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Old Valewalker guide

Zyfrig

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Shameless copypaste from daoc.catacombs waybackmachine (https://web.archive.org/web/2006101...fm?ThreadKey=27713&DefMessage=334345&forum=56):


"I started this just to help a feew peeps here on the VW boards...It has morphed into a huge rather in depth guide to specing a Valewalker. I post it here for your scrutiny, but also because it seems I can see errors easier here than I can in MS Word.

I wish I could really thank everyone that helped in the creation of this document. I cut and pasted information for me before I knew I would make a pubic guide. So if your an active part of the community and you see somthing that you wrote in here, thanks so much. I only want to take credit for what I wrote, and aknowlage that I did not do this alone!!!
Looks like this will end up at shelteredgrove.com, and Aphex said he will put this up somwhere on the vault once I'm happy its compleate and accurate....

THANKS EVERYONE!!

Talinfaine’s Complete Valewalker Spec Guide

Hopefully this will serve more as a guide to helping people make their own decisions based on a few widely held opinions. The point of this guide is not to tell you how you should spec, but instead give you information need to make an informed decision.
There has been some debate over what roll the Valewalker plays. Is he a caster with melee abilities? Is he a tank class that can tank? I’m not here to tell you what to think…Take a peek at this from the Valewalker Team lead for a little more insight if your undecided.


I have tried to organize this document into easy to read sections. Some information is relevant in more than one area so obviously, that is why it can be seen in more than one section. The first section deals with spec’ing your Valewalker because I think that’s why most people are here. The beginning should really be character creation. If your looking for hints on how to create your character read down to section 7……

Thanks, and enjoy.

***CONTENTS***------------------------------------------------------------------------
1 How Should I spec?
2 Arboreal
3 Scythe skills
4 Armor
5 Parry
6 Evade
7 Character Creation
8 Conclusion
9 Closing






1***HOW SHOULD I SPEC?***----------------------------------------------------------

This should help you cover 80% of the Valewalker specs out there, I know this guide does not cover them all, but I think I have the bulk of some of the most common and more viable specs for the class and after reading this guide you should have enough basic knowledge about the class to make minor changes on your own:

A......S....P

50....39...18
Access to all Arb buffs, good weap and average parry. This would seem to best suit the "caster" spec while still keeping enough points in scythe to keep your weapon respectable.

48....44...10
Good melee, access to almost all self effects including the last haste buff with lower priority on parry.

43....50...2
This spec may lean toward those in group RvR, believing that the group parry bug will negate any points put into parry and those points put into parry can be used to maximize Arb and Scythe.

43....44...23
Nice round spec, nice balance for those who want to PvE and RvR.

43....39...31
Leaning heavy in parry. With the very high parry you should expect parry to function more noticeably in RvR, but at the cost of weap skill.

38....50...20
Good overall, and possibly one of the most common melee spec's out there, also no leftover points with this spec.

38....44...30
Leaning a little more towards combat. Another nice round spec, You should expect to do very well with this spec in PvE.

38...39...37
Most well rounded spec. A spec where 50 is possible in all 3 lines with bonuses at realm rank 3. Because this spec "waters down" the Arb and Scythe lines in order to boost parry (to a total of 23%), its seen as a well rounded spec that does well overall but, relatively speaking excels mostly in parry the benefit of which is mostly determined by your play style.

34....50...26
Another very popular melee spec. Most who spec like this realize that 34 is minimum that one can realistically take in Arb and still have 50 Scythe. The drop from 38 arb to 34 trades 4% in haste for 6 points in parry (3%) compared to the 38/50/20 spec.

34....44...35
High Parry and good weap spec. Compared the spec above simply trades 6 points in Scythe, the 50th LvL style and the weapon skill that goes with it for 9 points in parry (about 4.5%).
________________________________________________________________

The list above is obviously endgame stats (LvL 50) and how you get there is up to you. Some will choose one spec that is best for PvE to LvL 40 and respec to a more RvR oriented spec.
Where you put your points as you climb the latter to 50 is up to you, but I think the benefits provided in the Arb line up to LvL 34 (this is the LvL you get your last absorb spell) keep most people spec’ed equal in Arb if not higher in the middle LvL's.

In deciding what Arb spec you want you have to remember what the trade-offs are in terms of what styles and there affects your willing to give up for higher Arb/Parry specs…

You have 3 basic chains:

STYLE TYPE………………………..EFFECT

*Side chain
Stunning Blade LvL 10……….~4 sec stun
Winters Scythe LvL 18…………Additional 4DPS per swing
Blizzard Blade LvL 29………….This effect Procs a 198 AoE DD

*Parry chain
Thorny Shield LvL 15………..4DPS Damage shield
Grasping Roots LvL 21……...Procs a 33 AoE DD
Damaging Grasp LvL44……...Target is stunned for ~8 Sec

*Evade Chain:
Arboreal Fire LvL 8…………….Additional a 2DPS per swing
Foxfire LvL 12……………..…..Procs a 18 Damage DoT
Immolating Sphere LvL 39..Procs a 57 AoE DD
Conflagration LvL 50………...Procs a 95DD on the target

I talk a little more about the functionality of these chains in the Scythe section.



2***ARBOREAL*** -------------------------------------------------------------

In my attempt to suggest a method to determine how you may want to spec your Valewalker I think it best to decide what Arb effects you want and work from there keeping in mind the higher Arb spec the more your forced to trade off in Scythe and Parry (see below for scythe skill effects).
The following is a common list at the high end of the Arb spec which most people will choose as their final Arb spec; (you can of course look at what weap skill you want and work that way, but I personally feel Arb is the best place to start).

There is a simple table in the section above, and a more detailed section about scythe skills below that should help you determine what weapon skills you want to balance out with your Arb skills.

50-Everything, obviously (DOT's, Haste, Ablatives, Snares ect). This spec spends a lot of points between 43 and 50 that "may" be better spent). This is probably reserved for those who intend to play the class almost solely as a caster and melee only when needed. If you bring your Arb to 50 you will most likely be limited to the 39th LvL Scythe style.

48-Last haste -39% Some would argue its cost outweighs its effect, I would say this is your best choice when your willing to lower your parry spec to 10 to keep Scythe skill at 44. One other thing to consider with this spec….The 38, and 43 specs alone are hard to justify but by reaching 48 in Arb you get not only the additional haste but the skills that come from the 43, and 38 specs that many Vales will not have because the points spent for these skills are hard to justify….The question is is the offset (usually in parry) worth it to you?

43-Second to the last absorptive ablative (Hard to say if this is worth the cost). This will absorb 25% of your damage to a max of 110 for 1 min or until the 110 points are gone, also you can proc multiple times in one fight. I find that it goes off at least 1 per 30-40 sec fight and I have noticed that its most effective against those with small fast weapons as each hit gives you a chance to proc. This is also as high as you can possibly go in Arb and still be able to reach 50 in Scythe.

38-Next to last self haste –34% I believe most VW's will spec at least to this level for next to the last haste buff.

34-acsess to the highest LvL of absorb (33%, This spec is popular for those that want to max out weapon and parry skills).

<34-Bad Idea. With our castable absorb spell being part of our spec line, the 33% absorb comes at 34 skill in Arb. I think most would agree that this is the minimum spec for the Arb line for any Valewalker template.

Your decision on what Arb spec you choose should be made by looking at what effects you want and of course how you wish to spec the Scythe and Parry line. Scythe unlike parry has certain benefits that come from certain LvLs of skill (39, 44, and 50 for example) so keep that in mind as you build your Valewalker

I should mention that according to many higher LvL VW's very little is gained past 50 (adding + to Arb with items and realm rank) in Arb as it relates to spell damage. One of the numbers I had read via testing (as performed by the Eldritch TL) was about ~0.5% per lvl beyond 50.

As quoted by Taldren (Eldritch TL and avid VW player and tester):
"Also ran a test of 50 + 12 Arb and 38 + 12 Arb. On the same target the difference was 6 damage with the life tap."
The target was a player with 0% resist against VW LT.


*ARBOREAL MASTERY SPECIALIZATION LINE*
Here Ill take a little time to detail each abilility that come in the Arboreal mastery line. Unlike Arboreal path, you must choose what skills you want in this line by adding points into your Arboreal skill.

* Absorb*
This is a real no brainer. You need as much damage absorption as you can get. The LvL 34 absorb offers 33% melee damage absorption. Its not equivalent to plate armor as the 33% might suggest. Read below in the Armor section for more details (part 4).

*Haste*
This is fairly self explanatory. Each boost in haste offers a faster swing speed allowing you to deal out more damage over time and can be pivotal in being able to hit those that are protected by a refreshing blade turn.

*Snare*
First, the snare is quite worthless and the only thing that increases as the LvL of the spell goes up is the time the target is snared (it breaks when hit anyway). The fact that is has to be casted means that you have to stop to cast it, so unless your target is very close, chances are they will be out of range before you can cast, ironically if they are in range, you can probably hit them anyway. Even if its changed to an insta cast in a future patch I can't see spec’ing to 47th LvL snare (vs. the 37th LvL snare that most people will have anyway) just to obtain an additional 14 sec of snare (the 37 snare is 56s, and the 47 snare is 1:10s).

*DOT*
The DOT (insta cast w/ 30 sec recast) is used more to interrupt casters and archers than it is used to deal out real damage.... Its also a good spell to pull with in PvE.
So weather it hits for 5 or 25 its unlikely to make any real difference except at a tool to interrupt your opponent. Since most spec to at least 34 arb they will end up with a DOT that hits for mid 20’s where as the highest lvl of DOT will probably only add about 10-15 more per tick.

