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  1. #1
    Community Member Ausdoerrt's Avatar
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    Default Question: Casting feats for melee FvS

    Hey folks,

    I'm planning to TR one of my old toons into a melee Vistani FvS to get him a bit more up-to-date with current game. I'll probably park him in epics / at cap to run guild raids, farm stuff and otherwise support my main.

    The build (pure 20 FvS, Aasimar, SWF etc.) itself is pretty straightforward; similar ones have been discussed in this thread before. The big issue I have is that I want the toon to be decent at casting as well, but am pretty feat-starved. Currently the feat lineup looks something like this:

    .1. . . . : Single Weapon Fighting
    .3. . . . : Precision
    .6. . . . : [casting feat?]
    .9. . . . : Improved Single Weapon Fighting
    12. . . . : Improved Critical: Piercing
    15. . . . : Greater Single Weapon Fighting
    18. . . . : [casting feat?]
    21 Epic . : Overwhelming Critical
    24 Epic . : [casting feat?]
    26 Destiny: Perfect Single Weapon Fighting
    27 Epic . : Blinding Speed
    28 Destiny: Mass Frog
    29 Destiny: Dire Charge [probably]
    30 Epic . : [casting feat?]
    30 Legend : TBD

    So basically, 4 feats left. I was originally thinking taking the full Spell Pen. line (3 feats) + Heighten, but am now having second thoughts. How critical is Spell Pen., and how often do you see SR on mobs? Or should I stick to no-SR spells as a melee, and take Quicken+Heighten+Maximize instead? I've also seen some suggestions to take Glacial Wrath at 24 for the added CC.

    I suppose I could also drop Blinding Speed at 27 and just slot a Speed item, opening up another feat slot.

    What would y'all recommend?
    "People are stupid; given proper motivation, almost anyone will believe almost anything. ... People's heads are full of knowledge, facts, and beliefs, and most of it is false, yet they think it all true." Terry Goodkind

  2. #2
    The Hatchery Enoach's Avatar
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    For casting you have different approaches you can use.

    One direction is via DC focus, the other is DPS

    - DC focus will get you Crowd Control - Command, Cause Fear, Greater Command, Hold Person, Soundburst, Chaos Hammer, Orders Wrath, Holy Smite and Cometfall

    Now being limited in Feats for this area you need to choose your casting carefully. Pick the weak save - Don't cast a Reflex save vs mobs with Evasion etc. Also, if going against mobs with Spell Resistance you may need to utilize spells that do not have a Spell Penetration Check.


    - DPS focus will get you secondary damage, such as AoE spells or Single target. Most damage from the Divine will be in the Light/Alignment and Fire
    There are a variety of spells, some with saves and some without. Keep a mix and utilize your DCs. If you find you cannot get the DCs focus on the spells that do not have a save.


    With FvS if you are using the Wisdom or Charisma route to power your Melee, you will be able to Synergize your Casting. This is a good benefit.

    Now since your focus is going to be primarily with Melee you are going to be limited on Spell Casting Feats. So here are my suggestions.

    1. Wizard's Active Past Life - This will give you +1 DC to all Schools this is valuable because you are limited in Feats. Also, your spells will be primarily in the Enchantment, Evocation and Conjuration schools

    2. Maximize - The bread and butter of spell power boosting

    3. Empower - Another spell power boost

    4. Heighten - For DCs it is a great way to keep low level spells relevant in higher content

    5. Mental Toughness & Improved Mental Toughness - If you plan on going just for the CC/Buff aspect of spells and not focus on using them as a damage source this will give you more spells to cast


    As a note when it comes to metamagic feats, I highly recommend having multiple instances of spells on your hotbar and utilize the Right Click menu item and set the metas. While SLA abilities don't cost more, it is good to do this on standard spells to help from "over spending" on casts. Not every cast needs to be maximized + empowered to accomplish the task.

    ----
    Now another area of casting to consider is the debuff. It is not popular because it costs more SP then a single cast of a spell. However, if you can't land the spell in a two or less casts, using debuffs that can help you land a spell will likely be much cheaper in the long run (considering with cc if it does not land there is a likelihood you will be taking damage).

    Debuffs like Cause Fear, Doom, Prayer, Bestow Curse, and Contagion (which is flexible as it has multiple choices) can give you an advantage on landing that spell

    ----
    Soundburst is going to be a spell you find will work well with your melee focus. It is a low level AoE spell. In melee you want to avoid take damage when you can and this spell does the trick.

    Also, little used but when you are engaged in combat, cast prayer and then follow that up with a CC spell will improve your chances of it landing.
    -----
    A trick you can use if you find your DCs are just a little low it to grab a stack of Hypnotism Scrolls (this will require UMD) and to cast a Hypnotism then your CC that is vs Will Save. This is because Hypnotism has an effect that reduces saves even if it fails. A -3 to will save for the cost of a scroll can give you an advantage. This is more effective casting from a distance before you engage melee.

