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How are rangers nowadays? I remember back when the game went live they were utter trash. Are melee ranger builds any good now? Two weapon style or maybe a ranger tank? Also what pet is the most useful for the class?

Edited by zered
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Sorry for posting my builds all the time at the moment, but this is an example of a powerful melee ranger that also supports his pet a lot:

Riptide & The Pit Fright

 

Rangers are really good nowadays. That's because they got some awesome new abilities like Twinned Arrows (for bow rangers), Stunning Shots (now also works in melee - totally powerful), Powder Burns an so on. Best thing they changed: the pets got a huge, huge buff. They can now choose a DR talent that scales with level, and if you skill them right they hit like trucks. They don't hit fast, but every hit is devastating.

 

For example: if you combine Marked Prey, Vicious Companion, Mecilass Companion and Predator's Sense with the Stalker's Torc and Stalker's Link the pet will have +135% damage. Nearly as much as a rogue with Sneak Attacks and Deathblows. Ouch!

Combined with the high base damage (wolves have +2 base damage, so they make the best single target dps pet, stags have a per-encounter carnage ability that makes them the best AoE dps pet) it really gets awesome. They are still not super tanks (the Antelope is a bit tankier than the rest because of better defenses) - but sturdy flankers (sturdier than a glasscannon rogue) and don't go down as quickly as they used to. The ranger can also heal his pet now or revive it - and the pet can feign death - works like the withdrawal spell of the priest.

 

The best thing is you don't have to gimp your ranger to make the pet awesome. You can totally play a great bow shooter or melee guy with a devastating pet.

If you don't want to skill your pet it can be your bodyguard. It's still better and more sturdy than before because base DR also scales with level.

But remember - it's not a tank. None of them tanks like a well build kith character can.

 

The build I posted above is quite great (if I may say so - at least I had a lot of fun woith it on PoTD 2.0) because it combines tankyness and single target dps. Like a rogue who also heals his comrades and doesn't go down fast.

 

But that is just an example. Dual wielding rangers make sense because with Swift Aim and speedy weapons they can attack so fast (during the whole fight) it's not even funny. Combined with Stunning Shots and so on he's a very, very good single target dps/cc guy.

Edited by Boeroer
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your builds are best thing !

What about ranger using bows , have any builds for those ? I would still like to have very strong pet ( a wolf maybe or cat i guess wolf is better tho ) for the sake of those times when pet was liability more than anything .

Maybe a ranger that uses baby sneak attack with a pet that has Merciless Companion ( 135% bonus u told about earlier sounds nice ) in my party i will always meet conditions for it .

Edited by Blunderboss
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3.0 also added a heal pet ability and revive pet for more healing. Also, an ability to makes a dead pet actually help the party (a vengeance-themed ability). That should further greatly help the viability problem. Great thing about having a pet tank some is that damage the pet takes does not count toward any health pool. For easier encounters, letting the pet take point can save on resting supplies.

 

I think both ranged and melee work well for ranger. Ranged characters don't really need much con or resolve or heavy armor which allows more focus in offense stats. Stunning weapons is a great option or you can take the great soul bound bow. Also wounding weapons are particularly great with ranger.

 

Melee can be very powerful, particularly if playing solo, but requires more careful positioning and care controlling who engages who. Disengagement defense can be good for that.

 

I like having the ranger (or someone near the animal) wear "shod in faith" and have a pretty low resolve. This allows healing both the ranger and pet each battle. Moon godlike is also good for that, but sadly godlike cannot wear hats and there are so many good ones now. So I personally don't like them now.

 

It would be neat if your pet could gain the healing multiplier from survival, but I don't think they do.

Edited by Braven
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your builds are best thing !

What about ranger using bows , have any builds for those ? I would still like to have very strong pet ( a wolf maybe or cat i guess wolf is better tho ) for the sake of those times when pet was liability more than anything .

