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nooblord
06-27-2017, 04:10 AM
Hi all!

Im currently running a 2nd life pure wizard (currently level 13 Archmage with Necromancy and Enchantment focus) after a long break from this game (years) and im struggling to stay alive and solo reliably. I am looking for advice or gear suggestions that can improve my survivability

Here's what i can do: okay damage and consistent CC in Elite-R2.

Here's what i cant do: avoid getting hit.

My problem is that im running about... 250 HP on a level 13 toon and ive made sure to get as much as i could reasonably afford (i dont have access to greensteel or canith crafting leveled). I find myself dying to random 1 shots on the regular be it unavoidable traps, boss monsters, or just poor rolls. Hirelings, while helpful, just arent enough. The reason i come to the forums is because I regularly see other players run up to 600 something HP in reaper at my level AND avoid getting hit very consistently to the point where they dont bother with healing on R1. Did i miss a memo somewhere? Or are Reaper XP + low ML TR item handmedowns the only way to be that strong...

would appreciate any suggestions!

C-Dog
06-27-2017, 05:20 AM
What's your defensive gear like? Fortification? PRR? Dodge? Korthos Spearbane?
Do you run any Blur/Displacement/etc? What are the specs of anything in that direction?

PsychoBlonde
06-27-2017, 10:36 AM
If you're running a PM in undead form, you should have a pretty consistent 200% fortification. That will help. If you don't, get a fort item stat.

Most people will actually have around 300 to 350 hp at level 13, the high numbers you're seeing are because reaper points grant extra hp, particularly if you invest in the Guardian tree, which there's really no reason not to. So you're not actually doing that badly, the problem is that you're getting hit bigger than you need to be.

Blur, Displacement, and Stoneskin will improve matters for you right off the bat. Also, make sure you're using elemental resists appropriate to the quest you're in, and casting Protection from Energy on yourself frequently. This will reduce spell damage. You should have the Shield spell up at ALL TIMES on Reaper, because magic missiles are DEVASTATING.

Ideally, you'll probably want to wear light armor instead of robes to pick up some more PRR and MRR. Make sure you have a + dodge item and + sheltering item. Getting up even to 33% damage reduced makes a big difference. If you have reaper points, invest them in the guardian tree for more dodge/prr/mrr/hp--the caster benefits are trivial in heroic levels and you're better off upping your survival.

Try to get your AC up around 55, this helps also. Getting hit big once isn't a big deal, usually. Getting hit several times in a row, that's when you get killed.

Make sure you've got striding/haste so that you can move quickly and Jump for freedom.

Learn to recognize the different champion types and which ones can be particularly ouchy. Here's a general list:

Bad melee champions:

Arborian
Beast Mark
Demon Soul
Infernal Pact

Bad caster champions:

Soul of Cruelty
Soul of Flame
Soul of Ice
Skyborn
Demon Soul

Selvera
06-27-2017, 12:00 PM
Lairs of defense that I like to have on everyone:

HP: There is a lot of ways to increase this; some easy, some hard, some tedious, some require tradoffs. Here's a few sources:
False Life + Vitality: These give you + HP, they stack, and they're found on items and augments. If you can get an item with this great, if not slot them in as augments and get a lesser amount. The Pale Green Ioun Stone is pretty good; but it's also a low-droprate item from the wheloon expansion.
Constitution + Insightful Con: Having this in your build is good; more important is to get as much as possible from items. At level 13 it's not unreasonable to have at least +6 con; resulting in 39 HP.
Draconic Vitality: Once you run the gianthold saga you talk to the favor patron in the market and get +10 HP (until you TR).
Elemental Energy: This is found on greensteel; it adds up to 45 HP stacking with all these other sources.
Pastlives: Barbarian and Primal past lives add up to a maximum of +93 HP at level 13.
Reaper Points: Outside of reaper mode this is a maximum of +20 HP (at level 13), inside of reaper mode the maximum is much, much higher at level 13(in the order of a few hundred).
Constitution Tome: When you get 1750 total favor on a character you can pick up a tome of +2 constitution. This translates into +13 HP at level 13. It stacks with everything and is completely permanent (keep it during TR). On a second life character without actively pushing to get as much favor as possible; I'd expect you to hit 1750 favor at about level 18ish.

Tanks (and melees) also often get HP from enhancements and feats.

