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Thread: Ranger

  1. #181
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    I think the ranger holds up just fine in combat, particularly the hunter subclass.

    A 1st level ranger with an 18 strength and a greatsword, Horde Breaker, and Great Weapon Mastery can make 3 attacks for 6d6+12 damage in a round, assuming 1) that there is more than one enemy (triggering Horde) and 2) that one of her first two 2d6+4 attacks either crits or kills (triggering the GWM feat).

    If she casts Hunter's Mark, she can add a d6 to at least one (and possibly two) of those attacks. That's a solid 7 or 8d6+12 damage in a round, and at first level!

    At 5th level, she gets an Extra Attack (4 attacks doling 8d6+16 damage, plus another d6 or three [11d6+16] if she uses Hunter's Mark effectively).

    At 11th level, she gets Whirlwind, allowing her to attack as many opponents as are around her. Five opponents means at least 5 attacks and 10d6+20 damage. And while I'm not sure exactly how I'd handle Whirlwind as a DM, insofar as the way it functions in conjunction with Extra Attack, Horde, and GWM's bonus attack, I would be inclined to make it an obvious benefit in crowds, above and beyond what she could already do.

    I would definitely allow the GWM's bonus, if it's triggered, above and beyond Whirlwind, and I think I would allow the additionally triggered Horde attack as well. The language of Horde Breaker states that "
    Once on each of your turns when you make a weapon attack, you can make another attack with the same weapon against a different creature that is within 5 feet of the original target and within range of your weapon." Since Horde triggers off of any "weapon attack" and not off of an Attack action, I would allow it along with Whirlwind. (I would not allow Extra Attack, and for the same reason: it triggers off of the Attack action itself, which Whirlwind has replaced.)

    So against five opponents our aforementioned level 11 ranger can make 7 attacks for 14d6+28 damage---plus whatever benefits she may derive from Hunter's Mark (a possible addition of 3d6---giving her a potential 17d6+28 output).

    Of course, she's probably already boosted her strength to 20 and more than likely has guaranteed magical weapon damage to add to her totals, so... yeah.

    Which ever way you slice it, I think it's clear that the ranger can more than hold her own in combat, particularly against large crowds, even if we're dumb enough to reduce the game and characters to some kind of DPR calculus. Against singular foes I'd imagine the paladin stacks up better, as so many of the ranger's benefits depend on having multiple opponents, and as far as a singular burst of 1-round damage the fighter with his Extra Attacks and Action Surge can possibly do more in one big singular spurt, but the ranger, I think, can clearly handle her own on the front lines.

    (If you are fighting a single opponent, by the way, the ranger's damage output is severely reduced. The two attacks at 5th level are about it: paired with Hunter's Mark and the above weapon/strength, that's 6d6+8 per round. Not bad, but she's clearly at her best when she's fighting multiple dudes. I multiclassed my ranger as a level 1 war cleric in order to get the bonus attack(s) per day to help on singular foes---and to help ensure I got an extra attack even when I didn't trigger GWM with a crit or kill.)


    ...as for the beast master subclass, if I were DMing I'd definitely allow animal companions to attack all by their lonesome. I may consider making the command to attack a bonus action, but only on the first round and never as a full action (unless the player wants to try to give his or her companion particularly involved instructions or something).

  2. #182
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    Quote Originally Posted by professorDM View Post
    I think the ranger holds up just fine in combat, particularly the hunter subclass.

    A 1st level ranger with an 18 strength and a greatsword, Horde Breaker, and Great Weapon Mastery can make 3 attacks for 6d6+12 damage in a round, assuming 1) that there is more than one enemy (triggering Horde) and 2) that one of her first two 2d6+4 attacks either crits or kills (triggering the GWM feat).

    If she casts Hunter's Mark, she can add a d6 to at least one (and possibly two) of those attacks. That's a solid 7 or 8d6+12 damage in a round, and at first level!

    At 5th level, she gets an Extra Attack (4 attacks doling 8d6+16 damage, plus another d6 or three [11d6+16] if she uses Hunter's Mark effectively).

    At 11th level, she gets Whirlwind, allowing her to attack as many opponents as are around her. Five opponents means at least 5 attacks and 10d6+20 damage. And while I'm not sure exactly how I'd handle Whirlwind as a DM, insofar as the way it functions in conjunction with Extra Attack, Horde, and GWM's bonus attack, I would be inclined to make it an obvious benefit in crowds, above and beyond what she could already do.

    I would definitely allow the GWM's bonus, if it's triggered, above and beyond Whirlwind, and I think I would allow the additionally triggered Horde attack as well. The language of Horde Breaker states that "
    Once on each of your turns when you make a weapon attack, you can make another attack with the same weapon against a different creature that is within 5 feet of the original target and within range of your weapon." Since Horde triggers off of any "weapon attack" and not off of an Attack action, I would allow it along with Whirlwind. (I would not allow Extra Attack, and for the same reason: it triggers off of the Attack action itself, which Whirlwind has replaced.)

    So against five opponents our aforementioned level 11 ranger can make 7 attacks for 14d6+28 damage---plus whatever benefits she may derive from Hunter's Mark (a possible addition of 3d6---giving her a potential 17d6+28 output).

    Of course, she's probably already boosted her strength to 20 and more than likely has guaranteed magical weapon damage to add to her totals, so... yeah.

    Which ever way you slice it, I think it's clear that the ranger can more than hold her own in combat, particularly against large crowds, even if we're dumb enough to reduce the game and characters to some kind of DPR calculus. Against singular foes I'd imagine the paladin stacks up better, as so many of the ranger's benefits depend on having multiple opponents, and as far as a singular burst of 1-round damage the fighter with his Extra Attacks and Action Surge can possibly do more in one big singular spurt, but the ranger, I think, can clearly handle her own on the front lines.

    (If you are fighting a single opponent, by the way, the ranger's damage output is severely reduced. The two attacks at 5th level are about it: paired with Hunter's Mark and the above weapon/strength, that's 6d6+8 per round. Not bad, but she's clearly at her best when she's fighting multiple dudes. I multiclassed my ranger as a level 1 war cleric in order to get the bonus attack(s) per day to help on singular foes---and to help ensure I got an extra attack even when I didn't trigger GWM with a crit or kill.)


    ...as for the beast master subclass, if I were DMing I'd definitely allow animal companions to attack all by their lonesome. I may consider making the command to attack a bonus action, but only on the first round and never as a full action (unless the player wants to try to give his or her companion particularly involved instructions or something).

    Just so you know, you don't get Horde Breaker until level 3 minimum.

  3. #183
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    Quote Originally Posted by professorDM View Post
    I think the ranger holds up just fine in combat, particularly the hunter subclass.

    A 1st level ranger with an 18 strength and a greatsword, Horde Breaker, and Great Weapon Mastery can make 3 attacks for 6d6+12 damage in a round, assuming 1) that there is more than one enemy (triggering Horde) and 2) that one of her first two 2d6+4 attacks either crits or kills (triggering the GWM feat).

    If she casts Hunter's Mark, she can add a d6 to at least one (and possibly two) of those attacks. That's a solid 7 or 8d6+12 damage in a round, and at first level!

    At 5th level, she gets an Extra Attack (4 attacks doling 8d6+16 damage, plus another d6 or three [11d6+16] if she uses Hunter's Mark effectively).

    At 11th level, she gets Whirlwind, allowing her to attack as many opponents as are around her. Five opponents means at least 5 attacks and 10d6+20 damage. And while I'm not sure exactly how I'd handle Whirlwind as a DM, insofar as the way it functions in conjunction with Extra Attack, Horde, and GWM's bonus attack, I would be inclined to make it an obvious benefit in crowds, above and beyond what she could already do.

