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Harder than a Pillar: A Fighter's Handbook

Fighter Optimization Tank

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#41
Ceranai

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I'd sjst like to point out that min maxing is pretty overrated unless you are on PoTD with a party that is smaller than the full 6. I would also put DEX at the top of my list of "Stats you should never ever dump" Unless you literally want a meatshield that does nothing min dex is terrible. Its like watching people fight in slow motion.

 

As far as race goes i agree with a previous poster who questioned why you talk about them so much. aside from the wild orlan, and the moon godlike i would argue that the racial abilities won't affect your ability to tank much at all, and I would also comment that 1 point in an attribute also has a negligible effect so not really that important.

 

Apart from that I also disagree with a large number of your statements. Extra HP per tick adds up, especially when most mobs hit you for very little in the first place, getting more passive HP heal means you are even less likely to ever need to use active heals.

 

Save boosting talents are often great, i mean I got bulls fortitude on my solo run exactly because some debuffs are so terrible that you really dont want to get hit by them (petrify and paralyse being the obvious ones you really dont want to get hit by).

 

Also the way you dismiss movement is a bit alarming given that the best way to tank is often to avoid damage, IE you often dont want to stand in teh middle of a fire tornado or whatever AOE spell is cast on you, so moving out the way is really the obvious thing to do with pretty much any AOE and is almost always worth taking a few disengagement attacks

 

I have a few other minor issues but your build isnt bad or anything, I just think you speak far too often in absolutes with words like worthless, best and worst. I also dont see the point in increasing Int in your build, you barely have any duration based spells, and you could have not tanked your dex value, which even if you are determined to do as little damage as possible (and this build seems to revolve around the idea that having a tank that can do any damage is a bad thing) boosts your reflex value which is the second most targeted defense right after deflection.


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#42
SilchasRuin

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In your valuing of Races I think you're somewhat overvaluing racial maximum stat bonuses compared to racial abilities. The 1 more resolve and 1 more perception a hearth orlan has compared to a Pale Elf amounts to 2 deflection 3 concentration and 3 interrupt which seems to me for a full defensive tank less valuable than 10 DR fire and cold.

 

Also Constitution doesn't seem particularly useful to a full tank compared to might on a fighter, outside of certain niche cases versus enemies who attack slowly with high accuracy at low levels. Might also increases a fighter's survivability for particularly long fights while giving a slight increase to the damage output, and possibly a decent increase to damage output if you are running a min'd int medium-high dex fighter.


Edited by SilchasRuin, 17 April 2015 - 08:38 AM.


#43
Akimbo

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This build sacrifices too much. You're over-tanking. Having a meat-sack who can't do anything other than get hit isn't really helpful.

I disagree with all my heart. One of those in front and five glass cannons in the back. I "sacrifice" even more on my fighters.

 

You better listen to Akimbo because he speaks truth.

 

 

 

Seems to me that Akimbo isn't playing on PotD, where the damage your fighter tank puts out is completely negligible. On everything up to hard, yeah.. no need to minmax. No need to even create your own fighter because Eder can tank just fine.

 

 

If you build a character like a tank in the OP, then your fighter will put out negligible damage on any difficulty level.

 

It's still overkill, even on PoTD to build a tank like that.

Might            10 
Constitution     10  
Dexterity        3  
Perception       15 -5
Intelligence     3  -12
Resolve          15 -5

22 points saved cost = -10 deflection -Duration on skills that don't matter so much.

Using a Wild Orlan we get -

Redistributed:

Might            18 (+1 from location included) 
Constitution     10  
Dexterity        17 
Perception       15 
Intelligence     3 
Resolve          15

If you want the deflection, but don't want to entirely gimp might:

Redistributed #2:

Might            17
Constitution     8  
Dexterity        10
Perception       20
Intelligence     3
Resolve          20 (+1 from location included)

That said, is it wrong to build an entirely tank focused character, with 5 glass cannons?

 

No, of course not. I just think that it's overkill to do so and personally prefer a stat allocation like one above.

 

p.s. It's also funny that you assume I'm not playing on PotD :)


Edited by Akimbo, 17 April 2015 - 08:38 AM.


#44
Crucis

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Here is my fighter spec'd for damage. This was on hard, level 12 now, not finished yet with game. This is my first playthrough.

