A Newbie’s Guide to DDO: Part 2 – Classes and Races

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style="font-weight: bold;">Newbie's
Guide to DDO href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/ddo/guides/newbie/basics"> style="font-weight: bold;">Part 1
- The Basics

href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/ddo/guides/newbie/classes-races"> style="font-weight: bold;">Part
2 - Classes & Races

Ah,
welcome back, my friend! I see that you have more questions about
beginning your adventures in the mystical, dangerous world of Eberron.
I can see from your questions that you not only wish to survive style="font-style: italic;">Dungeons and Dragons
Online, but you wish to
thrive. Very good. The first thing you can do is to buy me, Prelixin,
the much-heralded sage and loremaster, a bottle of the finest wine that
The Halfling’s Armpit has in stock. Afterward, we can
continue our discussion which will, hopefully, lead you to riches,
wine, and glory!


The Classes

Overall, there are eleven different classes that an adventurer has to
choose from in style="font-style: italic;">DDO.
You are not limited to your initial class choice as
you gain in power and prestige. No, my friend, you can choose to take a
level in a different class when you accumulate enough experience to go
up a level. You can take levels in up to three different classes if you
wish to do so. Some benefits of multi-classing are that you can get
abilities that are not available to your initial class (such as
spells). The downside is that you are diluting your abilities across a
broad range as opposed to focusing on a specific goal. Spells, for
example, do not follow a regimented increase. A 20th level spell is
more than twice the power of a spell that can be cast at 10th level.
However, the ability to have up to three classes in your makeup allows
for a great deal of flexibility.


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Hmmm...what to choose...what
to choose?

As I have said, there are eleven different classes, and those classes
are grouped into three broad categories. There is the melee category,
which contains classes that like to hit things with a heavy object and
make them fall down, preferably bleeding and dying. The spell category
is comprised of….classes that primarily use spells to get
things done! Big surprise there, I know. Lastly, there is the
specialist category in which the classes perform…shall a say
a unique function? Very well, then I shall do so. As the tavern wench
is warming up my buttered rum, let’s run over the different
classes. Some are available to all players, whilst others you have to
either pay for or accumulate enough favor to unlock. (Favor is
something you earn from various factions as you complete quests. I will
fully discuss favor in the next part of my guide.)



For each class, I will list the necessary alignment (chaotic, lawful,
good, neutral, etc.) as well as the Hit Die (you gain the maximum
points per level so a d12 means that you will get 12 hit points before
any Constitution bonus per level). Also, I will mention the number of
Skill Points that each class gets per level, and what skills are Class
Skills (a Class Skill is a skill that you spend one Skill Point to get
one rank).


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Melee

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The Fighter is always

up for kicking ass.

Fighter:
The basic melee class in style="font-style: italic;">DDO,
the Fighter can be
a very
versatile warrior. They can use sword and shield, two weapons, or large
two-handed weapons. Their primary ability is Strength for use in
combat, so Strength should be increased as the Fighter levels. Fighters
also get bonus feats (more on feats later) so they can really
specialize in kicking ass. They can wear all armor types and shields
without any negatives towards attacking. Fighters can gain Strength
enhancements (more on enhancements later on) as they level.

Alignment: Any

Hit Die: d10

Skill Points: (2 + Intelligence Modifier) x4 at 1st level

 
        
       2 + Intelligence Modifier
per level after 1st

Class Skills: Intimidate, Jump, Repair, Swim



Barbarian:
A warrior type that wears light or medium armor and specializes in
dishing out damage. They gain special abilities while in a frenzied
state. They are used best when dropping enemies quickly as that their
Armor Class is less than normal Fighters and going into a frenzied
state lowers their Armor Class even more. Barbarians can get
Constitution enhancements as they level.

Alignment: Any Non-Lawful

Hit Die: d12

Skill Points: (4 + Intelligence Modifier) x4 at 1st level

 
        
       4 + Intelligence Modifier
per level after 1st

Class Skills: Intimidate, Jump, Listen, Swim



Paladin:
A holy warrior than can cast divine spells. They have great saving
throws and are immune to fear and disease. They can lay their hands on
people and heal them and can also help party members with their passive
auras against evil. They only knock is that they can get a might
preachy, but ol’ Prelixin learned early on in his questing
days to just nod and tune them out. Paladins can gain Charisma
enhancements as they level.

Alignment: Lawful Stupid…I mean Lawful Good

Hit Die: d10

Skill Points: (2 + Intelligence Modifier) x4 at 1st level

 
         
      2 + Intelligence Modifier per level
after 1st

Class Skills: Concentration, Diplomacy, Heal, Intimidate


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My Kung-Fu is better

than your Kung-Fu!

Monk:
This class is free to VIP members (subscribers); otherwise
you’ll have to purchase this class from the style="font-style: italic;">DDO
store. The Monk is your martial-artist, kung-fu fighter. They usually
fight without weapons, shields, or armor and use Ki to perform
incredible battle techniques. They are devastating fighters, but do
tend to get worn down in a prolonged fight. I travelled for a time with
a Monk named Broos Leigh. He was a pretty stoic guy, but his taste in
clothing was terrible. He always wore this eye-bleeding bright yellow
outfit that a half-blind orc can see from a mile away.

Alignment: Any Lawful

Hit Die: d8

Skill Points: (4 + Intelligence Modifier) x4 at 1st level

 
        
       4 + Intelligence Modifier
per level after 1st

Class Skills: Balance, Concentration, Diplomacy, Hide, Jump, Listen,
Move Silently, Spot, Tumble





Spell

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This Sorcerer has me

under her spell.

Sorcerer:
A Sorcerer is a very focused spell caster. While a Wizard has
a greater range of spells to cast, a Sorcerer concentrates on a small
subset. However, a Sorcerer can cast those spells faster than a Wizard
and have more Spell Points to cast spells with. Sorcerers can get
Charisma enhancements as they level. Armor is a no-no with this class,
so they are very squishy.

Alignment: Any

Hit Die: d4

Skill Points: (2 + Intelligence Modifier) x4 at 1st level

 
         
      2 + Intelligence Modifier per level
after 1st

Class Skills: Bluff, Concentration



Cleric:
Clerics are strong divine spell casters who can wear all types of armor
without penalty. Clerics are the primary healers in style="font-style: italic;">DDO
and are great Undead destroyers. They are slightly more preachy than
Paladins, but I learned early on never to argue with the guy who is
healing my blood wounds and keeping me from dying. Clerics can gain
Wisdom enhancements as they level.

Alignment: Any, but Good is the normal option

Hit Die: d8

Skill Points: (2 + Intelligence Modifier) x4 at 1st level

 
         
      2 + Intelligence Modifier per level
after 1st

Class Skills: Concentration, Diplomacy, Heal


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The Wizard will fry your

ass with some Firewalls.

Wizard:
Wizards are powerful arcane casters who have access to a wide variety
of spells. They can also switch spells when using a rest shrine or in a
tavern, making them very versatile. Armor is a no-no for them and they
are as squishy as Sorcerers. They definitely need to be protected as
they tend to draw a lot of attention with Fireballs, Firewalls
(probably one of the most useful spells in style="font-style: italic;">DDO),
and other spells designed to mess with the enemy. Wizards can get
Intelligence enhancements as they level.

Alignment: Any

Hit Die: d4

Skill Points: (2 + Intelligence Modifier) x4 at 1st level

 
         
      2 + Intelligence Modifier per level
after 1st

Class Skills: Concentration, Repair



Favored
Soul:
The Favored Soul class
can be unlocked on a server by gaining 2500 favor or you can purchase
it from the style="font-style: italic;">DDO
store. The Favored Soul is similar to a Cleric in that they can cast
divine spells, but they get to cast the spells more often, but have a
lesser number of spells. They have Spell Points exactly like Sorcerers.
They have some great enhancements that they can pick up as they level,
particularly some energy resistance enhancements. I once knew a Favored
Soul who laughed at lightning traps and would stand in them, mocking
everybody around him. Too bad one trap also had an additional whirling
blades component. Tsk, tsk.

Alignment: Any

Hit Die: d8

Skill Points: (2 + Intelligence Modifier) x4 at 1st level

 
        
       2 + Intelligence Modifier
per level after 1st

Class Skills: Concentration, Diplomacy, Heal, Jump


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Specialist

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And this bird you

cannot change...

Bard:
The Bard is a kind of jack-of-all-trades of support. He is decent
in combat, can cast some arcane spells (albeit rather weakly), and has
some decent healing spells. They are superb at using Magical Devices.
Their main strength is in buffing the party, either through spells, but
mainly through the gift of singing. They can make a good group an
extremely strong group. I travelled for many years with an incredible
bard named Ronaldo Van Zantarum. He liked the wine a bit too much, but
his singing was incredible and would put us all into a fighting mood.
(Too bad he caused many a tavern brawl with his ditties!) His favorite
song to play was Freeth the Bird. Bards can get Charisma enhancements
as they level.

