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Scrapper GM and AV killer


Elia87

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Hello everyone! As the title suggests, i am looking for a combo of power that can defeat GMs and occasionally AVs easily, without the use of -reg items from the p2w vendor.

Any ideas please? I tried to look on other posts but there is no clear answer..thank you all

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Energy Melee is a reliable heavy-hitter in the pylon test, which is a fairly good way of testing single-target effectiveness. I think War Mace does well, too.

 

Horrible answer that everyone will hate: For single-target damage, which is what you want, you may be better off with a stalker.

 

The reason being that they have two crit mechanics, the most significant being the fact that you can force crits and choose what powers crit and when.

 

They also have the best ATOs in the game (in my opinion), with one that randomly resets Build Up's timer (which you can slot with Gaussian's for something like a 75% proc rate, meaning build up is usually twice as powerful and goes off two or three times a minute). The second ATO effectively removes Placate as a mandatory power - most people slot it into assassin's strike, meaning it triggers a second crit as part of the normal attack chain, still within the double-build-up window. You can do this a few times a minute.

 

Bio is probably the secondary you want - you can boost your damage output and it has a significant -regen power.

Edited by Gulbasaur
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Just now, Gulbasaur said:

Horrible answer that everyone will hate: For single-target damage, which is what you want, you may be better off with a stalker.

I will take the opposite position on that one.

 

For starters, Bio Armor is truly overpowered on Scrappers, and you can see from the Pylon thread primary to primary, the best Stalkers tend to either lag behind or break even with comparable Bio Armor Scrappers. I can't actually think of a primary where /* Stalker > /bio Scrapper. Perhaps Savage and Staff?

Following that, it's worth considering aggro control. Without a taunt aura, AVs will run. GMs will run A LOT. This cuts into the incoming damage but your own DPS also takes a toll. Even if you are the best jouster, on a primarily melee AT you will lose DPS. Further pushing Scrappers ahead, provided they have a taunt aura. Of course Bio has a taunt aura on Scrappers, because why wouldn't Bio get everything. 😄

 

One might argue survivability on a /bio Scrapper isn't necessarily as great as on, say, a softcapped Stalker. But it just so happens most optimal Scrapper attack chains involve Moonbeam, which is in the same epic as Shadow Meld - and Shadow Meld meshes exceptionally well with native Bio defenses, fixing the DDR and defense hole.

 

Finally, I would argue Critical Strikes is the best ATO in game far and beyond Stalker ATOs, provided you build around it. Sticking it in most Scrapper T9 with no additional local recharge tends to yield proc rates pretty close to 90%. This makes your next 2 or 3 hits almost guaranteed crits, essentially turning medium damage attacks into extreme damage attacks; and in a typical highend cycle, this is half of your attack chain.

For me, the appeal of Stalkers is that they're better out of the box. You get AS at 6 and BU at 8, you stuff the ATOs as soon as level 13 or whenever they're available, and you can also kind of mash buttons and end up doing respectable DPS by virtue of 3-focus AS dealing fantastic DPA and BU recharging every now and then.

But, those same strengthes start to make you lag behind in the endgame, at least in prolonged fights against single tough targets:

- instarecharge BU isn't as much of a boon as each activation is 1.32s during which you deal no damage, and even with a Gaussian proc in there you are likely to have other, better options

- you almost have build an attack chain around 3-focus AS. Not only this is a constraint in itself, but this also compounds the above problem: an instarecharged BU takes the spot of one power providing focus

- epic snipes are awesome, but on Stalkers don't provide focus either

- the Hide proc has a 10.25s cooldown, so you also have to build your attack chain around that. If you want a specific high damage high recharge power to crit, and build an attack chain with more than one AS within a ~10 seconds span, any miss will cause your Hide proc to be tied to the wrong power instead of your big hitter.

 

With all these constraints, and all the advantages Scrappers get by late game, I've never managed to build a Stalker that dealt as much damage as the corresponding Scrapper. My latest failure was an EM/Bio Stalker, struggling to break 600 DPS despite excellent advice from other forum posters, whereas the EM/Bio scrapper deals 650+ without breaking a sweat.

 

Bringing this to the final point... even when Stalkers break even with Scrappers, the mechanical effort required of you will be higher. Pylon Tests, especially good runs, are near ideal conditions for Stalkers: a static target that cannot flee and doesn't deal enough damage to threaten you. Good runs likely don't see their Hide proc crit broken by a hit!

 

Whereas for Scrappers, a Pylon Test is mostly a regular fight. It doesn't affect your DPS as much if an AV forces you to use defensive clicks; you don't see your Hide status broken, you don't lose your focus stacks, you just resume your attack chains.

