I was sitting around pondering about how ranged builds have continuously been getting ignored in recent updates. I find that playing a ranged toon is ALOT of fun and as long as one can remember to not forget that they can also pick up a set of melee weapons (especially end-game) they can always be an effective contributor to a party.
Unfortunately it seems (to me) that instead of addressing the dps issues that ranged builds face, Turbine will be introducing items to the game that serve to only bridge the gap making those that aren't ranged builds more competitive with ranged dps than those that specialize in it. While I don't want to start a ranged vs. melee dps discussion, it would seem to me that a class that is defined as specializing in ranged combat should have considerable benefits when it comes to using ranged weapons. I think these are things to keep in mind as we will most likely see some more changes to the AA and Deepwood sniper paths within the ranger class.
Of course, this discussion is not limited to Rangers, as other classes should be able to invest in ranged combat skills as well. But, of course, the level of return should be proportionate to the investment. For example a Wizard build specced to use THF should not be putting out the same type of numbers that a THF Barbarian is -as the Wizard has a whole additional skill set to work with (namely their spells). In the same fashion a FvS or Rogue should probably not be as proficient with a ranged weapon as a Ranger who specializes in a ranged path. This perspective is, of course, up for discussion, but also not the main point of the thread (feel free to begin another thread to discuss ).
Instead of crying Dooooooom (although it will soon cost me fewer spell points to cry it), I thought I would do something constructive as a basis for future discussions. I know there have been other threads with measurements of RoF but partly because this information is a bit spread out, and partly because I wanted to perform my own measurements, I have come up with the data shown below.
My measurements were done using my Level 20 Ranger both with and without the 25% capstone enhancement. I utilized the gear I had which has been the most traditional/original gear available that impacts Rate of Fire (RoF). I did not have a suit of Black Dragon Armor to test with but I believe the items I tested will cover all the available "types" of bonuses and can be used with future data collection and calculations. Although I don't believe there should be any difference based on the Bow used, for sake of full disclosure I was using a GS Lit II bow.
As this is a rather lengthy thread, for those that would prefer to skip to the "main event", I believe Chart #3 (and the immediately preceding text) as well as Chart #8 are the main meat of this experiment.
For those that would like the full info, please begin here:
Below are the various items that can effect ranged alacrity/RoF with their stated % benefit increase as well as the type.
Chart #1 - Stated Item Effects
My first set of tests involved my 20 Ranger using Manyshot. I was completely sans equipment (minus what is stated) and free of any buffs. My sample set varied, but my numbers are based on the MODE of my sample sets and not the MEDIAN. Generally my sample set was at least 5, but increased to as many as 15 when there seemed to be a large disparity between tests.
Item Stated Increase Stated Type
Base (B) N/A N/A
Capstone (C) 25% Competence
Quiver (Q) 10% Untyped
AA Set (AA) 10% Competence
Haste (H) 15% Enhancement
The following chart shows the # of Arrows fired with a Manyshot with various combinations of the items above:
Chart #2 - Capstoned Manyshot
Based on the above chart, we can see that the stated effects from Chart #1 are not accurate, but instead the numbers seem more inline with the below chart. Also, based on how the effects stack, we see the following:
B C C,Q C,AA C,Q,AA C,H C,Q,H C,AA,H C,Q,AA,H
Arrows Fired 76 84 88 88 92 92 92 96 96
% Increase from Base N/A 10.53% 4.76% 4.76% 9.52% 9.52% 9.52% 14.29% 14.29%
% Increase from Previous 4.55% 4.35%
Volleys (Arrows/4) 19 21 22 23 23 23 24 24
1) The Quiver's benefits are overridden by Haste.
2) The AA Set stacks with the Capstone
Based on those points, it would be safe to say that:
1) The Quiver offers an Enhancement type bonus like Haste.
2) The Capstone and AA Set cannot both be Competence types (assuming we go with the well known adage of bonuses of the same type do not stack).
Therefore, i have reclassified the Capstone bonus as a new type "Class" instead of the original classification of Competence.
Chart #3 - Actual Item Effects for Capstone
If we take the numbers from Chart #3 we can utilize them with the following well-known methodology:
Item Actual Increase Actual Type
Capstone (C) 10.53% Class
Quiver (Q) 4.76% Enhancement
AA Set (AA) 4.76% Competence
Haste (H) 9.52% Enhancement
1) Bonuses of the same Type do not stack
2) Bonuses of different Types stack
3) When bonuses of the same type are applied, the highest one takes precedence
4) Bonuses are applied in sequence, with each bonus multiplying the result of the previous total (if anyone knows what the mathematical term for this is, please let me know...BTW this is the same way that healing amp is applied).
The below examples show the combination of various items with the stated forumlas plugged in and their results calculated in terms of # of arrows:
We can see from Chart #4 that the # of Arrows calculated falls almost perfectly in line with the actual results garnered in Chart #2.
Combination Base + Capstone (Class)
Formula 76 + 10.53%
# of Arrows 84.00
Combination Base + Capstone (Class) + Quiver (Enhancement)
Formula 76 + 10.53% + 4.76%
# of Arrows 88.00
Combination Base + Competence (Class) + Quiver (Enhancement) + AA Set (Competence)
Formula 76 + 10.53% + 4.76% + 4.76%
# of Arrows 92.19
Combination Base + Competence (Class) + Quiver (Enhancement) + AA Set (Competence) + Haste (Enhancement)
Formula 76 + 10.53% + 0% (overridden by Haste) + 4.76% + 9.52%
# of Arrows 96.38
The above then describes an accurate representation of the various item type classifications and demonstrates solid examples of how they apply in practice. I have continued with this methodology to show a similar breakdown with a Non Capstoned toon (in this case my 20 ranger with the Capstone removed).
