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Cleric FAQ by randomsome1
Version: 2.2 | Updated: 12/17/07
V2.0 - Update for MotB v2.1 - Added new Stone Body, Deathward,Freedom of Move cheeze combo. Updated BAB stacking with divine power. Misc changes from feedback. v2.2 - Added Turn Undead section and a few minor changes. Updated Cleric Guide for Neverwinter Nights 2: Mask of the Betrayer ------------------------------------------------------------------- Welcome to my guide on Clerics for Neverwinter Nights 2. Clerics are one of the most powerful classes and it is interesting that in MotB they apparantly gained quite a bit of competition. Two more divine classes, the Favored Soul, and Spirit Shaman have arrived. The Favored Soul is a CHA-based cleric with a sorceror like spell system. The class itself surprisingly is not nearly as versatile as the cleric though. In addition, two new divine prestege classes are here. Both of which are far better than Warpriest, but lack versatility in a big way. Clerics are one of the original hybrid classes. Although there are an amazing amount of warrior/mage prestege classes in pen and paper(pnp) D&D, clerics already handle this role quite nicely. Unlike paladins/rangers and even bards, they have full spellcasting power with 9 levels of spells but still retain adequate fighting capability. With an extra 10 levels of leveling progression, it significantly opens up the cleric class for greater multiclassing potential. This guide covers some concepts of healing, as well as two distinctly different builds for playing your cleric to its maximum potential. Feel free to contact me with questions. It makes me feel important ;-) My info is at the end of the guide. ---------------------------------------------------- Table Of Contents: I. Role of Healing II. Role of the Cleric III. Spell DC and Caster Levels. IV. Defensive Casting Analysis V. Turning Undead VI. The Caster Cleric a) Races b) Stats c) Domain Choices d) Feats e) Skills f) Weapon Selection g) Spells h) Multiclassing Considerations i) Sample Build VII. The Warrior Cleric a) Races b) Stats c) Domain Choices d) Feats e) Skills f) Weapon Selection g) Spells h) Multiclassing Considerations i) Sample Builds VIII. Clerical Prestege Classes. XI. Conclusion/Copyright/Contact Info. ------------------ I. Role of Healing ------------------ Nothing is particularly different in this section with regards to MOTB. For those who have played other games, especially massive multiplayer online games (mmo's), the role of healing in D&D/NWN2 may surprise you. In fact, healing in combat is RARE and not very useful most of the time. In MMOs, healing during combat is very necessary for parties for two reasons: a) Max HPs are low, compared to monster damage. An unhealed warrior can die within 10 seconds if he has all the mobile monsters(mobs) attention. An unhealed warrior is pretty much guaranteed to die during the course of an entire fight. In NWN2, this is not really the case. Party members are generally unlikely to take enough damage to die during a typical encounter. Healing is used more after combat to prepare for the next fight. b) Healing per unit time is much stronger than damage. In other words a single healer can do enough healing to the party to negate most if not all monster damage for a while. Basically the healer's mana-bar extends the party's effective HPs. In Magic the card game, lifegain is twice as powerful as damage. In World of Warcraft, a healer can crank out three times the healing as a damage based character. In NWN2, healing is just not effective enough. At level 7 for example, a cleric can cast a 30 point Cure Critical Wounds, but a Warrior can hit twice for 25, a rogue can sneak for 20, and a mage can toss a 7d6 fireball that affects everyone. A high level mass cure moderate wounds spell does NOT negate a chain lightning, let alone several of them. The upshot is that a cleric will NOT be a full time healer in combat. Occasional heals may be needed, but there are actually very few that are worth casting in combat. Note that in epic levels, this starts to reverse itself. The reason being that offensive spells plateau, whereas certain healing spells continue to scale (regeneration, greater restoration). Mass Heal is also a very powerful spell that may be cast in combat, for up to 250 healing per person. These spells far outstrip the offensive potential of even mighty 9th level spells like Meteor Shower, maximized chain lightning, and so forth. ----------------------- II. Role of the Cleric ----------------------- The cleric's usual percieved role is to buff the party and support the party by offensive, defensive, and healing spells. This means making a cleric that is ok at fighting, and has decently high WIS to be able to cast a variety of healing spells. The cleric will handle turning undead as well. This works ok, but in NWN2 there are many ways to heal without relying on a cleric. Hence, in this guide I show two alternative ways to play a cleric that are not as traditional. As most MMO players can tell you, the best thing for a hybrid is to specialize. Otherwise, you are so-so at everything. It is better to have a specialty that you are good at, and also retain a decent ability to perform the other roles as needed. There are several ways of doing so. Like all characters, feats and attributes are the primary method. Clerics gain a choice of two Domains that give them certain spells and abilities, which provides a powerful additional method of customization or specialization as we will soon see. Note that it is very possible to play a middle-of-the-road cleric, and be quite successful. This is more of a testament to the power of the cleric than anything however. Therefore, my guide covers two distinct styles of play... the Caster Cleric and the Warrior Cleric. The warrior cleric does not use hardly any offensive spells, and uses magic to buff self and party and heal as needed. Such a cleric is basically a second rate warrior. However, this is actually not the case, as the buff power of a cleric is very impressive, and provides a large amount of defense as well as offense. (various immunities, elemental damage reduction, AB, etc). In particular, there are 3 key spells (and 1 honorable mention) that transform a cleric from 2nd rate warrior, to very mighty in melee. These are (for lvl20): -persistent divine favor (+3ab/+3dmg for 24 hours. It got NERFED recently, but is still useful. -extended Battletide/Haste(Haste effect = +1ab,ac, 1 bonus attack for up to 4 minutes.) -extended Divine Power (Base Attack Bonus is set to that of a fighter of equivalent level. i.e. 30 cleric gets 30bab.) -honorable mention to Stoneskin (10 damage reduction per hit, max of 150 HP reduced for up to 20 minutes) which Earth domain provides. Premonition works great too (time domain). Most warrior clerics will multiclass and thus stick to around 25 or less casting levels (including practiced caster). Hence, spell durations will increase a bit on average, but not much. The caster cleric is wholly devoted to offensive magic. They act as a wanna-be wizard. Although lacking some of the diversity for offensive spells, the caster cleric is still quite powerful and has several notable advantages. Chief among these are full plate + shield, double the base HPs, healing ability, and much better melee capability, as well as more spell slots than an equivalent wizard. The emphasis is on a very high DC for all spells, a large number of bonus spells, and metamagic feats to extend the offensive punch and versatility. This cleric has limited healing spells and carries fewer buffs. It turns out that the caster cleric has a very obvious choice for spell focus that provides damage, stun, and insta-death spells. Because these two paths diverge and are so different, I devote two separate sections for discussing each playstyle. Really quick note: When making a new character, you MUST click the CUSTOMIZE button when it gives you the option of several character builds such as "default cleric", "battle cleric", and so on. This gives you control over your initial feats, skills, domains. ---------------------- III. Spell DC Explained and Caster Levels. ---------------------- A. Spell Difficulty Class DC is a measure of how hard it is to avoid effects of spells, and other "special" attacks/abilities. Most offensive spells allow for a Saving Throw, which adds their appropriate save category (Reflex,Fort,Will) to a 1d20 to meet or exceed the DC of the spell. You want your spell DC to be as high as possible, because if the foe makes a successful saving throw, the spell is partially or completely negated. Obviously, this is a bad thing if you are an offensive caster. Most damage spells do 1/2 damage if a save is made. Evasion allows certain spells to be reduced to 0 damage. These spells are still adequate, even with a low DC. A warrior cleric might make use of these as an "opener" to get in a bit of damage. Effect spells are called Save Or Die, which is a misnomer. This includes actual death spells, but also includes spells that do something really bad, such as Hold Person, dominate monster, flesh to stone, etc. These are WORTHLESS without a high DC, and should not be attempted. Here is how DC is determined: The DC starts at 10, and adds +1 for each level of the spell (NOT including metamagic), then adds your WIS modifier, and finally adds any spell focus. So, a level 20 aasimir caster cleric as a 24WIS, 32 with a +8 item. She casts an Empowered Chain Lighting. DC is 10 base +6 for chain lightning +1 focus +1 greater focus + 11WIS +1 prodigy for a total of 30 Note that the chain was an 8th lvl slot but metamagic was ignored. The spell focus Evocation worked since CL is that category. Greater focus stacks with normal spell focus, and Spellcasting Prodigy works as an effective +2WIS that fully stacks. Or think of it as a universal spell focus. It becomes obvious that an offensive caster wants as high of a DC as possible. It is the difference between a monster falling over dead, and making a save and laughing at you. Therefore an offensive caster should take the appropriate spell focus feats, take Prodigy for sure, and crank up the WISDOM as much as possible. This includes getting the best +WIS item you can find, even if it costs you your natural AC amulet for example. For EPIC levels, the spell DC is further modified in FOUR ways: 1) At caster level 23,26,29,32,35... a +1DC for all spells is gained. This does NOT mean 23 CLERIC levels, but 23 caster levels which is explained later. 2) Every +2WIS adds another +1DC to all spells, AND adds bonus spell slots. WIS can come from a free point at 24,28 OR from the Great Wisdom feat, which can be taken up to 10 times! 3) Better WIS items. A +10 or 12 WIS item would obviously be better than the +8 which was the cap in NWN2's original campaign. This would serve to pump DC even further. 