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Couple of questions about Condition/Bunker Mesmer


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#1 ObeyGiant

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 02:20 PM

Long post incoming.

I am running 0/25/25/0/20 Staff build with a healthy mix of pow/pre/cond/tou/vit. I switched from 20/20/0/0/30 build after my iBerserker quit doing any damage :(.

Even if they fix the greatsword, I don't know if I would go back. I am loving this build.

Couple of things I was hoping some of you fine folks could help me out with:

It seems that I want to be spamming clones for their on death abilities I have as well as the fact that they seem to be the most reliable way to put conditions on my enemies. In the midst of this I am sort of not understanding what I am "supposed" to do with my phantasms? The way I see it, I have 2 options in this case.

1) Get up 3 Phantasms. The staff Phantasm hits pretty hard still, but if I have 3 of them, I don't do a lot of conditions, and my gearing seems kind of pointless. I could get 3 iDuelist/iWarden's out, but I would either be in Sword or Scepter for too long; wasting my staff's condition damage. And at the rate they usually go down... It's really not worth the hassle. (not saying switching weapons is not worth it, but not for that sole reason)

2) Shatter as long as I have the ability to generate 3 clones/phantasms immediately (decoy, mirror image, phase retreat, deceptive evasion, etc.) In this case I pile on the damage and it seems like what I should be doing. But the only bad thing about this is that I feel like I would be much stronger playing the exact same way but with Berserker's and my traits set up for shattering.

I love the build for it's ability to survive and pump out clones that do actually do damage through conditions and on top of that, cause more conditions if the enemy decides to target them (makes me less reliant on buggy l.o.s. glass phantasms), but I almost feel like I could use the EXACT same build with a mix of some knight's/berserker's/with maybe a little valk jewelry and do the same thing except call it a shatter build. I would be just as tanky and play almost identically; only difference is: I would do more damage... Or so I think.

The only strength of the build I am using is that clone pumping/damage is more reliable than slow shatter's/unreliable phantasms.

This is my first character. I just dinged 80 not long ago, so I am not in full exotics yet (almost though :)). As I was rushing to gear up before this dungeon came out, my gear is a little mis matched. I got a mix of Rabid/PTV AC armor, Rampager's weapons, Chrysacola/Rampager Jewelry. So my gear isn't perfect looking, but the end stats are about the same as what I see other people post with more "standard" gearing.

I don't have the money to straight up ditch this build and get full berserker's so any pointers on how to maximize my build on the battlefield would be MUCH appreciated.

P.S. Sorry for the long post... but I have another quick question. The way the new dungeon gives loot out makes me think that Magic Find gear would be very nice. That will probably be the very next set I farm after completing my first mismatched set of exotics. I will probably answer my own question here, but what is a good build to use with mf gear. It is all Pow/Pre as far as I can tell so any Shatter/Phantasm build would be good eh?

Also is there a point where diminishing returns kicks in and more mf isn't worth it? I want mf gear at some point, but I HATE being squishy, so I would probably mix it with some Knight's jewelry or something to get up a decent level of survivabilty.

How much mf do you run and how much of a difference do you think it makes?

Been lurking these forums for awhile and used the knowledge I have obtained to make and play the best Mesmer I can be. Thanks to everyone for all the help they have already given me!

Edited by ObeyGiant, 06 December 2012 - 10:03 AM.


#2 Kelthien

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 03:55 PM

I'll try to answer some of your questions! I'm using your EXACT same build right now with a full set of Rabid gear (Prec/Tough/Cond)

Phantasms are great, some greater than others.  I use staff and scepter/pistol in PvE and trade pistol for focus in WvW.  Duelists pops out about 1200 damage on his volley I want to say but he usually gets 4-5 stacks of bleed. That's the money maker right there.  Bleed for me is about 100 damage per second (104-107 usually) and  lasts 5ish seconds.  That's a lot of damage.

