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Hi all,

 

I've got a few questions about chanters I was hoping some people might be able to help me to answer:

 

1. How is the Chanter's recovery period calculated after an Invocation? What affects it? (e.g. Armour Recovery, Dex Modifier, DaoM potion)

 

This is important I think to working out what spells you should be using in different scenarios. For instance, when to use the White Worms Writhed (Level 1) Invocation for 3 Phrases vs when to use Boil their Flesh (Level 5) Invocation for 7 phrases. If the better invocations come with a much greater refractory period afterwards then maybe it's better to spam the first level versions of the spell rather than save up for the level 5 version? (Spamming level 1 version might create corpses faster, increasing its power faster vs using the better one less frequently for more damage).

 

The temptation I find with many melee chanter builds is to reduce Dex as much as possible to bump might/per/res/int to higher levels. The way I understand things at the minute, even with Invocations such as he braved the horde alone, the Chanter does not have any native abilities that are very good for melee/ability points to spare to make it worthwhile spending points on melee damage when you could otherwise be making yourself more tanky or with better chants/phrases. He braved the Horde Alone isn't even that great either, for instances you could substitute it pretty well with a DaoM potion/Per Buff from Priest when you actually need it 

 

2. Is there any resource that has the stats for the summons e.g. accuracy, deflection? I'm thinking ogres are still better vs the animated weapons summon as the level 5 invocation.

Edited by Livegood118
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Recovery on Chanter Invocations (and spells in general) is affected by general attack speed modifiers and armour, and is a function of the duration of the spell itself. That duration is affected by dexterity, so higher dexterity will speed up both casting and recovery. As far as I know almost all invocations are "Average" speed, so should have the same duration. 

 

Not sure whether anyone has actually documented the summon stats anywhere. If not, that would require some digging through the game files to get at.

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Recovery on Chanter Invocations (and spells in general) is affected by general attack speed modifiers and armour, and is a function of the duration of the spell itself. That duration is affected by dexterity, so higher dexterity will speed up both casting and recovery. As far as I know almost all invocations are "Average" speed, so should have the same duration. 

 

Not sure whether anyone has actually documented the summon stats anywhere. If not, that would require some digging through the game files to get at.

 

Interesting – so by "general" attack speed modifiers do you mean things like Frenzy, Deleterious Alacrity of motion or the gloves of swift action, rather than innate weapon speed enchants or the kind of bonus you get from Durgan Steel?

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In part. Item-specific bonuses and penalties indeed only apply to attacking with that weapon, so those don't affect anything else including casting (or even attacking with a second weapon). But also not applicable here are "attack-type specific" bonuses, eg. bonuses/penalties to dual-wielding or specifically to "melee attack speed" or "ranged attack speed", those don't apply here either (except for some "ranged attack speed" bonuses/penalties that affect some spells, but those are rare).

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I'm still finding it hard to evaluate how important Dex is for Chanters.

 

I think that something to accept is that you're never really going to be able to do that much damage in melee no matter what you do without abilities like the other "melee" classes (Fighter, Monk, Rogue, Paladin, Barb)

 

Let's take two sample "tanky" builds:

 

Somewhat "Balanced" Sword and Board Chanter

 

18 Might

10 Constitution

10 Dexterity

12 Perception

18 Intellect

10 Resolve

 

"Low DexSword and Board Chanter

 

18 Might

10 Con

03 Dex

18 Perception

18 Intellect

11 Resolve

 

Dumping dexterity points in to Perception doesn't really lose you any corresponding defensive benefits, and in turn gives you +6 Accuracy for all of your static attacks/Invocations and +1 Resolve at the cost of -21% action speed. 

 

I think maybe the answer lies in how frequently your character is going to be performing actions subject to long recovery periods in combat e.g. Invocations, Scroll Casting and Other on-use Abilities (e.g. from equipment, or class talents). If all you're going to be doing is casting Invocations then I think it's probably better to dump Dex in to Per, particularly if you're going to be using invocations that have a high phrase count. However, if you're going to be really active – e.g. using abilities, casting from scrolls then I think it's better to keep Dex at a reasonable level because if you don't your overall DPS through chants will be subject to an inordinate amount of down time.

