Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Have a nice day.

I was discussing cutscenes in FFXI yesterday with Ailee, and we are completely opposed on our opinion on the matter. She hates them, I love them. I believe they add depth to the game and is one of the key points that differentiates FFXI from other MMOs (along with the massive play style difference), this is a key component of the Final Fantasy line of games. I have played FF I, II(US), III(US) and VII, while this is her first FF game, so I can understand the difference in perspective. There is also a general difference in attitude that can present itself in the appreciation of cutscenes between her and I. I think that cutscenes are a vital and critical part of FFXI and must be a part of the game, while she make an alternative and I believe somewhat valid point, in that people should be able to choose to skip the cutscenes. You can always go back and see them again at Goblin Footprints, and sure you can just Enter right through them all, but I don't know why we can't just be given an option to skip them if you wish. I mean it is SE's game, and we just play in their world, but there are many aspects to this game and we tend to focus on the ones that we enjoy the most, and I think SE knows this, so why not just let us do it?

Anyway, I have pondering a bit about WS gear for my NIN, and this is something I have been considering; Is Byakko's Haidate really better than Shura Haidate for Blade: Jin? I have put a bit of thought into it and I have my own conclusions, but I am going to pose this more as an open question and then I am going to answer my question with my limited understanding of game mechanics after it.

Just for reference Blade:Jin's modifiers: Three hit WS, with an additional hit from the off-hand katana. 1.00 damage modifier for all TP levels but increasing chance of Critical Hit with increased TP, and a 30% secondary modifier of both STR and DEX.

A quick look at each and secondary benefits;
Shura Haidate:
* HP -35
* Strength +5
* Accuracy +7
+ Improvement to fSTR?

Byakko's Haidate:
* Dexterity +15
* Resist vs. Lightning +50
* Haste +5%
+ Accuracy +7.5
+ Improvement to Critical Hit?

So, just a quick look would favor Byakko's Haidate, it has slightly more accuracy and a higher secondary modifier. But what about the improvement to fSTR from Shura? Am I even thinking of that the right way? Wouldn't the additional STR improve both the fSTR and the secondary modifier on Blade: Jin? Does the improvement to Critical Hit from more DEX on Byakko's Haidate matter if you don't reach the next "tier" for Critical Hit rate improvement?

Most discussions on this subject have just gleaned over things and favored Byakko's Haidate because of the really high secondary modifier and the essentially equal accuracy. But that doesn't really delve that far into the issue, and my knowledge of fSTR and how to best improve it for a weapon's base damage is too limited to understand it completely.

My conclusion is that Byakko's Haidate will still probably better for a couple of reasons. First the obvious ones; slightly more accuracy, massive bonus to the secondary modifier, potentially improved Critical Hit rate. Second, the not so obvious ones that I believe are true but I may not understand the mathematics correctly; for lower damage weapons it is easier to hit the fSTR cap, so the additional STR from the Shura Haidate would not be as beneficial if this is the case and I am hitting the cap for fSTR. If this is true then the benefits of the Byakko's Haidate would definitely shine through. This is not something that can be tested on bunnies in Ronfaure I believe because you would only be testing the maximum damage and not the potential damage of mobs that are higher level than I am. Additionally, I almost always use Sole Sushi and I am unsure how the the difference between meat and sushi would effect the calculation but I don't know if it would matter that much over all. So I pose this question to everyone here, and I think I am going to post it on BG forums to see what some other people say.

I think I have mentioned that I have completed my missions up to what is available for Aht Urhgan, and I have also completed the Sergeant rank mission, in which I got to assist a cute little Qiqirn. And our cute little Qiqirn goes through a wide variety of emotional states, including sadness: and joyful plotting: and also, I got a job offer in case that stupid cat doesn't give back my Glory Crown. As I mentioned yesterday, I am really digging Assault right now, and some of the higher level Assaults are getting to be pretty fun, like escorting this little Automaton around for him to destroy these blockades in a level 4 Assault. The benefit I have is that I have achieved several ranks by just doing the same low level Assaults repetitively so I have tons of Assaults I can do to level up. The only bad thing is that the whole group doesn't match up, so I am balancing out new high level Assaults with those that I have already done, and actually this is working out better than I had thought as I am building points around at all of the Assault Points. I don't know which pieces I am going to get next but I will likely pick up some combination of Amir and Pahluwan pieces, but its nice to be getting more and more points. Also, tonight we are going to do the Salvage that we missed on Sunday because everyone was tired or not in game. Kitty has managed to build up those points and here is a pic of the Amir Boots that he picked up on Monday. Maneater and Amir Boots in one day, I hope that made a happy Kitty. :) Speaking of making happy Kitty WARs, here is my happy WAR the day that I got to 75. We were fighting Trolls and doing pretty damn well on them, nice higher base XP than other camps, but its harder to maintain chains because of the distance between mobs and the tendency to use Diamondhide. But this one gave enough on a chain 5 to get me to 75. Since then I have had two more really good parties in which I have gained over 26k toward my XP cap, and after capping XP I am going to start meriting my WAR, while xping my MNK. Still only 44 and without a Brown Belt, but I am really looking forward to it still.

