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  1. #1
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    Default Rogue Mechanic: Looking for some advice/builds

    Lately I've noticed my 20/5 Rogue Assassin just isn't as effective at what I want to do. I have a standing 50 or so Assassinate DC without sacrificing much, but it's getting a bit tiresome. I can handle assassinations throughout Menace of the Underdark on EN or EH, and do decent enough on EE, but EE Gianthold really owned me.

    I don't plan on TRing for a while, and tend to run EE and/or raids. In those situations, Assassinate is rarely needed. I may take out a troublesome spellcaster or two, but most groups don't bring a rogue to a raid to assassinate trash. I'm generally there for DPS and/or trapping needs.

    I was considering doing a simple feat/enhancement swap for a melee focused yet ranged capable rogue. Mechanic for Xbow proficiency, and swapping my Lv.6 rogue past life(which I rarely use nowadays) for Point Blank Shot. I'd still have all the great TWF/melee feats, but be capable of ranged if melee wasn't an option(though less than comparable DPS without rapid and precise feats).

    So any opinions on how well a mechanic currently performs and if/how I should go about this? Suggested builds? Or maybe an intense hatred of Mechanics coupled with the suggestion that I shouldn't do it? Looking for any input, really.
    Last edited by RastSekyd; 06-11-2013 at 02:37 AM.

  2. #2
    Build Constructionist unbongwah's Avatar
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    You realize you're giving up not just the Assassinate ability, but also +3d6 SA and the vorpal strike effect from Assassin III, right? Furthermore, that effect procs on ranged SAs as well as melee?

    Because if you're not willing to go all-in on a ranged Mechanic, maybe what you should consider is sticking with Assassin, swapping one of your less important feats for heavy repeater prof, and see if the vorpal strikes proc often enough to be useful when you're not meleeing. [It's just too bad you couldn't buff with Insightful Dmg as well, but I guess that might be considered OP...]

  3. #3
    Community Member bsquishwizzy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RastSekyd View Post
    Lately I've noticed my 20/5 Rogue Assassin just isn't as effective at what I want to do. I have a standing 50 or so Assassinate DC without sacrificing much, but it's getting a bit tiresome. I can handle assassinations throughout Menace of the Underdark on EN or EH, and do decent enough on EE, but EE Gianthold really owned me.

    I don't plan on TRing for a while, and tend to run EE and/or raids. In those situations, Assassinate is rarely needed. I may take out a troublesome spellcaster or two, but most groups don't bring a rogue to a raid to assassinate trash. I'm generally there for DPS and/or trapping needs.

    I was considering doing a simple feat/enhancement swap for a melee focused yet ranged capable rogue. Mechanic for Xbow proficiency, and swapping my Lv.6 rogue past life(which I rarely use nowadays) for Point Blank Shot. I'd still have all the great TWF/melee feats, but be capable of ranged if melee wasn't an option(though less than comparable DPS without rapid and precise feats).

    So any opinions on how well a mechanic currently performs and if/how I should go about this? Suggested builds? Or maybe an intense hatred of Mechanics coupled with the suggestion that I shouldn't do it? Looking for any input, really.
    I've got a first-life lvl 21 Assassin who, for the most part, can survive GH. Are you sure you're just not expecting too much?

    Secondly, if you can take out the casters, that's doing quite a bit. And DPS? All that SA damage and vorpal strikes on top of TWF and dual weapons effects? That's a ****-load of damage right there. Add to that trapping capabilities, and you're doing a lot of work for the group.

    If your party is giving you flack, my personal opinion is that their expectations are maybe a bit much. GH wilderness, I believe, is lvl 24. I expect the quests to be around that level as well. At lvl 20/5, your near max capabilities.

    Secondly, the only REAL advantage that Mechanic brings to you, aside from repeater proficiency, is being able to mess-up constructs. That isn't going to get you very far in GH. Plus, when you add in the need to make bolts (at least craft them) and some of the other baggage that is going to go along with having repeater proficiency, I don't think you're going to be happy with swapping one for the other, honestly.

  4. #4
    Community Member Charononus's Avatar
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    What race are you? I might be able to pull off some kind of build that is pure rogue with a better ranged option as assassin, but I think I'd need helf to do it.

  5. #5
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    The Gianthold wilderness wasn't really the problem, pretty easy overall. The quests got me, on the other hand(even though I know them reasonably well, as I'd ran them all many times through Heroic GH). Upon a second look and rerunning the quests(still on EE), I think I was just pulling too much aggro(even with threat reducing actives and the like) to deal with. But yeah, I probably am expecting too much. I've been dominating MotU content, so jumping into GH I probably set my standards too high.

    Secondly, if you can take out the casters, that's doing quite a bit. And DPS? All that SA damage and vorpal strikes on top of TWF and dual weapons effects? That's a ****-load of damage right there. Add to that trapping capabilities, and you're doing a lot of work for the group.
    Yeah, the DPS is actually why I'm trying to stay melee focused(and Assassin). unbongwah's suggestion to swap out a feat for repeater prof would probably work well enough for now(I do enjoy having a decent-DPS ranged weapon, and repeater + SA is about as good as it gets), and I'd be more likely to go full-on ranged mechanic than a hyrbid.

