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Diablo II Single Player Thread - 2

Discussion in 'Diablo 1 & 2' started by dmc, Jan 27, 2010.

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  1. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    To be a bit nitpicky, you actually be at 60% res all until you hit mid Act V hell, as you won't get the third Anya quest until then. Still, that's a few more charms (if you don't have another +15% one, then three small 5% will do the same). But overall, that's a solid setup. Or heck, you can get that 15% res all out of a ring slot, unless you're going for a SoJ/RF combo there.

    The lack of TP is (for me) small potatoes. Sure, it helps you move around faster, but with the rest of the equipment, I don't see that as a deal breaker. Other equipment I'd recommend would include Gore Riders (CB is halved with missile weapons, but the deadly strike isn't), and a pair of rare gloves with +2 bow skills and 20% IAS - anything else you get on it is just gravy. I'm assuming you're already counting Mara's in for your resistances.

    The Arctic set is the bomb. In fact, there's no reason not to keep on using it for a long while. That set will easily take you through normal difficulty, and you won't find better damage potential in bows until you can start equipping exceptional uniques.

    What skills are you planning on taking? If you plan on going physical, I'd advise dumping a few points into multishot early on - it really speeds up normal difficulty, especially while waiting to pick up strafe, and if you're going physical you're going to want a few points in there eventually anyway.
     
  2. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Actually, I was not counting Mara's for resists. Hell = -100 resist all. Silence and COH = 75 + 65 resists all = 40 resist all in Hell. Add +15 for the GC and +15 for the quests and you are at 70. I have more than one small charm with +5 resist all and some FHR or something like that to make the 75 resists.

    I was thinking of using a +2 'zon skill ammy with IAS on it instead of Mara's.

    I'm going to look at my various crafted blood gloves and see if I have IAS, good CB and +2 'zon skills.

    I was thinking a physical/cold combo and planned on respeccing at least twice, because I intend to make the build for each level. I'm not saving points on this toon and want to maximize killing speed and pleasure without worrying about the timing of the build or squandering points.

    I can put a Kuko or something else with fire damage on switch to deal with the PI/CI bosses I might meet. If my strength is up to it, maybe a hellrack.

    Also, just realized that I may not have the rune wealth to make silence right now after spending like a drunken sailor on infinity. I may have to use WWS in the interim (through end of NM) and intersperse some Countess runs by my sorc or hammerdin in the interim to rebuild rune wealth. Silence needs an ist and a vex, so not as bad as two bers.
     
  3. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    If you have such an ammy, then yes, I would take that over Mara's. However, anything less and you may be better off with Mara's. If nothing else, it would let you ditch the +res charms.

    Assuming you mean +2 bow and xbow skills, that would be ideal. I'm unsure if you can get +2 all zon skills on even the blue versions of gloves, but they certainly aren't available on rare or crafted gloves. Still, if it were me, the IAS is much more important than CB. The CB on missile weapons is half that of melee weapons, so a CB hit on a boss will only do 1/20th of the boss's total life. I'm not saying it's insignifcant, but with a strafazon able to get off 10 arrows per second the dps isn't going to be much different. I know with my WWS zon, the only CB I had was on Gore Riders, and she did just fine.

    Now that you're pretty sure you want to go with physical and cold, I'd say your best bet is working on the physical part first. Multishot should be where you place extra points, although as I said previously, with a lot of +skills there's no real reason to max it. Every point adds another arrow to the attack, but since there's the rule that each monster can be hit by a maximum of one arrow, you will reach a point where more arrows won't matter. I like about 15 arrows or so, and so subtract your final +skills from 15, and that's about how many skill points you'll need.

    About the only other slightly annoying thing with multishot, is you'll have to do a lot of shift-click when you attack, in order to get the right dispersion of arrows. Also remember that with multishot any ctc mod (such as WWS ctc amp damage) will only be carried on the middle two arrows.

