Titan Quest: The suckiest mastery?

OK so I just picked up Titan Quest for $20 at Gamestop. (We were at the mall and my wife was shopping for shoes for our toddler, and she told me, “Go get your cell phone fixed” (at the Cingular stand) “and then I’ll meet you at the game store.” I love my wife.) Also picked up RCT3 for $20, and even Puzzle Quest for the DS!!! for $30 – talk about a big win! My wife is even now on the couch happily playing her Mother’s Day game gift as I am over here working :-D Gamer wife FTW!

But that is all beside the point. The POINT is, I will soon (e.g. sometime in the next six months, given my game backlog) fire up Titan Quest. And when I do, I have to choose a primary mastery.

Now, I don’t really want to know everyone’s favorite. Let’s face it, they all look good in one way or another. And I know from skimming the thread that just about every combo CAN be fun. But I do want to know if there is any one that is stinkerier than the rest. I don’t know which one I WILL pick, but I could use some help with one that I WON’T pick.

So have at it!

They’re all good when combined with any other tree. I’d say the weakest Mastery if you were to play a single-mastery character (and there is no reason to outside of pure challenge) is Defense. And even then you’d be fine, things would just take awhile to kill.

Also, get the expansion before you start playing.

Whoa, why get the expansion before I even start playing the first one? No fucking way man, part of the appeal is that I only spent $20. I’m not gonna spend another $30 to make the game twice as big (or whatever) when the odds are I’m not even going to get to it for months to come. Don’t make me list my backlog.

My wife just told me “There’s a rat in the road! This is the coolest game ever!” :-D It’s so sweet to see someone lose their RPG virginity…

The expansion adds the new artifact recipes at all levels, but you are probably right. I don’t particularly think the expansion is worth buying for that alone, especailly given the huge pita it is to make the artifacts.
Or the dream mastery skill set though it is quite fun. still probably not worth picking up the expansion just for those 2 things which are the only things I believe it adds at low levels. I’m fact, I’d say you were better off to finish the original game once with no expansion in just so you can play epic mode without having to finish the expansion to do it.
Almost forgot the storage system they put in. Easily replaced with TQvault though.
I’m not sure if the guaranteed blue drops on first boss kill was added as a patch to the main game or is only available in the expansion but if it’s only in the expansion you can adjust the main game fine with TQDefiler.

Because the expansion, along with adding another Act, also adds a bunch of new features that enhance the original game. Things like Scrolls, Artifact creation, a new Mastery (Dream), and Caravans that let you store items as well as transfer them among your characters. Trust us, you want to get and install the expansion before you play.

[Edit]: Ok, trust everyone but Phred.

Defense by a mile. Defense not only sucks because of it’s lack of killing power and lack of range, but because most of it’s skills require either a shield or a blunt weapon, something a caster will almost never have. I guess you could try and make a “true hybrid”.

Although i find it hard to mix masteries at all, and even though you can choose two, i generally just max one mastery up and not even pick a second.

I’m thinking Rogue/Storm right now. Yeah it’s a true hybrid, but so what? Cut them, poison them, freeze them, and shock them. Maybe I’ll name my character Painmaster.

Raife, not that I don’t trust you, but I don’t want to spend more money on this yet. Maybe I’ll just wait to start playing it until the expansion drops below $20 :-)

I used to think like that too, till I took my Dream/Defense character through all three difficulty levels like a hot knife through butter. We are talking premelted lobster butter here. It sure was shit wasn’t the dream skills, they where nice, and helped with my damage output, but defense made me near immortal. If anything it was too easy, and I expect it’s been nerfed or will be.

I like spirit/earth myself. I bet spirit/any caster mastery would own once you got the spell in the mastery up that buffed your damage in that mastery and then used tirnion attack from spirit. With the fire damage buff from earth mastery I get about 295 avg fire damage with a 60 base fire damage staff. Other than pets I don’t have points in any other spells in either mastery. Just buffing my dmg, buffing my pet and buffing terion, and this character owns everything but Typhon, who ate my pets in 1 shot.

Parappa the Zappa.

Raife, not that I don’t trust you, but I don’t want to spend more money on this yet. Maybe I’ll just wait to start playing it until the expansion drops below $20 :-)

Yeah, I can understand that. Play around with some different Masteries and see how you like both them and the gameplay. It doesn’t take long to get tenth level or so, especially after the first run. Just keep in mind that some Masteries can take awhile before you get that first Oh hell yes! moment.

