Dual = please explain?

mappammappam Posts: 24
I have read VERY Different things about using dual weapons.

Some say that it is only the Main Hand Weapon that does any damage so you should use a shield instead
Some say that they use a pistol/sword and it works well
Some say they use dual (same) weapons and that they have to be equal - same stats etc

WHAT is with dual?? I am using dual pistols ATM - they are not equal and seem to be working. Should I invest in a shield instead??

As you can see I am very confused as to Exactly What Dual means? What adding points into dual does IF you can only use one w/shield etc....

Thank you in advance for any and all suggestions, links or tips you can offer!!

Comments

  • ZiddersZidders Posts: 14,340 ✭✭✭
    Bumping with hopes someone can help you with this.
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  • kthxbyekthxbye Posts: 125
    Equipping two weapons means the character will alternate between the two weapons when attacking except with particular set ups. Since they alternate, if you equip a 500 DPS pistol in the main hand and a 50 DPS in the off-hand you'll once strike with a powerful weapon and once with the weak one. If the two weapons (pistols, swords, axes or whatever) have similar DPS (or better they have the same stats) alternating between the two isn't a big concern. Investing in the dual wield skill will improve the damage of both weapons.
    If you instead go for a pistol/sword dual (my vanquisher is going that route now), the character will always use the pistol only if the target is out of range for the sword, and the sword only otherwise - so you know exactly which weapon will strike every time. Anyway, investing in the dual wield skill will still improve the damage of both weapons, without having the "downside" of having to alternate the two weapons to attack: you can end up maxing dual wield, equipping pistol & sword and using always only the pistol, having the good +60% damage anyway from the skill.
    If you use a shield, the dual wield skill won't work.

    Other than the +60% damage to both weapons thanks to a maxed dual wielding skill, some properties from one weapon will work for the other weapon as well: mana and health leech carries over, as well as knockback and elemental damage (in particular I noticed the elemental damage from gems adds to the other weapon as if I inserted them in the other weapon directly). I don't know if other properties carry over as well.

    EDIT: for comparison, my vanquisher is keeping strength and dexterity both at the same value, and I'm going to max martial & ranged weapon and dual wield. Having equipped a pistol&sword dual wield, I'll have a 40%+60% bonus for the sword (martial+dual) and a 40%+60% bonus for the pistol (ranged+dual).
  • Hmm... this isn't really something I have a definitive answer on.

    My suggestion would be to open both the character and the inventory screen at the same time, and play around and watch how your stats change.

    Dual wielding does do more damage. Assuming you have up to date weapons. If your weapons are too low level, you may not seem much difference between main hand only and dual wield damage. If you have up to date weapons, then dual wielding does definitely do more damage.

    However, doing more damage isn't the only thing to worry about. Mitigating incoming damage is also important, especially when fighting bosses. I had a Vanquisher whom I trained as a dual wield character, but for fighting the final boss, I swapped out her off-hand weapon for a shield with good resistances. For most of the game I used two weapons, and by the lower levels, she had about 2k of physical damage (this was on "normal" mode by the way). For the end fight, swapping to a shield dropped my physical damage to about 1.6k but raised my armor from about the 600 to 700 range up to over 1k. Additionally, I ended up with about 200 Fire Resistance. Bumping up your armor makes a big difference if you find yourself dying a lot.

    Another thing to be aware of, is that weapons aren't necessarily easily distilled down into one number. I found a number of one handed weapons that had a higher physical damage number than the axe I ended up using, but the axe had more ancillary bonuses, so it ended up doing more total damage.


    So... I'd say for most of the time, Dual Wielding is superior, but it's situational, sometimes you'll want more damage mitigation, and a shield is a good way to get that. As you descend levels, your need to mitigate incoming damage will increase, regardless of whether you're fighting a boss or not, so ... once you get to the Black Fortress, think about upping your armor.


    As for the sword/pistol combination, I don't know... I've never tried it. It doesn't really seem like it would be as effective to me, but who knows.

    One thing I will point out is that Arrow Hail works regardless of whether or not you have a ranged weapon equipped. I used it as a support skill on my melee Vanquisher quite often, especially once I'd reached the Black Fortress.


