Let me Sell you on the FvS

I have a couple of Guildies looking to make/TR alts into a divine class. They both are not sure how to do so but they both have ideas and have asked for help. And this is my advice, look at FvS.

Wants: Melee, self and group healing, Hp, good defenses (other then Hp and self healing), solid solo ability.

Now I could copy and paste they want list and add a few things and call that what a FvS gives you but that would make a short post for the day. And while I want to knock out a fast one, you all deserve a good one too.

Melee: X of your faith, gives you a lot of combat options, as well as your final level 20 perk but we will talk about that later. Depending on your race you can pick between currently 5 faiths. I don’t know if the Xpack will include more or not. But your faith grants you a set of weapons and some special enchantment options. And as you level up you get better and better with your religious weapon.

Healing: Um heal spells and lots and lots of Sp. Enough said.

Hp: They have a full toughness enchantment line. So that is 40 more hp then clrs. And if your not worried about Dcs then you have one less stat to worries about then a melee Clr. Str, Con, Chr vs Str, Con, Wis, Chr so more build points in to Con if you want.

More defenses: Fvs gets three choices of gaining a stacking 10 elemental resistance. I did Fire, Ice and sonic on my FvSs so with ship buffs I am as covered as possible with out needing to use SP for more end game elemental attacks. Also at 20 you get Dr10/x, x is based off your faith which is helped along by your race if you remember. Standing DR more then 5/ is not real easy on a clr.

Even more: Wings, that leap ability is super good, I mean I use Tp to buy stacks of Missile-toe when it is available. And FvS just get it… Free spells for hitting level 20, Sure shield spell 100 time a quest is not uber, but Searing light, Cure light wounds or Incisibilty are all cool and I can even see times that command undead might be a boon.

Any way roll all that together, and you get one very tough build for solo or group play.

There are some down sides. Spells come a level later then a Clr and you have less slots over all to play with. It can be strange to have a ton more Sp and less spells to cast. Also it is very hard to have it all on a fvs. If you want to be heavy Dced caster with another major focus your stat points don’t really help you and one focus will need to fall aside to a lesser role. As casting FvS needs both Wis and Chr. Unlike Clrs Chr is not just a perk for turns that turn in to other abilities, it is a major casting stat and needs to be at least 12ish. Also Fvs only get Wis +2 enchantments and not the +3 that Chr’s get. But casting FvS are very fun, I have a ranged/casting focused fvs and he is very fun (kinda wish he was an elf so he could also go Arcane Archer.

Anyway before looking at reinventing the wheel for a melee divine build take a look at the fvs class.

Thinking about Waterfalls, I mean Changes..

I was going to talk more about Artificers, this time defending melee artificers and spout some damage numbers and whatnot. But I don’t feel like it. They due solid damage, and once quicken reconstructs are online I will be top notch I think.

So what to talk about then???

I am level 14 with 15 banked so what else is there to talk about? The next life. I have fighter, paladin and the soon to be out druid to go until completionest. Druid is out because it will not be out when I am ready to TR (I hope) and do I really want to do another “new” class with out doing a few levels of sample play? Not really.

Both fighter and paladin work on the bowonk frame well enough. I missed the ranged option going 9/x on the rouge life if melee combat was stronger. So I am inclined to do the normal 6/6/8 bowonk lives for them.

I also find myself missing that hard up Ac tank. Leveling Samyus had some challenges. But feeling invincible was not one of them. And with Samius’ TR cache and a willingness to do the 2+ splash for evasion and full umd a quick and easy sword and board life might be just the thing to mix things up a little.

No matter. That is at least 2 or 3 weeks away. Lots of time decide, right?

Side note. I did some leading last night. Like really leading, and not just shouting orders to guildies/TR pals when shit hit the fan. I did a nice walk through with the guild/Fopo for a epic Small Problem. And then lost Fopo and picked up another guildie and lead Tod.

I don’t like to lead anymore. I don’t like having to be the nice guy that hand holds people and walks through the quest for everyone as if it is their first time. I play the social game here, not there. And I totally blame the time about 4 months after the influx of F2P people hitting the level cap. Or how I remember it “Six Months on the Fail Train”. That would make a good song for Ddocast.

