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#1 Aug 30 2010 at 10:58 AM Rating: Excellent
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Good afternoon, O Chosen of Altana. MNK here, thanks for keeping me alive! I have some questions on what advice to give my wife as far as properly meriting her WHM. Current scattershot approach is certainly helping but could probably use more focus. Not looking for in-depth analysis, just first thoughts.

Hume 80WHM /BLM or /RDM - first and main job. Primary role is heavy healing in mid-to-large groups (tank/BLM alliance in dynamis, abyssea, event kind of stuff). For gear (if it matters), consider full blessed, AF, and relic but don't assume other endgame pieces.

Merits so far:

MP 3
Divine 1
Healing 1
Enmity Decrease 1
Cure Cast Time 2
Martyr 1
Devotion 1
Protectra V 1
Shellra V 1

Thanks for any help you can give! If you need more information about anything, post and I'll see what I can get for you. Good luck out there!

-KK
#2 Aug 30 2010 at 11:20 AM Rating: Good
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First advice: Screw merits, level /SCH. It will help more than any amount of merits she invests.

Second advice: Skip skills for now. Healing skill is pointless. Elemental is pointless, obviously. Enfeebling can help sometimes. Enhancing is pretty pointless.

As for what she should put merits into, I suggest these two as top priority:
Cure Cast - Put 5 points into this before doing anything else. It is the only merit that literally directly makes you a better healer. Every point into this essentially makes it as though you'd reacted to the situation faster than you actually did.

Shellra V - Put 5 points into this next. Shellra is full of win.

Aside from that advice, she looks like she's on the right track. Devotion & Martyr are worth at least one point each. MP & Enmity Down are the big wins from general categories. MND can be nice too, but is not a big deal so if she ever plans to level a DD job she should just leave that category clear for STR merits later. Similar with magic, WHM won't benefit as much as most mage jobs so if she plans to level another job with magic then she might just want to keep this group fairly open for now. As for the Group 1 merits, after finishing off Cure Cast, she should put the rest into Regen and/or Barspell merits. How she splits those last 5 points is really down to her personal preference.
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#3 Aug 30 2010 at 12:29 PM Rating: Good
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Thanks for your input! I was concerned about Shellra V. We have very limited playtime and 4+5+5+5 (190,000 xp) to max it out seems like such a waste at this point if we're going to see Shellra VI trumping it in an update or two.

Has WHM really come down to "/SCH all the time or bust"? The tractor / ele seal sleepga (silence, repose, etc), and Warp/2 from sub black mage have been very handy from time to time, as has Convert+Dispel+Fast Cast from sub Red. Since she does group events where she'll often have a Red for Refresh, it seemed Sublimation was not a factor so we were weighing the merits of Accession and Penury raise 3s + Light Arts goodies only. Given our playtime constraints it didn't seem compelling enough to spend the time on raising the sub. Thoughts?

edit - Yes, despite being a country bumpkin that punches things for a FF11 living, I know who you are and what you must have gone through to get all that snazzy gear and a Mythic. "Yes, it really is /SCH fulltime or bust" is a legitimate argument coming from Pergatory =)

edit again - Okay, read some subjob discussion threads and am 90% sure prevailing opinion is /SCH beats everything, all the time. That's too bad. Thanks again for your time!

Edited, Aug 30th 2010 3:16pm by kskerns
#4 Aug 30 2010 at 2:53 PM Rating: Decent
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Accession does not work with Raise, unfortunately. I tried it once after a 1st LT Assault gone horribly wrong :/

As for /SCH, aside from Accession and Penury, it's important to remember that you're spending 10% less MP for every spell you cast with Light Arts active. That adds up quickly and doesn't take into account Conserve MP. Penury is another 50% off the lower MP cost. You can also effectively Aspir with Dark Arts and some INT gear, something you can't do with /BLM. As for Sublimation, I use it even if I have a RDM in the party, and most RDMs are more than happy to have one less thing to do.

Shellra V is worth capping. While Shellra VI at some point does seem likely, we don't have it now, and the M.DEF bonus on capped Shellra V is completely worth the time. Merits don't take too long to get with Abyssea now, either.

The rest of the merit advice is solid. Skip the magic skills, except maybe enfeebling if you do that frequently.
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#5 Aug 30 2010 at 3:12 PM Rating: Decent
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Yes, /SCH really is that good. Although after 82, /RDM will be able to compete, particularly if the rest of the party could use Refresh and there is no RDM to do it.

Quote:
Second advice: Skip skills for now. Healing skill is pointless. Elemental is pointless, obviously. Enfeebling can help sometimes. Enhancing is pretty pointless.


