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Why I Cannot Get into this Game -or- Character Options Stink (for Me)


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Here's my problem:

I want to play melee, I want to play on a higher difficulty, and I want to be unique in the party. Since Eder is going to be in my group, as he is one of the most praised companions in the game, and he is a fighter already, my unique, non-fighter options are rogue, barbarian, chanter (kind of), paladin, and monk.

 

1. Rogue: By all accounts on this forum, rogue sucks. A trash tier damage-dealer who needs to be microed regardless. The viable suggestions for rogue involve some sort of scroll-reading psuedo-caster. Yeah... I wanted to MELEE. Not serve as a low-rent caster. Next...

 

2. Barbarian: All right, a barbarian! A BOOKISH barbarian with genius intelligence? Wait, what!? Okay, whatever... I'll bite. I still get to jump in with my huge two-handed weapon of doom, right? Wait... I don't? I shouldn't do that because Heart of Fury and crit mechanics necessitate pirouetting around Florentine style with two fast weapons? Jesus... Okay, I can just pretend the class is named Fencer instead of Barbarian. Oh, one more thing, many barbarian mechanics revolve around getting killed. Because... that's fun and sensical? Sorry, at this point the class flavor is too damned counter-intuitive. Next...

 

3. Chanter. Chanter? Oh, I hear they can be viable tanks. Cool! But that really means that they pretty much never really hit anything hard and simply "cast" songs in heavy armor. Not melee at all. Next...

 

4. By all accounts on this forum, paladin sucks as well. Worse tank than a fighter? Check. Worse buffer than a Priest? Check. Hits like a wet noodle? Check. Next...

 

5. Monk. I guess I will play a monk. Sigh. The thematic sellout to the otaku, waifu, japanofile types who used to show up with their Oriental Adventures sourcebook to play 2nd Edition. I blame TMNT - but I digress.  Time to roll a monk. TIME TO UPPERCUT A DRAGON LOL!

 

A few hours into the game, and I remember I hate monks and just can't get into the game. Wait a month and repeat the thought process above.

 

So, I have started the game a number of times but just can't get into it. Any help?

 

 

TL;DR

Are there any serious builds I can choose that dish out significant damage hand-to-hand (preferably with a big-ass 2-hander) that require neither goofy mechanics (i.e. scrollthief and the incredible dying barbarian)? Can I choose one without severely undercutting maximum potential? Also, can I do it without being Eder part 2?

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First of all your post had me laughing prtty hard, good job. :)

(In a very positive way)

If you really want to do a lot of damage with your weapon I can only advise cipher.

Cipher is less squishy than rogue and also buff itself.

But I'm not gonna lie it's not a char you learn how to melee with in 1 day, ranging is a lot more inituitive (and less fun).

Also you get to use powers which are ofc partially spells, but you could just use buffs and debuffs to accentuate meleeing.

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2: Barbarians are perfectly viable using a two-handed weapon or a weapon and shield. Sure, full attacks benefit more from dual wielding, but unless you absolutely must min-max it's not that important. Even if you do feel obliged to go two-weapon style there's plenty of one handed weapons that are perfectly Barbariany: axes and warhammers spring to mind. As for Vengeful Defeat: Boeroer has a build based around making the most of the ability, but most of Boeroer's builds are about finding weird ways to play a class. I'm about to start a Barbarian PotD playthrough and I have no intention of taking Vengeful Defeat.

 

3: I can understand that, if you want to focus on doing melee damage with your weapon, then Chanters aren't for you.

 

4: I don't know which accounts about Paladins sucking you've been reading, because Paladins don't suck at all. They're great tanks, more than good enough to main tank the game if designed to; they good buffers, not as good as Priests sure, but they can be good buffers whilst also being great tanks which Priests cannot; finally at high levels, with Sacred Immolation, they do brilliant damage. Sure, at lower levels they're not going to be topping the damage charts, they'll still contribute (particularly with a two-handed or two one-handers when using Flames of Devotion).

 

5: That's a shame, Monks are great fun and fit your desire for a non-Fighter melee class who does damage with weapons. I say this as someone who has no idea what otaku or waifu means, and who isn't particularly Japanophile. One thing I am sure you already know, but in case you don't: all Monk abilities work with weapons and armour just as well as without. A Monk in full plate and wielding a greatsword works fine.

