Saturday, July 17, 2010

Critical Playtesting #3 The Avenger

Playtesting different classes and races so you'll give them a shot.

While the first two Critical Playtests were all about classes that don't get enough attention, this week is dedicated to a class that happens to be exclusive to Dungeons and Dragons 4th Edition. The easiest way to sum up the Avenger is a Jedi Knight but that's only a half truth. Avengers are the Divine Striker class that are all about separating their target from the group. Whether you like being a mysterious warrior, a divine ninja, or just wielding a giant freaking weapon, this class is for you.

Normally this is the part where I tell you what the competition is. I would tell you what the other Strikers are known for except that's a giant list that would take quite awhile to go through. Sorry folks. Let's just skip on into what makes an Avenger stand out shall we?

1) Accuracy - Oath of Enmity is what it's all about. You get to roll TWICE! You get to roll TWICE! Sorry for repeating but it fills me with so much joy I had to say it twice. Do you understand how insane that is? You are twice as accurate as anyone else. There are some rules to get this double roll however so strategy is still involved. I should also mention you even get a power to let one of your ally's reroll.

2) Isolating - This is what the Avenger does best. Avengers are all about going toe to toe with someone and isolating them from the rest of the hordes of enemies. Many of their powers force enemies to separate so you can pull this off. It's almost like force push and pull.

3) Defense - Not every Striker can say they have Defender level HP or ways to be sticky. You're rather awesome at both and you don't even wear hefty armor (you get a bonus for not wearing the extra armor and their are feats to boost your AC instead). You can take hits with the best of them and hold your own in a fight. You even get some tasty utility powers so you can keep getting back up.

4) Maneuverability - Strikers are known for this quality but let's talk about how the Avenger pulls this off. Since the Avenger is based around having a target and keeping track of that target, many of your powers give you free shifting or even teleportation to stay with your target (but only your target).

5) Damage - Avenger's don't honestly bring out the damage you would think. The way an Avenger pulls off having Striker-level damage is their consistency. Thanks to the accuracy I mentioned earlier, you'll hit more often. Hitting more often means more damage even if you're doing less per round than Ranger Smith over there. Getting the chance to roll the dice twice to hit also means twice the number of chances for a critical hit.

6) Divine - Being a Divine class is awesome. You get Channel Divinity feats, Domain feats, and you're based around Wisdom so your perception is insane. Plus, it's simply fun to roleplay.

"And shepherds we shall be,
for Thee, my Lord, for Thee.
Power hath descended forth from Thy hand,
that our feet may swiftly carry out Thy command.
So we shall flow a river forth to Thee
and teeming with souls shall it ever be.
In nomine Patris, et Filii, et Spiritus Sancti."

This is Kylak signing out and suddenly in the mood to watch Boondock Saints again.


  1. Avenger class was definitely one of the classes I was extremely pleased about. I hope to be playing Avenger in one of the campaigns in the fall soon.

  2. hmm, I played with a couple of Avengers before, so a few points:

    Elves are the obvious and most common choice. Oath + Elven Accuracy is great fun. Further more, Avenger is based on Dex+Wis so it greatly complements the Elf.

    Avengers are strange in that they pull mobs away from the scene and starts to kill them. Make sure you pull what you know though. My friend pulled what he thought was a simple archer away, only to get netted and almost got poison-shot to death.

    That, is what i think, their main selling point. For consistency, a ranger can do it much much better for better DPS, but only avengers can pull an annoying creature away from the fight. In some sense, it's controlling.

    I just came back from playtesting battlemind, so it'd be great if you'd write something up about it =)

  3. @ Waffle
    I hope you get to try one out. You'll have plenty of campaigns to get your chance, that's for sure.

    @ Faylar
    I'd also like to point out that each Avenger is different. You did a great job pointing out the Censure of Pursuit Avenger. They get a bonus if their target tries to get away so it usually ends up in you isolating one enemy away from everyone else.

    The Censure of Retribution gets a bonus if anyone other than your target attacks you so you have to play a strange tactic of targeting one foe and getting someone else to hit you (HIT ME AGAIN!).

    The Censure of Unity gets a bonus for each ally teaming up with you against your target. This is the easiest one to play since the whole group gets to isolate and mob one target.

    Each of these uses different stats but yes, Elves make great Censure of Pursuit Avengers.

    And I'll gladly write a playtest on the Battlemind for you Faylar. I plan on eventually covering all classes and races as time goes on. If you ever have any requests just let me know.

  4. I'm trying hybrid Battlemind/Paladin next. For some odd reason, both these classes don't have really good class features, and they have matching stat requirements, allowing them to be...'hybridable'.

    You should check out the Battlemind level 7 at-will Lightning Rush. It's probably the only power that will catch your eye in Battlemind's repertoire.

  5. I hybridized an Avenger with an Artificer one time. It was quite fun. He was an Eladrin that worshiped technology.

    And I teleported all the time. It was awesome.

  6. Oh, and by the way, Kanda is a dick. For serious.

  7. @ Faylar
    You'll be glad to know as far as class features go, the Paladin's features were "fixed" in Divine Power and Psionic Power is coming out soon for the Battlemind.

    @ Joe
    Glad to see such an interesting combination.

    Yes, Kanda is a dick. Some people love him for it apparently. I had to post him though. He fits the many aspects of what an Avenger is. It's great to be able to find puzzle pieces that fit so well.

  8. I think the main thing the drew me towards playing the Avenger was the roleplay possibilities therein. Its just fun being a divine "assassin"

  9. Divine assassin paladin giant-weapon wielding slayer for the Church! *cue music*



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