Questions pertaining to the positive aspects of character optimization (CharOp). For problems with negative issues or player problems around optimization, use the [powergaming] tag.

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Is there any way for a player character to get Threatening Reach?

Is there anyway for a player character to get the Threatening Reach or equivalent ability with a reach weapon? Apart for one-off's like artifacts such as the Spear of Urrok the Brave [ddi]
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2answers
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What benefit does a fighter with a high wisdom score have?

In the Players hand book it mentions in a list called "Melee weapon groups and associated Statistics" (Pg. 77) and says ...the list below notes the melee weapon group and the ability score that ...
9
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1answer
601 views

Most levels of Cleric recommended?

There are classes in 3.5 that, in the view of the optimization community, simply fail to continue to deliver value after a certain point. For example, the monk class: the first two levels have a lot ...
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3answers
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Do Powerful Build and Monkey Grip Stack?

The Character in question is a Large half-Minotaur Goliath who is using monkey grip. Normally a Large Goliath could wield a Huge weapon with no penalty. Monkey Grip allows you to wield a weapon 1 ...
9
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2answers
279 views

What options in the Laundry system might make a character significantly more powerful than his group?

What skills sets are a game breaker and would make one PC much more powerful than the rest? Or How would you optimise a character so that they were incredibly more powerful than a "standard" ...
9
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1answer
300 views

What major non-hermetic virtue would be appropriate for an ex-Ex Misc who wants to be Flambeau?

One of my PCs is creating a character that has left her (probably mystery cult) in Ex Misc, and tried (and failed) to join House Flambeau as part of her backstory. I cannot find a major non-hermetic ...
8
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4answers
323 views

Optimizing 2e High Int, Low Str Fighter

I am trying to design a character who will be wildly suboptimal at his desired profession, but hopefully will be able to keep up with the rest of the group in terms of usefulness. The campaign is ...
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4answers
2k views

Is fireburst overpowered?

The party I DM for tries to play D&D 3.5 strictly by the rules as written. The wizard of the party came to me with the fireburst spell, from the D&D 3.5 book "Complete Arcane" (page 107). ...
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6answers
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Character good for underwater environments?

What would be the best character to make for sub-sea and island-hopping adventuring? This would be a newly-rolled level 5 Pathfinder character.
8
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3answers
424 views

Is there anyway to see through Darkness without removing it?

Simply put, the Shadow Monk gains the ability to cast Darkness, but I'm struggling to see a use for it except to help escaping. Way of the Shadow monk receives Darkness (among a few other spells) and ...
8
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2answers
482 views

How can I optimize playing a sentient wolf?

I was invited to a savage themed campaign recently that features shamans, cave monsters, and all that prehistoric goodness. I'm going to be playing an awakened wolf named Virginia, and have no idea ...
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2answers
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How can a monk control a battlefield?

My group has decided to switch from 4e (which had very mixed reactions) to Pathfinder, since we all seem to like 3.5 well enough. However, one of the few things everyone enjoyed in 4e was the ability ...
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2answers
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What's an optimum build for a set-up character for Pathfinder Society character?

My wife plays a barbarian in Pathfinder Society that does massive amounts of damage when she is able to use Cleave. I decided to build a character that would reposition foes for her to cleave. What's ...
8
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1answer
813 views

What are the best uses of a Factotum's Cunning Brilliance (Ex)?

At 19th level, you become the ultimate jack of all trades. Your sharp mind and keen sense of your surroundings allow you to duplicate almost any ability you witness. At the start of each day, ...
8
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1answer
854 views

How can I increase AC for a Wilden Shaman|Runepriest?

My son has a hybrid Wilden Shaman|Runepriest and his AC is awful. How can I get it higher? He's taken no feats related to AC/defense and is level 4. Rebuilds are possible.
8
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1answer
118 views

Is there a directory of Optimization Handbooks for Legend?

I'm the sort of person that likes looking at optimization guides for d20 related games. I know directories for handbooks to certain classes/playstyles exist for both D&D 3.5 and D&D 4E, but I ...
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9answers
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Can a DM disallow the Candle of Invocation exploit using RAW?

