Alright, so I'm reading through the new Dark Sun Campaign Setting and I came across a new character creation concept: themes.
Now themes are an overlay on your current class. Want to be a gladiator? Sure! No problem. But what if you want to be a magic using gladiator, or a warrior gladiator, or a sly rogue-like gladiator? With the theme, you pick your class; mage, fighter, rogue, etc. and then overlay the gladiator theme on top of it. I like this concept and think it adds some amazing layers of customization to classes.
One of the themes is the Athasian Minstrel. This theme is best for bards and rogues, but it has its uses in other classes. However, it wasn't the minstrel theme that really grabbed my attention. It was the minstrel paragon path known as the Arms-Troubadour. This paragon path is sick. Whenever an enemy misses you you get combat advantage against them (WHAT?! fuck ya!) and that's at 11th level. At 16th level you can reroll certain skill checks and never fail in specific skill challenges if you miss by 5 or less. And seriously, how often do you fail a skill challenge by more than 5? But what REALLY grabbed my attention was this...
Sorry about the blurry picture. Below is the description of the power.
Level 20 Daily Martial, Stance, Weapon
Requirement You must be wielding a light blade or a heavy blade and use it to attack with this power.
Trigger You hit a creature and deal damage to it with an at-will melee weapon attack.
Target Creature you hit.
Effect You deal 2[W] extra damage, and the target is dazed (save ends). In addition, you can assume the stance of the arms-troubadour. Until the stance ends, you can make the following attack.
Free Action Close Burst 3
Trigger You hit with a melee weapon attack.
Target Each ally in burst
Effect Until the end of your next turn, the target can reroll one damage die, using either result, each time he or she hits an enemy with an attack.
Ok so this is a little complex, but let's break it down. What this says is that if I use an at-will power I can trigger this daily. So suddenly my mediocre at-will does an additional 2[W] in damage...that's nice. It also dazes my enemy. This is also nice. But is it awesome? Not so much. Then it gets into the stance.
Stances end when the encounter ends or when the player chooses another stance. So for the rest of this encounter, whenever I hit an enemy (which let's face it, at level 20 you're going to hit a lot) all my allies within a burst 3 of me get to roll their damage twice and pick the higher number.
This is legen....wait for it....dary!
Why would I ever leave this stance? I'd start taking extended rests after every battle and use this every time. This is fucking awesome! (ok I know you can't take extended rests after every battle, but christ I'd want to)
I've only gotten about 45 pages into this campaign book and I'm already loving the new classes and abilities. The arms-troubadour is seriously powerful AND it has an entertaining flourish on it for role-playing purposes. WoTC really did a good job with this one.
Until next time...