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figurehead00

Can any Range experts help me out with some Ranger questions?

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Howdy Ranger experts,


I'm finally getting a chance to really dig in to PoE! I don't know if you're as excited about that as I am, but I'm pretty excited. I'll probably try starting on Hard and see how it goes.


I started a game last night as a Cipher but stayed up way too late just learning the rule set (I think I read the entire Cyclopedia). The Cipher seem extremely cool, but my mind kept going back to Rangers. Ever since I first played D&D in high school Rangers have been my favorite class.


Now, I remember when the game first came out Rangers were getting dunked on pretty hard, but I also know a TON of updates have happened since then, so I'm wondering how they stack up now.


Since this is my first deep-dive into the game I wanted to look over an in-depth character guide to get an idea how the class works and I found this on over on the Obsidian forums and I'm wondering if it's outdated or not.


Also, any tips for playing it from the start? It looks like it focuses pretty heavily on the Stormcaller bow (as do most of the Ranger threads I've seen), which I think is in the expansion? So I'm guessing there's a lot of game between starting out and getting my hands on it.


Absolutely any help would be appreciated!


tl;dr - How's this build look? Any Ranger tips you can think of? Thanks!


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First of all: using grey color on grey background is a bold move. :)

 

If you want to play a bow ranger (so it seems) then one of the best weapons can be achieved very early: Persistance is a hunting bow that lies in level 4 of the Endless Paths, a dungeon below the fortress of Caed Nua (that you will take as your own home base).

 

This bow has the wounding enchantment. It's the best unique enchantment for damage (besides the speed enchantment).

Especially if you combine it with a high might (MIG) and a low INT value (some weird damage-over-time mechanics are the reason).

 

And there's another reason why Persistance is one of the best choices for a bow ranger (besides Stormcaller): wounding triggers Predator's Sense, a talent that boosts your pet's damage a LOT (+50%). Since your animal companion will have high base damage but attacks quite slowly, you want to make sure that every hit (or bite) is as effective as possible. With Persistance that's very easy: just shoot at an enemy and let your pet attack with Predator's Sense, and it will bite most foes in half. It's like having an additional rogue in the party.

 

Good thing is that bow rangers don't need a ton of talents to be good shooters, so you can but quite some talents/abilites for the pet's damage, too. Pet's damage scales with level and gets really ridiculous once you combine wounding + Predator's Sense, Wounding Shot (hobbles the enemy) + Merciless Companion and Vicious Companion. It will hit like a truck after some time. A slow but heavy hitter. I would recommend a wolf in combination with Persistance. Wolfs have the highest base damage of all pets and attack quite fast (compared to bears for example). Stag's carnage is also nice, but since Persistance is better against single enemies the wolf fits perfectly well.

 

Another nice thing is that you can even get away with low INT as long as you attack fast enough. Low INT favours the wounding damage of Persistence and Wounding Shot because the fixed raw damage will not be spread out over time but gets applied in a very short amount of time - thus increasinf damamge per second. Just adjust INT in a way so that the enemy is wounded permanently, that's enough to ensure high dps AND Predator's Sense all the time.

 

This is the best setup for single target damage for a ranger. Stormcaller produces less single target damage, but has the nice shock based things (reduced DR, two damage types and so on) and additional crowd control (stun through Returning Storm). 

 

The Storm- and Plague-Caller build is very nice as well. You can even start with Persistance and then retrain after you find Stormcaller - if you feel that bow suits you better.

Edited by Boeroer
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The INT isn't really a problem for wounding since the damage remains the same - if you do it in 2 or 3 ticks it doesn't make a big difference in the end. Also you need high INT once you get stunning shots if you want to be able to stunlock effectively.

 

The pet (especially the wolf) can do some serious damage, but doesn't tank very well. Personally I use it more like a distraction or as another layer of defense for my ranger. Once you have stunning shots the pet becomes very effective when you want to eliminate isolated targets (casters, ranged attackers).

