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5E 4th level Bladesinger with same AC as Tarrasque

imagicnation

Archmage
So I have a 4th level bladesinger in my game who essentially has the same AC as Tarrasque...

10 + 3 (from 16 DEX) + 4 (from 18 INT) + 3 (from Mage Armor) +5 (from Shield) = 25

So he essentially can only be hit with crits... how would you deal with this??
 

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Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
So I have a 4th level bladesinger in my game who essentially has the same AC as Tarrasque...

10 + 3 (from 16 DEX) + 4 (from 18 INT) + 3 (from Mage Armor) +5 (from Shield) = 25

So he essentially can only be hit with crits... how would you deal with this??
This is done using two limited resources. You can hit this AC exactly seven times a day, in encounters you have Bladesong up, and at the expense of being a wizard in any other meaningful way. The EK fighter is sitting at a base 20 all the time (21 with defensive style) and can do this 3 times a day, giving up only a little of their shtick to do it.

Wait until you realize that at 4th level, you can rock a 20AC with disadvantage to attackers by using blur, 3 fights a day, and still peak up to 25 AC 4 times.

This really isn't a problem because the Bladesinger is spending all of their resources to do something a Fighter mostly does without effort, so they're not being the Wizard, just a dodgy fighter. The Bladesinger is much better used as a Wizard that can survive melee rather than a melee combatant that's occasionally a wizard. The lack of hp and poor saves vs CON and DEX mean that a lot of things really hammer a Bladesinger on the front lines. What's really killer is a foe that just knocks the Bladesinger prone, because AC and blur don't help with that at all, nor does Bladesong. Two enemies that knock prone and grapple make the Bladesinger easy prey for anyone else, and it's unlikely they'll have an easy time escaping -- even if they do, they aren't doing anything else.
 

DM Dave1

Adventurer
Given that shield lasts one round and uses up a spell every time, the bladesinger can do this at most 3 times (having already cast Mage Armor) or perhaps 5 times (due to Arcane Recovery) before dipping into their 2nd level spell slots on any given adventuring day. If that's how the player wishes to play their character.

So, perhaps be sure to set up a combat now and then that has mobs so you can use mob rules (DMG p250). Or once in a while smarter enemies might notice the shield go up once or twice in a combat and then might try to do something that gives advantage on attacks against the bladesinger - knocking them prone, pack tactics, blinding them with sand to the eyes, etc.

Or, what @TwoSix and @Ovinomancer said.
 
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Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
This is done using two limited resources. You can hit this AC exactly seven times a day, in encounters you have Bladesong up, and at the expense of being a wizard in any other meaningful way. The EK fighter is sitting at a base 20 all the time (21 with defensive style) and can do this 3 times a day, giving up only a little of their shtick to do it.

Wait until you realize that at 4th level, you can rock a 20AC with disadvantage to attackers by using blur, 3 fights a day, and still peak up to 25 AC 4 times.

This really isn't a problem because the Bladesinger is spending all of their resources to do something a Fighter mostly does without effort, so they're not being the Wizard, just a dodgy fighter. The Bladesinger is much better used as a Wizard that can survive melee rather than a melee combatant that's occasionally a wizard. The lack of hp and poor saves vs CON and DEX mean that a lot of things really hammer a Bladesinger on the front lines. What's really killer is a foe that just knocks the Bladesinger prone, because AC and blur don't help with that at all, nor does Bladesong. Two enemies that knock prone and grapple make the Bladesinger easy prey for anyone else, and it's unlikely they'll have an easy time escaping -- even if they do, they aren't doing anything else.
The real Move is to take your first level in Fighter for the extra early-game HP, Second Wind, Defense fighting style, and proficiency in Con saves. Your Dex saves should be OK thanks to high Dex, and if you fail a save against a damaging spell there’s always Absorb Elements.

Granted, you’re still using all of your Wizard resources just to be a Fighter with lower HP. But that’s in whiteroom world, where situations where you would want to cast a spell to do anything but boost your AC never occur. In actual play, Bladesingers are awesomely versatile characters who can switch between the tank, blaster, and controller roles as the situation demands.
 

Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
I agree the Terrasque has fairly low AC, but if you give him Sorcerer levels he can Shield, Blur, or even cast Fly.
Heh, I agree it's a low AC, but in my homebrewed version of the Tarrasque, I kept the the AC, but made the Tarrasque the size of a small town (it's effectively it's own large battlemap instead of a big creature on a normal map) AND made it immune to normal weapons of any kind, except in specific spots of the Tarrasque that, well, aren't very safe. So, yeah, still pretty easy to hit at the levels we're talking about, but not at all like a normal monster.
 


Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
The real Move is to take your first level in Fighter for the extra early-game HP, Second Wind, Defense fighting style, and proficiency in Con saves. Your Dex saves should be OK thanks to high Dex, and if you fail a save against a damaging spell there’s always Absorb Elements.

