Neverwinter CW Oppressor PvP Guide
Neverwinter CW Oppressor PvP Guide by hidahayabusa
It’s been a while since a dwarf wizard posted a guide for other wizards, but I would like to share some knowledge on the oppressor PvP…a tree that I enjoy a lot for this particular part of the game.
I will not go in depth of analysis of every wizard encounter and at-will, because I know that you are aware of them. What I would like to do is discuss my choices about build/encounters/at wills and generally some tips for your PvP matches.
Currently, I have 4 out of the 5 playable classes (except GWF) as lvl60 characters with 10-12k GS each, made up of PvP gear that is obtainable through Glory. My enchantments are rank 6 and Lesser quality, so I will not talk from a perspective of owing 7 Greater Vorpals and showing you the ropes, but I’d rather like to share some knowledge I gathered from my PvP experience.
This is all about characters that have gear easily obtainable from people dedicating a good chunk of time in this game. Here goes:
Mostly because it’s not as popular as Renegade, and simply because I liked the Ice based build along with some funky PvP abilities that are here and there. The emphasis is on controlling rather than bursting, which is much much better for my playstyle. One other thing that you will notice when running the oppressor tree, is that your basic attack (Ray of Frost) procs the class bonuses much more often than Magic Missiles. So, you will be under the Eye of the Storm (and thus Nightmare Wizardry) and Spell Storm much more often.
Obviously dwarf is not the best race for a wizard. It’s clear that any race with Int boost, or Charisma boost or even a critical boost racial is better. My advice is that you should play what it makes you feel more comfortable with the character you will be spending some game-time with.
Intellect,Charisma,Wisdom. That’s the order for me, and I think that it makes sense. Intellect is a damage boost, Charisma is a Critical boost and Wisdom is AP gain and cooldown reduction. One could argue that Wisdom is quite important, and I wouldn’t disagree, but it the Charisma increase in critical chance is much more easily notable rather than Wisdom gains.
That’s what I run. The Heroic feats spread is quite self explanatory, and one may want to spend some points to Prestigitation, rather than Learned Spellcaster but the direct damage buff is much better in my humble opinion. The point in Arcane Mastery is a filler to get me to last tier.
There is some more variation in the Paragon spread-out. I will cover them one by one:
Severe Reaction: Not as good for the pushback (random benefit), but the +10% in the stamina helps a lot. If you also have the campaign buff of 10% faster charging, you are going to see a good difference in your kiting skills.
Bitter cold: It’s a no-brainer. A damage increase for doing what you are supposed to do.
Brisk Transport (why no points?): I actually tried it a lot. The fact that you can’t cast while moving makes it irrelevant to kiting unfortunately. It does stack, but it will require you to use all 3 (or more than 1) teleport in a row in order to receive a 30 % speed boost…which is bad in most cases.
Glacial Movement: One of the main reasons to go Oppressor. This is simply amazing and you will like it so much that you will be using Ray of Frost ALL the time. A no brainer to max out.
Control Momentum: Obviously you’ve seen where we are going with this build. Throw a control power, spam your beam, freeze the opponent and steal most of his HP away while he is stunned or slowed. 10% is a very notable percentage.
Shattered Strike: Although it sounds worse than it plays, it’s a very good end tier ability. Obviously for the Chill strike part. Adding 3 points of Chill is a god-sent for this build since everything works better immediately. Chill strike is one of your bread and butter ability so you will enjoy this skill a lot. Sometimes you got to remember to use Ice Storm also (although you will be greatly attached to Ice Knife).
Other trees spreadout:
I went for the two first tiers of Renegade tree, since I really liked Nightmare Wizardry. I have no clue what percentage of damage is granted by Combat advantage, but when I didn’t have points in Nightmare Wizardry I could notice the difference in numbers. When this procs in conjunction with Eye of the Storm (very often) you will see a huge damage spike on your Ray of Frost and all encounters.
Bottomline, I went for Reaper’s Touch (quite good, although you shouldn’t try to make it work…it always does :P ) and Nightmare Wizardry. Never found something on the Thaumaturge early tiers to excite me. So I passed.
—-The power, at-wills, Dailies and class features lineup:
My favorite mix of talents is torn between the use of Repel or Shield. There are times that you want the first and times that you want the second. Shield is generically better than Repel since it absorbs SOME damage , but repel is a stun and a huge gap creator. Mind you, this is not always good.
The shield on the other hand, requires a cast…absorbs an unknown amount of damage passively (really no idea how much), and it can be popped to damage and throw adjacent people away (much like Clerics Sunburst). THE main difference between the two skills is that you can pop the Shield if you have seen a rogue go in stealth to send him away, by damaging him…meaning that you’ll probably unstealth him. It needs no targeting, so it’s much easier to use. Plus it will passively absorb damage.