 

 

 

Damage Spec'd Fighter

 

Can tank well enough to stand in the fray and beat down the enemy with minimal babysitting required

 

Race = Boreal Dwarf - dwarves are cool and +15 accuracy to two of the more common enemies is not inconsequential

 

(snip)

 

With this spec a fighter is not a meat shield agro bot but a true tank like the Sherman tank in Fury. An ass kicker in full plate packing steel.

 

KDubya, looks like a nice balance between offense and defense that was clearly capable of kicking butt and taking names.  The dumped INT was a bit cheesy for my taste, but I've seen far worse when it comes to cheesy min-maxed stat builds.  Kudos for a nicely built Fighter!

 

Speaking those Boreal dwarves' bonuses, one of the problems I have in the game is knowing what's what when it comes to those categories.  Kiths are easy enough.  They're essentially just people.  But it gets dodgy knowing what's a beast and what's a wilder and what's a primordial, for example.  Still, I suppose that having 2 of the five (?) categories is a pretty decent benefit.
 

 

 

 

From the wiki

 

In the traditional lands of the boreal dwarves, primordial creatures (oozes, sentient fungi and plants) and wilder (ogres, skuldrs, trolls, vithracks, and xaurips) have long preyed on isolated hunters. Generations of conflict with these creatures has given the boreal dwarves inherent Accuracy bonuses against them.

 

 

I encounter the above a lot more than poison or disease damage which is for mountain dwarves.

 

A pale elf makes for a good choice as well, cuts down on the friendly fire from your wizard.

 

Regarding the intellect dump - you can cut from resolve and place into intellect. Your will save stays the same, you lose concentration, deflection and gain some duration on abilities. If you have house rules on how low a stat can be the base concept still works just won't be as efficient. My personal house rule is to not use the godmode race. If I need to use one to make it work I'd rather drop the difficulty.

 

PotD will be the next challenge, will see if my play style works there or not.

 

 

I agree.  it does appear that you'd get more value out of Boreal Dwarves over traditional mountain dwarves.  Kind of a shame.  Not that the Boreals have a decent racial bonus, but that the mountain dwarves' one seems so weak.

 

As for Pale Elves, it seems like if you're not looking to play any sort of ranged combatant with an elf, Pale Elves are the way to go.  It's hard to turn down that regular Elf racial ability and not use a ranged weapon.  But with a Pale Elf, it's a non-factor.  The racial benefit may not be spectacular, but at least you don't feel like you're giving up something useful.

 

As for stat dumps, I'm not fond of going below 8 or 9.  Particularly when it comes to INT.  The idea of a min INT character that has the intelligence of a fruit fly doesn't sit well with me.  Or a min Resolve character.  Seems to me that the first time an enemy said "BOO!" to the min resolve character, he'd be running for the hills!
 



#45
Ceranai

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This build sacrifices too much. You're over-tanking. Having a meat-sack who can't do anything other than get hit isn't really helpful.

I disagree with all my heart. One of those in front and five glass cannons in the back. I "sacrifice" even more on my fighters.

 

You better listen to Akimbo because he speaks truth.

 

 

 

Seems to me that Akimbo isn't playing on PotD, where the damage your fighter tank puts out is completely negligible. On everything up to hard, yeah.. no need to minmax. No need to even create your own fighter because Eder can tank just fine.

 

 

If you build a character like a tank in the OP, then your fighter will put out negligible damage on any difficulty level.

 

It's still overkill, even on PoTD to build a tank like that.

Might            10 
Constitution     10  
Dexterity        3  
Perception       15 -5
Intelligence     3  -12
Resolve          15 -5

22 points saved cost = -10 deflection -Duration on skills that don't matter so much.

Using a Wild Orlan we get -

Redistributed:

Might            18 (+1 from location included) 
Constitution     10  
Dexterity        17 
Perception       15 
Intelligence     3 
Resolve          15

If you want the deflection, but don't want to entirely gimp might:

Redistributed #2:

Might            17
Constitution     8  
Dexterity        10
Perception       20
Intelligence     3
Resolve          20 (+1 from location included)

That said, is it wrong to build an entirely tank focused character, with 5 glass cannons?

 

No, of course not. I just think that it's overkill to do so and personally prefer a stat allocation like one above.

 

p.s. It's also funny that you assume I'm not playing on PotD :)

 

I assumed you had stated you werent playing PoTD or that comment is actually bordering on insulting, Its like oh HE is DEFINITELY not playing such a HARD difficulty level.

