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  • #16
    Aye Captain_Korr, and people charge 500 or so a pop.......thats almost the same as most missions give in total


    • #17
      Dirty Fighting...

      Well... this has been an informative thread so I thought I'd add in the Dirty Fighting tactics...

      Currently I'm L30 and I have the following. I don't have a set method for doing things as the avcom is already boring enough as it is, if I processed it I'd probably want to kill myself or someone else.

      Powder Jockey line to full (This is a /CRAZY/ good line, even post nerfs)
      Low Blows up through the 2nd prep attack (it has the highest balance damage in Dirty Fighting)
      Reckless Swings up through the area hate remover
      Firearms to the 2nd level

      I'll break this into two sections. One for boarding the other for missions.


      1. See how many waves the enemy has.
      2. If 0 then tab target the enemy captain run in, shoot the captain, improved flash powder to stun everyone, order attack my target, toss a grenade, shoot the captain, stab captain repeatedly. Unless there is a significant level difference this should kill the captain in seconds. If a significant level difference exists then using prep attacks on the captain will improve your odds of killing them quickly.
      3. If they have waves then treat it like a normal boarding action, try to wear down the crew. I try to use Imp. Flash powder to help mitigate damage to my own crew. I also try to kill the captain when the enemy crew is down to 3 members fighting as that's generally when the most advantage is to be had from causing captain respawns.

      Avcom Missions:

      1. Body pull. Pulling with an attack causes more chain aggro than body pulling.
      2. Use the single target 'flash powder' skill on a target then attack a different target.
      3. Use grenade or shot as an opening move. I agree that finishers and these in the middle of a group fight are bad, but grenade as an opening move allows you time to recover the lost balance and can provide a huge boost to the speed with which things die.
      4. Be careful where you move and how. Someone mentioned those nasty ship missions where if you go down the stairs in front of you there are 5 mobs waiting. Go down the other steps. I have managed to avoid that wandering patrol in every ship mission so far by simply running down the left side while they were out on the right side. It's almost like mobs don't see too well around corners and the middle of the ship debris.
      5. Don't bother with prep attacks against normal regular mobs. For whatever reason the normal mobs seem to get hit often enough even at full balance that they die just as quickly without prep attacks. This seems to be untrue of the boss mobs and "seasoned" veterans. For those types use the prep attack with the most damage so you can get them down. Kill the regulars first so that you can make use of a finishing move against the seasoned mobs.

      Last but not least, get in a group. Seriously. It's faster, less painful, and there's nothing quite as amusing as watching a group of 5-10 enemies fall down from 2-4 grenades in a row!;P

      Hope this helped and wasn't too redundant with the other posts. Oh, and thank you to the other posters as I've learned a bit about the other fighting styles that I didn't like very much and was having a lot of trouble with when I tried them.

      Vox Dargard


      • #18

        I don't think I've ever found as informative a post as yours. Thank you for making AvCom playable for me.


        • #19
          Glad I'm helping people out

          The avatar combat in this game isn't really all that bad as some folks make it out to be. It's just a helluva lot different from what most people have been conditioned to doing in other MMOs. You gotta focus more on your setup and anticipating your opponents more before the fight than during it. Quick clicking of buttons mid battle still helps in situations (refill balance/initiative, temporary immunity type skills, etc), but coming into the fight with a good plan to begin with is more than half the battle.

          There was a couple comments about the active defense skills. At one time attacking would interrupt them in beta, but they underwent some significant changes in the open beta.

          This is how I understand them to work, and my ideas on them:

          All active defenses (parry, block, dodge) share a 10 second or so cooldown. This means you can only be running one at a time. Pick your poison for the current situation

          Active Parry - 5-6 seconds (not sure exactly) of +20 to parry skill. Some people like to ctrl-click this skill so that it auto fires when it's a available. This way you've got +20 to parry half the time. I'd probably actually consider this if I were a fencer, since they have higher base parry than dirty fighting and florentine... AND they have parry reactionary skills. Active parry might be a whole lot more useful than active block to a fencer because it actually also improves thier offensive possibilities (ctrl-click those reactionaries before your auto attack selection, and they'll auto-fire after a parry), and fencing is all about offence. Fencers are probably the nastiest 1 vs 1 duelers in this respect. I'd like to think the ability to riposte and such would give them a significant advantage 1 vs 1.

          Active Block - A toggle skill. Active block increases your block rate by +5(which is nice), and your balance recovery rate by +2.5(which is the really, really nice part). It drains initiative to use though. I already outlined that setting a prepatory attack to auto attack with ctrl-click is the best way to use active block. It keeps your initiative replenishing fairly consistently, so you can keep active block up much longer, in most cases an entire fight. At the same time your prep attack will be breaking down your targets defenses for when you do decide to go on the attack. This is a great strategy for improving survivability in group combat situations. Tend to your defences, and when they're sound, you can step out and smack someone.

