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  1. #1
    Associate Producer Cocomajobo's Avatar
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    Default U48.4 Preview 2: Balance Changes: Combat Styles

    Disclaimer
    Everything seen on the preview server, Lamannia, is not final and is subject to change or removal before live release.

    This is the BALANCE CHANGES: COMBAT STYLES portion of the release notes.

    Preface
    When looking at the spread, popularity, and usability of combat styles, we came up with a few concrete goals. We wanted to boost the DPS and versatility of SWF, expanding its usage outwards to better cater to hybrid builds. We also wanted to tone down the DPS of THF slightly while leaving the AoE capabilities top-tier, as that niche is part of what makes THF so compelling. We also looked at the DPS of TWF, and found that while we think it's in a balanced place offensively, the companion feats for TWF needed a lot of help to become more compelling defensive options. We ran through several iterations of Two Weapon Blocking before we decided to simply remove it entirely, merging it with Two Weapon Defense, and we also wanted to further incentivize it by adding a MRR cap boost. Natural Fighting needed adjusting to match THF, but it also needed some extra special incentives at the top so that both Bears and Wolves would be happy switching their feats to the new Perfect combat style feat. Finally, we wanted to add more compelling combat options for Shield Fighting. Its Perfect combat style feat is very defensive, but that's Shield's niche, and we wanted the style to retain its defensive elements at the top end. These are also coupled with some buffs to the Vanguard tree's T5 options, to help make that tree more of a competitive choice versus Kensei or Knight of the Chalice, and you can see those in the Balance Changes: Enhancement Trees/Misc Post.

    Single Weapon Fighting
    New Feat: Offhand Versatility
    • Req: BaB 8, Single Weapon Fighting
    • Your offhand item modifies your main hand:
      • Runearms and Orbs now grant: when you vorpal strike, your next spell automatically crits. This has an internal cooldown of 20 seconds (lasts for 20 seconds).
      • Nothing in your offhand increases your ability score modifier to damage by 25%.
    • Fighters may select this feat as one of their Fighter Bonus Feats.


    Perfect Single Weapon Fighting
    • Now also increases your ability score modifier to damage by 25%.
    • Now also grants an additional +10 combat style bonus to Melee Power.


    Two Handed Fighting
    The Two Handed Fighting, Improved Two Handed Fighting, and Greater Two Handed Fighting feats now increase your ability score modifier to damage by 25%.

    Perfect Two Handed Fighting
    • Now also increases your ability score modifier to damage by 25%.


    Natural Fighting
    The Natural Fighting feat now increases your ability score modifier to damage by 25% while in Bear or Dire Bear form.

    New Feat: Perfect Natural Fighting
    • Req: Level 26, maximum experience in one Primal sphere Epic Destiny, at least one copy of Natural Fighting.
    • If in Bear form, your Two-Handed ability mod increases by .25, and your Bear form's bonus to Armor Class is increased by 5%.
    • If in Wolf form, +15% competence bonus to maximum hit points, and you gain +2d6 sneak attack dice.


    Shield Mastery
    New Feat: Greater Shield Mastery
    • Req: BaB 13, Improved Shield Mastery
    • You are exceptionally skilled with the use of a shield, and your physical resistance is increased by 10 when using a buckler or small shield, 15 when using a large shield, or 20 when using a tower shield. Your doublestrike chance while using a shield is increased by 2% to 10%. Your Combat Style bonus to Melee Power is increased by 4 to 10.
    • (These bonuses do not stack with previous feats, so this is a net gain of 5 PRR with each type of shield (5 -> 10 for buckler/small shield, 10 -> 15 for large shield, 15 -> 20 for tower), 2% doublestrike, and 4 Melee Power.).
    • Fighters may select this feat as one of their Fighter Bonus Feats.


    New Feat: Perfect Shield Mastery
    • Req: Level 26, maximum experience in one Divine sphere Epic Destiny (same as other Perfect Combat Style Feats), and Shield Mastery.
    • You are the paragon of shield usage, able to effectively leverage all types of shields in close combat. Your shield gains +1W, and you gain +20% Shield Armor Class and +5 PRR.


