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I just picked up the game and I'm digging around the forums looking at the various classes as steam does its download and install thing. I've played plenty of fantasy RPG's before, from Baldur's Gate to Dragon Age: Inquisition and I'm a big D&D player so I feel right at home with the class list at a glance. What I'm hoping for here is a little help picking my first class and I want something that is good for getting to know the game.

 

Usually a fighter is a pretty straight forward choice but if I go this route, I'd want a DPS fighter, not a tank. I tend to get bored with pure hack and slash classes, though. Eventually, I end up gravitating toward something with a mix of melee and magic. Would I be biting off more than I can chew to jump into the deep end with something a little more complicated like that?

 

For a decent idea of what I'm talking about, if you've played D&D 3.5, a hexblade or a duskblade would be a good proxy. If you are a pathfinder fan, Magus.

 

Are there variations on the classes that can approximate that kind of feel here? Would cipher offer that hybrid feel? Is there a version of a wizard that can wear some armor and swing a sword effectively?

 

Should I put that on the back burner and play something a little more simple my first time through?

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For my part, I actual find paladins with passive abilities the simplest to play.  Of course, I expect I might get scorched by someone who finds them complex, but I enjoy my paladin.  :Cant's rueful grin icon:  The only warning is, she's pretty much a tank as opposed to DPS.  Kind of a little bit of utility also.

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The only "difficult" thing about ciphers is picking good powers which you actually use. Other than that they are straightforward and even dependent on being played like a mix of fighter and mage, since attacking builds focus.

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Sounds like you're looking for a cipher. Pick the weapon talents and the ones that boost Soul Whip damage, and Powers which enhance your front-line survivability and you're good to go. Ciphers have a relatively small number of Powers so they're fine as a 'starter' class.

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Cipher is the go to melee/magic class it seems - I haven't played around with then enough to offer a really solid opinion though.

If you're game, you could try a dps fighter and put a heap of points in lore. I know a lot of people here would scoff at the idea but it's pretty interesting in my opinion.

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You don't even need to heap them much. Getting Lore up to 6 doesn't cost much if you pick a background which gives you a bonus, and that'll let you use level 3 scrolls. I always have 4 lore on my frontliners (minimum) just for this purpose. It helps a lot in some of the harder fights on PotD.

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Keep in mind there is a Cipher story companion you can pick up on your travels, and you can hire adventurers very early on which are just as customizable as your main, their only weakness being that they start at most a level below your main. However, if you hire them early, they are cheaper and the level difference will shrink since each level requires more XP than the last.

 

There are a couple of other gameplay considerations for choosing your main. One is that only the attributes and skills of your main affect what dialogue options are available, so you might want to consider dialogue as well as combat. The "mental" attributes are more common in dialogue checks and tend to make the most difference in your options. Specifically, I've read that they go in this order of importance overall: Resolve, then Int, then Perception. I've also read that Lore is the most common/useful skill check in dialogues.

 

The other consideration is that paladins and priests, specifically, each have one ability affected by making dialogue choices that align with the favored and disfavored dispositions of their chosen god or order. For paladins, it's their defenses that improve this way. Again, this mechanic is only in effect if its your main character. So, if you're going to have a paladin or priest in your party, you will have this gameplay benefit of making it your main, and you can still easily get other allies who are awesome in the ways you've laid out. Up to you though. I know there can be that special attachment to your main. Your main does uniquely have access to additional talents you can unlock throughout the game.

 

Personally, with these gameplay considerations in mind, I've chosen my main to be a paladin tank, and I still have a cipher in my group. A paladin tank can be built with attributes that make him great at tanking, support, AND dialogue. Mine is a Moon Godlike with base attributes of 10/14/4/18/14/18. There are, of course, many valid schools of thought on what's optimal given how you want to play, and of course you might have RP considerations, but I hope that info helps!

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