          Active Dodge - This is a "single use" type skill. Essentially, you activate it, and you WILL dodge the next incoming attack. If you attack before the blow comes in, you will cancel the dodge effect. I'm not a huge fan of dodging, because it reduces your balance significantly. HOWEVER, there is one fantastic potential use for this skill. If you KNOW your opponent is likely to use a pistol on you, Active Dodge is a great way to prevent being shot. I'm not 100% certain, but I believe pistol shots cannot be parried or blocked, only dodged (makes perfect sense too). This is the only concievable use I can think of for burning a 10 second cooldown on it though. It's the ability to turn your character into Jet Li and dodge a bullet.


          • #20
            I you activate Active Block first you can then activate Active Parry immediately after. While they are on the same timer activating active block does not start the timer (deactivating it does).


            • #21
              I'm gonna have to play around with that tonight, I've been wondering if that was possible.


              • #22
                I basically just hit auto attack, open up with a gun shot and just wait.

                It's greatly dependant on equipment.


                • #23
                  About smelling salts, I never carry them. Day 1 I put them all in Marsh Harbor warehouse and there they still sit. If you mess up in an avcom at least you didn't waste something that sells for more than the mission reward. I'm saving them for the extended missions I am expecting later, where they will actually be needed. But by then prices may have become reasonable...

                  If you are going to do avcom missions, one point in pistol is pretty much obligatory, to pull patrols or pull groups out of patrol paths. The ship missions with a patrol of two passing a group of three, it is possible with the right timing to pull just the group. If not, oh well, you died right where you entered, try the timing again.

                  Florentine seems to be the best mission school at the moment, probably best allround except one on one where fencing shines. Set up your autoattacks right and you won't have to worry too much about lag even.


                  • #24
                    Im using florentine, mainly because i like the looks.

                    not all the finishers damage your balance, or at least not to any great extent.

                    im personally using active parry, loop, screened kick with a flurry finisher(the frenzy one).
                    to top it off i have the wall of steel and an incapacitate skill if i get bumrushed.
                    (the +40 init skill helps too)

                    i have chosen the parry because it doesnt drain your init or damage your balance, with the downside of not escaping bullets.

                    only used 3 smelling salts in total so far, most avcom missions and boarding are cake.

                    Granted im just lvl20 and havent pvp'd all that much.. yet.

                    only thing that annoys me really is all these bleeds, no fun to get chumped and bled to death in 10 seconds flat.
                    isnt there something to help stop bleeding or reduce it?

                    Im not sure, but maybe its the pistol that is causing the patrols to jump in as well at times?

                    if so, maybe the throw dagger skill works better as a pulling tool.
                    Last edited by Redrum; 01-28-2008, 12:03 AM.


                    • #25
                      btw, in another thread someone stated that parrying doesnt work against preparatory attacks (damaging balance) among others, is that true?

                      is there an official source on it?
                      since ive never noticed losing balance when wall of steel is up.

                      EDIT: it seems that npcs do a lot of balance damage even having both active parry and steelwall up
                      Last edited by Redrum; 01-28-2008, 12:53 AM.


                      • #26
                        Awesome post.

                        Hey, can someone post some expert advise for Fencing, I really appreciated the analysis of Dirty fighting and Florentine. But right now, I'm getting frustrated as I am 26 and still can not complete the first of the second set of fencing master quests (Salut des Armes, Maricabo for Spanish). I may respec this afternoon, and some of the suggestions are very helpful, maybe I can complete this soon. Thanks all.

                        I am totally fine with most ground combat in 3v1, and a 5v1 might need a smelling salt. But for some reason, these 5 fencers kick my Spanish butt every time.



                        • #27
                          I don't know how useful my input can be at this point but I'm level 25 Dirty Fighting and I don't have too much trouble with AVCOM. As someone, probably Athlen pointed out earlier, much of the trick is not taking all five levels of your Swashbuckling skills but rather a good mix of levels 1-4 and applying them judiciously.

                          More to the point, I think not only are the three styles, Florentine, Fencing and Dirty Fighting different but also one must consider how one prefers to PLAY.

                          Some people want to hack and hack and cut down the enemy. Others, like me, like a good mix of skills, others are dancers, still others prefer the "pillbox" stand-and-fight mentality.

                          I believe most of the skill sets allow for these if you mix and match well. This can mean a LOT of experimenting but if you take the time you'll find the one best suited to your playstyle.

                          I've tried all three, though only Dirty Fighting over level 25 and while I do drop and burn Smelling Salts on occasion (and admittedly I burn through quite a few Bandages!) I usually get through my AVCOM missions having had fun.

                          Athlen and I hold that the Flash Powder skill is absolutely priceless in the Dirty Fighting line. I seem to remember it, or something basically the same, being in one of the other lines as well (Florentine?).

                          For my part, I OPEN with Brace of Pistols which, like the Grenade option someone mentioned earlier isn't self-defeating IF you use it A.) as an opener while you still have time to regain the Balance and B.) when you're only facing one opponent...or two opponents one or both of whom are badly hurt (my style).

