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  1. #1
    Community Member slothinator's Avatar
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    Default Moneyball, HP, and YOU

    Ever heard of "Moneyball"? It was a book written by Michael Lewis with Billy Beane (GM of the Oakland A's). In the book, Lewis details Beane's approach to running a team by targeting areas that other teams ignore. Beane would consolidate his limited resources (by baseball standards) into these areas. At the time of the book, this focus was players who got on base a lot (especially via the walk), because teams were not valuing those skills as much as others.

    If you asked any old timey scout, journalist, or baseball exec about "Moneyball", they would tell you it's that book written by Billy Beane about drawing walks, hitting homers, and ignoring defense. Well that's not true at all; one might assume - rather correctly - that these people didn't even read the book and were just drawing their own conclusions based on limited observation and hearsay.

    So now you are asking "uhm, sloth, what does this have to with HP and me?". There is a post on the new player forum right now by a player who posts the same topic every couple of months. He continues to insist that only front line melee types need HP, and that divines, arcanes, and other "non-melee" types can ignore HP and dump con. He will also tell you that the regular forumites insist that every character max CON, take every HP enhancement available, and put all their efforts into being a big bag of HP, despite the fact that no one has ever posted that.

    You see, this player is preaching against his own assumptions, and he is wrong.

    When you see someone talk about not dumping CON, that does not mean max it out. No one expects a non-melee toon to take toughness III and IV enhancements, and certainly no one expects a first life toon or new player to have green steel HP items.

    You will see lots of responses to this post (I HOPE!!!) detailing different visions of what your HP should look like. Allow me to offer you one such vision*:

    1. Try to put at least 6 build points into CON at character creation. Trust me, you can spare them. You can put more if you are a melee or if you just want to. Some builds are build point starved. I had first life TWF paladin that started with a 12 con (4 build points). Like I said, try for 6.

    2. Take the toughness feat. It's not just a total of 22 hp at level 20; it also opens up the class and racial toughness enhancements. Depending on your build, that could be anywhere from 20 - 80 hp.

    3. Wear a level appropriate false life item. They are easy to find. You don't have to buy one on the auction house, they drop frequently.

    4. Wear a level appropriate +x CON item. See #3 above.

    5. Wear a level appropriate fortification item. This won't boost your HP, but it will help alleviate critical hits. If you've ever been wiped out in a circle of trolls or ogres, take a look at your fortification.

    Finally, understand that your "role" will not protect you. It does not matter if you are not a front line player. Traps do not care if your are not a melee. Casters with cometfall and disintegrate do not discriminate. Devils can teleport past the front line and right to you.

    I hope this post encourages everyone to read "Moneyball" - I mean, take their HP more seriously. There can be a fine line between running away screaming and healing, and asking who picked up your stone. Don't be on the wrong side of the line.

    * - This is, just like my opinion man. Other opinions will vary, see posts for details.
    Sarlona: Stelvar, Stethos, Saltmint, Abbracadaver, Shaigh Hulud, Fujihowser MD, Soundwaive, Kuddlefish and some others

  2. #2
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    QUESTION: What does a caster have to give up to max CON?

    Answer: NOTHING!

    Don't dump CON.
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    Quote Originally Posted by zwiebelring View Post
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  3. #3
    Community Member slothinator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ape_Man View Post
    QUESTION: What does a caster have to give up to max CON?

    Answer: NOTHING!

    Don't dump CON.
    ANSWER: It depends.

    While there is really no excuse for starting with an 8 (or a 6) CON, there is also no need to max it out on most builds. Example - 6 build points takes a con score from 16 to 18; those same 6 build points would take an 8 str or dex to a 14. It's a question of where the build points would ultimately be more useful.
    Sarlona: Stelvar, Stethos, Saltmint, Abbracadaver, Shaigh Hulud, Fujihowser MD, Soundwaive, Kuddlefish and some others

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ape_Man View Post
    QUESTION: What does a caster have to give up to max CON?