Finally, last night we did another Kirin which for some reason always takes us forever to get going, but when we do we really do a great job. The mini-gods are a piece of cake really, and we have taken to a really good strategy that makes Kirin much easier and much faster. And I was thinking of adjusting my gear to make it more effective, but it's hard to find places that I would want to swap to be honest. Since I need /WAR for kiting, I can't make as many concessions in the enmity department I could other wise, and their isn't a whole lot of wind resist gear that makes sense. Honestly, looking at the Sky God gear, it looks like Seiryu's Kote should have 50 wind resist on it, but sadly it doesn't. So right now I am going with a normal /WAR tanking set up with an Aquilo's Staff instead of a Earth Staff, then stack that with Baraera and Wind Carol. I am not looking for so much of a resist set up but they do come more often than not, I am more looking for a way to decrease the max damage from Great Whirlwind. Heat Breath seems to do a a flat 500 damage, and Great Sandstorm just doesn't do enough damage to worry about it. With this set up, I am able to hold Kirin for quite some time, usually 20% of his health before the healers start running low on MP and having to start kiting again. Usually we try to SC it for the BLM's but today we were more "TP burning" it, not like a lot of LS's, we just don't have the people or the damage to do that, but we are able to integrate different tactics to do what is best for us. In the past we have started to kite again when it casts Stonega but this time we didn't kite it and either tried to interrupt it or just sucked it up, and I don't believe that anyone ever died from it, though some got hit for more than others. Straight tanking Kirin is actually relatively easy because he barely ever uses real melee attacks, just mostly spamming Great Whirlwind, Great Sandstorm, Tail Slam, Tail Smash and Deadly Hold, with the occasional spell tossed in. So most of his TP moves just go through shadows so that leaves lots of time for shadows to refresh. I don't even have haste gear on at all I believe for this fight. Now, I am not trying to come up with something fresh or new on how to fight Kirin, but I would like to suggest to other LS's like mine (medium-sized, non-HNM) on how they could make their fights more efficient. Here is what I wear for straight tanking:

Main: Aquilo's Staff
Ranged: Ungur Boomerang
Head: Genbu's Kabuto
Neck: Evasion Torque
Earrings: Eris' Earrings
Body: Arhat's Gi
Hands: Seiryu's Kote
Ring 1: Mermaid's Ring
Ring 2: Bomb Queen Ring
Back: High Breath Mantle
Waist: Warwolf Belt
Legs: Koga Hakama
Feet: Suzaku Sune-ate, Fuma Sune-ate or Ninja Khayan +1

Now, I could improve some slots, like the neck is obvious and a Harmonia Torque is likely in my future, and I would love to get a Ritter Gorget but I am not doing Einherjar so that is right out. Also I could improve my waist with a Trance Belt. But improvements aside, I am trying to focus on HP and Enmity and ways to reduce Wind damage, then on defense. There is no real focus at all on haste which is pretty much not worth my while when most of the time I can just go Ni to Ni with just the Haste spell on me. This set up lets me hold Kirin pretty much indefinitely when using Carbonara to boost max HP, and the healers have MP. Even taking a solo Stonega IV will not kill me, as I have over 1700+ HP and it caps at I believe 1660ish, the only thing that is a real risk is the rare Deadly Hold for like 2k+. Even back to back bad Great Whirlwinds are manageable. Holding Kirin in this manner allows my LS to be able to do much more consistent damage, do it faster, and do it without having to worry about gaining hate. Generally, it is actually easier for me to maintain hate like this even without SATA just because I can more consistently voke, cast spells (which actually land pretty often if not for very long) and generally maintain hate better. I would like to get to the point that once we have killed the mini-gods, that we will only have to kite it after Astral Flow, and hold it for the rest of the time. Honestly, I don't know if there is enough MP to do this realistically but its a worthy goal.

As for last night's Kirin we finally got some decent drops. The Pole went to Lilkathy, the D. Body, for which we have been getting just a ton, went to Mirra, and the Osode, well, I got lucky on that one. :) I was lotting against four other people, and lotted about my average something like 540, but everyone else had really low lots and I managed to get it. This now completes my Sky God gear set, and I have to say that I am really proud that I got it with Versus. It makes me really impressed over all, and I want to help get ones for everyone else that needs them.


Aable said...

if you buy me a Cursed Haidate, I garentee extensive testing on byakkos vs shura... and by that i mean my maniquins will have 2 pairs of orange pants.

Anonymous said...

my opinion is u tanked Kirin really awesome last night....(this is short I'm on a PSP LoL) "Bam"

Anonymous said...

Hey, was scrolling through your blog after seeing the link on BG - your mention about taking down Kirin as a mid-sized non-HNMLS looks like a really interesting take, and fits my situation really well.

Just wanted to say thank you for posting it.

-Isladar, Caitsith