View Full Version : Questions on making a Beguiler

2007-01-06, 12:07 PM
I'm playing a lvl 4 Changling (Eberron) Beguiler (PHBII) for a campaign next week, and I have some questions for making it more effective (I'm not looking for cheese, just to make sure its a useful character - we're playing an adventure for lvl 4-7s, so we're right at the bottom of the power curve).
Here's the sheet (http://www.thetangledweb.net/profiler/view.php?id=6325).

So, questions:...

What can a Beguiler do against undead? Almost all their good spells are mind-affecting, which makes them useless against many creatures.
Is the Wanderer's Diplomacy (PHBII) feat worth taking? Rereading it, it seems not - charming a monster would be better than having it friendly for a minute before becoming hostile... So, strike that feat.
Is it better to take Spell Focus in Illusion, Greater Spell Focus in Enchantment, Unsettling Enchantment (Complete Mage), or another feat?
Are there any good PrCs for a Beguiler to aim for? I'm limited to the core rules, Complete series (except for the CPsi), ECS, PHBII, EPH and Stormwrack.
Looking at my sheet (http://www.thetangledweb.net/profiler/view.php?id=6325), what have I done really badly?I'm going to be the party's primary arcanist, and the 'face'. The rest of the party is an Elf Rogue/Swashbuckler, a Changeling Duskblade/Rogue, a Jungle Dwarf Spirit Shaman, a Halfling Fighter, and another character, although I don't know what it will be yet. Most of the players in the party are pretty new.

Also, if anyone has good strategies to reccomend with what I have, I would like to hear them :smallbiggrin:...

2007-01-06, 12:18 PM
Halt, Legion of sentinels and a few other spells affect undead, too. However, beguiler would propably be better at avoiding fights with them. Disguise yourself as a zombie, minor image+ghost sound to lead them away, or ghost sound + obscuring mist. Invisibility to avoid fights with undead...

However, once in a while your party wants to fight them instead of bypassing the encounter, so buff them. Blur on the fighter, haste on the fighter. At later level, greater invisibility on the fighter...

You won't be doing damage against undead but you can circumwent them well and then if your party fights, you can help by buffing fighter, then offering flanking, etc.

2007-01-06, 03:39 PM
Mmm...Changeling Beguiler.

I'd definitely go for GSF in both schools, eventually, probably starting with SF in both. Basically everything you have offensively is Will Negates, so you want to get your save DC's as high as possible.

At later levels, be sure to pick up Greater Shadow Evocation and/or Conjuration as your Expanded Knowledge spells. They're great against undead, since they aren't mind-affecting, and undead often have crap for Will saves, so you'll be doing full damage. Plus, you get access to pretty much the entire schools of Evocation and/or Conjuration. Sorta.

If you're only playing to level 7, interpret this as "take Shadow Evocation at level 7"

2007-01-06, 04:59 PM
Would I be better off taking Spell Focus in Illusion or Greater Spell Focus in Enchantment first?

2007-01-06, 05:07 PM
Enchantment. Illusions have to be interacted with, meaning you've already gotten the target to do half of what you want. Enchantments are auto-save.

Bears With Lasers
2007-01-06, 05:14 PM
Beguilers have plenty of things that can affect mind-immune critters such as undead. Like Solid Fog.

2007-01-06, 05:19 PM
Beguilers have plenty of things that can affect mind-immune critters such as undead. Like Solid Fog.

...which, unfortunately for me, is a 4th level spell, and since I'm level 4 I can't cast it.

GSF in Enchantment it is then.

What about PrCs? Is the Mindbender worth the lost spellcasting progression? Is Archmage good for Beguilers?

Bears With Lasers
2007-01-06, 05:22 PM
At level 4, the undead won't be too scary. Shoot them with a +1 light crossbow or something.

2007-01-06, 05:37 PM
Fair enough.

I'm asking because the party (which contains two people who rely on Sneak Attack for damage, and no turning ability, which are probably more significant factors) got completely trashed by a Vampire Spawn in a practice game. I had a hard time finding a useful spell that was not mind-affecting to cast on it. I guess buffing the rest of the party is the way to go...

2007-01-06, 07:41 PM
One level of Mindbender is wonderful, for the telepathy (which makes so much sense as a Beguiler). It also delays advanced learning by a level, which means you can learn a higher level spell.

Remember, mindless undead are just that... they're dumb. Just use illusions to bypass the annoying little things.


2007-01-06, 07:46 PM
Mindbender 1 is great for anyone who likes [Language-Dependent] spells like Charms and Dominates. Mindbender telepathy means anyone within 100' can automatically understand you. Plus, you can think your orders to your Dominated minions without saying them aloud, which can keep the enemy confused.

The rest of the class, though...I've never taken it.

2007-01-06, 09:29 PM
Spell Focus and Greater Spell Focus in both Illusion and Enchantment are great, though you should get enchantment first. You might want to consider spell penetraition and the greater version as well if you fight a lot of foes with SR. Other then that a beguiler can make fairly good use of metamagic feats, it does take a full-round action to cast a metamagiced spell, but since you have such a strict spell list it can help you become more versitile.

I acually found fatespinner to be a fairly good PrC for beguilers, beguilers are so dependant on their foes failing will saves that its nice to be able to make your spells that much harder to resist.

2007-01-07, 05:00 AM
Hmm... I'll aim to take a level of Mindbender as soon as I can, and Fatespinner as soon as possible after that.

