Level Up (A5E) Adepts appear to make really good fighters.

Jacob Vardy

Explorer
I was wondering how a dragonborn's claws would work with an adept. And then wondered what an adept would look like in heavy armour. And it turns out a lot of their features still work pretty well when grafted on to a fighter base. So, a level one fighter, level three adept. In full plate.

I wrote it up like a monster stat bloc because that is how i hope to use it. I don't think it'd work all that well as a PC but in the single encounter lifespan of an NPC it looks kinda explosive. I gave it a CR of 4 because although the rest of the stats are around a CR 2 the AC is around a CR 15.

DRAGONBOUND MARAUDER​

Fanatical devotees of their draconic masters. Frequently used as assassins, except there is little subtlety about them.

MEDIUM (DRAGONBORN) HUMANOID, CHALLENGE 4, 700 XP
AC 18 (full plate)
HP 30 (1d10+3d8; bloodied 15)
Speed 30 ft.
STR DEX CON INT WIS CHA
18 (+4) 14 (+2) 12 (+1) 10 (+0) 14 (+2) 08 (-1)​
Proficiency +6; Manoeuvre DC 15, Exertion Points 5
Senses passive Perception 7
Languages Chondathan (Common), Draconic.
Claws. The marauder grows retractable claws from the tips of their fingers. Extending or retracting the claws requires no action. The claws are natural weapons, which the marauder can use to make unarmed strikes that deal slashing damage equal to 1d4+4
Deflect Missiles The marauder can use their reaction to deflect or catch the missile when they are hit by a ranged weapon attack. When the marauder does so, the damage the marauder takes from the attack is reduced by 1d10+5.
Dragon Breath Drawing upon great reservoirs of draconic power, the marauder can unleash magical destruction upon their foes. The marauder can use their dragon breath as an action. It is 30 ft. line 5 ft. wide. The damage is 3d6 fire, with Dex saving throw DC 11 for half damage
Dragonbound Boon A marauder’s final action will tend to be a modified message spell, telling their master the time, place, and cause of the marauder’s downfall.
Exertion Focus - Patient Defence The marauder can spend 1 exertion to take the Dodge action as a bonus action on their turn.
Great Weapon Fighting When the marauder rolls a 1 or 2 on a damage die for an attack they make with a melee weapon that the marauder is wielding with two hands, the marauder can reroll the die and must use the new roll, even if the new roll is a 1 or a 2. The weapon must have the two-handed or versatile property for the marauder to gain this benefit.
Horse-chopper. The marauder wields a zhanmadao, a sword for fighting large creatures. It is a straight, thin, single edged, greatsword. It has the heavy, two-handed, and vicious qualities.
Combat Manoeuvres
Dangerous Strikes (1 point) The execution and follow-through of the marauder’s strike is exquisite with not an iota of force wasted. When the marauder activates this manoeuvre, they take the Attack action and make a weapon attack, as well as any additional attacks granted by Extra Attack. Until the start of their next turn, their weapon attacks score a critical hit on a roll of 19–20. If the marauder already has a feature that increases the range of their critical hits, their critical hit range increases by 1 (maximum 17–20).
Gaze Of Conviction (2 points) The marauder locks eyes with an opponent with a fury so potent that it cannot be ignored. The marauder stares down a creature they can see within 30 feet, and if it can see the marauder it makes a Wisdom saving throw. On a failure, the creature is compelled to attack the marauder. On its turn the creature moves towards the marauder and makes as many attacks against the marauder as it can. The effects of this manoeuvre end when the marauder attacks a different creature or the creature is unable to attack you.
Lean Into It (2 points) Not just commiting to an assault, the marauder shoulder into it with all the strength the marauder can bear and deliver hits that resonate in the very bones of their foes. When the marauder activates this manoeuvre, the marauder takes the Attack action and makes a weapon attack, as well as any additional attacks granted by Extra Attack. Until the start of their next turn, when the marauder hits a creature with a melee weapon attack it makes a Strength saving throw or it is knocked prone.
Purge Magic
(1 point) As soon as their senses seize upon the uttering of an incantation or a hand working the gestures of magic their body reflexively reacts with violence. When a creature the marauder can see within their reach casts a spell, the marauder can use their reaction to make a melee weapon attack against it.
Rapid Drink (2 points) As casually as any seasoned alchemist, the marauder plucks the cork from a magical concoction and pours it down their throat or a companion’s. The marauder drinks a potion or administers a potion to a creature within reach.
Zealous Stance (1 point) (stance) By submitting to their fervour the marauder make themself vulnerable but gain an edge on their opponents. When the marauder makes their first attack on their turn, the marauder can decide to gain an expertise die on melee weapon attack rolls until the start of their next turn. When the marauder does so, until the start of their next turn attack rolls against the marauder gain an expertise die.
ACTIONS
Horse-chopper. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 10 (2d6+4) slashing damage. Critical on a 19-20.

