EverQuest II Kiting Guide
EverQuest II Kiting Guide by Rian18
This is something I wrote on another site and was asked to cross postthis here. So here you go hope it helps some.
This goes out to my friends on AB who have asked me to put together a guide on kiting.
This is the first guide; I’ve ever tried writing so if it’s not fully informative or if my grammar is off, well blame my High school and college English professors.
Very often I find myself kiting while waiting for a group. Even more often I find myself sitting afk while explaining to a fellow ranger exactly what it is I was doing, and how to do it effectively.
Coming from EQ 1 kiting is not a new concept to me. I guess it still shocks me a bit that so many have no idea exactly what it is. So I’m going to write down some basics I’ve learned in my days as a ranger to help those who may have questions perhaps get a little more out of their class.
My qualifications or why the hell is an only level 33 ranger writing this guide?
Well I come from EQ 1. There I played a Paladin to 70, a Ranger to 65 and a Druid to 70. Kiting is something every Eq1 player is very familiar with. And tho it has changed in eq2 the basics remain the same. Now I’m not here to pat myself on the back or claim kiting is foolproof. Because if your looking for a fool proof way to kill something go read something else. I die a lot. Expect to die a lot while kiting even when you have it down. My KVD is barely over 100, yet I’ve managed to solo my way to 33 (solo about 75% of the time) and have killed to quote a friend of mine “some outlandish [expletive ninja’d by Faarbot]’.
To date I normally xp in zek by soloing level 39 and 40 Protectors, Elites, Centurions and such. I’ve managed to take down 2 group yellows like Vallon savages and Centurions. And Heroic Reds like the Sullon Lt and his minions. Yet the thing that I believe was the toughest kill was duoing Moog the overlord a level 40^^ with another ranger via bounce kiting.
What is Kiting?
The word kiting comes from Eq 1. Back then it was a way for classes, mainly necro’s, druids, bards and to a small extent rangers (very very small) to solo effectively.
Kiting is very effective for classes that can either increase their own movement speed during battle and/or slow down opponents.
The basics behind kiting involves using high damage abilities (direct damage and/or Damage over time) to kill a mob while it follows you around unable to get close enough to hit you. In EQ2 this is more challenging due to the anti-kiting code which will have a mob break encounter if you stray it too far away from its spawn point or outdistance it
Too greatly. Therefore EQ2 players have had to improvise by running smaller routes and using more finesse.
How do I Kite?
Kiting is something that is easy to learn and hard to master. There are several different types of kiting that you can use dependent on whether you are soloing or duoing. Also the amount of foes you face is a factor. 2 mobs are twice as hard to kite as 1. And 3 twice as hard again. The more you add the harder it gets. Once you get it down though. It will get to the point that the only thing between if you will win or won’t is the amount of arrows you have.
There are several types of Kiting which I will discuss a bit later on. The most popular is solo kiting, or what most people know. This involves picking out a foe slowing its movement speed and running elliptical circles while your bow ca’s and poisons do the work. There is also bounce kiting, for when you are duoing with another ranger. Or my favorite and the toughest to learn sweet spot kiting. Yes it is possible!
Remember the key to kiting is NOT to get hit. If that means holding off on your Ca’s a moment while you maneuver around a rock or tree so be it. Keep yourself steady first, shoot second. All the damage in the world isn’t going to help you if you back peddle into a wall and have a pack of reds on you.
What do I need to Kite?
Ah good question. The first thing you need is to be comfortable at your desk. Seriously. I’m left-handed, so I use the arrow keys to move and keep my mouse in my left hand.
When Kiting I keep the down and right or left arrows keys pressed down with my control key to move in a circle, I use the mouse for course corrections and to keep scrolling out as needed so I don’t accidentally backpedal into a creature that most likely will not have a strong liking of me. I keep all my kiting Ca’s on the number hot bar so all it takes is a quick second to jam down 1, 2 for a quick flameshot/tripleshot combo.
