Please upgrade your browser for the best possible experience.

Chrome Firefox Internet Explorer
×

[Guide] The Sith Sorcerer's Codex

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Classes > Sith Inquisitor > Sorcerer
[Guide] The Sith Sorcerer's Codex

AstralFire's Avatar


AstralFire
12.13.2011 , 07:16 AM | #1
THE SITH SORCERER'S CODEX
v1.1.2a (updated 07-Feb-12)

"Is it possible to learn this power?" "Not from a Jedi."

The Dark Side holds dangerous secrets - and immense power for those who dare to uncover them. The Sorcerer reaches into the darkest corners of the Force to harness volatile energies that can wreak devastation on his enemies and bolster or even heal his allies. The air around a Sorcerer crackles with dark energy, and those foolish enough to get in a Sorcerer’s way soon learn a new definition of suffering.


--------------------------------

INTRODUCTION

First off, a little about me - my name is AstralFire, and my main is a Jedi Shadow, though I have played Jedi Sage quite a bit. As a result, I am looking for people to assist or preferably take over from me in maintenance of the Sage and Sorcerer guides, as I am simply not going to be able to keep up on the Sage metagame while it is not my main.

This handbook is intended to be a comprehensive guide to gameplay competency with the Sith Sorcerer. As such, it will provide data on effective Player-versus-Player gameplay, Player-versus-Environment gameplay, and some general tips on leveling as a Sith Sorcerer. It is not intended to be a walkthrough or guide to any specific World, Flashpoint or Operation, and will only contain some brief looks at specific Warzones and Conflict Regions. Skill Calculator builds are merely my opinion, and though I do my best to learn as much as possible, I cannot know everything. If you have contradictory ideas, please post them here. While this guide will never be perfect, it will be more perfect with each version than the last. We get better through sharing ideas, after all.

This guide will also go over the basics of gearing as a Sith Sorcerer, and highlight some notable pieces of equipment.

The version numbering will correspond with that of the most recent live version of the game, followed by a letter indicating a major revision to the guide's contents. e.g. 1.0.1c would be the third major version of the guide intended to correspond to game version 1.0.1. Minor wording changes and stylistic editing will not be considered.


--------------------------------

TABLE OF CONTENTS

01. [Introduction]
02. [Table of Contents]
03. [Sorcerer Basics]
04. [Notable Issues]
05. [Specialization: Corruption]
06. [Specialization: Lightning]
07. [Specialization: Madness]
08. [Sorcerer Companions]
09. [Equipping a Sorcerer]
10. [Crew Skills]
11. [Appendix: FAQs]
12. [Appendix: MMO Glossary]
13. [Appendix: Keybinds]
14. [Appendix: Sage <-> Sorcerer Dictionary]
15. [Appendix: Changelog]
16. [Appendix: Advanced Reading]


--------------------------------

SORCERER BASICS

Parent Class: Sith Inquisitor
Sister Class: Sith Assassin
Mirrored by: Jedi Sage
Primary Weapon: Lightsaber, Vibrosword
Off-Hand Items: Force Focus
Armor Class: Light
Aesthetic Inspirations: Yoda, Emperor Palpatine, Jolee Bindo, Kreia
Story Inspiration: Emperor Palpatine. "First and foremost was the Emperor/Palpatine inspiration. To be just bat-**** insane or to be subtle and clever."
Skill Trees: Corruption (Healer), Lightning (Striker), Madness (Striker)
Resource: Force Points. (Base Max: 500; Base Recovery: 8 Pts/Second)
Playable Species: Human, Zabrak, Rattataki, Twi'lek, Sith Pureblood
Voice Actress: Xanthe Elbrick
Voice Actor: Euan Morton

The Sorcerer has been described by the developers as their most perfectly balanced class, able to contribute in every situation, and having a good mix of enjoyable play that still benefits and reflects a more skilled controller.

The Sith Sorcerer has the largest resource and lowest relative regeneration of any class in the game, lending itself to a playstyle that is punishing in the long-term for mistakes, even if the short-term outcome is positive. The challenge in playing the Sorc is in knowing your limitations well. An Assassin must place a bulk of thought on tactics, while the Sorcerer must emphasize strategy.

Those coming from World of Warcraft will not find a direct analogue to the Sorc. The Corruptor possesses a strong resemblance to a Discipline Priest, but with more control and less emphasis on damage prevention. The Lightning Sorc has some similarities to the playstyle of an Elemental Shaman, but without the central totem mechanic, the feel will necessarily be very different. A Madness Sorc constantly regenerates health and constantly pressures the opponent's health down like an Affliction Warlock, but has longer cooldowns, different AoE behavior, and uses channeled abilities with regularity.


--------------------------------

NOTABLE ISSUES

- Forked Lightning does not activate, and Conduction does not do additional damage, essentially crippling deep Lightning specializations.
- The description for Revivification is incorrect and the ability has a very small initial heal.
- Sacrifice is notably worse than the Consular counterpart, Unity, at least when Unity will no longer be bugged in 1.1.2. Item of minimal importance since neither Sacrifice nor Unity can be used in endgame zoned content.


--------------------------------

CORRUPTION SORCERERS

"The dark side of the Force is a pathway to many abilities some consider to be... unnatural."