Maybe a ranger that uses baby sneak attack with a pet that has Merciless Companion ( 135% bonus u told about earlier sounds nice ) in my party i will always meet conditions for it .

A bow ranger is pretty straighforward so I never wrote down something for it: dump RES and CON, max MIG, DEX, PERm put the rest into INT. Take Weapon Focus Peasant, Marksman, Penetrating Shot, Stalker's Link, Stunning Shots, Twinned Arrows and Driving Flight - pick up Stormcaller and use wounding shots for good AoE CC and damage, pick up Persistence and use marked prey for maximum single target dps and maximum pet's dps. Then take all the damage-related pet talents and resilient companion. Done. :)

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  • 4 weeks later...

Sorry for hijacking this thread, but I didn't want to start another one for my questions.

I was searching the forums for ranger builds and nowadays it seems that Stormcaller is the way to go.

Melee ranger is not my thing, I really like the bow theme, and all the more, I like war bows.  :yes: 
 

I just wondered how viable a very similar build, just with Borresaine, would be?
Does Borresaine's stun ability work with driving flight? If it does, is it still viable on Hard or PotD difficulty?

My second question is about the stats. Is a ranger with a might score of 12 able to get through the DR of most enemies?

I though of something like MIG 12, DEX 18, PER 18 rest 10 for my character. But I've no idea how important might still is. Especially in the expansion.
I'm not keen on dropping attributes below 10. So the alternative would be MIG 16, DEX 16, PER 16.
I guess it's easier with a war bow than with a hunting bow, but I'm really to stupid to do the math myself. :banghead:

So if anybody could help me out here, I'd be very thankful. :biggrin:

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Boressaine is good bow ....

but........

Stormcaller .. is most overpowered item in the game . 

You can stunlock entire group of enemies with Stormcaller no problems , actually rangers arent that good as everybody say they are , i mean pet is still useless for everything except tanking , you cant really maneuver with melees in PoTD and flanking someone is a legend that people tells on forums so all your pet is going to do trough entire game is stay in front line tanking meanwhile stealing one melee spot you could use on other character , but after you get Stormcaller you become overpowered stun machine and then you can say rangers are best class in game , i even took lvl 15 talent on ranger that gives him more attack speed after pet dies , because More attack speed = more stormcaller = more auto win fight

 

I was having trouble with magrans faithful bounty , but in the end i managed to stunlock them ALL until i killed the priests , all i needed to stunlock 25 enemies was ranger with Stormcaller and melee with Swaddling Sheet ( one proc of this cape was enough to get the ranger going and then he kept them all stunned until the very end )

 

Actually when u get ur Stormcaller ranger going game becomes to easy instantly , because yeh instead of fighting enemies you kill stunned victims all the time , it even stuns dragons together with their ads making those fights trivial .

 

If not using stormcaller , really i would go for ranged rogue u will do more damage for the big part of the game ( rangers and their pets dont do real damage in practice on PoTD unless u have stormcaller , meanwhile rogues will always do increased damage because of SA ) , rogue will always be better at doing single target damage to target of your choice , ranger needs to attack same target as his pet for that to happen , and in practice u will never be able to attack important targets with pet , pet usually ends up tanking enemy fighters in front line .

Edited by Blunderboss
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Sharpshooter = Rogue with Boressaine 

Use Cloudpiercer / Boressaine 

switch after Cloudpiercer proc , 

make sure u have someone who can mass debuff for SA , like cipher or Priest with Painfull Interdiction

You will have reliable damage dealer that will do ranged damage from level 1 to level 16 , meanwhile rangers only starts working after lvl 13 after you got Stormcaller 

Edited by Blunderboss
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"flanking someone is a legend that people tells on forums"

 

I flank all the time on my current PotD playthrough. In fact I only started bothering about flanking for PotD because that -10 Deflection is so handy against the higher Deflection enemies (particularly at lower levels). Moreover Ituumak is often my main flanker, I have my other melee characters engage the main group of the enemy, then once the melee is properly started Ituumak runs around at flanks whoever needs to be flanked the most.

