Living Death's Hard Light DPS Build.

Discussion in 'Powers, Weapons, and Movement' started by ARCHIVED-LivingDeath, Jan 2, 2012.

  1. Well as promised here is the Hard Light DPS build I have been working with. First and foremost I want everyone reading this to understand this is a melee build. If you are someone who believes melee is not good enough dont bother reading the rest. I did have a ranged build but after days of testing and comoaring numbers, I have came to the conclusion melee is Hard Light's full potential. So with that being said I'll continue with my guide.

    • Chompers
    • Snap Trap
    • Whip Trash
    • Straffing Run
    • Neo-Venom Boost
    • Light-Barrier

    Chompers- Begins every engagement with chompers. Great AoE with an isntant cast and a huge effected area.
    Snap Trap- Begins every combo. Snap Trap>Fan>Light Claws. 50% damage modifier.
    Whip Trash- This is really just a filler can be substituted with anything of your choice.
    Straffing Run- In my opinion the best DPS supercharge in the game.
    Neo-Venom Boost- My weapon buff since Hard Light lacks one. Good damage and added defense.
    Light-Barrier- Mostly used to cancel the animation from Neo-Venom Boost. Added defense and damage.

    Okay now that we established what powers to use, I'll explain the rotation and how to use it effectively. The biggest problem with most people who DPS is the lack of knowledge of a good rotation. A rotation can make or break a DPS. Do it correctly you will be topping charts with minimal power usage. Do it incorrectly and waste valuable power always trying to catch up in damage. This applies to any powerset.
    Chompers is the start of this rotation. It's a 45% damage modifier and it's an AoE with high critical chance and instant cast. Chompers is very underrated. It can hit every mob in the room for 250 non-critical might damage, up to 500 critical might damage.
    Now that you have casted chompers and gained the 45% damage modifier, you cast Snap Trap. Snap Trap will hit 300 non-critical might damage and 600 critical might damage, also applying a damage over time which tick from 15-30 damage per tick for 6 ticks. Snap Trap is a single target skill. Also a damage modifier of 50% for the following combos.
    Snap Trap will now combo into the Fan. The Fan is an AoE precision based attack that hits one time on any enemy in front of it. Fan can do hits of 300-500 damage non-critical precision damage and 600-1000 critical precision damage. The damage depends on how many mobs are effected. The damage does split but not drasticaly. Fan keeps the damage modifier from Snap Trap and carries it over to Light Claws.
    Light Claws are the bread and butter to this build. Still being effect by the damage modifier from Snap Trap which is 50%. They are a 5 hit combo with an extra hit finisher for a total of 6 hits. Which also has 4 extra hits from Neo-Venom Boost but ill explain that in a bit. The first hit from Light Claws, which is a lunge and hit for 300 non-critical precision based damage, 600 criticial presion based damage. Then does 4 more swings 3 who hit for 150 non-critical damage, 300 critical damage, the forth swing has an animation that looks like a spinning back fist. This can hit for 500 non-critical precision damage, 1000 critical damage, this hit is a 360* area around the user. Its not very large but big enough for melee. On the spinning back fist animation instantly press and hold square, you will then do another spinning back fist which does the same exact damage and AoE effect. This is all still effected by the 50% damage modifier from Snap Trap.
    Neo-Venom Boost is a staple in my build it servers multiple purposes. Notice Hard Light and Nature are the only two classes without a weapon buff, except nature has super buff as to where Hard Light does not. So these are the purposes it servers: Weapon buff, Might Damage, Defense, Super Strenght. NVB is the perfect compliment to this build. Lets talk about the might damage it does. NVB grants 4 procs of might based damage to your weapon attacks, who can hit for 150-300 per hit for a total of 600-1200 damage depending on wether it criticals or not. This damage is added to each swing of the Light Claws. You are probably wondering how and why. Well the key is that Hard Light combos are precision based therefor counted as a weapon. Many people dislike NVB because it is very power hungry. Well guess what we Hard Light dont have a problem with power management. Why? Well simple combos cost no power to cast so we always have extra power. So no we are getting extra damage and extra defense for this melee build.
    Now for Light-Barrier who servers three purposes. It cancels the animation of NVB, it grant damage nullifier, and extra might based damage every time the shield is struck. Normally it can get 2-3 hits of 150-300 might based damage, and can reduce about 800 damage. You might think its not a lot but think of how many times throught the course of a raid you will be using this skill. It only has a 45 second cool down. If kept up every minute thats 800 damage reduced every minute. So if you are in a raid for 1 hour that means you have popped it 60 times that roughly 48,000 damage you will not recieve at the end of the raid so thats 48,000 less heals your healers need to worry about.
    Now for the best DPS supercharge in the game. Straffing Run is what I consider a boss killer. It is only 50% supercharge and does insane damage. Straffing Run hits 13 times. One initial hit for 1000-2000 damage and 12 ticks of 300-600 damage and can be stacked. You wondering what I mean by it can be stacked, well you can use 2 super chargers back to back and the tick will stack. So the boss get 2 initial hits and 24 ticks of damage. If you make the math that's 4600-9200 damage per supercharge. So a total of 9200-18400 damage on a boss. This is also an AoE lol.


