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Pure Malevolent Champion Shadow Warrior

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Hey guys, X here with my take on the Malevolent Champion Shadow Warrior.


For a little bit of back story, check out my earlier post and video Here in DarkMatters.




As I'm sure anyone who keeps up with this site can agree on, Mr. Vaclaf has beautiful guides and I'd hate for this to be a big plain wall of text so I'm just going to use his layout as a reference to hopefully spice it up a bit. It could never be so pretty though, that I'll be the first to admit. So here goes for my first guide.






1. Attributes


2. Skills


3. Combat Arts


4. Gear


5. Items to shoot for





First off: Attributes:



This one is pretty easy for a Shadow Warrior.



Strength.pngStrength : This one is a pretty obvious choice. It increases your weapon damage and attack values, making you hit harder and more often. 'Nuff said.



Stamina.pngStamina : This one is a good one, but... and here's the but... being a Malevolent focused Shadow Warrior, our main CA will be Frenzied Rampage and with even just 1 ring or amulet with just only 1sec of regen per hit, that takes care of all our regen time woes on our main CA. Not worth it for this build, in my opinion.



Vitality.pngVitality : Again, a great attribute to take, but one again, I believe for a Shadow Warrior is not worth it. Having Grim Resilience up as our Second buff and taking Constitution as one of our skills makes Vitality pretty negligible. Again, not worth the damage and hit chance loss for this (mostly) purely offensive build.



Dexterity.pngDexterity : This one increases attack and defensive values. It also increases damage, but for "Shortswords, Daggers, Blunt Polearms and Ranged Weapons" according to Sacred Wiki. And none of these we use. Strength is going to be the better choice here over this one, easily.



Intelligence.pngIntelligence : No... just... no.



Willpower.pngWillpower : Definately not needed for any Shadow Warrior that uses Grim Resilience as a buff. No points needed here.



So, of course, Strength is going to be the skill of choice here 100% from level 1 to 200. Easy 'nuff.





Now for the Skills:



Level 2: Tactics Lore.pngTactics Lore : Obvious choice for any melee focused build. It increases your damage and your chance to critically hit. At mastery it increases your chance to critically hit even further. Great choice. Keep this at your level.



Level 3: Malevolent Champion Focus.pngMalevolent Champion Focus : Since the Malevolent Champion aspect will be our main aspect tree, it makes sense to go ahead and pick this up as early as possible. Between keeping this and Tactics Lore at your level, you'll have plenty of modification points in this tree early on to modify your Frenzied Rampage, Reflective Emanation and Killing Spree. Keep this one at your level as well.



Level 5: Dual Wield.pngDual Wield : Well, since we're going to be dual wielding, this one is kind of a no-brainer. We're gonna need to pick this up to even equip 2 weapons at once, and taking it at level 5 lets you do this as soon as you possibly can so you can start really pumping some damage out as early as level 5. Keep this at your level 'til mastery.



Level 8: Death Warrior Focus.pngDeath Warrior Focus : Now this one is debatable. The reason why I took this one is there's really not all that many offensive skill choices for a one aspect melee character. I mainly got this one to keep the regeneration time on my Grim Resilience buff as low as possible with +all skills jewelery while keeping the hard points into this skill at 1. By the time you reach this level and take this skill, this free point you get here along with the 8 you have in Tactics Lore will get you your last mod point you need for your Grim Resilience buff. I'll go into a little bit more detail on that buff later. Keep this skill at one hard point and let +all skills take care of the rest.



Level 12: Armor Lore.pngArmor Lore : This one is good to have at this level for 2 reasons. One, set pieces start dropping soon, as low as level 15. If you so happen to get one or if you're lucky, 2 to drop anytime around this level or heck, maybe this is an alt that you wanna try out and have a piece in the chest at level 15, if you have means to socket something with +all skills jewelry, you can wear the best, up to date pieces without any movement speed penalty as low as level 15. The sooner you start wearing nice pieces, the sooner you'll start to whoop some serious tail. Two, no matter how offensive you want to play, you're going to need at least one defensive skill. This probably being the best choice. It decreases the regeneration penalties on the armor that your wear, which is quite hefty, mind you, and a decreased regeneration time against your Combat Arts mean you can pump more runes into your Combat Arts and increase the regeneration time for a good reason, like increased damage. Think of this as a damage skill take. Keep this skill at one hard point for now and we'll come back to it later to eventually get the mastery on it.



Level 18: Concentration.pngConcentration : This is the skill that we'll take to go ahead and start using both our Grim Resilience buff and Reflective Emanation buff together. Keep this skill at one hard point all the way to the very end.



Level 25: Combat Discipline.pngCombat Discipline : Damage, damage, damage. This one is a must-have for any build in my personal opinion. With the exception of maybe a shopper build, it might really not have room for it. You can put up to 3 Combat Arts in 1 combo slot and it decreases the regeneration time of said combo (whether it just only has 1 CA in it or not), by 10% initially and 20% at mastery. On top of that, if you needed it, you can put up to 4 Combat Arts in one slot with this skill at mastery. So very nice. Keep this skill at one hard point for now and we'll get to put some points in it soon, don't worry.



Level 35: Speed Lore.pngSpeed Lore : Ah, the skill I've seen soooo many people dis on. Well, we need this build to be offensive more than defensive, and we already have 3 defensive skills planned for this build and 3 is plenty, especially for the over-powered Shadow Warrior. This skill lets me attack more often by adding a slim amount of attack value, and hey, I get a tiny bit of defense from it as well. The other thing about this skill is on top of that, it increases your run speed by a little bit, which I value, cuz I honestly dislike using a hellhound with my Warrior. It's one less ring I have to socket to get to 150% run speed and what other skill am I gonna take? Blacksmithing? I wish I were so lucky, but alas, I play on the PS3. Keep this skill at one hard point for now and we'll get back to it later.



Level 50: Constitution.pngConstitution : Gotta love this skill. More HP = more chance that you dont get 1 shot, and along with the HP bonus from Grim Resilience, I doubt you'll be getting 1 shot anytime soon. If just the HP wasn't an awesome enough reason to take this skill, at mastery you can regenerate your out of combat health in combat. Sweet! (As far as I know, the HP bonus% here for regen doesn't work with the value HP regen from Grim Resilience, please correct me if I'm wrong!) Keep this skill at one hard point for now and we'll get back to it later.



Level 65: Toughness.pngToughness : The synergy this skill has with armor lore is too good to pass up. Even with this build being as offensively oriented as possible, with all the damage mitigation you'll get from Armor Lore, Toughness, Grim Resilience and the reflection from Reflective Emanation, you might as well be a tank! Shadow Warriors aren't over-powered at all... noooo... Keep this skill at one hard point and we'll get back to it later.





A better idea on skill point distribution:



You'll be keeping Tactics Lore and Malevolent Champion Focus at your level to the very bitter end, so they'll be 2 of the 3 you'll master immediately at 75. The 3rd skill you'll master at 75 is Dual Wield. You'll start catching up your first 3 skills to master at level 37 and they'll finally be even and at your level. What you'll want to do at that point is go ahead and start putting your 4th points in Armor Lore for the next 4 levels, so you can get your second tier of defensive skills unlocked for when you hit 65 to pick up toughness. After you get your 5 hard points into Armor Lore, we can start pumping some serious points into Combat Discipline to up our damage even farther. Take it to mastery, and that should happen around level 81 or so. Next, to get just a little bit more defense going, since we're getting a bit up there in level, we should probably go ahead and pump some points into Constitution 'til mastery, cuz that Constitution mastery bonus is oh so good. You'll get that mastered at around level 105 if you've been keeping up with keeping Tactics Lore and Malevolent Champion Focus at your level. From here, it's kind of up to you. At level 105, you're going to be pretty beast, just cutting through everything that comes in your way. If you decide to keep playing after this point, I'm sure you know your Shadow Warrior pretty well by now and if you feel like you want a bit more attack value or need that few extra % of run speed to get to 150%, Speed Lore is your skill. If you need more defense, go for some Armor Lore and/or Toughness.



*Side Note*



Granted, this guide is mainly directed toward patch 2.43 of Sacred 2: Fallen Angel, and not so much the Ice & Blood expansion. If you really would rather not take a skill here, such as maybe Speed Lore, be my guest and replace it. My recommendation would be Blacksmithing. I have yet to use it, but I hear everybody needs a Blacksmith. There's just so many benefits to having one.





Combat Arts:



In this section I'll only go over the Combat Arts that we'll use and just ignore the ones that we just wont use.