4) Epic Spell Focus - This is an ok feat that replaces the +2bonus from focus,greaterfocus with a +3 bonus! So in theory a cleric from 20 to 30 can pick up quite a bit of DC... +1 epic focus, +2 (+12wis item), +1 (+2WIS at 24,28), and +3 (+6 WIS from Great Wisdom 6 feats), +3 (epic caster lvl bonus) Total DC gain: +10! That is more than sufficient to overcome the increased Saves of the epic monsters. B. Caster Level The effectiveness of your spells depends on your Caster Level. This includes damage, duration, and ALSO ability to penetrate Spell Resistance, and avoid getting Dispelled. When you take a level in cleric, you gain 1 caster level in cleric also. Normally, it is a 1 to 1 correspondance. When you multiclass, you do not usually keep getting caster levels. A 16cleric/4fighter has a 16 caster level. However, there is a feat called Practiced Caster, that adds +4 to your caster level. It ONLY works if you have enough total character levels. i.e. the 16cleric/4fighter with practiced caster, will still ONLY get level 8 spells (as a 16 cleric). BUT his spells are cast as if he is level 20! A 16cleric/2fighter would have 18 caster level, since it cannot exceed total levels. Some prestege classes add partial clerical progression. A warpriest gives a clerical full caster level every TWO levels. So a 12cleric,8warpriest is really a 16cleric for ALL spellcasting purposes. He casts 8th lvl spells AND casts as a 16 cleric. Therefore, taking Practiced Caster would make him a 16cleric for spell selection purposes, but a 20 cleric for spell effect, duration, etc purposes. It becomes confusing as people refer to Caster Level as two DIFFERENT things! a) How many levels worth of caster for SPELL PROGRESSION purposes. b) How many levels worth for damage and effect purposes. So, warrior clerics want a high caster level to have longer lasting spells (ext battletide = 40 rounds instead of 32 for example), and be harder to dispel (dispel check = 1d20 +15 to exceed Caster Lvl), and get better effects (+5 magical vestment vs +4) Caster clerics want to penetrate spell resistance, AND do more damage, such as a 20d6 chain lighting vs a 16d6 one. ---------------------- IV. Defensive Casting ---------------------- Ok, I wanted to toss in this interesting sidenote that is important to all clerics. One new choice is whether to use Defensive Casting mode or not. The short version is: Leave defensive casting on at high level, otherwise keep it off unless surrounded by several opponents. Defensive Casting lets you avoid any attacks of opportunity when casting a spell. However, it forces a concentration roll of 15 plus the spell level. Casting without it in melee gives all baddies a free attack of opportunity against you. For each one that hits, you will take damage and force a concentration roll that is likely to be pretty high. (The DC increases as more damage is taken) The best way to do it is toggle it on and off as needed. The trick is... whether it is needed or not. And also, when is it correct to use. I will try to answer this with the following chart. For each level below, it gives the percent failure chance for casting the highest spell level. I make several assumptions: - no attribute mod (Constitution), positive or negative. - no concentrate focus feats or anything. - Uses maximum allowable concentration skill (i.e. character level +3) - Assume no multiclassing, so that casting level = character level. - Always casting the highest possible spell level. - Gains 1 new spell level every 2 levels (sorcs,bards, and multiclassing will lag behind a bit from this. So this is worst-case scenario. In that case, subtract 5% per non-cleric level class) The formula remember is 1d20 + concentrate skill has to equal or exceed 15 + spell level. NOTE: A 1 is NOT automatic failure, so 23 concentrate = automatic success always. 1: 55% 2: 50% 3: 50% 4: 45% 5: 45% 6: 40% 7: 40% 8: 35% 9: 35% 10: 30% 11: 30% 12: 25% 13: 25% 14: 20% 15: 20% 16: 15% 17: 15% (max of 9th lvl spells = 24DC) 18: 10% 19: 5% 20: 0% This chart has several modifiers: 1) Every 2 CON past 10 including buffs and items gives a -5% chance to the whole chart. 2) Every point of Concentration from items (i.e. gloves of concentration) gives -5%. 3) The Skill Focus: Concentrate feat gives -15% as it is worth 3 skillpoints. 4) The Combat Casting feat gives -20%. Examples: A cleric with 14 CON and a bear's endurance has -20% to the chart. At level 14, they can use defensive casting with no chance of failure, so they just leave it on all the time. The same cleric with Combat Casting feat can start leaving it on at level 10. Conclusion: If you are under level 10, you will probably never want to use Defensive Casting. Once you hit a high enough level such that the chance drops to 0% , you will always use defensive casting and leave it on. Otherwise, if you are surrounded by 3 or more baddies, you will probably use defensive casting if the failure chance is under 20%. Else, you will likely take your chances and hope the attacks of opportunity miss. In MOTB campaign, you will always want to leave defensive casting on. Since you start at level 18, you have already hit the 0% failure mark. ----------------- V. Turning Undead ----------------- I wanted to add a section (upon request) to explain how turning undead works. I underestimate the usefulness of turn undead myself and tend to gloss over it because it takes my focus away from other things I am trying to accomplish with my cleric. Anyways, your cleric gains 3 uses of Turn Undead per rest-period. Your CHA modifier is added (or subtracted) from these uses, including that obtained from items. Note that Extra Turning will add 3 attempts per day. You have something I will call a Turn Undead Level (TUL), that for a cleric is equal to your CLASS level. The TUL affects how strong of undead you can turn. Multiclassing usually messes this up and pretty much ruins your ability to turn undead effectively. I.E. a 12cleric/8fighter has a 12 TUL. A 12cleric/8pally has a 17TUL as paladins have their own additive TUL of cleric minus 3. Upon using the ability, your cleric will spend 1 round doing so. Then, all enemy undead within 60 feet radius of your character may be affected. First, you have to roll to determine what is the most powerful undead you can affect, done by the level or hit dice of the undead in question. This is a 1d20 roll, modified by your CHA. The results range from -4 to +4 of your current Turn Undead Level. In other words, if the 1d20 roll is a 0, you can only affect stuff that is 4 levels less than your TUL. Your best case is a 22 roll that lets you affect undead 4 levels HIGHER than your TUL. Unless you have godlike CHA, you will typically get an Undead Effect roll that is about equal to your cleric level. Note that the SUN DOMAIN adds 1d6 to the roll. As this averages 3.5, you can expect the Undead Effect roll to pan out such that you gain +1 cleric level effectively. In other words a 15 sun cleric = a 16 normal cleric for purposes of the maximum power undead that can be turned. Step 1 is complete. You now know whether enemy undead are able to be turned. Now, we want to know how MANY undead are turned. This roll is your TUL(cleric lvl) plus 2d6 plus your CHA modifier. Sun domain adds 1d4 bonus hit dice. As you can see, Turn Undead gets a lot weaker as you level up. At level 5, you can turn around 14 HD of undead (assuming 14CHA). At level 10, that turns to 19HD. At 20, thats 29HD. (maybe a bit more due to +CHA item by now) At 30, thats 39HD. So basically, you can turn many foes early on, but at higher levels you will be able to turn one or two only. Upon turning undead, any affected will stand around not doing anything for 10 rounds with -2AC while you beat on them. With enough HD worth of turning, you can even blow them away instead. Overall, turn undead is kind of nice but I rarely use it. I do not like needing CHA since it has no other real purpose for my builds. If I really want to mess up some undead, I can use an Undeath to Death spell and kill up to 80 HD worth of them. Or, use Sunbeam and do massive 20d6 damage to a large group and possibly blind them. My conclusion is that you should use Turn Undead, but I would not recommend actually taking feats and stats just to support the ability. --------------------- VI. The Caster Cleric --------------------- Welcome to the Caster Cleric section. Playstyle is pretty similar to a wizard and you have similarly powerful spells. In addition, you can fight reasonably well, and have solid anti-undead capabilities with Turn Undead. You have wizard-like offensive spells, but d8 HPs and full plate with shield! It is a great combo. You will primarily use Evocation spells, since those are the most common... and have several different effects (stun,death,dmg) You want to maximize Wisdom at all costs, since it is the biggest thing that grants high DCs for spells. At lower levels, an Owls Wisdom gives you a +4 pump which = +2DC to all your spells. Use it, but careful with rearranging spells as it gives bonus slots temporarily that you cant keep. At higher levels, you should be able to find an item that adds wisdom. One major downside is that the typical +WIS item is an amulet. This happens to be the ONLY slot available for Natural AC pumps, which is bad. CHA is found on cloaks, but Deflection AC comes from cloaks AND rings, as well as other sources. INT is usually on helmets, etc. You wind up with no natural AC and get beat up more, or improved natural AC with a weaker DC and fewer spell slots. The epic items in MOTB do address this somewhat. Hence, any non-amulet WIS source is very important, unless you have access to SpiderSkin/Barkskin somehow. (rod, clickey item, druid/mage buddy, stack of wizard scrolls with UMD, etc) Your second weakness is that you have few damage mitigation spells. Wizards rely heavily on ghostly visage, stoneskin, premonition, etc to cushion blows and reduce concentration checks. You do not really have any such luxury and rely on your higher AC to avoid being hit, or your higher HP to soak up more damage. Look for things such as Rod of the Ghost and other items that allow such spells, so you can reap the benefits of wizardly mitigation AND clerical AC/HP advantages. In MOTB, you will want to find items that grant displacement, improved invis, ethereal visage, stoneskin, and so forth. These are very strong to greatly increase your effective HPs. ** There is a pseudo-cheat that can GREATLY increase your survivability. As discussed later, you will not have access to Stoneskin or Premonition. Hence, this helps compensate quite a bit. First, cast Freedom of Movement, then Deathward. Finally, cast Stone Body at the end. This gives you all the benefits of Stone body, but Freedom negates the move penalty, and deathward negates the -4DEX penalty. The benefits are many, including immunity to sneaks/crits, and 10/admantine damage reduction, with a very nice 1min/lvl duration. Playstyle wise, once mobs bunch up you can use a Hammer to disable several of them then start chain casting damage spells to take out most of them. You can Divine Favor and melee out nearly dead stragglers, unlike wizards which are stuck with horrible fighting capabilities. Another approach is to use BlindSight buff and then cast Darkness on yourself. This gives you 20% concealment while the melees attack you, while you spam damage spells. (it got nerfed too :-( A lvl17+ game strategy is to Deathward yourself (depending on if needed due to pvp settings) and use your DC36-ish Implosion on yourself to slaughter surrounding mobs. This of course assumes higher difficulty settings. Otherwise, you can just spam out death and destruction without targeting considerations. In MotB, you will be fighting higher level monsters. These have more HPs, but you don't gain any extra spell slots. Obviously this is a bad deal. Hence, you will likely wind up melee-ing more often. Other alternatives do exist however such as the following: - Use more Death Magic, as HitPoints are irrelevant if they fail their save. - In a party, disablers like sonic burst, hammer of gods, storm of vengence are very useful to minimize damage taken by the party while they take out the disabled monsters. - Use persistent damage, such as Storm of Vengence(dmg&stun), and especially Blade Barrier. Note: you can't really cast bad spells targeting yourself via the portrait, but CAN zoom way in and target right at your feet. It's kind of a pain though due to the autotargeting "feature".. especially if the monsters are large, since you can unintentially cast a spell at a foe instead of casting right at your feet to hit all surrounding monsters. Example Diagram: O is you, X are enemies in a typical surrounded scenario: xx xOx xxx Casting an implosion on an enemy means the small AoE will only affect maybe 3 of them. Centering it at your feet though has a good chance of affecting most or all surrounding baddies. Try it! Now, lets look at how to make an effective Caster Cleric. a) Race ------- You have no XP penalty concerns, so any race is doable. Here are the three best choices in my opinion. Human - The extra feat is really nice for getting the essentials faster. Allows an extra choice at 18 which is probably gonna be toughness. The extra skill allows you to skimp 2 points on INT to place elsewhere. Humans are best for playing the original campaign since ECL races mean your partymates will always be higher level than you. Aasimir - The main advantage is the +2WIS, which allows for +1 to all spell DCs... and a few bonus spellslots. There are several drawbacks compared to humans, but for the absolute most casting power, this is your race. I would