Drizzt Do’Urden, Drow Ranger
Who is he? A whirlwind, fearsome fighting machine. The villains from Castle Ravenloft are afraid of him!
Strengths: Makes an additional attack each round. His at-will powers gives him the options to inflict additional damage or play defensively making him nearly untouchable. Paired with favorite magical panther, Guenhwyvar, he is about invincible. He also has a high AC and moves really fast with a speed value of 7.
Weakness: Few. But he isn’t trained to attack enemies not near to him.
Favorite at-will power: While Icingdeath may give you +1 damage when you need it, Twinkle buys you extra life with damage reduction.
Favorite daily power: Inspirational Strike (when not playing solo). Is your party overrun with monsters? Do you need to put away the villain before it activates one more time? Inspire your party for one synchronized attack!
Favorite utility power: Figurine of Guenhwyvar. It’s like having an additional attack each round with a decoy protecting the heroes.
Strategy: If this was baseball, you want to make sure Drizzt makes the most plate appearances in the game. You want to make sure he has the most opportunities to roll attack dice. Drizzt should be ranked first or second in your party. Keep in mind, if Drizzt goes first in the group, he won’t be attacking a monster until the second round.
Rank: Most favorite, first tier character. The game is named after him.
Catti-Brie, Human Archer
Who is she? A sharpshooter with the bow and arrow, she provides support from afar picking off monsters before they’re too close.
Strengths: Can attack monsters as far as two tiles away. Her choice of utility powers offers her a variety of strategies tailored to the session. Can fight her way out when monsters are too close to her.
Weaknesses: Vulnerable AC. Low hit points. Not best suited for close combat.
Favorite at-will power: With only two to choose from, one is only applicable with ranged attacks (Taulmaril) and other with adjacent (Khazid’Hea). With a disciplined strategy, Catti-Brie should be always relying on Taulmaril.
Favorite daily power: Massive Volley. Very likely your party will be split and monsters overrunning. Position Catt-Brie in the center and have her take control of the situation.
Favorite utility power: Heartseeker Stance. Sometimes, you really need that extra hit point of damage to put away troublesome monsters.
Strategy: She’s the sniper of the group. Put her in the middle to last so she may stand back and watch the drama unfold. Likely, she’ll be one or two tiles away and has her choice of monsters to pick off. In order to protect her from ambush, she’s less likely to draw a tile and gain attention of monsters. That means automatic encounters she must endure.
Rank: A first tier character who pairs favorably with Drizzt.
Athrogate, Dwarf Battlerager
Who is he? A close-combat specialist that becomes more dangerous surrounded by monsters.
Strengths: Can conflict area damage. Has opportunities to attack twice.
Weaknesses: Vulnerable armor class. Not suited for range combat.
Favorite at-will power: Cracker. Can turn the session’s luck around by tagging difficult monsters with high hit points.
Favorite daily power: Forceful Strike. Not only can it do 3 damage, Athrogate can send the monster far away or in the reach of an ally.
Favorite utility power: Figurine of Snort.
Strategy: Athrogate is at his best when the numbers of monsters start to get out of control. He’s also crafty positioning monsters in reach of the next hero. The hero who follows Athrogate should be trained in close quartered combat.
Rank: High second tier.
Wulfgar, Human Barbarian
Who is he? Human tank that attacks anything. Nothing is out of reach.
Strengths: Bonuses with attacking adjacent monsters yet is capable of throwing his hammer. Ridiculously high hit points and above average speed.
Weaknesses: Ridiculously low armor class. Attack bonuses are below average.
Favorite at-will power: Rampage. Rules-as-written allows a double attack on a single, adjacent monster. Otherwise, Wulfgar can you out of a jam with lucky rolls.
Favorite daily power: Bear Hug. Reserve for the final villain and cut it down to size.
Favorite utility power: Healing Herbs. Not so much this is great but others aren’t very good. With Wulfgar’s low AC, he’ll need a first-aid kit.
Strategy: Wulfgar is a brute less refined than Drizzt. He’s best suited for close combat yet can contribute a ranged attack when needed. Wulfgar is wild card and his low armor only encourages monsters to roll lucky results. Wulfgar is best mopping up spawning monsters reserving his greatest powers for the final battle.
