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View Full Version : The Intel Commando: Halfling TWF/Ranged DPS Endgame Build



geoffhanna
12-09-2014, 06:38 AM
I am cross-posting this build both here and on DDOGamer.com (http://www.gamergeoff.com/the-intel-commando-halfling-twfranged-dps-endgame-build/) because I plan to implement it in the next day or two and I would like maximum input first.



Mawry Haversack, Intel Commando
Level 28 Chaotic Good Halfling Female
(1 Rogue / 14 Ranger / 5 Wizard / 8 Epic)



This is a DPS build with four goals


Top-shelf TWF
As close to top-shelf ranged as remains possible
Healing and self-sufficiency
Won't embarrass me in the end game





Abilities Level 1 Level 28
Strength 10 15
Dexterity 12 19
Constitution 16 21
Intelligence 18 30
Wisdom 12 20
Charisma 8 13


Mawry is a 36-point build with +3 tomes on all stats except Wisdom where she has a +4.

All of the level ups go into INT.

The level 28 numbers are all ungeared. Assume another 14 points of INT, and at least 10 more CON and WIS.



Hit Points: 408
Spell Points: 939
BAB: 16
Fortitude: 19
Reflex: 26
Will: 16


These totals are from Ron's Character Planner (http://www.rjcyberware.com/DDO/), which does not include Epic Destinies, and are also ungeared. The current version of Mawry which is STR-based but otherwise similar has 750 hit points, 1050 spell points, and saves in the 40s-50s. I expect Mawry's reflex save in this version to be in the 60s.

Mawry's AC will not be all that outstanding, nor will her PRR or MRR. On the other hand, she will have Evasion with an excellent relfex save, lots of Dodge, equipment-based miss chances like Ghostly, and always-on self buffs including Displacement.



Skills Level 1 Level 28
Balance 3 40
Heal 5 42
Hide 5 41
Jump 4 27
Move Silently 5 39
Search 8 44
Spot 5 37
Tumble 2 29
Use Magic Device 1 35


Again, ungeared. Most of the skills above will be in the 60-70s. UMD will be 44.

Feats
Level 1 Least Dragonmark of Healing
Level 3 Completionist
Level 3 Extend Spell
Level 6 Insightful Reflexes
Level 9 Dodge
Level 11 Mental Toughness
Level 12 Improved Critical: Piercing Weapons
Level 15 Improved Critical: Ranged Weapons
Level 18 Mobility
Level 21 Epic: Overwhelming Critical
Level 24 Spring Attack
Level 26 Epic Destiny: Holy Strike
Level 27 Point Blank Shot
Level 28 Epic Destiny: Perfect Two Weapon Fighting

Level 1 Favored Enemy: Undead
Level 10 Favored Enemy: Giant
Level 16 Favored Enemy: Evil Outsider


Lots of Dodge. Lots of hit and move. Lots of critical enhancers. The Ranger levels add all of the TWF feats and the best ranged feats for free.


Halfling Enhancements
Dexterity x2
Halfling Luck x3
Jorasco Dragonmark Focus x3
Lesser Dragonmark of Healing
Break Out The Leeches
Greater Dragonmark of Healing

Arcane Archer Enhancements
Arcane Archer
Morphic Arrows
Metalline Arrows
Conjure Arrows
Flaming Arrows
Dispelling Shot
Force Arrows x3
Frost Arrows
Wisdom x2
Terror Arrows
Paralyzing Arrows

Tempest Enhancements
Shield of Whirling Steel (Rank 1)
Tempest (Rank 1)
Whirling Blades (Rank 1)
Acrobatic x3
Improved Parry x3
Haste Boost x3
Critical Accuracy x3
Critical Damage x3

Harper Agent Enhancements
Agent of Good
Harper Enchantment
Traveler's Toughness x3
Strategic Combat
Strategic Combat II

Eldritch Knight Enhancements
Eldritch Strike

Ron's planner (http://www.rjcyberware.com/DDO/) doesn't yet address Epic Destinies. Mawry already has Epic Past Lives from the Martial and Arcane spheres (3% Doublestrike and +1 Weapon enchantment) and will be working on adding more. She will probably want to live in the Unyielding Sentinel tree because it makes her virtually unkillable, with twists from Shiradi and Legendary Dreadnaught.


