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What is the appropriate Weapon Style for Wizard?


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Ok, so a typical Wizard spends most of his/her time holding and fighting with an implemtent and a grimoire.  Agreed?

 

So...

What is the correct Fighting Style to support this combination of weapons/gear?

 

Two Weapon Style?  (Clearly, with Grimoire Slam [at least] the grimoire can be a weapon.)

 

One-handed Weapon Style?  (Admittedly the least likely, given the requirement to assign an implement as if it required two hands, but per animations the implement is clearly held and used in one hand, with the grimoire in the off hand.)

 

Two-handed Weapon Style?  (Basically the complimentary arguments to the above set of ambiguities.)

 

… or even...

 

Weapon and Shield Style  (Again, admittedly a stretch, but the grimoire IS handled rather like a shield.)

 

 

I'm actually NOT joking around here.  I am building my first wizard, and realized that I had no idea what weapon style Talent would apply and help the wizard with the tools of his trade.

 

What do people normally use?  Or perhaps a better question, do ANY of the Weapon Style choices assist a wizard with an implement?

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From a mechanical point of view: Two Handed Style. All summoned weapon of the wizard are two handed, implements are two handed. So either don't pick any because you won't be using your weapon too often (or because Blast won't profit anyways) or Two Handed Style.

 

Of course - if you want to build a special wizard, e.g. a tank with axe and shield (see Bilestomper build) you want to pick the style that's fitting.

 

But in general: two handed or simply no style. 

Edited by Boeroer
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I concur, NO STYLE.  I would say "unless you're planning some melee once and a while," but why?  Yes your party make-up might dictate the need for the wizard to join the fray up front but to me you're not using the wizard to the best of his/her abilities if you're doing that.  There are spells to disperse attackers up close too, so really no need imho.  Heavy armor slows down the attack speed and you want your wizard to cast as quickly as possible.  If your wizard is under melee attack a lot then you're not putting him/her in the right position in your party formation and after the battle starts.  

  

If anything, choose "Dangerous Implement" which is not a style but a talent.  If gives your wand or rod or scepter extra damage if you use it.  I rarely used Aloth for anything but casting spells, he had a rod which was bound to him but never max'ed it because he was always casting.

Edited by Mangamina
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Unless you are playing a melee wizard with summoned weapons of course which is plenty fun and powerful. Concelhaut's Parasitic Staff or Spirit Lance gain some good damage (in flat mumbers) with Two Weapon Style because their base damage is a lot higher than that of normal two handers. And the Staff is one of the best spell options in the first few levels (besides Chillfog).

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Wizards with summoned weapons make great to amazing second line damage dealers. If you're looking for damage on a melee monster that has already been debuffed or you're flanking then all of the melee weapon spells will have top notch damage per second as well as damage per slot. Even if you don't have a lot of +damage modifiers or have a particularly high might the amount of damage they do is top notch.

 

The wizard/druid summoned weapons all have a base damage of 20-30. Which is 47% higher than a normal two handed weapon. Because its weapon base damage this results in multiplicative rather than additive scaling. Thus the most damaging weapons in the game are all summoned. The most damaging in an AoE is Citzal's Spirit Lance. The most damaging single target is firebrand because it does fire damage and so all of its damage stacks with scion of flame multiplicatively*. After that its Concelhaut's Parasitic Quarterstaff. A level 1 wizard spell which you can fairly easily master.

 

Wizards also get some of the best buffing spells in the game, Like DAoM, Displaced Image, Essential Phantom, Safeguard, and Martial Power.

 

If you want to see some really hilarious damage and as an exercise to examine just how strong these weapons are

 

Put the Foregemaster Gauntlet on a monk with Turning Wheel and Scion of Flame, 16 might, and Two Handed Style. This item allow you to summon firebrand [Damaging 3, Bonus Crit damage, 20-30 base fire damage] 3/rest. The Deadfire cannoneer belt will let you do it another 3 times and also give you 2 might, 3 dexterity, and 2 intelligence.

 

This produces 30 base damage attack[25x1.2 from scion of flame] *(1+ .45[weapon damage modifier] + .018[might] + .15[two handed style])* 2.1 [Due to 60% fire lash from turning wheel and scion of flame and 50% crushing lash from torments reach and note that the lash portion only defends against 1/4 DR] AND +1 crit modifier...though you will want a different weapon for dragons as some are fire immune...this produces an average torments reach damage of 80/110/175 [graze/crit/hit] the AoE portion will be 19/26/42 [against 1/4 DR]. And the belt gives you another 2 might and 3 dexterity because this monk clearly needed more damage.