Set your hotkeys up appropriately. Ok got that. Now smoke a cigarette before you start because once you do your not going to be able to smoke or type until you’re done. Well you can but you’ll probably crash into a wall and die and then come back posting here that I suck and don’t know what I’m talking about. Well at least I’d do that.
Ok so now you have your hotkeys all set up. Your smoked your cigarette told all your friends you’ll be kiting so won’t be able to type and are all ready to go!
Wrong. There are a few essentials you need to kite effectively.
- A BOW- Yes go ahead and laugh. But If I didn’t mention it I’m sure people would be out there trying to kite using their daggers =). Ok seriously you need a bow, and a good one. Preferably a long bow (high chance of procs) even better an imbued longbow (more procs!).
2. Poisons- When kiting you need to realize one thing. Half your damage is going to come from poisons and procs. So the more numerous and better quality you have the faster you kill. In general you will want to use 3 poisons. A debuff to poison resistance, a High Damage low dot poison and a Low damage High dot one.
Why 2 different types of damage poisons since they don’t stack? Easy. Each poison is an additional chance to proc from my understanding. So if you have 1 poison at (using random numbers here) a 5% chance to proc if you have 2 poisons you have two 5% chances to proc. The high Damage poison is for that additional zing when you hit the mob. Nothing like seeing 140 damage from poison hit on top of your CA. The high dot one is for continuous damage. See High damage upfront poisons have smaller dots so they are used just for initial damage. In an ideal world, Your flameshot procs your high dd and then your regular bowshot procs your high dot one which overwrites the dot portion of your high dd one and does even more damage until your proc again.
Wow I just read that and am as confused as you are. But trust me on this one.
The debuff poison stacks with either of the two and will make them land much more frequently and for greater damage.
On top of poisons having damage procs like gleaming strike especially on a longbow (your using a longbow for greater proc chances) will give you even more additional damage. There is nothing like seeing your triple shot hit with a double proc of your high DD poison on the first two arrows and your high dot one on the last coupled with a gleaming strike proc. Is it common when that happens? Not at all, all the more reason you cherish those moments.
- Good drink- I cannot stress the importance of having good handcrafted drink. More power means more Ca’s which means more damage. You really want to try to avoid situations where you are out of power and kiting, then you’re just relying on bow damage, procs and poisons which is cutting your dps in half at least. Having high level handcrafted drinks helps avoid this (go hug your local provisioner). On a side not the PGT (polished granite tomahawk) is invaluable. Its still procs off bow shots (shush don’t tell anyone) and the added power makes a world of difference. With a pgt and good drink you’ll rarely be out of power.
- Some open space! If your going to try to kite in runneye, or stomhold or any dungeon well your either suicidal or should be writing this guide yourself. Kiting is for outdoor areas. At first you may need a lot of open space to do so effectively. As you grow more accustomed you can do so in smaller and smaller areas. For example I’ve kited Trial 2 of the SBS quest, by just moving around and using my jump key to avoid things. It took a few tries but I did it.
- Spacebar is your friend- Learn your jump button. Love your jump button. It will save you more then you can ever imagine. I actually put on quite a show when kiting. You’ll see me jumping over rocks and other obstacles and rarely letting them interfere with my art (and yes kiting is an art!). Proper use of your jump key and mouse will let you avoid any and all obstacles and keep the flow of the fight in your favor.
- Proper buffs! – Ok real important as well. You must keep all your buffs up when possible. Things like steady aim, Natural Instinct and especially adroit and Foresters insight are invaluable. Forester’s insight gives you a 5% movement increase while IN combat. That is a huge huge advantage which cannot be understated. Bladeflurry should always be active (especially now that it’s fixed again) it’s another chance to proc more damage and therefore proc more poisons and dd’s! However with all that said and done the single most important buff to keep on yourself at all times is survival instincts/adroit. You will eventually get hit. And having that additional chance to parry is huge. I can’t count the amount of times adroit has saved me from being smeared into a wall because I parried away a swing or two when they got too close.
