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  1. #1
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    Default Throwing Axe build - Could it work at all?

    Hey there, I'm Xianio and new to this game. I played Neverwinter Nights way back when so I am familiar with the setting/DnD rules/general building concepts that come with a DnD game.

    One thing I generally like to do is to try and figure out builds that are different from the run of the mill cookie cutters that bring unique/different approaches to games. So, I'm here asking for some advice/info on if/how a few things work in DDO.

    First off, I'm thinking about making an Axe throwing Dwarf that specs heavily into Fighter/StD. The intended idea being to create a character that has exceptionally high AC and moderate damage while operating from range. The intent being that I'll be able to create a ranged warrior who operates like a turret - taking advantage of the 30% boost to weapon damage from Archer's Focus.

    The idea is built around;
    1) I take all of the +dex bonus to tower shield/heavy armor
    2) These enhancements stack allowing me to reach +9 dex bonus on tower shields and fullplate (assuming both have 1 naturally, if not +8)
    3) With such a significant investment in armor/decent investment in Constitution I'll be tough enough to tank for a while.
    4) If I don't need to kite the eventual 30% bonus from Archer's Focus adds up to a solid DPS boost.

    Given all this, a few quick questions:
    1) How many enhancement trees can I invest in?
    2) Would Paladin SD +dex armor/shield/Armor boost stack with Dwarf and StD +'s to the same?
    3) If I'm using Dwarf "throw your weight around" (Con = +damage stat) and dwarven fortress (+7% weapon damage) and 30% from Archer's focus, would that be enough damage boosts to be significant despite the paltry 1d6 base weapon damage?
    4) Lastly, am I allowed to invest in 2-3 enhancement trees? I'm contemplating investing in both fighter paths and a paladin path - if it's possible.


    Whew, long post. Thanks to those who took the time to read it, double thanks to those who reply. (Plus bonus points for anyone who can give me some pointers without changing the core concept)
    Last edited by Xianio; 09-17-2013 at 06:57 PM.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xianio View Post
    3) If I'm using Dwarf "throw your weight around" (Con = +damage stat) and dwarven fortress (+7% weapon damage) and 30% from Archer's focus, would that be enough damage boosts to be significant despite the paltry 1d6 base weapon damage?
    The main problem won't be damage, it'll be attack speed. You still won't be able to reach the power of melee or archer builds in terms of damage per hit and crits, but you'll have a fraction of the attack speed of melee builds and be limited to one projectile per attack unlike archer builds, and have no way of making up for that.

    3) With such a significant investment in armor/decent investment in Constitution I'll be tough enough to tank for a while.
    Your other big problem with the idea is here. You won't be able to hold the attention of any enemies with your low damage, making your defensive investments mostly worthless. The minute an archer uses Manyshot or a caster stacks a DoT or two, they're going to draw aggro. Not only that, but an actual tank is unnecessary for almost all of the game. Somebody that can self-heal while doing damage and having good damage reduction is perfectly fine in 99.5% of situations where there's a dangerous enemy.

    There's just no reason to use a throwing weapon for anything more than flavor. They all suck. Bows and crossbows are both far better in virtually any situation. You're free to use them, of course, but I think you'll end up sorely disappointed.

    1) How many enhancement trees can I invest in?
    Up to 6 class trees, plus your racial tree.

  3. #3
    Community Member Soulfurnace's Avatar
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    Just to step in here, it seems like a bad idea, to the point where I wouldn't even consider it.

    A shuriken build, maybe. But that's it in regards to throwing builds for me.

    Your AC will not matter. AC is dead in DDO, sadly enough.
    Your DPS? You won't ever get agro, unless you're soloing.

    Even with Archers Focus, I don't see it happening.

    Sorry, but I wouldn't try it. (Coming from the guy who loves melee wizards/sorcs :P)

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soulfurnace View Post
    Your AC will not matter. AC is dead in DDO, sadly enough.
    AC isn't dead. It no longer grants immortality if you invest really heavily in it, and it's not worth a massive investment because of that, but it's still worth investing at least some in. It's not difficult to get a meaningful AC on almost any character in almost any content that isn't EE.

