The Universal Barbarian (Barb 17 / Bard 3 / RDD 20)

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      This is a Barbarian who can wield any weapon (including exotic) or use any armor, UMD permitting. Hence a ‘universal’ barbarian.

      Mundane melee AB of 45, with Expertise/Taunt can lower AC by up to 6.

      He has Expertise, Blind Fight, Knockdown and Terrifying Rage DC 30+1d20 (later 42+1d20) as soon as it is available (which is devastating to any enemy who is not fear immune). +8 AC from Tumble, +2 AC from Armor Skin and +6 AC from RDD 20.

      500+hp without buffs and saves are pretty good with +9 to saves against spells too. Reflex save is the weakness.

      Barbarian DR 3/- for what its worth. 300+ skill points because Bards need a lot of skill points to achieve their potential with all their class skills.

      ‘Universal’ builds were first explored by Empyre65 with a ‘Universal Warrior‘ – a fighter/RDD with 44 AB.

      I’ve explored it further with a Universal Paladin with 47 AB and a Universal Bard/Shield with 41 AB, and now this Universal Barbarian concept.

      Build details:

      Barbarian(17), Bard(3), Red Dragon Disciple(20), Human

      Any non-lawful

      STR: 18 (42)
      DEX: 8
      CON: 12 (14)
      WIS: 8
      INT: 16 (18)
      CHA: 8 (10)

      Human: (Quick to Master)
      01: Barbarian(1): Luck of Heroes, Armor Proficiency Heavy
      02: Barbarian(2): {Uncanny Dodge I}
      03: Barbarian(3): Expertise
      04: Barbarian(4): STR+1, (STR=19)
      05: Barbarian(5)
      06: Barbarian(6): Weapon Proficiency Exotic
      07: Barbarian(7)
      08: Barbarian(8): STR+1, (STR=20)
      09: Barbarian(9): Knockdown
      10: Barbarian(10)
      11: Barbarian(11)
      12: Barbarian(12): STR+1, Blind Fight, (STR=21)
      13: Barbarian(13)
      14: Barbarian(14)
      15: Barbarian(15): Great Fortitude
      16: Bard(1): STR+1, (STR=22)
      17: Red Dragon Disciple(1)
      18: Red Dragon Disciple(2): Iron Will, (STR=24)
      19: Red Dragon Disciple(3)
      20: Red Dragon Disciple(4): STR+1, (STR=27)
      21: Red Dragon Disciple(5): Great Strength I, (STR=28)
      22: Red Dragon Disciple(6)
      23: Red Dragon Disciple(7): (CON=14)
      24: Red Dragon Disciple(8): STR+1, Great Strength II, (STR=30)
      25: Red Dragon Disciple(9): (INT=18)
      26: Red Dragon Disciple(10): {Darkvision}, (STR=34), (CHA=10)
      27: Barbarian(16): Terrifying Rage
      28: Red Dragon Disciple(11): STR+1, (STR=35)
      29: Red Dragon Disciple(12)
      30: Red Dragon Disciple(13): Great Strength III, (STR=36)
      31: Red Dragon Disciple(14): Armor Skin
      32: Bard(2): STR+1, (STR=37)
      33: Red Dragon Disciple(15): Great Strength IV, (STR=38)
      34: Red Dragon Disciple(16)
      35: Red Dragon Disciple(17)
      36: Red Dragon Disciple(18): STR+1, Great Strength V, Epic Prowess, (STR=40)
      37: Red Dragon Disciple(19)
      38: Red Dragon Disciple(20)
      39: Barbarian(17): Great Strength VI, (STR=41)
      40: Bard(3): STR+1, (STR=42)

      Hitpoints: 506
      Skillpoints: 319
      Saving Throws (Fortitude/Will/Reflex): 28/23/18
      Saving Throw bonuses: Spells: +9, Traps: +4
      BAB: 28
      AB (max, naked): 45 (melee), 28 (ranged)
      AC (naked/mundane items only): 25/36
      Spell Casting: Bard(0)
      Alignment Changes: 0

      Disable Trap 1(5), Discipline 43(59), Intimidate 42(42), Listen 43(42), Lore 8(15), Open Lock 1(0), Perform 9(9), Search 11(15), Set Trap 1(0), Spellcraft 41(45), Taunt 43(43), Tumble 40(39), UMD 33(33)

