[repost] coldarmy13's fireclaws guide

coldarmy13

Diabloii.Net Member
[repost] coldarmy13's fireclaws guide

coldarmy13’s [aka blood_baron] Guide to the Fireclaws Bear©

v1.1







Well well, if it isn’t about time for one of these. Ever since I saw Garbad’s guide to firebears in general, I couldn’t resist looking over the melee portion of it. I doubt any of you remember me, but I’m blood_baron, formerly of the paladin forums. And if any of you do remember me, then remember that I only live for melee pvp. I can’t stand ranged or magic users, as I have no patience for finding 12 different hotkeys[necro], nor relying on a good connection to keep me teleporting, nor do I enjoy fragging someone with a little white flying sticks when they can’t even see me. Thus said, here is my[hopefully] comprehensive guide to fireclaws bears.



When starting your bear, keep in mind that he is in fact, a cross between magic and melee. He is very like an enchant sorc, but much much more adept at melee than the sorc is…haha. What I mean is, you need a lot of + skills equipment and damage reduction[dr] at the same time. At the same time, you will need to focus on getting the right faster hit recovery[fhr] and possible faster block rate[fbr]. Of course life and def matter much to this build, so when you add it all together, there is a huge list to juggle around to get the best configuration for your bear.



Upon creation of your druid, you will hopefully have hand me downs or low level gear to get yourself started. I will try to outline in the easiest and most user[and eye] friendly way one of many routes you could take in leveling up your bear in preparation for pvp. As I detail the growth of the bear, I will be making suggestions on gear, statistic[stat] and skill placement. You do not have to follow what is said, but I think they are sound suggestions.






Mule items you will want to use to your bear. I mean items you will be using in a single gaming session as you level up.

Join 8 player games and start hacking away at zombies and quill rats. Pump your strength[str] as you level until it’s about 60. Then the rest should go into dexterity[dex], and vitality[vit]. None should ever go into energy[nrg].



Levels[Lvls] 1-6:

Place: Go through the blood moor, and cold plains.

Skills: 1 point[pt] in lycanthropy[lycan], werewolf, werebear[wb], oak sage[oak], firestorm, molten boulder.

Stats: get str to 60, rest in vit/dex

Gear:

Helm-pelt with + lycan/wb or a biggin’s bonnet

Amulet-any that you can find

Weapon-try a stoutnail, rixot’s keen, felloak, or the gnasher.

Armor-blinkbat’s, or any armor you can find

Shield-anything you can find

Gloves-if you have the str, use sigon’s, or else death’s works

Belt-sigon’s with the gloves if you can, or try death’s sash

Rings-any

Boots-hsaru’s worked for me



Lvls 7-12:

Place: Try blood raven and the 2 crypts. The dark wood and the underground tunnel are excellent places to lvl up.

Skills: 1 pt in fissure, maul, feral rage. Place the rest in other synergies for fireclaws, like firestorm or molten boulder.

Stats: vit/dex

Gear:

Helm-stick with your pelt, or you can try sigon’s

Amulet-still…just any

Weapon-any of the uniques/sets you can get. Try civerb’s.

Armor-greyform for the ll, or try sigon’s

Shield-sigon’s is the best if you want to get your str to 75

Gloves-use the ones you been using

Belt-see above

Rings-cathan’s if you like ll

Boots-try gorefoots if you are using mana intensive attacks



Lvls 13-18:

Place: Keep doing Griswold runs in 8 player games. He gives u a lot of experience[exp]. Mix this in with partying or soloing your way to andariel. Finish her off by the time you hit 18 or 19. She is cake.

Skills: 1 pt in fireclaws and the rest go into synergies for it.

Stats: vit/dex

Gear:

Helm-tarnhelm; any helm that you need to compensate for resists[res].

Amulet-eye of the etlich, finally

Weapon-a lot of the mid lvl weapons work. bladebone is good, or a runeword such as steel

Armor-stealth runeword works very well

Shield-sigon’s

Gloves-see above

Belt-see above

Rings-manald’s for mana leech[ml]

Boots-see above



Lvls 19-24:

Place: Act 2, all of it. Party up and just run through the act, maybe doing a little arcane here and there. If you have a good party, you should reach somewhere in mid act 3.

Skills: all in fireclaws

Stats: you might want to invest in str for better gear, like armor or weapons

Gear:

Helm-see above

Amulet-see above

Weapon-see above

Shield-try an ancient’s pledge

Gloves-magefist

Belt-something to hold you over until lvl 29

Rings-manald + cathan’s

Boots-try treads of cthon if you run out of stamina









Lvls 25-50

Place: Party or solo your way through act 3, 4, and finish off the ancients. From here on out, just do bloody runs, or baal runs until the exp is coming to slow for you. I actually got to lvl 55 in normal.

