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PostPosted: Fri Dec 01, 2017 11:15 pm 
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Cornac

Joined: Thu Nov 23, 2017 2:19 pm
Posts: 39
Hello community,

I have a lvl 17 Bulwark. I now have a shield and breastpiece equipped I would consider swapping out for another set. The crucial question for me at this moment is: how should I compare the flat value life given by shields or armors with the defense, armor or block they give? Or is this the wrong question to ask and should I compare different criteria as well?

Currently, I have equipped a reinforced dwarven-steel shield of cold resistance (15%) which gives 8 defense, 7 armor, +3 block and has 32.5-39 power. I consider swapping it for Yvekira the Sunsin with 6 defense, 2 armour, +2 block and 15.5-18.6 power but gives +56 life. In addition, I wear a fortifying iron mail of Eyal with 2 defense, 4 armor, 3 str, 3 con and +71 life. I may swap it for Scaldraze with 5 defense, 11 armor.

What do you suggest?

Thanks in advance!


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2017 12:18 am 
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Thalore

Joined: Sat Apr 29, 2017 9:39 pm
Posts: 148
Armor is pretty great, but only works against weapon attacks. Weapon attacks are pretty deadly, especially if your opponent has high skill levels in weapon mastery talents. Max Health items are worth stacking, particularly early on. Defense is basically irrelevant for anyone besides maybe a Shadowblade[Blur Sight + high Dex]. Blocking power isn't terribly important, but higher block level gives you a better cooldown, which means more counterstrikes and thus more damage.

I'd probably go with the options that gave higher +health at this point in the game, since all your examples have quite large boosts. But once your naturally large health pool gets big enough, +health will become relatively less useful since you're already out of the danger zone and can focus on winning battles of attrition with damage reduction and healing instead of trying to avoid getting killed in a matter of turns.

Its also worth noting that you want to max Armour Mastery and wear a massive plate set as soon as you can, to get that delicious armour hardiness and crit shrug bonus. Sudden burst damage from one or more crits is one of the biggest causes of death and being able to reduce that chance is really nice.

^Disclaimer: I've never actually played a Bulwark. I'm assuming that they gear sort of like Stone Wardens/Sun Paladins, which I have played.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2017 1:53 am 
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Sher'Tul Godslayer

Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 11:16 pm
Posts: 2263
High Armour with 100% hardiness is brilliant n

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2017 12:22 pm 
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Cornac

Joined: Thu Nov 23, 2017 2:19 pm
Posts: 39
Thanks! Too bad that the armor w/o the health bonus is massive, while the other one is not. Is 'massive' worth -71 life?


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2017 1:07 pm 
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Sher'Tul Godslayer

Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 11:16 pm
Posts: 2263
Spreeuw wrote:
Thanks! Too bad that the armor w/o the health bonus is massive, while the other one is not. Is 'massive' worth -71 life?


It all depends on your level and other gear, your hardiness and total armour. So hard to give an answer without more info....

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2017 6:31 pm 
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Cornac

Joined: Thu Nov 23, 2017 2:19 pm
Posts: 39
Well perhaps one of you would be so kind to take a quick peek at my character sheet?

It's here:

https://te4.org/characters/222959/tome/ ... 1642492ced

Any other feedback is welcome as well, of course! For example, in level my skill I try to maximize the short-term utility. Since levelling up skills decreases their marginal gains, I now have lots of skills at 2 or 3 out of 5. I don't know if this is an optimal strategy.

The shields and armors are visible as well. I equipped the 'massive' armor (no + 71 health) but I did equip the shield which has around +52 health or so.

Thanks in advance!


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2017 8:19 pm 
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Thalore

Joined: Sat Apr 29, 2017 9:39 pm
Posts: 148
Random skilling advice:

-I think you overestimate the importance of saves, judging by your investments in Unshackled/Spell Shield. The resistances from Shield Wall + Unflinching Resolve work far better then saves do, especially if you stack more stun resist on top.
-Greater Weapon Focus is apparently pretty great[More attacks = more damage]. Step Up is decent mobility for an otherwise sluggish class and Bleeding Edge looks fairly solid.
-Assault is Bulwark's best attacking skill by a large margin. Two guaranteed critical hits in one turn is huge, especially if its also a Counterstrike. It doesn't scale that well with additional points, but it increases your damage capability by a lot once you do get it. Unlock as soon as you can.
-Combat Veteran skills really aren't that useful. Putting one point in the first two skills makes resting not take as long and that's pretty much it.
-Blinding Speed is really good, especially on a class like Bulwark that is good with bump attacks. Global speed is hard to come by and definitely deserves 5/5. Perfect Strike is useful against some annoyingly dodgy enemies, but is fine at 1/1.
-Weapons Mastery is your most important generic skill and should be maxed as soon as possible. %damage increase and a large physical damage boost gives you much better numbers with hitting things.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2017 10:16 pm 
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Cornac

Joined: Thu Nov 23, 2017 2:19 pm
Posts: 39
Thank you! So my priorities are to level shield wall and unflinching resolve. I will last a while with your points for sure! I am about to take on the Dakaira, Tempest and then the Master! >:^)


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 4:43 pm 
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Higher

Joined: Fri Nov 03, 2017 4:35 pm
Posts: 52
Basically, you need a good health pool to reliably sustain at least 2 rounds of any fight, and the rest can go to armor/resistances.

IMO in early game life is the best, but to deicde what you need more it's better to look at percentage increase. From my experience with Bullwark I easily had 700 HP pre 20, so life wasn't very important. Overall, if it's at least 10% increase from your current life it's probably worth it. But in general it heavily depends on your current level and situation. Armor will help more vs physical attackers while HP/resistances are best vs mages.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 10:48 pm 
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Cornac

Joined: Thu Nov 23, 2017 2:19 pm
Posts: 39
Thanks so much everyone! I finally beat the master (with this very Bulwark) and the ambush which followed. My approach was a bit cheap in that when things became too dangerous I teleported to the other side of the dungeon, healed up and reengaged.

One thing which bothered me, was that my stamina seemed to run out quickly. One rotation of all my skills basically did it. Is this normal?


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2017 4:14 am 
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Thalore

Joined: Sat Apr 29, 2017 9:39 pm
Posts: 148
Spreeuw wrote:
One thing which bothered me, was that my stamina seemed to run out quickly. One rotation of all my skills basically did it. Is this normal?


More or less. Getting Second Wind from the Warcries tree helps you use your emergency talents more consistently and I think Adrenaline Rush does something similar, if more limited. You can also get some pretty large amounts of +stamina from lategame items. You should probably cut back on skill use a bit: Physical characters like this can deal very large damage with bump attacks[Or in Bulwark's case: Block->Riposte bump attack], so skill spamming hurts you in sustained fights. Stamina is basically what mana would be if it were a functional resource: You can't consistently restore it in combat and you have to budget your talent use in long fights or risk tiring out and losing your sustains.


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