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[CLASS BUILD] The Man of Mistery – SC Trickster Solo Upscaled PotD

 

Class: Trickster

Concept: Fun and Versatile Rogue that mixes spellcasting, ranged and melee attacks to adapt to each situation and tricks his enemies into certain death. Optimized for a No-Rest run.

Game Version: RTwP. Works with latest updates and DLCs as of v5.0.00040. I recommend the Full Community Patch and the No Forced Rests mod (otherwise just metagame around them, it’s fully viable but just a bit annoying).

PotD Solo Viable: Yes. Of note, I think this is a Solo build that is particularly well compatible with party play because he can do so many things that will benefit others.

Companion: Nope.

 

-----WHAT IS INTERESTING ABOUT THIS BUILD?------

 

Why go with an SC Trickster? As an SC Rogue, it’s probably not the strongest Solo option (arguably it is Assassin). As a Trickster, multiclassing is usually the way to go as it pairs so well with other classes, in particular martial ones. I wanted to try out this build nevertheless to see how much mileage I could get out of its unique access to high-level Illusion spells, notably by stacking as much Illusion Power Levels as I could while achieving a really cool, nightmarish style (see this thread) fitting well the fluff of an Arcane Rogue who vanquishes his enemies with scary illusions and deadly, freezing tricks.

I was especially curious about using Kalakoth’s Freezing Rake and Wall of Many Colors as a Rogue. These are spells that I’ve loved since PoE1, particularly for their utility against certain Adra/Alpine large beasts, but in Deadfire I haven’t used them so much as a SC Wizard because 1) there is usually another certain Wall spell that I want to keep up and 2) there is a lot of competition on PL8 spells and offensive spells in general.

All in all, I’ve found this SC Trickster quite surprisingly powerful and very fun to play Solo, mostly for its versatility and because it’s a Rogue archetype that doesn’t play exactly like a typical Deadfire Solo Rogue. Here are some key highlights:

  • We reach PL14 on Illusion spells (we can even reach PL16 on Freezing Rake wielding Sun & Moon at night). That is a lot of PL, which combined with high No-Rest stats make all Illusion DMG and CC attacks hit like trucks. Huge AoE, nice ACC, long duration, large damage…
  • We can then supplement that with powerful ranged and melee offense depending on the situation. I would usually always start with Dazzling Lights to lure/group enemies but then every combat sequence can be totally different depending on the enemies and layout. I’ll detail key abilities and strategies below.
  • Because it has so many options, this build is the opposite of a one-trick pony and can actually stay in most fights for some time before resetting the encounter or abusing Gouging Strike, if at all. Even if in many situations on Upscaled PotD you still have to go invisible/resest before the end of the fight, I have found that you might reset less often than Assassin for instance, and can take down a lot more enemies than you thought in one go (ah, the random power of Fyonlecg's Wall of Many Colors…).
  • Of course, it should be also be said that as a SC Rogue with non-renewable resources, completing the harder DLC fights (non-resettable, small battlefield, lots of enemies with lots of health) without cheese requires Arcana. But that’s also true for an Assassin. Or you know... abuse Strand of Favor and remove all challenge (that is not what this build/post is about, but it is a possibility).

 

 

-----SPECS------

 

Race: I went with Pale Elf for style and +PER

Background: The White that Wends – Hunter

 

FINAL STATS WITH ALL PERMABUFFS AND NO-REST BUFFS AS OF 5.0 (without combat buffs):

 

MIG 22 (15 Base +2 Berath +1 Gift from Machine +2 Alchemic Brawn +2 Hot Razor Skewers)

CON 12 (3 Base +2 Berath +2 Alchemic Brawn +2 Konstanten Boon +3 Girdle of Eoten CON)

DEX 27 (18 Base +1 Elf +2 Berath +2 Alchemic Guile +2 Amira’s Blessing +2 Footprints Ahu Taka)

PER 30 (18 Base +1 Elf +1 White that Wends +2 Berath +1 Konstanten Boon +1 Effigy: Sagani +2 Alchemic Guile +1 Savage Cunning +1 Cauldron Brew +1 Ajamuut’s Cloak +1 Kuaru’s Prize)

INT 26 (18 Base +2 Berath +1 Konstanten Boon +2 Alchemic Wits +2 Charm of Bones +1 Kuaru’s Prize)

RES 11 (3 Base +2 Berath +2 Alchemic Wits +2 Nature’s Resolve +2 Rikuhu’s Blessing)

 

ADDITIONAL PERMABUFFS:

 

Food: Hot Razor Skewers

Adratic Glow

All Trainings

Dawnstar Blessing

Luminous Adra Potion

Nature’s Resolve (Accuracy)

Savage Cunning (Survival)

Galawain’s Gift

Magran’s Blessing

Infamous Captain, Bonus Skills, Champion Stats, Port Maje vendor, Fully discovered Map, Bonus Money… invested all 105 Berath’s Blessing Points

 

SKILLS

 

I just spent between Mechanics, Athletics, Stealth and Survival, Diplomacy. Max Arcana temporarily for certain end-game situations.

