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View Full Version : Having trouble in solo combat with wizard, any help?



Vivamort
06-06-2011, 02:43 PM
Hey all. Very new player. I started playing a melee because in most MMOs they tend to be fairly easy to understand and play at low levels and be very powerful at low levels too. This was certainly the case for me, I was able to enjoy a bunch of quests and experience a small slice of what DDO has to offer. Now ultimatly I don't want to play a melee type, but would much prefer a DPS caster type. However on my first attemps, I do rather poorly at mechanics of combat.

It seems to me I need at least three hands to do what needs to be done, so I must be doing something very poorly and am hoping I can get some guidance here, since my searches of the forums didn't net me anything but some videos that were marginally helpful.

So my exact problem is this. I find it difficult to target, run/jump to keep from getting hit, and casting at the same time.

I use the wasd keys to move, spacebar to jump, mouse to target and then have problems clicking or pressing hot key to get spell to cast. This often results in my toon getting hit a lot, and certainly a lot more than is healthy if I want to finish a quest without drinking tons of cure light potions. I usually have expeditious retreat going to be able to outrun the mobs and am so far always solo.

So 1) Am I doing something wrong, or will it just take time for me to get used to doing it and it will eventually happen faster and I will get hit less? 2) If I am doing it wrong and there is a better more reliable less intesive way to "kite" and kill mobs, what is it? 3) Is there an easier way to lock on targets that doesn't require me to use a mouse click? because part of the trouble is once I kill one mob I get hit while trying to target the next one.

Thank you for any advice.

MrkGrismer
06-06-2011, 02:49 PM
Tab

dragons1ayer74
06-06-2011, 02:51 PM
I would recommend a bit of practice and also use hot keys and/or put your most valued spells on your active hotbar then use the number keys to hit them. I WASD and can hit keys 1 - 5 very easy and in most quests I routinely only need 2 or 3 spells that I need to cast in the heat of battle. Also I believe in mouse targeting locations for most spells once you get it down it is way more functional and much more efficient on your spell points.

chodelord
06-06-2011, 02:51 PM
use tab to target and I think there is a key for "target nearest" but I never remember what it is

also "q" is very useful when you are looking for levers or switches but you aren't sure exactly where they are

Waylayer
06-06-2011, 02:53 PM
Tab

^ This.

Unless there is a specific mob that tactics dictate needs to die first, tab (target closest/next enemy) is your friend.

Splatterfart
06-06-2011, 03:13 PM
It sounds like you're struggling with adjusting either to the interface, or the large number of hotkeys required to quickly/easily access a spell caster's abilities. If you do much looking through spellcaster threads you'll hear the woes of casters everywhere choking off their visibility with anywhere from 6 to a dozen visible hotbars packed with all sorts of fun. I personally run 7-9 depending on my character.

Nobody can tell you how YOU will play best, but what I can do is tell you where I have personally found success.

Short of typing to the guild/party/etc my right hand never leaves my mouse. Ever. I have my left mouse set to circle my toon without actually turning my avatar, while my right keeps the camera locked behind my toon while I turn. This lets me basically use either a forward or back key on my left hand while still leaving my other 4 fingers free to pop off hotkey'd spells and skills. Which brings my to my 2nd suggestion:

Meta keys. Meta keys. Meta keys.
I have Shift+[button] Hotkeys for just about any button on my left hand, as well as CTRL+[button] hotbars. You have a lot of spells/skills, so try to use something that is logical for you. For instance, on my Favored Soul I have Shift+S set to holy (S)mite, and Ctrl+S set to (S)ilver Flame Exorcism. Shift+F for (F)lamestrike, etc.

Admittedly, I go a little far with my hotkey'ing, but it serves me well. I have gone so far as to create hotbars that utilize my arrow keys (as well as shift+[arrow keys] & ctrl+[arrow keys]) and the /*-+ keys on my 10-key pad. However, I have instant one-touch access to literally anything and everything my character could ever possibly do with the push of a single button (or button+meta combo).

Another slightly unrelated suggestion for spellcasters out there: Place your spell components in order from lowest level to highest level on hotbar 20. You can scroll down one hotbar to instantly see how many spell components you have remaining for each spell level at a glance, then get right back in the action.

I think what you really need is just a little more time to "feel out" a class. I'm not sure which spell caster you're looking at, but a sorcerer is a relatively straight forward spellcaster that can be shockingly effective with rather small amounts of effort or game knowledge. Of course, they are absolutely deadly effective in the hands of a skilled player.