    • Two Handed
    • Dual Wield
    • Staff
    • Martial Arts
    • One Handed
    • Brawling

    Any melee weapon will do just fine with this build. So use what you prefer. Personaly I prefer to use Two Handed & Dual Wield. Reason why I like Two Handed is because it has the best ranged of all the melee weapon in my opininon . And Dual Wield because it is very fast and does great damage. Believe it or not you wont be using you weapon much but it still makes all the difference. Wondering why? Well the Hard Light combos are based of your weapon and get the bonus from your weapons. For example currently I am running the Sparc Dual Wield from Central City, when I am doing the Light Claws the weapon still procs and I also the the bonus from the melee weapons. In update 4 melee weapons recieved a great buff. Melee weapons now grant 15 weapon critical attack damage and 200 control resistance. So since Hard Light combos are considered weapon they get this bonus as well. So my critical hit 15% harded than if I was using a ranged weapon plus I get extra 200 resistance to control effects.

    Skill Points

    • Bow- First 4 innate and the 3 might- 7 skill points
    • Brawling- First 4 innate and the 3 critical magnitude- 7 skill points
    • Dual Pistol- First 4 innate and the 3 critical magnitude- 7 skill points
    • Dual Wield- First 4 innate and the 3 critical magnitude- 7 skill points
    • Handblaster- First 4 innate and the 3 might- 7 skill points
    • Martial Arts- First 4 innate and the 3 critical magnitude- 7 skill points
    • One handed- First 5 innate and the 3 critical chance- 8 skill points
    • Staff- First 4 innates and the 3 critical chance- 7 skill points
    • Two handed- First 4 innate and the 3 critical chance- 7 skill points
    • Rifle- First 4 innate and 3 critical chance- 7 skill points

    To be able to obtain all the Might, Critical Attack Dmage, and Critical Attack Chance you need roughly 75 skill points give or take depending on your weapon of choice. I personally have 95 skill points so I go ahead and get the breakout inates from the movement tree aswell which is another 7 skill points. But that is pretty much how you should distribute your skill points.

    Power Points


    • Light Claws
    • Minigun
    • Chompers
    • Snap Trap
    • Ram
    • Whip Trash
    • Fan
    • Straffing Run


    • Boxing
    • Clap
    • Light-Barrier

    Iconic Powers

    • Weapon Expert
    • Tactical Genius
    • Neo-Venom Boost
    • Wisdom Of Solomon

    This is exactly how you power points need to be distributed for this build to work. This is pretty self explanatory so not too much to add.

    Gear Selection

    • Tier 3 gear
    • FOS 3 DPS neck
    • FOS treasure chest precision rings

    Okay this is a key part to Hard Light DPS and its having the proper gear for it. Hard Light is based on combos which are based on precision. With that being said you should always chase after precision gear. So in a nutshell what you want is full Tier 3 gear with FOS 3 DPS neck and FOS treasure chest precision rings. This gear will grant you 340 base precision and 390 precision for 20 seconds every time the neck piece procs which is very often in the course of a raid.