  5. #5
    Community Member Soulfurnace's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zirun View Post
    AC isn't dead. It no longer grants immortality if you invest really heavily in it, and it's not worth a massive investment because of that, but it's still worth investing at least some in. It's not difficult to get a meaningful AC on almost any character in almost any content that isn't EE.
    If it's not worth a massive investment to the extent where you get enough passively, I declare it dead!

    Anyway, you're right, yeah. However, I'd rather exaggerate its uselessness than have OP build a toon expecting AC to grant him serious protection in elite (or even eHard), which are the difficulties most people tend to run.

  6. #6
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    There's more help available for throwing weapons than there used to be, although some of it is reported to be bugged. A throwing-weapon based character could be an interesting experiment, but personally I think you'd more or less need to be a halfling ranger focusing on deepwood sniper. Still, it would be an experiment, and not something I'd recommend to a new player... dwarf thrower even less so, and dwarf thrower tank even less than that.

    But don't get discouraged! Everyone needs a ranged attack from time to time and you could certainly incorporate some measure of proficiency with throwing axes into a dwarven fighter build. They are, if nothing else, cool weapons. I just wouldn't encourage making it the centrepiece of your build.

  7. #7
    Community Member Rautis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xianio View Post
    The idea is built around;
    1) I take all of the +dex bonus to tower shield/heavy armor
    2) These enhancements stack allowing me to reach +9 dex bonus on tower shields and fullplate (assuming both have 1 naturally, if not +8)
    3) With such a significant investment in armor/decent investment in Constitution I'll be tough enough to tank for a while.
    4) If I don't need to kite the eventual 30% bonus from Archer's Focus adds up to a solid DPS boost.
    1) You could invest in strenght and get Brutal Throw feat in order to be more capable with melee axes when needed. depending on feats you pick you can live with 13 dex(base stat+tome) or less. 19 in case you want improved precise shot.
    2) Lifting dex cap is mostly used to increase your maximum allowed dodge. Boost received to armor class will not be as big of an improvement you might expect.
    3) If you can get aggro most certainly. Note that Stalwart defender stances require you to have a shield and a melee weapon in order to work.
    4) Boost is very nice. However you must consider that not all attacks are physical(casters). This means you will be standing still less than you would like to.

    Quote Originally Posted by Xianio View Post
    Given all this, a few quick questions:
    1) How many enhancement trees can I invest in?
    2) Would Paladin SD +dex armor/shield/Armor boost stack with Dwarf and StD +'s to the same?
    3) If I'm using Dwarf "throw your weight around" (Con = +damage stat) and dwarven fortress (+7% weapon damage) and 30% from Archer's focus, would that be enough damage boosts to be significant despite the paltry 1d6 base weapon damage?
    4) Lastly, am I allowed to invest in 2-3 enhancement trees? I'm contemplating investing in both fighter paths and a paladin path - if it's possible.
    1) 6.
    2) Enhancements of same name from different trees should not stack. Also Sacred Defense and Stalwart Defense are stances that cancel each other out.
    3) With strenght you would be able to save some action points and get acceptable damage before spending 16 action points(15 required to qualify +1 for Throw Your Weight Around, end of level 4 at earliest) into dwarf tree. Also if you really want to go fighter/pally you get divine might which adds your charisma modifier to strenght.
    Damage with thrown axes won't be even average as others have pointed out. You will be having trouble with any self healing targets if you keep using thrown weapons against them. However using thrown axes can be very nice when fighting targets you can't reach, that haven't reached you yet etc.
    4) You are. You only get so many action points so spend them wisely. Using points on both Stalwart Defender and Sacred Defender can be troublesome as many abilities in those trees won't stack or can't be activated at same time.