 

As for a solution to your problem, I think you're focussing too much on min-maxing/being optimal. Sure, Rogues are weakest class in the game, but a Rogue main character with the story companions can still certainly beat PotD. Similarly it's not like a two-handed Barbarian is bad, they're just not going to benefit quite as much from full attack abilities. Honestly, outside of solo PotD this game is easy enough that I prefer to avoid absolute min-maxing in favour of a bit of challenge and role-playing reasons.

 

Also I'll second Raven Darkholme's suggestion of a melee Cipher (you can focus on their self buffs if you really don't want to be a "spell caster"). On top of this, Wizards can be built as a really good pure melee class with summoned weapons and self buffs, and another non-obvious melee choice is a pet Ranger.

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Sure, it's my fault. :| I lure little kids to the weird side of the character creation and all...

 

I do builds that are unusual or (hopefully) interesting and still work well. Why should I post the obvious? :) Not very entertaining. I'm not Obsidian's official build encyclopedia where you can find all viable builds - I just do that stuff for my own amusement so I limit myself to the werid stuff like a Barb with a dead wish. That's not necessarily the "best" way (although it's pretty good).

 

That doesn't mean the obvious doesn't work well.

 

For example the great sword wielding barbarian works really well. No need to be a fencer. Sure - there are some nice synergies between a certain rapier and carnage and HoF - but that doesn't make other, more traditional builds bad.

Give him a great sword and make him strong and meaty, give him frenzy, bloodlustand blood thirst and he will be good and lots of fun. Aim for the Hours of St. Rumbalt and see the magic of carnage + prone + high damage. Or use Tidefall and look at the tremendous wounding damage and the self heal via carnage + draining. Both variants are lots of fun and powerful.

Atm I'm playing a barb tank with weapon & shield and dazing + frightening via shouts - also very nice.

 

And on the other hand - you don't have to stick to the traditional monk. Play him like a fighter with a two hander in fat armor and he will do great. Just pretend he's a templar or whatever suits you.

 

I think rogues are a bit weak compared to the other classes, especially because their late game abilities are not as "wow" as those of other classes - but they still do a lot of melee damage.

 

Also, the impression of paladins is wrong. He's a great mixture of support and sturdiness. And paladins are actually better tanks than fighters. Fighters are good tanks, but even better at other things, like disrupting the enemies' back line without going down. Paladins also have the best healing abilities in the game. Look out for the "damaging healbot".

 

And of course there's no rule that says you can't habe two fighters in the party.

 

Maybe you did a little bit too much research about what's the optimum when you just should have started a game and see where it gets you?

Edited by Boeroer
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Can't say - I never play those. :)

 

It was partly a joke, but also my experience back when I played WoW was of very aggressive forums which would flat out tell you you were an idiot if you didn't use the best build, and even casual raid guilds often requiring their members use said builds or risk being barred from raiding. If you're used to that mindset, and you come into a game like PoE which is superficially similar to an MMO, you might naturally look for the best builds.

 

Of course I could be reading too much into it. I have been known to do so.

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I blame MMOs.

 

I was already blaming them before it was cool. :disguise:

 

 

 

 

 

 

:biggrin:

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"Time is not your enemy. Forever is."

— Fall-From-Grace, Planescape: Torment

"It's the questions we can't answer that teach us the most. They teach us how to think. If you give a man an answer, all he gains is a little fact. But give him a question, and he'll look for his own answers."

— Kvothe, The Wise Man's Fears

My Deadfire mods: Brilliant Mod | Faster Deadfire | Deadfire Unnerfed | Helwalker Rekke | Permanent Per-Rest Bonuses | PoE Items for Deadfire | No Recyled Icons | Soul Charged Nautilus

 

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Back on topic, Chanters can be made to hit pretty hard. Not as hard as Fighers or Monks, perhaps, but still hard.

