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I am realtively new to D&D 5e and would like to have a Ranger class who can also cast some Wizard spells. It seems this is only possible if I multi class.

What is the best way to implement such a character? In terms of stats, hit die, skill and spell selection, etc.?

For example I know I need to have good Dex for being a Ranger, especially if I want to be skilled with a bow, and Int for learning spells as a Wizard. Do I also need Wisdom? If I am going to be focusing on wizard spells for my magic, I would think not right (is it true that rangers need wisdom of at least 13)?

Please do not close or down vote this for being opinion based, I am just trying to learn how best to build the character I want from the experts.

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    \$\begingroup\$ It's not exactly opinion-based, but as it currently stands, it is too broad for us to usefully answer. We need a lot more details about what you're trying to achieve here. When you say you want to cast some wizard spells, are there specific spells you have in mind? Is there a certain level of wizard spells you'd like to have access to? What's your goal for this character? Also, the question you linked to is about Pathfinder, not D&D 5e, so it's not really relevant here. \$\endgroup\$ – Miniman Jul 26 '16 at 13:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ No, specific spells, mostly from the school of Abjuration. I want my character to be offensive with the bow (striker) and rely on wizard magic for party defense (controller/buffer). In terms of wizard spell level, the higher the better, but I understand I have to sacrifice for not being a full wizard. Please let me know what other info you need. \$\endgroup\$ – AbuMariam Jul 26 '16 at 14:24
  • \$\begingroup\$ It's still pretty broad - approaching another way, you want as much wizard power as you can get, so what do you want out of your Ranger levels? Also, what level are you looking to play this character? \$\endgroup\$ – Miniman Jul 26 '16 at 14:56
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    \$\begingroup\$ @AbuMariam What other ranger features do you want? What you establish here can be done with a non-multiclassed eldritch knight warrior. \$\endgroup\$ – Carpe CM Jul 26 '16 at 15:04
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    \$\begingroup\$ From Ranger, I want the 1d10 hit dice, leather armor, natural explorer skill, +2 archery bonus for my bow, and beast master archetype. For level, I am thinking level 3 ranger/level 2 wizard. \$\endgroup\$ – AbuMariam Jul 26 '16 at 15:07
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Multiclassing Ranger/Wizard

You're on the right track.

The Ranger is Dex based for their ranged attacks. Wizards spell casting is Intelligence based. If you start with a Ranger at level one, and multi-class into wizard at level 2.

You still have to worry about Wisdom being at 13 to be able to multi-class.

To qualify for a new class, you must meet the ability score prerequisites for both your current class and your new one. (PHB 163)

Wisdom is the spell-casting attribute for any/all ranger spells you learn, so you might decide to spend some Ability Skill Increases on wisdom at some point, but you'd likely only do that if you've maxed Dex and Int.

Assuming standard array, I'd suggest starting with:

15 Dex
14 Wis
13 Int
12 Con
10 STR/CHA
8 CHA/STR

Then push most/all of the ASIs into Int and Dex.

Options Besides Wizard to Consider

  • Multi-classing three levels of Fey Warlock for defense, support and control spell list has some nice options. Armor of Agyths, Hex, Arms of Hadar, EB etc. Plus, invocations, and a pact boon (Pact of Chain would work well with the ranger's beast master in you'd have two pets, Pact of Blade could bond with your bow allowing you to summon your bow at will as an Action and dismiss it).
  • Multi-classing Druid would also make sense because both the ranger and druid have Wisdom as the casting attribute, and the nature theme works well. The beast shape plus having pet also might open some opportunities.
  • Magic Initiate Feat doesn't provide as much spell casting either, but requires less investment in being a caster if you want to primarily be a ranger who has gained some more knowledge in the arcane arts.
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  • \$\begingroup\$ I think that you mean intelligence instead of Wisdom in the second-ish paragraph when multi classing into a Wizard. Also, you can cast spells with somatic and material components with two handed weapons. You only use two hands when you are going to use the weapon, but holding the weapon requires only one hand (and you only need one free hand to cast the spell and access the component pouch). \$\endgroup\$ – Chepelink Jul 27 '16 at 15:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ No, in the second paragraph I mean wisdom. It is an answer to one of his sub questions. I suppose I overstate the problem, but drawing and restashing your focus does burn your object interaction so there is opportunity cost not incurred by a component pouch. I'll just remove that section of my answer. \$\endgroup\$ – J. A. Streich Jul 27 '16 at 17:09
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    \$\begingroup\$ I guess we are not reading the same paragraph. It is the one that you state " If you start with a Ranger at level one, and multi-class into wizard at level 2". Since you are a Ranger at level 1, you don't need wisdom to multi-class. You need 13 intelligence to multi-class into a Wizard at level 2. I'm referring to this: "you still have to worry about Wisdom being at 13 to be able to multi-class." \$\endgroup\$ – Chepelink Jul 27 '16 at 17:19
  • \$\begingroup\$ OMG!!! You are completely right... Facepalm. I have to say good bye to my Cha-less Bladelock :'( \$\endgroup\$ – Chepelink Jul 27 '16 at 17:38
  • \$\begingroup\$ True. This edit should read better. \$\endgroup\$ – J. A. Streich Jul 27 '16 at 18:57
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One thing to take a look at is the Magic Initiate feat(PHB 168). It gives you 2 cantrips and 1 level 1 spell. It does require sacrificing your ability score increases though.

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As a start I would suggest Ranger-Druid spellcaster.

Rangers favor Dex->Wis->Con while Druids favor Wis->Con->Dex. So stats wise you are playing into both classes much better than adding Wizard's Int requirement to a Ranger.

Further it gives you wild shape options if caught in melee, or to reposition quickly. Your wild shapes might not be very powerful and you would not aim for the Elemental(druid class level 10) wildshapes. Beast based wild shapes can also give you opportunity for funny roleplay with your ranger pet, whatever you are into.

And finally lore and flavor wise it is more thematic to mix Rangers and Druids with the nature aspects. Wizards are generally considered to rip the fabric of the world to force raw magic to do as they wish, where as Rangers generally are caretakers of nature, as are druids.

Finally the concern with this combination is that Beast companions and Wild shapes are heavily dependant on Caster's Class level, ie. if you are lvl 20 with 10-10 split then your Ranger companion will have about half health of a lvl 20 Ranger's one. However from your description of your vision I believe it fits to ignore/downplay your companion and wild shape abilities and instead focus on Archery and Druid spellcasting, Land druid I believe improves spell list.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ @nitsua60 Yeah I caught that after his comments and other answers started rolling in. Not sure whether it was better to delete or leave the answer. His initial question did have phrases like "What is the best way to implement such a character?" and "If I am going to be focusing on wizard spells for my magic." So I took it to be a less experienced person not aware of Druid spellcasting that could fit the vision to a degree also. \$\endgroup\$ – Aruthawolf Jul 28 '16 at 8:04

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