Author Topic: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]  (Read 6490 times)

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Offline Firebrand

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #15 on: 11 May 2018, 22:52:58 »
One little thing that only occurred to me recently:

The description of Soften Metal states damage. Not Fire damage, just damage, which implies to me that it deals physical damage. This means that even Ring of Fire benefits from strength, and that fighter characters also have a decent shot at damaging their foes with Soften Metal.

At least if I'm interpreting things correctly. But Flame Arch clearly states that the additional damage it provides is fire, so I don't see why Soften Metal wouldn't do the same if it was fire damage.

I think I'm going to go start a new game with a Battlemage sometime soon. It seems there's an amazing number of synergies ripe for trying.

Offline Laionidas

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #16 on: 18 June 2018, 14:55:41 »
Summon Core Dweller, Inner Fire, Wildfire, Metamorphosis

Ah, the fabled Core Dweller. I'd put one point into each skill as soon as they're available, but it seems to me that until the very end of the game, it's more or less safe to leave them that way. Putting some more can help with your pet's survivability, but seeing how you should be able to eliminate your attackers pretty quickly, it shouldn't be a top priority on the list.

I'm wondering here what your take is specifically on Wildfire. I heard a lot of player never put any points in it past one, even after they've covered their priorities, because the slightly increased flat fire damage and reduced offensive ability is never worth the investment of another whopping 11 points.

Offline Firebrand

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #17 on: 20 June 2018, 19:22:05 »
I'll need to admit: I haven't even tried putting more than one point in Wildfire.

My reasoning (and, by extension, mindset) might be very one-dimensional here. Basically, I could invest some skill points to make my Core Dweller kill things faster, or... Alternatively, I could invest it in something that makes me kill things faster. Quite frankly, I'm much better at the whole business. Wildfire has some reduction of offensive ability, which is not too bad, but the reduction isn't that significant, and (unless you play a dedicated petmaster, I guess) your Core Dweller isn't going to have anywhere close to as much bonus to elemental and burn damages as your character does. I suppose it could be interesting to play as a Summoner with a focus on the petmaster items that boost elemental damage, and make better use of Wildfire as well as Plague for reducing their resistance, as well as the Sylvan Nymph's Nature's Wrath; I haven't tried.

One more thing I'd add is - in line with how I'd personally prioritize skills that help you kill things faster - is how there are a lot of those. Like I probably mentioned in the original post, personally I find quite a few skills worth maxing from Earth for most character builds. Earth Enchantment, Volcanic Orb, Conflagration, Fragmentation, Eruption, and Volativity; only these and the mastery points themselves account for a hundred skill points, and that's not counting your secondary mastery, nor anything else you might want to take (Brimstone if you're using weapon attacks or throwing knives, Flame Surge if it's your primary attack, et cetera). Point is, you're probably always going to find something that gives you better value for your skill points than Wildfire.
« Last Edit: 20 June 2018, 19:42:00 by Firebrand »

Offline Mook

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #18 on: 26 June 2018, 21:24:52 »
Hi. TQ is my present addiction, and I am developing a stable of Normal characters. My latest was supposed to be a Storage, but I started having fun killing Spartan bandits with a torch. So now I want a Fiery Dragon Sword!
He is a Stonespeaker, equipped with the fastest weapons + Prometheus charm. I can't decide whether to aim for Transmutation or not.
From what I read, staying partly physical +strength means better armour which means better odds if he is a melee, which is what I want him to be.
Converting all to elemental +intelligence means More damage, and extra points for dexterity which means better weapons, particularly if I am sticking with weapons like the Sabertooth. I'm not sure how far Feather will take me.
This character is a fun character, a melee ball of doom that I would like to survive to the end of Normal.
Which road do you suggest?