    Two Weapon Fighting
    Two Weapon Defense
    • Now grants everything that Two Weapon Blocking did, as well as its original +1 AC and +5 PRR.
    • Now also grants +10 MRR Cap.


    Two Weapon Blocking
    • No longer a feat! Should no longer be trainable!


    Misc Combat Style Changes
    • Shield Mastery feats now contribute to Epic Defensive Fighting (including the new ones).


    Bug Fixes Since Preview 1
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Hand-and-a-Half weapons now properly get their ability score modifiers to damage (both at base and with THF feats)
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Two Handed Fighting's baseline +0.5 to ability score modifier to damage now properly applies regardless of whether or not you have the first THF feat
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Perfect Natural Fighting now applies regardless of how many times you've taken Natural Fighting
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Natural Fighting now gives the proper amount of ability score modifier to damage when you have 2 and 3 copies of the feat (was not giving you the cumulative bonus).
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Two weapon blocking feat is now hidden on the buffbar and doesn't fall off on death.
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Two weapon blocking feat now works with Handwraps.
    Last edited by Cocomajobo; 02-16-2021 at 01:08 PM.
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  2. #2
    Squirrel Enthusiast Lokeal_The_Flame's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cocomajobo View Post


    Single Weapon Fighting
    New Feat: Offhand Versatility
    • Req: BaB 8, Single Weapon Fighting
    • Your offhand item modifies your main hand:
      • Runearms and Orbs now grant: when you vorpal strike, your next spell automatically crits. This has an internal cooldown of 20 seconds (lasts for 20 seconds).
      • Nothing in your offhand increases your ability score modifier to damage by 25%.
    • Fighters may select this feat as one of their Fighter Bonus Feats.


    Perfect Single Weapon Fighting
    • Now also increases your ability score modifier to damage by 25%.
    • Now also grants an additional +10 combat style bonus to Melee Power.

    Does this spell critical chance from having a runearm equipped when you have Offhand Versatility count for runearm blasts? The numbers seen from certain runearms upon a critical are impressive enough to where it might be considered.

  3. #3
    Community Member MistaMagic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cocomajobo View Post
    Disclaimer
    Everything seen on the preview server, Lamannia, is not final and is subject to change or removal before live release.

    This is the BALANCE CHANGES: COMBAT STYLES portion of the release notes.

    Preface
    When looking at the spread, popularity, and usability of combat styles, we came up with a few concrete goals. We wanted to boost the DPS and versatility of SWF, expanding its usage outwards to better cater to hybrid builds. We also wanted to tone down the DPS of THF slightly while leaving the AoE capabilities top-tier, as that niche is part of what makes THF so compelling. We also looked at the DPS of TWF, and found that while we think it's in a balanced place offensively, the companion feats for TWF needed a lot of help to become more compelling defensive options. We ran through several iterations of Two Weapon Blocking before we decided to simply remove it entirely, merging it with Two Weapon Defense, and we also wanted to further incentivize it by adding a MRR cap boost. Natural Fighting needed adjusting to match THF, but it also needed some extra special incentives at the top so that both Bears and Wolves would be happy switching their feats to the new Perfect combat style feat. Finally, we wanted to add more compelling combat options for Shield Fighting. Its Perfect combat style feat is very defensive, but that's Shield's niche, and we wanted the style to retain its defensive elements at the top end. These are also coupled with some buffs to the Vanguard tree's T5 options, to help make that tree more of a competitive choice versus Kensei or Knight of the Chalice, and you can see those in the Balance Changes: Enhancement Trees/Misc Post.





    Two Weapon Fighting
    Two Weapon Defense
    • Now grants everything that Two Weapon Blocking did, as well as its original +1 AC and +5 PRR.
    • Now also grants +10 MRR Cap.


    Two Weapon Blocking
    • No longer a feat! Should no longer be trainable!


    [

    Bug Fixes Since Preview 1
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Hand-and-a-Half weapons now properly get their ability score modifiers to damage (both at base and with THF feats)
      [
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Two weapon blocking feat is now hidden on the buffbar and doesn't fall off on death.
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Two weapon blocking feat now works with Handwraps.

