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Archer guide.

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#1 altus201


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Posted 28 October 2012 - 01:28 PM

(Started this build as a level 35,at the momment i'm three levels away from cap and i'll be revising this guide,teaching you each thing i've learned and the benefits of which as well as going over skill trees that look more promising)

Archers are able to do some pretty incredible damage and if played right can take little to none.

Throughout this guide i'll tell you some neat little tricks and go into detail on a few advanced tricks.

Remember this is a "Guide",if you don't like it,don't use it.

In my opinion there is no right or wrong way to build an archer (excluding pure vit),below will be a basic overview of how you can build them.

First lets go over which "type" of archer you would like to be.

Glass Cannon:Low hp, consistently high attack,skill spammer.

Kiter:Mid range Hp,high crit auto attacks,focuses on no channel CC and maelstones.

Balanced: High enough damage through late game gear,nice sustain,hard to kill easy to get kills.

Archer Stats for Playstyles:

Glass Cannon:
4 str
1 Agi

(Stat distribution changed,credits to SleepAssasin)
2 str
3 agi

Balance: Per two levels
5 str
5 agi

Pros and cons:
GlassCannon (Slow attack speed bow,high damage)

Glass Cannon is easily focused and picked down
Lower crit chance
Auto attacks hit like a truck
Can do insane damage with skills
Traps can tear through enemies with ease

Glass Cannon should of course never be in the front lines but behind the tanks obliterating anyone focusing on your clerics. If you see someone iniating,pop your stealth,smack them with secret fire,then feel free to spam them with Deadly shot and Poison Arrow.
Should be simple enough to Deadly Shot auto attack and then another Deadly shot to take care of any equal lvl mob. In boss fights keep your Poison shot on them at all times and spam Deadly shot. Should be doing 3-5x more than the tank and much much more than any mercs you've picked up to fill the holes.

Kriters:(Low damage bow,high attack speed)
Cons: Pros:
Kiter's damage falls short when crits dont activate

Relatively easy prey while CC's CD's are down
PvE requires kiting mobs the same as you would in PvP
Constant auto attack crits (2 in every 3 hits)
The CC and mobility buffs through maelstones are amazing
Traps can drop 40 mobs with 3(Will reveal later)

Kiter or "Kriter"...(Im making it a thing,go with it) should wait for the tanks to charge in swinging and run to the sides of the battle picking off the clerics/mages/rangers while constantly staying moving. If you get focused simply target the person,drop a "Defensive Shooting" on them activate "Purity" after the debuff wears off and kite them down while auto attacking all the while.Dont forget your skills crit as well,whenever you aren't getting focused spam Deadly shot,and don't forget your faction skill. Could easily make the difference between one kill or four.
Traps and kite. Lay down an "Iron Trap" wait for the CD to refresh then lay down another a few feet away(shouldnt take too long if you go for the lowered cooldown skill,i'll go over that in a bit). Run out and agro a few monsters,5 is your best bet without taking lethal damage.Run back some and let them all group up,then kite them over one trap,if all 5 of them didnt die,then kite them over the other. My personal best record was 41 mobs with the help of a cleric. Post yours below!

Balanced:Mid speed bow,Mid damage,mid attack speed.
Cons: Pro:
Not as high damage as you could do

Can farm longer than other builds
Pop Ardeant Zeal and live through anything

Mix both above overviews.

Skill Tree:
Prelude: Looking over my skill tree and the skills I use most consistently now I wish I would've done it differently. I'll be detailing which skills and why I would chose them in this next section.
At this level cap you get 64 skill points,what i'm about to go over isnt theory crafting.

