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Wyll's statblock is inconsistent with his nickname "blade of the frontier". It is also fairly bad from an optimization standpoint:

Str 9
Dex 13
Con 15
Int 14
Wis 11
Cha 16

The first thing that strikes me on looking at this is that four of the stats are odd. Odd stats are wasted stats in D&D 5e, and Larian really should avoid them on NPC's when possible. They also should not be part of the "recommended" stat block for any characters, but I digress.

In addition to the problem of having four odd attributes, Wyll's attributes are very poorly chosen for a melee combatant. Now, his 16 charisma is just fine for a warlock, and if you keep him away from enemies he can just blast away to great effect. However, that fits poorly with his backstory. If we are to put him in melee range of the enemy (presumably after they add blade pact) then he will need better defenses and a better melee attack stat.

I have two alternative approaches for tackling this problem.

Approach 1 change the stat block: This is fairly easy. Lower intelligence to 12 and wisdom to 9 (these stats do nothing for warlocks and from an optimizers standpoint can be dumped, from an RP standpoint a lower wisdom fits Wyll nicely, and a 12 intelligence means that he is a bit above average, which also fits). Next, swap the CON and DEX stats in his block, and then raise dex to 16 and con to 14. This is what will result:

Str 9
Dex 16
Con 14
Int 12
Wis 9
Cha 16

The higher dexterity will give him better defense in light armor, and will also allow him to hit with his rapier. In the long run he will probably still lag behind a dedicated frontline combatant like Lae'zal (even with blade pact) but he will at least be competent.

Approach 2 custom patron: Hexblade would fix Wyll very nicely, but its probably not going to be in the game at release, and it also conflicts with his lore. However, granting Wyll some of the features of Hexblade as part of a "special deal" with his patron would work. Specifically, give him proficiency in rapier and medium armor, and also use charisma as attack stat instead of dex/str whenever he uses a rapier.

This would allow him to be a fairly effective front line combatant without any changes to his stat block. This fits fairly nicely with his backstory (or what I know of his backstory at least) since it will be very clear that his ability in combat is directly related to his patron. It will add real consequences to any decisions to break that special deal that we may encounter later in the story. If he breaks the deal with the patron he will go back to relying on his weak str and dex to fight.

Last edited by dwig; 07/01/21 08:06 PM.
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Better idea, create your own Warlock and not have full of bravado Wyll in your party given Gale provides more utility and spell diversity than Wyll; Shadowheart provides more utility to a full party than Wyll, and Lae'zel, if built and equipped right, is beastmode frontline; therefore, nullifying a 'front line' Wyll?

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Personally Wyll is my favorite companion, I find his personality to be the most charming out of the characters. I'd prefer if his stats were a bit better designed so he's more useful, too.

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Personally, I'd love it if they let you adjust the stats of companions when they first join your party so you can tweak things to match your desired play style.

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People are just people. Sometimes they try to do things they aren't actually that good at. Sometimes they persist at it. I see no reason for every companion to have their stats min/maxed to suit their class. Especially considering this is just a starting point. As you level up, you can boost his stats as you see fit.

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I don't think stats should be min maxed but I do think his stats are slightly off from how he should be, a higher dex would fit his rougish hero archetype really nicely and would make his exploits (that are not boasts, I dunno how truthful his exploits ARE) make a bit more sense.

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Originally Posted by grysqrl
People are just people. Sometimes they try to do things they aren't actually that good at. Sometimes they persist at it. I see no reason for every companion to have their stats min/maxed to suit their class. Especially considering this is just a starting point. As you level up, you can boost his stats as you see fit.

There are a limited number of ASI's available, and using those to patch his bad stats will mean that his prime stats fall behind the power curve. If they release the game with a story mode then this will not be a problem, but at higher difficulties it certainly will be.

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Yeah, I'm good with little tweaks to fit the character - I've just seen enough (not necessarily in this thread) "That's not the way to build the strongest warlock - max his dex and chr." that I'm a little wary.

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Yeah he doesn't need to be min-maxed and he's still good enough as he is, but the lower dex is definitely off for how he seems to want to be built. I'm also cool with characters being bad generally, it was really funny in the older BG games, but since we have a much smaller set of options this time around I'd prefer them to all be playable. Again, Wyll is pretty good, but he doesn't seem to be built for what his lore seems to think he's built for. He's a better blasty warlock than a stabby one, which doesn't fit as well with the whole pretending he's not a warlock for half the plot and just some heroic magic warrior deal. Personally even a 14 dex I'd find better, he doesn't have to max out the stat, just be focused enough on it for it to feel like he is splitting his attention between the dark pact and warrior sides of his personality and skillset.

