Clone Killer with Knives
01-18-2008, 07:15 AM
Clone Killer with Knives
"Who am I? Who are you? What is this place, and what am I doing in it?" inquired the young, blonde woman anonymously, regarding the bald, grey-bearded man suspiciously.
"You are PunchinJudy, an Amazon of Clan Zyr. I'm Zyr, and this encampment is the temporary home of the Sisters of the Sightless Eye, popularly known as the Rogues," grinned the old man rogueishly. "Your job is to stay here and hold the Clan's collection of daggers and throwing knives, against the time that the Clan's warriors may have need of them," he added sharply.
"Sounds boring; I'd rather punch holes in monsters," replied PunchinJudy penetratingly. "Isn't there something more I could do?"
"Hmmm," grunted Zyr contemplatively. "Well, I suppose you could use some of the daggers to advance yourself to the sixteenth level, so you could wear the Clan's currently unused Twitchthroe," he said with a tic.
"Yes!" exclaimed Judy affirmatively, as she set out into the Blood Moor.
"I'm overburdened!" panted PunchinJudy heavily a few hours later, as Zyr handed her the Twitchthroe. "It's very difficult to kill monsters efficiently when I've no space in my backpack to pick anything up, and no room in my stash to store anything," she complained verbosely.
"But you've reached the level to wear the armor, so you have no reason to kill any more monsters," said Zyr unreasonably.
"Oh, yes I do!" affirmed PunchinJudy assertively. "This Clan has a long history of sending Daggerzons out to fight the evils infesting Sanctuary, but how many have finished off the Prime Evils?" she asked innumerably.
"None," replied the old man emptily.
"Whatever happened to UseMeLoseMeToo, Clan Zyr's first Daggerzon?" murmured Judy wonderingly.
"I, er, neglected her," muttered the greybeard negligently.
"And you let my mortal cousin Zyryalyna meet a shocking death in the Hell Maggot Lair, with lousy resistances," nodded the blonde concurrently.
"That was ba-a-ad," bleated Zyr sheepishly.
"And don't I have another mortal cousin named Zyranala, whom you're permitting to invade Hell with a Harmony bow and lousy resistances, just like Zyryalyna, at only her 69th level, in spite of the fact that she also has a perfectly good Chromatic Bone Shield of Deflecting with two Perfect Diamonds in it, and a Cruel Fanged Knife with a Shael and a Ruby Jewel of Fervor in it, and a Strength Fanged Knife which she could be using?" queried PunchinJudy cruelly and strongly and emphatically (and, again, verbosely).
"Correct, I have allowed her to go forth into Hell so equipped," admitted Zyr forthrightly.
"I think it's about time that someone from Clan Zyr followed in the footsteps of Woglinde, and finished the job," stated PunchinJudy with finality.
"True," said Zyr candidly, as his hands manipulated strange tools which the Amazon could neither identify nor see. A moment later, another young blonde woman appeared beside PunchinJudy.
"Just give me the knives," said StabithaToo cuttingly, pointedly ignoring Zyr and transfixing PunchinJudy with a glare.
As she contemplated her chest's treasures, PunchinJudy chose throwing knives as her primary weapons against most monsters. They were fast, and she could either throw them or stab with them as circumstances warranted. Also, unlike javelins and the normal and exceptional throwing knives, the elite Flying Knives and Winged Knives suffered no damage penalty when used for stabbing.
She knew that the damage she could cause to monsters with such weapons would be far lower than her bow-, javelin-, and spear-wielding kin could achieve. This did not concern her; she also knew that her destiny was to be a Mistress of Minions, with the strongest possible Decoy and Valkyrie, like BlindJustis, AmaZingValk, and anna_goanna. She also would be accompanied by a Sister of the Sightless Eye wielding an Edge bow; the Thorns aura from the weapon would turn her Decoy into a killer. After defeating Blood Raven, a Rogue named Amplisa had become her faithful, fierce and frosty companion.
Judy also knew that she would contribute types of damage, critical to the success of her mission, that her minions would not be able to inflict. The journals of Gardarr and The Poorman had shown her that Crushing Blow and Open Wounds would be enormously effective even with low damage weapons. She also knew that Fire and most especially Lightning would be key elements in her party's progress.