Anyway I lead the groups and everything was fine. There was little to no loot however, so no reward for me to make me thing that maybe I need to lead more often…. But it was a good enough time.

A Long Weekend’s Thoughts on the Arty part 2

Picking up where I left off fleshy arty’s with the Craft Essence feat Vs the Bot arty. Don’t know what I am talking about? Look down.

Now I am comparing apples to oranges here, keep that in mind. We have my arty, human with the craft essence feat, melee/spell casting focused, super tweaked out gear and past life wise (rune arm is more then extra damage) vs Tobril’s first life bot Xbow guy with what ever gear….

My guy has more HP, AC, and raw damage out put. And yet Tobril’s guy seems to be over all harder to kill and has less trouble in quests.

I think it comes down to the advantage of ranged combat over melee. There is a funny relationship between ranged and melee combat. Ranged has less damage and less risk. Melee is more more damage and much more risk. But he who lives wins, and often that is the ranged guy because he can run away and keep fighting were the melee runs away he is all running away.

Let me try to explain via a story that happened this weekend. Tobril and I do an OOB on Elite (to matain his streak). Fopo and I ran it easily earlier in the day. Tobril and I get started, and in the first big fight the mini boss scorp stuns Tobril’s Arty some quick repairing keeps him alive while stunned. H breaks off to heal up and I try to pull the scorp off him but he can’t cast spells due to the bewilder effect the scorp has and takes a few more hits while running away and dies. I throw him a rez and we kill the mini scorp boss.

The quest goes down hill from there. Finally ending with him carrying my stone around for 5 mins as he tries to get my rock to a shrine.

How is that an example of either one being any good as we both died and left the quest?

Well shipbuff-less, gear-less he was able to keep moving. Using what he had to stay alive and moving forward.

When I died I had just found a mana pot greater I think. Not a major for sure. And went on a blasting melee/rune arm run but it wasn’t enough. I just got pounded down. There were so many guys hitting me that sooner or later hitting that heal scroll wasn’t going happen. Damn concentration checks! And I with out my recon boosting clickly running my repair spells were not enough to keep myself up (also no quicken yet..).

So by the very nature of the beast of “stay out of line of the melee mobs” is a huge deal. And kept him running longer me.

So Samius, what should I take from this?

Well readers, unless you have a damn good reason to try and go melee dps on an arty don’t. Or don’t get angry when you get your head handed to you out of the blue. I die a lot this weekend. 5-6 times I think. And I want to say every death (save one) was due to the fact I was in melee and failed a con or Umd check to save myself.

Btw check the math on those umd checks. I think the % on the scrolls are off and are giving a higher % then you really have. Think I caught it saying I had 110% to use a heal scroll while I was around 35 on my umd score. Just saying take a look for awhile.

**That one none melee related death, Fopo and I were in Made to order. I was disarming a trap and my dog saw a box and ran over to break it. I took a hit as it ran over the trap trigger. No big deal. FinFangFoom freaks out and runs back to me (tripping the trap again) and back to another box (tripping the trap again) and back and forth 3 more times in about 2 secs and tripped the trap about 6 times in total. Lets just say once I was raised I put the ghost dog in its box for a while. Maybe the hunter of Boxes is not the best thing ever??

** Edited to fix horribly bad errors pointed out by Mr. Tiemmothi.

A Long Weekend’s Thoughts on the Arty part 1

Lets jump straight into some thoughts on the weekend’s play. First most of the time the group was Fopo and myself but there was ample time when Tobril also got to jump in on his arty. Watching the two different kinds of arty’s play has given me some basic thought to share. I do really like the arty class as a whole and I think they have a hidden depth. Remember I said the same thing back when Helfs came out and now they are the other master race.

Casting focus Artys seem to be the way to go, at least if you like casters at all. The Blast rod spell is just as amazing as my wife said it was. If not more so. Empowered with a Superior Lighting clickly running I am seeing 300-500 points to as many guys as you can fit into the cone and it always castes right unlike cone of cold…Add in Lighting Motes, which other then the cloud not lasting as long as I would like it quite nice, To rake up the damage another tear and those 400-500s are fairly normal. A can hardly wait to fit in Maximize. But the surprise winner for me so far is Prismatic Strike.

