This page is about the wonder that is the crossbow sniping Halfling. Since it's not extremely feat-intensive and allows play with 8-10 levels of the build, I'm only going to post the basic 12-level progression here and let you fill out the last 8.
Halfling Rogue 10/Fighter 2
Ability Scores: Dex>=Int>Con>Wis>Str>Cha
Rogue 1 - Halfling Rogue Substitution Level 1$ ^1 $, Point Blank Shot
Rog1/Fighter 1 - Precise Shot
Rog1/Ftr2 - Weapon Focus (light crossbow), Crossbow Sniper$ ^2 $
Rog3/Ftr2 - Halfling Rogue Substitution Level 3$ ^1 $
Rog4/Ftr2 - Deadeye Shot$ ^3 $
13:13, 7 March 2008 (UTC)
Rog7/Ftr2 - Able Sniper$ ^4 $
13:13, 7 March 2008 (UTC)
Rog10/Ftr2 - Halfling Rogue Substitution Level 10$ ^1 $, Rapid Reload
$ ^1 $ These items can be found in Races of the Wild.
$ ^2 $ Crossbow Sniper is in the PHB II.
$ ^3 $ Deadeye Shot is in the PHB II. At level 12, it is strongly recommended that you use the retraining options from the same book to change this feat to Rapid Shot.
$ ^4 $ Able Sniper is in Races of the Wild. If you want to enter a Prestige Class at level 13 and need a feat to qualify, take it at level 9 in place of Able Sniper.
This is the basic Halfling Crossbower, highly playable from level 1 to 12.
- High skill ranks for the vast majority of career.
- Very high AC against ranged attacks and can easily avoid melee attacks by sniping from ledges or behind a meat-shield.
- Able to hit for high damage at all levels.
- Extremely adaptable, 8 levels allows almost a full PrC progression.
- Not the most damaging build out there, but can be adapted for a more offensive approach.
Strategy- This build is basically a one-shot wonder at any given point in time, but you can broaden your options with wise magic item choices.
Level 1 Strategy- At level 1, don't buy a crossbow. To tell you the truth, you're actually more effective at this level with a sling, which also just so happens to be 35gp less. Thats 35gp that can go towards adventuring gear that you very well could need in the upcoming crawl. You are already pulling your weight by disarming all the potentially lethal traps in your first dungeon. By attacking with a +7 to hit and dealing 4-16 damage with your sling in the surprise round, you're earning brownie points.
Levels 2-5 Strategy- You now have the money to spend for a light crossbow without sacrificing anything significant. If the Wizard is still casting Grease for you, then you can get your sneak attacks in outside the surprise round. Otherwise, you're likely dealing about 1d6+3 damage, which really can hurt. If you want, you can also try sniping and might get lucky and beat out spot checks despite the -20 penalty on your Hide check.
Levels 6-11 Strategy- The toy of your dreams is now here: Deadeye Shot! This is the single easiest way to manufacture sneak attacks from a range aside from Ninja's Ghost Step, but this has no daily limits, so fire away.
Level 12+ Strategy- Now you're a fully-functioning sniper. The 10th Halfling Rogue Sub-level is canned awesome, not only because of your ability to snipe with multiple attacks now, but because you take a far lessened penalty to Hide checks for sniping. In fact, between Able Sniper, the 10th-level Halfling Rogue level, and sniping from 60' away, you are rolling a straight-up Hide check vs. your victim's straight-up Spot check, a battle you should win at least 90% of the time.
Anyway, thats that. I'll improve on this later if I feel the need.