Hey fellow Burglars and those aspiring to become one! I am known to many as Gabo or Beo, and today I have put up the first of a several articles about Burglars that will hopefully help those seeking basic knowledge about this fun class.
The Burglar class has been my main ever since I created it, and I continue to enjoy it every day and improve myself with it. Once you start playing it, it does not take long to realize that the burglar is one of the most complicated to play along with the Lore-Master, but the key factor in differentiating them is SPEED!
In this first article I will be talking mainly about the Gambler trait line, its design, its advantages while solo, and how it can contribute to a Fellowship and/or Raid. At the end I will explain what are my suggested Legendary Item Legacies builds as well as combinations of traits to get the maximum for every instance currently available at level 75 cap.
Way of the Gambler
The Gambler trait line is a fun, twisted, and somewhat complicated form of playing your Burglar. This trait line has an intricate design that should be fully understood before starting to use it and practice.
One of the first things to learn is, what are gambles?
As the word implies, a gamble is an effect that can be applied to a target and has a random potency. Let’s begin by identifying and explaining each one of the 3 gambles that exist.
Disabling Gamble: This effect is simply a daze, its potency ranges from 15 seconds up to 60.
- Tier 1 = 15s Mez
- Tier 2 = 20s Mez
- Tier 3 = 30s Mez
- Tier 4 = 30s Mez
- Tier 5 = 40s Mez
- Tier 6 = 60s Mez
Debuffing Gamble: Probably the most useful gamble for any fight, as it can really cripple your opponent for 15 seconds. It adds a Miss Chance, Attack Speed Reduction, and a Damage Reduction.
- Tier 1 = +15% attack speed
- Tier 2 = +05% miss chance, +20% attack speed
- Tier 3 = +10% miss chance, +25% attack speed, -5% damage
- Tier 4 = +10% miss chance, +30% attack speed, -10% damage
- Tier 5 = +15% miss chance, +35% attack speed, -15% damage
- Tier 6 = +20% miss chance, +40% attack speed, -30% damage
Damaging Gamble: This is your bread and butter gamble as it is the one you can consistently apply over and over with the right setup and of course some good luck. The potency of each Tier depends on your specific gear, Physical Mastery and LIs. As a reference I can say that with my current build a Tier 6 is around 370 damage a tick.
Remember all three of these Gambles have a random potency when applied, from the weakest of level 1 to the strongest of level 6.
Now how do I apply Gambles?
There are several ways you can apply them. When traited deep into the Gambler line all your trick removals can apply each a different gamble: Mischievous Glee (a Disabling), Clever Retort (a Debuffing), and Startling Twist (a Damaging). They all have a 25% base chance to proc.
Other ways of applying them are through specific slotted traits:
- Leaf-walker: Gives Provoke a chance to apply a Disabling Gamble -60% chance-.
- Footpad: Will give the Burgle skill a chance of applying a Debuffing Gamble -60% chance- (After next update this will change to Diversion instead of Burgle).
- Lucky/Gambler’s Strike: Last but not least, your most used skill for Gambles and ideally the spamable one. Lucky Strike is available once you train it and will always apply a Damaging Gamble on hit.
Lucky Strike becomes Gambler’s Strike when you trait the capstone of the Gambler line “Dealings Done“. This is a powerful modification as it changes a few key things for your gambler’s build:.
- First and most noticeable, it reduces the cooldown of the skill by 4 minutes. And assuming you have the cooldown reduction legacy maxed to -45 seconds on your weapon, Gambler’s Strike will go down to a 15 seconds cooldown!
- Secondly, Gambler’s Strike now has the quality of increasing the potency of an active gamble on the target to its maximum level. So for example, if I apply a Debuffing Gamble of level 2, which lasts for 15 seconds, I can use Gambler’s Strike while the debuff is active to upgrade it at any point to its maximum potency at level 6. The same applies to any Gamble active on the target, a current Disabling or Damaging gamble will be upgraded to its maximum potency if you hit it with Gambler’s Strike.
