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Seeking advice from advanced Ariticifer experts

Hi,
I've been playing DDO for over 10 years now and for the past 5 years at least I've specialised myself by pretty much exclusively playing an Articifer. Although I enjoy playing in a group, my main focus (due to time commitments making group-play difficult to organise) is on being self sufficient for solo play. Furthermore, I enjoy playing on epic levels most of all and want to try to keep at the level cap for the foreseeable future.

The build that I have been playing for a while now is an Articifer 16 / Paladin 4 (details below, Build A). Strong points for me have been top trapping skills (high enough to be a trapper in legendary reaper, as long as evasion is not required), superb saving throws, good defence and hit points, self-healing and very decent ranged DPS.

The Renegade Mastermaker sounded extremely interesting and for a while I'd hoped to be able to switch to a pure Arti. I've now dabbled a bit with a pure Arti Battle Engineer with some Renegade Mastermaker (Build B below) and a pure Arti Renegade Mastermaker with some Battle Engineer (Build C below). The results have left me disappointed. Although both have some advantages, the downside seems by both to be too extreme - at least for me with my priorities. Before I give up and resign myself to the good ol' faithful pala splash, I wanted to ask the experts here - is there something I'm missing? Can I keep my self-sufficient focus including saves etc. yet still optimise my DPS for example?

Ok, here the common template and the builds:

Base template:

Heroic Past Lives:
3 each of: Artificer, Ranger
2 each of: Warlock
1 each of: Barbarina, Bard, Cleric, Druid, Favored Soul, Fighter, Monk, Paladin, Rogue, Sorceror, Wizard

Racial Past Lives:
3 each of: all of them :-)

Iconic Past Lives:
2 each of: Bladeforged

Epic Past Lives: (Bold for ability that is usually active)
Brace 3 Stacks; Block Energy 1 Stack
Colors of the Queen 3 Stacks; Doubleshot 3 Stacks
Skill Mastery 3 Stacks; Doublestrike 3 Stacks; Fortification 3 Stacks
Enchant Weapon 3 Stacks

Applied Tomes: all Ability tomes +7; Fate Points +3; MRR +1; PRR +1; Ranged Power +1; Racial Skill Points +1

Build A: Articifer 16, Paladin 4 Warforged with Battle Engineer focus
STR: Base 8 + 7 Tome + 5 Feats and Enhancements + 1 Items and effects = 21 (43 with items switched)
DEX: Base 15 + 7 Tome + 6 Feats and Enhancements + 21 Items and effects = 49
CON: Base 16 + 7 Tome + 14 Feats and Enhancements + 27 Items and effects = 64
INT: Base 16 + 7 Level-Ups + 7 Tome + 9 Feats and Enhancements + 35 Items and effects = 74
WIS: Base 12 + 7 Tome + 6 Feats and Enhancements + 13Items and effects = 38
CHA: Base 12 + 7 Tome + 6 Feats and Enhancements + 26 Items and effects = 51
Hit Points: 1.519 (Healing Amplification: 40 & Repair Amplification: 100) & Spell Points: 2.259
Armour Class: 200 and Dodge 9%
Fortitude Save: 97
Reflex Save: 103
Will Save:86
BAB: 21
Spell Resistance: 51
Fortification: 292%
PRR: 179 & MRR: 109 (64.16% / 52.15% damage reduction)
Ranged Power: 118 & Doubleshot: 32.94% & Ranged Attack Speed: +15%
Spell Power/Critical Chance/Multiplier: Electric 428/15/0 & Force 368/15/0 & Repair 546/15/0 [Spell DC varies between 57 to 60, i.e. non-existant against legendary foes]

Relevant Skills: (values in brackets are with item switched to purpose)
Spot 91(92) Search 111(118) Open Lock 89(96) Disable Device 105(112)
Repair 87 Spellcraft 99 Heal 50 Concentration 90
Diplomacy 66(93) Bluff 47 Intimidate 50(78)
Balance 51 Jump 40 Use Magic Device 71

Standard Feats:
Adamantine Body; Completionist; Dodge + Mobility + Shot on the Run; Point Blank Shot + Precise Shot + Improved Precise Shot; Rapid Shot; Quicken Spell; Insightful Reflexes

Epic Feats:
Combat Archery; Bulwark of Defence; Holy Strike; Doubleshot; Epic Reflexes; Construct Exemplar; Embodiment of Law; Scion of the Plane of Air

Enhancements:
Warforged: Core 4; Mechanist 3; Damage Reduction 1; Adamantine Durability 1; Memories of the Last War: Front Lines;
Battle Engineer: Core 4; Crossbow Training 4 + Reconstructed Crossbows; Thaumaturgical Conduits 3; Caustic Shot 3; Shatter Defences 3; Thunder-Shock Weapon; Intelligence 2; Endless Fusilade; Weapon Attachment; Agility Engine 3 + Unlock Potential
Renegade Mastermaker: Core 2; Easily Fixed 1; Supporting Construction 3;Armor Mastery 1
Harper Agent: Core 2; Harper Enchantment; Strategic Combat I and II; Know the Angles 3
Sacred Defender: Core 2; Durable Defence 3 + Resilient Defence 3; Sacred Armor Mastery 3; Bulwark Aura 3 + Resistance Aura 3; Hardy Defence 3 + Tenacious Defence 3; Reinforced Armouir 3; Swift Defence

Epic Destinies:
Shiradi Champion: Healing Spring 3 + Illusion of Well-being 1; Prism + Rainbow + Double Rainbow; Pin 2 + Otto's Whistler 2; In the Weeds 3; Nerve Venom 3; Stand and Deliver; