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  • Writer's pictureArbitrary 20

Top 3 Beginner Builds That Aren't Champion Fighter

Updated: Sep 25, 2023

Original Video:



*This article is an edited version of the script for this video


Build 1: Arcane Trickster Rogue


Race: Halfling

  • Boost our Dexterity by 2

  • Lucky Trait

    • If you roll a 1, you can reroll it and you must use that new roll.


  • Brave Trait

    • Gives you advantage on saving throws against being frightened.


Ability Scores:

  1. DEX

  2. INT

  3. CON

Class: Rogue

Level 1:

  • Starting Equipment

    • Pick up the shortbow and the shortsword or dagger



  • Sneak Attack

    • staple of Rogue

    • allows you to deal more damage, once per turn, to one creature if you have advantage on the attack roll or if an enemy of the target is within 5 feet of the target. This extra damage starts at 1d6 and scales as you go up in levels.


  • Expertise

    • double your proficiency bonus on two skill proficiencies or a skill proficiency and thieves’ tools

      • Perception and Stealth are always solid options

        • allow you to see and hide better




Level 2:

  • Cunning Action

    • Nice utility option for your bonus action


Level 3:

  • Sneak Attack Damage

    • Moves up to 2d6 extra damage


  • Roguish Archetype:

    • Arcane Trickster

      • good way to get your feet wet with Spellcasting and still be able to deal damage reliably


  • Spells

    • Cantrips: Mage Hand, Booming Blade (use our dagger/shortsword), Message

      • The uses that Mage Hand and Message have are as big as your brain is and Booming Blade is a really good cantrip for attacking in melee.

        • The best way to use Booming Blade is to cast the cantrip as an action and then using the Cunning Action feature to Disengage as a bonus action. You can move without getting hit by an Opportunity Attack and if the enemy you attacked with Booming Blade tries to follow you, it takes even more damage.



  • 1st Level Spells: Disguise Self, Hideous Laughter and Find Familiar

    • Disguise Self also has a multitude of possibilities on how you can use it, Hideous Laughter is a good control option that can potentially incapacitate enemies until they take damage and Find Familiar (choosing the owl) gives you an extra option for gaining advantage so you can Sneak Attack



  • Mage Hand Ledgerdemain

    • Effectively the Giga Chad version of the Mage Hand cantrip, this allows you to control the spectral hand created by the cantrip as a bonus action, giving you more options without having to give up your action.



Level 4:

  • Feat @ Level 4: Crossbow Expert (if we can't get a crossbow, Sharpshooter is a great feat to take instead)

    • We'll need a crossbow for this to work

    • Allows you to be more versatile when stuck in melee and you can ignore the loading property of crossbows. You also can make a bonus action attack with a crossbow that you're holding, after you take the attack action by attacking with a one-handed weapon.

      • Strong feat, allowing you to deal more damage



OR

  • ASI

    • Boost your Dexterity.



  • Spells:

    • 1st Level Spells: Silent Image

      • A great spell with a lot of versatility if you get creative with your illusions



Level 5:

  • Sneak Attack Damage

    • Bumps up to 3d6 extra damage


  • Uncanny Dodge

    • A solid reaction feature allowing you to halve the damage of a single incoming attack


Build 2: Divine Soul Sorcerer


Level 1:

Race:

Half-Elf(Drow), this race can boost all of our important ability scores and it gives us a few extra spells that are still based on our Charisma.

Ability Score Priorities: #1: Cha #2: Con #3: Dex

Starting Equipment: Pick whatever, most important is a component pouch or arcane focus

Spells:

Cantrips: Fire Bolt, Toll the Dead, Guidance, Mind Sliver. Fire Bolt, Toll the Dead, and Mind Sliver are all damage cantrips that will be good in different situations. Guidance is probably the best utility cantrip and will let us add a d4 to most of our ability checks.

1st Level: Sleep, Mage Armor, Sleep is often considered the best control spell at low levels because it does not require a saving throw and Mage Armor will be a nice boost to our defenses since we can't wear armor.

Choose the Law option from Divine Magic to get Bless. Bless is a great concentration spell and will continue to be good at higher levels as well.

