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So I've tried several builds of chanters and they all take 18 seconds to acquire 3 chant tokens so they can cast their invocation.  18 SECONDS!  Most battles don't last 18 seconds.  Whats the point?  Why even have invocations a part of their class?  I love the idea behind the chanter and their buffs, but that whole reward level of their class seems to go unused.  In order to use the higher level inocations its going to require 24-30 seconds.  You can't be serious.

 

Anyone who has played a high level chanter able to give me some hope on why even bother?

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The point is that chanters are specifically best in long lasting fights, and have constant passive buffs that let them be useful in all situations. Where basically every other class is going to use their per-encounter abilities very quickly in fights and will reach their peak usefulness in a quick period of time, chanters have a slower build up but will remain at peak usefulness as they are able to keep using chants and invocations throughout a battle.

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What difficulty are you on? It is an issue for easy and normal, but on hard I use invocations fair bit. I do think they need to be tweaked though. it takes far too long for some of the effects to be worthwhile. with some tuning I think having the chant requirement of each level reduced by one could help.

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On hard I've been able to use my chanter's invocations a number of times (the 3 skeleton summon, and the grub worms from a dead body one), and I'm only up to the Gilded Vale at this point. I kind of like the feel of wanting the Chanter to hurry up as he climbs closer and closer to being able to use an invocation. It creates a certain intensity to the battle. :) 

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I completely agree - Chanter's invocations are practically irrelevant in most fights because they end before you have enough chants to even fire one off.

 

Is it bad design? Well... At least they don't have "per rest" restrictions.

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What difficulty are you on? It is an issue for easy and normal, but on hard I use invocations fair bit. I do think they need to be tweaked though. it takes far too long for some of the effects to be worthwhile. with some tuning I think having the chant requirement of each level reduced by one could help.

I'm on hard, and I just picked up Kana, did the dungeon level and just cleared the crossroads.   And, honestly... I'm kicking him out, which feels ironic since he's has the best attribute spread of any of the companions.   The low level phrases have a negligible effect (and the higher level phrases are longer, which means you get to use even fewer invocations), and I've used invocations exactly twice.  Both times against the large groups of pwgra and forest trolls in the crossroads.  And in both cases, if I'd had more damage dealers (particularly a druid or a better wizard), those fights wouldn't have lasted long enough to bother with invocations. 

 

Most combats are just an exercise in firing squad, paralyze & interdiction, fire again, paralyze as needed +clean up.  Maybe open with an AoE effect from Aloth if the fight looks particularly big.   But if I wasn't carrying half the companions (and instead had useful party members), I could just burn the encounters down and not care. 

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What difficulty are you on? It is an issue for easy and normal, but on hard I use invocations fair bit. I do think they need to be tweaked though. it takes far too long for some of the effects to be worthwhile. with some tuning I think having the chant requirement of each level reduced by one could help.

 

I'm on hard difficulty.

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Ok, sorry I was at work.  Just sat down to play, and figured I would respond here first.  

 

The Chanter isn't a face melter class... It's support.  That is its strength.  If you want to play the game in a way that is "burn things down as fast a possible" the Chanter is of marginal value.  To compare it to the Wizard or Druid is silly.  Those classes don't have a constant buff/debuff cycle rolling, and they can't debuff/buff while attacking.  A Chanters Chants are active while moving, attacking (melee or ranged), while casting scrolls, while drinking potions, while using special abilities (from items and leveling up in game), etc.  The only thing that interrupts the Chants are Invocations.  Wizards, Priests, and Druids must stop attacking/reloading/etc to cast a buff/debuff.  

 

My Chanter is only 50% the damage of Aloth IIRC.  However, I am using him for buffs, debuffs, casting from scrolls, and he is my primary tank.  He has 77ish DR, IIRC.  A pure battlecaster, and he is carrying my team.  Although, sometimes Durance has to hit him with a heal or a buff.  

 

I use my chanter so I don't run Aloth and Durance out of spells too quickly.  I use their per encounter abilities, and then IF I need them to do something I keep it minimal.  Why? Because my Chanter takes very low damage in most fights.  If I get low on health and have excess spells then I begin using those spells to end fights more quickly.  I rest very rarely. This means that fights take longer though, and that isn't for everyone.  I am playing this way because I want to savor my first play through.  I understand that it may not be to other's taste.  

 

I won't disagree that Chanters are a bit slow to build for the combat at present.  There are a few things that could be done to help.  

 

1)  Not related to Chant speed, but ... They overnerfed Thrice She was Wronged.  It is useless, and was a go to Invocation before.  The other damage level 1 Invocations are situational.  One has a Push back (I might want to keep those enemies clustered around me) and the other requires enemy corpses on the ground.  

 

2)  The dead zone after an Invocation could go away, and have no bearing on combat.  Although this doesn't help initial build to X chants... it helps with follow ups.  

 

3)  Currently, If you have 4 Chants built up, and use a level 1 Invocation, then you go back to zero (even if 4-3=1).  This is unnecessary.  Once again it helps with follow ups. 

 

4)  I could possibly see lowing the Chant requirement by 1, but that might make them a bit overtuned.  . 

 

5)  Also, not related to Chant speed, but allowing a Chanter to trade in Phrases and Invocations at level up like the Bards and Sorcs in NWN2 would be awesome.  EG - Skeletons become useless, but now I have level 2 invocations, so I switch Skeletons for another level 1 and pick up a level 2 summon.  

