View Full Version : [3.5] Wizard Gestalt; Ranger or Druid

2008-11-28, 11:41 PM
I know from an optimization standpoint, this is pretty obvious, but this character is meant to be actually played from level 1 to around 13, so I am not so sure.

The concept comes first, which is a wizard who studies nature and the ways in which it interacts with arcane magic. "Is arcane magic separate from nature, or a part of it?" As a youth interested in nature and the way of the world, he would often tag along with hunters and trackers, absorbing their advice and such. So combat wise, I was thinking about a Ranger, since it fits well and the Archery combat style would fit well with this background.

But I want to be fairly optimized as well, and man you miss out on so much without taking Druid. Are the unique abilities and spells of a druid too much to lose out on for a few feats and some BAB? Or would I be better served by just taking the feats I needed for the archery and eating a level of ranger for the weapon proficiency? Are the Ranger's spells enough to make up for the lost unique Druid spells?

Any ideas are welcome, but all I have at my disposal is PHB1, DMG1, MM1, and Unearthed Arcana. I've got some Feat-Pain already, as I am hoping to take the wizard into Loremaster and then Archmage (if we continue play to later levels).

Point Buy will be 32.

Pie Guy
2008-11-28, 11:58 PM
This could actually work with arcane archer (OMG teh noobzorz 1s h1m). Free plus 4 arrows is always nice.

2008-11-29, 12:09 AM
Druid would be nice, if only because you can ride your animal companion earlier. The extra spells will serve you well. You can make up for the lack of BaB on the druid with spells.

2008-11-29, 12:11 AM
This could actually work with arcane archer (OMG teh noobzorz 1s h1m). Free plus 4 arrows is always nice.
Actually yes, it could.

Wizard-X//Ranger-6/Arcane Archer-Y would do quite well. d8 Hit Die, all good saves, full BAB, Favored Enemy(Constructs - due to their Magic Immunity), decent skill points (6+Int from 1-6, 4+Int thereafter). Use any standard Wizard cheese you feel like, and you have the added benefit of being able to drop an AMF wherever you please (once you can cast it, that is). Biggest issue is the loss of use of armor ... and even that can be gotten around if you throw enough supplements at it.

2008-11-29, 12:16 AM
This could actually work with arcane archer (OMG teh noobzorz 1s h1m). Free plus 4 arrows is always nice.

While not particularly optimized, imbuing arrows with area spells is way too fun to pass up. You could even do things like antimagic field arrows, allowing you to still cast while potentially disabling the opponents. (Now Polymorph any Object a really huge rock into an arrow and imbue it with antimagic field...)(Also: Fun fact, the spell takes a standard action to imbue even if the casting time of the spell is longer than that.)

2008-11-29, 12:18 AM
I'm not sure about how optimized it would be, but since it's gestalt this would be an opportunity to be an actually viable Geomancer. It's spell versatility would reduce some of the MAD that comes with dual casting. You'd need access to Complete Divine, though.

Druid would be the obvious choice for that route, but you could actually qualify for it with ranger, just much later. Straight druid would probably be stronger because of wildshape, but the Geomancer's "channeling energy from the land" and "all magic is the same" shtick seems like it would fit your character concept pretty well.

2008-11-29, 12:36 AM
Ah, gestalt, how I love your character synergies.

Seriously, both of these could be a lot of fun. As everyone before has said, wizard/ranger makes going arcane archer an awesome choice.

And if you go druid and can spare the single feat at 6th level, taking natural spell will let you be amazing amounts of awesome. Bears mauling you while casting spells are already scary, but bears mauling you with access to everything a wizard can do too? *shivers* :smallbiggrin:

Also, someone mentioned the geomancer. I'm a bit rusty on this, but if memory serves, geomancer is the one that lets you blur spell classifications, treating divine as arcane and arcane as divine in some ways. Perhaps there's a way to blend that with arcane archer in order to be able to imbue arrows with divine spells too. That could be fun, just to say you can... and there might be a few unintended but awesome consequences, though I can't think of any right now.

Random NPC
2008-11-29, 01:12 AM

I would suggest going Druid, mainly because double casters are awesome. If you can convince your DM to modify Arcane Hierophant so you can take it as a Prestige Class, it would be perfect.

Normally, since it's technically a Mystic Theurge, you cannot take it in a Gestalt game, but if you can convince him that you want to advance just one side of the spellcasting it would be wonderful.

Wizard 5/Arcane Hierophant 8//Druid 13.... with your animal companion as your familiar


2008-11-29, 01:36 AM
My first suggestion would be to try to get access to a copy of Races of the Wild for the feat Magic of the Land. That will allow all your friendly buff spells (Enlarge Person, Haste, etc.) to also heal anyone affected, as long as you make the Knowledge: Nature check. Go Killoren for your race (same book), and use Aspect of the Hunter until you get that feat, then start using Aspect of the Ancient until you can consistently make the Kn: Nature check without the bonus, then switch back to using Hunter.

I think a Wizard/Ranger archer would be the funner choice. I'd only go Arcane Archer if you can get more books to have a bigger spell list, especially (Greater) Fireburst. Maybe go something like Wizard 7/ Loremaster// Ranger 5/ Horizon Walker 2/ Ranger, and get a lot of ray spells. Build/play the character to fill a Batman (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=19085) role along with some archery feats. See if your DM will allow the Animal Companion replacement (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/classes/variantCharacterClasses.htm#sorcererWizard) variant (UA p58-59) to basically get an Animal Companion just as strong as a Druid's until you start taking prestige classes.

Keld Denar
2008-11-29, 01:56 AM
Cleric10/Geomancer10//Wizard20 would allow you to DMM Persist Maw of Chaos. Talk about an amazing spell for Winning Friends and Influencing People. Or DMM Forsight, and never worry about surprise....again. I'm sure there is lots of other fun stuff here. DMM Shapechange?

Question, would Natural Spell allow you to cast Wizard spells while WSed? Cause that would be super.

Random NPC
2008-11-29, 03:12 AM
Question, would Natural Spell allow you to cast Wizard spells while WSed? Cause that would be super.

I see no reason why it shouldn't

Tempest Fennac
2008-11-29, 03:15 AM
The Druid variant which can be found at http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/classes/variantCharacterClasses.htm#druid would probably fit your background well. (It isn't as powerful as a nurmal Druid, though.)

2008-11-29, 07:58 PM
I think I've solved my feat problems in the case of going Wizard//Druid. Loremaster and Archmage will take up 7 feats;

Skill Focus: Arcana
Skill Focus: Knowledge (something)
Spell Focus
Spell Focus

Two of the metamagic feats come for free from wizard, and one gets granted back via loremaster.

That leaves 3 feats to spend, and 4 if I go human.

My question though is this; The Loremaster blurb says that one of the Secrets can be any one feat. Do you need to meet the prerequisites of this feat, or can my dude pick up Manyshot without having to bother with PBS and Rapid Shot?

Keld Denar
2008-11-29, 08:03 PM
No, it requires that you meet the prereqs, including any dependant feats.

Otherwise you'd take Epic Spellcasting at level 8 or so...

If you are taking Loremaster, take Skill Focus: Knowledge(Religion). This qualifies you for a 2 level dip in Divine Oracle, which adds the Oracle domain spells to your wizard list, and gives you the equivilant of evasion. Not a bad 2 level investment, since you've already met all the prereqs.