    Some other things to consider are the magic and passive tree. If you decide you don't need a valk, you can definitely save yourself some points there, as you're probably going to want to invest a good solid 70 points in the bow and xbow tree (maxing cold arrow, freezing arrow, strafe, about 5-10 multi, and a few prerequisites/1-pt wonders). You'll have enough for a 1-pt valk for sure, but probably not enough to max her out.

    One final point on the zon passive skills. To me, none of them are worth more than a point. certainly true of the dodge skills, but I never spend more than 1 point in pierce either. Razortail along with a bunch of +skill points will easily get your pierce chance up to around 90%, and there's no need to go beyond that.

    I have heard tell that WWS is also a PI solution with it's chance to cast amp damage, as that breaks phyisical immunities. I did it a couple of times with my zon, but I found Kuko to be more effective. And Kuko is the standard switch for cold/physical zons, just like Buriza is that standard switch for fire/physical zons.

    You also have a lot of time to get around to that. Needing a vex, you're looking at a level requirement well into the 50s to equip silence anyway (and possibly due to the bow depending on what you pick). Actually, I'd be more concerned with the bow - do you have one on hand (at least a white one that Larzuk can help you with)?
     
  4. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    I have several white crusader bows that I have been storing, so that's good.

    As for the gloves, yeah, I meant +2 bow skills as I don't think you can get +2 all skills on them, but I'll check and let you know.

    My intention was to one point the passive/magic skills and sink all the extras into the valk. I might subtract some points from either multishot or the middle cold arrow skill to make sure the valk is at least level 17 with +skills, as it's my understanding that she has the best gear once she hits that level.

    On the ammy, I am fairly confident that I have one, either rare or a blood/caster craft -- I was on a crafting kick a while back and have quite a few rings, gloves, and ammys sitting around that I need to check out.

    As far as the build goes, I have been focusing on physical and dumping points in the passive/magic skills as they become available, with the intention of sinking no more than one point in any skill until my kill speed drops. Given that I am one hit killing things on average, I am thinking that I won't need to start upping individual skills for a while. I can slap on a tarnhelm and an eye of etlich at level 15 for +2 all skills and a nice cold bonus that should, with the arctic set, let me get through all of normal with little to no difficulty.

    Mid-game, I'm thinking a vamp gaze, perfect skins of the vipermagi, gores, razortail, WWS/Kuko, one or two ravenfrosts (if I am having mana issues, maybe the SOJ as the second ring), rare or crafted gloves to make up anything missing, maybe a catseye.

    End game will be Silence/Kuko, COH, razortail, upped gores, +2 'zon skills ammy (assuming I have one with IAS), crafted gloves (assuming I have decent ones with IAS), maybe Shako, probably still using at least one ravenfrost (maybe 2).

    We'll see how that works.
     
  5. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    Level 17 is when she acquires her best weapon - she gets an elite rare war pike at that level. If you want all of her gear to autospawn rare and elite (where applicable - she also gets rings and amulet), then the target level is 27. Most zons try for 27, but if they don't have the skill points, some will settle for 17. I would advise the same for you. If 27 is a bridge too far, then 17 will do.

    If you cannot get to 27, then you may be better served sinking a few extra points in Decoy. Decoy gives a sizable life boost to the valk (+20%) and a hidden +2% resist all per level. (Although you also get that 2% if you sink the point directly into Valk, so it's really only the life bonus you'd be after.)

    If you are going to subtract some points out of the arrow skills to get to 17/27, then I definitely agree that it's the second cold arrow skill you skip. In fact, I'd say that's only worth a single point anyway. It doesn't give a damage bonus to Freezing Arrow - it just gives a 5% increase in freeze duration. The freeze duration on Freezing Arrow is 2 seconds, regardless of level, and it's halved in NM and again in Hell, meaning that it only lasts 0.5 seconds, so additional points in Ice Arrow (the middle one) only add a piddling 0.1 seconds duration in normal, or 0.025 seconds in hell.

