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3box combos involving a melee + bard? Also SK vs mage petFollow

#1 Aug 07 2012 at 2:01 PM Rating: Good
4 posts
Heya, been running a 3box combo of casters (lev 77 mage main with mage/necro sub + bard), and it is really powerful, but I want to mix things up and try other combos for fun. For this alternate box combo to try... I wanted just 1 character to be a melee, because 2+ melees in a box is such a headache!

I really wanted to try to make SK + Shaman + Bard work. I was hoping I could keep it going with two J1 rogue mercs and have shaman main healing (focusing entirely on healing AA's) for as long as I can before having to use a cleric merc. I am wondering if that combo with shaman pet + Sk pet + rogue mercs having both shaman and bard melee proc buffs (panther and storm line stack as far as I know) can kill as fast as the powerful 2caster/bard box combo, maybe even faster! (but I doubt it, the caster combo kills really fast). The problem is that the 76 mage pet has already passed the J1 merc in regards to tanking at level 77 (I have all the best pet focus items for the upcoming levels in bank, and have lots of pet AA's on mage). I'm worried the SK would never approach the DPS output nor the tanking ability of just the mage pet (who now hits in the 300's very fast with pet affinity + bard haste + overhaste) without massive twinking or AA farming on SK?

Summary: at what AA and gear level would the SK approach the dps output and tankability of mage pet from lv. 70-85? (assuming mage has best pet focus items). Will it ever happen at these levels?

Another idea: I wanted to try to make a rogue box work, because rogues just seem appealing in general to me. I have the ability to do a rogue/mage box, but would have to use the tank merc (I am solo 3boxing so upgrading the J1-J5 probably won't happen till the lev 80-90's) in order for rogue to DPS. This means I'd be using a subpar tank to the mage pet. I don't see a solution for this however, because running a rogue + character tank is just too much micro for me to want to box. I feel stuck here....

Anyway, any advice (or just 3boxing input in general, some of your favorite combos!) is appreciated
#2 Aug 07 2012 at 3:42 PM Rating: Excellent
603 posts

As far as SK vs Mage Airpet tanking goes,
I think that the SK will have to be in HOT T1 gear and 1500 well spent AA's minimum incl defensive aas maxed) at lvl 80 to compete tankwise vs the Mage air pet. They may outdps the airpet with less aas if a HOT t1 weapon...I noticed that over time with my SK in my main box trio (SK,Shammy,Necro-main.. sometimes subbed for Mage/Berz/Wiz).

The main advantages I noticed with the SK is the ease of aggro control and locking aggro especially AE aggro in messy add situations. Even before my SK reached the point of out tanking the mage airpet he was able to take and hold aggro earlier allowing the others in group to immediately burn down the mob faster than if the pet was to hold aggro as main tank. Melee DPS wise an SK, even with all dps AA's invested, is noticeably lower than a similar geared and AA'd dual wielding Warrior or any other melee dps classes that Ive played. Excluding the relevant lvl airpet which the SK beats dps wise..

By lvl 85 the SK needs HOT T2 gear imo. and about 2500 AA's minimum in my estimation, to compete tank wise with the relevant airpet at that level..But by then the SK would have his Malarian mitigation discs,"Leechcurse" disc ,"Visage of Death" AA, "Harmtouch" AA, "Malarian Skin" mitigation spell,"Confontation of Power" spell etc for harder situations.

By level 90, the SK would need VOA T1 gear (or HOT T4) all slots AC augged and 3500AAs (bare minimum all defensives maxed..imho) to outtank the relevant lvl airpet.

It will take some AA farming, AC aug farming and current group gear from 85 to bring up the SK but the rewards are great as he can pull and tank if you decide to box most of the progression in HOT for example. Though I have seen some Mages molo their way where few dare to go before.

I am happy with my SK,Shm Nec trio... Though I find that the Mage fills in very good with an SK/Shm...Damage Shields..their stunning airpet, that can emergency tank in many situations and good DD lines of spells not to mention COH...all of my characters pets are spoilt with the benefit from mage toys etc.

