Throughout the history of this column, I’ve talked about traits, skills and combat mechanics. I’ve discussed how to fight on land and in the water, which skills I like best and which I think actually work the best. But there always come a point where you start questioning things. Are you using the right equipment? Have you got a good set of traits? Should you be using a different Elite skill?
This moment happened to me this week, and I thought that my process of redesigning my Thief might impart some useful advice.
Completing the Checklist:
Before this week, I was running a fairly tanky build. Lots of points in Acrobatics, Shadow arts and Trickery. The build was great, lots of stealth, an ability to buff and heal my teammates, and I could actually take a few hits. But as Halloween approached, I started feeling that the build was a little stale. I wanted to do something different, and I figured that this holiday event might be a good opportunity.
So I ditched the Toughness and Vitality, and instead decided it was time for a condition build, focusing on the bleeds that can be pumped out with the Pistol. This was mainly in conjunction this the fact that I knew I wanted to use the Runes of the Mad King. But, I still needed to make sure I covered all the basis.
When you create a build, you need to make sure that you have all the important things accounted for, I addition to any prinicipal attributes you are looking to promote.
-Mobility: I have said it many, many times that mobility is key. Read some of my other articles if you want my full opinion, but know that for almost every single one of my Builds, I rely on Signet of Shadows and Feline Grace to fulfill my movement quota.
– Support: It is always good to have some form of support. Sometimes, your party needs a little help to make it through a fight, and for me, Thrill of the Crime fills that roll perfectly. I knew I would be using Steal a lot, so it only made sense to have this supportive trait.
– Interruption: It is always good to have some form of interrupt. When some uber attack of doom comes along, it is always good to have a way to stop it. In my new build, my interrupt in Scorpion Wire, which also works as an excellent pull and battlefield control skill.
Specialize or Generalize?
As you can no doubt guess from my above analysis, I favor a more balanced build, doing a little bit of everything so I can be flexible. I think it is far better to be adaptable than overpowered. Sure, if you invest all you energy
What’s the Role of Style?
Call me crazy, but I don’t like playing a build unless it seem cool to me. My previous build had a very cool element of dipping in and out of stealth to it that I really enjoyed. It made me feel like Nightcrawler, and I really enjoyed the support element of it. For this build, I got to go back to my first love of the Thief profession; Dual Pistols. They may be slightly underpowered, they might not have the AoE of the Shortbow, or the Control of Pistol Whip, but they have style!
There’s a saying that always makes its way out in these kind of conversations: “ Play what you want to play”. It is a very important and very apt saying, that I whole heartedly support. Don’t just play the best build, or the combination of skills that will make you the most powerful. Play something that you enjoy. The idea of Gunslinger, throwing handfuls of Caltrops about the battlefield was a fun idea, and one that I hope to play with for quite a while to come!
So, spend a few silver and try out a new build!