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Need help with a casting damage dealer - new to the game


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Hi all :)

 

I just installed the game and I'm looking to create a dps main, preferably a caster. After some researching, I think I will be deciding between a Druid and a Wizard. However I found this guide according to which Wizards after the recent patches actually aren't too great as typical nuking spellcasters and are better of as spellswords - when talking about pure damage dealing.

 

 

 

 

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#1 rule about guides for PoE....don't believe them.

 

Wizards can deal an incredible amount of AoE damage with nukes. They are very powerful. Pump might, per, dex, and int, and drop con and res fairly low and just keep him in the back. Can't go to wrong with talents. Focusing on abilities that help your wand/scepter/rod dmg like Blast and dangerous implement can be good. Interupting blows is a very solid choice on wiz. For damage talents I'd take cold for sure, and maybe fire.

 

IMO wizards def have more nuking power than a druid. Druids got a lot of other cool stuff, and shapeshift can be built to do a ton of burst dps, but if you want your dps to come from spells, go Wiz.

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Thank you for the reply, Mocker22.

 

but if you want your dps to come from spells, go Wiz.

not necessarily, no. I just want a dps that wouldn't be a straightforward warrior. Actually shapeshifting in addition to the ability to cast spells sounds great to me - that is why I created this thread, because I can't really decide.

 

I haven't even started the game yet but to my understanding, a typical nuking Wizard is a 3rd line glass cannon, staying in the back, doing lots of AOE damage.

But how about Druid? I can imagine there are several builds but how does the gameplay look like for the most offensive one?

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As with all spell casters, if you don't mind resting often, you can be very powerful nuking with spells. I haven't used Druid much, But eventually wizards can fireball everything to death within seconds. It is a fast-cast spell with a large radius. Just be sure to get a lot of Intelligence, Might, and Perception (one of the few things that help spell accuracy).

Edited by Braven
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Sadly (imo) casters are crap to play in PoE simply because you need to rest to get ur very limited amount of spells back, Cept ciphers. I don't bring druids, wizards or priests because I hate the "per rest" system too much especially since you can only carry two camps with ya. Wizards just tag along and hang in the back just incase there will be a fight where you feel like you need to spend one of your precious spells, wich u rarely will! Better to just make it a Rogue with high INT who carries scrolls.

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The problem with giving them per-encounter spells is that either you limit them at 1-2 spells per level (which would be frustratingly few), or you turn every single battle into a novafest where everyone sits back and watches the Wizard/Druid AoE-nuke everything with little to no effort. The vast majority of the fights can be won with DAOM + Shadowflame + 3 Fireballs. No need for anyone else to get involved.

 

...aaand I concur that Wizards are an absolutely great AoE DPS class (though Druids are also pretty badass.)

Edited by AndreaColombo

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Sadly (imo) casters are crap to play in PoE simply because you need to rest to get ur very limited amount of spells back, Cept ciphers. I don't bring druids, wizards or priests because I hate the "per rest" system too much especially since you can only carry two camps with ya. Wizards just tag along and hang in the back just incase there will be a fight where you feel like you need to spend one of your precious spells, wich u rarely will! Better to just make it a Rogue with high INT who carries scrolls. 

 

 

What ? Without priest ? : p

 

the "limit" of 4 powers is an illusion. 

 

Any group have to return to the tavern to rest.
 
You do not usually rest more often with casters. It's an illusion. The casters preserve others, priests especially.
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Wizards are probably better at burst spell damage, for the simple fact they can self-buff.

 

Druids, however are very fun and much more flexible when things don't go as planed, due to getting all their spells on level-up instead of being limited by grimmories. Just remember to attack the weakest enemy defenses first and not forget to debuff them.

 

As for builds, you can make your druid a normal caster, picking the +1 spell and elemental damage talents, turn them into temporary melee monsters by picking talents that boost spiritshift and unarmed damage in general(except novice's suffering) or take a shield, hatchet abd talents that boost deflection, for a frontline battlemage that can unload all those cone spells right on the foe's face.

 

In terms of attributes, INT rules. Druids need PER more than other casters, since wizards have more ways off buffing their accuracy and debuffing foes, and priests are masters of buffing in general. All else is quite flexible, depending on your build, but I wouldn't dump anything below 8 unless I was making a third liner caster.