  3. #3
    Community Member banjo174's Avatar
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    Honestly, it isnt just being feat starved. It will be a gearing issue too. It wont be possible to be good at either spell casting or melee dps. If you are trying to do both of them, you will only be mediocre. Sure its possible to do both, and if you are fine with not being particularly great at each aspect then go for it. However... The gear tetris is probably the hardest part about it

    You will need melee gear
    Healing spell power
    Damage dealing spell power
    Then on top of all that, sustaining your DCs.

    I have done a pure wizard melee build before, and even trying to get the DC's to be optimal, while maintaining my melee gear was hard. Doable, but still hard. If you are going to do a spell caster melee, then I would highly suggest dropping the idea of doing spell damage.
    and instead, just focusing on DC's, there are plenty of people that like to do this approach. They will just use soundburst on a fvs for the CC.
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  4. #4
    Community Member Pilgrim1's Avatar
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    Pick up quicken, highten, evocation focus, wizard past life.

    Dump spell pen.
    EDIT: if you can pick up daggers with keen you can drop improved critical and overwhelming critical feets.

    Evocation gives you soundburst (helpless cc), implosion, and holy smite. Commetfall, greater command, and symbol of stunning should be your lower dc fall back.

    Take +5 dc from twists and gear for key dc bosting effects. So take your 41 points in angel of vengeance, get slavelords set bonus for dc, run in primal avatar if wisdom (6 wisdom, 60melee power) or fatesinger if charisma. Swap to LD or EA situationally.

    I run a dps + CC druid its posible to pull it off. Gearing is a chalenge.

    With vistani i would consider switching to twf with 25 points in that tree. Works well enough for your neads. The last few points pick up divine might.

    Dump every and any thought of doing damage with spells. Spells are there to CC, heal, insta kill, and buff. Your melee dmg is going to be way higher then any soell dmg you could pull off. The only exception would be blade barrier kitting in heroics or gathering red DA and spaming commitfall.
    Last edited by Pilgrim1; 04-13-2019 at 01:56 AM.

  5. #5
    Community Member Ausdoerrt's Avatar
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    Thanks all for the feedback, extremely useful.

    To clarify, this is a melee build first and foremost, but I thought it'd be a waste not to utilize the class's casting capabilities.

    Based on your suggestions, I think I'll definitely pick up Heighten and Maximize, and think some more on the other two, depending on how earlier levels go. Will probably focus on CC over nuking, as well.
    "People are stupid; given proper motivation, almost anyone will believe almost anything. ... People's heads are full of knowledge, facts, and beliefs, and most of it is false, yet they think it all true." Terry Goodkind

  6. #6
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    I ran Maelodic's Vistani Favored Soul build. Using Soundburst was enough CC to keep me happy during heroic leveling. Twisting in Soundburst from Exalted Angel+Dire Charge at cap was good enough for r1 solo play.

    You might be trying to do much with a feat starved class. Give Strimtom's Eldritch Knight build a quick glance. Playing as a Warforged might not be the desired outcome, but it will likely feel better if you want to play a gish character.

    If you're inclined to stick with your current fvs aasimar build, I highly recommend selecting Quicken Spell, and Heighten Spell metas. Failing concentration checks when casting in melee isn't going to lead to a good experience.

  7. #7
    Community Member Iriale's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ausdoerrt View Post
    Thanks all for the feedback, extremely useful.

    To clarify, this is a melee build first and foremost, but I thought it'd be a waste not to utilize the class's casting capabilities.

    Based on your suggestions, I think I'll definitely pick up Heighten and Maximize, and think some more on the other two, depending on how earlier levels go. Will probably focus on CC over nuking, as well.
    Spell penetration is the first sacrifice that even do the caster builds who do not have feat bonus. Better catch feats that favour your DC than your spell penetration. Spell penetration can be a problem in some quests, but being melee and having soundburst that does not depend on spell penetration, it should not be a priority for a hybrid melee-caster build

    Quicken is a must, but in my opinion heighten is much more important than spell penetration; if you do not have the DC, it does not matter if you have the spell penetration. Then I would choose complecionist and/or wiz last life, if you have them available. Both give a +1 to all DCs, which is more valuable than a +1 to a DC to one school. A divine caster has spells of conjuration (comet fall), evocation (soundburst, implosion) enchantment (greater command) and necromancy, and prolly you will want mass frog (transmutation) So spell focus feat gives very little return for the investment of a feat . However, there is a problem. The magister school specialist twist requires having the spell focus of that school to invest points in it. If you do not have that twist already invested, you're going to need the spell focus. Yes, it is an abuse to classes that really do not have feats for everything (the casters will need to maximize and empower, you as melee can do without them), but it is what there is. Maybe when the devs improve EDs in some century (because at the pace they go they will not do it in this century xD), the devs take into account this abuse and change it

    Imo Maximize is not needed for a melee build
    English is not my native language. Sorry for the mistakes.

