Open 4E SRD Wiki
Advertisement

Choosing your Character Class is a three step process.

Step One: Theme[]

First, pick a Theme. Your Theme is the defining style of your character - a one-word description of what kind of hero you are. There are six base Themes to choose from. If this seems like a small number, don’t worry - each Theme represents a wide range of options, and can be further customized in hundreds of different directions. There are also several 'hybrid' Themes, which combine features from two different Themes to create a unique mixture.

The Fighter (Martial Hero)[]

The martial hero relies on the strength of his arm and the sharpness of his blade to survive. He is the warrior, the guard, the scout, the marshal: the ultimate fighting man.

The Rogue (Cunning Hero)[]

The cunning hero relies on guile and subterfuge to survive. He is the assassin, the acrobat, the thief, the bard: the ultimate con-man and ne'er-do-well.

The Barbarian (Primal Hero)[]

The primal hero relies on his resilience and his connection to nature to survive. He is the berserker, the warden, the druid, the shaman: the voice in the wilderness and the sentinel at the edge of civilization.

The Priest (Divine Hero)[]

The divine hero relies on his faith and the blessings of his divine patrons to survive. He is the avenger, the templar, the theurge, the cleric: the shepherd of the flock and the guardian of righteousness in his faith's eyes.

The Sorcerer (Eldritch Hero)[]

The eldritch hero relies on his innate magical nature to survive. He is the prodigy, the magus, the summoner, the oracle, and the power of the universe itself courses through his veins.

The Wizard (Arcane Hero)[]

The arcane hero relies on his vast store of occult knowledge to survive. He is the evoker, the abjurer, the conjurer, the artificer, and he controls the very forces of the cosmos to do his bidding.

Hybrid Themes[]

Some characters walk the line between two themes. These characters gain access to some or all of the powers from each of the two themes that they dabble in.

The Brawler (Martial and Cunning Hero)[]

The Brawler is the consummate ruffian, always seeking an advantage through strength. This union of underhanded tactics, street smarts, and instinct for self-preservation make Brawlers ideal mercenaries, informant, or bounty hunters.

The Ranger (Martial and Primal Hero)[]

The Ranger is the wanderer in the wilderness, the guardian at the edge of the forest, and the explorer in uncivilized lands. He combines an intuitive understanding of the primal wilds that he wanders through with battle-hardened wisdom and experience.

The Paladin (Martial and Divine Hero)[]

The Paladin is the protector of the faithful and the champion - or terror - of the weak. He combines a fierce devotion to a virtuous principle with hard-won experience fighting for that virtue on the field of honor.

The Monk (Martial and Arcane Hero)[]

The Monk learns to focus both his mind and his body towards ultimate perfection, gaining prodigious martial training and supernatural control over his body's energies in the process.

The Warlock (Arcane and Eldritch Hero)[]

For some practitioners of the arcane arts, mere knowledge is not enough. The Warlock trades away some piece of himself in exchange for fast and easy power, walking a hard, thin line between exaltation and damnation.

Step Two: Role[]

Once you have chosen a Theme, you should choose a role for your character to play in the adventure. One of the most fundamental choices you can make for your character, is deciding what role you wish to fulfill for the party. While a character can fulfill multiple roles, most players will want to pick one role for their character to excel at, at least in the beginning.

Striker[]

The Striker is perhaps the simplest role to fulfill, and often the most fun for new players. As a striker, your job is to attack the enemy. Your attacks will deal significantly more damage than other characters, and you will typically hit more often.

Defender[]

While the Striker's job is to dish it out, the Defender's job is to take it. As a Defender, you will typically have techniques that redirect attacks from your allies onto you, which is a good thing - since you can typically take hits far better than they can. Defenders will often have secondary techniques that allow them to direct the flow of battle around them.