Prismatic Strike’s summary in the ddowiki doesn’t do it justice.

A brilliant ray of multicolored light projects from your finger, causing the target to be afflicted by three different effects. The spell does 1d3+3 points each of fire, force, and sonic damage per two caster levels, up to a maximum of 10d3+30 damage (per element) at caster level 20, and the target’s melee and ranged damage is reduced by 75% on a failed saving throw, this spell has double range.

I hit up http://compendium.ddo.com to see how Turbine has the description written out as and I get the following:

A brilliant ray of multicolored light projects from your finger, causing the target to be afflicted by three different effects.
The first deals 4 to 6 sonic damage per 2 caster levels (up to a max of 40 to 60 damage at caster level 20) and knocks the target prone; a successful Fortitude save halves the damage and negates the knockdown.
The second deals 4 to 6 force damage per 2 caster levels (up to a max of 40 to 60 damage at caster level 20) and dazes the target; a successful Reflex save halves the damage and negates the daze.
The third deals 4 to 6 fire damage per 2 caster levels (up to a max of 40 to 60 damage at caster level 20) and reduces the target’s melee and ranged damage by 25%; a successful Will save halves the damage and negates the penalty to attack damage. This spell has double range.

Which is a lot more clear. You get 3 rays per cast a sonic, fire and force. Each ray does a d3+3 every other level so if it is your first level 5 spell it will be 6d3+18 points per ray or 18d3+54 base. But the crazy part is that each damage ray has 3 other effects to try and trip up the target if it doesn’t kill it out right, which it will a lot. Sonic as a knockdown effect, force dazes, and fire reduces damage by 25% each one against a different save and most likely against the hard save for the kind of target. Knock a caster on its ass, make a melee swing a little less hard etc. And there is no reason that all three can’t happen at once. 🙂 Running around in the sands I used this spell a lot and it if it didn’t one shot the mob it would often leave it dazed and triped and a quick melee swing on the way past it finished it off.

Looks like a good place to stop for now. I will knock out part 2 later today I hope. Fleshy vs Bot.

I have a Migraine, Enjoy

The last couple days have been slow for the TR train. The guild did epics on Tuesday this week after everyone decided that Wednesday would be the best, but not two weeks in a row. Shoot me. Xping on Wednesday is not that great as Fopo has his league bowling on those nights. So I fit in some more epic stuff as able. Last night turned in to a night of ddo where when I logged for the night I wondered where the night went as I felt like I did nothing (one eSnitch and one Abbot run done).

Anyway I did get a little bit of xp in the last few days on Samius and xp capped so I had to level to 10. A level I have been looking forward to since I learned that the Arty Battle Engineer gave -10% ASF. Meaning I can bust out some of my favorite armor from back in the day. Elfcrafted Chain Shirt, it is like baby blue dragon armor (+3 Mithral, Arcane Lore and Minor Spell Penetration VII) and happens to look amazing!


Replace that shitty Minos Legens, and put on a smexxy yellow feathered Captain’s Chapeau on a human with a kick ass long beard and a dragon mark and a rune arm you will have a rough idea of what I look like. I looked so hot I was getting tells about how randy I was making people while just standing on the boat. Okay, those tells were from Tobril. But I know how smexxy I look! Damn Smexxy!

Speaking of Smexxy, I have been really enjoying the Retain Essence perk the arties have.

Retain Essence
Whenever an Artificer uses a rod, staff, or wand, the character has a chance to not expend a charge. The percentage chance is equal to (Artificer Level)/2 + Int Modifier + Enhancement Modifier + Effect Modifier.

I am not sure what that all means, fill in the blank style and find a % per item thing but I can say that I notice my wand charges get saved fairly often. But where I really see charged being retained is on my spell boosting clickies. When I made them I gave them the highest level spells I could and still was able to use them at the time. So they are superior X level 7 or 8. So I am going to say there Effect Modifier is high as I almost always get 4 uses out per clickly and a lot of the time 5 uses in really long quests.

One last thing, I think today starts free Arty weekend. So if you haven’t gotten to play them because you are holding out for them to go on sale or something roll one up and try it. And if you love it then you can you can use code DDOMK10 to get 10% off whatever is in your store cart. And I think we are also in 25% xp week starting today also.