7. Arrows! – Make sure you have lots and lots of arrows. The worst feeling in the world is when you go to hit that CA and get the missing component message. Make sure if you plan on kiting you have a huge stack of arrows ready to go. As a reference point I normally carry around 15-20 Stacks and mash makeshift whenever I can.
Part II The Art of Kiting-
Ok so now you have your poisons set up. All your buffs are ready to go, and you have enough arrows to take out a large group of infantry.
Now the fun stuff. How to maximize your damage. There are several Ca’s as a Ranger you will use during your fight for ease of writing assume depending on your level which version to use (IE Backshot/Snipingshot/Culling the herd)
Flameshot/tripleshot/leaping cut/lunging thrust/corner are going to be your staples as all can be executed at a safe distance while moving.
Sniping shot will be used to start the encounter and to dish out that first dose of high damage.
Wounding arrow should always always be your second follow up arrow as the now perturbed creature charges at you. Wounding arrow will allow your following attacks to hit more often.
You should be able to get off a 3rd stationary CA at this time I normally use Trickshot as it requires line of sight where as Miracle shot does not and can be used further out.
You should follow these up by starting an HO’s and using corner/leaping cut to finish for some additional damage. So now you have an Ho’ done and the mob dotted from your leaping cut as well. Now keep moving in a circular route while watching behind you as you land lunging thrust to further decrease piercing mitigation and do a bit more damage. Ok now it’s really mad. You’ve proc’d poisons a few times and have done a bunch of damage. So now we chain our big hitters while the mob is still debuffed and flameshot/Tripleshot IN THAT ORDER. Never fire tripleshot first especially against healer type foes.
I’ll explain. You see you may take away 80% of a mobs life by using tripleshot first, but if it’s a healer type by the time your 4 second cast time openshot fires it will have healed itself so now your tripleshot may not kill it. However if you fire openshot first the 1 second cast time on Tripleshot does not allow enough time for a mob to heal itself, and many times that small subtle change is the difference between an outright kill or another 30 seconds of kiting.
Ok so now you’ve fired off all your ranged Ca’s. So its time to rinse and repeat firing them off as they become available. From here on in its pretty basic if you choose this route, run in a circle and continue pouring out the damage using those Ca’s. When possible snare the mob to slow its movement speed get some distance and fire off a stationary CA like wounding arrow or miracle shot.
Pretty basic right? Ok but there is another way to add more damage by using your short range melee attacks and other Ca’s.
I’ve chosen to include these strategies separately as they take some practice to get use too and many involve stun kiting with cheapshot.
Ensnare/stalk/Hiddneshot combo- The easiest of the following. Simply enough ensnare and the stalk line can be used while moving, though stalk will slow your run speed substantially. You need to make sure you have enough distance to get all 3 off or it’s wasted. The best time to do this is in the straightaway portion of your elliptical circle as then is when you have enough room. Wait until you are mid turn and cast impede/ensnare and Queue up Stalk. It will slow it down enough where the moment you stealth you can stop and fire off hidden shot for some big extra damage. It is possible to move slightly while firing stationary CA’s so if its getting a bit close move back a tiny bit as you cast, you’ll learn via trial and error how much is too much. Also keep in mind if the big bad guy is getting too close its better to cut your losses and run then stay and get hit. If you can get it off great! If not continue along your kite.
Corner/Ensare/Cheapshot/sniping shot combo- This is a bit harder to get down. And quite frankly I only succeed a portion of the time. Yet is a great way to get sniping shot in again once it refreshes. The best time to get this off is during the turning portion of your loop as that is when the mob is closest to you. You want to start with corner to lower defense, just before you begin your turn, then in midturn cast ensnare/ queue up cheapshot and turn off attack. The moment cheapshot casts RUN Past the mob and turn firing off sniping shot. You will get it off if your timing is right (comes with practice) Once you fire your sniping shot get to moving again. On a side note if your going to get hit this is when it will be, so make sure adroit is up when you attempt this.