*Barkskin – Defensive self Proc*
While the defensive self proc is useful, I don't think many people spec to 43 specifically to obtain it....It's cost in relation to its benefit it questioned in the VW community, but I should note that this ability is very useful when it works. I have noticed that my defensive proc goes off a LOT in combat. So this is more a matter of preference and play style. It is interesting to note that the Def proc seems to be more effective against fast weapons that deal smaller damage as each hit gives you a chance for your Def proc to fire. Because the damage delt by faster weapons is lower, the proc effectively last for 440hp worth of damage absorbing 110hp of that (or 1 min whatever happens first). My hope is that future changes may make this skill more useful.

*Offensive Proc*
Lastly, the offensive Proc. As of this writing, V1.60, its still completely broken, and while it activates in PvE (and independent testing has shown it has no effect on mobs), I have never seen it activate in RvR. So until it gets fixed and has a significant effect, spec'ing specifically to obtain this buff is well, worthless.



3***SCYTHE SKILLS*** -------------------------------------------------------------------

There is still some speculation about higher weapon spec and your "weapon skill" which is a number used to determine if you are blocked, parried, or evaded. This is especially important do to the lack of a +to hit anytime style, and high VW miss rates overall (we in the VW community hope that this issue will be addressed by Mythic with the 1.61 patch and subsequent patches).

According to most sources your weapon spec does not determine your "to hit" ability, but it is a factor against defensive abilities such as evade, parry and shield. So in that sense it will help you hit your opponent. I haven't done any testing on my own, but have seen a number of compelling, but inconclusive tests regarding weapon skill. In any event A higher weapon skill is advisable.
Valewalker styles, and there effectiveness is another point of contention. Due to upcoming VW fixes (rumor has it that 1.61 and after will contain VW "love") and a number of current bugged VW styles, its hard to say just how effective our styles will be after the "fixes" if the issue of VW damage is addressed at all.
As of this writing VW styles are more than adequate to solo yellow and orange con mobs, the miss rate (in some part due to a lack of a +to hit anytime style) on red and purple mobs is unusually high. I think most would agree at least 39 is a MUST, with 44 and 50 being the other choices based on styles and weap skill gained. As a VW your weapon hits fairly hard. Not as hard as a "true" two hand weap user, like a Champ or Spear Hero, but still does a decent amount of damage. Having played a Ranger for a LONG time I can give you this example. A Ranger MUST put at least 2-3 arrows in a high yellow con mob to expect to melee him with a consistent expectation of success. The VW'er has little to fear from any yellow con mobs (as long as they are not overly resistant to slash) in a pure melee encounter and using all your LT to soften up your target prior to melee makes most kills pretty easy and keeps your downtime low.
Your full barrage of casting your LT, DoT, and haste needs to be used mostly when you fight "high" orange con mobs or those orange mobs that are resistant to your weapon type. Increased downtime makes this hard to justify though. I solo oranges of all types with a degree of success that I had not seen with my 50 Ranger or 46 Ment.

The example above assumes you have very good equipment (I have had spell crafted weapons and armor since LvL 35) and that all your buffs are up and your DoT is available.
Our styles are mostly reactive and will add a significant amount of damage through a fight and will often mean the difference between winning an losing against a tough opponent. The 39 spec is the 3rd of 4 styles in the evade chain, with 44 being the last of the parry chain (3 total) and 50th LvL style being the 4th and last in the evade chain. You should note that you will evade significantly more than you parry, especially in group RvR, plan accordingly, but remember the 50th LvL style will see little use in group RvR as 4 parts of a chain is extremely hard to pull off and the effect isn’t all that great relative to its difficulty to execute. On of the problems with reactive styles is that you wont always parry or evade right at the beginning of a fight. Because of the significant damage that other tank classes can do in just 3-5 hits your chances of using a reactive style is diminished.

As of the mid 20th LvL I stopped using the only anytime style, Reaper LvL 2, as there is no attack or Def bonus and the fatigue cost is high the added damage is a joke (3-8). I think most high LvL VW's would agree your best bet is to use your parry reactive style and back it up with your evade reactive. That way if you perform either maneuver you can follow up with the second style in either chain. Others use the Taunt style because it gives a bonus to damage, but imo, is offset with its penalty to defense. The Taunt style is a good anytime style only so long as your target is not currently attacking you (as the def penalty wont be an issue). If your assistiting the side chain is your best bet, but there are times when getting position can be difficult when assisting and the added bonus of the taunt makes more sense

I should also mention that as of this writing the 4th LvL style sawgrass (that works off a parry) is also broken. Its supposed to cause a slash debuff. Until its fixed I can't really decide what its value is, but admit it sounds interesting.

Over all there are a number of issues (as of 1.60) with the scythe styles including, many broken effects, poor scaling of damage and the fact the 50th LvL style is at the end of a 4 part chain. I think few would argue that 4 part chains in RvR are of very little value for the following reasons;
1) The time it takes to pull off a 4 part chain
2) With our miss rate hitting players who's AF's and high block and resist rates and high evade make hitting 4 times in a row VERY unlikely.
3) The difficultly of this chain to pull off is not in line with the damage it produces.