As I struggle for a topic…

So here we are at 2:30 my time and I still haven’t written any thing for today. I have been playing with work stuff. My work Mac came the other day and I have been trying to use it some just to try and get a feel for things. But that is no excuse. The werds must go on. But I still don’t have much of a topic to focus on.

I could try an talk about the failed eDQ runs last night. But they might come across as whiny. And who wants to hear about how the healers failed to heal a raid, or fail to throw a rez with the queen’s bar all but totally gone? And please don’t get me started on how the raid leaders had real leadership issues. How many people can BYOH in and eDQ? Answer not many. And loosing a Sorc for a fighter because you don’t like how the sorc might play is crappy. Trust me one more caster would have won that second run hands down. That wipe was totally on the leader being an a$$.

Or I could talk a little about how I hit two epic Small Problems and in the second with Oncler he bitched me out for pikeing a fight. I was on Java healing btw. When I said I do that part of the quest all the time and there is not a fight he informed me there was and I told him I ran it the night before and there wasn’t. After about a min of arguing someone said that fight was only on epic and we both felt dumb. No seals for me on either run so my dry streak on seals continues.

I could run down how Phlor did his first night as a WF and a none Pally class. But as he was fresh off the boat (level 7) all we did was run the Ataraxia’s Haven loop and he did fine. Learned that rust monsters are bad which was funny. But nothing really worthy of a whole post.

Here is some good news Seth MacFarlane’s ‘Ted’ Moves Up to June 29. Think it will be a blast if the wife will never go. Tobril might be around for the 4th of July it might be just the movie to get us away from the computers and Ddo.

In other movie news Iron Man 3 started shooting yesterday and just got their budget increased (60 Million), hmm Iron Mans. Speaking of Iron Man and the Avengers (I was too talking about the Avengers) here is a sweet tee I am about to order. http://www.80stees.com/products/Avengers-Shirt.asp

While I am on the movie kick. Please someone tell me who thinks Kristen Stewart is hotter then Charlize Theron so I can kick that person in the nuts. The wife as informed me that I am taking her to see Snow White and the Huntsman, and before it even starts the realism is gone…. And I like brunettes over blondes.

Well I think that is enough rambling to make this count as a post. If you want to hear about something specific tomorrow you better use the comments.

Another Night in Stormreach

After a quick Elite Pit run and a mad dash Tear run the TR train swapped to epics and raiding. Epice Tuesday is a maybe once again…

Anyway after swapping and forming up we ran a quick eSnitch. Had two scrolls drop, both for Brawn’s Spirts. And One for me. So double win. 🙂 Still can’t get the axe seal to drop though….

Then a quick eDA, two full tokens are tasty. Someone got a Devil’s Run shard but it wasn’t me. But I did get a ring clickly with 3 uses of Pro Evil level 1. Did I say it has a large Augment slot? No..

After eDA it was time for our “Teach Samius how to Tank again” Class. Aka a Tod run. This time with an Arty and me on Horoth. It went well enough. Damage in felt good, Damage out could have been a little better… I did get stunned a lot more then I would have liked but what can you do if there is not a light monk? Any way the hate is there just need to fine tune a bit more.

Got the AC to 89 with Haste and Bard song. That leaves me with 1 more from dex if I reset my enchantments and take the last tear of the more dex in armor line. +2 when I get my defender set put together, and +3 if I ever get the epic tower shield built. Hope that is still good enough with the new changes on the way.

After Tod, “Teach Samius how to Tank again” Class rolled on to a Hard Vod where we lost our Arty. So I was in power attack/double strike shield mode trying to hold agro with 15-20 points of damage with my hate sword. Did well expect once fairly quickly after a port I got chained and Dots or a rogue with his full hate on got it and I had intim. Speaking of intims, I had to do some running after a port to imtim. Casters didn’t want to bring Sully over or let me bring her to me via my silver bow 😦 but it was fun. And when it was all over I got passed an Omniscience, which will let me swap swords and keep my AC the same.

After Vod the guild formed up again for another eSnitch, Still no seal for the axe.