Another thing that I tried and didn’t like is Conduit of Ice. Everything that has an animation is bad for PvP, and Conduit’s is quite slow. On top of that, it’s plain damage with no added tricks so I skipped it.
At Wills: Ray of Frost, Magic Missiles
Encounters: Entangling Force, Chill Strike, Shield
Dailies: Ice Knife/Icy Storm
Class: Eye of the Storm, Storm Spell
Mastery: Icy Rays
Let’s talk Mastery then. Icy Rays is a very good ability in PvP. It hits for quite some damage (especially if you had the time to apply some chill stacks), it applies 2 chill stacks itself, it marks rogues on one tab press and it is non-dodgable. Did I mention that it immobilizes for 2 sec? It’s so good in Oppressor that you need to find a very good excuse NOT to master it.
If you will stick to the PvP set, probably it would be worth trying slotting Chill strike in the mastery, just for the 25 % (or 30% for tier 2) decrease in the Cooldown. However, Icy Rays when mastered provide a much better buff (+50% damage, +1 sec immobilize and +1 Chill stack).
The rest are pretty much self explanatory. Storm Spell+Ray of Frost is a great love story and I hope it remains this way in the following patches.
The ‘rotation’ is quite easy. Start with Chill Strike, follow with Ray of Frost, when Stunned cast Entangling Force, keep Ray of Ice going (most of the times stacks go up so fast that you will get another stun) and finish off with more Chill Strikes or Icy Rays. That’s the ideal situation, and you will find it as easy as I describe it here against Devoted Clerics or other Control Wizards that will try to outdamage you. Especially DCs feel like damaging a dummy if they don’t slip away or don’t get help.
—-On to gear…
Personally I like the PvP gear a lot. Obviously tier 2 is better than tier 1 (Champion Mage over Gladiator Mage) since they provide the same bonuses with 5% increase on the tier 2. So, if you have access to or you are able to get Champion over Gladiator, by all means do so. The PvP gear has the much needed stat of Armor Penetration that you should increase up to a 20-25% that is 2100-2500. It’s a straight damage increase since you are effectively ignoring your targets damage reduction up to a percentage of your ArPen.
If you go for Eye of the Storm along with Ray of Frost, you will be finding yourself under its proc quite often, so investing in Critical strike is not THAT good. A healthy crit stat though is always welcome, but I would never go over 30% if I had Eye of the Storm slotted. I am standing at 1061 which is a 27% crit chance, and I haven’t ever missed the damage.
However the reason to go PvP gear, is the 4 set bonus and of course the substantial increase in hit points and defense. In addition, Icy Rays on 30% reduced time is amazing, and you will easily notice the difference. Other sets may be much better for the role of glass cannon, but that’s not what I had in mind when I went Oppressor. High Vizier and Shadow Weaver may have a better damage output but in the Oppressor chill stack build, you have a comparable damage output and some increased boost in HP and defense.
This is much needed for squishy fellas like wizards. The rest of the gear was selected according to the stats, and its ArPen and Crit. So the two Pyrotechnic Bands, the waist and cloak have the desired stats, and are easily obtainable if you have some AD to spare on the Auction House, or some time to farm those dungeons+coins.
I went for Dark Enchantments all the way for Offense slots increasing my ArPen to 20%. My crit comes entirely from my gear and of course I went for movement (Dark) in the utility slots.
As far as the weapon enchant is concerned, I went for Vorpal (currently slotted Lesser due to financial problems), and I would suggest it to you as well. It’s always on and it’s a good damage increase. Needless to say that the higher the quality the better the result.
For my Armor enchant, I went for Soulforged and so should anyone who is PvPing. This enchantment is so good, that words can’t describe. I have slotted Lesser again, and it has saved my hide more times than I can count. Your damage is quite good that even 2 seconds of immunity will probably mean that you are able to nuke down someone. In a nutshell, save AD for Soulforged.
An image of my dwarf and the stats I was talking about.
—-PvP Tricks and how to deal with each of the classes
Vs Trickster Rogues
There are two types of fight, the ones that you see him coming and the ones that you don’t. The second one is up to the RNG gods and your skill to kite after losing half (or more) of your life. If you manage to see him before he unleashes the Lashing Blade, then blink or pop shield. Good rogues will always have Impact Shots (if they don’t they are much easier) so be prepared for those 3 charges as well. In general:
If you see him, tab him and mark him. This will make him visible while stealthed. If this happens, Ray of Frost him to Oblivion.
If you don’t see him, teleport once and start kiting without using all your teleports in a row. Try to make the most of your shield or repel. Go Icy Rays->Chill Strike (while he is immobilized) and the typical Ray of Frost->Entangling force etc etc. It’s a tough battle, but it’s winnable. They are as squishy as you are and you have more stuns. In a nutshell, be mobile and don’t miss a chance to stun. Keep an eye for their Impossible to catch, which makes them glow black and be immune to most bad things.