Before I finish with weapon styles I would like to mention the side chain and natures shield.

*Blizzard*
Side chain does great damage. The opener causes a 4 sec stun and the last procs a 198 AoE DD. At LvL 40 this is about 250-350 damage on an even con and that does not include your weapon damage crits or other weapon procs. In the 3 style chain I have done between 800-1300 damage on an even con, and 600-800 damage on purple Abysmals in the Mines (between 39-40th LvL). Just keep in mind that is the total through all three styles. Miss rate on Purple and some red cons can make this style hard to get of consistently in PvE.
One other thing to mention is that you can Crit on your weapon as well as the effect of the Blizzard style, add that to a weapon that can proc (I have seen this happen a handful of times) the damage you can do in a single hit can potentially reach 700-800 on a yellow or orange con!!! Something like this..

You hit monster with Blizzard, monster takes 150 damage
You Critical for 100!
You do 100 extra damage <--weapon proc
Monster takes 250 <--Blizzard effect
You critical for 200!! <---Blizzard Crit
(this of course is a 1 in 500 shot, the reality is that youwill often be resisted on the blizzard effect, but its potential to do extreme damage is decent).

*Natures Shield*
The Natures shield style is simply a style that allows you to block all incoming arrows in a 120 arc in front of you. Target anyone (even yourself) activate the style and put it away. if your shot in front you will block the arrow. If you are shot from behind, /face activate the style and you can even LT in this mode, though there are times when you can be hit, and you will be interrupted, but your casting time is 2.5 sec base, faster than most archers. A little more testing with this style has shown that if you use this style to attack players/mobs you can continue to block incoming arrows while attacking, But only if the attacker is in the 120 degree arc in front of you. The trade off is the style has no bonuses so the only advantage to attack with it is to block incoming arrows while you fight.
I have also noticed there are times when the style won’t seem to work right. I'm going to look into this a little more and update this document when I can.

Lets talk a little more about the styles lines and there effects. Remember the higher you wish to take your Aboreal skill the lower your Scythe or Parry skill will be. I have tried to outline each chains advantages and disadvantages are. In the end decide what skill LvL you have chosen and how they will be effective for your style of play.

These are the styles you will use most in RvR and PvE.

Side chain:

After having read the Valewalker boards since there inception and my own in-game analysis and talking to other players it seems that the side style is best saved for PvE. It deals out fantastic damage, but is reported to be very difficult to execute in RvR, though I don’t discount its highly effective use in RvR in some key situations. Your roll in PvE groups is, in my opinion, best when you are assisting the tank classes. For example, Jyorus the tank pulls, you stand at an angle that allows to attack Jyorus’ target so you can start your side chain. Your first hit will stun Joyrus’ target for about 4 sec, thus saving Jyorus from about 1 hit. If when Jyorus pulled your group had to fight 2-3 mobs then with the last style in your side chain, Blizzard scythe, you have the opportunity do damage all mobs facing the group. This assumes that your effect is not resisted and that the mobs are within the area of effect.
Note: you can expect high/very high resist rates from red and purple mobs.

Evade and Parry chain.
Both chains are very effective, especially once mythic fixes the current issues with the DPS additions not working correctly.
Evade chain is a 4 style chain that deals out great damage over 4 hits. Again after discussing this in great length in the Vale community and with other in game players, it seems that a 4 style chain is VERY unrealistic in RvR combat. A 3 style chain is hard enough to pull off in RvR. Keep this in mind when creating your Valewalker. Make sure than if you spec specifically for this style that it fits your style of play. Most Valewalkers will evade more than they parry so keep this in mind also as you choose your template.
Parry chain is also very effective 3 part chain, with the last in the chain (as of this writing) proc’ing a long duration stun. If you can pull this off it can be devastating as the long stun allows you to move into postion for the side chain, or even step back and LT to cause damage while healing yourself. This is most effectively used in PvE as mobs are predictable. But the opportunity to pull this off in a 1v1 encounter is very tempting, and the reward would be high if it works.

I want to finish by saying that most of the AoE and some of the single target effects that Valewalkers proc can be resisted.


Another thing I should mention is our damage type. Valewalkers are limited to slash weapons. You should know who you have an advantage and disadvantage against in RvR.

One other factor to think about when determining your weapon spec is damage variance. The closer you are to your current LvL with your Scythe spec, the less damage variance you will have and at some point you will be able to go beyond normal damage. General rule is if you keep your weap spec at 2/3 your LvL you will do 75%-125% of your possible damage. When your weap is at level you will do 100%-150% of your possible damage. Remember every skill LvL counts so don’t get hung up on the fractions. For example if you are LvL 30 and your scythe skill is 20 you are at 2/3 and should do 75%-125% of your possible damage. If your at 22 scythe skill you might do (as I’m not doing the math) 76%-126%, and so on….