Offline botebote77

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #19 on: 27 June 2018, 05:56:58 »
I'll just throw my vote while we wait for firebrand to see this.. of course i suggest you still wait for firebrand.. in terms of experience, he beats me when it comes to earth.. i am assuming you would want to continue to epic once you beat normal

it took me about 1000+ hrs of experience and a bunch of very good items before i got confident playing a hybrid (str, dex, int) :)

so i vote for int, dex with int being the higher stat

there are other ways of surviving besides high armor anyways.. and if you really want high armor, earth has stone skin.. there are lots of better skills than that though
« Last Edit: 27 June 2018, 06:01:35 by botebote77 »
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Offline Laionidas

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #20 on: 27 June 2018, 11:36:39 »
I can't decide whether to aim for Transmutation or not.
From what I read, staying partly physical +strength means better armour which means better odds if he is a melee, which is what I want him to be.

Even when maxed, Transmutation does not fully convert all weaon damage. At 6 points it's only 63%, and I guess with the diminishing returns rule, not even +4 to all skills will get you up to a 100%. In short, this means you will always stay partly physical.

I am currently playing a ranged Stonespeaker myself and find it to be one of the easiest characters I've made to date. I am investing in Int. and Dex., as well as in Str., but I am keeping Str. as low as possible. Even with Runeword: Feather though, I need at least a few points in Str. to equip the throwing weapon of my choosing. I guess that also answers your question; Runeword: Feather will not take you far enough, especially considering most melee weapons will have a higher Str. requirement than any ranged weapon.

Finally, I find that while my damage input is insane, it's not the tankiest build (though it's by no means 'squishy' either). However, for a melee build that plays out a bit different. I'd go for more armour and a shield instead of dual-wielding. You need additional Str. again for that. Now I'd say the shield is more important than the armour; you can still keep Str. relatively low, since Runeword: Feather does apply to shields, then you can compromise on the armour for a bit.

In summary: I'd advice you to invest in all three attributes, yet at the same time go for as close to a full conversion as you can get.

and if you really want high armor, earth has stone skin.. there are lots of better skills than that though

The problem with Stone Skin IMO, is that it also grounds you. As a panic button for a non-retaliation, non-passive caster build, it just results in giving mobs more time to gang up on you.

it took me about 1000+ hrs of experience and a bunch of very good items before i got confident playing a hybrid (str, dex, int) :)

I dunno, I think Rune in combination with Earth is a bit of a game changer in this respect.

Like I said, with or without conversion, I find it a really relaxed and easy build to play.

Offline botebote77

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #21 on: 27 June 2018, 12:01:54 »
ultimate max transmutation is 99% elemental conversion


The problem with Stone Skin IMO, is that it also grounds you. As a panic button for a non-retaliation, non-passive caster build, it just results in giving mobs more time to gang up on you.

i think you mean stone form? stone skin is the 3rd upgrade of earth enchantment

Like I said, with or without conversion, I find it a really relaxed and easy build to play.
so you mean a true hybrid? not fake hybrid?

congratulations you have leveled up  :))
i eat mana for breakfast
Spoiler for Hiden:
finished ragnarok xmax x3 with sorcerer, illusionist, mage haruspex, skinchanger

Offline Laionidas

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #22 on: 27 June 2018, 14:47:58 »
Like I said, with or without conversion, I find it a really relaxed and easy build to play.
so you mean a true hybrid? not fake hybrid?

congratulations you have leveled up  :))

Thank you, thank you,..

The intended switch to Throwing Weapon more or less forces me to grab some Str., and I have yet to put any points in Transmutation. I'm in Act II Epic, with zero conversion, and my damage is more than adequate. Even with Transmutation I guess the physical damage output will still be quite significant.

ultimate max transmutation is 99% elemental conversion


The problem with Stone Skin IMO, is that it also grounds you. As a panic button for a non-retaliation, non-passive caster build, it just results in giving mobs more time to gang up on you.

i think you mean stone form? stone skin is the 3rd upgrade of earth enchantment

Uhhh,.. yeah, I meant Stone Form  ;D

Stone Skin isn't bad, but hardly ever worth the points, at least not more than 1.