    Well this is the build I have been running with much success and I am very glad to share this with the community. I really hope this help out all my fellow strugling Hard Light DPS. Maybe this guide will bring back the joy of your Hard Light toon. Honestly I believe Hard Light can still compete with Fire DPS and Sorcery DPS. Dont believe me give this build and run then tell me what you honestly think.
    If i have missed anything that you would like me to add just please post and i will do my best to explain anything to you. Which will also help me keep this guide update and fresh. This is an ever growing guide so anything you feel i left out just ask and i will make sure to add it.

  2. Nice build and info, only question is how does it do on bosses? (FoS 2 mainly)
  3. Wargasmic wrote:
    Honestly I do very well, really comes down to getting to know the animations of the bosses and knowing when to roll or block. Sparc weapons also make this melee build very easy believe it or not. Running with a tank and healers using Sparc weapon i get damage absorbtion and extra heals.
  4. Get whipped much meleeing avatar of meta?

    Your guide is so hilarious, of course melee works, but it's not viable for everything
  5. Really 2 ninja votes hey i dont mind if you dont like my guide or my build or if you down vote me but atleast give a good reason as to why you down voted. This community is strange why down vote a thread made to help others?
  6. Devirtue wrote:
    I can melee DPS every raid and every boss in the game its very viable. We can do a raid together and ill show you its better than ranged in my opinion. And i dont see what you find funny everything in this guide is a fact. Do you find it funny that melee can actually top charts or do you find it funny that you thought it was not possible because i see nothing hilarious.
  7. ARCHIVED-Ama Guest

    LivingDeath wrote:
    You don't get damage absorption from tanks from weapons you detaunt the enemies..... or drop you aggro in other words....
  8. Ama wrote:
    Oh okay well still great means i dont get hit unless its AoE lol
  9. Death,

    Great guide, very informative, thank you for sharing. And to those haters.......just because you don't think melee is viable doesn't mean he is wrong in his playstyle or build. There are many ways to skin a cat.
  10. I don't think your topping the damage charts has anything to do with HL. It has alot more to do with just your fundamental understanding of DPS in this game. I'd argue you would do alot more with a powerset that had real DPS potential.
    I don't diagree with any of the numbers you've posted for the powers, or even in this guide in general. Problem I have is I can put up just as good if not better in most cases, just by grabbing the 50% from Snap Trap only combing into Fan, and then combo spamming. Hard Lights powers are just weak, when compared to other powersets and even just weapon attacks.
    I've always felt there should a be hierarchy to attacks, and that the damage they do should reflect thier built in limitation on how often you can use them.
    Weapon attacks > Power attacks > Super Charge attacks. You have no limitation on how much you can do weapon attacks, you can spam to your hearts content. Even though this should be your bread and butter cause it builds both your power and supercharge meters, they should be at the bottom of the damage hierarchy.
    Next should be powers. You limited by the blue bar on how often you can use them. That's not to say, you can't use them frequently, but if you understand the team dynamic in this game you aren't going to burden your Controllers with monitoring your power bar, and handle that yourself with weapon combos. However, because of this limitation in most cases power attacks should do more damage then weapon attacks. Other then maybe first or second tier weapon combos, this isn't the case with Hard Light.
    Thirdly should come Super Charges. Now this is where I think they got the hierarchy correct. Super Charges have the most restrictive limitation in the game. There is no way to build it without weapon combing. So these should hit harder then anything else. In Hard Lights cases they do. Ballistic Assault is great in large groups of adds, and Strafing Run is a Boss killer.
    Now, when it comes to melee, I don't consider it unviable, but I do consider it very inefficent. While you do have to block and roll alot more and be more aware of your surroundings, your also suseptable to more Control effects which you cannot simply avoid. But here's the thing, everytime your blocking, rolling and breaking out, I'm still damaging the mobs. That's one part of the efficency equation. The other is while, after some practice, you may not die any more so then you did at range, there's no denying the risk is there, but the reward is not. Melee attacks do not do substantially more damage then ranged. And, even if your not dying as much, there's no denying you won't take more damage, hence more power has to be expended to keep you alive, through both the healer and by extension the controller. Then coming back to block, rolling and breaking out more often, means you combos will get interrupted more frequently, stifleing your own power regen.
    I'm willing to concede I'm probably to mechanical about things and worry to much about efficency. But at the end of the day,I got alot of things I'd like to do, both inside the game and out. So, I always look at things from the presepctive of, what can I do to make this go as fast as possible so I can move on to something else.
    Anyway, while I don't think we'll ever see eye to eye on melee vs range or wether HL is a good DPS power, +1 on your guide nontheless.
  11. I run very close to this build but keep it ranged and stay away from Light Claws in FOS raids. As an earlier poster mentioned, sometimes you are just using weapon combos off of the 50% damage modifier from Snap Trap/Fan.Also, I make use of both Supercharges (Strafing Run & Ballistic Assault) since each has its moments based on the situation.
    Right now I consider Light a pretty good damage class but not top tier since the nerfs. I will be toying around with Lightning and Gadgets after we have access to respec tokens.
  12. Great guide man, I melee DPS most raids these days although I do stay ranged and run controller in FOS2/3. This looks like a great build and it's cool you shared it. It's important to be good at what you play, but it's also important to enjoy what you play.
    One question, why not include the weight? I'm not talking about TK lifting the weight and that exploit, but rather the weight in its current state. The weight on its own does great damage for my HL dps (in fact it's mostly what I do redundantly as HL dps - i'm not very good with my HL dps). You just have to maneuver around behind the adds and keep them between you and the boss or all grouped in a line, and the weight slides through and hits everything for 200-300ish and 500-600+crits. That is a ton when there are a couple of hits per add (several if you've done NVB first). They're all precision hits and so power regen in some areas (FOS 1st boss - I literally do about 100k damage just there) can be off the charts too. I can see how weights can bog down a loadout b/c they just take so much time to do right and become a spam. I've also noticed the precision hits of the weight don't split when hitting multiple enemies in any dramatic fashion. They are basically all hits in the same range. You're the expert, so what are your thoughts?