Yeah, if she's absolutely Hardcore WHM That Will Never Play Anything Else, she still shouldn't merit healing. Might as well get Enfeeb, and Divine for Repose purposes.

Quote:
Penury is another 50% off the lower MP cost


Actually it isn't; it's 50% off the original MP cost.

Standard Raise cost: 150
Raise w/ Light Arts: 135 (10% reduction from 150)
Raise w/ Penury: 75 (50% reduction from 150)

As an addendum (GET IT? LOL), Conserve MP can proc on top of a Penury usage, in which case the cost can actually still drop below 75.

Edited, Aug 30th 2010 8:54pm by Fynlar
#6 Aug 30 2010 at 4:20 PM Rating: Decent
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/SCH is definitely worth the time to level up. When compared to the other subs i.e. /rdm, /blm, /smn, the comparison between high damage weaponskills and DoT comes to mind. DoT is like /sch, it works out to be the more important, even if it isn't immediately apparent. But of course we must consider SE's/our own disturbing fetish for situational game play. Before the level increase, /sch was simply the best hands down. As we gain more levels above 80, the other subs become more appealing for a wider range of situations. /sch will still be the generally best sub, but /rdm and /blm are still viable in certain situations, and /rdm is definitely catching up to /sch. I suspect by the time we hit 99, /rdm and /sch will be somewhat interchangeable. In the end, for general use, I think /sch will still pull ahead.


Aspir is quite useful, but please don't bother with INT. Only stack Dark Magic Skill and Magic Accuracy for aspir. Use a dark staff of course. Darksday/weather enhancing items would also be useful.
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#7 Aug 30 2010 at 8:38 PM Rating: Good
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Also, keep in mind that AoE stratagems add a whole new spectrum of utility. More -NA spells being AoE'd is always welcome, as is Stoneskinga. And of course, it allows to -GA stuff into other parties, like Pro/Shells and even cures (Yes, /SCH lets us "curaga" outside parties).

Also, Aspir-ga is just plain fun when you can actually use it. And if you reaaaally need it; /SCH is perfectly capable of casting Sleep-ga, if you have both stratagems up.

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#8 Aug 31 2010 at 1:05 AM Rating: Decent
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reiterating:

Skip merits, finish scholar (49 preferred).

Once that's done, merit along this path:

5 shell
5 devotion
3 regen
2 cure **
4 -enmity


**I think with Cure clogs, /SCH, Loquac. Earring, and 2 Cure Cast Time merits, you cap cure casting time? Please correct me if I'm wrong; or show me where to improve. Thanks.


Edit:

I did not touch the general merits other than -enmity, because I feel it's all personal choice and possibly other jobs might change the merits put into it. Assuming she is WHM, and WHM only, and ABSOLUTELY not leveling any other jobs:

MP:8 (could argue HP:4 MP:4), Divine 8, Enfeebling 8, 4 -enmity, 4 enemy crit, 8club, 8staff, 4 evasion, 5 MND.

I personally find specializing merits outside of job-specific towards WHM a large waste of time.


Edit again:

Do you guys have Abyssea? With abyssea, you can easily knock out 10.99 merits over the course of 2-3 hours depending if the group is good or not; on top of that, you could level Scholar from 30 to 49 in a little under 5 hours if you create the group and do chest picking.

Edited, Aug 31st 2010 3:10am by SakkaofValefor

Edited, Aug 31st 2010 3:12am by SakkaofValefor
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#9 Aug 31 2010 at 9:35 AM Rating: Good
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More thanks for more input! Nevertheless it's going to be an uphill task convincing her to level another sub, especially as reactive as she is about people telling her how she has to play. Suggestions? ^^;

Iniadelphinae>> "Accession does not work with Raise, unfortunately"

Sorry, wording error on my part, meant "Accession" and "Penury R3s" to be separate. I'm not sure the full list of spells that cannot be used with that strategem, but know at least Raise, Reraise, and Haste aren't on there.

Sujuro>> "When compared to the other subs i.e. /rdm, /blm, /smn, the comparison between high damage weaponskills and DoT comes to mind. DoT is like /sch, it works out to be the more important, even if it isn't immediately apparent."

As a monk, now you're speaking my language. =p

Drakonite>> "And if you reaaaally need it; /SCH is perfectly capable of casting Sleep-ga, if you have both stratagems up."

Can you Manifestation Repose? She's got an itchy banish/flash finger and very high Divine, her Reposes are almost never resisted. Might be better than Sleepga if she can AOE it. Unfortunately yes, sometimes we really do need it ^^;; things can go bad for the BLM team, or they or too far away, etc.

