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Thread: The Revised and Improved Archon Guide

  1. #1
    Shadowlander Seihk's Avatar
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    Default The Revised and Improved Archon Guide

    Introduction

    Hello mages! I play a 51 Archon build currently and I have to say that I'm really enjoying it! I think that every raid will want one Archon, therefore it's worth you looking into Archon to at least consider picking up the build. I'm not super experienced yet, but I've been able to test out Archon a bit and have really liked it so far, for utility alone.

    A quick note, I don't really touch on our 5-minute buffs in this guide because I assume that you can all manage to keep those up before a fight. These buffs are Shared Vigor - Vitality of Stone - Arcane Aegis - Burning Purpose - Tempered Armor. These spells should be cast right before a pull so that you can hopefully avoid having to cast them during the fight (5 global cooldowns! Yikes, that can kill a rotation!)

    FAQ

    Do Archon buffs stack with other, similar buffs?
    It would appear that they do stack with buffs that are not "until cancelled" effects, currently. The group comp I run with in my experts is Warrior Tank (Pally/VK/Warlord) - Bard Support - Cleric Healer (mostly sentinel I think) - Ranged Rogue DPS (I think he's ranger + sab?) - Archon Support. The reason I spelled that out is that there are a few buffs that Archon's bring that are brought by other classes. Shared Vigor stacked with an endurance buff, Living Bomb stacked with the bard equivalent...yadda yadda. Basically; our buffs are useful no matter what group we're running with.


    Do our debuffs stack with other similar effects?
    No, not at this point in time. Crumbling Resistance did not stack with the Bard-equivalent spell, and I'd imagine it wouldn't stack with the Elementalist Summoner's debuff either. Therefore, if you are running an Archon build and want to be most efficient in a raid setting, communicate with your other guildies that they should use other spells. Point out that for one global you can put up a 5 minute debuff, so yours is very easy to manage so they can focus their efforts elsewhere.

    Should Archon go Support/DPS or Support/Heals?
    Well it would seem that the community is relatively split on this matter. My other role is a 36 Chloro / 30 Lock build, and I think that Chloromancer is a very powerful build. However, if your raid has a primary Chloromancer, you're utility goes drastically downward if you're using a sub-Chloro spec. I had originally thought that Pyromancer was the best sub spec for an Archon, but I wasn't factoring Burning Purpose proccing on debuff-causing spells, and therefore I'm leaning more towards Archon / Warlock for extra Charge (never a bad thing) and potential instant casts (also never a bad thing).

    Although I prefer Support/DPS, a Support/Healing build could be powerful enough to not require a back-up healer at all. Therefore Archon/Chloro might be very strong in experts for that reason!


    Can Archon's do good damage?
    I feel as though we will be able to put out decent numbers. I do more damage than my Chloromancer build, but I'd imagine that Archon's won't ever be top dps on a fight (and if they were that'd be nerf-worthy in my book).


    Why Warlock secondary? Why not X?
    I'm sure there are other viable options with Archon, but Warlock has some very nice synergy with the Archon soul. As I stated above, I was originally thinking that Pyromancer was a great addition to the soul, but a flaw was pointed out in my logic: Burning Purpose, our 51 point talent, adds extra damage on to any spell that puts a debuff on the boss. Therefore, a Pillaging Stone that hits for 800 gets an additional 300 damage from Burning Purpose. For that reason, you'll want a sub-soul that benefits your Archon spells, and not one that adds a new spell into the rotation (in this case, fireball). I'm considering trying out a 51 Archon / 10 Warlock / 5 Elem Summoner, and I'll post back with my results.

    What is the Archon rotation?
    I'm sure you've heard this sentence before, but I'll put it here as well: it's more of a priority system than a rotation. I'll list them below in order of importance:
    •Volcanic Bomb / Surging Flare / Earthen Barrage
    •Crumbling Resistance / Lingering Dust (Only needs to be cast once every 5 minutes!)
    •Pillaging Stone


    The rotation might seem a bit tough when looking at it, but in actuality it's quite simple. Most of the time you don't have to cast anything other than your buffs on cooldown and spam Pillaging Stone in the mix. One thing to note is that Surging Flare only has a 10 second cooldown, as opposed to Volcanic Bomb and Earthen Barrage which have 15 second cooldowns. This is only worth noting because it means that you won't really have a rotation (well...if you don't have to move and can just spam cast you ultimately have a 2cycle rotation that I'm not going to type out for fear of confusing everyone...myself included lol), so you've really just got to watch your cooldowns and hit those buttons asap.

    Ok, so Burning Purpose adds damage to my Archon Spells?
    Well, it adds damage to any spell that debuffs the boss (Pillaging Stone, Lingering Dust, Crumbling Defense) so don't assume that every spell you cast from your Archon tree will do additional damage.

