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  1. #1
    Lamannia Coordinator SqueakofDoom's Avatar
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    Oct 2012
    The End of the Universe - The view is great!

    Default The Official Monk Enhancements Discussion Thread!

    Monk Enhancements are currently available on Lamannia.

    Please share your thoughts on the Monk Enhancement Trees!
    Last edited by SqueakofDoom; 07-10-2013 at 09:19 AM.

  2. #2
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    Apr 2013



    Ninja Spy
    -Ninja spy's capstone need to be made more appealing to those who do not wield shortswords and kama's. Niether Shintao's nor Henshin capstone are so limited as to improve 3 weapons, especially ones that are realistically not going to be used much even with the changes.
    -please, fix Sting of the Ninja to work with handwraps when the vorpal strikes feat is toggled on (giving handwraps slashing damage). It says that it works on handwraps if they have slashing damage, so it should. Already bug reported, but posting on forum just in case. It is a big enough issue as posion is a important thematic part of the ninja spy line, while still being useful outside of being thematic.
    -Deadly Exploits needs to be fixed, as it is only tier 1 can be taken. Asks for more points to be spent in prerequisite to take the higher tiers, but the prerequisite only has tier 1.

    Pros: The dark finisher end effects are extremely useful.
    Sneak attack in always nice.
    Shadow fade/veil... nuff said.
    Agility finally allows us to go a bit farther than the 25% dodge cap theoretically.
    Shadow double has great use as a burst dps tool
    Touch of Death's prerequisites are actually useful.
    hate reduction added is very nice

    I was going to mention that defensive stance doesn't negatively affect THF, but the only classes that can benefit from that are rogue (thief acrobat) and fighter (kensai) as they are centered with Two handers well being effective DPS. However splashing monk does take away 10% doublestrike fighter capstone and the threat is a huge deterrent for thief acrobat and if they get agro they lose sneak attack. Therefore I believe it to be fairly balanced. A pure monk using Henshin for quarterstaff damage will do worse damage than a TWF as well, therefore only two-weapon fighting getting a hit makes sense. Good on you devs.
    I have not played around with Shintao enough to comment more.

    Elemental Words: almost no one uses the equivalent of the elemental words on live so perhaps putting them down to 1 AP would be prudent.
    Shadows cannot exist without light: The heal on enemy death doesn't seem to work for me.
    Void strikes is awesome... but only as a trash remover and only on a vorpal. Yes when it was one of the few ways to instakill reliably in epics it needed a high enhancement cost, but now it only saves a bit of extra time on trash enemies. Consider keeping tier 5 but removing the need for prerequisites.

    Embrace the void and focus are... thematic, but consider either allowing movement when mediating if the third tier of embrace the void is taken or introducing a new enhancement that allows that. As it is right now they won't see much use since you have to stand still. Also consider setting the 30 second timer for after the mediation for at least the monk. It kinda sucks that you spend 30 seconds focusing and when you are done you the one who actually mediated for that time gets nothing. Even with that done, there will be very little use of these abilities. Without it, this is just a trap for beginners to fall into.

    Henshin's quickstrike is directly inferior to acrobats. Take this to mean that you should buff Henshin's quickstrike not nerf acrobats' as acrobats finally have a chance to become slightly more popular and viable because of it and I do not want the enhancement tree to suffer because of a comment I made on the monk enhancement pass.

    Furthermore, most of Henshin's quaterstaff abilities are also in the thief acrobat line, consider adding a few Quaterstaff abilities not in the acrobat tree so that there is actually synergy between the trees. (This does not mean removing acrobat abilities from the acrobat tree and putting them in henshin mystic)

    Balance at Dawn allows for you to be able to do both Dark and light monk moves! It's ki strikes are awesome even if it didn't.
    Solid capstone
    Allows you to take any ability score
    Animal line is much cheaper than live.
    Last edited by SMDrake; 04-29-2013 at 08:21 PM.

  3. #3
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    Apr 2013


    I have yet to test the Ninja Spy or Henshin Mystics so cannot fairly comment on them at this time (Although on paper both are looking nice, and look forward to playing both here soon).