 

I'm using Boeroer's The Last Unicorn build in my pre-3.04 party testing sessions (I'm OCD like that) and with but a couple buffs (and its weapon enchanted to Superb + lash), its Accuracy and damage are nothing to sneeze at. The only drawback is that it hits rather slowly, in part because I needed to use Durgan Steel and Gauntlets of Swift Action on other characters. A potion DAOM ameliorates that to an extent, but everybody else in my party attacks a lot faster (that's largely due to my preference for fast-paced aggro, which leads me to optimizing attack speed as much as possible across the board.)

 

But yeah, a well-built protagonist Chanter can be made to hit hard and at a decent speed, on top of passively chanting and healing the party (and casting invocations to boot.)

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"Time is not your enemy. Forever is."

— Fall-From-Grace, Planescape: Torment

"It's the questions we can't answer that teach us the most. They teach us how to think. If you give a man an answer, all he gains is a little fact. But give him a question, and he'll look for his own answers."

— Kvothe, The Wise Man's Fears

My Deadfire mods: Brilliant Mod | Faster Deadfire | Deadfire Unnerfed | Helwalker Rekke | Permanent Per-Rest Bonuses | PoE Items for Deadfire | No Recyled Icons | Soul Charged Nautilus

 

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What people also sometimes miss is that a chanter who wants to focus on melee (and NOT use the obvious "The Dragon obliterates everything" chant) can deal good damage via his self buffs which he can keep up 100% of the time with lvl 1 phrases after some levels with decent DEX and INT - and later also with "The Champion braved the Horde alone", which lasts surprisingly long. Another nice touch is to use a burning lash on your weapon and sing the "Myth Fyr" phrase and combine it with Scion of Flame. That way you will have a 60% burning lash on your weapon (while others in range also get lashes) which is way better than Sneak Attack and such. It's not as powerful as the Dragon Slashed, but if you want to go the melee road it's definitely good.

The Champion invocation also gives you ridiculous interrupts - combine that with high PER, Interrupting Blows and an item that gives you better interrupt values and you are THE disruptor. And as I said: the damage per hit is pretty nice, too. Also works with ranged weapons obviously.

Edited by Boeroer
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Casting reaping knives on the chanter whilst having 0 attack recovery also makes it very viable in melee, but then again that counts for everyone even rogue.

 

In the initial post I missed the part about the op saying paladins suck.

As others here stated, that couldn't be farther from the truth.

The paladin has always been an awesome tank and group supporter.

With the addition of sacred immolation it also became one of the best damage dealers, if you max Might and go with high Int.

With the addition of Defensive Mindweb to the cipher a "tank" generally got raised in usefulness by a massive amount, since that spell transforms your whole party in a tank, ofc each retaining their unique abilities.

My paladin in my trio party is not even optimised and has in combat with the use of Llengraths potion (you only need to use it on the tank for mindweb) 152 deflection 172 Fort (she is also Coastal Aumaua, wears boots of stability and little savior), 162 Reflex and somewhere in the 140 will range.

No other class has this widely spread defenses and even tho it's useless if the rest of your party gets roasted, with mindweb now you have the amazing ability to transform all your party into monsters.

The paladin already supported the pparty with various abilities this is just a further form of support.

Not possible ofc ithout the cipher who is also amazing support, whilst being a vicious attacker.

(And yes my high defense paladin still has maxed Might and almost maxed Int and with SA still a damage monster)

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Also: only a paladin is able to wear the Outworn Buckler, which is the best shield until you find Little Savior and improves his and his fellows' defenses even more.

 

I often chose a paladin only because of that shield.

Edited by Boeroer
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Okay, so I think I have something I can work with:

 

Pale Elf Barbarian

2 Handed (Soldier Weapons)

Medium Armor

 

Str:   18

Con: 9

Dex: 20

Per: 10

Int:   18

Res: 3

 

I do not plan on building this character around dying lol. Also, running on hard difficulty for the playthrough.

Will this work?

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​​

Well, the way I see it:

  • ​Paladins do not suck.  I used one as my main melee recently, and it was extremely effective.  Probably the best melee class I've used in PoE.
     
  • ​Chanters do not suck.  Also, you can play them lots of ways, including hitting things with swords and ignoring the damage songs entirely.  In fact, my first play, I didn't use the damage songs at all.  It worked out fine.
     