The Candle of Invocation exploit is pretty cheesy. Basically, a player uses a candle to gate in an extra-planar being that grants more than one wish per summoning. One wish is used to get another ...
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4answers
806 views

Is Alter Self strictly better than Disguise Self as at-will invocations?

PHB Page 211, Alter Self You assume a different form. When you cast the spell, choose one of the following options, the effects of which last for the duration of the spell. While the spell lasts, ...
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6answers
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Do Sorcerers need to know a lot of attack spells?

I was building a Sorcerer character I had in mind for high-level campaigns (e.g. starting at 10th) and noticed that while I was planning and selecting his spells known, I seemed to gravitate mostly ...
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1answer
2k views

Optimizing a smart fighter

I am currently in a campaign and have a Swashbuckler 3/Fighter 2 who is basically the party leader. I chose Swashbuckler more for style than for the flavor, a fighter who fights more by his wits and ...
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5answers
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Domains for a Sorcerer with Domain Access

Domain Access from Complete Champion p52 allows a sorcerer to take a cleric domain for the price of forever losing one L1 and one L2 spell known. The sorcerer gets the domain power, but can cast the ...
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3answers
366 views

How to optimize a TWF Barbarian Elf

A little backstory: One of my earliest DnD characters was a Two-Weapon-Fighting Purple-haired Barbarian Elf. He was immensely popular due to his unorthadox nature as a war-loving elf that embraced ...
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2answers
472 views

Is blasting a suboptimal strategy for 5e Wizards?

In D&D 3.5e, blasting was known to be a comparatively weak strategy for a Wizard to adopt. On the other hand, in D&D 5e, there have been a number of changes that potentially render it more ...
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2answers
774 views

How can a battlefield control character be built?

In Pathfinder, there isn't much in the way of battlefield control like there is in 4e. How can a character be built focusing on things like forced movement, zones, or generally making the enemies be ...
7
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2answers
4k views

How to optimize a bard's ability with a bow in Pathfinder?

Specifically, the question would be for a halfling bard whose main combat role I want to have is ranged with the bow—as no one else seems to be taking any interest there. More interested in accuracy ...
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2answers
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How to better implement Spiked Chain build from OOTS 216?

I was wondering if the build posted on Order of the Stick 216 is still valid in pathfinder, and how to better implement in terms of: Better races, preferably, being a common (medium sized) race, ...
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2answers
203 views

Is there a directory of optimisation handbooks for D&D 3.5?

On the eve of 5th edition, there has been a great deal of bit rot since the dark days of 2003-2004. Forums have lived and died, and many of the trivial searches on google show ancient threads. ...
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1answer
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How can I make the most of Use the Force?

So I have a Force wizard character I'm making for a Star Wars Saga Edition game, who has specialised in the Use the Force skill. There are various ways to use the Use the Force skill in place of other ...
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1answer
2k views

Optimize at will dpr

I always hear about insane nova builds that can drop Orcus in a round (at least before errata), but it seems these builds rely on encounter and daily powers. How could you get stupid damage from ...
7
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1answer
381 views

Within 6 levels is there any way to change your save DC from Wisdom to Charisma for a Cleric?

I'm playing in an E6 game (caps out at level 6) and with the stats I rolled and templates I'd like to apply, I end up with a downright amazing Charisma score. Unfortunately, I'm playing a cleric and ...
7
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2answers
1k views

What is the optimal build for AC for a fighter at Level 13?

I like to take my characters to extremes when I can. In this instance I am building a fighter (weapon master) that will be the team's tank. I am interested in maximixing his AC, and secondly his ...
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2answers
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Most effective lightsabre dual-wielder at low levels?

It's been implied that my current Jedi character in SWSE might die/be handed in by the party, whilst the GM plays him as an NPC. In that eventuality I'd like to bring out another Jedi but focus on ...
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2answers
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A Ranger build that is close to Tier 3 classes

As the title suggests, I am looking for a Ranger dual wielder build that can compete with Tier 3 classes. Our party is quite imbalanced as it is composed of a Druid, a Wizard, a Dread Necro, a ...
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0answers
158 views

Why is the Monk class considered sub-par in some games of 3.5? [duplicate]

This question is a combination of theoretical-optimization and practical-optimization. In some games, I acknowledge that the monk can be a fun and flavourful choice. Unfortunately, looking at the ...
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5answers
917 views

+1 AC or +20 HP--which is better for a nimble, frontline character?