probably recommend Aasimir in most cases, except maybe for the NWN2 Campaign due to ECL. For the MotB campaign since it is already high level, the ECL is not nearly as painful. Deep Gnome - If you really want the best character at high levels, this is the way to go. The +2WIS is great as described above. In addition, +5 extra AC is amazingly good! Free Spell Resistance frees up a buff cast and spellslot. Don't be fooled by the Illusion spell affinity though... evocation is still best, and clerics have hardly any (if any) illusionary spells. Racial invisibility is occasionally handy, since you don't get access to that normally until much higher(ethereal). Best choice on a persistent world IF you are twinked and have assistance. Note that the -4CHA means NO undead turning without a +2 or better CHA item! Unfortunately, all the new races stink! All the Genesai are worthless, as is half drow. None have WIS gains, and all have +1ECL for no real reason. b) Stats -------- For a Human, I would go with the following: STR: 14 (carrying and fighting) DEX: 13 (Max of +1AC in fullplate. Mithril Fullplate allows +3 FYI) CON: 14 (Good HP bonus) INT: 10 (3 skill points per level) WIS: 17 (pump this at 4,8,12,16,20,24,28 and with Great Wisdom feats) CHA: 8 (not needed) Aasimir will add +2WIS, +2CHA, but you will have to bump INT to 12 for the same skillpoints. Change DEX to 12, and STR to 13. DeepGnome gets +2WIS, +2INT. STR drops to 12. CHA gets cratered to 4. If you are starting at high level, it is probably a good idea to take a 9 DEX, and crank up INT to 14 for more skills. You can easily find a +4dex item to make up the difference, AC-wise. Even with mithril plate, a +8dex belt will allow maximum dex bonus allowed. A note on CHA: Every 2 points of CHA adds 1 Turn Undead attempt per day. There are a few minor domain abilities that can take advantage of CHA as well. However, my opinion is that putting points elsewhere is more valuable. If you wish, you can lower WIS to 15 from 17, and DEX to 12 and crank CHA to 14. Personally, I prefer +1 spell DC over 3 more turn undead attempts, but you may always choose otherwise. Remember though that you can equip a CHA item and gain the same effect. 8 natural CHA +8 CHA item = 6 Turns per day. c) Domain Choices ----------------- I recommend Air and Water as they provide strong offensive spells which are badly needed. You COULD skimp on one or both of these, but I highly recommend against it. Unfortunately, MotB did not provide ANY useful domains for caster clerics! Air: -- uncanny dodge - Useless. Might avoid some sneak attacks from unseen rogues at best. (untested) -- call lighting - Very important as its your 1st AoE damage spell. Extremely powerful when leveling, as it is evocation and doesn't hit party members. -- chain lighting - So so. The 1/2 dmg to secondary targets makes it weaker. However, it doesnt hit party members and adds some needed offensive diversity. Both of these are you only decent access to Lightning damage. Water: -- Evasion - So-so. Cleric reflex saves are low, so it's not as good as you might think. -- Poison - useless. -- IceStorm - Important, as it is your ONLY spell that allows NO save. It cannot be evaded. Provides a solid fireball-like spell that scales well with levels. It is also the only access to cold damage. Scales all the way to level 30 (15d6). Fire (possible replacement for Air) -- Fire resistance 5 - Weak. Element buffs provide better protection. -- Fireball - This is strictly stronger than Call Lighting if you are playing on average difficulty or non pvp settings, as it has a bigger AoE and is tossable. Otherwise, I strongly prefer the party-friendly Call Lightning. Besides, I like having access to lightning-based damage and 2 usable spells. -- Wall of Fire - weak. Blade barrier is much better. These are tempting, but you should avoid them: Plant (tempting, but lacking offensive punch) -- Wildland Stride - nice, but not that useful. -- Entangle/VineMine - Not bad, but they are not evocation and too low level to be really effective later on. -- Barkskin - Key spell. Allows you to equip a Wisdom amulet and still retain natural AC bonus. Depending on your module's items, this could be quite important. In MOTB, this is less powerful since it caps out at +5. Earth (strong, but no offense gained) -- Toughness - Great free feat. -- Stoneskin - Key spell as it adds a lot of free HPs, and also helps a LOT in reducing concentration rolls to be easily made. (-10 dmg per hit reduces the DC by a lot) -- Energy Immunity at 5 - worthless. Death (don't take!) -- Avatar - This thing is a sick joke. At level 20, it has an AB of 3, 63HP, and 13AC! It doesn't even stack with summon spells either. -- Phantasmal killer - Worthless. Allows TWO saves to avoid death. -- Wierd - Worthless. Allows 2 saves to negate. Implosion is much better. Animal (don't take. No offensive spells gained and pet isnt worth it.) -- Animal Companion - Not bad and scales adequately. Plus it stacks with summon spells. It doesn't really work as a tank though and requires buffs to be any good at all, thus eating spellslots. Clerics do not have the appropriate buffs for it anyways. If you want a pet, play a druid. -- Cats Grace - worthless. -- True seeing at lvl4 instead of 5 - worthless. Travel (don't take) -- 10% move - Supposedly doesn't work in heavy armor. Feat description does not say that though. Might be decent. -- Freedom of Move at 3 - worthless. -- haste - its just not that good for a caster, unlike in NWN1. Unlike a mage, you cant extend it (lack of feats) and definitely cannot Persist it. It's not worth 5th level slots. Time (don't take) -- Improved Initiative - Pretty nice actually. -- haste at level 3! Persistable, but once again haste is not THAT useful for a caster. You are unlikely to take Persist spell anyways. -- Premonition - Super Stoneskin. Very nice, but epic monsters are more likely to bypass it. Cold (don't take) -- Cold resist 5 - Woopie. -- Creeping Cold 2 - Id rather have sonic burst with its AoE Stun. -- Hypothermia 3 - Not a bad alternative to Searing Light. -- Polar Ray 9 - Cleric 9th lvl spells are WAY too good, to ever justify this piece of crud. 25d6 with a ranged touch atk? Ok, but not good. Sun (special) This domain is strong if you are playing a module with HEAVY undead. I do not generally recommend going with Sun, but I cannot deny that it heavily boosts one's anti-undead power. If you do go with Sun, be sure to pump your natural CHA to 14 to maximize its effectiveness. d) Feats. --------- The following feats are vital to a caster cleric. Do not skimp on these, as it is just not worth it. Prodigal Caster - Essential feat. MUST BE TAKEN AT 1st LEVEL! It is basically +2 Wisdom, and acts as a Spell Focus: everything plus allows bonus spells. Empower Spell/ Maximize Spell - These are extremely important. Since you have a rather small selection of good offensive spells, these two allow you much more latitude in spell selection. Spell Focus: Evocation/ Greater Spell Focus - These are essential to maximize your spell DC. Both of these together decrease their chance of saving by 10%. Evocation is the obvious choice as most good spells are evocation as will be seen. Trust me on this...go evocation. Spell Penetration/ Greater Spell Penetration - Important since you rely so heavily on spells for offense. An equal level monk has a 45% chance of resisting your spells. These two feats reduce that to 25% which is much more manageable. (sidenote: Caster level +1d20 roll +2(penetration) +2(greater pen) has to meet or exceed target's Spell Resistance, or spell is resisted) -- Practiced Caster - Seems worthless since you will not multiclass anyways. HOWEVER, due to a BUG, this increases your caster level beyond your level! That means a level 30 cleric casts as a 34 cleric which means more Icestorm damage, AND +1DC as a lvl32 caster. Plus more spell penetration. Until this bug is fixed, I would highly recommend this feat. The order does not matter too much, although my recommendations are below: 1: prodigal caster (must take at level 1) 3: focus: evocation (grab early on for DC bonuses) 6: greater focus: evocation 9: empower (nothing worth empowering until level 9) 12: maximize 15: practiced caster 18: spell penetration. If human/halfling, you can choose 1 additional feat for your 18th level. I generally dont recommend taking any of these earlier than 18. There are several nice choices: -toughness - extra HP is good. -tower shields proficiency - more AC. A very dubious choice though. -extend spell - it is just not needed, as you have no short-term buffs you really need to extend. -Weapon focus: morningstar or whatever - So-so. -Lightning Reflexes - +3 reflex saves. Combos with evasion. I'd probably stick with toughness. -Skill Focus: Concentration - Very nice, although it isn't needed so much at higher levels since your Defensive Cast always works anyways. Don't even consider the following: -- expertise - Noo. At higher levels, Defensive casting is usually better, and you can ONLY have one or the other. Too high prereqs. anyways. -- dodge - Not worth a valuable feat. Needs 13 dex. -- Other combat-related feats - Not your forte. Don't bother. -- Divine Shield - CHA-based, and requires too high prereqs. NOT worth the sacrifices needed. -- Combat Casting - crappy. Use SkillFocus instead since it works for ALL Concentrate rolls. EPIC feats: These are the mandatory feats: * Great Wisdom - Each 2 picks of Great WIS gives you +1DC to all spells, and 2 or 3 bonus spell slots. Take this multiple times. - Epic Spell: Vampiric Feast - It is a 1 shot per rest deal, but it is incredible! It is like an Implosion with 4 times the area (20 ft vs 10), centered at your feet. Only affects baddies. Anything that saves STILL loses 1/2 their life. Anything that dies creates some shadow fodder. Plus it heals you, because apparantly just killing everything and summoning friendly shadow is not NEARLY good enough.. ;-) It loses evocation DC bonuses, but the epic nature compensates for this by giving it +5DC. These are feats to consider: - Armor Skin - +1 AC that fully stacks with everything is quite good. You are probably better off focusing on Great WIS. Weak feats: - Epic Spell: Darnnation - Hits one foe only, requires a touch attack, no range on the spell, a save negates it. Woopie. - Epic Spell: Epic Gate - It is a really good summon spell. You get an actual balor like in NWN1. So basically, you are using an epic feat to get 1 use of a spell that you had in NWN1. I just don't see it being worth the feat. e) Skills --------- You have rather few skillpoints, so are somewhat limited here. The best skills for you to take are the following: You basically get to pick 3. Remember, you can sacrifice some STR for more skillpoints if necessary. It will affect your melee and carrying, but may be worth it. Also, you could reduce DEX for INT also, but this affects your AC. ONLY do this option if you expect to find a DEX item very soon, or are starting at high level (such as with the MOTB campaign) Remember, that if you want EPIC SPELLS, you MUST max out Spellcraft! ** Concentrate - Essential since you are a caster. MUST PICK THIS. -- Tumble - Even at 1/2 value, it is useful for the +1AC and small chance of avoiding attacks of opportunity, even in plate/shield. Pushing it past 10 ranks is not as necessary, since I wouldn't expect you to be moving in combat that much. If you do think you will shoot n scoot, go ahead and max out tumble since the higher ranks help you negate the plate/shield armor check penalty. ** Spellcraft - The saving throw bonus is nice. Good combo with Evasion vs fireballs and other spells. MANDATORY for epic spells. -- Healing - Very useful, as a good heal roll can cure poison/disease too. Allows you to save spell slots. It does not really scale very well at higher levels though. At level 30, it takes a LOT of bandaids to make a difference. -- Diplomacy - If needed for a particular module/campaign. -- Use Magic Device - Even 5 ranks (adjusted for CHA) allows use of scrolls and other minor items. Several wizard scrolls can be very beneficial (spiderskin, shadowshield, IronSkin, premonition) I do not recommend above 5 adjusted points though. NOTE: If playing at higher difficulty, using a scroll requires a UMD