  • Fighters do not suck either.
     
  • ​Can't speak for barbs and monks as I've never tried them.  But in general, every class in PoE is drastically overpowered compared to the content, even on PotD, if you are in a 6-man party.  The game simply does not offer enough difficulty to make you sweat the minutia, unless you are playing under self-imposed rules to make it harder for yourself.  So, the point is to have fun.​  Play whatever you find fun.​​  You can build any class at all into an effective melee class in PoE.

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Okay, so I think I have something I can work with:

 

Pale Elf Barbarian

2 Handed (Soldier Weapons)

Medium Armor

 

Str:   18

Con: 9

Dex: 20

Per: 10

Int:   18

Res: 3

 

I do not plan on building this character around dying lol. Also, running on hard difficulty for the playthrough.

Will this work?

 

Honestly, I'd not dump Resolve so much, especially in the early game and especially if you don't want to spend much time on the ground. Similarly for Barbarians I'd avoid dropping Constitution below 10. I'd probably go with something more like

 

Mig 16

Con 10

Dex 12

Per 14

Int 16

Res 10

 

Explanation: Obviously Might and Intellect are important for a damage dealing Barbarian but unlike in some RPG rulesets all attributes scale linearly in PoE so you don't have the same impetus to chase max values.

 

Barbarians have the highest Health and Endurance multipliers, which means they suffer more from the percentage decrease from Constitution below 10 (and gain more from above 10) so I avoid going below 10 on Barbarians.

 

The Dexterity score is perhaps debatable: in the early game Dexterity is important for attack speed but at level 7 the Barbarian gets access to Blood Thirst which makes attack speed much less important, and even before this the speed bonuses from Frenzy and Bloodlust make having lower Dexterity less important. In fact I'd even consider lowering Dexterity to 10.

 

Barbarians have comparatively low accuracy for a melee class, so I like to make up for this with a few points in Perception. I am others will disagree with this choice though.

 

Finally, the above attribute spread gives a nice balance of defences i.e. you get +12 to all of Fortitude, Reflex and Will, whereas your original spread suffers from low Will.

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Okay, so I think I have something I can work with:

 

Pale Elf Barbarian

2 Handed (Soldier Weapons)

Medium Armor

 

Str:   18

Con: 9

Dex: 20

Per: 10

Int:   18

Res: 3

 

I do not plan on building this character around dying lol. Also, running on hard difficulty for the playthrough.

Will this work?

 

Honestly, I'd not dump Resolve so much, especially in the early game and especially if you don't want to spend much time on the ground. Similarly for Barbarians I'd avoid dropping Constitution below 10. I'd probably go with something more like

 

Mig 16

Con 10

Dex 12

Per 14

Int 16

Res 10

 

Explanation: Obviously Might and Intellect are important for a damage dealing Barbarian but unlike in some RPG rulesets all attributes scale linearly in PoE so you don't have the same impetus to chase max values.

 

Barbarians have the highest Health and Endurance multipliers, which means they suffer more from the percentage decrease from Constitution below 10 (and gain more from above 10) so I avoid going below 10 on Barbarians.

 

The Dexterity score is perhaps debatable: in the early game Dexterity is important for attack speed but at level 7 the Barbarian gets access to Blood Thirst which makes attack speed much less important, and even before this the speed bonuses from Frenzy and Bloodlust make having lower Dexterity less important. In fact I'd even consider lowering Dexterity to 10.

 

Barbarians have comparatively low accuracy for a melee class, so I like to make up for this with a few points in Perception. I am others will disagree with this choice though.

 

Finally, the above attribute spread gives a nice balance of defences i.e. you get +12 to all of Fortitude, Reflex and Will, whereas your original spread suffers from low Will.

 

 

To expand on JerekKruger's advice I'd drop the dexterity to 10 and add it to Con. Once you get the ability that gets zero recovery after a kill (bloodthirst?) your dex won't matter as much while have 10% more of a large endurance pool will really change your ability to stay vertical in a fight.

 

I'd even look to take it even further with:

Boreal Dwarf - for the look and for the +15 accuracy versus the most common enemies. But Pale Elf will work fine as well

Might - 16 - more damage and more healing

Con - 16 - your endurance pool and health will be Yuge!

