May 092013
 

Learning at the knee of the master
Yes my Master

The long-promised Iconic Heroes have arrived on Lamannia. Or at least one of them has, the “Bladeforged”, a Warforged Paladin. Ever your intrepid reporter, what choice exists? Soon I am logging into Lamannia to take this Bladeforged for a test drive.

The character creation process is different right away. Visually different. Iconic Heroes are an entirely new class of classes.

Character creation panels
New Character Creation panels

Different but not so different that they are difficult to navigate. One clicks in the expected places and – assuming one chose to customize their path rather than taking the Way of the Bladeforged – eventually ends up in the same character attribute selection screen that any other custom build uses.

Bladeforged appear to all be 32-point Champion builds. I tested this on my regular account, and then again on my Free To Play account which has never unlocked or purchased any account upgrades. In both cases I was given 32 attribute points.

The character appearance selection process is changed too. Bladeforged have “hair”, and cheek blades, and nose blades. One can select from a variety of blades that grow out of almost every surface on the character’s head.

Once the build is complete, and the character is initially logged in, there are more changes: the character does not start out on an airship. For those of you who have never attained Veteran status, characters normally begin on an airship, the “Heart of Wind”, where they add levels to their character one at a time, prompted by dialogs that are activated by speaking with the NPC Thealea Auryath, languorously laying on a pile of cargo and listening to you go on and on about yourself.

But not Bladeforged. No airships full of supine storytellers for these hardened Paladins, no, they begin in the Creation Forge deep beneath the Cannith Manufactory, home of the raid Lord of the Blades. Speaking of which, the Lord of Blades is present and in fact grants you your Paladin levels, one at a time.

Check out the image at the top of this article. That is how you level up to 15. A much more impressive and suitable beginning, fit for an Iconic Hero.

According to the wiki article, one can leave without taking all 15 paladin levels, but retaining enough XP to level to 15 by (one assumes?) talking to regular class trainers. Thus may Bladeforged be something other than pure Paladin. I did not test this myself.

Once done, you exit into the world, finding yourself high above House Cannith, with a treasure box in your inventory. Opening the box releases a set of gear. All of the gear has two attributes, which interlock into a fairly decent set of bonuses, nothing that is best in class, but a good set of attributes nonetheless.

And one final coolness: you also get to cast Repair spells. BYOH indeed. And not just like a caster, better, as you get the Mass Repairs way earlier than any other class, earlier even than Artificer. I do not know whether these spells are INT-based or WIS-based or what; I suspect WIS, all of my experiments included at least a 16 wisdom but no more than an 8 INT and I was able to learn and cast Repair spells up to 4th level.

I believe that this is the only capability that is truly unique to Bladeforged. But it is a key capability.

[Edit] Arkat points out that Bladeforged also start with 8 CHA and 6 DEX while normal warforged start with 6 CHA and 8 DEX.

Bladeforged appearance
A most distinctive look

So let’s recap. When you choose Iconic Hero, you get:

  • 32 point build
  • A unique look
  • A unique-looking cosmetic armor kit
  • The ability to cast Repair spells as if they were Paladin spells

You also get unique bound items that provide:

  • Spot 13
  • Repair 13
  • Intimidate 13
  • Concentration 13
  • Attack +2
  • CON 5
  • STR 5
  • DEX 4
  • CHA 5
  • WIS 4
  • Dodge 2%
  • Striding 25%
  • Repair amplification 10%
  • Melee alacrity 10%
  • Protection 4
  • Deathblock
  • Vitality (20 hp)
  • Moderate fort
  • Greater thorn guard
  • Greater parrying
  • Greater false life
  • Reconstruction 72

And a +3 true law greatsword of improved bloodletter.

I am curious, is this the only item in the game with Repair Amplification? I don’t recall seeing that before, but I don’t play warforged very often so I might easily miss it.

What do you lose? Well, so far no one has found a way to reincarnate a Bladgeforged. Kruz the Reincarnator won’t do it. Is this a bug? Or a designed tradeoff? If the latter, one will have to decide whether starting at 15th level with built-in Repair capability is good enough to pass on all of the Past-Life feats and abilities. No Completionist for you.