The chart below demonstrates the same data as Chart #2, but using the Non Capstoned build:
Chart #5 - Non Capstoned Manyshot
As a comparison to Chart #3 for the Capstoned build, the below chart represents the actual observed increases for the Non Capstoned build.
Manyshot B Q AA Q,AA H Q,H AA,H Q,AA,H
Arrows Fired 76 80 80 84 84 84 88 88
% Increase from Base N/A 5.26% 5.26% 10.53% 10.53% 10.53% 15.79% 15.79%
% Increase from Previous 5.00% 4.76%
Volleys (Arrows/4) 19 20 21 21 21 22 22
Chart #6 - Actual Item Effects for Non Capstone
The below examples show the combination of various items with the stated forumlas plugged in and their results calculated in terms of # of arrows for the Non Capstoned build:
Item Actual Increase Actual Type
Quiver (Q) 5.26% Enhancement
AA Set (AA) 5.26% Competence
Haste (H) 10.53% Enhancement
Once again, we can see how these values fall in line with what is shown in Chart #5.
Combination Base + Quiver (Enhancement)
Formula 76 + 5.26%
# of Arrows 80.00
Combination Base + Quiver (Enhancement) + AA Set (Competence)
Formula 76 + 5.26% + 5.26%
# of Arrows 84.21
Combination Base + Quiver (Enhancement) + AA Set (Competence) + Haste (Enhancement)
Formula 76 + 0% (overridden by Haste) + 5.26% + 10.53%
# of Arrows 88.42
The below chart shows a summary comparison between the bonuses available to both Capstone and Non Capstone builds.
Chart #8 - Summary Comparison of Actual Item Effects
We can see from the above that a Non Capstone build actually has slightly higher % increases to their base RoF speeds compared to a Capstone build. Obviously, since the Capstone "Class" type is not available to them, they can still not reach as high a RoF as a Capstoned build.
Item % for Capstoned % for Non Capstoned Actual Type
Capstone (C) 10.53% N/A Class
Quiver (Q) 4.76% 5.26% Enhancement
AA Set (AA) 4.76% 5.26% Competence
Haste (H) 9.52% 10.53% Enhancement
All of the above calculations were performed using only 20 second bursts of Manyshot. To attempt a more diverse experiment, I expanded to 3 more tests:
1) 20 seconds of fire (Non Manyshot)
2) 60 seconds of fire
3) 120 seconds of fire
To save on time, the tests are not as comprehensive as the previous but show relatively the same bonus percentages being applied. In addition, the data continues to back up the various type classifications and their stacking methods.
The below charts show the data from the 3 new tests. No tests were done using Haste, primarily because I was unable to get someone to help out at the time I conducted the tests to cast a Haste longer then the 30 seconds my potions would allow. I would be supremely confident that the bonuses from Haste would apply in a fashion similar to what has already been shown above.
Chart #9 - Standard Firing Tests
* The % increase from Base above is the percentage increase from either the Base (non-Capstone) or the Capstone, depending on the combination being tested (e.g. For 120 seconds the 4.80% percent listed for C,Q means that C,Q was 4.80% faster then just C - since the Capstone is used in both measurements)
B C Q C,Q AA C,AA Q,AA C,Q,AA
# of Arrows 19 22 20 23 20 23
% Increase from Base* N/A 15.79% 5.26% 4.55% 5.26% 4.55%
# of Arrows 56 63 59 66 59 66
% Increase from Base* N/A 12.50% 5.36% 4.76% 5.36% 4.76%
# of Arrows 111 125 117 131 117 131 122 138
% Increase from Base* N/A 12.61% 5.41% 4.80% 5.41% 4.80%
Avg % Increase from Base* N/A 13.63% 5.34% 4.70% 5.34% 4.70%
While there are variations between the % changes from the 3 tests, we see that the Average increase from all 3 durational tests is roughly equivalent to those shown in Chart #8. The 13.63% shown for the increase from the Capstone seems to indicate that the Capstone bonus may have a slightly higher RoF increase for standard shooting (as opposed to Manyshot).
For the final columns in Chart #9 (those that with a combination of both the Quiver and AA Set) I decided to use my formula results to derive what I should be seeing in terms of RoF of a 120 second test prior to performing the tests.
Based on the data gathered from the previous columns, I could work out what we should expect to see:
Our results are very close to what we would expect to find:
Combination (Capstone + Quiver (Enhancement)) + AA Set (Competence)
Formula (131) + 4.80%
# of Arrows 137.29
Combination (Base + Quiver (Enhancement)) + AA Set (Competence)
Formula (117) + 5.41%
# of Arrows 123.32
For the C+Q+AA (Capstone) test we compute 137.29 arrows. As Chart #9 shows we actually observed 138.
For the Q+AA (Non Capstone) test we compute 123.32 arrows. As Chart #9 shows we actually observed 122.
I believe the above sample sets along with the corresponding formulas and their applied use to predict results serve as a pretty good basis for comparing the bonuses and type classifications of the listed items. Additional items bonuses and classes should be able to be determined relatively quickly by adding their results into this gathered data.
Again, I realize that this is not the first test done of this type and perhaps there may have been one as comprehensive already performed (or maybe even more comprehensive). However as I wanted to perform these tests for myself, I thought I would share the data with the community.
I hope it comes in useful for someone else.