State of Amazons (a bit long)

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Marcel
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I've focused on Amazon this ladder (currently #2 amazon). The class has several serious issues that should probably be looked at.

General class breakdown:

Currently, Amazon has two playable specs. Specifically, hammerzon and bloodzon. These two specs are so far out of line with the rest of the class tree that it is nearly impossible to play anything else.

High-level feedback:
Curare has no place in the Amazon tree anymore. None of the specs scale with poison damage, and we have no skills that are good at applying it. Almost every amazon attack relies on multiple hits (bows and javs) or provide massive physical scaling (jav and spear).

War Spirit was hit too heavily by the crushing blow to bosses change. It was already a mediocre skill to invest in, but the reduction in the number of procs on gear and removal of crushing blow from bosses hit this skill on both sides. I still put a point into it, but mainly out of stubbornness rather than utility. This really needs some love.
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The good:
Hammerzon, in particular, is a massive outlier in all regards except boss killing. It easily boasts 75% block with 350k defense with almost no gear. In addition, hammers deal full physical damage at 150% WDM, which is an insane outlier. This results in 5% leech full healing a 16k hp Zon in 2-3 hammers. Nothing else in the Zon tree comes close to this. Furthermore, because this is a WDM scaling skill (attack), it only requires a single stat point, allowing the Hammerzon to max defensive options with no tradeoffs. Personally, at lvl 125 I was able to easily solo 8-man fauntz with only a single (fairly common) SU scepter (legion). Furthermore, Asterism is way out of line in terms of power. It makes max block investment easy, provides flat damage for insane scaling, as well as enormous enhanced defense (with max thundercrack).

Bloodzon, typically Magic Missile Zon, boasts incredible boss killing damage and very good clear, but lacks the total invulnerability of hammerzon. This build is more "balanced" as it scales well with gear and has a few end-game options. If anything, this playstyle could use more support in the SU and SSU department, but since physical/magic spells are the name of the game (neutraldin as well), things are probably okay here.

The meh:
Javazon is alright, but currently does too little damage compared to other builds. It is a mid-tier farmer, boss killer, and tank. The class can be played, but relies heavily on Danmaku, an SSU shield, and even then is clunky and underwhelming. The full strength of javelins come from the free DR and regen of Moonbeam combined with the physical damage and deadly strike from Moon Queen. However, heavy physical scaling w Moon Queen is under-supported in the SU an SSU slot--heartseeker looks to be the best of the bunch but is not great. The SSU maiden javelin, Titan's Revenge, focuses heavily on fairy ring, which suffers from elemental damage scaling problems, reliance on corpse positioning (even with sacrifice), and high mana cost. The new level cap actually makes it difficult to reach max block on javelins even while using a +1 amazon shield (Danmaku). Even with full perfect amethysts, Javelin users are pushed into 2+ pieces of abandoned crafted gear with additional % dex on jewelery at higher levels. This can be mitigated using specific uniques/runewords for additional max block chance (Shaheeda), but further prevents an already mediocre damage spec from gearing into full damage.

Traditionally, javazon is a heavy proc-based class using Danmaku + other javelin/arrow/knife procs to deal additional damage. The overall proc reduction is very noticable for javazonIn addition, ricochet's base WDM of 60% feels very low for a skill that only hits a single target one time (compare to iron spiral or deatgaze).

Spearzon is incredibly fun to play, but has some clunky mechanics that hold it back. Pounce is a classic skill and still feels great to play. However, the rest of the spear tree is currently just a bit meh. The blood globe mechanic performs very poorly on the often-laggy MedianXL servers. Overall, spearazon is fairly alright as a farming spec and is worth playing around with. The fact that the single target skill, hyena, does poison damage is a fairly big detractor, but amazon has poor single target overall outside of Magic Missiles. Note: I have spent less time testing spearazon than other specs.

The awful:
Bowazon is currently in a very bad place. Beyond core mecahnical problems discussed below, it suffers heavily from multiple Sigma changes. First, the removal of aggressive cheap reanimates (skeletons) removes its only layer of defense. Second, the skills no longer out-range mobs--the larger resolution means you're constantly getting hit from out of range. Third, the tiering of endgame zones means that you cannot focus on the few zones where bowazon is alright (Teganze and Duncraig). Fourth, the new TUs and SUs provide no way for bows to compete in the mid to late game. Fifth, the removal of crushing blow from bosses completely neutered Bow single target.