Sakka>> I personally find specializing merits outside of job-specific towards WHM a large waste of time.

Honestly, yeah. DDs see a big improvement from 8/8 combat merits and such where our stats+gear are a primary indicator of results in the form of damage. Casters (and healers in particular) seem much more nuanced. She outdoes a couple of the WHM/SCH that have come through our shell based on reaction time and knowledge. The "zomg noob go lvl /SCH" mentality from people she's beating at their job is the biggest detriment towards getting her to level it =/

Sakka again>> Do you guys have Abyssea?

Yes, and we've been using it for some merits! Unfortunately we have job/child/commitments so can only play FF from about 10:30pm to 2:30am on the days we do play. Enough time for an Abby party if we get into one quickly, but not much time to gear and seek on a new job and meander through it at 4-5k/hour. =( a project for next weekend at grandma's, perhaps!
#10 Aug 31 2010 at 9:39 AM Rating: Good
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SakkaofValefor wrote:
**I think with Cure clogs, /SCH, Loquac. Earring, and 2 Cure Cast Time merits, you cap cure casting time? Please correct me if I'm wrong; or show me where to improve. Thanks.

That's only 35%, and it's verified that the cap is at least 50% or likely higher. So far no one has found an actual cap. People have verified in testing that you can go at least a few points over 50%, I think it was about 54% that they had and it cast faster than at 50% so it was still helping even at that point.

I have 5 Cure Cast merits, Cure Clogs, Loquacious Earring, Veela Cape, and Ebur Bliaut with healing magic cast time -3%. Add Light Arts to that, and I'm over the 50% mark. I cast Cure V at about the same speed a RDM casts Cure III. I've never done any explicit testing to see how far you can take this... maybe I'll pick up one of those belts that gives Cure Cast -15% in Campaign and see if it makes my casts even faster. I'll be sure to post my findings if I do.

kskerns wrote:
More thanks for more input! Nevertheless it's going to be an uphill task convincing her to level another sub, especially as reactive as she is about people telling her how she has to play. Suggestions? ^^;

It's all about the MP efficiency of the subjob. Light Arts gives 10% MP savings across the board. Conserve MP gives another 7% or so on average. Add in a Penury every 2 minutes and the average savings shoots well over the 20% range, probably closer to 25%. That's a lot of MP savings! It compounds on MP gained too, in other words that 1mp/tick from your bodypiece becomes 1.2mp/tick because you can do 20% more with it. If you have Refresh & Ballads up for 7mp/tick then you are effectively gaining 8.4mp/tick on /SCH.

The utility argument (Tractor, Warp II, etc) is really secondary to this because those are not your primary responsibilities. Other jobs should be able to do that if necessary, and foregoing them gives you a significant advantage in your primary responsibility which is healing. That's not to say there aren't reasons to use other subs. /SCH is not the end-all be-all subjob for WHM. The utility argument can win in some cases and so it's useful to have them available, but /SCH wins out 95% of the time.

kskerns wrote:
Can you Manifestation Repose? She's got an itchy banish/flash finger and very high Divine, her Reposes are almost never resisted. Might be better than Sleepga if she can AOE it. Unfortunately yes, sometimes we really do need it ^^;; things can go bad for the BLM team, or they or too far away, etc.

Manifestation only works on enfeebling magic and only with Dark Arts active, so you wouldn't want to try to cast Repose with Dark Arts up even if it did work on divine magic. Accession only works on enhancing magic in Light Arts, so it won't work on Repose either.

Edited, Sep 1st 2010 8:57am by Pergatory
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#11 Aug 31 2010 at 9:57 AM Rating: Good
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Thanks for clarification on Accession/Manifestation.

I know it's not the place to ask, but Fast Cast and Cure Casting Time Reduction seem to stack. Do they also stack with Fast Cast (9-20%!) given by Corsair's "Caster's Roll"? That would be pretty darn fast.
#12 Aug 31 2010 at 1:04 PM Rating: Decent
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Quote:
The "zomg noob go lvl /SCH" mentality from people she's beating at their job is the biggest detriment towards getting her to level it =/


The thing is, even if she's beating them, with /SCH she's only going to beat them even more.

To put this in your language... just because you're the best geared MNK in the bunch doesn't make /THF the ideal subjob for you to use. And before you say that /THF is absolute crap for MNK... that's what any other sub (aside from /RDM, now that it has Convert and is eventually going to have Refresh) is going to feel like on WHM once you get used to /SCH. The sub was practically tailor-made for WHM specifically; it's that good.


Quote:
Manifestation only works on enfeebling magic and only with Dark Arts active


Not *entirely* true. It works with Drain/Aspir.

