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Rogue - Monk conversion

Discussion in 'Dragon Age: Origins' started by Gothmog, May 28, 2011.

  1. Gothmog

    Gothmog Man, a curious beast indeed! ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran

    Jun 30, 2002
    Likes Received:
    I hope i make some sense at least, it's 7am with an allnighter :p

    I've been trying to figure out what kind of a character and composition to play through Origins next. The one run i've done was with a powerhungry amoral Shadow Druid. Taking Morrigan, Oghren and Zevran along. Loads and loads of fun.
    While i think it'll be a constant strain to keep trying, i'm going with a goody two shoes next. Since that on it's own is boring, i'll mix in Chantry fanaticism, self proclaimed righteousness and goodness with a great deal of delusions. Generally unphased by reality and shades of gray. Tends toward snap judgments of black&white color.
    Playstyle wise, i wanted to play either an archer, a balanced sword&board warrior with moderate amounts of archery (think LOTR Boromir) or some sort of D&D model of a monk.
    Finally i've condensed all of this into a rogue dualwielder protagonist with the abovementioned personality traits. Accompanying him will be Alistair (taking Boromir classlike role), Leilana (being the dedicated archer) and Wynne with purely support&utility&healing spell selection. I don't expect to take a single Primal spell with her, i don't want to rely on spells for damage. I'm guessing Telekinetic Weapons should be as good as Flame Weapon for Alistair and rogue dualwielder.

    I should note, my usage of rogues so far has been in the boundaries of "inferior warriors with lockpicking and trap disabling". That's all i've ever used them for.
    Since i've been reading that many of you adore playing rogues for their versatility, i look forward to finding out how that goes :)
    Protagonist will skip things like Lockpicking and Pickpocket, since they don't belong in monk concept very well. That's where Leilana comes in, picking up the slack, so i get the full rogue experience.

    Now, while i'll mostly be abiding by conceptual approach as to how a D&D monk translates into DA:O rogue class, i've little knowledge of game mechanics. I'd prefer not to make huge errors in building the character. I won't be minmaxing, but neither will i go about wearing robes and pummeling darkspawn with all-too impressive pugilist damage. I'll almost certainly spread my attributes widely, while pretending Cunning is Wisdom. I don't know how useful Strength is.
    Talents will also mainly follow conceptual guidelines. I've looked the dualwield tree over and there's surprisingly few unacceptable ones. A few things i just can't justify using. I'm pretending the daggers i'll wield are.. i don't know, punch daggers, katar, brass knuckles or something like it. Abilities like Dual Striking and Dual-Weapon sweep are ridiculous enough to consider wielding normal daggers, doing it with fists is laughable. So while i may take them to get to next talents, i'll never use them. I've no idea if they're even useful, i'm mainly basing this question on mage spells, which clearly have superior and inferior representatives. I presume it's the same with these. I'll go over rogue and dual-wield talents later (when i get some sleep) and try to (mis)interpret them into martial arts skills.
    Oh, i'll be taking Duelist and Assassin specializations. Bard and Ranger simply make no sense for a monk. Leilana can stroll about yelling bard songs anyway.

    So basically... i roughly know what i want to achieve, but lack game and rogue specific knowledge to translate/reforge monk stereotype into DA:O rules of rogue dualwielder.
    I'll be playing on Nightmare, for at least some tactical challenge, and to force me (hopefully) to bring out traps and poisons and other unfamiliar rogue goodies. Bruteforcing through the game with huge fireballs and infernos is a no-no this time :)

    A talent-by-talent translation analysis:

    Rogue Class Talents
    Dirty Fighting tree
    Classical sand-in-the-eyes move. Completely convertible.

    Translated into spring attack well enough. Less restrictive movement around between combatants. Mobility being monk's forte, an obvious pick.

    A far more roguish talent. It's easy enough to imagine an experienced fighter going for vulnerable spots, if the opponent is a statue. But i'm somewhat at a loss when looking for a D&D feat equivalent. It fits however, and makes too much sense not to take it.

    I can't imagine this one for a monk. Deception isn't one of their strong suits. Skipped.

    Below the Belt tree
    Kick to the knee/thigh/groin, a natural choice.
    Conjures plexus strikes to mind. Also bears some affinity to fabled one hit death strikes. Makes enough sense to me.
    This one's a little trickier. Even the original talent is quite unbelievable. Hitting where it hurts is all well and fine, but strength is irreversibly entwined with damage. Scratching someone's neck with base strength isn't exactly devastating. Since i'm working under the cunning-wisdom assumption, it's somewhat reasonable that it should affect combat directly in some way. There's no cunning to armor talent, so i guess this will have to do. It's fairly borderline though.
    A dodge-mobility type deal. A complete nobrainer.

    Deft Hands tree
    Despite promising talent name, the whole tree goes out the window. Monks typically aren't mechanics and burglars. Whole picklocking and trap disarming business is just an exclusive rogue deal.

    Stealth tree
    A questionable tree. While having some stealth competence is a reasonable expectation, monks have always had an affinity for it, by the 3rd tier rank, the restealth-during-combat it gets really problematic. Goes without mentioning that it's a skeptical "oh really?" skill even for rogues, i don't think i can equate rogue and monk stealth. Rogues should have the upper hand here. I guess i'll take first and some 10 levels later second tier, as in a slow progression of the talent. If someone can come up with a convincing argument/case for combat hide in shadows for a monk, nothing pops to my mind.

