4E Reworking class builds for other classes

thanson02

Explorer
Hey everyone.

Recently, my wife and I were talking about the Artificer class for 4E and she loves it, but wishes that the class received more love from WotC. We were brainstorming character ideas and one of the things she wanted to do was make an artificer character that has a mechanical construct as a companion. So far, strait forward and easy to do.

Then she decided she wanted to use it in combat....

We talked about options, but ultimately, she wants a Beastmaster Ranger who is an Artificer and has a swarm monster construct, not animals. So we figured, why not try a homebrew and see how it goes. :) We are in the process of reskinning the Beastmaster Ranger to be an artificer. I have never played with the Beastmaster, but I have heard that that it is the weakest of the ranger builds. Also, it sounds like my wife wants to have the build act more like a controller then a striker or a leader.

Most of my homebrewing has been on the DM side, so this is the first real rework I have done on the players side. I was wondering if there were any pointers folks had for the rework of the build so it worked with the Artificer.
 

MwaO

Explorer
Fey Beast Tamer theme or an Int/Wis Sentinel|Artificer hybrid both do what you want it to do. Then you just need to refluff the Fey/Primal into Mechanical/Arcane. A lot less work.

And Sentinel adds a lot of controller elements - Magic Stones, Charm Beast, Wind Wall, Summon Giant Frog, etc...
 

thanson02

Explorer
Fey Beast Tamer theme or an Int/Wis Sentinel|Artificer hybrid both do what you want it to do. Then you just need to refluff the Fey/Primal into Mechanical/Arcane. A lot less work.

And Sentinel adds a lot of controller elements - Magic Stones, Charm Beast, Wind Wall, Summon Giant Frog, etc...
See, this is why I ask.

Thank you. I will see how my wife likes that route.

Sent from my XT1096 using Tapatalk
 

darkbard

Explorer
I second MwaO's suggestion of Sentinel|Artificer. Recently I built a similar character, a Sentinel|Warlord, for my wife, and Sentinel actually plays better as a hybrid, IMO, than the straight class. The companion can be a full-fledged combatant, and the class brings a good degree of control powers to the build, again as MwaO notes. INT/WIS builds are fun on the Skills side, too.

EDIT: If your wife is interested in a swarm companion, refluff the Living Zephyr companion (Heroes of the Elemental Chaos).
 

darkbard

Explorer
Aye. And one of the great things about the hybrid Sentinel is the ability to grab regular Druid powers instead of being limited to the precanned (leader) choices of the Essentials class, which brings the control powers that [MENTION=6801619]thanson02[/MENTION] 's wife has indicated as her desire. All that without losing the second encounter heal when hybridized with Artificer, so the PC can still clearly fill the Leader role as such (by choosing Artificer powers or Sentinel choices where appropriate). It's a win-win, really: primary leader, strong controller secondary (through power choice).
 

darkbard

Explorer
Fey Beast Tamer is the general "go to" for viable animal companion mechanics, but for what the OP has specified, I think Sentinel is the best option.
 
Hey everyone.

Recently, my wife and I were talking about the Artificer class for 4E and she loves it, but wishes that the class received more love from WotC. We were brainstorming character ideas and one of the things she wanted to do was make an artificer character that has a mechanical construct as a companion. So far, strait forward and easy to do.

Then she decided she wanted to use it in combat....

We talked about options, but ultimately, she wants a Beastmaster Ranger who is an Artificer and has a swarm monster construct, not animals. So we figured, why not try a homebrew and see how it goes. :) We are in the process of reskinning the Beastmaster Ranger to be an artificer. I have never played with the Beastmaster, but I have heard that that it is the weakest of the ranger builds. Also, it sounds like my wife wants to have the build act more like a controller then a striker or a leader.

Most of my homebrewing has been on the DM side, so this is the first real rework I have done on the players side. I was wondering if there were any pointers folks had for the rework of the build so it worked with the Artificer.
Take the 'Beastmaster is weak' meme with a pound of table salt. They lose a tiny bit of DPS due to lack of dual bastard sword wielding, and they lack Prime Shot, which is nice but not critical. They also don't get the toughness of the TBR, but that's pretty minor.

Instead they get a beast, which is certainly a very decent damage soak and blocker, if nothing else, and can when cleverly employed enhance your HQ a bit, and now and then make a useful OA. Its not incredible, but you're basically giving up 0.5 DPS and 5 hit points for it, so don't complain too much.

Lack of Prime Shot and access to the Battlefield Archer PP are arguably a rather higher cost, but nobody ever argued that the STR/WIS melee ranger was WEAKER than the Archer build, and you certainly aren't weaker than the former, so why assume you're weaker than the later? You aren't.

Beyond that you have a beast, which can do all sorts of "I need a hand over there where I really don't want to go" kinds of tasks. It can accomplish many things in RP terms that simply can't be quantified in the flatland white room combat-only analysis of its detractors either.

There are also at least a few decent Utility powers for the Beastmaster. Even one or two of the attack powers are reasonable choices depending on your goals, though none of them are really outstanding. You can do some tricky stuff with OAs too, though I don't think that kind of build is exceptional its still not really lame and could be fun.

So, the core you have, the Beastmaster, is not bad. You could easily just color the beast as a 'swarm' (and heck, give it swarm mechanics while you're at it, its not going to break anything). You could hybrid with Artificer, but you could also just take the Alchemist theme and MC Artificer for a bit of that action if you wish. Anyway, I think MwaO's approach is at least as good, Sentinel is a perfectly good base for this, or just use Fey Beast Tamer, which is a great theme.
 

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