Sunday, February 27, 2011

Beastmaster review

Like all classes in Rift, the Warrior has a vast amount of diversity in the available souls within the calling. One of the most intriguing is that of the Beastmaster, a powerful melee class that derives much of its capability from the bond shared with their combat pet. The Beastmaster can be a focal point of your build if you want to create a melee support class or a nice bit of flavor to round out other more traditional warrior builds.

  • Great soloist
  • Can offtank adds and handle multiple mob pulls easily
  • Offers group enhancements
  • Easy access to armor and mitigation buffs early in the tree

  • Lack of diversity as prime soul
  • Lower mobility than most other warrior souls
  • Lack of PvP talents
  • Dual wield itemization is lacking in certain level ranges

Fans of the Beastmaster in FFXI and the Beastlord in EQ1 will instantly be drawn to this soul, and with a bit of planning will find they can recreate that playstyle with ease. Masters of avoidance and hard hitting dual strike melee attacks, the Beastmaster is a wonderful pet class that offers tons of upside.

Solo Play
Beastmasters are master soloists, bringing their own backup with them in the form of a summoned spirit companion. Digging deep into the tree you will find a slew of potency and survivability upgrades, as well as some nice statistical enhancements. With a nice combo heal that effects the caster and the pet equally, the Beastmaster can handle the unexpected add with ease.

Group Play
Beastmasters bring quite a bit of utility to a group, via enhancements, buffs and damage. While there are better choices for damage output and group buffing, the Beastmaster is a great utility infielder that can handle both duties.

Pairs Best With

The Champion is the social butterfly of the warrior calling, fitting in anywhere and everywhere. At a measly 4 points into the tree you can pick up a 5% damage increase with Soldier’s Bearing, a root side bargain that packs a huge punch. Other damage modifiers abound in the tree, but players looking for a dual wield playstyle will need to navigate around the many two-handed talents in the tree.

This pairing is one suggested at the in game tooltip and one that makes sense for most players.
The Warlord adds a measure of survivability and group enhancement that is a perfect complement to several builds and gives the Beastmaster the increased armor and avoidance they will need to stay viable. At 6 points into the tree you gain Call to Battle, a scalable battle cry that buffs a groups attack and spell power by 6 as well as unearthing a scaling health buff and a hefty dodge increase in the root system.

My personal favorite pairing for a third soul of a Beastmaster is the Riftblade. The Riftblade adds elemental damage and a couple ranged spells that give me the feeling of playing a Beastlord from EQ again. You can gain a decently powerful punch with as little as 11 points spent in this tree, gaining spell damage enhancements, dodge increases and a nice snare ability. One of the coolest upsides is found 2 points into the root in the form of Fiery Burst, a triggered ability that adds a DoT to weapon damage and is off the global cooldown timer.


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