 

A very effective way to play your ranger is to open with 2 arquebuses/arbalests using Wounding Shot (the wounding depends on the damage done by your shot) and Vicious Aim, then switch to bow.

 

The best races for ranger are the Woodland Elf (for the best ranged accuracy), the Island Aumaua (for the best damage and the 3rd weapon slot) or the Boreal Dwarf (for the best damage and bonus accuracy vs Wilder/Primordial)

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I think the above posts hit the optimal build info. I did a warbow ranger run once before i knew a lot of the optimal stuff. There are a few interesting warbows. For ranger they would be: 

 

Cloudpiercer  - Rending: 3 DR bypass AND Spell Striking: Grants Jolting Touch on Critical Hit (1 per encounter)

The Rain of Godagh Field - +20% Attack Speed

Sabra Marie - Spell Striking: Grants Confuse on Critical Hit AND Annihilation: +0.5 to Crit Damage Multiplier

 

I ended up use Sabra Marie alot the confuse is funny and annihilation good. It was a little annoying because the second confuse hits enemies, companions would stop targeting those enemies and you had to pause and re target them. Not sure i remember which warbow the community landed on as better dps - The Rain of Godagh Field or Sabra Marie but it was a fun playthrough but not optimal.

 

I love the ranger class in the is game with the pet. I enjoy the micromanagement with maneuvering your pet around. i actually go melee rangers mostly now for even more micro. So be prepared for that. 

Edited by draego

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I think the above posts hit the optimal build info. I did a warbow ranger run once before i knew a lot of the optimal stuff. There are a few interesting warbows. For ranger they would be:

 

Cloudpiercer - Rending: 3 DR bypass AND Spell Striking: Grants Jolting Touch on Critical Hit (1 per encounter)

The Rain of Godagh Field - +20% Attack Speed

Sabra Marie - Spell Striking: Grants Confuse on Critical Hit AND Annihilation: +0.5 to Crit Damage Multiplier

 

I ended up use Sabra Marie alot the confuse is funny and annihilation good. It was a little annoying because the second confuse hits enemies, companions would stop targeting those enemies and you had to pause and re target them. Not sure i remember which warbow the community landed on as better dps - The Rain of Godagh Field or Sabra Marie but it was a fun playthrough but not optimal.

 

I love the ranger class in the is game with the pet. I enjoy the micromanagement with maneuvering your pet around. i actually go melee rangers mostly now for even more micro. So be prepared for that.

Don't forget Borresaine!


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

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Don't forget Borresaine! 

 

I didnt mention Borresaine on purpose. Its affect is 'Stunning: Attacks can Stun on Crits'. This is not a good effect for a ranger. Rangers get Stunning Shots which is not the exact same thing but close enough to make it not as useful as the other warbows i mentioned.  

 

I stand corrected by Boeroer below

Edited by draego

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Yes, Borresaine is the earliest weapon you can get that has a disabling enchantment (in this case stunning). Very nice until you get Stunning Shots (which comes pretty late at lvl 11). It's totally useful to have Borresaine before that. You can buy it as soon as you enter Defiance Bay. After lvl 11 I like the Rain (if I use warbows). Sabra Marie is not so great for rangers in my opinion because the pet will always stop attacking a turned enemy and has to run to another one. I like that bow more on rogues.

Edited by Boeroer

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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Yes, Borresaine is the earliest weapon you can get that has a disabling enchantment (in this case stunning). Very nice until you get Stunning Shots (which comes pretty late at lvl 11). After that I like the Rain (if I use warbows). Sabra Marie is not so great for rangers in my opinion because the pet will always stop attacking a turned enemy and has to run to another one. I like that bow more on rogues.

 

Ye that was my experience to and this was one of my first playthroughs. It was pretty annoying  :banghead: but i plowed through with it. I didnt understand how powerful speed enchants were at the time.  You can re target your pet to the confused person so that is how i handled that. You just have to pay more attention to that. again annoying but doable

 

Good point about Borresaine in that it is useful until stunning shots later in the game. I stand corrected.