My general playstyle is to be nimble.  If my clones are too far away from my target or its about to die, I shatter.  If I'm fighting a boss, I try to maximize duelist uptime but don't let that stop me from shattering.  If Warlock and Duelist are both ready, I shatter and resummon them in just a quick second.  Shatter isn't my main damage source and my clones will usually do more on their own than a mind-wrack.  I pretty much only shatter if Cry of Frustration is up and I think it'll be a damage increase.  It's ok to let clones die somewhere far away.  You'll make new ones

Damage-wise, it's a VERY sporadic build, as are many condition builds.  Bleed caps at 25 stacks, that's one issue.  Confusion and enemy AI is another.  Confusion hits about 3 times as hard as Bleed for me, almost exact.  In many fights, enemies swing less than that and confusion is comparatively weaker to bleed. Any time an enemy is kited, for example, its not swinging.  Some enemies attack quickly though, like players, and tear themselves apart before your eyes.  the new Karka enemies usually attack twice per 4s and combined with Feedback, kill themselves in about 6 seconds.  I try not to worry about stack efficiency.  It's more about damage-per-cast-time for me and confusion is either passive (25 pt in dueling trait or combo field), linked with a high damaging ability (scepter 3), or instant (cry of frustration).  If it only hits for 1800, no big whoop.  It cost me very little to get that 1800 damage.

My goal with the build wasn't to maximize damage.  It was to find a build that worked in PvE, PvP, and WvW that was demanding enough to keep me interested.  I think power/precision phantasm or shatter builds are stronger in some areas and weaker in others.  I put out solid damage, I'm very resilient, and I provide a few useful utilities to my teammates.  That's all you can ask of any build, really.  

I absolutely LOVE this build in WvW.  Confusion is just a beast and causing it on clone death is amazing.

I can't answer much about MF gear. I tried a full set and it didn't make me some sort of money-earning god.  Maybe if I was farming karma or something.  But I hate farming so I'm much happier in actual gear with useful stats.

#3 dragonphlu

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 09:21 PM

I use a similar build that both of you use, but swapping 5 points from Chaos to Illusion to grant extra might upon shattering. I'm working my way on getting either Rabid or Rampager set. In both PvE, dungeons, and WvW, I used scepter/pistol + sword/focus and I giggled every time I interrupt my opponents. XD

Also, the new mobs in Sea of Sorrows seem to attack faster (much like in GW1 hard mode) and that is making confusion more appealing. As for magic find gear, I haven't tried that except for a 20-30% magic find from food.

#4 Phenn

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 10:41 PM

I was running a version of this build earlier while leveling, but went to pure power/precision GS/shatter when I hit 60. I haven't played more than maybe an hour since the update--can someone explain what happened to iZerker? I haven't noticed anything so far.

That being said, is it worth it to respec/re-equip/etc. for this build again? I loved it 'back when' but I'm concerned about shifting back. I pumped a lot of dough into Zerker equipment, etc.

#5 Kelthien

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 02:24 AM

The Illusionary Berserker thing got a weird little glitch.  On its first pass through enemies, it only hits once or twice instead of the full 3-4 it used to.  On later swings, I think it's back to working, but it's rough going until that's fixed.

The build is totally workable.  If you're geared and equipped, I don't know if it's worth it to swap anything unless you're super interested in the playstyle.  I don't think there's anything this build does that others don't do.  At the end of the day, the game is about doing damage and surviving long enough to do it, and there are many options for that. This is just one of them

#6 Phenn

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 04:56 AM

Ah I noticed that this evening. Bummer. I was hoping this most recent patch would do something about it, but no luck.

#7 ObeyGiant

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 06:38 AM

@Kelthien

So I have been using my Pistol more and trying to keep duelists out when I can and the bleed's are definitely stacking lol. What sigil's do you use on your weapon's? I am currently using Superior Earth on my Staff. My other weapons are crappy greens for now with no Sigils.

I am also interested in Superior Agony but someone told me it wasn't worth it if you couldn't get to an even number (I think agony would give me 6.75s bleeds). I use Runes of Undead, but was recently looking at Runes of the Centaur. The 20% Bleed duration would put me over 7s bleeds with Sigil of Agony.

With this I stack a ton of bleeds with my second weapon set and Earth seems kind of lackluster with the Scepter (and the staff too really...)

Edit: So I was reading a post on the Official forums and it raised the question: Do two sigils of Agony stack? If so on my Scepter/Pistol Agony/Agony seems like the only choice...

Edited by ObeyGiant, 20 November 2012 - 07:15 AM.