 

It's even somewhat doable for Scrappers to manage their defensive clicks to happen during the "weak" part of their attack chain, i.e. the lowest damage power that isn't affected by Critical Strikes, and then resume their highest damage pummeling.

Don't get me wrong: with a properly minmaxed Stalker, you can solo most AVs in game without inspirations or temps, at level 54. You'll likely be able to solo many GMs as well, all the way to level 50. But I think a Bio Armor Scrapper will have an easier time doing so. For level 50 GMs especially, you need 350+ DPS to outpace their regen before their resistance is considered. That is a lot of damage to do if your target is running away.

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2 hours ago, nihilii said:

Without a taunt aura, AVs will run. GMs will run A LOT.

I mean, I tank them on my widow which doesn't have taunt aura. It's less of a problem in play than it looks like on paper. Provoke is a good enough taunt for everything but out-taunting tankers. I don't use it if I'm soloing AVs, though. I've never had one run off. The worst I had was bloody Nemesis with his bubble of annoyingness.

2 hours ago, nihilii said:

Sticking it in most Scrapper T9 with no additional local recharge tends to yield proc rates pretty close to 90%. This makes your next 2 or 3 hits almost guaranteed crits, essentially turning medium damage attacks into extreme damage attacks; and in a typical highend cycle, this is half of your attack chain.

I mean, that's basically the same as on a stalker, but their big hitters start at a lower level, meaning you exemplar better, meaning you have a wider arc of AVs to punch in half.

Honestly, that's why I like them.

 

I'm not really disagreeing with you - both stalkers and scrappers can do the job very well. I'd argue that that stalkers get their big-hitter chain much earlier with the AS-double-crit combo so if you're specifically building an AV/GM-smasher, it makes sense to take that into account.

Edited by Gulbasaur
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DM/SD is one of my fav for solo av/gm's certainly the safest, could be faster but if you don't wanna use envenomed temp power its still enough dps for it. Not sure how against all odds stacks up against bio's offensive so maybe DM/BIO would be faster i haven't tried that combo yet but AaO keeps stuff close which is always a bonus. DM/NIN works too you can proc that one out big time. Theres a pattern here i'm thinking primary seems the easiest pick. Rad/SD is pretty good as is Energy/SD. Can't think of many bad scrapper combos that struggle with dps for av/gm. I tried a solo Khan on an Ma/Bio it was going well til the end when it turned into a stalemate and it didn't have any trouble getting past the av in mish 1 with no temps. Find a powerset you enjoy and turn it into an av killer or just do what everyone else does and make a TW/Bio its much more playable now after i27 changes even if the damage dropped a teeny bit.

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My Street Justice/Bio scrapper can do it, and he's not really that optimized for damage since I chased defense to get him softcapped to all types (and succeeded). 

 

I still use Envenomed Daggers in most fights just to speed it up some, since it takes him ages to take down a GM otherwise. 

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@nihiliiis pretty much right on the money. His dps assessment between the two ATs is accurate. He's also correct about  the value of a taunt aura.

 

With my stalker I've had to chase so many AVs all over the map that it draws the fight out to incredible lengths. Some GMs that you "could" drop simply become a stalemate because they move around. It is to point that I picked up melee radial hybrid with the taunt aura as the bonus of assault hybrid is wasted while they flee. 

 

All things being equal (which they aren't quite), the taunt aura available to some scrappers lets them set the pace and control the engagement. The stalker, on the other hand is at the behest of whether or not the enemy wants to fight them. 

 

While I enjoy stalkers more than scrappers, the scrapper is better suited to the OPs goal

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8 hours ago, nihilii said:

Sticking it in most Scrapper T9 with no additional local recharge tends to yield proc rates pretty close to 90%.

This implies you are not slotting the whole Critical Strike set in your tier 9..are you slotting for just Acc/Dam and this proc ?

 

I'm working on a rebuild for my scrapper, any opinion on the other ATO  Scrapper's Strike proc?

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10 hours ago, SuperPlyx said:

This implies you are not slotting the whole Critical Strike set in your tier 9..are you slotting for just Acc/Dam and this proc ?

Generally just the proc, even. But adding the acc/dam is certainly an option.

Scrapper's Strike is decent, it's a flat increase to crit rate so it's always worth having. I like stuffing the whole set in a damage aura for the set bonuses.

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I haven't attempted to build a Scrapper to solo GM's on Homecoming.  But as a reference point, I have solo'd Boomtown Babbage with a StJ/Bio stalker and it was surprisingly easy.  I'm pretty sure a scrapper version could achieve the DPS to do it also.

 

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6 hours ago, Shred Monkey said:

I haven't attempted to build a Scrapper to solo GM's on Homecoming.  But as a reference point, I have solo'd Boomtown Babbage with a StJ/Bio stalker and it was surprisingly easy.  I'm pretty sure a scrapper version could achieve the DPS to do it also.

