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  1. #1
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    Default Newbs (like me) and the blue bar....

    Hi all,

    Been running through options for my first TR. I am level 18.5 at the moment, and am hoping that this weekend is the time to do my first TR into a class I actually LIKE. I'm playing a Wiz at the moment, and am hating this class. Why? Well, it's all to do with the blue bar.

    First off, the pros of a Wiz are obvious:
    - Great selection of spells
    - Can change at any shrine or inn
    - Great synergy with Rogue for trapping (my char is a 16/2 wiz/rog)

    The cons:
    - That damn blue bar. I can't maintain SP worth a damn, and the reason is that I don't have the experience to know how far to push what, when. Blow my SP now with a big nuke effort? Save em like Scrooge in case there's no shrine? Generally, I don't know. If you're a 10th lifer running through the same quest for the 532nd time, this might not be an issue.

    Seems to me that a Wiz, Cleric, and maybe Bard have the same issue. Favoured Soul and Sorc probably less so. Arti? I dunno, never ran into any issues on mine, but maybe. No idea about Paladins.

    Point is that the blue bar is seriously newb-unfriendly. Or at least it always has been to me.

    Opinions?

    Aes.

  2. #2
    The Hatchery Urist's Avatar
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    I've never really got on with using the blue-bar as primary damage, either. My general strategy is to take things slow and careful, luring out opponents one at a time or in small groups - divide and conquer.
    Doesn't work so well with blue bars, who need to take out big groups of enemies at a time to be mana-efficient. It seems rather off that my melee characters would use cover and choke-points to fight tactically, whereas my wizard's go-to strategy was to get as much aggro as possible, then shield up and take the pain, while standing in a wall of fire...

    These days, I'm quite content knowing that I don't like playing caster-types. So any blue bar I have is usually just for buffing or healing. Then I just get stuck in with blade, hammer or pewpew.

  3. #3
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    my strategy is watch the blue bar of other arcanes and adapt accordingly.

  4. #4
    Community Member Philibusta's Avatar
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    When you play this Wizard, are you grouping a lot, or do you tend to prefer solo play?

    If you're mostly grouping, you shouldn't be running out of SP too often, because each person in the group should be puling their weight. And if you're being pushed too much to act as a party buffbot, tell em all to go to Shavarath. Everybody wants to run these "BYOH" groups now...fine. If you're the Wizard and you gotta bring your own heals, everyone else can darn well bring their own buffs.

    If you prefer solo play, on the other hand (as I do), bring along a hireling if you're not already doing that. At least one Cleric hireling at most levels (might have to use a hire that's one level under you, till you hit your next level) have the Divine Vitality ability. That, in effect, makes them your mana-battery.
    All that is wrong with DDO, life, taxes, poltics, religion, music, fast food, education, the criminal justice system, the weather, society, the universe, and previously-discontinued-but-now-on-their-way-back snack cakes, is all the fault of Wizards of the Coast. I know this because Fred told me so, and Mind Flayers are smart.

  5. #5
    Community Member Ryiah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Istaria1 View Post
    Blow my SP now with a big nuke effort?
    Which spells are you using? Keep in mind that you generally want to stick to highly efficient damage spells like Wall of Fire, Ice Storm, and Acid Rain.
    Ryiah | Raeyah | Reikara
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  6. #6
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    I must admit that as a casual player with very irregular hours, I do tend to play solo quite alot. I don't necessarily think this is a solo issue though. Even in a group, I can't always judge who can and can't do anything. So I tend to act the same - spam the AOEs, grab the outliers with force spells to drag them in. At the end of a quest I might have the highest or the lowest kill count, but I don't see alot of difference in SP needs.

    Having played a bit, I don't think I could ever recommend a Wiz for a new player. It just relies on your knowledge too much.

    Aes.

  7. #7
    Community Member Charononus's Avatar
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    Big thing imo that hurts new players with a blue bar is sp items. Other than that the big part is knowing when to turn your meta's off.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryiah View Post
    Which spells are you using? Keep in mind that you generally want to stick to highly efficient damage spells like Wall of Fire, Ice Storm, and Acid Rain.
    I do exactly this. I'll grab far away mobs in the same room with force SLAs.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charononus View Post
    Other than that the big part is knowing when to turn your meta's off.
    Exactly! Knowledge a new player (and for that matter, ME) won't have.

    Blue bars are not a newb friendly thing.

  10. #10
    Community Member Charononus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Istaria1 View Post
    Exactly! Knowledge a new player (and for that matter, ME) won't have.

    Blue bars are not a newb friendly thing.
    I'd say as a general rule

    heighten always on for instant kills and cc
    max, empower, etc only on for red names
    quicken on once you are level 18

    hope that helps.

