Author Topic: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian  (Read 8291 times)

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Blackshade10

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Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« on: August 05, 2010, 02:25:45 AM »
Alright, I'm going to try and throw in all my restrictions and all of my plans for this character, so forgive me if I miss anything.


I'm currently playing a 2nd Level Barbarian, though I have enough XP to get to 3(just haven't actually leveled him yet).  He is currently using a "Clawed Gauntlet" a custom weapon in the game setting that is basically a longsword except a D6. 

He will be using an exotic weapon(which he gets for free!) with these stats:

1d6 - 18-20/x2 crit - hidden - Light - P/S

The main reason that he is using these is because of flavor.  It wouldn't make logical sense for him to use anything else, so I ask that you please don't post things like "Just use a 2h" and nothing else- it's really not very helpful.  :bigeye

He's currently using the Clawed Gauntlet and a Wooden Heavy shield, but those are just substitutes until I choose what I really want to devote him too.  I considered TWF but his attributes are as follows:

18 str
14 dex
16 Con
10 Int
12 Wis
10 Cha

And TWF is, from what I am told, both inferior and feat intensive. 

I plan on having him go to the Runescarred Berserker from the Unapproachable East book, since it looked both flavor-wise awesome and reasonably effective.

My current feats are this, and they are subject to change!

Iron Will
Snow Tiger Berserker


Chosen because I need them to qualify for the PrC- If it turns out that I get refused to be a Runescarred Berserker(since it's not totally OKed with my DM(s) yet), I should be able to change them, but Snow Tiger Berserker + Light Weapons does seem extremely awesome- if it can be made to be effective. 


The Following Classes are for sure off the table:

- Monk
- Warlock
- All Psionic Classes (Expanded Psionics Handbook, Complete Psion, Etc.)
- Any Class from "Tome Of Battle"

As well as the Bloodhound PrC.


Also!  I am Human. 


The DM promised me that I would definitely be repaid in the campaign if I choose my Exotic weapons as I did, so there's hope something awesome will come there, but I still want to build my character effectively.


So....

Ideas? ^^;

Solo

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2010, 02:47:10 AM »
Turn into a bear.

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Blackshade10

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2010, 02:48:03 AM »
Turn into a bear.

A level or two of Bear Warrior then?

RobbyPants

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2010, 02:51:14 AM »
It's too bad about no the ToB restriction.  The Tiger Claw discipline was made for characters like this.

That being said, you're right about TWFing.  You need a minimum of 15 Dex to enter, and it only gets worse from there as you get iterative attacks.  If you wanted to go this route, your best bet would be two levels of Ranger, but you won't be that good.

How high of a level is this campaign expected to run?  Using a one-handed weapon and a shield actually isn't all that bad at low levels.  It just starts to suck around 5th level.  One option is to seriously focus on your shield, and just to use your claw as more of backup.  There are feats that let you TWF with your shield and keep your AC, let you trip people, and daze them.  The only way to pull something like that off, though, would probably involve at least two Fighter levels to get more feats.

Also, I don't know what Snow Tiger Berserker does, so I can't comment on how to use that to your advantage.
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RobbyPants

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2010, 02:51:42 AM »
Turn into a bear.

A level or two of Bear Warrior then?
Actually, that would be a pretty good idea for this guy.
My balancing 3.5 compendium
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Totally true.  Historians believe that most past civilizations would have endured for centuries longer if they had successfully determined Batman's alignment.
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Why are so many posts on the board the equivalent of " Dear Dr. Crotch, I keep punching myself in the crotch, and my groin hurts... what should I do? How can I make my groin stop hurting?"
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Steve: You underestimate my power!
Fluffy: Don't try it, Steve!
Steve: *charges*
Fluffy: *three critical strikes*
Steve: ****
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I don't even stat out commoners. Commoner = corpse that just isn't a zombie. Yet.
Quote from: CryoSilver
When I think "Old Testament Boots of Peace" I think of a paladin curb-stomping an orc and screaming "Your death brings peace to this land!"
Quote from: Orville_Oaksong
Buy a small country. Or Pelor. Both are good investments.
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Blackshade10

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2010, 03:07:29 AM »
It's too bad about no the ToB restriction.  The Tiger Claw discipline was made for characters like this.

That being said, you're right about TWFing.  You need a minimum of 15 Dex to enter, and it only gets worse from there as you get iterative attacks.  If you wanted to go this route, your best bet would be two levels of Ranger, but you won't be that good.

How high of a level is this campaign expected to run?  Using a one-handed weapon and a shield actually isn't all that bad at low levels.  It just starts to suck around 5th level.  One option is to seriously focus on your shield, and just to use your claw as more of backup.  There are feats that let you TWF with your shield and keep your AC, let you trip people, and daze them.  The only way to pull something like that off, though, would probably involve at least two Fighter levels to get more feats.

Also, I don't know what Snow Tiger Berserker does, so I can't comment on how to use that to your advantage.

This Campaign will run to 20 and beyond. ^^  It's actually an IRC thing and it's in a custom World setting. 

Snow Tiger Berserker basically allows Pounce when you wield light weapons.

How useful would tripping be?  There IS a Berserker feat that allows you to use it as a substitute for Improved Trip.

Unbeliever

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2010, 03:11:22 AM »
Isn't there also the Agile Shield Fighter feat, or whatever it's called in PHB II?  Doesn't that not have the annoying twf dex requirement, and let you use your shield to bash w/.  A bashing spiked shield is actually an ok weapon.  You are missing out on the classic "damage booster" approach that makes twf so good, but maybe the ridiculously high strength from Bear Warrior will give you something.  It's still a little feat intensive, but at least it's less MAD.  