Blur: Gives you a chance that you don't get hit; very valuable.
Some classes can cast blur and/or displacement; if you're one of these classes make sure you have one of these spells cast on yourself at all times. If you're not one of these classes; then there's 2 items that can provide this bonus on a permanent basis.
Bracers of the Wind: Found by running approximately 4 cannith challanges (2 challanges twice). Minimum level 3; grants permanent blur.
Greensteel of Smoke: Yep back to greensteel, it's just really good at level 13. Anyways, min level 11 and grants permanent blur and a displacement clickie with 2 charges; and it can be made with the HP that was mentioned above.

PRR/MRR Effectively acts like a % increase to your health. Except better.
Basically what you want here is the best quality randomloot item you can find with "sheltering" on it. It is the cheapest and best source of improving your prr/mrr. Some named items might have insightful prr/mrr, and those are often worth wearing.
Other sources of PRR/MRR include wearing heavy armour and wielding shields. Enhancements. Fighter-specific feats. And a huge chunk comes from pastlives.

Saves Make it less likely that enemies can hold and disintegrate you.
Again there's a lot of ways to improve this; the two main ways I like to focus on are through finding the best resistance item you can and by increasing the save-type stats (by default Constitution, Wisdom and Dexterity). Typically you need both to a significant extent. You want save = 2ce your level.
You also want a parrying item if you can find it. This is powerful in that it grants a stacking bonus to saves and a stacking bonus to AC in one effect slot.
Class/build factor a lot into what saves are good. Wizard has fairly good will save, and by taking the insightful reflexes feat can have a good reflex save too. However, you might struggle to get a good fortitude save.

Dodge (if light armour or robes) Another chance to not get hit. I like not getting hit.
Random loot dodge items might be able to net you 10% dodge chance by level 13, although that might take having both dodge and insightful dodge items equipped. In light armour or robes, your dodge cap will be much higher then 10%, so you don't need to worry about any "maximum dodge" increases to get the most out of wearing these items.
Shadarkai pastlives can supply a small amount of dodge (3%), as can the dodge feat (3%) and some class enhancements (also in the order of 3%). Also monks get a lot of free dodge.

AC (especially if melee) Yet another chance that stuff doesn't hit you. This one is more dependant on how hard the content is (harder content = more chance of being hit with the same AC)
The biggest source of AC in heroics is via martial past-lives; which can net you +27 AC at level 13. However, this isn't much of a possiblity for you so let's go into some other sources.
Protection: At level 14, you can wear the white dragonscale robe from gianthold; which provides a lot of nice medium-sized defensive bonuses all in one; including 3 different types of AC bonuses that all stack for a total of +17 AC. And also fortification.
Dexterity: Adds a little AC, you might be able to pick up +4 or so if you have a good dexterity item on.
Parrying item: Might be able to get +2 or +3 from here, and it also gives (all) saves which makes it really good.
Obviously heavy armour builds can get better AC then you will be able to. Also monks can. You could theoretically pick up a shield to improve your defenses if you take care to remove the arcane spell failure chance that it entails.

Fortification Reduces the chance that enemies just get lucky and deal double, or triple, or quadruple damage to you.
This is especially important after level 10; however as you're undead you should get a large chunk of this for free, so you won't really have to worry about it. Also the white dragonscale above gives a large chunk. At level 13 you shouldn't need more then 120% of this and you're likely to have more then that with your build.

If you can't get white dragonscale, need it earlier or want to run a different character who needs fortification; here's a couple good sources:
Blue Augment of Heavy Fortification: Minimum level 8, slot it into any gear. It costs 20 tokens of the 12, which you can only get after level 20, but if you run across a vet and ask nicely they might have a few extra.
Nightforge Gorget: A cheap item to make which you can get in a single run of a free to play level 12 quest. The budget alternative to get 100% fortification just when you need it on any character.

Arctigis
06-27-2017, 12:16 PM
If you're running a PM in undead form, you should have a pretty consistent 200% fortification. That will help. If you don't, get a fort item stat.

Most people will actually have around 300 to 350 hp at level 13, the high numbers you're seeing are because reaper points grant extra hp, particularly if you invest in the Guardian tree, which there's really no reason not to. So you're not actually doing that badly, the problem is that you're getting hit bigger than you need to be.

Blur, Displacement, and Stoneskin will improve matters for you right off the bat. Also, make sure you're using elemental resists appropriate to the quest you're in, and casting Protection from Energy on yourself frequently. This will reduce spell damage. You should have the Shield spell up at ALL TIMES on Reaper, because magic missiles are DEVASTATING.

