Meet the 4e Dragonborn Paladin

This is a transcript of the 4e paladin from the adventure Keep on the Shadowfell, which we’ll be running in only a few weeks. It should also give a few pointers to how 4e will be. I’ll post transcripts of the other pregens over the next few days. My comments will be marked like this.



HP 27, Bloodied 13, Healing Surge 7, Surges Per Day 11

Initiative +0

AC 20, Fort 14, Ref 12, Will 13


Right, notice the high starting HP, the Bloodied # (which shows when you’re at 1/2 hp or below), the HP you regain by spending a Healing Surge (1/4 hp), plus the number of times you can use healing surges per day. Basically, you can spend 1/combat, and any number between combats, allowing you to go longer without (a) resting and (b) bothering the cleric.


All saves are now like AC: they are target numbers that the attacker tries to beat. Fort is based on the higher of Str or Con, Reflex on Int or Dex, and Will on Cha or Wis.


[bm] Longsword +7 vs. AC; 1d8+4

[br] Javelin +6 vs. AC; 1d6+4


Two basic weapons. There is one big change to thrown weapons in 4e: the heavy ones (like Javelins) use Strength for both attack rolls and damage rolls!



Height: 6’4″; Weight: 260 lb.; Size: Medium

Speed: 5 squares; Vision: Normal

Languages: Common, Draconic; Alignment: Lawful Good


Skill Bonus: +2 History, +2 Intimidate (already included).

Dragonborn Fury: When you’re bloodied, you gain a +1 racial bonus to attack rolls.


Notice this: the Dragonborn gets angrier when he’s hurt!


Draconic Heritage: Your healing surge value is equal to one-quarter of your maximum hit points + your Constitution modifier (already included).

Dragon Breath: You can use dragon breath as an encounter power.


Dragon Breath   Dragonborn Racial Power

As you open your mouth with a roar, the deadly power of your draconic kin blasts forth to engulf your foes.

Encounter * Acid, Cold, Fire, Lightning, or Poison

Minor Action   Close blast 3

Target: All creatures in area

Attack: +4 vs. Reflex

Hit: 1d6 + 1 damage.


We now reach the power descriptions. Basically, all attacks look similar: weapon or spell or power. There are also utility powers (for combat powers that don’t attack) and rituals (for non-combat stuff). Rituals include things like Raise Dead.


In 4e, you may perform one Standard action, one Move action and one Minor action a round. (Minor is what we know as Swift). However, you can trade them down: Standard->Minor->Swift, as far as I know.


Powers are either At Will, Encounter (which is once/encounter), or Daily. The more powerful a power, the less often you can use it. The Attack line gives what you need to roll to “hit” with the power – bonus and defence. In the case of area attacks (like Blast 3, such as the Dragonborn breath weapon), you roll once for each opponent. Some abilities work even when they miss (so a Miss: line), and some work regardless of the roll (Effect:).




Holy Strike   Paladin Attack 1

You strike an enemy with your weapon, which ignites with holy light.

At-Will * Divine, Radiant, Weapon

Standard Action   Melee Weapon

Target: One creature

Attack: +7 vs. AC

Hit: 1d8 + 4 radiant damage. If you marked the target, you gain a +1 bonus to the damage roll.


Marks indicate a monster you are paying special attention to; other abilities allow you to grant marks to a monster. A monster can’t have two characters marking it, however. Holy Strike is one of your meat-and-potatoes Paladin attacks.


Valiant Strike   Paladin Attack 1

As you bring your weapon to bear, the odds against you add strength to your attack.

At-Will * Divine, Weapon

Standard Action   Melee Weapon

Target: One creature

Attack: +7, +1 per enemy adjacent to you, vs. AC

Hit: 1d8 + 4 damage.


In the middle of combat? Overwhelmed? Valiant Strike is for you!




Radiant Smite   Paladin Attack 1

Your weapon glows with a pearly luminescence. Enemies shrink from its pure light, especially creatures of supernatural evil such as demons and devils.

Encounter * Divine, Radiant, Weapon

Standard Action   Melee Weapon

Target: One creature

Attack: +7 vs. AC

Hit: 2d8 + 5 radiant damage.


Here’s the encounter power: Radiant Damage is especially effective vs undead; many are vulnerable to it. This ability is basically doubling your weapon damage.




Paladin’s Judgement   Paladin Attack 1

Your melee attack punishes your enemy and heals an ally.

Encounter * Divine, Healing, Weapon

Standard Action   Melee Weapon

Target: One creature

Attack: +7 vs. AC

Hit: 3d8 + 4 damage, and one ally within 5 squares of you can spend a healing surge.

Miss: One ally within 5 squares of you can spend a healing surge.


And the daily power. Note how an ally gets to heal whether you hit or miss! This is a nice ability. 3x normal weapon damage as well on a hit. The paladin’s Smite!




Channel Divinity: You can use one of this special divine power once per encounter.

Divine Challenge: You can use divine challenge as an at-will power.

Lay on Hands: Once per day as a minor action, you can use the lay on hands power.


Lay on Hands   Paladin Feature

Your divine touch instantly heals wounds.

At-Will (Special) * Divine, Healing

Special: You can use this power once per day.

