Why I created this handbook when another one is already being made? Well the more handbooks the better right? Also I felt that the other book had done some of the starting setup, but had been entirely missing the most important part for some time. The most important part to me is the powers, feats and equipment that a heroic player starting a new character will want to get. As such this is where I will start, and I will finish with epic dest after I am done with everything else.
Why play a runepriest?
Runepriests excel at giving bonuses to their teammates. Their basic twice per encounter heal "Rune of Mending" gives a +2 damage or +1 AC to all allies in close burst 5, as well as healing the target. All of thier powers tend to be this way giving a lot of bonuses to a lot of teammates. They are not nearly as good in the "pure healing" aspect as most other leaders though.
One of the other nice things is that the runepriest gets to choose with every power if he wants more offense or more defense, and that changes throughout the course of the battle. Destruction can be very good if you spike it (have a lot of destructive powers and things going on at once). The reason is that every +to hit you do means any +damage you do during that time is more effective. Try to mix +to hit, and +damage stuff, being able to hit 100% of the time but with no damage, or doing tons of damage but always missing isn’t good.
This guide uses the following rating system:
Gold - Make sure you get this, there is nothing better. Light blue - Quite good, maybe the best. Blue - Above average, better then most. Black - Average solid power. Purple - Situational, occasionally useful. Red - Do not get, other powers are always better.
Hit Points: 12 + con Average for a leader, but con is a secondary stat for wrathful hammers and as such they will probably have quite a few hit points. Surges: 7 + con mod, again quite average for a leader. Armor Proficiencies: All the way up to scale and light shield, higher then any other leader in the game, almost up to defender level armor profs (they usually have heavy shield, plate, or get con to ac with hide). Weapon/Implement Proficiencies: Simple Melee, Simple ranged, very bad weapon profs, but wrathful hammers do get military hammers at least. Bonus: +2 Will, given you will have a high fort, this helps protect against some of the nasty daze/dominate vs will attacks.
Rune Master: You give your team a bonus around you. The bonus depends on if you last used a destruction rune or a protection rune. The key to using this effectively is to guess how the DM will react in the various rune states. If the DM doesn’t care what rune state you are in, and always attacks you, because your a leader, try to stay in destruction rune state. If he tends to attack your team mates no matter what, protection may be better (depending on current damage bonuses you have given). Destruction: +1 to hit is quite powerful, usually meaning 5% extra damage for your whole team attacking the targets around you. Also meshes well with granting additional damage bonuses, so that your own damage bonus is more effective when used on someone that will attack an enemy adj to you. Protection: Allies adj to you gain resist 2/4/6 all. This doesn’t stack with any other resist effect, but can encourage the enemies to hit you instead of your teammate, giving you a bigger damage bonus from runic artistry.
Rune of Mending: normal 2/encounter heal, but in addition it gives all allies in the burst +2 damage or +1 AC. The key to using this effectively is to combine the effect with other bonuses that you are granting. If you just dropped a Icon of Victory to give everyone +2 to hit, that would be a good time to use rune of mending to give everyone +2 damage as well. This does 1d6 less healing then the cleric (and no healers lore bonus), but the additional +2 damage (power bonus) or +1 to all defenses in a burst 5/10/15, more then makes up for it.
Runic Artistry: When compared to most other classes damage bonus, this almost reaches striker territory if the target is attacking you. A ranger for instance gets 1d6 damage (avr 3) from hunters query, while you get con/wis mod (usually about 3-4 in heroic) if they hit/miss you. This is very large damage bonus for a leader class.
Wrathful Hammer: You get a con mod bonus whenever someone hits you (doesn’t stack). You also gain proficiency in military hammers and maces. Tends to push towards a more aggressive destruction build as you sacrifice a little AC for more damage, as you get even more damage when they hit you. Toughness tends to be more important to be able to take all those hits.
Defiant Word: You get a wis mod bonus to damage when someone misses you (doesn’t stack). Tends to really push the AC bonuses getting heavy shield. Would get plate but for the con requirements. More AC means you can take more attacks, and do more damage when they miss.
Defiant Word: Tend to stay very close to the defenders, maximizing thier effectiveness. Things like Rune of Binding can make the defender almost unhittable, but still a bad idea to attack you, putting the enemy in a lose/lose situation. Also tends to use protection a little more, to make sure the rest of the team is not taking as much damage. The protection of rune of mending for instance gives a bonus to all defenses, which means that any enemy attacking you is more likely to miss, and grant you your extra damage.
Wrathful hammer: Wrathful Hammers tend to work with the strikers of the team more. Pressuring the enemies by granting lots of extra damage and to-hit bonuses. They also tend to do a lot more damage themselves and lean towards a striker secondary (not controller like PHB3 says).