check! It is generally too difficult to reliably use scrolls until much higher level. f) Weapon Selection ------------------- As a caster cleric, your weapon selection does not matter that much. You will swing a lot more than a wizardly type, but spells are your main weapon. Your best bet is to take a morning star. It is the highest damage weapon available to you, and is bludgeoning which is unusual. Take whatever best weapon you can find though. Whatever you do, DO NOT use a 2handed weapon ever, as losing Shield AC as a caster would be incredibly stupid. Ditto with dualwielding which should be extremely obvious. g) Spells --------- The following is a list of offensive spells by slot that I would expect to see. One note: It is better for you to diversify your spells on a level-basis. In other words, it works better to have level 4 hammer, lvl5 icestorm, lvl6 chain lightning, etc. As opposed to having your level 6 slots be: 1 maximized call lightning, 1 empowered hammer, 1 chain lighting, 1 blade barrier, and so forth. This better allows you to fit all your offensive spells on one slot. You want your offensive stuff used during battle on your 1st bar... your battlebar. The 2nd bar contains buffs and other out of combat stuff, like Healing kits, etc, which makes up your buff-bar. Remember, all Evocation spells will get your spell focus bonuses of +2DC early on. Note how the cleric evocation spells are not just damage, but also disabler spells and even an awesome instant-death spell! Note: AoE refers to Area of Effect. Unfortunately, MotB did not give us much to work with. Clerics picked up a few buff spells, but little offense. In fact, Hypothermia is our 1 whole offensive spell. Check under FEATS for my discussion of epic spells. Although mostly evocation spells are used, do NOT overlook the utility of certain other spells. Instant Death spells like Destruction and even Slay Living are increasingly good as encounters gain more and more HPs. For example: A lvl30 mob will take 50% more damage to kill than a lvl20 one, with the same direct damage type spells. However, a successful Slay Living still kills the monster regardless of its increased HPs at lvl30. Level 1: Protection Alignment - Immunity to mindspells. Very important buff. Divine Favor - Load up with these for when melee is needed. It is very helpful, and you have plenty of level 1 slots anyways. I've had to chip away at resistant mobs 3 magical damage at a time before (demiliches). Level 2: Bears Endurance - HP are nice, but it also adds +2 to your concentrate skill. This can be very important at mid levels to ensure defensive casting causes no failures. Useful until you find a +4 or better CON item. Sonic Burst - This is basically an Evocation version of Hold Monster (2 round stun) with a small AoE. It is a fortitude save, and is potentially useful for stunning a small group of casters when you want to conserve more powerful spells. The tiny damage is irrelevant and not the point of the spell. Darkness - It is so-so. Cast it, run into the cloud and you can spam damage spells while all mobs have 20% chance of missing you due to concealment. It was nerfed from 50% to 20% unfortunately. Glpyh of Warding - Special Note. Very buggy spell. It doesnt seem to respect empower/maximize as damage doesnt improve. However, it does DIVINE damage instead of sonic and allows NO SAVE or spell resistance. If you have a set encounter, this can be cheezy and effective. I once dropped about 25 such wards in 1 spot. Then, summoned a red dragon (via trainer) and lured him onto the glyphs. Got a screenshot of said dragon dying immediately upon touching it. Combat log was full of about 22 5d8 divine damages with no mention of saves, spell resistance, nothin. Nor were there ANY particularly high numbers that would indicate empower or maximize worked. (no 40 dmg hits at all) Level 3: Call Lightning - Air domain. This is your first real AoE damage spell and is quite solid. It is Evocation for higher DC, and only hits baddies. Unfortunately, it cannot be tossed anymore and must center on you. Fireball - Fire domain. If you dont have call lightning, hope you have this. Watch the collateral damage depending on PvP settings. Evocation. Searing Light - It is basically an empowered magic missile. (5d8 = 22.5 ave vs 1d4+1 times 5 times 1.5 = 26ish) Does divine damage which is hard to resist, with NO SAVE. Double damage vs undead. It is nice, but I would stick with Call Lightnings unless many zap-resistant mobs are expected in an area. Note that it now requires a Ranged Touch attack. It will pretty much always hit, but note that you have a minimum 5% chance of it missing. Level 4: *Hammer of the Gods - Widely regarded as a crappy fireball, it is a key spell that is vastly underrated. It is basically a huge AoE hold monster that only affects baddies and dazes for 1d6 rounds. It is a will save and strong vs most melee mobs and cannot be Evaded. It is Evocation and also does moderate divine damage as a bonus. It is an excellent opening spell to control crowds and disable foes. As a bonus, any rogues in your party will love you, since they get free sneak attacks on the dazed enemies, if they attack from the back. Divine Power - Might be worthwhile to carry a few of these at higher levels in case you really need strong melee ability (vs golem or something). This plus Divine Favor makes you a reasonable temporary fighter. Level 5: Spell Resistance - As a pure cleric this is an extremely strong buff. Grants 55% chance of resisting a spell from equal level caster. (empowered Call Lighting) - Very useful, especially at mid-levels. Slay Living - I am grudgingly adding this to my casting lineup for MotB. It is a touch-range spell that allows a save. However, at higher levels, a save-or-die spell is possibly better than a mid-lvl damage spell. Early on, you are better off with icestorms, but later (18+lvl), this spell becomes more useful... especially against low-fort types. The idea being that killing a 400HP monster is much better than doing 40 damage to 3 or 4 400HP monsters for a 5th level slot. **Ice Storm - No Saving throw allowed, and thus un-evadeable. Scales reasonably well with level doing 5d6 initially plus 1d6 cold for every 3 caster levels. (15d6 max at 30) Note that it is really useful for epic levels since it continues to scale while most spells cap out at level 20. This is one of your best AoE pure damage spells. It is in fact, Evocation, although with no save it doesn't particularly matter. Level 6: Stone Body - Noteworthy buff as it gives permanent stoneskin which you dont have access to. The immunity to crits is very strong for avoiding rogue sneak attacks, weaponmasters, and monk stunning fist. The 50% arcane failure does NOT apply to clerics, unlike wizards that cast this. As noted before, casting Freedom of Movement and Deathward BEFORE this, will eliminate all the penalties of Stone Body! (maximized call lightning) - Solid 60 damage to all nearby mobs. (empowered Hammer - Note: Damage increases, but the 1d6 daze is NOT empowered unfortunately. Used when in parties, and thus when the Daze is more useful than pure damage. Ave dmg = 5d8*1.5 = 34ish. Chain Lightning - (air) Evocation spell that does great initial damage (20d6 cap is good for lvl6 spell), but only 1/2 damage to secondary targets. Still, it is party friendly and very easy to target, since it automatically chains to other foes. I rarely use it though, since the secondary damage is weak. It is best to use other spells at long range such as IceStorm, and use Chain at short range where its party-friendly aspect is the most useful. Blade Barrier - Situational. Tossed on a foe, it will always hit and do damage. It is amazingly good in solo-mode vs most melee mobs. HOWEVER, if using it in target-self mode, the larger mobs can stand outside the barrier and hit you without taking damage! Plus, you are immobilized for the duration. There are several clever ways of using the wall version though, including having a rogue run back n forth with imp evasion reducing the damage while mobs take heavy damage. Works really well with medium PvP settings when you can't damage yourself with your own spells. In that case, running around in circles and leading mobs back and forth it is very effective when solo, not to mention saving a lot of spell slots. Poor vs rogue/monk types since it is a reflex save. Death to Undeath - solid spell vs undead. Much better than sunbeam. Level 7: (maxed hammer) - Increases damage to 40 divine. The daze is still quite strong though if you need lots of daze more than pure damage. (empowered icestorm) - solid AoE damage choice. Word of Faith - Basically blinds all foes without a save. Good in parties, as it mitigates a lot of damage, effectively. Destruction - This is a solid death spell. Note the fortitude save, so more useful on caster/rogue types. 10d6 divine even if they make the save. Plus, it has some range unlike Slay Living. This is definitely a solid spell, and is handy when typically fighting a few strong foes instead of many weaker ones. Greater Restoration - Dont forget at least 1 of these, as it is the best healing spell in the entire game. Restores ALL HP with no cap, and removes almost all other irritating ailments. (lvldrain, etc) Level 8: (Maxed icestorm) - 66 damage at lvl18, no save. 90 at lvl30. (empowered bladebarrier) - Approx 75 damage. (empowered chain lightning) - 105 average dmg at lvl20 to primary. Level 9: (maxed chain lightning) - good, but eclipsed by the other awesome level 9 spells. Does 120 damage to primary. * Storm of Vengence - Simply Awesome. Giant AoE, targets baddies only. 3d6 acid per round with no save. Plus, all baddies eat reflex save or get Stunned for TWO rounds (not 1 as per description) and eat 3d6 more of electric damage. This happens for 10 rounds and is insanely good for disabling mobs and softening them up. Storm turns hard fights into easy ones. And get this... it STACKS! Yep, I fought 10 insanely tough barbarian kings in a trainer mod and stacked 5 storms. The Barbarians had no chance, having to roll against FIVE seperate DC33 saves or be stunned, plus eating up to 30d6 per round. * Implosion - The ultimate Death Spell. Has a small AoE and short range, but kills anything failing a fort save. Note this is an Evocation spell which is helpful though a bit surprising. Also, for some unknown reason it seems to get a +3DC. Hence, theoretical max for a lvl20 aasimir cleric with +12WIS item is DC38!! (10 +9th lvl +2evocation +3unknown +1prodigal caster +7 (24wisdom) +6(+12WIS item). As you approach level 30, this becomes even greater. -- Energy Drain - Apparantly it finally got fixed and has No Save. This is the premiere spell for beating up "Boss" monsters. 