#8 Kelthien

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 04:09 PM

View PostObeyGiant, on 20 November 2012 - 06:38 AM, said:

@Kelthien

So I have been using my Pistol more and trying to keep duelists out when I can and the bleed's are definitely stacking lol. What sigil's do you use on your weapon's? I am currently using Superior Earth on my Staff. My other weapons are crappy greens for now with no Sigils.

I am also interested in Superior Agony but someone told me it wasn't worth it if you couldn't get to an even number (I think agony would give me 6.75s bleeds). I use Runes of Undead, but was recently looking at Runes of the Centaur. The 20% Bleed duration would put me over 7s bleeds with Sigil of Agony.

With this I stack a ton of bleeds with my second weapon set and Earth seems kind of lackluster with the Scepter (and the staff too really...)

Edit: So I was reading a post on the Official forums and it raised the question: Do two sigils of Agony stack? If so on my Scepter/Pistol Agony/Agony seems like the only choice...

Duelists are great! Especially with combo fields.  Between Cry of Frustration, Scepter #3 skill, and Duelist combos, my enemies are usually pretty drenched in Confusion and bleeds.

For sigils... Earth is pretty nice! I occasionally run with the one that gives you Might on weapon swap, particularly when I'm running with groups (Might -> Signet of Inspiration = Team full of might).

I'd be hesitant to go with Agony.  At the moment, I haven't seen anything saying condition duration gets passed on to your illusions.  Since most of your Bleeding comes from them, it might be a bit wasted.

For Runes, I go with Undead.  Again, the lack of condition duration transfer kind of kills a lot of other options. Undead gives condition damage, toughness, and culminates with a toughness->condition damage bump.  Since I run this build in mid-level fractals and WvW, toughness is pretty handy to have around.

I'm not sure about stacking sigil effects, since I've never tried the duration-enhancing sigils.  Definitely worth a test, though!  You may want to wander over to the necro forums and see if anyone there's tested it.  Those folks love conditions!

#9 Syrryan

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 08:00 PM

How do you feel about using the Divinity Runes?  I already have them.  I decided to rebuild my base spec after realizing ascended Power gear is going to be way to expensive for me.  I would much rather build a condition build and create ascended gear with bones than try to find enough powerful blood to make the high Power gear.

#10 Kelthien

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 09:37 PM

Divinity runes are probably ok, but again... I don't think Critical Damage is something that xfers to our clones.  Plus, crits aren't really our source of damage as much as the bleeds that result from the crits are.  If you're loathing Undead for some reason, you could probably go for the Thief runes.  Condition damage and precision.  I don't know how the "more damage if beside/behind your target" would work... that'd be something you'd have to test.

I totally get it about the gear thing! I'm low on gold and have a nice set of Rabid exotic armor.  I'd love to have a power-based set as well  but I'm hesitant to drop nearly 100% of my remaining gold on one.  I'm also torn on which to get.  Knight's has the mix of stats I want, but Toughness is the prioritized stat instead of Power. :-/

#11 Mizpah

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 06:42 AM

OK, you got my interest. I'm leveling my mesmer alt, and have been reading forums and examining builds. I'm only lvl 20 and have a long way to go. I've stumbled across this post and it has me liking the potential for now. I have two questions for you guys contributing to this build.

1. What sort of utilities are you using?
2. I saw the point trait distribution at the beginning of the posts, but I am curious about what sort of traits are you using?

So far I only have 10 pts invested in illusions, and went with trait 5 - increasing confusion length. Am I on the right track? Any insight is appreciated. Thanks!

#12 niie

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:09 AM

View PostMizpah, on 21 November 2012 - 06:42 AM, said:

1. What sort of utilities are you using?
2. I saw the point trait distribution at the beginning of the posts, but I am curious about what sort of traits are you using?

My thoughts exactly... My alt mesmer is now level 60 and I plan to finish it off soon and I would love to see some exact specs to see.  The 0/25/25/0/20 and the 20/20/0/0/30 build would be awesome.

#13 Trickstick

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 01:14 PM

View Postniie, on 21 November 2012 - 11:09 AM, said:

My thoughts exactly... My alt mesmer is now level 60 and I plan to finish it off soon and I would love to see some exact specs to see.  The 0/25/25/0/20 and the 20/20/0/0/30 build would be awesome.