Color coding is how i'm going impress the importance of certain skills:

Killing Spree: Get the skill[Who doesnt want the benefits it has to offer?]
Chaser of Madness: Five points [25% phys crit rate]
Quick Aggression: Three points [15% dodge]

Deadly shot: One point[Skill]
Master Ranger(Shot of death):Five points[30% bonus skill damage]
Defensive Shooting:One point[Skill]
Precise Skill(Check shot):One point[1 sec cd/Prerequisite skill]
Trap Check Shot:One point[1 sec duration/Prerequisite skill]
Compound Poison:One point[10% elem poison resist/buffer skill]
Poison Arrow:One point[Skill]
Crave Combat(Poison Arrow):One point[1 sec cd]
Overlapping Poison(Poison Arrow):Five points[50% bonus skill damage]
Cobra Kick:One point[Skill/After dodge you can stun(Within melee range)]
Black Shadow:One point[Skill/Stealth]
Black Shadow Extension: Two points[20% stealth duration/Prerequisite skill]
Black Shadow Specialization:Five points[Level five stealth/Cannot be detected by most other rangers/maelstones]
Secret Fire:One point[Skill,90% slow(Must be stealthed)]
Chill Mix:One point[10% ice resist/Prerequisite skill]
Ardeant Zeal:One point[400 base dodge when activated]
Iron Trap:One point[A mine that does DoT to many areas within 5 meters]
Iron Trap Expansion:Three points[Increases duration 6 seconds/Prerequisite skill]
Iron Trap Specialization: Three points[Cooldown reduction/Prerequisite skill]
Chill Shooting:One point[Skill/60% slow]
Aimed Shooting:One point[Skill]
Aimed Shooting Distance Enhancement:Three points[Range increased by 1.5Meters]
Break Spell:One Point[Removes physical DoT]
Fast Break Spell: Five points[Instant cast Break Spell]
Break Spell Cooldown Specialization:Three points[36 sec cooldown]
Concentrated Fire:One point[Area of Effect/Three second channel,Can move while casting]
Shadow Pursuit:One point[Detect Stealth]
Shadow Pursuit Specialization:Five points[Increase stealth detection level]

With this build you will get the maximum effectiveness and damage from your skills along with amazing survivability.Some people won't like this build because I completely throw out the stun.Granted the stun does have its benefits and viability but your job is to slaughter,not hold them still or interrupt a cast.
The five points into stealth is so end game the only players who could possibly find you,are the ones who devoted their points into the same,maelstones won't be able to detect you,and you should be able to ambush anyone,even other stealthed rangers.

You will not get your first skill point until level four.

Regardless of which path of archer you chose I would recommend this trick for anyone with the patience to master and control a unique asset. What you need to do,is try and maximize the cooldown reduction on the trap and start planting,one in the middle of the area you're trying to lure, one about 7 steps in any given area then one about 7 steps away from that one in the same direction. You should then trigger your Purity if the mobs are aggresive and run right into as many as possible in a big circle around your middle trap,after purity wears off slowly back up over the traps with all mobs clustered together. Depending on your lvl and power of your bow it should only take one trap,if you missed a few mobs with it or they simply didnt die then use the backup traps.If you're only agroing a small amount of mobs you should only need one or two traps. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE ENOUGH POTIONS,this will eat the potions up in no time,but save you so much time its unreal,plus pulling in some exta mobs means pulling in some more cash that you would've otherwise ignored. Damage done is based on the weapon damage you have as with all skills,the stronger the bow,the stronger the trap. For people wanting to go Glass Cannon I would suggest a slower bow 1.8-2.3 attack speed for maximum damage.
(Note,traps hit in a small AoE of 5 paces in each direction)

Below is what you can expect from a trap

Hope this helped someone somewhere even a little bit or persuaded someone into being a archer(there simply isnt enough of us),taking a break from this guide,may come back to it later if I can come up with anything else.

Sincerely yours,Intellectual.

Edited by altus201, 08 November 2012 - 06:29 PM.

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#2 SleepyAssassin


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Posted 30 October 2012 - 12:14 AM

Here are the current builds with my current equipment (all 68 orange except for 59 shoulders) that will show what each individual build will give. I originally posted on my guild forums but as I'm not really active in game might as well show it to the community.