2d4 levels lost means a big hit to caster level and Attack Bonus for sure. However, I still prefer Storm or Implosion for most situations. Load up with a few of these IF you are expecting a "boss fight". Spells to avoid: ---------------- Summons - Most summons are of dubious utility. Dont use any of them, even the long lasting planar ally (except maybe at level 11 when you first get it). Note that as soon as you cast a damaging spell, ALL the monsters will ignore the summons and head straight for you. So, it does not work out so well as a distraction. Hypothermia - Our ONE whole offensive spell from MotB. Thanks lots guys. It is not bad, but lousy compared to Hammer which is the same spell level. Hammer is really really good for a 4th level spell, and thus outshines the single target Hypo easily. Fire Storm - So so damage for a level 8 spell. Maxed icestorm is usually better. Firestorm must be centered on you, and is truly horrid if the PvP settings are such that you can damage your party accidently with spells. Earthquake - Its a strictly inferior version of firestorm, which is itself quite bad. It's truly terrible. Inflict Wounds series - These are all awful, and don't seem to work very well. Your normal spells work much better anyways and the AoE on the Mass Inflict ones is very small. Harm - Weaker spell now. Capped at 150 damage. Allows a save, which they are unlikely to make due to your good DC. However, you ALSO have to make a touch attack which may be difficult. The spell has no range either so you must walk right up to them to start casting it... which may result in a fizzled spell. Destruction is much better. This one got nerfed hard from NWN1. Flame Strike - Not bad in theory, but empowered call lightning or icestorm are usually much better. The AoE is very very small. Poison - This one should be obvious. It is so horrible as to defy all logic. Sunbeam - Even vs undead it is pretty weak. 20d6 with a save isn't amazing. Use Death to Undeath instead and just blow them away if they fail the save. The only real saving grace is that undead will likely be immune to your other spells such as Icestorm, chain lightning. Possibly usable IF you know ahead of time that you will be up against undead with really high saves. Plus, it won't hurt your buddies all that much if they get caught in the AOE. g) Multiclassing Considerations -------------------------------- You will NOT want to multiclass at all up until level 17, and possibly at all. Although there are advantages to doing so, you simply do not have the feats to waste on Practiced Caster. Any advantages gained are offset by losing a feat, and also slowing down spell progression. Since there are 30 levels to play with, but most spells have no effect past 20, it is possible to do some multiclassing to pick up a few free feats or abilities. You can consider the following, but watch XP penalties, and remember bonus feats at 23,26,29 cleric! You will likely want to take Practiced Caster to make up for the caster level loss. cleric29/fighter1 - gain free feat, tower shield and wpn proficiency. cleric29/rogue1 - pick up some skill access. Generally not a good idea, due to low skillpoints. Cleric19/Monk1/SacredFist10 - Uber speed, good AC, etc. NO bonus feats! NOT recommended. See Sacred Fist section for more. i. Sample Build Putting all the previous information together, lets make a MotB build: Race: Aasimir (for best wisdom) STR: 14 DEX: 9 CON: 14 INT: 14 WIS: 19 +7pumps +6GWis = 32 natural. CHA: 10 Level 1: Air and Water domains taken. Max Concentrate, Spellcraft, Tumble, Diplomacy. All levels are Cleric, and add +1WIS every 4 levels. 1: Spellcasting Prodigy, 3: focus: evocation 6: greater focus: evocation 9: empower 12: maximize 15: penetration 17: tumble hits 10. Optional: Discontinue tumble and take Heal or Lore. 18: greater penetration 21: Epic Spell Focus:Evocation 23: bonus feat: Epic Spell:Vampiric Feast, Great Wisdom 1 25: Great Wisdom 2 26: bonus feat: Great Wisdom 3 27: Great Wisdom 4 29: Great Wisdom 5,6 --------------------- VI. The Warrior Cleric --------------------- As a warrior cleric, you do not need offensive spells. Hence, this gives you a lot of slots for buffs and heals. To take a closer look at your Big Three buffs that make you equal or better than a warrior type, read on: -- Divine Favor - +1 AB/dmg for every 3 levels. At 1 thru 5, the +1 is not worth it. At 6-12, extended divine favor is pretty useful for heavy fighting. At 13+, you gain access to PERSISTENT spell. At this point, favor becomes a permanent buff you apply after each rest. Its like having a +8 weapon, when everyone else has a +5, and is powerful. At EPIC levels, it is not nearly as impressive but still useful. -- Divine Power - Raises your BAB to your character level. At 20 cleric, this gives you +5AB and 1 extra attack. It is very helpful and often results in an extra attack while leveling up. This spell should always be Extended and takes most of your level 5 slots. At epic levels, this can be seriously abused for huge AB bonuses. Here's why... The AB gained from going from say 22BAB to 30BAB (30th lvl cleric) FULLY STACKS and DOES NOT COUNT towards any kind of AB Cap! This means you could have a level30 character with 15BAB, cast DivPower, get 30BAB, and STILL get full benefits from +10weapon, div favor, heroism, and other buffs that total the +20 cap. -- Haste/Battletide - Both spells give you Haste, which adds a bonus attack at full Attack Bonus. It also grants +1AC and +1AB. The big decision you face is whether to use Haste or Battletide. Battletide gives you Haste, PLUS does some other stuff (+2AB, +2dmg for cleric only, minus same to foes if they fail save, and looks cool). So it always is better if you are solo, since spell level and duration are exactly the same. However, Haste spell affects the WHOLE GROUP! However, with time domain, you can get persistent haste which is really nice. It keeps you from having to recast Battletide all the time, and frees up a lot of spellslots. Hence, I recommend Haste via Time domain. At 20 cleric these 3 spells alone (assume battletide used) provide +10AB, +5damage, +1AC, and TWO extra attacks! At 30, it jumps to +13AB thanks to scaling Divine Power. For playstyle you start with buffs. DO NOT OVERBUFF, as it takes too long. You have buffs for every situation, but most are not needed. Note you will need to recast often to keep Divine Power and Haste/Tide up. At 20, these have a 4 minute duration extended. Not bad, but not great. This is why I don't recommend trying to pick up other short-duration buffs like barbarian rage, divine shield, dwarf defensive stance, and so on. As you approach level 30, depending on build you will squeeze a bit of extra duration out of your buffs. You will carry a small complement of offensive spells for pulling. Go around a corner and sonic burst a group of mobs, then duck around the corner. They follow you, and their archers/mages lose line of sight. As the round the corner, you beat them down. This buys you a bit more time and positions the fight much better. Your lower spells 6th or less are used for buffing. Your high level ones are used for heals. (gr resto 7th, ext regen 8th, mass heal 9th) With all this power, you can definitely fight very well and be a tank. However, just because you CAN tank doesn't mean you should. Let the warriors in the party take the brunt of the fighting. This frees you up to cast heal spells if needed, or to go rescue a mage that is getting beat on. Fight, but don't necessarily be the first one into the battle. Lets take a look at how to build a Warrior Cleric correctly. a) Races -------- As a battlecleric, you will likely multiclass. This and other factors limit the recommended races. Any small race is out due to the -2STR and they have to use a small weapon. Another factor is that you need high STR and WIS. In fact, my best choice is Human/Dwarf. After careful analysis, I cannot find any compelling reason to go with any other race that is worth the price. Dwarf - Gain 2CON, but lose 2 INT basically. Gain Dwarf Axe proficiency, but lose a feat. Its a wash. You may go Dwarf for flavor under certain conditions, but human is generally better. Elf - Free longsword/rapier is nice, but stats come up lacking, as does loss of bonus feat. -2CON is a bummer. Drow don't really gain anything useful for the ECL price. Aasimir - +2WIS is great, but -2INT, -1 feat, +1ECL makes it a net loss. Half-Orc - +2 STR is tempting, but -4 INT and loss of a feat make it not worthwhile. Don't have the attribute points to pull this off. Deep Gnome - The only advantage is the +4AC, plus size bonus which is kind of a wash. Well, the Spell Resistance is nice too. 3ECL is really harsh though, as is the -2STR, lack of feat and XP penalty. Only go deepgnome if you are heavily twinked on a server and are in love with high AC. Earth Genesai - An odd choice, but if using The Great Cheeze, it might work out. -2WIS is managable, and -2CHA is not a problem. In exchange, we get a fat +2 STR AND CON! +1Lvl Adjustment is a bummer though. The figher favored class works out pretty well for multiclassing. (Great Cheeze is taking a low WIS and using an item to get spell access. See below.) b) Stats -------- For a human, I would recommend: STR: 16 +2 = 18 (Good AB/dmg) DEX: 12 (Max +1AC in full plate) CON: 14 (Decent HP bonus) INT: 10 (3 skill points per level) WIS: 16 +3 = 19 (9th level spell access) CHA: 8 (2 turn undead per day) Feel free to lower DEX and raise INT. The only use for DEX is to get to 12 (or 16 for mithril plate) for AC reasons. Items can certainly easily make up the difference, and you get extra skill points for doing so. The Great Cheeze!!! As a warrior cleric, you aren't so concerned about great spell DCs. Nor do you need tons of bonus spell slots. So, you can gimp your WIS and use items to make up the difference! i.e. a 14WIS cleric with +8WIS item = 22WIS, which LETS YOU CAST 9th LEVEL SPELLS!! Even an earth genesai with 12wis works out beautifully. If using the Great Cheeze, you can lower WIS to 14, and raise STR to 17, PLUS all 5 (7 epic) pumps can go into STR. This lets you maximize your fighting ability with little drawback. c) Domains ---------- As a warrior cleric, you want domains that assist you with fighting. MotB was very disappointing, as you get 1 UBER domain and a bunch of very mediocre ones with garbage spell selection. You can choose from the following Big Three: Earth -- toughness - Very nice free feat, gained at level 1. -- Stoneskin - Awesome spell that stays useful for the entire game on most servers. It basically adds a lot of bonus HPs and is castable on your party as well as you. -- Energy Buffer - getting it at 5 instead of 6 isn't that helpful. Time (uber) -- Improved Initiative - so-so feat. -- Haste at level 3! Persistable!! Incredibly good. -- Premonition 7 - Very strong damage reduction. I kind of prefer stoneskin since it absorbs about the same damage and is lower level. Since you will take persistent spell feat anyways, I see no reason to skip Time domain. Persistent haste is just really good. Plant -- 10% move outside - so-so. -- barkskin - very nice buff and frees up an amulet slot basically. This is pretty much mandatory if using The Great Cheeze without really high levels OR a friendly druid/mage to cast barkskin. Note at epic levels, the +5cap and ability to put several things on an amulet start negating the need for this domain. -- other spells: the other spells are garbage. Free slots basically. None of the other domains are really any good. A few are tempting, but lacking: War -- Free Weapon focus with diety weapon. Free useful feats are good. PLUS, this is a way to get Martial or EXOTIC weapon proficiency for free! All you have to do is pick a diety with the appropriate weapon you wish to wield. -- Flame Strike 4 - Fairly worthless. -- Power Word Stun at 8th lvl - No Saving throw, so might be kind of usable. I consider War to be a bit weaker than Earth overall, as stoneskin is so good when leveling up. If you want to use a Bastard Sword though, War is the way to go. Travel (Got demoted with Time domain in) -- 10% move - Seems to work in heavy armor, despite description. Grants the barbarian move ability feat. -- Freedom of movement - gained at 3 instead of 4 is worthless. -- Haste - The reason for taking travel, but received at level 5. Hence, this domain is garbage now. Destruction -- Smite Infidel: The high damage bonus is nice, but at only one hit, once per day, CHA-based, it is weak. -- Rage: Note that this rage spell DOES NOT act like barbarian rage... i.e the stats are NON-STACKING enhancement bonuses. A real barbarian rage is a morale enhancement that stacks. Death - The companion is quite weak and more trouble than it is worth. Animal - The companion is actually not too bad, but you don't have the druidic buffs that are needed to make it worthwhile later. Plus, multiclassing will adversely affect the pet progression even more. Good - Aura is nice, but not really needed with protection from evil spell. Strength/Fury - They use CHA-based abilities and thus are worthless. None are nearly useful enough to consider high CHA for. -- Divine Might: No, you cannot Persist it even though you get it at level 3. -- Tensors Transformation - It seems tempting, but is completely worthless. It is a POLYMORPH effect that removes most of your item bonuses, resulting in a horrid AC, no item immunities/abilities and a fast death. -- Enlarge person - a really weak version of Righteous Might which itself is poor. Maybe if you are in love with Knockdown or Disarm, you can use this to add +4 to the checks. Healing - bah. Getting heal at level 5 is mostly worthless. Empowered healing is a joke, and doesn't work with the GOOD healing spells anyways (heal, mass heal, greater resto, etc) New MotB domains - Several have