So if I had to vote on a trio for you ..I'd Vote SK/Mage/Bard with a pocket Shammy alt on same account as Bard if poss Smiley: smile

Good luck and enjoy.

Edited, Aug 7th 2012 6:54pm by hexeez
#3 Aug 14 2012 at 12:51 AM Rating: Good
13 posts
Best combo for me is Bard and Magician and Necromancer. All three are 95 with full T4 Voa gear. Can take down any named. Easy to play.
#4 Aug 14 2012 at 5:56 PM Rating: Excellent
26 posts
I started with a warrior and druid combo, but haste and slow became an issue so I added a chanter. Yah, its tough to manage the chanter boxing on crowd control, but hey, that makes it fun. :)

Added Merc healer and two rogues. Now its a pretty solid group. :)

Edited, Aug 14th 2012 7:57pm by nazggul
#5 Oct 21 2012 at 6:23 PM Rating: Good
I have a Monk, Shammy and cleric with Tank merc, rogue merc and a cleric merc and i am very satisfied.
Easy pulls, good buffs and enough heal power for the most situations.
And i dont need to hunt all time for better armor.....Just need 2 good weapons for the monk.
Shammy Panther hits the Mercs too. So Monk, Shammy pet, Tank merc and rogue merc. Not bad dps.

(no SK in it but might be worth a try.....SKs need tons of aas)

Taifun, Monk, 100,>4200 aas Vazaelle
Wotan, Shaman, 100,>4500 aas, Vazaelle
Ladili, Cleric 100, >4000 aas
Knochenbrecher, Shadowknight, 97, >1200 aas
tell me if u want a bit chatting :-)
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#6 Nov 08 2012 at 4:28 AM Rating: Good
1 post
Ahh the days of 3 boxing! Cant say i miss it 100% but it was productive and efficient in most aspects. I will probably be rambling on a bit because this topic sparked my fond memories.

I used SK, Mage, Necro most of the time swapping in wiz for necro when i was feeling lazy. Usually had 2 healer mercs and the first lucky player to send me a tell wanting to leech =)

All toons were 85 when i did this and i was doing UF content at the time. It was a breeze in all aspects really. Pull with SK sick pet click a few macro'd dot lines on necro, taunt spells on SK and spam damage with mage. Like said previously i used SK for aggro reasons over mage pet but later on before taking a break from EQ i was only running necro and mage most of the time doing the same content just as easily with a few FD's on necro when he grabbed aggro.

Currently i recently returned as a bard main and wow! Bards are a very impressive class and i would have one in my trio now for sure.

Taking current content of the game into account, if i were to 3 box again this would be my set up:

1. SK
- im familiar with them
- Mortal coil is amazing
- Numerous AA abilities that are very helpful in staying alive
- Epic 2.0 click

2. Mage
- once again familiar with them already
- pet as off tank or secondary tank is a must imo
- CotH
- easy to run the toon with 4-6 macro keys including ones for burns

3. Bard
- can mez and AE mez which is particularly easy to manage while boxing now with the cooldown on the gem
- bard speed (a must have now that i play bard)
- the best puller flat out (played monk main for 5 years)
- slow, haste, over haste, about 500ac buff, added procs, increase spell damage....the list goes on
- also easy to run with a few macro keys

4. J5 healer
- Probably on reactive because with the bards regen possibilities mana isnt much of an issue so ive seen.

5+6. Caster DPS
- decent damage on balanced and usually not much aggro issue
- amazing damage on Burn though might need a few extra taunts from the SK
- can take more of a beating than you might think with a reactive healer

I would expect to have no trouble with anything through T3 VoA with this set up and 95 cultural+ gear/augs. And having the bard be able to basically stop time at any point with the AE mez and possibly a few single target mez if resisted, i dont see having many close calls either. Take the time to set up dummy proof macros on the off toons and everything should run flawlessly.
#7 Nov 21 2012 at 3:04 AM Rating: Decent
24 posts
I'm boxing Mage 95, Beast 95 in VOA T4 Group gear and Bard at 93 in T3 group gear. 2 healer 1 caster merc,

I admit the dps on the Beast is lower than ideal as he doesnt mellee due to no Tank, so another Mage would be more efficient and put down in
the region of double the Beasts dps but the Beasts been my main since They were released when i dropped my druid and just cant think of quitting him.