Dex - 10 - good enough when the zero recovery kicks in

Per - 10 - losing 4 accuracy is better when you can get +30% endurance

Int - 16 - better duration and carnage area

Res - 10 - don't want to be interrupted all the time, can still get high enough with boosts to talk down the Alpine Dragon if you want

 

Your reflex is lower but your all important fortitude defence is higher. Suffering a reflex attack gets you damaged, suffering a fortitude attack gets you stunned or worse.

 

Take Veteran's Recovery for the regen early and be unkillable. Start with heavy armor and lighten it up as desired as you get more and more endurance.

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I also like Boreal Dwarves a lot with barbs because of the inherent +15 ACC against two creature groups which can lead to easy fights because carnage crits all the time when fighting those. And at the beginning of the game (which is the hardest part of all, esp. for a barb) it's a huge boost. Then I would aim for 4 and then 10 survival asap to add +10 / +15 ACC. THis way your barb will not miss all the time.  

 

If you plan to take Frenzy, Bloodlust and Blood Thirst (which I'd do) then you really don't need 20 DEX.

 

10 CON can work, but without a shield I'd give a barb more CON. On a barb CON pays off because his base vaules of endurance and health (as well as the higer values at level up) work really good wtih the +5% per point of CON. After some levels they turn from squishies in meat shields because of that. At level 16 you can around 500 endurance which is twice the endurance your other chars have and around 6000(!) health. As long as your healing is good this guy won't go down easily. But you can't feel that in the first few levels.

 

I wouldn't leave PER at 10 - carnage already has lower ACC than your normal attack - and one of the best things that you can do with carnage is to apply AoE interrupts and AoE on-crit effects. 

 

If you take Veteran's Recovery (which I would do asap) you want high MIG and INT (doesnt need to be maxed). Watch out for Belt of Bountiful Healing or Fulvano's Amulet: they are great together with Veteran's Recovery. If you feel that you ACC is high enough you can also use the survival bonus for healing which also really boosts your survivability.

 

At the beginning of the game high DR is very effective and high endurance is not. But during the game thios drastically changes. Because DR doesn't scale as much as enemies' damage which on the other hand doesn't scale as much as endurance. So as the others said, you can start with heavy armor and then - with each level up, you can choose lighter armor if you feel like it.

Edited by Boeroer
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Thanks so much for the advice.

 

One question, however. I don't understand the 10 RES. It seems that with 3 RES I am getting hit by every attack; however, with 10 RES I am STILL getting hit with every attack. Wouldn't it be better, since I am getting hit either way, to put those points into CON?

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Is more about concentration... Beign hit is ok, beign hit and interrupted all day not. And resolve is the only way to mantain concentration at acceptable levels, unless you find a random belt, a random glove or an end game necklace. Or drink potion of spiritual shield at every fight

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Remember that, unlike in D&D*, crit chance increases with the difference between Accuracy and Deflection, so whilst you might be hit just as often with 10 Resolve as you are with 3, you'll likely be crit a lot more.

 

Also as Dr <3 says, every time you're hit there's a chance you'll be interrupted, adding a bit of time to your recovery. This is defended against with Concentration, which is tied to Resolve, so tanking Resolve leads to being interrupted a lot, which leads to frustrating combat. This is less of a problem if you're using a reach weapon like a Pike, and can hide behind other characters to avoid getting hit, but with a Greatsword you're going to be in melee range of enemies and you're going to get hit.

 

Personally I dislike lowering any attribute lower than 8 for role-play reasons. To my mind, a Resolve 3 character represents someone with literally no ability to resist temptation. The sort of person who answers "yes" to the question "would you like to..." before it's even finished. I don't like playing characters like that so I keep my attributes at or above 8. Obviously you might not feel the same, this is just personal preference.

 

*I haven't played D&D since 3.5 so this might not be true anymore. However back when I played, crits were determined by your unmodified hit roll.

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I've got to say I disagree on RES, if CON is not maxed on a barb rather max that.

Sure if out of the 10 points you save from Dex you can still put some in Res be my guess, but if you need them to max con do that.

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