Priest build opinions

Gr8Scott

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(I did find a 'cleric' build thread after posting. Helps if I search the correct game term :) )
I don't see much info for priest builds. Wiki doesn't have much either. Sounds like it's longer fights with better defense, longer to lvl up, and maybe not as offensive as other classes without a warrior type build.

Opinions for builds are welcome. I really want to use sacred fire/flames of faith, but I didn't see any recommendations for it. Also are the non-damage skills like stun effective enough to invest in? And what advanced skills are recommended so I can meet the prerequisites? Do I actually need a couple INT & AWA points for some skills?

I've played all classes to lvl 6, so still a newbie and want to make sure I'm headed in an effective direction.
 
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Iamcringe

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Pure cleric builds are actually quite fun, sacred flames in the early stages of the game speeds up fights a lot. You need Per 5 to get battle prayer, which is the best skill for pure clerics imho, but that is worth it, since it is a party buff, so summons are really good with this type of cleric- any summon mind you, even scroll types, so you can postpone getting guardian wolf until you are a little more confident with the playstyle.

The other cleric guild skills like turn undead or retribution are quite useless, since you don't want to spend skill points on extremely situational skills. Spirit ward also isn't very useful, since clerics have wide array of stun immunity items. Flames of faith does good damage, but it is mana intensive and doesn't heal you, so use it sparingly or during boss fights.

Even as a pure cleric, you can still get precision strikes and massive criticals, which boosts dps a bunch, so get them in the endgame.
 

Molokot

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Actualy its fastest leveling and easiest to play class of all, just end game warriors and mages kinda outshine end game priests.
Stun is very handy , woth having at least points in it. Cleric hhas generic skill that autoresurects you as long as you have any mana, so after you die you are healed for your mana x 8 and cheap cognac or small mana potion gives 20 =160 inst heal when you should die. As long as you carry with you some mana potions , its not so easy to die with that guy. When it comes to ofence , he has abernos might that greatly boost damage and is quite op at low levels especialy paired with high damage weapon. (either steal bone mace from manticores, or simply use 2h maul)
Also cleric has best gear of all clases , just its not available early.Sacred fire has some uses if you want to kill undead, but otherwwise its not so great. You need INT for sumon wolf skill, but on cleric it also gives mana so it is ok. 2 awarness are enough for evrything , except final location that requires 3 . In short , there arent realy manyy cleric builds, YYou just can choose to use sumon wolf or not and join warior guild instead of cleric, wich is so so idea. And dont look at wiki for builds , because they were put there by a guy who had veryy shallow understanding of this game- to put it politely.
 

VDX_360

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I really want to use sacred fire/flames of faith

With the goal of tailoring this advice to your stated goal, let's explore.

Flames of Faith is a party buff so Guardian Wolf and Summoner are on the table. Likely Battle Prayer, too. Getting a Companion should go without saying. Those will flush out your skills and traits plan in the mid to late game. So let's build to get there.

First Skills:
Might 1: This +7 damage for 2 mana will serve you well.
Heal 1: Clerics need to heal. It's kind of their thing.
Sacred Fire 1: This will help you attack groups.

Early Game Considerations:
Crusader 2: The stun chance is useful all game. The undead damage is situationally nice
Nivaria's Barrier 2: Get that extra defense early when every armor point counts. You'll need this for Battle Prayer, too.

Optional:
Intervention 1: Not required but can be helpful. NOTE: Flames of Faith builds are not suitable for Immortal Cleric builds due to the mana use issue.
Thelume's Wisdom 2: No secret door or trap will hide from you.

Traits:
You're going to need PERS 5 for Battle Prayer if you want to go that route.
You're going to need INT 3 for Guardian Wolf.
You're going to need PERS 3 for Summoner.

Early Game Map:
As a Cleric, getting Griss early will really help.

In order to Join the Church of the Three, you'll need to get Hirge as a Companion, Complete Three vs Eleven, and have a minimal reputation of 30 with Varsilia. So that will keep you busy for the early game.
 

VDX_360

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Basic Pros / Cons of Flames of Faith:

Pro:
121 Spirit damage to all enemies in range.
60 Health to all allies / summons. (In addition to any other healing)

Con:
The damage and healing are spread over 6 seconds making them less useful than instant skills.
Doesn't heal you.
Once cast, the area doesn't move. So if you move out of the flames, or the enemy moves out of the flames, the buff is ineffective.
35 mana per cast with a slow cool down.

Play game notes:
Flames of Faith can be mana intensive, esp when you used with Guardian Wolf and Battle Prayer. However, when used with those skills, your little party can be rather brutal. Because the flames don't move, it's more suitable for bosses, or very strong enemies. Using it for mundane enemies will often resulting in you wasting most of the flames.

Battle Prayer offers nifty buffs for 12 mana. That makes it more useful as a go-to ability in dungeon crawling.

Conclusion: Flames of Faith can be useful, but its the most tricky Cleric skill to use and requires an investment in several other skills to optimize.

Recommendation: If you're a skilled player, feel encouraged to experiment with this route but stock up on those mana potions.
 

Gr8Scott

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Wow. Thx so much VDX. Super helpful. Guess I'm just looking for a more traditional cleric build and want to make Sure I have enough offense to handle tougher battles. I think of summon as more of a druid spell so I wasn't considering that direction, but it sounds like it's one of the most useful mid game skills. My thinking for flames of faith is to deal with groups. How else do you handle mobs (besides summon) Would it be better to skip offensive magic and use mana for damage skills/defense? Battle prayer sounds useful and PER 5 covers summon requirement, so it looks like using it is most effective. Gris & a wolf sound solid with battle prayer for the party.
"Crusader" is worth points for stun. Or is there a better advanced skill to check out?
 