Offline botebote77

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #23 on: 27 June 2018, 19:42:46 »
I'm gonna deviate a little from the topic

Stone Skin isn't bad, but hardly ever worth the points, at least not more than 1.

most of the time yes.. most of earth builds yes

but there are always exceptions  8)
there are skills often deemed not worth spending more than 1 point.. but if these skills give a certain attribute that can be helpful, and if it stacks, piling one on top of another may be worth it.

and in a juggernaut's case, stone skin, battle awareness, and rally, 3 skills that are often considered not worth spending more than 1 point, all give bonus to armor.. and if you pile them on top of another, suddenly you can get quite a high bonus to armor.. and they are all global meaning all your gear benefits from them.

by now some people know where I'm going to.. Benitot's master armorer guide :)
i haven't tried that build yet but i approve of the guide and the idea.

of course i approve of the idea because i ripped his idea of stacking one attribute on top of another :)) .. my skinchanger guide but in that case, i piled damage absorption on top of another.. sanctuary is rarely maxed at least from the builds i see and read.. overgrowth is often seen a worthless skill but in this build, i swear it really helps.. i don't know the consensus on energy armor but from what I'm reading, people don't like the 3000+ energy cost.. the combination of 3 skills together with briar ward makes it a very tanky build.

p.s: we really need to see @Benitot 's juggernaut master armorer build guide ported to here  ;)
« Last Edit: 27 June 2018, 19:44:26 by botebote77 »
i eat mana for breakfast
Spoiler for Hiden:
finished ragnarok xmax x3 with sorcerer, illusionist, mage haruspex, skinchanger

Offline Firebrand

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #24 on: 27 June 2018, 20:01:12 »
I'm not an expert of the game, by a long shot, but I'll give you my two cents.

Long story short: for a melee Stonespeaker (or any Stonespeaker, really), I'd go for Transmutation. I'll elaborate below.

First of all: With +4 to all skills, Transmutation gives you 99% conversion. Some of your damage stays physical, and you can keep your Transmutation lower if you still want physical, but personally I don't really see the point. If you're going to focus on intellect, then might as well go for full conversion. And with a Stonespeaker, I see little reason not to.

The thing is, in my personal opinion, both Rune and Earth are decent at supporting another mastery with good physical damage output. But on their own, they don't provide much in this way, at least definitely not enough to go physical over elemental. Especially because most masteries have so amazing returns on your invested intellect that it's almost a crime not to put the majority of points into that.

Rune, of course, gives you your Elemental Charge as well as Transmutation, and a flat elemental bonus damage is already pretty powerful. There's Runic Mines, there's Runeword: Explode and Runeword: Burn. One of them gives you physical damage as well, but you shouldn't overlook what looks like a humble burn damage on the other.

So what does Earth give you? At the first glance, it doesn't boost your weapon damage much. Earth Enchantment provides only an almost negligible flat fire damage bonus, and the percentile increase of fire and burn damage shouldn't affect much - although with full Transmutation, it should increase 33% of your weapon damage already.

Brimstone provides some meager increase to physical damage, which shouldn't concern you, but wait - what's that hiding in the corner? When maxed, Brimstone adds 98 burn damage over three seconds. With +4 to all skills (or at least Brimstone), this becomes a whopping 182. It's affected by your intellect. It's affected by any modifier you have, such as Earth Enchantment, it should stack with the aforementioned Runeword: Burn (damage-over-time from the same source overwrites itself, but different sources should stack to my knowledge). Not to mention Volativity! It's pretty insane. It's quite easily overlooked, but with Anniversary Edition, Earth has become one of the best damage-over-time masteries in the game. And it relies on intellect.

Both Volcanic Orb and Eruption are boosted by both strength and intellect, but only intellect increases the burn component of Volcanic Orb. You likely want to use these spells often, especially if you're planning to go melee.

That said, a melee Stonespeaker might be quite challenging. I transitioned to throwing weapons even before finishing Normal. It's quite easy that way - you get to distribute the burn damage, and to use your utterly insane DPS to bring enemies down before they reach you. Rune or Earth don't provide too much in the way of survivability, though, so if you rely on melee, you might get in trouble.

You'll probably need a maxed Energy Armor and a way to cast it consistently; this means equipping some armor or jewelry with energy cost reduction and perhaps an alternate weapon set to help out. You might want to pay extra attention to your resistances as well (me being me, I dual-wielded Chakrams of the Sun and mostly ignored resistances, but I'm not a good example). Pierce will likely be problematic.