Skills: fireclaws until it’s maxed out. Then pump the synergies to your taste. I maxed out fissure first, as it is a great spell to use in unshifted form. At this stage, you are kind of a hybrid using fireclaws[fc], and fissure.

Stats: Start pumping str a little more for the str demanding items, and don’t forget vit/dex for life and blocking.

Gear:

Helm-jalal’s is the best here, but you can use a peasant’s crown or rockstopper.

Amulet-telling of beads, eye of etlich, and rare or magical + druid skills that works well with your res and stats.

Weapon-I keep a fleshrender on switch for using fissure, but I moved onto a 2x shael’d + perfect skull aldur’s weapon. This is the first real weapon you will use heavily. It is fast, damaging, and has insane leech.

Armor-skin of the vipermagi, goldskin, spirit shroud, all good choices here

Shield-ancient’s pledge, rhyme, lidless wall, moser’s, tiamat’s rebuke

Gloves-magefist

Belt-string of ears, wilhelm’s pride, m’avina’s, plenty to choose from.

Rings-2x raven frosts if you can afford it, or leeching rings or +attack rating[ar]

Boots-waterwalks, war traveler, some set boots are also good here

Charms-start getting some shape shifting charms, hopefully with life or fhr if you can. Then focus on small charms with ar/fhr, ar/life; def/fhr, def/life; res/fhr, res/life.

Jewels-try to aim for a 5+/5- fire rainbow facet to socket in your gear, if your res will allow it. Try to project your res in hell mode to see if you will have max or stacked res to allow for the use of fire facets.



Lvls 51-75

Place: By now you should be able to pace yourself through the game in nightmare mode. I personally made it to baal runs around lvl 60 and stayed there until 75. There aren’t too many fire immunes just yet, so you can solo if you wish.

Skills: continue maxing out the synergies, your dmg should be rising quickly now. Your ar should be high too.

Stats: get enough dex to use a phase blade, and the rest should go into vit/str

Gear:

Helm-see above

Amulet-mara’s or any + 2 druid skills. A +3 shape shifting with life isn’t so bad either.

Weapon-a 110ias phase blade. This will take some explaining. Find or trade for a 6 socket phase blade, or have larzuk socket a plain one. Find 4 shael runes, and 2 15ias jewels with modifiers[mods] on them, useful mods, such as ar, res. Do not spend excessive amounts for an ed/ias jewel. Your mauler brothers need those, not you. With a 110ias phase blade, you will reach the fastest fireclaw attack possible: 4 frames.

Armor-this will be hard to do for some, but try to get a +2 skill armor, either through an arkaine’s valor, or a runeword. Ladder players will find it hard to get a runeword armor with +2 skills.

Shield-try your hardest to get a stormshield, otherwise a whitstan’s guard, or a blackoak luna should hold you up. Just beware of low block rates, as you will need enormous amounts of dex to maintain 75% blockrate.

Gloves-see above

Belt-verdungo’s hearty cord is very nice. nosferatu’s coil is a good choice as well.

Rings-raven frost + soj or bul kathos’ wedding band. on ladder this will be extremely tough to get. stick with 2 raven frosts if you can get a good ring with a lot of ar/dex/res/stat.

Boots-see above

Charms-if you have an annihilus charm, lucky you.

Jewels-see above



Lvls 75+:

Place: Hell mode. Get yourself to hell baal or any way you prefer to gain exp. Cows are kind of a dud now. Hell baal is what I recommend.

Skills: As you round out near 80, you should have finished the 3rd synergy needed for fireclaws, and your dmg should be looking beefy…near 10k at least I hope? Is your ar looking around 10k also? As you finish off fissure/molten boulder/firestorm, you have a choice to make: more dmg or more life? you can pump volcano for more dmg if you like, or lycan/oak for more life as you please. This decision is entirely yours to make based on the performance of your bear thus far.

Stats: by now, you should be pumping only dex and vita for max block and life.

