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Hello.

I'm going to play on "path of the dammed" difficulty (I never did it before).
I practically finish assembling party, but there are some questions (the general is: "must I make solid-roles characters, or 'half tank-damager, half tank-support ...' good enough to play?").

Requirements : comfortable gameplay (of course party have to be powerful enough),  flexible tactics (including long \ short battles), readiness to characters sudden deaths.
Comfortable gameplay means, that vast majority of battles have to be passed with self-written AI scripts, and a little manual control: party positioning, and maybe wizard crowd control/killing, assassin kill mages in enemies backline, so it means "minimum manual-control demanding character classes", such as rogues.

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So I prepare  two similar parties (I hope that general idea is clear for experienced players).
Solid specialized party looks more effective in the linear battle, on the other hand it looks more vulnerable to loosing high-specialized characters, in case of ambush for example. So they are:

Solid-roles party:
 - 1. tank: Paladin-chanter (troubadour)
 - 2. support: Paladin-priest;
 - 3. casters-assassin: Fighter-monk / monk-barbarian / rogue-monk / rogue-fighter.
 - 4. range-striker: Cipher-ranger.
 - 5. Wizard-rogue (this is only character I am confident in)

Mixed-roles party:
 - 1. Tank-damager: Paladin-fighter (of paladin-rogue: if riposte + quarterstaff-modal works).
 - 2. Support-damager: Monk-chanter(skald) + sun and moon + single weapon + multiple crits;
 - 3. casters-assassin: Fighter-monk / monk-barbarian / rogue-monk / rogue-fighter.
 - 4. range-damager: monk-priest(Berath).
 - 5. Wizard-rogue (this is only character I am confident in).
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So questions are:
1. The general question is: is mixed-roles characters work good enough to play? Or I must make solid-roles characters?
2. Criticize both parties (providing above requirements), is any of them viable? Which of them better for comfortable paying?

== If both parties "approximately viable", I have more specialized questions about them
== Honestly I like second party more, but I have doubts about practically any of it characters:

3. "casters-assassin: Fighter-monk / monk-barbarian / rogue-monk / rogue-fighter" - which of this characters better for this role (looks line monk-barbarian)? Providing, that in battles with "boss" it have to strike boss (looks, like fighter-monk)?

4. Chanter(skald) + monk  + sun-and-mood - is it viable character? How will it cast his spells, providing "one handed weapon" specialization?

5. Paladin-Fighter or Paladin-rogue (riposte + quarterstaff - is it viable "tank-damager"? If "yes viable", which of them better, providing no manual control?

6. Is "Priest(berath) + monk" - good striker (it good crowd killer, but striker)? Will it have enough time to strike in 2-nd party?

Edited by Konst
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2 hours ago, Konst said:

Comfortable gameplay means, that vast majority of battles have to be passed with self-written AI scripts, and a little manual control: party positioning, and maybe wizard crowd control/killing, assassin kill mages in enemies backline, so it means "minimum manual-control demanding character classes", such as rogues.

if this is what you expect for path of the damned (esp if incl upscaling), you're in for an extremely rough ride

 

even the extremely powerful builds are likely going to be something you have to manage manually a lot to pull off instead of hoping AI scripts will take care of it for you, at least until very late game (where certain spells/abilities or items become available).

Edited by thelee
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2 hours ago, Konst said:

2. Criticize both parties (providing above requirements), is any of them viable? Which of them better for comfortable paying?

while keeping my earlier post in mind, having a herald in your party will go a long way into smoothing out PotD difficulty.

i would not even consider it a "solid role" build, because you can easily make a herald that does a lot of summoning, which is not very tanky, but the summons you generate can be very tanky themselves.

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A well built darcozzi/troubadour is basically immortal and can also rez fallen companions if needed. I would add to your party a forbidden fist monk who is also nearly immortal and by the end can beat any encounter by himself. An ascendant/ghostheart with Frostseeker is also great and can clear the field very fast with his bow/spells and later can provide Brilliant to the entire party. An assassin/bloodmage is also very powerful and once he obtains the invisibility spell can also solve encounter by himself. A devoted/trickster with sabres is a very solid damage dealer and can trigger disengagement attacks with Ryngrim's Repulsive Visage. Another alternative is a soulblade/trickster who can deal high single target dps with Sun and Moon + Tuotilo's Palm and also great AoE damage from the back of your tanks with Whispers of the Endless Paths (and he can also buff your other cipher).