Strength - Everyone wants strength, it is your primary stat. Everything uses it to attack and for damage, so make sure it is way up there. Recommended 16-18 before racials. Constitution- For wrathful hammers only, but they should get it fairly high so they can get the extra damage feature, as well as secondary effects. Wrathful recommended 14 before racials, defiant recommended 10. Dexterity - might be a little useful to get some extra Ref, and init for both builds (Recommended 12) Intelligence - Dump stat both builds (Recommended 8) Wisdom- For defiant word secondary stat. Can be useful to bump as wrathful for some Will defense. Defiant recommended 14 before racials. Charisma - worthless for defiant word, but can be used by wrathful to get some will defense. (Recommended 10-12).
Dragonborn- Bump to primary stat, makes good use of con for wrathful hammer, and good feat support.
Dwarf - Bump to both secondary stats, good feats for hammers leans towards wrathful hammer. Eladrin - No good stat boosts . Elf - Bump to wis for defiants, rerolling and shifting in difficult terrain can be good. Half Elf - Bump to con so good wrathful hammers. Lots of interesting choices for the extra at will, and good feats. Halfling - Both not primary or secondary stats. Human- Bump to str, 3 at wills, extra feat, lots of feat support, good nads, all around good for both builds. Tiefling - Both not primary or secondary stats .
Deva- Bump to wis makes for defiant, memory is ok, rest doesn’t help.
Gnome - Both off stats. Goliath - Perfect stats for a wrathful hammer. Racial gives better survivability, and some good feat choices. Half-Orc - Bump to a primary stat, and extra dex for more imitative never hurt, good extra temps when bloodied and extra damage once per enc make this a good choice for both builds. Shifter (Longtooth) - Perfect stats for defiant word. Regen when bloodied is wonderful, as is the extra damage which we can make a lot of use of with our +to hit stuff. Shifter (Razorclaw)- Bump in wis leans towards defiant, but the +2 speed doesn’t help us, and the +1AC/Ref while bloodied is nice, but just not enough.
Githzerai - Bump to wis leans towards defiant.+2 init (+3 if you get dex stat bump), +2 to saves against some nasty conditions, shift 3 when you second wind, and an imm int which can negate one attack per encounter. All nice things, if only they were +str .
Minotaur - Perfect stats for both builds. Extra attacks when you drop, and with feats if you're bloodied are nice. But we don’t do a lot of charging, so I'm not sure how useful the charging racial features will be.
Shardmind- They get a wis bump for defiant, but I don’t like their features much for this class, doesn’t seem to work all that well.
Wilden- Bumps to both secondary stats, so can go either build. Will probably stay in Wrath of the Destroyer most of the time, that way you can get some extra melee basics when you got some good +dmg/to-hit bonus on you and daze.
Changeling (EPG) - No good stats or feats. Drow (FRPG) - No good stats or feats, and the cloud doesn’t seem all that useful. Genasi (FRPG) - Bump to primary stat, lots of choices to pick from for a racial, and good feat support. Maybe firesoul or cindersoul both look like they could work. Gnoll (Dragon 367) - Gets a bonus to con, making an ok wrathful hammer. 7 speed isn’t bad, 2 extra on a charge, and 2 extra if there are a lot of team mates next to the target, and you will probably be in the thick of things this is likely to occur. Kalashtar (EPG)- Both bad stats, nothing all that useful. Revenant (Dragon 376) - A boost to con leans towards wraithful hammer, and not dying for a turn can be wonderfully helpful allowing you to heal yourself or second wind if something bad goes on. Shadar-kai (Dragon 372) - Not very useful stats, and racial isn’t good enough to make it worth it. Warforged (Dragon 364/EPG)- Perfect stats for a wrathful hammer, and very tough to kill as well, making a great runepriest.
Orc (MM) - Str and Con bumps make for the perfect stats for a wrathful hammer, warriors surge helps in the survivability but without good feat support can't be all that great.
Bladeling (MOTP) - Wis bump makes for a defiant, racial ability can use str though, not very good feat support.
Bugbear (MM)- Strength bump combined with the crazy overpowered oversized weapon property, racial ability doesn’t hurt. Githyanki (MM) - Con bump means wrathful hammer, but I don’t like the other properties and little feat support. Goblin (MM) -No good stat bump, but you might find some use for shifty.
Hobgoblin (MM) - Con bump means wraithful hammer, and being able to shrug off a condition isn’t bad, if only they had feat support. Kobold (MM) - Con bump means wrathful hammer, and shifty isn’t bad for getting CA, but no feats.