 

I half agree with you elsewise, in that i think you dont want your tank to do nothing else (ie ignore everything else) but at te same time if you can get your deflection up to 140 or so its worth it because almost nothing can even graze you anymore


Edited by Ceranai, 17 April 2015 - 09:04 AM.


#46
DracoSpirit86

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Tbh I think a party of one super tank and five glass cannons is asking for trouble, especially on iron man mode. Since all it takes is your tank to fail to stop one foe and you could end up with shattered glass >.<


Edited by DracoSpirit86, 17 April 2015 - 09:34 AM.


#47
Vadász

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Well there seems to be a heated debate about how a tank should be, instead of addressing the posts one by one I'll just state some things.

First and foremost this is not an RP guide, so arguments like "tanking this way is not realist" or "This is a cheesy build" are not valid.

Many here believe that a tank should be able to do more than just tanking, i don't since this is all about the dedicated tank. And while It is possible that hybrid is more effective than a dedicated tank, it requires more micromanaging to work. Still, i appreciate the feedback and I'll use the advice while writing the hybrid guide.

 

I have updated the main post, thanks to everyone who participated in the thread. I'll add KDubya build once i get to write about the hybrid fighter.


Edited by Vadász, 17 April 2015 - 10:08 PM.


#48
Incendax

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Well, the first order of business is deciding if it is cheese.

So you pump your deflection so high the AI cannot hit you, but still continues to try...
Is that equivalent to attacking an enemy who is just standing there bugged and not attacking you back?
Is the result any different?


Edited by Incendax, 18 April 2015 - 12:12 AM.


#49
omgFIREBALLS

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Well, the first order of business is deciding if it is cheese.

So you pump your deflection so high the AI cannot hit you, but still continues to try...
Is that equivalent to attacking an enemy who is just standing there bugged and not attacking you back?
Is the result any different?

I have some sympathy for the minmax distaste, but not for this. Are you saying the enemy is supposed to know he can't hit you? Are the mobs reading the accuracy rolls?

 

I mean you could also argue your rogue shouldn't get too much offensive power. Not talking "at the expense of defense" even, just too much per se. Because then they could oneshot vulnerable enemies like wizards. And they would be stupid to engage you because they will lose off that instakill. This is a thread about optimization and I think three times now it's been posted that you shouldn't get so much deflection that you're unhittable because that's not fair to the AI.



#50
knownastherat

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This will never end I guess .. so building tank in way that s/he is hard to hit or almost impossible to hit is cheese? Maybe Lionel Messi with his untouchable dribbling is cheese.


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#51
Lord Vicious

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Well, the first order of business is deciding if it is cheese.

So you pump your deflection so high the AI cannot hit you, but still continues to try...
Is that equivalent to attacking an enemy who is just standing there bugged and not attacking you back?
Is the result any different?

 

So you play the game so well the AI cannot win against you, but still continues to try...

 

Is that equivalent to using a cheat code to give yourself God mode?

 

Is the result any different?

 

...The result may be the same - winning the game. But the means to get this result are different - by personal skill, or by cheating.

 

Developing an optimised character build and playing it well enough so the enemies rarely, if ever, hit you - that is personal skill, not cheating.

 

And this forum is called "Character builds, Strategies...", not "How to play fair with the AI".

 

If you want to role-play a "fair duel", then remove all tanks and glass cannons from your party (imbalanced builds!), seek a 1-on-1 engagement with a monster, do not use sneak/backstab, do not use any special equipment or items (unfair!), do not use any strategies like positioning (cheese!) or "OP" classes/races etc. But I would like to see how well this would go against the Adra Dragon on PoTD. Because, you know, the enemies have their own "cheese" going.


Edited by Lord Vicious, 18 April 2015 - 01:37 AM.

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#52
Incendax

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I have some sympathy for the minmax distaste, but not for this. Are you saying the enemy is supposed to know he can't hit you? Are the mobs reading the accuracy rolls?

If I put a sword in your hand, and you couldn't hit me even after a dozen of your best swings, would you reconsider your tactics?

 

So you play the game so well the AI cannot win against you, but still continues to try...

Is that equivalent to using a cheat code to give yourself God mode?

Is the result any different?

