I'm wondering if anyone can give me an idea of where Shapeshfiter combat stands these days, both for duels and for group fights. Here's what I've been able to gather (based on previous experience and reading posts and help files). I last actively played one in 2016 or so.
1) It sounds like there's been some change to how idiocy/plodding is handled as a moss soak and balance/eq lengthener. I can't figure this out. It used to be that you could run both and basically soak up a moss balance while also lengthening EQ or Bal recovery (Moss eq lengthening also worked on the howl that knocked eq).
2) People seem to be saying Bear is still tankiest. I can't see much difference between Brace and Wolf cornering though when it comes to avoiding physical damage. Is the difference that not all physical attacks can be dodged or diverted?
3) I'm struggling with understanding the new jawlock attacks. I understand that Rupture does huge bleeding, Deathroll does huge asphyx (hard to mitigate) damage if you're in water, and that headdrop gives you a way to break someone's head for necklock, but I'm not sure about Gore or Buffet? Basically, what's actually usable?
4) What am I missing change-wise after 6 years of not playing Shapeshifter?
Anything else I should be aware of? What am I missing?
Thanks in advance!
For groups, Shifters seem to be in demand mainly for their beckon and neckdrag, both of which can turn a fight. Their salve pressure is amazing for limb based groups, of course.
1.) Two rips required for Devour now instead of three.
2.) Fury triggers now after three parries, instead of two.
3.) Expose exists and makes damage kills a reality, or at the very least less reliant on the special rips(IE: Deathroll)
Having played many more classes since then, this time around too, I'd certainly say that Shapeshifters are on the high end of classes that cause immense amounts of bleeding. That too can be leveraged in a group setting with both sides having Templar class now, and hemorrhage as a result. Also, incidentally in group fights, people tend to become prone a lot faster, meaning your claw attacks will do a lot more damage more often due to Expose. Also, combining the bleeding with both sides having the you-cant-clot-at-all entities via Indorani and Oneiromancer means it can add up fast.
Two rips being required for Devour now means, as a result, its more efficient to go for Devour than it is to use the special rips like Gore, Buffet, etc. I love the flavor of those attacks, but they just seem to be mostly flavor at this point. Hell, even in a group setting, its more useful most of the time to get a Jawlock and just not rip it at all so the person remains prone for the rest of your team.
I also choose Bear because I do like having more audit over dodging slightly more. That's mostly a preference thing, but I also like having the Lethargy roar/howl because in theory you can use lethargy to hide rend and haemophilia that you can also give.
1. Idiocy/plodding has taken sort of a backseat to using more salve pressure in order to get ahead faster for rips-devour.
2. Bracing is a constant, making Bear tougher than Wolf, even if there is cornering. It is even more noticeable in PVE.
3+4. I've only tested the other attacks a few times (as Wolf), but it's usually faster to go for the normal lock/rip for devour now that they changed to only 2 being required as mentioned above.
If I had more time, I might have tested some of the other skills more to see if they make things more efficient, but from a first glance that didn't seem to be the case. It's also much easier for a less code-savvy person to manage the usual route.
Edited to add: Several Shifters in a group still rock 'n roll with quarters.
I think I was a bit off on my estimate of when I last played Shapeshifter. Mac moved to Shallam and Luminaries for a while after Bahkatu.
Back in the day, devour didn't exist, so the kill route was bleeding due to Jugularclaw. Is rupture and Jugular a valid kill route?
Two rips to devour sounds amazing but I can see how headdrop makes it easier..
I played before the paresis/paralysis change. Am I correct in understanding that paresis stops parry but wouldn't allow spinerip? If so, why not blurring/anorexia/stupidity to push salve balance a bit more and reduce accuracy?
Can someone explain the plodding/idiocy changes? What used to be nice to raise shifter survivability and decrease opponent healing was deep+dumbing+disturbing, as dumbing would extend the eq loss from concentrating a little. Agreed that it's not as good for pushing salve balance.
Nice to know about Baying. That wasn't a thing at all last time I played.
You will be unable to parry if you have paresis or become prone (see HELP PRONE). Being fallen is excluded from this list.
As for Plodding/Idiocy:
Diagnose: plodding with slow movement.
Cure message: Your body feels free of its heaviness and plodding.
Type: [ ]Physical [ ]Mental [ ]Venom [x]Random
Increases balance recovery time by 0.2 seconds. Prevents the primary healing effect of the anabiotic pill when consumed, and will instead cure the affliction.
Diagnose: afflicted with the mind power of an idiot.
Cure message: Your mind feels free of its idiocy.
Type: [ ]Physical [ ]Mental [ ]Venom [x]Random
Increases equilibrium recovery time by 0.2 seconds. Prevents the primary healing effect of the anabiotic pill when consumed, and will instead cure the
I'm not following where the "nerf" to plodding and idiocy that people keep telling me about comes in? It looks like still soaks anabiotic (old moss?) and it still extends balance and eq?