nice bonus feats, but garbage spell selection. I'd rather get Earth and toughness with good spells, and take Blindfight, than get Darkness w/ crap spells and take tuffness. In other words, a feat is a feat. Warrior clerics have enough to pick all the necessary warrior feats anyways. d) Feats -------- For a battle cleric, your feat choices are pretty loose. They vary based on your multiclass choices since that gives you more or less feats to work with. Very few of them are essential though. Here are the recommended ones: ** Luck of Heroes - Essential. +1AC always, and +1 all Saves. MUST PICK at first level! -- Martial Weapons - You get this free if multiclassing. Should never actually pick this one. -- Exotic Weapons - If you do not get martial free from multiclass, this is maybe tempting for katana/b-sword/dwarf-axe. Use WAR domain to get this for free if desired. -- Tower Shield prof - Very rarely would you ever want this, but can get for free as Fighter or Warpriest. Possibly useful for certain servers with uber tower-shields, despite AB penalty. ** Weapon Focus - A very strong feat. Take it always. See weapon selection section for details. ** Extend Spell - ESSENTIAL. You have several short-term buffs that must be extended. ** Persistent Spell - ESSENTIAL. This allows persistant Prayer and Divine Favor, which are key. Haste w/Time domain is key also. -- Power Attack - Its a prerequisite only. Not useful with a 1-hander. -- Cleave - Free attack is very nice, especially for leveling. However, P/A and cleave are NOT essential. -- Blind Fighting - Pretty important pick. Apparantly, even with True Seeing you STILL get stuck with the concealment penalty in darkness or against displacement, invisibility, etc that results in misses. -- Improved Crit - Not needed if you expect a keen weapon (doesnt stack), OR have a bludgeon wpn since you have a keen spell. ** Practiced Caster - ESSENTIAL if you multiclass. REQUIRES 4 ranks of Spellcraft. DON'T BUNGLE THIS! -- Power Crit - Decent, but not amazing. Don't be confused. When you "crit", now you must reroll as if you are attacking again. If it misses, then your "crit" becomes a normal hit. This feat gives +4 to the "confirmation roll" (the second "attack"). Hope that makes sense, as it's a major change from NWN1. -- Greater Weapon Focus - Requires 8 levels of fighter. This is a prereq for epic weapon focus, and is very nice for raising AB. -- Weapon Specialization - Requires 4 levels of fighter. +2 damage is nice, but by the time you get it, you are epic and the bonus is not worth the epic feat required. -- Knockdown, Imp KD - I would go this route ONLY if you have the 13INT needed for Imp KD, since KD got nerfed. It is a pretty powerful feat though. Certain other prerequisite feats may be needed for some multiclass combos. Feats to avoid are: -- Great Cleave - Getting more than 1 cleave per round is rather unlikely, making this feat a waste. Clerics never use 2handed weapons, which is best with great cleave. -- Dodge - Not bad, but 13dex requirement is a waste of attribute points for a +1AC against just 1 foe. Compare to luck of heroes which adds 1ac always, AND a saving throw bonus. -- Improved Power Attack - It's just not very good for a 1hander. -- Divine Might/Shield - Avoid since they are CHA-based, and adding CHA would seriously dilute our other important attributes. -- Toughness - Note that you ALREADY GET it from earth domain for free. It is worth picking up, if you dont get it already. EPIC Feats: In general, you want your basic feats at 21,23,25,27,29 to be mostly Great Strength. This increases damage and AB. Ideally you would use bonus feats to purchase feats on the fighter list. ** Epic Prowess - It is a +1AB bonus. Solid and nice to have. ** Epic Weapon Focus - Grants a +2AB bonus. Requires Greater Weapon Focus, which needs 8 fighter levels. Great if you can fit it into your build. xx Epic Weapon Specialization - +4 damage. Pretty nice, but it is impossible to acquire the many prerequisites which would need 12 fighter levels. It would not nearly be worth it. -- Epic Armor Skin - +2 AC. Stacks with natural AC amulets and is quite nice. However, currently bugged to only +1AC. -- Epic Toughness - So-so. +30HP is good, but not worth an epic feat in my opinion. -- Epic Spell: Vampiric Feast - This spell is really really good and worth the feat slot. Almost all of the foes would be expected to make their saving throw. Even so, all foes within 20 feet of you lose 50% of their HP and you GAIN those HP as healing (up to your max HPs). If you do manage to kill something with this spell, it creates shadow that fight for you temporarily. This is a great panic-button spell that can make a huge difference in very tough fights. IMPORTANT NOTE: You MUST take this spell on a CLERIC level! Fighter, stormlord, etc will NOT allow you to take this feat. Also requires 24 spellcraft to take. xx Overwhelming Crits - This was just a bad prerequisite for Devastating Crits back in the day. There is no reason to take this weak feat. xx Epic Spell Darnnation - It is a save or die that only affects 1 foe. Completely worthless. xx Epic Spell: Gate - A decent summons, but not worth the epic feat in my opinion. e) Skills --------- You have rather few skillpoints, so are somewhat limited here. Remember you can always subtract DEX to get INT, ONLY if you expect to find an item with DEX on it very soon to avoid AC loss. Best skills are: -- Concentrate - Important since you need to rebuff or heal in combat occasionally. Note that you can skimp on this skill some if going warpriest due to Combat Casting required. -- Tumble - Even at 1/2 value, it is useful for the +1AC and small chance of avoiding attacks of opportunity in plate/shield. -- Spellcraft - The saving throw bonus is nice. You NEED 4 ranks to multiclass and take practiced caster! -- Healing - Very useful, as a good heal roll can cure poison/disease too. Saves spellslots. It does not scale well though. A bandaid +1 heals 21 HP with 0 heal skill. Each point adds 1 HP to it, such that a 30cleric might heal for 50ish maximum. -- Use Magic Device - Even 5 ranks (adjusted for CHA) allows use of scrolls and other minor items. Maybe split Spellcraft and UMD. Consider taking, but DO NOT raise above 5 (adjusted). With 30 levels, it MIGHT be worthwhile to grab 15 to use Sun Soul boots, and other clickie items. Note: On hard difficulty, using a Scroll requires a pretty high UMD roll or the spell fizzles. f) Weapon Choice ---------------- Your choice of weapon depends on whether you multiclass, or go human, or want to pick Exotic weapon. Overall it does not matter that much. Warhammer and Morning star do the best damage of their types, and also are bludgeoning which is rare. Plus, you have the Weapon of Impact spell that makes them keen. Whatever you do, DO NOT use a 2handed weapon ever. You do not have the super high STR to make the 50% more STR bonus effective. Also, with your damage bonuses from various buffs, the extra few points of average damage a larger weapon does is not worth the loss of the huge shield AC you can get. Since you do not have any special AC bonuses such as Red Dragon Disciples, Dex-based characters, or even 20 tumble, losing the shield will cause you to absorb a lot more damage in melee. You are guaranteed a shield that is +1 every 4 caster levels thanks to Magic Vestment remember. Dualwielding is out as well, due to the number of feats needed and the fact that you dont have the DEX to get more than 1 offhand attack. Not to mention the AB penalty and huge loss of AC. If you are really in love with dualwield, check my advanced build guide for one such cleric/monk/fighter that does so effectively. It is a very unconventional build however and not recommended for most. Guess I'd better go update that guide here soon... g) Spells --------- The following is a list of the best spells by Spell SLOT level. I only mention spells that are particularly useful or that I have commentary on. Some are pretty obvious and not worth discussion. Epic spells are discussed under Feats. Note: Ex stands for Extended Spell. Pretty much all buffs should be extended. Level 1: ----------- *Prot Alignment - A key buff. Has built-in extension, and provides immunity:Mind. The +2 saves is nice too. Level 2: ----------- Ex bless - decent. affects whole party with 1 casting which is nice. *Ex divine favor - Load up with these from level 6 to 12 ONLY. At 13, remove and replace with other spells, since it will be cast as persistent. Sonic Burst - Adequate long range offensive spell for getting monster's attention. Used for pulling only. Darkness - Rarely used, but when/if you get blindfighting it works pretty well vs enemy melee. DONT use on casters, as they will completely ignore it and continue to cast spells at you. Level 3: ----------- Ex bear's endurance - Pumping up your HP is nice but hardly essential. Note though that it adds +2 to your concentration rolls which can be very handy at mid-levels to perhaps lower defensive casting failure from 10% to 0%... until you can find a permanent CON item. Ex Aid - Useful solo at lower levels for +1AB. A lower priority buff however. Protection Energy - Great long lasting buff. Use if you expect casters and elemental damage, especially at lower levels where the damage shield is relatively powerful. Remove Disease - Keep one of these handy, just in case... unless you have maxed healing skill. Level 4: ----------- ** Stoneskin - No need to extend this. Amazingly good spell, effectively doubling your HP early on and making concentrate checks easy. Castable on party too. Load up with lots! Ex Prayer - Marginally useful if in a party. Otherwise, dont bother. Note this will be Persistant at lvl17 casting. Ex Weapon of Impact - This spell is a good reason to take morningstar or warhammer as your weapon choice. Adds about 8% more damage statistically. Ex Magic Vestment - Don't forget this can be used to guarantee magical armor OR shield. Generally only used if unlucky, low magic module, or if you find some amazing armor,shield with great properties but crappy enhancement bonus. In epic levels, this spell becomes mostly useless. Ex. Blind Sight - Situationally useful, but does NOT grant BlindFight feat abilities. Neutralize Poison - Keep one handy unless you have maxed heal skill. Level 5: ----------- **Ex Divine Power - Already discussed. Load up with these. Ex death ward - situational. NOTE that it comes with negative energy protection built in now which protects against level drain, negative energy, and other bad things. It's pretty nice. Level 6: ----------- ** Ex Battletide - Already discussed. Load up with tons of these if you chose to use battletide instead of taking Time domain for haste... which you probably should not have. *Ex Spell Resistance - One of the best defensive buffs around. You resist 55% of an equal level caster's spells! Level 7: ------------ **** Persistent Divine Favor - Learn it! Remove the extended ones at level 2 slots. ?Persistent Lesser Vigor - Free 1 pt of regeneration permanently. If on a low magic world with little resting, this could be pretty valuable. *Greater Restoration - This is a FULL heal, not capped. Plus it removes many other harmful effects. Carry several of these. Ex. Stone Body - Normally, a so-so situational spell mostly due to the 50% move speed penalty. However, weaponmasters, monks, and rogues will loathe you, since stunning fist, sneak attacks, and huge crit bonuses are completely negated by the Immunity to Crits that it provides. If you use this, you have permanent stoneskin so keep that in mind. It lasts a long time (1 min/lvl), and the 50% spell penalty is ARCANE ONLY, and does not affect you at all. Extended to move it out of the valuable level6 slot. ** Update: You can cast Deathward first to negate the DEX penalty, and Freedom of Movement to negate the move penalty! This makes this spell insanely powerful as you gain all those immunities and damage resistance with NO DRAWBACK! Word of Faith - A great offensive spell with no save. Basically it blinds all foes and gets rid of summons. Level 8: ----------- *Ex Regenerate - A really good pre-emptive heal spell. 