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you cant flank anything when enemy is blocking all the space and standing in 3 lines behind each other , which is the case in 80% encounters on PoTD especially in WM and WM2 , in this game flanking is done by casting Phantom Foes

Edited by Blunderboss
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If your not soloing Bow Ranger is perfectly fit for PotD. Any of the unique bows in the game will work just go with a) what is the coolest looking and b) whatever bow has the special ability that fits your party best be it Persistance, Borresaine, Lenas Er, etc.... Once you know your bow of choice then you know what stats you need. I would say console all unique into the game at intro just to see what they look like. Then drop them all once your decided. I am not a min maxer so I prefer a 14 10 15 15 14 10 starting setup. Items , resting bonuses and consumables will get your stats where they need to be for tough/boss battles. 14 Int can be surprisingly useful on a bow Ranger.

Edited by Blades of Vanatar

No matter which fork in the road you take I am certain adventure awaits.

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managing doesnt mean its worth it , meanwhile in act 2 where enemies dont always come in groups of atleast 15 its possible to flank somewhat reliably , it all changes when u start fighting hordes of WM enemies , who always come in large groups in somewhat limited space enviroments , then the best(and in most cases the only possible) way to use pet is for holding the frontline , but then your ranger has to either attack frontline enemies who rarely pose any threat or attack the backline while loosing all pet related bonuses(because the pet will be stuck in melee) , this all ofcourse is not a big problen when u are using stormaller and fights are cakewalk because of mass stun, but without it its different story .

In fact because of retrain feature i had a chance to try all the ranger pets in practice and there are only few pets that are worth using imo , thats bear for making it a decent frontline off-tank ( make sure u have only 2 melees with a pet as 3rd or ur movement will be too limited most of the time ) and Stag , this is the only pet that can work nice with all the damage talents because of carnage (considering u position him well between two of your tanks so he can carnage as many enemy as possible), with other pets its just not worth it to spend 3 talent and few ability points so they can do bit more damage to one melee enemy or die trying to reach a backline where u cant even heal them .

 

With current Pathfinding and Unit colision pets are somewhat annoying to use and cause you more harm than good unless u build them as stationary front line off tank in which case they do the job just fine except that they might be taking melee space from your melee dps character and if your melee wastes time cuz pet is blocking his path thats very bad

Edited by Blunderboss
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Pets flank well enough and they do bucket loads of damage. They are an incredibly useful member of the party.

"Those who look upon gods then say, without even knowing their names, 'He is Fire. She is Dance. He is Destruction. She is Love.' So, to reply to your statement, they do not call themselves gods. Everyone else does, though, everyone who beholds them."
"So they play that on their fascist banjos, eh?"
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I have a total different experience than Blunderboss: When I use a melee ranger I always flank with my animal companion. Works like a charm. But maybe that's because I use at least 4 sturdy guys and like to stretch out the battlefield after the first initial buffs/debuffs. That way picking single targets and flank them is pretty easy. You should by all means try to flank as a double team as a melee ranger. You will get a lot of +ACC, bonus damage from Stalker's Torc and items/weapons with certain enchantments and stunning shots.
And because there are some items with flanking bonus damage and also the survival bonus damage, the cipher's Phantom Foes is really nice now. +30% bonus damage from flanking alone. You can combine that with one of the vicious weapons (Cladhaliath, Traitor's Merit, Misery's End, Dîal Ewn Dibita or Vierina's Leaves) for even more bonus damage (+20%) for a total of +50%. That's like Sneak Attack - not too bad I think.

Edited by Boeroer

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Was the old wounding weapon + INT bug ever resolved (where higher INT actually hurt the overall damage from wounding and low INT resulted in higher damage)?  I remember hearing it was a "high priority" bug back in 2.*, but I never recall seeing anything definitively saying it was fixed.

