Lynncletica (my heavy-duty Light Monk) has developed a new hobby: The quicker dispatch of Frost Giants.
You’ll find these hulking things throughout a couple of places in the Reaver’s Refuge adventures.
Frost Giants are much like other giants. Slow in attack. They knock you down. What differs them from others is their ridiculous durability. They have probably 1,000-3,000 HP on Normal or wilderness environments. Since they are being controlled by a really ticked off giant lich, they typically have Deathblock. Did I mention the knockdown part?
One thing to note in reading is that Frost Giants don’t have is a lot of Dexterity. That reminded me of an old tactic that worked great for players before auto-crit was removed from the game. The use of stat-draiing weapons still work, but they will no longer allow you to get super-massive damage on a helpless foe–just higher damage.
So Lynncletica found three pairs of handwraps to test out in the Valley: A pair of +5 Flaming Burst Handwraps of Bone Breaking, a pair of +5 Maladroit Handwraps of Maiming, and a pair of +1 Force Handwraps of Improved Destruction.
The Taste Test
“We’ve secretly replaced the standard handwraps that Lynncletica uses with pairs that should leave a giant butt-naked in seconds.
Let’s see what happens.”
The first pair, the +5 Flaming Burst of Bone Breaking, were obviously enjoyable. Frost Giants are very vulnerable to fire, so an Earth Stance Monk with frequent critical hits per strike really pissed the giants off. They fell reasonably fast, but I couldn’t note if that seemed any faster than the other Flaming Burst wraps of Pure Good I’d had used earlier. That is, the “bone breaking” part of the wraps didn’t seem to slow the giants down.
The second pair of Maladroits seemed nice in damage. Again, however, the Dexterity-draining effect seemed ineffective. I kept thinking I was missing something.
And then I tried the pair of Force Wraps of Improved Destruction. Hmm. Now these handwraps were surprisingly handy. For those playing at home, the Destruction/Improved Destruction effect tears away (without opportunity to save) up to -8 of the foe’s AC and -8% fortification. Things did show a marked but very modest improvement in takedown speed. I couldn’t quantify it as well as I wanted, however, the giants did not like me.
Some pointers against these guys:
- Frost Giants try to knock you down often. A high Balance skill keeps you on your feet so you’re only knocked back.
- Kill it with fire. Damage-over-Time spells may be particularly nice. (Having Monks, I tend to Kill It with Friar.)
- Giants as a race have very high Fortitude. You might get a Stunning Blow/Fist to hand, but don’t depend on it.
- Don’t forget the clerics. They often throw Blade Barriers and try death spells on you. Always shoot the medic first.
- Fight in a stable place. You’ll hate yourself if the giant knocks you off a cliff and into the middle of next week, all because you decided to fight on the ice bridge.
All of this Frost Giant hate comes from one quest: “Prey on the Hunter.” The beasties spawn often, in mobs, and are your main focus to kill, quickly, before they kill Aussircaex, who is so ungrateful for your aid in stopping the mobs of giants that are bludgeoning her that she still treats you, the rescuers, as an enemy, making area-of-effect spells problematic since they’ll hurt the dragon as well as the giants.
I tried this on Casual, recently. I was able to progress well enough, accompanied by my new Onyx Panther, Klin the Level 20 Cleric and his summoned Herzou. The maze took me longer to solve (don’t use Empty Body/Shadow Walk here; the speed is negated by difficulty in seeing where the hell you’re going). I made it to the dragon and decided to head straight to the giant red-named boss. Whoops. Apparently I dragged the dragon with me because my hirelings dutifully attacked everybody, dragon included. In a second, the dragon fell.
Back to the drawing board.
Would it kill the developers to create an event where you craft Flaming Burst on stuff?
Oh, yeah. That’s Cannith Crafting. My bad.