- - - - - -

So how did I do? Any ideas for improving the character? Have at me, I am thick-skinned and can take the criticism. More, I want to implement this in the next day or so and am anxious to incorporate any useful feedback that may accrue.

unbongwah
12-09-2014, 10:43 AM
Apart from novelty, is there any particular reason to go INT-based on this build? Why so much STR & WIS? I think your feats need some work; in particular, I don't see Power Atk or Precision (should have one of those); and why no Empower Heal? Those seem more useful than, say, Mobility & Spring Atk.

geoffhanna
12-09-2014, 11:46 AM
Apart from novelty, is there any particular reason to go INT-based on this build? Why so much STR & WIS? I think your feats need some work; in particular, I don't see Power Atk or Precision (should have one of those); and why no Empower Heal? Those seem more useful than, say, Mobility & Spring Atk.

INT is to maximize ranged damage. And melee too, at the same time, and skills, and reflex saves.
STR may be too high. I am so used to needing STR I just put some there out if habit. A base of 6 plus Completionist plus tome is enough to carry her gear. Free points! Nice catch, thanks!
WIS is for saves and spell points. I'd add more if I could (and now I can :) ).

Feats: mobility and spring attack are for Dodge more than anything else. Do you think I don't need that much Dodge? Or have smother idea how i could get it? Or just think the extra DPS justifies the trade-off regardless?

Saekee
12-09-2014, 12:41 PM
Hi, what does 5 wizard bring to the table? It will significantly lower your BAB which affects ranged RoF more than anything else

unbongwah
12-09-2014, 12:58 PM
Alternate proposal:

Halfling rgr 12 / wiz 5 / pal 3
Stats: 6 / 12 / 16 / 18 / 8 / 15 or thereabouts
Feats (heroic): Least DM (1), Precision (3), Dodge (6), Imp Crit:Pierce (9), IC:Ranged (12), Emp Heal (15), Insightful Reflexes (18)
Feats (wiz): Maximize and Extend or Empower
Feats (epic): Overwhelming Crit (21), Completionist (24), Point Blank Shot (27) or whatever you want
Feats (ED): PTWF (26), pick from First Blood, Elusive Target, or Hellball

Leveling order doesn't matter too much, except you can't take more than 2 wiz lvls before lvl 9 (otherwise your BAB is too low for IC) and you need to hit rgr 8 by lvl 15 to take Emp Heal (or swap it with Insightful Reflexes)

Enhancements: 36 APs into Tempest (Dance of Death & 100% offhand), 12 APs into halfling (Gtr DM), 12 APs into Harper (KtA+SC), 6 AP into Sacred D. (+25 PRR), and possibly 13 APs into EK (Imp Mage Armor & Shield, Arcane Barrier, +3% doublestrike), with 1 AP left over for DWS.

The pal 3 splash provides a big boost to survivability (defensive stance & Div Grace); if you do make Unyielding Sentinel your primary ED, you can use your LoHs to power Light the Dark, which is a nice AoE heal. [Ftr instead of pally trades DG & LoH for 2 more feats.] A heavier investment in EK also yields survivability gains: +10% AC, +10 PRR, and Arcane Barrier.

Since you're going INT-based, you may also want to experiment with Draconic Incarnation; Energy Burst would be a fun Twist to have in any ED.

I would also experiment with using med/hvy armor: you'll lose Evasion and cap your Dodge bonus; but the gains in PRR/MRR may be worth it.

Grailhawk
12-09-2014, 01:43 PM
I agree with unbongwah, 12/5/3 is a better split you might talk me into 3 rogue over paladin but paladin is the better choice. IMO ranger has cut of points at 6, 12, 15, and 18. 14 for CSW might be worth it but you have the halfling DM instead i think?

For what its worth (comparison at the very least even if that's worth nothing) my current ranger is an 18/1/1 Ranger/Arti/Fighter who does every thing you want but in my opinion better.




Stats Base Gear & Buffs
STR 18 50
CON 14 37
DEX 15 36
INT 14 36
WIS 08 29
CHA 08 19


HBF: Toughness
L01: Point Blank Shot
L03: Exotic Weapon Khopesh
L06: Precsion
L09: IC:Slashing
L12: IC:Ranged
L15: Maximize
F01: IC: Piercing
L18: Quicken
L21: Overwhelming Critical
L24: Combat Archery
L27: Epic Damage Reduction