Edited by DreamWayfarer
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The problem with giving them per-encounter spells is that either you limit them at 1-2 spells per level (which would be frustratingly few), or you turn every single battle into a novafest where everyone sits back and watches the Wizard/Druid AoE-nuke everything with little to no effort. The vast majority of the fights can be won with DAOM + Shadowflame + 3 Fireballs. No need for anyone else to get involved.

 

...aaand I concur that Wizards are an absolutely great AoE DPS class (though Druids are also pretty badass.)

It would overpower them for sure, a cooldown on each spelltier would be a better option. Anything other then "per rest" would be welcome, the "per rest" system has always been bad. My shield monk with disengage and speed build coupled with two ciphers is insanely OP AoE DPS and i can do it every encounter. Cipher>>Wizard/Druid in almost every scenario. A Barb with tall grass, high INT/Might, Vulnerable Attack, Two handed focus and a couple of potions will also out dps wizards in AoE. Put the Forgemaster gloves on him for a 3per rest AoE overkill.

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I prefer ciphers because I don't like per rest abilities. That said, other casters demand a more creative approach from me: I never rest until I'm dangerously low on health, so I often have to deal with a limited spell selection from my wizard, which can be an interesting challenge. A druid would be the same. With a cipher I can use similar tactics in every fight more consistently.

 

I actually have no clue which one objectively has the highest DPS potential, but there's also the story side to consider. You meet a wizard companion almost right away and he's relatively strongly connected to the main plot; this could be an argument against choosing this class for your main character. Then again, every class is represented by recruitable companions, so it's not an issue in the long run.

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Many people avoid doubling the same class in their team. I never do unless I'm playing a themed party, I like variety. But wizards are pretty versatile and can be built in different ways, so I don't think it would be such a problem.

Edited by Rosveen
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^ Yeah, party variety leads to team versatility.

Although doubling ciphers is always sweet. Be it due to cross tactical-meld and focus fire. Or in case, when one of them is melee, it solves the problem of Pain Block and Going Between not being castable on self. Also that's the only way for a cipher to wield Reaping Knives, if for some reason there appears such need)

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Wizard becomes great at lvl 9 when their first lvl spells become per encounter, but thats a long time to wait. But slicken and fog several times per encounter is badass.

 

Yeah Alacrity is very good and sure the wiz can dish out some good bursts, not going to argue with that, BUT it's a per rest thing so sustained I'd say Cipher and Barb beats wiz.

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Druid has larger AoEs and a larger variety of damage options along with some healing.

Wizard can still deal damage, but are more narrowly focused on controlling spells.

 

 

Last but not least, I'd say difficulty factors in. If you're on Path of the Damned, I'd say Wizards are better for their control/debuffing options. If you're on any difficulty below that, Druids are because you don't need to crowd control/debuff so much and can straight nuke most things.

 

Druid shapeshift is also pretty useful at lower levels.

 

 

 

Worth noting is that you get the Wizard NPC earlier than the Druid one. Though you may like one or the other's personality better, you don't know until your first playthrough. So I'd just go Druid.

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Wizards, Druids or ciphers work just fine, it really makes little difference, you just have to adjust your play style slightly, for your first play through I would really go with the class you think is coolest. Again, don't worry to much about the companions just go with the ones you like. For me Druids rock, they have always been my favourite class, so I am biased, but they have probably the most variety in their play style out of all the casters. I find ciphers are great at first but get a bit boring later on as you tend to use the same spells over and over. Wizards fit somewhere in between the two with regards to variety. You can build a caster type or go melee. Both are fun and both do dps or buffing excellently.

But a Druids shapeshift is awesome fun and pretty effective and they have loads of different spells available at all times.

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I really like Druids at the moment. Especially if you leave all the shapeshifting aside and build them as (light) tanks. They have good base deflection and don't have any important class talents (if you don't want to use spiritshift). So you can take all the defensive talents without looking back. Their defenses will reach very high numbers and they become very tanky while still being able to cast fast. My normal encounter goes like: Nature's Mark - Returning Storm - Relentless Storm - finish. And I never go down. :) That's the best part. And it's one of the few caster variants that works with very little micromanagement. I really hate this buffing at the beginning of every encounter that you have to do with your wizard - although it's powerful. 

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