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 Hello there,

I recently built a pretty nice shepherd, really REALLY effective at melee, but it got boring really quick, it was very micro non intensive (means mostly auto-attacks with the occasional FoD to heal allies around). PoTD Scalled up.

I was thinking about a melee seer, I really dig the ghost heart theme, with dead AC that you can still summon when in the thick of things. Like your old buddy jumps into the fray through the beyond because you are in trouble.
Also my character in PoE1 was a melee ranger, so I absolutely want a ranger class on him in this game.

I was wondering if a ghost heart / soulblade could work for a melee character. Is there any good synergy here ? Compared to Stalker / Soulblade, who has a clear advantage of beeing sturdier when close to the AC.

I know at low level it will not be really good at anything, considering how it's stretched thin with ability points, but I'm more asking about mid-high level ? like 10~ish ?

I don't want to invest too much time in a character and realise it's trash after 10h of game.

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Sure, why not?

Best synergies are all the ACC bonuses from Ranger which stack with Borrowed Instincts.

Takedown Combo (+100% dmg) works very well with Soul Annihilation. You can use the AC as ally for all the cipher powers which need one.

Stuff like Soul Ignition will trigger Predator's Sense on the AC and so on.

Compared to Stalker/Soul Blade: not much difference to be honest. But with Ghost Heart you can use Screaming Horrors on your Animal Companion (since it's a spirit). It might die in the process but at least you can use this ability and deal AoE damage even when there are no enemy vessels or spirits around. Because the "scream" that the hit AC will emit does damage to all enemies, not just vessels/spirits. You just need a spirit/vessel to cast the spell onto.  

If I'm not mistaken you can even cast Detonate on your AC. That would be not so great with a normal AC, but with a summoned one which is about to die you can at least make sure you get some AoE damage out of it withoug suffering Bonded Grief. ;)

It's not soo much to be honest. Stalker would be the more obvious and "synergetic" pick.

Edited by Boeroer

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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5 hours ago, Boeroer said:

Takedown Combo (+100% dmg) works very well with Soul Annihilation.

I had actually just been wondering about a related interaction for an itinerant I'd been thinking about rolling (I need a Deadfire party to play for fun just to break up the ultimate slog). How do DoTs interact with Takedown Combo? I know that dot ticks don't consume it, but does the initial attack roll consume it (essentially wasting it on the first tick only)?. I do know that there are a limited number of spells (Disintegrate, Cleansing Flame... Wounding Shot?) that instead of specifying X damage for Y ticks does a total X damage over Y ticks. Does the whole damage get boosted by Takedown Combo in those cases? Would be a pretty nice interaction with Disintegrate then.

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If the DoT spell has no initial direct damage (like Necrotic Lance or Autum's Decay have) then nothing happens: Takedown Combo remains untouched (tested 5 min. ago after reading your post - just to be 100% sure). Only direct damage works (the damage receives a +100% boost and the status effect disappears). That makes stuff like Chillfog and Minor Missiles bad with it but single instances of high direct damage good (Sunlance for example).

Very nice Interactions with Disintegrate:

Debonaire/Cipher: charm with Whisper of Treason and then cast Disintegrate (yes, it's possible): 100% hit-to crit conversion --> +50% duration of Disintegrate

Forbidden Fist/Cipher: Forbidden Fist to enfeeble and then Disintegrate: +50% duration for Disintegrate. Even better if you crit (Enduring Dance, Morning Star - Enfeebled itself lowers fortitude).

My last tests with this were today. So I know that Disintegrate does do more damage overall with longer duration. But I'm using the Community Patch which fixed some weird DoT behavior - maybe Disint. was one of them. But iirc it was also patched by Obsidian...?

Edited by Boeroer

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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7 hours ago, Boeroer said:

If the DoT spell has no initial direct damage (like Necrotic Lance or Autum's Decay have) then nothing happens: Takedown Combo remains untouched (tested 5 min. ago after reading your post - just to be 100% sure). Only direct damage works (the damage receives a +100% boost and the status effect disappears). That makes stuff like Chillfog and Minor Missiles bad with it but single instances of high direct damage good (Sunlance for example).

So this may be a change in recent patches (5.0 or so), but I just did some testing (because I was curious if the weird DoT for Cleansing Flame functioned differently), and while Takedown Combo isn't consumed by DoTs, it does affect DoTs while active. I tested both the normal kind of DoTs and also the weird Cleansing Flame/Disintegrate/Wounding Shot style DoT. It absolutely does affect DoTs.