Gear:

Helm-see above

Amulet-see above

Weapon-see above

Armor-see above

Shield-see above

Gloves-see above

Belt-at 80 you might want to try an arachnid mesh

Boots-see above

Charms-see above

Jewels-see above






Now that your bear is finished, well, mostly, you should be hitting the pvp scene. Keep in mind that you are tailored for melee dueling, and that ranged/magic opponents may piss you off. Now for some GENERAL strategies.



vs: any repeated thrusting, jabbing, slashing, attack

-fury, zeal, jab, zerk, frenzy, and their variants, just walk and calmly proceed to smack them a couple times until they are dead. they will complain, and some jabbers with power strike or charged strike will kill you, but no worries, it’s just a game. if you fear lightning, stack up on res, or get more life. also when fighting high def chars, try to get more ar, through items or charms.



vs: bows

-bowazon, ranger, hunter, asn with bows, mainly they use widowmaker or guided arrow to ruin your duel. My advice here is just forget the amazon. She’s a chicken that will just run run run. Paladins usually have a secondary attack, so wait for it, and when they switch, kill em. Assassins are a lot harder to kill as they have burst of speed and they just run run run, even more so than an amazon. Just forget these. They don’t even deserve to be beaten by you. But if you must, I suggest having high fhr, and a faster block rate. A shael’d stormshield would be nice here.



vs: ranged magical attacks

-foh, sorcs, necros, do your best. Just kidding. I wouldn’t leave you stranded like that would I? Against foh, you will need lightning absorb gear, as in wisp projectors, thundergod’s vigor. Stacked lit res in the 300’s is what you will need. A guardian angel isn’t so bad here either. The strategy here is to stay out of range of the foh, and distract the pala with your oak summon, let the foh target it, and when he’s in casting delay, run up and try to hit him. Of course he’ll run. On sorcs, it just depends on their element. You may need some rising suns and dwarf stars to kill them, but overall you should be ok. Try to predict their teleporting pattern[mostly a triangle around you], and run to their next location and hold down shift and attack. Or you can just run. On necros…most are bone prison + bone spirit. You have enough life to soak up a few bone spirits. Just chase them down, and if they use a bone prison on you, hold down shift and one attack should kill their bone wall around you. They will die in 1 hit most of them. If you see a hammerdin, I pity you. I have no strategy yet to take them on, other than unshifting and using fissure. It works well though. On a side note, you may want to make a secondary weapon, a 6 socket giant thresher with 6 shaels, for use on casters, since it is range 5, you can shift attack with a huge range for runners and teleporting suckers.






Technical Stuff



I don’t think I can post links for Chippydip’s skill planner or other sources of information, but do search for them if you need to. At the top of the druid forum, look for TheDragoon’s wereform central. He has a great site dedicated to wereforms and their technical junk.

I find it important to have a decent amount of fhr, so hitting the 7 frame mark was my goal. You need 54 fhr, which is easily attainable. Jalal’s gives you 30, and if you stuck with verdungo’s, you have another 10 there. The rest can be made up in charms.

Also, if you have problems with block lock, try to shael your stormshield, or get a shield with 60fbr.

Fireclaws has proven to be an attack that is unblockable, but does not ignore target’s defense. This idea has been thought on, and in my experience, it is true. Load up on ar gear. Defiance smiters will annoy you so much.

If I left anything out, let me know, and I’ll revise this for a new version.
















My fireclaws bear



Ladder UsWest

Magum_Colim

lvl 86

202 str

208 dex

253 vit

59 nrg



14-15k dmg fireclaws

12k ar

5.2k def

4.2k life

80/75/75/75 res



skills

20[42] fireclaws20[30] fire storm20[30] molten boulder20[30] fissure1[22] lycan1[22] werebear1[10] oak sagethe [#] is where the skill is at with + skill itemsgearjalal's[5/5 fire facet]28 mara's110ias +165ar phase bladechains of honor archonstormshield[5/5 fire facet]magefistbul kathos' bandarachnid mesh248/19 raven frost62 life water walks10x shape charms 40, 32, 26, 26, 25, 17 life. others with minor mods1/11/13/9 anni charm9x assorted ar, fhr, res sc's



this is ladder btw.






End



I would like to thank the druid community for your support in my poll to make a guide. I also thank Garbad for his interesting primal flame thread that got me interested in this build. I must thank TheDragoon for his comprehensive wereform central, of which I would be clueless to druids without. It was due to his site that I made my first bear[and it’s the fireclaws bear, no kidding] so successful. Chippydip deserves great thanks for his help with the skill planner. I would like to thank all my friends on bnet who put up with my constant whining about my needing this and that. And lastly I thank all the idiots that traded me the items to make this bear the killer that he is.


v1.1 update

solution to smiters/casters
My solution was to get a 2 handed weapon swinging at 4 frames. After looking at Vic's charts, i figured the best thing was a giant thresher with 3x ar/ias and 3x shael with 15oias. So I thought about how to get incredible ar and range and swing speed.

