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Random Ideas: Lessons From The Herald of The Phoenix Champion

My TWF DPS bard, Anastazie Tezla,  just graduated to level 16, and is quickly homing in on level 17, thanks to weekly raiding.  There are a few things I discovered first hand – stuff I already knew in PnP, but the DDO environment seemed to amplify the experience:

  • Area Effect Spell Damage – as a front-line warrior this kind of damage is just a part of another day’s work. Mobs seem to spam area damage in raids and high level content. I regret not seeing this sooner and taking two rogue levels at level one and two of my character’s life. I ended up taking my rogue levels at around level 8 and 9 — when mob casters get smart and start to rain down the bad hurt!
  • Traps – After running a few quests on Hard and Elite, trap evasion became absolutely necessary. Anastazie is a zerger and traps impeded her progress; evasion from her 2 levels of Rogue helped smooth over that speed-bump.
  • Locked Chests – Rogue levels solved this problem. And after taking a +2 INT tome, and coupled with gear and buffs, I could happily afford to take the Open Locks skill.
  • Gear Gives You a Scary Uber Advantage – This is my first toon in DDO that I planned out her equipment. When I say planned, I mean obsessively to near behavioral disorder levels: Every odd level I had her accessory sets ready to go for her. At even levels, I had her weapon sets and armor already picked out. The minute she ticked over, I would scurry to the bank and get her level equivalent stuff equipped. Anything I lacked, such as raid specific items, I would make it my purpose to get that item; the need for gear drove my questing goals to the point of forgoing XP. I fear the day when a DDO Mordenkainen’s Disjunction works like in table-top v3.5; a chance that magic items permanently dispelled into normal items is heartbreaking to think about.
  • Respec Spells – going up in levels and encountering new mobs neuters some of my lower level spells, especially since don’t have the Highten Spell meta-magic feat.
  • Knowing when to Toggle Power Attack – Power attack is all about sacrificing accuracy for damage.  Sometimes my goal isn’t to do uber amounts of damage but to help my partner lay down the hurt.  Weapons that cause effects such as banish, paralyze, disruption, smite, curse, destruction, weighted, and anything that is based on accuracy to take effect help my buddies do just that.  For such situations, it’s just best to turn off Power Attack. Anything that relies on doing damage to take effect – such as wounding, maladroit, and weakening – its best to turn on Power Attack, and especially so when having to bypass DR.

So far it’s been a fun trip questing with Anastazie. If I had to rebuild her again from ground up, this is what I would do:

AnnaTezla v3.0

  • Level 20 True Neutral Halfling Female
  • (2 Fighter / 2 Rogue / 16 Bard)
  • Hit Points: 260
  • Spell Points: 540
  • BAB: 15/15/20/2525
  • Fortitude: 12
  • Reflex: 19
  • Will: 12

Ability to focus on: Strength

                 Starting      Ending     Feat/Enhancement
Abilities        Base Stats   Base Stats    Modified Stats
(32 Point)       (Level 1)    (Level 20)      (Level 20)
Strength           14             21                22
Dexterity          16             18                21
Constitution       14             16                16
Intelligence       10             12                12
Wisdom             10             12                12
Charisma           14             16                17

Skills to focus on:

                Starting        Ending    Feat/Enhancement
               Base Skills    Base Skills  Modified Skills
Skills          (Level 1)    (Level 20)      (Level 20)
Balance            7              19               19
Concentration      4              18               18
Haggle             6              26               26
Jump               6              26               28
Open Lock          7              17               17
Perform            n/a            26               26
Use Magic Device   6              26               26

Optional Skills: Spot, Tumble, Swim

Level Progression

  • Level 1 (Rogue 1) – Feat: (Selected) Two Weapon Fighting
  • Level 2 (Fighter 1) – Feat: (Fighter Bonus) Power Attack
  • Level 3 (Bard 1) – Feat: (Selected) Weapon Focus: Slashing Weapons, Feat: (Automatic) Fascinate, and Feat: (Automatic) Inspire Courage
  • Level 4 (Rogue 2) – Ability Raise: STR and Feat: (Automatic) Evasion
  • Level 5 (Bard 2)
  • Level 6 (Bard 3) – Feat: (Selected) Extend Spell
  • Level 7 (Bard 4)
  • Level 8 (Fighter 2) – Ability Raise: STR and Feat: (Fighter Bonus) Improved Two Weapon Fighting
  • Level 9 (Bard 5) – Feat: (Selected) Toughness
  • Level 10 (Bard 6) – Enhacement: Bard Warchanter I
  • Level 11 (Bard 7)
  • Level 12 (Bard 8 ) – Feat: (Automatic) Improved Inspire Courage
  • Level 13 (Bard 9) – Feat: (Automatic) Inspire Greatness
  • Level 14 (Bard 10)
  • Level 15 (Bard 11) – Feat: (Selected) Greater Two Weapon Fighting
  • Level 16 (Bard 12) – Ability Raise: STR and Feat: (Automatic) Song of Freedom
  • Level 17 (Bard 13)
  • Level 18 (Bard 14) – Feat: (Selected) Oversized Two Weapon Fighting
  • Level 19 (Bard 15) – Feat: (Automatic) Inspire Heroics
  • Level 20 (Bard 16) – Ability Raise: STR


  • Fighter Attack Boost I
  • Bard Extra Song I- III
  • Bard Inspired Attack I – III
  • Bard Inspired Bravery I – III
  • Bard Inspired Damage I – III
  • Bard Lingering Song I – III
  • Bard Warchanter I
  • Halfling Dexterity I – II
  • Halfling Hero’s Companion I – IV
  • Racial Toughness I – II
  • Bard Lyric of Song I
  • Bard Song Magic I – II
  • Bard Energy of the Music I – II
  • Bard Charisma I
  • Rogue Dexterity I
  • Fighter Strength I
  • Fighter Toughness I
  • Bard Wand Mastery I – III
  • I just rolled my first bard on Orien and it’s close to this one. I was thinking of taking FOP instead of OTWF as my Widsom is an 8, but you’ve given me something to think about.



    May 19, 2010

  • Anne your bard build is very close to the Warmonger build developed by Purgatory with the only real difference being his build was 15 Bard/2 Fighter/3 Rogue. The link to that build is I have a level 6 bard I’m slowly working on based around this build but with my own personality quirks thrown in for flavor.

    Also, now with a reincarnation there is nothing stopping you from rebuilding Anastazia to fine tune her if you feel that she needs just a bit more tweaking. Just switching around 1 rogue level can be huge!




    May 24, 2010

  • Anne,

    Thanks for all the work you do! It’s amazing to me the dedication that you, and many others, have to this game. I am fairly new to the game (9/2009), but have since given up all other games and pretty much only play DDO. I read your post after listening to DDOcast, and thought I would start my own blog and share my insights to my build which is very similar to yours.

    Thanks again!



    May 25, 2010