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Level 30 Ice/Ice Sentinel Lives To Tell Tales


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It has been seven levels since I last posted (See  post ), and this level 30 Sentinel has significantly changed.  As it has evolved, I finally get this build.  I came from the blaster world, and I found myself building just another blaster but in the Sentinel archetype.  The Build was all power, but was plagued with accuracy, health, and End problems.  It took about seven levels and a lot of Influence, and the Build is finally rolling.

It took a lot of In-Game time for me to realize-- the Sentinel isn’t a blaster, it isn’t a tank, and it isn’t a controller—it’s really a ranged-scrapper.  I had to learn to build him that way, play him that way, and slot him that way. And now, he is a blast.  I’m know my build (See below) still has remnants of a blaster (aim, hasten, and a lot of damage IOs) but he is now heart(ier) and will only get tougher as I run through the 30s. 


Play Strategy

I solo most everything fine without the END issues as before.  I still carry at least six blues into battle, but I’m not dependent on them like before.  I usually attack a mob of 4-5 with a Bitter Freeze Ray to lock down the LT, followed by a Chilling Ray on another villain, and start blasting the others.  I’ll keep zapping the LT with Chilling Ray and wipe out the others, run into the mob if I need some more End with Moisture Absorption and then dart back out and keep firing damage after damage.  I originally was fearful of this, given I’m taking a ranged character and running into mobs, but in-game, it is not too bad.  I might drop a fraction of health, but by the time I dart away, the trade-off was worth it (nearly full END and ready to fight). Plus, I’m not wholly dependent on blues for every mission; I just pop one when I don’t want to slow down through a mish.  Most times, my health does not dip below ¾, and I always have a single-target blast (Ice Bolt, Ice Blast, or Bitter Ice Blast) ready to fire off.  If in a bind, I use Hoarfrost as a last-resort to boost HP and self heal and keep up the good-fight.

I know some do not prefer the single target setup, and I’ve seen builds focusing on AOE (See this build).  Unless you are farming or running at a +2/+3 hero and catching large mobs, single target is fine for soloing missions.   I did pick up Blizzard at 30 and it will be nice to have. 


In-Game Drawbacks

A few downsides I’ve seen In-Game. 

First, Elite Bosses are a nightmare soloing for this Sentinel.  He is sturdy, but not that sturdy.  He is powerful, but not that powerful.  I pancake several times, and I could only defeat them while eating Lucks/Sturdy/Reds and a prayer.  I eventually can solo them, but definitely no easy task and had some debt afterwards. 

Second, large mobs cannot be attacked head-on like scrappers can. I usually have to pull, run, set-up, and fight—just like the good ol’ blaster days.  However, I knew this when I bypassed Ice Storm and deferred a true AOE until Blizzard.  Design choice, here.

Third, OMG—Bitter Freeze Ray’s animation time so slow.  I really can only “open” a fight with it.  After that, the animation is so slow the villains are on me too fast.  The good part, however, is you can inflict damage and it will not “wake them,” like with Chilling Ray (See below)

Fourth, the build is toggle heavy, especially with Maneuvers.  Toggles are spinning all the time. It is not for the set-it-and-leave-it player, as many times during battle, for some reason, a toggle will drop off, so I must always be vigilant to ensure they remain active.  I usually fire up all of the toggles before battle and keep Aim on auto-select, instead of Hasten because, honestly, I can see the yellow Hasten is up quicker than the Aim button.  With single target, accuracy is vital.  Once the toggles are swirling, I’m ready to fight, and I’ve had to train myself not to panic too quickly.  I can take some damage. I don’t need to flee when the health starts dropping. The Ice Armor can take some pounding (however, a sidenote, Ice Armor is no where the strongest secondary, so if pure numbers are your cup of tea or you are looking for uber-tough, Ice Armor is likely not a good choice; I went with it for thematic purposes, and I’ve gotten use to the “frost” covering my character).


Thoughts On Powers

As for powers, the only one I really regret is Frost Breath.  The animation is too slow. At early levels the target would reach me and strike before the animation was done.  Even now, it has minimal impact and the range, even with slotting, is only so-so. However, I haven’t given it much by way of enhancements. I likely will Respec it out but have not done so yet.  

Chilling Ray is unique because if the baddie is encased in a block of ice and you shoot the villain, he will wake from it because it is classified as a Sleep (see here for more complaints on this), unlike its counterpart, Freeze Ray, for blasters.  I don’t even use it in groups (as someone will surely attack it) and even on missions with Allies, they invariably hit it, waking the baddie.  If you are team-focused, skip it.  During missions, I had to train myself to cycle past the frozen villain while “asleep” and focus on blasting the others nearby.  It also eliminates using Frost Breath nearby too because invariably the Frost Breath would hit the ‘frozen’ baddie, waking him, which is another downside to Frost Breath.  Despite the shortcomings, Chilling Ray has become a vital power for me.  I sometimes lock down a LT with it and take on the rest; alternatively, if I come across a boss and a minion/LT, I will lock down the minion/LT and engage the boss.  (of note, as a I have it slotted, it will not lock down bosses)

Oh, Hasten, what should I do with ye? It may be excessive, and I would be open to any ideas on its true usefulness. I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it to everyone, especially for Ice Storm-->Frost Breath --> Blizzard attacks, but for single targets I feel it is important.

