This week bears with it the final installment to Waging WAR's Nagaryth Chronicles, which took a long-term, in-depth look at the Path of the Scout mastery tree available to Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning's shadow warrior. Admittedly, Greg didn't have time to take his character all the way through to rank 40/40, but this past July 4th weekend's double XP and renown bonuses allowed him to level through Tier 3 relatively quickly. He's also promised us that he'll continue to play her casually as a break from his Archmage main, from time to time.
Again, I would like to take a moment to respond to some feedback left as reader comments to last week's column:
@Taawa -- According to my experience, festerbombs are absolutely deadly (think: "BOOM Headshot!"), possibly even moreso than any sort of infiltration attack by stealth-class melee-damage-per-second (MDPS) careers. If you're the type who enjoys sneaking around terrain and quietly selecting a target while taking time to prepare a guaranteed kill, you'll enjoy this build. I'll explain more after the break.
@Kyelthis -- Again with excellent feedback: the Steady Aim (SA) - Replenishing Strikes (RS) - Rapid Fire (RF) combination (a combination that had never occured to me until you pointed it out) is almost always as effective as Lileath's Forgiveness (LF). However, I feel that my use of SA is slightly more productive. I'll explain why after the break.
@Hal900x -- I'm pretty sure you're mistaking Unshakeable Focus with SA. Also, Shadow Sting (SS) is extremely short-range (45'). My ideal build (complete by rank 35) was focusing on extremely long-range, high-burst, sniping -- which is why I opted for Fell the Weak (FTW, 100') instead, since it has the same effect except instead of requiring an ailment, the "mortal strike" component requires Vengeance of Nagarythe (VoN, and is one second longer in duration to boot!). Finally, SA applies a 50% increased critical chance to damaging attacks, not to the overall critical chance of the character; thus, any attack during those six seconds has its critical chance treated like a coin flip: heads for a critical, tails for a normal hit.
So, why do I think that shadow warriors are fine and don't need the attention that everyone seems to claim they need? I'll discuss my side of the issue after the break.