Playstyle: Preventative, control-based healer.
PvE Builds: Standard (32/7/2), Offensive Leveling (30/9/2)
PvP Builds: PvP Standard (32/7/2)

I know: you're a healer. That doesn't matter. Your first five points should be in the Lightning tree. Everything else can be taken as you please, but those first five points are the most important five points to any Sorcerer. In fact, I personally think that this makes them bad design, as they essentially become a skill point tax, but that's another issue.

Healing Specializations are unique in this game because the role of each ability you use is greatly altered as you go up the tree. By level 14, you have access to three of the seven heals that you'll eventually be using, but the way you use them will be radically different in the mid-30s, and radically different again at level 50. So I will discuss each ability over the course of your development, in broad terms. (Note: This is not the guide for deep, advanced numbers. I did a lot of deep, advanced number work to arrive at my results, but I recommend that you go to Advanced Reading if you want to actually see them. The purpose of this guide is to cover the basic principles in a friendly manner.)

Dark Heal: It will initially be your only heal, so there's not much to discuss there. You'll be able to chaincast it a maximum of about 14 or 15 times in a row at these levels, which might sound like a lot, but it isn't.
- Once you've picked up Dark Infusion, you should stop using this ability except to deliver a quick heal to someone about to die, otherwise.
- When you get Static Barrier, you can stop using Dark Heal for emergency heals unless your heal target can't be rebubbled yet.
- When you get Resurgence and the Force-Bending skill, Dark Heal becomes your efficiency direct heal. Use it to top someone off who's in good shape. If no one needs to be topped off, just hold the Force-Bending buff until they do, then respond with Dark Infusion or Dark Heal as appropriate.
Lightning Strike: This is an offensive ability. In leveling content, I recommend using the Offensive Leveling (30/9/2) build. Lightning Strike will never be more effective at Force Point Recovery, even with Subversion, than just not attacking. However, the damage output that you add - even as a healer - is more important than just not doing anything at low-level content. At higher levels, if you're in a position where you have more Force than you need, Lightning Strike is usually a better idea than auto-attacking, due to time lost in positioning and the chance that you'll be damaged by a point-blank area-of-effect. This is true even outside of the Offensive Leveling build.

Dark Infusion: This is a slow, high efficiency heal. It will always be your primary spam heal. In PvP, this should usually remain your spam heal; if someone uses a hard interrupt on you, you're cool with it because that won't lock out any of your other heals. This ensures that you have Innervate available when you need a high speed heal.
- Once you get Resurgence and the Force-Bending skill, you can use Dark Infusion as an emergency speed heal. If no one needs to be topped off, just hold the Force-Bending buff until they do, then respond with Dark Infusion or Dark Heal as appropriate.
- Dark Infusion is completely eclipsed as an emergency heal by Innervate; Innervate's Force Surge benefit allows it to supercede Dark Infusion as an efficiency heal as well. After getting Innervate, Force-Bending+Dark Infusion is used very rarely - only when the target's health is in sufficient danger that you do not have time to spend a GCD on Consumption, but they are not going to fall over and die the next second. This does not happen a lot.
Static Barrier: Fairly efficient, Static Barrier can be looked at as either the single fastest big heal that you possess, or a constant buffer to keep up on the tank. Both are absolutely true. Always keep Static Barrier refreshed every twenty seconds on the defender, and if you're concerned about someone else dying to spike damage, this should be the first thing you cast - it lacks a cooldown once skilled up.

Resurgence: A direct heal with a periodic heal component. It is the most efficient heal that you possess. Once you get the Force-Bending skill, it completely changes how you look at every other heal. You should almost always keep Resurgence on cooldown if possible, just for Force-Bending. The fact that Resurgence improves the armor of its beneficiary is great, too.

Restoration: It removes up to 2 debuffs and, properly skilled, gives a minor heal. The heal is very high efficiency, but very weak. You will never use it primarily for the heal, it's simply a nice side benefit. It has a 4.5s CD.

Innervate: An instant healing ability with a channel that heals once a second for three seconds. It's pretty awesome. It gets more awesome when used in conjunction with Force-Bending (which you should almost always do) as that adds 25% critical effect chance. Under Force-Bending, it is very simple to get 50% crit with Innervate, which greatly improves the average healing which you can expect from Innervate, as there are four chances per each cast to critical.

It gets better. Force Surge allows any of these criticals to cause your next Consumption to have absolutely no negative effects. You heard right. Once you get Force Surge, there is only a one-in-sixteen chance that a Innervate will not allow you to have a free + 48 FP. When you include the 48 FP regenerated naturally during the activation time of Rejuvenation + Innervate + Consumption, each use of this trio returns 33 more FP than was spent.

Revivification: It's your big AoE heal, best for grabbing either all the ranged, or all the melee. It has a maximum of eight targets. If you can, announce prior to its usage, as it creates a heal-over-time circle on the ground. The first hit is slightly frontloaded, but has received a significant nerf. Over 10 seconds, Revivification will be faster than conventional healing for even two or more targets, but it won't be efficient - even after Force-Bending - until after it hits three or more targets. I don't recommend using it unless you can grab at least three targets.

Affliction: This is the most important damage ability which you have in PvP. It does good damage constantly at low cost - it is slightly more efficient on a long lived target than Lightning Strike - and with the PvP Standard (32/7/2) build, will ensure that you're moving faster than your opponents, particularly pesky melee opponents, afflicting them with a -20% speed debuff. It also has no cooldown, meaning that it can be spammed faster than a healer's cleanse can. In conjunction with the much cheaper Force Slow or the powerful Force Lightning, it basically can lock down a target's motion entirely.