4***ARMOR*** -----------------------------------------------------------------------


As a Valewalker you wear cloth. One of the nice things about cloth is that its cheaper to purchase from crafters than RF or Scale armor. Also no one in any realm has a bonus to hit you in cloth, but by the same token no one has a penalty either.

Albion:

Albion is simple, you are neutral with your weapon to everyone, and because you wear cloth armor everyone is neutral to you.

Midguard:

Everyone in Midguard is neutral to attack you because you wear cloth.

The following are 2 classes that you will be neutral too when attacking because of armor type:

Cloth
* Runemaster
* Spiritmaster

The following are 3 classes that you will receive bonus damage against when attacking because of armor type :

Studded
* Savage
* Berserker
* Hunter

Leather
* Shadowblade

The following classes are classes you will receive a penalty against when attacking because of armor type:

Chain
* Healer
* Shaman
* Skald
* Thane
* Warrior

As most of you that play the Valewalker class know, we wear cloth with our own AF and absorb buff. Our natural AF is one of the lowest in the game (cloth is 51 AF per piece and all other types are 102 AF, at there highest LvL), and even with the 250AF buff still limits us to an overall 500AF (I should note that Hybirnian support class AF buffs do not stack on Valewalker self AF buffs, but rumor has it that Cleric Spec AF buffs will. This of course this is only useful on the PvP or co-op servers).
The 33% absorb buff is the best of its type in game. However after much reading and debate the only thing I can tell you, without rampant speculation, is that the combination of AF and absorb is good, but unlike the 33% absorb might suggest our ability to take damage is not what the 33% absorb might suggest. My best guess is that we are close to scale in terms of our ability to absorb damage overall, possibly a little less (subject, of course, to the rampant speculation I was just taking about).
Our barely adequate armor configuration is further hindered by the fact that Valewalkers are on a fairly low HP table. With my experience as a Ranger it looks like I'm on par to have about the same amount of HP (possibly a little more than my Ranger as con is a tertiary stat for the Vale) as my Ranger at LvL 50, or about 1200 +/- 150 or so based on equipment, stats taken, and racial choice at conception.

If one factors in the useful but unreliable proc'ing defensive buff (at its best the proc will absorb 25% of hits taken up to 130 for 1 min @ LvL50 Arb) I would simply say that, at least in melee, there are times that that proc will be the difference between winning and loosing. Its just really hard to put substantive value on an ability that you have no control over and may proc 3 times in a fight or not at all. Seems like this "ability" leaves the average Valewalker consistently unsure of his chances in a combat situation.

Here is more comparative info on armor factor.

Max AF formula. For cloth, leather and chain

(1 + Absorb) x level x 10. = your capped AF.


For a 50 VW
1.00 x 50 x 10 = 500
for realm rank 5, just use 51 as level.
1.00 x 51 x 10 = 505
(plus 33% abs)

For a 50 Friar
1.10 x 50 x 10 = 550
for realm rank 5
1.10 x 51 x 10 = 561
(plus 15% abs)

For a 50 Thane
1.27 x 50 x 10 = 635
for realm rank 5
1.27 x 51 x 10 = 647


Also, absorb buffs are not part of the AF formula, they simply absorb a portion of the melee damage.

Your total AF means nothing really, its just a number to show your relative armor factor. In terms of combat, where your hit and the effective AF of the piece where your hit, condition, quality and bonus mean more than overall AF.
AF determines whether we are hit or not (we have the same AF as casters).
Then I believe that AF also is factored in to help determine damage. Thus lower AF means we would take more damage than a scale wearer with equivalent equipment. Factor in our self AF and absorb buff and the damage taken comes more in line with someone who wears scale, but is not better than scale, as the 33% absorb buff might suggest.

One other fact, when getting hit with spells, we get hit just as hard as casters as our abs does not work against spells. Combine that with our low HP and I would say that we are pretty weak to casters. Thus resists should be a priority to any Valewalker in RvR combat.

5***PARRY*** -----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Parry rates (from the original table in section 1) are as follows: (1-skill)/2+5
02 – 6%
10 – 9.5%
18 - 13.5%
20 – 14.5%
26 – 17.5%
30 – 19.5%
31 – 20%
35 – 22%
37 – 23%

Dex and possibly Qui effect our parry rate, but as of this writing I am unsure exactly how much, though according to the quote from Mythic (below) it seems that Dex/Qui stats have more of an effect on parry than they do in our evade rate.
As our styles are reactionary and one of the style chains starts off a parry, parry skill is fairly important....But as most know in grouped RvR there is a "parry bug" so your parry rate will fall dramatically in grouped RvR (the more members in your current targets group the less likely you are to parry). Just how much your parry rate will drop is unknown.
I find that parry importance is directly related to your style of play. If you intend on fighting solo enemy players, dueling or playing a lot of PvE, high parry is a great idea, but if you tend to fight in RvR against groups, you may want to put your parry points elsewhere. If you do a little of both. Then balance your spec accordingly. I would suggest that points in parry, meaning 20+, are probably spent better elsewhere, but I concede that this point is highly debatable, and by no means definitive and should be taken with a grain of salt.
I should mention that the parry chain seems to deal out slightly more damage than the first 3 in the evade chain. The last in the parry chain also adds the ability to stun. The official Mythic website lists the effect as hindered so as of this moment I’m unsure about the future of this styles effect (hindered suggests slowed attack speed).

