I'm going to add a few thoughts on top of shamaya's but first I want to acknowledge I was wrong with this statement
This is not true. Ex: 400/80 = 5. 200/40 = 5. 5/5 = 1. Delay reduction: 400/(80*0.2)=1. 200/(40*0.2)=1. 1/1 = 1. Lower delay weapons don't help more because they don't go into the delay reduction formula, but gets multiplied against it.
I edited that snippet out. I was confusing two different concepts and shamaya explained it correctly. Now with that said...
Like shamaya I've been a thief main for all my playtime; level 75 since 2006. I get defensive about thief's dd potential because I've had to listen to people shun my favorite job for years in a manner I felt was unfair. Shamaya worded his post excellently and the thing I think sticks out the most was this
Most thieves never got far beyond the AH/sh*ttily geared level, whereas warrior was easier to gear and easier to play. But well geared thieves have always been much stronger compared to sh*ttier thieves, than well geared wars have been compared to sh*ttily geared wars.
Thief needed a lot of stats at level 75 that just weren't readily available like they were to the 2 handed jobs through auction pieces, but instead came from all the rare/ex possessions. When I was a newbie lvl 75 thf my damage was pathetic but I was inspired by my viper bite days and how I had been THE queen of exp party by closing distortion. I put more effort into getting the necessary pieces to make up for my handicaps than I would have had to on the other jobs, but I was rewarded for it with some killer damage potential and I even turned some heads at HNM. There is a ring of truth about thief at Einherjar and Khimaira because sneak and trick attack can do vast amounts of spike DoT there and weakness doesn't affect them.
That brings up my second point. A lot of people only leveled thief to 75 for treasure hunter so they never tried to play it well, nor did they use their abilities. Using warrior's strongest native DD abilities is pretty straightforward button mashing. You hit berserk and aggressor when it's available and that's it. In my case I try and use sneak and trick attack when I can, and if I'm not using it in conjunction with a weaponskill I will swap to a dex/attack set for sneak and an agi/attack set for trick. In order for this to work I also have to be positioned properly. This is a much more complex playstyle and most thieves just saved SA or TA to stack with a weaponskill (many in a one hit wonder SATA ws). When Kinematics added the thief tab to kparser at my request I used it to see how much my crits did, and they were a meaningful contribution to my DoT. I would argue that abusing sneak and trick attack really helped to close the gap on berserk's potential if executed properly because berserk was down 40% of the time, but that's something I can't show through math and it's also subject to gear once again... namely the quality of the sa or ta set used. But when average 2 hander base damage was 100 I had the potential to land two base damage 180+ criticals each minute, and being that they were forced criticals it was a big deal.
Thief always had potential to be a great DD even at 75, but it was literally 10 times easier to gear warrior or samurai or dark knight or w/e to get equal results before the gains on thief would start to outweigh those on other jobs. I needed a majority of everything available but once I had it I blew "GOOD!!" 2 handers out of the water and held my pace with "GREAT" ones. A well geared thief
was ten times better than a sh*tty thf than a well geared war was to an auction one if they also played effectively. But how many thieves ever reached that level of play?
People almost never saw
a GREAT!! thief, and because 95% of thieves sucked thief was branded with the title of "inferior in every way". I hated that because it encouraged people to not even try, which led to more people thinking thf DD sucked, which led to more people accepting gimp thiefs, which began a downward spiral ultimately leading to the attitude that "thief does nothing right except make stuff drop, don't ever use it for anything but treasure hunter". I don't think thief's DD potential was as terrible on HNM as perception made it to be, but that is again the issue of a GOOD thf versus a sh*tty one. You get what you give. This is one of my favorite screenshots from a Nidhogg battle, I closed light which mirrored the damage
but didn't show in the log because of a gear swap. Thief always had potential to shine, but between the "You feed to much TP, GTFO THE MOB NOW" and even fewer thfs being properly geared to battle HNM combined with the downward spiral attitude, thief had a bad rep that never healed. "thief is a support/utility class, not a DD and much less a "heavy" dd".
The past is gone now and I want to move on. People who leveled thief for "TH only" are going to level it to 90 againf or that reason, but now many of them will have atmas and abyssites plus great daggers drop off nms they'll probably be fighting anyway (like rapidus sax). Our AF3 set really
raises the bar and gives us necessary stats (haste...lots!!), and we don't have to choose between haste and accuracy (or acc at all) anymore. People will want the three furtherance abyssites anyway (ivory is free, flame skimmer almost a given, and Lugarhoo isn't that hard) and +10 every stat will really help SA/TA (even if they DON'T have a dedicated dex/agi set) should they use it like I explained earlier. The razed ruins just further pushes the bounds with sneak and trick attack. Also this warrants note
I find it entertaining that you act like you can't, but the biggest obstacle to thieves using /war is thieves themselves. Since I consider myself a whm main I'll cure whoever is taking damage, regardless of if it's a pld, sam, blm or thf. But thieves get hung up on shadows and feel naked without them, and they lose out on 10% dual wield when sub warrior (at least according to wiki they're listed as only having DW1 without /nin). Dancers also do this to themselves, as you would be hard pressed to find one that isn't /nin even though they don't get any of dual wield bonus from doing so.
We do have dual wield II at level 90, and the jobs you listed as top dogs (nin, monk, dnc, war) have three things going for them. Speed, critical weaponskills, and in some cases high attack. I've seen several dancer/war and monk/war and they're godly, and ninja always subs /war. I'm played around with /war myself and if that isn't chart topping damage I don't know WHAT is. The thing people are slowly realizing is that "dead stuff doesn't hurt you...anymore", and my mages all have minikin + w/e else so mana is usually flying. I'm going to close with this. Thf/war also has more max HP than thf/nin, and if you have abyssites of MERIT thf/war isn't that frightening. I'm missing at least two merits and I still have over 2300 max hp thf/war up from ~~1950 thf/nin, and I still have my evasion swap to rely on if I get too low. I'm almost always healed before I die so I've begun to enjoy thf/war at the abyssea brawlfests. I'd encourage others to try it out a few times and see what they think, if your mages have atmas you may be surprised with what you get back. Edited, Dec 19th 2010 12:04am by Melphina