Granted, you’re still using all of your Wizard resources just to be a Fighter with lower HP. But that’s in whiteroom world, where situations where you would want to cast a spell to do anything but boost your AC never occur. In actual play, Bladesingers are awesomely versatile characters who can switch between the tank, blaster, and controller roles as the situation demands.
They are very versatile -- I love Bladesingers, matter of fact. The cost of that versatility is that using it dilutes being an effective wizard. I see it as a fair trade -- you burn resources another wizard is using for different effects to be able to hang in melee, even occasionally defensively excel. Perfectly fine, for me. I don't have any problem with the OP situation -- plenty of game left around 25 ACs.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
They are very versatile -- I love Bladesingers, matter of fact. The cost of that versatility is that using it dilutes being an effective wizard. I see it as a fair trade -- you burn resources another wizard is using for different effects to be able to hang in melee, even occasionally defensively excel. Perfectly fine, for me. I don't have any problem with the OP situation -- plenty of game left around 25 ACs.
Agreed. As a magic player, I think of it a bit like modal cards. Each mode is slightly less efficient for its cost than the same effect would be on its own, but it’s usually worth it to have the other options available.
 

MarkB

Legend
Given that shield lasts one round and uses up a spell every time, the bladesinger can do this at most 3 times (having already cast Mage Armor) or perhaps 5 times (due to Arcane Recovery) before dipping into their 2nd level spell slots on any given adventuring day. If that's how the player wishes to play their character.

So, perhaps be sure to set up a combat no and then that has mobs so you can use mob rules (DMG p250). Or once in a while smarter enemies might notice the shield go up once or twice in a combat and then might try to do something that gives advantage on attacks against the bladesinger - knocking them prone, pack tactics, blinding them with sand to the eyes, etc.

Or, what @TwoSix and @Ovinomancer said.
Shield also takes a reaction, so provoke him into making an opportunity attack.
 



dnd4vr

The Smurfiest Wizard Ever!
So I have a 4th level bladesinger in my game who essentially has the same AC as Tarrasque...

10 + 3 (from 16 DEX) + 4 (from 18 INT) + 3 (from Mage Armor) +5 (from Shield) = 25

So he essentially can only be hit with crits... how would you deal with this??
Wait for him to run out of shield spells. Oh, and anyone with a +6 mod (easy even at level 4) to attacks can hit with a 19 or 20...

Also, a dispel magic would stop his shield and mage armor immediately--no check required. ;)
 

As the earlier posters said, there are many ways to deal with a Bladesinger. What I would recommend is to not over do as to gimp the character. A bladesinger is a versatile character that is fun to play as long as the DM gives a fair chance.

The main problem seems to be, again, a monotype style of encounters. This is fairly common problem. As soon as a lot of your encounters includes more than one type of monsters (ideally 3 or more) a high AC is no longer a problem. A single acolyte can cast a bless spell, two thugs can grab and restain the charcacter forcing him to use more resources.

Yes, there are times that such high AC will be a pain in the ass. But it is also true that it comes at a high price and remember one thing:"Every character should have a chance to shine. "
 


Dude; at 4th level he as 4/2 slots.

He spends 1 on Mage Armor, leaving him enough spell slots for 5 rounds worth of shield spells and no other magic at all for the rest of the day.

If a Wizard is wading into melee, and blowing his precious spell slots on shield, while swinging a sword about the place, then that's a total win for the Monsters.
 

Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
This really isn't a problem because the Bladesinger is spending all of their resources to do something a Fighter mostly does without effort, so they're not being the Wizard, just a dodgy fighter. The Bladesinger is much better used as a Wizard that can survive melee rather than a melee combatant that's occasionally a wizard. The lack of hp and poor saves vs CON and DEX mean that a lot of things really hammer a Bladesinger on the front lines. What's really killer is a foe that just knocks the Bladesinger prone, because AC and blur don't help with that at all, nor does Bladesong. Two enemies that knock prone and grapple make the Bladesinger easy prey for anyone else, and it's unlikely they'll have an easy time escaping -- even if they do, they aren't doing anything else.

The thing is, the bladesigner is not a good "gish". You can use your magic to enhance your sword-fighting, but with lackluster result. And your sword-fighting doesn't enhance your spell-casting. Almost any other build is better at fighting.

Now if you multi-class... then maybe it can work.
 

FrogReaver

As long as i get to be the frog
So I have a 4th level bladesinger in my game who essentially has the same AC as Tarrasque...

10 + 3 (from 16 DEX) + 4 (from 18 INT) + 3 (from Mage Armor) +5 (from Shield) = 25

So he essentially can only be hit with crits... how would you deal with this??

Have enemies push him prone then grapple him. Nearly doubling your chance to hit/crit him will feel good.
 

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