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Dragon's Dogma Build: The Crimson Arisen

Tags: #Dragonborn1721  #Dragon's Dogma 
  • January 5, 2018

    The Crimson Arisen

    So who is my character? So, Crim (short for Crimson because I had nothing better to name her) is a Magick Archer who primarily focuses on the Dagger-Magick Bow combination and really focuses on using her range of Magickal skills to defeat enemies, or at least weaken them before finishing them off with a few basic dagger moves. Because of this, and the nature of Magick Bows in general, she's extremely capable of fighting Chimeras, Cyclopses, Ogres and any minor threat (with Harpies being incredibly easy) but struggles a bit against Undead, Griffons and Golems...god are Golems terrible.

    As a side note, she can be good against Undead, but I rely completely on Grand Scension to fight them, and it's powerful but very unwieldy against ranged or faster undead. 

    She does this rather simply by combining Sixfold Bolt, Hunter Bolt and Explosive Rivet to deal with a wide range of foes, have a wide range of elements and just generally be rather deadly from afar. Up close, Hundred/Thousand Kisses, Grand Scension and Forward Roll are my only dagger skills of note, though I am dabbling with Sun Flare currently. 

    Gender: Female 

    Name: Crimson

    Starting Vocation: Strider ----> Magick Archer (with Assassin, Mage, Mystic Knight and Ranger all taken at various points for reasons explained later).

    Pawns: Main Pawn (Mage ---- Sorcerer). Secondary Pawns (Fighter and Mage)

    Early Gameplay (Strider)

    The earliest part of the game is probably the hardest if I'm honest. Not because I died all that often, but because anything decently strong or defensive is a real pain to take down. Part of that was my slight misconception on how long the first 'Arc' of the game (getting to the Capital) can take so I never really invested heavily in skills that might've been useful. As a Ranger, I took Threefold Arrow and Mighty Bend but nothing else from the direct skills, but I did end up focusing rather heavily on passive skills. Early on, I can't stress the usefulness of Quick Loose as a way to fire faster without endangering yourself much (by being too close) but it's mostly just useful against Harpies where attacking faster can be a benefit because they can glitch terribly at times (I've had them fly through solid rock on numerous occasions). The good news about the early game is that there aren't many tough enemies...I mean, sure you can fight a few Cyclops but really the only one is one I affectionately call 'Dead-Meat' because he's practically dead when you fight him, and you've got tonnes of meat shields...I mean bait...wait no, allies is what I meant to say.

    What I would recommend to people taking this build up (for whatever reason) is to get a few AoE attacks. It's something that I sorely needed simply because there are more 'hoard' based enemies early on, with very few enemies that are really going to need anything stronger than your base attack. I think that Cloudburst Volley is a tad better than Triad Shot, but neither are really that great when you compare it to some of the Magick Archer skills.

    Roleplaying (Early Game)

    Yes, I did actually play a role here. I feel like Dragon's Dogma is a very easy game to Roleplay in because of of...well everything really. You tend to a lot more listening outside of quests (or even with them) rather than responding to things with your character's voice, which for me allows a lot more freedom. An easy example is when the Hydra is beaten, my only thought was...I'm going to get praised for cutting off it's head? There were dozens of us here, and the thing still ate half of your men. Ah well, better deal with this then. Because honestly... it's not like you did anything truly amazing IMO, probably would die instantly if it were for the bait...I mean allies, of course, that's what I meant. On top of that, there are choices that can be made throughout the game that feel like they'll have long-lasting effects (and I think they do) and there are plenty of character to interact with.

    Crimson, is your rather classical hero I suppose. She's uncertain, all this nonsense about Arisen is something she's vaguely aware of, but it isn't until well into the game that she truly understands what it is that she's doing. All she knows is that she's been given a strange power to interact with a powerful army of humans (Pawns really, but she really doesn't understand all that nonsense about what they are.) on a level beyond other people, and that this kind of allows her to help people out. That's Crimson's primary goal at the start of the game, help people and maybe work her way up to Gran Soren where she can make something of herself, and then use the money to help repair and provide for her hometown. She isn't setting out to go fight a Dragon that she could literally do nothing against. Hell, if it were up to her she'd just fight Goblins, Wolves and Harpies, simple but numerous types of enemies that make travel dangerous but aren't ridiculous monsters that she (thinks) cannot defeat. She's not the most educated person, I mean she's just a fisher and a hunter who's a bit out of her depth. But she also isn't going to turn down someone that needs her help, which leads to her fighting Dragons and Chimeras and Griffins and animated chunks of stone that could crush her in a single blow.