I have started using a 0/25/25/0/20 rabid build with staff/scepter+pistol quite recently and it is fun, definitely more forgiving than a glass cannon build. As for major traits:

Phantasmal fury (II), deceptive evasion (X),
crippling dissipation (V), chaotic dampening (X),
master of misdirection (X), illusionary elasticity (VII).

Decoy, feedback, blink/null field depending on the circumstances.

I'm still working on equipment though. I am aiming at rampager's trinkets and still need a few bits of rabid armour and a pistol better than masterwork.

#14 ObeyGiant

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 03:19 PM

http://gw2skills.net...JbTumkNtqYUxmAA

These are the traits and utilities I use for PVE. Signet of Domination can be swapped with Blink/Decoy and I swap Mirror Images depending on the situation for Feedback.

I wish I had 20 more trait points. I would go 0/20/20/20/20 just because I LOVE Feedback/Nullfield. Mirror Images is good, but it's hard for me to not use Feedback/Nullfield.

One thing I seem to have trouble with sometimes is condition removal. Nullfield is great, but the cd on it is not great... I am sitting around 17.5k-18.xk hp depending on if I use Coral or Chrysacola amulet, so I can soak up some conditions, but it isn't enough sometimes.

#15 Jobuu

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 07:37 PM

you can always do 0/20/20/10/20 for the glamour cooldown - im actually considering it

Edited by Jobuu, 21 November 2012 - 07:38 PM.


#16 Trickstick

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 10:26 PM

Well you could use the focus and its light combo field with projectile and whirl finishers. That would remove conditions,

#17 ObeyGiant

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 09:58 AM

View PostTrickstick, on 21 November 2012 - 10:26 PM, said:

Well you could use the focus and its light combo field with projectile and whirl finishers. That would remove conditions,

I use to use the Focus all the time. But I just found the Duelist to be more reliable than the Warden at getting it's damage off on the enemy.

#18 ObeyGiant

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 10:00 AM

So I am always trying to improve my build and I was wondering if the runes with % bleed duration (centaur/krait/afflicted) work on Phantasms. I checked it out and it would be an extra 2 ticks from everyone one of my bleeds if it works. I am thinking this would be a lot stronger than the Undead runes.

Any thoughts? I know Necro's do it, but I haven't heard about Mesmer's doing it. Is it because they in fact do not work with our illusions?

#19 dragonphlu

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 11:20 AM

View PostObeyGiant, on 06 December 2012 - 10:00 AM, said:

So I am always trying to improve my build and I was wondering if the runes with % bleed duration (centaur/krait/afflicted) work on Phantasms. I checked it out and it would be an extra 2 ticks from everyone one of my bleeds if it works. I am thinking this would be a lot stronger than the Undead runes.

Any thoughts? I know Necro's do it, but I haven't heard about Mesmer's doing it. Is it because they in fact do not work with our illusions?

Any non-stat effects from our runes don't pass onto our illusions, that includes the % bleed duration since illusions also can't receive our condition duration. However, they do get the attribute increase of power, precision, toughness, critical damage, and healing from the runes.

#20 ObeyGiant

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 11:23 AM

View Postdragonphlu, on 06 December 2012 - 11:20 AM, said:

Any non-stat effects from our runes don't pass onto our illusions, that includes the % bleed duration since illusions also can't receive our condition duration. However, they do get the attribute increase of power, precision, toughness, critical damage, and healing from the runes.

Including the Cond D. added from the 6 piece bonus of Undead runes?

I don't know if all of this stuff is intentional, but it is sure annoying (all the things that don't work with illusions). Been leveling a Necro lately and boy is it much simpler lol. Still love my Mesmer. Still love Condition Damage (on both chars).

On a side note:

I swapped Sigil of Corruption in my pistol (which I found very underwhelming in dungeons since you only get stacks from things you hit with your pistol) to Sigil of Battle and it is much better IMO. Don't have to worry about it not working with Phantasms and one thing I love about it is it's reliability. I know exactly when it is going to pop and what it is going to do.

Thought about replacing my Sigil of Earth on my staff for Sigil of Strength. My thoughts on it are that with the bleed cap, having less more powerful bleeds is good and it affects my "other" damage as well. I hear Strength does not have a CD and Earth does? Is this true? Any thoughts on this subject? Opinions on Strength vs. using another Sigil of Battle on my staff as I do tend to switch weapons often.