    What about Power Drain, when do I use that?
    Power Drain is a phenomenal cooldown. Not only does it lower the bosses damage by 10% while active, but it also increases your damage by 10%. If you're at 100 Charge when you cast it, you'll be buffed (and he boss will be debuffed) for approximately 15 seconds. It is best to line this up after you've just finished casting your 3 damage+buff spells (Volcanic Bomb, Earthen Barrage, Surging Flare) so that you can maximize Pillaging Stone usage during the buff. But don't be strictly limited to using it as a damage buff, because it's also an awesome defensive cooldown. When I first step in to a raid I plan on using it everytime my charge hits 100 just to help smooth out incoming tank damage.


    So always spend your Charge on Power Drain?
    Not necessarily! Rock Slide also uses charge, but should only be cast once every 5 minutes...so don't forget that spell. But more importantly, we have another amazing cooldown which is very similar to Bloodlust / Heroism (from that game that we should never admit to having played!), it's called Flaring Power. Flaring Power gives everyone in the raid 15% spell power and attack power for 20 seconds. One very important thing to note...do NOT use it unless you have 80+ Charge or else it will cancel early! This spell should be called out for by the raid leader if needed, but in an expert dungeon you can use it on every boss, just try to time it well enough that most people will get a good benefit from it.


    And what about Waning Power?
    Waning Power is the uppermost talent point in the Archon soul and it's also a decent cooldown. It's not game-breaking, but it should definitely get some love and usage. It's best to use it right before you use Power Drain so that you can get a few Power Drains off during it's uptime. The buff lasts a minute, so you can probably get 3-4 power drains off in that timeframe, helping to buff your damage by a nice chunk.


    Do Archon's have mana issues?
    Nope, therefore you can use Mental Flare (30% of your mana restored to the target) on somebody who needs it more.
    Let him who desires peace prepare for war.
    - | - | - Ellessia, Dwarven Guardian - | - | -

  2. #2
    Telaran
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    Another note on power drain.

    If you really want to crank out the dps, you can flick it on and off for every spell cast (it's off the GCD) and get a tick of burning purpose every time.

    start casting a spell
    queue power drain
    spell casts, power drain turns on during travel time and does damage
    cast next spell
    turn off power drain and requeue it during cast

    Do this with a necro sub and plague bolt to see 4 hits of damage on every cast

  3. #3
    RIFT Guide Writer Redcruxs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quinburger View Post
    Another note on power drain.

    If you really want to crank out the dps, you can flick it on and off for every spell cast (it's off the GCD) and get a tick of burning purpose every time.

    start casting a spell
    queue power drain
    spell casts, power drain turns on during travel time and does damage
    cast next spell
    turn off power drain and requeue it during cast

    Do this with a necro sub and plague bolt to see 4 hits of damage on every cast
    1) i get carpal tunnel from doing this

    2) this is likely an exploit and will get fixed

  4. #4
    Telaran
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redcruxs View Post
    1) i get carpal tunnel from doing this

    2) this is likely an exploit and will get fixed
    Oh I fully agree on both points. Just sayin it's possible =p

  5. #5
    Rift Disciple
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    The dps gain from toggling Power Drain is slight anyways. I just use Power Drain full to empty as intended.

    @ OP: Plague Bolt and Grave Rot

  6. #6
    Shadowlander Seihk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maxvla View Post
    The dps gain from toggling Power Drain is slight anyways. I just use Power Drain full to empty as intended.

    @ OP: Plague Bolt and Grave Rot
    Yeah, I hear Necro is a very good sub-build with Archon for Deathly Calling stacks, I'll have to definitely check it out.
    Let him who desires peace prepare for war.
    - | - | - Ellessia, Dwarven Guardian - | - | -

  7. #7
    Rift Disciple Gurgeh's Avatar
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    Thanks for the guide... quick questions:

    I'm currently 35. So far I've been leveling with Necro/Chloro, Chloro/Lock, and SC/Chloro.

    My question is, is there any viable primary/secondary Archon build that would work at lvl 35? I want to try the soul out to get used to it before higher levels.
    I am thinking 24 Necro (for FD and better pet) ... would the rest (22) in Archon be workable (primarily solo), or should I just wait till higher levels? More pts in Necro?
    Any other workable combos you'd recommend at this level that would give me a better feel for the class?
    Or, is Archon strictly a group build that doesn't work solo, esp at lower levels?

    Thanks

  8. #8
    Soulwalker
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gurgeh View Post
    My question is, is there any viable primary/secondary Archon build that would work at lvl 35? I want to try the soul out to get used to it before higher levels.
    Generally speaking, going Archon deeper than 11 points before level 50 is a waste. You can still use the mana regen for mana-heavy souls like mid-level Pyro, but that's about it.

    And at 50 your best option is generally going full 51 Archon for increase in damage and 10% haste buff. Barring that, use it as a 3rd soul with 11 points or forget about it at all; basically Archon is 'all-or-nothing' soul for PVE.

    Even for Chloromancers (who fit the role with Archon, being support-heal), Warlock tends to be a better off-soul; there are some viable 32+/32+ archloro builds around, but generally there aren't enough mid-archon talents/abilities for it to be a good 44/22 off-soul, and Chloro is way better with 44 than 32, thus, in my opinion, 32/32 builds are generally worse than the alternatives.

    Oh, and in PVP Archon is completely 100% useless.

  9. #9
    Rift Disciple Gurgeh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WarChoon View Post
    Generally speaking, going Archon deeper than 11 points before level 50 is a waste. ... basically Archon is 'all-or-nothing' soul for PVE. ...
    I had a feeling this was the case. Thanks for the reply!

  10. #10
    Ascendant TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    I just don't see the turning on and off of power drain to be that big of a deal. The damage that it does on it's own is minimal compared to any of your other spells, or other classes abilities. It does give you a slight bump in dps, but mages are already way behind in the raid dps department compared to warriors and rogues. Unless greenscale is going to cry "HAXXXXX!!!" and start reporting the 1 lonely archon in the raid that toggles his flashlight at him for 150+ damage a pop, I fail to see this as nerf worthy or game breaking.
    Red ball + fulminate + really craptacular dom/pyro spec trying to hard cast transmog and pray your spell lands before some squirrel punching moron eats your controlled opp proc = +1 board warrior keeping mages from being realistically balanced in PVE or PVP. 1.0-1.2's best combo in the game. RIP FOTM Pyro rollers

  11. #11
    Shadowlander Seihk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan View Post
    I just don't see the turning on and off of power drain to be that big of a deal. The damage that it does on it's own is minimal compared to any of your other spells, or other classes abilities.
    Yeah, I have to agree. Also, letting my group know "Icetalon is going to be doing 10% less damage for 15 seconds." in vent seemed to be reassuring to them haha. I like using it more for a boss debuff than as a dps increase, although I definitely try to line it up with a situation where I can pump out some solid damage. I'm liking having a 51 Archon / 11 Necro / 4 Warlock build to help boost my charge generation, but I'm probably going to drop down to 5 points in Necro and up it to 10 Warlock (so 51 Arch / 10 Lock / 5 Necro) for single target dps.
    Let him who desires peace prepare for war.
    - | - | - Ellessia, Dwarven Guardian - | - | -

  12. #12
    Ascendant TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    I find it rediculous that the boards are suddenly being spammed with "OMFG nerf archons power drain! the DPS is too LEET!". I tried it in a tier 1 dungeon the other night, and managed to get my DPS to a whole 480. The marksman (marksman? LOL!) in the group hit over 840 dps.

    But yeah, rogues are fine. Nerf mages. *eye roll*
    Red ball + fulminate + really craptacular dom/pyro spec trying to hard cast transmog and pray your spell lands before some squirrel punching moron eats your controlled opp proc = +1 board warrior keeping mages from being realistically balanced in PVE or PVP. 1.0-1.2's best combo in the game. RIP FOTM Pyro rollers

  13. #13
    Telaran DollaDollaBillYall's Avatar
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    Can Archon's do good damage?
    I feel as though we will be able to put out decent numbers. I do more damage than my Chloromancer build, but I'd imagine that Archon's won't ever be top dps on a fight (and if they were that'd be nerf-worthy in my book).
    More damage than a healer spec? Preposterous!

    In any case, Archon's show good numbers if you take them with Pyromancer and slam down some Fireballs. Mine hit for about 500/each at level 50. Higher if I keep up Pillaging Stone and all of those.
    Spindrifter Pyro/Warlock/Archon on Freeholme

  14. #14
    General of Telara Sarathor's Avatar
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    Running parsers over the last couple of days worth of experts has shown Archon toggling tactic to be the best dps increase. I'd have to check it out again, but I do remember not bothering with it, and only pulling 3-400 dps, but when toggling I can pull anywhere from 5-700 dps, depending on certain factors. It almost puts me on par with the other callings for my groups.

    But again, I'll check it out next expert I do, but I'm pretty sure it's a decent dps increase.

    Also, I really hope they don't nerf Archons power drain toggle without buffing the other classes first, because I'd really hate to go Chloromancer for the rest of my gearing up process.
    Last edited by Sarathor; 03-19-2011 at 06:04 AM.

    Sarathor@Byriel Rank 7 Defiant Mage - retired
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    Soulwalker
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    I hate to follow set cookie cutter builds. This always takes the fun and excitement out of a game..

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