As two of these at-wills are con based, and two are wis base, it usually makes sense for wrathful hammers to take Word of Diminishment and Word of Shielding, while defiants take Word of Exchange and Word of Binding. Its amazing how close these at-wills are, usually there are a big gap between the best of the best, and the crap, but here they are all competitive at least.
Word of Diminishment - basic normal 1[W] +str attack Destruction - Vul 2 to all damage from your whole team is cool, amazing if your focusing on a solo. Also can trigger for winterfrost before paragon, if you can follow it up with a cold attack (or have a frost weapon). Protection - Good if your alone fighting something, that way if they hit you, they don’t do much damage, and you get your damage bonus next attack.
Word of Shielding - basic normal 1[W]+str attack Destruction- Useful if you want something to die fast and your fighting alone, and there isn’t a fighter marking the target. But usually word of exchange destruction is going to be better (if there is more then just you attacking it). Protection- The only advantage that this has over word of diminishments protection is that this works hit or miss. But the other power works for all attacks while this one only works for the first attack, and reduced damage is much better then temp hp of the same amount.
Word of Exchange - basic normal 1[W]+str attack Destruction - You get the damage roll with 2 stats basicly, and your friend gets extra temp hp. Protection - -2 to all defense of the target, cool think of astral seal. Rather then giving healing like astral seal does, it gives a very nice boost in AC for one turn, and you get a full damage roll+str attack
Word of Binding- There are some critical situations where this power becomes very good. It isnt a primary at-will power, and wont see all that much use, but when it does, it does well. The primary target for this power is artilery and other ranged only enemies. Without being able to shift away from you, they can eat a lot of OA's. Secondary targets include creatures that have something like firery swoop, that pass through a bunch of peoples square doing damage to each, as it shuts them down, and makes them use less powerful attacks. Destruction - Primarily used when there is no one else next to the target, for some extra damage, otherwise use protection. Protection -This is wonderful if you have you and a defender are adj to the same enemy, so that he almost must attack you and the defender gets a free attack because his mark was violated.
Anvil of Battle – Good for wrathful hammers to use when the enemy has no one next him, as resist 5 against the target, means if he hits you, you take less and get your damage bonus. Destruction – Use when you have a high +dmg bonus already because of something else, like rune of mending. Protection – Use on melee guys when your team mates are 1 square away, if he shift away, everyone on your team shifts away from him, and now they have no one they can reach or charge.
Divine Rune of Thunder Destruction– eh, get your wis mod extra damage, and he grants CA, can be ok if you got a rogue around. Protection– Very nice to use on melee guys, place him 1 square away and dazed, for 1 wasted turn.
Executioner’s Call- +2 damage bonus for ALL allies attacking the target is great. Destruction– +4 to hit for 1 ally is GREAT esp if he about to hit the guy you just gave +2 damage to, use right after or before word of mending for best effect. Protection – Ok to use on a solo, where -2 to hit can be critical, but usually destruction is better.
Flames of Purity – 1[W] +str in a blast is good. Destruction – +3 damage is ok, but make sure you move up after you use this, so that you can give them the +1 to hit from runemaster while this damage bonus is in effect. Protection – 3 hit points each usually doesn’t add up to a lot of extra healing
Rune of Endless Fire – Blind is a good condition to give to a solo (who would just save out if it was a save ends power). +2 damage and +4 to all healing for the rest of the encounter is also great. Primarily useful if you have a lot of healing powers.
Rune of Iron’s Rebuke – Primary part of this is that for the rest of the encounter, the target takes str mod damage when it is adj to you and an attack misses it. Great if you got a lot of multi-attack friends like rangers. Rune of the Undeniable Dawn – Close burst 3 enemies only, 1[W] +str damage, that alone is great. Then a sustainable +2 to all defenses for the rest of the encounter, makes this an amazing power.
Rune of Twilight’s Beacon– 5 damage if they move away from the target, but the friendly needs to stay next to them every turn. Usually this means that it ends up not doing much damage, as the target beats on the ally that you picked, or pushes/dazes them so they cant move adj, and it ends. Only thing OK is its Weapon vs Fort, but fort isn’t a very good Nad to target.
Icon of Victory - +2 to hit in a burst 1 sustainable for the rest of the encounter, wonderful! But it doesnt move, so you might want to try to hit the big bad boss solo with word of binding, and if you hit use this to make sure your whole team can unload. Also useful for ranged attackers that can just sit in it for the rest of the encounter.
Mark of Skilled Effort– Eh, an encounter bonus to a skill check. Seen it before, still can be useful in the right type of module, but usually not worth it.
