Monday, June 8, 2009

Weapon Skill Gear Comparisons - Waist

{All right!} Time for another gear comparison. Today we go over the waist slot. Subjects today are:

1. Cuchulain's Belt
2. Wyrm Belt
3. Warwolf Belt
4. Sword Belt+1 (Didn't do the NQ cause the HQ is so cheap. STOP BEING CHEAP FUCKERS!)
5. Vanguard Belt
6. Potent Belt (Per Inbred's request).

And in case you don't feel like clicking links to remind yourself of the stats for each of those pieces, here's the breakdown:

The great thing about all of these belts is that they are rather easy to obtain. Warwolf Belt is probably the most common belt used out of all of these simply because it drops in a KS30 that gets spammed almost daily. It offers a great balance of STR and DEX, but will it stack up to raw attack? Potent Belts can be picked up for free if you spend a little time doing Leujaoam Sanctum assaults (6 tags should do it if you trio spam Red vs. Blue). Vanguard Belts are probably one of the more difficult ones to get in an ENM40 called Bad Seed. Swordbelts are commonly crafted by Leathercrafters (72 synth...can reach T2 HQ if you bother to get all the gear). Wyrm Belts come from CoP Dynamis areas (Buburimu and Qufim specifically) and are Dragoon only. Lastly, Cuchulain's Belt comes from Plucking Wings, which is only available when Castle Oztroja [S] is under Allied Forces control and your rank is Iron Emblem or higher. This one is probably the most difficult one to obtain, hence the price tag of 1-1.5 mil. Again though...will the most expensive belt be the best for Dragoon?

So let's get started. Here are my stats with each of these pieces of gear equipped:

Here are my calculated stats against our friendly level 82 colibri that I obliterated a ton of over the weekend:

And finally, here are the estimated Drakesbane numbers against said pink, feathery bags o' experience points should all four Drake-pokes connect:

There are a couple things to notice here. First is the accuracy percentages. With my gear set up the way that it is currently, the only two pieces of gear I would hit the accuracy cap with would be the Wyrm Belt and the Potent Belt. A Warwolf or Cuchulain's belt would have me a couple accuracy points short of the cap, but the damage range between these two belts and a Wyrm Belt are not all that different.

Second thing to notice here is what is actually making a difference in the damage range. Due to the combination of Ares body, Amemet Mantle +1 and Hecatomb Subligar +1, I'm well over my pDIF cap. This means the only thing left that has a direct effect on increasing my weapon skill damage would be that fSTR rating. Even then, I'm not that far off from the cap. Remember that for 2h weapons, fSTR caps at 18. Relic weapons allegedly have a cap of 19. (This may apply for 1h weapons too, but I haven't bothered to look it up).

Should I think a little more realistically around what most casual players would have, if you replace the Ares Body and Hecatomb Subligar+1 with say...Askar Body and Conte Cosciales (a difference of 29ish attack, 4 STR and 9 DEX in those two slots alone), a Warwolf Belt is still a viable option, but the extra attack and accuracy on a Wyrm Belt starts to have a little more of an impact overall.


The only two belts I could go wrong with in my current set up would be the Vanguard Belt and the Swordbelt+1. Even though the Swordbelt+1 offers up the highest floor damage of any of the belts, that issue with accuracy would bite me in the ass more often than not. I would need to find another 8 acc in a different slot in order to cap myself out. In order to do that, I'd need to replace my Askar Zucchetto with a Hecatomb Cap (on the list anyway), my Pole Grip with a Platinum Grip +1, and my Olibanum Sachet with a Black Tathlum.

The kicker is this though. It wouldn't make a bit of difference against this Colibri. My pDIF is already capped. If we're talking against much higher level monsters with a much higher defensive rating or evasion rating, then yeah, I might consider adding a Black Tathlum anyway, but I still wouldn't use the Swordbelt due to my accuracy being crap against said higher level monsters.

Wyrm Belt, Warwolf Belt, Cuchulain's Belt are your best options overall with Wyrm Belt getting the edge in my opinion if you're not pDIF capped or Accuracy Capped. You're not going to go wrong with the other two. A Potent Belt is good if you're fighting something particularly evasive, but if that's the case, you probably have a Life Belt laying around somewhere collecting dust. A Swordbelt+1, while offering the highest damage floor, does not offer any form of Accuracy and when considering the ceiling, why would you choose this over something that has the same floor/ceiling combo AND higher accuracy to boot (Cuchulain's Belt)?

If Wyrm Belts aren't readily available to you cause you hate Dynamis, get a Warwolf Belt. If you're rich and can't get a Wyrm Belt, get a Cuchulain's Belt. If you don't give a crap about accuracy and just want the eye-popping numbers, get a Warwolf Belt/Swordbelt+1/Vanguard Belt. If you have accuracy issues, Potent Belt. At least that way you're still increasing your attack and accuracy numbers instead of just your accuracy with the Life Belt.

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FFXI subscriber since NA release.