Critique my Pierce/Bleed BM build

I generally don’t follow build guides, since half the fun is leveling and picking as I go. However, I’m ready for an uber character. This guy is more than adequate for most fights, but on Ultimate, the Mad Queen and the Sentinel are giving me problems. Also I find I need to tweak my gear when fighting Nemeses for increased resists, which I don’t like.

In particular I’m thinking that Dual Blades is not very effective, given that the listed flat damage isn’t that high. I’m thinking to remove a large number of skill points to spec into Oleron’s Rage, since my devotions are reliant on crits, but I don’t have a lot of +Soldier gear so the point sacrifice would be very high. I stuck with 3 pieces of Blind Assassin for the same reason…6% OA. Also I know Bloodsong has lousy Armor Piercing conversion, I chose it for the skill points and bleed. I don’t have a Reaver’s Claw yet. Much of the gear sacrifices damage and skills to max resists as much as possible. Please take a look at everything and let me know. This is a pure Pierce/Bleed with virtually no tertiary damage type, but I’m open to change.

Without gear:

With gear and devotions:

Gear list:

Razor of the Blind Assassin -> Blessed Whetstone/Outcast’s Bastion
Bloodsong -> Vicious Spikes/Outcast’s Bastion
Peerless Eye of Beronath - Arcane Spark/Breath of Life
Closed Fist of Vengeance - Corpse Dust/Cairn’s Hope
Open Hand of Mercy - Ectoplasm/Breath of Life
Direwolf Crest - Dread Skull
Blade Breaker Sash - Antivenom Salve/Mankind’s Vigil
Cowl of the Blind Assassin -Sanctified Bone/Mankind’s Vigil
Stealth Jacket of the Blind Assassin - Chains of Oleron/Mankind’s Vigil
Arcane Harmony Leggings - Scaled Hide/Mankind’s Vigil
Purging Valderan’s Mantle of Blood - Silk Swatch/Mankind’s Vigil
Handguards of Justice - Antivenom Salve/Mankind’s Vigil
Footpads of the Grey Magi - Mark of Mogdrogen/Mankind’s Vigil
Belgothian’s Carnage (+1 Circle of Slaughter, +1 Shadow Dance)

PS: My OA is at 2590 before the ring proc, which is essentially constant, so 2797 effectively. DA is 2175. Resists at 80% except Poison and Aether at 77, Vitality 74, Chaos at 78. Bleed is 85%.

Other than I think you’ve over spent on weapon proc skills with a cadence build (remember every third strike overrides wps), I’d like to see you get rid of those weapons :slight_smile:

Pick up a couple of “something” “Dermapterean Claws” “of Alacrity”. 50% piercing base, means you will do 100% peircing probably :slight_smile:

Drop points from pneumatic burst, veil of shadow, shadow dance, and your WPS (optional).

Any extra points beyond max level for these skills is a bit of a waste imo, WPS beyond the 20% proc could be worth it I dunno.

I thought Cadence and WPS conflict with each-other…

In any case that frees up at least 13+ skill points.

I know BM’s can get overpowered so I dunno if you need a defensive devotion, but I still need at least one for my BM atm (obviously this will gimp your offence).

Thats my 2 cents, I don’t know enough top tier stuff to offer anymore suggestions.

Right after posting, I switched Bloodsong for Sinister Exalted Conquerer of the Rifthound. Dermapteran stuff has high pierce conversion, but I don’t need it (I have +225% conversion bonus) so I prefer something with higher base damage. By the way what is the difference between Claw and Slicer? Slightly higher flat damage?

EDIT: The problem with dropping the Blind Assassin sword is I would lose 6% of my OA, which is a large drop. So I would have to find it elsewhere, since as I mentioned my devotion build relies almost exclusively on crits. That’s how most of the Pierce/Bleed devotions are, unfortunately.

Cadence only conflicts on the third strike. I find I still proc WPS skills quite a bit. You are right that above 8/8 the incremental bonuses drop sharply. But going above 20%, up until 8/8, does give you a significant damage increase each point. I maxed the various defensive skills you mentioned when I discovered that the Soldier line really doesn’t have all that much defensive/health skills as I thought unless you have a shield. I might go the opposite way and drop Cadence for experimentation. I’ll try your suggestion of going less on Nightblade defensive skills…except Pneumatic Burst. That one is just too much of a lifesaver and gives a nice attack speed increase too.