    Thanks LD, see you around.
  13. +1 to your guide mate i was a ice dps from when the game started and i switched to HL and i have noticed my damage has dropped a fair bit since the nerfing (thanks to the 5 people that complained HL was OP) i use ranged attacks mostly what would you suggest a good range build would be i have .
    Light weight
    Snap trap
    Strafing run
    Chompers or somtimes spikequake
    Hand clap (so i can use the chainsaw combo)
    What are your thoughts ?
  14. Nice guide death+1. Is this your melee loadout or is it a hybrid? I use similar on my range loadout cept for whips, I use minigun.
  15. This is pretty much my load out except I use spikequake instead of chompers, and ram instead of whips. I'll give this a try and tell you what I come up with.

    Edit.. Won't have Internet till Friday. So it will be a while.
  16. Interesting that Recharge is not listed in the build. An immediate boost to might and precision. Have you tested it and found it lacking or was it an oversight?
  17. Bigby wrote:
    I would like to say that you have earned my respect from here on out wether we agree or disagree on everything. You gave a constructive point of view with out insulting my intelligence.
  18. D3adshotLawton wrote:
    Recharge boost is not long enough to make a difference and you will waste more power trying to keep this buff up rather than putting out damage.
  19. Omega7 wrote:
    Honestly I was a huge fan of the Light Weight the only problem i have with it is not being able to have enough power points for the other staples to my build. i would have to sacrafice somehting essential in order to obtain it for my loadout. But do know if we ever get more power points the light weight will find a place in my load out.
  20. LarGandps3 wrote:
    My ranged load out is:
    • Chompers
    • Snap Trap
    • Minigun
    • Straffing Run
    • Ballistic Assault
    • Neo-Venom
    As stated earlier both super charges server a seperate role and are useful on a ranged loadout. You will find your self using Ballistic more often than not on trash mobs its a great AoE that does 6 hits and everything infront of you. for damage any where from 300-600 per tick.

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