Round
0. Fire breath 3d6 dex save
  1. Lean into it (2 points)
  2. Dangerous strikes (1 point)
  3. Battle meditation
BONUS ACTIONS
  1. Gaze Of Conviction, (2 points)
  2. Zealous Stance (1 point) +1d4 to hit
  3. Dodge, (1 point) attacks are at disadvantage, DEX saves at advantage
  4. Rapid drink
REACTIONS
Purge magic
Deflect missiles
 

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lichmaster

Adventurer
I was wondering how a dragonborn's claws would work with an adept. And then wondered what an adept would look like in heavy armour. And it turns out a lot of their features still work pretty well when grafted on to a fighter base. So, a level one fighter, level three adept. In full plate.

I wrote it up like a monster stat bloc because that is how i hope to use it. I don't think it'd work all that well as a PC but in the single encounter lifespan of an NPC it looks kinda explosive. I gave it a CR of 4 because although the rest of the stats are around a CR 2 the AC is around a CR 15.

DRAGONBOUND MARAUDER​

Fanatical devotees of their draconic masters. Frequently used as assassins, except there is little subtlety about them.

MEDIUM (DRAGONBORN) HUMANOID, CHALLENGE 4, 700 XP
AC 18 (full plate)
HP 30 (1d10+3d8; bloodied 15)
Speed 30 ft.
STR DEX CON INT WIS CHA
18 (+4) 14 (+2) 12 (+1) 10 (+0) 14 (+2) 08 (-1)​
Proficiency +6; Manoeuvre DC 15, Exertion Points 5
Senses passive Perception 7
Languages Chondathan (Common), Draconic.
Claws. The marauder grows retractable claws from the tips of their fingers. Extending or retracting the claws requires no action. The claws are natural weapons, which the marauder can use to make unarmed strikes that deal slashing damage equal to 1d4+4
Deflect Missiles The marauder can use their reaction to deflect or catch the missile when they are hit by a ranged weapon attack. When the marauder does so, the damage the marauder takes from the attack is reduced by 1d10+5.
Dragon Breath Drawing upon great reservoirs of draconic power, the marauder can unleash magical destruction upon their foes. The marauder can use their dragon breath as an action. It is 30 ft. line 5 ft. wide. The damage is 3d6 fire, with Dex saving throw DC 11 for half damage
Dragonbound Boon A marauder’s final action will tend to be a modified message spell, telling their master the time, place, and cause of the marauder’s downfall.
Exertion Focus - Patient Defence The marauder can spend 1 exertion to take the Dodge action as a bonus action on their turn.
Great Weapon Fighting When the marauder rolls a 1 or 2 on a damage die for an attack they make with a melee weapon that the marauder is wielding with two hands, the marauder can reroll the die and must use the new roll, even if the new roll is a 1 or a 2. The weapon must have the two-handed or versatile property for the marauder to gain this benefit.
Horse-chopper. The marauder wields a zhanmadao, a sword for fighting large creatures. It is a straight, thin, single edged, greatsword. It has the heavy, two-handed, and vicious qualities.
Combat Manoeuvres
Dangerous Strikes (1 point) The execution and follow-through of the marauder’s strike is exquisite with not an iota of force wasted. When the marauder activates this manoeuvre, they take the Attack action and make a weapon attack, as well as any additional attacks granted by Extra Attack. Until the start of their next turn, their weapon attacks score a critical hit on a roll of 19–20. If the marauder already has a feature that increases the range of their critical hits, their critical hit range increases by 1 (maximum 17–20).
Gaze Of Conviction (2 points) The marauder locks eyes with an opponent with a fury so potent that it cannot be ignored. The marauder stares down a creature they can see within 30 feet, and if it can see the marauder it makes a Wisdom saving throw. On a failure, the creature is compelled to attack the marauder. On its turn the creature moves towards the marauder and makes as many attacks against the marauder as it can. The effects of this manoeuvre end when the marauder attacks a different creature or the creature is unable to attack you.
Lean Into It (2 points) Not just commiting to an assault, the marauder shoulder into it with all the strength the marauder can bear and deliver hits that resonate in the very bones of their foes. When the marauder activates this manoeuvre, the marauder takes the Attack action and makes a weapon attack, as well as any additional attacks granted by Extra Attack. Until the start of their next turn, when the marauder hits a creature with a melee weapon attack it makes a Strength saving throw or it is knocked prone.
Purge Magic
(1 point) As soon as their senses seize upon the uttering of an incantation or a hand working the gestures of magic their body reflexively reacts with violence. When a creature the marauder can see within their reach casts a spell, the marauder can use their reaction to make a melee weapon attack against it.
Rapid Drink (2 points) As casually as any seasoned alchemist, the marauder plucks the cork from a magical concoction and pours it down their throat or a companion’s. The marauder drinks a potion or administers a potion to a creature within reach.
Zealous Stance (1 point) (stance) By submitting to their fervour the marauder make themself vulnerable but gain an edge on their opponents. When the marauder makes their first attack on their turn, the marauder can decide to gain an expertise die on melee weapon attack rolls until the start of their next turn. When the marauder does so, until the start of their next turn attack rolls against the marauder gain an expertise die.
ACTIONS
Horse-chopper. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 10 (2d6+4) slashing damage. Critical on a 19-20.

