PvM equivalent of Flaming Rabies setup

neumein

Diabloii.Net Member
PvM equivalent of Flaming Rabies setup

Morning all.

I read through the flaming rabies guide, (for those who want to see it, it's stickied in the druid forum,) and liked the idea of this setup, but obviously, being on bnet, he listed all of the 'must-have' gear which us legit (real) players won't have easy access to.

Enough of my slander against bnet...

Would this setup (with some skill and gear alterations) be suitable for SP PvM play? Here is what I was thinking:


20 Fissure (synergy for Armageddon)
20 Armageddon
20 Rabies
20 Poison creeper (synergy for Rabies)

Divvy up rest of points into fury, werewolf, lycanthropy, and HoW. Points are tight, like most hybrid setups, but I think this could work.

Sound okay? Armageddon provides some nice crowd control damage (playing around with a skill calculator, with this skill setup, each meteor does something like 1100-1300 fire damage, O_O ) Rabies does some nice poison damage, and once again, gets in some cheap crowd control damage, whilst I'm occupied slapping something else. And Fury, well, it rocks. Chuck on a ribcracker, and go open a can of whupass!

Three main concerns:

Fireclaws doesn't seem to work well here. It can put out some nice fire damage, but we already get that from armageddon. Fireclaws goes out the window.

How does Rabies stack up later on? My flaming rabies druid "Bloody_FoulMouth" (I love that name.) is level 20 now, and likes to bite things. It doesn't do much damage, yet, but how well will it do in Nightmare and Hell.

My Weapon: What works well with this setup. Earthshaker will be used for midgame, and if I can get one, Earthshifter will be used endgame. If not, I'll just have to find an interim solution. Ideas for midgame?

Some other, minor questions:

I plan to use a nice lionheart armour for end game, but would treachery work? I use treachery on my pure fury wolf, and the venom is nice, and the fade makes me turn into a ghost-wolf :azn: . How well, or badly does venom interface with Rabies? Does it nerf rabies duration? Simply add poison damage to the initial bite? Clarification would be good.

How much Faster hit recovery gear do I need? I recall reading somewhere here, that wolves have good faster hit recovery rate as it is, and don't need much FHR. Ideas?


Thanks for reading this guys, and thanks in advance for the help.
 

Arreat_mercenary

Diabloii.Net Member
I'm not a druid expert, but from my point of view, that armageddon seems nice, I want to see how you will do with the randomness of armageddon :scratch:

Also, IIRC, Venom caps every other source of poison damage to 0.4 seconds. So if you have something like 1000 poison damage over 5 seconds with Rabies, when you have venom on, you will only do 80 damage with rabies (the 0.4 seconds duration of rabies). So, it's not a good idea.

FHR on wolves is very nice, and besides, even withou tanks, FHR is not very needed in PvM unless you're completely and totally surrounded (thing that every player must avoid), much less with how you can play with rabies (bite an enemy, run, wait, bite someone again). About the weapon, well, ribcracker sounds nice.

About the other questions, no idea :grin:
 

neumein

Diabloii.Net Member
Thanks A_m for the quick response!

Edit: Armageddon is more a crowd control skill, rather than a main damage source. Sure it's random, but it's more of a "finish off the wounded" kind of skill. And it looks freaking awesome.

Edit2: I pulled out the character editor, and made a testing character, with 20 in firestorm and armageddon. Crowd control, here I come! In areas like act 1, and act 3, when there are heaps of little buggers, armageddon really shines.

The rabies\venom issue is a real shame. Rabies rocks, and so does venom, but seeing as they don't play nice... I guess Lionheart will have to do, until I can find something better.

As usual, comments, questions, and big cash prizes are welcome!
 

JinXX

Diabloii.Net Member
i hope you have better luck with Armag than i did, it never felt like like it was hiting anything. maybe if you fissured them while they ran at you and then went to work on em with your claws, but like those before me, i'm no druid expert.
 

Harrid

Diabloii.Net Member
Rabies works differently from damn near every other sort of poison damage. I have seen some people in a completing forum argue that Venom and Rabies operate simultaneously and independently (that is, for the first 10 frames, you get the damage from both, after which Venom ends and Rabies continues [as opposed to how Venom interacts with regular poison damage or with Poison Dagger]). I do not know myself exactly what is true, but empirical evidence suggests that Venom stacks for the first 10 frames with anything less than an fully synergized slvl 31 Rabies.

I would provide links, but that would violate the forum rules, I believe. Rest assured that if anyone is just pulling numbers out of their anus, though, it is not me :wink3:.
 

neumein

Diabloii.Net Member
>> Harrid

Okay... My spider senses are telling me that venom and rabies interfere with each other... but I'll whip up another demo character now, and let you know of the findings.

>>JinXX

Armageddon seems to work fine for me. There's no splash damage to speak of, but they rain down at a good rate, and whilst they're innacurate, they flood down, which makes up for their inaccuracy.


I'll get onto that demo character now...

Thanks for the comments so far
Keep 'em coming.
 