    I probably have got this sooo wrong but can you explain how you say that two weapon blocking is no longer a feat and then say the feat is a bugfix?
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  4. #4
    Community Member Stravix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MistaMagic View Post
    I probably have got this sooo wrong but can you explain how you say that two weapon blocking is no longer a feat and then say the feat is a bugfix?
    It got rolled into two weapon defense. I guess they made that part of the feat now work with wraps is what they meant to say.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stravix View Post
    It got rolled into two weapon defense. I guess they made that part of the feat now work with wraps is what they meant to say.
    Yes
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  6. #6
    Community Member Monkey_Archer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cocomajobo View Post
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Hand-and-a-Half weapons now properly get their ability score modifiers to damage (both at base and with THF feats)
    I'm still confused on what this is. Are Hand-and-a-Half now getting a full 25% per feat? Do they still have the same old progression of 1.1/1.35/1.6/1.6 (ie nothing from PTHF) or have they changed?

    Also, just going to point out that Hand-and-a-Half Vanguards now need to take 8 feats (full THF and SM lines) for less benefit than natural fighting gives to bears for 4...
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  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Monkey_Archer View Post
    I'm still confused on what this is. Are Hand-and-a-Half now getting a full 25% per feat? Do they still have the same old progression of 1.1/1.35/1.6/1.6 (ie nothing from PTHF) or have they changed?
    They are unchanged from Live. On last Lamannia, they were getting no bonus at all due to a bug.
    We don't only build for the builds that exist.
    We don't only build for the builds that are good right now.

    The fact that some changes are necessary is not diminished by the fact that other necessary changes have not happened yet.

  8. #8
    Community Member Stravix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steelstar View Post
    They are unchanged from Live. On last Lamannia, they were getting no bonus at all due to a bug.
    Thank you for the clarification

  9. #9
    Community Member Stravix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cocomajobo View Post
    Disclaimer
    Everything seen on the preview server, Lamannia, is not final and is subject to change or removal before live release.

    This is the BALANCE CHANGES: COMBAT STYLES portion of the release notes.

    Preface
    When looking at the spread, popularity, and usability of combat styles, we came up with a few concrete goals. We wanted to boost the DPS and versatility of SWF, expanding its usage outwards to better cater to hybrid builds. We also wanted to tone down the DPS of THF slightly while leaving the AoE capabilities top-tier, as that niche is part of what makes THF so compelling. We also looked at the DPS of TWF, and found that while we think it's in a balanced place offensively, the companion feats for TWF needed a lot of help to become more compelling defensive options. We ran through several iterations of Two Weapon Blocking before we decided to simply remove it entirely, merging it with Two Weapon Defense, and we also wanted to further incentivize it by adding a MRR cap boost. Natural Fighting needed adjusting to match THF, but it also needed some extra special incentives at the top so that both Bears and Wolves would be happy switching their feats to the new Perfect combat style feat. Finally, we wanted to add more compelling combat options for Shield Fighting. Its Perfect combat style feat is very defensive, but that's Shield's niche, and we wanted the style to retain its defensive elements at the top end. These are also coupled with some buffs to the Vanguard tree's T5 options, to help make that tree more of a competitive choice versus Kensei or Knight of the Chalice, and you can see those in the Balance Changes: Enhancement Trees/Misc Post.

    Single Weapon Fighting
    New Feat: Offhand Versatility
    • Req: BaB 8, Single Weapon Fighting
    • Your offhand item modifies your main hand:
      • Runearms and Orbs now grant: when you vorpal strike, your next spell automatically crits. This has an internal cooldown of 20 seconds (lasts for 20 seconds).
      • Nothing in your offhand increases your ability score modifier to damage by 25%.
    • Fighters may select this feat as one of their Fighter Bonus Feats.


    Perfect Single Weapon Fighting
    • Now also increases your ability score modifier to damage by 25%.
    • Now also grants an additional +10 combat style bonus to Melee Power.


