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HastyPudding
08-02-2014, 08:20 PM
I made my pure 20 bard morninglord (it's a pure spellcasting spellsinger, might seem strange as a morninglord, but it works great, for me). I'm enjoying it a lot, however, I'd like to do some epic lives to finally get some past lives to make epic completionist. This should be easy on a pure bard: spellsinger is a pretty strong caster, and has great synergy with magister and exalted angel destinies, and swashbuckler can easily be done in legendary dreadnaught and fury of the wild, so that covers all destiny spheres.

So, now that I'm almost ready to ETR, I've come to a few crossroads.

1) Weapon choice: I can't decide. Morninglord has a line that could work for light maces and light hammers in swashbuckler stance. Or should I just go with rapiers like everyone else? Maces seem ideal due to the current end-game content having so many skeletons (and epic orchard coming up), but rapiers seem more suited to more general dps.

2) Strength, charisma, or dexterity? This pertains a lot to my 1st issue. On one hand, charisma has great synergy with bards and bard abilities. Strength is a no-brainer as it allows for much easier stat disbursement. Dexterity, however, has an added option: weapon finesse can be used so that you can use dexterity for both attack and damage, and you can get dex-to-damage via morninglord's mace/hammer line, as well as swashbuckler. High dexterity would give high reflexes (great evasion from the swashbuckler capstone), easier stat placement (strength would become a dump stat), and only cost one feat.

3) Offhand? I see the vast majority of people using a buckler, although a hybrid sort of build can be taken by using an orb, to take advantage of my 18 spellcaster past lives. Has anyone ever tried using nothing in their offhand, or is the damage you gain from it insignificant?

slarden
08-03-2014, 06:05 AM
Morninglord makes perfect sense for a bard caster with the +3 spell pen and light spell benefits (great synergy with EA destiny). These benefits come at the cost of 1 DC vs. Drow which is not a bad trade-off at all.

Bucklers are very common now with (esp fighter splashes that have extra feats) because you can currently take the SWF feats and the shield mastery feats which of course would make the tier 3 dashing scoundrel option kind of underwhelming. However, with a pure 20 bard you may be a bit challenged to fit in the shield mastery feats without giving up something else important.

Based on a previous dev comment, it's possible SWF and shield mastery feats can't be taken together in the future.

As for a hybrid build with an orb, I really don't think it's worth it if you are working on primal and martial trees. Basically all you are getting is an energy burst twist but your spellpower will be lower without points in the spellsinger tree. I think exploit weakness is a better option for a swashbuckler myself, but that is at least partially just personal preference.

Good luck on your TRs - it sounds like a great plan.

HastyPudding
08-03-2014, 10:24 AM
Morninglord makes perfect sense for a bard caster with the +3 spell pen and light spell benefits (great synergy with EA destiny). These benefits come at the cost of 1 DC vs. Drow which is not a bad trade-off at all.

Bucklers are very common now with (esp fighter splashes that have extra feats) because you can currently take the SWF feats and the shield mastery feats which of course would make the tier 3 dashing scoundrel option kind of underwhelming. However, with a pure 20 bard you may be a bit challenged to fit in the shield mastery feats without giving up something else important.

Based on a previous dev comment, it's possible SWF and shield mastery feats can't be taken together in the future.

As for a hybrid build with an orb, I really don't think it's worth it if you are working on primal and martial trees. Basically all you are getting is an energy burst twist but your spellpower will be lower without points in the spellsinger tree. I think exploit weakness is a better option for a swashbuckler myself, but that is at least partially just personal preference.

Good luck on your TRs - it sounds like a great plan.

Yes, I've been having a lot of fun using the EA destiny. Morninglord has the mass buff SLA, which gives the spellsinger additional buffing capabilities, and the +30 light spellpower, elven arcanum, and +1 to enchantment are wonderful. It was even more fun once I got my lantern ring at level 26. Easily stunning mobs with soundburst/greater shout then using sun bolt, avenging light, divine wrath, and shout is great.

Yeah, seeing as bards are a bit squishy, I guess going for bucklers would be useful, if anything, for the +10% dodge. I read that comment from Sev, too, and I can see their reasoning: swashbuckler is strong enough as it is without a 45% shield bash rate and more doublestrike. Although, I don't think 8% doublestrike and 5 PRR are worth 2 feats.

I'm still debating on what stat to use, though.

mrunlimited
08-03-2014, 06:47 PM
Ive been etring on my bard to go towards epic completionist so ive been trying out all three trees a bit and mesing around with different weapons. One thing i have found that works extremely well, if you wanted to do maces grab a drow mace of the weapon master(light with +10 stunning) and for lvl 21-24 you can get a working dc with the frozen fury line in wc even the t5 or go heavy swash and just take the first freezing strike. Then 25-28 use the epic skullsmasher. It will end up 18-20 x 4 in swash and is prolly the best weapon for a swash aside from balizard or t2 thunderforged. For 20-21 well best I have for you is to use the envenomed blade. even without imp crit it is a nice weapon.

HastyPudding
08-03-2014, 08:22 PM
Ive been etring on my bard to go towards epic completionist so ive been trying out all three trees a bit and mesing around with different weapons. One thing i have found that works extremely well, if you wanted to do maces grab a drow mace of the weapon master(light with +10 stunning) and for lvl 21-24 you can get a working dc with the frozen fury line in wc even the t5 or go heavy swash and just take the first freezing strike. Then 25-28 use the epic skullsmasher. It will end up 18-20 x 4 in swash and is prolly the best weapon for a swash aside from balizard or t2 thunderforged. For 20-21 well best I have for you is to use the envenomed blade. even without imp crit it is a nice weapon.

I had thought about using skullsmasher. Even a thunderforged light mace or light hammer would do if I can't find one, I suppose.

That leaves the issue of which stat to use. I'm undecided on charisma or dexterity.

mrunlimited
08-03-2014, 11:03 PM
Go charisma to damage, gives you the option of a higher dc for frozen fury as well as disco ball. Also grants some extra sonic spell power for resonant arms. You can still get dex high enough to have a no fail reflex save in ees if you are full swashbuckler, may need to twist lithe from the sd ed for higher level ees. More spell points too if you find yourself running low ever.

HastyPudding
08-04-2014, 11:12 AM
Go charisma to damage, gives you the option of a higher dc for frozen fury as well as disco ball. Also grants some extra sonic spell power for resonant arms. You can still get dex high enough to have a no fail reflex save in ees if you are full swashbuckler, may need to twist lithe from the sd ed for higher level ees. More spell points too if you find yourself running low ever.

That's probably the best bet, I think. Charisma just goes so well with bards.

What about strength, though? How much strength would be enough for to-hit to be functional and not like a healbot cleric's that misses 9/10 times?

Seikojin
08-04-2014, 12:58 PM
Stat importance it sounds like should be:
Cha
Con
Dex/Str (if you want evasions/high reflex or melee damage)
Int/Wis (skills or saves)

All the rest is gravy and for your build, should be fun either way. My Spellsinger/swash life is going great. Not going t5 for swash, mainly aiming for reliable cc and some melee useability under all those sla's.

Weapon type in a swashbuckelers case is all flavor. The bludgeon is good for undead like you mention. So mainline that.