Rune of the Final Effort - +5 to all defense of a bloodied ally, can be very useful if your DM likes to target people with a lot of guys. But in the situations where you really need it shield of sacrifice is going to be better.
Shield of Sacrifice – one person loses a healing surge, but 2 people gain healing as if they spend a healing surge, which means you gain an extra surge of free healing, not bad, and can heal 2 unconscious people. But the key is 3 people get a +5 to AC for one turn, which is crazy good in some situations.
Beacon of Vengeance– makes an ally invis, is nice to stop OA’s if they need to get away, as well as CA for sure, and makes the target hit you instead (so you get your bonus damage). Destruction– Makes your allies next attack very accurate as it gets +2 to hit from CA and targets a NAD, great to use when they got a nice damage bonus already. Protection – Only useful if you need to save someone that is getting pounded on, usually not worth it.
Symbol of Wrath Reversed Destruction– Great, basically a multi-attack power, that you can let someone else take the second attack. Protection – If everyone is clumped together this can be a lot of healing, but usually it amounts to 12 heal or so.
Word of Alliance- A 2W power, more than others at this level. Destruction –Wonderful on a solo/elite, or someone else your whole team is pounding on. Protection – Also good on a solo, but not as good, as anyone that has enough people for this to really be meaningful (so they cant just shift away and take only a -1), isn’t going to last very long.
Word of the Blinding Shield- As an out of turn power, that is always nice, blind is a great condition to inflect, as its effectively +5 to all defense for whoever he attacks. Try to wait till some big encounter, daily ability that does a lot of damage then negate it. Destruction– con mod damage isn’t a lot, it if was a damage roll, it would be a different story, as such only use on undead, where they are vul to the radiant. Protection – Temp hp equal to the con mod is nice, whoever they are, they are next to someone that can do a lot of damage (which is why you used this power to stop that damage right), so they probably need the temps.
Cage of Light - a Weapon vs will 2[W]+str enemy only blast that is really nice to center on your defender. Makes shifting away from the defender impossible, and moving away from a defender usually isn’t a very good idea. While at the same time forcing them to grant CA if they attack the defender.
Rune of Arrows Flight– Could be useful if you had a lot of ranged attackers, but you would usualy want to put this on a solo, and they are going to save out very quickly. Weapon vs will is nice though. Rune of embers wrath – A very odd power. You almost always want to target 2 people. Most encounters tend not to have 2 people with high hp, but sometimes with elites you see it. Even so you spread your damage out a lot with this, but an AOE can trigger it twice for 10 extra damage. Not sure how I feel about this power.
Rune of the Final Act– Now this is what I am talking about +2 to damage that increases with every attack! Any good multi-attack powers on your team mates and this can deal insane amounts of damage very quickly. It is save ends, so its likely it wont last more than 2 rounds against a solo, but still those 2 rounds can be all you need. Try to make sure your just after the creature you hit with this to maximize the effect. And right after you cast this is the perfect time to action point, with some destruction based +to hit power. Use with Rune of Boundless Fury, to add in a lot of extra attacks, which translate to lots of extra damage.
Banner of Alliance – You don’t have a lot of hit points, it doesn’t prevent damage at all, just moves it to you. Can be useful to spread out the damage if your DM likes to target one person.
Compact of Peace - +5 is a big bonus, and diplomacy and insight tend to be two very used skills, and as an encounter power this seems ok to me.
Rune of Meritorious Alacrity– WOW everyone on your team gets +10 to initiative, um yes please! Rune of Unyielding Steel- +2 to defenses to a target for one turn as an encounter isn’t bad.... if it was a minor action. As a standard, never get this, not worth it.
Gathering Storm Intonation - Strange power, you do 1W, in a Weapon vs Reflex attack to start. Then when your target attacks you do more damage in a burst around the target. Destruction – My guess is this is what you would use usually as slide 2 usually isn’t great. Protection– Slide 2 usually isn’t great unless there is a cliff or AOE zone, etc near by, then it is good.
Rune of Roaring Fire – normal 2W damage for this level. Destruction –5+ con damage for taking an OA, doesn’t seem like much, and hard to tell when an OA is going to be coming. Protection – -2 to the targets attacks from concealment is ok.
Symbol of Cowardice – Weapon vs will is nice Destruction – Push 1 as a free for anyone that ends adjacent to him can be great if he near to a cliff (as he has to make like 6 saves to not go over the cliff), or not so good otherwise. Protection– penalty to attacks equal to Wis+# of people adj can be like -8 to attacks on a solo when your whole team is around it, quite nice for wis based chars.