Controller[]

The Controller can be the trickiest role to fulfill, but is also often the most rewarding for experienced players. The Controller's job is to disrupt the enemy's plans - to force them into areas they would otherwise not want to go, to keep them away from areas you don't want them to be, and to disrupt their strategies before they have a chance to implement them. As a Controller, you will be somewhat weaker than the other characters in terms of damage and durability, but you will make up for it in versatility and utility power.

Leader[]

The Leader's job is to keep the party fighting, to augment their capabilities, and to coordinate their attacks into a well-orchestrated plan. As a Leader, you will have powers to heal your allies, increase their accuracy, damage, or toughness, or even grant them special capabilities that they would not otherwise possess.

Hybrid[]

A Hybrid character has no specific role, but gains class features from two different roles. They gain enhanced flexibility at the cost of focus.

Choosing Your Role[]

Once you have chosen your role and your theme, you can choose your character class. Each class within a theme fulfills a particular role; some themes may have more than one class that fulfill the same role, but do it a little differently.

Fighter Classes[]

Rogue Classes[]

Barbarian Classes[]

Priest Classes[]

Wizard Classes[]

Sorcerer Classes[]

Ranger (Fighter/Barbarian) Classes[]

Paladin (Fighter/Priest) Classes[]

Monk (Fighter/Wizard) Classes[]

Bard (Rogue/Sorcerer) Classes[]

Warlock (Wizard/Sorcerer) Classes[]

Choose a Role:

Step Three: Style[]

Once you've chosen your character class, you are provided with a choice to customize your character to your liking. This is called your style, and works differently for each kind of character.

Fighter Styles (Fighting Style)[]

Fighter styles are called, appropriately enough, Fighting Styles. A Fighting Style is a particular regimen of training in armed combat that allows a Fighter to excel with a particular set of weapons.

Rogue Styles (Talent)[]

Rogue styles are called Talents. A Talent is a set of accumulated skill, training and intuition that lets a Rogue excel in a particular set of circumstances.

Chose a Talent:

Barbarian Styles (Totem)[]

Barbarian styles are called Totems. A Totem is more than simply a collection of powers; it is a way of life and a representation of a Barbarian's true nature.

Chose a Totem:

Priest Styles (Faith)[]

Priest styles are called Faiths. Like a Barbarian's Totem, a Faith defines who a Priest is, and guides every decision that they make.

  • High-Father (Sun, Law, and Good domains)
  • All-Mother (Life, Peace, and Good domains)
  • Spring-Daughter (Life, Chaos, and Good domains)
  • King-of-Stones (Death, Law, and Earth domains)
  • Him-Who-Sees (Knowledge, Stealth, and Air domains)
  • Silver-Lady (Moon, Chaos, and Water domains)
  • Sky-Conquerer (Law, War, and Evil domains)
  • All-Devourer (Death, Chaos, and Evil domains)

Wizard Styles (School of Magic)[]

Wizard styles are called Schools of Magic. A school of magic is a particular area of arcane study; think of them as the magical equivalent of academic degrees. Each school of magic is a major undertaking to learn and master.

Chose a School of Magic:

Sorcerer Styles (Spell Source)[]

For Sorcerers, magic is in the blood. All sorcerers have infused their body with eldritch power - many through luck of inheritance, others through magical experimentation or intense mental training. Whatever the source, it defines your connection with your supernatural powers.

Ranger Styles (Fighting Style)[]

Choose a Fighting Style:

Monk Styles (Fighting Style)[]

Choose a Fighting Style:

Paladin Styles (Virtue)[]

  • Justice (Lawful Good alignment)
  • Freedom (Chaotic Good alignment)
  • Slaughter (Chaotic Evil alignment)
  • Tyranny (Lawful Evil alignment)

Bard Styles (Lore)[]

  • Divine Lore
  • Primal Lore
  • Arcane Lore

Warlock Styles (Pact)[]

  • Fey Pact
  • Infernal Pact
  • Outsider Pact
  • Shadow Pact
Advertisement