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  1. #1

    Default Tempest Ranger with Rogue splash Build Question

    It's been a long time since I've worked with the D&D ruleset and the things I used to know aren't coming back to me so readily. Recently I've spent a good amount of time researching the character I want to make but I still have some questions and I'd like some advice in general.

    My plan is to make a level 18 Ranger/level 2 Rogue, for the purposes of being able to disarm traps and pick locks when I play solo. (Though I might only put one level into Rogue since I was going two levels for Evasion, which the Ranger gets at nine, and a level 19 Ranger has a few more spell slots available.)

    This was the idea for my starting ability scores (32-point build):

    Str: 13 (would raise to 14 using my level 4 ability point)
    Dex: 18
    Con: 13 (would raise to 14 using my level 8 ability point)
    Int: 14 (the +2 modifier ensures I can raise Disable Device and Open Lock each level, usually at the expense of Listen. But from what I've researched it seems Listen isn't that important?)
    Wis: 8
    Cha: 8

    There are a few variations to this build in my head (less Int for more Str or Con, less Dex for more Str) but overall this is what I'm looking at.

    The reason I chose this build is because Dex builds are what I'm used to and what I usually enjoy playing. But I was wondering if this was the best option for a Tempest Ranger. So finally we're getting to my actual question.

    Would a Str-based build be a more viable option for a Tempest? I know I need Dex for my Rogue skills, but I'm thinking that with more Strength I wouldn't need to take Weapon Finesse which means I would technically have a wider variety of weapons to dual-wield since WF only applies to light weapons. And of course there is Bow Strength to consider.

    This would also free up a feat. As it is I'm thinking of not getting Tempest 1 until level 9. I'd like to take Toughness as my starting feat and as a Half-Elf I'm taking the Dilettante: Barbarian feat so I can take Barbarian Toughness on top of Racial Toughness for a healthy HP boost early on.

    It's a crime that I've gone so long without playing around with these rules. In terms of gaming it's one of my favorite things. I love discussing it, so if I have a good thing going let me know .. or if this is just the dumbest idea ever let me know that too. Your advice/criticism is really appreciated. Thank you for your replies.

  2. #2
    Community Member Kinerd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010


    No matter what you end up deciding stat-wise, do not take Weapon Finesse. (Strictly speaking it applies to all light weapons and the rapier, which is actually a decent base, but that is incidental.) One way that DDO is different from D&D is the to hit formula. Instead of...
    to-hit + 1d20 vs. AC
    ...we use...
    (to-hit + 10.5) / (2 * AC) + 25% [if proficient] vs. d100
    ...hence, incremental increases to to-hit become less and less useful as you get further along, plus the formula rounds so it's entirely possible the +3 or whatever you end up getting out of Finesse will be rounded to literally nothing even if you aren't at 95% hit rate, which you probably will be anyway.

    For your purposes, Open Locks is the only rogue skill that uses Dex modifier. Search and Disable are both Int skills. Because Search has no dice roll and because Disarm can be critically failed (blowing up the trap box and making it impossible to disarm), and because there are never mission critical OL checks, your relevant stat for rogue skills is really Int rather than Dex.

    Rangers get 6 skill points per level + whatever your Int mod is, and you only need 1 (Search) + 1 (Spot) + 2 (Disable) + 2 (Open Lock) = 6 = 0 Int mod to keep all your disarm/pick skills maxed. As mentioned above, though, Int mod contributes to your most sensitive checks, so it's definitely worth having a little in it for that reason alone. Additionally, you do have other skills you could productively spend on: UMD, Concentration, Balance, even Swim (although it's a distant third). Listen and Spot are redundant in practice.

    In general spreading level-ups is not the way to go. The only time I recommend it is to meet expensive feat pre-reqs for players without the resources (or inclination) to acquire sufficient tomes. This has become even more compelling with the advent of MotU and associated random gen gear: it's very difficult to predict what will even you out in practice, evening out in the character planner is not a good indicator so no need to stress over it. As a ranger, you get all the stat-expensive feats for free, so you're good there.

    For these reasons I would definitely go 16/14/14/14/8/12 or maybe 10/10 in the last two.

    Regarding level split, you're right on that 2 rogue gives you very little. Common choices for that last level are 1 monk (the Exploiter) or 1 fighter: each gives you another feat (although not necessarily the same one), and other than that these days they're pretty much the same.

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