I wouldn’t drop the blind assassin sword (I didn’ realise it was the one that gives chance of % resist reduction!). But the other sword, a good dermapaterean claw would kick arse (especially with “of alacrity” suffix). your physi damage would be almost entirely soaked up by enemy armour, so higher conversion to pierce means even MOAR DAMAGE :slight_smile:

Also, the 6% can’t worth that much, as I have 200 OA less than you (with worse gear), and still crit tons to proc all the 100% on crit devotions.

cadence is fine, however I’d only have maybe 60% worth of WPS procs, and invest the rest of the points into part 1 and 3 of the cadence line. Worth waaaay more damage especially if your attspd is high. The rest dump into dual wield (flat pierce). I’d drop belgothian’s shears, completely, leaving you malkovians advantage, whirling death, amastra’s quick cut and Cadence with tons of points in (WPS not including from items, 65% chance). Effectively treat cadence as a 33% proc chance, gives you 98% WPS. with cadence basically the soldier version of execution.

Ok, I will try to be as short as I can :slight_smile:

Basically build looks interesting but you have to decide what path are you going, dealing high dmg or applying bleed dots, its a bit hard to be good at both.

  1. You need some flat resistance reduction source. (black star medal, plaguebarers affix, manticores acid spray)

  2. Take out points from PB, VoS, SD there is not much point in overcaping them if you dont have points you dont know what to do with, and you dont.

  3. If you dont rely on applying bled dots take out some points from RoS and CoS same goes for AoM, BT and DB.

  4. There is not much point in investing in WPS higher than 5/8, idk did you invested more than one point or you got bonus from gear, but if you invested more than one point take it back.

  5. Max both masteries, take execution, blade spirit, OR.

  6. With cadence as your auto atc replacer you have way to many WPS (for instance I use just markovian and execution)

  7. Max deadly momentum.

I really dont know where you have found that much conversion to pierce, my guess is that you are not calculating it correctly.
But even if you calculated it correctly with +225% conversion to pierce only ~34% of your phy dmg from bloodsong is converted to pierce so you do need it more if you are going pierce dmg, or to be more precise you do need other weapon with higher to pierce conversion.

Difference between claw and slicer are higher flat dmg bonus, +30% to pierce dmg, 3 points more to wps.

Your build definitely needs looot of polishing, but its interesting process enjoy in it :wink:

Thanks JoV! I noted in my updated reply to one of the responses above that I switched out Bloodsong for a sword with Sinister prefix (+75% to Armor Piercing). Combined with Blessed Whetstone and Blades of Nadaan that gives me the 225%. Ofc when I first posted, it was just the %150. The non-slicers tend to have lower damage than other swords so I went with a Conquerer. The Conquerer is only Fast, versus Very Fast on Slicers, but the Conquerer also has +12% to attack speed. Does that balance out the speed?

EDIT: Another question…does the +% to armor piercing on the Sinister prefix apply to both weapons?

Didnt know that sry :confused: With sinister is ok :slight_smile: And yes its apply on both weapons.

Basic weapon atc of slicer is 98% conqueror is 95% afaik. So conqueror with 12% to atc speed is 0.95x112%=106,4%, slicer with 12% atc speed would be 109,7%.
Your goal is to push atc speed at 200% or as close as you can. Its ok to stick with conqueror for now but noting can beet good slicer.

After looking over my build RE: JoV’s feedback: I like most of your suggestions and will implement them. I have a lot of points into it, but I really like BoS because it’s my only real AoE, plus seems to be a lot of Bleed available in the NB line, and many items that buff Pierce include a bonus to Bleed. It clears trash quite effectively, and with the cooldown proc from Belgothian’s Carnage I can use it frequently. Is it considered a useless skill in general? BoS itself is a Pierce skill, so I guess I could drop just CoS if I go pure Pierce as you are suggesting, However, the crit bonus is nice (it applies to BoS as well, correct?), plus it has a very high chance of causing fumbles for a long time. IIRC bosses aren’t resistant to Fumble, or am I wrong? Then again on close inspection it appears the radius of CoS is very small…still good for bosses?

Regarding BT/DB, they are just one-pointers so I threw them in there for the DA debuff, health leech and pierce/bleed buffs. Again, with Belgothian’s proc it seemed worth the two point investment for a 1/3 reduction to enemy DA, and the health leech seems to help me stay alive.

EDIT: 200 attack speed? How the hell would you get that without sacrificing resists massively? Or is the strategy just to get to the point where everything is a DPS check and defense is irrelevant?

I use Ring of still (I think you mean that when you say BoS ;)) just for fumble on CoS, its good against bosses nemesis. Blade spirit/blades of wrath is much better aoe skill for clearing trash imo and its not dps lost like RoS.

BT/DB is one point but is one button more to pres in fights so its a bit to much, for me at least, and it doesn’t work on bosses/nemesis afaik.