So, as she peered intently at her chest, she made mental notes: A <span style="color:yellow">Plague Stinger Flying Knife, with 40% IAS, 51-119 damage, +54 AR, 1-4 Cold damage, 1 Mana/kill, might be her primary physical damage weapon from her 48th level onward, if nothing better came her way. A <span style="color:blue">Shocking Balanced Knife of Strength, with 1-472 Lightning damage, would certainly be useful in the plane known as Hell. She was not at all distressed that many of the knives in the chest were merely magical; Maldar had taught her that blue is a perfectly acceptable color for an item's name. She was mildly concerned, though, that there was no Condensing weapon.
After withdrawing a <span style="color:wheat">Strength <span style="color:gray">Cinquedeas and a <span style="color:blue">Snowy Balanced Knife of Storms (8-24 Cold damage, 6-98 Lightning damage), PunchinJudy closed her chest and passed it to StabithaToo. "Keep them sharp; I'll be back for more soon," she promised keenly.
Critical Strike was the first skill PunchinJudy began developing, but Decoy and Valkyrie were the first she developed to their maximum levels. It was a proud day indeed when, during a brief respite from bloody frays in the Bloody Foothills, she first summoned a Valkyrie. She studied the ghostly Amazon spirit intently, frowned slightly, then summoned another. She continued until she had summoned the spirit of MalibuStacy, an Impaleazon of Clan Makofan, for this spectral warrior had fought fiercely both in life and, after death, alongside many of Clan Zyr's Amazons.
Judy was still in the middle of the plane of existence known as Nightmare when her Decoy and Valkyrie reached their maximum potentials. She next concentrated on Inner Sight, though she seldom needed to use the skill herself, as Amplisa cast the spell frequently and effectively. But Judy, with an inner sight of her own, could foresee times when Amplisa might not be at her side, and she developed this skill, too, as far as her talent would allow. She also trained her mental powers in the skills called Penetrate and Pierce. She took great pride in the latter, as she watched two or three monsters turn first blue, then green, as a single thrown knife passed through their Hell-spawned bodies.
PunchinJudy had soloed her way to level 79 and had reached Lut Gohlein in Hell when news came to Clans Relic and Zyr that Diablo walked the earth. Because the two clans had been lucky with such events, Judy had received an Annihilus charm shortly after starting Hell; now, she would have a chance to earn it. Solo the Clone? That possibility was never considered; the two Clans always tackle the Clone and the Ãbers as a team. Tank a monster 31 levels higher than herself? Even with Relic's level 90 Trapper IShdBWritin casting Life Tap and traps, and slowing the Clone with shuriken from Pompeii's Wrath, getting up close 'n' personal would not be trivial. Judy swapped her throwing knives and <span style="color:blue">Athletic Heavy Gloves of Alacrity for the <span style="color:wheat">Strength <span style="color:gray">Fanged Knife and <span style="color:orange">Storm Grasp Heavy Gloves kept in her stash for boss fights. Clan Zyr's Smiter and Kicker do take him down quicker, but Judy's 35% CB and damage were adequate to the tanking task.
PunchinJudy tanked the Clone three more times, all at level 82. The second time, she was again accompanied by IShdBWritin. Her companion for her third encounter was MrPottryMouth, a Clay Golem/Cursemancer whom Relic was grooming for Ãberland. For the fourth battle, Judy was joined again by IShdBWritin, who by this time had reached level 91. Surprisingly, this was the toughest of the four fights. When the Clone was nearly dead, he suddenly started regenerating, and Judy stopped leeching, even though the Life Tap graphic was clearly visible over the demon's head. Judy was soon out of potions, and the party went to town to refill. When they returned, Life Tap and Open Wounds were working properly again.
The Clone turns his back on Judy and Stacy to attack Mizan, IshdBWritin's prayerful companion
After slaying Mizan, Diablo faces Judy and Stacy-- but not for long...
PunchinJudy's confidence was boosted enormously by the first battle with Diablo's Clone, and she took savage satisfaction in avenging her mortal cousin Zyryalyna's death in the Maggot Lair. She had dreaded having to fight each Fetish, Flayer, and Soul Killer in the Kurast jungles individually, so she laughed aloud as she saw how efficiently Stacy dispatched them. But her progress was slowed with increasing frequency by monsters immune to both physical and lightning damage, such as this Finger Mage in the Chaos Sanctuary:
A Condensing Balanced Knife would have been most welcome here
But Fire and Cold damage from charms, Poison damage from a ring, Open Wounds from Swordback Hold and Judy's belt, and Amplisa's Cold Arrows eventually dispatched the monster.
For the first time in Hell, Judy had to summon Valkyries during combat in the Chaos Sanctuary, when Stacy's own formidable power was directed back at herself, magnified many times over, by the Iron Maiden curse. Diablo, however, was not much of a challenge, especially compared to his much stronger Clone.
