D&D 5E Thoughts on Absorb Elements vs Shield on a 4-level Arcane Trickster dip

ECMO3

Hero
I am working on my build for my next character (probably start playing late march or early April). This will be a 1-20 game and might be one of the last 5E characters I play if my groups all go to ONE.

The character is not going beyond 4 levels in Rogue so no uncanny dodge or evasion. She only gets one spell that is not enchantment or illusion, she will have silvery barbs though so maybe shield is a little redundant with this? She will be mostly a full caster (Bard) after this, so she will have a decent number of slots.
 

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Kurotowa

Legend
It depends on both your character's fighting style and the DM's encounter building style. Will you be fighting on the front line, or standing back and only getting hit with a few ranged attacks? Does you DM favor squads of warriors, or do they like to run NPC casters who throw Fireballs at the party?

There is no universally correct answer. Only the best answer for your specific situation, and we don't know what that is.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
Shields more useful as absorb elements more niche.

Rogues get evasion by level 4? Another case for shield.

Silvery barbs better in a dual type situation shield is good vs multiple attacks.
 

Stormonu

Legend
Yeah, absorb elements is definitely more niche. I've been running a warlock and had it for a while but dropped it when it hadn't been used once in 8 levels or so.
 



Zardnaar

Legend
Shield and Silvery Barbs are always useful. Absorb Elements is only useful if the DM regularly throws dragons and fireballing wizards at you.

Tends to be useful later as well along with heroism and protection from evil.

Absorb elements would be great in my new generation tbh along with a nature cleric.

Lots of incoming fire and cold damage from level 3 or so. I'll put that in the PG.
 


Zardnaar

Legend
Yeah, there is an EK in our current game who seems to be getting good mileage out of Protection from Evil/Good. But it's Ravenloft campaign, so undead are pretty common.

Think you convinced me how good it is and I played a EK in BG3.

Your level 1 and 2 spells sort of become utility at level 8ish.
 

ECMO3

Hero
It depends on both your character's fighting style and the DM's encounter building style. Will you be fighting on the front line, or standing back and only getting hit with a few ranged attacks? Does you DM favor squads of warriors, or do they like to run NPC casters who throw Fireballs at the party?

Thanks, she is going to be in melee a lot with 2 levels of Paladin as well and heavy armor. Most levels are going to be Whispers Bard though.

The other thing I did not mention as well is a physical shield. I can go with a shield an have a permanent +2AC, but I won't normally be able to use the shield spell (or the Absorb elements spell for that matter) while going sword and board. Going without a physical shield lets me keep a heavy crossbow around for ranged attacks though ..... choices.

Thanks everyone for the thoughts. I think I am leaning towards the shield spell, go heavy armor and no physical shield.
 
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