Delreich

Diabloii.Net Member
Harrid said:
Rabies works differently from damn near every other sort of poison damage. I have seen some people in a completing forum argue that Venom and Rabies operate simultaneously and independently (that is, for the first 10 frames, you get the damage from both, after which Venom ends and Rabies continues [as opposed to how Venom interacts with regular poison damage or with Poison Dagger]). I do not know myself exactly what is true, but empirical evidence suggests that Venom stacks for the first 10 frames with anything less than an fully synergized slvl 31 Rabies.

I would provide links, but that would violate the forum rules, I believe. Rest assured that if anyone is just pulling numbers out of their anus, though, it is not me :wink3:.
I'm guessing that comp(l)eting forum is the AB, and that SSoG was (one of) the poster(s)?

In any case, this should be interesting: http://forums.diabloii.net/showthread.php?p=4595039#post4595039

Marvel at the power of the search engine...
 

SSoG

Diabloii.Net Member
Delreich said:
I'm guessing that comp(l)eting forum is the AB, and that SSoG was (one of) the poster(s)?

In any case, this should be interesting: http://forums.diabloii.net/showthread.php?p=4595039#post4595039

Marvel at the power of the search engine...
I found this thread searching for my name.

Anyway, further testing with Rabies has yielded results that are a *TON* more complicated and unexpected, but very, very interesting. Rather than write another thesis, I'll sum up my *CURRENT* set of beliefs on how Rabies operates in combination with Venom and various other skill/gear setups. Please remember that I'm still evolving my understanding of these poison skills, which are ridiculously complex and varied, so in a couple of months I might believe that they operate in another different way entirely.

First off, I *NO LONGER* believe that Rabies will run concurrantly with other, higher-bitrate sources of poison damage. What I think happens is as follows: When you bite a monster, you tag them with the Rabies red aura. That aura will poison any unpoisoned monsters within a certain radius and tag them with the red aura as well. When you hit a rabid monster with a higher bitrate poison, that poison runs ALONE for its entire duration, and when it expires, the red aura replaces it with the Rabies poison. At least, that's how I think it works.

An interesting result of this interaction (and the mechanic that lead me to conclude that this is how Rabies works) is that if you poison a monster, switch to a -% poison resist item, and then switch back to your original setup... the monster will begin taking a higher damage rate poison as soon as you switch to the -%pr gear, and will continue to take that higher-bitrate poison damage for the duration of the Rabies skill.

Anyway, the whole upshoot, as far as it concerns you, is that no source of poison damage of any type or on any character will ever nerf Rabies in the slightest. Don't sweat it at all. Pack on Venom, poison small charms, poison dagger, whatever... it won't always help you, but it will NEVER hurt you.

I feel like with a few more tests I could really complete my understanding of the Rabies skill, but I've just been too lazy to get around to those tests recently. If I ever do get them out of the way, I'll post the results here and let you all know how I interpret them.
 

Fluffballer

Diabloii.Net Member
I don't think you need to throw FC out completely. One point will help you a lot with PI, because as you've probably realized from your test character, rabies doesn't kill anything in any sort of timely manner and Armegeddon isn't consistent enough to kill individual targets. (I don't remember if that guide mentions it, but a good way to use Armegeddon is to run almost into a hoarde, then run back out a bit. Let them walk through the lagging meteor shower.)

You may even prefer using FC over fury in various situations if you have a good IAS. It has certain advantages such as being more precise.
 

Arreat_mercenary

Diabloii.Net Member
Nice writing SSoG! I'm really looking forward for your conclusions, since from your reading, it seems than Rabies together with other poison items (poison charms, -PR, etc.) or poison skills (venom, etc.) can bring anyone down...... mmm, PvP chars which currently use rabies might make some changes to their equipment :scratch:
 

Fluffballer

Diabloii.Net Member
Arreat_mercenary said:
Nice writing SSoG! I'm really looking forward for your conclusions, since from your reading, it seems than Rabies together with other poison items (poison charms, -PR, etc.) or poison skills (venom, etc.) can bring anyone down...... mmm, PvP chars which currently use rabies might make some changes to their equipment :scratch:
I was under the impression switching to dweb and back again was standard practice for rabies wolves? There are an ***-ton of wolf videos in the PvP forum... I could be wrong as I've never dueled other than to kill off the occasional PKer, but I think that's what they're doing.
 

neumein

Diabloii.Net Member
Playing around with fireclaws last night...

It works surprisingly well against physical immunes! It gains a synergy from firestorm, which I maxed anyways for armageddon, so it puts out a fair amount of damage, and at good speed too. The only problem is specializing in the fire element, with something like 40% of monsters in hell being immune to fire. That's why I have gone with the trio. Bite something, and watch the disease spread, getting in some cheap damage. Bring on armageddon for thinning out the crowd, and mop up the remainder with fury. In my tests so far, it works rather well.

EDIT: and an ethereal wolf biting things, with armageddon raining down all around, looks completely, utterly sweet!
 

Fluffballer

Diabloii.Net Member
Wolves at max FC IAS are only one FPS slower than perfect bears if I remember right. I think FCs is a bit overlooked due to the Bnet perfection.

I actually discovered a new respect for it when I made my Jekyll and Hyde FC bear Guardian who I will eventually make a post for. It does mildly massive fire damage.

Mine was obviously untwinked. Yours is not. :prop:
 
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