 

 

I can confirm. 

 

Mine can, but it takes a long time. He's not really in any danger of dying, but his DPS is just barely enough to whittle him down over time. 

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On 1/1/2021 at 5:29 AM, nihilii said:

But, those same strengthes start to make you lag behind in the endgame, at least in prolonged fights against single tough targets:

- instarecharge BU isn't as much of a boon as each activation is 1.32s during which you deal no damage, and even with a Gaussian proc in there you are likely to have other, better options

 

That sounds obviously wrong to me.  You use your build-up in front of your Assassin's Strike, and you use your biggest non-AS hitter right after AS.  Both will easily be in the time-frame of both BU and the Gaussian's.  That's 160% of the base damage of your two best powers, for the cost a 1.32s animation time, plus likely 160% of the base damage of a third power, plus 80% of the base damage of the entire rest of your attack chain?  In what world do you have a better option than that?

 

In the classic StJ Stalker attack chain of SB > AS > CU > SB > MB > SC, for example, replacing SC with Build Up, you get something like 800 damage over the course of the next 10 seconds. (you get 90% chance of 80% of the base damage of SB, AS, CU, then 80% of the base damage of SB, AS, CU, SB, MB), assuming that nothing crits.  Somehow.

 

Quote

- you almost have build an attack chain around 3-focus AS. Not only this is a constraint in itself, but this also compounds the above problem: an instarecharged BU takes the spot of one power providing focus

- epic snipes are awesome, but on Stalkers don't provide focus either

 

Due to the fact that you're constrained by a 10 second+ attack chain, these doesn't feel like a serious constraints either.  The attack chain I mentioned above has one 100% chance of AF attack (Crushing Uppercut), and three 90% chances (Shin Breaker twice and Sweeping Cross once).

 

(Based on a monte carlo simulation over 1,000,000 runs, AS will crit 88.6% of the time for that attack chain).

 

Quote

- the Hide proc has a 10.25s cooldown, so you also have to build your attack chain around that. If you want a specific high damage high recharge power to crit, and build an attack chain with more than one AS within a ~10 seconds span, any miss will cause your Hide proc to be tied to the wrong power instead of your big hitter.

 

This, on the other hand, is a real and brutal problem.  The fact that if your natural attack chain comes in at 9.5 seconds, you only get your "guaranteed" from-hide crit every other attack chain is brutal.  I don't really see the reason for the long lockout on chance-to-hide.

 

None of this is to say that nihilii is wrong from a high level -- he's a very accomplished build creator and makes amazing pylon times, and is dialed into other people who do the same.  If stalkers underperform scrappers overall in ST damage at the very high end, he'd know.  But I don't think he's correctly identified the reasons why stalkers are underperforming, here, except the last one.

Edited by aethereal
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Fair points. I can only agree I've started from (my perception of) the results and worked backwards to try to rationalize some discrepancies. So perhaps I am wrong in some or all of these rationalizations.

 

But to refine it further: when I say insta buildup starts lagging in the endgame, I think of the times where I get, say, BU recharging twice within 10 seconds or so, sometimes not too far after its natural recharge which makes a string of 3 BUs; causing some of the duration to be wasted, less attacks and less Assassin Focus, and so on.

 

Comparatively, at lower level it's unlikely you have an optimized attack chain. So Build Up suddenly recharging is almost always a great boon.

 

You're right to call me out on "you are likely to have better options", worded as such it doesn't make sense. The sentiment I wanted to convey is that Stalker strengthes start fantastic at low level, then the curve for improvement sort of flattens a little bit. Scrappers have arguably the reverse dynamic where they start at a slower pace, but the longer you invest into them, the better returns.

 

Going back to insta BU, having BU suddenly recharge adds to the cognitive effort (or intuitive mechanical skill) required in playing a Stalker. You play a Scrapper, everything is predictable when it comes to your own actions. You mash keys in order for as long as you want. With a Stalker, there's more conditional factors; whether BU recharges, whether the Hide proc goes off, whether you get hit before you follow up with a Hide crit, whether you got 3 stacks or not.

 

There's things you can do to mitigate these factors, some at the build level and some at the player level. But I think it boils down to: Stalkers require more skill than Scrappers. Because Scrappers are less demanding, they're somewhat more flexible in a scenario where the net performance is identical between the two ATs.

It doesn't help that a case can be made (some) Scrappers outperform Stalkers in scenarios where having an aggro aura prevents the enemy from running, or with the outlier that is Scrapper /bio. It is painful to read in depth threads on the Stalker forums optimizing ST DPS rotations and for all of that to amount to maybe 500-600 DPS against the stationary and relatively unthreatening target that is a Rikti Pylon, while Scrappers can get to the same damage output and apply that damage output in most tough encounters.