Round
0. Fire breath 3d6 dex save
  1. Lean into it (2 points)
  2. Dangerous strikes (1 point)
  3. Battle meditation
BONUS ACTIONS
  1. Gaze Of Conviction, (2 points)
  2. Zealous Stance (1 point) +1d4 to hit
  3. Dodge, (1 point) attacks are at disadvantage, DEX saves at advantage
  4. Rapid drink
REACTIONS
Purge magic
Deflect missiles
That's interesting, but maybe it's even cooler if you start with a Juggernaugt Berserker. You gain proeficiency in heavy armor, are not slowed down by heavy armor and its weight doesn't count when worn. And of course you can rage! A horse-chopper wielding, raging, full plated monk must be fun to play with!
 

It's a thing going round!

I also immediately thought of Treantmonk! Have you seen his followup?
That's interesting, but maybe it's even cooler if you start with a Juggernaugt Berserker. You gain proeficiency in heavy armor, are not slowed down by heavy armor and its weight doesn't count when worn. And of course you can rage! A horse-chopper wielding, raging, full plated monk must be fun to play with!
I LOVE A5e's flexibility. I think this is an excellent observation and, as a side effect, highlights just how many options you have in A5e when you start digging into the details.
 


Jacob Vardy

Explorer
That's interesting, but maybe it's even cooler if you start with a Juggernaugt Berserker. You gain proeficiency in heavy armor, are not slowed down by heavy armor and its weight doesn't count when worn. And of course you can rage! A horse-chopper wielding, raging, full plated monk must be fun to play with!
ooooooh
EDIT.
First thought, cool!!!! As above.
Second thought, surely you'd have to drop one of the combat maneuvers? But nope, the four used are all covered by adept and berserker. Although you do need to take two levels of berserker to get those combat maneuvers. But the Furious Critical - Furious Momentum makes it more than worth it. With that, Dangerous Strikes, and a zhanmadao (horse-chopper), you can have a 20% chance of a critical. Take the Surgical Combatant feat and you don't even have to spend exertion, just rages.