 

Durance's Quarterstaff is also good for this because it does crushing or fire damage... If we assume that we have enchanted it to be superior then its damage scale for those attacks will be 52/73/92 [graze/crit/hit] and the AoE portion of that will be 11/15/19 [against 1/4 DR]

 

A similar two fist torments reach would do 69/95/121[graze/crit/hit] but be twice as susceptible to DR penetration; though it would go off a bit faster.

 

Now the monk is unique in that they can easily stack multiple lashes for well multiplicative damage. Which other classes cannot as easily do(besides barbarians? Is Carnage a lash? does it apply to the character you're attacking as well?). However what is not unique is the ratio at which the summoned weapons do damage compared to even top quality weapons and the ease of acquiring those weapons. Concelhaut's staff is a level 1 spell. It has +8 ACC and does a load of damage. You could use it far into the game as a primary weapon on a wizard.

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Scion of Flame only adds 20% additive damage, not multiplicative. Still very nice for Firebrand since it's a talent that gives you +20% dmg with no drawbacks (unlike Savage Attack for example). The drawback of Firebrand is that is only does burn damage unlike normal great swords that have two dmg types.

 

Crit damage bonuses are additive as well.

 

Torment's Reach's AoE has its own dmg type (crush) and -roll that is independent from your weapon - except for accuracy. So here fast weapons, dual wielded are best.

 

Carnage is no lash but simply the same attack resolution mechanic with the same weapon. This meams all on-hit/crit effects work. Only the attack gets a -34% additive dmg modifier and -10 ACC modifier - and then +1 ACC per char level because it's an ability. That means that it has the same ACC as your initial attack at level 10 (5 if you take Accurate Carnage).

 

Firebrand is best used on a Barbarian with Blood Thirst. Every kill removes recovery and Carnage-kills do count.

 

Since you can crit quite often with Carnage at higher levels (because its ACC is rather high then, up to +11 at lvl 16 compared to your initial attack roll) and Firebrand is Annihilating (double crit damage which is awesome with that high base damage) you will reset recovery all the time, making you a one man flaming wrecking ball of fury. The best part is that it also works on killed allies. So make sure you attack that whimpy sekelton summon if you can't hit enough enemies and if you want to have higher hit chances against targets with high defenses while triggering Blood Thirst. :)

 

This is the highest dps you can get with Firebrand and this way also circumvents the fact (a bit) that you can't enchant Firebrand with a lash and more important Durgan Steel. Because on other classes usually a lash-enchanted, superb and durgan refined two hander does better dps than Firebrand - mainly because of attack speed reasons.

 

Citzal's and Minor Blights AoE used to work with Knockdown, Runner's Wounding Shot and also Envenomed Strike. Sadly that was patched. Citzal's also has speed which gives it great dps potential even against single targets.

 

Rot Skulls is very good. The DoT stacks.

 

Kalakoth's Minor Blights is very nice as well because it comes with +20 ACC and every of its AoE attacks triggers a Blast (if you picked that Talent). Combine with Combusting Wounds and you can wipe whole groups with just 2 spell uses.

 

The summoned weapons are all about efficient spell use and they are great at that. And also lots of fun in my opinion.

 

Best summoned weapon in my opinion is the Long Pain by the way. :)

Edited by Boeroer

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Torments reach is crush but its a lash and lashes are based off of the total modified damage and not the base damage of your weapon. So if you add scion of flame to firebrand the crush damage on the torments reach lash increases because the modified damage before DR increases. And the lash damage of Turning Wheel increases as well.

 

I ran the math assuming that crits were additive(though i did have Scion as multiplicative, that will reduce damage across the board, it should be multiplicative on Lashes). The multiplication you're seeing is a result of the multiple lashes, not crits. 60% for Turning Wheel (6%/wound due to Scion of Flame) and 50% for Torments Reach crushing Lash => 110% lash damage = 2.1 multiplier to final damage.

