D&D 5E [GUIDE] Pacts, Patrons, and Power, a Warlock guide


I looked at a few different Warlock guides for thoughts on building a Hexblade, but they all seem to have the same general problem: They ignore how few spell slots the Warlock has.

So far, this is what Ive planned out/done. The idea is to be capable as both a melee and ranged combatant. I do not take Improved Pact Weapon as I assume I'll fid a decent magic weapon that would not stack and most of my spellcasting requires no implement/material component in combat.

Level 1: Variant human (Great Weapon Master), Far Traveler Background (skills: Stealth, Insight, Deception, Persuasion, Nature (campaign specific reason), Hexblade. Spells: Armor of Agathys and Hex. Casts Hex and rides it until concentration is broken (advanced to level 2 after a few small encounters and one biggie - never even short rested). Cantrips: Eldritch Blast and Mage Hand.

Level 2: Spells: Add Charm Person (for use out of combat - never cast it). Now casts Armor of Agathys (AA) before entering danger and Hex in combat. This will be my trend for a long time and it means that after the first round of combat, I will have no slots to cast combat spells. If I get a wand of the war mage / pearl of power I'd likely reserve it to cast hex again after I lose cocentration. Invocations: Agonizing Blast and Devil's Sight.

Levl 3: Pact of the Blade. Spells: Charm Person - >Suggestion. Add Invisible. Still using AA and Hex. He generally eldritch blasts from near the front and moves in to attack with his weapon if he thinks he can get the kill shot and then 'cleave' into a new foe with GWM. (Current level - below is the plan).

Level 4: Adds +2 Charisma. Adds Misty Step to spells. Still using AA and Hex. Cantrip: add Friends to supplement his role as 'Face of the party' ... Prest and MI are stronger, but this fits.

Level 5: Thirsting Blade invocation. Spells: Misty Step -> Thunderstep (this is only for non-combat use as I have no slots to cast it in combat). Add Fly.

Level 6: Spells: Add Tongues. Again - combat spells have little to no use for me, so I focus on non-combat spells. This is also the level where I get My Little Specter as a buddy when I kill humanoids.

Level 7: Spells: Thunderstep -> Dimension Door. Add Charm Monster (to avoid combats on the road, etc...). Add Repelling Blast.

Level 8: Cap out Charisma. Spells: Add Banishment.

Level 9: Add Dispel Magic. Add Whispers of the Grave as an invocation (free chances to interrogate dead enemies).

Level 10: Cantrip: Mirror Image.

Level 11: Mystic Incarnum: Mass Suggestion. Add Cone of Cold as a spell as I now have 1 'extra' slot to utilize and this can clear a lot of fodder - usually strong enough to kill humanoids to get my specter. I want a spell that does not require concentration.

Level 12: Feat - Warcaster. Invocation: Lifedrinker.

Level 13: Mystic Arcanum: Finger of Death (zombie servants). Spell: Summon Greater Demon.

Level 14: No choices.

Level 15: Mystic Incarnum: Demiplane (lots of sneaky uses). Spell: Counterspell. Invocation: Shroud of Shadow.

Level 16: Feat - Lucky.

Level 17: Mystic Incarnum: Psychic Scream. Spell: Synaptic Static

Level 18: Invocation: Visions of Distant Realms (scout before combat).

Level 19: Feat - Savage Attacker. Spell: Unseen Servant (basically, 24 hour massages - we're close to retirement).

Level 20: No choices.

This seems to balance the combat abilities to allow for effective combat.

For attuned items, the game will not tend to allow us to buy them, so I will be at the whim of the DM. I'm not going to plan for them.

Any thoughts on that approach? My focus is on how limited the spell slots are for combat sessions and my determination that most of the time I'll use those slots on Hex (for bonus damage) and Armor of Agathys (for extra hp and damage inflicting with no action used in combat).

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Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
You seem to be using two spell slots an encounter. I wouldn't assume a short rest after every encounter at all. On the other hand, Hex starts lasting an hour and increases to 8 hours with a 3rd level slot and 24 hours with a 5th level slot. So if you can maintain concentration Hex can already be up for you without the need for a slot.

GWM isn't going to be usable until 3rd level earliest - Hex Warrior can't use CHR to attack & damage to two handed weapons, with the exception that if it's your pact blade. Which is gained at 3rd. So going some other race (Half-Elf or other +2 CHR) and picking up GWM at 4th (or later) is also a viable path.

GWM's extra bonus attack on a crit pairs nicely with your Hexblade Curse, but that's a single target per short rest so it's limited. For GMW's other half I don't see big accuracy boosters to use the -5/+10 often. And since Hex is boosting damage for every hit, missing more with the -5 hurts more then it would otherwise. Not sure it's worth it at all, or at least until later levels.


Based on typical gold gained by higher level characters, would a strategy of using hex scrolls (1st level, 50 gp each) be a viable strategy to stretch outl available warlock spell slots?

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