Finally before bed there was time to ransack the first chest in Servants of the Overlord. We even had a few goodies drop. I just really want to try and get that Shield done. To that end I will need to flag a few more guys to hit that chest and maybe even run the first one for seals some….


Falling so Hard

So one of my big fears of playing the Arty class is coming true. I am falling for it fairly hard. I am already thinking of doing a major juggle and switching guys in to different kinds of Arties. I was telling a guildie the other day (think it was Phlor) that they are the most complex class I have ever played. It takes so much concentration to make them sing.

The thing is even with all the things I love about them and I truly love to play this life, I feel I am busy doing all the cool thing and not really watching what I am doing. And that is leading to play error deaths. For example think I died 3 times in Tide Turns last night. WFT? Twice while getting the traps and once clearing the last room. Cleared everything but the water Ellies, while Fopo on his Pally life dropped the boss. Went to get them and took 6 shots from Frost Lance. As I had died earlier I lost my ship resistances and had so much else going on I forgot to cast them on myself so my 2 points of cold resistance from the ranger life stopped 12 points of the 204+ points of damage. Just a lot of things to keep track of over a normal caster.

I want to do a little break down, mainly for myself but you might dig it.

Casting: They have some really good spells, unfortunately they cap out at 6th level. Right now at level 9, I have three slots for direct damage spells. Static Shock, Lightning Sphere and Blast Rod. As I said they are very good. I really love Lightning Sphere to the point I even keep a copy of it unmetaed just for breaking things. Did you know its damage works through walls and stuff? So all those low level quests with 4+ breakables behind a gate can be broken with out having to stop to open things. Making racking up a ransack bonus a ton faster, and it is way nicer to make concentration check for a spell if a million little mobs are hitting for 1 or 2 points of damage vs trying to open a door/valve and being stopped every time you take 1+ point of damage. They are also loaded up with indirect damage spells, with the weapon buffs and haste like armor buff. Think I will be swapping to Lighting motes and carrying Haste scrolls however, as Armor of Speed doesn’t counter slow and at these levels the mobs spam me with that spell.

Wands: Boy howdy. Okay this is really the Artificer Knowledge feats in action but I most notice it with wands. Vendor shield, resistance (when I remember to use them), Fox cunning and other stat boosting wands are all golden. I even have been using a web wand to good effect. And I need to remember to nab an ice storm wand or two. I have the feeling that they will rock.

Melee: Okay this is a lot different now that I am level 9 and swapped out my claw set. I still do 20-30 normal numbers in the first melee slot. But I almost always hit even with power attack on thanks to Insightful Strikes but the trail of other numbers is almost sick at this level, right now I have a Icy burst, Lighting burst of Pure good scimitar from level 4 that I am still using because of this trail of numbers. Base + icy+shock+ good+ rune arm + weapon buff. Most swings of 18+ crit for icy and shock burst effects. That is a fairly impressive list of numbers. I have taken to using a race required paralyzing Sword with Icy burst and still the string of numbers is impressive.

Ranged: To be honest I don’t do a ton of ranged combat this live other then the rune arm. But I made a quick shock of pure good heavy repeater just to have around in case. And I have to say once boosted with Insightful Strikes and acid damage and using the auto reload clickly plus a rune arm the ranged damage is very nice. Did the Pit on Elite last night and I was able to stand up top during the end fight and let Fopo run around and get the mobs and it was very nice.

Pets: So the dog has issues. Mostly with weird bugs. Like if I go below decks on my guild ship I have to leave the boat for the dog to reappear, as well as how the dogs can’t use guild slotted items, or when it just decides to lock up and you have to dismiss it and re-summon it to make it do anything again. There are plenty of none bug related issues like how there is only a weapon and armor slot. They are dogs hello! No dog collar. /shakes head. And once you make a module and out grow it you can sell it or break it down for mats because there are no way to recycle that module as a new module. Oh other pets, have you seen the Flame Turret? Would like to see an something like an auto ballista or a catapult for say boss fights at cap but the flame turret is fun at level so far.

Any way thinks I am doing with my arty that is working and not in the coming days.