Minor Action   Melee touch

Target: One creature

Effect: You spend a healing surge but regain no hit points. Instead, the target regains hit points as if it had spent a healing surge. You must have at least one healing surge remaining to use this power.


Here you go for the Lay-On-Hands. Notice how the target heals depending on how good their own healing is, not yours. Yes, you can do this on yourself. Notice also that it’s a minor action – so you can heal someone even in the middle of combat and still attack. This makes the healing role a lot better.


Channel Divinity: Divine Strength   Paladin Feature

You petition your deity for the divine strength to lay low your enemies.

Encounter * Divine

Special: You can use divine mettle or divine strength once per encounter, but only one of them per encounter.

Minor Action   Personal

Effect: Apply your Strength modifier (+4) as extra damage on your next attack this turn.


Divine Challenge   Paladin Feature

You boldly confront a nearby enemy, searing it with divine light if it ignores your challenge.

At-Will * Divine, Radiant

Minor Action   Close burst 5

Target: One creature in burst

Effect: You mark the target. If the creature was already marked, your mark supersedes the previous one. The target remains marked until you use this power against another target, or you fail to engage the target (see below). A creature can be subject to only one mark at a time. A new mark supersedes a mark that was already in place.

While a target is marked, it takes a -2 penalty to attack rolls and takes 6 radiant damage if it makes an attack doesn’t include you as a target. The target takes this damage only once per turn.

On your turn, you must engage the target you challenged or challenge a different target. To engage the target, you must either attack it or end your turn adjacent to it. If none of these events occur by the end of your turn,the marked condition ends and you can’t use Divine Challenge on your next turn.

You can use Divine Challenge once per turn.


That’s a lot of text for the the second Divine Challenge. Basically, the second says “You attack me or else!”



Str 18 [+4], Con 12 [+1], Dex 10 [+0], Int 11 [+0], Wis 13 [+1], Cha 16 [+3]



Endurance +2, Heal +6, History +2, Intimidate +10, Religion +5.


Paladins gain 3 trained skills. Endurance and History bonuses are due to the Dragonborn’s racial modifiers. A trained skill gets +5 to begin with, and goes up every even level by 1 point.



Healing Hands: When you use the lay on hands power, the target heals extra damage equal to your Charisma modifier.


Ok, that’s an extra 3 points of healing. Nice!



Armor: Plate armor, heavy shield.

Weapon: Longsword, javelins (3). Your javelins have a range of 10/20.

Adventurer’s Kit: This kit includes: a backpack, a bedroll, flint and steel, a belt pouch, two sunrods, ten days worth of trail rations, 50 feet of hempen rope, and a waterskin.

Holy Symbol of Bahamut

Gold: 5 gp



At 2nd level, you gain the following:


Right, here we go with what happens at 2nd and 3rd level: you gain HP, bonuses, and new powers.


Hit Points: Increase to 33; Bloodied: Increase to 16; Healing Surge: Increase to 9.


Level Modifier: Because your new level is an even number, everything that includes one-half your level gets better. Increase your attacks, defenses, initiative, and skill check modifiers by 1 point.

Feat: Enlarged Dragon Breath: When you use dragon breath, you can make it blast 5 instead of blast 3.


Martyr’s Blessing   Paladin Utility 2

You step into an attack made against an adjacent ally

Daily * Divine

Immediate Interrupt   Close burst 1

Trigger: An adjacent ally is hit by a melee or a ranged attack

Effect: You are hit by the attack instead.


I sacrifice myself for the cause!



At 3rd level, you gain the following:


Hit Points: Increase to 39; Bloodied: Increase to 19; Healing Surge: Increase to 10.


Staggering Smite   Paladin Attack 3

With a mighty swing, you knock your enemy back

Encounter * Divine, Weapon

Standard Action   Melee weapon

Target: One creature

Attack: +8 vs AC

Hit: 2d8 + 4 damage, and you can push the target 1 square


We begin to see how characters can affect the battlefield and push characters around. You’ll see a lot more of that when I post the Rogue’s character sheet. Push is away from you, Pull is towards you, and Slide is any direction. Pushing people off cliffs allows them to save against it, but otherwise it’s a long way down!


So, that’s the 4e paladin. A lot of defence, HP, melee weapon attacks, and abilities to help heal and protect those around him. Tomorrow, the Rogue!



  1. goobermunch

    Question: Does KotS say that you can only use one surge per combat? Or does it say you can only use one Second Wind per combat? The distinction is important. If clerics and paladins can let you use surges more often than normal, you’re in better shape if you’ve got at least one of those classes in your party. If they only give a small bonus to the 1/combat you can use, then they’re really not as essential.



  2. asmor

    Haven’t read through the post yet (though I look forward to reading all your comments), but I’d just like to suggest that in the future if you’re specifying a font color please also specify a background color. That shade of purple is kind of difficult to read on the grey which is my friends page’s background.


  3. asmor

    Didn’t know about the saves being affected by the better of two stats. That’s pretty groovy. I always thought will saves should be charisma-based anyways.

    I don’t know how in depth you want your explanations to go, but it might be worth mentioning the whole 1[W], 2[W], 3[W] thing for weapon damage. I had a hard time explaining to my friend why the fighter was doing 2, 4 and 6 dice of damage at first level last night (he’s a 3e grognard).


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