Edited by draego

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Boeroer I would be curious to hear your thoughts on crossbow ranger. I have seem some talk about it in the forums. I guess it would be more like gun switching build with crossbows like Good Friend, Wendgar, Twin Sting and once you switch you stay with that crossbow for the rest of the fight. I had seen a debate on swift aim vs Vicious Aim with this build also. 

Edited by draego

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I guess you mean crossbows only and not arbalests?

 

Crossbows have some disadvantages:

 

- a reload phase (bad for dps)

- lowest base damage of all reloding weapons (bad for quick switching)

- only one damage type (like all reloading weapons)

- no special feat like other weapons have (e.g. dr bypass or prone on crit or two damage types - nothing)

- not so special uniques (nothing really exciting like wounding or annihilating or whatever)

- late uniques (lvl 8 and 15 of the Endless Paths)

- few uniques (only 2)

- shares weapon focus with only 3 other weapon types, none of them ranged (weakest weapon focus group)

 

Advantages:

- normal crit damage modifier (compared to all other reloading weapons)

 

I don't consider Twin Sting a crossbow because it's soulbound and thus works with any weapon focus. It's a good weapon for a ranger but no reason to stick to crossbows until you get it.

 

Because of those reasons I consider crossbows to be one of the worst weapon choices in the game. They are ok for rogues who can achieve a great hit/crit ratio, but even then there are other reloading weapons like arbalest, arquebus or blunderbuss which are simply better (higher base damage = great for damage mods like Sneak, Deathblows & Backstab).

 

For a ranger, a crossbow has no special benefit whatsoever. Sure, with your pet and stuff you can crit a lot, too, but things like Wounding Shot favor highest base damage and other stuff like Stunning Shots needs higher attack speed. Then there are Twinned Arrows for bows and Powder Burns for guns - but nothing special for crossbows. You can achieve an ok attack and crit rate with crossbows and Swift Aim + Gunner + Wendgär - but it's nothing compared to Twinned Arrows or the burst damage of three (or four) guns with Powder Burns, fired with quick switching. It's even worse than using the Golden Gaze (rod) or the Engwithan Scepter which also don't profit from Twinned Arrow or Powder Burns. Actually a ranger with Vicious Aim + Dangerous Implements is pretty nice - because there are so many awesome unique implements.

 

Good Friend has a nice enchantment for ranger & pet who like to attack the same target - but I tested it with a hearth orlan ranger + wolf and even that combination is not even close to Persistance which you get a lot earlier than Good Friend in the same dungeon. And it's still worse than a simple implement.

 

What crossbows lack is some special feat (maybe +0.3 crit damage mod for all crossbows or +5 ACC like rapiers, clubs, spears and daggers) and more uniques to make them worthwhile. I guess Twin Sting was an attempt, but it comes so late and its not a real crossbow for me - nothing to encourage the use of crossbows.

Edited by Boeroer
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I tried a skirmisher Ranger crossbow/arbslest build recently. My npcs outshined my main all day long. I found it lackluster despite my best efforts and large well of patience.

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

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The INT isn't really a problem for wounding since the damage remains the same - if you do it in 2 or 3 ticks it doesn't make a big difference in the end. Also you need high INT once you get stunning shots if you want to be able to stunlock effectively.

 

The pet (especially the wolf) can do some serious damage, but doesn't tank very well. Personally I use it more like a distraction or as another layer of defense for my ranger. Once you have stunning shots the pet becomes very effective when you want to eliminate isolated targets (casters, ranged attackers).

 

A very effective way to play your ranger is to open with 2 arquebuses/arbalests using Wounding Shot (the wounding depends on the damage done by your shot) and Vicious Aim, then switch to bow.

 

The best races for ranger are the Woodland Elf (for the best ranged accuracy), the Island Aumaua (for the best damage and the 3rd weapon slot) or the Boreal Dwarf (for the best damage and bonus accuracy vs Wilder/Primordial)

 

How high is high and how low is low? Any advice on the stats when making a ranger character.

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