  11. #11
    Community Member Ryiah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Istaria1 View Post
    Exactly! Knowledge a new player (and for that matter, ME) won't have.
    It depends on the player. Some players pick this up on their own rather quickly. Some you practically have to teach them every little concept. It comes down to a combination of common sense and math. These two allow you to realize that raising the SP cost through metamagics does not always result in an equal increase in damage.
    Last edited by Ryiah; 08-24-2013 at 02:45 PM.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryiah View Post
    It depends on the player. Some players pick this up on their own rather quickly. Some you practically have to teach them every little concept. It comes down to a combination of common sense and math. These two allow you to realize that raising the SP cost through metamagics does not always result in an equal increase in damage.
    Not til you know the quest or situation. A first life player running a new quest is running blind.

  13. #13
    Community Member Ryiah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Istaria1 View Post
    Not til you know the quest or situation. A first life player running a new quest is running blind.
    Yes, if you go around burning SP as hard as you can when you don't know the quest. Once again it comes down to common sense. Common sense tells me to be sparse with my resources when running a new quest. After I have properly learned the quest I can go back and be a little less frugal.
    Ryiah | Raeyah | Reikara
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  14. #14
    Community Member djl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Istaria1 View Post
    Hi all,

    Been running through options for my first TR. I am level 18.5 at the moment, and am hoping that this weekend is the time to do my first TR into a class I actually LIKE. I'm playing a Wiz at the moment, and am hating this class. Why? Well, it's all to do with the blue bar.

    First off, the pros of a Wiz are obvious:
    - Great selection of spells
    - Can change at any shrine or inn
    - Great synergy with Rogue for trapping (my char is a 16/2 wiz/rog)

    The cons:
    - That damn blue bar. I can't maintain SP worth a damn, and the reason is that I don't have the experience to know how far to push what, when. Blow my SP now with a big nuke effort? Save em like Scrooge in case there's no shrine? Generally, I don't know. If you're a 10th lifer running through the same quest for the 532nd time, this might not be an issue.

    Seems to me that a Wiz, Cleric, and maybe Bard have the same issue. Favoured Soul and Sorc probably less so. Arti? I dunno, never ran into any issues on mine, but maybe. No idea about Paladins.

    Point is that the blue bar is seriously newb-unfriendly. Or at least it always has been to me.

    Opinions?

    Aes.
    Both Wizards and Sorcs have access to great "Spell Like Abilities," aka SLAs. These SLAs function the same as real spells but they cost next to nothing and can benefit from Metamagic Feats without raising their cost. Utilize them to your full advantage to conserve SP. Archmages are practically nothing but SLAs, and Pale Masters get their negative energy bolts/blasts to use.

  15. #15
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    @Ryiah, Yes, ofc you need to be frugal til you know what might be round the next corner. In fairness, I think any MMO player runs this way, even a DDO first-lifer. I play that way as well! I don't go nuking happily til I have to stop and say "Urh...? But now I can't kill".... But that doesn't mean that even being frugal you can't run into a wall.

    And the issue with blue-bar casters and walls is that the only solution is Mnemonic pots. Which are available only through quest rewards (I always pick them) or through the store. A melee or ranged char will NOT have this problem.

    @djl, Yes, SLAs are amazing. Little bit of a long CD, but they're currently (apart from AOE like FW and Acid Rain) my main source of DPS. But, you know (under the old enhancement system) I went 17 levels without one. It's MUCH better now that the Enhancement trees are so much easier to read.

    I stick to my stance here, a blue-bar caster is not a newbie character.

    Aes.That'

    PS: If I come across as hardas$ about this, it's because I am really hating my Wiz :P That's personal hehe

  16. #16
    Community Member Charononus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Istaria1 View Post
    And the issue with blue-bar casters and walls is that the only solution is Mnemonic pots. Which are available only through quest rewards (I always pick them) or through the store. A melee or ranged char will NOT have this problem.
    Yup non blue bars just have issues self healing in a game that is switching to byoh.

  17. #17
    Community Member Ryiah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Istaria1 View Post
    A melee or ranged char will NOT have this problem.
    As Charononus has stated, this game is shifting largely to requiring players to bring their own backup healing. The only times I've seen melees dying frequently as of late has been those melees without a blue bar and Rejuvenation Cocoon.

