Rift: Bard – Planestalker Build – DPS + Healing

Warning, you might see this build as being a Tanking build. It is not. In fact any ability which generates a bit of threat is either not used, or not selected. This build is meant to make a more hardy bard, rather then a bard which can be thrown around like a pillow, ripped to shreds, and have the feathers falling out. Neither is this build meant to be a 100% Bard build to gain the effects of the higher levels of the Bard's abilities like resurrection. This build was created with my wife in mind, who loves the survivability of the bard, and the Planestalker hardiness which makes this one heck of a B*tch to kill, while at the same time allowing it to take on multiple mobs at the same time.

Because of the way this build was created, we may have chosen to gloss over certain aspects of it, meaning even though you gain a skill, we might not use it. This is because we do not want to take the chance of stealing threat from our tank, when fighting in groups. Note that there are a few points in Saboteur, simply for the boost to dexterity and Adhesive bomb, which allows the mobs to be slowed down when they come for you.

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This build is meant to both heal yourself, as well as party members, but if the party has a good healer and a good support, then you might opt not to use the Bardic abilities - this is acceptable. Remember if there is a Bard in the group already, to let them know you have some Bard powers, and that you will try not to step on their "toes". If they choose to have Fanfare of Knowledge or Fanfare of Vigor up, then you can put up Fanfare of Power. If they want to have Fanfare of Power up, then you can put up Fanfare of Vigor. Additionally the same goes for Anthems. I opt to go with Anthem of Competence, but could shift it to Anthem of Defiance if they instead opt for it as well, however it's more likely the full Bard will opt for Anthem of Glory. In magic and physical damaging fights you should have Anthem of Defiance and Glory up, for a 2 bard party. Anthem of Competence should be turned on whenever the party needs to run around and avoid death spots.

Your main attack is going to be Cadence and Power Chord, which will not only heal you and party members, but also allow you to drop 5 points on a mob really quickly, thus boosting the additional spells such as Coda of Wrath and Coda of Fury (AoE).

In an emergency, where the party, or just you, is dying quickly, you can do one of my favorite spell combos, which is Riff -> Virtuoso -> Coda of Restoration (spam this f**ker), to get the health of the party (or you) back to full health. Once in a while, you might pop a Verse of Fascination, which is a good crowd control (cc) spell.

Really thats about it, when it comes to the Bard aspect of things. The other spells you will be using are on the Planestalker tree. To avoid mobs, or get out of a trap/cc effect, you are going to Planar Stalk. This should remove movement impairing effects, as well as give you some bonuses to damage absorption. Additionally, on occasion, when you are on the receiving end of the damage, you can execute Guarded Steel, which is going to give you a "shield" which is going to absorb some of the incoming damage.

When setting up a mob, or group of mobs for takedown, go ahead and set the Adhesive bomb, as well as the Memory Capture/Flashback ability. Alternatively you can also use Shadow Warp, to give yourself an escape route to hit the mobs from afar again. Remember to drop another Adhesive bomb down, or alternatively click on Anthem of Competence to get away from them. Do note however that you really do not have many spells you can use at range while moving, with the exception of Blast Charge/Detonate and Fragmentation (AoE). However if you are on the move, this can be a deadly combo for those following you. If there is just one mob, and you know you can't take it on, then cast Rift Prison on it. This will give you the crucial moment to mount and get the frack out of there.

 

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Other spells which you might consider using (which we put points into) and the reasoning behind them, are as follows;

  • Shadow Assault/Shadow Warp, to get in, hit the mob, and bounce out again in a matter of seconds.
  • Planar Disruption, a spell interrupt.
  • Rift Prison, the equivalent of sapping or sheeping a mob for 6 seconds.
  • Planar Reversal, instead of shifting away from mobs, you shift behind them, to hit them with an attack - good for PvP and also to break Line of Site (LoS).
  • Planebound Resilience, use this instead of Fanfare of Vigor, when you are solo hunting to increase your own health amount.
  • Motif of Renewal (self) or Regeneration (party), will heal you or the party for a small amount every 3 seconds.

Best Rift Guide, recently updatedIf somehow you manage to grab aggro in a party, click on Stalker Phase which should help reduce the threat on your character. If your tank is about to die, you can grab aggro with instigate, however if you aren't familiar with tanking, you might not want to do this, unless your Riff/Virtuoso/Coda of Restoration is off of cooldown. Should you grab aggro, and they aren't, just keep hitting Cadence 2x, then Coda of Restoration, till a healer can help you, or your tank can take back over on taking damage. Additionally use Rift Guard and Guarded Steel once every other finishing move, to give yourself some abortion rating.

You probably noticed I avoided mentioning Motifs for the most part, except for Motif of Renewal and Regeneration. These 2 spells are so minor, they are hardly worth mentioning, and since we didn't really put spells into boosting the time, damage, or other boosters, they aren't really worth mentioning in this build.

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