At a high level, bowazons suffer from poor damage, zero survivability/no sustain, and low range.
Damage: Bowazons are intended to rely on heavy raidbow damage (+magic) through dragonlore. However, elemental attack damage currently scales very poorly. It is only scaled through -res, but -all res is--understandably--rare. Thus, bows deal very very poor damage throughout Hell difficulty. Even with high-end gear (Rainbow Maiden, Athula's Wrath, Bad Mood ring) rainbow damage fares poorly when compared to pure physical bow damage. The base damage from a 350 avg damage per hit bow (of which there are several) when scaled by dex (often 800% damage) provides as much or more damage than massive flat added. Furthermore, dragonlore is currently very undertuned compared to other amazon tree passives. Since it only adds maximum damage, the actually added damage by Dragonlore is often only half the tooltip (going from 1-1 fire damage to 1-1000 fire damage only adds 500 average damage). Finally the WDM multiplier on bow skills are all low, with Wyrmshot and Barrage further reducing your already unscalable flat elemental damage.

Zero Survivability/No Sustain: Due to the elemental damage focus of bow skills, leech is not a viable method of survivability, even with the large HP pool from Paragon. As a result, many bowazons have selected Spirit of Vengeance in order to provide some meat shields. At a minimum, dragonlore or ecstatic frenzy could provide life on stirking per base levels so that bowazons don't have to hit a health potion every 6 seconds (if they're alive).

Low Range: The skills in the bow tree are just bad at delivering damage, especially in the increased resolution world of Median Sigma. Unlike bow druid and xbow necro, bowazon's skills are very short range (barrage), slow and short range (wyrmshot) or clunky and difficult to use in most situations (phalanx). The new rapid wyrmshot skill from the SU askarbydd is so much better than any core bow skill that it makes any other bow feel useless.
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TLDR: Amazon has 1-2 OP specs and a lot of problems with its tree as a whole. Many of the sigma changes have negative side effects on the Amazon attack trees and the various tree passives are not well balanced against each other. Please help Bowazon!

Best,
Marcel
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HechtHeftig
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Personally, I just find it annoying that both the spear tree as well as the java tree rely on a short-duration buff in order to be somewhat viable at all. Also the health orbs that are created with a spear spec are reaaaally unrealible. It's not just lagg on the TSW servers. Even in single player you often walk through the orbs only to get nothing at all. There are so many issues with spearzon and I'd like to blame it all on the fury mechanic, but honestly, there's more to it than just that. Pounce often gets stuck when you are hit while pouncing around, making you pounce right in place, also you don't need 2 bosskillers (Hyena Strike and GH), GH fury giving mechanic has the same issues Hyena strike's health orb has, and the mana cost of the only skill you really want to use (pounce) are way too high in early game, making it really annoying to use until you reach ~level 70.

So yeah, too many bugs for a single tree and a horrible mechanic (fury) and a horrible buff mechanic (Takedown).

Also I think the last time I managed to get a pouncezon to level 70 or more before losing interest in it was before they swapped Pounce and GH. Yes, pounce used to be a level 12 skill. Now just getting to level 24 is already so annoying, and then you're hit with high mana cost. It's not my kind of playstyle anymore.
Marcel
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I hear you on spearazon. It's the spec I've spent the least time on, largely due to the inconsistency of the globes and fury mechanic. To be honest, a moonbeam style buff makes more sense in the spear tree than the jav tree. Overall, those two trees, if merged could form a single great tree.
titan015
Stone Warrior
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I feel the pain of the removal of reanimate orbs since I also rely on them for my psychic sin as well. Instead of totally removing them they could have lowered the chance. Crippling builds ain't awesome. As for the rest of your points a totally agree although I never liked hammerzon. Its just too clunky for median xl speed standards. It is strong no doubt but the need for building up damage is cringy.
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suchbalance
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You're wrong on numerous counts here:

- Javazon is extremely strong, moonbeam short duration is warranted since the buff is overpowered
- Spearzon poor single target? I suggest you explore Great Hunt before making such comments. Statements like this come very close to invalidating your opinion
- Bow at endgame with low range and poor damage? Bow is one of the fastest farmers by far and has benefit tremendously in Sigma, not just from more free damage, but from the much better availability of physical res.

You're either not building these characters correctly, or need more experience with the game.
currycatstrophe
Dark Huntress
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level 123 here - playing primarily as a Spearzon (SP)

I'd disagree with you regarding Curare for the Spearzon at least - it's typically very easy to Pounce/GH and proc poison, but the inability to find a good amount of -psn res gear definitely hurts (although the change to boss psn duration was nice). Also, the specific change of not losing your gear when you die lets you play a little more risky in some situation, like Duncraig was always a little dicey without very optimal gear, as you would die in a swarm spot and be screwed before. With full Celestial set, you can use 1pt Ecstatic Frenzy and go nuts with Pounce spam in some Uber areas.

