View Full Version : DMG Prestige classes are they worth it?

2009-07-01, 01:34 PM
dear playgrounders

i have seen mant people saying that some of the prestige classes in the DMG are not worth it, why, also core only allternative would be nice


2009-07-01, 01:42 PM
You have the wrong area of the forums I think.

2009-07-01, 01:59 PM
Core only is only the DMG prestige classes.

2009-07-01, 02:07 PM
But to answer anyway:

Arcane Archer: gives no casting progression even though it requires spellcasting to enter; doesn't give you very much that you couldn't get just from a Greater Magic Weapon spell. Death Arrow has a pitiful Save DC, and Phase Arrow and Seeking Arrow are nifty but at 1/day just aren't exactly at all powerful, and Imbue Arrow is nifty, but you just won't have very good spellcasting to use it with.
Arcane Trickster: not bad, but the prerequisites are a little steep, and the non-Sneak Attack, non-Spellcasting class features are a little dull. Unseen Seer has replaced this as the favored rogue/caster hybrid PrC.
Archmage: good PrC. Recommended often.
Assassin: not terrible, especially as a dip. Annoying alignment restriction that many players don't agree with. The biggest problem is that its "main" class feature, Death Attack, is pretty easy to negate with a save; its DCs are low and especially don't scale well at high levels. Spellcasting is actually probably its best feature.
Blackguard: lacks focus, kinda an evil Jack of All Trades, Master of None, and not being really good at anything (except "being evil") doesn't get you very far.
Dragon Disciple: two of its main features -- Strength boosts and natural weapons -- are only really useful for a melee character, and yet it still sucks as a melee character due to the spellcasting prerequisite and the Medium BAB. Oh, and a breath weapon that only works 1/day is just insulting.
Duelist: ick, terrible. Intelligence bonus to AC really doesn't make up for not wearing any armor. And +2d6 damage over 10 levels just isn't competitive with other melee builds. Without doing decent damage or having decent defenses, what does it have left? Acrobatic abilities. Which can't be used in the same round as a full attack.
Dwarven Defender: All its nifty abilities don't make up for the fact that it can't freaking move while it uses them. Makes it pretty bad at "defending" its allies, and very vulnerable to ranged attacks.
Eldritch Knight: high BAB alone does not a warrior make. Needs some melee-friendly class features. That being said, it's not terrible, though later Gish classes are more power-creeped and have made EK less and less popular.
Heirophant: um. A class for high-level divine full casters ... that doesn't advance spellcasting at all. Fail. Although it's pretty good in Epic campaigns when you already have 20th level spellcasting.
Horizon Walker: not bad, just has the usual problems with Core melee classes. A little difficult for anyone except a Ranger to qualify for.
Loremaster: good PrC, though somewhat outshone by later splatbook caster PrCs.
Mystic Theurge: in most campaigns, having a huge number of spells per day (and a huge variety) just isn't as powerful as having cutting-edge-power spells. And what the heck do you do once you've taken all 10 levels, and you're still playing? One of your two spellcasting pools is going to go obsolete quickly.
Red Wizard: not actually very familiar with it; I usually just use the SRD instead of the DMG. But it's very FR-specific flavor, and frankly its features just aren't really worth losing access to a school.
Shadowdancer: class features are OK, but not great, and the crappy prerequisite feats are a pain.
Thaumaturgist: not bad, its class features aren't exactly impressive, but then again all it loses compared to a straight Cleric is a few HP and BAB points. Totally worth it for a Core-Only non-melee Cleric. But usually Clerics either have better splatbook PrCs available, or are concentrating on melee and want to keep their BAB and HP.

2009-07-01, 02:22 PM
/Edit: pirate-ninja attack.

Not all of them are bad...
Arcane Trickster is nice for Arcane Rogues.
Archmage is good.
Assasin is ok, but there are better choices outside of core.
Dwarven Defender is ok if you wanna blow your AC through the sky, but im absolutely positive you can find better ways to do so outside of core.
Eldritch Knight is ok for a gish, but there are better PrC's outside of core.
Red Wizard is good.
Thaumaturgist is good for summoner clerics.

Classes I don't know too much about...:
Horizon Walker - heard of the horizon tripper, so I suppose its not totally useless.
Hierophant - at first glance this looks like fail.
Loremaster - Seems like its not terrible, but not crazy good either.
Shadowdancer - hum. HipS at lvl 1, so dipping is definitely a option. How about more than 1 level?

2009-07-01, 05:45 PM
Some of the core prestige classes that have been slated as bad aren't that bad if you include some other material with them.

Ex-Paladin 1/Blackguard 10/Nar Demonbinder 2/Unseen Seer 7 might be good. Some +6d6 sneak attack, 8th level arcane spellcasting with some good summoning abilities, I think it gets +16 BAB (it might get 15, I forget). And at 11th level, it has full BAB, d10 hit die, great saves, a host of class abilities and 4th level spells. That's one below full casting. I'd grab Arcane Strike just in case, though.

One thing I've always wanted to do was:
Commoner 1/Survivor 5/Ur-Priest 10/Hierophant 4

You still get 9th level casting. Hierophant goes great with Ur-Priest! :D

Hmm, Arcane Archer...

Bard 9/Arcane Archer 2/Sublime Chord 4/Abjurant Champion 5?

But yeah, the rest are pretty bad.

2009-07-01, 06:51 PM
One thing I've always wanted to do was:
Commoner 1/Survivor 5/Ur-Priest 10/Hierophant 4
Why common...oh. You could try this class (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=116875), taking the strength aspect, for the same effect.

2009-07-02, 12:43 AM
I love how someone asks for "Core Only" and two posts later gets a 5-class level progression...

Gamers clearly read stuff.

2009-07-02, 12:51 AM
Well, to be fair, the second reply was a response to that.

2009-07-02, 12:57 AM
Technically, Prestige Classes aren't part of the Core game at all, as they are detailed in chapter 6, which is a chapter solely devoted to variant rules. Further, the section on Prestige Classes indicate that the DM is encouraged to use the ones listed in the book as guidelines for creating their own Prestige Classes.

So no, the DMG PrCs aren't really worth it.