                          After that I wade in use the Blinding Sand to slow down the rate at which my crew takes losses if on shipboard or buy myself some time NOT to be taking damage if I'm in a regular "landbound" AVCOM mission.

                          I then build up my Initiative until I can use the Finishing move (the basic one actually) then fire off another round from the gun, rinse, repeat with Flash Powder/Blinding Sand.

                          I admit, I probably burn more Bandages this way but hey, I'm a PIRATE!

                          Also, I should add that Brace of Pistols, the level 5 Firearms skill is utterly worth taking because it not only does nasty damage (especially in shipboard combat) but it allows the cheaper, level 1 or 2 (I'm at work I forget which) basic Shot to ALSO regen faster. You effectively get TWO gunshots or at least 1.5 for the price of one!! It works well for me anyway.

                          I reiterate, that in NON-shipboard missions, you can (and imo SHOULD) use BOTH shots from your pistol. The balance loss isn't that big a deal if you're only facing one or two opponents.

                          So good hunting to all of you in game!
                          Last edited by Ice9; 01-28-2008, 12:57 PM.


                          • #28
                            AvCom by feel.

                            Briefly: Started as DF, respec-ed and went to florentine lvl 5. Respec-ed again (but stayed with florentine) at lvl 20 and I'm nearly lvl 25 now.

                            If you read the dev stuff and the rumors about the AvCom you can kind of figure that:

                            1. at some point boarding actions were just a numerical mechanic (or not at all.. I guess the beta guys can tell us that.. I only did pre-board) as ship combat was the only system.

                            2. avcom grew out of a desire to make boarding actions playable combat.

                            So, if you figure that avcom has its priorities with boarding actions 1st and that the land combat missions were even an afterthought to the afterthought:

                            1. avcom is geared so that it's impossible for you to solo a boarding action.
                            2. the worst factor (the one that actually slams you the most.. my opinion I guess) against you during boarding combat is the balance recovery debuffs that come from just being on the ship.
                            3. Again my opinion, but a lot of the time, I die during boarding like because of the crappy (or is it?) tracking and grouping that makes you end up all over the ship. You end up separated from your seamen. I say I wound up dying that way a lot of the time, because I started dying a lot less overall once I took stuff that let me hold my ground for just a few more seconds (like wall of steel)

                            If you're thinking about it that way, then you want to gear your skillsets towards:

                            1. Wailing on the enemies' balance.
                            2. Recovering your own balance.
                            3. Building up your initiative (I guess I just threw that in, but it's kinda universal).
                            4. Defending while your balance recharges (or help arrives).

                            So far doing that has pretty much worked out on land and sea, which is a reason why I think this game is pretty cool.. super organic. I haven't had to buy any smelling salts yet. I only use taunt to pull and I don't shoot guns yet (but I want to).
                            Last edited by clone00; 01-28-2008, 05:19 PM.


                            • #29
                              Most AVCOM missions are pretty easy IF there's enough room between the enemies so you can drag them in groups of 3 max.

                              Anyway there's one mission that's simply impossible - 'The wayward son'. It's inside and there's no way you can combat less than 5. I'm LV30 and I simply die, die, die in that mission. AVCOM is boring, boring, boring and the skills you can get are mostly useless (all these 'guard somebody else' skills are simply LOL). But if boring missions become impossible it gets ridiculous.


                              • #30
                                I've really struggled with AvCom since i hit the 20's - prior to that it was easy as pie... just drop a bleed on everyone and pick off those who are still standing once you've got your bleeds in place. I thought AvCom was boring, simple and uninteresting...

                                ... BUT then i got to lvl22(ish) and everything changed...

                                I would get slaughtered when it was 3v1, or even if it was mass combat and i got a few on me... ok ive a few perofmrance issues which seriously are not helping, but i struggle.

                                After reading this thread, i respec'd (DF - i love this style) dropped the bleed and went with the spec detailed earlier in this thread (Flashpowder to 5, low blows etc) - did a few AvCom missions last night and did notice an improvement, but i still have some questions.

                                I didnt seem to generate much initiative during fights, knocking down their balance with the pred attacks didnt seem to give me much initative - certainly not enough to use a finishing blow. Wasnt much of a problem as with no balance the NPC's fell quite quickly, especially if i had allies. Whats your DF tactics for initative generation?

                                Grenade, whilst fun and reasonably powerful just results in death after use, or at the very least, mass panic as everyone (whos still alive) is beating on you. Whats the best tactic for this skill?

                                Flash powder and Improved FP. i used this a lot last night and found the results... uninspiring. I'd pull with pistol, order the crew to attack my target and drop an Imp FP when the NPC's got close, i would see the 'incapacitated' message float above everyone and within a second or two they had recovered... is this normal? I was expecting it to last longer than a few seconds... i pretty much stopped using it after an hour or so as i felt it wasnt really benefiting me much (if at all)

                                I think i will respec again, now i have a better understanding of AvCom (thanks to this thread) i think i have a reasonable build in mind that would have a nice bleed in the middle.