      01: Disable Trap(1), Discipline(4), Intimidate(4), Listen(4), Lore(4), Open Lock(1), Set Trap(1), Taunt(4), Save(6),
      02: Discipline(1), Intimidate(1), Listen(1), Lore(1), Taunt(1), Save(9),
      03: Discipline(1), Intimidate(1), Listen(1), Lore(1), Taunt(1), Save(12),
      04: Discipline(1), Intimidate(1), Listen(1), Lore(1), Taunt(1), Save(15),
      05: Discipline(1), Intimidate(1), Listen(1), Lore(1), Taunt(1), Save(18),
      06: Discipline(1), Intimidate(1), Listen(1), Taunt(1), Save(22),
      07: Discipline(1), Intimidate(1), Listen(1), Taunt(1), Save(26),
      08: Discipline(1), Intimidate(1), Listen(1), Taunt(1), Save(30),
      09: Discipline(1), Intimidate(1), Listen(1), Taunt(1), Save(34),
      10: Discipline(1), Intimidate(1), Listen(1), Taunt(1), Save(38),
      11: Discipline(1), Intimidate(1), Listen(1), Taunt(1), Save(42),
      12: Discipline(1), Intimidate(1), Listen(1), Taunt(1), Save(46),
      13: Discipline(1), Intimidate(1), Listen(1), Taunt(1), Save(50),
      14: Discipline(1), Intimidate(1), Listen(1), Taunt(1), Save(54),
      15: Discipline(1), Intimidate(1), Listen(1), Taunt(1), Save(58),
      16: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Perform(4), Spellcraft(19), Taunt(1), Tumble(15), UMD(19), Save(6),
      17: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Search(9), Spellcraft(1),
      18: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Search(2), Spellcraft(1), Save(1),
      19: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Spellcraft(1), Save(4),
      20: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Spellcraft(1), Save(7),
      21: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Spellcraft(1), Save(10),
      22: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Spellcraft(1), Save(13),
      23: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Save(17),
      24: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Save(21),
      25: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Save(25),
      26: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Save(30),
      27: Discipline(1), Intimidate(12), Listen(1), Taunt(11), Save(14),
      28: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Save(19),
      29: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Save(24),
      30: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Save(29),
      31: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Save(34),
      32: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Perform(2), Taunt(5), Tumble(20), UMD(14),
      33: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Spellcraft(5),
      34: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Spellcraft(5),
      35: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Spellcraft(1), Save(4),
      36: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Save(9),
      37: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Save(14),
      38: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Save(19),
      39: Discipline(1), Intimidate(12), Listen(1), Taunt(7), Save(7),
      40: Discipline(1), Listen(1), Perform(3), Spellcraft(5), Taunt(1), Tumble(5),



        This is an interesting build. I”ve never actually played a Barbarian that rages, and I’ve got a few questions that don’t seem apparent to me and might be hard to answer.

        When a barbarian enters a rage that causes the fear/will check, how big is the radius? Perhaps I’m missing it, but with a quick look in the wiki, I can’t seem to find it.

        Additionally, how effective is protection from alignment spells for preventing this effect? Would a neutral barbarian have an advantage?


          This is the approximate size of the circle around the character. The green dots are very faint, so I drew some red lines to make it clear how big it is. It’s similar to a self cast ‘silence’ aura circle, magic circle against alignment, or ‘battletide’ circle in size. I just made this in game with the Pretty Good Character Creator Module v3.

          In Vanilla NWN, enemies can fail the roll from TR, not have fear immunity, and still fight back. TR has a paralysis effect in Vanilla rather than enemies running away in fear. Immunity to paralysis (from immunity to mind affecting, or freedom, or RDD 10, or PM 7) therefore prevents the paralysis effect from Terrifying Rage (TR). Therefore paralysis immunity in vanilla NWN counters TR, even though fear immunity causes a failed roll and a fear ‘visual’, there is no subsequent paralysis effect and therefore no practical effect (only a visual effect)

          The NPC fighter in the screenshot I think is a good example. He failed the TR will save, but is still able to do things, funnily enough! I think he probably has a freedom item equipped. Pretty frustrating for my barbarian!

          So in Vanilla NWN as you commented, a neutral aligned barbarian would have an advantage, by having a paralysis effect being able to bypass protection vs alignment. While an evil barbarian wouldn’t be able to affect enemies who have prot v evil.

          In environments with modified terrifying rage mind immunity will not protect such enemies, nor immunity to paralysis from freedom/RDD/PM. WoG is one example of an environment where terrifying rage makes the enemy actually run away due to it being a true fear effect (similar to a Dragon’s Fear Aura, for example, except with a DC roll which is much much higher). In this environment, only fear immunity prevents the effect of enemies running away.

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