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I have a level 6 TWF monster hunter in a Curse of Strahd campaign. Quick summary of monster hunter: it's a new fighter archetype (hence TWF), it gets superiority dice to use on attack/damage and a couple of skill rolls. My hunter also has the feat Martial Adept, taking trip attack and parry as her two maneuvers. I'm also 90% certain I'll be taking Dual Weapon Fighting this level to give her an extra +1 to AC and let her dual wield rapiers.

HP: 59
Current AC: 15, Armor: leather
STR: 11, DEX: 18, CON: 14, INT: 13, WIS: 13, CHA: 12

Now, my hunter's AC is a bit on the low side for my taste, and I don't want to increase it via armor because she'd get a penalty to dex, and I don't want to use a shield because, well, she dual-wields. Since the majority of her party is buffing/debuffing (Illusionist wizard, cleric, bard), she has been delegated to the role of both tank and co-DPS (the other DPS being the rogue).

I'm considering multiclassing her soon in order to maximize both her DPS and her AC. What would be the best option for multiclassing for this situation? Keep in mind that not multiclassing is viable.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Have you looked at breastplate? AC 14, gain up to 2 dex bonus, versus ac 11 with 4 dex bonus. That's a net benefit of +1. Studded Leather likewise for different reasons, as it is AC 12. Basic rules page 44. \$\endgroup\$ – KorvinStarmast Jul 22 '16 at 19:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ @KorvinStarmast I'm looking into studded leather, but as for a breastplate no way - I get damage bonuses from dex. \$\endgroup\$ – jackwise Jul 22 '16 at 19:59
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    \$\begingroup\$ you should read the PHB again, armor only influences your DEX regarding AC \$\endgroup\$ – András Jul 22 '16 at 20:05
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    \$\begingroup\$ The armor bonus limitation does Nothing to your attack and damage bonuses from Dex. Where did you get the idea that armor changed your dex bonus for attack and damage? \$\endgroup\$ – KorvinStarmast Jul 22 '16 at 22:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ Sorry guys, remembered my info wrong! \$\endgroup\$ – jackwise Jul 26 '16 at 13:44
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Based on the stats given, it appears to me that your best option is to not multiclass.

The most obvious option would be a dip into Monk, to get Unarmored Defense's Wis-to-AC bonus, but that would be trading leather's +1 for your Wisdom's +1. The other abilities wouldn't really add anything to what you already have.

Another option is Barbarian's Unarmored Defense. That would add +2 AC from your Con instead of your Leather armor, but simply changing to Studded Leather (also light, and giving full dex bonus) would achieve the same result. The Barbarian's Rage does add a moderately useful ability, but comes at the expense of delaying your progressing in Fighter/Monster Hunter.

Finally, a 2 level dip into ranger would allow you to pick a second fighting style, specifically "Defense" which grants +1 AC while wearing armor. Again, the Ranger's abilities do not synergize particularly with your other abilities, and delaying your main class abilities for 2 more levels is unlikely to be worth +1 AC.

Also note that none of these options combine. Unarmored Defense is specifically called out under multiclassing as an ability you can only get from a single class, and even the greatest Cheeselords still have trouble finding a way to be unarmored and wear armor at the same time.


It seems like you already have the best option figured out: take the Dual Wielder feat for the bonus AC, and indirect damage increase of 2 one-handed weapons.

While you're shopping for a second rapier, upgrade to a suit of studded leather. This and Dual Wielder will bring you up to 17 AC.

After that, just stick with fighter. At 7th level you can start using 2 superiority dice on damage, as well as automatically maxing superiority dice damage against certain types of enemies. At 10th level, your superiority dice get bigger by a step, becoming d10's.

These options will do more for you than you can get from any quick dips into other classes.

For a build like yours, and for most builds in 5e, multiclassing is a great way to increase the breadth of your skills and abilities, but usually does not add a lot to the depth of them.

As Ethan has pointed out in the comments, don't forget to turn to your teammates for assistance and buffs, as well as doing the same for them where you can.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ On the defense side, remember to add in mage armor. An allied wizard with a spare level 1 slot or two should be able to keep it up 24/7 (or a 1 level dip in wizard, which his 13 int should allow for, but that's a bit expensive for 1 AC). On the offensive side, begging for haste or enlarge should help. \$\endgroup\$ – Ethan Jul 22 '16 at 19:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ Good point, and I've added it in my answer. Remember, though, that "Mage Armor" is a spell that counts as armor, and thus doesn't stack with armor. That isn't to say it's a bad option; I have played a 5E rogue who got mage armor from somewhere, and at that point she simply tossed her old armor out, it was that bad in comparison. \$\endgroup\$ – tzxAzrael Jul 22 '16 at 21:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ Didn't mean to imply that it stacks with armor, just that it is effectively +1 compared to studded leather. Although you can still wear leather if you want as a backup, in case you're really paranoid about anti-magic effects. \$\endgroup\$ – Ethan Jul 22 '16 at 21:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ Actually you can't: "The spell ends if the target dons armor..." \$\endgroup\$ – tzxAzrael Jul 22 '16 at 22:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Ethan One of our spellcasters is going to be taking haste next level, so that works out perfectly! \$\endgroup\$ – jackwise Jul 26 '16 at 13:45

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