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Tough Crab to Crack

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Hi.  I'm leveling up (currently in the mid 40s) my first VEAT of any kind, and would appreciate a review of my build for level 50.  I currently have Reinforcements and Spiderlings, but I'm thinking I'll respec out of them.  They are helpful with soloing, but too squishy at +3 or +4.  So I'm thinking I'll just stick to team play on this toon and try to make him the best teammate he can be.  I've focused on survivability/tank-lite with lots of AoE and debuffs.  However, I'm completely open to rethinking the character.  Below is my build and a screenshot of my totals.  


Thanks in advance!


This Villain build was built using Mids Reborn

Click this DataLink to open the build!

Maryland Crab: Level 50 Science Arachnos Soldier
Primary Power Set: Crab Spider Soldier
Secondary Power Set: Crab Spider Training
Power Pool: Leaping
Power Pool: Fighting
Power Pool: Speed
Power Pool: Leadership
Ancillary Pool: Leviathan Mastery

Villain Profile:
Level 1: Channelgun

  • (A) Superior Dominion of Arachnos - Accuracy/Damage
  • (45) Superior Dominion of Arachnos - Accuracy/Damage/Recharge
  • (45) Superior Dominion of Arachnos - Damage/Endurance/Recharge
  • (46) Superior Dominion of Arachnos - Accuracy/Damage/Endurance/Recharge
  • (46) Superior Dominion of Arachnos - Recharge/Chance for -Dmg and Terrorize

Level 1: Crab Spider Armor Upgrade

  • (A) Steadfast Protection - Resistance/+Def 3%

Level 2: Longfang

  • (A) Apocalypse - Damage
  • (3) Apocalypse - Damage/Recharge
  • (3) Apocalypse - Accuracy/Damage/Recharge
  • (5) Apocalypse - Accuracy/Recharge
  • (5) Apocalypse - Damage/Endurance
  • (7) Apocalypse - Chance of Damage(Negative)

Level 4: Combat Training: Defensive

  • (A) Luck of the Gambler - Defense/Increased Global Recharge Speed

Level 6: Super Jump

  • (A) Blessing of the Zephyr - Knockback Reduction (4 points)

Level 8: Suppression

  • (A) Positron's Blast - Damage/Range
  • (9) Positron's Blast - Chance of Damage(Energy)
  • (9) Bombardment - Chance for Fire Damage
  • (15) Ragnarok - Chance for Knockdown
  • (15) Touch of Lady Grey - Chance for Negative Damage
  • (17) Achilles' Heel - Chance for Res Debuff

Level 10: Tactical Training: Maneuvers

  • (A) Reactive Defenses - Defense
  • (11) Reactive Defenses - Defense/Endurance
  • (11) Reactive Defenses - Endurance/RechargeTime
  • (13) Reactive Defenses - Defense/RechargeTime
  • (13) Reactive Defenses - Defense/Endurance/RechargeTime
  • (36) Reactive Defenses - Scaling Resist Damage

Level 12: Venom Grenade

  • (A) Superior Spider's Bite - Accuracy/Damage
  • (17) Superior Spider's Bite - Damage/RechargeTime
  • (31) Superior Spider's Bite - Accuracy/Damage/RechargeTime
  • (31) Superior Spider's Bite - Damage/Endurance/RechargeTime
  • (34) Superior Spider's Bite - Accuracy/Damage/Endurance/RechargeTime
  • (34) Superior Spider's Bite - RechargeTime/Global Toxic

Level 14: Boxing

  • (A) Empty

Level 16: Combat Jumping

  • (A) Luck of the Gambler - Defense/Increased Global Recharge Speed

Level 18: Frag Grenade

  • (A) Positron's Blast - Accuracy/Damage
  • (19) Positron's Blast - Chance of Damage(Energy)
  • (19) Bombardment - Chance for Fire Damage
  • (25) Javelin Volley - Chance of Damage(Lethal)
  • (29) Overwhelming Force - Damage/Chance for Knockdown/Knockback to Knockdown
  • (31) Explosive Strike - Chance for Smashing Damage

Level 20: Tactical Training: Leadership

  • (A) Gaussian's Synchronized Fire-Control - To Hit Buff
  • (21) Gaussian's Synchronized Fire-Control - To Hit Buff/Recharge
  • (21) Gaussian's Synchronized Fire-Control - To Hit Buff/Recharge/Endurance
  • (23) Gaussian's Synchronized Fire-Control - Recharge/Endurance
  • (23) Gaussian's Synchronized Fire-Control - To Hit Buff/Endurance
  • (25) Gaussian's Synchronized Fire-Control - Chance for Build Up