    As to the Shintao I will say that it is all in all nicely done. I do feel the 40% reduction to offhand attacks is pretty hefty though, but given that it is part of a stance I suppose the benefits are balanced reasonably well against the loss - but I'm still semi on the fence about it, it is a pretty big hit.

    The smite tainted creature / jade strike / tomb of jade line is a bit out dated. Smite tainted creatures has its issues landing (mob moves suddenly, its benefits are lost), similar issue with the latter two as well. Tomb of Jade is almost a useless tool to burn ki with, its exceedingly long refresh and ease of which to fail with it makes it approach pointlessness quickly.

    With each of these abilities it might be better served if they granted a buff to the monk with 1 counter, which is spent when the monk strikes a target, and then the standard save vs dc occurs. Jade strike would be particularly special if it applied stacks of its debuff, as it seems the Shintao monk enhancement is geared more towards a level of utility and tanking.

    Across the board I think it is worth saying that the limited progression to skills of +1/2/3 per tier (unless cumulative) is lackluster compared to other enhancements that can be chosen. Consider increasing the per tier gains or making such progressions cumulative. (This is most certainly true across all classes and enhancements, but I really can't/won't speak for everyone.)

    As a side note: I am curious about Shintao monks receiving a line of ability which improves the Light Finishers over their base level. The abilities are still useful, but without some progression to them they will rapidly stagnate (which has occurred already to a degree, but not completely so as of yet), and Shintao monks receiving this would expand upon their utility in times when they are not tanking.

  4. #4
    Community Member ~Grubbby's Avatar
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    Apr 2013


    I didn't have much time yet to play with Henshen, but the damage from the ki atttacks seemed pretty lackluster in my first few minutes of running around.

    I spend more time working with the Ninja Spy and Shintao trees.

    The trees are interesting, but Ninja spy is hurt by the shift to DEX over Wisdom. IMO it's also hurt by the exceptionally strong emphasis on using short swords and daggers. I don't mind the attempt to push a viable sword wielding monk forward, but value of the tree is tied to using swords which appears to still be noticeably weaker than unarmed unless you are multi-class sword fighter. I'll probably center my monks in the Shintao or Henshen tree and splash into Ninja Spy for some sneak and for Shadow Veil. I'd like my dark monk to keep his identity, but I doubt that short swords and daggers are going to do it.

    Shintao... The basic tree is ok, a bit to tankish, but solid. I don't like the Shintao Capstone. While removing the penalties of the Meditation of War is a nice idea, it makes the value of the capstone very much dependent on taking a specific tier 5 enhancement. And on top of that. the bulk of the tree is centered around the defensive stance, which is disabled by the meditation of war stance. I'm ok with this being part of the capstone, but it needs to include something else to make it a generally valuable capstone.

    My main is a light path Warforged monk who focuses on Stuns, DPS and Medium tanking... pretty much in that order. My first build on Lammania appears to be competitive to live. He loses some DPS, but gains enough PRR and Intimidate options to make him a solid Medium Heavy Tank. Probably a good trade off for an all purpose toon. But I may need to build a dedicated tank and shift him around to trade off tanking capabilities for some more DPS.

    Also in Shintao, the cost/benefits of the Rise of the Phoenix enhancement needs to be looked at. While ROP is now an interesting ability, putting it in tier 5 and requiring all 4 of the abilities make it too expensive to consider on all my builds. 10 AP is just to much. IMO the prereq's either need to stack on your healing finisher (your area heal does all 4 at once) or the cost needs to be reduced to 1 AP each. 6AP for the ROP line makes is expensive but worth considering. 10 AP is not viable.
    The poster formerly known as TPICKRELL.... Hopefully will be again if Turbine support ever gets it straightened out. .. Grubby WF Shintao, Grubonon Human HAMP Shintao, GrubbyDark Halfling Ninja Spy, GrubbSmash Horc soon to be Henshin, GrubbyTrap Monk/Rogue/Fighter, Gralak Shirardi Sorc (soon to be PM Wiz again) and other Grubs... All on Khyber

