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D&D 5E [Fun]Really Broken Combos

Reynard

Legend
Now that Tasha's is out, it seems like there are enough official player options for unforeseen consequences to start popping up.

Has anyone seen or designed a really OP combo using 5E. I know I still cringe at paladin sorcerer combos, but I am guessing they have been eclipsed by other builds.

Note: this is supposed to be fun, not an excuse to beat on 5E.
 

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Horwath

Hero
Twilight cleric + peace cleric if you are thinking of more than one PC combo.

and they said that giving Rangers non-component, non-concentration Hunters mark few times a day as 1st level spell instead of Favored Enemy was too powerful...
 

TwoSix

Unserious gamer
I haven't seen any really broken new combos yet. Definitely some new A/S tier stuff, though.

Bladesinger comes to mind, especially if you rule that a haste-granted attack can be swapped for a cantrip. (I don't think it's legal, personally, but it's been a point of contention.)

Both new clerics are very solid. Clerics have been getting stronger with almost every release, and almost every newer domain seems a bit better than previous ones. It's really their lack of strong at-will attack scaling which really prevents them from being viewed as a top-tier class.

One combo I like is using the new monk class features along with kensei to make a really good monk archer.
 

Hohige

Explorer
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Dragon Sorcerer level 6, Custom Lineage (Tasha)
Flames of Phelethos feat.
Elemental Adept feat.
Metamagic: Empower and Quicken

Damage:
Elemental Adept , Flame of Phelethos, Elemental Affinity Empowered Quickened Fireball for average 41 damage that ignores resistence.
Empowered, Elemental Affinity , Flame of Phelethos and Elemental Adept Fire Bolt for sweet 21 average damage that ignores resistence.

Total damage AoE: 41
Single target: 21
Total damage: Average 62 damage.

It's a lot of damage.

If you can precast, Empowered Elemental Adept, Flame of Pheletos, Elemental Afinity Dragon Breath upcasted level 3. It deals more than 30 damage on AoE spell + Super Quickened Fireball
Total of 71 damage AoE on single turn.




Optional: Rakdos Cultist Background for Hellish Rebuke Spell.
That is upcasted to level 3.
It's Empowered Elemental Affinity, Elemental Adept, Flame of Pheletos that can deal more than 30 damage.


Dragon's Breath using an action each turn (Precasted), Quickened Super Fireball and Hellish Rebuke is more than 110 damage per turn that ignores resistence.
 
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kerbarian

Explorer
The new summon spells are great for sustained damage without the headaches or DM-dependence of previous conjure/summon spells. The highest-damage build I'm seeing so far is a genie chainlock with Investment of the Chain Master and Summon Fey (or another summon spell).

At 3rd level they can attack for 1d10+3 (eldritch blast) + 2 (genie) + 1d4+3+3d6 (imp) = 26.5.
At 5th level it's 1d10+4 (eldritch blast) + 1d10+4 (eldritch blast) + 3 (genie) + 1d4+3+3d6 (imp) + 2d6+6 (fey spirit) = 51.

The imp poison damage gets a save for half (at the warlock's spell DC), but the fey spirit is attacking with advantage which I think more than makes up for it. Other summon spells can be better for utility, bypassing damage resistances, etc.

The imp and summon can be taken out but I generally think it's fine if they're tanking and protecting the rest of the party when you can just resummon them. The imp can be surprisingly tough with resistance to all damage (many inherent resistances plus resistance from Investment of the Chain Master when needed), and the warlock can also be VHuman with Inspiring Leader to hand out temp HP to their minions (and the rest of the party!). Eldritch Mind makes concentration checks very reliable so the summon won't disappear that way.

Honorable mentions go to Circle of Stars and Wildfire Druids who can start using Summon Beast at level 3 and also get bonus-action attacks from their circle. Plus the Wildfire Spirit offers great utility with its at-will teleport.
 
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Gorg

Explorer
I don't know about broken, but a Guiding Bolt- followed by any good ranged attack (Melf's acid arrow, chromatic orb, sneak attack w/a bow) can inflict massive damage. Enough to drop the big tough guy in one round, sometimes.