Anyway all these characters, if well built, don't require end game items to be strong and can roll over most encounters just on AI. The only one who requires more micro is the bloodmage/assassin.

Edited by Kaylon
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2 hours ago, thelee said:

if this is what you expect for path of the damned (esp if incl upscaling), you're in for an extremely rough ride

 

even the extremely powerful builds are likely going to be something you have to manage manually a lot to pull off instead of hoping AI scripts will take care of it for you, at least until very late game (where certain spells/abilities or items become available).

Thank you.
In this case I prefer to change difficulty to veteran (honestly I'm not ready to accept game challenge now).

And I wonder if you could answer the same questions in case of "veteran" difficalty?
To criticize both parties, which of them more viable (if any), and some of more special questions about their characters.

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32 minutes ago, Kaylon said:

Anyway all these characters, if well built, don't require end game items to be strong and can roll over most encounters just on AI. The only one who requires more micro is the bloodmage/assassin.

Thank you.
You commented first party with "solid-role characters", and I'm wondering if that means, the second party with "mixed-roles characters" weak and unsuitable?

P.S.
If play PoE2 Deadfire on difficulty "veteran" (as I supposing to do after previous answer) which of parties is better for comfortable and flexible game?

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Just now, Konst said:

And I wonder if you could answer the same questions in case of "veteran" difficalty?

i think veteran would be a smoother experience. the big thing is that, in addition to buffing enemies further, PotD also changes the mix of enemies in an encounter, which can be significantly harder than simple adjustments to stats.

 

both of the parties should be viable, though i would lean towards the "solid roles" party as a fire-and-forget approach (herald and paladins in general are pretty tanky and easy to AI script)

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4 hours ago, thelee said:

i think veteran would be a smoother experience. the big thing is that, in addition to buffing enemies further, PotD also changes the mix of enemies in an encounter, which can be significantly harder than simple adjustments to stats.

Thelee is right, and that will be more fun to explore some classes via companions or hired adventurers, with some challenge but not more than. 

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12 hours ago, Constentin Lévine said:

Thelee is right, and that will be more fun to explore some classes via companions or hired adventurers, with some challenge but not more than. 

Thank you for very true proposition: I want explore new classes (and their interaction), with both convenience and high game difficulty. And want to examine interaction between characters (just as not played yet builds).

And I still wondering some issues about mixed-role party:

1. Paladin-X who is tank-damager. Is it viable? And which build better in particular:
 - Paladin-Fighter (supposedly Capana Tage + Tuotillo's palm)?
 - Paladin-Rogue riposte (wepon + shield?  or quarterstaff modal? or dagger(modal) + sabre)?

2. Monk-Chanter(skald) + sun and moon? Can it beat in total profit Paladin-Chanter(troubadour).
It's looks like Skald will have match more phrases, but how Skald would cast invocations standing in frontline without shield?

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3 hours ago, Konst said:

2. Monk-Chanter(skald) + sun and moon? Can it beat in total profit Paladin-Chanter(troubadour).
It's looks like Skald will have match more phrases, but how Skald would cast invocations standing in frontline without shield?

i don't understand how shields are relevant? are you talking about protecting yourself from attacks while trying to use invocations? i don't think that's important to worry about - the more important is having concentration so you don't get interrupted. But even then, many (possibly even most) invocations cast very very quickly, so typically I don't have problems with front-line chanters getting their invocations off.

As for troubadour vs skald, generally troubadours are able to generate phrases better, skalds mostly profit from being able to spam lower-level offensive invocations faster while still having linger. But possibly with a monk you might be able to generate tons of phrases since there's lots of melee crit/accuracy synergy.

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On 3/17/2022 at 2:21 PM, Konst said:

Thank you for very true proposition: I want explore new classes (and their interaction), with both convenience and high game difficulty. And want to examine interaction between characters (just as not played yet builds).

And I still wondering some issues about mixed-role party:

1. Paladin-X who is tank-damager. Is it viable? And which build better in particular:
 - Paladin-Fighter (supposedly Capana Tage + Tuotillo's palm)?
 - Paladin-Rogue riposte (wepon + shield?  or quarterstaff modal? or dagger(modal) + sabre)?
 