  5. #5
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    moo moo moo moo moo


    Quote Originally Posted by Grubbby View Post
    The trees are interesting, but Ninja spy is hurt by the shift to DEX over Wisdom. IMO it's also hurt by the exceptionally strong emphasis on using short swords and daggers. I don't mind the attempt to push a viable sword wielding monk forward, but value of the tree is tied to using swords which appears to still be noticeably weaker than unarmed unless you are multi-class sword fighter. I'll probably center my monks in the Shintao or Henshen tree and splash into Ninja Spy for some sneak and for Shadow Veil. I'd like my dark monk to keep his identity, but I doubt that short swords and daggers are going to do it.
    I agree that the choice to go for other weapons is a nice option for ninja spy's making those weapons actually viable, but it focuses too much on them with no significant gain to unarmed combat, mostly with the core abilities. I feel like there should be an option for wraps or at least a few bonuses thrown into the core for wraps instead of only focusing on 2 types of weapons. With that, the removal of extra wisdom from ninja spy kinda hurts, it kinda seems like they are trying to make wraps users shift over to the shintao monk path.

  6. #6
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    Apr 2013


    Goal: Recreate the monk I've been playing for years.

    Realizaton: Impossible.

    Reasons: Massive nerfing, horrible pre-requisites inflating cost.


    On live I consider the main benefits I derive from enhancements to be:

    -healing amp
    -touch of death
    -ki regen
    -void strike 3 and 4
    -wisdom bonus

    Stances: No problems. These are free now.

    Healing amp: Requires wasting 42 points in the Shintao tree.

    Touch of Death: Requires spending 32 points in the Ninja Spy tree.

    Ki regen: Requires wasting 42 points in the awful Henshin Mystic tree. Getting the ki regen is a big moment in a monks life. The endless heamoraging of ki finally stops. Something that should have been moved to a much lower level... like level 1.

    Void 3: REMOVED. On top of not even having this anymore, doing void+dark+void for charming is now longer to prep.

    Void 4: NERFED. TRIPLE the ki cost. Now prepping charm finisher costs 40 ki instead of 20.

    Incorporeal: Requires spending 12 points in the Ninja Spy tree.

    Wisdom bonus: No problems. Does require spending at least 34 points among 2 trees.


    So to recreate my Ninja Spy I need to spend:

    -42 Shintao points
    -42 Henshin points
    -32 Ninja Spy points

    ...for a total of 116 enhancement points AND... suffer a massivly nerfed Void Strike 4 and a complete lack of Void strike 3.


    Also Touch of Death is massively nerfed: Special strikes have become a DPS loss now.


    I'd go into how...
    - dumb it is to have a defensive stance that lowers monk DPS, when monk DPS has become quite low in comparison to other melee since the epic destinies.
    - disappointed I am that really weak enhancements like All Consuming Flame, which I was hoping would be fixed with an enhancement pass, are still ****.
    - awful ALL the new abilities are and look NOTHING like a monk class. The poison stuff is bad, the henshin stuff horrible.
    - insulting it is that you can up your finisher DCs by 3, at a cost of 6 enhancement points, when the finishers are often sitting at 16 to 19 DC behind other tactical abilities, AND this doesn't help strike DC at all.

    But I'm too disgusted at this garbage.

  7. #7
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    May 2013


    I love my monk on live
    On lamma I was forced to change
    As a dark monk FISTER I am required to wear something like Ivy Wraps or... Scorched wraps (thats 2 handwraps in the game. . .) Do you expect me to go from lvl 2-15 wearing only scorched wraps and then from 15-28 wearing Ivy's? Are you telling me that I now have NO choice of being an efficient dark monk fister?

    *for those of you lost on my horrible conveying of the above*
    I don't like the fact that there is 2 weapons in the game that allows me to stay a dark monk unarmed character...

  8. #8
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    Jul 2011
    Milwaukee, WI

    Default Monk Trees -- 1) need more offensive enhancements 2) Better Capstones 3) other

    I am passionate about monks and their class – since playing the pen and paper original box set 40 years ago. Since joining DDO almost two years ago I have exclusively been monk focused with its variations – though most preferring the pure monk.

