For an upcoming game (starting at ~level 9-10, continuing until level 20 or we get bored/distracted), I’ve been working on a build specialized in in-combat healing, with a secondary focus on buffing allies and disabling enemies. Unlike my usual experience with 3.5 character optimization, I find myself with spare levels and feats after "finishing" the character’s core concept. I’m seeking feedback on how to best spend these character resources to strengthen the character’s performance in its core roles, and perhaps shore up its weaknesses as well.
Ability Scores (32 point buy):
- Str: 8
- Dex: 14
- Con: 14
- Int: 14
- Wis: 14
- Cha: 15
|1||Cloistered Cleric 11||Imbued Healing, Combat Casting2, Travel Devotion3||Healing Domain, Knowledge Domain|
|4||Bard 3||Cha 16|
|6||Combat Medic 1||Enlarge Spell|
|7||Combat Medic 2|
|8||Combat Medic 3||Mobility4||Cha 17|
|9||War Weaver 1||Reach Spell5|
|10||War Weaver 2|
|11||Sublime Chord 1|
|12||War Weaver 36||FREE||Cha 18|
|13||War Weaver 4|
|14||War Weaver 5|
|15||Combat Medic 4||FREE|
|16||Combat Medic 5||Cha 19|
1: of the Sovereign Host
2: Human bonus feat
3: from trading Travel domain
4: Combat Medic bonus feat
5: I haven’t asked the DM yet if retraining will be allowed. If so, this feat will be retrained after level 14, when War Weaver’s Enlarged Tapestry class feature makes it largely redundant.
6: From this point on, all prestige class levels advance Sublime Chord casting.
The build’s core goals are to:
- Heal the party, using War Weaver to apply Cure X Wounds spells to all party members at once, with additional rider effects from Imbued Healing and Combat Medic, plus spontaneous Heal starting at level 16.
- Buff the party, using War Weaver’s class features to do so efficiently in terms of actions and spell slots.
- Perform various other support utility functions, such as removing status effects using Resurgence and wands of Healing Lorecall.
- Disable enemies using spells that ignore saving throws, like Solid Fog, Fanfare, and Irresistable Dance.
I’m looking to achieve the following with my remaining build resources:
- Find additional ways to improve the efficacy of my healing spells, or add additional rider effects to them.
- Find additional ways to support my party that synergize with my existing suite of healing, buffing, and disabling.
- Find things to do with my spare actions. The build currently has limited uses for swift actions prior to getting Arcane Spellsurge at level 15, and limited uses for standard actions after that (although increasing the action cost of spells via metamagic with Enlarge Spell remains an option). It also lacks things to do with its move actions beyond moving and activating Quiescent Weaving, though this is true of most builds.
- Shore up weaknesses, such as the build’s low Fortitude save.
Things I’ve considered:
- Gish stuff (Arcane Strike, Snowflake Wardance, Knowledge Devotion instead of domain, levels in Abjurant Champion): Gives me something to do with standard actions at high levels. My BAB is garbage but I can use a wand of Divine Power. This option is shiny but I suspect not actually good.
- ToB dip: I can dip 1 level at 17+ and get level 5 maneuvers/stances, while still getting level 9 spells by level 20. White Raven Tactics is really, really good, and fits the character perfectly. On the other hand, losing caster levels, yuck.
- Inspire Courage investment: Can I make this work? Not very many effective Bard levels for Bardic Music, unfortunately.
- Fatespinner: Low barrier to entry, 4 levels fits with the build and doesn’t lose caster levels, class features are good for supporting. On the other hand, the build is already badly starved for skill points (can’t even keep Concentration maxed at some levels, though I catch up eventually), and Fatespinner requires even more.
The choices I’ve made in the build table above are also not locked-in; I’m open to suggestions to change the existing portions of the build in pursuit of the goals I’ve described here.
- All official 1st party 3.5 sourcebooks
- Official 1st party 3.0 sourcebooks, subject to 3.5’s standard rules about not using 3.0 content if a newer 3.5 version is available
- All official WotC web content
- Dragon/Dungeon content (aside from that found in the Dragon Compendium)
- Pathfinder content
- Epic level content (if we make it to level 20, we will stop there)
- Extremely setting-specific Forgotten Realms content (but content from Forgotten Realms sources might be allowed if it’s not too heavily based on Faerun fluff)
Not what I’m looking for:
- "In combat healing is weak, you should play something else": Yes, I know; making the best in combat healing specialist I can even though I know it’s a weak character archetype is the whole point of the build.
- Extreme metamagic cheese (e.g., Incantatrix levels to offset the cost of Persistent Spell): This is a higher level of optimization than I expect from the rest of the table, and part of why I’m committing to healing and support is to avoid overshadowing other players, who mostly have less system mastery and interest in character optimization than I do.
- Extreme action economy cheese (e.g., Mark of the Dauntless to ignore the penalty of Celerity): As above.