Really, most of the guides are so old and out- of- date, they make absolutely terrible advice. Note this build was intended for PvP but fairs well in PvE as well. Reposted from elsewhere.
I've had a couple of people PMing me asking what my tree looks like, so here:
- 6/5 Ghost Shadow
- 5/4 Assassination Mastery
- 6/5 Strike of Pain
- 4/4 Killer of Darkness
- 4/3 Pain of Nightmare
- 4/3 Sudden Strike
- 5/4 Hurried Pain
- 4/4 Lurking Sting
- 3/3 Advanced Lurking Sting
- 3/3 Blood Burn Strike
- 1/2 Toxic Strike
- 4/3 Pain Amplification
- 3/3 Pain Strike
- 4/3 Darkness Poison
- 2/2 Amplified Endings
- 4/4 Strength Fortification
- 2/2 Offense Break
- 1/2 Secret Art- Agony
- 2/2 Intensified Nightmare
- 3/2 Seed of Agony
- 3/3 Darkness Expert
- 3/3 Venomous Blade
- 1/1 Mutilation
- 2 ghost shadow
- 1 strike of pain
- 1 pain of nightmare
- 3 sudden strike
- 1 pain amplification
- 2 darkness poison
- 1 seed of agony
- 1 hurried pain
- 5 assassination mastery
Ok, I can already hear the "oh, but this skill is a waste of points" and such. Just because a build is put up doesn't mean it fits your play style. This build fits my play style and accomplishes what I was looking to do. So what is
Zol trying to do? Glad you asked!
As far as I can tell, bleeds are not effected by crit dodge, crit defense (they can't crit), divine shield or even sonata of water. This is guaranteed damage
, no matter how miniscule. This includes Mutilation, which places a debuff that increases poison damage taken to the target, inflicts a bleed because it's a dark skill, and bleeds the target for 1% of it's MAXIMUM HP
. Ouch; the more HP you have, the more this will hurt. The most optimum time, and my absolute favorite timing
for Mutilation: catching a vampire right after Bloodrite.
Those partied with me in 12s have probably noticed I'm not
afraid of jumping into Feasts purposely to kill vampires. That is why- I want
to catch them with Bloodrite still active.
The more bleed damage I do, the more it will return to me in heals.
Keep in mind, bleeds compliment the damage you do with your attacks. Poisons also scale with your wrath.
[*]Maximize Seed of Agony.
Think of seed of agony as a crappier BoR. It's single target and only goes into effect every time the target attacks. This is similar to just maximizing bleeds. These bleeds, however, drain 10% of the target's current
HP with every attack with 4 agony orbs. Combine this with the fact that you can stack 3 seeds.
A new stack of Seed of Agony resets the timer.
[Thank you Cosette for being my test subject~]
[*]Exploit extra damage.
"Assassination mastery"- the hell? Alright, let me explain. Everyone uses MP and obviously, skills do more damage than auto attacks. Derp, right? Why not to try and exploit that? Granted, I'm not rebel priest with those insane drains, but I can drain and add half of that drain as attack damage
. A mage with 42,000 MP will be drained around 3,000 MP and add 1,500 damage on top of my normal skill damage and
Of course, this isn't as effective on, say, another assassin or a warrior. However, putting those runes in wasn't to focus on those classes. It was actually made as an anti- priest and mage measure. Oddly enough, you'd be surprised at how often priests or mages don't seem to use mana serums (or are they always in cool down?).
[*]Get a spam- able Thrust of Pain.
This was an important one. This skill does several things:
Being Dyos, my dark skills have a 20% chance of interrupting a target's skill at 90 energy. Not a large percent, but enough to make it highly annoying should it proc often enough.
Remember that Assassination Mastery? Guess what- it's effects are on Throat Seal and Thrust of Pain.
Agony orbs. If nothing else, agony orbs. It's fast, it's spam- able; give me those orbs for those finishers ASAP.
[*]Maximize Lurking Sting
The highly regarded useless skill in question. Only, it's not so useless if you set up for it. Think of it similar to bloodlust warrior's skills: it drains HP to add as damage. That's exactly what Blood Burn Strike does. It is the only skill to gain additional accuracy in the venom tree.
[*]OMG that Pitch.
I've heard of people overlooking this skill.
Pitch is a guaranteed interrupt- enough time to give you that one extra attack that could mean life or death. Being the build I am, it is not
uncommon for me to see a 25,000- 50,000 pitch kill a mage across the room
(and then seeing the text of "omg hax reported"). Either or, the point here is this skill makes pitch hit harder and gives a guaranteed interrupt/ silence.
[*]Maximize stealth speed.
[Taken from vexxers combat log on 8.27.2013:]
I still run around in stealth just because I walk faster in stealth than I do outside of it. Seriously, I hate the movement penalty stealth had and I'd rather keep my speed buff for a time I really feel I need it.
[*]Debuff, debuff and buff.
You'll noticed that I actually took the time to put points in raising my attack. This is one of the main 'pros' I heard about venom- it had the highest base attack out of the three trees.