    However, if you want to up freeze duration, all is not lost. From the Arreat Summit:

    So Ice Arrow is definitely a one-point prerequisite, and nothing more.

    Tarnhelm and Eye of Etlitch are two standard pieces of gear for all my low level characters - my druid has them equipped right now. I typically only keep Tarnhelm until I can get to Peasant Crown, but Eye of Etlitch usually stays with me for quite a while.

    I would definitely lean towards making use of that SoJ as the second ring. You're already going to have a TON of dexterity and therefore AR just due to your build. Most bowazons set a target of about 800-1000 life, and everything else gets pumped into dexterity - it's usually upward of 300 by late game. Sure, a RF would add up to another 20 dexterity (and the associated damage bonus), but the total difference in damage between say 320 dexterity and 340 dexterity isn't going to be great. I think I'd much rather have the +1 skill from SoJ, as this is definitely a character where you'll have all the other essential bases covered by other items.

    Let's see here, with that setup you get:

    Weapon +2 all skills
    Armor +2 all skills
    Helm +2 all skills
    Ammy +2 all skills
    SoJ +1 all skills
    Gloves +2 bow skills

    So +11 bow, +9 everything else. Looking at the IAS, I'm pretty sure the only elite bows that can get 6 sockets are crusader and hydra, a bit unfortunate as they are also base speed 10 weapons (the slowest among bows). So looking at Strafe (the skill that IAS is most important to):

    If you have a +20 IAS ammy, and +20 IAS gloves, and the +20 IAS on Silence, that's going to get you to the 10/3 breakpoint, which is adequate. You'd think you'd want to get to that 9/2 breakpoint, but NextDelay hoses you. The NextDelay on Strafe is 3 frames. Meaning once you damage a particular enemy with strafe, they cannot be hit by strafe again for 3 frames. When there's a lot of targets on the screen, it doesn't matter, because your zon will fire a different arrow at all of the targets (or alternate between the targets if there's only 2 or 3), so three frames will pass between arrows. The problem is when you're flighting a boss. With a 2-frame Stafe, every other arrow will miss, because the second arrow will arrive during the NextDelay period. It's a well known complaint among stafezons. Your last breakpoint is effectively 9/3.

    ---------- Added 0 hours, 9 minutes and 8 seconds later... ----------

    EDIT: And with +9 to passives, you definitely have enough for your valkyrie to get to level 27. You'll need 19 hard points. There's 9 other passive and magic skills, so that's 28.

    You'll max strafe, freezing, and cold arrow (60), and say 4 in multishot to give you 15 arrows. There's 3 prerequisites in the bow tree (Ice, Guided, Magic), for a grand total of 95 skill points - level 84.

    ---------- Added 19 hours, 57 minutes and 32 seconds later... ----------

    Wow... I never realized the beauty of Fire Claws as a bear. (I've dabbled with it, but never focused on FC as a stand alone skill.) I just hit Level 24 (now in Act II) and so I threw on Bonesnap, and my bear is one-shot killing everything on p8 with a single point in FC. (Sand Maggots sometimes take two whacks, but Bonesnap is giving me that 50% damage bonus versus undead against pretty much everything else in the entire act.) With just one point (using Eye of Etlitch and Tarnhelm - so effectively level 3) I'm dealing up to 400+ damage per hit.

    If you're wondering why I'm going with a WB instead of a WW, Fire Claws is actually faster (by 1 frame per attack) in bear form as opposed to wolf form. Since the only purpose of using the WW is for speed, and FC is faster as a WB, there's no reason to use WW. Add in the fact that you can use Shockwave as a WB, and there's no comparison - especially considering everything short of act bosses is stunned by SW - even the Ancients can be stunned with it.