    Two Handed Fighting
    The Two Handed Fighting, Improved Two Handed Fighting, and Greater Two Handed Fighting feats now increase your ability score modifier to damage by 25%.

    Perfect Two Handed Fighting
    • Now also increases your ability score modifier to damage by 25%.


    Natural Fighting
    The Natural Fighting feat now increases your ability score modifier to damage by 25% while in Bear or Dire Bear form.

    New Feat: Perfect Natural Fighting
    • Req: Level 26, maximum experience in one Primal sphere Epic Destiny, at least one copy of Natural Fighting.
    • If in Bear form, your Two-Handed ability mod increases by .25, and your Bear form's bonus to Armor Class is increased by 5%.
    • If in Wolf form, +15% competence bonus to maximum hit points, and you gain +2d6 sneak attack dice.


    Shield Mastery
    New Feat: Greater Shield Mastery
    • Req: BaB 13, Improved Shield Mastery
    • You are exceptionally skilled with the use of a shield, and your physical resistance is increased by 10 when using a buckler or small shield, 15 when using a large shield, or 20 when using a tower shield. Your doublestrike chance while using a shield is increased by 2% to 10%. Your Combat Style bonus to Melee Power is increased by 4 to 10.
    • (These bonuses do not stack with previous feats, so this is a net gain of 5 PRR with each type of shield (5 -> 10 for buckler/small shield, 10 -> 15 for large shield, 15 -> 20 for tower), 2% doublestrike, and 4 Melee Power.).
    • Fighters may select this feat as one of their Fighter Bonus Feats.


    New Feat: Perfect Shield Mastery
    • Req: Level 26, maximum experience in one Divine sphere Epic Destiny (same as other Perfect Combat Style Feats), and Shield Mastery.
    • You are the paragon of shield usage, able to effectively leverage all types of shields in close combat. Your shield gains +1W, and you gain +20% Shield Armor Class and +5 PRR.


    Two Weapon Fighting
    Two Weapon Defense
    • Now grants everything that Two Weapon Blocking did, as well as its original +1 AC and +5 PRR.
    • Now also grants +10 MRR Cap.


    Two Weapon Blocking
    • No longer a feat! Should no longer be trainable!


    Misc Combat Style Changes
    • Shield Mastery feats now contribute to Epic Defensive Fighting (including the new ones).


    Bug Fixes Since Preview 1
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Hand-and-a-Half weapons now properly get their ability score modifiers to damage (both at base and with THF feats)
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Two Handed Fighting's baseline +0.5 to ability score modifier to damage now properly applies regardless of whether or not you have the first THF feat
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Perfect Natural Fighting now applies regardless of how many times you've taken Natural Fighting
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Natural Fighting now gives the proper amount of ability score modifier to damage when you have 2 and 3 copies of the feat (was not giving you the cumulative bonus).
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Two weapon blocking feat is now hidden on the buffbar and doesn't fall off on death.
    • Lamannia only Bugfix: Two weapon blocking feat now works with Handwraps.
    Any chance we could get "Main hand double strike applies to shield bashes" somewhere on one of the shield feats? Even if it is just as a stopgap until the animation issues can be resolved?

    Or is that also not technically feasible?

  10. #10
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    Default Balance druid animal forms.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cocomajobo View Post
    Natural Fighting
    The Natural Fighting feat now increases your ability score modifier to damage by 25% while in Bear or Dire Bear form.

    New Feat: Perfect Natural Fighting
    Req: Level 26, maximum experience in one Primal sphere Epic Destiny, at least one copy of Natural Fighting.
    If in Bear form, your Two-Handed ability mod increases by .25, and your Bear form's bonus to Armor Class is increased by 5%.
    If in Wolf form, +15% competence bonus to maximum hit points, and you gain +2d6 sneak attack dice.
    We need to talk about balance changes to bear form vs wolf form. Bear is just superior in anyway, facing many mobs or just 1 because of the mod multiplier to damage. Giving wolf a +15 % competence bonus and in my eyes, an admitance of defeate in ways to balance the 2. "Oh but 2d6 and other other minor bonuses on a single target as worf" When you're walking around with any decent amount of strength (or whatever you use as your modifier) scales exponentially better.