On the other hand, someone (I think Producer Glin) mentioned that there would be a new way to gain Completionism using Epic Destinies. So maybe Turbine is intentionally de-emphasizing the Heroic levels 1-20, including the TR path, and encouraging us to spend our time in levels 20+.

Or maybe it’s just a bug and Bladeforged will be able to reincarnate just like everyone else. Remember this is a first-look preview on Lamannia, and everything about the new class is subject to change.

Sure does look badass though.

:) :D :)

  15 Responses to “The Bladeforged: an Iconic Hero”

Comments (15)
  1. hmmm.. you know, I wasn’t really interested in creating a character at level 15. I rarely use the level 7 creation, except for bank characters. But reading this… I want pointy spikey bits!!!

  2. The new/unique visuals are an intriguing feature. Looking forward to seeing what else this has to offer. Thanks for sharing!

  3. My thought about the no TR is they don’t want people skipping to 15 powering to 20 and TRing for a fast second life character…

    Think about it. Assuming there will be one per class or at least one for each major pnp archetype quick first life barbs, wizards, fighters, monks… the list goes on. Personally i say why not if they are paying for the game they can do what ever they want but i can see Turbine saying hang on for now. Just like they did with vet status druids.

  4. I created one of these tin men also. Unfortunately I did not have much time to take him for a spin. THe process of leveling him up and choosing enhancements took the time I had to play that day. :(

  5. The testing would work better for me… if there were some kind of release notes telling us what we should be seeing!

  6. You missed the fact that Bladeforged start with an 8 CHA instead of the 6 all other WF start with. However, Bladeforged also start with a 6 DEX instead of an 8.

    • Good catch! I don’t play WF very often, not surprising I would miss something like this. Thanks! :)

  7. BTW…Bladeforged spellcasting is based on WIS. If you don’t put any points into WIS and don’t equip your stuff, you can’t memorize any spells.

    • Nice snapshot! Ty. Common sense tells me that Epic tr patterns should be available. Tr through 1-20? Nah, what’s Iconic about a seven hour xp grind just to tr into anything and everything But!

  8. Woah! That looks really cool! Too bad I won’t be able to afford the expansion :(
    (That is part of the upcoming expansion, right?

    • Actually I think this one’s a freebie for Update 18 to whet our appetites.

  9. hmmmm, nice looks…
    it is true, you cant tr him, it has a specific reason:
    Turbine has the intent to pull in people with all the Farun content. (maybe hoping they get some of the neverwinter crowd?)
    The following signs point to this:
    The stone of exp, to get more people to lv 16, ready for the LoD chain
    The expansion and newer packs, all in Farun (Epic Giant Hold(EGH) doesn’t count, it leaked out on Lamania atleast 3 years ago)

    However, this has failed, people used the stone of exp and later the Otto box for their TR’s because tr-ing is end game in DDO, not Eveningstar. This lil town isn’t as deserted as 3BC but doesn’t hold such a large crowd as it used to during its release. People moved on.
    The lackluster raid and droprate had people move to EGH to farm Commendations and gear on a reliable rate.

    The iconic characters seem to be geared to newer players who don’t wanne slug through the Eberon content but just wanne see Farun.
    More exp players might use ‘m for chalange material runs and bank toons.
    Without the abilety to TR them, no tomes aplied for extra skill points etc, the min-max crowd will ignore them at best, shun them from parties at worst.
    (simular to the Xth drow 2weapon fighting wiz/ranger with 18 wisdom to spot traps and 20 hp named xxXdrizzleXxx, the ranger class pre Epic Destinies, a Warforged melee tank, a non shiadri arcane and the list goes on).

    Conclusion?
    Looks like a money grab stunt to draw people in, as much as i like new blood in the game, i would still advise them to start on korthos, so they can learn how to play.

  10. I wonder if we will get to see new Eberron content ever again. Unlike many faerun lovers I prefer Eberron.
    Also, bladeforged is Eberron material and upon creation you exit in house cannith with no open route to faerun. so what do they really want?

  11. I hope so but it does not look good anytime soon.

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