5 rounds with foci which is enough. Not a long time by any means but enough to get a few big dragons breaths in.
This is true. It's quite noticeable when fighting something like a Goristro. And apparently the damage reduction from green wyrmling does work, but the duration appears to be extremely short compared to the infliction from the other wyrmlings, which is a lot longer than 5 rounds. (Not that I'm complaining)
Great guide, it's a lot of information to swallow, and it gave me a much better understanding on the class.
I only have one question. You took 3 feats (legendary humanoid) just for kobold, and I wonder if it's worth it. I mean, you have a very specific idea on shifters, maybe this is designed for hells/abyss only? In my eyes it doesn't look that good -- while having other options taking into account kobby's usability (which seems to me very situational) and the benefit from other humanoid forms (next to none).
After seeing one in action, and having one myself i can tell you that this build is useful everywhere. And the kobold traps are situational, but can be used practically everywhere.. even if its just setting some up while the party are resting to easily pull kill the next spawn. Everywhere in low LL it has it uses, and solo's many of the runs as well.
Tank -Well, you have 3 paragon feats, you can pick Leg/Para spell and paragon reflex, if you don't want the Humanoid. -Alternatively, use level 39 feat for dragon/undead and swap the last Paragon Form defense for PFF in that one.
I wouldn't go for humanoid, without AB to use Drow shape or even Lizard (which has a good damage vulnerability infliction).
Last Edit: Feb 10, 2015 15:33:59 GMT by desocupado
Since this topic was referenced and I having played several shifters I'll add some additional notes.
Deso's notes about Shapes The most often used shapes will be marked with *
Wildshape 1 - Not really worth the effort due lower DC - I suppose you could use them on a boss-like enemy if you can't do anything better.
Wildshape 2 Gargoyle - The damage resistance in negligible since the form is useless at melee (doesn't merge weapon buffs). *Harpy - This shape is very squishy but curse song is a necessity on a bardless party - have someone else to lure enemies on that case. Minotaur - Can deal some weapon damage (they merge weapon buffs) - the maze spell is interesting but being limited to a single attempt is not worth the trouble. Fairy - Spill potion ability is great for boss type mobs that have heals. Troll - No point really - doesn't do enough melee damage to make any use of it's regeneration.
Wildshape 3 *Basilisk - Death Gaze, it's not a spell so bypasses mantles and saves versus spells. But if you or your target is blind it will not work. - You will use this often you don't pick undead forms (banshee) Drider - Web is cool - just cast it and forget. - IGMS has some niche uses (really rare in higher levels due the massive kickback it might generate) *Manticore - Use it preferably on isolated targets vulnerable to piercing (kroaches and baatorian golems come to mind - as several uro, rona and elysium mobs). Has the same kickback issue of igms tough. Wyvern - I didn't find a good use for this shape - (the poison is a bit purposeless since it doesn't affect constitution i.e. kill) The toss ability is clunky. If only the poison was an on hit effect... Xorn - Speaking of on hit effects the xorn attempts to stone on hit (reflex save) with EACH attack (more attempts if you have a monk splash). Reflex for stoning is quite unique and might be useful for targets that medusa has difficulty getting (like constructs).
Wildshape 4 Dire Tiger - The knockdown is inferior to a full conjuration focus grease but has niche uses since some fores are immune to grease (make sure target's reflex is debuffed) - like phanes from aboleths. *Medusa - Petrification gaze is the most loveable shifter ability. It's use the gaze logic - neither you or targets can be blinded for it to work. *Mind Flayer - While the damage to stunned foes is low it's psionic (basically unresistable) - being a non spell ability it affects many things like Ayperobos Swarm. It's stun also has a high DC. *Beholder - Ranged spamable single target cold and negative damage. You will use this often. The negative damage is quite remarkable against bosses that take it. - Antimagic Cone is effective for aoe debuffing enemies and also packs spell failure - beware of friendly fire. Gelatinous Cube - It disarms with reflex save and slows on hit but is a lousy tank (low ac and dex). The disarm dc isn't high (but then anything worth disarm has a ridiculous high discipline so this ends up being a better deal) - the slow effect is remarkable on some foes that usually ignore slow spell like balors - they get really slow after a couple of hits.
Construct Shape - Low dex, avoid using them around dex and reflex checks. (specially enryes). Critical hit and Amnesia immunity is convenient.
Demonflesh Golem - Deals high damage per hit (adds wisdom modifier with rage, merge weapon buffs and gets 1 extra attack) - Also packs a toggleable 100% elemental immunity - Thus is quite usable if you splash monk for extra unarmed attacks. Quite good for smashing bosses with amnesia effects or deadly critical hits. *Iron Golem - Used to be the best shape in hells, still the Poison breath is the most effective constitution damaging poison. *Stone Golem - rock throw deal a good chunk of blungeoning damage. - Has a siege mode with extra phy imm and more range and damage for Rock throw at the cost of mobility and dexterity. Use it as a substitute for the old reverse gravity chesse-way. Crystal Golem - Prismatic spray is a niche source of positive damage (the other being undead's positive finger of death) - make sure to use a tome of epic spell penetration at very least. - The aura dazes enemies around you and can be surprising effective against some foes (it's worse than vampire's domination gaze). *Marut - The Grapple Chain is very effective at paralyzing - notably most casters at long range (raksha come to mind) and some constructs (hell machines). - Lightning pulse is a great option for pointblank aoe electrical damage (the other option are blue dragon and blue wirmling).