Here is some information from the Warrior TL, Ritorix. This should give you an idea of parry effectiveness in solo vs. group combat….
The test was performed using a Warrior in epic, with good stuff. The warrior is 50+9axe, 39+14 parry +(1 LvL of MoP), 42+15 shield
Warrior parry rates: (attacked by a 50th LvL Armsman)

Ungrouped 28%
2v1 16.8%
7v1 9.1%

This is an example of the problem with parry in certain group situations. Particular test seems to be indicative of the parry bug across the realms. I should also note that this was conducted at the time of the 1.56 patch between an Armsman and a Warrior.
Try not to read into the numbers above other than how they relate to each other.

See below (at the end of the evade section) for more information on parry.

6***EVADE***

Here is how Valewalkers stack up against some other classes in evade:

* Assassin (all types) evade 7 (35%)
* Friar evade 5 (25%)
* Valewalkers, +Savage evade 4 (20%) -In addition Savages get a 25% Evade buff.
* +Bezerker, +Blademaster and
*Scout, Ranger Evade 3 (15%)
*Hunter evade 2 (10%)
* Most tank classes, Bards and +Mercs evade 1 (5%)

+ These classes get advanced Evade which allows them to evade attackers in a 360 degree circle.

I believe evade will often be the difference between winning an loosing in melee. As I mentioned above in the style section evade not only prevents a hit but allows us to react with a bonus to damage and proc certain effects (most of which are broken or less effective at this time).
Be aware that Dex and Qui (probably the average of the two) will give you a bonus to your evade rate. It is interesting to note that it seems very likely that the average of Dex/Qui will have more of an effect the higher your base evade rate.
That is to say that a Lurikeen Nightshade with an average Dex/Qui of 250 (with a base evade of 7) will get more from his Dex/Qui average (for example +20%) than a Lurikeen Hero (with a base evade of 1) with an average of 250 Dex/qui (example here 7%).
Lastly the Dodger realm ability is part of your base score, so as you increase your dodger realm ability (3% per LvL) you also increase the effectiveness of how Dex/Qui adds to your overall evade rate. So in effect raising dodger will give you slightly more than +3% per level.
Your opponents LvL and his bonuses/penalties will also effect your chance to evade.

Also from Mythics *Grab bag*

Regarding parry and evade


"Evade is not a skill, and it works very differently from parry and block. Primarily, the effectiveness of evade is related to your level of evade (and of course, your level versus the level of your target). There are many minor factors, of course, but that is the big one. The stats that affect evade are dex and qui in equal proportions, just not in as large a proportion as they are in parry or block."

7***CHARACTER CREATION*** ---------------------------------------------------------

Where to take your initial 30 points. This of course depends on the race you play and what play style you intend to use as well as other factors. I’m not going to suggest anything in particular. But I will tell you what is important and why.

* Str- Is a factor in weap damage and weap skill.
* Dex- Higher Dex is included in a formula, along with Qui, that determines your evade rate. Dex is also a large factor in determining your overall parry rate.
* Con- Hit points, and I have read, that higher Con also helps lessen (though as of this writing I have no idea how much) damage taken.
* Qui- Determines how often you swing your weapon. Also see Dex above regarding evade rates.
* Int- This will, as of the 1.60 patch, increase your spell damage. I don’t have any definitive numbers as to just how much as of this writing.

Overall stats will mean more in the early LvL’s as buffs will be smaller and less available. In the end, grouped with Bards, Wardens, and Druids regardless of your race, your stats should all be high enough to be close to there caps, with the exception being Int, and Qui (as there is no base buff to stack w/ spec buffs).

I will add that Firbolg seems the least viable with the only elevated VW usable stat being Str and because Str is a primary stat you will eclipse your cap at LvL 50 w/ buffs by as much as 20 points. For Firbolgs Dex, and Qui are fairly low (both at 40) and will impact your ability to evade and parry, but overall at LvL 50 this won’t have as big an impact and some people will play Firbolg VW's just to be different.

8*** CONCLUSION***---------------------------------------------------------------------

Figure what style of play suits you....
Mostly PvE?
Melee tank roll?
Caster?
Something in the middle?
Little bit of everything?

After you ask this then find out what spec will help you accomplish this goal. Of course there isn't any one spec that will fit one goal....but it should help....