    My suggestion would be to give wolfs the same modifier multiplier to damage but take away the strikethrough, OR require them to fight in SWF mode as dog form to get their multiplier, and in a way it makes sense for wolfs to better utilize one handed items.

  11. #11
    Community Member Hakushi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cocomajobo View Post
    Disclaimer
    Everything seen on the preview server, Lamannia, is not final and is subject to change or removal before live release.
    Single Weapon Fighting
    New Feat: Offhand Versatility
    • Req: BaB 8, Single Weapon Fighting
    • Your offhand item modifies your main hand:
      • Runearms and Orbs now grant: when you vorpal strike, your next spell automatically crits. This has an internal cooldown of 20 seconds (lasts for 20 seconds).
      • Nothing in your offhand increases your ability score modifier to damage by 25%.
    • Fighters may select this feat as one of their Fighter Bonus Feats.


    Perfect Single Weapon Fighting
    • Now also increases your ability score modifier to damage by 25%.
    • Now also grants an additional +10 combat style bonus to Melee Power.
    Those feats will also work for swashbuckling bards using either an orb, a buckler, a rune arm or nothing in their off hand? What about the underlined/bolded part.
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  12. #12
    Squirrel Enthusiast Lokeal_The_Flame's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cocomajobo View Post

    Single Weapon Fighting
    New Feat: Offhand Versatility
    [LIST][*]Req: BaB 8, Single Weapon Fighting[*]Your offhand item modifies your main hand:
    • Runearms and Orbs now grant: when you vorpal strike, your next spell automatically crits. This has an internal cooldown of 20 seconds (lasts for 20 seconds).
    Please give a different bonus for runearms, the orb one makes perfect sense, but giving the runearm the same benefit does not!

    If you are an undead Eldritch knight build, this orb effect will majorly assist negative energy burst healing and damage so it makes sense, but for a melee artificer this makes no sense so giving runearm use the same benefit is a problem. I suggest this solution:

    Orbs now grant: when you vorpal strike, your next spell automatically crits. This has an internal cooldown of 20 seconds (lasts for 20 seconds).

    Runearms now grant: When you vorpal strike, proc effects from your equipment that require an enemy save such as Legendary Trap The Soul now have a 25% chance to ignore enemy saves, This has an internal cooldown of 1 minute and lasts for 20 seconds.

  13. #13
    Community Member Stravix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lokeal_The_Flame View Post
    Please give a different bonus for runearms, the orb one makes perfect sense, but giving the runearm the same benefit does not!

    If you are an undead Eldritch knight build, this orb effect will majorly assist negative energy burst healing and damage so it makes sense, but for a melee artificer this makes no sense so giving runearm use the same benefit is a problem. I suggest this solution:

    Orbs now grant: when you vorpal strike, your next spell automatically crits. This has an internal cooldown of 20 seconds (lasts for 20 seconds).

    Runearms now grant: When you vorpal strike, proc effects from your equipment that require an enemy save such as Legendary Trap The Soul now have a 25% chance to ignore enemy saves, This has an internal cooldown of 1 minute and lasts for 20 seconds.
    I agree'd with you at the start, but you lost me there at the end.

    The point of this seems to be buffing the off-hand when SWF, which for runearms would mean buffing the runeshot.

    That said, I haven't played an Arti, so maybe someone who has could think of something that could buff runearm use for this feat, but that is the direction I would like to see it go, not loop back to weapon effects.

