Went for a stroll with the new spells.txt between the Orcish Byway and Entruag. Main impression, killing mobs is harder and takes longer. And in some cases it's actually slow, like with Blunderbone mobs. Elites take a lot more punches to die by the same means as before. As for spells, HF does well enough against regular smaller mobs without much resistances or with sensitivity to fire. Other than that the fire damage is but a small tick on wide HP bars, so it's not your main killing art. Enter FotH which is a lot less deadly and HB which seems to only have a decent effect on its nemesis. Sure I haven't updated my gear in many levels and I know this could perform better with the same skill set, but the game feels distinctively harder. It's not a stroll in the park anymore. HS still provides the main line of defense and though I wasn't redlined even once the amount of damage indicators floating above the toon are much more when compared with before. Stun and root from mobs are a sure way of getting yourself killed.
At some point I did one thing, I switched Conviction for Reflective Emana... I mean Thorns, and since I had three spare mod points I used it for spell/ranged reflection and further melee reflect. Funny thing is that it seems to work because with the reflect mobs suffer more damage and smaller ticks from reflect together with HF cause a more distinctive amount of damage. Enter a Wendigo Champion and it seems like I'm hitting a brick wall with my bare hands. Old Gar still falls down easily with HB though. Bottom line, right now I feel like restarting because the game plan is different and I can't rely on just three active CAs anymore, nor just the passives to do my dirty work. I'm not sure if that was the intended desire but it's what I'm getting.
I'm curious about raising this build as a tank with Thorns instead of Conviction, while keeping the passive damage profile. Any thoughts on that?
PS: HF without Prayer active has 3,1k of damage, with Prayer active it has 3,5k. Funny thing here, Prayer has become dispensable as a damage booster for spell-based CAs.
I've picked up the backup toon, changed its name and save slot and started toying a bit with the Character Editor. So, Ancient Magic at mastery level has very little effect on boosting the damage for HF (it does however allow HF to apply its effect more often). Without Prayer it's the diference between 2,4k and 2,7k. I thought the difference was much bigger but alas it isn't. I then switched Riding for Blessed Defense Lore for the HP bonus it gives to Prayer. Then I used S2CE to invert the mods on Prayer for the HP and CA regen bonuses, which in turn granted me over 5k hp regen/sec. Is that intentional or totally OP? Because I only have 1 hard point in the Lore skill, imagine at mastery! I went in further and switched Ancient Magic with Constitution, which even at mastery level didn't seem to make a significant effect on the toon's HP regen. In fact it goes from 5380hp/sec to 5462.1hp/sec with Constitution having a +46% HP regen bonus, so Constitution and Prayer aren't working together as the Constitution bonus is applied over the base HP regen value and then the Prayer bonus is summed to it. Don't know if that's how it should be or not but that's that. I remember playing with the High Elf with Constitution mastery and a high level Grand Invigoration but I've never did the math on how the bonuses are applied, so this may actually be normal. Still, the 5k HP regen bonus? Seems way off.
Just tried raising the Lore to mastery, over 9k hp/sec on Prayer. I teleported to Grunwald and my HP wouldn't drop below 85-90%, being instantly returned to its max value. That can't be right...