This playtest was still under the old, working, version of the bloodrager.
It was a human level 5 arcane BR.
As we played in an Asian setting I fluffed him as a noble looking samurai (flair not class). While he carried around his daisho (he could have used the katana two-handed) he fought with a nodashi. For Fluff and utility he had a warhorse and a hawk (bought with money handled with the handle animals skill) with him.
I guess he was an impressive sight to behold with his battlemask on, that increased his already significant intimidate skill.
I have no full build handy but here are some important points:
- traits: blood of dragons, threatening defender, extremely Fashionable
- feats: Power attack, blind fighting, combat expertise, moonlight stalker
Used blur while raging to get moonlight stalker going which gave me +2 damage and offset the -2 from power attack.
I could have activated combat expertise for -1 to hit +2 AC in addition to that but there has never been a situation to warrant this.
One noteworthy piece of equip I grabbed was the cloak of the fangs that allowed me to grow teeth 5/day to get a second attack.
Spells known: Vanish, keep watch, swift girding.
Of those I used the first two. Keep watch every night, vanish once for RP reasons. But it felt good to have it as a way out.
The group was: Brawler, shaman (nature), swashbuckler, arcanist, bloodrager
Being able to be lawful opened RP options normally barred to barbarians.
How it played out:
The pc was fun to play. Being a high cha guy people reacted differently than they would to a usual barbarian. He had enough skillpoints to max some skills and spread out some more points.
The first combats were all very short with only me and the brawler getting to attack and end the fight each time. The damage output was high but not OP.
I liked my resource usage of using rage in combat and saving the spells for utility and/or emergencies.
The first level bloodrage ability didn't come into play but the blur, besides enabling moonlight stalker, helped negate a good part of the attacks coming my way.
All in all the class seemed to work well, being neither too strong nor too weak. Even if not all abilities came into play they didn't feel unimportant or wasted because I always had the feeling the could become more relevant in the future.
Keep watch helped keep camp times low and allowed for double watches (1 target per two levels being 2 at level 5).
What the pc lacked was something meaningful to do during the sleepless nights.
The pure combat power felt a little less that a vanilla barbarian but the utility of the magus spell-list more than made up for it in terms of utility and backup-plans.
These last points were what made me rebuild the pc into a different class for the rest of the playtest because for me, the new spell list felt like having no spells at all.
Utility spells like the ones I used in the test game. The most important for me is vanish. And I really took a liking for keep watch.
But with just vanish being added I could see me playing it. Im my opinion that is a spell the glass cannon bloodrager needs.
Look at it, you have low AC, fewer hitpoints than a barbarian, can't afford high dex because of MAD. You will be hit. Often. You need an escape plan.
But apart from that long lasting buffs or utility of various kinds.
And I just do not understand which of the added spell were important enough to make the new list worth it. For me the spells lost were far better than the spells gained.
I agree on the importance of 'utility' spells such as you enjoyed...
This isn't a Magus, mixing attacks spells with weapon attacks like 2wf,
trying to use low level spells is just not viable for attack purposes, especially for spells with saves.
I feel like I want to see some additional Su type ability that actually synergizes with CHA,
not that it's designed around having a high CHA, but to reward you if you do put more than average in there,
and just have an additional benefit for having a positive CHA mod in the first place...
Perhaps this ability could "mix" with combat more than spells, or possibly apply to both attacks/spells/bloodline abilities?
It would be possible to add things as such. But then you'd have to watch the balance carefully.
What I wanted to achieve with this threat was just to show my opinion that the pre revision BR was a good class that worked very well and had little to no problems that needed fixing.
And that I do not think the same about the current version. So while I would prefer the final version to be as good or better than the first version I still have the option to just use this first, good, version of the class.
I do not want this to be a flame or whatever just to express my joy about the original BR version. I loved it!