Luckybreak/Ensnare//Cheapshot/Shadowlunge combo- Similar to above but we substitute shadowlunge our high damage backstab for snipingshot. You will use this at the same time you would use the cheapshot/sniping shot combo. Shadowlunge has nice range on it from behind so use the same concept. If you’re going to do this might as well start an HO and take advantage of some additional damage (hopefully) while doing it. Lucky to start /cheapshot to continue and lunge to finish.
Ensnare/Cheapshot/pouncing attack/shadowflame combo- Ok first things first. You’re going to get hit. End of story. No way around it. I tend to use this most against solo mobs of even con or yellow I just want to finish off quickly. The concept is simple once again just before you begin your turn snare the mob and stun it. Immediately move to the Side of the mob (side is closer then behind) and hit shrouded strike or pouncing attack. This will break the Stun, however if your fast enough on the buttons you will have shadowflame qued up and if the mob misses you, you’ll hit for even more additional damage. At this point you can either continue kiting or slam down melee ca’s to finish off the fight. Do not use this early on or midfight against creatures which can quickly stun and kill you. The only exception is if using a pgt and your ward just procced and can absorb some damage. Then it maybe worth it. It’s your call on that one.
These are the basic chain Ca’s I use when fighting Solo mobs. Keep in mind these are all ineffective when there is more then one as your going to get hit and then things become a bloody mess. Using any of those combo’s while doing a group often leads you in a panic to hit your escape key, and well your kite just got eaten by Charlie brown’s tree.
The Art of Sweet spot Kiting- This is only only effective against Solo encounters. I stress this. Try this against 2 or more and it’s a swift invitation to beating time.
Ok we all have heard of the sweet spot. That elusive area where you can fire off both melee attacks and bow ca’s without having to move. It can be tough to find when you’re stationary; it’s harder when you’re moving. It is possible though. This will allow you to work in more ca’s you would normally not have access too when kiting such as mastery strikes, rip, Lightning strike, quickstrike etc. I often wonder if it’s worth it considering how dangerous it can be. But then I proc a gleaming strike /poison proc combo off rip and grin like an idiot. If anything is going to get you killed while kiting this is it. I highly advise mastering kiting first then moving on to this.
To SS kite (should be SoS kite lol) you need to maintain the mobs height difference in-between you. This is the maximum melee distance. Coming from EQ 1 where as a raid leader I spent ¾ of my time Shouting MAX MELEE to everyone it wasn’t that hard to get accustomed too. If you can keep that distance mid kite while fighting you’ll be able to work in a few extra ca’s for added damage. I can’t really describe how this is done. It’s really more of just a touch thing. Practice on gray mobs and you’ll eventually be able to get this down to a reasonable level of success. Just remember two things.
- Always keep adroit or its line up.
- Its better to retreat and live to fight again then to get mauled like an idiot.
On a side not if your timing Is impeccable it is possible to get off melee Ca’s while kiting by stopping (yes stopping) mid kite queuing up a lightning strike moving into the sweet spot and just as its about to hit move back out of the mobs melee range. It’s hard to do but can be worth it. If you make sure to err on the side of safety you shouldn’t get hit. Much.
Group Kiting or OMG there are 4 of them!-
Ok remember all those pretty combo’s you learned for solo fights? Forget them. Every single one of them. Their no good here. Also you might as well put your ensnare/impede key away because no sense in snaring only 1 of 3 mobs it will just keep it out of range of your extended range melee ca’s like lunging thrust and leaping cut while the other 2 or 3 bare down on you.
When group kiting I have one strategy mainly and that is dot kiting (unless there is a healer or caster in the group then you want to burn that one down ASAP before dot kiting).
Dot kiting involves switching from mob to mob to make sure you have as many of them poisoned and therefore taking damage at the same time as possible.
For those that don’t know the Tab key is your friend. It allows you to cycle through creatures engaged in the fight. You want to open up one mob with a flurry of Ca’s as if it was a solo mob. When this is done, in all likelihood it will be poisoned, now you want to move onto the 2nd one in the group and stay on it, until it is poisoned. Use leaping cut and lunging thrust as available. Once the 2nd one is poisoned move to the next one. The key is to keep as many poisoned and therefore taking damage at once as possible. Yes that does mean you will not kill one super fast and therefore have a greater chance of not surviving a stun/collision. But we’re kiting so we’re not getting hit in the first place right!