    Mechanic would have a few other advantages, but not likely worth it. I already have a nice 70 disable and 60 or so search(before boosts and such), so I'd probably never have to worry about trapping this life. I don't now, really. EE Gianthold was the only quest to give me any trapping issues, and that was only my Search being a couple points too low for some traps(easily fixed via Heroism)


    What race are you? I might be able to pull off some kind of build that is pure rogue with a better ranged option as assassin, but I think I'd need helf to do it.
    Human, I'm practically built for repeaters stat-wise anyways, being a finesse rogue assassin. High dex and a respectable(but not "maxed" by any means) int.

    [It's just too bad you couldn't buff with Insightful Dmg as well, but I guess that might be considered OP...]
    Eh, Rogue/Arti mixes have been doing that forever. I could technically just grab some Insightful scrolls and use those, if needed.

  6. #6
    Community Member Todkaninchen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RastSekyd View Post
    Eh, Rogue/Arti mixes have been doing that forever. I could technically just grab some Insightful scrolls and use those, if needed.
    One problem...

    Repeaters are 2-handed and Insightful damage only casts on the weapon in your hand...

    Which means you can't cast it while holding an Xbow.

    Which sucks.

    The other big differences between rogue mechanics and rogue assassins are:

    1. Mobility
    2. Not (ideally) getting meleed much.
    3. Range specific Feats.
    4. Different use of stealth.

    Mobility is a big thing. As a rogue mech, you can generally hit almost anything you can see. You may not get sneak attack damage on it (without gear help or a big barbarian), but you can hit most things. If melees come after you, you can run or kite away. It's a different style of playing. This ties into the differences in how you use stealth. For an assassin, you can attack and kill without breaking stealth. For a mechanic, that first shot means everyone knows you are there--which is where mobility comes in...

    ...and you use it to try and avoid the melees while killing the casters first. *grin*

    Which is one reason why you probably aren't going to be that effective just flipping a feat or two. As an assassin, you're major source of damage is sneak attack. As a rogue mechanic, you're going to get less of it unless you can--with gear--induce blindness, helplessness, sleep or deception. Most of your damage as a rogue mech is based on how high you can get your INT, what gear you can add to pop some more ranged damage on (Quiver of Poison, Windhowler Bracers, Legendary Dreadnought Epic Destiny stuff, Shiradi stuff, etc.) or the feats for ranged damage.

    At the least, for DPS purposes, (in my opinion), you should have the following ranged (and general rogue feats):

    1. Point Blank shot.
    2. Rapid Shot.
    3. Rapid Reload.
    4. Improved Critical: Ranged.

    These 4 are the basic package. This is your "rate of fire" focus.

    5 & 6. Precision and Opportunist.

    Fort breaking. Rogue 101. The big issues is you've got a bow with a base Crit range of 10%, with Improved critical, you have double damage about 1/5 of the time and two bursts is 6 shots...

    ...having a decent "on critical" effect on your bow like radiance is pretty common.

    Assuming someone's aggroed at you, this is probably the best your damage will get.

    (Actually, even on rarer procs--like the 1-1.5% proc rate on ooze summons on an ooze II bow, you'll see those many times in a typical quest.)

    7 & 8: Precise Shot and Improved Precise Shot.
    9. Combat Archery (Epic level)

    PS is lovely because--if you're standing still (where the mobs can't get you) you can get up to a 30% bonus to damage with the archer's stance going (and it runs with Precision...) By itself, this is a nice thing to have.

    IPS, on the other hand, is even better. This is how you can do more DPS than an assassin without (and probably with) sneak attack damage. This is how you turn a crowd into a shooting gallery. However, to get IPS, you need DEX 19+, Point Blank Shot and Precise Shot and to be really effective, the other ones listed.

    Also, you're going to want to lay in some decent gear. Non-weapons, you want an improved deception item and an armor-piercing item. Black Dragonhide is nice for this. If you don't splash artificer, you'll need several large quivers. Ideally, you want Sturdy Deneith bolts plus +3 Sturdy Denieth bolts, + generic bolts as spares in each one. (That's 3000 bolts per quiver, stacked like that, equivalent of more) For most quests, one quiverful will be enough, but if you're running a chain, 2-3 are what you'll need in case. The Quiver of Poison adds a few points of poison damage (often resisted) but is the equivalent to a Large Thin Quiver.

    For weapons, any repeater with radiance is nice, The various forms of the Doublecross (when Nightshade works) and the Slaver's hand cross work excellently for trash. For red-names, it's more about what breaks DR and kiting. My faves are GS Triple Positive (holy/good burst/good blast) (and a Tira's Splendor since I started splashing 2 levels of Arti for bolt summoning and runearm imbue will break Silver DR for the devil raids), a Radiance II, and a Ooze II repeater for anything resistant to good damage and fire. (Does frost and acid damage plus reduces enemy AC by 5 20-30% of the time).

    A metalline of righteousness/good/etc. is also a good idea.

    So...

    If you simply change out for the proficiency, you'll probably loose a lot of damage for not a lot of benefit. A full-rebuild with max INT (damage/skills) and DEX (to-hit/skills/AC) as well as the feats above would probably work better. You'll need to adjust to having aggro most of the time too, but it can be fun. Also, when the sneak attack damage does kick in, you're usually doing enough damage fast enough to basically end most non-bosses pretty quick.

    For Epic Destinies (I only ran Legendary Dreadnaught, level 1 Shadowdancer, and level 1 Shiradi before TRing), even the base Shiradi "Stay Frosty" can be a game changer with un-resistable crippling. In many cases, if you can range them, they're dead before they even get into sneak attack range...

    Good luck though.

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