Word of Befuddlement – Weapon vs will is nice. Destruction – Can be useful on an enemy that has a good status effect that it can use as a melee basic. But the chance of a target that has a special melee basic, and an enemy next to him, and the target actually hitting his friend is low. Protection– -5 to attack rolls against allies that arnt adj to it, is really nice against artillery
Rune of Boundless Fury – A lot of extra attacks with this one! A free attack per person that starts adj to the target for one turn, try to use on a solo when the enemy is dazed, immobilized, or otherwise cant move and has a lot of allies adj to it. Also useful after you word of mend, or do other big aoe +dmg stuff. Combine with Rune of the Final Act for tons and tons of damage.
Rune of Death’s Verge – eh, you get one big aoe daze save ends, at some unknown time in the future when the target dies if you hit with the secondary attack.
Rune of Shielding – interesting, 3W attack, and wizards will love you for an encounter. You can just spam your burst spells on the taget, and ignore all the teammates you might hit for an encounter.
Unconquered Redoubt – close blast 5 enemies only 1W+str and push 4, is not bad damage. The effect is a sustainable zone, that grants you protection against close and area attacks. Can be very useful if you get caught at the start of a combat in a big immobilizing and Aoe damage attack, but usually doesn’t seem like it would be all that great.
Banner of Resolution - 5 temps on every hit for one person for an encounter, can be great on some barbs, or other melee strikers.
Rune of Daunting Light – close burst 5, your team doesn’t grant CA for one turn. Usually not worth it, as the times were you really need it (like your team got hit by a big AOE daze), you don’t have the minor to use it. Rune of shared Lore – there are some battles where everyone needs to know how to jump, or climb, etc. and this can be good in those situations. But usually not everyone is using the same skill over and over again.
Rune of Astral Winds – instead of your move, you can slide an adj ally 4 squares AT WILL, wonderful, if your already adj to an enemy and an ally You can give yourself CA, by swinging your ally around to the other side before attacking.
Iron Redoubt – An odd marking power, with an effect that gives resist 5 to the targets attacks on a wis based power (usually powers like this are con based). Destruction– a standard MBA if the target violates your mark, with a wis bonus to hit/dmg. Not all that worth it, because the target will likely just attack you, meaning you get no bonus for destruction. Protection – gives a penalty to damage roll for the target, combined with your resist 5 all, this should lessen any damage it does to you for marking it. Whirling Storm Word– normal attack + grants CA. Destruction - + con mod bonus while the target is flanked. Given that you are already granting CA to the target, it doesn’t seem to add much you if you are already flanking it as well. Protection – penalty to hit equal to con mod, that is usually like a -4 to hit, quite nice to use on a solo or elite. Word of Astral Defiance – A burst power that allows you to slide, but given even at this level its still only 1[W] for most attacks, a 1[W] burst is a lot better than a 1-2[W] single target. Destruction – adj enemies have vulnerability to all damage equal to your wis mod (about 4 or so at this level). Given that word of dim, can do this at will to one target this doesn’t seem all that great. Protection – Allies gain a power bonus to all defenses equal to your wis mod while adj to you. A nice boost to prevent a lot of damage if your in the middle of a big melee. Word of lingering Thunder – a 2[W] attack (biggest for this level, which is kind of laughable given how much damage other classes are doing at this level). Destruction– at best it is a little damage, -2 to hit and grants CA for one turn, and that is if the target moves, and enters a square next to one of two allies you pick. Whirling Storm Word (protection) would usually be better. Protection– This can be interesting, forcing the opponent to fight next to some other character. Could be useful against a ranged character so they cant shift away from the defender or striker. Depends on when they fall prone, if its before or after the shift. If before, this is good, if after, this is probably black.
Brand of Arcing lightning– Eh, this tends to spread the damage out a bit too much. Can pop a lot of minions but not usually worth it for a daily of this level.
Rune of Judgment's Levy – Interesting, you mark the target for the rest of the encounter, and its dependent on that mark staying around to do anything. Be careful of teammates that like to override marks, the penalty isnt very strong, but you do get full damage roll, making it almost as powerful as the fighters mark. You need to stay near the target for this to have any effect though.
Rune of the First Fortress – a close burst 3 enemies only 2[W] attack means a lot of damage. In addition to that resist 5 is ok. The real key to this is that any enemy entering the zone is immobilized for a turn. This means that with some push/slide powers, it can be impossible for any melee attackers to get at a ranged ally in a burst 1 around the center of this zone.
Rune of the Flanking Wind – Against a solo, this isn’t that bad, mainly for the +2 to all defenses while flanking which, for a solo, is usually happening a lot. The problem is a lot of the time the creature will shift out of the flank right before attacking.
