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 Ninja is...weird 
kevrlet
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Joined: 30 Dec 2016
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As it stands, Ninja simply does not feel like it's in a good place in any way.

AV: Ninja has the lowest potential AV of any class (except Mercenary), and no reliable countermeasure for this. We all say AV is useless, but it is easily noticeable how lacking Ninja is in this category while playing one. I consistently take more damage per enemy group in pents than anything else I've played, despite having the highest weapon mod AND penting below rank. Ninja is basically a Merc in this regard, except Merc gets both Curse and Stun. Early on this can be partially mitigated by having high Karate mod, but the higher rank you get the less effective this is. Ninja will feel this the most in endgame content like RD2, where you won't be able to rely on having significantly higher weapon mod than your opponents.

Magic defense: Ninja gets a high Res max and good Imm and Blind maxes, so it's pretty good against magic-using NPCs. This is basically the only category where Ninja doesn't feel lacking. Missing Curse and/or Curse 2 does knock some points off though.

Offense: In one on one combat, Ninja is good. Not the best, due to lack of AV/Curse/Curse2/Stun/Blast/Warcry/whathaveyou, but acceptable. But...how often do 1v1 fights happen, really? The majority of your life in the game is going to be spent killing endless mobs of enemies. Ninja sucks at this. No Curse, no Curse 2, no Blast, no Blast 2, no SH2, no Stun, no Warcry. Ninja just does not have the tools to compete with any other class for the majority of content. They have ridiculous WV and get Poison, but that doesn't make up for a nearly complete lack of utility.

Utility: Yeah I already covered this, but it really needs to be said again. This class has next to nothing. Blind is a very nice skill, granted, but that gives Ninja a grand total of one major utility skill. Two if you include Poison, but Poison is essentially an expensive version of SH2, so it's hard to consider it on an even playing field. Even ATs have two real skills, with Warcry and SH2. This leads me to a related, but more general confusion: why do the new classes not get Stun and Curse? These are core skills and one is as good as required for Cave. AT not getting them makes sense; it gets Warcry instead. Necro and Ninja have no replacement for Stun.

Leveling: AT is a flat out no-go. Lack of any real AoE means AT is going to be an exercise in futility, even with Blind. Poison is...better than nothing, but isn't going to replace SH2 or B2 or C2. This means you're stuck in pents, where once again lack of any real AoE (and Curse/Curse II) means your kill speed is going to suffer. You can stealth but you lack two of the vital skills for maximizing this option: a GC or Stun. It's also been brought up that Poison doesn't give XP while SH2 and B2 do, so that is another possible mark off for this category.

PVP: ...no Stun. No Curse. No Curse II. No Blast. Don't even bother.

Assassinate: I honestly like Assassinate in a bubble. It's neat how it gives a bonus passively with an option of a utility feature when actively used. However, making it be a requirement for the belts (which I'll get to more later)...and such a steep one at that...is really weird. The only other class with a skill requirement on their weapon is Necro, and it's only 50...and on a skill you will be using regardless of your play style, and only on the top-tier sword. Assassinate's not very useful to raise once you hit 160 mod unless you're stealthing (and even then your stealth is way higher than you need without Assassinate) or can hit 240, and you require it at 90 base to use the two best belts.

Karate: This is really nitpicky, but still...historically, ninjas were not martial artists. They were farmers, blacksmiths: normal people. They used re-purposed trade tools, like scythes. Karate makes more sense for a Monk-style class than a Ninja. Ninja would have made more sense as a dagger class, or even an axe class, as farming scythes are basically axes.

Which takes me to the belts. Why belts? Why go off-script from every other class and NPC in the game and put the primary weapon in a belt slot? Handwraps would've been less trouble, and would've foregone the issue of having to combine the ankh belt and the black belt. That is the biggest issue I have with the belts, actually. The ankh belt is very nice, easy to stat into item for rebirthing. You lose that very lovely QoL option as an RB Ninja, and even as a non-RB Ninja since many people making Ninjas will be doing so with a character that can get/already has the ankh belt. Taking away QoL features is, honestly, never a good idea.


All that said, though, Ninja is very strong in the early game. So if you felt like sacrificing a brig/magen character to make a good lab helper..WHY?!...but Ninja would work very well for that.
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TheFroggles
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Joined: 28 Mar 2018
Posts: 24
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I'm sleepy and trying to keep my post concise and on-topic.

My take on Ninja so far:

To begin, I enjoy the idea of Ninja - a primarily physical sneaky character with focused damage potential and some moderate spells for flavor. The tradeoff of blind vs stun was something I found tasteful on my Necro, and am comfortable with that on Ninja as well.

Being a mostly mid-rank player, Ninja will see little use from me in its current form. The low AV coupled with low AoE damage potential guarantees that.

My thoughts on how to address this:
If Assassinate could function as a toggled ability between two phases, that would be lovely.
-One phase in its current form - single target damage bonus.
-Second phase adds AV akin to Harden, and AoE damage more significant but a smaller area than SH2.
-Keep the endurance cost so one cannot infinitely swap phases without cost.

I understand my input is largely uninformed, being a novice player. These are just my thoughts on providing the Ninja with added personal appeal. Very Happy Thanks for reading, peeps!
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TheFroggles
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Joined: 28 Mar 2018
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Hooray, I made it to 2nd Lt! I'm looking forward to ranking up a little further from here, as the class is finally starting to pull ahead of mercs a bit more. I'll get getting higher AV soon with upgrading belts, higher sword mod with reduced stat/skill cost, and at least basic surround hit has helped with penting speed.

And even better, where mercs cap out at 60 sword, I'll be able to smoothly progress beyond that. ;P Looking forward to not having that particular plateau.

I'm looking forward to getting assassinate and raising stealth a bit to see how penting speed remains further into the pents~
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Tulkas
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Joined: 18 Apr 2016
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Location: Louisiana
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Sword or Karate?
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TheFroggles
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Joined: 28 Mar 2018
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Sorry, Karate* Was comparing it to a merc's sword skill while playing my ninja. And of course I meant higher WV with belt upgrades, not higher AV.
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TheFroggles
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Any other ninjas out there want to chime in with opinions or suggestions?
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Jantaveon
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Joined: 01 Aug 2017
Posts: 19
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My ninja is a knight at the moment. Penting is a little slow, not terrible but on the low end of the races for sure. Their single target damage is very good, but their aoe damage is awful, bringing their overall damage output lower than what I would like to see out them.

I don't think that they necessarily need SH2, that would make them too much like the other fighter type classes. But sticking with the high damage against single target theme, increasing their crit rate or weapon value could bring their total damage output more in-line with the other races

I tried prison, it's not very friendly to ninjas. It's very difficult and time consuming to solo, to the point that it's not even worth trying to solo. So that is pretty disappointing.
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Jantaveon
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Joined: 01 Aug 2017
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I'd like to add that ninja is very good in cohors. The high single target dps + blind makes for some pretty quick runs.

As far as prison goes there is one area that simply just requires luck or you will die. The area where there are three earl arch haras that attack you immediately upon opening the door. Blast hits for about 20% hp and you're likely to be chain stunned as soon as you open the door. If you can get blind off then you'll be fine but you have to get lucky enough for them not to keep you stunned. I maxed stealth thinking that maybe two of the haras wouldn't see me when I open the door which would make that area much more manageable, but it doesn't matter since they can see through that level of stealth from that far. I think it would be nice if we could use stealth to help in those fights where we aren't quite as equipped to handle as the other races.
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