Another suggestion: Take plenty of time to learn the difference between soft targeting, hard targeting, and when to use each method.
* Soft Targeting = When your character is pointed in the general direction of a bad guy/crate/npc and its image appears in your targeting orb. I have my UI set to fire my spells at whatever is in that targeting orb (I'm pretty sure that's a standard setting, but you may want to double check). This will help you with the "run-n-gun" tactics you're looking for (and you WILL want to learn those tactics).
* Hard Targeting = When you directly click on an enemy/object/player/etc to "lock on." This is extremely useful for time when you are attempting to precisely aim something like a finger of death spell, attempting to snipe a nearly dead enemy on the backline of a brawl, or when your vision is impaired by something like an obscuring mist & you can't find where that annoying kobold has run off to.

"Directional Targeting" is also something worth mentioning. It's really nothing more than a little more hands-on manipulation of Soft Targeting. This is when you use something like the right-click-and-hold method described above to turn your character. You'll gain a small targeting reticule that will help you aim attacks. It's extremely handy for placing ranged attacks at specific locations, or to help you attack while strafing (aka Strafe left while looking right and firing).

I will make the assumption that as a "new" player you do not currently have warforged as an option. If that is, in fact, the case, then I would recommend something like Human to learn the game. Bottom line: Human is NEVER the "wrong" option. There may be other very viable races for a specific class setup, but human is ALWAYS among the list of "best" races for anything. If you DO have warforged available, then I would HIGHLY recommend a warforged sorcerer that is completely focused on charisma with remaining ability points funneled to Constitution. It will be a very straight forward and effective character with a healthy amount of staying power, incredible amount of stopping power, and the oh-so-handy ability to self-heal with repair spells. Short of the warforged-arcane-selfhealer option carry a "pocket healer" with you (aka hireling). A hireling cleric's divine vitality ability can go a long way toward allowing you a few extra spell casts between rests.

(Note to melee-types: Hireling bards. Period.)

Simple spells like Expeditious Retreat and Jump will also go a long way toward improving your longevity. Jump is virtually a requirement for any arcane caster. The mobility you'll gain from this simple 1st level spell will not only save your life time and time again (by allowing you to simply hop over bad guys), but will also let you navigate dungeons MUCH more easily (such as hopping chasms, crates, etc). Those two spells I've just described will also let you completely bypass a shockingly large number of traps you'll encounter in this game (either from simply running past them before they fire, or hopping over their harmful effects).

Hopefully this will help you a little bit. Bottom line is to find a style that suits YOU best and allows you to have fun and enjoy the game. Good luck, and Happy Trails!

mleger
06-06-2011, 03:54 PM
get some charm type spells, and a npc cleric

let everything else do the fighting for you.

at level 15 i only have 80 HP and i let myself get hit, because i know i'm getting healed

also blurr is great & fearsome robes

Cendaer
06-06-2011, 03:56 PM
Tab


^ This.

Unless there is a specific mob that tactics dictate needs to die first, tab (target closest/next enemy) is your friend.

Actually, the tilde (~) key is "target nearest enemy."

Tab key cycles to "next" target.

I'm not sure exactly how "next" is determined, but Tab is definitely NOT "target nearest enemy."

Impaqt
06-06-2011, 04:11 PM
Actually, the tilde (~) key is "target nearest enemy."

Tab key cycles to "next" target.

I'm not sure exactly how "next" is determined, but Tab is definitely NOT "target nearest enemy."
I always flip the "`" and "Tab" targeting

DoctorWhofan
06-06-2011, 04:16 PM
get some charm type spells, and a npc cleric

let everything else do the fighting for you.

at level 15 i only have 80 HP and i let myself get hit, because i know i'm getting healed

also blurr is great & fearsome robes

you only have 80 points at level 15??

Theolin
06-06-2011, 04:23 PM
at level 15 i only have 80 HP and i let myself get hit, because i know i'm getting healed

^^ NO please do not do this ... this will get you killed many many many times, mobs hit for 30-75 at later levels and you cannot avoid it. Mobs like Orathons & Devils that Teleport & wack, they usually come in packs of 2-6 as well. Try to plan for about 400+ HPs at level 20, 500 is better and can be done.

