3-Box for Older Content

Discussion in 'The Newbie Zone' started by RangerDave, May 20, 2020.

  1. RangerDave Journeyman

    Hi all,

    I’m coming back to the game after a very long absence and plan to casually 3-box my way through the older content, hopefully using the general power increases, Defiant gear, and higher level limits to progress through stuff that used to take full groups and even raids in-era (e.g., Epic 1.0 mobs, Velious end-game zones, maybe even some Luclin and PoP bosses, etc.). I like to take my time and see the sights, so I plan to explore a lot along the way, doing quests, visiting old stomping grounds, and so on.

    I still have my OG Ranger that I de-leveled from level 55 to level 1 (using shrouds to get under 5) to be my main again, and I plan to box a Shaman as well. I’m not sure what to use as my third box, though, particularly with healer and tank merc’s available to pinch hit for those holy trinity roles. I want something relatively easy to set and forget in a fight, and no Necros or SKs for RP purposes. Also never really found Int casters appealing, but I was considering a Mage for the pet. I’ve always liked Pallies, and a BL might be good for an RP appropriate, non-Int pet class, but I wonder whether they would add much to the existing Ranger/Shaman duo.

    Anyway, anyone have some thoughts or suggestions?

    Thanks in advance!
  2. Tuco Elder

    I can't speak for lower levels, but at higher levels (105+ at least, maybe lower) rangers suffer from significant mana conservation problems. A ranger/shaman duo also suffers from no tank and the current tank mercs devalue at higher levels.

    My recommendation would be to add a beastlord, which provides you with both a tank and mana regen for your ranger (focused paragon of spirits, dissident fury, spiritual insight). The beastlord also benefits from your ranger/shaman ADPS and provides ADPS to your ranger. With a beastlord you'll be able to send a pet in to tank, dump mana into your ranger and let your ranger start blowing up mobs.

    A paladin would work well too, but your ranger would just be some extra DPS that is frequently OOM. Same with a warrior.

    A bard would help with mana problems but you'd either have to rely on a tank merc or do some kind of kiting, which might be fun but somewhat limiting.
  3. RangerDave Journeyman

    Thanks, Tuco! I'm probably not going to get up to those levels any time soon, but good to know for the future. I'm guessing the same basic roles/benefits for Beastlord apply at lower levels too to some extent, though, so that's super helpful. Leaning strongly in that direction at this point.
  4. Kutsuu Augur

    If you want to do raids, you'll need to make sure you have tanking and heals covered without a merc involved since mercs can't be used in raid instances. Given that you are already set on Ranger + Sham and you don't want to play a SK, I would probably make the 3rd a Paladin.
  5. Dilligaf New Member

    Sounds like Bard is perfect for your 3-box. You'd have a plate class to not-compete with your two chain classes, very easy set-and-forget utility, a ton of benefits like haste/overhaste without wasting a buff slot on celerity, mana and hp regen, CC, slow redundancy, DS stacking, splitting/pulling, no-fuss snares, a decent ramp tank, a DPS boost, resist boosts for those raid bosses, bard speed, and more
  6. Vumad Augur

    Tank mercs have traditionally been pretty poor. ToV is easier than previous expansions but I wouldn't expect that to be normalized. Tank mercs were just shy of useless in TBL. Hopefully tank mercs with their increase in DPS and subsequent aggro in the in-progress patch will help, but tank mercs will continue to be weak. Devs have made it clear they want to make sure mercs don't replace players, and tank is the one role in the group you can't fake, so they will continue to be on the low end of tanking ability so as to not surpass casual play tanks.

    If you don't want to box a tank, then using a mage is a great idea.

    No merc can play the support role so boxing something that can is a very wise choice. I think the most critical part of this is slow, as many classes can make pull work. This gives you the primary options of ENC, BRD, SHM and BST.

    MAG, SHM, RNG with mercs of TANK/DPS, CLR and CLR/DPS would make a good group, that is, if you want to play a ranger and not a plate tank.

    The merc tank will do a pretty good job in old world content, so a beastlord pet or well geared ranger will make a good backup to the merc tank if you dont want a mage. BST pet will tank pretty close to a mage pet once you give it a full set of armor, and BST has the added advantage of FD as rangers are not in a great place right now for split pulling.

    Of course, if you are okay with the mage, you could swap the SHM with the BST as well, which gives you a content supply of pet weapons, but you downgrade your slow and ADPS and turn over all control of the healing to the mercs.

    MAG, SHM, RNG or BST, SHM, RNG might be a good choices for you.

    I am MAG, ENC, CLR and quite fond of my mage. Pet tanks are pretty wonderful when boxing. The merc goes down and the pet tank get right in there automatically.
  7. Tatanka Augur

    It sounds like he plans to be overleveled for the content he takes on. If that's the case, the tank merc will be fine.

    Currently working through VoA content (91-95) with a 110 druid & tank merc. No issues at all.
  8. Fredescu Augur

    I cannot stress enough how much you should not build your team around a tank merc. Your third should be a tank or pet class. Pally, Mage, BL, as you've mentioned, are all fine options. As Tucoh points out, BL for mana regen is best with your ranger, since rangers are mana heavy DPS at higher levels.

    Just don't make a tank merc a long term option. They work in a pinch and you can do a lot with them, but they will lock you out of some things altogether. You'll be much happier with a tank or pet class.
    Raptorjesus5 and Tucoh like this.
  9. RangerDave Journeyman

    Thanks for all the input, folks! I'm leaning toward the BST at this point, but I think I'll muck around a bit with a Pally as well to see how I like a tankier plate class. I flirted with the Bard suggestion, Dilligaf, but I think the whole instrument/song/twisting mechanic is so different than anything I've played in the past that it would either end up consuming the bulk of my attention or being relegated too much to a set of macros that I click once or twice in a fight. My Ranger's been around since Kunark, so I definitely want him to stay my main focus, but on the flip side, I do still want to feel mentally invested in actually driving the boxes.


    Yeah, I'm mainly focused on working through older content up to LDoN for now with a few detours into TSS, and I figure I'll have to be fairly overleveled to handle what used to be considered raid content or end-game group content with a casual 3-box! Not sure how far overleveled I'll need to be, but I was thinking something like 10 levels over max for the era - so, lvl 70 for Kunark through Luclin, 75 for PoP, and 85 for TSS. Think a lvl 75 Defiant-geared 3-box with mercs could handle PoP? For normal group content, though, I'll probably stay roughly level-appropriate (blue to yellow cons) so I'm actually gaining xp and feeling some challenge while still focusing on fun and sight-seeing instead of max efficiency. I know it sounds crazy, but I actually plan to periodically de-level a bit again so I can revisit the lower-level group content in each expansion as I progress through. Sort of doing my own personal overpowered TLP here! :)
  10. Raptorjesus5 Augur


    This! Always center your box group around a real tank unless you absolutely don't want to.

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