 

...The result may be the same - winning the game. But the means to get this result are different - by personal skill, or by cheating.

Do you mean playing the game so well that you take one step and the enemies stop chasing you, then you take another step and they turn around to chase you again, and then you take a step back and they stop chasing you again, until some of them forget to chase you and you only have to fight one guy at a time?

Personal skill like that?


Edited by Incendax, 18 April 2015 - 02:26 AM.


#53
Ceranai

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My complaint was nothing to do with cheese as I'm a big fan of dairy. My complaint was that your build is pretty simplistic to the point of "anything that doesn't increase deflection is a waste of time"

Which I contest as I think it's a pretty ineffective way to play a tank. Warriors have a great base accuracy so by dumping dex you are ensuring one of your most reliable hitters basically never does anything.

A stationary, no damage dealing meat shield is actually a terrible tank because it brings nothing to the team that you can't get from a doorway

#54
Eos

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My complaint was nothing to do with cheese as I'm a big fan of dairy. My complaint was that your build is pretty simplistic to the point of "anything that doesn't increase deflection is a waste of time"

Which I contest as I think it's a pretty ineffective way to play a tank. Warriors have a great base accuracy so by dumping dex you are ensuring one of your most reliable hitters basically never does anything.

A stationary, no damage dealing meat shield is actually a terrible tank because it brings nothing to the team that you can't get from a doorway

 

Well, you do need someone to stand in that doorway..



#55
Ceranai

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My complaint was nothing to do with cheese as I'm a big fan of dairy. My complaint was that your build is pretty simplistic to the point of "anything that doesn't increase deflection is a waste of time"
Which I contest as I think it's a pretty ineffective way to play a tank. Warriors have a great base accuracy so by dumping dex you are ensuring one of your most reliable hitters basically never does anything.
A stationary, no damage dealing meat shield is actually a terrible tank because it brings nothing to the team that you can't get from a doorway

 
Well, you do need someone to stand in that doorway..
Yea but you want that person to do more than just sit there playing with themselves

#56
omgFIREBALLS

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If I put a sword in your hand, and you couldn't hit me even after a dozen of your best swings, would you reconsider your tactics?

I would get you nerfed motherf-

 

I might see the futility of my efforts but perhaps I'd be as likely to flee as to try to run past you. I think it's an absurd idea either way to strive to get hit as a tank. A tank should be good at handling incoming damage and at directing it at him. That the latter part comes trivially unless you're not alone in melee doesn't mean we should give up the former to be nice to the AI.

 

Which I contest as I think it's a pretty ineffective way to play a tank. Warriors have a great base accuracy so by dumping dex you are ensuring one of your most reliable hitters basically never does anything.

A stationary, no damage dealing meat shield is actually a terrible tank because it brings nothing to the team that you can't get from a doorway

He's still sporting a shield which is the worst weapon setup for damage. He still has no big hitting abilities.

 

I don't see this obsession with making your tank a one man army. He never needs to be one. It's all about how well your party can handle the fights. My cannons can be made of glass when their tank is made of diamond.



#57
Ceranai

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If I put a sword in your hand, and you couldn't hit me even after a dozen of your best swings, would you reconsider your tactics?

I would get you nerfed motherf-
 
I might see the futility of my efforts but perhaps I'd be as likely to flee as to try to run past you. I think it's an absurd idea either way to strive to get hit as a tank. A tank should be good at handling incoming damage and at directing it at him. That the latter part comes trivially unless you're not alone in melee doesn't mean we should give up the former to be nice to the AI.
 

Which I contest as I think it's a pretty ineffective way to play a tank. Warriors have a great base accuracy so by dumping dex you are ensuring one of your most reliable hitters basically never does anything.
A stationary, no damage dealing meat shield is actually a terrible tank because it brings nothing to the team that you can't get from a doorway

He's still sporting a shield which is the worst weapon setup for damage. He still has no big hitting abilities.
 
I don't see this obsession with making your tank a one man army. He never needs to be one. It's all about how well your party can handle the fights. My cannons can be made of glass when their tank is made of diamond.

Straw man argument. There is a big difference between useless hunk of metal who blocks doorways and tank who can do things and there is also a big difference between tank that can do things and a one man army.