    Edit: Well... I wrote out my whole post, and then saw that Kthxbye had already replied with a much more comprehensive explanation of how the pistol/sword combo works, so .... some of my post would seem to be irrelevant. However, I still think my points regarding balancing mitigation and damage are good, so I'll leave my post as is.
    ... and this, too, shall pass away ...
  • ZiddersZidders Posts: 14,340 ✭✭✭
    Told ya ^.~ Thanks, Cantankerous and Kthnx!
    ItfooQF.png
  • Thanks Cantankerous and kthxbye! VERY interesting info!

    SOOO - it Does look like your character Does Switch between both weapons/hands and putting effort into dual IS worth it.

    The downside I can see to using pistol/sword is that points need to go into strength as well as Dex - where using 2 pistols only needs the Dex. Also with the pistols you do not need to put any points into martial - leaving more points for dual and ranged etc.

    My character is now lvl 18 using 2 'gold' pistols with gem upgrades. I am just trying to figure out what works best for LMB/RMB for the best use of the pistols.

    I AM finding my pet to be invaluable!! My lynx has Heal All and Skeleton (sp looks Wrong lol and senior moment can't remember exactly Which Skel spell) BUT we are running thru dungeons with little effort.

    Another Question = when a weapon says (example only) 10% Fire, 10% Electric, 10% Ice - does that mean that if you ADD a Fire Gem the Fire Damage goes up and Only the fire damage? Also - with this example if NO gem is added WHAT does that weapon DO? Does it do ALL of the elements or only choose one? (ice example) then switch to Fire for the next shot?

    Thanks again - awesome info and a lot of appreciation in a Hug to you all!

    I ask in this Dual thread because I want to add gem(s) to new Gold pistol and not sure what would work best.
  • During the earlier levels, it's fairly easy to be a generalist. The problems come as you get lower down in the dungeons. Every character needs Defense, but putting points into both Strength and Dex will reduce your overall damage ... eventually anyway. I'm not saying you can't spend SOME points in both, but I think at you do eventually need to pick one, and focus.

    As far as abilities go, I'd definitely try to focus more with those points. Lots of abilities work pretty well with only one point invested. Pick what your main attacks are going to be and dump a lot of points into those. For my melee Vanquisher, I maxed out the melee weapon ability and the Needle Arc ability. Needle Arc does have a shorter range than a ranged weapon, but I found it worked acceptably most of the time when I needed some range. Additionally, it's an AoE (Area of Effect) skill, so it hits multiple enemies.
    Another Question = when a weapon says (example only) 10% Fire, 10% Electric, 10% Ice - does that mean that if you ADD a Fire Gem the Fire Damage goes up and Only the fire damage? Also - with this example if NO gem is added WHAT does that weapon DO? Does it do ALL of the elements or only choose one? (ice example) then switch to Fire for the next shot?

    Hmm... honestly, I have no idea on that one, sorry :?

    There are some pieces of gear that add a percentage, and some that add a raw stat (like +10 Fire damage for example). The impression I get is that a certain percentage of your damage will be boosted, but not all of it. If I have a big number in something, I'll try to optimize for it and use matching gems. On the other hand, I'm also fond of the skulls (in weapons), for the health steal effect.

    I think ... that if you have a +percentage type of stat, and you have none of that damage type, then the stat is unused, but I don't actually know for sure.

    Again, I spend a lot of time with the inventory and stats screens open, playing around and watching how the numbers change. I have an Alchemist character, who has a fairly low level wand with two green gems and a lot of gear that boosts poison damage. Despite the fact that his wand is fairly low level now, it still does a lot more damage than wands that are nominally superior.
    ... and this, too, shall pass away ...
  • VodageVodage Posts: 80
    I've read through this topic and I'm surprised no one has mentioned how DualWield relates to other skills.

    For example, if you use a regular attack on a monster, you will alternate weapons if Dual Wielding.

    However, if you use a class skill like Frost Pilum, you will notice that your character fires the same weapon each time.

    Furthermore, which hand you carry a faster//slower weapon in affects overall attack speed the same way it does in Diablo2; you can have even amounts of time between attacks, or two quick attacks followed by a pause, depending on which hand the slower weapon is in.

    Because class skills are based on cast speed not attack speed, you always want your dual wielder to have the slower weapon in the hand that fires during ClassSkillCast, because that one will most likely have higher DPS, which is what your Skill damage is based upon.

