Viper Strike


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Balance & Design
Last bumped on Jun 14, 2020, 2:09:42 AM
Been playing a Duelist with Viper Strike as his main Ability and the skill is really nice so far. The scaling was a bit messed for quite some time. The early levels it was just fine. But by early/mid Act 2 the damage was incredibly underwhelming until I got a skill up on it and the damage went from like 8/second/stack to 21.5/second/stack. All of a sudden it went from being almost useless for anything but bosses where the stacked damage got to shine to a skill that allowed me to leave mobs at half health and have them drop dead behind me. So I'd say there would need to be I think it was level 4, But I'm not 100% sure of the level, That could use less XP for the level to be gained but having the damage of it a bit more linear in its scaling. I think I had in a +1 to melee skills Weapon and that was what caused it to get that extra level to become good again. If I hadn't lucked out and had that happen I can't see how the skill would have had enough damage for quite some time in Act 2.
This underwhelming damage in the early part is even more noticeable due to the super big monkey spawns in Act 2. Having 2 packs of ~8 apes pulled at the same time seeing as they're so close together as a pure single target character made the skill's underwhelming damage a big headache. But past level 4 or 5 the skill is just really really solid unless dealing with the apes. I hate the apes. If they were a bit stronger but a bit fewer it would be cool but with random spawns it's really easy to get like 2-3 packs of them pulled at once filling the entire screen with apes and locking you in combat for a lot longer than you would want to in a Hack'n'Slash.
This skill is amazing when paired with an increased duration support. I'm using it in act 2 merciless on anything I can't tank with my sword-and-board duelist (particularly blue/yellow bears), and physical reflect things. It's also really handy for filling up on frenzy charges, since I use blood rage instead of the frenzy skill -- I can just tag a bunch of mobs with viper strike, then activate blood rage just in time to receive 2-4 frenzy charges from the get-go.

I do wish it had some AoE component. It'd be awesome to see charges hop to new targets if their primary targets die before the duration is up. That is, my duelist's viper strike lasts about 12 seconds; if it kills something after 8 seconds, it'd be cool for the charge to hop to a nearby enemy for another 4 seconds. This would help address some of Ryukira's concerns and make the skill a little more distinctive.

Also, am I right that the DoT component of the skill doesn't scale with anything? It's not elemental damage, not spell damage, not physical damage... the only support gem I've been able to link to it is increased duration.
"And 'Do what thou willst' shall be the whole of the law." -- Aleister Crowley
"First, love; then, do what thou willst." -- St. Augustine
"Whatever is done out of love always takes place beyond good and evil." -- Friedrich Nietzsche
Yeah I'm also missing a AoE component on the skill my first thought was for the body of the victim to explode spraying whatever poison is left in them on surrounding enemies dealing AoE chaos damage proportionate to how much time/how many stacks was left on the victim. Would make whether you pop a few stacks on several enemies or 4 stack one and nuke it an interesting choice. This would make msot sense to have achieved by having some sort of AoE support gem to connect with it. And probably have it also lower the single target damage of the skill to keep it from getting too good.
I disagree about adding an AOE component. I think the skill is already powerful enough.

It's true that it leaves you weak to crowds in a sense, but you should solve that with a secondary AOE skill.

This is a great skill, by the way. I think it gets overlooked in favor of flicker strike because that tends to have a higher DPS on the character screen. We can't really know this skill's true DPS though, since it doesn't take the chaos damage into account.

I honestly wouldn't change a thing about it. I've been using it since the start and I'm on level 41 Ruthless and I still think it's about as strong as it should be.
That's to say . . . you understand . . . the dusk . . . the strain . . . waiting
Last edited by Melonpan on Dec 14, 2011, 6:05:11 AM
in terms of damage over time this skill might be a bit over the roof, im currently using this in conjuction with double strike to kill rare mobs like butter.

i wouldnt mind a aoe component to this skill, as when the fourth charge gets placed, it removes the charges and create a poison cloud. could even be a separated skill to do a combo. cloud damage based on charges removed.
My biggest problem is that the Gem doesn't tell you how long a single charge should last
Insanity is overrated unless you join me in mine.
DarkRookie wrote:
My biggest problem is that the Gem doesn't tell you how long a single charge should last

the gem description doesnt, but it does on skill popup
0.9.5 feedback below this post

To read feedback only read between the marks "---" ;)

I started a new char saturday.
Having this gem @ 14% and the new changes to the "Hex Master"-Passive let me choose a very exotic test-idea.

I just want to share my experience. It is more than just the feedback to this single gem.
I didnt expect to find a superb imba build, this wasnt my goal at all, but i was looking forward to play even well.

I canceled this "project" @ lvl 40.

Ok, the idea was:
vulnerability for DoT increase
temporal chains as 'Defense' and again as increase for the DoT (total time)
-put the viper strike charges @ a target really quick, and then deal AoE with detonate dead.
crit increase was planned for raising the dmg.

Why the build totally sucked ;)
first: viper strike was the best of the build. it deals it dmg ok, but everytime flicker strike was better. even with added support gems, the solo-flicker strike was stronger.

the endless near crackbrained idea to get the hex master passive with a ranger o_O was also a reason for the failure of the build, but on the other hand the viper strike would be weaker without the 2 curses. so, that was the exotic part, and i tried it this way.

the worst of the build was the lack of a useful AoE.
detonate dead is so useless in my opinion.
as said before this gem is best played on level 1, but still, what do u get?
you can use it from a distance.
you first need to get a corpse.
the damage is so low, that you will need to kill 5 out of 8 enemys with single-target-dmg, so that the 5 extremly expensive explosions are enough for the rest 3 enemys.

i died like a glass cannon, but without the impressive dmg of a glass cannon.
dont get me wrong, i dont want to whine here. i was knowing before, that it will be a weird idea. but in this idea there arises some feedback.

to detonate dead the feedback already is posted, so i put mine into the viper strike thread.


i totally agree that there should be some possibilitys to put the charges on nearby enemys.
a curse could do this:
-all negative FX go on nearby comrades

a sup-gem:
negative FX of these skill go on...

or like already mentioned, through the skill itself.
if dies after X sec, or (better in my opinion) if stacked to the full amount of stacksize, then it goes over @other enemys.


having a dex/int char, without a good AoE is the dead of that char.
i wear evasion, i wear energy shield, i wear mixed armour. no matter how i tried, this char was much to weak for a melee.
in fact i tried a build which would suits better to the upcoming new class (the way would be shorter).
and every time i thought:
"hm, to make this crap work, i need to take cleave or flicker...."
but thats the point:
if only the handful known skills/builds work fine, than where is the fun building a exotic char?

the funny thing was, that my friend started a AoF char, and so my "creation" looks even weaker compared to this imba-build.
this shows again a problem of the actual flask-refill system. because he gets the kills, i run out of flasks very often, and then the situation (with a weak/bad build) gets even worse.
i dunno if there is a feedback to this concern.
but dealing dmg at a enemy should suffice to get the refill.
excuse my english - i am from sauerkraut & bratwurst land ;)
Last edited by SLAINE on Jan 16, 2012, 7:35:26 AM

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