Now I just need to figure out which Sigils are good for my Scepter/Sword MH. Been using Earth, but I am starting to think the "on crit" sigils are slightly lacking on Scepter due to it's attack speed. Force doesn't affect conditions... Accuracy doesn't affect scepter clones... Is this where I should have put my Sigil of Corruption maybe? I weave in and out of both weapon sets so this seems like a decent choice; I do hate being downed with those on though.

Sorry for the hundred questions, but I think with the way runes and sigils work with our class mechanics (ie illusions), this is a harder choice for Mesmer's than some other classes. And it doesn't seem to be common knowledge away from people who actually put the time in to research their class and browse a forum or two (most people). I wonder how many people are actually out there using runes/sigils that are do practically nothing for them.

Edited by ObeyGiant, 06 December 2012 - 11:43 AM.


#21 dragonphlu

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 06:22 PM

View PostObeyGiant, on 06 December 2012 - 11:23 AM, said:

Including the Cond D. added from the 6 piece bonus of Undead runes?

I don't know if all of this stuff is intentional, but it is sure annoying (all the things that don't work with illusions). Been leveling a Necro lately and boy is it much simpler lol. Still love my Mesmer. Still love Condition Damage (on both chars).

On a side note:

I swapped Sigil of Corruption in my pistol (which I found very underwhelming in dungeons since you only get stacks from things you hit with your pistol) to Sigil of Battle and it is much better IMO. Don't have to worry about it not working with Phantasms and one thing I love about it is it's reliability. I know exactly when it is going to pop and what it is going to do.

Thought about replacing my Sigil of Earth on my staff for Sigil of Strength. My thoughts on it are that with the bleed cap, having less more powerful bleeds is good and it affects my "other" damage as well. I hear Strength does not have a CD and Earth does? Is this true? Any thoughts on this subject? Opinions on Strength vs. using another Sigil of Battle on my staff as I do tend to switch weapons often.

Now I just need to figure out which Sigils are good for my Scepter/Sword MH. Been using Earth, but I am starting to think the "on crit" sigils are slightly lacking on Scepter due to it's attack speed. Force doesn't affect conditions... Accuracy doesn't affect scepter clones... Is this where I should have put my Sigil of Corruption maybe? I weave in and out of both weapon sets so this seems like a decent choice; I do hate being downed with those on though.

Sorry for the hundred questions, but I think with the way runes and sigils work with our class mechanics (ie illusions), this is a harder choice for Mesmer's than some other classes. And it doesn't seem to be common knowledge away from people who actually put the time in to research their class and browse a forum or two (most people). I wonder how many people are actually out there using runes/sigils that are do practically nothing for them.

"Illusions derive the following attributes directly from the mesmer: precision, power, condition damage, critical damage, armor, and healing. Illusions do not gain any benefit from the mesmer's vitality, condition duration or boon duration. Additionally they are neither affected by the damage of the mesmer's equipped weapon nor by any of the various non-stat effects of weapon sigils or armor runes."

Source: http://wiki.guildwar...m/wiki/Illusion


So to answer your first question, yes, condition damage will be pass onto illusions, however condition duration doesn't.

I can understand why vitality and condition/boon durations are not passed over; it'll make our clones/phantasms very tanky and overpowering.

The most popular rune I've heard so far is the rune of air, but unfortunately, it's pricey. There are other alternatives, including rune of undead, dolyak, lyssa, eagle, and centaur.

Popular sigil choices I've seen are sigil of air, fire, strength, and earth; Off-hand choices can be sigil of battle, bloodlust, minor accuracy, earth, and energy. Like the runes, these are just what I've heard/seen being used, but that doesn't mean they are must-haves.

I'm currently running a rampager armor set of the centaur with sigils of strength, earth, and battle for my staff + sword/sword (or pistol). However, I'm still experimenting but this has so far allowed me to deal decent damage while not too squishy. I most likely will change my staff's sigil to one of the "on kill" sigils.

For the scepter, one of the "on kill" sigils is usually what I have since, like you said, "on crit" sigils don't work so well with scepter due to its speed (though Anet may buff the scepter in the near future, who knows).

Since you tend to swap weapons often (which what we all should be doing), sigil of battle is nice to have on staff or off-hands.




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