Also suggest playing with "auto targeting" off it drives me nuts it will always be the wrong mob it is on

hotbars are your friend, have them out & visible & hotkey'd it helps

I personally drive with both hands depending on what I need sometimes mouse look sometimes not & have a mouse button to switch back and forth,

also push to talk on the mouse as well

I also use the "classic" DDO key layout, I find it much friendlier

Also the above of having a hot bar with components in it really helps, I have mine out separate where I can always see it.

Vivamort
06-06-2011, 04:23 PM
This is exactly the kind of information I am looking for! Thank you all! I can't wait to get back home and try to put this info into practice.

So just to answer some of the above. No, no warforged yet. I have a human wizard, was intending to go pale master, to eventually add some self healing to the mix. But I can certainly try a sorcerer out to work out the kinks in my keyboarding/mousing set up and skills.

Kochab
06-06-2011, 04:48 PM
I do not have much experience with casters here, but like the others said figuring out hotkeys and using tab to target will help greatly.

Personally I decided to go wizard for my first caster as there is more flexibility in choosing spells and finding which ones work for me than a sorcerer. Pale master has been pretty survivable but I find myself questing outside of undead form a lot if there is a decent healer.

Be sure to get as many constitution items and things that otherwise boost your hitpoints to survive longer. Having fortification is another thing that will greatly increase your survivability.

Buying a few resist energy wands and using them to cast resist energy will help mitigate most damage from casters and some traps at lower levels and will save spell points.

Also what server are you on? I am sure there are some friendly people willing to help gear you.

ProdigalGuru
06-06-2011, 04:56 PM
Some things that I find helpful:

1. Scroll out all the way. This lets you see the battle as a whole without rotating much.

2. Hit the "T" key when you log in, and leave it like that. Now wherever you point the mouse is where you will face. If you need the arrow cursor, hold the right mouse button. Makes for more intuitive movement.

3. Tab targeting. Get used to hitting "Tab" to select a target before you fire.

4. Hotbar 1, slots 1-5. These number keys are very close to your WASD movement keys, and are your go-to actions. You could have 10 open hotbars, but as long as your top 5 actions are here, you should be fine. it's easy to move new icons into these positions as well, on an as-needed basis.

5. Never back into unexplored territory. Best case scenario: you back yourself into a corner. Worst case scenario: you just aggroed 20 more mobs. Pretty much the same reason we face forwards while driving a car.

twix
06-06-2011, 04:57 PM
get some charm type spells, and a npc cleric

let everything else do the fighting for you.

at level 15 i only have 80 HP and i let myself get hit, because i know i'm getting healed

also blurr is great & fearsome robes
Just a tip OP .... DO NOT take this guys advice..
If you want dps casting reroll as a sorc..
Use jump,displacement,haste and rage at all times..
Use tab to target in most situations unless you are targeting a specific mob...
Backspace to look for items,levers,etc..near you character...
At low level take masters touch and grab a two hander and go to town...
Always have pots if you are soloing or other means to heal i.e. potions,scrolls,wands..
Hi,Welcome ....to DDO

Aurora1979
06-06-2011, 05:04 PM
my personal layout when i play is:

mouse in right hand.

Hold down right button to pan round.

left button to attack

I have a button on the side which i use for auto run.

Right hand side of keyboard with left hand.

I use the keypad numbers 1-9 and also the " - " key and link these to the hot bar. That gives me my quick access to 10 spells.

I then have a 2nd bar with other spells. I find thats easy enough to swap round the main spells Ill need for a quest.

I use the arrow keys to run,

0 to jump,

enter to block,

left control to "use"

left shift to select next mob.

I also put players 1-6 on the keys home,insert,delete,end.pg up and pg down. Just incase.

.......

This is my first mmo so I just mucked round loads when I started until I started feeling comfortable. As i did I was able to add more and move key functions about a bit.

I have alot of tool bars up, usually 8-10 or so. But the important 3-4 here are:

1 for my buffs. I just mouse click these. I tend to be prepared rather then try to buff in battle but once you know where they are you get used to them and can clcik them quickly.

i then have my 1-10 spells on the highlighted bar, linked to the keypad. Most quests 10 spells is plenty. Once you know what you use most often and generic spells etc.

I keep a couple of bars of other spells too. Ones you might use rarely. Having quest knowledge here helps i guess but I tend to just swap in when I know ill need it..... eg... banishment on a wiz..... might stay on the second bar for most of the time but then your going into vale so you move it down.