    Answer: NOTHING!

    Don't dump CON.
    I generally put exactly 6 build points into Con on just about every build. That is not "dumping" Con.

    But I sure don't max it, either. I would rather my WIZARD or whatever have more Str and Cha than a couple of super-expensive Con points. Not getting burdened, having better UMD, those are worthwhile. Or for other classes, Int, too. I love my skill points.

  5. #5

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    Agreed.

    My rule of thumb is 6 build points in con, 1 toughness feat (not multiple), and any toughness enhancement that costs 2 ap or less. That's my starting baseline.

  6. #6

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    A lot of casters have room in the build point for more CON. Beyond INT and CON on a wizard not much else really has a high priority.

    It's not like they need enough DEX for TWF, CON for hit points INT for assassinate DC, CHA for better UMD, and STR for better damage.

    Between less build point priority, PM hit point bonuses, lich CON bonus PM's tend to be more on par with d8 classes than d4 or d6.

    I don't see much reason not to invest heavily in CON on casters.
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  7. #7
    Community Member stretchcore's Avatar
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    Nice post, sound advice. +1 for the OP.

  8. #8
    The Hatchery Enoach's Avatar
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    on a Single Attribute class like the Barbarian, Wizard and Sorcerer Ape_Man has a point - What benefit does one get by putting points in alternate Attributes...

    Barbarian:
    Points into
    DEX <- AC? Reflex?
    INT <- Skill Points
    WIS <- Will Save, Listen/Spot
    CHR <- UMD? Intimidate

    Wizard:
    STR <- Bonus to Melee hit/dmg, carrying capacity, Enfeeblement prevention
    DEX <- AC? Reflex (Generally covered using a Feat Insightful Reflexes)
    WIS <- Will Save?
    CHR <- UMD

    Sorcerer:
    STR <- Bonus to Melee hit/dmg, carrying capacity, Enfeeblement prevention
    DEX <- AC? Reflex (Generally covered using a Feat Insightful Reflexes)
    INT <- Skill Points
    WIS <- Will Save?

    ===============
    The build will determine if extra points are needed. On a Barbarian that uses Silver Flame Potions for its healing source I can see adding a point to each to help compensate for the -10 for 30 seconds.

    Everyone needs to evaluate the value of spending the Build points and understand what they are giving up vs. gaining with each point expenditure. Example: On a first Life Drow is 20 in Charisma/Intelligence really needed? Or would those 6 points be better spent in another attribute?

    The main problem is that those that don't have a PnP background see the system as complicated while those with the background have a better grasp on what is being given up vs. gained with each expenditure.

    This is why I'm a believer in the Character builder applications, it allows you to see the progression and gives you an idea of what the HP, Saves, AC, Ki, DCs and Spell points will be by the time you reach Level 20 or 25. It helps to understand what is needed to be able to use certain abilities like Combat Expertise or Two Weapon Fighting.

    Hit Points are a "Death Prevention Buffer" and when learning how to play any buffer is a good thing.

    I am not in the MAX CON on all characters camp. I'm in the camp that preaches CON is one of the earliest things you can control to help get more HP. Very few Builds spend Level Up points in CON as these are generally saved for a Main Attribute. So understanding what your starting CON means to your build is important as only Enchanted Items and Attribute Tomes will be adding any long term benefits. Also understanding how buffs effect your builds performance can help you also to understand how best to dispense your build points.

  9. #9
    Community Member Systern's Avatar
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    I had this conversation with a friend the other night... It really does depend on your character.

    For example, My artificer is a human. She scroll heals (well), but because scroll healing is slow, I like to have enough HP for a buffer so that I may fight, swap, scroll, swap, repeat for a while. She wears Superior False Life, Con/Health items, Toughness item.

