I actually parse on the ship to use the armor reduction and HP modifier tools.
Last night when I added some new gear, I ran a couple parses on the training dummy. I didn’t do as many as I wanted to, but today, the fingernails on my left hand hurt a bit!
I was also inspired by listening to OotiniCast’s latest episode and their conversation about how they play, regarding UIs and key binds. I thought that it would be interesting to let you guys know how I play and also give you an insight on why a certain nail on left hand hurts today.
Seriously though, if you’re wondering how I play my Deception Assassin in PvE, this is it!
Detailed Explanation of My Quickbar Abilities
If you examine how I have my quickbar set up, I place frequently used abilities closer to the left side of the keyboard, and lesser used abilities towards the middle and right. Recklessness (Q) is always hit on cool down which is right below Discharge (2) & Voltaic Slash (3), which are used a lot. I placed Discharge there because it is part of my opening move and the proximity to Recklessness, and it’s also hit every time I have 3x Static Charge.
Maul (4) is usually only hit during the Duplicity proc, and Shock (5) is only hit with the 2x Induction proc. These are important abilities that are very easily accessible with the left hand. Saber Strike (1) is a bit farther to the left because it’s seldom used, but still needed sometimes.
While Assassinate (6) is a high priority ability, I can only use it when the enemy is below 30%; thus it’s further away from the left of the keyboard. In PvE, I don’t have a big use for Low Slash (7) except to forcefully proc Duplicity, and personally I think it’s a waste of time to include in your rotation. Still, it’s a good ability in PvP so it stays in the middle.
Deception Assassins have terrible AOE abilities, but I still leave them on the bar for some situations. Overload (9) is only used if I have to knock back anything. Lacerate (8) is only used if there are at least five enemies grouped up. Lacerate only hits up to 5 enemies anyway, which is very limiting.
Electrocute, while a very cool stun ability, has a bit of a long cool down for my taste, which is why it’s all the way to the right at 0. My CC is “- and Stealth is =. Not important to have extremely close to the left side of the keyboard.
On the bottom row is what I consider a lot of my “support” abilities that are mostly not damaging. I mentioned before why I placed Recklessness at Q. I consider W to be very important; it’s my interrupt ability. If I miss an interrupt, it’s either on cool down or I’m not paying good enough attention to raid. (My raid group will now use that against me if I miss one.)
Blackout (E) and Force Cloak (R), work hand in hand. For a Deception Assassin specced into the right abilities, you can use Blackout, which immediately completes the cool down on Force Cloak, therefore allowing you use it again if you want to gain 40 Force. Additionally, while you are coming out of stealth you initiate Dark Embrace, which boosts your Force recovery rate. This is a nice time to do bursty damage again.
Overcharge Saber (T) provides a little buff to damage and also heals me a bit. Right below T is G on the keyboard, which is my click to proc relic, Underworld Relic of Boundless Ages. They are placed next to each other so they can be hit almost simultaneously. I will be changing my relic next, as I have almost enough mats for the Dread Forged Relic of Focused Retribution. (Still need some Isotope-5s and EEEs, which I can probably farm this weekend.)
Force Lightning (Y) is a DPS ability; however for a Deception Assassin it’s only useful in certain situations and not in my regular rotation. A situation where I would use Force Lightning would be in Dread Fortress Nefra, if the droid’s red circle of death is blocking me from getting into melee range to the boss, I’m not going to stop DPSing. Depending on how far I am and whether or not Recklessness is available, I’ll hit Force Lightning so I’m doing some damage from afar. I would use Crushing Darkness (I) similarly, but this is more of a PvP ability in my opinion. I sometimes change out Crushing Darkness with the single-target taunt.
Unbreakable Will (U), which is my CC break, and Deflection (O), my defensive cool down, are important to have.However, they not used as much as Voltaic Slash for example, which is why they so far to the right. Force Speed (P) and Rocket Boost is also all the way to the right, but not difficult to access when I need to move quickly.
This seems like I somehow master planned my quick bar, which maybe I have! However, over time I really just placed abilities into spots I thought they would work best.
What About the Mouse?
I use a regular, non-gaming mouse with my right hand. I only use my mouse to move, turn the camera, and zoom in/out. With a Deception Assassin, there are really no casted abilities other than Force Lightning/Crushing Darkness, which I only use in special situations and not during my regular rotation. Because it’s only for movement, it’s a bit easier for me to avoid stuff on the ground. I still make mistakes, but the class and skill tree allow for so much mobility.
My UI Setup
As far as my UI goes, it’s pretty basic. Everything is pretty much in the default spot that Bioware placed them, except scaled much smaller. I like to see what’s on the screen, not the quick bar. I use two quick bars at the bottom for my combat abilities, and things like the fleet pass, Quick Travel, Seethe, Phase Walk, buffs, stances, etc. are on vertical bars on the right.
Everyone plays differently, but this is what I do. Now you can picture it in your head, muahaha. I had never played a game where I had to use abilities on a keyboard before SWTOR and had to teach myself about keybinding, so if my way seems a bit odd, that’s why. It is a ton of fun playing my Assassin like this, so whatever way works for you is great!
Here’s a quick tip for those that like to wear nail polish and use their keyboards a lot: When you get your nails done, get the gel polish that is cured with the UV light. It never chips or dents unlike normal polish and will withstand long hours of button mashing your rotation on the keyboard! My nail polish lasts forever, and the only reason why I change is because the nail bed looks funny if it grows out too much.