I've planned a 1 Monk, 19 Draconic Sorcerer, and I have the option of setting Con to 14 and Wis to 12 (providing +1 HP at each level up), or Wis to 14 (+1 AC, given Monk Unarmored Defense) and Con to ...
6
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2answers
759 views

How can I make sure my character is awesome enough?

This question pulls quite a lot from Brian Ballsun-Stanton's paper on constrained optimisation (i.e. making your character awesome), so that might be a good thing to read. I know that in D&D ...
6
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1answer
412 views

How can I squeeze a place for utility spells with limited number of preparable spells?

A full caster in D&D Next can prepare 1 + Caster Level kinds of spells per day. It seems to me those are not enough to justify preparing utility spells. Assuming a single defensive and offensive ...
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2answers
1k views

Druid: how to obtain rage?

I'm building a druid character for an upcoming E6 game, and I'm wondering if I can get myself rage along with 6 levels of shapeshift variant druid. Unfortunately, shapeshift is obligatory, which ...
6
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2answers
798 views

How does a damage dealing Wizard use higher level spell slots optimally?

In D&D 5e, one of the neat features for spell casting is the ability to cast spells at higher levels than the spell is originally set at. For Clerics, this makes it handy such that Cure Wounds, ...
6
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5answers
831 views

What is the best way to multiclass Bard and Sorcerer?

Introduction I've recently joined a new RP group and a DM has decided to give DnD 3.5e a run. I am told it will be a short, but intriguing campaign. When asked about what kind of characters and ...
6
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1answer
3k views

How to optimize a Gishy [Fighter/Mage] Character?

What is the best class or classes in 3.5e to build a character that uses both a sword and either arcane magic or psionics which can be fluffed as arcane magic and focuses on fighting powerful ...
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4answers
6k views

Fighter weapon choice?

With the normal fighter builds found in the PHB, is there any weapon choice (hammers, light blade, heavy blade, axes, etc) that does statistically better damage based on weapon damage, power ...
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2answers
1k views

Post character creation, getting spellcraft bonuses

After character creation what is a good way to get bonuses to spellcraft? I'd rather not have to use feats, however. Are there any items, equipment, spells or suchlike that could be used? Such as ...
6
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2answers
638 views

Does the Ranger's Companion synergize with the Ranger?

The Ranger Beast Master subclass gets an animal companion under the ranger companion ability, which for free can move about the battle field, or using the Ranger's action can make an attack. Being a ...
6
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1answer
895 views

How does two weapon fighting calculate the offhand attack?

I am making a character who uses two weapons at once, but this is the first time that I have attempted to make a dual-wielding character. He will have 2 attacks/round from his BAB. Two-weapon fighting ...
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2answers
331 views

Can a Transmuter/Abjurer with Racial Proficiencies compete in melee?

I like odd (but not completely broken) builds, and am intrigued when I see them, but do like to see them somewhat balanced. Right now I'm considering whether a melee Wizard build is feasible. If you ...
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2answers
150 views

Is there any way to turn regular ranged weapon attacks into Touch attacks?

Just this basic question. Any feat, skill trick, spell, regardless of source would be fine, just want to know if i've missed something or if the means doesn't actually exist to do so. The only way ...
6
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2answers
823 views

Samurais studying abroad: automatic killing machines?

I am confused by the "Multiple School" advantage in L5R 4th Ed. It basically allows your character to stop studying in his current school and start studying in another one. It costs a whole 10xp, and ...
6
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2answers
984 views

Optimal Dragonborn Warlock for DPR/AC with Blade pact and Fiend patron

How can I get the highest Damage-Per-Round (both melee and ranged using pact weapon and Eldritch Blast) and AC possible (with DPR being more important than AC) with a Dragonborn Warlock taking the ...
6
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2answers
686 views

How can I add more attack to my Wood Bond Oracle?

I am trying to build an oracle, and need some help with what I have so far. I'm still somewhat new to tabletop games, so any insight you have would be helpful. Here's what I have so far: Race: Human ...