Malevolent Champion




Frenzied Rampage.pngFrenzied Rampage



Use: Our main Combat Art for killing everything and anything.






Bronze: Double Attack - chance to hit twice with one strike.



Silver: Double Strike - even more of a chance to hit twice with strike, how about that?



Gold: Envenom - the increase in damage from this mod is better than the increase in damage from the Vampire mod without Tactics Lore. I'm not sure how Tactics Lore scales the Vampire mod, but this is just how I've always modded FR and it works great. (If anyone else has any opinions on this mod choice, please feel free to contribute)



Rune Consumption: Keep it at 1 for a bit til you get some regen per hit. Even then, pump some runes into your buffs first before you do this CA and after you do that, and your regen per hit is still more than enough to keep your FR up at all times, go ahead and pump in a few. At later levels, you'll be able to put massive amounts of runes into this, along with your buffs, just take it fairly easy at the beginning and dont get too ahead of yourself.



Killing Spree.pngKilling Spree



Use: Boss killer cooldown along with Rousing Command. Good to keep them in a combo slot to cast them both together when you need it.






Bronze: Control - Increases attack values as well as storing up damage. The higher your attack value the more you hit. The more you hit, the more damage you do and the quicker that boss goes down!



Silver: Burst - Bonus damage. Need I say more? We dont take the Perserverence mod cuz really... bosses wont even last long enough to use the full duration of this cooldown without it.



Gold: Sear - Adds fire damage to the discharge. Key word: damage. You'll get to 150% attack speed plenty quick enough, so the other mod isn't even close to worth it.



Rune Consumption: Any spare runes should go into here and Rousing Command. Screw the regeneration penalties. 'Nuff said.



Reflective Emanation.pngReflective Emanation



Use: Our main buff for this build. Keep it up on you along with Grim Resilience from level 18 on. The reason why we don't have this one on from the get go and we have GR on instead is cuz in the beginning, GR seems to just give better overall defense in the first few levels. You have to start pumping runes into this for this to get to be really nice.






Bronze: Backlash - Reflects ranged attacks. Reflected damage is more damage that you're doing for free.



Silver: Antimagic - Reflects spells. Again, free damage just for reflecting a spell back at a mob.



Gold: Riposte - I take Riposte cuz I don't generally play with other people. If you do, by all means, take Idol. If you don't, this is the mod for you.



Rune Consumption: General rule of thumb for weapon based builds that I go by for Sacred 2 is when you get a fair amount of regen per hit to where the regeneration time on your Combat Arts are not even an issue anymore, go ahead and throw some runes into a buff before the attack CA. I generally don't like to go above 50% penalty and sooner or later your buffs will drop below or hover just below 50% when you start to get into the decimals of CA level on your buffs. You get to that point, start pumping up your damaging Combat Arts. It's always worked for me.




Death Warrior




Rousing Command.pngRousing Command



Use: Boss killer cooldown along with Killing Spree. Good to keep them in a combo slot to cast them both together when you need it.






Bronze: War Song - Increases your attack values even more. Yes please. Bosses are harder to hit than normal mobs or champions. Any bit of attack value helps. Also, like on Killing Spree, the added duration of this cooldown is useless since they'll be dead long before the unmodded duration is up.



Silver: Impulse - Either of the choices for this one is kind of lame, in my opinion. You'll get to 150% attack speed fairly quickly on your own without the help of a mod from this cooldown, and really, during boss fights I don't generally run around a whole bunch, but hey, if you like to run circles around the boss you're killing, then by all means, take Spur. (too bad you can't attack and run at the same time :/ )



Gold: Surge - Another fairly useless mod, with all the quick strikes you get with Frenzied Rampage and a regen per hit ring or two, your Frenzied Rampage regeneration time with never be an issue after the low levels. Again, if you play with other people, by all means, take Leader.



Rune Consumption: Any spare runes should go into here and Killing Spree. Screw the regeneration penalties. 'Nuff said.



Grim Resilience.pngGrim Resilience



Use: Our secondary buff. This is the one we'll probably want to use straight from the beginning. The extra health is very nice and when you get a few mod points into it, you'll start regenerating health right away in combat and the regeneration penalty from this after the silver mod is pretty minute.






Bronze: Rejuvenation - This buff already grants a pretty solid HP bonus, and the HP regeneration on this is great from level 1 to level 200. Yes, please.