Straight Strength
Damage Amp: 212.80%
Dam. Thru Crit: 283.20%
Physical crit: 2927
Defense 6230
P Dodge: 2194

4 Strength 1 Agility
Damage Amp: 213.13%
Crit Damage: 270.20%
P. Crit: 3200
Defense: 6490
P. Dodge: 2519

3 Strength 2 Agility
Damage Amp: 213.13%
Crit Damage: 256.8%
P. Crit: 3482
Defense 6758
Dodge: 2854

2 Strength 3 Agility
Damage amp: 213.13%
Crit Damage: 243.20%
P. Crit: 3767
Defense: 7030
Dodge: 3194

4 Agility 1 Strength
Damage Amp: 213.13%
Crit Damage: 229.40%
P. Crit; 4057
Defense: 7306
Dodge: 3539

Straight Agility
Damage Amp: 213.13%
Crit Damage: 216.2%
P. Crit: 4334
Defense: 7570
Dodge: 3869

So there are plenty of ways to build your archer, based on playstyle. Just keep in mind that the skills you choose should complement your build. For example if you go "glass cannon" picking up the dodge passives from the sin tree can give you a nice amount of survivability. And naturally, your maestones should complement your build as well.

That being said the only point I disagree with in your builds is vitality. The reason why is fairly simple, adding 1 point of vit per level will get you +68 vit, which is approximately 4k hp. Those 68 points could be utilized in other area's, with a better net gain. For instance if put into agility you will get more crit chance, more dodge, more defense, and approximately 9% more damage amp. 9% may not sound like much but at the cap it is fairly substantial, particularly with certain maestones and crits. Alternatively, you could add to strength for 9% more damage amp, and approximately 10% more damage through crit. Either way, the trade off, imo, is much much better than vit, which adds next to nothing to survivability in comparison to agility for rangers.

You are spot on with traps though. Damn good skill and so much fun to use. =P I'm not going to comment on your skill tree as you were only level 35 at the time so there's still a lot of wiggle room. I will be interested to see what you decide on (and why) when you have capped and exhausted all your points.

As far as no one playing archer, well I do not know why. I have over 500 pk's and have not breached 100 deaths. Archers quite frankly are killing machines. 1vs1 there are very few classes that can touch them (dark priest is one due to their unreasonably long fear skill at cap) and in rvr they have the benefit of range, stealth, and two aoe's. Not to mention the burst damage is very very high and they have high escapability should things go wrong with two speed buffs, a stun, and two slows. It really is a fantastic class, and downright deadly on the battlefield.

Edited by SleepyAssassin, 30 October 2012 - 12:32 AM.

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#3 g1347910674


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Posted 14 December 2012 - 07:58 PM

wait, what about the purity cooldown reduction?
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#4 SleepyAssassin


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Posted 10 January 2013 - 03:32 AM

I wanted to take the time to come back here and comment on this now that it appears to be finished. You have set up a very good guide in regards to stat distribution and how to allocate your skill points. I myself have something very very similar to what you have outline in terms of skill allocation, with the exception of the stealth skills (mastery/and detection) as they either were not needed at the time (no one could detect stealth at launch after all as no one had maestones and the skill to do so didn't exist), but if I were to do it now, I would definately agree on picking these up. I also agree on not picking up the stun, while it certainly is situationally useful, I would mainly use it as an escape mechanism, something that ranger in general already has plenty of if utilized correctly.

At any rate, this is a great guide, perhaps someday going over maestone combinations could be added to it. Not that you should give away all your secrets of course. =P
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#5 TsunamiGamerzzz


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Posted 19 March 2013 - 11:01 AM

Is this topic still up to date? Since it's allrdy 2013 :P
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#6 SleepyAssassin


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Posted 19 March 2013 - 03:07 PM

No, this guide was made when the cap was 68 and the cap is now 100. There are new skills etc and I would strongly recommend not following this guide. I'm not aware if the author is still around to update it for the new cap, but a lot of things have changed since this guide. Skills, standardized bow damage, bow delays are all uniform, and damage through crit received a serious nerf. I plan on putting out an updated guide for this new patch, but I'd like to hit the cap first, so I can judge the 98-100 skills and the skills with max books. Atm I'm 96 so that won't be too terribly long.
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