Favored by the gods, a great ability that can boost 1 attack roll or saving throw per short rest. I would almost always save this for an important saving throw and would rarely use it on attack rolls.

Level 2:

Font of Magic, we gain sorcery points and the ability to convert them to spell slots and vice versa. We will gain another use of sorcery points next level

Spells:

Healing Word, use this to bring up allies after they go unconscious.

Level 3:

Metamagic: Twinned Spell and Subtle Spell. This will be our new main use for sorcery points. Twinned spell effectively lets us cast spells that target 1 creature twice within the same action or bonus action as long as we target 2 different creatures. Subtle spell is nice for non-combat situations where we don't want other creatures to notice us casting a spell and it will be nice at higher levels as it lets us avoid being counterspelled. An enemy caster can only use counterspell if they know the spell is being cast.

Spells:

Swap Sleep for Web and pick up Rime’s Binding Ice. Web is one of the best control spells in the game, especially for its level. It restrains enemies on a failed save and requires them to use an action to get out of it. Rime's Binding Ice is like a mini cone of cold that also freezes the enemy in place and like Web, they have to use an action to get out of it.

Level 4:

Feat: War Caster, this is mainly to improve our concentration checks. If your table doesn't use feats just take a +2 to your Charisma instead.

Spells:

Shield, a really good defensive option that adds +5 to our AC for a round as a reaction. This in combination with Mage Armor will make our AC pretty decent.

Level 5:

Spells:

Fireball, Hypnotic Pattern. Fireball is probably the most well-known AOE damage spell, and it's one of the best at 5th level too. Hypnotic Pattern is another great control spell that incapacitates enemies for up to 1 minute as long as you maintain concentration, or until the enemies take damage.


Build 3: Path of the Totem Warrior Barbarian


Race: Half-Orc

  • Boost your Strength by 2 and your Constitution by 1

  • Darkvision

  • Relentless Endurance Trait

    • When an attack drops you to 0 hit points and doesn’t kill you outright, you can drop to 1 hit point instead. This feature can only be used once per long rest, but it’s a good option if you need to use it.


  • Savage Attacks Trait

    • When you score a critical hit on a melee attack, you can reroll one damage dice and add it to the total damage for that hit.


Ability Scores:

  1. STR

  2. CON

  3. DEX

Class: Barbarian

Level 1:

  • Starting Equipment

    • Pick up the greatsword or maul



  • Rage

    • Main Feature of Barbarian

    • allows you to be better at things that require strength, makes you more durable, and allows you to deal more damage. This damage also scales as you gain levels in this class.


  • Unarmored Defense

    • Special feature for Barbarians that explains how to calculate your Armor Class if you’re not wearing armor. This feature stills works if you use a shield.


Level 2:

  • Danger Sense

    • You gain advantage on Dexterity saving throws against effects that you can see, as long as you aren’t blinded, deafened or incapacitated.

      • Good feature to make you more resilient in and out of combat



  • Reckless Attack

    • On the first attack of your turn, you can decide to gain advantage on all of your attack rolls for that turn. There is a trade-off here, as attack rolls against you have advantage until your next turn.

      • Which means if you get a chance to hit more often, but so do your enemies.



Level 3:

  • Primal Path

    • Path of the Totem Warrior


  • Totem Spirit ‘Bear’

    • which makes you resistant to all damage except psychic damage while you’re raging.




Level 4:

  • Feat: Great Weapon Master

    • an awesome power feat that is essential on a build like this.

    • allows you to have some extra interactions with critical hits

    • The biggest thing about this feat is that before you attack, you can choose to take a -5 penalty to your attack roll and if the attack hits, you can add +10 to that attack’s damage.


OR

  • ASI

    • Boost your Strength.


Level 5:

  • Extra Attack

    • Attack twice per one attack action


  • Fast Movement

    • Speed improves by 10 feet since you’re not wearing heavy armor



Honorable Mention:

Battle Master Fighter:

Crossbow Expert feat with a Hand Crossbow for Ranged. Dexterity is your main ability score.

Polearm Master feat with a Glaive/Halberd for Melee. Strength is your main ability score but make sure you have a good Constitution since you’re going into melee.

Menacing Attack, Trip Attack, and Precision Attack are often considered the best maneuvers whether you’re melee or ranged


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