Vivamort
06-06-2011, 05:41 PM
I am on Sarlona since someone asked. And currently have a 1 rogue/3 wizard human (thanks to the many guides on this forum, I don't think I am messing up too badly to have a sneaky trap disabling toon that can cast very effectivly (plan on 2 rogue and 18 wizard) and 5th level dwarf fighter (my first toon).

ceiswyn
06-07-2011, 01:11 AM
get some charm type spells, and a npc cleric

let everything else do the fighting for you.

at level 15 i only have 80 HP and i let myself get hit, because i know i'm getting healed

also blurr is great & fearsome robes

A l15 wizard should not need constant healing by a hireling cleric in order to complete a quest. They should be able to handle most dungeons at-level using pots or (depending on UMD) scrolls/wands.

I am hardly an expert with arcane casters, but my own l15 wizard is currently running around with a Con of 21 (despite being a drow!) and an Int of 32, and solos OK without hirelings (she'd solo better if her player weren't a complete incompetent).

If you have only 80hp at level 15 you will die constantly without a healbot cleric, and also with a healbot cleric on any reasonable difficulty or if they can't/don't focus entirely on you. In a party, that cleric could have been casting offensive spells, doing melee or healing other people; nothing you have gained by dumping Con is worth them having to give up all their other actions in order to heal you (or the number of pots they will go through in doing so). Also, a Con as low as 10 reduces your Concentration (which is a kind of vital class skill, especially if you're being hit a lot!). You're going to have real difficulty with high-end content, in raids, and in epics; I'd suggest you consider an LR. At the very least, wear a Con item!

OP: everyone else in this thread has already said the things I would have said. Good luck; and practice conquers all :)

Cardtrick
06-07-2011, 01:33 AM
4. Hotbar 1, slots 1-5. These number keys are very close to your WASD movement keys, and are your go-to actions. You could have 10 open hotbars, but as long as your top 5 actions are here, you should be fine. it's easy to move new icons into these positions as well, on an as-needed basis.

In addition to the low-numbered hotbar slots (and their CTRL/Shift meta-d versions), it's worth noting that certain letter keys are also very close to the WASD keys, and can be assigned to hotbar slots.

On all my characters, I have F and Ctrl-F mapped to frequently used "cheap" combat actions (haste/damage boost on melees, divine power/divine favor on my melee favored soul, SLAs on spellcasters), G and Ctrl-G mapped to Haste (Haste pots/clickies on characters that can't cast it directly), and H and Ctrl-H mapped to some form of self-healing.

Asmodeus451
06-07-2011, 01:37 AM
Some things that I find helpful:

1. Scroll out all the way. This lets you see the battle as a whole without rotating much.

2. Hit the "T" key when you log in, and leave it like that. Now wherever you point the mouse is where you will face. If you need the arrow cursor, hold the right mouse button. Makes for more intuitive movement.

3. Tab targeting. Get used to hitting "Tab" to select a target before you fire.

4. Hotbar 1, slots 1-5. These number keys are very close to your WASD movement keys, and are your go-to actions. You could have 10 open hotbars, but as long as your top 5 actions are here, you should be fine. it's easy to move new icons into these positions as well, on an as-needed basis.

5. Never back into unexplored territory. Best case scenario: you back yourself into a corner. Worst case scenario: you just aggroed 20 more mobs. Pretty much the same reason we face forwards while driving a car.

This.

this is exactly what i do. It makes running and gunning MUCH easier (especially if you are at all familiar with First Person Shooters).

You could even go so far as to hotkey your main damage spell to your left mouse button (i know its possible, just beyond my tech-fu)

ProdigalGuru
06-07-2011, 02:25 AM
In addition to the low-numbered hotbar slots (and their CTRL/Shift meta-d versions), it's worth noting that certain letter keys are also very close to the WASD keys, and can be assigned to hotbar slots.

On all my characters, I have F and Ctrl-F mapped to frequently used "cheap" combat actions (haste/damage boost on melees, divine power/divine favor on my melee favored soul, SLAs on spellcasters), G and Ctrl-G mapped to Haste (Haste pots/clickies on characters that can't cast it directly), and H and Ctrl-H mapped to some form of self-healing.

Believe it or not, some folks find rebinding hotkeys to be a more daunting task than surviving combat.

I prefer to get used to the default layout, as most MMOs share a lot of similarities in this regard.