The other option is go to Whirling Frenzy.  That could just tide you over till Bear Warrior, or you could go all the way and try to optimize that.  It's a lot like TWF w/ its extra attack and all.  My only recent experience w/ it is my gf's recent character, which is a whirling frenzy barb, and it's a little unconventional, but it seems to work fine.  She went for uber tanking, so Anointed Knight dip (for DR) and Champion of Gwynarf (or however you spell it) for Divine Grace, and combined that all w/ some intimidation.  EDIT:  just looked at your stats again, and the low Charisma makes that not much of an option.

I still think Whirling Frenzy might be a good call for you.  It also is more of an AC booster, which helps synergize w/ the shield.  [EDIT:  just read your most recent post.  At least the AC boost will be nice in the meantime.]  You probably won't be getting to the level where ACs don't matter anyway (they still matter in my 15th level game that I DM).  I hear Runescarred Berserker is good, but I've never thought about building a character around it, so I can't be of any help there.  

If you're cruising to crazy  high level, then the casting from RB is looking even tastier b/c I think they get AMF ...

Snow Tiger Berserker is kind of crap given that Lion Totem is sitting right there, isn't it? 

Blackshade10

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #7 on: August 05, 2010, 04:17:31 AM »
So, what exactly does Agile Shield Fighter do?  And should I devote to getting a good shield?  Also, don't you have to enchant the shield spike separately? 

Also, if I want to go full Runescarred Berserker, how many levels in Bear Warrior should I take?  Well, more specifically, should I go full RuneScarred Berserker?  And should I go Barbarian 7 until I qualify for either? 

Rebel7284

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #8 on: August 05, 2010, 04:28:05 AM »
Turn into a bear.

I second this.  Bear Warrior/Warshaper/Etc.
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Blackshade10

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #9 on: August 05, 2010, 04:43:01 AM »
Bear Warrior seems a popular suggestion.  :lmao

But how many levels and compared to the Runescarred Berserker?

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #10 on: August 05, 2010, 05:12:52 AM »
Mmm...Bear Warrior works nicely with Snow Tiger Berserker. Honestly, you could do nicely with either.

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #11 on: August 05, 2010, 05:23:43 AM »
+1 bear warrior. cant go wrong there
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Rebel7284

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #12 on: August 05, 2010, 05:28:21 AM »
Bear Warrior seems a popular suggestion.  :lmao

But how many levels and compared to the Runescarred Berserker?

Well you can't use power attack as much with a 1-handed weapon, so it defeats the point of barbarian's normal fighting style.  Which is why people are like "ok, you can't uber-pounce... so just turn into a bear and maul shit"

Bear Warrior seems to have breakpoint after level 1,5,10. 
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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2010, 05:41:39 AM »
Agile Shield Fighter: essential, TWF for weapon and shield bash.  PHB II p74

Has some fairly steep pre-reqs, but if your going to focus on shields anyhow, might be worth it.
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skydragonknight

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #14 on: August 05, 2010, 06:17:53 AM »
It looks like you need a hand, but you'll have to bear with my sense of humor.

Why not a theme build?

Bear Totem Barbarian 4/Fist of the Forest 3/Bear Warrior X/Something Something Y

or if you're CN and have access to Champions of Ruin

Bear Totem Barbarian 5/Fist of the Forest 2/Bear Warrior 1/Black Blood Cultist(Champions of Ruin) 8/Bear Warrior+4

Required feats: Power Attack, Great Fortitude (covered by Bear Totem), Track(If you go Black Blood Cultist)

Bear Totem Class Features

A barbarian dedicated to the bear totem does not gain the standard fast movement, uncanny dodge, trap sense, and improved uncanny dodge barbarian class features, and instead gains the following abilities.

    * A 1st-level bear-totem barbarian gains Toughness as a bonus feat.
    * At 2nd level, a bear-totem barbarian gains Improved Grapple as a bonus feat, even if he doesn't meet the normal prerequisites.
    * A 3rd-level bear-totem barbarian gains Great Fortitude as a bonus feat.
    * Beginning at 5th level, a bear-totem barbarian gains a +4 bonus on grapple checks when raging.
It always seems like the barrels around here have something in them.

Blackshade10

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #15 on: August 05, 2010, 06:24:33 AM »
Allow me to slide in and feel like an ass.  :banghead

Fist of the Forest was refused for being too monk-like when I tried to get it through.

So that's a no go I'm afraid. ><

Should also point out that he's NG.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2010, 06:43:32 AM by Blackshade10 »

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Blackshade10

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #17 on: August 05, 2010, 06:50:41 AM »

skydragonknight

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #18 on: August 05, 2010, 07:08:34 AM »
It always seems like the barrels around here have something in them.

weenog

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Re: Advise for a One-Handed Barbarian
« Reply #19 on: August 05, 2010, 08:05:40 AM »
Fist of the Forest was refused for being too monk-like when I tried to get it through.
Killing wild animals with your bare hands, sleeping in a bush because caves are for weak civilized pansy elves, not owning pants, and living mostly on a diet of so-fresh-it's-bleeding raw meat is too monk-like?  Monks in your game must be pretty cool.

Also, did I miss something, or is that claw gauntlet light?  Cause if it is, you can't power attack with it at all, and that's a big problem.
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