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fedechicco
10-31-2013, 09:44 AM
Hello folks!

I was planning the next life for my beloved Snemeis, and it came to my mind that I never played bard. So what the heck, let's play a bard!
Well, I know nothing about bards, but I do know how I like to play my toon, so here are the requisites for the build:

1. Must have a good (not necessarely uber) DPS
2. Must have a working evasion
3. Must be a working toon on the level range 1-20 (I'll TR as I get to level 20)

With all these new enhancements I wanted to try a ranged build, because I never played them and it seems kinda fun now.
So this is my first hypothesis for a DEX based AA Warchanter bard-rogue elf.

It's brd16/rog2/ftr2, and I think it is missing a lot of stuff, therefor I'll absolutely need your advice.


Character Plan by DDO Character Planner Version 04.19.03
DDO Character Planner Home Page (http://www.rjcyberware.com/DDO)

Snemeis Ranged Warchanter
Level 20 True Neutral Elf Male
(2 Fighter \ 2 Rogue \ 16 Bard)
Hit Points: 260
Spell Points: 570
BAB: 15\15\20\25\25
Fortitude: 11
Reflex: 24
Will: 14

Starting Feat/Enhancement
Abilities Base Stats Modified Stats
(36 Point) (Level 1) (Level 20)
Strength 8 11
Dexterity 20 32
Constitution 14 17
Intelligence 8 11
Wisdom 8 12
Charisma 16 19

Tomes Used
+1 Tome of Strength used at level 3
+1 Tome of Dexterity used at level 3
+1 Tome of Constitution used at level 3
+1 Tome of Intelligence used at level 3
+1 Tome of Wisdom used at level 3
+1 Tome of Charisma used at level 3
+2 Tome of Strength used at level 7
+2 Tome of Dexterity used at level 7
+2 Tome of Constitution used at level 7
+2 Tome of Intelligence used at level 7
+2 Tome of Wisdom used at level 7
+2 Tome of Charisma used at level 7
+3 Tome of Strength used at level 11
+3 Tome of Dexterity used at level 11
+3 Tome of Constitution used at level 11
+3 Tome of Intelligence used at level 11
+3 Tome of Wisdom used at level 11
+3 Tome of Charisma used at level 11
+4 Tome of Wisdom used at level 15

Starting Feat/Enhancement
Base Skills Modified Skills
Skills (Level 1) (Level 20)
Balance 5 11
Bluff 3 4
Concentration 2 3
Diplomacy 3 4
Disable Device 3 26
Haggle 3 4
Heal -1 1
Hide 8 16
Intimidate 3 4
Jump 3 7
Listen -1 6
Move Silently 5 11
Open Lock 9 19
Perform n/a 24
Repair -1 3
Search 3 19
Spellcraft -1 0
Spot 3 11
Swim -1 0
Tumble 6 12
Use Magic Device 7 27

Level 1 (Rogue)
Feat: (Past Life) Past Life: Barbarian
Feat: (Past Life) Past Life: Favored Soul
Feat: (Past Life) Past Life: Fighter
Feat: (Past Life) Past Life: Paladin
Feat: (Past Life) Past Life: Ranger
Feat: (Past Life) Past Life: Rogue
Feat: (Past Life) Past Life: Wizard
Feat: (Selected) Toughness


Level 2 (Rogue)


Level 3 (Fighter)
Feat: (Fighter Bonus) Point Blank Shot
Feat: (Selected) Rapid Shot


Level 4 (Fighter)
Ability Raise: DEX
Feat: (Fighter Bonus) Precise Shot


Level 5 (Bard)


Level 6 (Bard)
Feat: (Selected) Force of Personality


Level 7 (Bard)


Level 8 (Bard)
Ability Raise: DEX


Level 9 (Bard)
Feat: (Selected) Manyshot


Level 10 (Bard)


Level 11 (Bard)


Level 12 (Bard)
Ability Raise: DEX
Feat: (Selected) Improved Critical: Ranged Weapons


Level 13 (Bard)


Level 14 (Bard)


Level 15 (Bard)
Feat: (Selected) Improved Precise Shot


Level 16 (Bard)
Ability Raise: DEX


Level 17 (Bard)


Level 18 (Bard)
Feat: (Selected) Extend Spell


Level 19 (Bard)


