Tips for Playing The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt on Death March Difficulty

Tips for Playing The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt on Death March Difficulty

Posted by on May 22, 2015 in Commentary, featured, Guides, PS4 |

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is out. It has four difficulty levels, the toughest of which is called Death March. I had my reservations about choosing that difficulty but said to hell with it and chose it anyway. The game kicked my ass until I learned to kick back. Then it went back and forth until I started getting the upper hand. We’ll see how long that lasts.

What I mean to say is that this is a work-in-progress. The game was just released. I don’t think anyone’s an expert at anything just yet. I don’t know if the things I’ll be writing here are going to be viable at the endgame. What I do know is that these have worked well for me so far. Let’s get started.

Combat Basics

  • Save and save often. The game allows manual saving so take advantage of it. Save before every fight.
  • There are two ways to avoid getting hit: rolling and dodging/sidestepping. Take the time to master the advantages and differences between the two. Don’t roll when a dodge will do. Don’t just dodge when you really need to get out of harm’s way.
  • Rolling covers more ground, allowing you to completely get out of your enemy’s attack range when you need to. Naturally, that works both ways. If it can’t hit you, you can’t hit it either. You’ll need to regain that ground back.
  • This is where dodging comes in. It allows you to avoid getting hit while keeping your target within striking distance.
  • Stamina does not regenerate when you roll. Rolling costs stamina.
  • Most foes dodge or step back when you land a hit or two. When they do, chase them with a forward dodge. It covers more ground than the forward spin light attack that Geralt does.
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Lightning Returns: Combat Tips

Lightning Returns: Combat Tips

Posted by on Feb 18, 2014 in Guides |



Similar to the past FFXIII games, you still do the most damage when your target is staggered. To do this, the general rule is to hit them with physical attacks to extend stagger time then follow-up with magic attacks to actually stagger them. By the time you run out of ATB for your spells, your opponent should be staggered. If not, then nearly so.

You can tell the stagger status by the pulsing wave that appears on their health bars. The more violent the oscillation, the closer the target is to staggering.

If you’re having a tough time dealing with a particular monster, hitting R2 or RT will bring up Libra, which will give you info about your target. Stagger information is at the bottom of that screen.

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Review: Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning

Review: Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning

Posted by on Feb 22, 2012 in Commentary, Reviews |

Reckoning 2012-02-22 09-48-37-11

What’s Good:
Let’s get the obvious out: Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning’s strongest point is its combat system. If you’re a fan of action games like God of War and Devil May Cry you’ll find that there’s a lot to love. You can fight as a warrior, mage, thief or any combination of the three. You can shoot with bows and spells. If fighting up close is your preferred method then you can hack with swords, hammers and daggers. It’s easy to switch from one style to another.

What fighting and action game aficionados will appreciate is how fluid combat is. You can attack, cancel your attack, roll, block, shoot, cast spells and then some. Your weapon of choice and character’s skills mostly determine how you fight, and with at least two weapons per class you can do the math and count the ways you can kill your foes. Reckoning does an excellent job of combining an RPG with a solid, satisfying combat system. You don’t sit back and let auto-attack do the fighting for you. You have to get in there and get your hands dirty.

What’s Bad:
The camera is annoying. The default view is a little too close and zooms out too slowly or too late to show that you have an opponent behind you. When you’re playing the game on Hard difficulty that annoyance becomes life-threatening. I mean, if I’m going to get hit let it be because I was reckless or inattentive, not because I couldn’t get a good view. I’m already fighting multiple monsters. I don’t need to fight with the camera.

Final Word:
Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning is a great game that does a lot of things right. And all that is outdone by the battle system. If you love fighting games or RPGs with solid combat then this title will provide an excellent experience.

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More On Combat

Posted by on Feb 16, 2011 in Commentary | 5 comments

I have a confession to make in case it wasn’t obvious: the whole point of building a Combat set was to bring back the glory days of WotLK. I’m referring to being able to run both as Combat and Assassination. I just liked having that choice back then. Now that I actually have a decent Combat set, things aren’t working out as I intended.

This explains why:

Q: What’s the top DPS spec?

A: Assassination and Combat are both reasonable options. Combat should be a bit ahead above 35% and a bit behind below 35%, but its hard to say which is going to be higher on average. In practice, I think they’re going to be pretty close on single-target, and primarily distinguished by how they perform in non-single-target situations. That is: Assassination has vastly better AoE and more broadly applicable utility talents, while Combat will be the king of DPSing two targets (via Blade Flurry) and has better burst via cooldowns; for any given fight, this distinction is likely more relevant than the theoretical single-target difference between the specs. [via EJ]

Combat used to be the spec of choice when it came to AoE situations, making it better for 5-man dungeons. Now that Assassination is the superior spec for both single and multi-target fights, the only reason to run Combat is when I’m cleaving. I don’t know about you but I find that option severely limiting.

Don’t get me wrong. Combat DPS is amazing when it’s used properly. With my current gear I usually get 6-7k DPS on single-target and 11k when I can use Blade Flurry. 11k is good damage, obviously. My only problem with it is that it seems so situational.

Think about it.  With Assassination all you need to do after the pull is to cast Tricks then go crazy with Fan of Knives. That’s it. With Combat, I have to decide whether hitting two targets only justifies not touching the others. I also have to worry about the eventual threat issue when Tricks goes down. Bottom line, I need to do more runs as Combat and see what I can learn. I also have to convince myself to stick with Combat even when I start seeing my numbers go down (cleaving nothing, KS on cooldown, etc.)

How about you guys? Any similar experiences? Have you tried running both? Is it better to just stick to one spec?

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Combat In Patch 4.0.6

Combat In Patch 4.0.6

Posted by on Feb 12, 2011 in Commentary | 1 comment


So the patch is out. I went ahead and assembled a second set for Combat to try it out. In case you’re wondering why a second set is necessary, it’s because of stat weights; Assassination and Combat have different priorities. For example, Spell Hit is critical to Assassination due to its reliance on poison damage. Special attacks play a more vital role for Combat, making Expertise a priority over Spell Hit. You can look up my previous post on stat weights for more information.

I tried out my Combat set earlier today and here’s what I can tell you.

• This is an early impression, but soloing and questing were more convenient to do in Combat because my special attacks were hitting harder. Downsides? Recuperate was healing less and I was running slower. Why? Because they were both untalented.

Blade Flurry did wonders for my DPS during trash pulls on heroic dungeons. It was fun cleaving everything. However, it also messed up my threat big time. I was using Vanish then Evasion + Cloak of Shadows when it was on cooldown more often than necessary. And yes, even when I was casting Tricks I was still having problems. I’m going to try to include Feint in my rotation and see how it goes. It’s better than turning off Blade Flurry altogether.

• How’s Combat’s single-target DPS compared to Assassination? Forget it, it’s not even close. Go switch specs and use your daggers when you’re fighting only one mob.

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