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Rune-keeper Advancement Beyond Level 50

The folks at Turbine have prepared a series of Dev Journals which take a class by class look at level advancement past level 50 in the Lord of the Rings Online's Mines of Moria expansion. Today we take a look at the Rune-keeper.

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Introduction

Brains? Braaaains! It is I, Zombie Columbus, come to fill your braaains with more information about the Rune-keeper! Unlike the other class diaries, many of you will have never even played a Rune-keeper when you read this. I will do my best to take that into account. Reading the 1-50 diary I wrote will help as well.

The Rune-keeper’s three Trait Sets were designed to be fairly straightforward as to what aspects of the Rune-keepers gameplay would be enhanced (instant damage, induction damage, or healing), yet still present some interesting possibilities for hybridization. The first bonus of each Trait Set is more useful while in the opposite attuned direction as the rest of the set, and the third in each line is beneficial to any attunement direction (more details below). This, plus a number of traits in each set that are useful to either damage dealers or healers, is intended to give flexibility to a more experimentally inclined Rune-keeper.

Trait Sets

Solitary Thunder

"When alone, a Rune-keeper’s stormy nature is allowed to run rampant."
This trait-line primarily modifies Wrath of Storm skills and some Chill of Winter skills. As such, it focuses on spiky damage, quick abilities that are useful while foes are wailing on you, minor debuffing, and random chance. It is mostly geared toward the solo player (although dealing quick burst damage can be useful while grouped) and enables the Rune-keeper’s fairly weak disabling abilities to become more viable.

Traits in the Set:

Two traits will give Wrath of Storm skills the ability to put debuffs on your targets that increase damage dealt to them. Another will empower Epic Crash to remove those debuffs and deal additional damage. Other traits will increase the power of survival skills like Shocking Touch and Chilling Rhetoric.

Trait Set Bonuses:

Each of the Rune-keeper Trait Sets starts with opening up a skill to be usable at all attunement levels. Solitary Thunder will open up Chilling Rhetoric, a great skill for dealing with adds or to open a fight with. While it can normally only be used when Battle attuned, this Trait Set will allow it to be used while Healing attuned.

The third bonus of each Trait Set has an effect tied to attunement of both directions. Solitary Thunder will give Rune-keepers a bonus to critical magnitude of all skills (damage and healing) for each attunement step past the Steady state. This means a Rune-keeper who has gone down this Trait Set will still have some bonuses (specifically increased heal criticals) if he needs to switch to healing mid-combat.

Capstone Skill: Vivid Imagery

Wrath of Storm skills are all about single target attacks, but not Vivid Imagery. This long cooldown skill will shock a number of enemies adjacent to the Rune-keeper with images of their demise. This leads to a short, random duration daze, similar to Shocking Touch.

Legendary Capstone Trait: Perfect Imagery

When the top of the Trait Set is achieved, Vivid Imagery can be upgraded to perfection. The skill not only does more damage and can be used more frequently, but the daze duration is doubled. This skill becomes a powerful tool for escaping from tricky situations, or just damaging multiple enemies at once.

Cleansing Fires

"When guarded by fellows, a Rune-keeper is free to burn white hot."
When a Rune-keeper is left alone and able to work his fire skills on a target, large amounts of damage soon follow. This Trait Set increases the power of the Wrath of Flame skills primarily, as well as granting some aggro management and power reducing options.

Traits in the Set:

One of the more exciting traits for Rune-keepers who enjoy flame skills is Fiery-temper. Each time a wrath of Flame skill is used, a Rune-keepers Fiery-temper will increase, causing fire skills to burn hotter. Other useful traits decrease the induction time of Fiery Ridicule, or cause Self-Motivation to reduce power consumption for a time. There is even Frost-burn, which lets Writ of Cold keep Writ of Fire tiered up.

Trait Set Bonuses:

Like Solitary Thunder, the first Cleansing Fires Trait Set bonus allows a skill to be used at all attunement levels. In this case, Fiery Ridicule can now be used even while Healing. This work-horse damage skill will give healing oriented Rune-keepers a nice boost to damage output between heals.
Also, for each attunement step past Steady, the power cost of all skills will be decreased.

Capstone Skill: Distracting Flame

A flame of confusing origin flickers up about the Rune-keeper’s foe. Your enemies will be unsure where it came from, causing it to distract them over time. This skill will reduce the aggro of a target as it burns, not increase it.

Legendary Capstone Trait: Mystifying Flame

Mystifying Flame is a pretty straight upgrade from Distracting Flame, burning hotter, reducing aggro by a greater amount. The cooldown is also decreased enough to make this skill a contender for a regular place in skill rotations.

Benedictions of Peace

"When aiding fellows, a Rune-keeper is a tireless steward."
The Rune-keeper’s ability to sustain his allies is enhanced by this Trait Set. Various buffs are given to Words of Grace skills, as well as some Foretelling based skills. This line is for Rune-keepers who want to see that his fellows do not fall.

Traits in the Set:

A useful trait will modify the Writ of Health so that instead of being dispelled when its duration ends, it will simply go down one tier, making maintenance of the Writ much easier. Mending Verse, a mainstay heal, can gain a short max morale buff that goes well with the heal over time style.

Trait Set Bonuses:

The skill Benedictions of Peace allows Rune of Restoration to be used at all attunements. This skill puts a rune on the ground that allies can be healed if near, and is a great addition to a damage dealer’s skill rotation.

Additionally, this Trait Set will enable each step of attunement to decrease the threat generated by all skills, a bonus useful for any of the Rune-keeper’s abilities.

Capstone Skill: Glorious Foreshadowing

The Rune-keeper tells of glories that are to come, keeping his fellows spirits high. Placing this buff on an ally increases the healing done to them by any further healing skills.

Legendary Capstone Trait: Wondrous Foreshadowing

The upgraded version of Glorious Foreshadowing causes the Rune-keeper’s entire fellowship to receive additional healing. The cooldown is also reduced, making this skill wondrous for keeping a group healthy.

Improved Skills

Like other classes, the Rune-keeper will find two of his skills get upgraded at higher levels. Firstly, Abrupt Words will be able to dispel those pesky Corruptions monsters are using. Next, Our Fates Entwined will put a damage resistance buff on the Rune-keeper. This will help keep him up if he decides to go down this party protecting route.

Class Items

The Rune-keeper’s class item is his trusty Rune-satchel. In it one will find a barely organized mess of quills, papers, chisels, ink, half-written essays and spare rune-stones. Such satchels act as a Rune-keeper’s traveling library, but are also commonly embroidered with lettering to assist some of his skills.

The Rune-keeper’s ranged slot is being held back for now. Having an addition for it is in the works, but will not be part of the initial class package.

Conclusion

I will be playing a Rune-keeper, and hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed designing it! This whole process has been amazingly fun, and I look forward to your reactions.

 

Read the article at its original source here.

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