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i tested a bit 1-2 patches ago - dex and armor both play a role how fast you can get consecutives spells out, however it doesnt matter for the first spell and you dont get the spell itself faster with more dex/lower armor.

The spell always needs the same time no matter how much dex/armor you have.

However: you get 2 pauses after using an invocation: 1) right after the spell is done, before your character starts moving/acting again. 2) after your character starts moving again and before your chants start again.

1) is dependend on dex, the more dex the faster you can move again - armor doesnt matter.

2) is dependend on armor recovery and i think dex too - too long ago.

 

if you have either high dex or low armor recovery, you dont loose "that much time" (chant stop to chant start), however if dex is low and recovery is high... it looked multiplicative and you loose quite some time (a few secs - since you could cast lvl 1 invocations every 6 secs lategame if you had no recovery... a few secs is... too much)

 

changing the chant, ending the fight, getting CC'd and casting invocations stops your chants, everything else doesnt (as far as i know) - so dex is in my opinion only needed if you play a solo chanter (the pause after casting before moving can kill you with low dex in solo play) - or if you want to cast much lategame and still want a high DR armor.

 

dont have my numbers anymore (and didnt post them) so i cant tell you how much time it is exactly, it should be 4 dex vs 19 dex - 1 sec slower to move again. 4 dex no armor recovery and 19 dex 50% armor recovery create the same pause (chant stopping to chant starting again)

attackspeed from 2 weapon fighting didnt affect it (didnt try the speed invocation or the potion)

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i tested a bit 1-2 patches ago - dex and armor both play a role how fast you can get consecutives spells out, however it doesnt matter for the first spell and you dont get the spell itself faster with more dex/lower armor.

The spell always needs the same time no matter how much dex/armor you have.

However: you get 2 pauses after using an invocation: 1) right after the spell is done, before your character starts moving/acting again. 2) after your character starts moving again and before your chants start again.

1) is dependend on dex, the more dex the faster you can move again - armor doesnt matter.

2) is dependend on armor recovery and i think dex too - too long ago.

 

if you have either high dex or low armor recovery, you dont loose "that much time" (chant stop to chant start), however if dex is low and recovery is high... it looked multiplicative and you loose quite some time (a few secs - since you could cast lvl 1 invocations every 6 secs lategame if you had no recovery... a few secs is... too much)

 

changing the chant, ending the fight, getting CC'd and casting invocations stops your chants, everything else doesnt (as far as i know) - so dex is in my opinion only needed if you play a solo chanter (the pause after casting before moving can kill you with low dex in solo play) - or if you want to cast much lategame and still want a high DR armor.

 

dont have my numbers anymore (and didnt post them) so i cant tell you how much time it is exactly, it should be 4 dex vs 19 dex - 1 sec slower to move again. 4 dex no armor recovery and 19 dex 50% armor recovery create the same pause (chant stopping to chant starting again)

attackspeed from 2 weapon fighting didnt affect it (didnt try the speed invocation or the potion)

 

Interesting ... so if I'm getting this right:

 

– Heavy Armour + Low Dex = Really Bad

– Lighter Armour + Low Dex = OK

– Heavy Armour + OK Dex = OK

 

Maybe it is better not to dump Dex if Recovery Penalty is multiplicative with it. Just thinking about the math, if you lose 3-4 seconds every time you do an Invocation that's another Dragon Thrashed at high levels, something which is likely to trump whatever the benefits you could have gained from putting points in to Per. I wish there was a way of calculating what the exact figures were based on the cast times.

Edited by Livegood118
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The reason DEX is generally not considered a prime stat for chanters is that it doesn't affect the chanting itself. So you could just sit there a slow, lumbering oaf in the heaviest of armour, and your chanting still goes at the same speed. It's only the invocations (and any non-chanter specific activity, of course) that gets affected by low DEX and slow recovery, which you do less frequently; keep in mind though that you stop chanting when you use an invocation and only start again after the recovery of that has elapsed (scroll casting doesn't interrupt chanting, by the way). 