    Also, correct me if I'm wrong, but your dual wielding bonus will not apply to class skills, since you're only firing one weapon. So Dual Wield + Explosive Shot isn't gonna make a beastier explosive shot. It just makes for better normal attacks. Critical Strikes, on the other hand, does add crit chance//damage to all attacks, including your class skills. Something to consider.
  • dale445dale445 Posts: 25
    Wow, just reading some forums and I found this thread very very interesting and informative, thanks all ;)

    Inspired to try out my own Pistol/Sword (Or something idk) Vanq.
    hello friend
  • I'll assume you want to be a Marksman and intend to Dual Wield pistols.

    Toward the mid to late game (and endgame, if you intend to proceed to the Shadow Vault), you should NO LONGER be using basic attacks. Instead, you will be spamming spells (this is also why a few points in Advanced Spellcasting is a good idea). The two spells you will probably be using most frequently by this stage as a Marksman are Explosive Shot (for groups) and Seeking Shot (for individual targets). In the early game, a single point in Ricochet are all you need till you get stronger spells.

    Dual Wield increases your damage whenever you're Dual Wielding. However, the damage values you see for Dexterity on the Character Screen are only for the Right Hand weapon. This is also the damage value that your Shot powers are based on. Thus, you want to put the slowest possible weapon in the right hand slot. Slow weapons have a higher damage range, and hence have a higher Shot damage. The Dex-based damage of this "primary weapon" increases when dual wielding anything in the other hand. So what would be best to put in the left hand? The left hand item still contributes to elemental magic damage and effects (check the damage next to the Magic stat). So the weapon in the left hand should ideally be any other pistol you own that has the highest elemental damage effects (ignore its physical damage), whether fast or slow.

    Hope this helps.
  • dreamriderdreamrider Posts: 1,727
    Folks, the Dual Wield Skill bonus applies to all damage done by a weapon while you are wielding a weapon in each hand...whether you are using the second weapon for that particular target or not. As long as you meet the criteria for the Skill, i.e. you are actively bearing two 1-hand weapons, you get the bonus. This is similar to the other Passive weapons bonuses, like X Weapon Expertise, or Critical Strikes, etc...as long as you meet the criteria for the Skill effect, it is applied to the damage calc. This means it is applied to weapons fire or weapons strike Skill damage effects as well, i.e. it will enhance Ricochet, ES, SS. (I've seen it work for Vanq shot-based Skills; I presume it works similarly for Alchemist and Destroyer weapon-strike-based Skills.) Arrow Hail pretty clearly does NOT get the benefit in my testing, but then it is not a weapon-dependent Skill.

    Also, although it is just a consequence of having the items of gear in active slots and not a consequence of the Dual Wield Skill, you get all of the enchantment bennies of both currently active weapons, just as you would get all of the enchantment bennies of your weapon AND your shield if you were carrying that combo. Easiest way to see this is to pick up 2 weapons that both have HP bonuses, or weapons that have various Resistance bonuses.

    (You want to see some REALLY high hit numbers? Go hunting with 2 Stark Fists, max Dual Wield Skill, max Ranged Weapons Expertise, max Ricochet, and a reasonably high Crit %, 50% or better - you'll be 1-shotting same-level bosses.)

    dreamrider
  • dreamriderdreamrider Posts: 1,727
    BTW, I see no reason that you should stop using basic attacks in Shadow Vault adventuring, at least ranged basic attacks, if they fit the situation. Often you may particularly want to use basic attacks for awhile to take advantage of, say, life leech or mana leech. I've often had set-up where I would just alternate between left and right button shots, to get the normal attack bennies along with the Skill shot bennies.

    You just want to remember one basic rule about normal attacks at these levels - carry the most insanely powerful weapon you can, and enchant it to insaner levels. If possible, get two identical insanely powerful weapons, then enchant them alternately until one of them fails. Then proceed to use the other (now extremely tingly) 'attitude adjustment tool'.

    dreamrider
  • I've seen it work for Vanq shot-based Skills; I presume it works similarly for Alchemist and Destroyer weapon-strike-based Skills.

    Yes, it also works for Alchemist and Destroyer weapon-based skills.

    For really experienced players, they take advantage of the weapon-set-switch ability. They set the Tab ability for normal attacks while keeping Explosive on left-mouse and Seeking on right mouse. Their main weapon set is, of course, slowest on right and high elemental on left, while the secondary weapon set is two really fast weapons with high hp drain (or rarely mana drain, since mana pots and Advanced Spellcasting regen is enough for most foes). Whenever they need to top up on health, they Tab then W to switch to the secondary set and spam normal attacks as necessary, then switch back to the higher damage skill set afterward.

    Still practicing this myself. :D
  • VodageVodage Posts: 80
    Mappam, I'm sure someone already covered this (I'm too lazy to read the long posts),

    but the reason people use pistol/sword is because the game recognizes that as duel-wield, even though you're only firing with the pistol as you shift-click on targets.
  • GraeystoneGraeystone Posts: 1,545
    dreamrider wrote:
    BTW, I see no reason that you should stop using basic attacks in Shadow Vault adventuring, at least ranged basic attacks, if they fit the situation. Often you may particularly want to use basic attacks for awhile to take advantage of, say, life leech or mana leech. I've often had set-up where I would just alternate between left and right button shots, to get the normal attack bennies along with the Skill shot bennies.
    About this - a good idea is to begin fusing Core, Skull, and Eyeball Gems as early as possible and save up the higher quality gems for the Vault and make sure weapons have Gem Slots. Having the fastest possible handguns for dual with highest quality Core, Skull, and Eyeball attached helps a lot. I also do believe there is a Gem Shop Mod somewhere in the Mod Forum.
  • MorbusMorbus Posts: 176
    I've seen it work for Vanq shot-based Skills; I presume it works similarly for Alchemist and Destroyer weapon-strike-based Skills.

    Yes, it also works for Alchemist and Destroyer weapon-based skills.

    For really experienced players, they take advantage of the weapon-set-switch ability. They set the Tab ability for normal attacks while keeping Explosive on left-mouse and Seeking on right mouse. Their main weapon set is, of course, slowest on right and high elemental on left, while the secondary weapon set is two really fast weapons with high hp drain (or rarely mana drain, since mana pots and Advanced Spellcasting regen is enough for most foes). Whenever they need to top up on health, they Tab then W to switch to the secondary set and spam normal attacks as necessary, then switch back to the higher damage skill set afterward.

    Still practicing this myself. :D

    The switching between weapon sets and skills can be streamlined. Assign the same key to both actions in settings.txt and link that key to one side button of your mouse. This way you can switch the weapon set and its according skill at the same time while you select hotkeys with your other hand.
    "I will, of course, be dead at some future point, as will everybody else. For me, this maybe further off than you think - it's too soon to tell."
  • JekanlJekanl Posts: 7
    I'll assume you want to be a Marksman and intend to Dual Wield pistols.

    Toward the mid to late game (and endgame, if you intend to proceed to the Shadow Vault), you should NO LONGER be using basic attacks. Instead, you will be spamming spells (this is also why a few points in Advanced Spellcasting is a good idea). The two spells you will probably be using most frequently by this stage as a Marksman are Explosive Shot (for groups) and Seeking Shot (for individual targets). In the early game, a single point in Ricochet are all you need till you get stronger spells.

    Dual Wield increases your damage whenever you're Dual Wielding. However, the damage values you see for Dexterity on the Character Screen are only for the Right Hand weapon. This is also the damage value that your Shot powers are based on. Thus, you want to put the slowest possible weapon in the right hand slot. Slow weapons have a higher damage range, and hence have a higher Shot damage. The Dex-based damage of this "primary weapon" increases when dual wielding anything in the other hand. So what would be best to put in the left hand? The left hand item still contributes to elemental magic damage and effects (check the damage next to the Magic stat). So the weapon in the left hand should ideally be any other pistol you own that has the highest elemental damage effects (ignore its physical damage), whether fast or slow.

    Hope this helps.
    So then if I want to get the most out of my spells, I should be using 2-hand weapons? Since they generally have a higher DPS than 1-handers.
  • dreamriderdreamrider Posts: 1,727
    Not necessarily. it would depend on the number and type of enchantments on the two weapons or weapon and shield that you are carrying. Remember that 2-handers have generally higher DPS at a given level, but 2x1-hand items have twice the sockets and roughly twice the enchantments.

    dreamrider
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