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UPP raves about Maximise Attacks - err why?

Discussion in 'Icewind Dale 2' started by Gregorovitch, Sep 14, 2012.

  1. Gregorovitch Gems: 2/31
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    I was reading the UPP paper which I found on the whole quite interesting. but one thing struck me as odd:

    Their main tank (Fighter(4)/Barbarian(x)) build has a big deal made about the Maximize Attacks feat, going to some lengths to make it happen and taking it as early as possible - before Improved Criticals for example.

    My reading of his feat is that is that once a day it might give you an extra 5 or 6 damage on successful hit over possibly 8 or 10 attempts at best once per day - if you remember to turn it on. Given that where you might really want that, against some boss perhaps, you probably won't hit that many times over the 10 seconds anyway, this seems like a really measly, marginal bonus.

    Most of what the UPP paper says seems well researched and thought out to me, but this seems weird - but I might be missing something so I wondered if anyone knows why they are so keen on this feat.
     
  2. Marceror

    Marceror Chaos Shall Be Sown In Their Footsteps Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    It's one of the more "controversial" (if I may) choices in the UPP. A lot of folks opt not to do it. I agree, it's a fairly large price to pay for a single round of hitting really hard each day.
     
  3. Paracelsi

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

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    It all depends on party composition and playstyle. Also consider how higher luck increases the chance for a critical hit, and with the right items, weapon and bonuses Maximize Attack can increase damage output significantly for a particular fight.

    Anyway, to be specific note that 5 out of the 6 characters in the UPP are casters. That means they have enough buffs, debuffs, summons and other spells allowing them to perform extraordinarily long dungeon crawls effectively. How is Improved Critical going to make a difference when you already have so many memorized copies of Haste, Shades, Emotion:Hope, Animate Dead, Improved Invisibility, Wail of the Banshee, etc? In paper it gives you higher overall damage than Maximize Attack, but in practice then for certain groups (like this one) it's simply redundant most of the time. Better to get a buff that gives you a massive damage boost for use in certain fights - that way you get to kill bosses easy on top of already breezing through everything else. There's little point in making what's already easy even easier.

    Even in normal mode the UPP group has extreme nuking potential. Not much point going Improved Critical early when you're just gonna fry most hostile groups extra crispy.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2012
  4. coineineagh

    coineineagh I wish for a horde to overrun my enemies Resourceful Adored Veteran

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    Max Attacks is a novelty. I wouldn't rearrange my build for it, but for a Fighter who already gets tons of feats, it's a great feat to take. Definitely not an early priority, and I agree that Improved Critical should come first. Imp Crit is a passive bonus that doesn't need activation, so for my playstyle, its value is far greater than Max Attacks. Max Attacks overrides luck effects, making them redundant for 2 rounds. I prefer things that stack with all my bonuses over a 1x/day ability.
     
  5. Paracelsi

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

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    Only as far as damage goes. Hit and more importantly crit rolls should still be affected.
     
  6. Gregorovitch Gems: 2/31
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    So if I understand this the tank's job in this UPP party is really to take initial agro from front tier enemies while the five casters proceed to incapacitate and decimate the enemy group and occasional waft a weapon in the direction of anything that manages to stagger out of the smoke and vapours still on it's feet to finish it off for which Improved Criticals is not really necessary.

    Some bosses, however, are resistant to magic so the tank also has the job of executing a brutal physical assault on them to take them out as quickly a possible if the casters can't incapacitate them. For this task Maximise Attacks is a big bonus and is also reliable, not subject to adverse rolls.

    For ordinary mortal parties the Maximise Attacks feat might be more of a luxury and Improved Criticals much more of a priority.
     
  7. coineineagh

    coineineagh I wish for a horde to overrun my enemies Resourceful Adored Veteran

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    This is very true, even more son in Heart of Fury mode. Since I built most of my characters as primary casters with some melee/ranged options, I had the advantage of feasible physical combat, when magic just doesn't cut it.

    Most people who do HoF mode will just cheese it with summons most of the time, or have a 72AC build which protects from the brunt of the damage. I think superbuffed melee was the way the designers envisioned HoF to be played.

    Things get very different in HoF mode. My best melee warriors were clerics, my ranged characters were a druid, illusionist and sorcerer, and in fact my bard was the only character who did best when staying out of physical combat.
     
  8. Paracelsi

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

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    Basically sums it up, yeah.

    I'm pretty sure the fighter/barbarian in the original UPP is less of a tank (despite claims to the contrary) and more of a first line of defense against monsters that make it through the summons line. For one thing, he's a two-handed weapons user (definitely not ideal for a tank without innate magical capabilities). He may also function as a temporary main tank while his caster allies summon minions, using an invisibility items afterwards to get rid of aggro.
     
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