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I tested it @ level 10 vs. Sky Dragon, not even on PotD difficulty just using my first game's save before final battles.

 

It's a waste. The drain spells are still good of course but you get into melee and you lose.

 

The accuracy isn't high enough to have 100% reliable build up and I don't think Tactical Meld and Borrowed Instinct stack anyway. I was still getting lots of misses. Granted, it's a dragon fight, but all that set-up isn't really necessary on small fights anyway.

 

I managed to finally get all of the borrowing spells off, waded into melee, got crit by fire breat and KOed. Deflection doesn't give you reflex and you don't have a shield and this build suggested low per/dex to boot. Getting crit by a breath attack and one shot didn't honestly surprise me at all.

 

I think you're still better of going ranged w/cipher. You can get high accuracy and just Arbalest things, and potentially prone them with crits which is nice.

 

 

This in no way some kind of juggernaut build.

Edited by Odd Hermit
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... like it. I edge away from weird, unstable-looking builds like these, but this is, I dunno, ugly-cute.

 

I'll give it a shot - I like having Grieving Mother in the party, but she feels redundant with a conventional Cipher along.

 

firearms are mostly limited by reload time, which doesn't depend on Dex

Not true. Dex does shorten reload time.

 

That said, Dex really doesn't matter much for the normal fire-and-forget approach, so there's that.

 

Yeah, maybe. I usually switch to melee or run away after the 1st shot. Still often does tons of damage though. And fullplate penalty is surely negligible for firearms in any case. My build is not 3 dex and a moon godlike btw, with some different talent picks, but the general idea of fullplate cipher with retaliation still applies.

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I tested it @ level 10 vs. Sky Dragon, not even on PotD difficulty just using my first game's save before final battles.

 

It's a waste. The drain spells are still good of course but you get into melee and you lose.

 

The accuracy isn't high enough to have 100% reliable build up and I don't think Tactical Meld and Borrowed Instinct stack anyway. I was still getting lots of misses. Granted, it's a dragon fight, but all that set-up isn't really necessary on small fights anyway.

 

I managed to finally get all of the borrowing spells off, waded into melee, got crit by fire breat and KOed. Deflection doesn't give you reflex and you don't have a shield and this build suggested low per/dex to boot. Getting crit by a breath attack and one shot didn't honestly surprise me at all.

 

I think you're still better of going ranged w/cipher. You can get high accuracy and just Arbalest things, and potentially prone them with crits which is nice.

 

 

This in no way some kind of juggernaut build.

You used wrong tactics for the dragon, what did you expect? Would end the same way for a lot of chars. As I said, it's not the tankiest build ever, it can tank a lot of enemies however. You can switch to ranged if needed an you can still do nasty stuff with your spells. Retaliation tanking is used vs mobs of melee enemies, which are plenty.

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I tested it @ level 10 vs. Sky Dragon, not even on PotD difficulty just using my first game's save before final battles.

 

It's a waste. The drain spells are still good of course but you get into melee and you lose.

 

The accuracy isn't high enough to have 100% reliable build up and I don't think Tactical Meld and Borrowed Instinct stack anyway. I was still getting lots of misses. Granted, it's a dragon fight, but all that set-up isn't really necessary on small fights anyway.

 

I managed to finally get all of the borrowing spells off, waded into melee, got crit by fire breat and KOed. Deflection doesn't give you reflex and you don't have a shield and this build suggested low per/dex to boot. Getting crit by a breath attack and one shot didn't honestly surprise me at all.

 

I think you're still better of going ranged w/cipher. You can get high accuracy and just Arbalest things, and potentially prone them with crits which is nice.

 

 

This in no way some kind of juggernaut build.

You used wrong tactics for the dragon, what did you expect? Would end the same way for a lot of chars. As I said, it's not the tankiest build ever, it can tank a lot of enemies however. You can switch to ranged if needed an you can still do nasty stuff with your spells. Retaliation tanking is used vs mobs of melee enemies, which are plenty.

 

 

OP made it out to be "ultimate" "god-like" and etc. It's not. It doesn't deal that much damage, and it doesn't tank that well. That's my only point. Some of the stat stealing Powers are great, but they don't turn a cipher into something you can call "tanky".

 

Also the set-up necessary to buff this thing up isn't worth the time on most of your average encounters.

 

.

Edited by Odd Hermit
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I tested it @ level 10 vs. Sky Dragon, not even on PotD difficulty just using my first game's save before final battles.

 

It's a waste. The drain spells are still good of course but you get into melee and you lose.

 

The accuracy isn't high enough to have 100% reliable build up and I don't think Tactical Meld and Borrowed Instinct stack anyway. I was still getting lots of misses. Granted, it's a dragon fight, but all that set-up isn't really necessary on small fights anyway.