With Pounce, GH and Lioness at Smax, I'm clearing Teganze very easily (farming for Ea stones) - tried something different gear wise by adding %TCD MOs on the set armor, flat defense MOs on honorific gloves and emp bands, and points in Balance instead of W&F. Sitting at around 43k defense and most things have a hard time hitting me



For those of you saying mana cost on Pounce is too high at low levels - I feel like that's the point. You aren't meant to be Pouncing non-stop (I couldn't do that until i finished the set bonus), you're supposed to Pounce -> get Fury -> GH -> Get Fury -> GH again until Pounce wears off -> repeat
Low level Pounce spam (while chugging pots) was only useful for bypassing areas I didn't want to farm...Utilizing Spellbind in the rotation can make a HUGE difference, too.

100% agree on Bowazon being unintentionally nerfed to trash - even with full Pantheon, Curare and Wolf Stance on, she's really only good at farming trash. Surprisingly, actually great at farming Teganze, although I suspect that Hammer and Blood are just as good
Edited by currycatstrophe 2 years.
Marto
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suchbalance wrote:You're wrong on numerous counts here:

- Javazon is extremely strong, moonbeam short duration is warranted since the buff is overpowered
- Spearzon poor single target? I suggest you explore Great Hunt before making such comments. Statements like this come very close to invalidating your opinion
- Bow at endgame with low range and poor damage? Bow is one of the fastest farmers by far and has benefit tremendously in Sigma, not just from more free damage, but from the much better availability of physical res.

You're either not building these characters correctly, or need more experience with the game.


The biggest issue I can see with the bowazon right now is the squishy factor. I've been drooling over the Orange text for the SSU bow that I wont ever find, because it seems to be the only way to prevent getting killed by what many would call "Some complete bullshit." Ecstatic Frenzy is absolutely mandatory for the build to do any decent damage, and damage is one of your layers of defense. It just doesnt give enough for what it takes away. The sprint feature isnt the same as being the only class that wants to autorun.

I would agree that bowazon is a super fast farmer for K3BK and TA, assuming for the latter that you are not using Habanagami. I dumped mine because the procs would hide the arrow swarms. Any target/boss/UBER with a boatload of HP will instagib if you make one tiny mistake.

I really like your bowazon guide, and a lot of what is in there is still extremely useful for sigma. But OP does raise a good point about the bowazon. I expect to die when I play median. Just not as much as the bowa will when you are already forced to play the class right on the margins to sneak by some content.
Marcel
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suchbalance wrote:You're wrong on numerous counts here:

- Javazon is extremely strong, moonbeam short duration is warranted since the buff is overpowered
- Spearzon poor single target? I suggest you explore Great Hunt before making such comments. Statements like this come very close to invalidating your opinion
- Bow at endgame with low range and poor damage? Bow is one of the fastest farmers by far and has benefit tremendously in Sigma, not just from more free damage, but from the much better availability of physical res.

You're either not building these characters correctly, or need more experience with the game.


-Javazon is okay, but its damage output and playstyle is just slower than strong builds at the moment. I believe that with a full set of endgame gear it feels alright, but it just doesn't stack up against strong builds at the moment. Moonbeam is listed as one of the saving graces of Javazon, not sure where I said it wasn't good?

-I definitely don't have the most experience with spearazon, but I struggled against kabraxus and Xazax with it. Maybe It was my lack of experience, but its abiltiy to deal single target damage felt quite low.

-Bow endgame is just weak compared to endgame builds. It can super speed clear content that is no longer worth fast farming due to the new tiering of endgame zones. The range issue with bows isn't really debatable. Have you played them since sigma? Wyrmshot doesn't even reach the edge of the screen anymore and barrage is constantly outranged by ranged enemies. I played nothing but bows to 125 and have tried them with endgame gear at 140 and 141. They feel awful compared to hammers in fauntz and duncraig and worse than Magic Missiles in teganze. If you feel that being able to farm K3K quickly at lvl 140+ is a selling point, that's fine, but I'd never consider farming zones that can't even drop SSUs.
Battery
Stygian Watcher
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I agree and disagree with you. Everything is viable end game, the problem is progression.

Any str based builds have an easier time to progress than DEX or Int build. More points into str not only increases your damage output, also let you wear heavier armor for better def.

Lack of mid tier items for certain builds. Between the first TU and end game, there isnt anything to bridge the char. A bowzon with tran and without is like 2 different chars. some hit this wall while leveling, others at 120ish, every zone is either too easy or too hard. The new Tier Rift system only made this worse.

Also, the imbalance between different char is absurd. Playing as assassin, my innate skill doesnt even support throw or naginata, one is a dedicated tree, the other is class specific weapon.
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Bowzon is 100% fine on damage output. Here is a sample even of a crossbow amazon:

07:40 ish for Jungles and k3k, 17:04 for Duncraig

I turned my stream on last night because of someone in discord saying similar things to you about bowzon, specifically with the Athulua's Wrath bow with the fancy orange text, so someone briefly donated their bow so I could show it. That's seen at 30:02 in Duncraig.

https://www.twitch.tv/videos/374410046

(please ignore the mic issues)