Keeping all mobs dotted will substantially reduce the time and arrows needed to win the fight. Once you have cycled through pick the lowest health one and finish it off. Then rinse and repeat. Once you’re down to one treat it as a solo mob and unleash on the hapless thing.
Bounce Kiting!-Or how to duo with another Ranger
People have asked me, what is my favorite class to duo with? That’s easy. Another Ranger!. Bounce kiting is about as safe and flawless as it can get. As long as you have 2 people who know what their doing.
To understand bounce kiting you need to know how agro works. Aggro is a number basically. Everything you do buff, hit, heal, Ca’s gives positive agro. In a group the person who has the highest agro number is the one who the mob will be beating on.
Bounce kiting takes advantage of this flaw by rapidly switching agro back and forth between two people. It can take some practice, but [expletive ninja’d by Faarbot] is it effective (This is how myself and a 34 ranger took down a 40^^).
Ok example. You and your ranger buddy find a very tough, very red foe in front of you. One of you sneaks behind him at max distance and the other in front of him about halfway to him. The Ranger behind unloads with snipingshot/wounding arrow and as many other Ca’s stationary Ca’s as possible. This will anger him quite a bit and now this bloody beast is heading straight for you! So now your partner in crime opens up himself with the same combo, plus another high damage CA like Tripleshot!. Guess what the extra CA will overcome (normally) the initial agro bonus and it will turn right back around towards him! Now he begins his kite and as he does so you fire off your high damage CA’s like tripleshot/flameshot etc. The moment your CA’s are done your partner evades/stalks etc to drop agro. Guess what? 9 out of 10 times he will turn around and make a beeline back to you. Now your partner runs behind him unleashing ranged melee ca’s like Shadowlunge as you kite. Eventually you evade/stalk and wait for him to get agro back and then begin to unleash more of your now refreshed CA’s like sniping shot/hidden shot!. You keep up this ridiculous pattern until either the mob is dead or they nerf the hell out of it. This allows 1 of the 2 rangers to always have the creatures back to it as the other kites. There by doubling your damage.
A few keys are knowing how and when to use agro reducers (evade/shadow etc) and making sure you are using complimentary poisons. Work these things out before hand and bounce kiting can be a very effective way to win what seems like impossible fights!
Ok, so now about 90 minutes have passed and I can’t type anymore. I by no means claim this to be the end all be all guides to kiting, its just a few tricks and tips I’ve learned in my day. Many people may feel a lot of what I’ve stated is pretty basic.
This is true. Hopefully this guide helps out a couple of people and makes their time on Norrath more enjoyable.
Kiting is not an efficient way, to make xp. It can be time consuming. And you will level faster in groups then soloing. However for those times when you just can’t find a group or don’t have long to play, buff up pull out your arrows and go to work knowing you can still get something done and have some fun while doing it.
Kiting is an art. And as with most arts the more you practice the better you become. Be prepared to die a lot early on. Be prepared to get frustrated. Be prepared to have people screaming at you to call for help as you kite around 3 reds. And finally be prepared for that moment when you drop that heroic group of oranges or that yellow double up and turn to those people and say “sorry I was kiting and couldn’t type but thanks for the offer of help!”
Those are the moments that make being a Ranger supreme. Remember you are a Ranger, master of long distance combat. Use that to your advantage and I promise you’ll accomplish things that will leave you and those around you in shock.
Well now I’m off to Norrath, if you see a crazy ranger with a backpack full or arrows running around in a panic while being chased by a group of Reds, that’s me and no I don’t need help =).
Disclaimer- Avoid Orange con casters like the plague. Especially Mystic types. If you can’t burn them down with 2 or 3 ca’s they’ll tear you apart every time. I promise.