 

Also, I won't disagree over how little the level 1 Phrases effect things.  I am using Aloth's high perception and Blasts along with my Chanter's -10 Concentration and his high perception to slow enemy attacks via interrupts.  Is it weaker than just using a class that can do boat loads of damage?  Absolutely, but for a first playthrough it is enjoyable.  I also have a Barbarian with a 2 hander and decent Perc.  

 

The Barbarian drops like a rock though.  :/

 

Anyway, the chanter is a PoE version of the Bard.  Bards weren't really mega damage dealers.  They were Jack of all Trades.  The Chanter fits that bill.  They can be pretty good as an arcane archer, or a melee DPS, or a tank.  However, they will never be as good as a Rogue/Cipher (maybe even a ranger) Archer, a Barbarian/Rogue in melee, or a fighter/Paladin built for tanking.  I will say they make a great tank though.  

 

I do wish Obsidian had given Chanters a talent for using a single level 1 or 2 spell from the game (Wizard).  Let them have 3 casts a day, or 1 per encounter.  It would add to the Chanters versatility while keeping them from being better than the Wizard as a caster.  Give the Talent a Lore requirement, and it makes sense.    

@PugPug - No you cannot speed it up.  Also, your chant book sets up the "twist mechanic".  So it is done automatically.  

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My Chanter on Paths of the Damned difficulty uses an invocation in about 1/3 of the fights. On shorter fights, he barely does anything other than the relatively minimal buff/debuff/heal that comes from his chanting. On longer fights, though, his skeletons make it easy to get flanking bonuses, his ghost helps bring down hard targets, and he never ever stops being useful. Only a cipher can stay at peak utility throughout multiple battles like a chanter. The only real thing that needs changing is that some of the phrases and invocations are useless, and you can't get rid of them in any way. I'd buff the worthless ones, and allow swapping phrases and invocations out on level up.

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I don't think anyone here is complaining that the chanter isn't a facemelter as you put it.  The complaint is, that for many people, the chanter rarely gets to use half of his class abilities because the ramp up time is astronomical.  Thats the issue.  I'm not even complaining about their tier one chants being weak.  I'm ok with that.

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In trial of iron Hard run I'd say 90% of the battles in Act 1 are over before Kana gets to 3. The 10% that last longer are pretty much exclusively when facing packs of Shadows/Phantoms. Battles on Hard just seem way to fast and in general a bit too easy for my taste. This is probably partly due to my min/maxed Barb destroying everything though many of smaller encounters are over by time he casts frenzy and maybe 1-2 attacks in. 

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The fact that the higher level phrases have a longer duration is kind of a bummer.
I'm rolling a tankchanter now and 12 seconds to build 3 tokens feels fine for me, but with the third level phrases it takes twice the time (24 seconds) to build 3 tokens?
I have Kana Rua in my party and he had a 6 second chant, while my character used 4 second chants. The difference between waiting 12 or 18 seconds to summon a phantom is really noticable, even for me.

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@Skol - I misread Voss's post. I thought he was saying that replacing the Chanter with a Wizard/Druid made the class pointless. That is my mistake. I should have read his post more carefully. In my defense I was up all the night before playing, and only got 3 hours sleep.

 

I was thinking: level 2 Phrases take 6 seconds to cast and linger for 2 I believe. They could make it 4 second cast and a 4 second linger. Although that means the linger will completely overlap the next phrase. They could also let level 2 phrases build 1.5 Chants, and adjust level 3 phrases/chants accordingly. It doesn't make sense that Invocations cost more to cast at higher level, and phrases build Chants slower. One or the other is fine, but both is a bit much. A class should become more efficient as is levels, not less.

 

I guess they want to let you play in a different ways. You can use level 1 phrases and use invocations more, or you can use level 2 or 3 phrases and use invocations less. It is a bit unintuitive though.

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I have not really tested in game but I do not exactly understand the mechanics of phrases and chants.

 

Each phrase has a duration and a linger time.  Level 1 phrases are 4 second duration with a 2 second linger.  So, if I put two level 1 phrases into a chant and combat starts...are both buffs up all the time or is it like this:

 

Start of combat: 0seconds in First Phrase active

 

4s First Phrase still active, Second Phrase activates

 

6s First Phrase worn off (4s duration+2s Linger), Second Phrase still active

 

8s First Phrase starts again, Second Phrase still active

 

10s Second Phrase wears off, First Phrase starts again

 

etc.

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@Skol - I misread Voss's post. I thought he was saying that replacing the Chanter with a Wizard/Druid made the class pointless. That is my mistake. I should have read his post more carefully. In my defense I was up all the night before playing, and only got 3 hours sleep.

 

I was thinking: level 2 Phrases take 6 seconds to cast and linger for 2 I believe. They could make it 4 second cast and a 4 second linger. Although that means the linger will completely overlap the next phrase. They could also let level 2 phrases build 1.5 Chants, and adjust level 3 phrases/chants accordingly. It doesn't make sense that Invocations cost more to cast at higher level, and phrases build Chants slower. One or the other is fine, but both is a bit much. A class should become more efficient as is levels, not less.

 

I guess they want to let you play in a different ways. You can use level 1 phrases and use invocations more, or you can use level 2 or 3 phrases and use invocations less. It is a bit unintuitive though.

 

I definitely think they should give them something to accelerate their access to their invocations.  Even ciphers start with at least some points so they can fire something off before having to build more with attacks.  Perhaps a talent that you can use once per encounter that can give you 3 chant points or a talent that accelerates your acruel rate would go a long way.

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Yes, but Intellect increases the duration so at 17 intellect (+35%) they linger long enough that you can keep 2 phrases active at all times.

Has this been working for you in game?

 

I haven't noticed an increase with 18 int so far.

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