Monthly Archives: September 2011

Hitting 17 the painful way

I was playing my Artificer and I jumped on the chance to join some shroud flagging quest. At 15 I had burnt through 5-7 runs of Devil and now at 16 I thought it would be the right thing to do. It was just as the promotional 20% exp hit and I bought a 30% pot to go with that. It was only on normal; now I had my misgivings early on when the healer (leader) died out in the wilderness. He got webbed and acid rained on and his death was utterly pointless. And instead of going healbot in a group of DPS and casters, he kept wasting more and more SP inside on blade barriers and such. So soon enough he ran short on SP and we’re not even halfway done and I’m trying desperately to substitute heal. The guy didn’t have heal scrolls he said (I asked him) and I had only 60% chance to pull one off. So I tried to multitask being useful DPS with my crossbow and heal one way or another. The subsequent amount of deaths that followed was a result of a healer who couldn’t really figure out when to be a healer and when to be a battlecleric. Neither very effectively.

So when the final boss died; a awesome 20k XP (and that was only on normal) – I hit 17 and said my goodbyes. I really didn’t want to waste almost another hour doing more of the same and have my XP pot churning for no good reason.

The moral of the story is simple; know your class. It doesn’t mean that you have to healbot or anything – but if you’re the only healer then expect to heal. If you can’t household your SP and you don’t have backup wands or scrolls to help you out you’re not doing anyone a favor by putting up a LFM. Vale quests are not good BYOH. There’s just too many critters dealing a ton of damage. And to my credit on my Favored Soul; I know when to heal and when I don’t have too. A smooth quick completion is always desired, even if I have to heal bot the entire way.

Mired in crafting

A while back I decided to try Mired and kill the end dragon; you know the big one. Back then I didn’t have ship buffs but I did have a greater acid ring. I ended up sucking one pot after another. I don’t know if I did it on elite or normal, but I don’t think I did it on elite since I distinctly remember those crystals.

What have changed since is the favored soul PRE, slightly better gear (more con op but I do believe I had the torc back then), divine punishment and a more vicious blade barrier.

First – I gave up on blade barrier early on. It sucks tremendous amount of SP and kiting is tough enough as it is. I concentrated on keeping my DOTs up and after a while it was paying off. I almost died once – I got snared and couldn’t do anything but luckily I managed to snap out of it in the nick of time.

Here’s the bad part – I had tons of chests to open but despite the +2 loot gem it was lousy and I barely got anything. I don’t know if the loot tables are borked but not even when we had +2 loot and +1 loot from Turbine did I get a lot of good stuff.

But it feels good being able to do this without using one single pot.

Now crafting still remains a sore spot. The amount of stuff needed to craft things is beyond idiotic. I hate to use those words but it best describes something like a flame thingy to make Holy burst. I mean the thing require tons of material already and forcing someone to get Silver flame favor in order to be able to craft it just sucks. Quite frankly – in order to hit 150 in favor you first need to run necro quests. And while some of them are quick, others are just a pure pain. But Holy Burst is not the only recipe that require a silly material; look at greater evil outsider bane. Not only a large devil scale but also many other materials.

Crafting can be fun; but let’s face it – who in their right mind would bother crafting something like this and go through this entire process? This is almost more work than running shroud once a day on different toons to have what you need to CRAFT GS holy burst after about a week.

All I can say is this; a clear waste of time but since I can’t run shroud on my arti yet I have to try to get the items needed to get it done.

Crafting

I really haven’t changed my opinion about crafting – the limitations make it less useful than before. After all – you have limitations on how much crafting you can do before you have to increase its crafting level and then you have the silly prefix and suffix limitation. That’s a limitation random stuff don’t seem to have. I don’t want to make overpowered items; I just want to be able to add any 2 things to make them more useful. And the limitations on items is kind of silly too. Like life shield on armor or shields only. How about on a trinket? Why only armor and shield? I get that weapon related damage doesn’t make sense on gloves or bracers – but crafting becomes really limited if we can only add the one thing.