It will eventually be something like this, I guess... Beguiler 5/Mindbender 1/Beguiler 1/Fatespinner 4. Although I doubt I'll ever reach that level.

Thanks for all the help!

Bears With Lasers
2007-01-07, 05:13 AM
Don't take Fatespinner, actually; you need to keep your skills *and* spellcasting high, since beguilers fill the skillmonkey role.

2007-01-07, 05:25 AM
Ah... right. I haven't generally been taking rogue-y skills, more face-y skills such as Diplomacy, etc. So, just Mindbender?

To tell the truth, I doubt I'll get high enough level to take the Fatespinner levels, so it doesn't really matter.

2007-01-07, 01:42 PM
At level 4, the undead won't be too scary. Shoot them with a +1 light crossbow or something.

Thanks man you just got me laughing so hard I almost cried.

Mindbender, TAKE IT! okay that's enough from me

2007-01-07, 10:24 PM
Arcane Thesis is fun too if you focus on one spell specifically.

2007-01-08, 08:05 AM
Haste on the party, Slow on the enemy group. Can't go wrong with that, and it works on everything. Haste has to be the single most useful buff at those levels. Slow is downright crippling on a melee monster, which usually relies on full attacks.

2007-01-08, 10:49 AM
Haste/slow sounds good, but you don't get any iterative attacks until lvl 6 without TWF, at least as far as I know. Still, considering the level range of the adventure in question, I could well be facing lvl 6 foes.

As for Arcane Thesis, I haven't got any metamagics yet. +2 CL would be good, although I don't know which spell I'd use with it.

Feat progression is probably Spell Focus (Enchantment), Greater Spell Focus (Enchantment), Spell Focus (Illusion), Greater Spell Focus (Illusion) - anything wrong with that?

2007-01-08, 01:07 PM
Catharsis : I don't have my book on me, but I believe undead and other creatures without a constitution score are generally immune to slow, since they can't be effected by spells which require fortitude saves.

2007-01-08, 01:23 PM
By RAW, it is possible to use the "Racial Emulation" feat from Races of Eberron to emulate a gnome and gain access to the "Shadowcraft Mage" prestige class, which is a very potent class for a beguiler as it gives you Evocation and Conjuration spells. This is a very feat-intensive build though, as a good Shadowcraft Mage also takes "Heighten Spell", "Earth Sense" and "Earth Spell", to really max out the Shadow Illusion class feature.

I also recommend a dip into Mindbender. Only take the 1 level though.

2007-01-08, 01:25 PM
I'm afraid I don't have Races of Eberron, just the Campaign Setting.

However, I do hear its worth getting...

I'm not sure I need evocation and conjuration - it wouldn't fit the 'subtle manipulator' image for my character. From an optimisation perspective, I hear a lot about 'batman', and how direct damage spells aren't very useful.

On the other hand, Defenestrating Sphere...

2007-01-08, 02:37 PM
1) Use hit and run tactics. Most undead are stupid, and though they tend to have great natural attacks and tons of special immunities, they tend to be poorly armed. Simply run away, shoot at range, and keep running. Tanglefoot bags work wonders. If you're friends aren't patient enough to do this, spend your time buffing them with your spells.

2) Wanderer's Diplomacy is a useless feat. You have a ton of ranks in the social Skills plus enchantment magic to back it up, and they should get you through 99% of what you need to do.

3) My suggestions for feats are Extend Spell, Practical Metamagic (Extend Spell), and Arcane Thesis (Dominate Person). You can now extend any spell for only +1 level adjustment. Arcane Thesis lowers the metamagic modifier for your thesis spell by 1, thus allowing you to cast a Silent, Still, Extended, Dominate Person without any level adjustment.

Since you have no investment in the sneaking Skills, another alternative is to take Practical Metamagic (Still Spell). You can now cast every spell in full armor. Dip into a class that offers full armor proficiency (I'd use Dragonslayer from the Draconomicon, since it also offers +1 Caster level on the first level as well). Or just wear full armor and suck on the double armor check penalty.

4) With your book limitations, I can't think of a natural prestige class for you. All of the "Shadow" PrC are good ones for a Beguiler, but come from Forgotten Realms, Races of Stone, and Underdark. Strait Beguiler is still pretty strong, though.

5) Sheet looks fine, though I hope you rolled all of those odd stat numbers, and didn't point buy them. That would be a HUGE mistake. I also would have taken a lower Wis and higher Str - you have a strong Will save from your class, and normal movement/damage/to-hit is more important then a few points in Skills and on your Save. But other then that, looks good.

2007-01-08, 02:58 PM
1: Right, I'll do that. Tanglefoot bags...
2: I thought so.
3: Hmm... I'll look into those.
4: Right, straight Beguiler, taking a level of Mindbender along the way.
5: Yep, I rolled them (ouch). I'll look into swapping Str with Wis... although, roleplaying-wise, it would make sense for him to have a good Wis, since that is related to being sensible, planning ahead, etc. - all traits I imagine for this character.

Thanks for the excellent advice, I'll look into it further soon.

2007-01-08, 06:36 PM
Catharsis : I don't have my book on me, but I believe undead and other creatures without a constitution score are generally immune to slow, since they can't be effected by spells which require fortitude saves.
Slow asks for a Will save.

As for iterative attacks, many melee monsters have several natural attacks like claws and bite even at low levels, rather than getting iterative attacks from high BAB.