 

If it is fixed, and INT actually increases the overall damage of wounding weapons, something like TideFall would be great for melee ranger.  They benefit from INT quite a bit with their abilities.  Not sure if all of the new pet new healing powers benefit from INT (is it heal over time?), but that would be another reason to invest in it. The other melee wounding weapon (dagger) could be used for a high attack speed, but you give up endurance draining and wounding shot ability is not "full attack", so it benefits a lot more from a two-handed weapon.  Also, with rangers being tight on talents, vulnerable attack is hard to fit in and is basically needed to make daggers good.

 

Even if your goal is to be a melee Ranger eventually, I think it is best to start out using ranged weapons.  I would probably wait until around level 11 to really switch over to melee.  Ranged is better early on when you can one-shot enemies with fire-lashed wounding crossbow bolts, and quick-reload with swift-aim's massive 50% reloading speed boost.  Melee shines in the late game after all of the melee-focused items are acquired and you are able to invest in melee talents.  Early on, rangers typically want the pet-enhancing talents so the melee ones end up getting delayed and a "ranged" attack style is less dependent on items or talents.

Edited by Braven
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The best thing is you don't have to gimp your ranger to make the pet awesome. You can totally play a great bow shooter or melee guy with a devastating pet.  If you don't want to skill your pet it can be your bodyguard. It's still better and more sturdy than before because base DR also scales with level.

But remember - it's not a tank. None of them tanks like a well build kith character can.

 

I'm not entirely sure that I can agree with this statement.  The fact is that if you want to make your pet awesome, you need to take 3 (IIRC) of the pet related in-class talents, i.e. Resilient Companion, Vicious Companion, and Merciless Companion.  That only leaves you 5 out of the max of 8 talent points to work with.  And that sort of seems like "gimping" to me.

 

Now, I'm not saying that you can't have a competent Ranger.  But compared to other classes, it's going to be a little more difficult to make your ranger into a well rounded combatant when you're short 3 talent points.  Maybe even more so if you're looking to build a good melee ranged, and particularly one who isn't wearing heavier armor.  It seems to me that wearing heavy armor (like you do in your melee ranger build - not a criticism, BTW), aside from being against the stereotype, is a bit of a counter for not having been able to take talents like weapon+shield style or superior deflection.  But if one wanted to play a leather wearing ranger, you're going to be at a bit of a disadvantage without those 3 extra talent points.  OTOH, I think that ranged rangers aren't in quite as tough a situation.  I think they'll be able to be entirely competent ranged combatants, but I think that their weakness will be that they'll be rather lacking when it comes to melee, due to the loss of those 3 talent points to their pet.

 

 

 

I still wish longingly that animal companions were an optional thing, perhaps taken as a level 1 class ability, so that those who would like to play pet-less rangers could do so.

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Pets flank well enough and they do bucket loads of damage. They are an incredibly useful member of the party.

 

I had Sagani in my last party from the instant I met her.  And Ittumak was an absolute BEAST in combat.  It seemed like every time I looked around, that wily white fox was nailing someone for 70-80-90+ damage!!!   

 

If you want to get the most out of an animal companion, just think of them as being like a melee rogue.  Just have your casters cast afflicting and DoT spells on the enemy, and watch the pet just tear through them.  And have your ranger make constant use of Wounding Shot (2/encounter) to enable the pet's Predator's Sense +50% damage. 

 

It really isn't difficult at all to set up the conditions that allow pets to increase their damage output.

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The best thing is you don't have to gimp your ranger to make the pet awesome. You can totally play a great bow shooter or melee guy with a devastating pet. If you don't want to skill your pet it can be your bodyguard. It's still better and more sturdy than before because base DR also scales with level.

But remember - it's not a tank. None of them tanks like a well build kith character can.