03 AP Human
Human Versatility: Damage Boost
Improved Recovery
11 AP Stalker
Far Shot
Sneak Attack
Stealthy
Called Shot: Sniper Shot
Increased Empathy
Versatile Empathy
37 AP Tempest
Shield of Whirling Steel
Improved Parry
Tempest
Improved Reaction
Graceful Death
The Growing Storm
Deflect Arrows
Whirling Blades IV
Dance of Death
Whirlwind
Action Boost: Sprint Boost
04 AP Kensei
Kensei Focus
Action Boost: Haste Boost
25 AP Harper
Agent of Good I
Harper Enchantment
Magical Endurance (Rank 2 only)
Know Your Foe
Vigor of Life I
Traveler's Toughness (Rank 2 only)
Versatile Adept III
Know the Angles
Strategic Combat II

I use heavy armor, and have less care for reflex save do to PRR/MRR

Hobgoblin
12-09-2014, 01:56 PM
he only does halflings

Grailhawk
12-09-2014, 01:58 PM
he only does halflings

I know like i said its a point of comparison, also not that hard to convert over.

unbongwah
12-09-2014, 02:31 PM
he only does halflings
Phrasing - BOOM!

Hobgoblin
12-09-2014, 02:33 PM
Phrasing - BOOM!

um

let me try again.

he only plays with halflings.


First one was unintentional

second i couldn't resist

hob

Thrudh
12-09-2014, 03:09 PM
Not sure I get the whole INT thing, but I guess it works, since you can make it work with Reflex save (with a feat) and for to-hit and damage (with enhancements). You do miss out on any chance for tactical feats though... and I notice you're not taking "Know the Angles" harper enhancement which basically gives you Divine Might except with INT... You really should fit that in if you're going INT-based, and Harper-based anyway.

My big question is why wizard?

My main was a halfling ranger/wizard for a long time (11/5 back when the cap was 16), and I found the synergy worked very well back then... Self-cast haste and displacement and blur and shield and invisibility was very nice on a melee character...

And for a new player, that might still be a good combo...

But for a vet player, I'd expect you to have Haste and Displacement clickables from the Shroud, plus clickables for every other low-level wizard buff spell you might want... which pretty much make the iconic melee/wizard of D&D lore pretty pointless (Shame on you devs!)

Also, you really should get Empower Heal, and Maximize, so that your halfling dragonmarks hit harder (and get a devotion item, and put some skill points in Heal).

I do like 12 ranger levels (I'm a halfling 12/4/4 ranger/fighter/paladin), but there's a lot of different options in those remaining 8 levels.

I've been halfling for 8 years and I really like the healing dragonmarks, but they are much more limited than just using Epic Destinies to heal yourself... I still stick with them, because my main has been a halfling TWF evasion melee with the healing dragonmarks for 8 years now, and that's his core identity... I've TRed into different classes (I've been more fighter, more rogue, more monk, in the past, but he's always been TWF evasion melee with the healing dragonmarks - oh and he's always had at least 6 levels of ranger for manyshot and the TWF feats)

I'm rather happy about being mostly ranger again, since that's how he started.

Saekee
12-09-2014, 03:24 PM
I know your goal was TWF, but 7 bard levels get you displacement. What about a mix that utilizes SWF and thrown weapons? Srry this would completely change your approach but I can see the various elements having more synergy. Right now 5 wiz just to get displacement seems costly. Maybe bard/ranger/fighter and use deepwood line on high-crit throwing weapons like the nightforge one? IDK. I know Critzilla by Tilomere works with this.

geoffhanna
12-10-2014, 07:05 AM
Thanks for the great suggestions, everyone! I responded in general in this post (http://www.gamergeoff.com/sharpening-the-build-revising-the-intel-commando/).

But I wanted to respond specifically to a couple of comments:

@Grailhawke: Dude, you are why I went Ranger 14! Because of your impassioned defense of the need for CSW to supplement Halfling DM http://www.gamergeoff.com/going-to-the-polls-for-a-second-opinion/

@Saekee: interesting idea, definitely, but that is a whole other build and not this one at all.

@Thrudh: Apparently we have a lot in common, you are describing Mawry's past lives on the way to completionist perfectly.

Thanks again everyone!

Grailhawk
12-10-2014, 08:48 AM
Thanks for the great suggestions, everyone! I responded in general in this post (http://www.gamergeoff.com/sharpening-the-build-revising-the-intel-commando/).

But I wanted to respond specifically to a couple of comments:

@Grailhawke: Dude, you are why I went Ranger 14! Because of your impassioned defense of the need for CSW to supplement Halfling DM http://www.gamergeoff.com/going-to-the-polls-for-a-second-opinion/

My bad though you went at it for FOM lol if you have CSW loaded I say go with it still.