Paladin-Rogue (Trickster), by far.

Probably shield + weapon. Even two-handed Whisper of the Endless Paths is an option, particularly against crowds of weaker mobs.

Although, Paladin without some item support is not the best in traditional tanking due to limited engagement slots.

 

IMO the correct answer is Fighter-Trickster.

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Thanks for all for your advice.

And now I have some intermediate results in both solid(mixed)-roles parties (preconditions are: veteran difficulty, viability, mighty enough, convenient play) and another question.

1. Both parties are viable, and mighty enough.
Solid-roles party is more convenient and more powerful.
Death, and even sadly sudden death of half-tank is possible (in mixed-roles party), and then you have to pay many-many time, attention and manual-control for win the battle.

2. Chanter "Her revenge...." invocation - is an awesome spell.
Chanter-paladin (I think and chanter-priest and chanter-druid(lifegiver) too), due to it can simultaneously tank, support and deal as match croud-damage as "primary melee fighter".

3. So another question (about chanter-troubadour and another subclasses):
Preconditions: I think "Her revenge..." is the best chanter ability. One level of efficiency above any other. Better then other invocations, and more profitable then summoning, they are hard to comparison,  but chanter summons rather weak and only their value - is infinite amount of chanter invocations.
Intermediate implication:  It looks like most-loveliest-chanter-subclass troubadour have too high penalty:
 - no subclass: "Her revenge..." cost = 3 phrases
 - troubadour: "Her revenge..." cost = 4 phrases
 - skald: "Her revenge..." cost  = 2 phrases.
So for example: skald and troubadour both cat cast "Her revenge..." every 12 seconds, but troubadour have to have not-prolonged phrases, and skald cat score crit and gain another.

Now I'm using skald, with two weapon complects:
 - Sasha's singing skimitar - in case it isn't focused and target of crits (brigantine without shield enough tough in this case)
 - sun and moon + shield - in case of high-accuracy enemy.
It looks like this skald more valuable (as tank, support and croud-damager simalteniously) than troubadour.

So the question is: criticize above reasoning.
I know troubadour - is the loveliest subclass of chanter on this forum. But why? Both precondition and intermediate-implications  looks reasonable for me now.
 

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1 hour ago, Konst said:

So the question is: criticize above reasoning.
I know troubadour - is the loveliest subclass of chanter on this forum. But why? Both precondition and intermediate-implications  looks reasonable for me now.

Troubadour is really noticeable as interrupting build, because of the modal : while energized, every crit included chant cause an interrupt, so a possibility every 3 s in the area without any thing to do. This especially true with the chant Thick Grew which remove all the layers of concentration that prevent interrupt.

Some other builds are using the Troubadour modal, the other time Boeroer found a nice way to constantly apply the debuffs from chants : enable the modal after the phrase hit refresh the debuff to the initial duration each new phrase hit (from 6s + linger, the first debuff is refreshed to 6s+linger each 3s ( or 6s when 2 phrases are alternatively chanted).

Skald have a nice passive, sun and moon is useful for maximise the phrase chance gain. Her Revenge is a fast spell, it is not a problem to cast in melee, especially with a good recovery time malus. 

 

 

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6 hours ago, Constentin Lévine said:

Troubadour is really noticeable as interrupting build, because of the modal : while energized, every crit included chant cause an interrupt, so a possibility every 3 s in the area without any thing to do. This especially true with the chant Thick Grew which remove all the layers of concentration that prevent interrupt.

another thing is that the "downside" of losing linger when brisk recitation is on, is not always a downside. some examples:

  • if you have a song that's just "thick grew their tongues" or whatever. the duration doesn't really matter, because as soon as the debuff is applied to enemies, they lose all their concentration. not many enemies generate new concentrate very frequently so the actual debuff doesn't matter. so if you just have a song with this one song on it, you double your chances of applying the debuff over the same time period. (also i think debuffs still have a duration, i forget)
  • there's a chant that gives you a 10hp shield. it only gets refreshed when the song re-applies. so similar to the above, having a song with just this and brisk recitation on means you double your shield's effectiveness. (in fact, one of the early times I fought Huane O Whe, I just had this song on w/ brisk recitation, and it perfectly counteracted the Symbiote debuff that deals ~9.6 raw damage/tick)
  • the song that summons a skeleton completely ignores linger mechanics. so you just double the amount of skeleton cannon fodder you have on the battlefield.
  • all the resistance chants immediately downgrade all applicable afflictions when refreshed. so with brisk recitation on, you can rapidly clear away afflictions without much concern.

for this reason, troubadour is an easy chanter to pick, whereas all the other ones require a bit more thought to use (and there's almost no reason to want to pick a vanilla chanter).

