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The (Apparently) Age Old String QuestionFollow

#1 Nov 26 2010 at 5:55 PM Rating: Decent
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Okay, so I did some digging into stickies and what-not, and I just want to ask this, mostly because the game has changed a lot since most of the information I have read was written, most people aren't having many issues with magic accuracy any more for instance, thanks to the cap raise.

From what I understand, Wind = Smaller area, higher magic accuracy. String = Larger Area (That starts small and gets larger as you rise in string skill over some sort of number assigned to each song) but lower magic accuracy.

My GF has started playing Bard, and so I'm curious to know so I don't feed her miss information, I'm not worried about skilling them up, so I don't need any "it's easier to skill up just wind" crap, both will be skilled, I'm just wondering about their uses. And here's what I understand...

Defensively: Use string when you don't care if the buff hits the entire party, or when you want to hit the entire party and they're relatively spread out, especially (obviously) if the song's enhancement is on a string instrument. (See: Paeon) Exceptional case is, obviously, if you have a wind instrument with the song, and no string, you ought to go with wind, and just try to get everyone through positioning.

Offensively: Use string (Read: Nursemaid's) when you are trying to sleep a large number of spread out enemies, use wind (Mary's) when you're more concerned about not getting resisted. Seeing as there appears to only be one AoE offensive song, I'm guessing this is really the only situation where string wins out. Though I understand Threnody is on a harp, which leads to my other question...


Regarding differences in accuracy, how bad are they? Now with the cap 85, soon to be 90, and string skill always being cheaper gear to purchase, has anyone got some numbers or just general eyeballing on how bad string is? I guess you can take it in tiers to answer the question, but for offensive spells like Threnody, Lullaby, etc...

What's the hit rate like on a normal T-IT mob like the average Abyssea exp mob
What's the hit rate like on a mid/low tier Abyssean NM
What's the hit rate like on a high level Abyssean NM

At any point if Threnody is desirable, should a Bard stop using string (if it's capped, and they have string skill gear) in favor of potency, and switch to wind in favor of accuracy? I guess this question is probably going to generate the most debate (if any do) but I'm wondering about people's experiences. If you still land 90% of the time with good gear, I guess my question is why not use string to enhance the potency.

The other reason I ask about this is, I've been considering duoing with my GF's BRD when it is the appropriate level on my BLM, doing the "pull a huge group of aggressive Abyssean mobs" and -ga > sleep > -ga them. And I figure it'd be much safer and easier to just have her Lullaby right as my Nukes land, and I'm assuming the Harp would be the best choice, to make sure none are missed, so those would be average Abyssean mobs, would she get resisted fairly often?

Thanks for the feedback, I've never really leveled Bard myself, so this whole string vs wind thing is actually something I was only vaguely aware of, and I apologize if I missed a sticky, or a recent post discussing this.
#2 Nov 26 2010 at 6:06 PM Rating: Decent
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It's a pretty big difference, but i don't have any numbers on it.

For weak **** you can use harp of course, it doesn't matter.
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#3 Nov 26 2010 at 6:53 PM Rating: Decent
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Grand Master Leatherworker ThePsychoticO wrote:
It's a pretty big difference, but i don't have any numbers on it.

For weak sh*t you can use harp of course, it doesn't matter.


Can you clarify weak sh*t? I'm basically wondering at what point string becomes too risky - Savannah Rarab? Greater Colibri? Ephemeral Amoeban?
#4 Nov 26 2010 at 6:55 PM Rating: Good
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RamseySylph wrote:
Can you clarify weak sh*t? I'm basically wondering at what point string becomes too risky - Savannah Rarab? Greater Colibri? Ephemeral Amoeban?
Exp mobs.
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#5 Nov 27 2010 at 9:17 AM Rating: Good
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RamseySylph wrote:
From what I understand, Wind = Smaller area, higher magic accuracy. String = Larger Area (That starts small and gets larger as you rise in string skill over some sort of number assigned to each song) but lower magic accuracy.


Incorrect. In regards to magic accuracy, Wind Skill and String Skill provide the same amount of magic accuracy. The reason it was believed String Skill is worse is due to lots of reasons (more Wind Skill gear available, aspiring BRDs aiming for ghorn builds, etc). Tests have been done to compare Wind Skill gear against String Skill gear and there was no measurable difference between the two when the builds are similar.

As far as buffs go - generally your going to want to cast with the corresponding instrument, which for most happens to be wind instruments. Paeon and Hymnus are your only exception at this point (unless you have G.horn, and then they are equal) and generally you wont cast these songs very often for it to matter. Your likely going to be casting ballads, or marches.

On the debuff side - For a BRD with capped skills, usually resist rates come in two flavors: Stupidly easy (seriously, people used to level BRD naked), or near impossible (even for a career BRD it can be difficult).

So here's my take on threnodies: The age of SC+MB on normal mobs is over. You may still see it on HNMs, but these are heavily resistant mobs. Your going to want to land threnody with the most reliable setup you have, whether it is your string build or your wind build. If that means landing a 'weaker' threnody due to casting with a wind instrument, so be it. The only exception to this, is if you have another BRD in your group who is also landing threnodies, then you can try to aim for the higher potency version with the harp.

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And I figure it'd be much safer and easier to just have her Lullaby right as my Nukes land, and I'm assuming the Harp would be the best choice, to make sure none are missed, so those would be average Abyssean mobs, would she get resisted fairly often?


I've leveled up in abyssea using similar methods and have not had a problem landing horde with harp.

If you get any resistance to string builds, it usually comes down to one simple thing: gear

People don't have much room now and would rather play BRD with one set of gear. Even some career BRD's don't make much room for string builds, preferring FastCast,Song Spellcasting, Idle builds, etc over String. Additionally, while most songs are capped for potency (read: I don't have to wear much gear), almost all the high end songs are not capped for range (read: I need a lot of string skill gear). While you can have a Wind based BRD cast in the same wind buff/debuff set, a String based BRD is going to have two sets - one for max range, another for max accuracy. Finally, no matter how much your efforts...Wind Skill is SE's baby, and unless things change, you will never find enough String Skill gear that will rival Wind Skill gear on magic accuracy. While a lot of these reasons are silly and almost all of them can be worked around, it makes it very inconvenient - to the point most believe it isn't worth it.

Edited, Nov 27th 2010 10:17am by Asmoranomar
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#6 Nov 27 2010 at 11:08 AM Rating: Decent
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I used to change from horn to harp in my ballad macros, back when Ballad I was still cast, depending on my party makeup. A group of BLMs where I was acting as a battery would get a harp for extended range, but a group of DD with 1-2 mages would get a horn for the tighter AOE and more precision.

But since Ballad II and III have a much closer range (and one that isn't 20 yalms like Ballad I with a harp) I don't bother any more.

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#7 Dec 10 2010 at 10:14 PM Rating: Decent
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Asmoranomar wrote:
RamseySylph wrote:
From what I understand, Wind = Smaller area, higher magic accuracy. String = Larger Area (That starts small and gets larger as you rise in string skill over some sort of number assigned to each song) but lower magic accuracy.


Incorrect. In regards to magic accuracy, Wind Skill and String Skill provide the same amount of magic accuracy. The reason it was believed String Skill is worse is due to lots of reasons (more Wind Skill gear available, aspiring BRDs aiming for ghorn builds, etc). Tests have been done to compare Wind Skill gear against String Skill gear and there was no measurable difference between the two when the builds are similar.


I'd be interested in seeing the source for this.
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