    Mid Game (Magick Archer)

    So, to clarify, what I mean by mid-game is reaching Gran Soren until the Great Wall. This is probably the hardest part of the game in my opinion, not because of how difficult the enemies are (though this is where you'll start fighting Golems) but because of how lengthy it is. Even if you were just going from MQ to MQ you've still got an awful lot of 'filler content' to go through, and for someone like me who prefers to do as much as possible without going too far out of my way, well it was a bit of a pain in the ass. Exciting as all hell, but a pain.

    I want to use this section to explain an item you might've stumbled into by now. Called Portcrystals. These are incredibly useful items that have two uses. 1) Your out in the wilderness and want to head back to town but don't want to lose your progress. Chuck a Portcrystal down and you can Eternal Ferrystone there and back. 2) Set up Portcrystals as permanent fast travel points in key locations so you can constantly travel around. Personally I set one on Hillfigure Knoll (turned out to be near pointless), The Shadow Fort (outside it), The Great Wall and really should've put one outside Bluemoon Tower but never got around to it. Oh and the Southern-most castle. This, this is a life saver. Doing this will save you so much time.

    Note: Some players won't have the EFS because it's a Dark Arisen only item. That and PS3/360 users would've needed an old save of the original game to get it. PC, Xbox One and PS4 user should all have it, and if your playing Dark Arisen, regular Ferrystones are relatively cheap and you can buy 5 a day in Gran Soren.

    So let's talk combat. The Magick Archer is a really strange class because it can deal Physical and Magical damage (somewhat rare) and most importantly, has tracking projectiles. This makes little things like 'aiming' more or less pointless (just look at an opponent and fire) which is so different to how the Strider functions that it might take you a bit of time to get used to it. But once you do, the Magick Archer is a relatively simple class with a hell of a lot of power. Part of what makes them powerful, is that they can either hit an enemy a lot, or hit a lot of enemies once. Hunter's Bolt is a deceptively good attack that allows to damage larger enemies immensly by targeting 10 points on their body (or close to it) while also having a really good knockback effect on weaker enemies. My personal strategy was to use Hunter's Bolt constantly against anything other than Golems >.> Fucking Golems.

    So rather than just explain combat, because it's almost done. I'm going to break apart how to fight each type of enemy (not all the details, but enough of them).

    Minions (Goblins, Harpies, Bandits, Wolves, etc.) are all relatively easy to fight. Goblins are just little balls of bait to kill, as are Wolves and Bandits so I really have nothing to say there. Use Hunter's Bolt and Sixfold Bolt to deal with most of them really easily. Harpies are a bit more of a pain just because they can fly but Sixfold Bolt will knock most of them down, and Hunter's Bolt with a Fire Boon/Affinity from a companion will gronud any of them instantly, letting you just smash them with your daggers. 

    Saurians get there own little section because they're tougher than you'd think. The main problem is that they combine pretty good natural defences with a lot of blocking which makes them rather difficult to attack with either the Magick Bow or Daggers. Combine this with the fact that there are three major types of Saurian that all resist different elements and you've got a pretty tough set of enemies. The regular ones are weak to Fire (like everything in the early game :P) and are relatively easy to take out, then there are Black Saurians that are weak to Ice instead, and finally White Saurians that resist Ice but Lightning and Fire didn't seem to be that strong either. Regardless, they can all best be taken out by attacking their tail. Chopping it off then attacking the stump allows you to deal the most damage and also usually makes them drop their spear. The negative is, that they then start slithering around which makes them a lot harder to hit in melee.

    Orgres and Cyclopses ... Cyclopi? Got no idea, maybe just multiple Cyclops...Anyway, these are the easiest of the big enemies to take down because they fall fairly easily to Hunter Bolt. Dropping 10 arrows (boosted by Fire Boon/Affinity) on a single target is incredibly powerful, enough to take at least a quarter of a Cyclops' health bar in a single hit. After that it's just a combination of repeating that, resting, climbing on top of them to strike at their head (or the back if it's a helemted Cyclops), rinse repeat. Chimeras are fought in a relatively similar manner, but involve a lot more climbing because the Goat Head can be easily taken out with a few Explosive Rivets followed by Hundred Kisses.

    Griffins are much harder, partially because they resist magic and partially because they fly. I found hitting them with Explosive Rivet (head or leg) and then delivering a Sunburst to be farily effective for dealing high damage, but your main issue here is just going to be dodging. Keeping out of the way (even with Forward Roll) is pretty damn hard, but can be done very effectively and allows you to stay alive. You just need to time it so they miss, but stay on the ground where you can follow up with ther Sunburst/Explosive Rivet attacks.