Lots of Hate

One of the worries I have/had leveling Samyus (if you don’t remember he is now my AC tank) is having enough Dps/hate to keep agro with out having to spam the Intim button. My first attempt to tank once hitting 20 was a normal tod, where I got to play the Sully tank. And it went very well. Think I did a run down a few days back, even. But there was an arty to make my Sword (eFang) good aligned (Slotting it with good is next on my to do list. I swear) and even though I spammed the intim button I didn’t think holding agro was an issue, but of course that was with arty help. However, on Saturday I got to tank Sully in Tod again. Once again lead by Tobril. But this time he didn’t get an arty, I felt a little hosed….

Lets skip to level two of this run down. We all get started on the boss, the kiter takes off and life it good for 30- 40 secs. When the kiter goes down. Tobril yells for the back up kiter to go and to make with the mass cures until the new kiter gets the shadows off us. Not sure what happened with the healing. There were 3 people with divine symbols and a bard. I know that what your icon is doesn’t mean a lot but come on you can heal some, right?

Anyway, half the part wipes. Let alive is the kiter, Tobril, myself and two of the three healers and I think the bard. Shadows are hitting me for about 103 a tick. At this rate I am dead real soon. But I drink a pot and swing, swing swing, pot and repeat. Meanwhile I am telling the healers to get it together, and through a mass or two. I am down to 110 hp when I finally get a heal and then people start getting raised, and a recovery happened. Think the bard was paying attention and ended up saving us. But were close to taking a ride on the fail train.

Mean while I noticed that I had taken agro of the main boss from Tobril. Kinda surprising as I know he is mostly geared out. But I don’t think he was trying to hold agro over trying to stay alive. My hate on the other hand just happens. My efang is fully powered with the dragon marks and being in stance makes a lot of hate, so other then swapping to a smaller sword (and lowering my AC in the process) there is not a lot I can do to lower my hate. And I really didn’t want to lower my AC just then.

Moving on to part three, I was worried that with out a good I would loose agro against some of the barbs and other fighters in the raid. So I kept power attack on with the bard buffs I want to say my AC was again in the 86 range. So I was good with that. This time I watched a lot closer to when I was getting heals and whatnot. Looking for how well my AC is working and instead of hitting the intimidate button for the extra hate, I let it roll waiting until I needed to intim to regain the agro if I lost it.

On the healing, I never had more then 100 points of damage when a heal was cast. Most of the time I was in the 20-30 points of damage range. Never missed the extra 5 ac from combat expertise. So Ac is working well enough for normals well enough.

As for Hate/Agro I never needed to Intim, even with my yellow numbers. Didn’t need to swap into my Swashbuckler for the extra double strike. Don’t remember seeing a Disintegration proc. So all in all hate was working. And am very pleased with how easy someone can build an Ac tank. Yes I gathered a few epic items, the sword and the Cavalry Plate, nothing super hard to get.

Need to do some testing against Tobril soon and I want to finishing slotting a few little things (Good on the sword at least, would like to slot Dex on my slayer ring).But I don’t want to go nuts before the new pack hits. I think there might be some real winners coming with the level cap raise.

GenCon 101:

I have had a few questions for how to handle a first trip to Gencon. So here is my advice in a nut shell.

1, Listen to this ep of the CtH, DDO Cocktail Hour Episode 21, Gen Con Indy 2010

End of list. 🙂

If you don’t want to listen to a whole show to get the over all scope I will try and knock out a quick list for you.

1, Stay busy. But not super every hour of the day is planed, busy.

2, Try not to do more then 6-8 hours in a row with out a break. If you wouldn’t work for that long with out a break why would you try and game like that?

3, Have snacks handy. Con food is pricy, and the lines are long. Sometimes a quick snack is just the ticket.

4, Same as above for drinks. There are normally water containers for “free” (you all ready paid) ice water. Have a bottle you can fill from time to time.

5, Stop to eat, sleep and SHOWER. You will already be a stinky geek. But try and help yourself out and be less stinky.

6, Have cash/budget. There will be stuff you want to buy. Be careful not to break the bank. Have a budget either in cash (can’t spend what you don’t have) or a mental amount. What ever you have planed add in an extra 20-30 % for didn’t plan to play this items…

7, Dress right. Walking shoes, light dress and have a pack with a hoodie. (some rooms will be cool others will me quite hot.)

Think those are the main things. If you have other thoughts for the con newbs use the comments.