 

 

I'm not entirely sure that I can agree with this statement. The fact is that if you want to make your pet awesome, you need to take 3 (IIRC) of the pet related in-class talents, i.e. Resilient Companion, Vicious Companion, and Merciless Companion. That only leaves you 5 out of the max of 8 talent points to work with. And that sort of seems like "gimping" to me.

 

Now, I'm not saying that you can't have a competent Ranger. But compared to other classes, it's going to be a little more difficult to make your ranger into a well rounded combatant when you're short 3 talent points. Maybe even more so if you're looking to build a good melee ranged, and particularly one who isn't wearing heavier armor. It seems to me that wearing heavy armor (like you do in your melee ranger build - not a criticism, BTW), aside from being against the stereotype, is a bit of a counter for not having been able to take talents like weapon+shield style or superior deflection. But if one wanted to play a leather wearing ranger, you're going to be at a bit of a disadvantage without those 3 extra talent points. OTOH, I think that ranged rangers aren't in quite as tough a situation. I think they'll be able to be entirely competent ranged combatants, but I think that their weakness will be that they'll be rather lacking when it comes to melee, due to the loss of those 3 talent points to their pet.

 

 

 

I still wish longingly that animal companions were an optional thing, perhaps taken as a level 1 class ability, so that those who would like to play pet-less rangers could do so.

You don't need quite that many talents because you don't need any of the defensive ones. You want to be crit in order to activate items like shod in faith boots and sanguine frenzy. Also, lower deflection encourages enemies to target you over your pet. That said, I would be ranged early on while getting pet talents and wait until the key melee equipment is obtained before giving up the bow/gun.

 

The non-pet melee ones I would take are: veterans recovery, two-handed weapon style, appr. sneak attack, weapon focus, and savage attack. Another good one is the -8 deflection AOE one since it helps your pet's bad accuracy. However, since it takes an action that could be binding roots (-20 deflection or CC), I found it not really worth it. Optionally it could be taken instead of weapon focus if playing solo, if you have high INT.

Edited by Braven
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The best thing is you don't have to gimp your ranger to make the pet awesome. You can totally play a great bow shooter or melee guy with a devastating pet. If you don't want to skill your pet it can be your bodyguard. It's still better and more sturdy than before because base DR also scales with level.

But remember - it's not a tank. None of them tanks like a well build kith character can.

 

I'm not entirely sure that I can agree with this statement. The fact is that if you want to make your pet awesome, you need to take 3 (IIRC) of the pet related in-class talents, i.e. Resilient Companion, Vicious Companion, and Merciless Companion. That only leaves you 5 out of the max of 8 talent points to work with. And that sort of seems like "gimping" to me.

 

Now, I'm not saying that you can't have a competent Ranger. But compared to other classes, it's going to be a little more difficult to make your ranger into a well rounded combatant when you're short 3 talent points. Maybe even more so if you're looking to build a good melee ranged, and particularly one who isn't wearing heavier armor. It seems to me that wearing heavy armor (like you do in your melee ranger build - not a criticism, BTW), aside from being against the stereotype, is a bit of a counter for not having been able to take talents like weapon+shield style or superior deflection. But if one wanted to play a leather wearing ranger, you're going to be at a bit of a disadvantage without those 3 extra talent points. OTOH, I think that ranged rangers aren't in quite as tough a situation. I think they'll be able to be entirely competent ranged combatants, but I think that their weakness will be that they'll be rather lacking when it comes to melee, due to the loss of those 3 talent points to their pet.

 

 

 

I still wish longingly that animal companions were an optional thing, perhaps taken as a level 1 class ability, so that those who would like to play pet-less rangers could do so.

You don't need quite that many talents because you don't need any of the defensive ones. You want to be crit in order to activate items like shod in faith boots and sanguine frenzy. Also, lower deflection encourages enemies to target you over your pet. That said, I would be ranged early on while getting pet talents and wait until the key melee equipment is obtained before giving up the bow/gun.