Alignment: Any Non-Lawful

Hit Die: d6

Skill Points: (6 + Intelligence Modifier) x4 at 1st level

 
        
       6 + Intelligence Modifier
per level after 1st

Class Skills: Balance, Bluff, Concentration, Diplomacy, Haggle, Hide,
Jump, Listen, Move Silently, Perform, Swim, Tumble, Use Magic Device



Ranger:
Rangers can be an archer and a dual-wielding melee combatant. They can
pick up to five monsters to specialize in fighting, can be stealthy,
cast divine spells, and detect secret doors and traps. However, they
cannot disable traps. Rangers are a jack-of-all-trades for their own
benefit. They can get Dexterity enhancements as they level.

Alignment: Any

Hit Die: d8

Skill Points: (6 + Intelligence Modifier) x4 at 1st level

 
         
      6 + Intelligence Modifier per level
after 1st

Class Skills: Concentration, Heal, Hide, Jump, Listen, Move Silently,
Search, Spot, Swim


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All I want is some shinies.

Rogue:
This class is the most skilled in the game. A Rogue’s primary
ability is to find and disarm traps. You definitely do not want to go
into a dungeon without a Rogue by your side (just make sure that you
check your pockets afterwards). They can also open locks and find
hidden doors. They can also dish out incredible amounts of damage by
using their sneak attack as long as the target isn’t immune
to criticals. They definitely need to pick their spots for attack as
they wear light armor and don’t have tons of hit points.
Never underestimate a Rogue. For many years, I travelled with a
Halfling Rogue named Kyrras, who parlayed her adorable looks into
vicious sneak attacks on beguiled enemies. Many was the time that an
enemy would take no heed of her to find, to their horror, her twin
rapiers running through their kidneys as she chortled with unholy glee.
Before their bodies could become cold, she would already be rifling
through their clothes looking for gems and loot, or as she called them:
“shinies.” Rogues can get Dexterity enhancements as
they level.

Alignment: Any

Hit Die: d6

Skill Points: (8 + Intelligence Modifier) x4 at 1st level

 
         
      8 + Intelligence Modifier per level
after 1st

Class Skills: Balance, Bluff, Diplomacy, Disable Device, Haggle, Hide,
Intimidate, Jump, Listen, Move Silently, Open Lock, Repair, Search,
Spot, Swim, Tumble, Use Magic Device



Special
Note:
You gain the 1st level
Skill Points only at your initial first level. If you take 3 levels of
Fighter, then take a level of Rogue, you would only get 8 + your
Intelligence Modifier for Skill Points.





Races

The world of Eberron is vast and filled with a variety of intelligent
races. Some are friendly and some are not-so-friendly. There is a great
variance from brutish and nasty, such as Orcs, to refined and graceful,
such as Elves and Halflings. Each race has certain advantages and
disadvantages and can lean towards one type of class over another.
However, the final decision is up to you, my friend.



Human:
This race is a good all-around race and serves as a baseline to
the other races. They can play any class. They get one extra Feat at
1st level and gain 4 additional Skill Points at 1st level. After the
first level, they gain 1 additional Skill Point every level.

Stats: No changes


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Elves sure are easy

on the eyes.

Elf:
These graceful beings have pointed ears and slanted eyes. They are
somewhat shorter than humans, but radiate graceful elegance. They are
immune to sleep spells and effects, have a +2 Saving Throw bonus
against enchantment spells or effects, and have a +2 Racial Bonus on
Listen, Search, and Spot Checks. Overall, they make good Rogues,
Rangers, Clerics, and Wizards.

Stats: +2 Dexterity, -2 Constitution



Halfling:
Halflings are the smallest of the player races, but they are
extremely agile. They can only carry 75% of other races, but they do
get a +1 Size bonus to Armor Class (because they’re so hard
to hit), +1 bonus to attack rolls, +4 Size bonus to Hide, +1 Racial
bonus on all saving throws, +2 Morale bonus against fear (stacks with
Racial bonus), +1 attack bonus with thrown weapons, and a +2 Racial
bonus to Jump, Listen, and Move Silently. Halflings make awesome Rogues
and are surprisingly good at being a Monk with their great Dexterity.
Just make sure that they pay for their portion of a meal as they tend
to eat a great deal.