    I would say getting some proficiency with thrown axes can be nice flavor but using them all the time would be a mistake. If you get 4 pally levels (divine might, tier 4 enhancements) or 2 paladin(charisma to saves, tier 2 enhancements) and spend rest of levels in fighter you get plenty of feats and spending some on thrown weapons won't reduce your ability with melee weapons too much.

  8. #8
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    Hello again all, thanks for the replies.

    For some reason that I don't understand my original account now has no forum posting privileges so I couldn't reply earlier. If anyone knows why I could create one thread then no others please let me know. I created a champ, played until level 2 (about 2 hours or so) then logged back in only to no longer be allowed to post. Maybe this time it'll be different.

    A few thoughts no your responses,

    Does no one Sword and Board in DDO? I cannot see why my DPS would be so much lower unless S&B is simply never used in this game.

    Why is my DPS so much lower compared to other archers? Is it really just Manyshot being so insanely powerful that nothing can compare? As for attack speed is quick draw, rapid shot and BAB of 20 not at all reasonable? Wouldn't the math be the dps a traditional Manyshot archer vs a non-manyshot archer with quick draws % increase to attack speed and a 37% weapon damage boost? Are these so different?

    I'll flush out the idea a little more to give you guys a better understanding of my choices (for example why dwarf and no deepwood)
    1) Dwarves gain +4 damage to thrown axes vs halflings who only gain +2 to hit.
    2) Dwarves gain constitution which I'll be using to survive and do damage + Dwarven Fortress gives another 7% weapon damage.
    3) Even without the ability to activate the StD stance, the class tree offers me a chance to max out my dex bonus while wearing fullplate + tower shield.
    4) By only needing some of StD (no stance based enhancements) I can pour more into Kensai. This nets me a very notable +3 to hit and damage along with some other neat benefits.

    All told, I expect my feat/enhancement based bonuses to damage to be,
    +1[W] point blank
    +1 to hit point blank
    +4 damage dwarf
    +4 damage fighter
    +3 damage kensai
    +3 to hit kensai
    +30% damage Archer's focus
    +7% damage Dwarven Fortress
    +20% attack speed rapid shot
    +?% attack speed quick draw

    Then, if I decide to get really into this game I might push 6 levels of ranger/barb/druid (giving up paladin) so I could go Shardi epic destiny and gain another 60% attack speed to my thrown weapons.

    So, about 2d6 + 11 x 1.37 or 18-32 (rounded) before adding my Con score (I think that'll be about 6-7)

    All told, that makes my base damage 2d6 (not bad I'd say) with some nice damage boosts. While it obviously won't ever be enough to match Manyshot the intention isn't to match it (I'm giving up some offense for defense I know that), it's to not be SOOO far behind that once Manyshot is on CD my DPS will notably outshine theirs.

    Thoughts? ps: Please let me know why I can't post on my previous account if you know.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Xianio1 View Post
    Why is my DPS so much lower compared to other archers? Is it really just Manyshot being so insanely powerful that nothing can compare? As for attack speed is quick draw, rapid shot and BAB of 20 not at all reasonable? Wouldn't the math be the dps a traditional Manyshot archer vs a non-manyshot archer with quick draws % increase to attack speed and a 37% weapon damage boost? Are these so different?
    Basically, in DDO melee attack speed goes up automatically with Base Attack Bonus, and ranged doesn't. That's why archers have always had to struggle to keep up with melees on attack speed and why feats like Manyshot and Improved Precise Shot tend to be considered essential on ranged builds - these things don't allow the archer to exceed the melee's [sustained] attack speed, just to come close through burst damage.

    That said, I love flavor builds, and would hate to discourage one, would just go with a caution to only invest in it as much as you're having fun. Grinding for the best gear only to find it's still disappointing would be no fun

  10. #10
    Community Member Soulfurnace's Avatar
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    Sword and board? Not really. It's not used in current content.

    AC is dead at endgame, and endgame has a focus on high dps/survivability. It's not to say S&B doesn't exist, it's just not popular.
    Archers? They're bad, ASIDE from manyshot. Manyshot is where they shine, to the point where people get manyshot on melee builds - it's that powerful. (you also have monkchers; archers that use 10k stars to make up for slow rate of fire.)