After Judy reached the Frozen Tundra waypoint, she was able to replace the <span style="color:yellow">Plague Stinger Flying Knife with a <span style="color:blue">Cruel Winged Knife, the gift of IShdBWritin. She put it to good use in the battle with the Ancients, stabbing Korlic back to statuary with it, and then throwing it at Madawc over Stacy's shoulder. With Madawc again frozen on his pedestal, she looked for Talic, whom she had not seen since the first seconds of the fight-- only to discover that he, too, was again in stasis. "It's good to be the Mistress of Minions," she said magisterially as she crossed Tyrael's greasy palm with gold for Amplisa's resurrection, "but sometimes it gets expensive."
Malah had kind words for PunchinJudy after the battle on Arreat's summit. She also offered a <span style="color:blue">Condensing Balanced Knife (149-221 Fire damage), which the Amazon purchased instantly. "I'll put that to good use," the Amazon replied roguishly. Its small size allowed her to carry it with her, and exchange it with her <span style="color:blue">Shocking Balanced Knife when needed.
The fiery knife indeed proved its usefulness on the second level of the Worldstone Keep, where the trio encountered Burning Souls just off the waypoint. Thus began what proved to be a four hour grind to reach the Worldstone Chamber. The toughest single fight of PunchinJudy's adventures to date came on WSK3, as experienced Amazon warriors call it, when she and her minions encountered a Blood Temptress boss and hers:
PunchinJudy's most difficult adversary so far
Four times Amplisa and Stacy fell to the demon spells. Four times Judy fled through portals to Harrogath to resurrect the one and resummon the other. When each fell for the fifth time, Judy decided to stand her ground, resummoning Valkyries as they died. Eventually, she prevailed.
With some trepidation, PunchinJudy descended the stair to the Throne of Destruction, casting a Decoy immediately upon emerging. There was no welcoming committee at the stair, so she cast another Decoy at the corner to the upper left. Undead Soul Killers were the first monsters to respond, quickly followed by Burning Souls. What other monsters lurked on this level? Oh: Doom and Oblivion Knights. Shucks, nothin' there we can't handle... The level was quickly cleared.
Welcome to the Throne of Destruction!
Colenzo and Achmel managed to resurrect a few Doom Knights, but no Dolls, Souls, or OKs. The first four waves of minions weren't particularly difficult, but Lister & Co. were tough. MalibuStacy's 4840 Life was wiped out quickly, and Judy had to summon a Valkyrie in combat for the first time since the marathon battle with Ash Wound the Unclean and her cohort on WSK3.
"Thank you for coming to my aid," panted Judy to the Valkyrie when the final Minion had fallen. "May I ask your name?"
"Molpadia," the spectral Amazon whispered.
"Molpadia of Clan Jinxed!" exclaimed Judy redundantly. "Your deeds of valor are remembered with great respect. Would you do me the honor of fighting Baal with me?" she asked humbly.
"Ja," assented the Valkyrie softly, with the merest ghost of a smile.
After swapping her <span style="color:blue">Cruel Winged Knife and <span style="color:blue">Athletic Heavy Gloves of Alacrity for her <span style="color:wheat">Strength <span style="color:gray">Fanged Knife and <span style="color:orange">Storm Grasp Heavy Gloves, Judy led Amplisa and Molpadia past the vacant Throne of Destruction and into the Worldstone Chamber. Fleetly bobbing and weaving through a forest of Festering Appendages, she came face to face with Baal. "My brothers will not have died in vain!" predicted the monster future-perfectly, as he hit the Amazon with a flying wedge of Ice.
The last of the Prime Evils proved to be a much more formidable foe than his two brothers had been, teleporting away from PunchinJudy's blade, summoning his clone, and hurting the Amazon so badly that she was forced to drink all of the potions in her belt. Judy fled to Harrogath through a Town Portal. After refilling her belt, she replaced her <span style="color:blue">Shocking Balanced Knife of Strength with the <span style="color:blue">War Dart of Life Tap she kept in her chest against times of need. "This is a time of need," she thought needlessly.
After casting the Life Tap curse on the demon, she resumed stabbing him with the Strength knife. The battle was long; Judy was forced to curse Baal four more times, and faithful, fierce and frosty Amplisa fell to his cruel tricks. But as the last wisps of Baal's spirit drifted back to the burning hells, PunchinJudy and the Valkyrie remained standing.
"You have accomplished everything you set out to do..."
