D&D 4E The "Spine" of 4E - Am I missing anything?

Mercurius

Legend
I'm trying to do some research and understand the underlying mathematics of 4E, somewhat similarly to Trailblazer's "the Spine." Specifically, right now I'm looking at attacks vs. AC and Defenses at different levels, taking into account Ability mods + half level bonuses, as well as relevant likely enhancements. After a year+ of light play, I feel like I am only finally entering the "intermediate" stage of understanding the rules, so please let me know if I am missing anything.

As far as I understand it, each defense is composed of:

Base Defense + Enhancement bonus + Primary Ability Modifier + Class bonus


Base Defenses: 10 + Half Level
Magical Enhancement bonuses: +1 at 1st, +2 at 6th, +3 at 11th, +4 at 16th, +5 at 21st, +6 at 26th.
Maximum Primary Ability Modifier: 1st level +5; 8th level +6; 14th level +7; 21st level +8; 28th level +9.
Class bonuses: 0 to +2

I'll leave aside situational modifiers for now, including relevant feats that improve Defenses in very specific circumstances.

Which brings me to:

Defense Ranges by Level (assuming level appropriate magic items):
1st: 10 to 18 (base 10 +1 enhancement +5 Ability mod +2 class bonus)
5th: 12 to 20 (base 12 +1 EB +5 AM +2 CB)
10th: 15 to 25 (base 15 +2 EB +6 AM +2 CB)
15th: 17 to 29 (base 17 +3 EB +7 AM +2 CB)
20th: 20 to 33 (base 20 +4 EB +7 AM +2 CB)
25nd: 22 to 38 (base 22 +5 EB +9 AM +2 CB)
30th: 25 to 43 (base 25 +6 EB +11 AM +2 CB)

Armor Class would be approximately the same.

So am I missing anything?

EDIT: I added Prophetic Blessing into the Ability Modifier.
 
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Mercurius

Legend
One thing I just realized that I could do would be to use Character Builder to figure all of this out. I still might miss stuff, but at least I would have the right basic numbers.
 

Elric

First Post
For changes over time, here's the math on the raw effect of levels, stat increases, and enhancement bonuses of magic items.

Over 29 levels, from a starting level 1 character (no magic items) to level 30:
To-hit, AC, and Fort/Reflex/Will gain +21 from levels/enhancement bonuses.

Assume you split your stat boosts to two stats that add to different FRW defenses. One of these stats is your primary attack stat. If you wear light armor, one of these stats boosts AC.

AC gains +6 more: either +6 from Masterwork Heavy Armor, or +2 from MW Light Armor and +4 from increases to an ability score which adds to AC. To-hit and your two strong FRWs gain +4 more from Primary/Secondary Attribute advancement. Your one weak FRW gains +1 from the ability score boosts at levels 11/21.

So AC gains +27, to-hit and your two strong FRWs gain +25, and your weak FRW gains +22.

Over these 29 levels, monsters gain +29 to their to-hit and to all defenses. So monster defenses scale 4 more than player to-hit does, monster to-hit scales 2 more than player AC does, monster to-hit scales 4 more than a player’s two strong FRWs do, and monster to-hit scales 7 more than a player’s weak FRW does.

These numbers don't take into account feat, powers, Paragon paths, or Epic destinies.
 


Mercurius

Legend
Er, no, I didn't. +6 Godplate Armor (+20) and a heavy shield (+2) would add +22, but you'd have to subtract the ability modifier (max +11), and there would be no class bonus afaik, and the enhancement bonus (+6) would also be part of the armor, so we're talking +22 instead of +19, so it would have a max of AC 46 at 30th level. Again, unless I'm missing something. The maximum AC I could come up with is +6 Elderhide (+11) with 3- DEX (+11), which ends up the same, I believe (AC 46). So yeah, "approximately the same."

I've asked a couple times: If I'm missing something, Jester, tell me--and tell me how--rather than the drive-by snark. ;)
 
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Rothe_

First Post
I get 51 for max AC, although I am probably missing something.
+11 Elderhide (+6)
+10 ability mod (30 score = start with 20, +8 from levels, +2 from epic destiny)
+2 heavy shield
+3 barbarian agility
+15 levels
+10 base
 

the Jester

Legend
Er, no, I didn't. +6 Godplate Armor (+20) and a heavy shield (+2) would add +16, but you'd have to subtract the ability modifier (max +11), and there would be no class bonus afaik, and the enhancement bonus (+6) would also be part of the armor, so we're talking +22 instead of +19, so it would have a max of AC 46 at 30th level. Again, unless I'm missing something. The maximum AC I could come up with is +6 Elderhide (+11) with 3- DEX (+11), which ends up the same, I believe (AC 46). So yeah, "approximately the same."

I've asked a couple times: If I'm missing something, Jester, tell me--and tell me how--rather than the drive-by snark. ;)

Sorry, didn't intend to come across as snarky.

Looking at your numbers, it appears that you're more or less correct, although I'd argue that AC outpaces NADs at lower levels especially.
 

Aust Diamondew

First Post
One can always get feat bonuses to defenses, lightning reflexes, paragon defenses, robust defenses etc.
The bonuses can range from +2 in the paragon tier to +4 in the epic tier.
Also there are some items in the adventurers vault I believe that add static defense bonuses. What these items names are, I do not recall.

Also I don't think listing the minimum as 10+1/2 level is useful, you should at least add in enhancement bonuses.
Furthermore, by level 21, all characters should get a minimum of a +1 ability modifier bonus to all defenses (assuming one doesn't roll ability scores). This is because ability scores increase by 1 at level 11 and at level 21.
 

Destil

Explorer
I get 51 for max AC, although I am probably missing something.
+11 Elderhide (+6)
+10 ability mod (30 score = start with 20, +8 from levels, +2 from epic destiny)
+2 heavy shield
+3 barbarian agility
+15 levels
+10 base
Nothing preventing you from being a pit-fighter (are there any other +1 AC paths yet?) so 52.

Also you'd much more likely have a defensive double weapon and two-weapon defense rather than a heavy shield, so you can still use your barbarian abilities.

Isn't there a hide armor specialization feat? Isn't there something stupid in Primal Power for +2 for hide AC (it may be the same thing, Second Skin? Don't have my books at work). I suppose your existing build could get shield Spec for another +1...
 

Rothe_

First Post
Yeah, the heavy shield might not even work with barbarian agility actually (can't check now).

I guess it is then something between 52 and 54 depending on second skin.
 

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