Last edited by 7TeenWriters; 07/01/21 11:10 PM.
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I actually think that leaving his stats as they are and then giving him an extra boost from his patron would make for a stronger story. Charisma to attack/damage is very strong, but tying it to Wyll's deal makes quite a bit of sense in this story, especially if they never add the (arguably too good) Hexblade patron to the warlock.

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Yeah hexblade changes everything if it gets introduced but tbh I think it'd be even more busted in a game than it is in 5e (and it's already busted in 5e), I'd be iffy about including it. As an MC with the hexblade archetype you could get away with literally 1 stat to help you socialize and murder things easy, allowing you to focus the rest of your points on basically whatever you want for dialog options. It'd be kinda like how busted Arcane Warrior was in Dragon Age Origins, without even the barrier of needing to unlock it. Hexblade would be fine for Wyll since they can keep him from being minmaxed, but I worry it'd just be the straight best option for a player if you build it right.

Last edited by 7TeenWriters; 07/01/21 11:24 PM.
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+1 We shouldn't feel bad about having certain party members just because they have poor stat allocation. They can fit the character, but they shouldn't be outright bad. Characters with bad stat allocations wouldn't have the kind of backstories our companions have anyway.

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if larian made changes to the current companion ability scores i wouldnt really be opposed to it as folks had a similar concern for SH before larian upped her dex. additionally, since the current companions are also planned to function as origin player characters i wouldnt be surprised if the devs were responsive to community feedback during ea regarding companion ability scores.

that being said, idk how many more changes and tweaks should be made for the devs origin characters given some of the other feedback items posted in these community spaces - at a certain point the devs origin characters need to be established both in game mechanics and narrative/storyline-wise (altho, i will admit that im not a particular fan of the origin player character approach). other than ability scores there have been some calls that players also should be able to change features of the origin characters, both during origin character creation and at recruitment during playthrus, for things like origin character classes, domains, spells, skills, etc., and while i am pro player choice and could see some limited implementation (i could see gale as a sorcerer or wyl as a ranger for ex., but a gale barb or laz bard would need some convincing), such features seem like too large of an undertaking with ranging impact at this stage and be actually counterintuitive to the origin character approach

theorycrafting wyl specifically, given his current stat allocation with a 9 in str and 13 in dex it can make melee more of a struggle (in particular if you wanted to flavor him more 'botf' ranger, altho as a ranged blaster for low lvls hes not too bad - he is a warlock after all, but i think your custom patron idea is really neat seeing astarion has custom vamp abilities) that i felt during my playthrus too. it really depends on how you want to play him, in particular if you are playing him as your origin pc and you want a better stat distribution. as a companion i opted to toss him the moderate armored feat. with med armor, shield, and a dex +1bump he can get pretty tanky - but a melee attack still will likely be less optimal than an EB wink.

(six party plug - i also think that the issues presented by the ability score distributions of the currently available companions is highlighted given we can only adventure with three other party members - if we could play with what i would consider the legacy BG experience of a 6 member party, lackluster stats in certain ability scores may not be so debilitating as you would have additional teammates to offset those weaknesses. id also argue it would open up gameplay and encourage more playthrus being able to play with more varied, less optimal, or niche character builds/playstyles among a six person party, but thats an argument for another thread)

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I don't know how to rearrange his stats to something better, but it looks like everything is perfectly normal if using standard array on a human character who gets +1 to all stats. I think they are using this system for all the companions but I could be wrong.

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Wyll approves of everything I do (whether he’s in the party or not!) because I am a hopeless goody-two shoes. But I never take him along because his build is bad and he should feel bad. And any other companion will be stronger. Which is a shame. It looks like he was given the standard array with questionable priorities (aside from the CHA) and not allowed the human +1 to all stats (all those odd numbers would round up nicely). I’d give him a shot if I could fix up his stats upon recruitment, but as it stands now I’d have to be super-tired of either Gale or SH to have a space for him (until maybe I get around to rolling a Fighter and can free up her slot). I’d also be happy enough to bring him along if they let us have a 6 member party so I could cover all the bases while having an under-tuned character (by bases I mean party balance roles: party-face, tank-ish, heal-ish, battlefield control, lockpicking, trap-clearing, ranged deeps, magical deeps, melee deeps).

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Originally Posted by Zarna
I don't know how to rearrange his stats to something better, but it looks like everything is perfectly normal if using standard array on a human character who gets +1 to all stats. I think they are using this system for all the companions but I could be wrong.

I double checked, and it looks like you are correct. I think this may not be the best way to present the stats to a new player. Probably better to highlight important stats for a class by putting one or more stars next to them (e.g. two stars for charisma and one each for dexterity and constitution for warlocks) and then let players apply points via point buy from scratch. Also might be helpful to advise that they "max out" the two star stats.

I also don't think that they should use the default array for companions. Those should be custom built.


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