Saekee
12-10-2014, 09:03 AM
I have also tried to come up with wizard levels in a build to get displacement. I am running a 6 monk/7 wiz/ 7 rogue dex build melee with perma tensers since none of the other tier 5s are attractive. I may do tier 5 assassin if I can pull a second EMG shard (monks are centered with it).
The whole EK tree strikes me as defensive since the cleaves eat up too many spellpoints

Monkey-Boy
12-10-2014, 09:09 AM
he only does halflings

Don't judge.

Monkey-Boy
12-10-2014, 09:12 AM
Regarding the build itself . . . just build some displacement clickies and go pure ranger.

unbongwah
12-10-2014, 09:17 AM
I responded in general in this post (http://www.gamergeoff.com/sharpening-the-build-revising-the-intel-commando/).

I thought that (armor) or (evasion) were basically two differing ways to achieve the same result , but I haven’t played an Armor character in EE since the Armor Up changes (https://www.ddo.com/forums/showthread.php/446138-Armor-Up-Developer-Diary-2) went live; maybe armor is now clearly the superior choice?
They're different forms of defense: Evasion + high Reflex saves provides a way of avoiding dmg from anything with a Reflex save (i.e., traps & spells); while PRR/MRR provides dmg reduction on (almost) anything which hits you. You can read the wiki page (http://ddowiki.com/page/Physical_Resistance_Rating) for more, but a simple comparison at lvl 28 (presuming Div Power or Tensers to max BAB):

lt armor: 15 + (28 / 2) + 2 = 31 PRR (~23% dmg reduction)
hvy armor: 45 + 28 + 6 = 79 PRR (~44% dmg reduction)

So right off the bat, hvy armor provides almost double the dmg reduction of lt armor; though that gap narrows with additional PRR from gear etc. I think the max combined PRR bonus you can get from gear is +55, though that includes a Planar Focus of Prowess which req's using a CitW weapon. So best-case scenario on the build I posted upthread, let's say +55 PRR from gear, +10 PRR from Imp Parry, +10 PRR from Imp Shield, and +25 PRR from defensive stance.

lt armor: 31 + 55 + 10 + 10 + 25 = 131 PRR (~56.5% dmg reduction)
hvy armor: 79 + 55 + 10 + 10 + 25 = 179 PRR (~64% dmg reduction)

Unyielding Sentinel in Unbreakable stance would be another +30 PRR, which would be ~61.5% vs ~67.5%. So it is still possible to achieve high PRR in lt armor, but as you can see it takes a considerable investment, which involves sacrifices elsewhere.

MRR (http://ddowiki.com/page/Magical_Resistance_Rating) is another matter, though, because for some reason a lot of PRR bonuses don't boost MRR as well; it's also designed to favor hvy & tower shields, which is part of why we're seeing a resurgence in classic S&B builds. [The other part is the DPS gains from pally & Vanguard, ofc.]

tl;dr summary: Evasion is still a good way of avoiding a lot of spell dmg (provided your Reflex saves are high enough, ofc), but it doesn't do a thing for physical dmg nor non-Reflex-based spells. PRR/MRR mitigates dmg from almost everything; and a hvy-armor wearer gets better protection with less effort than a lt-armor wearer. As an added incentive (http://ddowiki.com/page/Thunder-Forged#Flawless_version_upgrade), Shadow Striker is only available on med or hvy Shadowscale armor; and Shadow Guardian is only available on hvy armor.

geoffhanna
12-10-2014, 07:27 PM
They're different forms of defense: Evasion + high Reflex saves provides a way of avoiding dmg from anything with a Reflex save (i.e., traps & spells); while PRR/MRR provides dmg reduction on (almost) anything which hits you. You can read the wiki page (http://ddowiki.com/page/Physical_Resistance_Rating) for more, but a simple comparison at lvl 28 (presuming Div Power or Tensers to max BAB):

lt armor: 15 + (28 / 2) + 2 = 31 PRR (~23% dmg reduction)
hvy armor: 45 + 28 + 6 = 79 PRR (~44% dmg reduction)

So right off the bat, hvy armor provides almost double the dmg reduction of lt armor; though that gap narrows with additional PRR from gear etc. I think the max combined PRR bonus you can get from gear is +55, though that includes a Planar Focus of Prowess which req's using a CitW weapon. So best-case scenario on the build I posted upthread, let's say +55 PRR from gear, +10 PRR from Imp Parry, +10 PRR from Imp Shield, and +25 PRR from defensive stance.

lt armor: 31 + 55 + 10 + 10 + 25 = 131 PRR (~56.5% dmg reduction)
hvy armor: 79 + 55 + 10 + 10 + 25 = 179 PRR (~64% dmg reduction)

Unyielding Sentinel in Unbreakable stance would be another +30 PRR, which would be ~61.5% vs ~67.5%. So it is still possible to achieve high PRR in lt armor, but as you can see it takes a considerable investment, which involves sacrifices elsewhere.

