Author Topic: Mage Slayer?  (Read 1664 times)

Offline Kasz

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Mage Slayer?
« on: February 08, 2017, 08:18:59 AM »
I've been thinking about making a Mage Slayer and I was wondering if anyone has any ideas.

I've considered a straight up Barbarian, Fighter or Barbarian/Fighter with the feat. Considered Rogue, maybe Arcane Trickster, Sneak attack and counterspell. Maybe Ranger, using the Revised Ranger and see if I can persuade a DM to allow Favoured Enemy Arcane like the old 3.5e. I like the idea of a Paladin with an anti-arcane oath, but I have played a paladin recently.

The general purpose of the character would be murder, I always play the support based spellcasters and apparently this time my party will be doing that so I'll be the one dealing damage every round, so my aim is to be sustainable. Sneak attack suits better than Smite for example. The character is going to starting as a slave to a magical overlord, so a hatred of mages will be deeply soaked in.

Offline TenaciousJ

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Re: Mage Slayer?
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2017, 10:22:12 AM »
Even though you've recently played a paladin, would you consider a paladin multiclass different enough?

Your best bet to be anti-caster is to be an Abjurer or a bard, but you want damage too.  Paladin/bard has multiclass synergy with the capability to grab most of what you want.  Paladin 2/Valor bard X or paladin 6/Lore bard X will get the job done.  With the bard's spell slots available, you won't have to worry about running out of steam.  Save those Divine Smites for the right situations instead of using it indiscriminately.  The Valor build gets better spell progression but the Lore build gets Charisma to saving throws, helping you to steamroll through a lot of common magic effects.  You could also do paladin 2/sorcerer 1/Lore bard X to rely on Booming Blade/Green-Flame Blade instead of Extra Attack to scale your damage.

You want large individual hits to break concentration.  Divine Smite and Sneak Attack are the two biggest, reliable ways to get 1 large hit.

Counterspell is helpful, but it's best on someone who will be able to invest a significant amount in their casting ability score with plenty of spell slots to spare.  Abjurers and bards can get proficiency to such rolls to help (half in the bard's case).  Keep in mind the order of operations on the Mage Slayer feat.  The spell gets cast.  It has to finish before you take your reaction because the wording is "cast a spell" not "attempt to cast a spell" or "start to cast a spell."  If the effect of the spell requires concentration, the Mage Slayer reaction hits after the concentration is up, helping to ruin the spell.  You only need to counter instantaneous effects if you're effective at sticking close to your mark.

Nondetection is pretty awesome. Nondetection beats all divination spells.  This is especially helpful if you can become invisible through some other source. Nondetection lasts 8 hours without concentration, so you can also make yourself invisible and be undetectable by anything most casters could do.  What is the rest of the party?

e: Arcane Trickster X/Abjurer or Diviner Y could accomplish what you want to get an AT base that also has enough spell slots for effective anti-magic.  Improved Abjuration is a solid feature but takes awhile to come online.  Portent can fix dispel/counter checks for you and is available quickly.  You just have to find the sweet spot between just enough Sneak Attack and enough spellcasting power.  Again GFB or BB can scale up your damage and both work with Sneak Attack.
« Last Edit: February 08, 2017, 12:35:30 PM by TenaciousJ »
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Offline Kasz

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Re: Mage Slayer?
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2017, 01:02:43 PM »
Rest of the party is not currently decided, but I think we'll have a Paladin (of the Crown), A Sorc, A Wizard and a Cleric. Leaving a big hole in the melee spot (although the Cleric is likely going to have heavy armour, but not be front line focused).

I know Mage Slayer doesn't really work if they teleport away, although I've been considering War Caster, Mage Slayer on an Eldritch Knight. But every build I consider seems really feat heavy already.

I like Lore bard and Paladin, it's a really solid method, but I'll probably either end up being mostly redundant with the charisma/caster heavy party already.

AT/Abjurer I would play the hell out of, but I think its my turn to be a little more mundane of a party member. Hence why I was looking at Rogue/Barbarian/Fighter. Assassin is always tempting although it rarely ever gets to use half it's class features.

Offline TenaciousJ

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Re: Mage Slayer?
« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2017, 01:53:57 PM »
It sounds to me like you're pulling your character into too many different directions.  Mage Slayer on its own does not really make you a mage slayer.  Are you sure you'll fight a lot of casters in the campaign to make it worthwhile?  Bear Totem barbarian with Resilient: Wisdom will let you truck through most of the nastiest magic, but you won't be very good at preventing it.

You can Counterspell with an Eldritch Knight, but you won't be very good at it unless you pump up your Int, and you want feats to do decent damage with a fighter.  A 2 level dip into Diviner with high Portent rolls can help you out with that.  EK's can pick up Hex via Magic Initiate and use it with their own spell slots, and you can get Booming Blade that way since it's casting score-independent.
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Offline awaken_D_M_golem

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Re: Mage Slayer?
« Reply #4 on: February 08, 2017, 04:23:48 PM »
Str Valor Bard for grappling.
Maybe Rogue 2 or Tabaxi to help close the distance.

I don't recall anyone trying Wiz Enchant 2 as a pseudo grapple substitute.
So like Fighter 11 / Wiz Ench 2+ / Swashbucler the rest
... but it might come together too late.
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Offline Kasz

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Re: Mage Slayer?
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2017, 05:07:41 AM »
Yeah, I might have to go back to the drawing board, it's looking like we're going to need a damage soaker so the Bear Barbarian looks tempting.