Electric Man

Today’s title comes from a track by Rival Sons. And as I have epic and heroic racially reincarnated my Air Savant it is as accurate as an title I have picked for my blog entries.

So I have worked on my completionist and my savant and literally alternating playing them each day. With all the boosts I have now it has become a lot easier blasting through the early levels and with the stunning effect of sonic blast I often get some time to decide who dies in what order. And of course once you hit level four you take electric loop as your first second level spell.

I am power levelling with both now I have hit level four because that is the way I have always done it for the last eight years. Not something DM would ever let you get away with in the PnP (Pen and Paper) version. But online it is a thing and I am guessing a lot of us do it. Now I could level faster if I played reaper etc but I still enjoy the journey and want to take it in rather than rushing and not enjoying it.

I don’t even think about what I take in enhancements as I go forward with the character build. I have done it so many times I wonder if I could make a mistake while not thinking and just assume I got it right? Nope too many times I have made savants and each one has a natural order to being built that has become instinctive. If anyone ever wants help with any of the savants can ask here or on twitter and glad to help.

Obviously the other classes are not as easy for me and I have never levelled an eldritch knight beyond eight so that is something I couldn’t advise on.

Starting to get the feel of writing again.

Grousemerlin.

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Sign Of The Southern Cross

So this is a New Year and Black Sabbath always a great band to listen to so a reference to the southern stars would in this case refer to the first big City to celebrate New Year being Auckland, New Zealand.

So new year and a new start, I have epic and heroic reincarnated Grouseman the Kukri wielding completionist. Played as a ranger last life and for his first Epic Reincarnation taken fast healing as his past life stance. Thinking I will go back to ranger next racial reincarnation as I fancied playing as a fighter for a change.

So the heroic reincarnation was a racial one, so I have just started my third halfling past life. Thinking I will shift to either human or drow next. plenty of time to worry about that when I get there. However I will be doing another character’s rebirth.

Yep timed it so Grousemerlin will reincarnate tomorrow and will be working through his racial lives now. Looking forward to seeing how easy it is with an epic past life added to the mix. Keeping it nice and short today.

Happy New Year from Clan Grouse

Two Hearts

So apart from one person this is just about synergy between race and class and hence the two hearts, wood and blood. This was something I wished I had of known more about when I started, it would have meant a lot less deleting of toons when they didn’t work or were less effective than I was lead to believe. Some races are naturally drawn to some classes and other races would inherently gimp a class.

So Humans are the almost safe bet as they can make any class work and if I was creating my very first character in game, playing as a human makes a lot of sense. With a total of 12 races and 14 classes I could be writing for weeks to cover all the options. Even my favourite class sorcerer has five enhancement options and with 12 races that gives 60 basic options before we start spending enhancement points.

So there are a lot of options but unless you are very confidant in creating unusual builds I would suggest we focus on synergy to make character work to their best. Obviously if you and free to play there are limits but as a VIP and having bought the expansion packs I have everything in game available. Certainly if I was building a divine character like a Cleric or Favoured Soul I would naturally be drawn to Aasimar, Half Orcs make good fighters and Dwarves make good Barbarians. There is no reason that these would be my only choices but if I was starting these are common sense.

Strangely I see my sorcerers ending up as Dragonborn because of the synergy in colour and savant. So breath weapon would benefit from the build and Charisma would enhance the power of the build. The other choice I feel drawn to with Dragonborn is Paladin for either the strength or Charisma.

As to Rogues guess the sensible option would be either Elves or Halflings as the most natural choices but these are only suggestions or hints. I  have played many different races and classes to find what works best for me. Mostly now it has become instinctive for me in choosing race and class especially in reincarnations trying to make characters fun to play and effective. I am sure I will still mess up occasionally but that is fun in a different way trying to survive a bad build.

Madness to the Method

Well writing this a little differently, normally I go through a couple of drafts before putting the blog together. However this time writing from scratch no draft no rewrites. Not sure if it will flow better or not but hey we got to try these things.

So madness to the method is all about Grouseman, who is the character I have made most effort it building. He has his heroic class completionist and will be working on his racial reincarnation and epic as well. He already has four past racial lives but that leaves 28 more racial reincarnations. And that is madness considering I flit between different characters. Those lives are three warforged and one Halfing, currently on his second Halfing life.