In PvP, Corruption's considerations for healing spells are mostly the same. You will start using Shock and Force Lightning for instant damage, though try not to use Shock a lot; it's very cost inefficient.

GEARING

As with all Inquisitors, Willpower is your primary stat, and Critical Strike Rating greatly improves the reliability of your Innervate triggering a free Consumption, so it should be your most important stat until you have 20% crit rate from gear. After that, it becomes a matter of preference:

Surge Rating will greatly increase the throughput of your Innervate, Resurgence and Revivification, while it will be an unreliable bonus for your other abilities. Getting a small measure of it is a good idea, but I wouldn't focus on it.

Alacrity increases the speed of your two most important abilities - Dark Infusion and Innervate - but exhausts your Force more quickly. Alacrity is probably a stat of interest to a PvP Corruptor, but a PvE Corruptor will rate it of low concern. Raw Force Power will improve all of your abilities and your efficiency, but at a very slow rate. This steadiness is probably of most interest to a PvE Corruptor.

In PvP, Expertise Rating will be your single most important statistic.


--------------------------------

LIGHTNING SORCERERS

"If you will not be turned, you will be destroyed!"

Playstyle: Spike damage striker, area damage and control.
PvE Builds: Standard (3/31/7)
PvP Builds: PvP Standard (3/31/5)+2

WARNING: This section needs serious reworking due to the Telekinetic Momentum/Forked Lightning bug.

Single Target Priority List:
0. Affliction (if not active)
1. Lightning Strike (Less than 3 stacks of Subversion)
2. Crushing Darkness
3. Thundering Blast
4. Chain Lightning (Lightning Storm active)
5. Force Lightning (Lightning Barrage active)
6. Lightning Strike
Area Priority List:
0. Affliction (if not applied)
1. Thundering Blast
2. Chain Lightning
3. Force Storm
Low Intensity List:
0. Affliction (if not applied)
1. Force Lightning (Lightning Barrage)
2. Lightning Strike (Less than 3 stacks)
3. Force Lightning (cooldown)
4. Lightning Strike
PVE

The priority list pretty much holds true while leveling. Lightning gets an early lead on the other two specs while leveling simply because all three specs absolutely need their first five points in Lightning. They're too good, as I bemoaned upthread, and it's the only Sorcerer specialization with significant multitarget damage, able to keep up with Mercs; you can cast Affliction on multiple targets for sustained damage, and Chain Lightning is high enough damage to make it into your single-target rotation.

You're probably wondering how Crushing Darkness got on here; I know that I still kind of am. But it's true! It's an extremely powerful ability that ticks very rapidly, which is why it's viable even with only one skill in the entire tree which directly relates to it.

I should re-emphasize that the above are priority lists and not rotations. However, you should be able to to get all the way through steps 2 through 6 in a single cycle if everything activates, which it usually won't.

Critical hits are your lifeblood - not only do they do a considerable amount of damage for you, but they directly tie in to your longevity, as a result of a Lightning Effusion. You should try to avoid using Lightning Strike, Force Lightning or Affliction, and prioritize Chain Lightning and Thundering Blast when this occurs, within reason. And if you're using Force Storm, you should definitely prioritize that, making it the second force ability used. Even so, unless literally every ability you use is under the effect of Lightning Effusion, you will eventually run out of Force if you continue your cycle without stopping.

During phases when damage is less crucial, you can switch to the low intensity list instead, and essentially never run out of Force. You also will not gain any substantial amount of Force, however (you'll end up with a very slight positive rate of return) making it just a holding pattern.

Polarity Shift is best used immediately after a Lightning Storm Chain Lightning, as it is the only ability on your priority list which does not benefit from an Alacrity increase. During Polarity Shift, you should try to avoid using Lightning Storm Chain Lightning unless it would require you to use Lightning Strike when you already have a full stack of Subversion in no danger of slipping. I don't currently know if increasing Alacrity affects periodic damage already in effect; I'll update this section once I have found out.

Lightninglightninglightninglightninglightninglight ninglightning. I didn't say that word enough.

PVP

The PvP Standard (3/31/5)+2 requires some explaining. Two points are left over. These last two points should go in Disintegration or Suppression, and it's a choice between burst damage or slightly more control. Your Force bar's longevity is simply not as crucial a point as in PvE, which is why this is even up for discussion at all.

In my point of view, Disintegration is superior, because being able to lock out for longer is not as important as being able to lock out more frequently; one must remember that a hard interrupt only affects the ability it interrupted, and nothing else, making it a less compelling option than in other games. Other 'two point' locations are not nearly as debatable.

You might think that you would want to pick up both Lightning Barrier and Backlash, rather than only Backlash. The two don't belong in the same build when you're this point-starved, though - you should have one or the other. They're not at odds, precisely, but they serve two different ways of using your Static Barrier in PvP. Lightning Barrier assumes that you use your bubble defensively as a constant barrier, either on yourself or your teammate; Backlash assumes that you're using your bubble offensively. To explain, it's useless if it explodes when the wearer is being range attacked, it's potent if it explodes when being brawled. Because there is a cooldown as well as a preventative debuff, it's best to only have one or the other. I personally prefer Backlash, but your mileage may vary.