 

I managed to finally get all of the borrowing spells off, waded into melee, got crit by fire breat and KOed. Deflection doesn't give you reflex and you don't have a shield and this build suggested low per/dex to boot. Getting crit by a breath attack and one shot didn't honestly surprise me at all.

 

I think you're still better of going ranged w/cipher. You can get high accuracy and just Arbalest things, and potentially prone them with crits which is nice.

 

 

This in no way some kind of juggernaut build.

You used wrong tactics for the dragon, what did you expect? Would end the same way for a lot of chars. As I said, it's not the tankiest build ever, it can tank a lot of enemies however. You can switch to ranged if needed an you can still do nasty stuff with your spells. Retaliation tanking is used vs mobs of melee enemies, which are plenty.

 

 

OP made it out to be "ultimate" "god-like" and etc. It's not. It doesn't deal that much damage, and it doesn't tank that well. That's my only point. Some of the stat stealing Powers are great, but they don't turn a cipher into something you can call "tanky".

 

Also the set-up necessary to buff this thing up isn't worth the time on most of your average encounters.

 

.

 

Well. it's good enough to clear PotD solo without crouching past most of the encounters. There are some other builds that can do it as well. 

 

In terms of damage - it retaliates for 140% weapon damage in melee powering up his spells that do really crazy damage (lvl 1 antipathetic field can do like 200 aoe dmg with proper positioning). I would argue on "doesn't do that much damage". It's definitely near the top.

 

In terms of tanking - Cipher has decent deflection and crappy endurance. Moon godlike (not fire like in OPs case, although it's good as well for some cases) fixes the 2nd problem, especially with high might. With DR stealing and buffs cipher can get one of the top DR scores, although it does rely on your spells landing. Borrowed instinct can buff your saves and deflection pretty well to, but again you need to land it. When you land it though, you're pretty close to a tank fighter in terms of defenses (like 10 less or so) Yes, it's not the ultimate tank, but any char can tank if built for it. The point here is not that you tank better than a fighter - you don't. The point is that by tanking you power up your spells like crazy and honestly you need to land like 1 ringleader to end most encounters.

Edited by MadDemiurg
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I tested it @ level 10 vs. Sky Dragon, not even on PotD difficulty just using my first game's save before final battles.

 

It's a waste. The drain spells are still good of course but you get into melee and you lose.

 

The accuracy isn't high enough to have 100% reliable build up and I don't think Tactical Meld and Borrowed Instinct stack anyway. I was still getting lots of misses. Granted, it's a dragon fight, but all that set-up isn't really necessary on small fights anyway.

 

I managed to finally get all of the borrowing spells off, waded into melee, got crit by fire breat and KOed. Deflection doesn't give you reflex and you don't have a shield and this build suggested low per/dex to boot. Getting crit by a breath attack and one shot didn't honestly surprise me at all.

 

I think you're still better of going ranged w/cipher. You can get high accuracy and just Arbalest things, and potentially prone them with crits which is nice.

 

 

This in no way some kind of juggernaut build.

Yes, they stack. And you do it all wrong. No other class can get as much accuracy and DT at the same time. Average reflex doesnt matter because high DT will reduce all that damage. Reflex is the most useless defense stat anyways.

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Yes, they stack. And you do it all wrong. No other class can get as much accuracy and DT at the same time. Average reflex doesnt matter because high DT will reduce all that damage. Reflex is the most useless defense stat anyways.

 

 

High DR doesn't reduce a 100+ fire breath attack enough. 

 

I'm sure you can down groups of your average mooks with it but that's not the real test of a build. Anybody can build a cheesy retaliate+drain tank for that purpose. A rogue is better for skipping the things such a build can't handle as well, if the purpose is solo. This build's reflex saves are too damned dire even with high DRs.

 

This build doesn't add much to a party composition that any old cipher can't already.

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You don't have to stand and wait for the dragon to burn you you know. No one's stopping you from casting disintegrate using tactical meld from safe distance.

 

I think it's a better solo build than rogue actually, I tried both. Shadowing beyond does allow you to escape some unfavorable situations, but stealth and fast legs are enough for the most part. Plus it's not available for early levels and for later levels cipher scales much better in terms of combat power, especially solo.

 

For party you get a decent offtank (which depending on your tactics can be your only tank) that gains tons of focus from being attacked in melee to eliminate both ranged and melee opposition. He also can use some of the more devastating cipher spells like antipathetic field and ectopsychic echo much better than ranged cipher due to positioning. Plus ranged cipher can't really compete with his focus gain in most battles, so he casts much more spells as well. And notion of "melee" and "ranged" cipher is quite blurry since you can switch to blunderbuss too if needed. That been said, I don't run him with min dex (mine has 10), so I'm not sure how that will play out (maybe worse, maybe better, who knows).

