Optimally, should a controller ever go blaster, or is that doing it wrong?

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In a game I'll be the group's one and only controller, and I was looking to focus on damage spells (staff of ruin, spending a feat on implement focus) to help make combat go faster and give everyone less conditions to track. It would be a wizard whose only means of control would be the occasional summon and zones of pain, with an additional CA bonus to all and sundry if standing next to either a conjuration. In essence, an aoe striker with light control elements.

The guides I've looked at have stated that they evaluate power and feat selections from the viewpoint of a controller first, then make side notes if it'd be good for a blaster. They haven't come down hard on the blaster as a concept, just stated that it's not their primary focus. What I'm asking is, are blasters (generalist blasters in my case; no specific damage type focus) just "doing it wrong" with regards to their role, or are they viable alternatives to the typical imposers and such?

They're viable, very much so. I've seen both variants used to great effect. I guess the only debatable thing regarding a blaster wizard from a charop standpoint is that they typically do not have a very powerfull nova to take down a standard or multiple standards with the same speed some strikers do (e.g. flame spiral sorceror).
The general issue is that doing damage only adds control when you kill something. If your Wizard goes and nothing dies, in a sense, you didn't influence the combat.

This changes rather dramatically if you have 2-3 additional burst attackers in your group. Then things die really, really fast. 
Eh, the problem is more of a game balance one.  At higher levels, you certainly can build an invoker or Sorcerer (or maybe wizard) that can take down multiple standards during a nova.

Doing so invalidates encounters with standard monsters, and leads to a rather spectacularly bent game. Especially if those standards are "enemies within an area burst 10".  And so while that can be the "correct" answer for solving an LFR module, it's a pretty crap answer to bring to a game table of actually playing D&D.

A similarly powerful hard-control controller invalides encounters just as certainly.  In my experience, the DM's left with a similar taste... but maybe since the rest of the party still has to do their jobs for a few rounds, it will feel better?  I dunno.

"Nice assumptions. Completely wrong assumptions, but by jove if being incorrect stopped people from making idiotic statements, we wouldn't have modern internet subculture." Kerrus
Practical gameplay runs by neither RAW or RAI, but rather "A Compromise Between The Gist Of The Rule As I Recall Getting The Impression Of It That One Time I Read It And What Jerry Says He Remembers, Whatever, We'll Look It Up Later If Any Of Us Still Give A Damn." Erachima

1 striker tends to work better then 1 blaster.
3 blasters tend to work better then 3 strikers.

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

In a game I'll be the group's one and only controller, and I was looking to focus on damage spells (staff of ruin, spending a feat on implement focus) to help make combat go faster and give everyone less conditions to track.

Action denial also makes combat go faster. Or at the least it doesn't really slow it down. Yeah it's a little more to keep track of, but I'm sure folks in the DM forum can give you 1001 easy ways to do so.
You can do Very Good damage and no control.
You can do Good damage and Good control.
You can do Poor damage and Very Good control.
You can do Virtually no damage and Superb control.

In terms of optimization, there's no difference between the bottom 3, the top one is substantially less powerful until it becomes brokenly good (which is impossible on a non-Epic Wizard)

That last one basically only describes the Enchantment/Charm Powers of Wizards, which actually count as "Average damage" because they either force enemies to attack themselves, or knock them unconscious allowing allies to coup de grace (auto crit). I only describe it as "no damage" because a lot of players are not satisfied unless they are actually dealing damage themselves (which is selfish and poor tactics).
"Invokers are probably better round after round but Wizard dailies are devastating. Actually, devastating is too light a word. Wizard daily powers are soul crushing, encounter ending, havoc causing pieces of awesome." -AirPower25 Sear the Flesh, Purify the Soul; Harden the Heart, and Improve the Mind; Born of Blood, but Forged by Fire; The MECH warrior reaches perfection.
Which is why Wizards and Invokers are at the cream of the crop for controllers. Because Invokers trivially get access to the 2nd and 3rd (and at epic arguably Very Good damage and Very Good control for RadiantOp), and Wizards can pretty easily access the bottom 3 at all tiers.

10/10 Would Flame Again: An Elite Paladin|Warlock The Elemental Man (or Woman): A Genasi Handbook The Warlord, Or How to Wield a Barbarian One-Handed The Bookish Barbarian Fardiz: RAI is fairly clear, but RAZ is different That's right. Rules According to Zelink!
Thanks all, I'll keep it in mind. The comment about effecting the fight in addition to doing damage will definitely help focus what encouter powers I choose.