Electric Bindings is the only other debatable 2-point allocation. It may seem redundant with Backlash, but they serve two different, but related, purposes on moderately long cooldowns. The best way that I can put it is that knocking someone into a hazard in Huttball with this will be beyond brutal, and it doesn't require predicting who they'll attack. You can use it in conjunction with Static Barrier to disable half of an unprepared team chasing after your ball carrier. Electric Bindings can be used on anyone around you, regardless if you're being attacked or not; Backlash can be used on any teammate, even if you're not there.

GEARING

As with all Inquisitors, Willpower is your primary stat. When given a choice between Power and Force Power, you prefer the latter; both improve your Force output, but the latter may be itemized to come in larger amounts than Power does. Critical Strike Rating jockeys with Alacrity for your most important secondary stat; critical strike increases the frequency of your very large crits, as well as improving your efficiency. Alacrity improves the cast time of your abilities, and improves the rate at which your channeled damage and healing abilities tick - but at the expense of your efficiency. Surge rating is helpful, but less important, because +50% critical damage on your direct damage abilities is already built in. This hierarchy of damage stats holds for both PvE and PvP, although in PvP, two other scores also become of note.

In PvP, Expertise Rating will be your single most important statistic. Accuracy Rating will also come into consideration; while you previously could only miss with your basic Saber Strike attack, every class has a minimum of 5% defense, and tanks can have much more. I would strongly consider getting at least 10% accuracy, to make sure that you do not miss with a vital Crowd Control or interrupt against enemy Jedi Sages and Sith Sorcerers, who have a base defense of 10%.


--------------------------------

MADNESS SORCERERS

"This is blasphemy! This is madness!"

Playstyle: Periodic damage, self-healing, high efficiency.
PvE Builds: Creeping Terror (3/7/31), Hybrid Lightning (0/13/28), Effusion (0/17/24)
PvP Builds: PvP Creeping Terror (3/7/31)

Priority List:
0. Death Field
1. Affliction
2. Creeping Terror
3. Force Lightning (Lightning Barrage)
4. Crushing Darkness (if no DoT present, or Wrath is active)
5. Chain Lightning (Wrath active)
6. Project
7. Force Lightning
PVE

First, a moment of silence for those few months in beta where the Sith Sorcerer's Madness tree made it into a semi-melee hybrid. We barely knew ye, single-bladed saber warrior.

The Madness Sorcerer is a completely different beast from the Madness Assassin. Both are periodic damage based specializations, but the Madness Assassin has less effective burst, is considerably more FP efficient, and can easily DoT down several opponents at once. While your fire-and-forget DoTs are not effective at bringing down weak opponents, your Force Lightning and Death Field abilities are - and the DoT debuffs strike with a vengeance when you're up against difficult foes.

For the sake of solo missions in a specialization with so many stuns, you may be the only Sorcerer that actually uses the Tumult skill, an oft-forgotten, powerful kick that only works on NPCs that are Strong and weaker, who have been stunned. You probably would do the best of any Consular specialization for being without even a companion, as you have strong self-healing, and the ability to AoE control multiple enemies at once. Imagine: You can take a group of two elites and five normals, Whirlwind one elite and two of the normals, deal with the rest and just daisy chain Whirlwinds at the trapped elite every minute.

Then when you deign to deal with him, you drop some DoTs and hammer them with a Death Field to wake them up. And immediately upon waking up, they spend two more seconds trapped in a stun. The Corruptor might be a little bit more soloable, but the Madman has more fun doing it.

Note that you should only waste Wrath on Lightning Strike if you took the Subversion skill; otherwise, do not cast it at all, it's pretty bad for you. Use it on Mind Crush, even if a DoT is present.

I recommend using the Creeping Terror (3/7/31) build for leveling, but at endgame, it's up for debate Creeping Terror is a little less than whelming. It deals less damage per cast than Affliction (though it is slightly more efficient), has a long cooldown, and an irrelevant stun in PvE Endgame. The proposed Hybrid Lightning (0/13/28) build needs testing, but may well prove superior; Wrath Chain Lightning deals almost as much damage and has an AoE effect, and in a build so dependent on Force Lightning, getting one in three or four to be cast at double speed is enticing. Its biggest issue is efficiency overtime, and the Effusion build is intended to assist with that concern.

I am personally of the opinion that Creeping Terror will pull ahead, not necessarily on the merits of Creeping Terror itself, but on the merits of the extra 3% critical that the Creeping Terror build has room to pick up. Both should do pretty good damage, however, so until we have more numbers and simulations out there, either one will do.

PVP

PvP Creeping Terror (3/7/31) is the only way to go, for Madness. You need multiple debuffs on your target in order to give you dispel protection against enemy healers, and Creeping Terror's stun adds just that bit of control that we find useful. Instant cast Whirlwind will be brutal on your opponents in PvP, but you should exercise caution - it will also be brutally generous to their resolve bars, instantly maxing them out. Whirlwind should only be used as a last resort to catch or stop a runner, and not as an opener.

Once you've got your DoTs and Deathmarks in place, spam Force Lightning like it's going out of style. Your slow is maddening and cannot be simply broken out of, giving you the title of most annoying long-range jerk on the field. And you do great damage with it, too.

