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[SM] 2H Hybrid DPS defensive stat priorities

Swordmaster, Shadow Warrior, White Lion, Archmage

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emoneys147
Posts: 3

[SM] 2H Hybrid DPS defensive stat priorities

Post#1 » Sat Mar 28, 2020 6:19 pm

Hi all,

I rolled a Swordmaster recently and it is far and away my favorite class so far. Coming from playing other tanks, I no longer feel like I'm lightly rapping people with a fly swatter and asking them politely to please stahp. I also feel like I am able to hold my own on the frontline, and enjoy the jack-of-all-trades mix of offense, survivability, and cute little group heals. Punishing the mDPS who try to ignore me is particularly cathartic.

All this being said, I would like some guidance on what stats I should be dumping my rr into, in terms of defense. Obviously strength and melee crit are my main DPS stats, and secondarily weapon skill (I assume), but what should I be prioritizing in terms of defense? I am still a tank, so I need to fill that role or risk becoming a middling DPS. Crit reduction is clearly a must and dodge/disrupt/parry as well, but should I be investing any points into initiative or toughness? Initiative seems very useful with the dodge chance and crit reduction, but is it worth investing rr? Toughness as well. Any build suggestions for masteries would also be welcome.

Thanks in advance!

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Mystry
Posts: 384

Re: [SM] 2H Hybrid DPS defensive stat priorities

Post#2 » Sat Mar 28, 2020 7:54 pm

It kind of depends on where you are at RR-wise. You said you rolled SM recently so that leads me to believe that you're not yet 40/40 yet. If you aren't in the 40 bracket yet, crit really isn't that big a deal so you can ignore Futile Strikes in favor of more parry through Reflexes. If you ARE in the 40 bracket, then dump everything into Futile Strikes until it's maxed out.

Ignore toughness. You'll get plenty from gear and it doesn't matter nearly as much as pure armor or defensive stats do. Since you're using a 2hander, block is obviously pointless. Initiative stacking is THE META to remove chances to crit but that's only in the 40 bracket as far as I know.

Ignore weapon skill. You deal mostly spirit damage. Ironic given that the name of the class is SwordMASTER, but still.

Like I said, I don't know what level/rr you are, but here's a 40/40 pure offense 2 hander build:
Khaine

And here's a more defensive 40/40 that won't deal as much damage but is tankier:
Khaine without Focused Offense

You might notice that the only difference between the two is swapping out one tactic. Khaine builds tend to be very samey.

All that being said, don't try and do the 2 handed thing in big warband fights. It just doesn't end well. Oh, and stack the **** out of armor talismans in case that wasn't obvious.

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Rowduk
Posts: 9

Re: [SM] 2H Hybrid DPS defensive stat priorities

Post#3 » Tue Mar 31, 2020 7:22 pm

Mystry wrote:
Sat Mar 28, 2020 7:54 pm
Oh, and stack the **** out of armor talismans in case that wasn't obvious.
Wouldn't you get better bang for your buck to stack other defensive talismans? Since, if you take Focused Offense, every armor talisman is losing 33% of its value?

Wouldn't stacking Toughness and Wounds give you better value and a higher defense overall?

Mystry
Posts: 384

Re: [SM] 2H Hybrid DPS defensive stat priorities

Post#4 » Tue Mar 31, 2020 7:37 pm

Rowduk wrote:
Tue Mar 31, 2020 7:22 pm
Wouldn't you get better bang for your buck to stack other defensive talismans? Since, if you take Focused Offense, every armor talisman is losing 33% of its value?

Wouldn't stacking Toughness and Wounds give you better value and a higher defense overall?
You should never use Focused Offense on any tank, including SM.
Plus, Armor is more powerful per point than either Toughness or Wounds, and you'll get a lot of toughness and wounds anyway off your gear, since you're still a tank.

I already made a post on why Focused Offense isn't very good, I'll copy and paste it here:
Mystry wrote:
Tue Mar 31, 2020 7:35 pm
I like the IDEA of Focused Offense: Trading some armor in return for more damage when necessary.

But in practice, it's just not very good. Given the armor meta, throwing away 33% armor for 15% damage increase just doesn't make sense, particularly with the relatively low damage thresholds that the game has. I tend to slot something like Ensorcelled Agony instead; I think the steady DoT ends up doing more for you overall than the 15%, without sacrificing armor.

Let me explain with some math.
Let's say that you land an Ether Dance hit for 800 damage (which is pretty reasonable). If you had Focused Offense, you'd do an extra 15% (120), coming out to 920 damage. For simplicity's sake, I'm not going to factor in mitigation that the target has for this.

At level 40, Ensorcelled Agony gives 560 damage over 5 seconds. 560 / 5 = 112, which is only 8 points below the 120 granted by Focused Offense, and it has 4 more ticks of 112 to go, AND you aren't trading 33% of your armor to get it.

Now granted, these numbers can fluctuate wildly depending on who you're hitting and what your gear is and so on, but given that we have only 4 tactic slots to work with, I just can't find room for FO in an offensive SM build. There are too many other, better tactics to take that slot.

TL;DR
Don't use Focused Offense.

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Rowduk
Posts: 9

Re: [SM] 2H Hybrid DPS defensive stat priorities

Post#5 » Tue Mar 31, 2020 7:58 pm

Thanks for the post link. I guess I was confused, as I assumed it was bad, but your DPS build link does have it selected as a trait.

Mystry
Posts: 384

Re: [SM] 2H Hybrid DPS defensive stat priorities

Post#6 » Tue Mar 31, 2020 8:12 pm

Rowduk wrote:
Tue Mar 31, 2020 7:58 pm
Thanks for the post link. I guess I was confused, as I assumed it was bad, but your DPS build link does have it selected as a trait.
That's because FO has some limited use in the early game when you don't have access to other really good talents, and the MUH ARMOR META isn't as strong.

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