About atc speed I suggest you to check my BM builds, atc speed is close to/or 200, most resistances are capped and I didn’t sacrificed much defense.

OK. I have my speed at 167 so I guess it’s doable. I have Blades of Wrath…what do you like to bind it to? I have a ton of crit-based devotions (see my second build link) and I have BoW bound to a WPS skill. Everything else has at least a 3 second CD and it seems to proc more on the WPS. I have Assassin’s Mark bound to Cadence; since it has no CD that seemed a logical choice.

Also, speaking of slicers could you take a look at my most recent new thread regarding damage conversion? I have a few good ones but there are some concerns about the stats. It’s basically down to a Puncturing Slicer of Spines with lots of Piercing % and bonus flat Pierce damage, or a another slicer with moderate Pierce buff and lower flat Pierce bonus, but with 17% attack speed. However the latter has physical->fire conversion of 10%. The tooltip is saying the latter is better DPS.

To bring blades of wrath to full efficiency you have to bind them to blade spirit. You can have 2+ blade spirits up and every one of them can proc blades of wrath.
Reason to bind assassins mark to cadence is not CD but applying it as fast as possible and cadence is best place for it.
Yes, you have higher dmg bcz of atc speed bonus, but check how much of unwanted fire dmg you have on cadence tool tip. Basically Im against of using slicers with any kind of conversion, but it can be ok if you dont have anything better.

Well, like I said I do have a nice high Pierce Slicer, but no attack speed on it. The conversion is 9% to fire on the other and it also has 17% attack speed, bringing me up from 150% to 167%. I’ll do the Cadence compare as you suggest.

Curious about your comment on flat resist reduction. None of those items/devotion really fit into my build, but doesn’t Night’s Chill cover that? Since I’m mostly Pierce after your suggestions, and NC gives me -29% Pierce resist (at 9/10), which is higher than any of the things you mentioned (unless I stack multiple sources, like black star AND Manticore devotion. However I would have to redo my entire gear setup to recoup the 25% Pierce resist I’m getting from Direwolf Crest.

Main rule in this game is: you cant have to much resistance reduction, ofc stacable :wink:

I got best result by stacking manticore, nights chill ,assassins mark and weapon augment for %chance of % reduction resistance, but black star can compensate manticore.

Edit 2: Max nights chill asap, I didnt saw it wasnt maxed.

Nice build! Really like it

OK. As you can probably see, my devotions are not optimized. Taking Wolverine for example, was just to get the maximum number of points towards certain devotions. It has little inherent value to me as a non-pet, non-retaliation build. I’ll play around with them.

Following JoV’s advice, I dropped my WPS skills to just one point each (lots of +skills to these, so they are still 5 or 6 each. I removed the overcap points from the PB line, and dropped AoM to a one-pointer. This freed up a large number of points so I went to 50 on Soldier mastery, maxed Oleron’s Rage, and put the remaining extra points into Deadly Momentum. There is a noticable difference in faster kills times overall, so thanks JoV!

I’m still a little unclear about RoS/CoS. JoV says he uses CoS against Nemeses, as I do, for the Fumble. But I seem to recall advice to drop RoS. This is a little confusing. RoS is all Pierce damage which is the direction JoV pointed me in, and CoS as mentioned has a great Fumble chance for a full 5 seconds! Also my build still has a lot of bleed in it, and CoS gives an excellent DOT, plus a marked increase in crit % for the skill. I would definitely have to drop it if I chose to go full Nightblade mastery, and other stuff too in order to actually put points into Blade Spirit, Execution etc. My points are spread pretty thin as it is, and I just love Rend bound to Shadow Strike as it gives me a really nice AoE bleed resist reduction.

Decisions, decisions. Can a BM have both Pierce and Bleed? That is the question. Every build I’ve seen in this forum had more than one damage type, often three. Perhaps Pierce+Cold instead? I must say there is just a metric ton of Pierce+Cold gear as opposed to Pierce+Bleed, so there’s that. And I do have a few pieces of the Deathmarked Set. Hrrrrrrrrrrrrrrmmmmmm…

You are welcome :wink:
You cant drop it completely, you have to invest one point to have CoS and one point is enough if you are going pierce.

It can, you can check the BM build Jajaja made some time ago (cold/pierce/bleed). But going as much pierce as you can is most efficient imo.

JoV, how many points do you put into CoS for the fumble? At cap its ~50%. Do you go lower, and hope for the best?

Edit: Also, how do you feel about Fighting Spirit? Big bonus, but it has a 15 second CD and 8 second active. So about half the time, assuming constant proc.