GEARING

As with all Inquisitors, Willpower is your primary stat. When given a choice between Power and Force Power, you prefer the latter; both improve your Force output, but the latter may be itemized to come in larger amounts than Power does. Critical Strike Rating jockeys with Alacrity for your most important secondary stat; critical strike increases the frequency of your very large crits, as well as improving your efficiency. Alacrity improves the cast time of your abilities, and improves the rate at which your channeled damage and healing abilities tick - but at the expense of your efficiency. Surge Rating is valuable as well, because the built-in diminishing returns on Surge do not account for your flat bonuses to critical from your specialized skills. You can easily sport another +20% critical strike damage from gear.

In PvP, Expertise Rating will be your single most important statistic. Accuracy Rating will also come into consideration; while you previously could only miss with your basic Saber Strike attack, every class has a minimum of 5% defense, and tanks can have much more. I would strongly consider getting at least 10% accuracy, to make sure that you do not miss with a vital Crowd Control or interrupt against enemy Jedi Sages and Sith Sorcerers, who have a base defense of 10%. Surge Rating is decreased in importance relative to Critical Strike and Alacrity, because the latter two improve both your self-healing by giving you more crits faster, and do not simply improve your damage output.


--------------------------------
JEDI SHADOW

You've failed, your highness. I am a Jedi, like my father before me.

AstralFire's Avatar


AstralFire
12.13.2011 , 07:17 AM | #2
SORCERER COMPANIONS

To assist you in your missions, you'll build a small team of helpers over time. While they will remain with you regardless of how you treat them, making sure that they like you is important; a companion who likes and respects you will craft faster and perform skill missions more successfully. To avoid accidental spoilers, each companion is listed in a dropdown beneath their planet.

KORRIBAN
Spoiler


DROMUND KAAS
Spoiler


TATOOINE
Spoiler


TARIS
Spoiler


HOTH
Spoiler


VOSS
Spoiler


SECRET COMPANION
Spoiler



--------------------------------

EQUIPPING A SORCERER

Handling your way across your starter world of Korriban as a Sith Inquisitor should be pretty simple, for the most part. However, your masters and lessons do not really explain a lot about gearing, and I feel that it is useful to have a reference list available here. If you're looking for specific gearing instructions per specialization, look back at the final paragraph for each specialization instead. This is general information.

All characters use one primary ability score of Aim, Cunning, Strength or Willpower. All four of these abilities has a specialized purpose. Aim will only increase your ranged damage and critical chance, Cunning will only increase your tech damage and critical chance, Strength will only increase your melee damage and critical chance, and Willpower will only increase your Force damage and critical chance. Normally, anyway.

Each base class has a different primary ability score. A primary ability score equally improves both of the damage vectors which your class will use. Through the Force, all things are possible; Willpower is the primary score for Consulars and Inquisitors, and grants both Melee Damage and Force Damage, as a result. This holds true for the Shadow and Assassin advanced classes, but the Sage and Sorcerer advanced classes uniquely lose this dual benefit.

Presence measures your ability to inspire, lead, and guide your companions. A higher presence score will increase your companion's health, damage and healing. Companions take up the party slot of a player, but are less effective than a player; if you intend to do a lot of content which requires full or nearly full groups, it's not wise to invest much into presence.

Endurance, simply enough, improves one's raw health.

Secondary stats are available, which add more complexity to the matter.

Absorption Rating: Increases the amount of damage blocked by a successful shield reaction. More rating is required to achieve the same percentage bonus at higher character levels.

Accuracy Rating: Grants additional hit, and then reduces the opponent's defense once past 100%. More rating is required to achieve the same percentage bonus at higher character levels.

Alacrity Rating: A secondary stat which improves the speed of activation time for non-instant abilities. It does not affect the Global Cooldown for instant abilities. More rating is required to achieve the same percentage bonus at higher character levels.

Critical Rating: Improves the chance of a critical hit. More rating is required to achieve the same percentage bonus at higher character levels.

Defense Rating: Improves the chance of a avoiding an attack. More rating is required to achieve the same percentage bonus at higher character levels.

Expertise Rating: Increases damage and healing done, and reduces damage taken, but only in PvP. A maximum of 20% effectiveness. More rating is required to achieve the same percentage bonus at higher character levels.

Force Power: A secondary stat which improves Force Ability damage and healing only.

Power: A secondary stat which improves damage and healing from all sources.

Shield Rating: Increases the chance that a shield reaction is triggered against an attack. More rating is required to achieve the same percentage bonus at higher character levels.

Surge Rating: Improves the effect of a critical hit. Base Surge is +50%. More rating is required to achieve the same percentage bonus at higher character levels.

Tech Power: A secondary stat which improves Tech Ability damage and healing only.


--------------------------------

CREW SKILLS

Money can get you everything.

Those of you coming from World of Warcraft post-Classic are familiar with the skill layout of that game, where every single craft skill had to have a mechanically advantageous thing that it 'owned' (each of them being roughly as good as the others). Several of the crafting skills in that game effectively were worthless to anyone besides the wielder, to boot.

That is not how this game works, mechanically. Every single crew skill mechanical perk originates from the fact that you're getting the benefit cheaper or earlier than someone who does not have your craft skill. For example, anyone can use medpacks; only a Biochem producer can get a reusable medpack, which costs more to craft but will never get used up. You do not need to be an artificer to upgrade your lightsaber; artificers make the upgrades, you just buy them and insert them into the lightsaber yourself. Etc. The other thing is that all of the crafting skills have some sort of aesthetic option which is unique to them, and these are among the rare bind-on-pickup items that cannot be given to anyone else.