Vs Great Weapon Fighters
It’s as boring as it gets. You start damaging them, they go Unstoppable, heal back, chase you and try to kill you in a knockdown. In fact they are easy to kite provided that you understand that when they are unstoppable you can’t really hurt them, so it’s better to keep all your teleports and run around him (rather than away from him, since he can sprint). GWF are very gear dependent, so sometimes you are going to run into a beast that will two shot you while healing back from 20-100, but that’s life. People need to somehow show off the money they spend on their toons, and that’s fine in my book. Remember they are killable in the right timing. Don’t waste time casting while they are immune, and try to drop them as low as possible during the first wave of damage, and popping them on the second (after they go back to human mode).
Vs Guardian Fighters
Ray of Frost really hurts them. They can’t stand behind the shield for a long time although they have 3 major gap closers. One is the Lunging stike, with a quite short cd, the other is Bull Charge which has a smaller distance but hits like a truck and the other is their at-will power that rushes them towards you. The last one is spammable. You need to worry about all of them, but mostly about Bull Charge, since it’s usually the start of their stun combo. They are not very tough to fight away, since you can fill them with Chill stacks and control them like a boss, provided that you keep your teleports for the lunging strikes and bull charges. The at will gap closure can be simply kited away or tanked (since they do laughable damage with non-encounters) . If you see a red dot on you, it means that they have activated the Knight’s challenge meaning that you and they deal each other 100% more damage, and 50% less damage to anyone else. So consider it a duel and try to avoid them while freezing them. A much easier matchup than the two other mentioned above.
Vs Devoted Clerics
Haven’t seen many going the damage way and everyone I’ve seen is running in a premade behind a wall of GWFs wrecking people, so not much to tell about their glass cannon spec. On the other hand, I’ve seen many running as healers, and so I am going to focus on them. Although they can’t kill you, they can stop you from killing others and they can tank most classes until help arrives. In general, they should be the first guy that you target, and you should yell it to the team as well (many premades fall apart if you kill their healer in the first go).
Our role in this is to manage to kill the DC in one or two rotations, without giving time for help to arrive or for his teammates to cover. Start with a chill strike, follow with Ray of Frost Spam until frozen. Then Strangulate him and reapply frost, ending up to Icy Rays. If you have all your arsenal available there is no way that they end up alive. The tricky part is focusing him.
Vs Control Wizards
Not much I can say, since you typically go in a pissing contest of damage and timely teleports. Check for Icy Knife animations and keep teleports handy for it. My experience with other CWs (and much better geared) is that they are a bit surprised with the Chilling spec, and they don’t know how to react against Ray of Frost. If you keep them stunned and controlled you are going to win the damage race over glass cannon specs.
1) PvP is not about 1v1. It’s about team vs team. All of the above are guidelines to know what you should do against each class, but generally you will find yourself against 1v3 or 5v5 situations that can go any way. The concept is to have battle awareness and use your powers to full potential (kite around, drive people away from nodes, help your healer etc).
2) Never waste Ice Knife in low-hp bars. Always cast it after Ray of Frost stuns if able.
3) One of the disadvantages of Ray of Frost, is that it hasn’t got those damage spikes, but it’s a linear attack on HP (bar goes down fast but almost steadily). This means that stuff like Soulforged enchantments will ruin your day. A trick you can use is that when you see that your opponent is near 30%, drop a chill strike or Icy Rays, hoping that it gets them to 0% directly.
4) Always move, it makes rogues chasing you more.
5) Always teleport when a GWF or a GF makes a move, and not when he is simply running towards you. Running around GWFs, challenges their skill to follow you in sprint. Make it difficult for them.
6) If you know a rogue is around, popping your shield would be a good idea. Chances are that you will hit him and unstealth him due to the damage.
7) If you start receiving damage when mounted, click to dismount. Giving rogues or CWs a free stun is as good as dying. Needless to say that if you see a mounted guy, Ray of Frost him to stun and start your rotation.
8) Time your stuns, and always remember that when Ray of Frosts sends someone to Freezing status (6 stacks of chill), you have 2 secs of damage while the stacks are up. So plan carefully (usually freeze to Entangling force is ideal, or just Ice Knife him/her).
9) Play a lot, and don’t be a whiner on forums. All classes are balanced in their way, and you can’t win all your fights. Learn your powers, your style, your disadvantages and capitalize on your strengths. It’s much more practical than asking for nerfs or buffs.
Feel free to comment and I would be happy to hear any corrections/additions you’d like to see in this post.
Thanks for reading, and see you online!
P.S: Although it’s not my video, that’s the guy who inspired the whole Oppressor thingy for me. Take a look :