There’s ways to solve this; how about you have to increase the potential more if you’re trying to add another suffix? Example – if you add it the first time it adds +2 and if it’s an addition it’s +3 and if you already have a suffix and this is a suffix then it will cost +6. In other words it costs twice as much making crafting specialized. Also add +2 if you’re trying to add it to a item that is beyond the recommended (within limitations spelled out). So if you want life shield on a trinket it’ll cost you +2 in crafting enhancement out of the 5 you can add to it, possibly forcing you to increase the potential of the item in order to make it.

Now you can make much better items with some sensible limitations and you have items that make more sense. True – some of them will have a slightly better potential than raid items that way, but at significantly higher levels instead making them situational and not definite replacements.

And yes – that means you can add more stuff to a weapon than you could say to a green steel, BUT the max level is 20 and you’ll do that easily if you insist on trying to add more than one burst to a weapon. Plus you won’t be able to add the really good stuff anyways such as blast damage etc.

Would it be possible to do a holy, holy burst of greater bane? I don’t know – maybe – dependent if that would bust the level 20 upper limitation. If it does – then no – if it’ll get close okay – but probably not at a +5 quality anyways.

But the reason I want to remove limitations is not to make better weapons – it’s do add flexibility to items and make the crafting more than a cute niche as it is now. I mean I’ve used it twice; to make alacrity items and beginner gear. I really don’t need it for anything in between niche and beginner. After all – why should I if I have all the named and raid gear to fill out the blanks in between.

That said I have used it for repeaters – simply because there are about 1 or so named repeaters and that won’t last you long. And I haven’t really pulled a ton of useful repeaters (one with disruption would be nice).

 Like the ONE repeater I made specifically to beat taming the flame on elite – a ice burst of elemental bane. Otherwise I wouldn’t have enough DPS to defeat the fire elementals regenerating in the fire geysers.

And I’ve also made a few others while I level up – mostly situational until I manage to make some GS (and I’m only looking to make a straight holy and straight earth since the new top crafting adds the option for a Li II strike one anyways).

Pets and Pirates

So there are issues with the pirate area and severe game crashing that causes rollback which causes players to lose things and if your pet dies it cannot be resummoned. BUT, despite that (and I’m glad I only tried it for a while and logged out before I experienced any crash) – I must say that playing arty and killing pirates is fun.

One caveat tho – if you’re running about I suggest telling your pet to go into do nuthin’ mode. Cause if there are higher tier critters around the brave but silly pet will attack. The best is to find a area where you can play with similar level people or alone and then start killing.

I like the pet because it’ll auto agro close by critters and as it takes the agro you can simply lay down a barrage of bolts in support. I also like that fact that stuff in your inventory sticks to the spot you slot them into. So that when you re-adjust torches, teleporters and go in a second time – it will be autoslotted where you put it – making it real easy to micro manage CC instead of digging for them in your inventory. Especially on every single return afterwards – you can have every single thing slotted that you use in game and you never have to open your inventory again (while playing). And similarly – if you want to return maps for dabloons or buy or upgrade something it’ll take it directly from your inventory – no more need to mess with stuff. Except they only stack 1k high in your bag so you’ll still see overspill into your inventory space (see dabloons).

Now it’s just a matter for Turbine to fix what ails CC so we can get back to plundering their riches.

Post U11 – waiting for the torrent downpour of pirates.

Since update 11 was released I’ve been busy parallel leveling my TR ranger and my new Artificer. What am I kidding – I must say that most of my time have been leveling my Artificer, especially since my ranger hit 18 (and can now participate in most raids anyways).

I’m having fun with Artificer since it’s a pretty good class to solo with. It sure helps having a ton of good BTA gear to use and to fill out with some crafted where I didn’t. Like spending the first couple of hours getting gear together before I ran all korthos on Elite. In fact I had a streak of about 50 elite runs before I noticed a definite wall around level 10 (soloing anyways). So now the streak is broken and I’m happy doing hard or normal where I can.