 

It's not that big of a deal, to be sure. Overall, Stalkers are a better balanced AT with a smoother performance curve, both from low level to high level and between their primaries. If I were to advocate any changes, I'd go for the same thing you name: the lockout on chance to hide doesn't seem to serve any meaningful purpose except penalize the upper end of potential performance. I'd love if stacks lasted longer and/or if the individual chances to proc a stack were higher or possibly 100% on all powers too, but maybe that's a me thing. Building attack chains is just frustrating on some primaries when you see routes that would make sense except for the realisation said chains would put you at 60-80% chance to crit with AS.

 

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2 hours ago, nihilii said:

But to refine it further: when I say insta buildup starts lagging in the endgame, I think of the times where I get, say, BU recharging twice within 10 seconds or so, sometimes not too far after its natural recharge which makes a string of 3 BUs; causing some of the duration to be wasted, less attacks and less Assassin Focus, and so on.

 

Comparatively, at lower level it's unlikely you have an optimized attack chain. So Build Up suddenly recharging is almost always a great boon.

 

You're right to call me out on "you are likely to have better options", worded as such it doesn't make sense. The sentiment I wanted to convey is that Stalker strengthes start fantastic at low level, then the curve for improvement sort of flattens a little bit. Scrappers have arguably the reverse dynamic where they start at a slower pace, but the longer you invest into them, the better returns.

 

Going back to insta BU, having BU suddenly recharge adds to the cognitive effort (or intuitive mechanical skill) required in playing a Stalker. You play a Scrapper, everything is predictable when it comes to your own actions. You mash keys in order for as long as you want. With a Stalker, there's more conditional factors; whether BU recharges, whether the Hide proc goes off, whether you get hit before you follow up with a Hide crit, whether you got 3 stacks or not.

 

I think it's easy to outsmart yourself here.  If BU recharges, you can wait a few seconds to use it at the best time in your attack chain.  You can nominate a spot in your attack chain and always use BU there if it's available, and never other times.  But yeah, I've been doing pylons and BU recharges and been like, "SHIT!  CLICK!  WAIT, WHERE AM I IN MY CHAIN?"

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This was the thing we did pre-incarntes solo av's all the time

 

Most can generate enough dps some better than others  with enough recharge and survival ability soling an av is very possible

 

Lighting melee being an exception it is terrible Single target; spines was in the same boat until the barb swipe change but it is slower than a lot of other sets

 

Staff  I have no clue on

 

On secondaries the worse ones are probably Lightning and Fire the others generally have better survival capabilities and buffs  but again some are better than others and some excel even more with maxed IO builds. The question not if they can that is the easy question because the majority of the sets is a simple yes with the correct IO's the question becomes what do you like to play and then we can get you there a lot easier

 

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FlashBack to old days: Pinnacle

Langar Thurs-Katana/SR 50; Hejtmane-DM/DA 50

Rogue Spear-Spines/DA 50; Hypnosis-Ill/Rad 50

Sir Thomas Theroux-DM/SR 50; Melted Copper-Fire/Shield 50; Byzantine Warrior-DB/ELA 50; Blade Tempo-50 DB/EA

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The cool down on the hide proc is annoying to say the least. The fact that it is undocumented and most don't know about it doesn't help.

I spent a long time frustrated on my sav stalker and ultimately became fatigued trying to optimize a chain that maximized blood stacks, assassins focus, proc probability AND the hide timer.

For a long time I was unaware of the timer and was using a ~7 sec chain. All I knew is I wasn't getting near the amount of 'hidden" procs as I should have been. Unbeknownst to me, I was actually inducing a nearly 14 sec timer between hide procs. 

 

The build up refresh proc is great and this is a first world problem, but the cast time does eat in to some of your damage so it isn't as amazing as it appears in some situations. I love it for aoe trash clearing though. 

 

Other than that, if a target will stand and fight you the crit proc for scrappers can be ludicrous with seemingly endless streams of crits. 

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16 minutes ago, Frosticus said:

The cool down on the hide proc is annoying to say the least. The fact that it is undocumented and most don't know about it doesn't help.

I spent a long time frustrated on my sav stalker and ultimately became fatigued trying to optimize a chain that maximized blood stacks, assassins focus, proc probability AND the hide timer.

For a long time I was unaware of the timer and was using a ~7 sec chain. All I knew is I wasn't getting near the amount of 'hidden" procs as I should have been. Unbeknownst to me, I was actually inducing a nearly 14 sec timer between hide procs.

 

Yeah, I don't really get it.  Like, why does this thing need a lockout?  It's got PPM.  It doesn't stack with itself.  If they're worried it'll happen too often, reduce the PPM, don't put the lockout on it.

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