EDIT I miss understood Furious Momentum.
 
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ZehirDisciple

Explorer
I am not to familiar with A5e, but assuming CR is calculated roughly the same as O5e, then CR 4 seems off.

I get a defensive CR of 1 (from 30 HP and AC 18) and an offensive CR of 2, so about 1.5 total which I would round up to 2 given all the options this guy has.

Also, you have the proficiency bonus listed as +6, but shouldn't be +2? You seem to have calculated the to hit bonus with the correct prof. bonus (+2), but listed incorrectly in the stat block.
 

WarDriveWorley

Adventurer
I pointed out to some of my players that with the correct feat/ability choices you can totally make a str Adept/Rogue that gets sneak attack with a greatsword so this doesn't surprise me too much.
 

lichmaster

Adventurer
I pointed out to some of my players that with the correct feat/ability choices you can totally make a str Adept/Rogue that gets sneak attack with a greatsword so this doesn't surprise me too much.
I'm wondering how. Sneak attack specifies that the weapon must be finesse or ranged.
Adept weaponry allows to take weapons that you can't normally use as adept weapons, and use them as such. But it doesn't say they become finesse weapons.
 

WarDriveWorley

Adventurer
I'm wondering how. Sneak attack specifies that the weapon must be finesse or ranged.
Adept weaponry allows to take weapons that you can't normally use as adept weapons, and use them as such. But it doesn't say they become finesse weapons.
By using the NIghtstalker feat on page 389. Second bullet point says "You may deal Sneak Attack damage when making attacks using unarmed strikes or adept weapons." Since the adept focus feature "Adept Weaponry" says the chosen weapons count as adept weapons for you they would qualify for sneak attack under the feat.
 

lichmaster

Adventurer
By using the NIghtstalker feat on page 389. Second bullet point says "You may deal Sneak Attack damage when making attacks using unarmed strikes or adept weapons." Since the adept focus feature "Adept Weaponry" says the chosen weapons count as adept weapons for you they would qualify for sneak attack under the feat.
Right, I was quickly looking for some feats that could allow for something similar but I didn't find any. Thanks for pointing it out.
Given the feats and class combo you need to pull it off, and given the fact that a vanilla 5th level rogue with no feats would do the same damage with a shortsword sneak attack (1d6+3d6 vs 2d6+2d6), I'm not concerned at all by this.
 

WarDriveWorley

Adventurer
Right, I was quickly looking for some feats that could allow for something similar but I didn't find any. Thanks for pointing it out.
Given the feats and class combo you need to pull it off, and given the fact that a vanilla 5th level rogue with no feats would do the same damage with a shortsword sneak attack (1d6+3d6 vs 2d6+2d6), I'm not concerned at all by this.
No problem. Yeah it's not a super big buff. More a "s'cool combo factor"
 




Kinematics

Adventurer
Just noting that Treantmonk's conclusion was not very optimistic. The build he created was "ok", nothing special, and doesn't scale well into higher levels at all.
Of course he was also comparing to a baseline fighter, not a baseline monk, so it's not clear how well this monk does compared to a standard monk. Given that you're already choosing to play monk, basing all his conclusions on, "If you played a fighter..." feels really disingenuous.
 


WarDriveWorley

Adventurer
Also, he was using o5e. With a5e and its immense variety (alternative class features, multiclass feats, combat maneuvers, more weapon properties, strongholds) I wouldn't be surprised if this came out as a fun and viable build.
I second this. The ability of the adept to pick and choose focus features makes it way easier to build a character that's both fun to play and viable.
 

Jacob Vardy

Explorer
Just noting that Treantmonk's conclusion was not very optimistic. The build he created was "ok", nothing special, and doesn't scale well into higher levels at all.
Seconding lichmaster's point

Also, he was using o5e. With a5e and its immense variety (alternative class features, multiclass feats, combat maneuvers, more weapon properties, strongholds) I wouldn't be surprised if this came out as a fun and viable build.

With the adept-fighter combo it is the combat maneuvers that fuse well. Fighters get more of them earlier. Adepts bring more exertion points and a higher DC.
 

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