    So now, I'm rethinking this build a bit. At level 28 (which is what it would be with all my end-game gear and 20 hard points, FC adds an average of 468 fire damage to your attack, and gives a 455% AR bonus. Obviously, that's pretty much nothing in hell difficulty. But you get a wonderful 22% synergy bonus for each and every point spent in the elemental tree fire skills. I was already planning on maxing Firestorm anyway, which would yield +440% damage, taking it up to 2,527 per whack - and that's starting to get very respectable. But I think I can squeeze a couple of more points into the Molten Boulder synergy too.

    But where do those points come from? It has to be the summons obviously, because everything else is already a one-point wonder. So I took a look at my grizzly. I really do want to max grizzly, as that gives me somewhere in the range of 2.8k-3k dps depending on the level of my might merc. Since I'm not going to be dealing much physical damage, I need that source from my summons/merc.

    However, maxing dire wolves as a synergy gives the grizzly about 5.5k life. But do I really need a grizzly with 5.5k life, considering in hell difficulty grizzlies get 85% resist all? Probably not, especially since as a WB I'll have shockwave, which can shut anything down. I really only need my grizzly to live long enough for me to close the distance between me and the enemies. So I asked myself (actually I asked a druid summons calculator) how many points do I need in dire wolves to get my maxed grizzly up to 3k life? (Which seemed like a good balance point for survivability.) Turns out I need 7 hard points in dire wolves for that, which in turn saves me 13 skill points.

    So what does that leave me with, assuming around 95 skill points in hell difficulty? Well, I have 8 one-point wonders in the Lycanthropy tree. I have 6 one-point wonders in the summons tree. Add in the 7 points in Dire Wolves and 20 points in Grizzly. That's just 41 points. So FC maxed and Firestorm maxed, I'm at 81 points. 10 more points in Molten Boulder gets the fire damage to +660%, or 3,557. If I max MB (need to get to level 90 for that), that's +880%, or 4,586 damage - and that's a 5-frame attack - so around 23k fire damage per second.

    Of course that still leaves fire immunes unaccounted for. And that's what the one point Fury is going to have to deal with. It will be level 9 with +skills, which gives a decent damage (+236%) and ar (+106%) boost. That combined with the merc and grizzly should do just fine. I don't really have a solution for dual fire/physical immunes short of a level 9 rabies combined with about 100 elemental damage per whack from Aldur's Rhythm, but it's not like those enemies are that common. (And hell, even if it take a while to kill the boss, I can keep him stunned the whole time.)
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2011
  6. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    Went away from Memorial Day, so not much recent progress. Finished up Act II last night, level 27. I'm going to try out an Iron Wolf Mercenary for Acts III and IV. Then I'll probably switch over to a Barbarian in Act V. I will eventually settle on an Act II merc in NM, but may as well try out some of the lesser-utilized options until then. The true launch point of this character doesn't happen until level 45. Although I'm excited about level 30, as that is when the Grizzly arrives. There's also some better weapon options out there between levels 30 and 45 that I can equip, like Dark Clan Crusher, and Fleshrender.

    ---------- Added 3 hours, 17 minutes and 9 seconds later... ----------

    One more thought on the amazon. I delayed pumping Valkyrie for quite a while - well into nightmare in fact. While I was waiting to level into my end-game armor, I used the Peace runewod - +2 all skills, with a ctc level 15 Valkyrie on striking. As long as have one hard point into Valkyrie, you're ctc Valkyrie won't poof on you.
     
  7. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    I haven't played much either, she's level 23 in the early stages of Act II. She is still using the Arctic Set with Eye of Etlich, Tarnhelm and one of the low level unique boots. I'm thinking of changing gear just to mix things up (it's not like she isn't still killing stuff quickly). I want to introduce more mana boosting gear because her mana level really blows.

    Once I hit the next level, I'll also get strafe, which should be cool.
     