Dual burning hands can clear quite a swath through a group of weaker enemies- or soften up stronger ones, nicely.

My Abjurer Mage, and Cleric of Lathander (light domain) like to team up and combine their spell castings for maximum effect. ( like I said before- whoever wrote the domain spell list for the Light domain is just plain mean, lol) * Both of these guys were first ever attempts at creating an X class character for 5E. They are NOT min-maxed or optimized, Just picked a logical domain for the cleric, and a specialty I'd never used before, for the mage.
 

Arvok

Explorer
5th level Ranger (Gloom Stalker)/3rd level Rogue (Assassin). You're invisible to darkvision, you should have a very good initiative modifier since you add Dex AND Wis, you get an extra attack at the start of combat, that attack does an extra d8, you have advantage on attack rolls on the first round of combat against creatures that haven't acted yet, AND any hit against a creature that is surprised is a critical. Given that you're probably invisible at the start of combat your first action should be 3 attacks, all at advantage, all at +1d6 damage from Hunter's Mark, 1 at +2d6 from sneak attack, 1 at +1d8 damage from Dread Ambusher, and all hits probably crits since the target is surprised if you managed to sneak up on your target (since you're invisible). This isn't a sure-fire thing, but it's not that hard to pull off. If you manage to get an oathbow, each of those attacks does an extra 3d6 (6d6 if your target is surprised, which--again--it should be). You can take a boss monster down by half its hit point total before the party fighter moves into melee.
 

Wish that all woodland creatures are True Polymorphed into ancient red dragons forever.

Wish the princess is never in any castle.

Wish for multiversal democracy, but nobody can agree on anything.
 

Zero Cochrane

Explorer
The Psi Warrior's Telekinetic Movement feature is broken. It needs a saving throw, like Telekinetic Thrust has. Otherwise, it's an automatic 3d6 damage to any target you choose to lift 30 feet straight up... or worse if you drop him over a cliff.

I wonder if the Noble Genie's Elemental Gift feature is too good -- effectively it is multiple fly spells that don't require a spell slot or concentration.
 

Mort

Legend
Supporter
The Psi Warrior's Telekinetic Movement feature is broken. It needs a saving throw, like Telekinetic Thrust has. Otherwise, it's an automatic 3d6 damage to any target you choose to lift 30 feet straight up... or worse if you drop him over a cliff.

I wonder if the Noble Genie's Elemental Gift feature is too good -- effectively it is multiple fly spells that don't require a spell slot or concentration.
You can't target an unwilling creature with Telekinetic movement ("As an action, you target one loose object that is Large or smaller or one willing creature, other than yourself.") So that's not a problem.
 

Mort

Legend
Supporter
I wouldn't say it's broken, but a hill dwarven bladesinger (now ok with Tasha's) is pretty potent.

One of a bladesinger's biggest weaknesses is HP and a hill dwarf gets a bonus to Con AND a bonus to HP. With the floating stat bumps allowed by Tasha's they can still have a top INT too. Even if a player chooses to not push Con (say using the floating bonus for Dex and Int instead) they still have more HP than a typical bladesinger.
 

CleverNickName

Limit Break Dancing
I think the most broken combo I've ever put together was:
Half-elf Hexblade Warlock/Draconic Sorcerer
Feats: Elemental Adept (Force), Spell Sniper
Invocations: Devil's Sight + Agonizing Blast + Eldritch Spear + Lance of Lethargy + Repelling Blast + Grasp of Hadar
Metamagic: Quickened Spell
Equipment: Ring of spell storing, ring of evasion
Signature Spells: Darkness, Counterspell, Eldritch Blast, Shield

Round 1: Darkness cast on my location (quickened as a bonus action), eldritch blast with Advantage (thanks to the cover of darkness). Push targets out of reach, or drag them out of cover.
Rounds 2-4: Eldritch blast on repeat, keeping enemies slowed, out of reach, away from cover, within range of our paladin, etc. Counterspell as necessary to protect my Darkness spell from being dispelled. Shield for any lucky shots that might manage to hit me even with Disadvantage.
Round 5: there usually isn't a Round 5; the targets were probably dead or fleeing by Round 4.