    My Ranger and Bard have access to quick cheap healing in the form of Cure spells. For them, I don't see the need for the extra buffer, but look to maximize the 'cash flow' of hit points. They both have about 500 HP and prioritize Healing Amp and Devotion items over false life items. They don't need a bigger buffer; they need to refill the buffer they have more efficiently.


    So, for newbies reading this, please know that all of these options exist. Please note that taking some of them is highly recommended. Also note that anyone telling you that you need to have all of them is full of it. Which 'some' you take is entirely up to you for what you want to achieve.
    Last edited by Systern; 02-01-2013 at 06:54 PM.

  10. #10
    Community Member Ryiah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enoach View Post
    CHA <- UMD
    Charisma can be made to do more than simply skills. My Wizard started with a 16 CON versus the typical 18 CON. I used those six build points to shore up her CHA bringing it to 14. Doing so allowed me to take the Half Elf Paladin Dilettante for up to 5 points in every save. I also took Force of Personality completely eliminating the need for WIS. Gaining a fairly decent increase to saves was far more valuable than the 25 HP I lost.
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  11. #11
    Community Member Demsac's Avatar
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    My wizard only has 962 hp (no bard/arti buffs, while he's in magister) He's still squishy need more hp!

    hp is awesome
    Last edited by Demsac; 02-03-2013 at 11:00 AM.

  12. #12
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    Most of your post is sound advice but there is really no need to put 6 points into Con anymore. That's like still saying races that have -2 con are gimped. Just doesn't apply anymore in this ED world. HP totals are so huge, your starting Con really doesn't matter as long as you are at 10. All characters can get by with a 14 Con. I see no reason to ever go with a 17 or higher Con anymore. Seems like most characters are in that 12-16 range though.

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Uhtred_Stark View Post
    I see no reason to ever go with a 17 or higher Con anymore.
    To qualify for epic toughness without needing a +5 tome or levelups.

  14. #14
    Community Member UurlockYgmeov's Avatar
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    agree - sound advice.

    If you are like me - and most of my game play is spent between 1-20 (rinse.repeat) - then CON is definitely not a dump stat. Toughness is not a must have - but it is something to be seriously considered.

    Self healing - even if just a little more than pots - is also a must. Be kind to your cleric and try to help. Help them in several ways: have enough HP for a buffer (at least 350+ HP to play), Fortification is not optional (SHOW ME YOUR MINOS), and carry enough pots or self heals to use as band-aids while the cleric keeps another from dying.

    Other considerations: curse removal, poison removal, disease removal, restoration, heck even jump and fear removal pots really aren't optional. Let the healer(s) save their mana for important things - keeping the party alive and death warded. (OK - how hard is it to get a death ward clickie?)

    On that topic - don't expect every arty to sacrifice reconstruct for deadly weapons, or every wizard to sacrifice a spell slot for blur. The first is simple - if arty is warforged - they should be (mostly) self-sufficient in the healing department. The second - for crying out loud - how hard is it to run a couple of challenges for a level 4 bracers of wind with perma-blur??? Wouldn't you prefer a nice Black Dragon Bolt or Chain-Lightning for the mana it cost?

    HP are not optional - and this is coming from a seven year vet of DDO - who has been told repeatedly by many many players 'builds solid toons that kick @22.'

    I am not saying be kind to those with blue bars; however, respect them and don't expect them to have mana pots lying around just because you can't use a free token once a day to get a powerful defensive item, or are too lazy to stock up on potions; or too broke since you just bought that new companion. Key words: Personal Accountability and Responsibility.

    U17 should see the return of Crystal Cove (which is free btw) and a great new clickie (ok so it could be better) - a ml10(I believe) endless flask of rum - which is a HEAL clickie with a built in restoration spell (ok - so currently it is exclusive, BtC, and has a 5 minute cooldown - so it is more along the lines of an oh-sh!t panic button) - but why not spend the hour or two to get it?

    I apologize about the diatribe - it has been brewing for quite some time; seen too many players abuse clerics and seen the cleric population become more and more scarce. How many of the new players you see in the harbor or marketplace today are playing clerics? Who's fault is that? Hope you are all looking in a mirror right now.

