Everything was fine until 30

RoloRolo Posts: 16
edited March 2011 in Alchemist Discussions
Hello.

I just started playing Torchlight a few days ago, a battle alchemist on hard difficulty (normal was too easy). So far, game-play was great with good fights until floor 30--good grief man! :o It got disproportionately harder. I eventually completed floor 30, a map, and am now trying to do a Hatch quest. I hit a wall: I constantly have to retreat, use multiple potions per fight, pet constantly flees, and frequently get one-shotted. :?: What am I missing?


My build: Link (10 points each in Armour Expertise, Ember Shield, Ember Shock, and Magic Weapons)
I didn't choose Frailty (yet) since foes never stayed alive long enough to warrant it; now, instead, *I* don't stay alive long enough to use it. :oops:

My stats:
HP: 1572 MP 249
Damage: Str: 22/Mag: 66 (464-927) with a little life- and mana-steal (Staff)
Defence: 121 (374-747)
Resistances: 453/440/362/327 (I made it a point to get resistances as high as I could.)

My spells:
Elemental Protection V
Retribution IV
Dervish V
Silence V


Pet's spells (and on Defensive stance):
Heal All VI
Draining Touch III


My fun-factor tanked and I'm out of ideas; any advice would be appreciated.

Comments

  • adoomgodadoomgod Posts: 4,270
    Shoulda gone with summoner build sir.
    You're going to have to get lucky with enchanting your gear, also farm for better gear, also **** silence and draining touch for some zombies which heal you whenever they attack.
    Summoner build = teh bomb tho.
    cuA6w.png
    I put the "DOOM" in "****."
  • You should really ditch silence. I'd suggest picking up elemental overload if you're using Ember Shock as your primary attack. Even when I play as a summoner with pet buffs for armor and health my pet gets one shot and flees a lot. I really only use him as a buff/debuff bot now, frost and heal all spells set to defensive. If you need something to tank for you or body block I'd recomend blood skeletons if you can find them, otherwise zombies.

    Running into trouble and lots of it is very very normal for the black palace. The level right before it is a completely joke by comparison. On my last playthrough fully half of my deaths were from the last 5 levels of the main quest line so your experience is not an unusual one.
  • RoloRolo Posts: 16
    Thank you for the feedback.

    Re: Summoner. I'm not interested in playing a summoner of any sort, save for eventually having one Golem (It's supposed to be a Full Metal Alchemist-themed character). However, a summoner is "Plan C" (better than quitting the game without finishing it, even if disappointing).

    Re: Pet. Its useless. Without the Less Narrator mod, I would have disabled the pet entirely. I don't use it to tank because I'm supposed to tank myself. Its useless for a little extra damage since it stupidly runs off and stands in AoE damage anyway, even when set to defence.

    Re: Elemental Overload. Higher damage isn't useful when I'm one-shotted at range. Previously, I replaced that with Silence 1) to keep from having to kite bosses but I don't really know if it does anything worthwhile, and 2) It wasn't necessary since Ember Shock & staff attacks annihilated everything nicely (until this wall). Since I have 10 points in Defencive Spell Mastery (to increase resistances and reflection), I was contemplating Draining Touch instead and replacing Dervish with Haste. But, again, these are useless when I can't even get within melee distance anyway. (Perhaps that's what Ember Phase is for..?)

    Hence, I tried a caster build (Link) with pretty much the same stats/armour (first, I exchanged defence for magic damage but that failed miserably); I was able to [painfully] finish the Hatch quest I couldn't touch with the battle build. I also capitulated and installed the Dark Zealot debuff mod. There was still too much dying, retreating, potion-imbibing for my enjoyment. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to switch my spells and I wonder if that could have made all the difference.

    Re: Enchanting. I've only used the enchanting shrines, not the NPC; I'll now enchant every run with whatever gold I have. I'm still using two "blue" pieces I'm not afraid to lose.

    Re: Farming. I assume the purchasable maps are useful for this; the few that I did were fun. I'm level 32/21. I'm thinking the (15-30) maps would be too easy/have inadequate drops; would (20-???) maps be the best option? I'm afraid I'll be one-shotted repeatedly in those, however, and still not make any real progress. Which porridge would be "juuuust right"?

    I'm going to a different battle build (Link) but with Block and Parry skill maxed and subsequent points in Advanced Spellcasting so I can spam Ember Shock without having to stop and drink a mana potion constantly.
  • TKOTKO Posts: 57
    Rolo, RagingGamer has a good post you should read.

    viewtopic.php?f=27&t=15869
  • RoloRolo Posts: 16
    OK, battle build, take 2 sucked. A potion-addled kite-fest.

    Haste with 63% movement speed is ridiculous; it should have come with Benny Hill music in the background! It also made click-to-move more of a nightmare than it already is.

    Re: RagingGamer. That is a good post. "You need 100% Reflect Ranged Damage"...hrmm... I quit/avoid MMOs because I don't like grinding/farming. I assume "Damage reflection" means melee or physical and "missile" means any ranged damage..?

    At one time I used Ember Sentry for the reasons he stated; I didn't know about it's stun effect though.
  • Ok firstly I want to apologize. I thought I knew what ember shock was without looking at the tree but mistakenly assumed it was one of the ranged damage skills in the arcane tree, not the melee gauntlet ability. Elemental overload is probably not the best spell for that so my advice was pretty bad because I made a bad assumption. My mistake.

    I've beaten the main quest line as a summoner and can relay my experiences. I did not have 100% missile reflect but still didn't feel particularly threatened by missile damage. My electric resists, however, were over 700 (335 base + 100 defense) so that might be why I wasn't getting one shotted at range while you are. I more or less only geared for lightning resistance though because I didn't have to engage the dragons and melee range where the breath could hit me so I could afford to skimp on other resistances to get electric this high without spell based buffs, fire is a meger 42 while poison and cold are 150 and 220 respectively. I also had around 25% block chance so that probably help a lot as well. In my opinion I wouldn't expect the black palace to be anything other than a pot spamming kite fest unless you've got a shield and max block and parry OR have minions to draw fire. Even with a shield and max block and parry you'll probably have to do a fair amount of kiting when you get into trouble just as I did on my summoner.

    One thing I'm not seeing in any of the builds you're posting is some form of crowd control. The pet should have frost or web, possibly both and for I'd get at least one point in terror or ice shock in any play style, summoner, battle, or caster. I used terror on my summoner and it works great. In a melee build taking it to max will given you 7 seconds of terror (when it procs) which I believe you could use those seconds to wail away at something unchecked. If you think you have to kite all the time it's probably because you literally have 0 crowd control if you're still using the spells from your OP and you're running any of the builds you've linked with the exception of ember shock and I just don't think that's enough to cut it on its own.

    On gear farming:
    Killing enemies isn't the best way, in my experience, to get the gear you want gambling is although you obviously have to get money to gamble with first. When you gamble you need to do some research first, every item has a specific gambling icon and a specific set of requirements, a gambling item that says 'level ??? strength ???' will never turn into an item that requires level, magic, and defense for eample, so if those aren't right then it's not the item you're after. In addition if a socketed item is in the pet's inventory while you look at items the sockets will light up if you have your cursor over an item in the gambling inventory that is socketed. Lastly your character's level has to be right for the item you're after. I don't know of the exact ranges but a level 35 character isn't going to gamble level 6 items or level 60 items so it's usually best to try to be roughly the same level as the level requirement on the item you want.
  • RoloRolo Posts: 16
    Thank you for your post. It'd been a while; I had to take a break and play something else.

    The only crowd control I had was Ember Bolt. Trying again tonight, I gave the pet Frost Bolts, got the Alchemical Golem with Pet Mastery, and maxed Iceshock. That went much more smoothly with no kiting. However, one level later, I lasted 2 seconds with the Dark Zealot Zoo-Bang. S*** running at me from everywhere and shooting me from off the screen, just inside the entrance--ridiculous. I really can't figure out what the level designers were thinking here.

    The pet and golem ran off somewhere off screen in the opposite direction, so they are useless; Iceshock is useless since 1) its AoE doesn't cover the entire screen, which was full of hostiles, and 2) with how fast everything moves (a blur), one has to kite away from melee hostiles only to be killed by the ranged attackers. Terror looks to be the better choice in this instance.

    Lore ("minion master") seems to be the only viable build for alchemist. So much for options. With the retarded pet/minion AI, I'm not inclined to try it. I'm not inclined to repeat Shadow Vault Floor 1 for a third time either. :? Back to Titan Quest...
  • Rolo wrote:
    Thank you for your post. It'd been a while; I had to take a break and play something else.

    The only crowd control I had was Ember Bolt. Trying again tonight, I gave the pet Frost Bolts, got the Alchemical Golem with Pet Mastery, and maxed Iceshock. That went much more smoothly with no kiting. However, one level later, I lasted 2 seconds with the Dark Zealot Zoo-Bang. S*** running at me from everywhere and shooting me from off the screen, just inside the entrance--ridiculous. I really can't figure out what the level designers were thinking here.

    The pet and golem ran off somewhere off screen in the opposite direction, so they are useless; Iceshock is useless since 1) its AoE doesn't cover the entire screen, which was full of hostiles, and 2) with how fast everything moves (a blur), one has to kite away from melee hostiles only to be killed by the ranged attackers. Terror looks to be the better choice in this instance.

    Lore ("minion master") seems to be the only viable build for alchemist. So much for options. With the retarded pet/minion AI, I'm not inclined to try it. I'm not inclined to repeat Shadow Vault Floor 1 for a third time either. :? Back to Titan Quest...

    Ember phase is useful. Every alchemist should have one point. AoE damage + stun + distance closer/creator.

    I also wouldn't really want to melee unless i was using a shield or had insane defenses, just because melee is so much riskier. I think the only class that can actually get away with a 2H melee weapon on any reasonable difficulty in the Black Palace is Devastator, solely because he has crazy-awesome defensive skills available to him.
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