 

Edited by thelee
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Also: if you apply effects with durations on enemies like Many Nights or Soft Winds etc. - and only then switch to Brisk Recitation, the effect on the enemy gets refreshed to the original duration with every new hit (the game the doesn't remove the linger time when the effect is already applied) and thus won't run out. So it can be very benefical to first apply effects without Brisk Recitation and then switch it on as soon as enough enemies are affected. It's micro-intense so it's only really worth in long fights with durable enemies imo, but then it's pretty cool.

 

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Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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I agree that troubadour is great due to its flexibility, and particularly if you are aiming for interrupts. Skald is great too if you want to be engaged in melee. In this case, Her Revenge and/or the Killers Froze Stiff are fantastic, since they are fast casts and only cost two phrases for skalds. As for skald weapons, you might consider having SSS and a shield in one weapon set, to use for an initial empowered invocation and also to protect against opening volleys. Then you could switch to Sun & Moon in the main hand only in the other weapon set, for the extra ACC to help you crit more often. This is particularly great for cantors with swift flurry/heartbeat drumming, as you'll often get crit cascades that can do much more damage than you would otherwise expect with Sun & Moon.

Edited by dgray62
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On 3/16/2022 at 10:59 AM, thelee said:

if this is what you expect for path of the damned (esp if incl upscaling), you're in for an extremely rough ride

 

even the extremely powerful builds are likely going to be something you have to manage manually a lot to pull off instead of hoping AI scripts will take care of it for you, at least until very late game (where certain spells/abilities or items become available).

Perhaps a bit late, but I think it's worth pointing out that it's definitely possible to have an entire party that requires very minimal management with scripts set up. e.g.

Bellower Watcher (just empower Eld Nary/Her Tears Fell Like Rain)

Scout Maia (use the Red Hand, spam Crippling Strike)

Swashbuckler Eder (just keep your self buffs up and occasionally use Crippling Strike)

Cipher Ydwin/Serafen  (use Borrowed Instincts whenever it's down and just hit stuff. Since Cipher spells are point and click it's not very tedious to cast manually)

Herald Pallegina (start every fight with buffing invocations and refresh whenever they expire. Occasionally heal, revive or suppress debuffs as needed, which can all be scripted)

 

It's worth noting that there's a useful mod on Nexus which adds more AI conditions for abilities that aren't inspirations/afflictions. So you can have your characters scripted to reuse things like Refreshing Defense whenever they expire even if the duration is uncertain.

 

It's really just a matter of avoiding the more fiddly classes like Wizard/Druid/Priest etc.

Edited by NotDumbEnough
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On 3/25/2022 at 8:27 PM, NotDumbEnough said:

Perhaps a bit late, but I think it's worth pointing out that it's definitely possible to have an entire party that requires very minimal management with scripts set up. e.g.

Bellower Watcher (just empower Eld Nary/Her Tears Fell Like Rain)

Scout Maia (use the Red Hand, spam Crippling Strike)

Swashbuckler Eder (just keep your self buffs up and occasionally use Crippling Strike)

Cipher Ydwin/Serafen  (use Borrowed Instincts whenever it's down and just hit stuff. Since Cipher spells are point and click it's not very tedious to cast manually)

Herald Pallegina (start every fight with buffing invocations and refresh whenever they expire. Occasionally heal, revive or suppress debuffs as needed, which can all be scripted)

Yeah I think it's a very effective setup. For the Watcher I would personally go with a Forbidden Fist/Troubadour which is also easy to script and more flexible while being party friendly. It can totally go on autopilot except for a few spots - hell, it can solo the game by mostly letting the AI do its thing.

Not very original but I had written one up here:

 

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