 

If you're having problems with reflex, you can take W+S style, you'll still get tons of focus from retaliation. Personally I don't. Also, regardless of your stat split your total saves are the same, and reflex is probably less important, since the other two have plenty of attacks that pretty much instagib you.

 

Really if you don't like it, well, don't use it, but when used properly it's quite devastating.

Edited by MadDemiurg
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Wait wait wait... Does this mean... retaliate + psychovampiric shield = infinite deflection?

 

Never used psychovampiric shield, but if you can spam it with retaliate, this mean you could get infinite deflection bonus???

Edited by DIXI
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MadDemiurge, what build are you using for your solo Cipher?  I've been trying to decide how to go about it; my initial try has been with:

 

Moonlike 18/10/7/18/7/18

 

Weapon Focus

Two Weapon Fighting

Cautious Attack

Biting Whip

Draining Whip

Superior Deflection

 

I haven't gotten very far into the game, so I don't know how it will do.  I figured that since you were further along you might have a better idea of what works.

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Nice build.

 

Ciphers are gonna get nerfed, I would imagine they will look at cutting starting Focus (at the start of the fight I mean) and Focus regen rates.  Some of the spells will get tuned down as well, like Mind Blades already has been.

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For some reason I have 5 points left over? Sorry, I'm new to the game so it might be something stupid I'm not getting. I put skills 18/10/3/3/18/with all points left resolve actually maxes to 18. When I am finished I still have 5 points left over. Where should these go, maybe I did it incorrectly? 

 

 

 

Can someone answer this for me? Should i put those last 5 in dex?

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Maybe i miss something. 14 dt from plate and 10 from body attunement. Where you take last 10 dt?

There are plate armors that give 16 +4 enhanced = 20. Pain block and body attunement +17. Now you have 37

There are also some passive watcher spells that give +DT and +4 from fire godlike. Paladin aura is nice too. There is also one item that give you +50% DT when your endurance drop under 25% so you could achieve even 60+ DT.

Edited by nemesis205bw
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You don't have to stand and wait for the dragon to burn you you know. No one's stopping you from casting disintegrate using tactical meld from safe distance.

 

I think it's a better solo build than rogue actually, I tried both. Shadowing beyond does allow you to escape some unfavorable situations, but stealth and fast legs are enough for the most part. Plus it's not available for early levels and for later levels cipher scales much better in terms of combat power, especially solo.

 

For party you get a decent offtank (which depending on your tactics can be your only tank) that gains tons of focus from being attacked in melee to eliminate both ranged and melee opposition. He also can use some of the more devastating cipher spells like antipathetic field and ectopsychic echo much better than ranged cipher due to positioning. Plus ranged cipher can't really compete with his focus gain in most battles, so he casts much more spells as well. And notion of "melee" and "ranged" cipher is quite blurry since you can switch to blunderbuss too if needed. That been said, I don't run him with min dex (mine has 10), so I'm not sure how that will play out (maybe worse, maybe better, who knows).

 

If you're having problems with reflex, you can take W+S style, you'll still get tons of focus from retaliation. Personally I don't. Also, regardless of your stat split your total saves are the same, and reflex is probably less important, since the other two have plenty of attacks that pretty much instagib you.

 

Really if you don't like it, well, don't use it, but when used properly it's quite devastating.

 

You can't afford talents for both melee and ranged with this build. You could use an Arbalest perhaps, rather than Blunderbuss which is much more reliant on penetrating shot. But you're in plate with terrible dex so your output will be extremely poor.

 

I would think taking decent dex + using weapon and shield style is better for this build. The reflex saves are way too poor with the OP's stat spread. There are some really strong 1h weapons including ones that drain endurance on hit. And with that set up I wouldn't use fire godlike, I'd use moon.

 

A bonus is that frees you up to use some stronger unique armor + the retaliation shield.

 

 

The issue with being a pseudo-tank in a party though is you just take too long to set-up and many fights it's just a tedious process to let your weirdo cipher build do his thing while a well optimized group can be done with most fights before the cipher has finished beefing himself up.

 

And you have to have something beating on the cipher in the first place, which isn't always ideal as it'll never be durable as actual tank build. I'd sooner just send a regular old paladin tank - mine has retaliation shield + a 1h with marking - and let the rest of the party do their thing from a safe distance.

 

And on tough fights - such as dragons - the cipher build is mostly dead weight as I found out immediately.

Edited by Odd Hermit
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