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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Pixie in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2020

    Default Character advice

    So, I'm at a bit of a quandary for my next character, most likely to be played in the Descent into Avernus campaign (so I think level 1-13). My current thinking is either a tortle or a warforged, and I'd like something that is primarily a strength-based character, as I have never made one of these before in *any* RPG I've played. I like the idea of a wild magic barbarian but, to be honest, I like all the new Tasha's fighter/barbarian subclasses. That being said, nothing in the game is really giving me a lot of *excitement*. So, I guess I'm seeking advice for a *fun*, yet also fairly powerful, character that is designed primarily for melee, and very strongly favoured towards tortle or warforged (or minotaur). I have frequently made characters in games that have been made purely for their RP and fun elements, but that weren't very optimal, and consequently they weren't so fun to play when everyone was doing better than them in everything. So, I'm after a character that may not be "optimal", but is pretty powerful nonetheless.

    Does anyone have any suggestions?

    I spent ages trying to find ways to make a minotaur that doesn't feel like a typical hack-n-slash, and is pretty effective at what it does. I wanted to focus on his pushing abilities, and had some ideas, but nothing really seemed to "fit" or be effective. My partner is also likely going to make a yeeting halfling sorcerer/warlock (using eldritch blast to throw things), and I don't really want to make another character who pushes things around if she ends up doing that.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    MonkGirl

    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    NW USA
    Gender
    Female

    Default Re: Character advice

    Warforged make great fighters and reasonable barbarians... but Tortles have a harder time finding a STR based niche (their signature armor ends up worthless for most); but they can make good STR focused Rangers

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Pixie in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2020

    Default Re: Character advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Naanomi View Post
    Warforged make great fighters and reasonable barbarians... but Tortles have a harder time finding a STR based niche (their signature armor ends up worthless for most); but they can make good STR focused Rangers
    I was playing with the idea of a bladesinger 2, beast barbarian X, so I get the extra bladesinger AC and the beast tail AC boost. Not sure if it'll be worth it, though.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

    Join Date
    Sep 2020

    Default Re: Character advice

    If you want to play a Tortle, go for this, change out Brute for Champion if your DM doesn't allow UA. This is honestly a build I would love to try:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d-Vk33fWcKg

    Or something like this for a Warforged, although you could change Wizard for four levels of Artificer.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DhXeCrwG0xo

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Segev's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location

    Default Re: Character advice

    Tortles in their shells can’t act, but maintaining a grapple doesn’t require acting. You could take the unarmed fighting style, do the usual grapple/shove-prone combo to one or two creatures, and then go into your shell and just hold them down, doing 1d4 per round.

    Not a lot of damage, but your AC is 21 while like that and they’re having to break free before they can do anything else.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Dwarf in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jan 2019

    Default Re: Character advice

    Strength based rogue with a dip in barbarian for rage is a nice grappler with skills to boot. shortsword, daggers, shield options with half-plate and sneak attack damage... It will also allow you to reach reliable talent at level 12 and perform some consistent nice skill checks near end game.
    Last edited by RingoBongo; 2020-12-03 at 08:21 AM.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Imp

    Join Date
    Feb 2017

    Default Re: Character advice

    Tortle Barbarian can go full STR and full CON without worrying about DEX too much, so you can easily go Beast Barbarian.

    Snapping Tortle, anyone?

    And if you need to defend, the Beast Barbarian's tail option will let you increase your AC (and IIRC it works even when the Tortle is in their shell).
    Last edited by Unoriginal; 2020-12-03 at 08:29 AM.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Segev's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Character advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Unoriginal View Post
    Tortle Barbarian can go full STR and full CON without worrying about DEX too much, so you can easily go Beast Barbarian.

    Snapping Tortle, anyone?

    And if you need to defend, the Beast Barbarian's tail option will let you increase your AC (and IIRC it works even when the Tortle is in their shell).
    Doesn’t it require a reaction?

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    DwarfClericGuy

    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    Location
    Northwest AR
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Character advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Unoriginal View Post
    Tortle Barbarian can go full STR and full CON without worrying about DEX too much, so you can easily go Beast Barbarian.
    That's the way I'd do it. Tortle Beast Barbarian, focusing on STR and CON, and using Beast Claw most combats for the additional attack. Take the Skill Expert feat to get Expertise in Athletics, and use Grapple+Shove frequently to hold enemies Prone while you tear them to shreds with your Beast bite/claw/tail.

    If you happen to roll really well for stats and eventually end up with an Unarmored Defense (DEX+CON) higher than your Natural Armor of 17, you can just opt to use that instead of your Natural Armor from that point on. But that's unlikely, since you'll be working on maxing out STR and CON instead of DEX. In fact, if you max our STR and CON, I'd even work on WIS before DEX.


    If you want to crank it up a notch, take a level of Monk, to get a Bonus Action unarmed attack (which can be used to Grapple or Shove) when you attack with your Beast natural weapons, which as simple melee weapons count as Monk Weapons. With Beast Claw active, this gets you 4 attacks per round starting at Barbarian 5, so you can Grapple+Shove+Claw+Claw all in the same round, and then Claw+Claw+Claw+Punch in subsequent rounds with Advantage on all 4.