I'm not saying a fighter should tank,dps, juggle, do backflips and yodel at the same time. I am saying that reducing him to a hunk of metal that just stands there isn't gettimg the most out of your team

#58
omgFIREBALLS

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By one man army I mean getting locked up on the individual damage output of the fighter rather than considering how much more he enables everyone else to do by being so sturdy that he can be surrounded by mobs and still take some friendly fire if need be.

 

I just don't find giving up tankiness for damage to be to any degree desirable. It can be affordable, depending on group composition, difficulty setting, encounter, player skill, etc. Certainly my all-out tank is tremendously overkill for many "named" fights even on PotD, but it's not like if he hit 10% harder and 10% faster he'd make any noticeable impact on how fast they go down.

 

When it comes to really tough fights, he needs to be the best tank he can be. That means getting as much attention as possible and surviving it. Speaking of which, that actually is a bit of a case for dexterity, as it would (presumably) help him chain chug potions. Regardless, if I were looking to improve the damage output, I could spend an hour before even looking at the drop-in-the-ocean damage the tank is dealing compared to the glass cannons. In fact, I think I'll go take on the vithrack bounty and tally up the damage done by every party member.

 

In the end, improving your tank's damage output is a luxury. Unless there's some tough fight where monsters simply ignore him, I wouldn't want to make any permanent sacrifices of tankiness in favor of damage output, because it might just bite me in the ass. But the lower the difficulty level and the greater the player's skill, the more affordable the trade is. Stay tuned for damage meterz.

 

edit for damage meterz.

 

1) Cipher: 937.5 (actually surprised myself how much AoE damage they do at max level now)

2) Druid: 583.1

3) Wizard: 177.9

4) Rogue: 77.0

5) Fighter: 0.7 (not sure when he even got that damage off, he was paralyzed the whole fight)

6) Priest: 0.0

 

This is PotD for clarification. Now I know the paralysis makes it a half-unfair comparison. Only half though, because as the primary target you gotta expect that CC effects will mess up your efforts to do anything. But still, nobody touched the rogue and she did... 77. She waited a bit for buffs before running in, then got off one shot before the brief AoE festival took care of everything. Hell even the rogue looks pretty sad here, and I doubt you'll contend that your slightly-offensive tank is going to surpass a rogue's damage. I'll tally up numbers from other interesting fights... hell if you have any requests just shoot, but know what I have left is mostly Endless Paths and act 3 content.


Edited by omgFIREBALLS, 18 April 2015 - 05:40 AM.


#59
gkathellar

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OP - you're undervaluing Dwarves for one minor reason. Dropping Dex to 2 gives you an attribute point to spend somewhere else. Not a huge deal, but worth noting.

 

Straw man argument.

 

Not what that means.

 

 

There is a big difference between useless hunk of metal who blocks doorways and tank who can do things

 

This, on the other hand, is a textbook use of a strawman - you are setting up the other party's proposal (low Dexterity) as something that it isn't (useless hunk of metal [never mind that it's a contradiction to call something useless and then immediately supply a use for it]), in order to make your own look better. You may not be doing it on purpose, you may not even be aware of it, but that's what it is.

 

In any case, Dexterity below 10 really doesn't matter as much as you think it does. A Dex 2 sword-and-shield can reliably and regularly pump out enough damage to be useful - they just won't be a top damage dealer by any means

 

there is also a big difference between tank that can do things and a one man army.

 

There can be a difference, but there's not necessarily one. People have triple crown solo'd this game with heavy tanks.

 

 

I am saying that reducing him to a hunk of metal that just stands there isn't gettimg the most out of your team

 

Even if dumping Dex did that (it doesn't, see above), it might still be, depending on the team.

 

Mind you, a paladin would be a better useless hunk of metal, but that's just a question of opportunity costs.

 

I happen to agree with you, btw. Due to a mix of damage-increasing and self-healing abilities, the absolute most optimal use of a fighter is as a strong off-tank. I don't see how low Dex prevents them from performing as such, but there are good arguments for having at least average Dex on your off-tank fighter. A pure tank fighter is a wannabe paladin.



#60
omgFIREBALLS

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A pure tank fighter is a wannabe paladin.

Indulge me. I found fighters superior but that was before I knew that FaC only works for the Watcher. Why are paladins better?

 

Side note: My previous post is a bit from the perspective of "IF YOU USE MY PLAYSTYLE THEN ETC ETC" but I don't think endgame fighter tanks are going to do significant amounts of damage outside contrived situations.







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