Toxic Strike reduces defense of targets not at full health. On a server with maximum resistances, I figure reducing defense will help increase my damage. If nothing else, this can be tossed to the side of PvE and help take down bosses that much quicker.
Darkness Expert increases your dark damage while reducing the target's masteries.
[*]Keep those orbs!
Getting 80% chance to not use up agony orbs on use of a finisher is amazing. Seed of Agony drains 10% of the target's current HP every time they attack (four agony orbs and runed to 3/2).
Each agony orb adds attack. This, again, goes along with the most heard of pro of venom, so keeping agony orbs just means higher damage in general.
You heard me. An assassin with an AoE- venom is the only assassin tree with this ability. Nyos makes all targets attacking you suffer poison damage as long as Nyos's Poison/ Blood are up. As part of the Dysil's Wrath expansion released 11.27.13 on official, Mutilation has gained a 90 degree AoE arc.
[*]Add some stability to so many instabilities.
Venom is a tree of chance; a gamble, if you will. If
you crit, your target is silenced. Your dark skills have a chance
of interrupting the target. Dyos' Poison has a chance
of resetting the cooldown on Deadly Chaser. Your dark skills have a chance
of activating Dyos Poison.
You'll notice I did NOT opt for dark's rapid shadow effect on Thrust of Pain just because it'd be adding one more gamble. The added critical chance is nice, though.
Soul Power, Equipment and Other Notes
I picked Dyos. I found that the interrupts, with even only a 20% chance of happening, to be more valuable to having immunity to controlling effects.
I also went with accuracy and health armor. I wanted to add as much as I could to Lurking Sting while being able to hit evasion builds. Accuracy and critical damage with more accuracy IDs over critical damage due to venom lacking any real accuracy boosts. (IE: Acc/acc/ crit damage VS acc/ crit damage/ crit damage.)
[No pet buffs, no gemlights, no ID'd fashion, no pray buffs, etc. Armor IS 100% reforged. Nyos and Dyos soul trees are 100% completed. Updated 12.3.2013]
My second rune energy was fervor. Every time I use a physical attack, it adds 1% critical chance, up to 10 stacks. For annoying characters, or even Hell Road, between Flair, Assassinate, Nightmare Termination and Throat Seal, it's easy enough to cycle through those attacks for added critical chance and possible silences [on players].
Venom has no dependable silences or stuns. This is probably one of the biggest turn offs for players, especially those used to edge or edge- hybrids. At it's core, I'd have to say venom is more like a constant DPS race- kill them before they kill you.
Maybe you've noticed already, but in case you haven't, ALL of my rune slots were used to have very specific skills. Most were kept inside the venom tree. I don't expect others to mimic my build- again, it fits my playing style and what I was trying to accomplish and nothing more. This post was mainly made to show others what my personal tree looked like as I had gotten quite a few of these PMs, both inside and outside of the game.
I do actually encourage others to try venom. It's a little difficult to adjust to at first, but once you do... Oh it's so much fun~
Pick Your Poison
I've continued to receive a few PMs asking about gear, runes, possible skill rotations and Nyos or Dyos. I'll try to cover some of the more frequent things I've been asked.
As I have mentioned before, venom assassins do not pick up extra accuracy from rune energy or their skill tree besides points invested into Lurking Sting. This makes anything other than accuracy builds very hard to succeed.
can be increased within the venom tree, but they all seem to stem off of Shadow Protection or Vicious Intention. In other words, no lasting boosts which means you'll be relying heavily on what you can muster from your equipment, IDs in both gear and fashion, trinkets and offhands, rings and necklaces as well as pet buffs. This also includes going down Nyos to max out evasion and switching over to Dyos for the full evasion buffs. If you honestly do go this route, I wouldn't suggest just settling for 4 evasion on your fashion.
Stacking critical chance
is very desirable on a venom assassin. Any time you crit with Thrust of Pain, Lurking Sting or Mutilation, your opponent is silenced for 3 seconds. With a Hurried Pain rune, this could easily demolish anyone not stacking critical dodge. However, again, you will need to be able to hit them. Players that stack evasion will remain a constant bane. The same will apply to any venom that stacks critical damage
; you will hurt when you hit- if
, critical dodge
or critical defense
are good complimentary stats along with accuracy. It's hard to tell which one to pick here. Against edge assassins, stacking critical dodge or defense will help immensely as most rely heavily on getting criticals off to kill you. Be aware that your lower health will still make you very susceptible to a warrior's Sacrifice. Of course, even with 89,000-92,000 health fully buffed, even I have been one- shot with Sacrifice from a warrior not at full health. All I can really advise here is pick what you think would be cost effective and more functional for your play style in the end.
Awards extra evasion if Nyos evasion is maxed (standard on all characters);
Awards extra accuracy if Dyos accuracy is maxed (standard on all characters);
- Nyos or Dyos (see matching color for pros)
[I'm aware that Nyos and Dyos award stats other than evasion and accuracy when their respective counterparts are leveled. However, evasion and accuracy are the main things I am asked, so that was my focus.]