    At the end of my soliloquy I may have a few bugs to report on the monk screens, but I will address the larger issues first. Let me begin with praising the new tree format – despite some of the naysayers that I have read in these forums, the tree system is visually easier to read and follow. It may seem more complicated only because there are now many more differentiations and path choices – which is no doubt one of the major purposes and benefits of changing the enhancement system. They have succeeded. Also I praise the wisdom in putting the monk elemental stance improvements as a naturally earned feat (Master of Forms, Grandmaster of Forms, etc.). This seems reasonable and is a great boon to the monk as so many points can be spent elsewhere. Thank you for all these changes.

    Now as to what may still need some help (and thanks for asking for it DDO ?) I shall offer my two cents – okay twenty cents worth – of advice for tweaking the Monk Enhancement Trees.

    The number of stars before a concern denotes my relative importance of the issue.


    ***Unarmed Enhancements. There needs to be better unarmed enhancement options. While there is a good path for the staff or for chi “magic” under the Henshin tree, and under the Ninja tree two weapons have many bonuses, for a monk to improve their most natural means of fighting –unarmed – they have few slots. The Shintao tree does have a defensive fighting path with the defensive striking – but it only buffs defense and at a fairly steep cost – minus 40% to offhand attacks. The only true gift to the unarmed monk is “empty hand mastery” which is tier 5. Otherwise one has to dual class to be kensai- monk. Why should a fighter monk know more about unarmed combat than a pure monk devoted its own craft? One should not have to leave the pure monk dream to fight better unarmed. I won’t ask why there are so many benefits to the unarmed kensei -monk – improved dodging, improved hit and dmg all up the tiers, double strike, vorpal capability, improved criticals, even meditation and concentration benefits – as well as numerous others. The kensei tree should be one of the monk trees. Why should a monk have to leave the monk path to be better at unarmed fighting? The fighter – monk dual class already has many benefits by dual classing – more feats, more help to dc techniques, more dmg and ability to hit etc. Now almost alll monks of the future will likely be torn from the pure monk path to receive such incredible fighting enchancements the kensei tree offers. And they will take the few fighting enhancements of the monk tree and then devote themselves for 18 levels to kensei. What advantage is there is being a pure monk anymore? (note sadness in voice).

    At the very least there needs to be for the pure monk such a path for unarmed offense as well -- probably under the shintao tree. Something for each tier at least. Examples would be for tier 1 – unarmed specialization (+1 hit, +2 dmg). Tier 2 (you already have the elemental ki strikes available). Tier 3 (+1/2 die unarmed dmg increase) Tier 4 Monk Flurry (an action boost for 20-30 secs that doubles the attack speed) and then cap it with the Tier 5 Empty Hand Mastery which you already have available.

    *Ps and by the way if you make an unarmed offensive path along the same same path up as where the elemental strike option and dismissing strike option is, then get rid of dimissive strikes (it should if anything be in the tainted creature path line if anywhere). It is redundant of the jade striking path line for tainted creatures – why go up that whole path when dimissing strike is good as the first 3 tiers of that line, including jade strike – they both end the creature’s existence for the same ki and same dc. But as a summary please add more unarmed enhancement benefits in the trees.

    ***Pure Monk Capstone As eluded to before there should be a much stronger capstone to choosing to be a pure monk to level 20. If the best offer is a couple attributes with some nominal ki improvements or some other slight benefit (like improved DCs against tainted creatures – hey monks already have good saves so not really needed), then it will be so much preferable to make a dual class where I can now find many of those same benefits early in a tree without even waiting to get level 20! More attributes are easily attainable a mid levels on every tree. And even Kensai monk has a power surge at level 12 to help generate ki at +2 for 60 seconds and this is repeatable! Now shouldn’t a pure monk devoted to perfection be able to generate a +1 ki way before level 20 (besides being limited to Sun stance)? If a fighter can opt that, why not the monk on its path?

