Pistol & Shield anyone ?

Hi all

I just restarted the game from scratch and i’m currently trying to level a build that gave me a lot of fun in EA, a Commando using pistol & shield. the idea behind the build is to hide behind a shield to strike enemies at mid range with Forcewave and at wider range with bombs (Grenado and Canister). i just beat the Warden at lvl 20, and while the build is going quite good for now (like pretty much any build in Veteran ofc :D) i feel like it will quickly become limited.

so questions :

  • do anyone manage to make a fun and Ultimate viable P&S build ? (viable, not necessarily crushing everything on his path).
  • build really suffers from cooldowns (and energy regen but it’s more manageable) because single pistol dmg is just aweful. any advice on how to counter it ?

i really liked the idea of a tanky physical caster but i’m still unsure if there’s a room for it in the current game, especially at higher difficulties. i’m thinking on switching for melee, but it doesn’t seem to fit the build either.

any help or opinion appreciated, thank you !

During Closed Testing I played a Pistol & Shield Sorcerer, who focussed on DoTs. I never continued with him on the higher difficulties, but given the improvements DoTs have seen since then, I would expect to have a good time again.

Theoretically it does not match, you lose more than you gain compared to melee+sword or p+p

yeah, what’s what i feared :undecided:


would you care to elaborate about your build and the DoTs you used ? and more importantly, how the build benefits from the shield comparated to DW pistol ?

thank you :slight_smile:

The idea back then was to use the shield for damage mitigation, while the DoTs are killing the mobs. That was in May 2015, and shields did not have all the utility they are having now - especially when you did not play a Soldier. So, quite possible it was mostly a psychological thing and made me feel more protected. I also used a lot of crowd control to buy me time.

It is a self-found char - stats (incl. buffs) from August, when East March had been added. Many stats are a bit better in the current build.

Devotions were not available then, apart from mastery skills I used Squall and Greater Fireblast.

With pistol & shield your weapon damage cannot compete with dual-pistols, which is why I suggest to use DoTs and investigate in survivability. Using a pistol instead of a melee weapon enables you use the great gun components. The strength of such a build is using complementary skills, which you are more or less unlikely to get, if you hunt down synergies and try to max your DPS. Here is a draft (same level as my char, but incl. Devotion) how I would build a Pistol & Shield Commando.

An additional route you could pursue is retaliation damage.

Pistol & Shield won’t have enough damage as a ranged character, but it is viable as a spell caster; something which might not be what you had intended.

in fact it’s what i’m trying to do, but a physical (cunning based) caster. problem is, i don’t find any spammable physical based skill to take place of weapon attack (and in this case, i have no reason to favor a gun over a melee weapon). the other possibility i try to explore is maxing weapon damage with Temper, Bulwark… i feel like it won’t be enough though :undecided:

i will give the build his chance anyway, we’ll see what will happen

thank you for your answers everyone :slight_smile:

so three months later, i’m nearing the end of veteran with my guy. although he’s by no way OP, it works well for now. here’s the build at lvl 48 :

Grim Calc

i use Devotion for defensive purpose only, and ended more stun-oriented than i thought (CB doesn’t deal that much dmg as i’m physical-focused so i finally choose to use the transmuter). it requires a little kiting to keep enemies in Forcewave range but it’s quite tanky nonetheless. i died once in the Chamber of Souls so far, but cleared SoT without problem yesterday.

now i’ll try BoC before entering the Necropolis and then we’ll see if Elite a step too far… or not !

With the recent buffs to Cadence you may want to take a look at using that instead of Forcewave.

that’s true, i didn’t look at it in details yet. that would likely solve the weak auto-attack problem, but that would also totally change the philosophy of the build. as it is, i’d say i’d like to add Cadence without sacrifying Forcewave :smiley:

thanks for pointing it out anyway, i might try it soon :slight_smile:

I played Commando Pistol/Shield up to the 70s with no issues - but it was all about Fire Strike which was really good due to great single target and aoe baked in a spammable skill.

Sure, dps compared to dual pistols is really on a lower level, but since i was able to farm consistently i had lots of fun.

Also, Retaliation damage helped a lot; i used a ranged weapon but most of the time i was at melee; running with a shield makes you really more durable.

EDIT: unfortunately i don’t have the saves anymore; had to wipe the pc as i wasn’t able to access anymore, and i’m not able to recover them :frowning:

…at one point in time, the Chinese were running Glock 'n Block* to beat The freaking Avatar of Mog, weren’t they?