 

 

----- ABILITIES ------

 

 

ACTIVE

Crippling/Arterial Strike, Blinding/Gouging Strike, Smoke Veil/Smoke Cloud/Pernicious Cloud, Withering/Toxic Strike, Gambit, Vanishing Strike.

 

PASSIVES

Key: Backstab, Fast Runner, Monastic Unarmed Training, Arms Bearer, Two Weapon Style, Dirty Fighting, Persistent Distraction, Tough, Uncanny Luck, Deep Wounds, Improved Critical, Deathblows, Prestige.

Optional: Snake Reflex, Combat Focus, Adept Evasion, Wall of Flashing Steel.

 

 

-----GEAR------

 

 

Weapon Set 1: Hand Mortar (Blinding Smoke), The Eye of Wael (The Hundred Visions, Shrouded Strike).

Weapon Set 2: Kitchen Stove (Thunderous Report, Everything and Anything) single wielded.

Weapon Set 3: Monastic trained Fists.

Head: Whitewitch Mask.

Neck: Charm of Bones.

Chest: Pale Hide (Ghost in White, Dread Howl).

Cape: Ajamuut’s Stalking Cloak.

Gloves: Gauntlets of Accuracy.

Rings: Kuaru’s Prize, Ring of the Marksman.

Boots: Footprints of Ahu Taka.

Belt: Girdle of Eoten Constitution.

Pet: Harley.

 

 

-----STRATEGIES------

 

 

I’ll just outline a few simple example situations but there are so many fun combos to create and you can mix depending on the situation and the resources you have left (I always start with Weapon Set 1):

Melee Style: Lure with Dazzling Lights, get close in stealth, combat starts, cast Repulsive Visage to Terrify everyone, Switch to Fists, Use Gambit as much as you want (you have 11 Guile :)), reapply Repulsive Visage, Gambit ad nauseam and other Rogue attacks or autoattacks. Can also use Dread Howl. Works surprisingly well!

Mage Style: Lure with Dazzling Lights, Gaze of the Adragan, 2 or 3 Freezing Rakes, mix and match with Wall of Many Colors and Thunderous Report for fun. Dread Howl can help if survivors get aggressive. (EDIT: one Freezing Rake can do about 300 DMG per target on a Crit, on average definitely in the 200s).

Rogue Style: Lure with Dazzling Lights, Fire AoE with Vanishing Strike from stealth > combat starts, all enemies are stunned and you’re invisible. Follow up with AoE Gouging Strike (you have reloaded instantly the shot from stealth), Pernicious Cloud, Smoke Veil. From there, you can try to add an Arterial Strike + Smoke Veil or simply just retreat to a safe location and wait it out. Won't be long :).

Weird/Wael Style: Lure with Dazzling Lights, Gaze of the Adragan, Wall of Many Colors to hit all enemies, see what happens then and what is best to apply next. :)

 

 

-----THE END------

 

 

That’s it. Not the strongest Solo build but really fun to play, especially if the unique features of the Trickster subclass have triggered your curiosity. I also think it would be an absolute monster in a party. Let me know if you have any comment or question!

Edited by Not So Clever Hound
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This looks really interesting, Not So Clever Hound. Thanks for sharing this. I think I might try this in a party, as it sounds like it would be a lot of fun. I had a few questions regarding the ability choices. First, I see you recommend backstab. Is this for backstabbing with MuT powered fists? Also, while Smoke Veil is a no brainer, I was wondering if you could say something about your reasoning for investing in the upgrades. Also, out of curiosity, how did this build fare against the megabosses?

Edited by dgray62
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1 hour ago, dgray62 said:

This looks really interesting, Not So Clever Hound. Thanks for sharing this. I think I might try this in a party, as it sounds like it would be a lot of fun. I had a few questions regarding the ability choices. First, I see you recommend backstab. Is this for backstabbing with MuT powered fists? Also, while Smoke Veil is a no brainer, I was wondering if you could say something about your reasoning for investing in the upgrades. Also, out of curiosity, how did this build fare against the megabosses?

Thanks!

Backstab: useful with MuT when using Vanishing Strike + Melee rampage on certain very dangerous enemies with lots of health (e.g. Splintered Reef's Fampyr's). It just gives a huge spike in damage when it matters. The DPS is impressive and you're safe because of VS so you can surgically take out those problematic customers and reset to take out their posse with less pressure.

Smoke Veil and Upgrades: Smoke Veil is a staples of any Solo Rogue, including this one. Pernicious Cloud is very strong in certain fights because our high PL and stats makes the DoT pretty good, its radius is huge, and it enables Deathblows/lowers Deflection.

MegaBosses: I did Doru and Belranga Rogue-Style (Gouging Strike) to get the mythical stones. You can totally take Auranic, I haven't done it (yet) but it is totally viable for it. I wouldn't risk Hauani. (EDIT: I mean of course with a Rogue and SoF you can take Hauani, its entire blob family and the whole of Deadfire without a scratch - but without SoF, a Blood Mage or a Cipher I don't want to try it anymore).

