In general Rangers are an auto-attack focused class with as much as 40% of their damage output coming from auto-attacks. Depending on gear your combat arts will do from 4% – 8% of the total each. So a lot of this guide will be focused on improving your auto-attack output.
Auto-attack is effected by the damage rating of your weapon, Crit Bonus(CB) and Weapon Damage Bonus (WDB) only. Potency, Ability Modifier and Crit Bonus effect your combat arts (CA).
Much of the info in this guide comes from Regolas’ Thread over on the official forums. So a big thanks to Regolas for starting it and for all the others that chipped in with info, especially Errorrr, Neiloch and Deathfrom.
The information on CA efficiency comes from Snapshot’s Post over on EQ2Flames so thanks to him as well.
Most of these have already been mentioned in the credits so here are some quick links to get to the data.
- Regolas of Reborn Through Chaos on Antonia Bayle (EQ2U / DA) – Since he wrote the original guide it’s only right that he goes first.
- Errorrr of Raiders of the Lost Duck on Splitpaw (EQ2U / DA) – There are 2 Errorrr’s if you search and both are the same player so it might be interesting to compare them.
- Neiloch of Revelations on Butcherblock (EQ2U / DA) – A lot of good insight on the main guide thread so definiatly someone worth checking out.
- Deathfrom of Death Before Dishonor on Butcherblock (EQ2U / DA) – Also very helpful on the forums so worth taking a look.
Remember the quickest way to set yourself up with one of these builds is to visit the EQ2U profile of one of the role models and select the build you want and download it. Then, after copying it to your EQ2 directory, go to your AA screen in game (default L key) and select Load from the drop down, save and name it and then commit it and you’re good to go.
That said I’m not really going to go through each and every selection. You really do need to go through the tool tips and figure out what each of your abilities are doing and how they interact.
I will point out that for Rangers the Prestige tree seems to be the biggest difference between any builds. In short which side of that tree you use is determined by what type of encounters you expect to be facing. You’ll want the left side for single target encounters (most boss/named even if they bring in adds) and the right side for AoE type encounters which might include certain bosses if it’s important that any adds get burned down quickly. Unless you’re going to be fighting groups of 3 or more quite often you’ll probably end up staying with the left side or Single Target build for your day to day stuff.
Some of your choices will be based on what gear you have available. In general you want to make sure you have all of the AA’s that increase the damage of your abilities. Others that are good to have are those that improve your temp buffs.
One that I will point out is Exploit Weakness on the heroic tree. This is almost a must have but you need to learn to use it properly to make it worthwhile. You’ll get some text saying that a weakness has been spotted and you want to use it then. If you use it without this it does minimal damage and is a waste.
Stat Goals / Reforging:
The big stats for Rangers are Weapon Damage Bonus (WDB), Potency and Crit Bonus (CB). WDB and CB impact your auto-attacks while Potency and CB boost your Combat Arts (CA). You’ll want to focus on those as well as Crit Chance early and then you can spread points around.
The list below is sort of in order of importance. Though you’ll want to get CB, WDB and Potency as high as possible, some or all will come on each piece of gear and as you hit the targets on other things you can also adorn for them somewhat.
- Crit Chance – 600% – 650% (100 greater than the current zone you’re doing demands so you crit 100% of the time.
- CB, WDB & Potency – As high as possible as was stated above.
- DPS Mod – 600. This is the soft cap and means you’ll hit 7 times harder so it’s the minimum you need to aim for.
- Haste (Attack Speed) – 200 is the soft cap but you might want to go higher as anything over converts to CB and Flurry. Don’t sacrifice any other caps/targets though.
- Multi-attack – 200 – 300. You can give this up somewhat for more Haste but try to hit around 200.
- AE Auto – 100 is the hard cap so don’t go to far over.
- Cast Speed – 100 is the hard cap again. You might be able to go lower depending on what buffs you normally get in your group/raid.
- Reuse Speed – 100 hard cap, and again you might be able to go lower depending on buffs.
- Flurry – 100 hard cap. Take it whenever you can get it and remember that Haste converts to flurry over 200.
- Weapon Skill – As high as you can get it since there is no cap.
- Ability Mod – Need to aim for 10k+ once you’ve got most of your gear but don’t sacrifice any of the above to boost it.
- Accuracy – 30% is probably good though opinions vary and it will depend on what arrows you use as well as what buffs you typically get.
- Hate Mod – -50% is the hard cap and you can get -36% from AA’s which is probably good enough.
Tip: Add Casting Speed white adornments to your forearms, cloak, legs, charms and wrists. You can then reforge Casting Speed from your gear into something more useful.
Here you’ll mainly want to be boosting the stats above until you hit your targets. Remember the note above and use adorns to buff your casting speed so you can reforge it out of other gear into something more useful.
You’ll mainly want to focus on CB once you get your Crit Chance up with gear.
The most popular seem to be:
- Spirit of the Jester – +30% Ability Reuse
- Harrowed Madness – +8% Ability Reuse, +9% Potency, +40 Attack Speed (Haste)
- Screams of Battle – +5% Multi-attack, +15 DPS, +20% AE Auto-attack
- Winds of Obol – +18% to spell/CA damage for the whole group.
- Bolstered Attributes – +10% to all attributes (Str, Int, Agi, Wis, Sta)
- Truespirit’s Legacy – +12% to groups Potency.
- Wild Swings – +25% AE Auto-attack
- Magnitude – +12% CB
For the most part the Ranger is pretty straight forward. They’re not quite as position dependent as an Assassin but they do still rely on some positional abilities so, unless you’re solo, you’ll usually want to make sure you’re behind the mob. In a group your tank really should be turning the mob for you so it shouldn’t be an issue. With a merc it’s a bit more work but you can usually get behind when you need to.
It’s also important to remember that you’re a DPS class and a large chunk of that DPS comes from your auto-attack and the biggest part of that will be your bow.
So you first want to make sure you’re always using ranged auto-attacks. Go into your character screen (default c key) and then the Options tab and down at the bottom make sure that the auto-attack default is set to Force Spell/Ranged.
Next you need to make sure you have the auto-attack timer window positioned so you can see it easily. Your CA’s are important but you never, NEVER, want to delay your auto-attack. You’ll need to play around with your skills to find out the timing and what all you can cast in between an auto-attack.
One thing that can help you figure that out is to take a look at Snapshot’s Combat Art Efficiency post over on EQ2Flames.
If you’re in the single target AA spec (left side) you’ll want to make sure you’re hitting anything that increments Flaming Assault. Something like this:
- Blazing Shot – Use this as often as possible to make the rest hit harder
- Sneak Attack
- Triple Shot
- Searing Shot – You should be casting this whenever it’s up for the debuff.
- Rear Shot
Once you’ve got that working you can start working on timing it so Flaming Assault is up when you start chain attacks or cast AoE’s on large groups. For example on a fight where you need to burn the mob down:
- Get 11 increments of Burning Intensity before the fight.
- Hit most of your temp buffs before the pull.
- Hit the mob with Searing Shot to get the 12th increment and get Flaming Assault up.
- Hit Predator’s Final Trick (PFT)
- Dragon Claws
- Sniper Shot
- Wreak Havoc – hopefully getting a second Sniper Shot.
- Unload all of your stealth attacks starting with Emberstrike to hopefully have it back before PFT drops.
Obviously this is going to be something that mostly raiders have to worry about but you can use all of the DPS you can get for some of the named even in the heroics.