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What the heck is up with Ninja Training?


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First of all, it's a great thematic set.  I will give it that.  Paired with Dual Pistols (likely) or maybe Archery, it fills that RP/theme playstyle, I'm sure.


Now, I love blasters.  I don't WANT to, but truly there are not many AT's and combos that can keep up.  Yeah, yeah... survivability.  Good blasters survive... most of the time.  😉 ("Most of the time, blasters have a 50/50 chance of survival!" - you can quote me on that!)


So I am checking out various Secondaries to play with the best PVE Primary (duh, Fire, fast/high damage=win).  I actually main a Fire/Dev (my favorite secondary), a Fire/Atomic, a Fire/TacArrow (second favorite), and a Fire/Time.  Think I have all the good ones down.   So I am digging around in those "other" secondaries...




Fire/Fire was decent damage, but brought no bag of tricks and is very difficult to softcap defenses w/o gimping the damage... it's good at ST/AoE, that's for sure, but I like having "tricks" - it's my play style.


Fire/Dark is REALLY potent, much more than fire/fire, has *some* tricks, but it slows down the flow.  Fire blasters know what I mean.


Fire/Elec /Energy /Ice = meh.  Sure /Energy is prob. the go-to in pvp (but that's often ice/energy).  In PVE, it's a whole lotta meh, all three "old" secondary sets kind of are.


Fire/Plant.  I have a Water/Plant blaster (theme) and it's an interesting set.  Plant really makes me feel dominator like, the buildup that adds a lump of toxic to each attack is interesting.  It is fun.


Fire/Mental also slows fire down, worse than /dark it seems.  Not really a fan.


Fire/Martial (Bill.  *drum-snare*) - is just terrible all around.  Clunky, cumbersome, no real flow.  Feels slapped together more than any other set.  It's the Sentinel of the set.  Best to just avoid.



With /Ninja Training, it seems interesting at first.  Got a stealth:  check,  Got a recovery/regen: Check.  Got some tricks:  Check.  I skipped all the sword powers because: lol, melee lethal.

  • Dart is weak for a T1 (Toxic Web Grenade from /Devices does more and is also a toxic immob with matching range, duration, recharge, but less acc).  It's as underperforming as the T1's from Martial and Energy.
  • Choking Powder is surprisingly good.  I first had a Hold set in there, then realized that thing is doing decent ticks of TOXIC, so I bumped it to a devastation 4-slot and a ATO-damage-proc:  man, it's impressive for a hold (and a T3 attack).
  • Shinobi:  The run/jump is silly, but OK.  It's basically stealth.  Half the measly defense is lost when in combat, so meh; but at least it's a stealth and a mule for a LotG7.5.  Now the odd part is (similar to devices) the first attack out of stealth (once every 30 seconds?) gives a nice +damage for that "sneak attack".  The revised Devices (Targeting Drone) does this better and has the "crit ring" thing so you know when it's up.  With Shinobi, you have to be monitoring your damage bonus and notice when it goes up over 40%.  Going back into stealth (and thus, you're out of combat) doesn't re-trigger the buff immediately (prob. the 30-sec thing), which is likely due to the very low recharge, so it's not gamed).  Still, just copy the Targeting Drone mechanic (trade some ToHit for more +Dam) and you're done.
  • Kuji-In Toh:  I get it, ninjitsu and sr have their "click" buffs.  I never liked click buffs, except when things would DE-TOGGLE when mezzed.  Now that most things don't detoggle, click buffs are lame interrupters of an attack chain.  This should just be a free toggle, like other sets get.
  • Smoke Flash:  I cannot believe this is NOT -ToHit and/or -Perception.  Because of the no ToHit, it takes NO SETS.  So bad.  It's a Tier 7 for crying out loud!  It's supposed to PLACATE and -RES.  Well, I'm fully stealthed and walk into a mob.  Figure, cool I can do a smoke flash to get -res, aim and nuke.  Well, kind of.  The Smoke Flash (which supposedly placates) just aggos them all (prob. from the -res) and now you're:  A) exposed, and B) Lost your +Damage from Shinobi.  Great set.  Guess I'm supposed to use the -res/placate thing AFTER I've damaged them.  What is up with that?!
  • Blinding Powder:  This, like choking powder, is a surprisingly good power.  Any AoE confuse is a great trick to have in your bag.  Just goes to show how OP plant control is with their Seeds of Confusion (fast rech, larger/longer cone, get at level 8, etc).  An excellent survival (esp. solo) tool.

Again, I did NOT take any of the sword attacks, I'm sure they're wonderful.  What I like to look for in the secondary sets is flow and usefulness.  This is probably why I love Devices the most, it has everything in two toggles, and smoke grenade is gravy and taser is so good instead of some silly punch-attack (or sword).  it's like a quicker, better-ranged Bone Smasher (though not quite as hard-hitting).  Anyway, Ninja Training has nothing remotely cool like that.

Lethal-based, melee-ranged, -Def attacks are NOT really blaster material.  Blasters should always have high acc/to-hit, be at range as often as possible to help with survival, and should try to avoid one of the most resisted damage types in the game.  I guess one could say the same for Martial training with all the kicks (smashing/melee) though it can also be argued that KD is better than -Def (esp 7%), as it helps with survivability.


I wanted to like you, Ninja Training, but I just can't.   I don't know WHAT IS UP WITH NINJA TRAINING!  Paired with some under-performing primary for theme/RP reasons, I'm sure it's great.  For efficiency in the Blaster AT, it's very skippable.





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Good analysis.  I'd not thought of the powders as damage attacks.  I'll look into this.  I really want to like this power set, too.


Since you didn't take the sword powers you missed IMHO, the dumbest thing of all.. the cool down on the whirling sword attack is WAY too long!  Why would anyone ever take this power?  If it had a "normal" cool down, it'd fill in that gap in the AoE attack chain of Dual Pistols or Electric, etc.  But as it is, it's just a waste of a power choice.


I tried really hard to make /ninja my secondary for my DP blaster but devices ended up being the better option in all the ways that mattered.  Even though I've now played a DP toon to vet 100 and semi-retired him, I still go back to looking at DP/ninja on occasion trying to find a synergy to exploit.   But still haven't found it.


Edited by Shred Monkey
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Active on Excelsior:

Prismatic Monkey - Seismic / Martial Blaster, Storm Dragon Monkey - Electric / Dual Blades Tank, Gadget Hunter Monkey - Dual Wield / Traps Corruptor


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If it's any consolation the sword attacks aren't wonderful. As you say, Choking Powder's not bad, though very short ranged. And as you say, Shinobi's value compared to targeting drone... Hell even with stealth if we compare Shinobi + Kujin'Toh to TD and Field Operative, Ninja's losing out big time. Unless I guess you're dealing with a psychic damaging fear spell, maybe.


Immobilizing Dart: Truly an insult; not only does it have less than half the damage of its contemporaries, it also has a longer cast time! The mild -recharge/spd doesn't make up for this any more than a stronger such effect did on the old Web Grenade.

Sting of the Wasp: Sad. Pretty much all alternatives in other sets hit harder and many hit faster too, often with stronger secondary effects.

Lotus Drops: Very basic, lethal and -def. This is marginally more damaging than Martial's Dragon's Tail (Burst of Speed's an incredible alternative though), but slightly slower to cast and doesn't have knockdown. End of Time hits harder still though casts a little slower (with additional conditional damage and types atop it), and does -regen. Faster recharge and a tiny bit bigger radius as well IIRC. Atom Smasher's a lot slower to come out but it does hit harder, recharges faster, stuns, and still does more -def than Lotus does.

Smoke Flash: would be alright were it not such a short duration, and if not for the complete lack of set compatibility or -hit component. It's not even that great as a placate since it's not like you can crit

Blinding Powder: it's ... okay. Range is very short and the magnitudes are just 2, so it could still use a bit of love.

Golden Dragonfly: A tiny cone that sometimes maybe will let you get two in a line if they're basically-stacked, for the kind of damage and secondary effects you'd expect from something secondaries offer at level 2-10 at the latest. At this point you should probably just grab Cross Punch along with Tough and Weave; it won't hit quite as hard even with both boxing and kick, but a far more debilitating and a wider cone at least.


You'd think there'd at least be exploding poison shuriken and teleports or something. 

Edited by Novacat
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Most of the set is prety bad.


Lotus Drops is a surprisingly good power if you slot it with damage procs. Due to the long Recharge, you have higher than normal chance to activate the procs, and you end up with surprisingly high PBAoE damage from a non-nuke (about 350 for my build). The two Powder Powers are just great.


But that's about all, and not only do they lack other GOOD powers... several of them just seem unusually weak for what they are supposed to do. A Build-Up replacement that functions like a high-recharge Build-Up, but for only one attack? Ugh. A weak Tier 1. Smoke Flash had potential, but it's left too weak. The two single-target sword attacks are likewise too weak to make them worth the risk of entering melee.


Overall, a couple of powers make the set playable, but it's clearly lower tier.

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My concerns with the set is that it's just broken and not well balanced.  My own opinions on the set having leveled it to 50:


Immobilizing Dart: Could use a damage buff and maybe a better visual on when targets are immobilized.  I feel like it should do a spot of lethal up front and then apply its Toxic DoT, kind of like the Sleep Dart origin power.


Sting of the Wasp: I don't mind this power, but it's noticably weaker than other set melee options of this caliber.  I also want a traditional weapon draw animation since the no-redraw looks dumb when you're just standing there and suddenly your foe takes a phantom cut from nowhere.


Choking Powder:  I almost feel like this power is too strong for being a T3 power.  If Immobilizing Dart gets a damage buff, maybe this should get a damage reduction or moved to a later power slot.  Otherwise, it's a good power.


Shinobi: a built-in Stealth is pretty nice, but as a Build Up replacement this power is garbage.  30 seconds out of combat is far too long for the damage buff to kick in, especially when Targeting Drone only needs 8.


The Lotus Drops: not a bad power, but why is the cooldown so absurdly long?  Compare it to something like Fire Sword Circle in Fire Manipulation and TLD has something like a 15 second longer wait.


Kujin-Toh: a good power.  My only gripe is that it's a click buff when it might be a bit more useful as a toggle.


Smoke Flash: every time I tried to use it the Placate effect was bugged.  It would be handy as a get-out-of-danger button but it doesn't even apply the Placate.  The -res doesn't seem too useful either.  If you ask me, it should reset the damage bonus on Shinobi after using it (and hitting).


Blinding Powder:  short range and low magnitude.  It was nice with Sonic primary since I could stack it with Siren's Song but it feels weak otherwise.  I hear the Contageous Confusion proc helps though.


Golden Dragonfly: A bit weaker than your average T9 melee with no real secondary effects either.  Katana attacks are just weak it seems.

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Currently playing on Indomitable as @Zork Nemesis; was a Protector native on live.

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I have one.  I love it.   I went for high def from set bonuses.





Hero Plan by Mids' Hero Designer 1.962

Click this DataLink to open the build!

Ghost Toast: Level 50 Science Blaster
Primary Power Set: Fire Blast
Secondary Power Set: Ninja Training
Power Pool: Speed
Power Pool: Fighting
Power Pool: Leaping
Power Pool: Leadership
Ancillary Pool: Mace Mastery

Hero Profile:
Level 1: Fire Blast -- Empty(A)
Level 1: Immobilizing Dart -- TraoftheH-Acc/Rchg(A)
Level 2: Fire Ball -- SprFrzBls-Acc/Dmg(A), SprFrzBls-Dmg/EndRdx(3), SprFrzBls-Acc/Dmg/EndRdx(3), SprFrzBls-Acc/Dmg/Rchg(5), SprFrzBls-Dmg/EndRdx/Acc/Rchg(5), SprFrzBls-Rchg/ImmobProc(7)
Level 4: Choking Powder -- SprEnt-Acc/Hold(A), SprEnt-Hold/Rchg(19), SprEnt-End/Rchg(29), SprEnt-Acc/Hold/End(45), SprEnt-Acc/Hold/End/Rchg(50), SprEnt-Rchg/AbsorbProc(50)
Level 6: Rain of Fire -- SprBlsWrt-Acc/Dmg(A), SprBlsWrt-Dmg/Rchg(9), SprBlsWrt-Acc/Dmg/Rchg(11), SprBlsWrt-Acc/Dmg/EndRdx(11), SprBlsWrt-Acc/Dmg/EndRdx/Rchg(13), SprBlsWrt-Rchg/Dmg%(13)
Level 8: Fire Breath -- Rgn-Dmg(A), Rgn-Dmg/Rchg(15), Rgn-Acc/Dmg/Rchg(15), Rgn-Acc/Rchg(17), Rgn-Dmg/EndRdx(17), Rgn-Knock%(19)
Level 10: Shinobi -- LucoftheG-Rchg+(A)
Level 12: Aim -- RechRdx-I(A)
Level 14: Hasten -- RechRdx-I(A), RechRdx-I(21)
Level 16: The Lotus Drops -- SprAvl-Acc/Dmg(A), SprAvl-Dmg/EndRdx(21), SprAvl-Acc/Dmg/EndRdx(23), SprAvl-Acc/Dmg/Rchg(23), SprAvl-Acc/Dmg/EndRdx/Rchg(27), SprAvl-Rchg/KDProc(29)
Level 18: Blaze -- SprWntBit-Acc/Dmg(A), SprWntBit-Dmg/Rchg(34), SprWntBit-Acc/Dmg/EndRdx(36), SprWntBit-Acc/Dmg/Rchg(36), SprWntBit-Dmg/EndRdx/Acc/Rchg(36), SprWntBit-Rchg/SlowProc(37)
Level 20: Kuji-In Toh -- StdPrt-ResDam/Def+(A)
Level 22: Boxing -- Empty(A)
Level 24: Tough -- GldArm-3defTpProc(A), UnbGrd-ResDam(25), UnbGrd-ResDam/EndRdx(25), UnbGrd-ResDam/EndRdx/Rchg(27), UnbGrd-EndRdx/Rchg(48), UnbGrd-Max HP%(48)
Level 26: Blazing Bolt -- SprDfnBrr-Acc/Dmg(A), SprDfnBrr-Dmg/Rchg(37), SprDfnBrr-Acc/Dmg/Rchg(37), SprDfnBrr-Acc/Dmg/EndRdx(39), SprDfnBrr-Acc/Dmg/EndRdx/Rchg(39), SprDfnBrr-Rchg/+Status Protect(39)
Level 28: Smoke Flash -- RechRdx-I(A)
Level 30: Weave -- LucoftheG-Rchg+(A), Rct-Def/EndRdx(31), Rct-Def/EndRdx/Rchg(31), Ksm-ToHit+(31)
Level 32: Inferno -- Obl-Dmg(A), Obl-Acc/Rchg(33), Obl-Dmg/Rchg(33), Obl-Acc/Dmg/Rchg(33), Obl-Acc/Dmg/EndRdx/Rchg(34), Obl-%Dam(34)
Level 35: Blinding Powder -- CrcPrs-Conf(A), CrcPrs-Conf/Rchg(45), CrcPrs-Acc/Conf/Rchg(46), CrcPrs-Acc/Rchg(46), CrcPrs-Conf/EndRdx(46), CrcPrs-Conf%(48)
Level 38: Golden Dragonfly -- Obl-Dmg(A), Obl-Acc/Rchg(40), Obl-Dmg/Rchg(40), Obl-Acc/Dmg/Rchg(40), Obl-Acc/Dmg/EndRdx/Rchg(43), Obl-%Dam(45)
Level 41: Scorpion Shield -- Rct-Def(A), Rct-Def/EndRdx(42), Rct-EndRdx/Rchg(42), Rct-Def/Rchg(42), Rct-Def/EndRdx/Rchg(43), Rct-ResDam%(43)
Level 44: Combat Jumping -- ShlWal-ResDam/Re TP(A)
Level 47: Maneuvers -- Rct-Def/EndRdx(A), Rct-Def/EndRdx/Rchg(50)
Level 49: Super Jump -- BlsoftheZ-ResKB(A)
Level 1: Brawl -- Empty(A)
Level 1: Defiance 
Level 1: Prestige Power Dash -- Empty(A)
Level 1: Prestige Power Slide -- Empty(A)
Level 1: Prestige Power Quick -- Empty(A)
Level 1: Prestige Power Rush -- Empty(A)
Level 1: Prestige Power Surge -- Empty(A)
Level 1: Sprint -- Empty(A)
Level 2: Rest -- Empty(A)
Level 4: Ninja Run 
Level 2: Swift -- Empty(A)
Level 2: Health -- Pnc-Heal/+End(A), NmnCnv-Regen/Rcvry+(7)
Level 2: Hurdle -- Empty(A)
Level 2: Stamina -- PrfShf-End%(A), PrfShf-EndMod(9)
Level 50: Clarion Core Epiphany 
Level 50: Support Radial Embodiment 
Level 50: Agility Core Paragon 

Edited by 25625
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The problem that lies with this set is mainly that is tries to force you into being a Stalker and into Melee when you're a Blaster. Look, all Blaster secondaries in this state of the game are playable and overall there is consistency between them that they'll always give you a decent source of endurance and health regeneration, therefore no secondary is inherently "useless" and is always going to have a meaningful contribution to your battles. 


That said, this set has more issues than any other...


1. The most resisted damage type is Toxic followed by Lethal, it is painful late game to deal with and in a lot of early game as well. This fact alone makes it hard to compete with other secondaries but let's keep going.

2. The AoE in this set is not the greatest especially compared to outliers such as Fire Manipulation.

3. The "hidden" mechanic is very easy to obtain with +stealth IO and super speed. It kinda makes this set not feel unique in what it can do for you.

4. Honestly I've already said it but it really deserves repeating again, being forced as a Blaster into Blapping or sets that would've otherwise been totally ranged is terrible. Primaries like Archery and Water should never be paired with Ninja because they can stay totally at range, if you wanted a primary that will allow you to stay at range and be even rewarded for being at range, TA and Energy are the ways to go. Conversely, secondaries like Fire Manipulation make fighting in melee "worth it" because of how uniquely damaging it is and how great the AoEs + auras are.

5. The "secondary effect" is not that helpful, -def is really only amazing to use for procs. 

6. The set is very ST focused and the set is also lethal which means it has a unique problem in which for it to "shine" you're going to have to use its specialties on very hard targets that will already resist you in a lot of cases.

7. Honestly, Drain Psyche in Mental Manipulation and the better AoE as well as more unique damage type makes it really hard to justify taking Ninja Training over it due to the fact both will try to force you into melee, one however will make fighting harder targets much easier because of its exotic damage type, -regen and will survive better and have less end issues due to DP.

Edited by 33053222
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