I have invested a lot in Kukris for him so he will either end as Tempest Ranger or Assassin Rogue. Got so many lives I will be alternating so as not to be bored by the same old thing. I haven’t started his epics so that will allow me to play other classes and leave the Kukris in the reincarnation cache to he is ready again.

Now his build is real fun as you get plus two to stats from the completionist and he has taken a plus five supreme tome. So although when you look at the build at the start it is not special when you hit level 11 you have plus seven to your ability scores. So say as a human you start with eight on each score strength, dexterity etc will have a base score of 15 at level 11. This is going to make a difference to which ever class you want to play as.

So although planning 28 more lives sounds like a method, there is certainly a madness to spending the amount of time to get to his end goal. This is why the Air Savant is going to reach his end game first. Frustrating but there are only ten more lives there to complete. And yes when you add in the barbarian you are looking at around 45 more lives before I start on my other characters. So say another ten years?

Grouseman seems more Grousemad.

Barbarians of the Wasteland

So rather that just look at my arcane I want to introduce my current second toon who eventually will end up as a Barbarian but is currently a fighter. Reincarnation is such a pain in the butt but the advantages it brings makes it worthwhile even if you are looking at years of working on the character. However this particular toon is still a long way from hitting his potential.

Now I would never even remotely claim to be a melee expert, this is just me working towards something I think works. I am not going to take every past life just those that will help my melee character so after finishing this life he will have 3 past lives as a fighter, 3 as a monk and a couple of barbarian. This is the point where I work towards the racial reincarnations that should help me. Half Orc, Dwarf and Warforged are definite’s however the debate I have is should I take dex based past lives?

You may note that my current preferred weapon is a level 4 Falchion, however is is so effective well beyond where I can start using it that even at level 15 I am quite happy to use it. The fact I want a two handed weapon is one of the reasons I will probably finish as I half orc barbarian with 3 or 4 racial points I can use to increase his effectiveness. It still feels strange talking about a character that is not in it’s expected class as a barbarian but is currently as a fighter, he will not be a completionist but he will be effective up to the epic levels although once capped I am not sure how effective he will be till I start running those quests.

I can drill down into just how effective he is in heroic levels but it doesn’t begin to explain the abilities this character will have in a couple of lives. He is though my go to choice at present when I don’t want to run my Air Savant and he is currently playing in Gianthold (which should be clear from the images). My issue with all my melee is that I tend to struggle to play them for any length of time, I will play for a few weeks and then switch back to arcane casters mainly Sorcerer and Warlock.

I think next week I will look at my class completionist and talk about the plans for hitting racial completionist for all 11 races (does wood elves count as an extra?).

Grouseconan

Just Cos’ You Got The Power

Okay so we are now taking about those thing that can increase the spell power of a Savant and therefore cause more damage. We are talking about the top tier level 20 enhancement, weapons that are not for fighting and even clothing. It all has an impact but some things do not add together however lets look at the three key totals for electric, sonic and cold which covers my Spell powers for my Air Savant and his secondary ability.

So at level 22 GrouseMerlin has 355 electric spell power, 257 for sonic and cold 303. Which seems a little odd but comes down to equipment working with the natural abilities and points spent in the enhancement tree. You can see from my acid power the investment in Air means acid spells are not going to have any effect. So what do we need to look for especially as we enter the epic quests?

So the first thing is the enhancement tree provides boost but you step up a lot when you hit level 20 and you can (and must) take top core Enhancement Elemental Apotheosis Air.  For any savant splashes weaken you a lot in the epic abilities and personally I would avoid adding any classes to Sorcerer. Now taking my favourite quest Devil’s Assault  Elemental Apotheosis Air will bring many advantages but my favourite is casting a spell of that tree’s element on a creature that is immune to that element, that creature becomes vulnerable to that element for a short time. Also while in the elemental form you get +20 increase in spell power for electric and sonic plus also +2 increase to spell critical chance. While you get a +1 to caster level to take a -3 to the other 3 elements.

There are also passive benefit that when combined with the abilities in elemental form has a massive impact. Anyway the next step is to use weapons and/or other items to increase the power of your spells. However if you are going to use cold spells for any reason I would suggest coming out of elemental form. It is my secondary ability but I am wearing a robe that boosts my glaciation. As I am trying for the highest number in glaciation I have no fortification on the outfit so this makes me more reliant on element form as I gain +100% fortification. I will be continuing to look for cool robe or when the winter ice games start maybe boosting a more ordinary robe?

