View Full Version : Looking for help with a tank build...

09-06-2007, 11:02 PM

I would like to make a solid TANK build. By tank, I mean the following:

1.) Something that can hold aggro. (Intimidate preferably.)
2.) Something that will not get hit very often. (Mid 50s AC for high end?)
3.) When it does get hit, it doesn't get hit hard (Shield blocking etc.)
4.) If it somehow does get hit hard, it can take it. (Hopefully about 300 HP)
5.) Able to resist/save against spells etc. well. (Evasion?)
6.) I don't care about damage, the barbarians etc. can take care of that.

I would like to make this build in light armor with evasion. I know the "batman" builds seem to be out of style. I don't really want to do traps, as the high end
traps seem to need a pure rogue now. I want the rogue levels for evasion and maybe UMD (enough to use whatever items I want.)

Here is what I have been thinking about, but I don't know much about tanks (I pretty much play bards.) so I could use some help:

Either an Elf, Drow or Halfling, DEX based. I don't care about damage, but I'd like to hit things (for vorpal, paralyzers, banishers, etc.) so I think weapon finesse would be best. I don't know if I'd like to try the elf dragonmark for displacement, or maybe the halfling dragonmarks for healing. Drow would be nice for the cheap dex, cha and int, as well as the spell resistance enhancements. Dwarf could also be a good choice but, I want to get around 28-30 dex, which is easier with these other races I feel. Human could be an excellent choice as well, especially with their human versatility...god I need help. :)

I am stuck on stats, I know I don't want much strength, I want to max dex, get as much con as is I can cheaply, and be able to pump some into charisma for UMD and intimidate. I also want combat expertise, so I'll need the int as well. Since it meshes so well, I was also thinking about throwing some paladin levels in for the added AC, wand usage, immunities, etc.

Scrapping it together myself I am thinking:

9 Fighter / 3 Paladin / 2 Rogue

Starting Stats (I think):
STR: 14 (+6 item, +3 class, +1 tome, 24 endgame.)
DEX: 18 (+6 item, +3 levels, +3 race, 30 endgame.)
CON: 14 (+6 item, 20 endgame.)
INT: 12 (+1 tome for expertise, 13 endgame.)
WIS: 8 (BAM helm for 10 endgame maybe.)
CHA: 14 (+6 item, 20 endgame.)

If I end up bumping the dex any higher I could go with robes and armor bracers. I am thinking about using a +5 Mithral Chain Shirt, since I have so many. With the fighter's armor enhancements, I could pump that to a +9 dex bonus, giving me a total of +18 to AC from my armor/dex bonus. That would be pretty close to +5 MFP, and Evasion would work. :)

Feats I don't really know what to do with. I know I really want Combat Expertise, and probably Dodge. I might also need to take intimidate feat(s) to make sure my intimidate is high enough to keep aggro? Weapon focus, improved crit and weapon finesse will make sure I can hit things fairly well. With this build I won't get as many feats as a pure fighter so my feat selection will have to be a bit more tight.

Anyway, any help, or a build would be great. This is not really a build, just something I threw together as a bare-bones example of what I am trying to accomplish, I am really looking for help here. Please no flaming. :)


09-14-2007, 07:32 PM

Well since no one replied, I decided to just go with what I've read on various forum posts meshed together. Here is what I've done so far:

Drow, Level 7 (3 Fighter, 3 Paladin, 1 Rogue)

Starting Stats:

Str: 14 (15)
Dex: 18 (19)
Con: 12
Int: 12 (13)
Wis: 8
Cha: 14

So far I've used a +1 Str tome and a +1 Int tome, and put my +1 stat mod into Dex. For feats I've grabbed Dodge, Mobility, Combat Expertise, Toughness and Weapon Finesse. I am going to get Spring Attack and Whirlwind by the time I am done, just because well, no one uses it and I'm getting 2 pre-reqs for it anyway...plus I'd like spring attack so...

I came to the realization that I can't get all three of the fighter's armor enhancements for the dex bonus with 9 levels of fighter, only 2. This will still give me 8 dex bonus with a +5 Mithral Chain Shirt, for a total of +17 overall from the armor.

Currently for skills I am going for max Intimidate and max UMD, it is working out so far. I am saving my other rogue level for as late as possible to max out UMD and put some points into Balance I think.

