Welcome to If the Spirit Moves You: A Shaman's Handbook! This is my first shot at a handbook, so don't be gentle. Playing a shaman is a lot like being in charge of England during the 19th and early 20th centuries: whenever you flex your power, the stuff that happens happens somewhere else. The shaman class is dominated by the use of its spirit companion, and this makes for a leader that is profoundly different from the cleric, warlord, and bard. With any luck, this guide will not only inform you about the choices you make when you build your character, it'll have some tactical or strategic tidbits that allow you to better understand and play the shaman. Enjoy!
Ratings Found Within This Handbook
Red: A red power is either 1) made obsolete by a power within the same class and level or 2) or a trap option. You have to be really bad to be a red power.
Purple: A purple power will normally be outclassed by most of the other powers of its class and level, but unlike a red power could be useful in an unusual situation or as part of an unusual build.
Black: A black power is good enough you won't get glared at for using it, but not so good as to cast skepticism on other choices. Powers that are solid but unremarkable or are role-players will often be considered black.
Blue: A blue power is very competitive for its level, and should be strongly considered by any shaman with the ability scores to support it.
Sky Blue: A sky blue power is first tier. Unlike the other colors, a sky blue power compares favorably not just within its class and level, but with comparable powers in other classes, and therefore serves as a draw to the shaman class.
A Flame of Hope Build: http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?p=18174442
lordduskblade, for general layout and some of his opinions
ppaladin, for the title and responding to lots of rules questions so I don't have to
Ghostpilot, for mudman!
Everyone who replied to this thread in some capacity