    The damage you just described amazes me, in the least offensive way possible. You've definitely done your research, but.. even then, the damage is that.. bad.. that.. :\ (Hell, you most likely know more about building a toon than I do with that amount of research o.O)

    My monk, with no dmg mod (wis based) hits for an average of 50... 120 on helpless targets, thne he has sneak attack, wrap damage.. Much high attack rate, etc. I honestly don't see your defences mattering, nor your dps :\
    Still, feel free to try. If you can prove me wrong, do so! When I'm wrong, I learn after all.
    I just don't know if you'll be able to.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soulfurnace View Post
    Sword and board? Not really. It's not used in current content.

    AC is dead at endgame, and endgame has a focus on high dps/survivability. It's not to say S&B doesn't exist, it's just not popular.
    Archers? They're bad, ASIDE from manyshot. Manyshot is where they shine, to the point where people get manyshot on melee builds - it's that powerful. (you also have monkchers; archers that use 10k stars to make up for slow rate of fire.)

    The damage you just described amazes me, in the least offensive way possible. You've definitely done your research, but.. even then, the damage is that.. bad.. that.. :\ (Hell, you most likely know more about building a toon than I do with that amount of research o.O)

    My monk, with no dmg mod (wis based) hits for an average of 50... 120 on helpless targets, thne he has sneak attack, wrap damage.. Much high attack rate, etc. I honestly don't see your defences mattering, nor your dps :\
    Still, feel free to try. If you can prove me wrong, do so! When I'm wrong, I learn after all.
    I just don't know if you'll be able to.
    the main thing missing from his calculations is knowledge of how DDO scales up during the game. from a NWN1 or 2 background the numbers he will be used to will be much lower than ones we are used to in DDO. 2d6 is the same base damage as a greatsword. if you tell a PnP player they can get a greatswords worth of damage on a throwing axe then they will think it's doing great damage!
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  12. #12
    Community Member Soulfurnace's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ReaperAlexEU View Post
    the main thing missing from his calculations is knowledge of how DDO scales up during the game. from a NWN1 or 2 background the numbers he will be used to will be much lower than ones we are used to in DDO. 2d6 is the same base damage as a greatsword. if you tell a PnP player they can get a greatswords worth of damage on a throwing axe then they will think it's doing great damage!
    Yeah, I expected roughly that. No personal experience of it, but I've spoken to a few pnp players who all felt DDO was way different. The fact he'd put in the research and come up with a viable idea (if DDO was different) made me suspect it. Nobody puts in that much research and planning without experience of other dnd games :P
    I also feel like pointing out that monk is level 17, thus I'm not as gimp, but w/e.

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    Again, can't seem to post more than 1 post before DDO makes it so that my account is invalid on the forums. This time I've allowed them to send me emails/offers, maybe that will work. Does anyone run into this problem other than me?

    Continuing on -

    Please don't take my building/theorycraft numbers to heart, I'm really just winging it off some very basic info. This is probably really hurting the math + I'm only really glancing so I might be missing some critical elements. For example,

    You say that you hit for 50 base without any modifiers, yet when I look at DDOwiki and do the math, at most I'm looking at 3d6 (for your level) giving you 3-18 + finisher damage. Obviously I'm missing something rather significant.

    As far as my damage is concerned there are lots more variables that are going uncounted. The basic understanding I have is that I'm missing at least
    +5 enchantment
    +7 stat
    +1d6 elemental
    +doubleshot
    + how these interact with the 37% damage increase.

    Assuming the elemental damage is left out that's another 16 damage moving the damage to 31-54 with a double shot potential of 20% reaching 62-108 finally with a x3 crit and 18-20 crit range.

    ALL of this assumes I haven't missed something substantial - given that your Monk does 50 damage before wraps, clearly I am. Perhaps you could explain to me how you reach 50 damage on your monk/120 on a prone target which will give me a better understanding of where the damage comes from - as I'm currently at a loss.