Vs. Smiters
giant thresher with 3x shael + 3x ar/ias jewels
ik boots + gloves + belt
2x high end raven frosts
cerebus' bite with ber rune
There are 2 strategies here. If you're facing a charging smiter, don't chase him down. Instead, shift attack and your range should make quick work of him. Make sure you have good fhr. If you have a smarter smiter as an opponent, chase him down, but when you figure out that he's gonna quickly turn around and catch you off guard, stop before he gets to turn around, and hold shift and name lock him, so if he runs past you, he will get hit by your range.

Vs. Casters
giant thresher as described above
magefist
arach mesh
waterwalks
jalal's
raven frost
bk ring
The only real thing you can do vs teleporters is to guess or figure out their teleport pattern, or better yet, lead them into an area with lots of ditches/rocks/trees, so that their mouse cursor lands on top of one of those and they cannot tele. Or you can just hope for a good hit if you stack on the runwalk. If you duel bone prison necros, remember to hold down shift and break their prisons. Vs elemental druids, bring a shield vs tornado. It's gonna be a hard battle and you will most likely lose. Vs foh, get stacked res. Hammerdins always beat me, so I can't give help there.

Anyway my new bear, CareBear_DoH is lvl 87 with 6.3k life, 19k ar, 14k dmg at 4 frames with max all res in hell with a 2 hander setup. With a shield, I have 6.5k life, 13k ar, 15k dmg.
 

Ifrit18

Banned
What are the strengths and weaknesses of this build?

Do you kill everyone that attempts to melee you? Do high vita barbs stand a chance?
 

coldarmy13

Diabloii.Net Member
Ifrit18 said:
What are the strengths and weaknesses of this build?

Do you kill everyone that attempts to melee you? Do high vita barbs stand a chance?
my weaknesses are decrep necros, some ele druids, hammerdins. no barb has beaten me. yet.
 

Sephiroth[TR]

Diabloii.Net Member
coldarmy13 said:
my weaknesses are decrep necros, some ele druids, hammerdins. no barb has beaten me. yet.
hmm weaknes of this build is vs absorbers :D my baba has alot of fire absorb so he wont get kild by fireclaw. And its proly not verry useful vs fire imune as ur phase blade wont be doing much dmg.

had similair duel vs that druid build he used 6 sock phase blade with 6 shael
3 hits and my lv 90 baba died and his fireclaw was only 9k dmg and the druid only lv 78 But after dying 3 times i took my fire absorb gear on... call me lame or whatever but it is the only way for a melee to stand a change
 

coldarmy13

Diabloii.Net Member
Sephiroth[TR] said:
hmm weaknes of this build is vs absorbers :D my baba has alot of fire absorb so he wont get kild by fireclaw. And its proly not verry useful vs fire imune as ur phase blade wont be doing much dmg.

had similair duel vs that druid build he used 6 sock phase blade with 6 shael
3 hits and my lv 90 baba died and his fireclaw was only 9k dmg and the druid only lv 78 But after dying 3 times i took my fire absorb gear on... call me lame or whatever but it is the only way for a melee to stand a change
like i said, if u have the need to absorb vs me, i'll bring in something u can't absorb, a 4k dmg ww asn.
 

Sephiroth[TR]

Diabloii.Net Member
coldarmy13 said:
like i said, if u have the need to absorb vs me, i'll bring in something u can't absorb, a 4k dmg ww asn.
is there anythign else u can do vs that beside using absorb ? my baba died in 3 hits and it has 3.7k hp and max fire res..... If absorb isnt alowed ur basicly screwd :/

and uhm assa with chaos claw do 4k ww dmg ??
 

coldarmy13

Diabloii.Net Member
Sephiroth[TR] said:
is there anythign else u can do vs that beside using absorb ? my baba died in 3 hits and it has 3.7k hp and max fire res..... If absorb isnt alowed ur basicly screwd :/

and uhm assa with chaos claw do 4k ww dmg ??
yes. i'll consider 1 dwarf star with 75 res ok. if u stack absorb or stack 95 fire res + absorb, there's no point in dueling u with my bear, so i'll get my 4k ww chaos sin and just ww u to death. she's not been beaten, even by a hammerdin.
 

melonbal68

Diabloii.Net Member
what about other fire claw bears im lvl 90 in ladder and got owned by a bear using armegeddon azurwrath i believe and spiritward for a shield he may have had on other fireabsorb gear too.
 

melonbal68

Diabloii.Net Member
i would like to know what you do against con barbs i can never seem to hit them he also had over 20k defense
 

coldarmy13

Diabloii.Net Member
melonbal68 said:
i would like to know what you do against con barbs i can never seem to hit them he also had over 20k defense
ur best bet here is to go:
high ar metalgrid + 2x high end raven frosts

or

angelic ammy + 2 rings

or

angelic ammy + 1 ring + high end raven frost

then add in a high %attack rating cerebus's bite. ur ar should be over 25k at this point. if u still have problems, use ik gloves + boots + belt for more ar.
 

mepersoner

Diabloii.Net Member
I doubt with one of my wolves I would lose to that sin.. but I'm not on ladder.

