13th Age character builds: Thrash Paladin



Paladins are among the simplest class to play—high hp, high AC, and hitting the unrighteous with a big weapon. They have no special powers, and are in some ways even simpler than barbarians.

The first paladin build of these two plays to those strengths—focused on smiting others as hard as they can.

The second paladin build is a holy warrior, optimized for smiting and using cleric-style powers that work alongside the paladin’s smite ability.

Thrash Paladin

Download the Thrash Paladin character sheets here.

This paladin is focused around beating up the bad guys in melee combat, and not much else. They are a ‘glass cannon’ in that their AC and hp are relatively low (for a front-line combatant)… but what a cannon! Your smite attacks will be the envy of all other warriors.

Your tactics are to hit hard and fast, finish enemies quickly, and hope for healing to pick you back up; this build is best for groups with strong teamwork, where you can depend on the support of a healer character. Thankfully your lay on hands talent means that you can do some self-healing when the situation calls for it.

This paladin uses a halberd (a combined spear and battle-ax) which we’ll be pairing with the reach trick feat for once-per-battle unexpected attacks. Smite early and often, using it to clear out mobs of mooks or hammer tougher foes into the dirt. Save your lay on hands healing for yourself, you’ll need it! If possible avoid using bastion to take damage for allies, unless you are protecting the party healer in which case protect them at all costs (and remind them of that fact when you need healing).

This paladin’s third talent implies that they are not entirely righteous—perhaps they are an avowed servant of evil, or merely a tarnished knight seeking redemption. Don’t be afraid to ‘kill-steal’ with your smite attack, it lets you avoid expending it and your allies are freed up to go fight something else.



A +1 bonus to AC, and the ability to aid allies by taking the brunt of blows.

Lay on Hands

Heal an ally (or most likely yourself) when the going gets tough.

Way of Evil Bastards

When we smite somebody to death that use of smite is not expended.


We need something with a Constitution bonus to get our hit points as high as possible. The dwarf’s is that your best shot? power makes sense for a paladin who is likely to need a mid-battle pick-me-up.


This build is all about high charisma to gain as many smites per day as possible, and high Strength to hit enemies: Str 19 (+4) Con 10 (+0) Dex 8 (-1) Int 8 (-1) Wis 8 (-1) Cha 19 (+4).

1st level

Attributes: Str 19 (+4) Con 10 (+0) Dex 8 (-1) Int 8 (-1) Wis 8 (-1) Cha 19 (+4).

Racial Power: is that your best shot?

Talents: bastion, lay on hands, way of evil bastards

Feat: reach trick

2nd level

New feat (smite evil).

3rd level

New feat (lay on hands).

4th level

+1 to three attributes (Strength, Constitution, Charisma), new feat (way of evil bastards).

5th level

New talent (implacable), new feat (smite evil).

6th level

New feat (lay on hands).

7th level

+1 to three attributes (Strength, Constitution, Charisma), new feat (way of evil bastards).

8th level

New talent (fearless), new feat (smite evil).

9th level

New feat (lay on hands).

10th level

+1 to three attributes (Strength, Constitution, Charisma), new feat (implacable).

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