    Get rid of Exempler (why should a monk get heal and intimidate bonuses – they are not even part of their natural skill set, so they will help very little – i.e. waste of tree points). Substitute it with the same option the Kensai has (the monk should have even sooner) -- +1 ki generation per strike or more. Some where at least on each monk tree it should exist – because with all these new and wonderful opts they all use ki and the monk needs to have a larger base and to remake it faster (I’m sure you have heard from many frustrated monks at heroic levels trying to maintain ki).

    Now back to the capstone. All monk tree capstones should be more like a +2 Wis and +2 dex (both) along with all of them having a +10 concentration and +1 ki generation (especially if not making it an opt earlier in the tree) along with some other special gifts unique to the trees which you would already have with the exception of the Henshin tree – but I’m sure you will find something along the lines of ki magic for them.

    *Get rid of explemper and replace it (see notes above)

    **Provide Ki generation bonus (see notes above). In addition make the ki pool bigger to begin with than just the concentration score. Much more ki will be needed with all the new options to use (though noted that you have provided more opts to get concentration built – even with that it is really not enough). The beginning pool should be something like base Wisdom + Concentration score. Or if you prefer base Constitution + Concentration score which is inline with what DDO has concentration tied too. This leads me to my next idea presentation / concern…..

    ***Rise of the Phoenix. 100 ki or above? Really? Okay I admit I love the concept as drawn up with 2 exceptions. No one is going to maintain 100 ki unless they decide never to use all those beautiful monk ki options. So they just sit on their ki for a “get out of death-jail free” card? 50 ki is reasonable. But who has a 100 ki lying around during a fight even at level 20? -- and even less at levels 8-9 when you could first get this enhancement potential (tree point wise) -- really? Note also that without the diehard feat the whole rise of the phoenix becomes essentially useless. Most deaths (especially at higher levels) will take you to -9 instantly. If you don’t stabilize you die anyway even with Rise of the Phoenix. I tested this several times. You get one roll to stabilize and then poof you die before the Phoenix can bless you with 1000 hit point heal. Therefore please also change this enhancement to automatically stabilize you so you get to rise….

    Keep also in mind to get this enhancement a player must essentially spend 8 points on enhancements that everyone can get with a potion at level 1 or 2. In addition to remove said curse or blindness or whatnot, 3 healing ki attacks have to be made and then triggered with a finisher… which is like, um, 25 ki spent later and probably 30 seconds of real time before I can send the heal to anyone. Instead, I think I will drink or give a potion away whis is much faster and easier….

    Make those earlier “Monk Curatives” more welcoming to spend points on. For example Tier 1 could offer those curatives (up to 4 points could be spent to get all four – but at least have one to continue up the path). Tier 2 healing amps (like the monks used to have as on live – so 2, 4 or 6 points spent on tier 2 – a little better than the human racial offerings – but hey they are monks and can heal their bodies better! Besides, better to spend points in the monk tree to help achieve those top tiers. Tier 3 Remove Negative Levels. Tier 4. Commune with Spirit (or Raise Dead). This was the original Rise of the Phoenix as it is now on live (raising the dead to 10%) that monks could do at level 9. My young daughter loves playing a monk that can help others thusly in a pinch (remember monks don’t get to use UMD magic devices and scrolls – so this is still a good fit for the healing monk). Please make my daughter and other such monks happy by restoring this heal ability. Then the final of the chain would be Rise of the Phoenix as you have it but with only 50ki necessary in the bank. Really.

    **Meditation of War do you intend this to be a stance toggle that turns off defensive striking stance? I thought the meditation of war stance benefits would build off of what ever a person is using at the time. If it is a whole separate stance with benefits then it is not so great – especially as a level 5 tier. I have to lose all my defensive striking benefits for a small plus in any stance (and with a drawback unless I’m level 20 in the tree). Either increase the benefits or make it stack with defensive striking (which I would think be a reasonable tier 5 add).

    *Shintao Core Deflection Bonuses do these deflection armor bonuses against tainted creatures stack with other deflection bonuses -- such as wearing a cloak of protection +5 for example? If not then they are totally worthless, because most characters have deflection bonus up to +5 even at mid-level. Perhaps they should be a different category than deflection such as Ki bonus or competence bonus.