In my right hand I am holding shocking forum post (lvl 20 club) which as seen in the picture has a spelling mistake which is nothing to do with my usual typos. However it is a powerful tool and I have them from level 5 to 30 so I will always have the ability to boost my electric power and increase the chance of a critical hit. I will need to gain another set for my earth savant next so he is ready when I finish Merlin. And of course we should note the increase to spell points which is always a thing to make me smile. Overall the club feels like the most vital part of my attacking armoury which sounds silly for a spell cast but the boost it provides covers me till level 25 when I switch for the next one.

Finally in my left hand is a resonating sceptre to boost my sonic spells, unfortunately the critical hit is for negate energy spells which I don’t really use. Certainly is is one item that is more likely to be switched out as I don’t really use sonic that much except for monsters who ignore electric damage and in my elemental form that sin’t many.

So the four keys to my ability to clear rooms quickly is my elemental form, the clubs and my robe. I am sure those who raid will be better kitted out but as I am a non raider this feels as good as I can currently make it.

Happy Mimic Hunting

Grousemerlin

Under Pressure

So when you look at my defensive and miscellaneous spells you realise there isn’t much in the way of defence when i am playing a savant. Merlin uses Shield, Blur, Detect Secret Doors, Knock, Greater Heroism, Summon Monster IX and has both teleport spells. No resistance spells and no short duration defensive spells. If I really need resistance I will buy a potion but in general I don’t need them. If I need a rogue hireling to deal with the traps then I will buy one but if it is monsters casting then I prefer to just kill them faster than the can cast. Literally I am an arcane cannon which looking at the kills in Devil’s Assault you can tell I am all about offence.

If we look at the 3 spells that are defensive in nature you ask the question do we over do the amount of defensive spells we fill our spell book or memory? I tend to run Devil Assault pretty much every day, even with the Tiefling resistance to electricity I can still finish it in 25 minutes. My level 30 monk can’t clear it that fast so am I doing something wrong? Brec is my preferred lower epic favoured soul mainly for heroes feast. Anyway the reality is there seems to be two ways of playing a savant. You either overload the defensive options and lessen the need for hirelings or you do what I do and use the free level 20 cats (if you have them of course) and two or three favoured souls.

Shield is one of my favourite spells, useful from the start of the game until end game. It grants a +4 shield bonus to armour class, which considering I don’t have any shields with my savants is an obvious positive. It negates magic missile completely and if chain missile is aimed at you it negates that. It doesn’t negate chain missile if you are not the primary target. Final bit of good news is that any damage caused by a grazing hit from a two handed weapon is reduced by 10%. I know there are plenty of items you can use get the effect but that just fills back packs with yet more junk. Still guess some people would rather have a click solution to tying up the spell slot. Personal choice.

So second defensive spell is Blur which causes opponents to miss 20% of the time. As it doesn’t stack with displacement which gives 30% chance to miss but a shorter duration I prefer cast once and not spend minutes watching for a spell to run out So you can cast it again. My Savant takes it after taking electric loop, unlike shield there are not a load of click solutions so people are much more like to consider this a viable option in the spell book.

Greater Heroism is more of a utility spell but having a +4 morale bonus to skill checks isn’t too bad. However for me one of the best bits is the extra hit points and still better the immunity to fear. It doesn’t have a group version which is a shame however it is something that I feel is useful enough to cast it whenever I don’t have it active in an adventure or wilderness. I consider it a necessity in my spell book. Summon Monster is always useful as it creates another target for the opposition and lessens the number focused on me.

Rather than defensive knock and detect secret doors are cover spells. Sometimes you don’t have a rogue in your party and there is a chest that is locked or a doorway/iron gate, having the spell knock with it’s ability to open locks based on the charisma of the caster (intelligence for a wizard) means it is rare a locked door or chest stands in my way. The investment into the feat search is a pain, so having detect secret doors especially when you are in a quest you know well. The option to walk up and click without looking for the door is a fantastic solution to the issues of investing in the search feat. I am sure like most people there are better options to invest in.

The two teleport spells are just helping me be lazy, I could probably do without greater teleport and just rely on the one. The whole purpose of a Savant is to clear areas as fast as possible. I am pretty certain that the right choice of spells only works when you invest in improving the damage. So next post will continue with my Air Savant focusing on the use of items to improve damage. As always  this will be what suits me and is only one person’s view.

Anyway everyone with select what suits them, this is just how I roll.