First, this latest lam allowed me to truly check out a few concepts within the changes that are coming. Namely half tank (not so much full tank tho), Paladin and my Dragon Singer.
There are of course other concepts that should be investigated – such as DPS fighter in relation to the DPS changes, full tank – both Paladin and Fighter, but I’m not sure I have time or interest in digging into everything. There’s one main drawback – currently MRR, this new magic resistance rating also lowers the healing. It’s an unintended side effect so hopefully that’ll change.
First off my Bladeforged Paladin. The fun part about doing Lam is that you can also get the latest toys, mix and match the augments and most named items (that you don’t have) and upgrade stuff like Thunderforged to Max. So in essence, you can check what your future build can look like. So in the end I put together a fully upgraded thunderforged greatsword, changed some feats since cleave and greater cleave is not needed if you pick the new Paladin cleave enhancement options and over all tried to put together the max features for a 2hf Bladeforged.
Note – this is not a tanking concept – it has a very small amount of tanking enhancements and most of it is either racial or more traditional. As such it worked out beautifully. Plenty of swings, plenty of smiting and plenty of overall DPS together with the crusader destiny. As such there’s nothing that can truly challenge it in EMacabre. Paladins are ideally built for such encounters and properly equipped you could call it a holy butterknife. There’s very little to add other then you can’t find a more ideal way of dealing with undead and such then a Paladin and over all DPS is good enough to deal with non undead. And with smites even harder to kill things goes down quickly enough.
My second concept is my Dragon Singer. I’ve already discussed my Arti and I kind of jumped on that before my Dragon singer because I was curious about the new rune arm (I know that some don’t like it because of the imbued damage, but it’s hard to explain to them just how great force lore and spell lore is together and how that consolidates several items).
My Dragon Singer ended up with 2 fully upgraded thunderforged items, lightning and Sonic and lots of other goodies. I also upgraded all destinies and ended up with tier 4 energy burst, using a Shiradi destiny for additional DPS and a lot of other items for all the other needs. In the end it looked pretty good – the downside as it seems is of course the reliance on 2 elements as suppose to a much broader on other casters and generally low level SLAs. The result was therefore somewhat mixed. Like the holds didn’t work super well (but at least close) but the disco balls were a lot more effective. The big downside is the reliance of 2 elements (mostly) and low level SLAs. Especially against enemies that are traditionally immune (like flesh golems that heal from electric damage) and Liches that ignore most low level spells. In other words against Liches this build is not good and against Flesh Golems it’s down to spamming magic missiles to hope to proc something that damages them. Against most everything else it worked okay, even if I saw more reflex saves then I was hoping for. I assume that a few more TRs can help, but I’m not sure if it’ll be spotless.
My half tank on the other hand performed very nicely. There’s currently a bug with Stalwart stance stacking. Meaning if you change gear, even your weapons (which might have to do with spell power augments) it’ll kick out Stalwart and you’ll need to take of your armor and put it on again. But as long as you don’t much around with that I ended up with a 1300 HP half tank with 2 weapon fighting dps.
In this case I ended up with kensei extra crit multiplier which is tier 6 and the cap stone, but also all the way up to tier 4 Stalwart with lots of PRR and MRR and additional points on HP and con. In Stalwart it was running around with 165PRR and 91MRR and something like 90 in AC. The idea of a half tank is not to be full tank values but having lots of good DPS and adequate defensive capabilities. And it worked. Again, the MRR bug and healing sucks since a lot of the heal ticks from the CITW B-sword gets eaten up that way and the heal amp will not help like it normally does.
I ended up with a mish mash of new and old named items; a fully upgraded thunderforged khopesh as secondary weapon (mortal fear build) and the fully upgrade CITW B-sword. Doublestrike is 24% and it could be more with triple martial ETR. But you’ll notice it. That’s a lot of doublestrike. Plus with the new boots with all the nice tactical enhancements makes stunning blow and improved trip work like a charm. It might even be EE worthy in some quests. Time and time again it would know down elementals and such and work almost spotlessly on other targets. Plus running on FOTW I had those nice adrenaline hits to dish out against bigger and nastier targerts, not that the normal DPS with 300-500 crits didn’t help. All in all even with a half tank build, most of the problems in areas like Emacabre can be dealt with.
All in all I’d like to run a few more runs in say early EE content to get an idea if the AC/PRR/MRR can live up to spec but in simple runs the difference is notable. But I can’t really see myself doing that yet with only cocoon for healing – since the MRR bug is downgrading each heal with a lot – I’d say close to half.
I will most likely end up moving a few other things over before it goes live, especially my 2hf Horc to see if these changes and heavy armor works fine.