Why should we bring you with us?

I’ve given you the advice that you should focus on how your character can help the team they work for, not how they can be awesome by themselves. But what does this mean? Think of your D&D character like an elite team of specialists: Why are we bringing you with us? In Mass Effect I bring Tali for her ability to break into anything and hack bad guys. I bring Liara because she can toss enemies into the air so I can pick them off with ease. Why would I bring you?

So, lets assume I always have the option of bringing the four core characters; A fighter, a cleric, a wizard and a Thief/Rogue/whatever.

Being awesome doesn’t mean you can help the party. No one is going to call a straight class fighter with the obvious feats awesome. However, he can help the part a lot.  For example Suppose you make a character that no one can harm. However, you can’t harm anyone else. I don’t really see any reason to bring you along, as the enemies are just going to walk around you and attack the rest of the party. The fighter is going to be more help, as if enemies try and slip past him, he can smack them upside the head.
This is an actual example from play: A bunch of gamers, skilled ones that I respect, created a series of fighters with crazy high con and some feats when 4e was new. That meant they got temp HP every time they were hit or some such. However, they drained all their other stats to boost con, so that they’d get more temp HP and be invincible. However, since they didn’t have much strength, and all their feats were in that special ability, everyone else could just walk past them; their marks didn’t have any force behind them.

Then there was the fighter with too many HP to die. He dumped everything into HP, all his feats, stats, everything. No one could touch him. I think he did OK damage as well. However, he had no defence, so he always was taking hits, and thus after battle it would drain a crazy amount of the clerics spells to heal him back up. In my opinion he was more of a drain on the party then a boon. I’d rather have your standard, run of the mill fighter, that isn’t going to suck my cleric dry after every fight.

See? These characters, made by decent and sometimes great, players, don’t help the party much. Sure, they’ve are really awesome. They’d work great as the star of a book, but they don’t work well on a team. D&D isn’t a story about Snake Plissken; it is a story about The A-Team. When building a character think: What am I going to do to help the party? Sure, this is a great ability, but is it contributing anything?

Think on that, and next time I’ll plumb the depths of the horrid jack of all trades.
Until then, stay geeky
—Canageek

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Published in: on May 6, 2013 at 12:56 am  Leave a Comment  
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