Tuesday, August 30, 2005

in a class of his own

recently ask zenstar received this mail:

"Dear Zenstar

I am soon to be joining a D&D 3rd Ed (or 3.5 actually, I think)
campaign, and they are desperately in need of healers, or so I hear. I
don't, however, want to just play a pansy vanilla cleric character, I
would like to play something with a little more splash and style. I
have been toying with the idea of either a Paladin (not Black Guard,
at least for the moment) or a Druid of some form, but I am not
entirely sure of the various ins and outs of these classes, or other
classes that may be available. Do you have any suggestions, or perhaps
a comparison of the pros and cons of the various healer classes?

Yours without any disharge whatsoever

well synkronos "pansy" vanilla is the world's most favourite flavour in the world, but i can understand the desire for a "strawberry" or "rum and raisin" class.
the party you're joining claims to be in desperate need of a healer, but do thay need a traditional spell-casting healer? prehaps you could be the sort of healer that creeps into clerics' houses late at night and redistributes the healing potions (for the greater good of course) to the party.
or prehaps the "pre-emptive strike" healer: a large fighter who does the beatdown jig on everything before a party memeber gets hit. prevention (they say) is better than cure. and i challenge you to find a "prevent light wounds" spell.
these choices may be a little too "bubblegum" for your taste so we'll now look at more traditional flavours.

your standard cleric (or vanilla) makes a good basis for a healer, but if you want to really get something out of it you need to add something (i suggest peanuts and hot chocolate sauce). have a look at playing a cleric of death who takes a bunch of cause wounds spells. you can always "spont" to cure wounds as needed or simply zap the pesky thief with a cause light when you catch him trying to steal your gems.
alternatively you can take a cleric of war. this usually allows you access to all sorts of pointy weapons that clerics don't usually get to play with. a nice side option with this particular mix may be a few levels of barbarian.
think of it: a nomadic, fur wearing behemoth with a giant axe across his back, a black helmet with faceplate covering most of his face, chanting over a fallen comrade. the chant translating to roughly: "i'm gonna get the bastard that did this to you... and don't worry, i'm keeping your finger safely with me until i learn ressurect in a few levels time... ad nauseum."
now thats vanilla with nuts... 2 big nuts and an axe shaped spoon all covered with strawberry sauce.

another interesting spice to the vanilla is to take a few levels of wizard or scorceror into the mix and cast a little healing and a little more traditional magic, later going into the prestigue class (theuge i think its called).
that gives you healing capabilities and fireballs.
every good spellcaster knows that the 'balls are the best. the hotter the better!
you could mix this up a little by replacing vanilla cleric with a more kinda "fruits of the forest" druid. you'll lack a little of the healing but you do get animal companions who make excellent furry shields in a crisis. also, if you run out of food, you can coax small animals closer to the BBQ (ie... fireball distance).
this particular mix is fruity yet nutty with a dark twist of chocolate sauce.

then there's the paladin mix. a plain paladin is kinda boring. you do get a spiffy horse, but its usually smarter than you are by the time you hit 3rd level.
you can prestige over into black gaurd, but the other characters tend to kill you for being an evil bastard if you do (plus they know you're worth a lot of xp).
to liven things up with a paladin, take enough levels to get a little healing and then start switching to bard. everyone loves a singing knight. imagine the ballards you could sing while riding along in your plate and tights.
that's just pure fruit.

as for comparing the pros and cons: it all depends on your taste. clerics are pure healing but kinda bland unless you add something. druids can't heal as well but do mix nicely to produce strong flavours. paladins don't do much in the way of healing and need lots of work to get somthing out of them. and bards are just fruity.

my sugestion is, no matter what class you take, make sure the other characters know that you're the source of healing. if you can't actually heal then fake it. steal potions of healing and claim that you brewed them the last time you stopped for camp. once you've convinced the rest of the party that you're the source, then you've become indispencable!
remind them when the new magic armour is found that if you die then there's no more healing... "what's that? an amulet of natural armour +3? you know i almost got hit in the last fight and forgot that cure major wounds spell that saved bob's life..."
pretty soon you'll be rolling in the good stuff no matter what flavour you are.
this could be a little more difficult to pull off with an overly fruity character though as characters will begin pointing out how the ring of deflection +4 clashes with your amulet of natural armour +3 and no self respecting bard/paladin would be seen dead in that particular magic, +5, ensamble of elvish chain...

of course you can always mix these suggestions up according to your personal tastes (and what you can convince the dm to let you get away with).
i hope this helps you choose just the right blend of creamy smooth classes to create that delicious character that'll have your mouth watering everytime you play. (prehaps you could get some sort of bib?)

uncle zenstar


Blogger Synkronos said...

Thank you for the reply =) I think I will be going with the Fruits of the Forest flavour (even though that is more common in yoghurt than in ice cream). Roar!

5:26 PM  
Blogger zenstar said...

glad to help you find your inner fruit ('s of the forest).

10:53 AM  

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