonus)) is sacrificing too much of his warlord abilities for toughness.

Speaking of Abilities: How do the following arrays look for a Bravelord?
St 16 Con 15 Dex 14 Int 10 Wis 8 Cha 16
This is for Half-Elves, Warforged, Hobgoblins, Minotaurs, Orcs, and Dragonborn*, while I 'd switch Con and Dex for Halflings, Goblins, and Drow*.
Both arrays qualify for scale/plate prof (the first only) and heavy shield prof in heroic, and for heavy blade opportunity, plate prof (the 2nd), armor spec (scale/plate) and shield spec in paragon. I guess the first array could aim for axe mastery in epic, the later 'd go for heavy blade mastery, and all 'd have well-rounded defenses (just my school of thought when it comes to optimization. And as you may noted I don' believe that 18 is necessary in a primary stat)

If this is after racials, it looks like it would probably work and would certainly provide more opportunities for various feats. For my part, I am more persuaded of the benefit of the 18 attack stat and +1 to an otherwise strong defense than access to feats and +2 to an otherwise weak defense. My position is that starting 16 is barely adequate as an attack stat and may be acceptable if lack of appropriate racial bonuses and other considerations make it inevitable. 18, however, is far preferable.
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