But yeah, it can't work with Repose. Repose will not even trigger a Dark Arts stratagem; the Manifestation icon will stay active until you cast a (compatible) black magic spell. No white magic is compatible with any Dark Arts stratagems -- and the Light Arts version, Accession, doesn't apply to Repose either, or any other offensive-based white magic.

tl;dr - Repose can't be AoE'd, sorry.


Quote:
I know it's not the place to ask, but Fast Cast and Cure Casting Time Reduction seem to stack. Do they also stack with Fast Cast (9-20%!) given by Corsair's "Caster's Roll"? That would be pretty darn fast.


Considering how Bolter's Roll stacks with all other partial speed buffs (that is, anything short of Flee/chocobo) even when previously only your single most potent speed buff will take effect at any given time (which is highly unfair toward Mazurka, if you ask me), I would be shocked if Caster's Roll didn't stack with everything else.

Only thing I'm not sure of is if cast time reduction has a hard cap (short of things like Chainspell, that is), but WHMs probably won't be reaching it anyway.
#13 Sep 07 2010 at 12:04 PM Rating: Decent
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I may as well throw my 2 cents in.

These are the "must have" merits for whm, in the order that I would get them.
1 shellra V
1 devotion
5 cure cast time
4 shellra V
5 barspell (or regen, if you choose to go that route)
4 other group 2 merits of your choice

For "whm main only never gonna level another job", I guess you could fill it out with:
8 mp (if you want more hp consider wearing less hp -> mp gear)
4 -enmity
16 magic merits (divine for repose and enfeebling are probably the best, but do what you want)
8 club, 4 shield, 4 evasion
5 mind (or str if you like to whack things with your club)
4 interrupt down/crit hit/crit hit taken (personal preference)

As far as subjob choice /sch really is king, and I think it will continue to be so at 85. The thing that makes scholar attractive is that it offers more flexibility then any other subjob. If your mp is tight you can use penury to make it stretch further, if you need to get stone/paralyze/silence off a party you can accession a stona/paralyna/silena. The ability to store up a pool of mp before a fight begins can be useful, and using sublimation to keep yourself awake when fighting AoE sleep monsters so you can cura is a great mp saver.

And I'll say straight out that I think the most powerful thing we can do with scholar sub is throw out AoE stoneskin.
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#14 Sep 10 2010 at 6:06 AM Rating: Decent
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Quote:
The "zomg noob go lvl /SCH" mentality from people she's beating at their job is the biggest detriment towards getting her to level it =/


If she's still unsure, I'll add my thoughts.

I was away from the game for a long time, missing the addition of SCH entirely. When I came back, I carried on as normal with /SMN and /BLM situationally (I also have /RDM but at the time rarely had a situation where I used it). People went on about SCH being the best but I feel that chasing the current flavour of the month in an online game is a stressful task which serves little purpose, as by the time you catch up when playing casually, something else is in fashion. The benefits were all readily apparent but didn't appear compelling enough to endure wasting time levelling yet another very similar sub job instead of progressing in the parts of the game everyone else was doing.

One day, I was bored and had some free time, so I went to play with my level 1 SCH to learn what its unique abilities actually did. Thanks to FoV and the other new developments, it was level 10 in the blink of an eye, and I started to get attached to it. Soon it was level 37. I was always invited as a healer anyway so it was just like playing my main.

SCH makes WHM a joy to play. If you love WHM, you will love WHM/SCH even more. It has benefits with MP efficiency and a good crossover with BLM/RDM abilities, but that's not the point. For me it makes WHM itself better and more fun. I'm no longer a slave to my MP bar, but can take control of it and put stats into much more fulfilling goals. I'm no longer limited to a small set of abilities but can use my existing ones in exciting new ways. It makes the role more tactical and interesting, because you can change your approach to fit the situation.

If she's happy as her current subjob, she should keep it. However, as one career WHM to another, she's going to learn to love /SCH very quickly if she ever has the time to give it a try. When the level increase was announced I was most excited to have the chance to get more out of /RDM - but as it turned out, I haven't even tried /RDM yet! /SCH is firmly glued to my WHM for the forseeable future. It's that much more fun.
#15 Sep 10 2010 at 10:51 PM Rating: Good
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I'm going to give one bit of fair warning: leveling SCH feels like leveling a gimpy RDM or BLM up until about 20~25.

After that, it's all downhill, though. It's just that first bit that's a pain in the neck because your spell selection is, to be honest, pretty abysmal initially (like leveling PLD or DRK, only without much in the way of melee skill to help back you up when soloing).
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