Choosing active rifle skills
1. Pick a builder
The first step to making a leech build is to pick a builder – Anima Shot or Anima Burst. Anima Burst is generally the better builder at low gear levels. The burst effect tends to increase your critical penetration rates, which is good when you have low penetration chances.
In addition, passives like Healing Sparks and Donor work very well with Anima Burst at low gear levels, especially if you’re using a heal rating lean, which you generally should before you get purple gear.
However, for various reasons, Anima Shot tends to pull ahead in both DPS and healing once you start to get end-game gear.
These reasons tend to be a complex mix of the Exposed debuff, high hit and penetration ratings making more of your attacks hit (Anima Shot is very sensitive to miss rates), the multiplicative effects of passives, and the increased frequency of shots that let you get more shots out in buff phases (Anima Burst has up to a 1.3 second cast time, while Anima Shot is 1 second exactly).
It’s too complicated to explain briefly, but all testing I’ve done – whether this be dungeon runs, dummy test firing (both short and long tests), and even simple tooltip math put Anima Shot ahead of Anima Burst slightly for healing, and by as much as 200 DPS for damage.
Anima Shot also has some more practical advantages.
The first is its direct heal is more frequent due to the 1 second cast. Once you get a Coney Island Band drop from the raid, you’ll see a large boost in healing and DPS.
However, the Band effect only procs off pure heals, not leeching. Therefore, the faster you can squeeze off direct heals, the higher your uptime with this buff. The same mechanics apply to Veteran, in any situation you might use that. Anima Shot builds Veteran counters faster.
For what it’s worth, the Coney Island Band is one of the main reasons I advocate against using an attack builder rotation from an alternative builder like Hip Fire. If you’re not healing, you’re not getting a massive crit power multiplication.
The second reason in favour of Anima Shot is its heal comes instant, rather than at the end of a 1.3 second cast. This makes switching around group members in need of health much easier with Anima Shot. In heavy group damage fights like Machine Tyrant, Anima Shot is much easier to use as you can simply cycle through group members healing them, rather than relying on group heals.
The third is that Anima Shot gives you some of the highest mobility of any character in the game, with its full running speed and 20 meter range (and 40 meter healing range).
2. Pick consumers
Rifle has up to six viable consumers to use. In general, you always want to take at least two.
is the tank healing consumer. This dramatically outscales any other healing consumer in the game, and a high-end leech healer can get 15,000-strong heals off this if the numbers all align (Breaching Shot giving a penetration on an Elemental Force crit with stacked crit power and self-buffed with Energise while doing a handstand).
Fire in the Hole
is a good DPS consumer, used with Exsanguinate and Elemental Force. Exsanguiante "holds open" Elemental Force, letting Fire in the Hole crit if Fire was cast before Exsanguinate. More details are given in the Blood secondary weapon section. However, outside this use, Fire in the Hole does impose a DPS penalty to an ele force rotation if it does not crit, as it slows down the Elemental Force counter. In that case, you use Three Round Burst to compliment.
Three Round Burst
is useful to manage Elemental Force as an instant resource dump. If you ever need to get rid of one rifle resource in a rotation, then Three Round Burst works best, as it is very quick and advances the Elemental Force counter, speeding up your rotation. Conversely, both Transfuse Anima and Fire in the Hole will impose a time penalty, slowing down your rotation, and hence your DPS. Three Round Burst is also good to shoot off resources quickly before a boss dies, giving you a small DPS boost out of rotation.
Fire at Will
is Three Round Burst's AoE cousin. When I want to take down adds, I usually just swap Three Round Burst in my 6th slot for Fire at Will. This seems to be better than using Suppressing Fire, as maintain anima shot healing leading up to the consumer. For more AoE, can also combine Fire at Will with Lock and Load. Fire at Will is better than the other AoE consumers as is an instant cast.
is good for group healing, as well as sustained tank healing if you don't quite need the heals of Transfuse Anima right now, but might need more healing over time. For everyone attacking the target for eight seconds after you hit with Anima Vessel receives a leech heal effect at your heal rate, passive bonuses, and extra bonus if the target is afflicted.
This means that a top leech healer with hunger signets can give everyone in a group an almost constant 20% leech return rate. This is extremely powerful, and can completely heal through many group healing situations, even the reflect shields in Hell Eternal. Also useful for the raid because it will heal two tanks at once, and even DPS outside your group.
All heals given by Anima Vessel can crit and count as being cast by the person they are healing, for the purposes of signet procs. This is sometimes beneficial for proccing the Coney Island Band, but can tend to make your Thirst or Equilibrium signets go everywhere to a random group member, diluting their power, as you can only buff one group member at a time.
Shot of Anima
does not scale too well with the low heal rating of leech builds, but is very useful with the passive Increased Dosage for healing when damage reduction shields are in play. Hell Eternal 4 can be healed just with Shot of Anima, mostly, meaning you won't have to change to a fist spec to get through this fight.
Alternatively, it's not bad as a simple leech skill, without increased dosage. The leech percentage does not depend on resources, so if the tank is doing a lot of damage, such as when buffed in the raid, or attacking lots of targets, this can heal for a fair bit off just one resource.
with the Outbreak Alert passive is amazing for Hell Raised. By giving the whole team a dependable major hit chance buff, you can increase group DPS substantially by even letting them run Lethality.
3. Pick rifle utility skills
Lock and Load
works well as a general utility because it has a low cooldown and can be used to increase any role you have the consumers for. For example, if you have Fire in the Hole, Transfuse Anima, and Fire at Will, then your Lock and Load can give boosts to DPS, healing, or AoE as needed.
is a massive healing buff available once every minute. For ten seconds, you get both +40% damage and leeching, giving you a base healing buff of +80%. The drawback to Energise is that it doesn't actually buff the main source of damage -- Exsanguinate, so is only useful as a healing cooldown.
is a small group heal, used best with around 50% heal rating. It gives you an easy way to quickly heal all DPS at once.
is a backwards dash, which can make it a decent replacement for rocket jump where you might need it. This can also be used to set a hinder to activate Transfuse Anima's leech, as shown in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3N9Nn...ature=youtu.be
Tactical Retreat also hinders where it is activated one second after it is used. While hinders are *normally* frowned upon due to interfering with tank impairs, when this is not an issue it can be used to give the tank a strong leech effect by casting Transfuse Anima straight after. If the tank is doing a lot of AoE damage, this can be like a mini Reap and Sew.
is the basic rifle AoE skill and it can be useful in situations where you need to help gun down adds. However it can be outdone by Fire at Will.
is a basic out of combat AoE heal. If used for single targets, it is generally a loss of healing, but is useful both as an out of combat heal and for multiple target healing. You may need both in the raid, for example.
slows down anything it contacts, and ignores CC immunity, without advancing the immunity counter. This has all sorts of applications, including slowing down the SH 2 boss, making the Ankh 3 bosses take longer to reposition (reducing their damage), and kiting adds. If laid sideways, you can increase the time of a boss in razor wire.
For an example, see this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=slRd9qeIe-8
If a boss has to regain distance or line of sight to cast, like HE4, Ankh 3, and Ankh 4, then if they get snared in Razor Wire, the boss will be unable to do anything until they get back to minimum range or regain line of sight. I've seen the Ankh 4 spider do nothing for eight seconds after being mired in Razor Wire.
Finally, like all dashes, Razor Wire makes you invulnerable during the dash, so can be used to jump over wave attacks, like Wave of Mutation or even Shadow Out Of Time. Jumping Wave of Mutation is seen in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V1vqJ...ature=youtu.be
Last edited by Claretta2; 09-01-2013 at 04:52 AM.