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Good day to you!

I recently played and beat PoE and I am now starting Deadfire 

For PoE, I played a variant of Boeroer's golden dragon build and had a blast with it. (I used spears instead)

Now I am looking for advice on a build or a sanity check to tell me it's not feasible and I need to find something else.

What I would like to do is run a Witch as a tank. I haven't been able to find any one else asking about it.

I did find some posts discussing using 2h offensive parry build and I was thinking maybe running that build like a tank by taking my RES up high?

Or maybe doing spear + shield something?

Any advice or wisdom you all would share with me would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you for your time!

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A Barbarian isn't really tank material IMO. He's quite fragile. Cipher is not very durable either.

Maybe as a Warlock, with Wizard protective buffs it could work. But he'd be very reliant on them and vulnerable to dispelling/damping.

Offtank, yes. Main tanking duty IMO no.

 

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Barbarian can tank well enough if you don't focus on stellar deflection (but not dropping it either) but try to stack AC. Underpenetration, combined with even more reduced dmg received (Cadhu Scalth for example) and the enormous health pool of a Barb can make you sturdy as hell. Just don't pick Berserker. :)

I played a dumped-deflection but stacked AR Furyshaper with focus on Blood Ward and Barbaric Retaliation with Battle Axes (Bleeding Cuts) as offtank (not main tank at all) and at some point I could just jump into everything (at higher levels though) because the life draining is so strong.

Thick skinned and the other defensive stuff is mandatory. So is Savage Defiance of course. Leap does daze enemies which can be very helpful. Regeneration items might help as well. 

The Dazing Shout is especially great for a tanking Barb. But it's for SC Barb's only. Nevertheless it's absolutely great because it not only causes -4 PEN on enemies but also deals a great deal of damage in a huge AoE. It turns a slow hitting guy into a great AoE CC/damage dealer as soon as Blood Thirst and Blood Surge trigger - and as a Furyshaper with Blood Ward it also heals you a lot (especially if you took Blood Storm which will put a DoT on all crits from Dazing Shout - and Blood Ward even drains life from DoT ticks. But Spirit Tornado is also good). I think this could work well with a more definitive weapon setup and high RES as well. But I didn't play that yet. 

Multiclass Barb's can't have Dazing Shout, but they can still profit from the +3 engagement of Barbaric Shout. 

If you want to tank with a Witch you'd not only need to stack up some defenses and AR but also reduce enemies ACC - or even better: disable them completely. Again I would suggest a Furyshaper because the Fear Ward is just incredible if you have some means to lower Will defenses (Cipher has and Barbaric Shout is also shaking enemies). A Furyshaper/Beguiler can shout and bind several foes, then summon the Ward and then spam several CC spells that will control the enemies (and fill up focus). Furyshapers have bad Will but Ciphers have very high Will and can pick a unique Will boost passive. Since interrupts will mess up your casting I would use Rekvu's Fractured Casque with an injury like Acute Rash or Serious Burn (let your party caster knock you out with some acid or fire spell out of combat). Or pile up some Concentration instead. 

Cipher spells that help controlling the enemies and preventing them from attacking/hitting you and your friends are stuff like Eyestrike, Secret Horrors and such. Ringleader is great leader on. Borrowed Instincts and Body Attunement are no-brainers. 

Here the "tanking" part doesn't come from the highest defenses but more from controlling and disabling the enemies. If you shower them with Secret Horrors, Phantom Foes, Mental Bindings and such while the Fear Ward constantly hammers against their Will defenses you can "tank" (in the sense of preventing enemies to attack your party) very well if you combine that with a good deal of sturdyness. 

If you use something like Cadhu Scalth (it's just the best tanking shield imo) you should focus on PER to make up for the -8 ACC. MIG isn't that important. DEX and RES are though. 

So yeah - Furyshaper/Beguiler would be my pick. With Cadu Scalth and Kapana Taga I guess (lower Will by 25 with the modal so the Ward can kick in). Thick armor. Instead of Rekvu's Fractured Casque (still my favorite) I can imagine the White Witch Mask being useful. Reckless Brigandine would complete a Witch in Huana-Mataru style. But other items would work, too.

I didn't try it myself and I can imagine it wouldn't work as a tank in the early levels, but after some time it should hold up well in most fights as well as wrecking enemies' tactics. Maybe bring a dedicated tank in the first few levels and then change or retrain.

