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5E [GUIDE] I Fought the Law and Won: The Rogue Guide

Grue AC

First Post
So I've made a Tabaxi Rogue. Level 2.

Here's my stats:

8 Str
16 Dex
14 Con
9 Int
14 Wis
14 Cha

It's a two person party. Myself and a Greatsword using Fighter. I don't anticipate the campaign going past level 10.

I'm curious about what Archetype you think would be good. Obviously, Arcane Trickster is out with my low Int. All Unearthed Arcana is available, so...

Mastermind
seems alright overall.
Swashbuckler is solid all around, helping me dual wield.
Assassin doesn't add much besides nova damage, which IS great. But that's it.
Thief is... Alright. Lets me get creative with environment and item use.
Inquisitor (UA: Gothic Heroes) is... I don't know what to make of it.

I'm leaning Assassin. I figure the sooner enemies drop, the better. But after that single hit, it's... Not great. Swashbuckler, on the other hand, is more consistent damage over the battle.

If your fighter buddy is going GWM then go Mastermind. No need for extra dps from you when he's one shotting everything.
 

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Not adding the Scout to the guide at the moment, since it's still playtest material, but I'll rate it as is in the comments, and you all can discuss:

Overall, Scout gets a blue rating. It's basically "spell-less ranger as a Rogue subclass." Lots of extra mobility from this subclass.
  • Survivalist: Lv. 3. Free skill proficiencies (and effectively Expertise) in Nature and Survival. Certainly fitting flavor-wise, and can't complain about what's essentially two free Expertised skills.
  • Skirmisher: Lv. 3. Free half-speed movement as a reaction, drawing no OAs. Big mobility boost on a class that is already very mobile.
  • Superior Mobility: Lv. 9. Extra 10 feet of speed. Always nice. With Cunning Action you get 80 feet of movement every time it's your turn. (Or 90 feet if a Wood Elf.)
  • Ambush Master: Lv. 13. Free party-wide initiative buff + first-round speed buff if you surprise any foes. This pretty much makes Alert a mandatory feat for a Scout by Lv. 12, since the buff's ceiling is your own initiative and you'd like to raise that.
  • Sudden Strike: Lv. 17. Lets you Sneak Attack two enemies every round. And even if there's just one enemy around, it's like getting the benefit of dual-wielding or Crossbow Expert with a free hand now available, entirely for free and with any weapon.
 
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Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Skirmisher: Lv. 3. Free half-speed movement as a reaction, drawing no OAs. Big mobility boost on a class that is already very mobile.

I worry that once you hit 5th and get Uncanny Dodge which competes for your reaction this will quickly become second fiddle. I can see cases where you want it, but also cases where it won't help (can't move out of movement/attack range of other foes) and Uncanny Dodge will, leaving this behind. I'd put it Black.

That's the only one of the features I had input on, otherwise you really nailed my thoughts.
 

WarpedAcorn

First Post
I worry that once you hit 5th and get Uncanny Dodge which competes for your reaction this will quickly become second fiddle. I can see cases where you want it, but also cases where it won't help (can't move out of movement/attack range of other foes) and Uncanny Dodge will, leaving this behind. I'd put it Black.

That's the only one of the features I had input on, otherwise you really nailed my thoughts.

I see Skirmisher being useful if you are getting swarmed or getting attacked by an enemy with multiple attacks. Uncanny Dodge would be to mitigate that one big hit that is aimed at you.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
I see Skirmisher being useful if you are getting swarmed or getting attacked by an enemy with multiple attacks. Uncanny Dodge would be to mitigate that one big hit that is aimed at you.

Skirmisher is not useful at all against a foe with multiple attacks. It's triggered by them ending their turn next to you, so they get all of their attacks at full damage, vs. reducing at least one of them.

When getting swarmed IF you can move such that you are out of the range of the others it's good, otherwise from #2 on they can just swarm you in your new location.
 

WarpedAcorn

First Post
Skirmisher is not useful at all against a foe with multiple attacks. It's triggered by them ending their turn next to you, so they get all of their attacks at full damage, vs. reducing at least one of them.

When getting swarmed IF you can move such that you are out of the range of the others it's good, otherwise from #2 on they can just swarm you in your new location.

Ah yes, you're right. So yeah its really only useful against a swarm or if you can "kite" a really big enemy (which should be easy to do due to Cunning Action in future rounds).
 

thenannymoh

First Post
Great guide!

Regarding the feat Great Weapon Master...with a multiclass fighter (particularly Champion) build, this feat can really increase in value. Of course, the second bullet in the feat description requires a two-handed weapon... But the first bullet is any melee:

"On your turn, when you score a critical hit with a melee weapon or reduce a creature to 0 hit points with one, you can make one melee weapon attack as a bonus action."

With Action surge and advantage, and a second attack at level 5, you have a decent chance at at a sneak crit and then you just bought yourself another attack. The widened crit range for champion starts paying off, and those future rogue sneak levels get nasty. Not a feat for every build, but still useful for some when you need alot of burst damage.
 


Great guide!