  8. #8
    Community Member Iriale's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pilgrim1 View Post
    Pick up quicken, highten, evocation focus, wizard past life.

    Dump spell pen.
    EDIT: if you can pick up daggers with keen you can drop improved critical and overwhelming critical feets.

    Evocation gives you soundburst (helpless cc), implosion, and holy smite. Commetfall, greater command, and symbol of stunning should be your lower dc fall back.

    Take +5 dc from twists and gear for key dc bosting effects. So take your 41 points in angel of vengeance, get slavelords set bonus for dc, run in primal avatar if wisdom (6 wisdom, 60melee power) or fatesinger if charisma. Swap to LD or EA situationally.

    I run a dps + CC druid its posible to pull it off. Gearing is a chalenge.

    With vistani i would consider switching to twf with 25 points in that tree. Works well enough for your neads. The last few points pick up divine might.

    Dump every and any thought of doing damage with spells. Spells are there to CC, heal, insta kill, and buff. Your melee dmg is going to be way higher then any soell dmg you could pull off. The only exception would be blade barrier kitting in heroics or gathering red DA and spaming commitfall.
    I agree
    English is not my native language. Sorry for the mistakes.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iriale View Post
    ...and having soundburst that does not depend on spell penetration...
    What? Is this a recent change or something? Soundburst requires a spell pen check, or at least used to.

  10. #10
    Community Member Iriale's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kpak01 View Post
    What? Is this a recent change or something? Soundburst requires a spell pen check, or at least used to.
    true, my mistake

    but it's still true that DC better than spell penetration
    English is not my native language. Sorry for the mistakes.

  11. #11
    Community Member Ausdoerrt's Avatar
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    So quick update, I did the ER+HR thing last night, will update this thread with my experience as I go forward. I've also been crunching numbers on Imp. Crit vs no Imp. Crit and might actually drop that in favor of another casting feat and replace Overwhelming with PTWF for doublestrike to (almost) make up the difference.

    Quote Originally Posted by CrispyonInside View Post
    I ran Maelodic's Vistani Favored Soul build. Using Soundburst was enough CC to keep me happy during heroic leveling. Twisting in Soundburst from Exalted Angel+Dire Charge at cap was good enough for r1 solo play.
    Thanks! Looks quite similar to what I ended up with except SWF instead of TWF. I may have read that guide before and forgotten it, lol.

    You might be trying to do much with a feat starved class. Give Strimtom's Eldritch Knight build a quick glance. Playing as a Warforged might not be the desired outcome, but it will likely feel better if you want to play a gish character.
    I guess since I didn't post a build and focused the discussion on spellcasting, it might seem like I'm after a gish build. I'm really not though, I'm just looking to make my melee FvS not suck completely at spellcasting, but have had little experience playing casters in general.

    Quote Originally Posted by Iriale View Post
    true, my mistake

    but it's still true that DC better than spell penetration
    Since this came up, what are the CC spells that take no SR check? Is Cometfall the only one?
    "People are stupid; given proper motivation, almost anyone will believe almost anything. ... People's heads are full of knowledge, facts, and beliefs, and most of it is false, yet they think it all true." Terry Goodkind

  12. #12
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    It seems a lot of dc caster types take all their metas as early as possible. Typically in the following order; Maximize Spell, Empower Spell, Quicken Spell, and Heighten Spell.
    In my experience, I felt pretty comfortable running without dc feats because I compensated through gear at each level break. I recommend taking Quicken Spell early on for leveling. Heighten Spell around mid-levels to keep Soundburst relative. Cometfall does appear to be the only spell without a Spell Resistance check for divine casters. If you can't CC something and melee it death, you can always default to shredding mobs up with blade barriers during levels 12-20.

    'Envelope math' farm list:
    Summoner's Spectacles - Cometfall DC.
    Mantle of Fury - DPS/HP/Survival
    Lore-Fueled Packbanner -DPS/HP/Survival
    Gauntlets of Innate Arcanum - Evocation DCs
    Dawn's Herald-Charm - Primary Stat (Wis)/Evocation DCs
    Last edited by CrispyonInside; 04-15-2019 at 12:03 PM. Reason: Added gear list.

  13. #13
    Community Member Pilgrim1's Avatar
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    If you plan on doing damage with melee and CC with spells then maximize and empower are wasted feet slots.

  14. #14
    Community Member Ausdoerrt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pilgrim1 View Post
    If you plan on doing damage with melee and CC with spells then maximize and empower are wasted feet slots.
    I may grab one or the other to boost healing, but yea, definitely not both.
    "People are stupid; given proper motivation, almost anyone will believe almost anything. ... People's heads are full of knowledge, facts, and beliefs, and most of it is false, yet they think it all true." Terry Goodkind

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