Contrary to what many people believe on first impression, you cannot keep reapplying Gambler’s Strike to maintain a daze from a Disabling Gamble, even though the dazes can range from 15 to 60 seconds. There is a Place Holder debuff of 15 seconds that is applied at the same time you daze the target and during this time only you can use Gambler’s Strike to increase the daze to its maximum level of 60 seconds. Also, any effects that can be applied while a target suffers from a gamble can proc or trigger during this time. On another note, once you upgrade any gamble you cannot keep refreshing it with Gambler’s Strike.
Let’s give an example of how this all works. Say you are fighting 2 bandits and to alleviate your burden you decide to use Mischievous Glee, and luckily enough you trigger a Disabling Gamble (daze) of level 3 (30 seconds). At that moment you will see the Disabling Gamble debuff on the target which means you have 15 seconds to upgrade it with Gambler’s Strike to level 6 (increasing the daze to 60 seconds). This debuff also allows you to possibly trigger any effects than can be applied while the target has an active gamble, like the Cruel Odds Trait effect.
You can increase the percentage of applying a Gamble in 3 ways:
- 20% from a Burglar’s Tools legacy.
- 10% from the Legendary Trait Dealings Done
- 40% from the buff you get after a devastating hit when you trait 4 or more deep into Gambler.
These can make you have a 95% chance to apply a Gamble with Trick Removals, and 100% with the specific traits mentioned above (There is another way to increase the percentage by traiting Even the Odds, which after using Escape Clause will give you 50% chance to apply a Gamble for 60 seconds).
Anodhelm the Gambler
I find the Gambler burglar a very dynamic and entertaining way to play as you can increase your abilities to CC (crowd control) more, debuff further, and apply a constant bleed aside from your Cunning Attack. However, its efficiency in raids/fellowships is questionable. My personal experiences have brought me to understand that your job as a burglar is to Debuff, CC, and put up high DPS in groups. With this said, relying on Gambles that depend on luck with based on percentages and processes is not the best approach when you are required to contribute in a certain way.
What do I mean? Well let’s say you are in a Lighting Wing Tower of Orthanc run (or another instance run) and you are required to CC a Troll. Right off the bat why would you rely on a Disabling Gamble to proc when you could just use the Riddle skill which is a straight forward CC?
Even a Debuffing Gamble (which as I stated previously is my favorite one) which can apply a crippling debuff isn’t all that useful in a raid. Why? Because even with all the traits and legacies available to the Burglar class, you won’t have a 100% chance to apply it in-combat. Furthermore, in case you do apply it, the duration is only 15 seconds with a cooldown of 1 minute and 30 seconds (at best. If you are lucky enough to apply a level 5 Debuffing Gamble and then upgrade it to a level 6 you will still only debuff the target for around 16 to 29 seconds. And yet again we are still solely depending on luck. I don’t know about you, but I hate luck in this game!
As for the damaging gamble it is just a simple DPS contribution and should be weighed as such when compared to other trait builds.
The last (and probably the best) thing a gambler can offer to a raid fight are the debuffs that come from traiting Swift and Subtle and Cruel Odds traits. While they are decent debuffs, they also rely on small percentages; although to be fair I wager that they proc very often. Finally, the trait Opportunist alone can improve Counter Defense to do more than the last debuffs coming from 2 traits we just discussed.
With all this said, I consider a Gambler Burglar more of a solo player than a group one, but this is only my opinion with my experience as a raider seeking the most efficiency for the success of a fight.
These are my picks for legacies on Legendary Items, starting with a 3 majors, 3 minors weapon:
- Critical Response Skills damage: This envelops all your skills dependent on critical responses. So you will be increasing up to 10% the damage on 7 skills; 5 of which you should be using in your rotation over and over again.
- Burglar Skill Bleed Damage: Increases the Damage Over Time of your Cunning Attack and Well-Placed Strike (unfortunately the bleed from a Damaging Gamble is not affected by this).
- Subtle Stab Damage Multiplier: This should be your most used skill, so t’s wise to increase its damage.
- Subtle Stab Critical Multiplier: Since I convinced you that the above is true, wouldn’t you want to increase those big numbers?
- Gambler’s Strike Cooldown: Another main skill that should be spammed as much as possible, so this is a must.
- Agility Legacy: Since the points on a weapon are not enough to max out all the legacies, you wont be able to increase other legacies beyond the ones already listed. A Main Stat legacy can be by itself of better help to increase your DPS than any other, and even with no points spent on it, it can toss in some good numbers on your favor.