Hopefully you had a chance to read the Valewalker team leads opinion on the roll that the Valewalker fills….If not, and your still trying to decide what roll this class fills, head back to the preface and read it!



9***CLOSING*** ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

All and all I have some RvR experience as a Valewalker but far from a vet with this class, so I don't try to influence the reader with my bias (too much anyway)....Ill do that later when I have reached lvl 50 and at least RR4 =) ....I hope other readers will add to this post with their own experiences and information in an effort to help those looking to spec their Valewalkers.

I have been in DAoC since week one and have RvR'ed with My 50 ranger and 46th Ment and have over 100 in game days of play time. I have a good grasp on RvR overall and I’m very aware of the culture and subtle mechanics that come from a year and 5 months (as of 3/2003) of playing DAoC

I will leave you with this. I love the nitch the VW fills. Its one of the harder classes to play, and with all the reactive styles and manipulation of quick bars, it takes a bit of manual dexterity to play this class.

Good day, and Good Luck!!



-----signature-----

TalinGuard 50 Ranger (Will trade my 47th lvl Imbueable cloak for full respec gem, Msg me!!)
TalinSpyir 46Metalist (currently on vaction)
Talinfaine Machavellia 4x Valewalker (Seeking Galladoria VW Crown )
Numquam adamo occisor tantum justic"

Thought it would fit nicely on these boards.
 

CrashTan

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Thanks for this.

I feel Celt with +10 str, dex, qui and 38 arb, 50 scythe, 20 parry seems like a solid choice for Atlas
 

bm01

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Sadly old guides are often plagued with wrong information, and this one is no exception.

There is no reason whatsoever to go below 38 Arbo and 44 Scythe. You can go 48 Arbo 44 Scythe, or 38 Arbo 50 Scythe. Both are fine. The only reason to go lower than 38 Arbo is to gain 5 or 6 points in Parry, and even solo that's generally a bad idea. Going below 44 Scythe is simply madness. Alright, but what are the benefits of going higher than that?


Let's compare what we gain at 48 Arbo instead of 38

Increased DoT damage? It's a 18 delve difference over 30 seconds, so it's pretty much irrelevant and it gets healed without anyone noticing it. Also in group we generally want to use the level 1 DoT because of its lower cost and 36% chance to get resisted (so 36% chance not to give your target a 30 seconds CC immunity).

Increased disease proc chance on the last spell? This is a change that was introduced in a later patch. In 1.65, the whole line is supposed to have a 10% proc chance (currently not the case on Atlas). We get a lower resist chance, but if we take the proc chance into account, the chance to apply the disease becomes 8.55% per hit with the last spell instead of 8.05%.

Increased lifetap damage? There's a ~5% damage increase between 38 and 48 Arbo (with some +skills and high acuity), before taking resistances into account. I mean, yeah, it isn't terrible, but...

Better abla proc? It's 20 more HP on a 10% proc rate.

Better haste? True. But you have to remember that it doesn't coexist with Druid's haste (at least historically it didn't). In 1.65, Valewalkers only used their self-haste when there was no buffbot, no Druid (of if it died) or if there wasn't enough conc for everyone.

Then we also get lower resist chances on our snare, which is actually a good thing (because there's no MoF with old RAs). And that's about it really.


What about raising Scythe above 44?

Obviously we can ignore the last style (fun in PvE though).

First, a quick test on a dummy shows that with 44+13 Scythe there's a flat 9.98% defense penetration. It becomes 11.02% with 50+13. It's not huge, but it's there.

Second, while making sure I'm not hitting cap damage and comparing only hits having the same SpecMod in /combatstats to remove all variance, a second test shows that Damaging Grasp does ~5% more damage at 50+13 Scythe compared to 44+13.

And that's all. It only affects damage (not variance since we're already above 52 Scythe) and defense penetration.


Conclusion

I personally tend to value 44->50 Scythe more than 38->48 Arbo for the sole fact that most of our damage comes from melee and enemies often have >40% energy resist, making the extra 5% spell damage pretty weak. For solo it also gives 10 more points in parry. The 19% resist chance instead of 14% on the snare is annoying though.
 
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Saroi

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Increased disease proc chance on the last spell? This is a change that was introduced in 1.114b (https://darkageofcamelot.com/article/1114b-comes-live-servers). In 1.65, the whole line has 15% proc chance. We get lower resist chance, but if we take the proc chance in to account, the chances to applies the disease becomes 12.825% per hit instead of 12.075%. We can ignore it.
Witherstrike(Last disease proc) having a 25% proc chance, so 10% more than the others, is afaik correct with patch 1.65. All the older information, guides, charplaners show a 25% proc rate on the last disease.

Patch 1.114b which you are showing is so far away and not accurate, because in earlier patches there have been changes to the disease proc from Valewalker.

For example patch 1.83: https://camelotherald.fandom.com/wiki/Patch_Notes:_Version_1.83

The disease amount from the Offensive Proc buff line (Blightstrike) has been increased by 10 per level and the proc rate has been increased by 5% per level.