  8. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    That is the one drawback to the Peace runeword - it kills the arctic set. However, it is worth it IMO, because be the time you can use Peace (lvl 29) there are a host of unique bows to pick from that have magic or exploding arrows as their base attack (see Raven Claw, Wisendraw) or add significant elemental damage, even with the base attack (see Stormstrike, Hell Clap, and especially Skystrike - up to 250 lightning damage and ctc lvl 6 Meteor). If you can kill stuff with just your regular attack, then mana is no longer a big deal.

    However, as soon as you get Strafe, your mana problems are essentially over, even if all you have is something like a measly 2% mana leech. When you hit level 33, you may as well just go ahead and equip Kuko - level 7 explosive arrows as a base attack, adds up to 180 fire damage per hit (on top of the arrow base damage and skill use), and of course the lovely +3 bow and xbow skills. Kuko really is one of the most overpowered weapons when you consider the level requirement on it. It's not endgame material, but can see you through NM if you wanted.

    If I were you, Strafe would be the first skill I maxed. Other than placing one point in the level 30 skills, I'd devote every point I had into maxing Strafe. As a whole, I found it far more useful than Multishot. MS only really shines when there are massive numbers of enemies on the board, as Strafe is limited to a maximum of 10 arrows, so if you aren't 1-shot killing everything, Strafe will take a while. Multishot can be spammed though, and is extremely useful in Act III.

    ---------- Added 20 hours, 34 minutes and 47 seconds later... ----------

    Heh... Just checked my stash for druid amulets and pelts to use while waiting to equip the set. Much to my chagrin, all of my +2 variety rares offer not much else. The amulet gave me a particular chuckle. It's +2 skills, damage reduced by 2, +2 light radius and +18 AR. So it's basically a +2 skill ammy. Same thing with the pelts. I do have a +2 all skills pelt that gives an additional +2 to Fire Claws, but the only other redeeming property is that it has two sockets.
     
  9. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    Finished Acts III and IV over the weekend - I'm not level 35, and using Dark Clan Crusher as my weapon, along with Sigon's Shield for a total of +3 all skills (I also have a +1 rare ammy equipped, and a +1 circlet, so I'm already at +5 all skills). While I might not keep DCC is my main weapon once I can use Fleshrender, I am strongly considering keeping it offhand just for summoning purposes. The bear is already a tank - doesn't hit for a ton of damage yet, but with 2600 life, he's very durable. Took consecutive lightning hoses from normal Diablo and laughed - well OK, he didn't laugh, but he still had half his life left.

    I'm now back to using the wolf form, and using Fury as my primary attack. It's extremely useful as a bridge skill. It does more damage than FC with just one point, and I don't think I'll switch back to WB form and use FC again until late nightmare. I'm maxing Grizzly first, then Fire Claws, the a synergy to Fire Claws.

    I also had a good find on normal difficulty! It will prove extremely useful for my Rabies/Fire Claw druid. It's a rare pelt that has a few decent modifiers, but it has +3 Rabies, all with a level requirement of 18 - which, conveniently, is the level you get to access Rabies. So, along with Tarnhelm and Eye of Etlitch, I'll have a level 6 Rabies right out of the box.

    I am looking forward to that druid - I have almost all of my gear set already - about the only thing I'm undecided on is the armor, and short of finding a Ber rune, I'll probably go with Gloom again, as I'm going to be short on resistances with the rest of my gear, which the druid armor Rain doesn't provide.
     
  10. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    I'm at the first third of Act IV. Level 33. Just added Kuko. Using Peace, Peasant Crown, Etlich, SOJ, I think a Manald Heal, sanders gloves and boots, Razortail, and just mopping up everything. Strafe is great fun.

    Resists suck, but nothing does much in the way of elemental damage yet, so what do I care? Valk is a beast.
     
  11. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    If you like a lvl 15 Valk, just wait until you get her to level 27 - think clay golem that actually can kill stuff.
     
