Questions tagged [optimization]

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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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 ...
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Is this build a viable melee Sorcerer? [closed]

My goal is to have a viable front-line sorcerer--'viable' means that he has decent-enough AC to stay in the front (as high as a rogue should be sufficient, no?), and good-enough damage that he's not a ...
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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 ...
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How to build a blaster/damage wizard or sorcerer in Pathfinder?

I've already asked this question for 3.5e, but it seems to be very different in Pathfinder, as many of the feats, prestige classes, and even the base class abilities of wizard and sorcerer have ...
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How many undead of each type can you control at one time?

With a 20 wizard necromancer, all magic items allowed (with the exception of sentient items) with the three attuned as usual, by RAW: How many undead can you maintain control over with a 100% success ...
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What are the best uses of a Factotum's Cunning Brilliance (Ex)?

On page 19 of Dungeonscape, this class feature is noted. 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 ...
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How to optimize initiative?

I want to make initiative the highest possible for a level 1 character in Pathfinder. Here's what I got: +5 DEX 20 (18 plus race) +4 Improved Initiative (feat) +4 Familiar (compy or scorpion) +2 ...
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Pathfinder: Arcane Duelist melee build

I've finally decided to make an Arcane Duelist (bard archetype). It'd like to enhance my own melee part as well the party ones. I can use the "Core Rulebook" and the "Advanced Player's Guide" only. ...
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How can I add higher level prayers to my prayerbook?

Given: A half-elf Archivist/5 (from 3.5 Heroes of Horror) with no required feats. Archivist 5 can cast 3rd level spells. The desired spell is a 5th level spell. All Pathfinder/3.5 books allowed. ...
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Why would I use Scorching Ray?

I have a level 3 light domain cleric. I have both the 1st level spell Guiding Bolt and the 2nd level spell Scorching Ray. When I use a 2nd level spell slot with Guiding Bolt the damage is 5d6 and ...
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How do you make an Int- or Wis-based character with only 3 Con viable with 30-35 hp at level 6?

I am a player in Tomb of Annihilation (5e) and we're playing with rolled characters. Rules are 4d6 drop lowest and no moving around ability scores. I ended up with the following stat block: Str: 14 (+...
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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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What other ways are there to make a Wizard more intelligent?

There are four ways I know of to get your intelligence increased as a Wizard: Levelling to get stat bonus (Untyped, 5 by level 20) Headband of vast intelligence (+2 to +6 enhancement bonus) Crimson ...
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How can I build a Celestial Warlock as a primary healer?

This will be my first time playing a Warlock class and I built a concept that resulted in an Aasimar Celestial Warlock. The party has plenty of potential healers but none with a class that focuses on ...
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What is the best damage you can do with a 9th level Magic Missile?

So one of this question's To maximize a combo with True Strike, which is the most damaging spell with attack roll? answers got me curious. What is the maximum damage a 20th level character can do with ...
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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.
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Which Paladin's Sacred Oath does the most damage?

This is my first time playing a Paladin. He just reached Level 3 and I am torn between all the Sacred Oaths. They all seem to have their advantages and disadvantages. I use the Great Weapon fighting ...
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Does Sacred Flame or Firebolt do more damage on average to a Shadow over an arbitrary but finite number of rounds?

Assume the following character build: Level 2 Variant Human Wild Magic Sorcerer with Magic Initiate Feat; relevant spells are Sacred Flame and Fire Bolt. While I don't think character level is ...
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What do the terms CO and TO mean in the context of characters and builds?

I have seen the terms CO and TO when reading about RPGs like in this Reddit post, this EN World forum thread, this Paizo messageboard thread, and this Giant in the Playground forum thread. Also, see ...
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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 ...
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What is the most powerful permanent undead follower you can get?