Sure! Wizards can make good blasters if you build them right;


I am playing a Gensai blasters right now and loving it! I am not doing as much as the Striker in our party; but I am doing more than the defender and also still have some decent control as well.

IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/1.jpg)

Optimally?  No.  Blasters are not better than, or even as good as, a controlling controller.

Fortunately, the difference isn't major, and if your only goal is optimal play we'd all be playing things out of the DPR Kings thread.  Blasters are effective and can be very fun.

Optimal is a high bar.  By definition, there can be only one.  That leaves a lot of the rest in the "suboptimal" category.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
Blasters aren't necessarily doing it wrong, but blaster Wizards are. If that's your focus, go Invoker instead, they have better support for it across the level range and sacrifice less to get there.
Optimally?  No.  Blasters are not better than, or even as good as, a controlling controller.

I have 3 epic PCs, and the one I can only play with a CharOp table is my blaster. And even then I actually felt a bit dirty.

I was talking to someone else from an entirely different group who similarly has to restrict what tables his blaster sits at.

So, my experience is otherwise. Encounters often just don't cope well with massive AE damage, since they assume that adding additional enemies is actually adding difficulty.
Keith Richmond Living Forgotten Realms Epic Writing Director
Optimally?  No.  Blasters are not better than, or even as good as, a controlling controller.

I have 3 epic PCs, and the one I can only play with a CharOp table is my blaster. And even then I actually felt a bit dirty.

I was talking to someone else from an entirely different group who similarly has to restrict what tables his blaster sits at.

So, my experience is otherwise. Encounters often just don't cope well with massive AE damage, since they assume that adding additional enemies is actually adding difficulty.



+1 this is why I like blaster wizards; you can do a decent to amazing amounts of damage on a whole cluster of enemies; givin a good party make up it can be even more devistating.

Now if you are looking to fill your Role (aka being a controller) then it obviously isn't a optimal choice; if you are just wanting to know "does it work' then Yes; and it can work very, very well as a Smi-Striker that focuses on hitting lots of things at once.

IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/1.jpg)

Optimally?  No.  Blasters are not better than, or even as good as, a controlling controller.

I have 3 epic PCs, and the one I can only play with a CharOp table is my blaster. And even then I actually felt a bit dirty.



Ok, I wouldn't have asked if not for that bolded part. But now that I'm curious enough: would you care to share your build?
Deva Invoker|Cleric / Morninglord / Soul of the World, shadar-kai dip so that my first round attacks prone, slow, -2 attack, push, and slide, borrowed confidence to increase hits and crits, pure glow and sublime light, reaction death's call = 3 burst 5s to team monster in round 1, so they're -2 attack, prone, blinded, slowed, granting CA, and where I want them. Also, dead. I don't have it on me, but with enough targets (damage increases with more targets, due to increased crit chance) it's basically SMHP to the burst size.

I actually started intentionally ignoring parts of the build cause it was too ridiculous.

The friend who said he couldn't play his blaster has been asked not to play the PC at some tables, and said he does so much damage that it changes the way modules play, so he only plays him in a special power gamer group.
Keith Richmond Living Forgotten Realms Epic Writing Director
To break that down a little bit (since I didn't find it completely obvious yet, so I'm guessing others didn't as well.  Appologies to the rest)

Jaunt into location.  Borrow some confidence.  Sublime Light; AP: Pure Glow  As a morninglord, everything hit is vulnerable 10 radiant.  Via Punishing Radiance, every crit (you're rolling twice per monster, ~6 monsters, two attacks. You crit on 19+ via feat.  Figure two to three crits?) jacks that vulnerability up 10 more, even on those you didn't hit.  Jack statics via the usual routine, and Pelor's Boon. When the extra damage instance from Pure Glow actually drops someone, or any ally finishes one of them off, drop "Death's Call" to finish off the rest.

Figure statics of ~35, with an additional +9 (Pelor's Boon) if the target is vulnerable to radiant.  For three of the 4 damage instances, the target is vulnerable at least 10.  For 2 of the 4, the target is likely vulnerable 30.  So 2d10+35, 2d8+54, 10+39, 2d8+74 =~ 241.  At that level, Standard Monster HP is around 240?