20 rounds of 10% heal per round is extremely good before a big fight. Scales really well for epic encounters. Ethereal Jaunt - i.e. Escape Hatch. In multiplayer where you cant reload and death penalties are harsh, use this if you get in over your head. Extended to move it out of the crowded lvl7 slot. Level 9: ----------- * Persistent Prayer - This is a nice buff for your whole party. It automatically debuffs enemies for the same 1ab,ac,save with NO saving throw (unlike battletide). As a permanent aura, this is a pretty good spell. ?Persistent Mass Lesser Vigor or Pers Vigor - Handy on modules where you can't rest very much. Or, if you do not have regeneration items. Unsure if they all stack or not: i.e. Pers Lesser + Mass Lesser +Per V = 4 regen per round for u. Mass Heal - A capped 150HP heal isn't so great, but multiplied by a big party makes this somewhat useful. I still wouldn't take it, except when fighting undead. Then, it heals all the good guys, AND smacks the undead for 75HP(they are very likely to make their save) in melee with them as an added bonus. It should be capped at 250HP and might get fixed eventually. Storm of Vengence - A really handy offensive spell for a tough fight. 3d6 acid guaranteed to only enemies is nice. Plus, it has a small chance (DC23 minimum) of zapping enemies for 3d6 more AND causing a 2 round stun. It does this EVERY ROUND, which is what makes the spell so good. Even if the bad guys roll only a few 1s over the duration, the stuns will make the spell worthwhile. Energy Drain - Now that the save has been removed, it is possibly useful to soften up a nasty foe. -5 average levels is no joke. Note: Monsters with high Spell Resistance may shrug it off, depending on your caster levels. Here is a discussion of some spells to NEVER take: Any Cause Wounds spell - They are just horribly bad, and have no range. The very few offensive spells you use are either used to Pull, or as crowd control/mitigation. Any offensive spell besides low level pull spells (sonic burst) or high level mitigation (word of faith, storm) - Don't use. You are a warrior. Beat them down and support the party. Summon Monster - Not terrible, but not very useful either. Too short duration to be of much use. Any undead summon spell - Absolutely horrible. Much worse than summon monster. Gate - You get a horned devil now instead of a NWN1 Balor. The Summon 9 is much stronger, though the weak spells he cast are marginally useful vs crowds. Righteous Might - Worthless. Adds 3 magical dmg per hit, but lowers AC, and the other bonuses DO NOT STACK. The so called damage reduction doesnt seem to work. Turning on Power Attack is just as good and doesn't take a spell slot. This MIGHT be usable for Knockdown and Disarm due to it increasing your size category. True seeing - Use blindsight instead. Its just as good, and level 3. Heal - Crap. It is capped at 150 HPs. Greater Restoration is MUCH MUCH better and only 1 level higher. It starts out good, but as you level up, it becomes weaker and weaker. Imagine a 150HP heal at lvl30 when you have 480HPs. Blah. Harm - Garbage. Capped at 150HP, requires a touch attack which is no problem. Allows a SAVE, which IS a problem. They will eat 75 damage 95% of the time. You can just beat them down and do similar damage without using a spell slot. Aura vs Alignment - Horrible. Its duration stinks, its SR granted is weak, and the +4deflection AC doesn't stack and is worthless. Undeaths eternal foe - Weak. Short duration, and Death ward provides most of the same benefits for much longer. h) Multiclassing Considerations ------------------------------- A warriorcleric can do quite well without multiclassing. However, multiclassing is not a bad idea at all. It does slow the cleric spell progression, but this is not so big of a deal for a warrior cleric. Remember that practiced caster ensures scaling spells continue to work. (i.e. a cleric7/fighter2 has a +3 divine favor since caster lvl = 9) In epic levels, you don't need much more than 20-25 total clerical casting levels max. So you have more latitude for multiclassing after level 20 or so. Note that extra caster levels serves to prevent your spells from being dispelled, as well as extending duration some. There are a few things to consider: a) You will want practiced caster feat, which requires 4 spellcraft ranks. b) You want 17 caster levels of cleric for 9th level spells.... ideally obtained earlier rather than later. c) You would probably want several warrior levels to get feats and more BAB. d) Obviously, watch for XP penalty if you went nonhuman. e) Do NOT put points into Concentration and other skills if they are not class skills of the new class. Just hold the skillpoints, or put into tumble as paying double is wasteful. Plan accordingly. In other words, weave the class levels so you can pay minimum price for things like concentration and spellcraft. f) Your BAB CONTINUES TO GROW after 21, unlike PnP or NWN1. You want high BAB classes to help your fighting ability grow. f2) However, you can use Divine Power to "cheat" your BAB to 30, regardless of multiclassing... while the spell stays active of course. :-) Here are the top options: 1) Fighter - Provides free towershield, martial and bonus fighter feats. One level can be taken early on at level 2 to jumpstart the warrior progress. 2 fighter levels, one early, one later is the best choice. Taking Fighter after lvl20 results in bonus EPIC feats! Getting 8 fighter levels is ideal to pick up greater and epic weapon focus. 2) Barbarian - 10% Move (IF not travel domain already, since they dont stack), martial wpns, and Rage. Rage stacks with enhancement bonuses, but it is quite short duration and you have enough short duration buffs already. A so-so choice. 3) Neverwinter Nine - Decent option as it has no prereqs except +6 BAB. A single level provides a +2saving throw aura to your buddies and a slight skill bonus. 3 levels gives a fast move and sneak attack option. 4) Stormlord - See next section. Good choice. 5) Sacred Fist - See next section. Decent. 6) Warpriest - See next section. So-so. 7) Divine Champ - Decent, but fighter is always better unless it causes an XP penalty which shouldnt happen. Here are some marginal options: Dwarven Defender - tempting, but it needs extra feats as prereqs including Dodge(13dex). Not worth the bugged stance and +1ac to me. Perhaps with 30 levels to play with, getting the damage resistance is more tempting. Monk - You lose 1 BAB, but monk is tempting on certain servers to provide heavy AC bonuses if you go Dex-based. This goes hand in hand with Sacred Fist. Frenzied Berserker - You already have toughness most likely, and the frenzy is very worthless since you have haste already. It is not a good match for cleric at all, since FB's use 2handers with huge STR for heavy Power Attk damage. Ranger - They just don't have much, and do not synergize well with cleric. I don't want leftover druid spells, nor do I want bad dualwielding if I wear light armor. NOR do I want a level 4 bear pet at lvl30! Rogue - access to rogue skills like tumble and sneak. Weak due to weak BAB and lack of enough skillpoints to take advantage of the better skill access. With 30 level cap, rogues do look up however. Red Dragon Disciple - You must take 1 level of bard also. You gain many benefits, but your BAB will suffer greatly. It makes you too dependent on Divine Power in my opinion. Epic characters with 30 levels opens up warrior cleric builds a LOT. I still recommend getting in most of the cleric levels early on for quick spell access. i. Sample Builds: ---------------- First up is a really simple, basic build that may be improved upon in a number of ways mentioned in this guide. Human, cleric20/fighter10. We gain full clerical spell slots, and also free fighter feats including access to Greater and Epic Weapon Focus, and a really nasty epic spell when the going gets tough. STR 16 +4pump +4 GreatSTR = 24natural DEX 12 CON 14 INT 10 WIS 16 +3pump = 19 natural. CHA 8 Domains: Time, Earth. (feats: Imp Init and Toughness gained) Skills: Maximize Tumble, Concentration, Spellcraft. (or skimp on Spellcraft to pump up Diplomacy if desired) 1: cleric - Luck of Heroes, Power Attack 2: Fighter - Cleave 3: Cleric - Weapon Focus: Warhammer (or your choice of weapon) 4: cleric (+1 WIS) 5: cleric 6: cleric - Extended Spell 7: cleric 8: cleric (+1 WIS) 9: cleric - Practiced Caster(cleric) 10: cleric 11: cleric 12: cleric - (+1 WIS to 19 for full spell access), Persistent Spell 13: cleric 14: cleric 15: cleric - Blind Fighting 16: cleric (+1 STR) 17: cleric 18: cleric - Power Crit (Warhammer) 19: cleric 20: cleric (+1 STR) 21: fighter - Great STR1, Epic Prowess 22: fighter 23: fighter - Great STR2, Armor Skin 24: fighter (+1 STR) 25: cleric - Epic Spell: Vampiric Feast (MUST take epic spell on cleric lvl!) 26: fighter - Epic Toughness. 27: fighter - Great STR3 28: Fighter - (+1STR), Greater Weapon Focus 29: Fighter - Great STR4 30: Fighter - Epic Weapon Focus AB = 25BAB +7STR +5feats = 37 (maximum of +5DivPower, +6 STRitems, +20misc buffs = 68 absolute maximum AB) AC = plate/shield +2armorskin +1tumble, +1luck. Caster stats: full level 20 spell access, 24 caster level to avoid dispels, and increase spell duration. A more advanced and complicated build might be: Earth Genesai Cleric15/Warpriest6/Fighter8/NWN1 6 attacks with no buffs (26bab). 2 auras. excellent AB. STR 19 +7pump +4GStr = 30 natural DEX 8 (needs dex item for AC purposes) CON 16 INT 14 WIS 12 +8 WIS item needed for spells! CHA 6 Domains: Earth,Time (toughness, imp init free) Skills: Max out Tumble, Diplomacy, Concentrate, Spellcraft 1: cleric - Luck of Heroes 2: fighter - Weapon Focus: Warhammer 3: cleric - extended spell 4: cleric (+1 STR) 5: cleric 6: cleric - Practiced Caster:cleric 7: cleric 8: cleric (+1STR) 9: cleric - Combat Casting. Save all skillpoints 10: Neverwinter Nine - Take 5 spot (prereq) 11: cleric - Back to normal skill progression. 12: cleric - (+1STR) Persistent Spell 13: cleric 14: cleric 15: cleric - Knockdown 16: cleric 17: cleric 18: Warpriest - Improved Knockdown 19: Warpriest 20: Warpriest 21: Fighter - GreatSTR1, Epic Prowess 22: Fighter 23: Fighter - GreatSTR2, Epic Toughness 24: Fighter 25: Warpriest - GreatSTR3 26: Fighter - ArmorSkin 27: Fighter - Great STR4 28: Fighter - Greater Weapon Focus 29: Warpriest - Epic Weapon Focus 30: Warpriest Ending Skills: Tumble 16, Concentrate 33, Spellcraft30, Spot 5, Diplomacy 32 AB: 26 +10str +5feats = 41 (maximum of +4DivPower, +6 STRitems, +20misc buffs = 71 absolute maximum AB) AC: standard plate/shield with +2armorskin +1tumble +1luck. 2 auras. casting: lvl 18 spell access, 22 casting level. -------------------------------- VII. Clerical Prestege classes. -------------------------------- With the expansion, I added a special section for the cleric PrCs. These are the classes that get some clerical progression built in. a) Stormlord ------------ The stormlord is an interesting and powerful class for a warrior cleric. It provides some interest for a caster cleric. Specifically, the electrical immunity and Knockdown immunity+superhaste Storm Avatar ability. However,it is probably not worth the prerequisite feats since caster clerics are somewhat feat-strapped as it is. For a warrior cleric, they will likely be multiclassing anyways and may be able to pick up some of the prereq feats from domains. Once that is done, it is simple to replace 8 cleric levels with 8 stormlord and take no BAB penalty. Taking the final 2 SL levels is a matter of debate, as it guarantees -1BAB most of the time. In most cases, I would take the extra 2 levels. Stormlord has FULL casting ability. SL levels are the same as cleric levels basically, except no turn undead progression. Lets face it, warrior clerics tend to multiclass which pretty much hozes your Turn Undead anyways. Stormlord gains the following abilities: * Up to +3 enhancement for a SL weapon. An SL weapon is the spear plus any thrown weapons. This bonus actually STACKS with existing enhancement! Pretty cool. * Electrical Resistance. Increases to 15, then grants complete immunity at level 9 SL. Nice to have. * Pumped Weapon - This is a clickie that has unlimited use and grants 20 rounds of pumped weapon. It adds the following to any SL weapon (defined above). 