  12. Paracelsi

    Paracelsi Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Since you're using Fireclaws then perhaps you could use a Cold Rogue merc instead of a Might merc. You could give her a Wrath Bow to make up for the +%damage from Might that you'll be losing. This gives you 3 elements, Decrepify, and %CB, besides.

    There's an interesting thing about Druid summon skills, I don't think they're true synergies since the bonuses they grant are not dependent on hard points. Say you equip a Spirit weapon, which grants +2 to skills. I've noticed that the Grizzly's HP will increase as if you had invested 2 hard points in Summon Dire Wolf, or at least it does when I look at it from the skill tree window.

    Edit: I'm always confusing Insight with Spirit.
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2011
  13. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    Well, the one thing the Act I merc has going for them is that they can cast Inner Sight, which is almost as good as a blessed aim merc once they are decently leveled. The only issue I have is the cost of the Runeword. It requires a Ber - a rune I have not so much as seen other than in a screenshot. That said, even if I were to acquire a Ber, it wouldn't go towards making Wrath. If and when I acquire that first Ber, it is going towards Chains of Honor, and the second would go towards Enigma (no Ber, but I actually do have a Jah).

    You are completely correct that the three summon skills don't work like regular synergies. They are almost "passive synergies" for lack of a better term. Any +skills you get to those skills work exactly like hard points invested in the skills. It's not unlike how the sorceress' elemental masteries boost damage regardless of whether you get the points from a hard expenditure or from +skills. The difference is that the elemental masteries are listed as passives, while the druid summons are not.

    It was for this reason that in my next planned druid in which he'll be a FC/Rabies build, that I'm definitely going to throw a point in all of the summons. I'm going to have a ton of +skills with that build (either +8 or +9 depending on what I use for the amulet slot) so they are three points well spent. I am strongly considering a HF merc for that build, as nearly all of my damage will be elemental.
     
  14. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    In playing my druid yesterday, Jack comes over, looks at the screen, and excalims, "What is *that*?" in reference to the werewolf on the screen. I told him it was a werewolf, and then, in a "watch this" moment, I said I can make him a werebear too! Jack was sold - a bear, that has a bear for a pet, was way coler in his opinion than anything else you can do. He further states that the Heart of Wolverine spirit is a firefly that follows the bears around so they can see things at night.
     
  15. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Nice - I'm done with normal and will level my zon up into the mid-50's. She's using Lycander's right now with WWS on switch because Lycander's is my only source of mana leach once I put a Ravenfrost on.
     
  16. Sir Rechet

    Sir Rechet I speak maths and logic, not stupid Veteran

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    You gotta admire how children view the (game) world. Us old farts mostly see mindless grind here, boring there, pointlessness over the yonder.
     
  17. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    Almost done with normal. And I've concluded that I'm a bigger idiot than I originally thought. Lamenting my lack of good +2 druid ammies, I completely overlooked the obvious points: 1) I don't use the elemental tree for casting purposes at all, 2) I cast my summons in town before I leave, and 3) once I leave town I use the lycanthropy tree in its entirety. This is to say that I don't need a +2 skills amulet. What I need, and what I do have, is two separate amulets: a +3 summoning amulet just for casting my minions, and a +3 lycanthropy amulet for putting on after I summon them. I haven't had my bear die yet, so I'm not concerned with having to run back to town to resummon him if he does, and the carrion vine and Heart of Wolverine are there mostly for show anyway.

    This setup will allow (once all end-game gear is equipped) +9 to the summoning tree, and +10 to the lycanthropy tree. In fact, given that the elemental and lycanthropy trees are pretty much mutually exclusive, and +2 all skills amulet (or even pelt for that matter) is pretty much useless. I'm not too concerned with the helm on this character, as I'm eventually switching over to Aldur's anyway, but +3 to a tree amulets have user requirements of just 45, meaning I can use them NOW. So at this point, I already have a good chunk of my end-item gear equipped.