Level 22: Mental Training

  • (A) Run Speed IO

Level 24: Tough

  • (A) Unbreakable Guard - Resistance
  • (40) Unbreakable Guard - Resistance/Endurance/RechargeTime
  • (48) Unbreakable Guard - Resistance/Endurance
  • (50) Unbreakable Guard - +Max HP

Level 26: Fortification

  • (A) Gladiator's Armor - End/Resist
  • (27) Gladiator's Armor - Resistance
  • (27) Gladiator's Armor - Recharge/Resist
  • (29) Gladiator's Armor - TP Protection +3% Def (All)

Level 28: Serum

  • (A) Preventive Medicine - Heal
  • (40) Preventive Medicine - Heal/Endurance
  • (43) Preventive Medicine - Endurance/RechargeTime
  • (46) Preventive Medicine - Heal/RechargeTime
  • (48) Preventive Medicine - Heal/RechargeTime/Endurance
  • (48) Preventive Medicine - Chance for +Absorb

Level 30: Frenzy

  • (A) Armageddon - Damage
  • (34) Armageddon - Damage/Endurance
  • (36) Armageddon - Chance for Fire Damage
  • (37) Obliteration - Chance for Smashing Damage
  • (37) Eradication - Chance for Energy Damage
  • (37) Touch of Lady Grey - Chance for Negative Damage

Level 32: Weave

  • (A) Shield Wall - Defense/Endurance
  • (33) Shield Wall - Defense
  • (33) Shield Wall - Defense/Endurance/Recharge
  • (33) Shield Wall - +Res (Teleportation), +5% Res (All)

Level 35: Hasten

  • (A) Recharge Reduction IO
  • (36) Recharge Reduction IO

Level 38: School of Sharks

  • (A) Positron's Blast - Damage/Range
  • (39) Positron's Blast - Chance of Damage(Energy)
  • (39) Bombardment - Chance for Fire Damage
  • (39) Javelin Volley - Chance of Damage(Lethal)
  • (40) Trap of the Hunter - Chance of Damage(Lethal)

Level 41: Arctic Breath

  • (A) Superior Frozen Blast - Accuracy/Damage
  • (42) Superior Frozen Blast - Damage/Endurance
  • (42) Superior Frozen Blast - Accuracy/Damage/Endurance
  • (42) Superior Frozen Blast - Accuracy/Damage/Recharge
  • (43) Superior Frozen Blast - Recharge/Chance for Immobilize
  • (43) Achilles' Heel - Chance for Res Debuff

Level 44: Tactical Training: Assault

  • (A) Endurance Reduction IO

Level 47: Maneuvers

  • (A) Luck of the Gambler - Defense/Endurance
  • (50) Luck of the Gambler - Defense
  • (50) Luck of the Gambler - Defense/Increased Global Recharge Speed

Level 49: Assault

  • (A) Endurance Reduction IO

Level 1: Conditioning | Hidden 

Level 1: Brawl





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My own experience with Crabberminds is that they're fun solo but the pets just can't handle the punishment of really challenging (fun) team battles. Spiderlings, in particular, just seem to evaporate and accomplish nothing, despite stacked leadership bonuses and unique pet-buff IOs. My own Crab has no pets and no Hasten.


I would also classify Frenzy as a "solo power" because a Crab on a team will struggle to gather up the crowd needed to pull off an effective Frenzy. I think Arm Lash is a more practical melee attack that can take the same IOs. If you've practiced hitting multiple targets with your Sands of Mu as a lowbie, you'll be able to use the small AoE of Arm Lash.


I have a lot fewer attacks and fewer procs than you do so I can't really say how your attack chain will work, though I suspect you don't really need both Channelgun and Longfang to go along with five ranged AoEs. I'd probably lose one filler attack and put a couple more slots in Stamina, and get some set bonuses that you have stopped short of, or slot Super Jump like a real movement power.


In general though, I would say you are hitting all the important benchmarks for playing the tanky crab.


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Some other random Crab Spider thoughts.
Since the leading cause of death for Crab Spiders is Defense Debuffs, I have tried to make sure that I know immediately if my defenses have failed. I have a chat window that displays damage taken, and if that suddenly starts scrolling red messages, I can check my defenses, which are also displayed on the screen. I also tend to keep my inspirations configured oddly so that if I make a wild stab at the F1-F4 keys I will get a defense buff first, then healing if needed, then resistance, depending on how many times I hit it. Things like damage or accuracy buffs I can just hit with the mouse. I also hate missing with my attacks so I always want to know what my last to-hit chance was....


