Law of the Jungle
Pre-emptive strike focused Chaos Dungeon build for bard. You can sub in Prelude of Death if you really like it but it doesn't work as well with Pre-emptive strike.
I have looked at and tried out many builds but finally I have found my favorite after lots of tuning and experimenting as well as knowledge transferring some stuff I learned about Sorceress builds to Bard.
There's 3 main reasons I like this build and I'm surprised I don't see it anywhere.
- It's much faster in my experience.
- It can be used for mob clear anywhere, not just Chaos.
- It still has a few support abilities in it.
The crux of this build is one Engraving: Pre-emptive Strike.
"When attacking challenge or lower monsters with 100% HP your attacks are guaranteed to crit and do 160% damage".
Our goal is to use bards few abilities that do big initial hits to clear out massive waves quickly and nuke bosses in one hit.
Prelude Of Storm and Heavenly Tune (Yes Heavenly Tune.. I was double taking too) are your two best abilities for this with Heavenly Tune being better at wave clear and Prelude being better at bosses.
Currently in NA Pre-emptive strike is very cheap to get through the purple/epic level. That means you can dual equip it for level 3 before you head into your Chaos dungeons and need zero custom gear. I've out DPS'd same ilvl gunslinger with this build. It's good you'll just have to trust me.
The Tripods for Heavenly Tune: Quick Prep, Forte and Tune for Me. Yes you get to use Tune for Me. What it does is increase the damage on Heavenly's first hit 100%, which works great with Pre-emptive strike. You'll be doing 160k to everything on the screen thanks the range it gets with Forte. The only thing you'll wish is the cooldown was shorter (Gems can help with this and are great for raid anyway). Make sure you apply bleed rune to Heavenly in this build as well. It will finish off anyone that wasn't quite nuked by it.
For Tripods on Prelude of Storm: Jungle's Law, Lightning Enhancement and Powerful Prelude. The AoE left by Prelude will one shot creatures who wander into it and it will finish off bosses often times as they are stunned. This is on a shorter cooldown and while it has less range you won't mind it much cuz you can just run in the middle of stuff and it's dead in a flash.
The rest of your skills you will be familiar with. You can sub in Prelude of Death if you really want but I don't feel it works as well with Pre-emptive as many other things.
Even you Dissonance and Stigma will benefit from the first chunky hit by the way but they are more supporting abilities here than the main bread and butter.
Conviction Core is still meh and the extra damage Guardian Tune can give you is pretty meh most the time too but they let you be a bit more survivable as you run into the thick of things to use Prelude of Storm.
Use your Z on your ult to keep up the self buff otherwise just us your healing. Swiftness spec def works wonders with this as do cooldown reduction gems.
Take your Symphonia instead of Oratio for awakening skills. With Pre-emptive maxed you will one shot all but the mega boss with Symphonia because it's not a lot of hits but one big one which is exactly what we want. Currently it does about 1.9 million to the entire screen for me pretty great :) My ilvl is currently 1355 btw.
Hope this helps some bards. This is much faster for me than grouping up and also much faster than any non Pre-emptive strike builds I have found. The best part it's cheap to setup as Pre-emptive is still super cheap even for the purple engravings and you don't need special gear for it.
My current time for the first room is about 45 seconds, and the next room about 1.5 mins. The last room takes me about 1.5 mins to 2 mins depending on how dumb I am that day.
Look forward to any comments feedback and hope it helps someone :slight_smile: