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Feat suggestions for low-level clerics?

Kalendraf

First Post
Lately, I've become somewhat interested in the iconic characters, mostly from a playtesting perspective, but also a bit out of nostalgia. Most of the character's feat choices make a certain amount of sense. However, when looking at the iconic cleric, Jozan, I'm rather perplexed. From the information I've been able to gather, Jozan's two starting feats (1st level + Human bonus) are...

wait for it...

Alertness & Scribe Scroll

Those choices strike me as being both underwhelming and rather baffling. I'd certainly think there would be some more "cleric-ee" options to take. For example:

- Extra Turning or Improved Turning would help against undead
- Lightning Reflexes would help offset the cleric's low reflex saves
- Improved Initiative would allow spells like bless or prayer to get of earlier in a battle.

Wouldn't those seem to be more logical choices than alertness & scribe scroll? This has me wondering...just what feats do low level clerics tend to take?
 

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IamTheTest

First Post
I agree that your feat choices are probably more stereotypically clericy. I have a Human Cleric3 that is trying to be druidesque. His three feats are Point Blank Shot, Precise Shot, and Zen Archery. Oh yeah, he's the party's ranged threat.
 


Boddynock

First Post
I've just started a new campaign in which the cleric has low scores in both STR and DEX. Since the player is inexperienced, she was asking me for my suggestions for a 1st level feat (just one - she's a half-elf). At first I suggested Improved Initiative but then realized that it would be best for her to maximize her spellcasting effectiveness, so I've recommended Scribe Scroll for that reason. Scrolls aren't particularly cheap - but they can effectively double (or triple) her casting potential at first level.

'Nock
 

Jack Simth

First Post
Depends on what effect you are going for, cleric alignment, and domain choices - e.g., Strength Domain cleric might want Improved Grapple/Sunder (goes GREAT with Spell level-1 Enlarge Person and/or Spell Level-2 Bull's Strength). A Trickery domain Cleric might want to go with Stealthy or Skill Focus (Hide) (and maybe a race that gets a bonus to hide from being small).
 

Longbow

First Post
Augment Healing from Complete Divine is a good choice, a bonus healing to cure spells is always good (especially at low level).
 

Kalendraf

First Post
Those are some good suggestions. Keep 'em coming.

Longbow's Augment Healing suggestion is probably the all-around best choice. However, to create a stereotypical cleric for purposes of playtesting, I think it's probably best to stay within the bounds of the PHB/SRD. The feats I'm currently leaning toward are Combat Casting (thanks, Ferox4, I'd overlooked that obvious choice) and Lightning Reflexes.

IamTheTest: The archery feats may be good for low-level clerics, but later on, those choices will likely wind up seeming somewhat wasted. I find that casters often fallback upon their ranged weapons at low levels, but even by mid-levels (say past 6th or so), they tend to be casting spells almost every round.
 

Longbow

First Post
IMHO, I think for the 1st Level Cleric it´s hard to choose a good feat when you only have access to the PHB. Lighntning Reflexes improves your save but is it enough to really make a difference? Is Combat Casting really needed if you always maxx your concentration sill (and Skill Focus: Concentration is better if you really want the bonus)?

My vote would go for Scribe Scroll. While it may be too complicated for a new player it really can save your butt, especially at low levels.

(Or if the character had a focus like fighting with a reach weapon it would be Combat Reflexes.)
 

Lord Pendragon

First Post
Longbow said:
IMHO, I think for the 1st Level Cleric it´s hard to choose a good feat when you only have access to the PHB.
This is an important point. I believe Jozan was statted up before a lot of the feats being mentioned in this thread were published. PHB is pretty much it for him. That said:
My vote would go for Scribe Scroll. While it may be too complicated for a new player it really can save your butt, especially at low levels.
I agree. In the game I play, our druid has taken Scribe Scroll and used it happily. In the game I just started DMing, the same player was strongly considering it for a Favored Soul, only changing her mind because of the FS's limited spell access.

For clerics, Scribe Scroll is a fantastic feat. There are a lot of countermagics and remedies that a cleric has access to, that they won't want to prepare, but when they need, they need.
 

Darthjaye

First Post
I would say invest in the Extra Turning Feat and then the no brainer would be Divine Spell power. It's from Complete Divine and it let's you boost your spells by making a turn check (to which by and only with the use of this feat you gain an additional +3 to this check. So, for example, if you have a 14 charisma and your level 1 you would still get a +5 to your turn check.) This is invaluable at low levels to make your 1 round/level spells last a bit longer, and it also boosts your healing spells. It also continues to make use of your turn checks when there is no undead around to use them on. Keeps all of your cleric abilities in use. Makes you important no matter what the enemy. To me this feat has proven highly useful no matter what the level and if you get a negative result on the turn check you don't have to cast the spell. You simply do something else that round and then try again next round and burn another turn use trying to boost your spell. If your not fighting any undead and you have extra turning, bang. Also, get Augment Healing as someone else pointed out as these two put together make you a healing machine at all levels. I would say, if you human,
1st level: Extra Turning and Divine Spell Power
3rd level: Augment Healing

By 3rd level your CMW have the potential to heal 2d8+11 (if you rolled max on your turn check you'd boost your caster level by 4 making it a 7 and Augment Healing would add another 4 to that. Cool thing about AH is that it can exceed the limit for the level of the spell i.e. the +10 limit for CMW)
 

Pickaxe

Explorer
Going strictly with PHB feats, I would also recommend Scribe Scroll. Someone also mentioned Improved Turning, which I think is probably as good as any other option, at least first or third level. At low levels, it can make a big difference. In fact, in our last session, our cleric 1/wizard 3 (the only cleric in the party), made two critical turn checks against some krenshar skeletons and lizardfolk zombies. Without this feat, he would have failed both checks, and the feat also helped his turn damage such that all of the undead but one zombie were turned. It's only a +1 to your level, but it does affect both your turn check and your turn damage.

--Axe
 

Stalker0

Legend
Another vote for scribe scoll...personally its a much better feat for clerics than wizards.

Why?

Because clerics have a ton of spells that are fantastic in very specialized situations. Neutralize poison is just one that springs to mind. Not one you want to prepare everyday...but once you encounter that monstrous spider it sure comes in handy!!
 

Longbow

First Post
Exactly. There are so many good spells to have in an emergency (Remove Paralysis, Lesser Restoration, Restoration, Protection from X, Resist Energy, etc.).
 

Shin Okada

Explorer
Another vote for Scribe Scroll. This feat is certainly great for a Cleric.

At lower level, make a lot of Cure Light Wounds scrolls whenever possible. Then, try to have 1-3 each of condition removing spells such as Remove Fear, Lessor Restoration, Remove Paralysis, etc. Divination spells and spells which enhance combat capability (say, divine favor, righteous might) are also good.

As a second feat for 1st-level human cleric, SKill Focus (Concentration) may not a bad idea. More versatile comparing to Combat Casting.

My Cleric PC has Travel Domain and took Tracking as the second feat at 1st-level. It helped much as there was no Druid nor Ranger in the party.

It the cleric has high CHA, Extra Turning and Disciple of the Sun (from CD) maybe good too. So as various Divine feats.

I am not a big fun of Improved Initiative. It gives only +4 for a d20 roll which is only made once per combat.
 


Rleonardh

First Post
PHB only....
Cleric 20
Human: Spell Focus Conjunction
1: Augment Summoning
3: Craft Wondrous Items
6: Leadership or Craft Wands
9: Craft Magical Weapons and Armor
12: Forge Ring
15: Craft Staff
18: Lightning Reflexes

Gives your party alot of options
Only problem this is for dms that allow some downtime or some Homebrew rules.

Example for our games:
50gp x spell craft roll plus 1000 gp per day
25gp x spell craft roll plus 500 gp for helper

If adventuring during rests and some time before camping for night.
Only 25gp x spell craft roll plus 500 gp per day
 


aco175

Legend
I think the designers were making characters that are more normal than the optimized PCs we tend to make. Alertness and scribe scroll are not the best 'combat' feats, but are handy if your table plays in a less combat game. These add flavor to the background of the character and are useful in certain situations.

I tend to play in a combat-heavy game and would suggest a few that the others already mentioned.
 

Rleonardh

First Post
Well to me there is 2 types of best.
Pure power gaming
Vs
Role playing, combat is important but not the end all be all.

Really comes down to how players want to play and the campaign being ran.
If it's a "one shot" or a dungeon crawl the power gaming is important.
If it's a x to x level campaign that going to run the Gambit you can build for favor role playing.

The cleric necromancer 😉 is a good all purpose one even some summon Monster spells.
The celestial bison and griffins are decent options if good aligned.

Scribe Scroll is great thing for a cleric. Can do alot of cure x things you don't want to prepare for daily use, cheap to make also.

Remove Paralysis x3
Restoration, Lesser x3
Remove Blindness/Deafness x3
Remove Curse x3
Remove Disease x3
Neutralize Poison x3

Also know if you got a wizard with creation feats that can free you up for other feats... If the wizard is willing to give up his exp😂

If you got a group of casters you can even share the creation feats and free up more slots. There a few rods that are great for the players to make but only the wizard can truly handle that area as it's feat extensive.
 
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