5E Arcane Trickster / Wizard: Diviner or Bladesinger? Ranged or Melee? - Page 2
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  1. #11
    So it turns out the bard has decided to be a lore bard and focus on CC/debuffs, which swings me more to the striker role. Also, between the bard, the tempest cleric, and maybe the druid to an extent, it seems like there will be some nice opportunities for booming blade related combos: spirit guardians, cloud of daggers, etc. (I was thinking that Booming Blade + Dissonant Whispers would be a great go-to combo, but evidently Crawford has said that movement from DW is not considered "willing", so does not trigger the BB rider, though it does provoke AoOs. Seems weird to me. Might ask my DM what she thinks.)

    So now what I'm thinking is to start AT 3 / Bladesinger 2, then:
    * L6/AT4 (elven accuracy)
    * L7/BS3 (shadow blade)
    * L8/BS4 (resilient (CON) or war caster, two 3rd level slots)
    * L9/AT5 (uncanny dodge, 3d6 SA)
    ------- Then, either Option 1 (focus on ASI/rogue features):
    * L10/AT6 (expertise, a third 3rd level slot)
    * L11/AT7 (evasion, 4d6 SA)
    * L12/AT8 (warcaster, resilient (CON), or +2 DEX)
    * L13/AT9 (magical ambush, 5d6 SA, 4th level slot)
    * L14/BS5 (3rd level spells, a second 4th level slot)
    * L15/BS6 (extra attack, a 5th level slot)
    ----- or Option 2 (focus on extra attack, 3rd level spells):
    * L10/BS5 (3rd level spells, a third 3rd level slot)
    * L11/BS6 (extra attack, a 4th level slot)
    * L12/AT6 (expertise, a second 4th level slot)
    * L13/AT7 (evasion, 4d6 SA)
    * L14/AT8 (warcaster, resilient (CON) or +2 DEX)
    * L15/AT9 (magical ambush, 5th level slot)
    ----- Either way, targeting AT9/BS6 at L15

    Option 1 is probably better if I'm getting a lot of mileage out of booming blade (either activating the movement rider or setting up no-win situations), if I have more concerns about survivability, or if I'm often relying on sources of advantage that only work for one attack. Option 2 is probably better if I'm consistently able to get whole-turn advantage, BB is not often yielding the extra damage, and I'm not as worried about survival.

    Either way, I think that 9/6 combination is a big power jump. At that point it has:

    Offense:
    * Two attacks with a 4d8 psychic weapon for one encounter a day, and up to 6 more with 3d8, with superadvantage on both attacks when not in bright light.
    * 5d6 sneak attack

    Defense:
    * An AC of 19
    * Concentration saves at +5 or +9 with advantage (depending on the third ASI/feat)
    * Some of the best of defensive rogue abilities (cunning action disengage, uncanny dodge, evasion), plus shield and absorb elements

    Casting and Utility:
    * Familiar cast as a ritual
    * 3rd level spells buffed by magical ambush with seven slots to use them with, four of which are at higher levels
    * Expertise in 4 skills

    From there there are several directions I could go: AT 13 / BS 7 taking DEX to 20 and INT to 18, AT 11 / BS 9 for 5th level spells, probably leaving DEX at 18 and taking INT to 20, AT 12 / BS 8 to get both stats to 20, or even AT 9 / BS 11 for 6th level spells and a 7th level slot. You can only get DEX and INT to 18 in this scenario, but if you only cast while hiding you're still more effective at landing those two 6th level spells than a 20th level bladesinger.

    Compared to a single class AT, here's what I get and give up...

    Pros:
    * Higher AC and concentration bonus
    * Higher DPR when using shadow blade at its highest available level and can get advantage for the full turn (any time in dim lighting, against prone/restrained enemies, etc).
    * 3rd and 4th level spells several levels earlier
    * A lot more (and more powerful) spell slots at any given level

    Cons:
    * Behind by an ASI from level 10 on, and depending on path, maybe 2 for levels 12 and 13
    * Delay nice abilities like uncanny dodge, expertise, evasion, magical ambush, reliable talent
    * Miss out on slippery mind, and maybe versatile trickster

    Compared to a single class Bladesinger...

    Pros:
    * Better survivability due to cunning action, uncanny dodge, evasion
    * More effective in late game at landing 3rd-4th level save spells when hidden
    * More and better skills and at will non-combat abilities

    Cons:
    * Not a full caster
    * Behind by one ASI for levels 12 and 13.
    * Lags in DPR from levels 6-10 when full turn advantage is available

    One thing I'm wondering is which class to take as the starting class. Rogue gives DEX saves, an extra skill and hand crossbow proficiency. Wizard gives WIS saves. As an elf I'll have advantage against charm effects, giving some limited protection against WIS effects, but on the other hand my WIS will never go above +1, at some point I'll get evasion, and absorb elements can be applied to many DEX saves, so going rogue first leaves me fairly vulnerable to WIS effects that aren't charms. Would you rather shrug off DEX saves almost completely and be vulnerable on non-charm WIS saves, or be decently good at both?
    Last edited by Esker; Monday, 17th September, 2018 at 09:22 PM.

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