    Every build I do has at least a 14 con (if not higher) - yes even an Artificer (Int Dex Str Con are all important to that build); even a Wiz (Int Con Dex Str) - con item, false life, Minos (or Min II), are all non-optional. Mission Critical.

    So to the OP - agree - and keep spreading the right thoughts - proper balance between offense and defense might not be the most sexy thing (like I killed Hairy with 22,203,223 points of coolness damage) - but it, like tactics, win the battle and the war of survival.
    Last edited by UurlockYgmeov; 02-04-2013 at 12:52 AM.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by EllisDee37 View Post
    To qualify for epic toughness without needing a +5 tome or levelups.
    But who takes epic toughness except barbarians who haven't taken the overwhelming crit line? I don't know in a game that has really drifted away from non self healing melees the 18+ str/17+ con melee build doesn't seem to be too attractive anymore, especially if you are moneyballing HPs and self sufficiency.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Uhtred_Stark View Post
    But who takes epic toughness except barbarians who haven't taken the overwhelming crit line? I don't know in a game that has really drifted away from non self healing melees the 18+ str/17+ con melee build doesn't seem to be too attractive anymore, especially if you are moneyballing HPs and self sufficiency.
    Agreed; just saying there is some reason to start with 17 con.

    EDIT: The Juggernaut build takes epic toughness, at least in some of its variations.

  17. #17
    The Hatchery DarkForte's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enoach View Post
    The build will determine if extra points are needed. On a Barbarian that uses Silver Flame Potions for its healing source I can see adding a point to each to help compensate for the -10 for 30 seconds.
    No. Any player that can afford self-healing with SF pots all the time (they're a plat sink alright) can easily afford +3 tomes on his dump stats.
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  18. #18
    Community Member slothinator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uhtred_Stark View Post
    Most of your post is sound advice but there is really no need to put 6 points into Con anymore. That's like still saying races that have -2 con are gimped. Just doesn't apply anymore in this ED world. HP totals are so huge, your starting Con really doesn't matter as long as you are at 10. All characters can get by with a 14 Con. I see no reason to ever go with a 17 or higher Con anymore. Seems like most characters are in that 12-16 range though.
    I don't see how recommending someone put 6 points into CON is the same as saying races that start with 6 CON are gimped. That's not what I am saying at all, and I don't know how you inferred that. 6 points into CON means that most races start with a 14; other races would start at 12 to 16. I guess I am confused because you started your post disagreeing with me, and then post numbers that back my original assertion.

    I also did not say that 6 points into CON was a must. I know that many experienced players run toons with dumped CON stats because they need the build points elsewhere. Since this is the new player forum, and we are giving advice to new players, I would recommend those 6 points in CON for the new player.

    Several people mentioned padding CON to get the epic toughness feat. There is one more reason to boost CON; it affects the DC of an earth savant's earth grab.
    Sarlona: Stelvar, Stethos, Saltmint, Abbracadaver, Shaigh Hulud, Fujihowser MD, Soundwaive, Kuddlefish and some others

  19. #19
    Community Member Charononus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarkForte View Post
    No. Any player that can afford self-healing with SF pots all the time (they're a plat sink alright) can easily afford +3 tomes on his dump stats.
    You're right and wrong on the details, a horc barb with 20 str 18 con on a 32 pt build will have 6 int and 6 cha. You'd need +5 tomes to be able to use sf pots. That said I still dumped em and made up the difference on gear, and do not advocate putting points into either on a barb.

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Charononus View Post
    You're right and wrong on the details, a horc barb with 20 str 18 con on a 32 pt build will have 6 int and 6 cha. You'd need +5 tomes to be able to use sf pots. That said I still dumped em and made up the difference on gear, and do not advocate putting points into either on a barb.
    I think most people in that position think of it as 6 base +3 tome +2 ship buff.

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