D&D 5E High DPR Paladin-Rogue-Bard Will it work?

FrogReaver

As long as i get to be the frog
With Steady Aim and Elven Accuracy I am more accurate than a Paladin generally I think. I can't use it all the time of course, but I can use it a lot, enough that overall accuracy will be better than a Paladin with +2 more on my ability I think.
I think you'll find that in most combats as a melee character that you'll miss out on steady aim quite often. Probably 25%-50% of the time.

Then there's also some overlap where you would have advantage due to some other effect like the enemy being prone. By the time you factor all this in, advantage due to steady aim is still good but it's not the same as going from never having advantage to having it all the time.

I don't think I am behind in DPR on average, but I would be at times.
Alot depends there. Your character has alot of conditional damage buffs. Steady Aim, Sneak Attack, blade cantrip riders, (side note, college of whispers and soul knife rogue both have an ability called psychic blades - but the soul knife feature doesn't work with the blade trips).

If you look at DPR with a 20 dex and a d8 weapon a Paladin at 11th level is doing 4d8+10 with improved divine smite. Against 17 AC that is 19.8DPR and he will pretty much do that all day long.

With a 16 dex I would be doing 3d8+2d6+3 with sneak attack. That is 14.0 vs AC17 without considering Elven Accuracy-steady aim, psychic blades or secondary cantrip damage.
Most common path for a sword and shield paladin in my experience is the dueling style, so 4d8+14. 22.4 dpr vs the 17 AC opponent. And your sneak attack damage isn't guaranteed either.

Your characters non-trivial worst case scenario is something like, Start encounter out of Whisper Bards Psychic Blades uses. Move to enemy (no steady aim). No ally nearby so no sneak attack either. No rider triggers. You do 3d8+3 damage and only hit 17 AC 55% of the time.

Next turn you likely would get sneak attack and steady aim+elven accuracy. (or at least are compensated with an OA if not). But as soon as this enemy dies you could easily be back to needing to move to an enemy not currently engaged with any ally.

If you consider Elven accuracy now you are looking at 35.3 and if you consider GFB secondary damage on top of that it would be 46.6
Yea, when everything is 'on' it's quite a bit higher.

So to really compare you would need to know how often you will use psychic blades (most of the time you hit?), Elven Accuracy (fairly often?) and GFB secondary damage (occasionally?). If it is like I estimate in paranthesis, I think you average significantly more DPR than a single class Paladin.
Agreed with most of your premises (though maybe not GWB). But that's only the stuff that favors your character in the comparison. Should we also consider favorable circumstances for the single classed Paladin?

I will have plate armor, the shield spell and the ability to resist all damage for an entire round 4 times per day with blessing of the Raven queen at 11th level (albeit at the cost of steady aim) while still having a reaction for shield. That is pretty good defensively I think.

I don't think a Rogue is nearly as good defensively. Uncanny Dodge works on a single attack only and since it is a reaction you can't combine it with shield.
I think you overrate shield spell on a character using a sword and shield and without the warcaster feat. Juggling the weapon so you have a free hand technically means you can only shield every other turn while also impacting your ability to make effective OA's.

One side note, I'm not opposed to using plate with 13 str since you will have cunning action for bonus action dash when desired.
 

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ECMO3

Hero
I think you'll find that in most combats as a melee character that you'll miss out on steady aim quite often. Probably 25%-50% of the time.ou can expend one spell slot to deal radiant damage to the target, in addition to the weapon's damage.

I agree, but even at 50% of the time, my accuracy and DPR is ahead of a single class Paladin. Also key in this is it is not just advantage, it is Elven accuracy.

Most common path for a sword and shield paladin in my experience is the dueling style, so 4d8+14. 22.4 dpr vs the 17 AC opponent. And your sneak attack damage isn't guaranteed either.

Agreed, and I did not consider that. The multiclass character could have that as well, albeit it is not as effective as she is only making 1 attack a round.

TBH I am probably using defense though.


Your characters non-trivial worst case scenario is something like, Start encounter out of Whisper Bards Psychic Blades uses.

