As the topic states, I'm interested in playing more melee (tanks are hard to find sometimes) but I don't want to run a character like the Champion that does nothing but stand there and hit hard. Melee characters are generally very simple to play, and I'm hoping to break that mold.

What subclass, for each of the main melee classes, is considered the most complex to play?

A good example may be the Illusion mage vs. Evocation, with Illusion being more "complex".

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ I think that what you are asking is not which one is more difficult, but which one is more tactically complex. \$\endgroup\$ – Ben Barden Jul 6 '18 at 20:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ Fair point, will edit to clarify \$\endgroup\$ – Daniel Zastoupil Jul 6 '18 at 20:50
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Also also, as presented, this is actually four questions (one each for barbarian, fighter, monk, paladin). Once you have it reasonably well-tuned, you should ask each of the four questions separately. Still, that's not somethign I'd do until you've locked down exactly how you want to ask it. \$\endgroup\$ – Ben Barden Jul 6 '18 at 20:54
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ It's all good. We'd prefer it as four separate questions. Welcome to RPG stack exchange. We have very particular ideas of how questions should and should not be... and getting good questions is good. Getting more good questions is better. \$\endgroup\$ – Ben Barden Jul 6 '18 at 20:58
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @Vigil That's a fair assessment, but not all questions are answerable at SE, and sometimes that's just the way it is. If I refined the question enough so there's no opinions at stake, then it's too narrow to be of any value. And SE isn't in the business of opinions. So I'd probably find more support for it elsewhere. Thank you for your support, though. \$\endgroup\$ – Daniel Zastoupil Aug 10 '18 at 16:17

In thinking of the ones listed here, Monk generally is the most complicated, at least in terms of decisionmaking. I chose this because I think most characters face a question of how best to use limited resources, but monks get a huge breadth of choice on how to use their resources.

In any given turn tou can spend a single ki point to achieve:

  • Disengage
  • Dash
  • Attack with one extra unarmed strike
  • Dodge
  • Stunning fist (for each individual hit)

This is just for base class too. If you go Kensai you get more decisions each turn. For subclasses, Elemental Monk and Kensai add the most tactical decisionmaking. Kensai at 3 gives you ranged abilities, but at the sacrifice of some power, or better defense at the sacrifice of power.

As a Monk you have to choose how to spend your ki points, because you can easily spend 6 ki points at level 6 upping your damage on weapon attacks, flurrying and stunning fist attempting on each hit. You can alternatively spend 1 ki point per turn dodging and using your weapon to provide AC. The options are wide and their optimal use is situational.


Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.