MRR (http://ddowiki.com/page/Magical_Resistance_Rating) is another matter, though, because for some reason a lot of PRR bonuses don't boost MRR as well; it's also designed to favor hvy & tower shields, which is part of why we're seeing a resurgence in classic S&B builds. [The other part is the DPS gains from pally & Vanguard, ofc.]

tl;dr summary: Evasion is still a good way of avoiding a lot of spell dmg (provided your Reflex saves are high enough, ofc), but it doesn't do a thing for physical dmg nor non-Reflex-based spells. PRR/MRR mitigates dmg from almost everything; and a hvy-armor wearer gets better protection with less effort than a lt-armor wearer. As an added incentive (http://ddowiki.com/page/Thunder-Forged#Flawless_version_upgrade), Shadow Striker is only available on med or hvy Shadowscale armor; and Shadow Guardian is only available on hvy armor.

Thank you for the thoughtful reply. It is most appreciated.

I was hoping to get more physical damage mitigation through Dodge, Ghostly, Blur, and Displacement. I think only Dodge is less effective or less available in armor? But it is quite a but less effective.

A semi-related question: I assumed that none of the Shadow Strike attributes stacked with anything, and were therefore not very useful. Is that incorrect?

unbongwah
12-10-2014, 07:49 PM
I was hoping to get more physical damage mitigation through Dodge, Ghostly, Blur, and Displacement. I think only Dodge is less effective or less available in armor? But it is quite a but less effective.
Investing in miss chances like AC, Dodge, concealment, Incorporeality, etc. is dmg avoidance; investing in PRR/MRR is dmg reduction. The problem is no matter how high you get your miss chance (and you will eventually hit a point of diminishing returns), you're still gonna be hit occasionally; and in EEs you're gonna be hit hard. So to a lot of folks, it is a more cost-effective investment of resources to go for high dmg reduction via hvy armor etc. to soak up the hits, letting you focus your build resources into moar DPS or higher DCs or whatever.

A semi-related question: I assumed that none of the Shadow Strike attributes stacked with anything, and were therefore not very useful. Is that incorrect?
Melee & ranged alacrity are enhancement bonuses, so they don't stack with Haste spell; but Haste is +15% atk speed and Shadow Striker has Ranged Alacrity 20%, a +5% increase. I think the only way to get higher is fully charged Fatal Harrier (+25%). Meanwhile the 3% doublestrike bonus is Profane; the only other profane DS bonus is Shadow Training IV from Shadowdancer, I think.

I suspect for at least certain combat scenarios, flawless black dragonhide (http://ddowiki.com/page/Item:Flawless_Black_Dragonhide_Armor) is better DPS for Armor Piercing and Relentless Fury; and you can get 3% doublestrike from Draconic Ferocity. But Shadowscale has a bunch of survivability benefits too (Ghostly, 130% Fort, Deathblock).

geoffhanna
12-10-2014, 09:14 PM
Investing in miss chances like AC, Dodge, concealment, Incorporeality, etc. is dmg avoidance; investing in PRR/MRR is dmg reduction. The problem is no matter how high you get your miss chance (and you will eventually hit a point of diminishing returns), you're still gonna be hit occasionally; and in EEs you're gonna be hit hard. So to a lot of folks, it is a more cost-effective investment of resources to go for high dmg reduction via hvy armor etc. to soak up the hits, letting you focus your build resources into moar DPS or higher DCs or whatever.

Melee & ranged alacrity are enhancement bonuses, so they don't stack with Haste spell; but Haste is +15% atk speed and Shadow Striker has Ranged Alacrity 20%, a +5% increase. I think the only way to get higher is fully charged Fatal Harrier (+25%). Meanwhile the 3% doublestrike bonus is Profane; the only other profane DS bonus is Shadow Training IV from Shadowdancer, I think.

I suspect for at least certain combat scenarios, flawless black dragonhide (http://ddowiki.com/page/Item:Flawless_Black_Dragonhide_Armor) is better DPS for Armor Piercing and Relentless Fury; and you can get 3% doublestrike from Draconic Ferocity. But Shadowscale has a bunch of survivability benefits too (Ghostly, 130% Fort, Deathblock).

Nice about the profane bonus, I'd missed that. Thanks again for all the info! :)