Sure, worst case, but how often is this really going to happen? It is 5 uses per short rest, you can't possibly use it unless you hit with an attack, you only get one of those a round and you wouldn't logically use it if the battle was more or less over.

I have played a single class Whisper Bard before and after 8th level (when I got a 20 charisma) I don't think I ever ran out of Psychich Blades when I wanted it. That character was using spells more than this one will be, but after bard 5, I think it is going to be rare that I start a fight without Psychic Blades available.

I think it is far more likely I will run out of spell slots for smite and even more likely that a single class Paladin would run out.

Move to enemy (no steady aim). No ally nearby so no sneak attack either. No rider triggers. You do 3d8+3 damage and only hit 17 AC 55% of the time.

Or use steady aim and shoot him with a crossbow for 1d10+2d6+3. Admittedly down on damage either way.

And I agree I will have these kinds of rounds, but I will also have much higher damage rounds. Enough that I think I will average more damage overall.

I think you overrate shield spell on a character using a sword and shield and without the warcaster feat. Juggling the weapon so you have a free hand technically means you can only shield every other turn while also impacting your ability to make effective OA's. '

I think I am probably using plate only until/unless I have Warcaster (possibly level 14 if I don't take a Dex ASI at that level).
 

FrogReaver

As long as i get to be the frog
I agree, but even at 50% of the time, my accuracy and DPR is ahead of a single class Paladin. Also key in this is it is not just advantage, it is Elven accuracy.
The next case would be something like your psychic blades along with bladetrip.

On a nothing but blade cantrip round you are at 9.1
On a non-advantage non-sneak attack round you are at 14.9
On a non-advantage sneak attack round you are at 18.7
On an advantage round (always get sneak attack with advantage) you are at 30.9

Just plugging in some maybe reasonable percentages -
9.1 @ 10%
14.9 @ 20%
18.7 @ 20%
30.9 @ 50%

23 DPR vs 20.8 for solo classed Paladin.

Since you take defensive style you get a little better AC. You have a few more spell slots so a little more smite damage. If your bladetrip secondary effect triggers than can also boost your damage a little.

That said, Paladin still benefits more from most buffs, magic weapons and we haven't accounted for his channel divinity.

Agreed, and I did not consider that. The multiclass character could have that as well, albeit it is not as effective as she is only making 1 attack a round.

TBH I am probably using defense though.
For a single attack PC I definitely would.

Sure, worst case, but how often is this really going to happen? It is 5 uses per short rest, you can't possibly use it unless you hit with an attack, you only get one of those a round and you wouldn't logically use it if the battle was more or less over.

I have played a single class Whisper Bard before and after 8th level (when I got a 20 charisma) I don't think I ever ran out of Psychich Blades when I wanted it. That character was using spells more than this one will be, but after bard 5, I think it is going to be rare that I start a fight without Psychic Blades available.

I think it is far more likely I will run out of spell slots for smite and even more likely that a single class Paladin would run out.
Agreed. I think you may run out of psychic blades occasionally. Not often though.

Or use steady aim and shoot him with a crossbow for 1d10+2d6+3. Admittedly down on damage either way.

And I agree I will have these kinds of rounds, but I will also have much higher damage rounds. Enough that I think I will average more damage overall.
I think with all things considered damage output between the 2 is going to be very close. Of course this is without trying to really ink out all the damage we can as a single classed paladin. PAM makes a world of difference at level 11.

I think I am probably using plate only until/unless I have Warcaster (possibly level 14 if I don't take a Dex ASI at that level).
WIth cunning action's bonus action dash you still cover more ground than most PC's do with a move action. I don't think i'd worry about mobility.

I've got no problem with your PC. He's interesting. He makes some tradeoffs of defensive features for maybe a bit more offense and much better skills. Those are maybe not trades I would make - but not bad ones either.

*Side note. Rogue 2/Whispers Bard X could make a nice bardic archer without too much sacrifice. Steady Aim + Elven Accuracy + Psychic Blades
 

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