Effects like Chill Fog or beam spells are the definite loser here, because they'll consume the Takedown Combo and only affect one tick. But seriously: wow. I've literally never before seen a tick for like 120 damage before, but I was absolutely ticking for that much with Cleansing Flame. As soon as Takedown Combo would wear off, the dot damage would drop down dramatically. Gonna really enjoy an itinerant now.

The real winners are high-impact short duration DoTs like Cleaning Flame or (to a lesser extent) Disintegrate, and Concelhaut's Corrosive Skin - because unlike other DoTs this one ticks every second, which gives you a lot of ticks at essentially double damage (whereas otherwise if combo wears off before the next tick, you don't get pro-rated the extra damage on the tick that happens after combo wears off).

 

edit - the weird interaction here with takedown combo is if you do affect them with a DoT (or multiple DoTs) you definitely don't want to touch that enemy until takedown combo wears off, because then the combo +100% effect will wear off too quickly to get much benefit out of it. And ironically depending on how the spell is structured, spells that do initial damage followed by a DoT may underperform, because the initial hit will eat up the takedown combo and then the remaining DoT won't benefit (so spells that do most of their damage up front will be OK but spells that do most of their damage as follow up will suffer)

Edited by thelee
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36 minutes ago, thelee said:

So this may be a change in recent patches (5.0 or so), but I just did some testing (because I was curious if the weird DoT for Cleansing Flame functioned differently), and while Takedown Combo isn't consumed by DoTs, it does affect DoTs while active. I tested both the normal kind of DoTs and also the weird Cleansing Flame/Disintegrate/Wounding Shot style DoT. It absolutely does affect DoTs.

That does it. I started this game with a Beastmaster when I didn't know what I was doing. It's time to go for it again. Insects/Maggots and Sunlance along with TC will be one new trick in my bag.

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4 minutes ago, Jayd said:

That does it. I started this game with a Beastmaster when I didn't know what I was doing. It's time to go for it again. Insects/Maggots and Sunlance along with TC will be one new trick in my bag.

same here, lol. itinerant was like one of my first ever class in 1.0. this time i'm going to do it right :)

Edited by thelee

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I swear when I tested it yesterday with Soul Ignition and Disintegration the damage didn't change at all. Hmmm... 🤔


Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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11 minutes ago, Boeroer said:

I swear when I tested it yesterday with Soul Ignition and Disintegration the damage didn't change at all. Hmmm... 🤔

so the way i recall it happening a few hours ago is that the tooltip number that shows up in combat log upon landing an effect is unaffected. it doesn't show the effect of takedown combo. what i did notice was the red numbers;  i was about to give up, but it was actually the jump on cleansing flame (my first test) that clued me in, because the jump to a random other enemy did way less red number damage. so the numbers appearing above the enemy's head going up dramatically (exactly 2x (+100%) in my tests for something like concelhaut's corrosive siphon, a little bit less than 2x with something like cleansing flame - i assume stacking rules with might since i had different characters doing the attacks).

i didn't exhaustively test everything DoT because I assumed once I had a few tests of each type of DoT effect that everything else is pretty consistent, but I did make sure to pay attention to when Takedown Combo was up and when it was not to prove that it specifically was ramping up damage (Concelhaut's Corrosive Skin was helpful here because of the fact that it ticked every second, making it extremely obvious when it was benefiting from extra damage and when it wasn't).

Edited by thelee

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Yeah I meant the red numbers. Disintegrate was giving me 62 per tick with the char without Takedown Combo and 62 with it. This is strange. Maybe my wild consoling did break something. I tested a ton of stuff in that session and changed class and abilities a lot.


Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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3 minutes ago, Boeroer said:

Yeah I meant the red numbers. Disintegrate was giving me 62 per tick with the char without Takedown Combo and 62 with it. This is strange. Maybe my wild consoling did break something. I tested a ton of stuff in that session and changed class and abilities a lot.

ok that's weird, i'll have to test more dots see if i also run into exceptions (i only tested like 4). is this any interaction with the community mod?

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I have the mod installed (and Enhanced UI mod). This might also be the source of my findings. But I don't think so. Will try again later...


Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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20 hours ago, Boeroer said:

Yeah I meant the red numbers. Disintegrate was giving me 62 per tick with the char without Takedown Combo and 62 with it. This is strange. Maybe my wild consoling did break something. I tested a ton of stuff in that session and changed class and abilities a lot.

so i definitely just did tests again, with more DoTs, with Soul Ignition and Disintegrate specifically as well (since I had just assumed their behavior before), with no mods, and can confirm that Takedown Combo does affect all apparent DoTs while active (this time I even explicitly tested multiple DoTs going on at the same time). It doesn't matter if Takedown Combo lands first or the DoT lands first and Combo comes after, as soon as Takedown Combo is present DoT damage increases. I still didn't test all the DoTs specifically, but I feel like with this even more comprehensive test I can more confidently conclude that in your case there must've been something else going on.

And just to double-confirm, I did test hazard-type effects and they are definitely losers here. Getting only one tick at double damage and eating up the Combo is definitely the lamest possible interaction.

Definitely going to go roll an itinerant for my "fun" run. Shining Beacon, Cleansing Flame as short-duration DoTs, plus a few high-impact damage spells (Pillar of Holy Fire, Divine Mark). Back to the OPs topic, Disintegrate would do well. I was doing triple-digit raw damage per tick the entire time Takedown Combo was active with Disintegrate with an extremely unoptimized Serafen, I even combined with Soul Ignition for even more damage. The only trick is that Takedown Combo doesn't last too long so you have to do a wee bit of micromanagement so that you're in the middle of casting a spell or have just landed a spell when you command your animal companion to do the takedown, so you don't waste the combo's duration. (Not to mention the micromanagement of making sure no one auto-attacks your target after you land the combo.) In my test case, takedown combo lasted ~12s, with Soul Ignition at ~20s and Disintegrate at ~15s, so I would cast Soul Ignition, cast Disintegrate, and then takedown combo, and watch a stupid amount of damage come out for the ~12s.

Edited by thelee

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The downside of this schtick is if one of your allies inconveniently tags the target by accident with a stray Carnage, bounced shot, or other hard-to-control source of damage, that's going to be some annoying micromanagement (and potentially lost DPS if you have to significantly suboptimize your party's attacks for fear of eating the Takedown Combo) unless you're doing a solo run.  But it's certainly a fun schtick to theorycraft on!

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Oh don't get me wrong, I love micromanaging.

Also I sure hope this schtick isn't the only trick of a seer, and even though it's the most powerful, there are some other things he'll be able to do when the area is crowded by allies.
 

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You can always use Takedown Combo with a direct dmg attack as well. Also a Seer is an accuracy beast: all the Ranger stuff + Borrowed Instincts... phew. And it's handy that a Seer always has an ally to cast stuff on that only works on allies (like Ectopsychic Echo or Amplified Wave and so on).  


Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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I'd like to back up a little about the beastmaster. Would a fury melee beastmaster be viable ? (I know shifter is better for melee, but I don't like spirit shifting much, I do like the elemental spells though)

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Viable: yes. But one of the biggest letdowns is that the storm blight weapons which jump 1 time don't work with Driving Flight. If you are not interested in the shifting and want to do melee even then that doesn't matter of course.

Stalker/Fury can just work fine.

With Firebrand + Ring of Focused Flame (+10 ACC for Firebrand) + all the Ranger ACC and Borrowed Instincts you can rel. savely leave the Greast Sword modal on. The Ring will kind of balance out the ACC loss of the modal and you'll gain +30% damage. Scion of Flame will give you +1 PEN with Firebrand. Unfortunately the Fury passive doesn't do anything for Firebrand attacks, only works on elemental dmg spells like Sunbeam and so on. Anyway +30% dmg (all cases) is better than +25% dmg from crits if your accuracy is already very high. Against hard to hit bosses you can then turn the modal off and gain even more ACC. 

By the way: people love Relentless Storm, but for a melee Fury I would recommend Nature's Terror. In my opinion it's the superior spell for melee druids. I compared Relentless Storm with Nature's Terror on a Berserker/Fury - and Nature's Terror yielded much better results.  Also one reason less to stick to Lord Darryn's Voulge. ;)

"Pulsing" spells like Returning/Relentless Storm and Nature's Terror don't work very well with Takedown Combo. Sunlance on the other hand is a killer spell. With PL7 and 20 MIG it would do ~170 dmg on a hit then.  Stag's Horn: also not bad. Even attacks with Firebrand + Takedown Combo can be very good. If you use Taste of the Hunt on an enemy affected by Takedown Combo you can do over 130 dmg on a crit. If you then apply Takedown Cmbo again the DoT from Taste of the Hunt will profit from that - and its ticks are already high (and raw). And the DoT last quite long (way longer than Wounding Shot). In my test case just now it had ticks of ~40 every 3 secs. That's a very powerful combo against single targets. 

Edited by Boeroer

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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