I’ve also been busy running the 3 new quests – and only tried the Artificer raid once and the whole group failed. So that means fabricator bracers and rocket boots for my ranger and horc fighter and I have one more quest to do (schemes) on my FvS to flag.

I also did Shroud on elite with my ranger. We failed in the end. Not because it’s harder – but because the healers didn’t want to suck pots in order to continue the mindless HP grind.

It’s not fun – 5 rounds in part 4 and a third HP left when we failed. And we were very well geared. Most of us TRs and most of us epic or GS equipped. It’s just that with the higher fort and more HP using resources is a must.

You can’t scroll heal a shroud. So you’re left using pots. And that’s not harder or more challenging. Only more resources. I guess some people love it. Like the group that used 120 pots in elob and loved it. Maybe I’m missing something here. But if winning is a matter of expenditure then I really fail to see how this is fun?

What else could we have done to finish shroud on elite?

Nothing. Not a darn thing. So if you’re a healer and want to heal a Elite shroud then the metagame for you is to manage resources and drink pots. For the rest of you it’s the same. Hit – and hit. And hit. Until there’s no HP anymore.

Let me know when this strikes you as more of the same and not the change you hoped it to be.

There are so many things you can add to make things more fun. Adding more HP and higher fort is the perhaps the laziest way of making it more challenging.

I will not heal any Elite pugs anytime soon. I want a challenge – not something that I spend a lot of resources on for the same drop rates as before.

And that’s really the rub – you need to complete Elob to make tier 3 on your new items. Fair enough – you need to run Epics to get shards, scrolls and seals. You do not get more of what you want running Elite shroud or ToD.

If Turbine would guarantee more large mats in a Elite shroud or more rings in ToD you would see more people running them and actually be willing to use resources.

But if the rewards are the same except for maybe better vendor trash it’s not really worth it.

So Turbine have a choice here; make a challenge really a challenge or at least up the reward. How about 1-2 large mats on hard and 1-3 large mats on Elite? Guaranteed in all relevant chests. At least give blue bar people a reason to use resources which in turn also means that blue bar type players might stock up on store pots. Cynical? Yeah. But everything is about rewards and if they expect me to work the analogy of 70 hours a week then ‘you get to keep your job’ is not the motivation that I’m looking for.

Hammer time

Well – I don’t use hammers. But it would be kind of cool if hammers actually were a okay substitute in DDO. I once found a greatclub that looked JUST like a oversized baseball bat. Holy burst of pure good or something (I bet I still have it on one of my mules). For a while when we entered the wilderness area under the marketplace and was about to drop down to do Hound or VoD I used to text out BATTER UP! and smack skellies around.

I doing the whole ninja thingie with my ranger – you know ninja store hood and whatever dark armor kit that makes what I’m wearing ninja like. So he wouldn’t say much. And he doesn’t exactly need too.

Besides; a lot of the half baked fantasy stuff you read and hear people say when they try to roll play sounds so corny. Don’t get me wrong – I don’t mind high fantasy speak – but some people just sound like a bunch of 14 year olds mixing fantasy speak with pirate speak. Like ‘Hi matey – o friend, may I offer you a ale – yaaaargh’

I once bought the PS3 game sacred 2 – wanted to play it with my wife. We like to play splits creen or dual player stuff (there’s not much that gets released now a days). The characters you played used to run around and blurb out cringy fantasy speak stuff like ‘eat my blade’, ‘your soul is mine’ etc.

So I just can’t imagine my ranger saying ‘my blade thirsts for your blood now let them drink’.

At most I can see my ranger or horc yell: ‘Stand still so I can kill you’ when kobolds and other critters jump around trying to evade their weapons.

What can I say – when you build a toon for max dps I really can’t imagine them speaking in high fantasy. Maybe a grunt at best.