 

So indeed it is very much a matter of what role you want your chanter to play beyond the chant-y part. Melee, ranged, scroll-based magic? And as Reent points out: are you using the longer, more powerful phrases as you get them, or doing lots of short phrases to get many invocations out quickly? I tend to favour the latter approach, in which case longer casting and recovery is going to have relatively more impact. It also helps to time other actions properly; ie. if you know you're going to hit 3 completed phrases soon (or whatever number you need for the desired Invocation), you can hold off doing anything else so you are at least ready to go as soon.

 

To give you an indication, I just did a quick test: at 3 Dexterity an 'average' speed invocation (ie. almost all of them) takes about 5.3 seconds, at 18 Dex this drops to 3.5 (this is the duration of the invocation itself plus recovery). A Dex of 10 came in at about 4.4 seconds. This was in mail armour by the way, so would be a bit faster in lighter gear as well. Anyway, the difference is significant but again depending on what else your chanter is supposed to be doing it isn't nearly as big a factor as for most other classes to have lower Dex. Even on a more hands-off chanter I wouldn't go too much below 10 though since it does still slow everything down and also makes you more likely to be interrupted. 

 

In terms of general mechanics by the way: attack speed bonuses/penalties of any kind (including armour) only affect the recovery duration, not the duration of the action (casting, attacking, drinking potion, whatever) itself. Dexterity does affect the action duration directly, as well as recovery. And where applicable, it also speeds up reloading (attack speed effects don't, so you reload just as fast naked as in plate armour; only the reload-speed specific bonuses/penalties affect reload duration). 

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Dexterity and the aggregate attack speed bonus/penalty indeed combine multiplicatively, by the way (different attack speed bonuses are mostly additive with each other; some exceptions, but those aren't directly relevant here). To expand my previous numbers slightly, duration of invocations (casting + recovery) at 3, 10 and 18 Dexterity are approximately:

 

- in mail armour: 5.3, 4.4 and 3.5 seconds

- naked: 3.5, 2.9 and 2.2 seconds

 

Spell casting durations aren't quite as well-behaved as attacking durations somehow; the math for normal attacks is very clear, I'm still trying to work out some irregularities I'm finding with the spellcasting times. But from the above numbers you can still make a reasonable approximation, I'd say. 

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Dexterity and the aggregate attack speed bonus/penalty indeed combine multiplicatively, by the way (different attack speed bonuses are mostly additive with each other; some exceptions, but those aren't directly relevant here). To expand my previous numbers slightly, duration of invocations (casting + recovery) at 3, 10 and 18 Dexterity are approximately:

 

- in mail armour: 5.3, 4.4 and 3.5 seconds

- naked: 3.5, 2.9 and 2.2 seconds

 

Spell casting durations aren't quite as well-behaved as attacking durations somehow; the math for normal attacks is very clear, I'm still trying to work out some irregularities I'm finding with the spellcasting times. But from the above numbers you can still make a reasonable approximation, I'd say. 

 

In terms of a melee/tanky chanter it looks to me like in the grand scheme of things you're probably better off going on the low end of Dex. As you point out, the difference doesn't seem that marked unless you're playing a fairly active chanter that's frequently using level 1/2 chants to build up phrases quick.

 

When I'm using Chanters I prefer a more hands off approach that just lets the Dragon Thrashed do the work though I'm wondering now whether that's the best thing to do. While the Chanter's damage chants are situationally very, very useful – for instance Seven Nights she waited vs large foes or Boil Their Flesh/White Worms Writhed vs large groups of corpses – I'd have a hard time believing that focusing on doing them repeatedly other than in those situations would actually do more damage than letting the Dragon Thrashed roll on and then using invocations as a bonus rather than a focus; only one phrase before level 3 does direct damage vs foes.

 

That leaves the CC Invocations and the Summon Invocations, the value of which probably depends on your party composition and the role you want your Chanter to play. A Chanter's never going to out CC a Druid or a Wizard. One of the main reasons I asked about the summons was to assess whether or not they were actually worth their salt – for instance, will the ogres last long enough/survive long enough to justify a cast vs a certain kind of monster? Will you get more benefit as a result of the paralyse CC chant or from summoning the Ogres?

 

This is why I love PoE :)

 

Sorry for all the theorycrafting – not in a position to test things myself in PoE atm.