My wife: “So how do you stop playing the game? My eyes are burning and I’m so tired!”

I was kind of thinking dream/def would rock. The huge damage add for weapons from dream seems made for a melee character, plus the ability to clear a space around yourself when things get too hairy would help a lot too.

All of the masteries are strong, but you can still wind up with a horrible character if you don’t put some thought into it.

Personally, I think nature and spirit are the two least exciting masteries to play. Both give you lots of buffs/pets, but not a lot in the way of active combat skills to use. Defense Mastery at least gives you Shield Charge, and Shield Charge never gets old.

Just remember that if you’re dying frequently to packs of monsters, raise your armor value. Even a “small” increase of +15 to your torso armor can make a huge difference, due to the way armor works in TQ.

You guys think defense is week? Whoa. My almost-pure-defense-conqueror-except-for-15-or-so-points-in-warfare disagrees. I stopped picking up Warfare talents once I got the maxed out dodge talent and maxed Onslaught I think, then I poured points into maxing out the better defense talents. Sure you’ll be killing stuff slower, but there are some nice shield-damage boosting talents that you could pick up that do enhance this, coupled with a good weapon and maxed-out Onslaught you’re golden. Plus you can actually tank bosses and fight them hand-to-hand.

Also, some of the damage boosting skills like Pulverise are pretty useful.

Defense needs a shield to be viable and gets off to a slow start but it definitely not a bad choice. I just finished Normal with my Defense/Dream char (and Dream’s utility is pretty much all in the passives for me) and I just tore through Hades in less than 30 seconds.

Defense/Hunting for the shield/spear combo I think would be a killer. Of course, I just happened to find a legendary spear that I’m itching to try out.

Defense/Storm, on the other hand is very much not worth it. I played that through Typhon in normal difficulty and it’s by far the weakest char I’ve ever played. Struggled with practically everything.

All passives? Man, talk about missing out.

You’ve gotta try the phantom strike + distortion wave + distortion field combo. Makes everything that’s not a boss (or a very tough elite) dead. And anything that’s not dead is sucking electrical burn, frozen, slow, and missing a big fucking chunk of armor.

Also, distortion wave has the best ragdoll physics effects ever.


Playing this game without the expansion is like, I don’t know, playing Icewind Dale without Heart of Winter. It’s like playing Warcraft 3 online without Frozen Throne. It’s like playing WoW without the Burning Crusade, I guess. Hell, it’s like playing The Temple of Elemental Evil without the Co8 fan patch or the front-end loader.

Or like reading “The Challenger Launch Decision” and not getting into a big argument with your Senior Seminar prof over how fucking stupid the engineers at NASA were to send that doomed shuttle up.

Well, maybe the last one’s just me, but Immortal Throne is a damn good expansion, and greatly enhances the gameplay outside of just the new content.

I like Phantom Strike, but the timer on it means I cant use it as often as I’d like. The bonus damage is great but since it recharges so slowly I find it’s main use is on the occasional supertough boss where I need to hit and run. Distortion Wave looks great but I don’t really need it. Grouped melee mobs only last 5-10 seconds against me and ranged mobs are usually too spread out for the effect to really pay off.

I might appreciate the slowing effect more if I hadn’t twinked my char with an epic green 20% damage to life sword, but as it is incoming attacks barely have time to dent my health (except those damn Formicid captains).

How do ya’ll afford points for the second mastery? The way many skills have synergies, i’d much rather buff one Mastery to 30 and then max several skills in that line, than raise two Masteries to 30 (or somewhat less) and have far fewer high level skills.

For example, ive just made a Theurgist character, but i can’t see any skills worth picking up in the other lines that won’t cost me an arm and two legs (this is vanilla TQ, i don’t have the expansion). The only thing vaguely interesting is maxing my death aura and perhaps the Storm aura, so it’d have stacked slowing auras, and hopefully knocking melee against me down to around 50% or so.

You don’t have to actually get a secondary mastery, you can manage just fine with one.

In my case, leveling two complementary masteries like warfare and defense was useful as they raise pretty much the same skills, so pouring some points into the second mastery to get some essential skills isn’t really a big problem.

I snagged the expansion this weekend finally and started a new Dream character. I’m at a loss as to whether I should try to pump up the early skills or spend points going for the later ones ASAP, or does it matter?

I don’t want to resort to looking at a faq for build advice, but I don’t want to screw myself over either by making blind choices instead of correct ones.