    Finally, if anyone can explain to me why DDO keeps blocking my accounts from posting here, please let me know. I'm on a free account, have a level 3 and 2 toon and have not recieved any emails from DDO to any of the email accounts/forum accounts I have active. Thanks.

    PS: This includes no buffs to stats/through magical means. If we do assume those exist it wouldn't be surprising to me to have an additional 10 damage through things such as bulls strength, endurance and aid, divine favour extra extra.
    Last edited by Xianio2; 09-18-2013 at 09:10 AM.

  14. #14
    Community Member Chaimberland's Avatar
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    I think the reason why people on the forums are advising you against this build is because most people on the forums are constantly trying to max their toons as opposed to experimenting with a flavor build. Its just against the grain thinking for them and they aren't use to it. I think its safe to say that you are the first to think of a build like this and I think that you should go for it. The wonderful thing about this game is its diversity. It sounds like you've got it pretty well thought out so I say build it and see how it goes.

  15. #15
    Build Constructionist unbongwah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xianio1 View Post
    Does no one Sword and Board in DDO? I cannot see why my DPS would be so much lower unless S&B is simply never used in this game.
    If they do, they don't like to admit it on the forums. Also, S&B builds can get DPS bonuses that a thrower build can't: e.g., Power Atk, glancing blows, doublestrike bonuses from Shield Mastery & gear (tho at least there's Doubleshot now). But the point to going S&B is survivability+threat amp; S&B DPS is better than it used to be, but it's still the weakest of the three melee styles.
    Why is my DPS so much lower compared to other archers? Is it really just Manyshot being so insanely powerful that nothing can compare?
    Manyshot + 10K Stars (if you go the monkcher route) are an archer's best friends. There's a reason why the usual advice is to switch to melee while both are on cooldown; and that's b/c the base DPS of archery is kinda abysmal compared to any half-competent melee build.

    The reality is a lot of what you list to boost your throwing DPS will also boost your melee DPS, only more so; and there are plenty of melee-only DPS bonuses too. Whirling Wrist sounds cool, but in practice I'm not convinced it even puts you on par with a good repeater build, much less a monkcher.

    I've messed with thrower builds before; they're better than they used to be, but that's not the same as saying they're good. At most, I would make a conventional S&B build with a few ranged feats to boost thrower DPS.

  16. #16
    Community Member Oxarhamar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xianio2 View Post
    Again, can't seem to post more than 1 post before DDO makes it so that my account is invalid on the forums. This time I've allowed them to send me emails/offers, maybe that will work. Does anyone run into this problem other than me?

    Continuing on -

    Please don't take my building/theorycraft numbers to heart, I'm really just winging it off some very basic info. This is probably really hurting the math + I'm only really glancing so I might be missing some critical elements. For example,

    You say that you hit for 50 base without any modifiers, yet when I look at DDOwiki and do the math, at most I'm looking at 3d6 (for your level) giving you 3-18 + finisher damage. Obviously I'm missing something rather significant.

    As far as my damage is concerned there are lots more variables that are going uncounted. The basic understanding I have is that I'm missing at least
    +5 enchantment
    +7 stat
    +1d6 elemental
    +doubleshot
    + how these interact with the 37% damage increase.

    Assuming the elemental damage is left out that's another 16 damage moving the damage to 31-54 with a double shot potential of 20% reaching 62-108 finally with a x3 crit and 18-20 crit range.

    ALL of this assumes I haven't missed something substantial - given that your Monk does 50 damage before wraps, clearly I am. Perhaps you could explain to me how you reach 50 damage on your monk/120 on a prone target which will give me a better understanding of where the damage comes from - as I'm currently at a loss.

    Finally, if anyone can explain to me why DDO keeps blocking my accounts from posting here, please let me know. I'm on a free account, have a level 3 and 2 toon and have not recieved any emails from DDO to any of the email accounts/forum accounts I have active. Thanks.