1d8 electric, 2d8 on crits, 1d8 sonic (gained in that order). It is irritating to have to click before every battle though. Remember, you are a Cleric and already have to deal with several other short duration spells! * Avatar - At 10th lvl, SL can cast this at CHAR LVL, extended automatically. (i.e. level 30 char gets a 60 round one) Adds 3-18 more electrical per hit. Pumps speed to 200%. The main benefit is IMMUNITY TO KNOCKDOWN! You also can use thrown weapons moderately effectively. Equip a shield/dart and you are good to go. The darts will be +3, and add 2d8 elemental. You are unlikely to hit much though due to poor DEX and lack of enchantment bonuses on darts. Still, it might be useful in a pinch. The downside is that you need to take Great Fortitude which is weak. Plus, toughness which is alright. And then you must weapon focus in a SL-weapon, which is typically Spear. Another big problem is that you are pretty much stuck using... a spear! Spear is a weak weapon and loses 2.5 damage compared to greatsword. You more than make up for that, but let's ask a better question... How many warrior clerics run around with 2handers?!? None! Since so much clerical damage comes from buffs and not high STR, most prefer the use of a shield. Plus, a shield keeps you from getting beat up when casting in combat, whereas a 2hander does not. At level 15 onwards, you are giving up 7AC(+5 hvy shield) to equip a spear! NOT a very good tradeoff most of the time. As you gain levels, even more AC is lost from the lack of +8 shields. ProTip 1: Take MONKEY GRIP so you can use a spear in 1 hand and still use a shield. You trade 1 feat and -2AB for a big shield AC advantage... and possibly some abilities or whatever that the shield might have. ProTip 2: Use Improved Power Attack and high STR to make the Spear hit really really hard. Adding 5 Frenzied Berserker levels for Really Improved Power Attack and supreme cleave is well worth it. Plus, FB gives the toughness prereq for free. ProTip 3: Earth Domain also provides free Toughness plus Stoneskin access. War gives free weapon focus with Spear-diety plus PW:Stun (nosave) access. Skills: SL uses the typical Spellcraft, Concentrate. Note that it LOSES Diplomacy and Heal skills, to gain Intimidate. Keep this in mind that you will likely need extra skillpoints to keep these up to date. Conclusion: Stormlord is quite powerful. But as you find epic weapons with 4d6 x3 elemental damage, the 2d8 +3 bonus from SL starts to pale in comparison. Do not sacrifice excessive feats just to pick up SL. Build Ideas: SL is best with fighter levels to add feats, especially in epic levels. Warpriest ok to provide full BAB and still advance spell potential somewhat. Divine Power is abusable with low BAB builds. cleric8/StormLord8/WarPriest10/Fight4 - 26bab, 21 casting level. 2-3 bonus epic feats thanks to fighter. cleric8/Stormlord8/Fighter8/Warpriest6 - Epic wpnfocus adds even more accuracy, sacrificing caster level down to 19. cleric8/SL10/bard2/RDD10 - 21BAB(use Div Power), good skills, stats, AC, etc. See my StormLord guide for more information if desired. B) Sacred Fist: ------------ Sacred Fist is a Cleric/Monk hybrid. At first glance it seems extremely powerful. However, you eventually will notice that several of the mechanics seem to work against it and you wind up with a character that is a mediocre monk and cleric. Caster clerics could benefit from the speed boost, as well as the improved AC (in theory at least). This works adequately at higher levels, but makes progress slow and painful early on due to a loss of spell progression. Even worse, adding SF guarantees the cleric will not grab free epic feats at 23,26,29 cleric since they toss in 1monk,10SF minimum. Warrior clerics will do much better. The trick is determining exactly how much cleric vs. how much monk you want to go with. I should note that you CAN NOT use SF as a free BAB booster, then play normally. The bottom line is that you must play as a monk hybrid. Note that equipping ANY weapon will cause a -8AB penalty! You will need 1 level of monk plus combat casting to quality. DO NOT try to go SF without taking a monk level! This basically means that most races are unsuitable since they eat 20% XP penalty right off the start. The primary advantages of the SF are as follows: * Move speed bonus - SF levels stack with monk levels and provide speed bonus based on the Monk movement chart. * AC bonus - +3 at level 10. This compensates for not having monk levels which give +1ac per 5 levels. * Spell Progression - Gains full spell levels as if a cleric level was taken, EXCEPT at levels 4 and 8. So SF costs 2 levels to take. * FULL Fighter BAB progression! This is really nice, being better than either monks OR clerics. If only one could take SF past 10 levels... * Sacred Flame - The main combat ability. Adds from 15 to 25 fire damage per hit to attacks for 10 rounds. This is a really nice ability, but only usable once per day. Great for boss fights! * Uncanny Dodge - Even monks dont get this. Really good for chars with lots of dex-based AC. * Inner Armor - +4dodge AC for WIS modifier rounds. I would expect pretty low duration though, as WIS mod for a warrior cleric is around 7. * Unarmed Damage - Derived by adding monk levels to SF levels, and checking the monk chart. Here is an AC comparison to clear things up: (I hope...) A 20 cleric will have mithril full plate and a +5 hvy shield let's say. That is 8AC + 7AC from shield = 15 AC from armor that the SF couldn't get. Note in this example I am comparing the DIFFERENCE between the two. Either one can get +6 plate or +6 robes, so there is no use comparing that. In the same way, 15tumble is +1AC, vs 30 tumble = +3, a difference of +2. The sacred fist cannot use any armor/shield Instead, their armor advantage is based on WIS bonus +extra DEX bonus (over the +3 mithril plate allows) +1 or 2 from Tumble +3 from SF +1 for every 5 real monk levels. Assuming +8 WIS item, a warrior cleric will probably have 28 WIS at the highest. That is a +9AC bonus. Assuming a +6 DEX item, a warrior cleric will have 20DEX highest. This is a +2AC bonus (over the +3 allowed from mithril plate) Grand total = 8wis +2tumb +3SF +2Dex = 15 AC. AC Conclusion: Sacred Fist style of play breaks even with Armored Style, and does not provide much AC advantage, if any. Other factors: SF must use Gloves as a weapon slot. That means no +8AC bracers! Caster SF can actually gain some AC over Armored playstyle, due to their very high WIS. Example: 1m/10SF/19cl has 40WIS(With +10 item), and 22DEX (+8 item). AC advantage over mithril plate cleric: +15WIS +3DEX +2tumble +3SF = 23AC vs. 8 platemail +10 (+8hvy shield) = 18. Problems with Sacred Fist: - Monk gloves are usually inferior to weapons. A weapon has special materials to penetrate DR. Open hand does not. Nor will you have enough monk levels to gain their DR pierce capabilities. Plus, monk gloves have no enhancement bonus.. it is +AB only. - You get no glove slot, because that is your "weapon slot" now. Kiss that +8AC bracelet goodbye... - You get no Spell Resistance. The clerical spell can compensate tho. - You don't remove Flurry penalty until monk lvl 5 and lvl 9. Greater flurry is achieved with 11 monk levels for an extra attack. Conclusion: SF lets you play as a mediocre monk with cleric buffs. It works reasonably well, but not as much as one might expect. I HIGHLY recommend pumping your WISDOM, instead of STR or DEX. This gives you much better spell DC, more spellslots, AC, stunning fist DC, and increases your Sacred Armor and Sacred Flame abilities. Build Example: 11monk/9cleric/10SF - This is the best combination build as you have 11 monk for greater flurry (+2 free full AB attacks), improved knockdown, imp evasion, and +2AC. You have 21 combo monk/SF levels for 2d10 damage and 150% speed boost. Finally, you have 17 caster levels for 9th lvl spell access. C) Warpriest ------------ The warpriest is a fairly weak prestiege class, but has much more versatility than the others mentioned here. Think of a warpriest as a fighter... except every other level it assigns you a feat that gives 1 full clerical casting level, instead of you picking a combat feat. The prerequisite is Combat Casting... one of the most useless feats in existence. (Skill focus:concentrate is much better). It also requires 4th lvl divine spells, and 8diplomacy, 5 spot. Yuck! It really works better for druids, Favored Souls, and Spirit Shamans although those classes lose a lot of their special abilities to take WP. The WP has the following advantages: - Full fighter BAB progression. WP is used to squeeze out a few extra points of AB. - 50% clerical progression. Every even level gives 1 full clerical casting level. - Provides Martial Weapon and Tower Shield proficiency. This is usually not really necessary though, and kind of a waste for clerics. IN fairness though, Favored Soul, Druids, Spirit Shaman can definitely benefit from the armor proficiencies, and can spare the skillpoints too. - War Glory - +1 to hit for all allies, EXCEPT YOU. -1 saving throw for all enemies. It is only a 10 foot radius, which is about that of a sonic burst or implosion. (i.e. tiny) - Inflame - Up to +10 saving throws vs fear/mind! Except for one problem: It lasts FIVE rounds. Plus, a 1st level Prot Evil spell pretty much negates fear/mindhoze anyways. So it is worthless. - Remove Fear - Hmph. If you had cast Protection from Alignment, your allies wouldn't be feared in the first place... Plus with a short-cast range, you have to CATCH them first.. :-) - 3:Mass cure light wounds - Here comes the big problem with these spell-like abilities. They are cast at the WP level! That means as a 10th level caster, BEST CASE SCENARIO! Wow, watch my 17th level character drop a huge 11-18 point heal on everyone. - 5:Fear Aura - A clickie ability that casts Fear once per day. The DC will be laughably low, so don't bother. 10 + WPlvl +CHA bonus. Remember that Favored Soul will have a high CHA, so it will work MUCH better for them. - 6:Battletide - Hey great! Except for the 10 round maximum duration. A 30 cleric can extend battletide to last 60 rounds in comparison. At once per day, it is not worth even putting on the bar. Once again, the druids/shaman can benefit, since they don't get this spell. - 7:Haste - 3x per day. Lousy duration, but druids/FS/Shaman love it since they do not have access to haste. - 9: Mass Heal - Onc per day. Finally, something useful! Except will only heal for 100 maximum. Any undead targeted will easily Spell Resist. Nice for druids/Shaman once again that do not have Mass heal access. - 10: Implacable Foe. All allies (cept you of course), get 20 HPs!!! Ten rounds later, they all LOSE 20 HPs. Apparantly this is SO powerful, that it is only usable once per day and HALVES your movement for 10rounds. I can't see this being useful for anyone... Despite the long list of special abilities (which are mostly worthless), the WP compares unfavorably to an Eldritch Knight. A cleric that goes 10WP gets: 20HP, 5 casting lvls, proficiencies, lame abilities, and +33% to BAB (from 3/4ths to full) A sorc that goes 10EK gets: 20HP, 9 casting lvls, 1 free (crap)feat, no abilities, and +100% to BAB (1/2 to full) The EK has martial wpns as a prereq, 3rd lvl spells, and no skills, vs the WPs, worthless combat casting, 4th lvl spells, moderate skills. The second major failing of Warpriest is the existence of Divine Power. This spell lets you have as low BAB as you want and STILL be uber. ex: 9cleric,19wizard,1PM,1rogue with 15BAB still gets 30BAB with Div Power! This kinda defeats the purpose of Warpriest to some degree, although the less buffs you have to use, the better. Example Builds: cleric16/Warpriest10/Fighter4 - 26bab, 21 cleric access. vs cleric20/fighter10 which would result in 25BAB only. ------------------------------------------- VIII. Conclusion, Copyright, and Contact info ------------------------------------------- This guide is copyrighted by Randomsome1. However, you may post it or use it as you like as long as no contents are changed. If you have any observations, questions, or comments, please email me at: joemama1512@SPAMBEGONEhotmail.com and add NWN2Guide in the Subject. Remove the spambegone part of course. (I would probably miss any email in my spam-filled regular email, hence the usage of my other account...) I hope you enjoy the guide and find it helpful.