Level 20 (Bard)
Ability Raise: DEX
Enhancement: Elf - Elven Accuracy (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Elf - Elven Dexterity (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Elf - Elven Accuracy (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Elf - Elven Dexterity (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Elf - Elven Accuracy (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Elf - Keen Senses (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Elf - Keen Senses (Rank 2)
Enhancement: Elf - Keen Senses (Rank 3)
Enhancement: Elf - Aerenal Weapon Training (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Elf - Nothing is Hidden (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Elf - Nothing is Hidden (Rank 2)
Enhancement: Elf - Nothing is Hidden (Rank 3)
Enhancement: Elf - Aerenal Weapon Training (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Elf - Arcanum (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Elf - Aerenal Weapon Training (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Elf - Arcane Archer (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Elf - Aerenal Grace (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Elf - Aerenal Weapon Training (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Mechanic (Rog) - Arbalester (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Mechanic (Rog) - Mechanics (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Mechanic (Rog) - Mechanics (Rank 2)
Enhancement: Mechanic (Rog) - Mechanics (Rank 3)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Arcane Archer (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Morphic Arrows (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Metalline Arrows (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Aligned Arrows (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Conjure Arrows (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Corrosive Arrows (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Force Arrows (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Force Arrows (Rank 2)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Force Arrows (Rank 3)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Frost Arrows (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Terror Arrows (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Terror Arrows (Rank 2)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Terror Arrows (Rank 3)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Flaming Arrows (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Dexterity (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Banishing Arrows (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Paralyzing Arrows (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Paralyzing Arrows (Rank 2)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Paralyzing Arrows (Rank 3)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Smiting Arrows (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Shock Arrows (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Dexterity (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Moonbow (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Arrow of Slaying (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Improved Elemental Arrows (Rank 1)
Enhancement: Arcane Archer (Elf) - Runebow (Rank 1)




My main concerns are:
1. I do not have enough AP to actually take the whole archer tree and warchanter tree, and I do not know what is really useful inside there, so I couldn't reason on the tradeoffs.
2. I do not have enough skill points to maximize the rogue stuff. I never had UMD on any toon and I play just fine, but with this toon I thought it was nice to try. Even so, having UMD kills out search and disable device, which might be even more useful.

What do you guys think? How would you improve this?

Thanks for the feedback.

unbongwah
10-31-2013, 10:41 AM
As much as I like DEX-based builds - heck, I just posted one! (https://www.ddo.com/forums/showthread.php/429060-Bard-Build-Advice-needed?p=5154150&viewfull=1#post5154150) - I have to admit I think it's something of a trap. There's just way more STR bonuses than DEX in DDO - inc. Rage spell & Skaldic Rage, so any bard can get +6 STR right off the bat - also it forces you to invest APs into DEX-to-dmg enhs like elven Grace, rogue Dagger in the Back, or rgr Tempest.

As for AAs: as you've discovered, if you invest in the racial AA line, it chews up most of your APs; at least 14 APs to unlock the racial tree and over 30 APs into the PrE itself (presuming you want Slaying Arrows, at least). So the first question: do you really want to invest that heavily into AA in the first place? A few rgr lvls gain you access to a lot of the "low-hanging fruit" in the AA tree while saving a bunch of APs for other things. It also opens up DWS, which has a few useful perks, like extra sneak atk and Pos Spellpower.

Chai
10-31-2013, 12:02 PM
As much as I like DEX-based builds - heck, I just posted one! (https://www.ddo.com/forums/showthread.php/429060-Bard-Build-Advice-needed?p=5154150&viewfull=1#post5154150) - I have to admit I think it's something of a trap. There's just way more STR bonuses than DEX in DDO - inc. Rage spell & Skaldic Rage, so any bard can get +6 STR right off the bat - also it forces you to invest APs into DEX-to-dmg enhs like elven Grace, rogue Dagger in the Back, or rgr Tempest.

Depends why they want the dex. If it is JUST for the damage, its a trap. DEX to damage does allow new players to focus on less stats in order to pump a smaller number of stats higher. Pumping dex is also better for reflex save if going for evasion.


As for AAs: as you've discovered, if you invest in the racial AA line, it chews up most of your APs; at least 14 APs to unlock the racial tree and over 30 APs into the PrE itself (presuming you want Slaying Arrows, at least). So the first question: do you really want to invest that heavily into AA in the first place? A few rgr lvls gain you access to a lot of the "low-hanging fruit" in the AA tree while saving a bunch of APs for other things. It also opens up DWS, which has a few useful perks, like extra sneak atk and Pos Spellpower.

Does the bard want to melee and have a ranged manyshot burst, or is it a full time bow user.

AzB
10-31-2013, 04:21 PM
Depends why they want the dex. If it is JUST for the damage, its a trap. DEX to damage does allow new players to focus on less stats in order to pump a smaller number of stats higher. Pumping dex is also better for reflex save if going for evasion.



Does the bard want to melee and have a ranged manyshot burst, or is it a full time bow user.