Continuing with your class item, Burglar’s Tools:
- Gamble Chance: I don’t have to explain why! This adds up to 20% chance to apply a Gamble.
- Addle Cooldown: No matter what path you take, Addle must be your second most used skill in your rotation
- Skills Critical Multiplier: More BIG numbers for your critical and devastating attacks!
- Positional Damage: Increases your damage when standing behind your target.
- Addle Induction Multiplier: Increasing the inductions of your target to almost double their times is a real time gainer for your fight.
- Agility Legacy: As I explained above, it is a great thing to have if you can’t afford to use more points. However, because of the inherent value of the Burglar’s Tools (the Incoming Healing Rating) you might want to use your last points here. This mindset will leave you with some extra points to invest in another legacy. So here you can really use anything that makes your quality of life better: Sneak Movement Speed or even Clever Retort Damage/healing (since you will be using it often) if you so desire. I for one would rather go for more Agility, but it’s up to you.
Please note that I am basing these LI builds off a Second Age since they seem to be the most commonly wielded at this point in the game. If you have a First or Third Age it will be up to you on how to distribute the available points. Also, you probably noticed I picked 4 Majors on the Burglar’s Tools. You should look for 4 Majors as they are very important for this build; even if you use Third Ages.
Selection of Traits
As you may know by now I am not a Gambler Burglar, but I have tried in the past and I have put some numbers together in order to suggest the traits that will help you support the fight. While there are many combinations available my selection is rigid on the 5 Gambler Traits and bifurcated on the last 2 traits.
My 5 rigid traits:
- Honed Wit: This will allow you to use Clever Retort outside of Mischief, also reduces the cooldown by 30 seconds. This is your in-combat Debuffing Gamble proc skill.
- Cruel Odds: Allows you to possibly debuff on proc your target, increasing susceptibility to melee criticals by 2%.
- Swift and Subtle: Increases your Subtle Stab skill damage by 10%, and also reduces the targets resistances (by 300 at level 75).
- Side-step: Increases your Evade rating (by 900 at level 75).
- Overwhelming Odds: Will give you a buff dependent on the Fellowship Maneuvers.
These are my picks for a raid situation so feel free to exchange the ones you don’t like for solo play and questing. The last 2 traits will depend on what you feel like doing; either more DPS or debuffing.
For DPS I would go for:
- Cunning Wound: Since we have the legacy we have to add this trait to the picture since it increases your bleeds considerably.
- Ambidextrous: Very simple; adds 15% extra damage to your offhand.
- Appraising Eye: 2% extra damage from all sources, your fellows will appreciate that.
- Opportunist: This is one of my favorite traits as it increases both the BPE debuff and the Incoming Critical Chance by 3% from all sources of Counter Defense.
A side note on the last two traits: If you are strictly required to main CC on your raid, you should consider traiting Perplexing Riddle along with Complicated Terms, as these 2 will improve so much your Riddle.
Player Versus Monster Player
For those seeking to use this build in PvMP, I may not be the best to advice you about every detail, because I’ve never traited this way for the Moors. Nonetheless, I can tell you what the advantages are, as well as the drawbacks.
PvMP from my perspective (as a solo Freep) is all about damage and speed. I don’t use much CC when fighting hence my choice of going Quiet Knife in PvMP. But at this point we can tell that Gambler will give you extra CC, debuff, and an extra DoT. The advantage of using the Gambler trait line in PvMP comes from being able to daze your target more often and possibly debuff it. The disadvantages are pure and simple DPS. I personally cannot sacrifice so much DPS for a couple of extra debuffs (which in the end wont help me much). Not to mention the CC is close to useless when there are Diminishing Returns, Potions that remove dazes, and the rapid increase use of Brands by Creeps. I can imagine some fun by using the Gambler line in the Moors, but my objective as a Burglar over there is to fight, kill fast, and move along; thus Gambler doesn’t do it for me. However, it’s up to you what build to use. Just remember this is only based on my experience and point-of-view.
Thank you all for reading, if you have any questions please make them in the comment section and I’ll try to answer as much as I can!
See you on the next part…