Force of Will and Darkness have been my mainstays. Hide behind creeping dark, use blast and willful strike them to knock them back, and if it's really serious use unseen force. I've mostly avoided melee.
I recently started getting shadows at level 20 not because I expect them to do good damage, but almost entirely because of Shadow Decoy. It's too good to pass up, even if it does cost a lot. It has already saved my life once. My immediate plans are to get 5/5 Call Shadows and 1/5 Focus Shadows, so that I will be able to re-summon my shadows if they are dead, to make sure Shadow Decoy can trigger if necessary.
For generic points, I intend to max out Timeless ASAP and also magic of the eternals. Maybe also get some Gestures, though I'm not sure if this is necessary. Then possibly thick skin 5/5 or heavy armor training 5/5.
I am wearing massive armor. My current armor is 71 with 88% hardiness. I'm considering wielding Blood-Letter to get +20 armor:
I almost have enough stats from gear to wield it.
However, I have low health, 512, and this resulted in me getting one-shot from near-full health. That's when Shadow Decoy saved me.
For prodigies, Corrupted Shell looks great since it gives +500 life, which shores up a weak point of this character. I can probably get 50 constitution if I collect some more +con items. I understand I can take 3500 blight damage by standing on blighted soil, wielding a weapon that does blight damage, and hitting myself. Siding with the Grand Corruptor requires 11 levels in spell talents. I think the Shalore racial talents would qualify. I have 5 levels in them now, which will be 6 as soon as I eat the sandworm queen heart. I can also take a point or two out of Thick Skin, giving 7 or 8 points in Shalore racial talents. That means I could potentially get Corrupted Shell by level 28 or 29.
Another one I'm thinking about is Blighted Summoning, which looks like it will give my shadows bone armor. This will keep them alive, which again will make sure Shadow Decoy can trigger if I die. I do want to be sure that this actually works on shadows. I already qualify for the talent by having summoned 100 creatures (shadows), the only thing I would need is to gather +mag items to get 50 magic.
Then there's Revisionist History, which also looks like a great way to safeguard myself against sudden death. To get it I'd need to time travel at least once, and I'm not sure if I can manage that on this character. Is visiting the time portal in Daikara enough?
And of course there's Adept.
Aside from survivability, there is a question of whether I will be doing enough damage. My fights do tend to have a lot of waiting time for cooldowns. My options as I see them:
- Go all-in on shadows, make them scary. Will this work? I know that shadows suck early on, because I've tried them. If I get 5/5 5/5 5/5 1/5 in shadows, is that enough for them to be strong in High Peak and the final fight? I can also later get advanced shadowmancy.
- Pick up fears and/or punishments. I've heard, however, that fears do not work against undead. This is also adding another damage type beyond physical and darkness. I know that it is more common for doomed to invest more in punishments than I have.
- Get gestures and start doing heavier melee. Currently this doesn't seem like the greatest idea, but if I get corrupted shell then maybe it's the way to go.