Just for TR'ing, I use that Gnoll bow that automatically grants str to damage. With no other archery feats, I get the same damage with a bow that I get with a two hander. That is to say, not a lot, but at least it's not worse. ;) For traps, you can give dex a minor boost and then maybe use something like Parasitic breastplate with the +10 reflex saves. With GH and skills boost, that should get you into the low 40s reflex if you don't completely dump dex.

But yeah, it's a compromise. You can't have it all.

fedechicco
11-14-2013, 04:44 PM
Does the bard want to melee and have a ranged manyshot burst, or is it a full time bow user.

It will be a full time archer in my intents.
I tend to like Dex based toons because I want good evasion, and I find it hard to achieve it on a casting toon with a maxed out str.

fedechicco
11-15-2013, 01:31 PM
As much as I like DEX-based builds - heck, I just posted one! (https://www.ddo.com/forums/showthread.php/429060-Bard-Build-Advice-needed?p=5154150&viewfull=1#post5154150) - I have to admit I think it's something of a trap. There's just way more STR bonuses than DEX in DDO - inc. Rage spell & Skaldic Rage, so any bard can get +6 STR right off the bat - also it forces you to invest APs into DEX-to-dmg enhs like elven Grace, rogue Dagger in the Back, or rgr Tempest.


What you're saying here is interesting: in a fully buffed condition, will a toon with Dex maxed out have a higher str than Dex?
This is kinda important to know, because I want and need an uber evasion, but still it will be a dps toon...

unbongwah
11-15-2013, 02:11 PM
What you're saying here is interesting: in a fully buffed condition, will a toon with Dex maxed out have a higher str than Dex?
STR bonuses off the top of my head: Skaldic Rage (+4), Rage spell (+2), Divine Might (+CHA), barb Rage (at least +4), Ram's Might (+2), Madstone Boots (+4), Titan's Grip (+6), Primal Scream (+5 - doesn't stack w/Rage spell, IIRC).

Naturally, you won't necessarily have all of those on your build, but as a bard you'll have the first two, at least; and the last three come from gear or EDs.

fedechicco
11-16-2013, 07:21 AM
STR bonuses off the top of my head: Skaldic Rage (+4), Rage spell (+2), Divine Might (+CHA), barb Rage (at least +4), Ram's Might (+2), Madstone Boots (+4), Titan's Grip (+6), Primal Scream (+5 - doesn't stack w/Rage spell, IIRC).

Naturally, you won't necessarily have all of those on your build, but as a bard you'll have the first two, at least; and the last three come from gear or EDs.

Yeah, in fact I see more than a couple that I won't be able to use in the list:
Divine Might is not available for Bard/Rogue/Fighter/Ranger, which are the classes we were considering,
Barb rage and Madstone are not good for a bard which wants to cast now and then,
Titan's Grip is available only after lvl18, which is too much end game for me (at level 20 i'll TR)
Primal Scream is epic stuff. I understand there is a bug which causes it to be usable at lower levels, but I don't have that ED anyway, so it's out of the question.

Just out of curiosity I tried to modify the build in order to make it STR based, and I finally get this:

STR: 18 start + 5 level ups + 2 warchanter + 4 skaldic + 2 rage spell + 2 ram's might = 33 STR (+ tomes and items, but those are the same for DEX)

The same DEX based makes:
DEX: 20 start + 5 level ups + 2 elven + 2 AA = 29 DEX (+ tomes and items)

DEX gives me a loss of 2 dmg per hit with sustainable buffs, but I lose a lot in reflexes and I get even more issues when talking about AP.

I don't know if it is worth it, for 2 dmgs per hit.

unbongwah
11-18-2013, 10:00 AM
True, much depends on how you structure your build. If you won't have access to barb Rage or Divine Might, that lessens the appeal of going STR-based; though again any bard will have +6 STR almost right off the bat (Skaldic + Rage spell). Likewise if you plan to TR once you hit 20 again, thus EDs and epic gear don't matter. Still, another disadvantage of going DEX-based is you have to spend at least 18 APs in elf tree for Grace; between that and AA tree, you don't have enough APs to pick up the better stuff from bard trees.

Plus one disadvantage shared by all bardchers is: what do you do while Manyshot is on cooldown? You can keep plinking away with your bow, ofc, and can cycle thru the special atks from AA; but your DPS will still be subpar. So I like to have a good melee option on my bardcher builds; and given the APs you spend on Aerenal, TWF w/rapiers is a natural fit. But even a humble staff can be useful if you pick up Acrobat (+15% atk speed, DEX to dmg) and a couple of melee feats.