Those are my thoughts on a level 30 Ice/Ice Sentinel working his way to lvl 50. 


Questions For My Fellow Sentinels

  • Below is my build; any ideas on how to improve?
  • IO Sets you think would be best suited for the build?
  • What to add in my 30s?
    • I was thinking slotting at 31 Kismet +ToHit  in Maneuvers? Best place to slot it?
    • My initial plan is Permafrost at 32, Tactics at 34, and Frost Protection at 36? Is this a good order?



This Hero build was built using Mids Reborn 3.4.6

Click this DataLink to open the build!

Crimson Hail: Level 49 Science Sentinel
Primary Power Set: Ice Blast
Secondary Power Set: Ice Armor
Power Pool: Flight
Power Pool: Speed
Power Pool: Leadership

Hero Profile:
Level 1: Ice Bolt

  • (A) Accuracy IO
  • (3) Damage Increase IO
  • (3) Endurance Reduction
  • (5) Damage Increase
Level 1: Frozen Armor
  • (A) Endurance Reduction
  • (5) Defense Buff IO
  • (7) Defense Buff IO
  • (7) Defense Buff IO
Level 2: Ice Blast
  • (A) Devastation - Damage/Endurance
  • (13) Devastation - Accuracy/Damage/Endurance/Recharge
  • (13) Devastation - Accuracy/Damage
  • (15) Devastation - Accuracy/Damage/Recharge
  • (15) Devastation - Damage/Recharge
Level 4: Fly
  • (A) Flight Speed
Level 6: Frost Breath
  • (A) Slow
  • (17) Range IO
Level 8: Chilling Ray
  • (A) Range IO
  • (17) Sleep Duration IO
  • (19) Endurance Reduction
Level 10: Hoarfrost
  • (A) Recharge Reduction IO
  • (19) Healing
Level 12: Hasten
  • (A) Recharge Reduction
  • (21) Recharge Reduction
Level 14: Frigid Shield
  • (A) Endurance Reduction
  • (21) Healing IO
  • (23) Healing
Level 16: Aim
  • (A) Gaussian's Synchronized Fire-Control - To Hit Buff
  • (23) Recharge Reduction
  • (25) Endurance Reduction
Level 18: Bitter Ice Blast
  • (A) Damage Increase
  • (25) Accuracy IO
  • (27) Damage Increase IO
  • (27) Endurance Reduction IO
  • (29) Damage Increase
Level 20: Wet Ice
  • (A) Endurance Reduction
Level 22: Moisture Absorption
  • (A) Recharge Reduction
Level 24: Glacial Armor
  • (A) Endurance Reduction
Level 26: Bitter Freeze Ray
  • (A) Recharge Reduction
Level 28: Maneuvers
  • (A) Luck of the Gambler - Defense
  • (29) Luck of the Gambler - Defense/Increased Global Recharge Speed
Level 30: [Empty] 
Level 32: Blizzard
  • (A) Recharge Reduction IO
Level 35: [Empty] 
Level 38: [Empty] 
Level 41: [Empty] 
Level 44: [Empty] 
Level 47: [Empty] 
Level 49: [Empty] 
Level 1: Brawl
  • (A) Empty
Level 1: Opportunity 
Level 1: Sprint
  • (A) Run Speed

Level 2: Rest

  • (A) Interrupt Reduction

Level 1: Swift

  • (A) Run Speed

Level 1: Health

  • (A) Miracle - Heal/Endurance
  • (9) Numina's Convalesence - +Regeneration/+Recovery
  • (9) Panacea - +Hit Points/Endurance

Level 1: Hurdle

  • (A) Jumping

Level 1: Stamina

  • (A) Performance Shifter - Chance for +End
  • (11) Endurance Modification
  • (11) Efficacy Adaptor - EndMod

Level 4: Afterburner 





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Proc the heck outta Bitter Freeze Ray. You can throw in 3 Change for Damage from Hold sets (Neuronic Shutdown, Gladiator's Net, Ghost Widow's Embrace), 1 from Slow, and Gladiator's Javelin.


Put Tough, Weave, and Combat Jumping into your build


Add in the normal stuff:

Shield Wall 5% Resistance

Steadfast Protection 3% Defense

Gladiator's Armor 3% Defense

Preventative Medicine Absorb Proc


I would focus on reaching softcap of defense for smashing/lethal and try and get as much smashing / lethal resistance as possible. Useful sets for this include Luck of the Gambler, Unbreakable Guard, Preventative Medicine


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