Silver: Discipline - Reduces the regeneration time of other Combat Arts. It makes this buff very much so a buff to pump a rediculous amount of runes into since it makes the regeneration time of it drastically smaller.



Gold: Safeguard - Increases physical resistance. I'd rather get hit less hard, than get hit less.



Rune Consumption: General rule of thumb for weapon based builds that I go by for Sacred 2 is when you get a fair amount of regen per hit to where the regeneration time on your Combat Arts are not even an issue anymore, go ahead and throw some runes into a buff before the attack CA. I generally don't like to go above 50% penalty and sooner or later your buffs will drop below or hover just below 50% when you start to get into the decimals of CA level on your buffs. You get to that point, start pumping up your damaging Combat Arts. It's always worked for me.










For this build we'll be using the full set of Denderan's Tactical Genius. The set bonuses are quite decent being: All Skills at 3/8, Aspect: Malevolent Champion at 5/8, Regeneration Time: Malevolent Champion at 7/8 and finally Life leeched per hit +(solid number) at 8/8. Even though the 8/8 set bonus a solid number instead of a %, with all the quick hits you'll be doing with FR, it adds up very quickly. It would probably honestly be way too over powered if it were a %, as bosses would die easily twice as quick and they die plenty quick enough as is.






Oh how I wish I could tell you to dual wield a set of Kaldur's Legacy. For you expansion players, you sure could, but if you're running anything less than the expansion, good luck with that. They're legendaries in 2.43 and with my many an hour invested in this game, the only legendaries I've ever seen are the class quest legendaries and the boneslicer which is a quest reward. Besides just trying to equip whatever the best unique 1-handed weapon is available to me, the one that I've seen that has some pretty nice stats from my point of view is the Raging Ire with it's experience%, strength bonus and +combat art skills with 2 gold sockets, can't really complain there. I generally find myself using the Desert Saber in my main hand, because those are a bit more common than the Raging Ire, I've noticed. Even though it's got casting speed% on it, it has a fairly high damage ratio in comparison to other weapons at it's level, and it's got 2 gold sockets. But then again, we can never forget about the good ol' trusty Officer's Saber with it's 3 gold sockets. It's got lower damage than other weapons it's level, but with 3 socketed xx-xx damage rings, you can get some major damage out of those things.



Items to shoot for:



The kind of rings/amulets I generally try to shop for on my shopper are just generally +all skills, but, that's not the only kind of beneficial jewelry out there. I'll make a short list of things that really catch my eye.



+ all skills

+ all combat arts

+ damage%

+ physical damage%

+ regen per hit

+ % chance that enemy cannot evade

- % chance for enemy to evade

+ xx-xx damage

+ aspect

+ % chance to crit

+ experience per kill%

+ run speed% (cuz I hate the mounts. they just seem to act funny to me, at least on console)



If I forgot any other good item qualities, I apologize, but those are the main ones I try to shoot for. I usually try to keep around 1 sec of regen per hit at lower levels and even on to higher levels in this build, cuz with FR, your regeneration time will be just about non-existant, and you can pump some serious runes into that CA because of that RPH mod. I generally don't try to go for too much or at all with %deathblow on melee characters, cuz they just don't really seem to need it with their damage being so great as is. With my LF/SW temple guardian though, I believe it's very nice and like to keep about 60% of it on me at all times.





>Here's a video of this build in action at level 36<





*Granted my toons are spoiled with a shopper and do pretty well basically from level 15 onward, this build is highly doable without a shopper and with just the "Whet" blacksmith arts from your local blacksmith. Granted your rune consumption will be a bit lower at the start, but you can shop for some regen per hit yourself fairly early on that will definately get you goin'.




Anyway, I hope this guide sparks any kind of interest with anyone wanting to try a Shadow Warrior. He's fun and is certainly a beast. Good Luck!





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I tend to prefer using mostly the DW aspects myself with MC as support, so it's cool to see someone melt bosses like butter with a build relying on MC as the main focus instead. =3

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Yeah, the death warrior tree sure hits hard, and I have a level 104 shadow warrior that is mixed in both using like demonic blow and frenzied rampage in a combo and does well, but I guess I got bored and made this guy who is MC focused and I've also got another lowbie shadow warrior who uses 2 handed swords that focuses on the death warrior aspect. Demonic blow hits pretty hard, and it hits even harder with a 2 hander. lol

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