    I would definitely allow the GWM's bonus, if it's triggered, above and beyond Whirlwind, and I think I would allow the additionally triggered Horde attack as well. The language of Horde Breaker states that "Once on each of your turns when you make a weapon attack, you can make another attack with the same weapon against a different creature that is within 5 feet of the original target and within range of your weapon." Since Horde triggers off of any "weapon attack" and not off of an Attack action, I would allow it along with Whirlwind. (I would not allow Extra Attack, and for the same reason: it triggers off of the Attack action itself, which Whirlwind has replaced.)

    So against five opponents our aforementioned level 11 ranger can make 7 attacks for 14d6+28 damage---plus whatever benefits she may derive from Hunter's Mark (a possible addition of 3d6---giving her a potential 17d6+28 output).

    Of course, she's probably already boosted her strength to 20 and more than likely has guaranteed magical weapon damage to add to her totals, so... yeah.

    Which ever way you slice it, I think it's clear that the ranger can more than hold her own in combat, particularly against large crowds, even if we're dumb enough to reduce the game and characters to some kind of DPR calculus. Against singular foes I'd imagine the paladin stacks up better, as so many of the ranger's benefits depend on having multiple opponents, and as far as a singular burst of 1-round damage the fighter with his Extra Attacks and Action Surge can possibly do more in one big singular spurt, but the ranger, I think, can clearly handle her own on the front lines.

    (If you are fighting a single opponent, by the way, the ranger's damage output is severely reduced. The two attacks at 5th level are about it: paired with Hunter's Mark and the above weapon/strength, that's 6d6+8 per round. Not bad, but she's clearly at her best when she's fighting multiple dudes. I multiclassed my ranger as a level 1 war cleric in order to get the bonus attack(s) per day to help on singular foes---and to help ensure I got an extra attack even when I didn't trigger GWM with a crit or kill.).
    Remember this.
    The bonus attacks from Horde Breaker, GWM feat, and WWA is split up on many targets. So the monsters might survive.
    And if you don't kill those targets, you are now surrounded.
    CR2 and CR3 monsters have 50-70 HP!

    This is why many rangers will go ranged as it doesn't get you "flanked" when you do AOE.
    Sometimes killing 1 guy is betting than wounding 3 as it removes enemy actions.
    Melee rangers won't be that good until rangers get some good splatbook buff spells.
    XP OpsKT gave XP for this post

  4. #184
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bryk View Post
    Just so you know, you don't get Horde Breaker until level 3 minimum.
    Oh yeah. Thanks!

  5. #185
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    Quote Originally Posted by Minigiant View Post
    Remember this.
    The bonus attacks from Horde Breaker, GWM feat, and WWA is split up on many targets. So the monsters might survive.
    And if you don't kill those targets, you are now surrounded.
    CR2 and CR3 monsters have 50-70 HP!

    This is why many rangers will go ranged as it doesn't get you "flanked" when you do AOE.
    Sometimes killing 1 guy is betting than wounding 3 as it removes enemy actions.
    Melee rangers won't be that good until rangers get some good splatbook buff spells.
    Yeah, I'd say the goal is to be surrounded. She's also given a progressive set of defensive abilities versus crowds as well.

    That said, you don't have to leap into the middle of 5 or 6 guys if you don't think you've got a good chance at 1) picking them off or 2) avoiding their counter attacks. From 5th level on, all you need is two targets within five feet of one another (or within five feet of you) to deal 8 or 11d6+16 damage. Ain't a thing wrong with that.

    And while, yes, a ranged ranger is always an option, too (Volley is friggin incredible), I don't think there's a thing deficient about a frontline melee ranger as an option, and that's what I was trying to argue.

  6. #186
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    Quote Originally Posted by professorDM View Post
    Yeah, I'd say the goal is to be surrounded. She's also given a progressive set of defensive abilities versus crowds as well.

    That said, you don't have to leap into the middle of 5 or 6 guys if you don't think you've got a good chance at 1) picking them off or 2) avoiding their counter attacks. From 5th level on, all you need is two targets within five feet of one another (or within five feet of you) to deal 8 or 11d6+16 damage. Ain't a thing wrong with that.

