Thread: Howl of the North - worth it? some random math

1. Howl of the North - worth it? some random math

Howl of the North: Toggle: -5 Attack and +1 critical damage multiplier on attack rolls of 19-20 with your Trained Weapon while under Skaldic Rage.
Will this ability result in net loss of damage for bards? I don't know. Here are some speculations.

If one weapon swing deals X damage, with an average bard weapon, (e.g. khopesh or drow greataxe, 17x3, 19x4), you deal 15+6+8 = 29D per 20 swings.
With Howl of the North, you deal 31D. 31/29 = 1.069 => This ability adds 6.9% damage. Assuming your hits still land.
Will -5 to hit decrease your hit rate by more or less than 6.9%? I don't know.

Comparison to Power Attack
Power attack uses a similar mechanics.

One-handed weapons: -5 attack, +5 damage
Assuming an average bard with 40 strength (+15 dmg), +8 dmg song, 2 ship, +6 weapon dealing 2d8 (9) damage, a basic hit hits for 40.
Power attack adds 45/40 damage, 12.5 % damage increase. Assuming your hits still land.

Two-handed weapons: -5 attack, +10 damage
Assuming an average bard with 40 strength (+22 dmg), +8 dmg song, 2 ship, +6 weapon dealing 4d6 (14) damage, a basic hit hits for 52.
Power attacks adds 62/52 damage, 19.2% increase. Assuming your hits still land.

Summary:
* Howl of the North: +6.9% damage, -5 to hit
* Power Attack 1H: +12.5% damage, -5 to hit
* Power Attack 2H: +19.2% damage, -5 to hit

Conclusion:
* It seems obvious that PA is worth it for two-handed weapons.
* It seems probable that PA is worth it for one-handed weapons.
* It seems questionable if HotN is worth it.

Action items:
* Turbine: Fix it.

Miscellaneous:
* name "howl of the north" vs effect
* get rid of attack penalty OR replace with a different effect
* is my math way off? it could be

2. Originally Posted by cru121
Howl of the North: Toggle: -5 Attack and +1 critical damage multiplier on attack rolls of 19-20 with your Trained Weapon while under Skaldic Rage.
Will this ability result in net loss of damage for bards? I don't know. Here are some speculations.

If one weapon swing deals X damage, with an average bard weapon, (e.g. khopesh or drow greataxe, 17x3, 19x4), you deal 15+6+8 = 29D per 20 swings.
With Howl of the North, you deal 31D. 31/29 = 1.069 => This ability adds 6.9% damage. Assuming your hits still land.
Will -5 to hit decrease your hit rate by more or less than 6.9%? I don't know.

Comparison to Power Attack
Power attack uses a similar mechanics.

One-handed weapons: -5 attack, +5 damage
Assuming an average bard with 40 strength (+15 dmg), +8 dmg song, 2 ship, +6 weapon dealing 2d8 (9) damage, a basic hit hits for 40.
Power attack adds 45/40 damage, 12.5 % damage increase. Assuming your hits still land.

Two-handed weapons: -5 attack, +10 damage
Assuming an average bard with 40 strength (+22 dmg), +8 dmg song, 2 ship, +6 weapon dealing 4d6 (14) damage, a basic hit hits for 52.
Power attacks adds 62/52 damage, 19.2% increase. Assuming your hits still land.

Summary:
* Howl of the North: +6.9% damage, -5 to hit
* Power Attack 1H: +12.5% damage, -5 to hit
* Power Attack 2H: +19.2% damage, -5 to hit

Conclusion:
* It seems obvious that PA is worth it for two-handed weapons.
* It seems probable that PA is worth it for one-handed weapons.
* It seems questionable if HotN is worth it.

Action items:
* Turbine: Fix it.

Miscellaneous:
* name "howl of the north" vs effect
* get rid of attack penalty OR replace with a different effect
* is my math way off? it could be
Your damage is low. It does not factor in burst damage (e.g. holy burst), misc damage modifiers like + to damage from claw set, 40 strength I think will be on the low side when the cap is 28 especially if this is a splashed bard, powerattack or other feats which add to damage, how about splash damage or etc..

Your damage is low. It does not factor in burst damage (e.g. holy burst), misc damage modifiers like + to damage from claw set, 40 strength I think will be on the low side when the cap is 28 especially if this is a splashed bard, powerattack or other feats which add to damage, how about splash damage or etc..
1) It's not "my" damage. It's just an example. Similar examples could be made for other tiers of the game. Howl of the North is a min.level 12 ability.
2) Holy, elemental etc damage simply makes Howl of the North less useful, because you're missing more.
3) Higher strength + static damage increases make Power Attack less useful, but not by much. E.g., at 60 strength
onehanders: 55/50 = 10% increase
twohanders: 77/67 = 15% increase
howlofnorth: 6.9%

4. It looks like Howl of the North can be active while PA is active. However, it looks like Howl of the North does not stack with other abilities enhancing the critical multiplier.

5. disregard this doublepost.

6. I must refresh this thread a bit.

Has anyone done some more math, especially on the effects of the -5 to-hit? Because the new content might make this drawback more relevant.

And personally i wouldnt compare it to Power Attack, as its not an either/or type, but rather a "What is the net effect of Howl of the North?"- type of question.

I have the feeling that the -5 to-hit drawback + the need to invest into a trash AP-chain (the whole Gathering Cold chain is very, very meh) might make it an overall not so good AP investment. For example i feel that all these AP might be better invested in the racial tree, at least for my splashed Half-Elven Warchanter.

7. Originally Posted by Noctus
need to invest into a trash AP-chain
Gathering Cold: 1 AP (and it grants access to Iced Edges too)
Northwind: 2 AP
HotN: 2 AP

It could be a trash chain, but you only need 1 rank each.

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