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    I won't be able to make it on Lamannia this week given work commitments, but to confirm, does Offhand Versatility do anything when you are in swashbuckling stance and using a buckler (with Skirmisher, of course)? If not, I would make it very clear in the tooltip that "this feat provides no benefit to characters who are able to take advantage of SWF with a shield equipped" to avoid any confusion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SWCarter View Post
    I won't be able to make it on Lamannia this week given work commitments, but to confirm, does Offhand Versatility do anything when you are in swashbuckling stance and using a buckler (with Skirmisher, of course)? If not, I would make it very clear in the tooltip that "this feat provides no benefit to characters who are able to take advantage of SWF with a shield equipped" to avoid any confusion.
    Or rather, the feat should grant a benefit for buckler-using swashbucklers.
    * Bucklers in your offhand gain +1 critical threat and multiplier (competence bonus).
    * Bucklers in your offhand gain strikethrough.
    * Bucklers in your offhand gain shield bash chance.
    * Bucklers in your offhand can doublebash.
    * Bucklers in your offhand allow you to deflect arrows more often. If you have Swashbuckler's Deflect Arrows trained, ...
    * Bucklers in your offhand allow you to use avoid spells. Gain charisma to reflex save, if higher than your dex.

  16. #16
    Community Member voxson5's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cocomajobo View Post
    Two Weapon Fighting
    Two Weapon Defense
    • Now grants everything that Two Weapon Blocking did, as well as its original +1 AC and +5 PRR.
    • Now also grants +10 MRR Cap.


    Two Weapon Blocking
    • No longer a feat! Should no longer be trainable!
    Please consider that this is only going to benefit builds who have spare, or otherwise filler feat choices.

    Please consider typical, and various player guides, recommendations for feat selections for the common 2wf builds - shintao monk, vistani rogue, even barbarian etc.

    Given the power differential between the various 2wf builds vs the alternative combat style benefits (melee power, additional % stat to damage, additional effects like strikethough & the proposed auto crit), please incorporate the proposed 2wd feat into adds for the 2wf chain.

    My proposal:
    Two Weapon Fighting - Current 2WF, + current 2 weapon defense feat effects, +1 AC while 2wf / wearing handwraps
    Improved Two Weapon Fighting - Current i2WF, + 5 PRR & +2 AC while 2wf / wielding handwraps
    Greater Two Weapon Fighting - Current g2WF, + 10 MRR cap, +5 PRR & + 3 AC while 2wf / wielding handwraps
    Perfect Two Weapon Fighting - Change doublestrike to +20% offhand (no mainhand DS), +5 PRR & +4 AC while 2wf / wielding handwraps.

    So with all 4 feats:
    80% offhand strike chance
    20% offhand doublestrike
    + 10 AC
    + 15 PRR
    + 10 MRR cap

    This provides a much needed defense increase for typically skirmisher type 2wf classes, and fairly gives perfect 2wf exclusivity to those archetypes as it is for every other perfect combat style feat.

    I look forward to your team's response.
    Last edited by voxson5; 02-17-2021 at 01:23 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stravix View Post
    Any chance we could get "Main hand double strike applies to shield bashes" somewhere on one of the shield feats? Even if it is just as a stopgap until the animation issues can be resolved?

    Or is that also not technically feasible?
    Please don't allow that for bards.For paladins ok because the vanguard is really bad right now but bards with swashbuckling are too strong already.

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    New Feat: Perfect Natural Fighting
    Req: Level 26, maximum experience in one Primal sphere Epic Destiny, at least one copy of Natural Fighting.
    If in Bear form, your Two-Handed ability mod increases by .25, and your Bear form's bonus to Armor Class is increased by 5%.
    If in Wolf form, +15% competence bonus to maximum hit points, and you gain +2d6 sneak attack dice.
    Question #1: So if your fighting with one-handed weapon and a shield in bear form you only get +5% AC? Isn't that a little stingy?

    Question #2: Is that +15% competence bonus to max hp stack with the max hp bonus from Epic Defensive? ( which is also competence bonus ) If it doesn't stack then what is the point?

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Malusny View Post
    Please don't allow that for bards.For paladins ok because the vanguard is really bad right now but bards with swashbuckling are too strong already.
    Lol ya alchemists, fire sorc, and swashbucklers public enemy #1
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  20. #20
    Community Member Stravix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Malusny View Post
    Please don't allow that for bards.For paladins ok because the vanguard is really bad right now but bards with swashbuckling are too strong already.
    Swashes, to my understanding, don't have the passive bash chance or +[W] to shield bashes to truly capitalize on that. It would technically be a buff, but not by a large margin. It would mainly buff those who actually utilize bashes in their damage

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