"Perhaps what Tyrael says is true," said Judy to the ghostly Amazon. "Even though I slew him, Diablo still walks the earth from time to time, stronger than ever; I have fought him four times myself. I have even heard that sometimes the three Prime Evils can be found together, in the ruins of Tristram. Perhaps you and I together could cut them down," she said incisively.
"Ja," assented the Valkyrie softly, with the merest ghost of a smile, as PunchinJudy stepped through the red portal.
PunchinJudy came to life in the spring of 2007 on US West SCL, but did not complete her journey until long after the ladder was reset. She quested alone, having the company of characters from Clan Relic only for the four DClone battles. As of this writing, she has never died.
Is she slow? Probably-- not that I would necessarily notice. My preferred play style is to pick up every pile of gold, and to examine every item that might have useful properties, or will sell to a vendor for a worthwhile amount. Since I return to town often anyway, the frequent need for repairs to the knives was a lesser issue for me than it might be for others.
Even though the majority of my Zons max both Decoy and Valk, PunchinJudy has probably consumed fewer potions than any of the others, because I'm less likely to rush headlong into a fight with her. It would be misleading to say she's the safest character I've ever played, but it would be accurate to say I take fewer chances with her than with other characters.
The practice of buffing Valkyrie in town works well for me. As noted, the Valk seldom dies, and it's very comfortable to have elemental damage and Open Wounds on weapon switch for PIs. I seldom had a problem positioning the Valkyrie; I had to pay a lot more attention to the Rogue, yanking on her rubber leash to make sure she joined the party instead of merely guarding the rear.
Before Judy obtained the Condensing Balanced Knife, she often used the Shocking Balanced Knife against LI/PIs, because of the greater chance of inflicting Open Wounds with Swordback Hold equipped. Her charms included two with Cold damage, two with Fire damage, and two with Lightning damage, and she has 50/3 Poison damage from a ring. This insured that she was able to inflict Open Wounds on any monster in the game, regardless of immunities. Swordback Hold might not be crucial to the build, but it certainly made it easier. If I had given Judy Duress armor, she could have equipped a second Rhyme, for better blocking and CBF with both weapons. However, it would have been difficult to make up the loss of 110 Life from Lionheart, let alone the Str, Dex, and Energy.
As my partner Relic says, TWWFM, HMSFIH (This Worked Well For Me, Hope Maybe Someone Finds It Helpful). Thanks for reading.:)
PunchinJudy's skills (with gear) at 83:[list]
[*]Inner Sight: 20 (27; -1335 Enemy Def)<>
[*]Slow Missiles: 1 (8; 54 seconds)<>
[*]Decoy: 20 (27; +270% Life; +1760 Valkyrie Life; +40% Valkyrie resist all)<>
[*]Valkyrie: 20 (27; 4488 Life)<>
[*]Critical Strike: 12 (19; 67%)<>
[*]Penetrate: 11 (18; +205%)<>
[*]Pierce: 7 (14; +79%)<>
[*]Dodge: 1 (8; 44%)<>
[*]Avoid: 1 (8; 52%)<>
[*]Evade: 1 (8; 44%)<>
Valkyrie summoned in town at level 31 (4840 Life)
Glove swap reduces all skill levels by 1 against bosses
Attributes (with gear) at 83:[list]
[*]Strength: 67 (135) <>
[*]Dexterity: 167 (199)<>
[*]Vitality: 256 (291)<>
[*]Energy: 15 (50)<>
75% res all on both switches
1314 Life with throwing weapons; 1360 Life with boss-killing dagger and gloves
74% chance to block with Rhyme; 68% chance to block with Swordback Hold
Damage, Defense, and Attack Rating: Sufficient:P
PunchinJudy's equipment at 83:[list]
[*]<span style="color:yellow">Storm Cowl circlet (+2 Passive and Magic skills, +5 Max damage, 13% resist all, 6 DR)<>
[*]<span style="color:wheat">Lionheart <span style="color:gray">Dusk Shroud (433 Def, +20% enhanced damage, +25 Str, +15 Dex, +20 Vit, +10 Energy, +50 Life, +30% resist all)<>