Edited by Livegood118
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Actually, for a melee chanter (if you want him to do at least *some* damage), dropping Dex too low starts to cut into your melee DPS. Also, that's not the sort of thing you would want to stop doing too much, so the melee recovery will tend to cut into your Invocation onset; ie. you won't be able to invoke as soon as you reached the required number of phrases.

 

Whether the direct damage Invocations can compete with Dragon Thrashed or Aesfyllath, that's certainly in question. Will depend on your might, enemy DR, etc. The Seven Winds packs rather a big punch though (and you tend to hit the close enemies twice as well), as does the raw damage one at level 7. But there's actually just a couple of those, dealing damage is hardly the main focus of the invocations (or the phrases, really). Even if the summons get killed off relatively quickly, they still draw attention away from your own characters, draw enemy spells, and just get in the way. And the higher level ones can certainly absorb and do some damage. Ogres are quite sturdy and pack a punch, Swamp Spore can Dominate all over the place, the animated weapons are reasonably sturdy as well; less endurance than ogres but high DR and better attack speed, and they just stick around longer (I'm still inclined to favour the Ogres, though). And even the lowly level 1 Phantom can mess up some high level casters if it's placed properly and you get a bit lucky with it. 

 

The buffing and debuffing spells can be quite useful as well. Buffing tends to be a bit more situational, but for example a fast chanter at higher levels can basically just chain-paralyze a fairly large cone area with the level 2 Invocation. Base duration is 8 seconds, so a 20 INT chanter will get 12 seconds on a hit (and it's against Will rather than Fortitude, which tends to help). Even at level 10, if you use just level 1 phrases you get to four in 11.2 seconds, maybe 3 seconds to cast and recover so you're casting it about every 14-15 seconds. That gets rid of quite a few enemies fairly effectively. Get a bit more duration (or briskier recitation) and you can basically just stand there singing Soft Winds at them (stacked 3 deep that's still base 6 damage per tick, and no DR) until they die (this would be particularly apt on a female Chanter called Lauryn, obviously). 

 

This is what I like about the design of the Chanter in particular actually. You have some great high level phrases but these don't automatically supercede the lower level ones, there's a genuine trade-off there. Sticking to lower level phrases to either get to high level invocations or to spam lower level ones is certainly also a viable strategy. 

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Actually you can hit close enemies up to 3 times reliably with Seven Nights, which is pretty neat.

 

When doing bounties with chanter builds I had the following impressions:

 

- low DEX lowers your invocation rate a lot

- The Dragon Thrashed feels superior to everything else if you only look a the chanter's damage

- Come Sweet Winds - as every lvl1 chant - only takes 2 seconds to chant at lvl 16 and stacking it will do good AoE damage until you finish with Seven Nights which is castable very quickly.

- with low DEX this approach can't reach the DPS of Dragon Thrashed, but you are more flexible because you can choose whatever invocation you like every few seconds. You can also fit in one long lasting chant for different effects - for example Old Siec or Damage Shield - without loosing too much time.

- With high DEX and low armor you can chain cast The Killers Froze stiff at lvl 16, stunlocking everything while damaging it. That is very powerful CC while doing OK AoE damage at the same time.

Concerning dps: Getting the most out of Seven Nights is difficult because you can't stand in the midst of a mob with max DEX and no armor. But if you could - for example with the help of buffs from party members - I think the DPS of a high DEX chanter with Come Sweet Winds + Seven Nights can be as good as The Dragon Thrashed. It's a lot more fuzz and the playstyle needs a lot more micro, but is of course a lot more versatile.

 

For my Chillfog chanter I still chose low DEX and a tanky approach because it was easier to play - less knockouts. And when being alone it doesn't matter that much if fights take longer as long as your defenses and DR are high enough. But I also made a version with more DEX because it's more fun to play that way.

 

I think the "beauty" of a Dragon Thrashed tank is that it combines a no micro tank with tons of no micro AoE damage. So it's super effective to have one in the party - just sitting there, drawing aggro, giving AoE heal aura and burning stuff at the same time. Can also be superboring of course - but in a full party you have to do a lot of things all the time, so that's not too bad.