 

The non-pet melee ones I would take are: veterans recovery, two-handed weapon style, appr. sneak attack, weapon focus, and savage attack. Another good one is the -8 deflection AOE one since it helps your pet's bad accuracy. However, since it takes an action that could be binding roots (-20 deflection or CC), I found it not really worth it. Optionally it could be taken instead of weapon focus if playing solo, if you have high INT.

 

 

 

Braven, I just don't play this way.

 

Even on the character I have wearing the Shod in Faith boots (regardless of class), I want to have that character have a high DEFL.  I prefer to minimize how often my characters get hit, not maximize how often they get crit'd just for the sake of triggering the SiF boots or the Sanguine armor, which I never, EVER use (on any character), because I hate the Frenzy ability's not allowing you to see your END status.  Losing the ability to see the character's END status just isn't worth the upsides of Frenzy to me.

 

And for that matter, I have no interest in putting heavy armor on a Ranger for RP reasons.  The heaviest armor I could see any ranger of mine wearing would be scale (like the Scales of the Raven, but not the Golden Scales), and more likely leather.

 

 

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There's no such thing as a "taking up a valuable melee dps spot". I'm playing a party with five melee and a ranged ranger, so a total of 6 able melee bodies. I never run "out of room" because when I do, it's because I'm playing badly. So I always have room to maneuver and opportunities to flank, by choice, much like ranged-heavy parties never have room to maneuver, because they will almost always favor fighting in chokepoints.

 

Flanking is great because it's a debuff you don't need to cast, it just comes naturally while you're doing your thing. You're actually gimping your party when you don't flank imho, because you have to spend valuable resting resources and damage uptime casting buffs and landing debuffs on every mob just to be able to crit or sneak attack. People who say they can't flank or it's not worth it obviously never tried to make it work, and never realized how much power they could have by using different sorts of tactics.

 

Now regarding using the pet to flank, it's generally suboptimal at the start of the fight. Pets aren't exactly useful while they're waiting for a flanking opportunity. You should use a couple speedy hybrid ranged/melee characters in your back line, using high burst ranged weapons at the start of the fight, deploy your front line, figure out how the enemy is maneuvering and flank accordingly while your guns reload. Just like in Blood Bowl, if you know the board game, the same tactics apply. Pets are better used as part of the front line if you're going for the flanking gameplay. With that in mind, you don't really need to invest more than the base scaling DR on the pet. Their base damage is good enough, doubling it is obviously better but does not bring you enough benefits due to their slow attack rate and lack of versatility. I'd much, much rather use the passive slot on the Ranger himself.

 

Playing ranged, I took Resilient Companion (26 DR at level 14 isn't too shabby for a Bear), Interrupting blows, all the Accuracy bonuses I could get, since I don't have a priest and those fortitude & concentration checks aren't gonna win themselves, and Enigma's Charm, because everyone in the party took it and six of those per fight is ridiculous. If I were to play melee, I'd probably do the same (damage & utility) and simply go for a hybrid approach. I see no reason to wear heavy armor or defensive talent on my flanking rogue and even use Escape offensively nowadays, I don't think I'd need any of those either on a flanking ranger either.

Edited by Esajin
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I would like to witness some of famous flanking on Magrans Faithfull fight when u upscale WM 2 :)

Or u can cast phantom foes ,

Flanking bears in act 1 is nice but doesnt really matter , and in WM having 2 bodies on 1 enemy is luxury that most of the time means fight is already over

Edited by Blunderboss
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How to ranger? By picking animal companion fitting your race. Here's the list:

Aumaua -> Bear; because big.

Dwarf -> Boar; because sturdy.

Godlike -> Stag; because horns.

Elf -> Antelope; because agile.

Orlan -> Lion; because cats.

Human -> Wolf; because ... that's what is left :D but also certain duc.

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Vancian =/= per rest.

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