Hey guys, Nick checking in again! So I’ve talked about two different roles previously–tank and healer. But let’s complete the “Holy Trinity” that Travis explained previously.
That’s right baby! Today we’re talking about damage dealers! These are your rogues, rangers, barbarians, warlocks… classes that, by default, are made to dish out heavy damage. By all means, each has secondary utility as well; however, if you build a damage dealing class right you can dish out big pimpin’ damage! And who doesn’t love rolling a ton of dice?!
I remember when I first got into it, I wanted to make some sweet high damage characters. I tried rolling everything from Fighters, to Rangers, to Sorcerers… and most of them ended up sucking. It felt pretty lackluster watching the sweet two-handed build Fighter I spent hours making do an extremely good job of cleaving the ground. Or the Ranger hailing a storm of arrows against skeletons, who laughed in reply (it sucked).
As for the Sorcerer….
We don’t talk about her.
She will be missed.
But man, sometimes you roll a character thinking it’s good, but the performance is a zero. So how do we get this:
… and not this:
Let’s go over some information to help you go Super with your damage! Just Saiyan. (I’ll see myself out for that one)
1.) Rock Your Build: I’ve mentioned it in all 3, and I simply can’t reiterate it enough! builds are available everywhere. Want to learn about Ranger? There’s some great information here, for example. There’s a ton of valuable information available online, or you can thoroughly study your core content like the Player’s Handbook. You’ve heard me say it before–you know.
But I want to take it a step in a different direction today. I also want to encourage you to play to your build and class strengths. It’s totally fine to build glass cannons–or, rather, characters who can dish out massive damage but are also killed easily. It’s incredibly effective to have a super tanky tank, a great support, and a group of damage dealers who can focus the enemy down quickly. But if you want to throw in extras to help you survive in case things go wrong, or if you style of play doesn’t jive with what’s posted online? Further yet, what if you’re playing without a tank or healer in your group? (It happens!)
Well, that’s fine! I know a lot of people who use “Lucky” to get those extra rolls for when things go wrong. Or “Tough” to get some extra HP, should the enemy decide to focus on something other than the armored dude in front. It’s totally fine to look up a build and make it your own! Just remember what you’ve got and use it to your advantage! I encourage everybody to research their builds to make sure you don’t end up with something totally off-the-wall that doesn’t work, but at the same time if you know how to make it work then do you. Information is available but at the end of the day it’s all about having fun, right?
2. Know Your Enemy: This, right here, is what’s gonna separate the kids and the adults at dealing damage. Experience is by far the biggest factor here. As you play more, you learn more about what enemies are affected by types of damage. If you’re playing a mid-to-high level campaign, it’s perfectly reasonable for your seasoned adventurer to know a thing or two. Knowing that a skeleton isn’t resistant to blunt, that trolls regenerate unless they take fire damage, or that iron golems shouldn’t be fucked with are important things to dealing damage and being effective.
Plan for the occasion! Ask the needed questions when it’s time to roleplay. Is your quarry a troll? have your character take the time to ask around or research it. Learn its weakness and bring the right supplies! Delving into an undead tomb? Why not bring a mace (or cudgel) along with your usual sword/daggers? Being prepared for a number of situations–and taking the time to truly learn what you’re up against will prepare you for almost anything! Except a tarrasque. You’re probably screwed, then.
Having some versatility in your weapons and supplies might make the difference between a party member dying, and your group victorious pillaging the emptied dungeon for that sweet, sweet loot. So ask the questions, do your homework, get those supplies. Plan ahead.
3. Communicate: I know, nobody likes to be “that guy” who meta games (rather, considers the game, rather than what their character is thinking). But sometimes in the midst of combat, I tell players it’s better to meta game a little and realize you’re fighting a god damn dragon (so don’t line up for breath attacks) than to risk everybody dying because your character wouldn’t know that.
And it’s okay for you–or your character–to communicate what you know! Need the tank to move out of the way to drop a Fireball? Notice an enemy that nobody is focusing down, but appears to be a bigger threat? Maybe an enemy is starting to focus you and things are looking dire. Or perhaps everybody is spreading out when you do need to focus something down. Communicate your thoughts! Not everybody notices every little detail on the battlefield, and your attention to detail could be the difference between victory or defeat.
As I also mentioned above in #2, if you happen to know something about a monster, provide a suggestion rather than let everybody flounder and inevitably die because they don’t know how to exploit the weakness (unless you’re playing neutral/chaotic evil, then do you).
These are just a few tips to get you going down the Path of Greatness, to help you achieve a better experience as a damage dealing class! Taking the time to build for good damage, and to utilize the right kind of damage along with communication are all important to effectively kicking enemy ass.
Any builds you prefer to use? Do you maximize your damage, or build for versatility?
Until next time, happy gaming!