Dragon Shape - Dragon is the best source of DC based elemental damage (has both raw damage and DC) on top of wing buffet - an pointblank aoe KD / gust killer. - It also has str and great dex. AC is quite decent but is worse than some humanoid shapes and Leonal when you factor their size. - Dragons have a decent size now. All that being said, they have lousy melee damage and are usually best reserved for bosses, as they can only deal on damage type on each shape.
Humanoid Shapes All shapes can restore themselves and resurrect party members, merge weapon buffs and get one extra attack with with LFF. You must pick some unarmed weapon focus to have enough AB to be worthwhile (those feats change to whichever weapon they use). *Drow - Darkness, useful in ely, but drider can do it as well along with web. - They can mortal strike foes like an assassin and have great Str and Dex to tank with adequate humanoid focus and form defense feats - DC isn't stellar nor is the morning star crit range but you will usually get you attempt each round if you have keen and improved critical. - Pack piercing damage with morningstars. Kobold - The traps are loot breaking but have two notable effects - 1 They can be stacked up for a burst of acid and slashing damage and 2- lower fort and reflex saves by 1 plus 1 per form focus. - It's a Dexterity tank with sneak attacks and concealment. That being said it deals the least damage among all humanoid shapes (except kenku) - Packs slash damage with daggers. *Lizardfolk - With form focus they debuffs target's immunities in a similar fashion to lash of hatred - (if you right click them you can see what elements they take, as only those vulnerabilities are inflicted) - Lizard's pack a so so dexterity (higher than constructs but still low) but have great AC and AB. - Packs slash damage with whips. Also gain disarm feats. Kenku - A source of ranged attacks - quite useful for sniping targets since the damage they deal is the same melee damage as the other shapes. - Packs piercing damage with it's bow. Sahuagin - Web spell is surprisingly effective in a number of areas - - They also pack 2handed piercing damage with their spears (with a reasonable AC and AB) - which is handy for killing piercing vulnerable foes that does not take manticore well (high resistance) or are surrounded by no hit mobs.
Outsider Shapes *Azer - Fire Stream deals more damage but is loot breaking and can't be used underwarter - Fire pulse works underwater tough, but is a non loot breaking pointblank spell. *Death Slaad - Provides the unique magic damage and has acid damage as well - both single targeted tough. The confusion immunity aura helps the party. *Rakshasa - Spam thunderclaps - the other spells have less uses. - Packs Spell level VIII immunity - this is very useful for tanking some effects - flesh to stone, bombardment and horrid wilting come to mind. Modron - Coruscating Beam deals fire positive damage and is useable underwater (where we have lots of foes vulnerable to fire). Positive is great against undead. - The other trap stuns for a brief time (1~3 rounds) and is not as useful. It packs a small firewall (door wide stone wall) - It's immune to time stop and can attack from long range as if wielding a crossbow. *Leonal - Fear Howl is useful in abyss (and should affect any weird vulnerable target). - Fear immunity aura is useful against some special foes and bosses and for healing feared allies. - Leonal have great AB and AC and a decent Dexterity - it's quite stable and pack a ridiculous high AC if you add expertise and/or form defense feats. - Leonal Rage bardsong lack in duration, so it's usable either if you just got rezed (and need a song) or if you are staying in leonal shape nearly full time refreshing it often enough.
Undead Shapes All undead are immune to critical hits (and several other things) and usually heal on negative while being vulnerable to positive (baelhorn being the exception) Risen Lord - High melee damage and AB but lousy defense (ac is passable with expertise and form defense) - useful when your build supports it and you feel lazy - arguably the least impressive shape - But it's a breach and crit immune tank that heals on negative damage and attempts a death magic effect on hit. Just stay away from dexterity checks. Spectre - Bestow curse is good to drop saves / SR if something happens to the people who usually cast it. - SR ignoring level drain is VERY useful - specially against Paragon/Elite constructs or high SR targets Vampire - Avoids some with in built Ghostly Visage, thus is good for spawning (spawn while visible then hide). - Domination Gaze is very situational but can be amusing with the non-spell mass daze effect. - Vampiric touch is another source of negative damage (compared to beholder's gaze) but not very remarkable otherwise. *Baelnorn - the second best shape - positive finger of death is pretty cool due range/damage type. - Sunburst has a nice DC and cleanses several undead due being highly spammable. - Empower Ally grants CL to the target ally like the energy drain spell (also can stack 3 times for a +3 DC and CL boost) - Clerics and Druids, who usually have a monk splash will love you for it (as they can reach CL 60 much easier) - very useful before any boss or to help on paragon foes increased SR and saves. *Banshee - The most useful shape. 2 more DC than basilisk on top of more area and up to a -4 saves aura. - The SR ignoring Sonic damage is useful, as it gets will save instead (thus mind fog help you and cannot be avoided with evasion). - The downside it has low dexterity and ac (65-70% concealment ameliorate it a bit).
Last Edit: Oct 27, 2016 13:26:57 GMT by desocupado
I was under the impression that Kobold traps lower fort/ref saves by a max of 4, thus only LFF3 is needed. Is that cap (from the class changes docs) just a leftover from before paragon levels were introduced or is there any other reason to take PFF: Humanoid beside the save reduction?
I couldn't try it in the [test] chamber, as it's a trap spell which cannot be set there, so I was wondering if someone with the PFF feat could confirm whether it's -4 or -5.
Post by drunkenboastor on Sept 19, 2017 16:44:01 GMT
kobold traps do scale to -5. The trap applies an effect called Rogue's Cunning, which stacks with other effects that do not share it's name. The effect can be removed, beholder dispel ray can remove it.