Me and my wife used to duo but added the bard when we came back to EQ last christmas and i love the Bard, awesome pulling and the mana/dps/lulls and mez + the caster merc have really opened doors in whats achieveable.

I've 3 boxed a ton of T4 Named and alot of the progression with this party despite its short commings.Obviously theres some named that just dont play
fair so for whats basically a pet/caster group dont seem achieveable.

Enzo, I cant comment on how good a SKs tanking is as ive no experience of playing one above lev70 but i think you'd stuggle with that
group makeup in VoA purely on the healing side with one cleric merc unless the SK tanks maybe twice as well as a 95 T4 focus Earth pet.
We've found alot of the time one healer merc just isnt reliable enough to keep the pet up 100% of the time, and so run 2 1 on reactive 1 on Balanced.

I cant remember the last time the pets lost aggro not even with the mage chain chaincasting its just a none issue unless the pet dies but even then aggro
is on the warder.

We grouped alot with a Necro instead of the caster merc in the T3 Stages and for sure he could grab aggro and it was an issue till he got some AA's down in
subtlety etc but so long as he was fast on the FD etc it just made things a little more exciting.

Real groupings fun for sure but thanks to my Box I'm basically done with Gear and Augs from T4 on The mains , and The bard has all his T4 in a Bag just waiting for the DING to 95.

#8 Nov 21 2012 at 3:08 AM Rating: Decent
24 posts

What Merc team do you use with that group ?
#9 Nov 21 2012 at 5:42 AM Rating: Good
3,212 posts
Citraka when asking a person with 13 posts, when they posted last in Aug, it maybe quicker to send a PM if you really hope for a reply.

+ 1 to post count.
For Truth, Justice, and the Norrathian Way!
Tinkering is a trade skill which will not prevent the mobs from hitting you.
#10 Nov 21 2012 at 6:27 AM Rating: Decent
24 posts
Hmm Good point, Hadnt really noticed the dates prior to Enzos post, Been a while sinc ei played a Necro but managed it here on the forum
#11 Nov 09 2013 at 12:15 PM Rating: Good
2 posts
I am three boxing with two bards and a monk, not the most desirable in some ways, but I love it. We normally use a J5 tank and a J5 healer or two, sometimes i sub one of the healers for a melee dps or a caster, though I always seem to get casters killed. The cool thing about this combo is that any one of the players can Fade or FD, so we almost never wipe, also with all of them speedy, we can get places fast.
We could do the dailies before all the characters were high enough to get the task. One bard was ahead in level, but behind in AA, now the bard (3 months old) and the monk (11 years old) are at the same level and aa, while the other bard (12 years old) is catching up in level. Bard and Monk are 92, 2nd bard is 86. Both bards can twist and have great weapons so they are putting out good dps, not as much as the Monk.
The reason I ended up with this combo is I came back after not playing for years and made a new bard, then enjoyed myself so much that I brought back my old main monk and old bard. I love to pull. Pulling are us. So I'm diggin the new EQ. Don't plan on raiding anymore, just like leveling and getting some gear, meeting up with old friends etc. Rediscovering old content.
One cool thing about this combo is you can add any class, and higher class dps folks love to group with a bard, and you will explode their dps output due to the combo of the monk and bard aura's. Both of those auras do wonderful things to dps output. So you will not lack for new friends if you want them.
Be sure to make a fellowship and light fires. Its a handy way to get somewhere.
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