The only drawback was not being able to be targeted by our healers (since they couldn't see me). So if I ever got seriously hurt I'd have to leave my "bunker" to seek help.
 




auburn2

Adventurer
Now that Tasha's is out, it seems like there are enough official player options for unforeseen consequences to start popping up.

Has anyone seen or designed a really OP combo using 5E. I know I still cringe at paladin sorcerer combos, but I am guessing they have been eclipsed by other builds.

Note: this is supposed to be fun, not an excuse to beat on 5E.
I have not tried it but I think battlesmith 3/bladesinger will be extremely powerful once you hit 9th level. Character can be in +1 half-plate Armor and use a +1 greatsword with int for hit and damage using GWM, plus make a second attack using Booming blade for even a bigger boost. With the steel defender she gets a bonus action which can be shove the enemy away so he can't attack unless he takes BB damage. Finally the steel defender gets to use a reaction to cause disadvantage meaning she does not need to run blur and can save concentration for something else. All while being only 2 levels behind a full caster in spell slots.

The character can't enter bladesong being in half-plate with a 2-handed weapon, but being able to multi-attack with one attack and one cantrip using a 2d6 heavy weapon and intelligence instead of strength is the key feature here.

Compared to a straight bladesinger, this character can use a dex of 14 and does not need to go 16, allowing better wisdom and charisma. The character will be slightly easier to hit in the tough fights (when the straight bladesinger would be in bladesong) but will have a better AC otherwise and do far more damage in melee and has more concentration spell options.
 
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Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Dragon Sorcerer level 6, Custom Lineage (Tasha)
Flames of Phelethos feat.
Flames of Phelethos is a Tiefling-only racial feat. Custom Lineage in Tasha's is "Instead of choosing one of the game's races..." - it is not of any of the races and doesn't qualify for any of the racial feats. Now, you can pick a tiefling and customize it as per Customizing Your Origin, but that doesn't grant the bonus feat that Custom Lineage does.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
I have not tried it but I think battlesmith 3/bladesinger will be extremely powerful once you hit 9th level. Character can be in +1 half-plate Armor and use a +1 greatsword with int for hit and damage using GWM, plus make a second attack using Booming blade for even a bigger boost. With the steel defender she gets a bonus action which can be shove the enemy away so he can't attack unless he takes BB damage. Finally the steel defender gets to use a reaction to cause disadvantage meaning she does not need to run blur and can save concentration for something else. All while being only 2 levels behind a full caster in spell slots.

The character can't enter bladesong being in half-plate with a 2-handed weapon, but being able to multi-attack with one attack and one cantrip using a 2d6 heavy weapon and intelligence instead of strength is the key feature here.

Compared to a straight bladesinger, this character can use a dex of 14 and does not need to go 16, allowing better wisdom and charisma. The character will be slightly easier to hit in the tough fights (when the straight bladesinger would be in bladesong) but will have a better AC otherwise and do far more damage in melee and has more concentration spell options.
I don't agree with your findings.

First, if you're not pumping STR or DEX, you're not coming on-line for melee until you get Artificer 3. But you're not getting Extra attack until Bladesinger 6. So this combo really doesn't even start until 9th level when most campaigns are well into their final Act.

Second, it's three levels behind on spells known and a level behind on spell slots.

Third, this would have a lower AC and not better Concentration that a straight Bladesinger by a good chunk. By 9th level if you don't have magic armor, you have the slots for mage armor. AC of 13 (mage armor) + DEX + INT (bladesong) will be greater than 16 (halfplate+1) + 2 (max dex). Concentration we're looking at the Artificer having +PROF, which starts lagging behind and not until 13th or 17th exceed the Bladesinging +INT to Concentration.

Fourth, with the lower AC the Artificer is more likely to need Blur than the Bladesinger. (Though really, I ran a pre-Tasha's Bladesinger 1-13 through Avernus, and never bothered to even learn Blur - my AC plus Shield when needed was enough to keep me virtually untouched going through every encounter in that book. So likely neither needs it.)

Now, the Artificer does do more damage once their melee combo comes on at 9th, but before that the bladesinger has been melee capable a level earlier and have Extra Attack w/ Cantrip 3 levels earlier.
 

auburn2

Adventurer
I don't agree with your findings.