If you have a Priest in the party the FuryShaper will laugh his ass off: you can withdraw the wards but they will keep working, making them invincible. So please pick Withdraw. :)

 

 

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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7 minutes ago, Boeroer said:

Multiclass Barb's can't have Dazing Shout, but they can still profit from the +3 engagement of Barbaric Shout. 

[...]

So yeah - Furyshaper/Beguiler would be my pick. 

Multiclass Barbs don't have Dazing Shout, but Witch has Mind Plague instead if one want to go the AR stacking route. With Beguiler refunding, it won't be that expensive to cast.

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8 hours ago, Amarynthus said:

I did find some posts discussing using 2h offensive parry build and I was thinking maybe running that build like a tank by taking my RES up high?

one thing that hasn't been explicitly mentioned yet is that part of the reason why this is not going to work so well is that barbarians have an inherent -5 deflection penalty (starting them off lower than everyone else) and you are heavily  incentivized to take frenzy (further -10 deflection while active) and dual or 2h-wield (no shield bonus). so you are not only going to get hit a lot more, you are also going to get crit a lot more. barbarians really need to rely on armor rating and sheer health for survivability. (and on potd+upscaling, it's extremely hard to win the armor arms/penetration arms race against enemies until mid-late game so you really need to rely on things like Dazed to help out)

if you had like a barb/trickster or barb/wael or barb/wizard you might be able to get enough deflection to cancel out all those penalties and make offensive parry worth it, but I think it would honestly be suboptimal.

 

3 hours ago, Elric Galad said:

Multiclass Barbs don't have Dazing Shout, but Witch has Mind Plague instead if one want to go the AR stacking route. With Beguiler refunding, it won't be that expensive to cast.

mind plague is very good - ciphers can make their powers pretty accurate (don't remember off the top of my head if it's available to MCs), and the bouncing effect of mind plauge--even if slow--means you can end up hitting enemies far away from the barbarian/cipher in one cast, whereas with e.g. interdiction or arkemyr's dazzlign lights you are extremely limited in whom you can affect.

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Nay, I wouldn't try Offensive Parry with a Barb either. Something with high defenses+Cipher  can be cool with Offensive Party because it generates focus as soon as enemies miss in melee, but once a Barb is involved you can't get to sufficient deflection anymore (unless you ditch Frenzy maybe). 

 

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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A witch wielding The Willbreaker would be particularly good, since hits with Willbreaker (with the morning star modal on) will debuff both FORT and WILL for both the main target and those hit by carnage attacks, making them more vulnerable to physical attacks once you have Brute force, and also more vulnerable to cipher powers. This would be a strong offense is the best defense build, I think. You'd get hit a lot, but with high armor, high HP and some healing from companions this build would be very sturdy.

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19 hours ago, dgray62 said:

A witch wielding The Willbreaker would be particularly good, since hits with Willbreaker (with the morning star modal on) will debuff both FORT and WILL for both the main target and those hit by carnage attacks, making them more vulnerable to physical attacks once you have Brute force, and also more vulnerable to cipher powers. This would be a strong offense is the best defense build, I think. You'd get hit a lot, but with high armor, high HP and some healing from companions this build would be very sturdy.

You sure about this? In Deadfire Carnage used to never carry on hit effects (except Static Charge from LDV). 

Edited by Haplok
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4 hours ago, Haplok said:

You sure about this? In Deadfire Carnage used to never carry on hit effects (except Static Charge from LDV). 

Haplok, you're right. Thanks for the correction. Body Blows and Willbreaker's will debuff apply on hit, so I thought that it would be applied by carnage hits, like LDV's static charge. But I tested it, and they do not; they only apply to the main target. I didn't realize that LDV's static charge was an exception to the general rule.

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Stuff that applies on all sorts of hits (not only weapon hits) - like Spirit Frenzy's Stagger affliction for example - do work with Carnage. But Body Blows and the other we won modals might be effect that are bound to weapon attacks specifically - and Carnage is not considered a weapon attack (and not melee either iirc). Blood Storm's DoT would also work with Carnage if it only could crit. It also doesn't generate focus. 

Still a morning star is great to have (e.g. in a backup weapon slot while you are using club+shield mainly) if you want to cast anything against fortitude like Disintegration and such. For such purposes you don't need Two Handed Style or any other investment in two handers. It's mostly about the modal.

 

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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