Both increase slow and bleed effects; both are effected by rune energy levels;
Dark skills have a chance to trigger Dyos Poison; causes target's casting time to be reduced (says, but not actually sure if it's a misprint); heals the amount of bleed damage done to the player character; Dyos Poison can be triggered more often with higher rune energy;
Dark skills have a chance to trigger Nyos Poison; when attacked by a bleeding target, their bleed effect turn into Nyos Blood and will slow them and reduce their max HP every second; if the target is a player character, you will be healed an equal amount to the bleed; stacks up to 3 times; health loss from Nyos Blood is increased by rune energy;
Dyos Poison has a chance to reset Deadly Chaser's cooldown; your dark skills have a chance to interrupt the target; interrupt chances are increased by rune energy;
Nyos Poison has a chance to reset Deadly Chaser's cooldown and make you immune to controlling effects; chances are increased by rune energy.
Edge- Fervor (listing only up to level 2 rune energy bonuses)
Both have blast orbs increase accuracy; accuracy bonus from blast orbs are increased by rune energy;
Physical skills trigger Dyos' Blade; each Blade increases your critical chance by 1%- up to 5 times;
Physical skills have a chance to trigger's Nyos' Blade; Blade increases your next attacks critical chance; critical chance increased by rune energy.
Both increase the effects of Vicious Intention, Swift Evasion and Shadow of Gale; increases durations and decreases cooldowns; increases effects of Stalking Shadow; increased duration based off of rune energy.
Stalking Shadow, Shadow Protection, Gale of Shadow and Vicious Intention give Dyos' Shadow; Dyos' Shadow gives a chance to remove all controlling effects when you evade an attack; chances of removal increased by rune energy.
Stalking Shadow, Shadow Protection, Gale of Shadow and Vicious Intention grant Nyos' Shadow; Nyos' Shadow has a chance to make you immune to all controlling effects; chances of becoming immune are increased by rune energy.
[*]Invaluable or notable runes to consider
I'm not going to tell you how to build your runes anymore than I've told you "oh, pick Nyos" or "oh, pick Dyos." It's all up to you; however, I can show you runes that may compliment your venom trees.
I covered before in my personal build above in red text. Since both Nyos and Dyos heavily rely on dark skills triggering poison, it's best that you use as many dark skills as you can. Having Thrust of Pain's cooldown reduced even further accomplishes this.
guarantees that your dark attacks will inflict a bleed. Both Nyos and Dyos have effects that happen only when your opponent is bleeding. Again, why add another gamble to your venom build when there are already so many?
Pain of Nightmare
allows you to keep your agony orbs after using a finisher. Bump this up to an 80% chance and you'll really notice the difference in your DPS.
Seed of Agony
goes hand in hand with Pain of Nightmare. The more agony orbs you have, the greater the bleed inflicted on your opponent. As long as you don't use your finishers back to back, you can easily place 3 seeds on a target.
and Darkness Expert
were both runes I heavily considered for my build before deciding upon Assassination Mastery. They fall under the category of buffing by debuffing. Both skills help further to cripple your opponent by reducing their masteries or their resistances and increasing your damage in some form.
runes are now immensely more viable as Vicious Intention no longer removes stealth. The runes only worked when using Vicious Intention in stealth- basically being in Shadow Protection to stay hidden (as using the skill won't remove your combat stealth) or using the skill, get uncovered and quickly attack your opponent before they could react to your sudden appearance.
This is something I don't really believe in, especially in PvP. However, I will usually follow a couple of rules I've imposed upon myself when it comes to skill use.
- Open the assault with Throat Seal;
- Do not use finishers back to back;
- Save Deadly Chaser for mages. If someone flees, LET THEM- you'll find them later and slay them;
- Use Vicious Intention and Deputy of Death sparingly (if you've watched my videos, you can probably count on one hand how many times I used either buff).
Lycan, kindred or human? Well, to be completely honest, I've never looked at human assassin's skill tree for venom and PWE's talent calculator is horribly out of date. However, from the looks of it, kindred and human are similar, if not identical, for venom. Lycans, however, receive the short end of the stick when it comes to the poisonous tree.
Agony orbs have a chance to not be consumed when a finisher is used outside of werewolf form. If the text is actually correct, while you are anthropomorphic (aka "normal"), finishers will have a chance to not be consumed, but once transformed, they will vanish like you did not put points into the skill.
Night Hunter (aka Darkness Expert) triggers mastery reduction only in werewolf form. Unless maxing this skill out with the inclusion of a Darkness Expert rune allows you to stay in werewolf form for seconds on end, this puts a lycan venom assassin at a disadvantage.
Unlike a lycan, humans and kindred will always have a chance to not consume agony orbs. Unlike lycans, humans and kindred can reduce your masteries with any dark attack at any time.
Also, would appreciate it if no one used the white dagger I designed to split apart the two sections without my consent.