What is the most powerful permanent undead follower you can get? Any class/race/spell/level combo is fine. Is it as simple as a necromancy wizard controlling a mummy lord, or is there something ...
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How would I build a master magic item crafter/blacksmith type character? [closed]

So I had this idea for a character who is basically obsessed with magic items, making, collecting, using, having, any and every magic item he can get his hands on: effectively a batman type character. ...
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How can I acquire Charm Person/Charm Monster as an SLA for my NPC?

So, I'm creating the overarching villain for a campaign I intend to run - an Osyluth with class levels known as Molkor the Quartermaster - and I want to get him into the Fiend of Corruption prestige ...
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Optimising a Mammoth Rider

I am new to the optimisation business. However, I often encounter a notion that for a two-handed weapons focused fighter is by the level 20 much more efficient than two weapons fighter. On the basis ...
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Which is likely to provide more chances to opportunity attack, Polearm Master or Sentinel (with War Caster)?

I'm wielding a staff focus, which doubles as a quarterstaff; so, it seems that Polearm Master + War Caster allows a PC to cast spells as reactions to enemies that enter its reach. Similarly, ...
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How can I build a character optimised to be able to stay fighting at, or keep from falling to, 0 HP?

Okay, backstory first. This started off with a character concept I was going to call Ivan the Immortal. Essentially, through magical, racial, and class abilities, Ivan was going to be able to either ...
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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 ...
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What is the maximum number of Fireballs a 12th level character can cast in a day?

In a brief RPG General Chat discussion, Yuuki suggested a character idea based around casting fireball as a primary method of combat. I think this would be a fun gag character for a comedic mini-...
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What are good options for a frontline melee with very limited source material?

I recently entered a Planescape campaign with a very rules heavy DM. I rolled stats in order, and now I have to make a character. As long as it stays within these sourcebooks and is neither a druid ...
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Do the Hunter ranger's Extra Attack, Whirlwind Attack, and/or Horde Breaker features work together?

At level 5, all rangers get the Extra Attack feature: Beginning at 5th level, you can attack twice, instead of once, whenever you take the Attack action on your turn. At level 3, the Hunter ranger ...
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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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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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Is there an optimal choice for multiclassing with the aim of optimizing an Arcane Trickster for front-line melee?

The general setting: I want to play a rogue. My party needs me in melee. I want to choose the Arcane Trickster archetype. XGtE and SCAG are allowed. I am aware that these basic assumptions conflict ...
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Is this a time to choose minimum damage per hit over average DPR?

A lot of gamers consistently optimize characters average damage per round. My intuition tells me, though, there are times when your character should be opting for an action that does the highest ...
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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 ...
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Exalted Land Speed Record Build

A while back, my group decided to see if we could come up with a way to get an Exalted Character, with unlimited XP and Personal Artifacts (those that can be worn for example), to run across creation ...
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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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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" ...
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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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For battlefield control, what’s the optimum mix of a Paladin dipping Warlock? [closed]

Brief backstory here, since I feel like Palalock gets enough of a backlash that I want to justify it. My group are longtime 3.5/Pathfinder players dipping our toes into 5e for the first time; we're ...
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The Most Charismatic Man in the World

OK, so the title might be slightly deceptive. This is an optimization question about charisma, but the goal is not to have the highest charisma possible (though builds should definitely crank charisma)...
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What's an optimum build for a set-up character for Pathfinder Society character? [closed]

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 ...
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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.
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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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What feats should I take with my Constructor Psion?

I've been playing a Metacreativity (Constructor) Psion for a few months, and I'm worried that my feat selection is not very good. I've been told by multiple sources that some of the feats that I've ...
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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 ...
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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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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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Is there any point in learning Mage Armor for my Sorcerer if he's Dragonborn?

I've created a Dragonborn sorcerer for my campaign: a largely blaster-type character. One of my friends suggested getting Mage Armor for my sorcerer to improve his survivability: Draconic Resilience ...
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When is it optimal to dip two levels of Barbarian into this human variant fighter build?

I'm possibly going to play a variant human fighter in my next campaign with the GWM feat at level 1. I'm going to specialize Champion and I'm not sure when I should go for reckless attacks. Should I ...