    End-game items:

    Aldur's Rhythm (weapon)
    Aldur's Advance (boots) 2 set items give +150% AR bonus, +15 dexterity, +15 strength
    Amulets (switching in town between summons/lycanthropy)
    Raven Frost, SoJ rings
    Rare Gloves - +20% IAS, fire, cold, poison resistance all over 20%

    Yet to equip:

    Aldur's Stony Gaze (helm) - I already meet the level requirement, I just have no desire to use it until I can equip the whole set
    Aldur's Deception (armor)
    Spirit Shield (I don't need no stinkin' blocking)
    Belt - (I haven't totally decided at this point, although I'm leaning towards Credendum for the +15% res all)

    As far as the actual character is concerned, I'm in the werewolf portion of my career. Until level 30, I was a WB, and the plan right now is to switch back to being primarily a WB in hell difficulty. But right now, I'm relying on fury in WW form as my primary attack. A 3xShael Aldur's Advance is REALLY fast (so +90% altoghether). It gives a 5 frame Fury attack, and should allow a 6 frame FC attack in WW form, 5 in WB form.
     
  18. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Didn't play much this weekend because of multi-guests, but I'm wondering how tough killing things in hell is going to be. I'm wondering if I want to change focus to frost-maiden and use the Harmony GMB bow (preloaded with +3 bow skills on the bow). Sure I'm not going to make Ice, which is every frost-maiden's wet (errrr, ice) dream, but I don't have to do much to my character to change her focus to frost maiden. I've already maxed FA and have been working on Valk (strafe is maxed). I am ignoring the timing synergy anyway (the middle cold arrow skill), so I think this really means just using FA more than strafe -- they're hot-keyed next to each other. It's a mental thing. Plus, I can give her merc the Infinity and pick him up in Act II NM with HF aura. The lightning and fire damage on the bow mean that I can pretty much skip a backup weapon for cold immunes (switch to strafe for generic CI's and, for CI/PI uniques with unbreakable resists, just plunk away with the bow for the fire/lightning damage and let the merc take him out.

    What this means is that I can use a CtA and +1 skill shield (I'm not wasting 156 points on strength, so it's a Lidless Wall as I can't ever see using a Splendor shield) on switch rather than another bow, which REALLY means that she can be a glass cannon. I have vit at 100 right now and don't plan on sinking another point into it -- dex all the way!
     
  19. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    I'm confused - wouldn't a build that maxed the two cold skills, valk, and strafe pretty much be an ice maiden anyway? You'd have Stafe as a backup/leech souce. Or are you suggesting you wished you did it in a different order? If you're still only sinking one point into the middle cold arrow skill (and I agree with that), you have enough left over skill points to max two more skills. Strafe is a nice backup attack for physical damage, and a high level valk is like a having a clay golem that can kill things. So where would those other 40 or so skill points go?

    I agree that dual cold and physical immunes are rare enough that you can make due with the lightning and fire damage on the bow. Afterall, it's only the boss that will be dual immune. All of the minions will be able to be damaged by either strafe or freezing arrow. In the case of dual immunes, you'll actually be best off using good ol' magic arrow to take them out, as in addition to the fire and lightning damage, it will convert 20% of physical damage to magic damage.

    I do like the CtA idea. As an aside, the really cheap option for a +skill shield would be Sigons. Level requirement of 12, and a strength requirement of just 75.
     
  20. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    I forgot about Sigon's. Given that I have multiples of both shields, it doesn't matter much.

    On the build, I think the gear setup is a little different on the two, but I'll look into it. In thinking about this, I am no longer so sure that I need to worry much about resists other than lightning. I may go with CoH and Mara's (which will get me to about 0 resist all in Hell with the quest rewards) and then see what I can do to bump lightning without wasting gear slots on it. Silence and its 75 resist all is nice, but the bow is slow and I think Harmony gives me more bang for the buck (especially as I already have one made). I'm going to do a complete re-think on gear sometime today or tonight and post it if I think it's worth talking about.
     
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