So basically what I want to do at the end of the day is run in and whirlwind to get aggro, then as I start to lose it, drop an intimidate to get it back, then I should be able to whirlwind again soon after right? I figure I can switch off between intimidates and whirlwinds to help keep aggro. Unfortunately I won't be doing much damage by design. I plan on using paralyzers, vorpals, disruptors and wounders to soften things up for the party.

So far it seems to be working decent, I use a keen puncturing short sword most of the time. I want to use rapiers but they are just too hard to find. My standing AC with combat expertise on as of level 6 is 40. I am going to break down what I think my AC can be at 14, tell me if I am wrong:

AC as of 14:

+10 (Base)
+9 (+5 Mithral Chain Shirt)
+8 (Dex bonus)
+7 (+5 Heavy Shield)
+1 (Dodge Feat)
+1 (Fighter's Dodge, not sure if I can get this though)
+5 (Deflection item)
+2 (Chaosgarde)
+5 (Combat Expertise)
+2 (Paladin Aura)

Final: 50 AC standing, 53 with a barkskin potion, 57(I think) with boost...beyond that I think there's some raid equipment I can get, but this is before raid eq...Also haste, full barkskin, full paladin aura blahblahblah, but this is self buffed :)

Anyway, the Intimidate seems to be working fairly well, I just draw everything in with it and let the DPSers go nuts while I shield block at this point.

Any suggestions, please let me know, I play to go 9 Fighter/3 Paladin/2 Rogue with it.


09-17-2007, 02:28 PM
I think you'll do ok... My preference for the end game is str based over dex based. My rationale is there are more times where I'm focused on doing DPS with a group rather than truely tanking these days... (speed loot runs etc... eventually with new content folks may slow down for a week or two while we learn the new quests etc...)

Light Armor wise if you're using a Mith tower shield with TS mastery II the magic number to get to for dex will be 22 since for your dex bonus would be limited to +6 and then you can pair that with a +5 Mith BP. 24 opens options to TS mastery III in the future but it's alot of skill points to invest.

Since you're a finesse based build this isn't as important for you as you'll avoid the tower shield and go with a normal shield.

Cha wise 12 to 14 is about where I feel comfortable on both my Evasion UMD melees so you shouldn't have any problems there.

Int I tend to start at 14 for the skill points. Granted I wanted Selgar to open locks, intimidate, and UMD so the build needed additional skill points per level which drove that stat for me.

09-19-2007, 02:46 PM

Yea, I definitely hear you about zerging through loot runs. People pretty much zerg through everything. I am hoping that more difficult content comes out where actual strategy come into play and things like real tanking matter. I am planning on going with stat damagers and vorpal, para, disruptor, banisher, smiter to kill things. I think this strategy will work for most things, what do you think? Should I just reroll and go straight DPS? Is tanking useless?


09-19-2007, 03:16 PM
I'm not ready to say that tanking is useless but I think the old state of the game posts that Gren and others discussed in the past have been fairy accurate. The balance of power has shifted from tanks "truely tanking" to Casters with insta kill and mass hold.

My belief is that this is going to be the new norm going forward rather than changing back to true tanking at some point based on what I've seen. Mod 5 might make me re-think that but I'll have to see/feel what the new quests are like. My guess is though after a month or so many of the quests will be speed runs, like gianthold is currently, as people memorize the new content.

I've just come round to the notion that there's not a great advantage to going Dex based tank over Str based tank. I just rerolled a TWF ranger from Drow to Dwarf due dwarf based on this same notion and discussions at the ranger boards.

AC wise you can hit comparible numbers:
(I'm assuming you wanted Evasion from your class spilt and using selgar's numbers as an example)

10 Base
10 +5 Mith BP
9 +5 mith Tower Shield
6 Dex
2 Aura
2 Chaos gaurds
5 protection cloak
1 Dodge
3 chattering ring
= 48 AC

AC with CE and Bark skin pot
= 56 AC

So if they are both able to hit similar AC's then where is Dex's advantage? non-ranger two weapon fighting? ranged attacks? Both skills I'm not visualizing for an intimidation tank.

Offensively then STR can go for DPS, Stat Dammaging weapons, and or Power five weapons. Dex loses the ability to do large DPS, but can stat dammage, and power attack.

I guess the big advantage I see with Str in the end game is you can change rolls between being a tank with CE on vs. going two handed power attacks for DPS when in a group that is zerging since they've all ran the quest 20+ times before.

Take it easy