    PS: This includes no buffs to stats/through magical means. If we do assume those exist it wouldn't be surprising to me to have an additional 10 damage through things such as bulls strength, endurance and aid, divine favour extra extra.

    there are items and feats that increase the damage dice of monk attacks to start with then there is the strength bonus to damage as well as items that add competence modifiers to damage.

    really though you need to play the game after you have thrown a few throwing axes then taken a few melee swings you will understand that throwing weapons rate of fire is just too slow.

  17. #17
    Community Member Spadeathome's Avatar
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    I run with aguy that has a pure thrower build. He more then holds his own when we run togather. I will prob run with him tonight. I will mention ur thread. Hopefully he he will give u some advise. Even if he dosent it is a viable build.

  18. #18
    Community Member psykopeta's Avatar
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    hi, nice concept (don't worry about viability at EE, maybe u don't even bother with it XD) for the next time, or if u wanna continue with this build, use a planner for the stats/levels/feats and paste a simple txt with the AP u have in mind to spend, this way we/you will have a more accurate idea of the pros/cons of the build

    imho i would take halfling for dragonmark (a heal spell like ability is really powerful u know XD) or something that could grant you some way of healing, basically because u'll need it in heroic, doesn't matter if you don't solo, it's needed (and scroll healing isn't really useful if u have the aggro)

    most times survivability>dps

    your con mod will be more like over 10 i think

    when u're at melee range think that most of ur stuff will help u if go S&B(dwarven weapons), so i would aim to brutal strength for the purposes to hit, also can manage some variation aiming to dex (so u use it to hit with throwing axed and can get improved precise shot) and using finesse for weapons, in that case for the handaxe (would use str for damage but with dwarven can use the con for damage again)

    my suggestion is: reduce stats where u focus, that helps to raise em to big values

    right now u could go with dex and con only, but if u are gonna add another class prolly will need to raise another stat (cha if you're pally for the saves, remember that pally's divine might goes to str, so shouldn't go dex based and take 4 pally lvls at time, 2 would be ok to use cha for saves)

    last thing, dodge, incorporeal and concealment are your best friends (you'll raise dodge cap with kensai so can use another class/pre to give you extra dodge) most times these values>AC, also some prr is useful, you'll get some because the shield and full armor, get extra prr if possible

    and ofc, don't worry about what ppl says about your toon, because you may be the 1st one building that kind of toon, and may work, why not?XD
    psykopeta - hoarding pl, for the sake of hoarding, the day i become ubercompletionist will be because there isn't anything to delay it more - thelanis, where the gimps claim to be pros and noobs claim to be pros, no newbies allowed(unless they claim to be pros), we have enough drama w/o them. PS i'm not a pro, maybe if i reincarnate in RL...

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    How important are glancing blows to damage?

    Also, how can fighters gain additional weapon dice? Are these methods blocked to throwing weapons?

    How many ways can you obtain doublestrike? Do weapons have it? Looking around I've found Kensai gives 20% to both throwing and melee but sheild mastery can give another 5% to doublestrike.

    Thanks.

    Not going to be able to post again after this on this account - still blocked.

  20. #20
    Build Constructionist unbongwah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xianio4 View Post
    How important are glancing blows to damage?
    Fairly important, with the caveat they only apply when standing still using regular atks (i.e., don't apply to Cleaves). If you're the sort of player who prefers to be constantly moving & spamming CL/GC/LW/MS, you won't get much if any mileage outta THF feats.
    Also, how can fighters gain additional weapon dice? Are these methods blocked to throwing weapons?
    I don't know what all the +[W] modifiers in DDO, but I know Legendary Dreadnought provides Imp Power Atk & Combat Brute; also Lay Waste & Momentum Swing have +[W] modifiers. All of these are melee-only abilities.
    How many ways can you obtain doublestrike? Do weapons have it? Looking around I've found Kensai gives 20% to both throwing and melee but sheild mastery can give another 5% to doublestrike.
    http://ddowiki.com/page/Doublestrike

    You can get it on gear, certain class / ED abilities, and feats.

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