Combos to Make Your DM Crazy
Players love a good combo. Whether it’s a combination of two spells by the same caster, two wizards working in conjunction, or a multi-class that gives the player more bonuses than they know what to do with, combos are just one more thing that make players feel like they are superheroes. The fact that they will also drive your DM nuts is just a little added bonus (Love you Stephen).
Now, none of the combos listed below will be new to some people, as there really is no originality left in DnD. The ones listed below are included because I found them interesting, annoying or just plain funny. Everyone has a combo they use, so please, tell us yours in the comment section below. Who knows, they could be new to us!
The Briar Patch: Plant Growth + Spike Growth
This one is from my friend Alex, who is an expert in the field of crazy combos. Druid Spells are some of the best spells to combine in my opinion, and this is just one example of why. It should be obvious to make sure that you cast Plant Growth first since Spike Growth is a concentration spell, but I wanted to make sure I said that.
A 3rd level Spell, the Druid uses one action to make all normal plants within a 100 foot radius to become overgrown, with any creatures in this area now using 4ft of movement just to go 1ft. The spell’s range is 150ft and you can shape it so that certain areas are unaffected, or if you are surrounded you could just make a little 10X10 circle in the middle where you are standing. Or you can just cast it in front you. Either way, you can just wave and smile at the creatures slowly making their way to you.
So now the poor creatures who, let’s say, have a normal 30ft movement, are slowly shuffling their way to you. Now, as you’re smiling at them, you drop your 2nd level Spike Growth on top of them. Not only are they slowed by the Plant Growth, but they are in difficult terrain. Where normally the creature would be able to get out of the growth’s 20ft radius in two turns, based on our above example of 30ft movement, it now takes four rounds, each doing 2d4 damage. That’s 8d4 with normal movement, 4d4 if they dash. Sure, it’s not a ton of damage, but I bet it will feel like it is to the creature that is slowly moving forward through the spikes, probably being peppered with arrows as he goes.
This uses the new UA Artificer. It is really interesting class that WotC has brought back, and if you haven’t had a chance to check it out, you can listen to us explain it here. At 3rd level, you can take the Artillerist archetype, who has the ability to summon a moving turret. This turret can be a healing cannon, a giant ballista or a flame thrower (not the official names of course). The turret has an AC of 18, and it has HP equal to 5 times the artificer’s level. Activating the turret only takes your bonus action. Where it really gets fun is at 14th level, the Artificer can summon two turrets of different types and they provide half cover if you and/or your friends are within 10 ft of it.
There are so many options available depending on what you need during the battle. In my mind, the artificer summons two ballista turrets next to each other while he/she stands directly behind them. Any ranged focused heroes should also be within 10ft too. The key here is that you can activate both turrets with your single bonus action. So on your turn, you use your bonus action to fire two ballista arrows, doing 4d8 damage and pushing the creature back 5ft for each arrow, or 10ft total if attacking the same creature. With your action, you can use your mending cantrip to heal a turret for 2d6. And if that wasn’t enough, you can push forward or retreat back 15ft on that turn. Oh, did I mention they can climb walls too?
The picture in my mind is that of a gnome standing behind his turrets, marching forward like he is a 5 star general on the battlefield, screaming for his troops to advance and follow him to victory. Hopefully he has a mount.
Fucking Pixies: Conjure Woodland Beings + Polymorph
This one has been around for awhile, and while I’d like to give someone credit for it, I have no idea who the original DM-Hating-Player who came up with this combo is. It’s been called one of the biggest game breaking combos out there, and here’s why.
You’re an 8th level Druid (or 14th level Ranger, but it’s not as OP at 14th level…sorry to all you Ranger loving people out there). You and your 3 other party members see a swarm of kobolds bearing down on you. You figure you only have 2 turns before you are overrun by the annoying little bastards. What do you do?
First you cast Conjure Woodland Beings and summon 8 Pixies, since you can summon up to 8 fey creatures of 1/4 CR or lower. Pixies are annoying, but they are also pretty powerful. What makes them so good is their ability to cast one of the following spells each day - confusion, dancing lights, detect evil and good, detect thoughts, dispel magic, entangle, fly, phantasmal force, polymorph, sleep. Those are some pretty good spells, and now you have access to all eight of them.
You’re not going to use 8 different spells though. As you see the kobolds getting ever closer, you gather the party together and have 5 of the pixies cast polymorph, one on each party member, and then have the pixies go hide. You now have a party consisting of four Tyrannosaurus Rexes… Rexen? You know, those 136 HP, multiattacking Dinosaurs with a 10ft reach? The kobolds just peed themselves a little, and even if the kobolds do take down a mighty T-Rex, you have four more pixies ready to cast Polymorph the first chance they get.
It has been confirmed by both Mike Mearls and Jeremy Crawford that the Druid can maintain concentration while in T-Rex form. Sure, they will have to make the normal Con saves as needed, but with you having the stats of a T-Rex, it isn’t has hard as you think it might be. The pixies must make sure they hide, because it is way easier for them to have their concentration broken or be outright killed… and since they are tiny and can fly, they can pretty much hide anywhere.
Sneak Attack Special
I heard about this one on the latest podcast from Monsters & Multiclass. You’re a rogue, and while that sneak attack is awesome, you are getting a little bored of jumping in, making your attack and running out. You long to fight at the front lines, hitting creatures without worrying about losing all your hit points.
Take a dip into Fighter. Level up to 3rd, and you get to take your fighter archetype. Maybe you can’t quite figure out which one to take. Should I go Eldritch Knight and get some spells? Maybe Champion and stay on the front lines a little longer. Nope, you need to go Battle Master. Remember, you are a rogue first, and Battle Master can bring out the best in your rogue if you know how to do it.
As stated above, sneak attack is what the rogue lives for. So how would you like to have the chance to get two sneak attacks in one round? By going battle master, you have that chance. On your turn you sneak attack just like a good(or evil) rogue does. Later in the round, the creature attacks you but misses. Now you can use one of your superiority dice and use Riposte. If you still have advantage and hit, you get your normal damage, sneak attack damage and the d8 superiority die damage. It may not seem as much fun as some of the spells combos you have seen, but if you’re level 10 with 7 levels in rogue / 3 in fighter and you are using a rapier, you have the potential to do 2d8 weapon damage + 8d6 sneak attack damage + 1d8 superiority die damage, and that’s before any of your modifiers to damage per round. Not so boring now that you get to roll all those dice now is it?
Arrowhead of Destruction
Then there is this:
I mean WTF. If I’m the DM, I just give up at this point. Creating a mini rift (10 ft radius sphere) that immediately sucks everyone into a random spot in the Astral Sea? Welp… there goes my BBEG.
Combos are fun, silly and sometimes so overpowered they can break the game. A good DM will allow crazy combos to happen, and then learn how to crushes the player’s hopes and dreams when they try it again.