Rune of Preservation – two people can spend a surge and get resist 5, every encounter. That’s a lot of extra used healing surges, but it does increase your team (and your’s if you use it on yourself), survivability, which can be good.
Rune of Reinvigoration- if it was just everyone in a burst 5 gets surgeless healing that would be dark blue, but the +4 to all defenses for a turn as well!
Rune of the Unblinking Eye– eh, there are a few cases where having a good perception can really help, but they are few and far between usually in skill challenges, this might be good, if it wasn’t a daily.
Rune of the Warded Path – You know there are some times where your whole party is stuck behind a door, or there is a cliff with a narrow bridge. And even worse when there are creatures blocking the path that get like 4-6 OA’s if you come in range of them, or immobilize/slow on an OA. Your team never having to deal with all these problems can be a godsend. I am just not sure how often this comes up for everyone, maybe its just me. But in the cases where this doesn’t happen, at least you can make it easy for the rogue to get CA.
Rune of the Astral Phalanx- Everyone adj can make a melee basic attack. Timed right or with something like Rune of the Final Act, this adds a lot of additional damage. Destruction– Stack on those damage mods for even more damage, this can easily do 4x your wis mod in damage. Protection – Its rare but occasionally I could see a use for having everyone or some people you cant or don’t have a good melee basic to just be able to shift away. But I think this would be fairly rare.
Mark of Battle's End – A lot of pushing, which can be useful if there is a cliff to push them off of, or something else to push them into it, but usually not worth it. Destruction – Slide instead of push, might be needed and makes it easier to get everyone to go off the cliff edge. Protection – Pushing allies, allows you to rearrange the battlefield a bit, and put your teammates in flanks, but not all that useful.
Whisper of the Cunning Step– Fairly normal base attack for this level Destruction – Giving a +2 to hit bonus, in addition to any flank you setup by allowing them to shift can be a great setup move. Protection – Teleport an ally like 10 squares, seems a bit excessive, but could be useful if one of your teammates Is being targeted.
Word of Healing Assault – This is a fairly unusual power. Its a lot like Rune of the astral Phalanx, but it only uses two allies, you don’t have to hit first, and they can target different people. In the end I think it matters how many strikers and how good the melee attack of your team is. If you got 2 big melee striker characters and the rest of the team is leaders, defenders, and controllers, this might be better. Also note that this works with ranged basic attacks as well as healing the people that take the basic attack. Destruction – Doing 2x con mod isnt bad. Protection – Given you are probably giving this out to strikers, they could probably use the 5 DR.
Mark of Ill Luck – What an odd power. It encourages hitting this next to the target, but not the target itself. Could be useful in situations where you have two elites, so you use this on one of them, and then target fire the other. Quite strange though.
Rune of Rust– I like this power, very useful on a solo/elite even though it’s a save ends effect. It starts out at effectively giving everyone that attacks the target a +4 bonus to hit, and then goes up by 2 every time they fail. And when they eventually succeeded it lasts for one more round. Very much a death sentence for most creatures, who probably won’t live long enough for the penalty to go away.
Rune of the Threshold- this is defiantly a combo-power daily with another daily. When combined with rune of dust (if you get one of these at a higher level), or rune of the final act, or another very strong save ends effect on a solo, lasting even one more turn can be very deadly.
Rune of warding light– A minor effect that does get a damage roll designed to protect the squishy characters. Still I don’t think the slide 3 isnt going to do a lot, as they are likely to just move back in and attack next turn, so it ends up just being a 1[W] attack per turn if it his, to creatures that stay in the burst 2.
Banner of the Undefeated – You can no longer lose. Well not quite, but still. Given some good bonus to death save items/feats, this can make your whole team unkillable for one encounter a day. Make sure you do heal them fairly quick though, so they don’t last longer than 1 turn below 0. One thing to be careful of when using this is that enemies will no longer stop attacking people that go below 0 a lot of the time, so you might find people reach their negative bloodied value a lot more often.
Banner of Victory– At this level resist 5, and vul 5, isnt all that much, and it takes up your minor action to sustain it. Your at will Word Of Dim give a higher vul status….
Rune of the Hero's Resolve– When used at the start of a fight that can be 100’s of temp hit points, and give almost a free action point, quite useful.
Symbol of Defiance – The slide probably isnt going to do a lot, the wis mod to all defenses helps, but as this only targets bloodied allies…..
Mark of Untamed Wrath– normal base attack Destruction– Eh 5 damage burst around the target on every attack isnt all that much, but it will clear minions at least. Protection - Against a ranged, or melee attacker (not blast or bursts), this can be almost a 1 turn stun. They HAVE to include the creature in the attack if they can. If they only attack one creature at a time, they cant attack at all (without hitting only their team mate).
