We are playing Hero's Championship in a wicked Arena of Terror. That's beside our regular storyline with characters built just for this purpose. It's to get some adrenalin in a Player versus Player environment. The rules are simple:

  • The arena's map (larger open spaces and some dungeon like narrow passages) and its features vary from time to time so it is a surprise for all characters
  • Players bring new groups each time so the enemy is quite unknown from time to time
  • Character ECLs are predefined and same for all (highest 14, lowest 10)
  • All 3.5 official material can be used

My approach is to create 2 tanks and 2 supporters. For tanks who deal damage I planned to use monsters such as Kolyarut, Invisible Stalker or Leonal and for supporters one arcane and one divine caster. Arcane caster could be Pixie Wizard/Sorcerer/Ultimate Magus and for divine I think about Cleric/Ur-Priest. I also plan to have some Flaw feats to have the opportunity to select more usuful feats for all characters.

My questions:

  1. Is my approach good enough?
  2. Is there a better option to create damage dealers with player races and classes (optimized Monk, etc)?
  3. How can I build the casters to function better?
  • \$\begingroup\$ Each of your questions is way too broad as posed. \$\endgroup\$ – Brian Ballsun-Stanton May 12 '14 at 12:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ Ok, I got why you think it is too broad. To narrow it down I should write a small novel. I think I got my impressions and also my answer where to look first. So I need to read first then ask more specific questions. I think the Administrator can close or delete this question. Thanks go to all of you guys! \$\endgroup\$ – Peter May 12 '14 at 13:39

Optimizing Is An Art, And That Art Is The Art of Death

  1. This answer really depends on your opposition and challenges. I will say that the concept you have outlined is not very optimized. Optimized is the word used by people online to refer to 'making powerful characters' in dnd 3.5e. If you look up 'Handbooks 3.5' and 'Optimization 3.5' on google, you'll find articles, forums, and so forth talking about this. It's a fun hobby for a lot of people.

  2. Generally apart from a few egregious examples, Classes are better at everything than monsters. Sometimes you want to use low-LA monsters as the base chassis for those classes, though.

  3. Ooookay. That's a loaded question because I can take a caster all the way from 'pretty good at his job' all the way up to 'I AM LIKE UNTO A GOD, THIS POWER THAT FLOWS THROUGH ME, IT DESTROYS WORLDS'.

There are two main approaches to 'optimizing'. One is to find a 'build' that you like, copy it, and use it. This requires some reading and research, but is generally easier. The other is to understand 'optimizing concepts', like the Action Economy, the possible optimized specialities, opportunity cost, and what classes, spells, and feats are good for which desired outcome in dnd 3.5e.

For example, if I was optimizing to the hilt for a 'challenge of heroes' mix of dungeoncrawling and pvp, I might consider something like Team Solars, a very optimized dungeon crawling crew based around sharing and Persisting various buffs for immunity to, and contingencies to, everything.

Your options are nigh-infinite if you're looking for something that's mid-range optimized, and it will still be probably a lot more powerful than you're used to. With only a bit of optimizing reading, it's very possible to create very powerful spellcasters (from the 'Tier 1' classes - Druid, Erudite, Wizard, Cleric, Archivist) to fill every 'role' in a party with ease and much better than the traditional Rogue-Fighter-Wizard-Cleric quartet.

By posting a thread on a board known for having optimizers (minmaxboards, giantitp) perhaps with a more specific set of requirements (I want to win at all costs, I want strong but not too ridiculous, I want a standard quartet but buff, I want 4 rogues who only use nonlethal attacks, etc), you will probably garner expert advice and the means to use it.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Answers like this are better posed as a vote to close. When the question is narrowed down, this answer will be wrong for that question and will need editing anyways. \$\endgroup\$ – Brian Ballsun-Stanton May 12 '14 at 12:25
  • \$\begingroup\$ There's not enough room in a comment to tell him how to narrow down his question. Without certain concepts, terms and protocols you can't ask answerable optimization questions. \$\endgroup\$ – user2754 May 12 '14 at 12:33

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