First, if you're not pumping STR or DEX, you're not coming on-line for melee until you get Artificer 3. But you're not getting Extra attack until Bladesinger 6. So this combo really doesn't even start until 9th level when most campaigns are well into their final Act.

Second, it's three levels behind on spells known and a level behind on spell slots.

Third, this would have a lower AC and not better Concentration that a straight Bladesinger by a good chunk. By 9th level if you don't have magic armor, you have the slots for mage armor. AC of 13 (mage armor) + DEX + INT (bladesong) will be greater than 16 (halfplate+1) + 2 (max dex). Concentration we're looking at the Artificer having +PROF, which starts lagging behind and not until 13th or 17th exceed the Bladesinging +INT to Concentration.

Fourth, with the lower AC the Artificer is more likely to need Blur than the Bladesinger. (Though really, I ran a pre-Tasha's Bladesinger 1-13 through Avernus, and never bothered to even learn Blur - my AC plus Shield when needed was enough to keep me virtually untouched going through every encounter in that book. So likely neither needs it.)

Now, the Artificer does do more damage once their melee combo comes on at 9th, but before that the bladesinger has been melee capable a level earlier and have Extra Attack w/ Cantrip 3 levels earlier.
Like I said I have not played it yet and some of what you say might be right. Here is some comentary though:

1. Good point on level 1-2, however after 3rd level this character will consistently be doing more damage than a straight bladesinger even one with 2 attacks. To start with the combo is using better weapons and getting higher bonuses on hit/dmg. A bladesinger is weilding a Rapier (4.5dmg) and MAD needing to split dex and int, this character is wielding a greatsword +1 (8 dmg) and can pump intelligence for dmg. Second she can gets a bonus action attack with the steel defender for 1d8+prof. So an artificer using steel defender + cantrip (BB/GFB) will do more damage than a bladesinger using attack + cantrip. This makes her way ahead from levels 3-5, and still ahead from 6-8 without any feats. Finally with GWM this combo can boost damage a lot after 7th level.

2. She is actually way ahead on spells known. Because Artificer chooses spells like a cleric or paladin a 3rd levels artificer "knows" about 20 1st level wizard spells, plus another 10 or so spells that are not on the wizard list. In spells prepared, with an 18 int she is 4 ahead of a straight wizard and with an 16 intelligence she is 3 ahead of a wizard, those numbers include heroism and shield that are "always prepared" battlesmith spells .... which is another benifit, with this combo you do not even have to learn or prepare shield as a wizard spell. She is 2 levels behind on spell slots though, you are correct about that.

3. If the bladesinger had a 16Dex/16in and studded leather this character would have 2 better AC out of bladesong and 1 worse in bladesong. With mage armor it would be 1 better out of bladesong and 2 worse in bladesong. This assumes no carried shield, although that is a safe assumption with this build.

4. The artificer mutliclass gets disadvantage from her steel defenders defelct attack reaction. This is what really makes it for me. This character does not need blur to cause disadvantage (to the first attack). IMO this is going to beat the slight AC advantage and the boost to con saves of a bladesinger in bladesong, and it is there all the time, not just during bladesong.

Don't get me wrong bladesingers are awesome and in my experience the most powerful character I have played, but I think this offers a lot of options.
 
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Mort

Legend
Supporter
2. She is actually way ahead on spells known. Because Artificer chooses spells like a cleric or paladin a 3rd levels artificer "knows" about 30 1st and 2nd level wizard spells, plus another 10 or so spells that are not on the wizard list. In spells prepared, with an 18 int she is 4 ahead of a straight wizard and with an 16 intelligence she is 3 ahead of a wizard, those numbers include heroism and shield that are "always prepared" battlesmith spells .... which is another benifit, with this combo you do not even have to learn or prepare shield as a wizard spell. She is 2 levels behind on spell slots though, you are correct about that.
How is a 3rd level artificer getting 2nd level artificer spells?

As a half caster a 3rd level artificer is still casting only 1st level spells. When multiclassing she would eventually get higher level spell slots and be able to upcast those 1st spells. But I don't see how she ever gets access to higher level artificer spells?
 

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