Rank: Second tier. Consider him if Drizzt or Catti-Brie is taking a holiday.
Bruenor Battlehammer, Dwarf Fighter
Who is he? A headstrong fighter with a large option of strategies at his disposal.
Strengths: Above average health. Good armor. Suited for close combat. Absurdly long list of utility powers to choose from. Can make up bad rolls with a head but and defeat monsters at a cost of health.
Weaknesses: Slow. Incapable of long range attacks. Given one at-will power and no daily powers.
Favorite at-will power: Notched Axe. His only choice but he does get a second chance on a different adjacent monster if he misses the first time.
Favorite daily power: N/A.
Favorite utility power: Dwarven Ale. Cancelling an encounter card while in a middle of a tough fight with a villain couldn’t be more useful.
Strategy: Bruenor is a specialist you want to hire when you’re having problems of monsters ganging up in close quarters. He’s like Wulfgar’s more disciplined brother. Bruenor has better armor class but doesn’t have an option for ranged attacks without a treasure item and is slower.
Rank: Low second-tier character. Think twice before teaming him up with Wulfgar.
Jarlaxle Baenre, Drow Mercenary
Who is he? A “swashbuckler” with incredible, if not niche, skills that might come in handy.
Strengths: Balanced approach to combat with possible bonuses in close combat and can attack monsters as far as two tiles away. Good armor class. Gets an extra treasure item.
Weaknesses: No options for at-will powers. Very specialized daily and utility powers that requires consideration and planning before the adventure begins.
Favorite at-will power: Dueling Rapier. Its possible extra +1 damage give incentive to throw Jarlaxle into the group and combat.
Favorite daily power: Blade Flurry. With a guarantee 1 hit point damage on each monster, Jarlaxle can clear a tile of troublesome, hard-to-kill monsters before things get out of hand.
Favorite utility power: Cloud of Darkness. Most useful to pin on final villains.
Strategy: An advanced character, meaning he’s recommended only to experienced gamers. Like a mercenary, he does little more than what is necessary and called for. Employ him if you expect healthy (2 hp+) monsters to cut down. He also can be Catti-Brie’s bodyguard.
Rank: Third-tier, “flair” character. Pair him with Drizzt if you want to have a theme adventure.
Artemis Entreri, Human Assassin
Who is he? A sneaky assassin who thinks only for himself.
Strengths: Possesses individual survival skills including able to avoid monsters he draws.
Weaknesses: By design, is not a team player. Nearly ineffective with ranged attacks.
Favorite at-will power: Vampiric Dagger. With a fair attack bonus, Artemis can outlast the party with help of his dagger.
Favorite daily power: Executioner’s Blade. The 3-points damage is a great closer. Note, if you choose this, you have no options for ranged attacks.
Favorite utility power: Parry and Strike. For difficult adventures, this is your “out” card that saves you from a monster’s killer attack roll.
Strategy: Artemis is another advanced character that requires second thought. He doesn’t necessarily makes your group stronger by including him. Like many characters, he’s about helpless with ranged monsters but draws his strength in close combat. Consider him for fast-paced dungeon crawling and you want monsters placed far away.
Rank: Third tier.
Regis, Halfling Rogue
Who is he? A walking good luck charm.
Strengths: Has a variety of crazy abilities that makes the adventure exciting and unpredictable. Can choose lesser evil of monsters.
Weaknesses: Low armor class. High learning curve for adventurers.
Favorite at-will power: Ruby Pendant. Crazy and strange, makes monsters attack each other and themselves.
Favorite daily power: Mass Charm. It’s better than Finish Off and can affect more than one monster.
Favorite utility power: Hide. Use when you’re very afraid of the next encounter card.
Strategy: Regis isn’t your average, typical hero type. He isn’t about hand-to-hand combat unless his friends are in trouble. He doesn’t have a ranged attack. Instead he has a strange approach dealing with non-adjacent monsters. His powers are very specialized and hard to appreciate from anyone but experienced players. You have to change your strategy to get the most of Regis’s abilities.
Rank: Third tier for beginners, but first for experienced players.