Requesting advice on fighter/cleric for Avernus

tommybahama

Explorer
Hi guys,

I'm playing in my first 5e campaign (Descent into Avernus) and would like some opinions on picking up two or three levels of Cleric for my Hill Dwarf Battlemaster Fighter. I was at 5th level with a 16 STR and 14 WIS and were told by the DM that we've reached 6th level right before going into a long rest and ending the session. We don't have a cleric or a wizard in our group and our Paladin's attendance has been spotty. We may be picking up new player that may go with a druid.

My DM said he has no problem with multiclassing but warned me that sometimes it can break a character at high levels which I want to avoid. I was thinking of taking at least two levels of Forge Domain Cleric to get my AC up to 22 with the +1 from Blessings of the Forge, the Identify spell which nobody has, and Artisan's Blessing at 2nd level to craft silver arrows and bolts for our ranged fighter and thief which we forgot to buy before we left Baldur's Gate. 😢 I think the Searing Smite spell will also help with my damage output as well.

So my questions are:

1. Will going with two levels of cleric screw me at later levels (break my character)?
2. Should I go higher than two?
3. Should I do it now or take 6th level in Fighter to get my STR to 18 first?

Role-play wise, I did receive some sort of blessing ("a warm feeling" according to the DM) for making a sizeable donation to the Temple of Tymora (goddess of luck) before leaving Baldur's Gate. I was thinking of telling the party, "Ya know, I didn't want to tell you this earlier because you might think I'm crazy, but I thought I heard a voice at the temple of Tymora telling me to "forge my own luck." Now I know what it means..."

Thank you for any and all advice!
 

Leatherhead

Possibly a Idiot.
I think your DM meant break as in Overpowered.

Standard Avernus Disclaimers here: You can probably buy anything you want in Avernus, though you might not like the price. Also fire might not be the best idea for dealing damage.

Now for a less general response:
Avernus ends at around level 13ish. Your DM might have more for you after that, but I am going to base this on level 13. With Two levels of anything else you are giving up one ASI (which could be a feat because you will have 20 STR) and one use of Indomitable (not too great). I see no problem there.

If, for some reason you are going all the way up to level 20, You will lose out on your 4th attack by multiclassing, but I don't really consider that a big loss compared to what you can gain because yet another extra attack is a fraction of your DPR at that point.

On the other hand, Level Two forge Cleric isn't so hot. Fire damage is going to be resisted a lot. You only get one +1 bonus from Blessing of the Forge. And you don't even get 2nd level spells for Prayer of Healing to help with downtime. You will be more or less slapping up Bless and keeping your party from bleeding out with a well timed heal spell. If you are getting a new Druid, it's not going to add much to the group.

Now I'm going to throw you a curve ball here. You could also stop leveling up Fighter. Level 5 is a perfect break point for a Fighter, as that's when you get Extra Attack. You could simply level up as a Cleric for the rest of your characters life. Which means by the end of Avernus you would be a level 7 or 8 cleric, have access to 4th level spells, and have fire resistance and another +1 Ac from Soul of the Forge, which would be really handy.
 

tommybahama

Explorer
Thank you for the reply. I have a week to decide so I'm going to consider your curve ball option very hard before making a decision. Thanks!
 

Esker

Abventuree
What's been your play-style as a fighter? Are you damage-focused? Lockdown focused? One-handed and shield, or two-handed weapons? What maneuvers do you use? I assume you took a feat at 4th since you still have 16 STR?
 

tommybahama

Explorer
This is my first time playing 5e so most of my choices are from the DM throwing out a list of options and me picking what sounded good.

My dwarf is a front line fighter. I chose Defensive fighting style and fight with a +1 sword and shield. My first ASI I took Tavern Brawler for the +1STR. We started the campaign with a side adventure until level 3 and had several bar fights so it made sense.

For maneuvers I initially went with Riposte, Menacing Attack, and Feint. I switched out Menacing for Restraining Strike from the recent UA. I hardly ever use the Feint maneuver.

Last session I got my clock cleaned by a mummy that crit hit me for 38 damage. His second hit put me down for the count with 24 damage. It's also why Forge Cleric with their +1 AC is so tempting. It looked like a TPK was coming but I think the DM intervened.

Beyond that I have decent luck with the to hit rolls but very bad luck with the damage rolls. My damage output hasn't been great.
 

RogueJK

It's not "Rouge"... That's makeup.
Personally, if you're going to multiclass into Cleric, I'd grab Fighter 6 first to get the next ASI for +2 STR, and then go straight Cleric from there. A level or two in Cleric won't do you all that much good at this point. You're considering multiclassing to Cleric primarily for healing, but you'd be limited to 1st level spell slots only, which would let you heal 1d8+2 HP at most with each Cure Wounds. That's less than a Potion of Healing, which are cheap and relatively easy to get. And you'd only have 2-3 of these 1st level slots per day to boot.

So either go Fighter6/Cleric7, or just stick to Fighter and rely on Healing Potions, Healers Kits, and possibly the new Druid player for healing.


As for Cleric subclass, Forge could be a decent option, but has some significant drawbacks (especially with the lower level abilities and domain spells). Keep in mind that Blessing of the Forge only applies to nonmagical armor/weapons, so it loses its usefulness once the party acquires +1 magical armor/weapons. The damaging domain spells like Heat Metal and Searing Smite are fire-based, which won't be much use against Demons/Devils which have Fire Resistance/Immunity. Magic Weapon, like Blessing of the Forge, only works on non-magical weapons, and you usually have better things to be spending your Concentration on anyway, like Bless, Shield of Faith, or eventually Spirit Guardians. And the Identify spell isn't strictly necessary, as a PC can "identify" a magic item just by spending 1 hour (a short rest) studying it without requiring a spell, although there are some circumstantial situations in which the Identify spell could be helpful to figure out a magical spell affecting a creature or non-item object like a statue or door.

On the upside, Artisan's Blessing is a great "swiss army knife" ability for a creative player to get the party out of a jam, and Forge's higher level abilities and domain spells are more useful to you. The additional +1 to AC at 6th level applies across the board even with magic armor, and the extra Fire Resistance at 6th level will be helpful in an Avernus campaign. (Although the campaign will be almost done by that point at 12th total character level.) And the 3rd level domain spells are Elemental Weapon, which stacks with magical weapons and allow you to choose an element like Thunder to which Demons/Devils aren't resistant, and Protection from Energy for more fire resistance for the party.


If you're mainly worried about healing, a better option would be to take those 7 levels as a Life Cleric. You'd get a boost to all of your healing spells, which would help to offset your low Wisdom. Plus the domain spells are basically all standard spells that you'd have prepared anyway, freeing up your spell selection to have some more situationally useful options prepared.
 
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Forge Cleric 1 with 5 levels of fighter is a sweet spot.

Forge allows you one extra magic weapon/amor. Some good spells (healing word, bless, protection from good and evil). A battlemaster will allow you to be either a damage dealer or a battlefield controller.
 

tommybahama

Explorer
Thanks for all the advice everyone. Our new player has decided on Twilight Cleric so I will stick with the fighter class for at least one more level to see if he works out for the party.
 

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