As for attrbutes, you'll likely need about 250-300 strength and some 420 dexterity in the very end. I'd put the rest into intellect.

As for the Stone Form discussion: it does change things if you plop an Eruption under yourself before activating Stone Form. Molten Rock, Ring of Fire, and the retaliation from Elemental Charge also help, and so does the burn retaliation from Heat Shield. Mobs can die to the combination of these more quickly than you'd think. But you're right, at times it just won't work out well. (Hint: Stone Form doesn't prevent you from switching weapon sets or drinking potions.)

I don't find Stone Skin useful enough to warrant more than one point, either.
« Last Edit: 27 June 2018, 20:02:51 by Firebrand »

Offline Hector

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #25 on: 27 June 2018, 23:19:34 »
I'd like to ask some questions, or maybe just share some thoughts about earth; frankly I don't know what I'm gonna write as I'm typing this..
Had a battlemage, couldn't sustain his defensive side no matter what I did (always wearing up-to-date armors, having more than 20% physical resist {heat shield + wineskin relic}, CtDA and what not).. a couple of hits from certain "trash" enemies from Act II and my 2500ish health goes down to below half in an instant.. good killing speed, the debuffs from hamstring, none of them helped the situation..

So I went ahead and changed earth to spirit.. I believe this is some kind of obsessive compulsive disorder.. I mean always trying to balance shit and making stuff in a "default" state, so to speak.. warfare has mainly physical, and its secondary damage is bleeding so I "should" choose something related with that element and hope to see some positive results after this stupid maintenance bullshit..

By the help of deathchill and some ADCtH, it seemed to solve the problem above.. but I still not feel satisfied due to losing all that fire and burn damage and the potential future of that battlemage..

I don't know what to think or do anymore..and don't know what I want.. used to be a smart player once, but I think losing some parts of your intellect is just another curse of getting old..     

Offline botebote77

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #26 on: 27 June 2018, 23:52:15 »
i picked gasconron's brain a few months back.. might help
https://titanquestfans.net/index.php?topic=355.msg3431#msg3431

that's a Thane build but from what i understand, he plays battlemage almost the same.. the following comments might also help

edit: btw as for warfare/spirit, battle standard goes really well with that recharge totem skill from spirit.. cast them at the same time
« Last Edit: 28 June 2018, 00:11:38 by botebote77 »
i eat mana for breakfast
Spoiler for Hiden:
finished ragnarok xmax x3 with sorcerer, illusionist, mage haruspex, skinchanger

Offline tholuneve

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #27 on: 28 June 2018, 05:15:55 »
Long story short: for a melee Stonespeaker (or any Stonespeaker, really), I'd go for Transmutation.

I totally agree with this. O0

Offline Mook

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #28 on: 28 June 2018, 08:16:30 »
Thank you for the clear explanations.! I benefit from seeing things in writing, not just half baked ideas floating in my head.
Energy for the E armor. There are two energy skills in Rune?  Energy drain on your weapon, which will be multiplied by Explode? And Absorb on your shield, collecting from enemy offensive"spells" when cast? Are spells any skills they use?



I came across a "small torch",  dps (fire) a bit less than my fiery gladius. I'd practise with it, but I'm still steamrolling opposition. I will look at throwing weapons in the future though, and keep my running legs on.
Reading your posts has made me really excited for all this fire (and brimstone) to come.

Offline Hector

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Re: Earth: An Attempt at a Comprehensive Guide [Ragnarök]
« Reply #29 on: 28 June 2018, 18:32:23 »
i picked gasconron's brain a few months back.. might help
https://titanquestfans.net/index.php?topic=355.msg3431#msg3431

that's a Thane build but from what i understand, he plays battlemage almost the same.. the following comments might also help

edit: btw as for warfare/spirit, battle standard goes really well with that recharge totem skill from spirit.. cast them at the same time

Thanks botebote.. I read the topic.. I'm gonna keep him as a spellbreaker and try the combination that you suggested..

Why didn't they increase the radius of vision of death?? it could have been a kickass CC tool if its radius could be raised by additional skill points.. 3 meters just won't cut it for scattered archer/thrower groups..

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