This article is about the new enhancements for rogues, part of the Lamannia preview release of the Shadowfell Conspiracy, and containing information covered by the Lamannia non-disclosure agreement.
DDOGamer has been given a free pass to talk about enhancements anyway: a DDOGamer exclusive! And so thus having been sprung from the legalese of the NDA, talking about enhancements is exactly what we are going to do.
Yazdia, to put it simply, is one of the best characters I have ever seen. I love my characters, really, all of them, but I don’t think a one of them is as functionally devastating as Yazdia.
She is fearless. She kills everything. She walks into a group of bad guys and decimates them all, emerging without a scratch. Epic Elite does not phase her. She has very little self-healing, but kills things so quickly and harmlessly that she rarely needs it.
She is a rogue. She is my Gamer Girl’s highest level character. And she is amazing.
|There have been many rogues in the Halfling Commandos. Very many: it’s a side-effect of being a halfling-only guild. Some of these rogues have been really well built. But none are better than Yazdia.
Let’s see how she will fare under the new enhancement system.
Yazdia is an Assassin. She has one level of fighter, taken purely for the feat, which is normally something I would avoid but on this character seems to work out well.
She has a lot of STRENGTH, but then all the good melee rogues are. DEX-only rogues simply do not fare as well in the end game.
Her assassinate DC is not awesome; she took Assassin for the sneak attacks and damage buffs. She will throw an Assassination attempt out now and then but her modus operandi tends more towards pummeling the enemy rather than insta-killing them.
|This article is part of a series where I am trying to get my brain up to speed on the new enhancement system. I’m doing it in the context of my characters, examining them one at a time, attempting to rebuild them on Lamannia as they are on the live servers, then stepping back and comparing the before and after versions.|
Yazdia dual-wields, preferring rapiers but recently focusing on short swords; there are many must-have short swords for the sneak attack set and she has or is seeking them all.
This is beside the point but she also looks pretty badass.
Let’s get to the comparisons:
|Old Enhancements||New Enhancements|
|Damage Boost 2
Halfling Guile 4
Halfling Cunning 4
Sneak Attack Accuracy 4
Sneak Attack Training 4
Subtle Backstabbing 2
Improved Hide 2
Improved Move Silently 2
Halfling DEX 2
|Assassins Trick (debuff opponent)
Execute (+3[W] for one attack or +500 damage vs wounded for one attack)
Ice Chill Poison (chance to paralyze for one attack)
Shiv 3 (+3[W] for one attack)
Sly Flourish (-100 threat on hit)
Venom Blades 3 (stance adds 1d8 poison to attacks)
Dagger in the Back (use DEX for damage with light blades)
Haste Boost 3
Halfling Luck 3
This is essentially the same character on Lamannia as on Sarlona. Differences exist but are minor, although when they occur they are generally favorable.
This is the first character that is able to take advantage of the Halfling racial enhancement tree. One or two of the others dabbled in the tree but most of the characters we’ve worked up have had to avoid the tree completely. Not Yazdia though, she selected from the racial tree with gusto.
She lost a point of DEX but gained 5 hit points. Her Reflex save improved by two while her other saves improved by 3.
- Armor class before: 43, 6% Dodge, 15% defense chance at level*
- Armor class after: 43, 9% Dodge, 15% defense chance at level*
- Sneak Attacks before: 22D6 + 21
- Sneak Attacks after: 26D6 + 1
* Does anyone know what “defense chance at level” means?
It is weird that her sneak attacks used to include a +21 and now include only a +1. Is that a display bug? Or a sneaky attack on sneak attacks by Turbine?
As with all of the other workups we’ve done, many of the new enhancements are unbundled versions of abilities that used to come as part of the Prestige Enhancement. For instance, Lethality used to be something you just got for free when you took the third tier Assassin enhancement.
But some of the new enhancements are all new. I am particularly excited about Dagger In the Back and Knife in the Darkness, as these enhancements allow for the return of truly viable DEX builds.
In fact, once we had this all plotted out, my Gamer Girl felt that her STR-enhanced Rogue/Fighter was a little behind the times. She immediately got busy planning how to LR the character as a pure-class rogue with minimized STR and maximized DEX and INT.
And that is what makes the new enhancements cool. It is not just about replicating your existing character. It is about a new set of building tools, some of which may take you in directions you didn’t anticipate at all.