x Dreadnaught – Solo Stealth Mage

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Introduction


Basically a much more Occult/Speed focused version of the Skull Knight build that uses a staff instead of shield/scepter. Moves fast, spams skills, and ninjas in and out of fights at will. It can get some huge magic crits to help supplement your lack of combos and splashy “one-shot” skills.

 

Basics


The Dreadnaught is basically a Solo based mage that can do it all, but isn’t a master of much. It relies on spamming quick casting combos between the Occultism and Shadowplay trees to keep enemies confused and off-balance. If you aren’t mobile and moving this build will fail so the build depends heavily on the skill of the player.

 

Style/Tutorial


The Dreadnaught has multiple options to string combos together. It has VERY strong defense for a mage, and is great for both it’s stealth skills and for great combos building up Mettle(

Refreshment and

Toughen) for a one-hit

Boastful Roar finish. Also remember to use

Revitalizing Cheer as often as possible to remove the need for a healer.

The most important part of the build is it’s mobility. The skills should be chained so that you’re always kiting or dodging. Use

Invincibility,

Drop Back, and

Freerunner to buy time for the bigger skills, while using

Summon Crows as often as possible.

Mana Stars is a great spam skill to keep your distance if all else fails, and

Overwhelm/

Shadow Step are great to get close and wreck mages or archers.

Skill Chain:
Eh, make your own. It’s extremely flexible. There are a lot of possibilities but I honestly have no idea which one is the best. I would suggest NOT relying on 

Summon Crows and

Hell Spear in PvE

to save mana. Try your best to avoid using them unless you’re in a tough spot. When all else fails, spam

Mana Stars until you think of a plan. Mana Stars are never the wrong choice.

Buffs:ALWAYS keep up

Retribution

Refreshment

Toughen. These buffs are absolutely necessary for this build to be viable.

Stealth is arguably the MOST important buff to pull off solid attacks without getting CCed

A few quick ideas:
Against a Melee Fighter:

Crippling Mire >

Ollo’s Hammer >

Overwhelm >

Shadowsmite >

Hell Spear >

Stillness

Drop Back >

Mana Stars >

Mana Force > Rinse/Repeat

Against Archery: Same chain BUT you may have to use

Invincibility to last out your cooldowns so you can stun again. Archer’s definitely have an advantage at range.

Against Mages: Again, same thing. The emphasis should be on getting close and running around them to confuse them.

Ollo’s Hammer

Stillness and

Overwhelm are the most important skills here.

Against CC(Any tree using witchcraft): Your MOST important tactic against CC classes is stealth and speed. Whenever they try to bubble you or get close to stun you,

Drop Back and

Stealth. Even if they have stealth detection, if you’re far enough away they’ll lose targeting and it interrupts channeling.

Shadowsmite is also very important so that you can maintain stealth when needed.

Hell Spear and

Ollo’s Hammer are your most effective counter-CC skills.



Gear


-2 Handed staff
-Cloth Armor(possibly leather/heavy at endgame, haven’t tested it out though)
-Magic Crit % is the most important, defense and magic damage secondary. Movement speed buffs are great as well.

 

Pros/Cons


Pros:
-Survivability
-Flexibility. Multiple combo chains to choose from
-Great chains of stuns/trips + DPS
-Lots of Instant/Low cast time skills
-Great mobility and Stealth
-Huge magic crits

Cons:
-Very slow start. Level 1-20 you won’t have much damage
-Mana Burn
-Mostly single target damage, AOEs mostly stuns or debuffs
-? To be determined ?

 

Theorycraft


At level 55 modify the build anyway you feel comfortable, these are just suggestions. The most important one IMO if there are less than 5 skill points is 

Bear’s Vigor. Get it however you can. You can even sacrifice some Shadowplay skills to get it at level 50 if you want to be more tanky.

Imprison OR

Redoubt (both aren’t fantastic but you need filler)

Spry Fortress

Bear’s Vigor
+Whatever you want. I’d suggest

Shadow Step and/or

Death’s Vengeance

 

Summary


A very solid front line mage that is flexible in all situations. Has no party support skills though and is mostly intended to be a front-line fighter or solo PvP hunter. Does well in PvE late game as well. Very self-reliant, with a strong reliance on player skill. The build is only as good as the player using it.