Edited by Not So Clever Hound
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Thanks! I suppose that pernicious cloud is best for a solo run. I understand that it is not party friendly. MuT punches with backstab and VS sounds like fun. I'll have to try it! Did you ever use Tuotillo's Palm with it for any of the harder fights? I guess it's not necessary for a solo run when you can disappear with smoke cloud or VS. Also, did you mainly use Gambit with the Hand Mortar, to maximize your chance of getting back guile?

Edited by dgray62
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16 minutes ago, dgray62 said:

Thanks! I suppose that pernicious cloud is best for a solo run. I understand that it is not party friendly. MuT punches with backstab and VS sounds like fun. I'll have to try it! Did you ever use Tuotillo's Palm with it for any of the harder fights? I guess it's not necessary for a solo run when you can disappear with smoke cloud or VS. Also, did you mainly use Gambit with the Hand Mortar, to maximize your chance of getting back guile?

You make a great point about Pernicious Cloud - probably more solo friendly, fortunately it is definitely not crucial.

I didn't use Tuotilo's Palm on this build. When I switch to fists, it's either because I'm invisible with VS or because enemies are Terrified/Petrified so I'm just looking for DPS ;) 

Gambit is most helpful to me with Fists + Repulsive Visage Combo. I've used a lot the Mortar but mostly to apply status effects in AoE. That being said, I think it's a good idea too. Gambit + Mortars would be best on a SC Streetfighter I think. Vanishing Strike with Powder Burns, Gambit like crazy... rinse, repeat. The only issue is to have all enemies in a small area and to have a large enough AoE radius.

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8 hours ago, dgray62 said:

One more question...... am I right in assuming you used Abraham as your pet, for the build's main source of healing as well as recovery time reduction?

As a pet I mostly used Harley for the ranged bonuses (DMG bonus also applies to spells) but depending on the situation Frau Nils or Ooblit are also great.

For a well-rounded pet with relevant bonuses no matter the situation/ play style, Abraham is a very solid idea indeed (as it often is).

Edited by Not So Clever Hound
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neat setup. i always overfixate on being able to MC a trickster for glass cannon setups, so seeing one that abuses the high-level power spamming is neat. also i love the use of monastic unarmed training - a quirky passive that makes for some unique takes and i like seeing people find uses for it.

one question though, under permabuffs you have:

On 6/16/2021 at 11:27 AM, Not So Clever Hound said:

Luminous Adra Potion

is there a trick to getting this outside of combat and persisting it? sorry if you mentioned how already and i missed it.

 

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Thelee, if you use the No Forced Rests mod, as Not So Clever Hound does, then the bonuses that only last for one rest, including the Luminous Adra Potion, become permanent. You can achieve the same effect without the mod by metagaming to avoid the forced rests, but this mod makes this much easier and stress free. BTW, I have been trying this build and it is definitely fun. It's squishy at first, but once you hit level 5 and get Ryngrim's Repulsive Visage it becomes much sturdier due to much better CC. Unfortunately, this is typically just after the arena battle when solo!

Edited by dgray62
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On 6/19/2021 at 3:14 PM, Boeroer said:

Potions usually don't last until resting though. Luminous Adra Potion does - so maybe the naming was just causing confusion. 

this is actually my bad, i confused luminous adra potion with the potion of ascension, the latter of which has no duration but doesn't last past combat.

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29 minutes ago, thelee said:

this is actually my bad, i confused luminous adra potion with the potion of ascension, the latter of which has no duration but doesn't last past combat.

To your point though, Potion of Ascension is particularly nice for this build when heavily using Monastic Unarmed Training, to cobble together the last PL necessary to get Mythic Fists. Similar to your Punchy Puncher build in that regard, but with Vanishing Strike + Gambit + Backstab on top :).

Edited by Not So Clever Hound
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2 hours ago, dgray62 said:

Potion of Ascension would get you up to innate PL 12, right, which I believe would get you post mythic fists?

Without the Potion, I'm at generic PL11 (9 +1 Prestige +1 Hot Razor Skewers, not counting Illusion-specific +3PL from Whitewitch Mask and Eye of Wael). With the Potion I get to generic PL13 (I checked my numbers just now, potion does stack properly the +2 PL).

That gives me MUT Fists with: +65% DMG, +18 ACC, +5 PEN. So it's not post-Mythic I think (?), it's near-Mythic - I'm just missing +10% DMG increase vs. a Mythic-grade weapon. If I was a Monk, I guess that would give post-Mythic Fists, but MUT gives an upgrade every "buggy" 3PL I think from what @thelee explained which seems to line up with my toon.

Edited by Not So Clever Hound
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By the way since I was testing I also tried Freezing Rake with Eye of Wael + Sun & Moon + Potion of Ascension at night. That's a total of PL18 on Illusion+Frost. The tooltip gives a range of 177-222 Freeze DMG, ACC of 134, PEN of 13 and a huge AoE on my end-game toon. Of course these are not the craziest numbers that one can get in the game with the strongest powerbuilds, but in practice that's potentially a lot of Crits in the 300+ DMG Range, plus the Weakened affliction component shaving off 25% of Health. On anything weak to Freeze DMG, it's lethal.

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