    Power of Blood
    Mobility talent, definitely a pick.
    What is this, a sustained doubled version of Lethality? Definitely a problematic talent. The biggest deterrant is the suggested requirement of shedding enemies blood. Using daggers kinda does that. Pretending to pummel foes with fists&feet does not. Piercing/slashing versus blunt damage. Leaving smears of your blood on enemies skin is a notch less impressive and terrifying. Grey Wardens don't have acidic Alien blood afterall. Unless a good interpretation arises, i'm staying clear of this.

    Heartseeker tree (Awakening)
    Translates perfectly into the legendary heart-stopping fist. Also being a high level Awakening ability is another plus.
    Tsssk, another combat hide in shadows talent. If that part is disregarded, it is an dodge-evasion ability and thus very suitable. I'll take it and not read first part of the description ^^
    Name of the talent provides a paved road to pressure points. The description less so. I'm not even completely sure what it does. Is it like an autoattack Mark of Death?
    Suspending judgement until i get better idea of what it does.
    Despite it's peak legendary tier, this smacks so much of folktale fancy. An epic level AoE Flurry of Blows crossbred with Backstab. On the other hand, it's basis lies in battlefield mobility... Undecided for now, it's at least 26 levels away, i have to test it's ridiculousness.

    Dual Weapon talents
    Dual-Weapon Training tree
    Makes little sense for unarmed combat. Less dexterous offhand may be also a reality in martial arts, but it's far less important than in dual wielding swords/daggers. I feel like i should be given this talent for free!
    A rather vague description. I'm not exactly sure what to make of it or how to interpret it into unarmed combat.
    Bonus to critical chance is all well and fine, bleeding lacerations are another deal entirely. It's hard to inflict bleeding wounds with bare fists and feet. Adding any sort of pointy objects, spikes, razors quickly resolves the difficulty. Think miniature Wolverine claws. I'm not certain if i want to go that way though. Another case of suspension until something comes along that'd justify it.
    Honestly, this whole talent tree is so bland and generalized. It's hard to translate something so vapourish. It could be likened to martial arts traditional forms, or kata's. It could be overall progress in pugilistic ability. Could be including defensive skill vs. armed opponents. All sorts of things.
    Ability to wield full-sized weapons in both hands is another "wtf" moment here. It makes sense it's in this tree, but i don't care how dexterous you are, it's impossible without a very decent strength attribute, of which there's no trace in prerequisites. How to remould it into unarmed combat is another mystery i've no answer to yet.
    Stamina costs for all talents is logical enough, no problem with that.

    Dual Striking tree
    There are cases of attacks with both fists/feet at once, certainly. But they're mostly intended as a knockback effect. Trying to fight solely with dual strikes is beyond laughable. Taking the talent so i can get to further ones, but unbinding it rightaway and never ever using it.
    A natural choice. Think boxing, counterpunches. Using opponents power&momentum against him. Should be one of the most used abilities.
    One of the rare cases, where the whole talent can be copied over and still make complete sense. Personally, i'm somewhat skeptical of a guaranteed critical hit, when the intent is to lower opponents effectivness. It brings concept of healthbar to the table however, and that's as artificial a game mechanic as any, don't even want to get into it.
    An easy interpretation. An equivalent of a one-two-roundhouse kick combo. Stringing attacks with synergy.

    Dual-Weapon Sweep tree
    Sorry what? Laugh timeout please. I'll buy the broad arc sweep attack from Twohanded weapon warrior tree. It has weight, it has reach and twohanded grip. Imagine trying to do that with a dagger. With two daggers even. A killer move, no doubt. Only you're the one dying. No place for it in a fight. Taking it for access to the rest of the tree, but unbinding&never using it.
    A lesser version of a three strike combo, i'll buy it.
    Hmmm. I'd feel better about this one if it carried a defense penalty. I imagine it to be a fullbody Flurry of Blows. Since you extend yourself so much in offense, defense suffers. In a bit of a stretch, it could be said draining stamina represents the effort expended to still dodge and evade while nearly overextending. Bought.
    Acceptable enough if you substitute "both weapons" with "maelstrom of limbs" or similar. I have to test it to see if it's too ludicrous in action or not.

    Twin Strikes tree (Awakening)
    An epic version of a one-two combo. Both scoring critical hits is a bit... epic i guess.
    A tendance toward pressure point combat. Increased critical chance being more chances of it striking true. Critical damage just a more forceful attack due to practice *shrug*. Bleeding damage is a bit "what?" but it can be waved away easily enough with internal bleeding that's easier to inflict.
    Leg strike is intuitive enough, i fail to see what could be so extraordinarily special to warrant before-most epic ability status though. I'll ascribe it to possible legsweep. Connection between internal bleeding and tripping is lost in translation. Passably fitting.
    Sensible enough, consider it's the end all talent.

    Oh boy, that's one definition of DL;DR occasion you can pull out ;)
    Last edited: May 28, 2011
  2. Munchkin Blender Gems: 22/31
    Latest gem: Sphene

    Apr 18, 2007
    Likes Received:
    An interesting idea. Let us know how it works out.

    The only problem I see with this idea is the the damage dealt. You will be very limited since you will not have a weapon to increase the damage and I don't know if the PC will fight two handed if you select the 2 weapon talent tree or not.
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