I should get a wolf up...
 

Daimao

Diabloii.Net Member
I've got some questions here...

1) Will a dimensional blade work just as well as phase? They both get 6 sockets from larzook (purposely didn't spell it right)

2) Will 6 shaels work with a phase/dimensional or does it have to be exactly a 110 IAS? In other words if i get faster IAS past this point will it negatively affect my attack speed (i guess maybe this could also include wearing bloodfists or magnus skin)?

3) I'm too poor to afford skill charms or cerebus, I just happen to have a jalal's that someone gave me out of pity. I could prolly get an angelic ammy and two angelic rings, no ravens im afraid, for armor the best I can probably do is a vipermagi, shield either blackoak luna or that orphan one, belt orphan one, boots waterwalk. With this said should I even bother or will my equipment be too low? I doubt I have anything i can trade for skill charms.

Thanks in advance either way.
In case I do have items worth skill charms or that i can trade for gear for this build, please let me know, what I have is as follows:
//Ormus Robe - 13/15/15 with +3 to ice blast (i realize now why someone gave it to me for free, nobody wants an ice blast robe)
//Frostburn Gauntlets
//Titans something javelins (non eth, dont recall the ed, prolly 187 or something)
//Sazabi's Helm
//Hel rune
//Dol Rune
//Rare sorc orb with 20fcr, +2 to cold skills, +2 to blizzard, and some other mods
//Ring with +15 to all res
//3 Perfect Emeralds and other assorted perfect/flawless gems
 

-Ferro-

Diabloii.Net Member
Hi there.

Nice guide, coldarmy, tho for me you always will be B_B. Dont think you remeber me from pala forum since I play on Europe, I didnt knew much about you neither...till the day ur brother told us about the surgeoun & kidnee stuff. Those days all the paladins in forums prayed for you and with the strengh of our faith all got to a good end. After those days many veterans palas quit and, IMO, pala forum never will be the same (me myself quitted, but got back with 1.10&ladder). I do remeber another history about you and a girl...nvm, I hope all is fine 4 u irl (sorry for recalling this sad stories, just had to do ^^).

Ok, after all this t.t. introduction, my question: Im building PvP fireclaw, so, does Ormus robes increases damge? If so, does it worths the try?

Than you!

Enjoy

Ferro
 

coldarmy13

Diabloii.Net Member
-Ferro- said:
Hi there.

Nice guide, coldarmy, tho for me you always will be B_B. Dont think you remeber me from pala forum since I play on Europe, I didnt knew much about you neither...till the day ur brother told us about the surgeoun & kidnee stuff. Those days all the paladins in forums prayed for you and with the strengh of our faith all got to a good end. After those days many veterans palas quit and, IMO, pala forum never will be the same (me myself quitted, but got back with 1.10&ladder). I do remeber another history about you and a girl...nvm, I hope all is fine 4 u irl (sorry for recalling this sad stories, just had to do ^^).

Ok, after all this t.t. introduction, my question: Im building PvP fireclaw, so, does Ormus robes increases damge? If so, does it worths the try?

Than you!

Enjoy

Ferro
yes i remember u ferro. ormus will increase the dmg for fireclaws, but imo i would rather use any + 2 skill armor, as + 1 skill will even go past the 15% boose ormus gives.
 

-Ferro-

Diabloii.Net Member
About the fire absorb, When i duel trappers (fire) I use my Guardian Angel plus dual dwarf, and I still get killed by traps, same with fireball&meteor sorcs. I dont die in one hit/trap, but with 4 im done. I just wonder if a 12-15k damage fireclaw can be negated with absorb...how many u need to be efective (2*dwarf, hellmoth gloves, Guardian, Raising...?). I read somewhere absorb is capped now in 1.10. what is that cap?

Sorry for all questions, I use to know a lot of statistic back in 1.09, but many things have changed and now i feel lazy to learn again, just play for fun and im not going mad anymore for all this math as I use to...you know.

Fer
 
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