Therefore, there are three approaches to take when choosing your Crew Skill layout: Do I want to get something that will save me money on a reusable I want a lot of, do I want to get something that will make me a lot of money, or do I want to get something that will give me a unique visual perk? It cannot be stressed enough that crafting of any kind while leveling up will only be of limited use; you will always end up ahead in credits while leveling by not crafting anything. It becomes a question of time and money spent now, versus time and money spent later to either level up your own craft skill or constantly purchasing everything you need.

To make your decision, you need to have a good grasp of what can be made by each craft skill. You have access to three crew skills per character; a maximum of one may be a craft skill, and it's recommended that the other two be a gathering skill and a mission skill which support that craft skill. Everything is oriented around the crafting skills; mission skills provide a nice little bit of flavor, but are essentially a second gathering skill oriented around the rarer materials that cannot be obtained through direct gathering.

It's important to note that you will not automatically get all of the important recipes for Craft Skills from the skill itself, even by reverse-engineering; you will need to get some of these schematics from the Galactic Trade Network. It's also important to note that you will always lose money by sending crew members to do missions, as the point is more to raise your skill and gain materials while not being out in the field yourself. If it was strictly superior to self-gathering, no one would ever do it.

I'll go over each of the Crew Skills in brief - each section will contain the Crew Skill's codex entry, followed by my input.

CRAFTING SKILLS
You may only have one of these skills on your character. If you take one of these, it is your most important skill. As noted above, once you get to endgame, you are not getting unique mechanical perks from what you make via these skills; you're just getting it cheaper, easier, prettier, faster, or reusable. For leveling content, they do create some unique stuff for lower levels, so rich rerollers will make purchases from dedicated crafters a lot.

Spoiler


GATHERING SKILLS
Gathering skills are skills which you or your companion may employ in the field, when you see an appropriate resource. They supply the basic materials used in crafting skills. You may send your companions on gathering missions which cost money, but provide you with skill-point appropriate resources. There is a chance for your companion to fail when deployed on missions (I believe it is related to their affection), but it will always give you a skill point even if they fail. Out of your maximum of three crew skills, all three may be gathering skills.

Spoiler


MISSION SKILLS
Mission skills function identical to Gathering skills which cannot be personally collected; you need your companion to do them. They provide the rare resources used in crafting skills as well as providing a host of other benefits, such as giving you companion gifts to raise their affection, rare schematics, and sometimes rare equipment. Out of your maximum of three crew skills, all three may be mission skills.

Spoiler


If you read all that and are confused still - or didn't read all of that, because it's a lot to chew through, that's okay. You just want the bottom line on which three crew skills I recommend, right? I've arranged them into sets of three based on what your main selling market is.

PvE Endgame: Synthweaving, Artifice, Treasure Hunting
PvP Endgame: Biochem, Bioanalysis, Diplomacy >> Cybertech, Scavenging, Underworld Trading
Self-Leveling: Biochem, Bioanalysis, Diplomacy == Cybertech, Scavenging, Underworld Trading >> Artifice, Archaeology, Treasure-Hunting
Simple Money-Making: Pick any three: Slicing, Investigation, Diplomacy, Bioanalysis, Scavenging, Biochem

Do not pick: Armstech


--------------------------------
JEDI SHADOW

You've failed, your highness. I am a Jedi, like my father before me.

AstralFire's Avatar


AstralFire
12.13.2011 , 07:18 AM | #3
APPENDIX: FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Q: How do I become a Sith Sorcerer?
A: Reach level 10 as a Sith Inquisitor, and find Lord Lokar in the Imperial Fleet or on Dromund Kaas. He'll give you a mission that will further your class training.

Q: I just became a Sith Sorcerer. Where do I train my Sorcerer skills?
A: Same trainer as your base class. Click the tab at the bottom to select your list of trainable Adv. Class abilities.

Q: Where can I respecialize my character?
A: There is a respecialization trainer standing in the banking area of Dromund Kaas, as well as in the Class Trainer area of the Imperial Fleet, with the subtitle <Skill Mentor>. He's near the person who accepts Guild Charters.

Q: When can I get my speeder?
A: After turning level 25, purchase Speeder Piloting from your trainer for 25,000 credits, then go to your fleet. In the shopping area, there should be a vendor who sells vehicles. You can also purchase them on Tatooine. Your first speeder will cost you 8,000 credits; you can get upgrades at level 40 and 50.

Q: I'm coming from WoW. Do these skill specializations have any resemblance to stuff from there?
A: The Corruption tree plays a lot like (though not identical to) a Discipline Priest with a bit more control. Lightning is loosely similar to Elemental Shamans, and Madness is loosely similar to Affliction or Shadow.

Q: I'm coming from Star Wars Galaxies/other MMO. Do these skill specializations have any resemblance to stuff from there?
A: I am not sufficiently familiar with most of those games to say. If someone would like to suggest things for me, I'd appreciate it. Games like City of Heroes are too different from your average MMO, and thus don't really bear comparison well.

