Ranged Combat Feats
Had a long post that got eaten yet again by the boards :(
What I'm looking for is a good list of feats as a minimum, recommended, and max all-out for each of the three ranged combat styles - bow, repeater, and thrown. I'm trying to come up with a build built on a 12 warforged wizard AM evoker platform that adds in ranged damage to leverage the benefits in Shiradi. To do that I need to know which feats are needed to make each one of those combat methods viable, good, and great.
For the purposes you're after, it's mainly the rate of fire stuff that's important, right? The possible Shiradi procs end up being a lot more damage than the missiles themselves, by orders of magnitude? So, I'd say...
Must-have: Rapid Reload, Rapid Shot
Best adds: Battle Engineer I (for EF), IPS (when line-dancing)
Gravy: IC, PBS, PS
Must-have: Rapid Shot
Best adds: Manyshot, 10k stars, IPS
Gravy: Bow Strength, IC, PS, PBS
Since we're talking Shiradi rather than Fury, Manyshot/10k doesn't necessarily end up being the clear direction, I don't think. Especially if they ever get around to fixing Rune Arms to work with Shiradi, there's potentially a lot to like about 2-6 levels of Arti. It helps shore up the spell point situation, and the "sustained" rate of fire is better with a minimal investment. Fast forward to a rune arm fix, and you've potentially also got a free AoE to trigger Shiradi procs. Never mind that you've got minimal Arti levels; you only want the rune arm for the proc, not for the base damage.
Of course, this is a hypothetical future in which they've (a) fixed rune arms for shiradi, and (b) not yet nerfed Shiradi procs on MM/CM/FM. It doesn't seem too likely that those two time periods will overlap ;)
See, that's what I'm thinking as well. I don't even think you *have* to have the rune arm fix in. The feats needed to make this work are minimal (Rapid Reload is free, Rapid Shot can be selected with level 4 arti). If you don't mind leaving out IPS you don't need much in the way of other feats. You've got a bit of burst from EF (5 per rest minimum).
You could splash 2 paladin on to here for saves or 2 monk for evasion and feats. Depsite what I've said in the other thread about saves I'd probably go with 2 monk unless (and this is a big if) I found a way to fit in Force of Personality. That's asking a lot though but the double-dip there could make enough of a difference to make some extra charisma worth it.
The nice thing about the 12 wizard/6 arti though is that we've created enough reasons to take int that we really do want to go all-out there. That would help some with the sp issues and take away from the MAD issues a bit (especially if we don't build for the really high dex feats). Also, the ability to use a rune arm mitigates the problem of having a weapon that takes up both hands - we'll be able to fit in casting boosts a lot easier.
I think you may be right on one thing though - if they do every go to a single proc for MM/FM/CM then the question becomes why do you go with 12 wizard versus just going pure arti or splashed arti. In that regard builds like Juggernaut stand to lose less to any future changes than something like this - they may not be able to manyshot as effectively if they make changes to address that but there are plenty of options on that platform that a straight-up LR at most would provide. Any of the 12 wizard AM evoker builds are much more dedicated to a single focus that might get changed.
Artificers get Rapid Reload at L1 + a free L4 feat (Rapid Shot) so that covers both.
Originally Posted by cforce
So PBS or IC:ranged would be the easiest DPS feat increases for ranged play (have to calculate if PS would be better). Going this route is most likely less stat intensive as well since INT can be leveraged for +hit or +damage
(insightful spells). BattleEngineerI also provides the mini-Manyshot Fusillade and additional +2 hit/+2 dmg.
12Wiz/6Arty also gets additional SPs thats based off of INT.
This route just seems to have more synergy with the base 12Wiz/6x Ranged goal.
Building on that 12 wizard/6 arti setup it looks like we'd have the following feats I'd consider critical:
3 of those are covered by wizard feats. 1 is granted from artificer and another as a level 4 feat from arti. That leaves 5 feats we might have to purchase with our 7 levels. I'd say that the monk version, since it frees up one extra feat, could go with PBS, PS, IPS line. The paladin version I'd probably go with FoP if you feel you need more will save that what just Divine Grace alone gives you and Improved Mental Toughness. Both would probably want Epic Toughness for one of the feats. The monk version might decide to pick up Combat Archery while the Paladin version could go with Epic Mental Toughness.
This is just off the top of my head of course but it seems like both of them would accomplish what we're trying to accomplish here. I don't see me playing either one - I just don't have the time to quickly recap a toon after they nerf it into mediocrity - but I think this would be a nice platform to provide constant high quality damage and CC. I'd lean toward the monk version simply because I think it does better with providing two modes of steady damage.
I do wonder how doable a human or helf version of this would be as well. The human would gain an extra two feats (dropping Quicken + human feat) which on the monk version would mean ICrit ranged tossed in and possibly taking the entire Mental Toughness line (depends on whether you want Epic Mental Toughness or Combat Archery). The helf version would gain sneak damage when in PBS range as the most likely benefit. Both would gain a damage boost that could be taken to rank IV if desired (though we already have one from arti that goes to II). Both also give healing amp which would help mitigate the loss of reconstruct. Honestly though, for EE's I don't know if anything can replace a quickened reconstruct.
See, I'd want to splash 2 paladin just to see people running in terror from the class split. :)
Originally Posted by Darkrok
"Wizard 12/Artificer 6/Paladin 2 --- arrgggh! My eyes! Can't....unsee...."
You know, I used to view those weird builds askance myself but with the advent of so much power coming from ED's I kind of expect it now. 8/6/6's seem pretty common now and often work just fine since the 'class' is really Shiradi, or LD, or US, or FoTW, etc. They're basically splashing 3 classes to get some benefits from them and 'playing' their ED. I'll agree though that there are still quite a few people out there that are in the pre-ED mindset and that layout (honestly, almost any layout with 12 wiz or 12 sorc) makes them shudder. :)
Originally Posted by cforce