Ideally, you'll probably want to wear light armor instead of robes to pick up some more PRR and MRR. Make sure you have a + dodge item and + sheltering item. Getting up even to 33% damage reduced makes a big difference. If you have reaper points, invest them in the guardian tree for more dodge/prr/mrr/hp--the caster benefits are trivial in heroic levels and you're better off upping your survival.

Try to get your AC up around 55, this helps also. Getting hit big once isn't a big deal, usually. Getting hit several times in a row, that's when you get killed.

Make sure you've got striding/haste so that you can move quickly and Jump for freedom.

Learn to recognize the different champion types and which ones can be particularly ouchy. Here's a general list:

Bad melee champions:

Arborian
Beast Mark
Demon Soul
Infernal Pact

Bad caster champions:

Soul of Cruelty
Soul of Flame
Soul of Ice
Skyborn
Demon Soul

Soul of Cruelty champs which cast MM. Ouchie!

C-Dog
06-27-2017, 02:04 PM
Soul of Cruelty champs which cast MM. Ouchie!

Potentially, yes - but not if you have Shield/Nighshield up 24/7, as PB recommended above. ;)

nooblord
06-27-2017, 02:58 PM
Thank you so much for the detailed replies - this was immensely helpful to checklist through my current item build. I'll try to splash a bit of eldritch knight, get wraith form another try (sustain just sucks on reaper), and look for a light armor and maybe a shield to get extra AC.

I'll bite the bullet and look into crafting to see if i can get the specific secondary stats im missing at a good quality

Niminae
06-27-2017, 07:50 PM
I'll bite the bullet and look into crafting to see if i can get the specific secondary stats im missing at a good quality

CC is really where it's at after the upgrade. If you didn't go to cap in your first life you'll probably be missing a lot of the collectables you'll need to make a fully decked out item, but if you did or can get your hands on some (there is a thread on the forums which lists good farming quests, many that are combat free) then that will go a long way towards improving your HP.

I make HP rings at the same factors of 4 that augments have (because I hate staring at my L15 crafted item and wishing I could put a L16 augment in it without wrecking the ML) with Con, Insightful con, False Life, and an augment slot (green is best for versatility). For the L12 version I'll slot a Diamond of Vitality in it (ML11 for some odd reason).

Crafted items can also be defenses oriented, with Sheltering, Insightful Sheltering, etc. For example a wrist item can have Resistance, Dodge, and Parrying.

Check out the Cannith crafting planner (http://ccplanner.byethost14.com/main.html), it is an excellent tool. I use the Gear Master page to plan out what I want, and then it will tell me on which item slots those effects can go.

Running Waterworks you might pick up a mithril shield with less or no ASF to have to get rid of via AP or augments.

Also include in your layers of defense a decent healing amplification. While Hamp (or Namp for a PM) won't keep you from being one-shot, it can keep you from being two-shot if you get a heal in the middle and your Hamp boost the healing up to a reasonable level. In reaper content this is especially important.

Arctigis
06-28-2017, 05:29 AM
Potentially, yes - but not if you have Shield/Nighshield up 24/7, as PB recommended above. ;)

IIRC, you still get the dot stacks.

TDarkchylde
06-29-2017, 07:00 PM
Get Enlarge. It'll mean you won't have to get as close to cast some of that CC. It also makes charms a more viable part of your arsenal, since you can charm from out of aggro range, and then the mobs will start fighting one another.

PsychoBlonde
06-29-2017, 09:59 PM
IIRC, you still get the dot stacks.

Not from magic missiles, because shield blocks them entirely so they don't "hit". From other spells, even if they don't do damage (because you saved and ignored all the damage, for instance) you still get the dots, because you still got "hits".

PsychoBlonde
06-29-2017, 10:02 PM
Get Enlarge. It'll mean you won't have to get as close to cast some of that CC. It also makes charms a more viable part of your arsenal, since you can charm from out of aggro range, and then the mobs will start fighting one another.

I second this one. Enlarge on CC spells is really, really helpful. I use it on my druid and it makes a HUGE difference.

Hobgoblin
06-29-2017, 11:20 PM
Not from magic missiles, because shield blocks them entirely so they don't "hit". From other spells, even if they don't do damage (because you saved and ignored all the damage, for instance) you still get the dots, because you still got "hits".

check that one

i know that last life as a lock i was getting hit with the dot, but not the mm.

I was warlock and did have the enhancment that puts shield on perm.

did not test casting spell, but did not work with that.