Rune of Rising Fury– 3 allies each make a basic attack (including ranged basic), during each of their turns. Multi attack is good, more times to use your static damage bonuses. Destruction – can be good if you got rogues or other people that need CA, otherwise its just a +2 to hit which isnt bad. Protection – cant see a whole lot of use for this, 1 square shift usually isnt all that great, but it does allow ranged attackers to use this to shift away, then use their normal move to move away.
Rune of the Wandering Star – normal base attack Destruction – a burst of con mod radiant damage within 5. A lot of minion killing there, but in the situations where it really counts, with lots of undead, the creature effected can always move away from the rest of the group and have it not hurt anyone. Protection – A 5+ con mod penalty to all enemies other than the target in a burst 5 is nice, if only you can immobilize him and make sure that he cant get away from everyone else before it goes off. I wonder how this works on a minion, if you kill him does the effect still go off when his turn would have come up? Or does he never have a turn again so it never goes off?
Tide of Victory normal base attack Destruction – push + slight damage, not worth it usually to me. Protection – penalty to its attacks equal to # of allies within 3 of it. Lots of powers like this at lower levels and this one isnt much better (some of the lower level ones are wis+# of people adj). Still a 4-5 penalty to attacks for 1 turn can be good.
Rune of Allied Effort – Seems very similar to Rune of shielding, just 6W instead of 3W. I kind of expected more 16 levels latter.
Rune of the Conquering Sign– Everyone within 5 square s gets a basic attack every turn (save ends). Lots of free attacks, means lots of times your static damage mods can come in to play.
Rune of the Penultimate Step – The target is stunned (save ends), even on a miss. And if it fails after you hit, it goes unconscious. Cant get much better control then that.
Sylarian Sign – Remove all resistances till the end of the encounter. I don’t know about you but usually resistances aren’t all that much of a problem as they usually aren’t resist all. I haven’t played a lot of epic though so maybe this is really good at that point, but for now I don’t like it.
Invocation of Carceri – There can be cases where this is quite good against ranged attackers, but usually I don’t see it doing a lot. Usually the best bet is to use it some time when you got a lot of melee attackers near you, and then walk away and leave them trapped. The problem is the walk away part, as they need to be near you, but not too near you cant get away. Destruction– Con mod damage isnt much of a threat, falling prone is worse, but they can still just stand back up again. Protection - -4 to the attack if they attack someone outside the zone that can be good.
Word of Divine Battle– normal base attack Destruction - +4 power bonus to attack Is useful, but it is only against the target. Protection – all allies gain a bonus to all defenses equal to your wis mod (no range restriction), which at this point can be like 7. Now that is a nice power.
Word of Vengeful Thunder– normal base attack Destruction – Eh monsters tend to have a lot more hp then PC’s do, so reflection attacks tend not to be all that effective. Protection – Half damage from all attacks, now this is more like it. Used when one or two PC’s are in a dangerous situation or are getting focus fired, this can save their life.
Word of Weal and Woe – if you hit, everyone in burst 5 can spend a surge. That’s quite a bit of healing, but fairly costly in terms of surges. Destruction – wis mod x number of people taking a surge, isnt going to add up to a lot of extra damage at this level Protection – Now this can be much better a penalty of about 5 to the attack and damage roll of the enemy and all enemies within 2 of it can really reduce the damage your party takes for a turn. Still Word of divine battle will probably have a bigger penalty to attacks, and no range restrictions.
Brand of Death's Gate – eh, it does a lot of damage, but strikers usually got like 9[W] at this level. And it only comes back the first time you use it to kill something.
Rune of Awakening – Wow this can heal for a lot. Your talking almost 1000 hit point heals at this level on a hit if they are unconscious.
Rune of Pacifism– Hit or miss the target cant attack for at least a turn. When combined with Rune of the Penultimate Step, that’s at least 2 turns you can be 100% sure that you wont take any damage from a solo.
I am only focusing on feats that are Ok to good currently. Starting with heroic feats.
One quick note about the rune feats. You have to decide if you want to get them, if you do you should look to get them all, or if you don’t, don’t get any. +1 temp hp or Damage once per encounter doesn’t help much, but +4/6/8 helps a lot. Rune of eloquence and zeal are the worst rune feats, but even they might be good to get as they help the other rune feats. At epic giving out 11 hp in a burst 15 every time you word of mending 3 times per encounter, or every time you crit give a free melee basic with a +8 to hit and damage can be nice.