    Golems are the worst. Full stop. The only way you'll beat these is by climbing up and then chipping away at them. They aren't that strong, I don't think I was ever killed by one but they're just a hassle to fight. that I think about it this is more or less combat for the entire game. There's nothing other than what I've mentioned here that I think is important to go over, especially since I don't want to spoil too much. Part of the fun is figuring out what works better on different enemies so I'd recommend just testing combos out, play around with some other skills, and just learn at your own pace.

    Equipment (End Game):

    Head: Tiara of Enlighenment

    Body: Dragonleather Vest + Golden Belt

    Arms: Dragon Hide Bracers

    Legs: Flame Skirt + Whatever Boots

    Jewlery: Whatever's the best you've got.

    Magick Bow: Dragon's Breath

    Daggers: Dragon's Vein

    Roleplaying (Mid-Late Game)

    I found myself becoming more...selfish as time went on. Not entirely, I still would complete quests for people on a whim and help out but my thought process behind a lot of them changed. On top of that, I started prioritizing treasure related quests, focusing on hunting down new locations or rare items rather than fighting hoards of monsters (which arguably is the best decision for helping people). Crimson slowly turned from what you'd consider a Reluctent Hero into a bit more of a Treasure Hunter/Adventurer. She was no longer doing things just to save people but for her own benefit.

    I think a quest that best capitalizes this, were all the ones with the Duchess. Simply put, Crimson was totally down for sneaking around the castle if it meant she got what she wanted (the Duchess). Not in a terrible way, but just that it became a priority far beyond 'helping the Duke' or 'helping a small child walk around town'. And it ended up with her making arguably selfish decisions. Fighting Grigori, is technically speaking a more selfish decision. The Arisen would rather attempt to save one life rather than the thousands she'd save by submitting, but Crimson simply couldn't do it. She was still heroic, incredibly so, but in the end would choose Aelinore's life over just about anyone elses.

    Closing Notes

    Got nothing much to say here. You'll notice that the build isn't Gameplay focused (really) and is more RP focused, and that to a certain extent it doesn't make all that much sense to do it that way, Dragon's Dogma is largely about the gameplay, so it would make more sense if I focused on that, however, I think it's more fun to let people figure some of it out on their own. Anyway, I've got another build set at the moment to come out soon, The Dark Arisen (that has nothing to do with the DLC) is a Sauron-esque Mystic Knight, you know running the Chaos Armour and flinging things around with giant Maces. Very fun so far, but a bit hard to figure out how to set my team up.

  • Member
    January 6, 2018

    You didn't explain why other vocations were picked up on the way.

    And just out of curiosity, are you playing on normal or hard difficulty settings?

    I myself prefer magick archers with staves in daggers' stead. Just because they get more points to magick attack than to strength.

    Oh man, Golems. The pain in the ass of every magick archer. Saurians shouldn't pose that much of a theat. I mean, magick archers do have elemental attacks, right? 

  • January 6, 2018

    Ah, I didn't end up playing the other vocations, I was originally planning on taking Assassin and Mystic Knight to grab extra attack and magic defence in order to gain a bit more protection and offence, but ultimately just figured that I was doing well enough without it so I didn't really bother. Ah, yeah played normal, wasn't going to play my first proper run through on Hard.

    That probably might work better, for me that was probably a bit more of a 'Roleplaying' reason rather than gameplay. Using the Magick Bow after the regular Bow made a fair amount of sense, as did using Daggers, just keeping gameplay more or less the same so I wasn't trying to learn a new weapon. That, and really I just didn't want to double down on magic in the end.

    It depends on which versions of the Saurians your fighting from what I found. The problem is that Magick Archers really have Dark and Holy attacks and then Sixfold Bolt and Explosive Rivet, oh and uhh...the Rebounding Lightning one that's name I can't remember. Which obviously just doesn't work well outside, in fact, is honestly terrible. Anyway, now the problem comes if you don't have Saurians weak to either Frost or Fire (Sulfur Saurians for Ice and Geo Saurians for Fire) then your kind of stuck with using one or the other. Now Sixfold Arrow is fine, but using Explosive Rivet on a Sulfur Saurian, is a rather terrible combination, just because then following it up by getting close puts the MA in close combat (where really you only fight when climbing over things) which isn't really great for this particular build.