    This is handy not only because it gives you an extra chance to land a Grapple/Shove/Hit in a round, but also because you otherwise don't have much to do with your Bonus Action outside of the 1st round when you use it to activate Rage.

    The only downside is that this Unarmed Strike won't be magical like your Beast attacks will eventually be. And in Avernus specifically, you'll run into a number of enemies with Resistance to non-magical weapon damage.
    Last edited by RogueJK; 2020-12-03 at 10:26 AM.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Pixie in the Playground
    Join Date
    Nov 2020

    Default Re: Character advice

    I'm just finishing off Descent to Avernus myself, and my party's strength-based Warforged Devotion Paladin has been a crucial member of the team. There's no way we could have finished it without him. Believe me, if you're going to Hell, you better bring a paladin with you - you need the Turn, you need the savings throw bonus, and more than anything you need the Smite.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    DwarfClericGuy

    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    Location
    Northwest AR
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Character advice

    Yes, I played a Paladin 6/Sorcerer X Sorcadin in Avernus, and all the Paladin abilities were amazing.
    Last edited by RogueJK; 2020-12-03 at 10:26 AM.

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Pixie in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2020

    Default Re: Character advice

    The characters will be using the standard array. But yeah, the beast barbarian monk with numerous claw attacks does sound pretty cool! Will it end up holding up against other options, such as the usual GWM barbarian?

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Segev's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location

    Default Re: Character advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Poe View Post
    The characters will be using the standard array. But yeah, the beast barbarian monk with numerous claw attacks does sound pretty cool! Will it end up holding up against other options, such as the usual GWM barbarian?
    I don't know how well it holds up to GWM barbarian, but I want to share that this makes me picture you playing Bowser.

  14. - Top - End - #14
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Imp

    Join Date
    Feb 2017

    Default Re: Character advice

    STR-focused Tortle Beastbarian also has the advantage of letting you have a decent natural attack out of rage, too.

    Quote Originally Posted by RogueJK View Post
    If you want to crank it up a notch, take a level of Monk, to get a Bonus Action unarmed attack (which can be used to Grapple or Shove)
    DM-dependent, but by the book you can't use your bonus action attacks for Grapple or Shove. Needs to be the attacks you get from the Attack action.

    Quote Originally Posted by Poe View Post
    The characters will be using the standard array. But yeah, the beast barbarian monk with numerous claw attacks does sound pretty cool! Will it end up holding up against other options, such as the usual GWM barbarian?
    Beast Barbarian can likely hold up against other options, including the GWM barbarian, but I wouldn't go for the Monk multiclass.

    First, it got a huge stat requirement. Having 13 in both WIS and DEX for the Monk multiclass on top of the rest of the stats you need is a lot. Especially when being a Tortle is to let you not worry about DEX for AC. And doubly so with the standard array.

    Second, Monk doesn't give you a lot, and if you don't take many Monk level the ki cost for the nice features is likely going to be a problem for you.

    Since the natural weapons of a Raging Beast Barbarian count as simple weapon, you can already use two-weapon fighting for a bonus action attack, which stacks with the additional Claw attack. Meaning you don't need Monk levels to make 3 attacks at lvl 3, then 4 attacks when you get your Extra attack.
    Last edited by Unoriginal; 2020-12-05 at 12:54 PM.

  15. - Top - End - #15
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    DwarfClericGuy

    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    Location
    Northwest AR
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Character advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Unoriginal View Post
    Since the natural weapons of a Raging Beast Barbarian count as simple weapon, you can already use two-weapon fighting for a bonus action attack,
    If you take the Dual Wielder feat. Beast claw/bite/tail are not stated as being Light weapons, so can't be used with TWF without that feat to remove the Light requirement.

    Quote Originally Posted by Unoriginal View Post
    Beast Barbarian can likely hold up against other options, including the GWM barbarian, but I wouldn't go for the Monk multiclass.

    First, it got a huge stat requirement. Having 13 in both WIS and DEX for the Monk multiclass on top of the rest of the stats you need is a lot. Especially when being a Tortle is to let you not worry about DEX for AC. And doubly so with the standard array.
    Agreed. It's not doable with the Standard Array.
    Last edited by RogueJK; 2020-12-05 at 11:25 PM.

  16. - Top - End - #16
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    GnomeWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    NE Tennessee
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Character advice

    Straight warforged rune knight. Just the optics of growing into a large construct seems worth it. Strong race, strong subclass. Hulkbuster, anyone?
    Emongnome

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    RogueGuy

    Join Date
    Oct 2019

    Default Re: Character advice

    For Avernus, I'd strongly recommend Paladin. I prefer Warforged, but you can make any subclass and either race work well.

    I'd also lean into mounted combat as I find the maneuverability extremely useful (controlled mount for simplicity - free DASH or DISENGAGE w/ 60' speed).

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