D&D 5E Wisdom based ranger beastmaster

PnPgamer

Explorer
I have been wondering about a beastmaster ranger who is wisdom based instead of the usual str/dex, since the beasts attack uses your spell attack instead of anything else(using the tashas cauldron of everything alternate beastmaster class option).
I seek advice on if it would be better to shillelagh/magic stone a weapon(druidic warrior), or pick druidic warrior and go to battle using other cantrips such as the primal savagery/bonfire/produce flame.(ignoring extra attack from 5th level)
Any thoughts on this? Hints, tips? Hardcore math?
 
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RogueJK

It's not "Rouge"... That's makeup.
The main issue with the Shillelagh/Magic Stone route is that you have a bunch of competition for your Bonus Action.
-Shillelagh requires one Bonus Action per minute
-Magic Stone requires one Bonus Action every three attacks (so as often as every other round)
-Primal Companion requires a Bonus Action every turn that you want your Companion to attack without your PC taking the Attack action and sacrificing one of your own attacks

Plus the various Ranger spells with Bonus Action casting times and any racial Bonus Action abilities.


Shillelagh's infrequent Bonus Action activation can still be fine, especially if your DM is okay with you pre-casting it when you know you're heading towards combat, and re-upping it frequently while dungeon crawling. But having to burn your Bonus Action every other turn on making new Magic Stones isn't very viable for a Beastmaster.

Therefore, I'd recommend going with a combination approach: Take Shillelagh for WIS-based melee with Extra Attack, and then pick a ranged damage cantrip like Produce Flame or Frostbite as a WIS-based ranged backup. This minimizes your Bonus Action clog, and allows you to devote your Bonus Action to your Companion attacks each round.


Or, even better, skip the Druid ranged damage cantrip altogether and go with the new Kobold race from Monsters of the Multiverse that can get a better ranged damage cantrip from the Sorcerer list as a WIS-based racial cantrip. This grants you access to a superior WIS-based ranged cantrip, such as Chill Touch, Mind Sliver, or Toll the Dead. And being Small, your Kobold would also have the nifty option to ride their Beast of the Land Companion as a mount. (Or if Kobold doesn't interest you, there are other ways to get a better WIS-based racial damage cantrip too... Variant Human or Custom Lineage starting with the Magic Initiate Cleric feat is an option here, as would be a Spelljammer Astral Elf with racial Sacred Flame.)

Compared to these racial Sorcerer/Cleric cantrip options, the Druid ranged cantrips are kinda lackluster. Some are short range like Produce Flame's 30' range. Others target a save that tends to be high on many enemies like Frostbite's/Infestation's CON save. Magic Stone has Bonus Action clog issues as discussed above. Create Bonfire requires your Concentration, and breaks Concentration on various Ranger spells and abilities. Plus ranged Druid cantrips tend to be more commonly resisted damage types like Fire, Poison, and Cold.

This also then opens up your second Druidic Warrior cantrip pick to go with something like Guidance (for the skills boosts) or Thorn Whip (for the forced damage) or Mold Earth (for utility).

Plus if starting at Level 1, this racial cantrip route gives you a resourceless WIS-based combat option right off the bat, while you're wait to make it to Ranger 2 and take the Druidic Warrior fighting style.
 
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PnPgamer

Explorer
The main issue with the Shillelagh/Magic Stone route is that you have a bunch of competition for your Bonus Action.
-Shillelagh requires one Bonus Action per minute
-Magic Stone requires one Bonus Action every three attacks (so as often as every other round)
-Primal Companion requires a Bonus Action every turn that you want your Companion to attack without your PC taking the Attack action and sacrificing one of your own attacks

Plus the various Ranger spells with Bonus Action casting times and any racial Bonus Action abilities.


Shillelagh's infrequent Bonus Action activation can still be fine, especially if your DM is okay with you pre-casting it when you know you're heading towards combat, and re-upping it frequently while dungeon crawling. But having to burn your Bonus Action every other turn on making new Magic Stones isn't very viable for a Beastmaster.

Therefore, I'd recommend going with a combination approach: Take Shillelagh for WIS-based melee with Extra Attack, and then pick a ranged damage cantrip like Produce Flame or Frostbite as a WIS-based ranged backup. This minimizes your Bonus Action clog, and allows you to devote your Bonus Action to your Companion attacks each round.


Or, even better, skip the Druid ranged damage cantrip altogether and go with the new Kobold race from Monsters of the Multiverse that can get a better ranged damage cantrip from the Sorcerer list as a WIS-based racial cantrip. This grants you access to a superior WIS-based ranged cantrip, such as Chill Touch, Mind Sliver, or Toll the Dead. And being Small, your Kobold would also have the nifty option to ride their Beast of the Land Companion as a mount. (Or if Kobold doesn't interest you, there are other ways to get a better WIS-based racial damage cantrip too... Variant Human or Custom Lineage starting with the Magic Initiate Cleric feat is an option here, as would be a Spelljammer Astral Elf with racial Sacred Flame.)

Compared to these racial Sorcerer/Cleric cantrip options, the Druid ranged cantrips are kinda lackluster. Some are short range like Produce Flame's 30' range. Others target a save that tends to be high on many enemies like Frostbite's/Infestation's CON save. Magic Stone has Bonus Action clog issues as discussed above. Create Bonfire requires your Concentration, and breaks Concentration on various Ranger spells and abilities. Plus ranged Druid cantrips tend to be more commonly resisted damage types like Fire, Poison, and Cold.

This also then opens up your second Druidic Warrior cantrip pick to go with something like Guidance (for the skills boosts) or Thorn Whip (for the forced damage) or Mold Earth (for utility).

Plus if starting at Level 1, this racial cantrip route gives you a resourceless WIS-based combat option right off the bat, while you're wait to make it to Ranger 2 and take the Druidic Warrior fighting style.
Marvellous answer thank you!
Reason i would prefer to choose either shillelagh or just another melee spell attack cantrip(primal savagery, thorn whip i.e.) is that i would think what to wield with my main hand, cos wand of the war mage would give bonuses to the latter options AND the animal companions attacks, while shillelagh would only benefit from none unless gm houserules it in my favour. I would begin as variant human or somesuch, but would pick war caster feat just so i can cast while wielding a shield + club/wand
 

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