I did get Lammania up earlier in the week to explore the changes for the Monk class with Update 33. I played around with copies of my Zen Archer, Poison Master and Shintao. Things looked promising for the very brief time I was able to play there.
Now that the official release notes are up as the game is updating today, I realized I missed some little bits of information from my last post that should make most Monks in general rather happy. Listed from awesome to meh:
- In all three trees, Elemental Ki strikes have been changed. Eagle Claw Attack now applies four stacks, and stacks to 15. Knock on the Sky reduces enemy physical damage by 4% per stack. Unbalancing Strike is now +3[w].
I use Unbalancing Strike (counted as a Water move) often with the Poison Master to quickly charge up Freezing the Lifeblood paralyzing move. Doesn’t look like Fists of Iron has changed from its +3[W] damage, +1 critical threat range, and +1 Critical Damage Multiplier.
- The Fire finisher Breath of the Fire Dragon now scales with 2x Melee Power.
This change will certainly help in damage against Plant and ice-based enemies.
- Each Ninjutsu ability in Ninja Spy now also grants +1 to hit and damage with weapons other than a quarterstaff or handwraps when centered.
A welcome change for my Poison Master and for the stealth-master Kiricletica. Kiri’s still around but my Zen craze has been keeping my attention. I’ll update you on her progress with these new changes and perhaps put Kiri through more solo stealth work with newer content.
- Iron Skin now works regardless of your chosen stance.
- Iron Skin’s third rank now grants +20 PRR when centered.
Last night I was playing with Lynncletica’s PRR just before another Deathwyrm. She generally sat around 139. Then I added in a Legendary Planar Compass, then Twisted in the Grandmaster of Flowers Standing with Stone for 15 additional and Primal Avatar’s Ephemeral Evolution for up to 15 more when attacked. As I completed that change, my Legendary feat Scion of Limbo moved to give me another 30 PRR. And then I added in the Antipode/Planar Conflux 15 PRR bonus.
I had around 177 PRR for a hot minute.The update to Iron Skin will make things more hot.
- Grandmaster of Flowers now grants handwrap proficiency in its first Core Ability.
Might have mentioned this one, but it’s still great. Gives our non-Monks something to look forward to doing as they level up that destiny.
- Fury Eternal and Unbridled Fury now explicitly say they work with ranged weapons.
The monkchers are vindicated.
When I used Unbridled Fury one time with Pynthetica in a “Defiler of the Just” run against the end-boss, my reaction to the immense DPS boost was not too different from Egon using his proton thrower for the first time in Ghostbusters: Complete amazement.
- Handwraps have gained +10 Hardness and +80 Maximum Durability.
Since handwraps are weapons now, does this mean that they also become damaged from oozes and rust monsters? Let’s hope not. Handwraps should have an inherent Everbright property. We shouldn’t lose, as parties or individual Monks, a way to remove oozes through a melee fighter. Monks can’t equip Muckbane clubs without becoming uncentered, and quarterstaves are nearly worthless in the hands of anyone but a Mystic.
UPDATE: In very early play in Update 33 live, I entered “Creeping Death,” where oozes abound. My wraps are suffering tremendous damage. I’ve reported this as a bug already. This is unacceptable as I haven’t any other “weapons” to use as a Shintao and there are absolutely no “Everbright” handwraps as that would’ve been unnecessary pre-Update 33.
SECOND UPDATE: Cordovan’s response in a thread I opened reporting this states this change is working as intended. New players are going to get screwed for repair costs as oozes are plentiful in early content. Everbright handwraps haven’t dropped for ages with various loot prefix/suffix changes. And you’ll need at least 250 bound/400 unbound skill to craft Everbright handwraps. I normally roll with the punches (no pun intended) with game changes that are challenging, but this one makes so little sense I will not be surprised that fewer Monks appear.
- Stunning Fist now specifically requires Handwraps to use.
Is this “problem” still going on? If you aren’t a Monk, you should be using Stunning Blow or, better, Shield Bash. I’ve seen one friend shield-bash about as fast as I could use Stunning Fist, and it was most impressive.
- Planar Shards, Outsider Tokens, and Draconic Runes now properly go into bags.
Totally not specific to Monks, but yay, more storage space freed up.
- Demon Assault no longer respawns enemies after the end chest is opened.
That’s welcome. In that quest, the reavers and renders were almost impossible to manage while you’re trying to loot, assess and trade items from the chest.
- Six new Deity options are available for Clerics, Paladins, and Favored Souls at their first level. These are analogous to the existing Deity feats and abilities.
Again, not Monk-related. But I’m fond of this change because of my long love of the D&D based Neverwinter Nights games. There, your clerics got a lot of extra bonuses with their deity alignments. Further, if you’re going to have clerics and other divine fighters in the game, leaving out these elements seemed to make gameplay rather odd in terms of roleplay, especially since many NPCs had deity alignments.
- Festivult Abishai Cookies work as a set again.
That explains my abortive attempt to use the five cookies with Paracleta for a stacking +4 to WIS while running a Legendary Elite Tempest’s Spine. I’ll be running lots of stuff to get more of these cookies in the future.
- Critical Multiplier bonuses now work on Thrown weapons.
That bug keeps being fixed and broken over several updates. My old Shuricannon relies on better modifiers for higher damage, so this is welcome. However, conversations on the forums suggest this isn’t the complete fix.
- Monk’s Moment of Clarity finishing move feat tooltip now properly states that it is a stacking bonus, rather than an Insight bonus.
Hardly relevant since you’d have to be a Mystic (where the only Void attack exists to activate the finisher) to use it. I mentioned this last time because there’s no reason I know not to have a simple Void Strike feat added back into the game for non-Mystics to use this finisher and its dark version once more.
I will try to forget what I’ve known about the Mystic and give it another try soon. I’ve learned more on defense options and the game has evolved significantly over several updates to provide options I hadn’t had available when the first Mystics arrived.