 

Not being able to add a lash to Firebrand is immaterial. You can see the difference in damage compared to Durance's Staff with Scion of Flame. The assumption there is that Durance's Staff is upgraded to superior and since it does fire damage as well it gets the same multiplication error as above. Such the ratio should be precisely the same(I may have messed the numbers as they look low a glance). Not only you can use firebrand far earlier than you can get a Superior or Durgan Superior weapon but the 15% recovery isn't going to make up the 47% base damage increase.

 

What i meant with regards to carnage was whether or not it hit the original target. Or if it only hit the AoE. I am guessing the latter. Barbarians with Firebrand are indeed good. Though i prefer single target damage on melee classes.

 

 

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The lash of Torment's Reach only applies to the initial target, not the AoE. The AoE has its own crush damage that is not influenced by weapon damage, only accuracy. I only wanted to point that out. Because ofthat your overall dps will be much higher when you use fast dual weapons. This is against groups of course.

 

Any lash is a multiplicative dmg bonus (albeit is has to overcome DR and doesn't use DR bypass so some dmg gets eaten away most of the time if it's not raw). But Scion of Flame on Firebrand is not multiplicative. In this case Scion of Flame is additive to weapon base damage like all the other dmg bonuses like MIG, crits and so on. If we don't want to mix up therminology we should call Scion of Flame on Firebrand an additive damage bonus and a lash a multiplicative one. Just to prevent confusion.

 

Scion of Flame will raise all burn damage by 20%. If the burn damage is a lash like Turning Wheel then it works as a multiplicative damage boost, yes. But it's not a 20% multiplicative damage bonus on the damage roll - just to make things clear. Turning Wheel going up from 50% to 60% is correct. Just remember that you don't always have 10 wounds. Not even close especially if you spam Torment's Reach.

 

It works the same on a normal burning lash enchantment: 25% becomes 30% multiplicative dmg. A 30% mutiplicative lash is not immaterial - especially if your attack speed is higher than that of Firebrand.

 

Durances's Staff doesn't profit from Scion of Flame (except the bunring lash of course) since the first damage that's mentioned is crush, not burn. Thus the base damage will not get an additive dmg bonus of 20%. The weapon has to have the elemental damage as first damage type to profit from an elemental talent such as Scion of Flame (see Stormcaller/Heart of the Storm or Bittercut/Spirit of Decay). Because of that your calculations might be flawed?

 

If you redo the math and compare Firebrand with a fully enchanted Tidefall (can have two lashes: one elemental one at 30% max and the other one raw at 25%*MIG bonus) or Blade of the Endless Paths (speed) or even a fully enchanted Hours of Saint Rumbalt (Annihilating like Firebrand with prone on crit) you might get different results just because of attack speed, additional lash and higher accuracy/more crits. Monk with Turning Wheel and Blood Testament Gloves (up to 20% raw lash) at 10 wounds may be an exception. But since Torment's Reach is a Full Attack I highly suspect you would be better off with something like dual fists, dual Bittercut or dual Drawn in Spring - or even better: the Long Pain. Its base damage scales with level and reaches crazy values (for a fast/light one hander): 24-36 crush. it has +5 base damage compared to Firebrand then. And accuracy scales as well (+20 at lvl 16 - +16 compared to Firebrand).

 

And sure: Firebrand is awesome becaue of the reasons you mentioned. It's my favorite weapon. I even keep it until the late game although other alternatives are better in the late game. I'm loyal. ;)

 

Carnage does not hit the initial target. That would make the barbarian a very potent single target killer (nearly +100% multiplicative damage minus 2*DR with two chances to proc on-hit/crit effects). Which he 's not. ;)

Edited by Boeroer

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So, Boeroer, on a Monk wearing the Belt ot RDC, with high deflection that slows Wound accumulation in early battle, would you recommend sparking off Firebrand in the early rounds before there are enough wounds to call The Long Pain?

 

I sometimes feel like my Firebrand feature is under utilized, but then I do have a rational understanding that is partly because I have been using the PC to level up soulbound weapons a lot.  Especially since some of his soulbound features (Weakened, Dazed) can contribute to the soulbound leveling of partner characters.

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I presume, however, that Firebrand (since it's gonna be there, as a bene from BotRDC) would be the weapon of choice against a crush-proof foe?

 

(I note here that I checked the wiki - none of the PoE dragons are immune to both crush and burn...neither are the Eyeless - for whatever that is worth.)

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