View Full Version : Beating Martial type classes at low levels

2007-10-25, 12:24 PM
Hi guys,

I'm going to start a campaign soon (actually more like just a few sessions over winter break), and I need some help with a character. He will be level 3 or 4, core only, and my stats rolled were 17, 14, 13, 13, 11, 6. I need to beat a lizardman fighter at the same level, but he rolled very high stats across the board (16 or 17 for most of them). I want this class to be non martial, so no fighter type classes please, and I'm looking to stay away from wizard because there's already a wizard.

So far I was thinking druid, going with trying to grapple with an ape and then swarming him with wolves, but do you guys have any better suggestions?

Edit: For this specific situation, the lizardfolk probably doesn't get his racial hit die and no adjustment for them (extra feats, skills, etc related to the hit die).

2007-10-25, 12:31 PM
Shame you won't go wizard, as sleep, ray of enfeeblement and grease would have done very well here. I don't suppose you'd want to go sorcerer instead? A beguiler might do well, as might a dread necromancer.

Cleric might do OK - dump the 6 in Cha or Int.

You could go druid and hope that your summons will help, but druids don't get good until they get wildshape (and natural spell).

Yuki Akuma
2007-10-25, 12:32 PM
...You want to beat a fellow party member?


And druids can't wildshape until level 5.

2007-10-25, 12:39 PM
A fighter typically has very, very low will-saves. Even with a 16 Wisom, a level 4 Fighter will have what...a +4 Will save?

A level 4 Beguiler has access to level 2 spells. That means assuming he doesn't kill you in one turn if he wins initative, you can go ahead and cast Blinding Color Surge to have a chance at blinding the lizardman and also guaranteed to become invisible for up to 5 turns. Since you're now invisible, you can take your time to cast various save or die spells such as color spray or Sleep (4 HD exactly), and your DC will be upped by one thanked to Cloaked Casting.

You are level 4, so you get a +1 to a stat. Add it to Int to give yourself a +4 bonus to your spell save DCs. Level 2 spell + 18 int + spell focus + Cloaked Casting = DC 18. If he fails the save, you win. Pull out your trusty Scythe and proceed to Coup de Grace, loving the x4 crit multipler. Good luck with him making the fort save.

For your other feat, you can try to convince your DM to let you use the old version of Spellcasting Prodigy, to give you an effective +2 to Int for purposes of Bonus Spells and save DC. Or, you can go for Improved Initiative so you have a good chance of going first.

2007-10-25, 01:08 PM
Well. you COULD rouge (sneak attack!) or bard (spells+fighting) to work for you.

At lower levels i would say barbarian but you said you don't want.

Another option is ranger, if you are level 4 you are quite good. for your level (small spells, good ranged ability, animal companion to annoy the lizard.)

2007-10-25, 02:53 PM
You want to go for will saves and ranged attacks first and formost. If he's in med./heavy armor go for reflex to. Sorc wouldn't be bad, except that if you get hit once your dead.

Cleric wouldn't be bad if you used a lot of inflict spells and had some good armor.

I know technally monk is a martial character, but if you put your two best in dex and wis, you'd be hard to hit.

2007-10-25, 03:28 PM
...You want to beat a fellow party member?


And druids can't wildshape until level 5.

We have a healthy compitition with each other.

I might just go wizard. I was thinking that cleric might work, but that +5 nat armor is so tough to get around.

2007-10-25, 04:00 PM
Natural armor shouldn't be too big a deal if you're a caster (Inflict/Flame Blade spells work if you really need 'em). Just hit him with a Will save--any Will save--and you win.

2007-10-25, 06:08 PM
Shame you won't go wizard, as sleep, ray of enfeeblement and grease would have done very well here. I don't suppose you'd want to go sorcerer instead? A beguiler might do well, as might a dread necromancer.

Since the OP specified Core Only, Beguiler and Dread Necromancer are probably not available. However, a Cleric with the Magic Domain might be able to cast those spells from a scroll, and if the Cleric also Rebukes Undead, could have a couple of skeletons to help out in the fight (kind of Meatshield lite :smallamused: ). Hold Person was the spell of choice at low levels for disabling foes, but 3e has weakened it considerably. Still, might be worth a try...

2007-10-25, 06:30 PM
Well, when I saw that title of this thread, I thought: Sorc. casting Grease (flat-footed if he doesn't have tumble..or was it balance, either way, he probably doesn't have it), then Ray of Enfeeblement. From there Sleep would work, or you could just take his Str down to 1 with a couple more rays (or use a Sudden Maximised/Empowered to conserve spells). Color Spray is a decent choice, but I generally advise against taking CS and Sleep if you are a Sorcerer. Glitterdust is a good choice, as you can blind him with a will save. Alter Self can help boost your AC if you need it (change into Trog. with Mage Armor gives you, if I recall, +10 to AC, Shield can add +4 to give you a base AC of 24 at level 4, which should be hard to hit).
Actually, Charm Person is an oft forgotten save or suck that relies on will and remains useful at later levels. Lizardfolk are still humaniod, after all.

All of that being said, I would go bard, as the fascinate music DC is probably higher than you could make it for a sorcerer since it is based off of a skill check. You also have a bit higher HP and thus can be hit if you lose initiative, and are different enough from the wizard to be useful still. Charm Person is still a viable choice if you are playing a caster-esque bard. Tasha's Hideous Laughter can be good to give you more time to "play" with him (since the rivalry and all), and is a good save or suck. Also, Grease is a bard spell too.

2007-10-26, 11:04 AM
Would grease or ray of enfeeblement wake a sleeping character?

2007-10-26, 11:11 AM
You could try to out-melee him as a Druid if you had a Great Club (it has a use!) and the spell Shilleligh (that is so badly mispelled), which increases the effective size category of a nonmagical wooden weapon by 2; get your companion to flank and you make up the Base Attack Bonus, and hopefully your size-enhanced club damage will make up for the Lizardman's higher strength.