Weapon Proficiency - Getting a good +3 prof weapon helps with hitting and damage, good choices are: Fullblade (1d12 high crit), one handed triple headed flail/bastard sword (1d10 versatile) with a shield, greatspear (1d10 reach).
Weapon Exp - Hard to argue with +1/2/3 to hit, you will get it eventually its only a question of when. Armor Proficency - +1 AC and 1 soak with plate is nice, given you're going to be on the front lines, this is for wrathful hammers as they will have the con to get plate, and the -1 to damage helps more as you get bonus damage for being hit. Shield Proficency - +1 AC and ref is good, given you're going to be on the front lines. Mostly for defiant words as they will need all the AC they can get so that they get missed more often and can get their damage bonus. Hafted Defense - +1 AC/Ref when wielding a polearm, well worth it if going greatspear. Rune of Hope - granting 3-6 temps when you use you're rune of mending twice per encounter, makes using it much more effective, and as you will probably be spamming it anyway (to get the bonus to AC/Dmg), well worth a feat. Toughness - You're going to be on the front lines, more hp is good (as is better healing per surge). Wintertouched- very good in paragon when you get lasting frost, skip till then. Rune of Vengeance - +3-6 damage when you are blooded for one turn. Combined with some good +to hit powers that you have at the right time, and this can be well worth it. Impending Victory - +1 to hit vr blooded enemies with at wills, means starting off with your encounter powers, but once you finish with those most enemies will probably already be blooded. Polearm Flanker - good if you're going greatspear, gives you an easier time flanking, and allows you to flank on a charge. Skill power - gain an extra utility power, sure why not, sounds good to me .
Dwarf Dodge Giants - Starts out bad, but eventually by late heroic to early paragon, this becomes quite good, by epic it's a must. Dwarven weapon Training- One great reason to go wrathful hammer. Mordenkrad here I come, with a +2 feat bonus as well! Might want to retrain at epic when you can get +3 feat bonus from weapon focus.
Deva Battle Intuition - This can easily be a +5 bonus or more to init for a defiant word. And you can still get improved init for 2 more if you want.
Eladrin Eladrin soldier - Prof with greatspear and +2 feat bonus makes this a wonderful feat, now if only eladrin had good stats for runepriest.
Githzerai Githzerai Blade Master- fullblade or bastard sword and a +2 feat dmg bonus at the same time, clearly a winner.
Golialth Goliath Greatweapon Prowess- get a +2/3/4 damage with a maul is good for wrathful hammers, who aren’t going Mordenkrad. As this does go up at higher tiers might still be worth it. Kord's Resilience - 5 resist all to all allies adj to you, as you're likely to be right up there next to people already this is good, makes people more likely to attack you, make sure you use it when you're in the destruction rune state as the protection doesn't stack with this. Markings of the Victor- rolling twice on first attack is a nice time to use a daily.
Genasi Elemental Blessing - you or an ally gains str mod temp hp when you use you're racial. Manifest Healing- (requires a primal MC) 5/10/15 more temps when you use you're racial. Primordial Surge - 5+ str mod temp hp when you use your racial, that’s quite nice way to improve your survivability on the front lines.
Human Action Surge - +3 to hit when you action point, everyone seems to love this feat a great time to use a daily and make sure it hits, or use when you got a ton of static damage bonuses. Frantic Recovery - Get one of the best things about being a dwarf for one feat, after you action point. As you usually have an action point in about 70% of fights (given skill challenges), this is quite good.
Half-Orc Anger unleashed - +2 to hit for one turn when you get bloodied, great time to unload with a lot of static damage boosts, and use your word of mending.
Halfling Blessed Scoundrel - Combined with Rigged Chance its a 100% chance of being able to use an extra healing surge every fight, makes you a lot tougher to kill. Lost in the crowd - +2 ac when adj to more than 1 enemy, as you're going to be right up in the thick of things, this will probably get a lot of use.
Longtooth shifter Longtooth spirit shifter (requires a primal MC): increase the regen by 2, makes you harder to take down, you need all the extra healing you can get.
Shardar-kai Life on the Edge- +2 to all rolls when bloodied and action pointing. +to hit, +to damage +crit damage, everything is quite nice. About as good as action surge.
Warforged Improved Warforged Resolve- 5 extra temps every encounter is nice, not quite as good as toughness though. Warforged Faith - A few extra temps for a team mate every encounter, and maybe a saving throw against ongoing damage, especially if it was an AOE that caused it.
Mark of healing - You got quite a few healing powers, being able to do mass saving throws at various times is quite powerful. Mark of Warding - You aren’t going to be doing a lot of marking, but you do have a lot of powers that grant a bonus to a defense, this improves all of them by a good measure.