Jul 172013
 

My brother, when first handed the baby that is my son Devon, spontaneously broke into song, making up this lullaby on the spot:

Sleep little cuddlefish
Bloop. Bloop. Bloop.

No one said it was a good song, but clearly it was a memorable one, Devon turns 30 this year but that moment stands as clearly in my mind as if it had happened yesterday.

I was reminded of this earlier this week when my amazing artificer Sparksy hit level 16 and grew into the DoubleCross Bow I’d had stashed for her. Sparksy has acquired quite a selection of repeating crossbows in the short time that I’ve been playing her; she quickly accumulated a disruptor, a banisher, a smiter, but has not had a clear, must-use crossbow and has had to carry a large collection of loot generated weapons for situational use.

Doublecross Bow
One determined-looking Artificer and her Doublecross Bow

The Doublecross has greatly simplified things for me. I still carry the Smiter for constructs, Banisher for outsiders and elemental, and the Silver Slinger for undead, but everything else gets the Doublecross. Everything else.

It does less DPS than the loot-generated weapons I’d been using (mainly Seeker of Laceration) but that is not the whole story. At level 16, lots of opponents are affected by the Nightshade poison and fall asleep, and if so, take extra damage for being incapacitated. Only for a moment, the damage also wakes them and removes the incapacitation, but even so, the extra damage plus the time the target monster loses falling asleep and awakening (often more than once) is enough to keep the charging target from ever reaching my character.

Throw in Insightful Damage and Deadly Weapons and the weapon becomes so effective that it seems almost unfair to the bad guys.

Almost.

Sleep little hobgoblin boss
Sleep little hobgoblin boss. Bloop. Bloop. Bloop.

There is a rhythm to using the crossbow. If you time it correctly, you leave your target sleeping for awhile (up to 20 seconds according to the Wiki) freeing you up to hit other targets. But if you hit the target again it awakens. Yet you are firing the crossbow in several shot bursts; the rhythm comes in knowing when to [Tab] to another target and give your original target a chance to fall asleep without instant re-awakening.

But even when you miss the rhythm it is not really bad, it is just slightly off of maximum possible effectiveness versus a large group. But you’re probably going to just kill them all like crazy anyway, this combination of weapon and character is exhileratingly overpowered even still at level 16, and a slight perturbation in effectiveness will not even be noticeable in the long run.

Got to go, my amazing Artificer calls to me. She and her amazing spells and amazing crossbow and general overall amazingness. All those monsters ain’t gonna slay themselves.

:) :D :)

  11 Responses to “Putting the Bad Guys to Sleep. Literally.”

Comments (11)
  1. I recently tr’ed into my first ever arty, lv8 atm, enjoying the playstyle so far and i will look forward to when i hit 16 for the doublecross :)

  2. Now I’m singing the Cuddlefish lullabye to my cat.

  3. Spontainiously breaking into a silly song? At least we don’t know anyone on DDO who does that! Nope.

    But that’s a cool looking crossbow though… I could use that!

  4. It’s a very nice crossbow, with some nice crowd control capability. I’ve found that it’s good long-term too, as the crippling effect on that combined with nerve venom, pin & ottos whistler from shiradi champion plus the 10% tendon slice from a dun robar ring all stack & add up to a lot of no-save effects for use while running epic elite.

  5. Doublecross rules. My main started life as an artificer, did 2 more lives, and ultimately will wind up back as an arty. Each subsequent time i look forward to hitting 16 so i can use it again.
    It was particularly fun during Crystal Cove IIRC

  6. When you get to epic levels you may feel the same way about the Needle, http://ddowiki.com/page/Needle,_Quill-slinger

    I get that feeling at level 2 with this xbow, http://ddowiki.com/page/Hobble%27s_Crossbow

    I got all the Double, Needle, and Hobble. Of course I have a few more, but I also like to keep a smiter, banisher, and paralyzer handy.

    Don’t forget to swing your swords :D Chimera’s Fang, Templar’s Retribution, and Nightmare!

  7. Love my arti too, so much he’s on his 3rd life as one. Have never got a doublecross bow but have a scroll and shard for one. One day this beauty will be mine.

  8. if you want a good xbow for endgame,you can go for calomen xbow from cannith challanges.it has an exelent dps,2 GS dmg abiliies,and 90% of it’s dmg unresistable ( all exept the cold dmg from crushing wave is untyped)

  9. The Double cross is fabulous…and it’s mama the Slaver’s hand is even better. Particularly deadly in the hands of a mechanic rogue getting sneak attacks when they fall asleep…

  10. Hurray finally got a doublecrossbow, I must have ran spinner over 50 times. I actually jumped up and cheered :-). Now only the seal to get and its epic. I only started farming for it seriously after reading this article. Daft thing is i doubt it will be of much use now i’m lev 25 :-/

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