    So...they aren't going around killing me on every turn or anything, but they're just slightly harder than Harpies, Goblins, Wolves, etc. So I thought I'd mention it.

  • Member
    January 6, 2018
    I played a Mage/Sorcerer/MA (in this order) on my first run. But went only up to Griffin's bane. The moment you fight the golem, I had only MA arisen, and my main pawn (mage). So yeah, I screwed up. But back to the topic at hand. For the saurians you could have just got yourself a mage with the right boons/affinities. I wonder, why did you call her crimson?
  • January 6, 2018

    Honestly, I'm starting to think that (generally) the Mage/MA combo is a lot better than the Strider/MA combo, because there really just aren't that many dagger skills outside what little I've seen of Assassin that seem worth it. They're just...mediocre at best, terrible against most things at best. I'd probably say Hundred Kisses was the best just because it gives you a pretty long attack combo which the other moves lack.

    As for pawns...I think I just had terrible luck, to be fair I wasn't entering the rift constantly to find new ones (only grabbing them every...4-5 levels) but by end-game I had almost no luck finding a Mage with Fire Boon/Affinity, have no idea why, but a lot of the late-game pawns for me tended to have a lot of the...more support focused spells, but only having Boons in elements like Holy and Dark (relatively useless for the most part) Not sure if it's related to the Dark Arisen content, and there being more enemies weak to those elements or what, but yeah, just really had no luck with Fire/Ice Affinnity which are really the best.

    No reason for the name honestly, I mean she did end up being a redhead but that was after the just a random name in the end that ended up working incredibly well (nearly all her equipment was red, plus then the Dragon Equipment's all red so it was kind of hilariously colour matched). 


    Uhh, that reminds me, I need to go into the equipment as well. Let me add that somewhere, just gotta remember which set I ended up with at the end. Can't even begin to remember my Level 25/30 equipment.

  • Member
    January 7, 2018
    I just hit lvl 37 on my second run, and just switched out pawns who were 22, so I'd say that moves are more important criteria than level. Although I'm slightly hesitant about you being unable to find a mage with fire/ice boon. I mean, the search system is pretty good. Note to myself: If I ever go for a MA again, make my main pawn mage.
  • Member
    January 7, 2018

    Magick Archer is horribad for levelling and you basically need a min/maxed build in Hard BBI or Online Ur (especially Online Ur). This is also a typical way to play Magick Archer when you get accustomed to the playstyle, weaken with the bow and rush in with your daggers (though some decide to use the bow for buffing and debuffing instead, or even the other way around).

    Here's my typical levelling plan and your level 200 stats:

    Strider 1-10
    Mystic Knight 11-40
    Assassin 41-100
    Sorcerer 101-200

    HP 3875
    STA 3985
    STR 517
    MAG 607
    DEF 307
    MDEF 338

  • Member
    January 7, 2018
    So you play MA only once you hit level 200?
  • Member
    January 7, 2018

    Cannon said: So you play MA only once you hit level 200?

    If you know what you're doing you can actually go MA quite early, the trick is levelling up as a non-MA. Keep an eye on your experience, when you get close to levelling up go to Gran Soren and change classes then finish the level. It's also fine if you do get a few levels as MA, I wouldn't suggest more than 25 though. If you wanna try this then move Sin to levels 11-70 and MK to 71-100 and follow the below instructions:

    Try to play Sin the entire 60 levels (it offers extremely high attack boosts that you absolutely don't want to miss out on and is not too different if you go dagger + bow). Roleplay-wise it also works quite well because Sin is just a better Strider. If you really want to play MA at this stage keep a very close eye on your experience, these Sin levels are damn near essential to getting a decent physical damage output and its hard to play any other class for long at these levels.

    During the MK stage you have a little more breathing room in regards of experience, you should still try to watch your XP closely but a few accidental levels as MA won't make much difference in that stage, MK was put in to make the 200 result less squishy anyway since Sin and Sorc don't give much defense or health, I still wouldn't recommend more that 15 or so levels though.

    100+ you have a lot of wiggle room in terms of experience, it'll usually take hours to level up once, though I'd still recommend keeping a very close eye on experience because these 100 levels of Sorc are essential due to your extremely low magick attack at level 100, don't lose more than 10 levels of Sorc or your final magick attack will be much lower.

  • Member
    January 7, 2018
    But Why assassin? All MA moves are based on Magic Damage. Only non-skill dagger combos and dagger skills shared with assassins are calculated off of strength. And there is a fair share of dagger skills exclusive to MA. Which, again, are calculated off of magic damage stat. And I'm not even touching staves now.