Wednesday, September 17, 2008


***Gaming Post***
You have been warned

I've been playing in a 4E campaign for the last couple of months. It meets every week which actually means we've been able to cover quite a bit of territory, but that's really probably too much time, I think I'd be happier if it met every other week, but so it goes. I started out playing a Paladin, which in 4E assumes the role of defender. That was pretty cool, but even before the books were out I had my eye on a class that had been previewed called the swordmage. Also a defender but with a significantly different feel than the fighter or the paladin. The book which contained the swordmage class (Forgotten Realms Players Guide) was released yesterday so tonight was my first chance to play it. (Normally we game on Friday's but we moved it to Wednesday's because of conflicts.)

Last week the paladin was killed in an epic battle that really all but turned into a TPK (total party kill). There were several points when half the party was down to a single hit point, and actions were so precious that people who had been knocked prone spent the entire combat crawling around after that. My paladin went down at least a half a dozen times before being brought back by the cleric, and every time he'd go toe-toe with the big bad guy. Finally the BBG was sick of it and the next time he was down he coup de grace'd me and that was the end of that. Of course that was fine because as I mentioned I wanted to switch to playing a swordmage.

So tonight was the night. The best thing about rolling a new character was that I had learned a lot of lessons from my previous attempt at playing a defender. First off this whole business of building a defender that focuses on damage? You can if you want, but it's going to suck. You'll never do as much damage as the strikers and if you're even attempting to do your job correctly you'll end up getting the snot kicked out of you because you won't have the AC and defenses of someone who's focused strictly on defense. So that was mistake number one I rectified. Other mistakes were less obvious, but now that I had seen more of 4E combat and had a better idea of how to play a defender my power selection was a lot better as well. And finally the swordmage has some really fun powers.

In any case it was quite enjoyable. None of the combats from tonight were as tough as the gigantic fight from last week, but I think this defender is definitely more durable than my previous attempt. And that's really what I wanted. I want a defender who, not so surprisingly has the best defense. I think I got there.

A possible AC of 31 at level 6 might not sound like much (or may not make any sense at all) but trust me it's impressive


Blogger Valerie said...

The Swordmage sounds cool. You will have to tell us more about it.

7:37 AM  
Blogger aozora said...

Yay! A gaming post!

* happy dance *

Wait, it is D&D4 ... ergh ... ah well ...

How do you track things with every-other week play? Isn't a lot forgotten?

8:09 AM  
Blogger Ross said...

Track what things? The numerous conditions and ongoing affects in 4E? Well we never end in the middle of combat, so that helps. Then there's daily power use to track, personally I have power cards which I flip in the sleeve if I've used it. Other than that it's pretty straight forward.

9:02 AM  
Blogger aozora said...

No ongoing campaign story?

4:47 PM  
Blogger Ross said...

Well the family campaign runs every other week and for that one I send out an e-mail about halfway between sessions with a "story thus far". Which helps, and of course there's 5-10 minutes at the beginning of the session where I review that as well. So I admit it can be annoying, but it's not too bad.

4:52 PM  
Blogger aozora said...

No, no, not annoying at all. I admire your prep-work.

The word verification is getting progressively more difficult. Is this part of the spam control? ;-D

4:56 PM  

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