Augh, these classes are making me work really hard. On the one hand, that’s fantastic ’cause I’m exercising my brain. On the other hand, it’s slow going!

Here’s the Guild Wars Ranger:
Essentials Dungeons & Dragons GW Ranger Class (v0.1)

I don’t like the Fourth Edition minion rules. Or the summoning rules. Or the beast companion rules — or the animal companion rules, which despite improving the companion rules still manage to retain many of the same problems.

So I designed the power, Call Beast Companion.

A beast companion is an effect that looks like a creature appropriate to the climate and region where the Ranger uses the power. This is in part a nod to Guild Wars, which permits you to “charm” many different animals in the wild.

The thing about the companion though, is that it isn’t really an animal at all, it just looks like one. Following what I think to be the best trend in player-controlled companions and summons, I made the companion functionally useless.

Well, mostly useless. A companion can block the square it’s in from enemies, which makes it a roadblock, first and foremost. Since it doesn’t receive its own actions, it doesn’t move on its own — it moves with Call of Haste, a Beast Mastery at-will.

I’m obnoxiously proud of Call of Haste, as the epitome of positioning powers. As a Standard action, the Ranger can move not one, but two allies in a Close Burst 5, which means the Ranger is the master of setting up the flanking maneuvers.

Initially I gave the Ranger a power that made his pet really sticky, but I dropped it after one of my players pointed out something completely unrelated … and a cascade of tweaks later, the power I once thought indispensable was on the cutting room floor.

Curiously enough, the Ranger uses the ki focus implement — at first I fought for the totem implement until the realization that the traditional longbow/shortbow was going to be difficult to justify. The Guild Wars Ranger is a tad more magical than others.

I’m also proud of the Energizing Wind power and the Endure Elements feature. Rather than introducing a “new” healing power and a slew of accompanying augments for it, EW (lol) enables an ally in range to spend their Second Wind … or recharge it if already used. The beauty of that is that Second Wind gets more mileage.

But what’s more is that when the Ranger gets Endure Elements at 6th level, they pick up Resist Cold and Fire (about 5 per tier), which they can extend to an ally as an immediate reaction when that ally uses their Second Wind. While it’s suggested that an ally use their Second Wind when it’s recharged, they aren’t required to do so.

That allows a Ranger to share the resistance one turn, then recharge the ally’s Second Wind so they can use it, and grant them the resistance a second time. If the recipient happens to be the party’s tank, the Ranger can perform this trick again.