    As for mnemonics being the only solution, there are two items in the game that give back a fair amount. Both are a pain to acquire. The first is the Mysterious Bauble from Weapon Shipment and the second is the Epic Ring of Spell Storing from the Desert. Both items mimic a major mnemonic pot with the bauble giving one use per rest and the ring giving three uses per rest.
    Last edited by Ryiah; 08-24-2013 at 03:20 PM.
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  18. #18
    Community Member AzB's Avatar
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    One thing that might help is to drop the 2 rogue levels. I know it's all the rage to be a wiz/rogue, but it does come at a price. First off, your spells may not land as much, especially with a first lifer, because your DCs are already down how ever many levels of another class you take. This makes you cast another spell, wasting sp. Secondly, you lose the spell points you would gain from two more levels. I ran with a guildy a couple lives ago, me on my wiz and he on his wiz rogue. He got frustrated quickly because he got the good spells 2 levels later, the wraith form 2 levels later, no lich form at all since we were TR'ing, and his FoDs were totally unreliable, he had fewer sp, etc. Yep, he could get the traps, but generally speaking we had a rogue in the party, and in most cases the traps could be bypassed anyway. I'm not saying don't be a trapper, I'm just saying to be aware that you're 20% less effective as a wiz if you decide to do traps too.

    The rest is simply strategy. Pace yourself, use your sp wisely. It's not that hard in most content as there are shrines if not frequently, at least about where you should be running out of sp. It's also nice to have a fall back, like an item that gets some sp back (concordant opp, twisted talisman, etc) for emergencies. Especially if you rely on your sp for self healing. Use your sp where they will do the most good. Lots of melees in the party? Buff 'em up. Use efficient AOEs for mobs and kite them through or in it. Don't use polar rays to blast the archers on the ledges if you can use a crossbow or just run past them. Etc. Some of it is experience, but most of it is simply pacing yourself and using some common sense. I see wizzes all the time the FoD a mob after the melee has knocked it down to almost nothing... that's a complete waste of sp. Let the melee kill it if he's not having trouble with it. FoD is best used on casters that can't be reached quickly, etc.

    I've played a lot of blue bars and I've never really had too much problem with sp. Even everyone's favorite gripe about druid having a poor sp pool wasn't a problem. I just made sure I tanked out the pet and gave my druid some ability to melee. Toss an earthquake and storm of vengeance on large mobs and me and the wolf could polish off the survivors by hand. The wolf would grab aggro first giving me a chance to get the spells off, and away we went. Bard was easiest since all the spells are pure **** except for a couple of buffs. There was no need for sp items and such because I simply never used very much of the blue bar at all. Soloing slightly more so because of the need for fast healing a lot more often. But even then, you can cast most of the buffs and heals from scrolls and wands and save the blue bar if needed.

    I think the wiz class would have a lot more dimension if we could scribe our own scrolls and wands had a more meaningful use in DDO. Right now, wands and scrolls are used for healing almost exclusively, and that's a shame. A high level wiz should be able to do some damage with wands on occasion instead of having to carry a sword or a crossbow. Even my bard with fully maxxed wand and scroll lines using a wand of blasting did very little damage... with poor saves and only ten charges to boot. It was marginally useful at 13th level, but by 18+ it was completely pointless.

  19. #19
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    That, and stack up on wands. No need to buy or select as end reward, but defibitely grab from chests and slot them in a quickbar to use. Be sure to crack every crate and barrel in sight, they often drop potions that will save you some mana.
    This gets less usefull as you gain levels, but can certainly help at the start.
    And if on a new quest, either as your party members for info, or read the ddo wiki before going in.
    DDO wiki can also help with figuring out what you need to increase your mana pool (pearl of power X comes to mind), or increase the damage per spell (like the ring of elemental essences, but generic loot can be helpfull too), and lots of other usefull knowledge. Playing a wizard isn't that hardm it just requires some research.

    Greetz,
    Red Orm

  20. #20
    Community Member xXbikergirlXx's Avatar
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    Default New Player's Comment

    I am also a new player and my wiz is heading for lvl 23, she is however my fourth character and I have probably benefited from the knowledge of what gear is out there to help that blue bar!! Having said that since U19 I am still coming to terms with all the new and 'improved?' gear thats available but my general approach is obtain anything and everything that increases your SP(i.e. gear, feats and enhancements0 also one of my main expenditures is mana pots from the plat AH., the cleric hires with divine vitality are also a must especially at lower lvls when you are learning what spells to use and how much they cost(SP wise that is). I'm currently lvl 21, with a lvl banked and my SP is just short of 2700, I am managing to complete epic quest(NOT elite lol) without running out of SP(i.e. using my stash of mana pots) and with only one hire(currently using lvl20 FVS mostly) without divine vitality. So it can be done and I have to say I thoroughly enjoy my wiz but I am also realistic in knowing what she can an cannot do 'Stand back and blow 'em up!!' is her moto. Face to face pummeling no way!!
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