Q: Do I have to use a Single-Bladed Lightsaber?
A: Yes and no. You cannot use a Double-Bladed Lightsaber, and you cannot use two Lightsabers, but you can equip and retrofit a vibroblade with mods to give it mostly Sorcerer-beneficial scores.

Q: Do we have to wear robes? Can we wear pants?
A: Pants are rare, but exist. If you want to keep the pants look, find a moddable pair and you'll be able to keep them all the way up into endgame.

Q: Can we really keep stuff the whole game and just keep modding it?
A: Yes and no. As soon as you find a chestpiece, pants, hat, weapon, gloves, and shoes - the most important stuff - with four upgrade slots, you can keep modding it for the whole level up game. It is rumored that Endgame, however, starts getting items with extra slots, and PvP gear has its expertise as a built-in, rather than a mod granted, stat. So you can keep it for most of the game. Endgame is where you will have more difficulties.

Q: Do I ever get to use my Lightsaber for anything?
A: You get to watch it deflect attacks, but it's pretty much a stat stick.

Q: What's the best Skill Specialization for leveling?
A: All Sorcerer specs are very strong for leveling, but Corruption is probably the strongest overall, thanks to the companion system. Madness is a close second due to its control and self-healing, and Lightning, while last, is still pretty awesome. You can't go wrong, here.

Q: What's the difference between Sith Sorcerer and Sith Assassin in the Madness tree?
A: They are both proc-heavy, DoT self-healing builds. It's a question of whether you want to use your lightsaber and Shock, or Force Lightning and Lightning Strike. The Assassin gets better procs to compensate for its lower range and smaller Force Pool.

Q: Is the Sith Sorcerer the best healer?
A: No healer is the best - they've each been designed to heal in different, and complementary, ways.

Q: What's the difference between the three types of healers?
A: In brief, the Operative has escape options and has to tactically manage its healing due to its resource, which prevents it from ever being permanently tapped - but short-term burst healing will screw you over for a while. It has a healing combo point system, and is based around periodic, constant healing with reserved upward spikes. The Merc is the most versatile healer, and pivots on the Supercharge Cells mechanic, which gives it a brief healing 'supermode' when needed. It also has a short-term resource management focus. The Sith Sorc reacts best to sudden spikes in health and has to manage its resource long-term.

Q: Madness?
A: Forgive me if my response is spartan.

Q: I'm going to do PvE. Does the Madness or Lightning tree do higher max DPS?
A: Lightning is generally accepted to do more damage, but Madness is competitive with it.

Q: What's the difference between a Sage and a Sorcerer?
A: There are the obvious ones - different stories, companions, and titles. Visually, a Sorcerer's Force Powers are centered around violet lightning, while a Sage is reliant on golden energy and rocks or other environmental elements. Late game, the Sage obtains Unity, while the Sorcerer gets Sacrifice. I'm of the opinion the Sage's ability is a bit better for the class.

Q: I want to play a Movie Sith; is this the class for me?
A: You can do a good imitation of Palpatine in the original trilogy, that's about it for Movie Sith.

Q: What's the story like?
A: I haven't tried it myself, this is a conversion of a Jedi Sage guide.

Q: Which abilities are off of the Global Cooldown?
A: Recklessness, Jolt, Force Speed, possibly others. Need to test more later.

Q: Is Telekinetic Throw considered a periodic damage ability?\
A: No.

More questions to be added as needed later.


--------------------------------

APPENDIX: MMO GLOSSARY

Activation Time: The amount of time used before an ability finishes its animations and triggers. Generally, being attacked during an activation causes pushback, and movement will cancel the activation.

AoE: Area-of-Effect ability. Refers to an ability that strikes an area, hitting all targets within that space. AoE abilities which only affect targets in melee range of the user are called Point-Blank Area-of-Effect, or PBAoE.

CC: Crowd Control. In the MMORPG context, it is used to refer to abilities which can reduce the number of opponents being faced at a given moment, without actually defeating one of them. Several abilities have crowd control effects which only trigger on Weak and Standard enemies, and will not work on Strong, Elite or Boss NPCs, or enemy players.

Channeled Ability: An ability of this kind begins triggering immediately, but does not finish until the activation bar is entirely depleted. If this ability is ended early for any reason, then you will not get the full effect of the ability, even though you have paid the full cost. Pushback on a channeled ability will cause the ability to end early. Moving, whether voluntarily or involuntarily, will always end a channeled ability prematurely. Alacrity does not affect channeled abilities.

Defender: See TANK.

DOT: Damage-over-time. See PERIODIC DAMAGE.

DPS: Literally, damage-per-second. It is also commonly used to refer to those characters who have damage-dealing as their primary mechanical mission. See STRIKER.

Global Cooldown: A 1.5 second delay after activating any instant ability, preventing you from activating the majority of other abilities. Successfully triggered non-instant abilities do not induce a global cooldown (or if they do, they generate one that is too low to reach via current alacrity values.) A rare few abilities are not affected by the Global Cooldown.

Interrupt: Broadly, any reason that an ability with an activation or channeling time is suddenly cancelled. More specifically, an ability that always causes cancellation of the target's non-instant ability, and adds a cooldown before the target can attempt that ability again. They are sometimes sorted into the mutually exclusive categories of Soft Interrupt (which does not add a cooldown to the targeted ability) and Hard Interrupt. Mind Snap is a Jedi Shadow's interrupt, and Jolt is a Sith Assassin's.