Stats: +2 Dexterity, -2 Strength



Dwarf:
These stout folk are known for their work hard, play hard mentality.
Dwarfs do not suffer fools gladly and will remember a grudge for
generations. They hate Orcs and Goblins. They get a +4 Racial bonus to
Balance, a +2 Racial bonus to Search, a +2 Racial bonus for saves
versus poison, a +2 Racial bonus on saving throws versus spells, a +1
Racial bonus to attack rolls against Orcs and Goblins, and a +4 Dodge
armor bonus against giant-type monsters. Dwarfs make good Fighters and
Barbarians with their staying power, and are also good Clerics. They
make lousy Bards as their singing leaves something to be desired and
their fondness for loud percussion instruments.

Stats: +2 Constitution, -2 Charisma


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Warforged! Now with

30% less clanking!

Warforged:
These beings are sentient, living constructs. This race must be
purchased from the style="font-style: italic;">DDO
store to use. Warforged do not wear armor, but can upgrade their
natural plating through the use of Feats. They are immune to sleep,
hold person, energy drained, nauseated, exhausted, poison, disease, and
paralyzed effects. They are also immune to spells that target
humanoids. In addition, the can remain underwater indefinitely as they
do not breathe. However, divine healing spells and potions only heal at
50% capacity on Warforged. Items that do Repair have a full effect.
Warforged are excellent Fighters and Barbarians with their great
Constitution, and they make decent Wizards and Sorcerers.
They’re also great at cracking open walnuts!

Stats: +2 Constitution, -2 Wisdom, -2 Charisma



Half-Elf:
These beings are the product of a human parent and an elven parent.
They are shunned by snobby elves and usually live with humans.
(Half-Elves are becoming more common as Elves adventure. Speaking as a
human male, ol’ Prelixin thinks elven ladies are mighty
smokin’.) This race must be purchased from the style="font-style: italic;">DDO
store to be played. Their main ability is the Dilettante feat, which
they get at level 1. This feat allows them to acquire some of the perks
of a specific class. The wisest choice is to choose a class that the
player has no intention of taking later. Half-Elves also get immunity
to magical sleep effects, a +2 Racial bonus to Diplomacy, and a +1
Racial bonus to Listen, Search, and Spot. Half-Elves are pretty good to
whatever they turn their hand to.

Stats: No changes


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As a Drow, I will always

be better than you!

Drow:
This Elven race is similar to other Elves, but is darker in complexion
and tends to have white hair. They are more distrustful of other races
than normal Elves and have lived either underground or in dense jungles
for a long time. To play this race, you must either purchase it from
the DDO
store or gain 400 Favor. You cannot use the Drow in conjunction with a
32 point build as they already have a high number of racial bonuses.
Drow are immune to sleep spells and effects, gain Spell Resistance at
10th level, have a +2 Saving Throw bonus against enchantment spells or
effects, and have a +2 Racial bonus to Listen, Search, and Spot. Drow
make good Sorcerers and Wizards with their stat bonuses, and are also
good at being a Bard, Ranger, Rogue, or Paladin. They also tend to
think a lot of themselves, but with their abilities, I guess that
can’t be helped.

Stats: +2 Dexterity, +2 Intelligence, +2 Charisma, -2 Constitution



Half-Orc:
This race is the product of a human parent and an orc parent. I know
what you’re thinking…ugh! I would assume that the
union would have to be forced as that I know I could never drink an Orc
up to anything remotely desirable! This race is extremely strong and
brutish, and not too bright. To play this race, you need to purchase it
from the DDO
store. Half-Orcs are good at bashing things, such as being a Fighter or
Barbarian. They do really suck at playing puzzle and riddle games.
Their idea of an interesting riddle is, “How do I open box
without key?” “I smash it with club!” A
witty race, they are not.

Stats: +2 Strength, -2 Intelligence, -2 Charisma



Well, my friend, I think it’s time to call a halt to our talk
for the time being. I grow weary and have an appointment at Madame
Rissa’s House of Unearthly Delights. I hope that our
discussion of the various classes and races to be found in style="font-style: italic;">DDO
were helpful and hopefully illuminate your way in the world of Eberron.
Until next time, my friend, never drink the cheapest wine and check
your coin purse if you’re bumped into by a Halfling.


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