Regarding the feat Great Weapon Master...with a multiclass fighter (particularly Champion) build, this feat can really increase in value. Of course, the second bullet in the feat description requires a two-handed weapon... But the first bullet is any melee:

"On your turn, when you score a critical hit with a melee weapon or reduce a creature to 0 hit points with one, you can make one melee weapon attack as a bonus action."

With Action surge and advantage, and a second attack at level 5, you have a decent chance at at a sneak crit and then you just bought yourself another attack. The widened crit range for champion starts paying off, and those future rogue sneak levels get nasty. Not a feat for every build, but still useful for some when you need alot of burst damage.

You don't get Sneak Attack again with the extra attack from that feat. And that attack only comes when you either crit or kill with an attack, which means you already used Sneak Attack on your turn. That makes GWM still not worth it for Rogues, since you're adding comparatively negligible damage.
 
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thenannymoh

First Post
You don't get Sneak Attack again with the extra attack from that feat. And that attack only comes when you either crit or kill with an attack, which means you already used Sneak Attack on your turn. That makes GWM still not worth it for Rogues, since you're adding comparatively negligible damage.

Yes, good point...that extra attack would only be useful if you had a weapon that provided extra damage that would be doubled in a crit, and even then only in the right circumstances. You would have to weight the chance of the widened crit range (BM feat) with the reward that you know couldn't include sneak.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Mr. Legis(or anyone in this thread), what is your thoughts on Hexblade Warlock as a multiclass option?

I'm not seeing a real use-case for it. You still need DEX for AC and Initiative so it's not like you can dump it and go CHR-only for a party face. SA requires a finesse or ranged weapon so you can't deliver with EB. Shield spell is nice, but you start with 1 per short rest which may not overcome the opportunity cost of another level of rogue. Hexblade's curse is nice with expanded crit range so you can double your SA dice more often, but bonus damage per attack doesn't get leverages as well as it could when you are forgoing EB. And it's one target per short rest.

Now, if you started with it for medium armor, you only need a 14 DEX for max AC and can go CHR-focused easier. And if you go up a bit to get invocations the classic Devil's Sight/Darkness combo can work. Would work with any warlock (and just staying Dex), this option would just let you be more CHR focused.
 



Pencilstubs

First Post
Hoping to get some advice for the Rogue/Warlock I'm currently playing. I'm currently playing in a 3 man party with a cleric and a homebrewed class that's not very helpful in terms of combat, so I'm trying to pick up the slack as best I can. Variant Human with Inspiring Leader to try to give us some breathing room when combat doesn't go well. So far I've put three levels into Rogue up to Swashbuckler, and 2 levels into Warlock with the Archfey patron. I might spend the next 5 levels in Warlock if Greater Invisibility is worth it, but I haven't really planned that far ahead. Any advice is appreciated!

Also hoping someone can clarify this for me:

The Warlock multiclass section of the guide states that Booming Blade is a must-have, but also mentions taking Thirsting Blade for the extra attack if you go with Pact of the Blade. From what I understand, Extra Attack and Booming Blade do not work together. If that's true, then is it still worth going Pact of the Blade? Am I better off using the Extra Attack or Booming Blade?

With all the new Eldritch Invocations in Xanathar's Guide, I'm suddenly overwhelmed with choices!
 

gyor

Legend
Shadow Blade is a useful spell for many classes, but it's almost custome made for the Arcane Trickster, an Illusion Spell, the weapon has the light, finesse, and thrown traits, and in dim light or darkness it grants advantage to attacks.
 

mellored

Explorer
Hoping to get some advice for the Rogue/Warlock I'm currently playing. I'm currently playing in a 3 man party with a cleric and a homebrewed class that's not very helpful in terms of combat, so I'm trying to pick up the slack as best I can. Variant Human with Inspiring Leader to try to give us some breathing room when combat doesn't go well. So far I've put three levels into Rogue up to Swashbuckler, and 2 levels into Warlock with the Archfey patron. I might spend the next 5 levels in Warlock if Greater Invisibility is worth it, but I haven't really planned that far ahead. Any advice is appreciated!
Tough choice.
Since you have another caster, probably go rogue 5 to get +2 Dex, extra sneak attack, and uncanny dodge. Then back to warlock.

The Warlock multiclass section of the guide states that Booming Blade is a must-have, but also mentions taking Thirsting Blade for the extra attack if you go with Pact of the Blade. From what I understand, Extra Attack and Booming Blade do not work together. If that's true, then is it still worth going Pact of the Blade? Am I better off using the Extra Attack or Booming Blade?
Yea, pick one or the other.
The more warlock, the better booming blade is, since it auto-scales.
The more rogue, the better multi-attack is, since you scale by sneak attack.
 

Xanathar's updates are up. Scout is good (very good at higher levels). Inquisitive is not.

Also the few new spells Arcane Tricksters get access to are meh for the most part.
 

mellored

Explorer
I think your underrating insightful fighting, or overrating rakish audacity a sky blue. (maybe both).

With expertise and min 8/10 roll, it's a pretty reliable way to get sneak attack, at any range, no matter who is around. An elf inquisitor can use sneak attack against a mob, while alone, in the middle of an open field, at 120'.
Also Wis as secondary is better than Cha as secondary.

It lacks the +inititive, so not as good, but i don't see it as 3 colors worse either.
 

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