Kiting: Using abilities and careful positioning to force a melee-primary opponent to follow another person at a distance like a kite - a successful example of kiting minimizes the amount of close-range time the melee-primary character is able to get.

Knockback: Not the same as pushback, knockback refers to a character being forcibly moved by another character (usually backwards).

OOF: Out of Force (points.) When you've exhausted your resource bar.

Periodic Damage: An effect which causes damage over time on a regular basis, such as every second or every three seconds, without further input from the user.

Proc: A "Programmed Random Occurence." Essentially, a proc is any ability which activates randomly. If you have an ability which has a 10% chance to heal you in addition to its primary effect, that heal effect would be considered a proc.

Pushback: Not the same as knockback, pushback refers to an unexpected delay during the activation of a non-instant ability, or causing a pulse on a channeled ability to fail. Pushback is caused by taking damage from any hostile source during the activation of the ability. Several skills mitigate or remove pushback on specific abilities.

Resolve: A bar which fills up whenever a character is incapacitated or moved against their will in anyway by another player. It slowly depletes when not recently increased. When the bar is completely filled, the character becomes immune to all player stuns, pulls, knockdowns and knockbacks for the next eight seconds, before the bar drains entirely. Snares and roots ignore Resolve completely.

Root: An ability which forces a character to remain stationary.

Snare: An ability which slows down a character's movement speed, but they are still capable of moving.

Striker: A character whose primary role in a group setting is to deal damage to the opponents. See DPS.

Tank: A character whose primary role in a group setting is to attract the enemy's attention and keep harmful damage away from other squad members.

Utility: Reference to abilities which do not directly relate to healing, damage dealing, or tanking but are combat-useful nonetheless.


--------------------------------

KEYBINDS

If someone would like to offer their own bindmaps with common mice (incl. the standard two-button), I might post them. I don't currently have a finalized bind setup for any specialization.


--------------------------------

SAGE <-> SORCERER DICTIONARY

If an ability name isn't included, it is identically named across the two classes. Some of the more common skills are included as well.

Sage to Sorcerer
Spoiler


Sorcerer to Sage
Spoiler



--------------------------------

CHANGELOG

v1.1.2a: Updated Crew Skills section. Added more known issues.
v1.1.1a: Some minor updates, mostly relating to the AoE heal being nerfed hard.
v0.0.0a: First version. 12/2/2011 || Reorganized and summarized Crew Skill stuff for clarity. 12/3/2011


--------------------------------

ADVANCED READING

The Jedi Sage's Handbook, the original Republic version of this thread.
The Consular's Codex is a resource for Jedi Sage Healers run by a friend of mine, if you're looking to run another Consular or find that the Shadow isn't for you.
Wobb's Seer Healing Guide - a better discussion of advanced stuff than I can provide.
TORHead is always full of good information.

More to come later. But don't forget to follow the signal!

JEDI SHADOW

You've failed, your highness. I am a Jedi, like my father before me.

AstralFire's Avatar


AstralFire
12.13.2011 , 07:18 AM | #4
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, heroes in the half-shell (Turtle power!)
JEDI SHADOW

You've failed, your highness. I am a Jedi, like my father before me.

AstralFire's Avatar


AstralFire
12.13.2011 , 07:19 AM | #5
Just wild beat - communication, something some- thing in Japanese! Something something something, something something something...
JEDI SHADOW

You've failed, your highness. I am a Jedi, like my father before me.

toekneeg's Avatar


toekneeg
12.13.2011 , 07:21 AM | #6
I'll be following this as I level my sorc. Thanks for the great info!

mountains's Avatar


mountains
12.13.2011 , 07:27 AM | #7
Shameless plug for the Sith Inquisitor and Jedi Consular forums over at Sithwarrior.com

There's some very high quality threads on Sorcerers, notably:
Sith Sorcerer/Jedi Sage Lightning/Telekinetics Compendium
Sith Sorcerer Healing Compendium

elvoran's Avatar


elvoran
12.13.2011 , 07:29 AM | #8
nice ill be folowing this for mu sorc

¸„.-•~¹°”ˆ˜¨ [Last Exile] ¨˜ˆ”°¹~•-.„¸

| NA PvP | Sith Empire | Recruiting |

Jorander's Avatar


Jorander
12.13.2011 , 07:29 AM | #9
This is very good work you have done here, Astralfire. I thought that I would be the only one to write anything informative or useful, really, about this. Thanks for the good job. I hope this is a guide that you plan to keep updated.
"Honor is a fool's prize." Darth Bane
"Love will not condemn you, love will save you." Jolee Bindo
"If you are to truly understand, then you will need the contrast, not adherence to a single ideal." Kreia. The wisest teachers of the force to ever live.

SySnootles's Avatar


SySnootles
12.13.2011 , 07:29 AM | #10
Very nice start to a comprehensive sorcerer guide. Congratulations for the excellent work

In the mean time: Add companion gift preferences. Its a nice way for people to figure out what their companions like or do not like. For those of us that plan to level diplomacy its a god send.

Example of some liked gifts for the Sorcerer companions:

Spoiler



Long run: Sections i see as essential for further work as the game and guide develop. A nice structured gear guide, with level ranges and optimal gear/drops.
SySnootles is... Darth Rage Quit, a Pure Blooded Sith Sorcerer Healer plying his trade on the Dark Intent guild / Kellian Jarro server.