    And while, yes, a ranged ranger is always an option, too (Volley is friggin incredible), I don't think there's a thing deficient about a frontline melee ranger as an option, and that's what I was trying to argue.
    Melee rangers aren't bad. Just saying that adding up the damage is deceiving. The damage is split up.

    A level 5 hunter ranger and Horde Breaker makes 2 attacks on one enemy and 1 attack on another.

    Volley is meh too. The area and damage isn't too hot.

  7. #187
    Quote Originally Posted by MortalPlague View Post
    In my Tyranny of Dragons playtest, the ranger had the highest damage output of the whole group. She was reliably hitting for lots of damage, right up until a dragon ate her. It was a TPK, mind you, against a wildly superior foe...

    The new PCs have a ranger too (different player), and she's doing plenty of damage, hitting often, and using spells to good effect. Hunter's mark and lightning arrow are both excellent spells for damage.

    For the record, both were hunter rangers with colossus slayer.
    Not to revive a dead thread, but I made a similar character: Hunter 15/Assassin 5 with Horde Breaker. Launching two lightening-arrow enhanced volleys within five feet of each other resulted in an essential "carpet bomb." Each arrow was treated as an individual spell that resulted an AoE greater than that of the volley and was able to treat them as assassination attempts. DPS was enough to leave a giant crater in the ground out to 600'. Hide, volley, move, repeat. All attacks ignored anything less then full cover, I might add, and the only time I wasn't able to pull assassinations was if something somehow went before me and that's only good for a turn. Melee combat was irrelevant with a +20 stealth check in absolutely anywhere, and if I needed to fight a single opponent, I always carried plenty of poisons.

    For the record, Horde Breaker does not explicitly say you have to target an enemy, only an adjacent creature. Ants are creatures last I checked....


    My character sheet is attached if anyone has questions.
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Last edited by UptownMotown; Thursday, 7th May, 2015 at 07:44 AM.

  8. #188
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    Quote Originally Posted by UptownMotown View Post
    Not to revive a dead thread, but I made a similar character: Hunter 15/Assassin 5 with Horde Breaker. Launching two lightening-arrow enhanced volleys within five feet of each other resulted in an essential "carpet bomb." Each arrow was treated as an individual spell that resulted an AoE greater than that of the volley and was able to treat them as assassination attempts. DPS was enough to leave a giant crater in the ground out to 600'.
    Lightning arrow only applies to one attack. The rule is "if you are making an attack roll, you are making an attack." You can make lots of attacks with Volley, but only the first one will get the lightning arrow effect.

    Of course, if your DM is fine with it, feel free to nuke the monsters.

    As a random aside, I was just running some numbers and noticed that lower level rangers have exceptional damage output if they can consistently get multiple opponents near each other and make use of horde breaker. And hunter's mark just boosts it through the roof. I mean, if you go TWF, you are making 4 attacks at level 5. Only the monk can compete, and he doesn't have hunter's mark. The downside is that their class-based damage output (not counting the 11th level multiattack features or spells) levels off when they max their attack stat (so probably around 8th level) and from that point on their basic attacks don't get any better. However, it does level off at a really nice place and it takes other classes quite some time to catch up with them. I had already done some damage analysis at max levels, but I didn't realize how much of a powerhouse the ranger was at low through mid-levels.

  9. #189
    Because the duration of Lightening Arrow is a concentration check with a duration up to one minute and includes any attack made during the spell's duration, our DM had no reason to say it couldn't work as long as the checks were made. That made things extremely fun.
    Volley also modifies the attack action and is itself treated as one attack; not much different from the Volley found in the Pathfinder games.
    Last edited by UptownMotown; Thursday, 7th May, 2015 at 08:45 AM.

  10. #190
    The other point I'd add with Horde Breaker is that it works well for melee characters when in tandem with Escape the Horde and Stand Against the Tide. Not only do opponents have disadvantage when making opportunity attacks against you, they run the risk of hitting their adjacent buddy if they miss.
    Last edited by UptownMotown; Saturday, 9th May, 2015 at 12:34 PM.

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