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At the top of your chat bar hit the "1" to create a new tab.

Move it somewhere you can see it.

Hit the Add Tab button and you'll get an interface like this and you can put "Damage Received" and whatever else you want in there.

I recommend including something like Rewards that isn't red and will scroll by frequently in combat. If the only thing you include in there is Damage Received it will just stay red all the time and you won't notice if you start taking new hits.


Edited by Two Dollar Bill
Can't spell.
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Hello OP @optimistic, bit late to the conversation but I'm here!


I feel your pain, I love crabby playstyle but had the same issues you do - that the pets just aren't good for solo play on anything past +3/4. I have tried everything - from trying to juggle support hybrid and barrier, trying to quasi tank with provoke, keeping them ranged with group fly, so on. Nothing seemed to work to keep them alive. So while they do pretty good damage (for a pet), their survivability is pretty blah even if you try to focus on it. So, you have a few options - 


1. Play on lower difficulty. 

2. Treat them as a quasi DPS cooldown, more than "pets" per say. Meaning you use them just to help burn something down faster and then forget about them. Using them in this way means you don't have to build for recharge either. 

3. Omit pets in your build entirely, which frees up a few power picks and many slots to put elsewhere.

4. Do keep in mind you can have more than a single build on a character. What I do is have a "tanky" Crabber for solo play, and a "Crabbermind" build for team play, and swap between them as needed.


Honestly, my best results (for solo) was using a durable flying crabber, without pets. This build has performed the best when I was soloing +4/8. It's a flying ranged AOE focus, with many damage procs and debuffs built in. She runs full toggles, and has no END issues with Ageless. Here are some of the perks -


1. Extremely durable - 45%+ to all defenses, plus 56% to flying defense. Since she is a flyer, her defenses perform very well. And she has very good resists as well, 80% to smashing, lethal, fire, and cold, with a respectable 60% to energy, negative, and toxic, and her lowest is 44% psionic.

2. AoE Damage - Her AoE rotation is - Venom Grenade, Suppression, Frag Grenade, Electric Fences. You can also pop Aim and Mu lightning for single targets as well. And all of her attacks has some kind of debuff and/or damage procs. She chews through groups just fine, its Elite Bosses that can take a little bit to down. 

3. A bit of CC from Electric Fences, its worth slotting them to prevent runners, and you can keep it up 100%. My duration is 47 seconds, with a 6 second recharge time.

4. Perma-Serum - You can use it both as a heal, and as a +hitpoint buff.

5. Runs double Maneuver and Assault toggles, with the Leadership Toggle, meaning her mere presence is a very good party buffer.

6. Manages to squeeze in Elusive Maneuvers for respectable -fly debuff resistance. You aren't immune from getting knocked down, but you are resistant to it. It happens but not often.


Note - When looking at the Defenses/Resists, dont be fooled by Elusive Maneuvers. Yes it provides a passive def bonus, but as soon as you attack or do anything that nice def boost vanishes.


Playstyle wise, it feels like you are playing a flying tank, of sorts. If you like ranged damage, but hate being squishy like some Blasters or Corruptors can be, you might very well enjoy it. It feels like you are playing a flying fortress bomber.


Anyway, just wanted to share. I wish they would give SoA's and Widows an update, but I doubt that will happen at this point. So I have run lots and lots of tests, leveled 3 different SoA's, probably spent around 4 billion on several crabber builds, and this is what I have found works for me the best, when solo. When playing on a team, I usually drop some of my defenses (usually aren't needed) for additional pet DPS. But there have been times where I was the most durable one on the team which was funny.


So here's the build with a screenshot of values.





But feel free to have a look. I love crabbys too, but always felt the pets were more gimicky and lackluster than effective. 


Hope this helps!

Sin's Hovercrab.mxd


PS - Also far as the frenzy power goes, it actually makes a decent afk-farming power if you have enough regen/def/res to afk farm on lower difficulty, it's been awhile but I believe my "afk farmy" crabby can do +3? It's not as fast as an actual farmer by any means, but its nice to farm veteran levels and incarnate materials while doing housechores and stuff. Power is personal preference really, but overall the melee crabby powers are kind of "blah." But don't let that stop you from using them if you like them.

Edited by Neiska
Added @OP
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