I disagree. If you were just focused on stacking bleeds then perhaps but if you aren't also using Chilled, Immobilized, Burning, Blind, etc., then you are really playing badly and not making the most of your class. This isn't a game where you should just be standing back and unloading your 'optimum dps rotation.'
Exactly, I'm looking to get the recipe soon so I can make myself (and guildies and future alts) a pair later on.
Through some very extensive testing, with the exception of a VERY choice few abilities (only found one so far!) Condition Duration caps at 100%. The only exception I've found is that the necromancer's scepter autoattack chain is bugged and receiving a much higher % increase than it should. Base is 4s on first 2 of the 3 hits, and It can be increased well over 12s, which should be impossible. (note, every other bleed I've tried on necro always caps at 100% or "double" the base duration).
As such, its trivially easy to reach 100% if you use the "condition specific" stacking, but its much harder to reach a generalized 100%.
30% from trait line + 40% from food is a good 70% general right there if you are min-maxing it. Without the new runes, it takes 4 Nightmare (or Lich) + 2 Lyssa to reach 20% Condition Duration from runes. With the new runes only taking 2 slots for the extra 10%, that leaves you with 2 spare rune slots for anything you like, though you would be losing a rather significant amount of condition damage.
Tough call, although in my case, it could let me NOT invest 30 in fire (which i currently dont) in order to to reach 80% general, then get a 20% specific condition duration increase to hit 100% in one and 80% in the rest, rather than 90% all.
In my case this would be Bleed at 100% (using +20% trait, to bring from 80 to 100), Chill at 100% with a 20% chill rune combo, and leave 80% for the rest.
That might be worth the loss of raw condition damage from the nightmare runes, still trying to decide personally.
In regards to the "why use Ice Bow?" I should have been more specific:
Chill on 3 is FANTASTIC for keeping perma chill along side Frozen Ground.
Ice Storm on 4 not only does fantastic raw structure damage with the build's power (FAR FAR more than the pathetically underpowered GoS, seriously never a reason to use this outside of Earth unless you really just want another aoe to drop) BUT it also stacks confusion better than anything in the entire game for its brief duration against larger targets or groups. With our generalized 80 or 90% condition duration, we have a fantastically good Confusion damage potential here (think I've had a 3k confusion hit, to give an idea, and when used in WvW in massive zergs, I see 1k+ popping up all over the screen.)
Finally, Ice Block on 5 is fantastic if used in a smart, coordinated group, allowing your allies to have some free time on a boss for a revive or just to lower the boss's general damage enough to give people time for self heals etc. Just need to know how to work the Defiance stacks, thief and mesmer are great at this btw. My group has managed a clutch back to back Ice Block to lock a foe down for a LONG time.
Finally, none of our signets, save for Earth, really benefit this build that much to be honest. Burning from Fire maybe, but even then, generally you have so many people applying burning that its not the go-to condition i try to maintain anyway. People will "delay" your burning stacks because they all happen in order of application, so unless i get the first burn on a foe, it will quickly get buried in the stack by guardians et al. Water is useless since the chill on it is amazingly poor compared to the staff / ice bow options, and I dont need condition removal passively since I use Ether as my heal.
Signets just dont provide enough oomph to get into my build, save for Fire signet. Arcane Blast is the trade out skill, so i have to judge weather the might stacking / aoe healing / aoe swiftness / aoe frost aura is worth giving up for an easy to apply long duration burn on a single foe. some fights this may be the case, but never enough to warrant lowering its cooldown OR keeping it perma passive, since i dont rely on crit chance at all.
I like it but I also share the same concerns with bleed stacking as others. A single necro (who's only real viable spec is conditions) would throw this whole thing off. The minute you're going back on the power basis is the minute you'll end up wishing you were crit/power.
When and if this happens, I can:
Focus on maintaining other conditions, and focusing extra hard on controlling foes rather than offensive conditions, using Frost Bow's stun + confusion and raw damage aoe, ensuring that 100% chill is maintained, maybe stack vulnerability with frost bow's 2 + ice spike from water staff... so many options.
Switch to either a power/crit/critdam or super might buffing and tanky alternative 80 character I have
Edited by Kitsune, 27 October 2012 - 09:41 AM.