"Nice assumptions. Completely wrong assumptions, but by jove if being incorrect stopped people from making idiotic statements, we wouldn't have modern internet subculture." Kerrus
Practical gameplay runs by neither RAW or RAI, but rather "A Compromise Between The Gist Of The Rule As I Recall Getting The Impression Of It That One Time I Read It And What Jerry Says He Remembers, Whatever, We'll Look It Up Later If Any Of Us Still Give A Damn." Erachima

Yep, sorry, that's the gist of it. 

SMHP is around 250. I do roll twice on all the damages, so add another ~10 damage though. In this particular instance, I also got +15 to damage on APs, plus I get covenant bonus of # of targets extra damage on the two standards on my turn (so call that another 10 or so damage).
Keith Richmond Living Forgotten Realms Epic Writing Director
Well, Morninglord Invoker builds do get silly pretty quickly. Haven't really been looking at the Hybrid Cleric variant (I know it exists) because I never really liked most cleric powers that much.
My radiant one morninglord wizard seemed to be doing considerably more than any striker I've sat with in LFR.  Using zones, even if only 2 taps per turn (typically had someone in the party with some forced movement to compound on this more) on 5+ enemies (architect's staff lets you add a few extra enemies without targetting allies) yields to massive total dpr.  If we are only talking about single target dpr, then sure, he is not the best (although with cloud of daggers being a double tap giving 2d6+80 damage, and having that as a minor action with quickened spellcasting, mmm).  Also, architect staff works well with cloud of daggers, allowing for several targets, and at least double tap for each.
Ah Radiant One, adding +stat to damage and 2 damage types to basically every attack. Totally not broken.
"Invokers are probably better round after round but Wizard dailies are devastating. Actually, devastating is too light a word. Wizard daily powers are soul crushing, encounter ending, havoc causing pieces of awesome." -AirPower25 Sear the Flesh, Purify the Soul; Harden the Heart, and Improve the Mind; Born of Blood, but Forged by Fire; The MECH warrior reaches perfection.
My radiant one morninglord wizard seemed to be doing considerably more than any striker I've sat with in LFR.  Using zones, even if only 2 taps per turn (typically had someone in the party with some forced movement to compound on this more) on 5+ enemies (architect's staff lets you add a few extra enemies without targetting allies) yields to massive total dpr.  If we are only talking about single target dpr, then sure, he is not the best (although with cloud of daggers being a double tap giving 2d6+80 damage, and having that as a minor action with quickened spellcasting, mmm).  Also, architect staff works well with cloud of daggers, allowing for several targets, and at least double tap for each.



I'm hoping that +80 damage is the cumulative result of a double-tap (Morninglord, Radiant One, Pelor Boon) and not per damage instance. Having +80 in statics seems a bit egregious, even if we're talking about the deep end of high optimization here.
I'm hoping that +80 damage is the cumulative result of a double-tap (Morninglord, Radiant One, Pelor Boon) and not per damage instance. Having +80 in statics seems a bit egregious, even if we're talking about the deep end of high optimization here.

In Epic? Let's see....I mean Radiant One giving +Int is basically +18 all by itself with a 20 post-racial starting Int. Shard+Enhance+DIS+item is +23 on top of that, for 41. Elemental Focus for +4, 45. RadiantOp can add another... what? 17? So that is 62. That last 18 would be tough to get. 4 from a SIP would the only easy thing left. 80 in statics is doable though.
Leader buffs, additional vulnerabilities. Not that hard to total it.
A Beginners Primer to CharOp. Archmage's Ascension - The Wizard's Handbook. Let the Hammer Fall: Dwarf Warpriest/Tactical Warpriest/Indomitable Champion, a Defending Leader. Requiem for Dissent: Cleric/Fighter/Paragon of Victory Melee Leader Ko te manu e kai i te miro, nona te ngahere. Ko te manu e kai i te matauranga e, nano te ao katoa. It's the proliferation of people who think the rules are more important than what the rules are meant to accomplish. - Dedekine
If there's a reason that you don't see strikers doing that kind of damage in LFR is that a lot of players generally back off on Radiant Mafia for those reasons. Unless your DM is equipped to handle it, there's just no point in playing.

I'm aware of at least one instance though in LFR where apparently a Morninglord hit himself and the other PCs with Pure Glow. Wasn't a TPK, but got very scary.