VDX_360

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Clerics struggle in two situations. A single, very high defense opponent. A massive crowd. There are ways to address those weak areas.

Gris as a Companion. Give her Cleave 2, Fury 2, and just let her handle mobs. 1-H Gris can survive forever. 2-H Gris can stun and do serious damage.

Use a summon. Either Guardian Wolf, or from a scroll. That adds one more to your party.

Battle Prayer. Since Battle Prayer gives an around buff to all party members (defense, damage, resistance), it's extremely useful with a crowd. It can reduce a lot of incoming damage from a crowd. And if you're gaining up on one boss, that's an combined extra 15 damage per hit (3 party people each doing +5).

If you're going to join the Church of the Three, Battle Prayer is arguably the best skill there. Flames of Faith is really good against shadow creatures (most are weak against spirit damage).

Most places in the game, you can reduce a mob by luring one or two out to you. Tell your Companion o wait, sneak in to get one enemy to chase you back to Griss waiting with her sword. You can also door ways or hallways to limit a mob.

There are a few places in the game where Clerics will struggle to deal enough damage. Tough bosses are obvious. Places where enemies have healers can prove problematic. They can heal as fast as you can damage resulting in a net zero. So either lure the enemies away from the healers, or take out the healers first. Skeleton Evokers are annoying but die easily. Witches with giant kittens are another thing. Sometimes you get stuck in a doorway trying to kill kitties while the witches are safe on the otherside healing away.
 

Gr8Scott

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Thx again VDX,,for the time and attention in your detailed responses. I appreciate it greatly.
 

VDX_360

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To help you discuss pros and cons on a Cleric, build, lets look at my current play through. Not rushing the game, but not quite slowing down for much either. Not designed to be a "prefect" build but fun to play and makes great headway in the game.

Level 21
Day 75
Almost all pre-wasteland quest complete. (Shards returned but not yet crossed to the south).

Skills:
Heal 3, Arbenos' Might 1, Crusader 3, Nivaria's Barrier 3, Thelume's Wisdom 2

Advanced Skills:
Precision Strikes 2, Massive Criticals 2, Blood Lust 1, Guardian Wolf 3
Battle Prayer 3, Summoner 3

Traits:
STR 7, END 3, AGL 3, INT 4, AWA 3, PER 5 (Not including equipment)
Belt: Superior Belt of Agility (+1 AGL, +1 Def, +6 health)

Companion:
Primary is Gris as a 2-H (reset after she upgraded).
Hirge as 1-H (only used for her quests)
Adon (AGL with off-hand, don't really care about him).

No houses purchased, sitting on 265,000 gold.

Designed as a 1-Handed Cleric. The +1 AGL Belt lets me take that extra 1-H damage point from AGL plus extra defense. Not hurting on mana so went with the extra defense belt rather than the extra mana.

INT 4 lets me get extra mana, extra xp and sets me up to pass trait checks for several quests.
AWA 3 (5 after equipment). Kept it AWA 2 for most of the game, raised it to AWA 3 in preparation for end-game quest checks.
PER 5. Needed for skills. Need for mana and for quest checks.

Does pretty good damage, can take quite a bit of damage. Still struggles against the top tier bosses (Elemental Lord for example) but anything less than the top tier boss is handled pretty easily.

When fighting, I try to ensure that monsters are flanked between Cleric and Griss that way one of us is doing flanking damage. Because of the way Companion AI works, it often easier for the Cleric to engage the enemy head on, which is why Cleric gets a shield. Griss with 2-H + Fury + Battle Prayer + Flanking does some serious damage.

Summoning the Guardian Wolf helps with bosses and crowds. Can really break up a mob attack. Let the wolf and Griss take on the crowd while I head hunt the healers, etc.

No one gets Companions in the Ark. So use of Guardian Wolf in the ark can help offset that loss. Wolf isn't that helpful in the ark but it can help with a ark spider swarm.

Note about healing. Healing heals yourself, your companion than your summon. In that order. So trying to heal wolf requires keeping Griss at full health, which interferes with her fury.
 

Gr8Scott

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Awesome advice! Since you are being so helpful:

Basic skills:
Crusader is apparently worth the stun chance and situational undead damage? Turn Undead is maybe too situational to build on Crusader?
Is Arbenos' Might 1 the only one active offensive skill? If so, why only lvl 1? Doesn't this also increase Massive Critical numbers? Would a 2nd active skill be useful while this one cools down?
Holy Shield sounds helpful for added defense w/ quick recovery but not on the list. Navaria's barrier is better as a passive protection. Stacking both sounds great but I guess something else must go, then.

Bloodlust sounds good for mobs. Duel sounds good for bosses but I've read the damage stacking progression often gets broken.
I was hoping Massive Crit and Precision Strike would be worth it. Do I have the right understanding of their effects?
PS 1 makes your '8%' crit chance (50% more) to 12%.
MC 1 makes a 150% crit {?-8(9-12)} 200% max damage {?-8(9-16)}
Summoner 3 answers the question as to if summoned lvls make that much difference.

Sounds like high armor, high HP, self healing opponents are a bit of work to get through?
This sounds like relatively low maintenance battle tactics. Summon, protect, heal, and pop potions when needed.

Thanks again for sharing your wisdom.
Last question (for now ;)), I am playing on an old Samsung 7" Tablet. Are the PC controls for Steam any easier to navigate? I have trouble avoiding traps, getting in range of new enemies, sticking on corners, and often backing out of new areas just entered with the tablet "joystick." It may be worth the $8 to switch if mouse/keyboard can be a bit more exact. I'm reading mixed reviews of the controls there. But you are "THE LEGEND".
 

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