Here it has a scaling in duration and proc chance per level. If you look up a charplaner from a patch after 1.83 then you will see that Witherstrike had then a 35% proc chance because of that. So if patch 1.114b increased the proc rate to 20%, then somewhere a patch must changed the scaling again and bring all down to 15%. With again is not accurate for patch 1.65.
 

bm01

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Witherstrike(Last disease proc) having a 25% proc chance, so 10% more than the others, is afaik correct with patch 1.65. All the older information, guides, charplaners show a 25% proc rate on the last disease.
Atlas currently shows 20% on the tooltip of Witherstrike, and 15% for the others. Looks like it's copied from Live, minus the last spell at level 50 which doesn't exist here and has a 25% proc rate.

Anyway, we have 1.114b saying the proc rate of the last spell was increased to 20%, then 1.83 saying the proc rate increases by 5% per level. It's possible that another patch brought some changes to the proc rates, but if we ignore that detail and assume that there aren't other changes, it means that during 1.83 the proc rate for each spell was:
- Blightstrike 5%
- Banestrike 10%
- Rotstrike 15%
- Scourgestrike 20%
- Witherstrike 25%

That's the only possible progression. The line obviously couldn't start at 0%, but it couldn't start at 10% (or higher) either because otherwise Scourgestrike would have had a 25% (or higher) proc rate, which was higher than Witherstrike after 1.114b.

Because of that and because 1.83 increased the value by 5% per level, it makes me think that the whole line was set to 5%. While it seems doubtful to me, I remember the proc rate to be fairly low and people complaining about it, but maybe not that low.

Your said you found older guides and charplaners showing proc rates but I'm pretty sure that information wasn't known during SI, and none of the forum posts from 2004-2006 I could find mention the exact value. Well I found a post saying it's 10% for the whole line, right before 1.83 came out, but that's not exactly a reliable source.
 
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Saroi

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Atlas currently shows 20% on the tooltip of Witherstrike, and 15% for the others. Looks like it's copied from Live, minus the last spell at level 50 which doesn't exist here and has a 25% proc rate.

Anyway, we have 1.114b saying the proc rate of the last spell was lowered to 20%, then 1.83 saying the proc rate increases by 5% per level. It's possible that another patch brought some changes to the proc rates, but if we ignore that detail and assume that there aren't other changes, it means that during 1.83 the proc rate for each spell was:
- Blightstrike 5%
- Banestrike 10%
- Rotstrike 15%
- Scourgestrike 20%
- Witherstrike 25%

That's the only possible progression. The line obviously couldn't start at 0%, but it couldn't start at 10% either because otherwise Scourgestrike would have had a 25% proc rate, which was higher than Witherstrike after 1.114b. Lastly, since 1.83 appears to be the first patch mentioning a different proc rate based on level, it means that the whole line had the same proc rate before 1.83, but the wording makes me believe the whole line was at 5%

Seems doubtful to me. I remember the proc rate to be fairly low and people complaining about it, but maybe not that low. Your said you found older guides and charplaners showing proc rates but I'm pretty sure that information wasn't known during SI, and none of the forum posts from 2004 (so post 1.65) mention the exact value.
In case of the disease proc, yeah 20% is correct. I somehow had 25% in mind. The last proc is still better than the 15%. And that is no mistake or because of patch 1.114b.

In case of the scaling after patch 1.83, they simply calculated a 10% base chance into it

it was
15, 20, 25, 30 and 35%

ibb.co/F59MrjG
ibb.co/xCCxm6H

So yes Scourgestrike(30%) was better than Witherstrike before and so was Rotstrike with 25%. That is basically the concept of a buff. The patch 1.114b because of those changes cannot be scale that Witherstrike before was 15% and the same as the others.
 
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bm01

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You're missing the point. We know that Atlas currently has inaccurate values. The idea was to trace back the changes to find out what was the proc rates at 1.65 instead of relying on a screenshot of some char planer. It's not about our respective opinions, it's about finding proofs in official materials and player conducted tests.

I'm not saying that "15%, 20%, 25%, 30%, 35%" is wrong at 1.83, I'm saying that if a patch is increasing a value to 25% or more, then it doesn't make any sense semantically speaking to have a subsequent patch increasing that same value to 20%. It means we're missing a piece, either our numbers are wrong, or the patch notes are wrong, or something happened in-between those patches.

Based on the values shown in this page (https://darkageofcamelot.com/content/class-library-valewalker) I think there was indeed some undocumented change between those two patches, and if that's the case the only reliable information we have so far is what's in 1.83 patch note.

Anyway, if "15%, 20%, 25%, 30%, 35%" is correct at 1.83, which increased the proc rates by 5% per level, it means that the values were "10%, 10%, 10%, 10%, 10%" before it. It still doesn't say anything about Witherstrike having a 20% proc rate at 1.65.
 
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