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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Dragon Thrashed is so strong if you have high perception and might (and enough int to hit enough enemies) - maybe eldritch aim potion...

if you play with such a chanter you dont need dex or low armor recovery... and you will still deal enough damage to kill most stuff in a reasonable time - doing nothing but keeping the chanter chanting... but you should forget him in your group and dont micro him - at all - if you start looking at his damage and simply microing him so he hits everyone and he doesnt get CC'd... its the most boring way to play...

 

i think i will test a caster chanter again - i really wanna know how effective a high level chanter with white wurms is (buff his ACC and hit those pesky monks stack them sky high... wanna blow something up?) too bad i dont have time anytime soon - but it sounds like fun!

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I think it really all depends on party composition.

 

Assuming you want your chanter to do damage high might is always a given (16+). Other than in gimmick builds, high intellect will always be very useful as well (16+).

 

Unless you're playing a chanter that isn't going to be in the enemies face (ranged), Con and Resolve should be at least around 10.

 

That leaves you with Dex and Per.

 

If you've got a party with a lot of crowd control e.g. wizard, Druid and Cipher I don't think you'd be any worse off dumping dex and investing in either per for more offence, res for more defence/concentration. Con is a possibility too though there is wound binding. This kind of chanter can focus on doing damage through dragon thrashed and then have the invocations as a bonus for when you need them; you'll either be much more survivable (con/res boost) or all your chants and invocations will be much more accurate (per boost) giving you more bang for your buck at the cost of laggier spell casting, so it's not like you're that worse off pumping per instead and dumping dex. Personally if I wanted to go extra tanky I'd rather invest in res than con for the concentration and deflection. This kind of build let's the dragon thrashed do the work because you've got your other bases covered.

 

If you've got a party that doesn't have as much CC, higher dex (10+) and focusing on short phrases while keeping con/res/per reasonable and still with high Might/intellect. This guy can do a fair bit of damage as well with the invocations when need be but also can make up for party deficiencies in crowd control with added CC/Summons. Ie more "balanced" approach.

 

I think either character can switch to the other style without THAT much difficulty - for instance even with a chanter with dumped dex you'll still have +7 Accuracy on everything you do if you put those points in to per instead, from dragon thrashed to Paralyse invocations. Maybe that extra Per is the thing that makes the difference rather than being able to get the invocation off more quickly? Who knows.

Edited by Livegood118
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You can switch between one and the other sure, but it isn't the most efficient. A summoning/debuffing chanter doesn't need Might for one thing, so you could opt to go high Int and put the rest in Per and Dex, maybe even dump Might a little. In between invocations, put him to work casting useful buffing/debuffing scrolls and Arbalesting stuff. And as Boeroer says, at higher levels you can add an occasional higher-level phrase without damaging your phrase count too much, especially if you have good Dex to compensate for it on the Invocations.

 

It also feels like a rather more interesting and versatile character than just a lumbering lump passively chanting Dragon Thrashed at people. Though personally I prefer Aesfyllath anyway, seems more useful; and also has the advantage of not needing high Might either.

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I go with heavy melee parties where the damage is being done via weapon attacks so for me I find the chant that adds the +25% fire lash as being better to keep up instead of Dragon Thrash. A Juggernaut 3.0 Monk with the Chanter fire lash, Lightning Strikes and Turning Wheel does an awful lot of damage. Add in the rest of the team and I prefer the Chanter  making them better instead of himself better.

 

It also gives more flexibility in how you set up your chant songs. Full on Dragon Thrash pretty much just wants that chant repeated, overlapped and stacked. The linger on the fire lash lets you tuck in lower level chants for additional effects without dropping the lash and even a slight drop in the case of adding a higher level chant doesn't affect you that badly.

 

I also like a Chanter to have normal dex so that casting is not painfully slow. I don't even bother with the summons anymore. If I have a pile of corpses then BOOM, a pack of enemies in the melee scrum FREEZE and let the team butcher the paralyzed, if I have a bunch of enemies in  the scrum but an even larger amount outside range then CHARM and give the enemy a lot more targets to lessen the heat.

 

The greatest thing about all of the Chanter's invocations are that they are all foe only. I usually go without the AoE shown so eliminating all friendly fire is great.

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