[*]<span style="color:blue">Athletic Heavy Gloves of Alacrity (+3 P&M, 20% IAS)<>
[*]<span style="color:yellow">Blood Nails Heavy Boots (10% FRW,19% Cold res, 16% Lightning res, 23% Fire res)<>
[*]<span style="color:orange">Shadow Chain Mesh Belt (10% FHR, 2% LL, 9% Open Wounds, +17 Life, +10 Mana, 24% Fire res)<>
[*]<span style="color:yellow">Eagle Eye Amulet (+1 P&M, +26 Str, +10 Mana, 20% res all except 38% Poison res, Half Freeze Duration)<>
[*]<span style="color:yellow">Bitter Spiral Ring (+5 Min damage, +111 AR, +50 Poison damage/3 sec, 9% res all except 20% Fire res)<>
[*]<span style="color:blue">Rainbow Ring of Performance (+13 Min damage, 9% res all)
[*]<span style="color:blue">Cruel Winged Knife (286% ED; 88-150 Throw damage, 104-135 Stab damage)<>
[*]<span style="color:wheat">Rhyme <span style="color:gray">Heater (107 Def, 40% FBR, 20% increased chance of blocking, +25 res all, CBF)
[*]<span style="color:blue">Shocking Balanced Knife of Strength (1-472 Lightning damage, +2 Str)
[*]<span style="color:blue">Condensing Balanced Knife (149-221 Fire damage)<>
[*]<span style="color:wheat">Swordback Hold Barbed Shield (upped for additional 7% chance to block; PDiamond for 19% res all)
For buffing Valkyrie:<>
[*]<span style="color:blue">Valkyrie's Throwing Spear (+2 Amazon skills)<>
[*]<span style="color:blue">Athletic Amulet of Precision (+3 P&M, +12 Dex)
For Act bosses, Diablo Clone, etc.:<>
[*]<span style="color:wheat">Strength <span style="color:gray">Fanged Knife (20-76 damage, 7% LL, 25% Crushing Blow, +20 Str, +10 Vit)<>
[*]<span style="color:orange">Storm Grasp Heavy Gloves (+2 P&M, 1% LL, 10% Crushing Blow, +16 Life)
For situational use:<>
[*]<span style="color:blue">War Dart of Life Tap (97 Level 5 Lifetap charges; 5 charges used against Hell Baal)<>
Amplisa's equipment at 83:[list]
[*]<span style="color:wheat">Edge <span style="color:gray">Diamond Bow (+322% damage to Demons; +9 all attributes)<>
[*]<span style="color:gray">Gemmed Tiara (30% IAS, +9 Min damage)<>
[*]<span style="color:gray">Gemmed Scarab Husk (+34 Min damage)<>
Even restricted to a single tree and daggers, PunchinJudy's accomplishments are insignificant in comparison to some who've informed and inspired me. My apologies to those whom I must have left out, and my deep gratitude to these folks.
[*]Candlelight: BlindJustis, BarelyManilow, others<>
[*]Captaintafel: StickyAndnOOd (more here), mentorship<>
[*]Casperi: Pure Mastery Barbarian, Guardian Pure Summoner Druid, others<>
[*]Grimborn: Soloing Uber Tristram<>
[*]GrlNDgz: Kwikwilyaqa, sentences, pictures<>
[*]Kynar: Incinderella, mentorship<>
[*]LavCat: Woglinde the Indecisive Amazon<>
[*]Mentha: Nadin Nullifies the Nasties, Iron Filings, a plenitude of PUNishment<>
[*]MongoJerry: Maldar, the Magnificent, Irene, the Infirm, others<>
[*]Ned_Devine: Amazing Valkyrie<>
[*]Othin: Mirror, Mirror at the wall … and Chance to Hit<>
[*]Relic: TWWFM-- Thank you! :heart:<>
[*]Sailboat: The Mini-Guide to Decoy Tactics, Sails' Tales, others<>
[*]ShadowHM: InspiredHope, lilacs<>
[*]Superdave: how far can superdave go?<>
[*]Trurl: Irene, the Infirm, revisited<>
[*]YogiBaar: <span style="color:#00ff00">B, and also <span style="color:#00ff00">N, <span style="color:#00ff00">N, <span style="color:#00ff00">Am, and <span style="color:#00ff00">As--but where's <span style="color:#00ff00">S?:unsure:<>
01-18-2008, 09:58 AM (This post was last modified: 01-18-2008 10:25 AM by Archon_Wing.)
Clone Killer with Knives
Well that was pretty cool! I've always been a big fan of passive skills and was somewhat disappointed in my javazon's ability to tank stuff, so naturally was curious on how a passive only amazon would work.
With great power comes the great need to blame other people.
DIII Info: ArchonWing#1480
DIII Profile: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/profile/ArchonWing-1480/
Guild Wars 2: Kyhime
01-18-2008, 04:50 PM
Clone Killer with Knives
Wow, what a great write up. Thanks for this Zyr, I'll be sure to post back some more comments soon!