    *Please note that it may be a bug but taking Agility in the ninja tree (tier 2) did not increase my dodge cap – at least not as it shows when you hover the cursor over your AC under the inventory.

    *Side note also on the human racial tree that fighting styles shows 3 points you can spend on it, but on the inside only raises you 1 point attack bonus for the ambidextrous, fighting style regardless if you spend 1, 2 or 3 points on it.

    **Finally let me suggest that there be a monk enhancement to revive ki quickly (like in the epic level) but not as powerful. It is still needed in the early levels and it could expend a meditiation as one of its costs. A simple clickie for emergency chi. Make it a level 5 tier if you wish and it might only give you as much chi as equal to your wisdom or constitution. But it would be something useful for monks in lower levels. At epic level it is 25 – 125 instant ki. Here at the heroic levels even half that possibility would be nice.


    *Level Requirements. Why even bother with saying that 4th tier means you can be fourth level or 5th tier you have to be 5th level, because at the same time you have tree point requirements of 20 and 30. No one can get 20 points sooner than 5th level or 30 points sooner than 8th level anyway. Not unless DDO plans to change point requirements or add more points. Speaking of which I recommend that level 1 characters all start with 4 enhancement points to reflect their work as an initiate from 0-1 just like they start with a number of feats and skills at level 1. This would make 80 enhancement points total instead of the 76. With the new enhancement system I am hoping that epic levels also continue to receive enhancement points.

    Okay I think that is all I have for now. I will continue doing more research and exploration of the monk trees. Hope this is helpful. And thanks for listening.

  9. #9


    I'd love to give some comments on the enhancements, Squeek--if the Lammania client would get past the "Connect...Waiting" point in the launcher. You're missing out on many more comments and suggestions if we can't log in to check things out. :/
    Editor, The Book of Syncletica: An unofficial DDO Monk Guide, and Stormreach Shadows: An unofficial DDO Stealth Guide
    The Order of Syncletica: A DDO-flavored blog on Monks and gameplay and more

  10. #10
    Ultimate Completionist
    2014 DDO Players Council

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    Nov 2009


    Its the bottom of the 9th, one out (alpha) and chicken little is two runs ahead.
    There is a wizard on first base, and a sorcerer on second base.
    The Devs are the home team, and time out has been called.

    Will the Devs pull it off, or will they lose the game to chicken little?

    Speaking as someone who has played every class and race the old fashion way,
    I am distressed and upset at the current events playing out in this enhancement alpha.

    You, the Devs, are about to implement a nerf to every class in the game except two.
    That is a pretty strong charge, let's talk it over.

    Archmage wizards probably need some more flexablity.
    Other than that, the arcane powerhouses (Sorcerer and Wizard) almost always come out on top.

    The enhancements for the melee is coming along, until one considers that melees exist in
    with other classes. When those classes suffer, the melee classes suffer.

    Most melees have gotten to the point of realizing that sorcerers and wizards often don't care.
    That is why we melees carry haste clickies, haste potions, and melee aclarity items.
    That is why we melees carry permanent blur items.
    We can get along if we have to without them.

    But we melees have another Symbiosis, a strong greater one that is much more important.
    If this group is weak, we melee are also weak.
    It is the group of classes that can cast mass curative spells.

    This group includes Bards, Druids, Clerics, and Favored Souls.
    The games fate and destiny are interwoven with their destiny.

    These four classes have some else in common.
    All four of them currently only have tier two prestige classes.
    Since three tier should exists, one can obviously concluded that each of these classes
    should be increased in enhancement power by 50% during this enhancement update.

    Bards also suffer as already needing upgrades in many forms.
    They sit at the bottom of all the classes, needing much love.
    I will not list in detail what should be changed as you the Devs already have my very
    details notes on the subject documented for later access.

    While some will say, the spellsinger looks kinda nice, I say you have a long way to go.
    The bard needs a lot of work, you know what it is, do it.

    Fifty percent is a lot of power addition.
    Fear is the original sin.
    Be bold, be creative, show us how smart you can be.

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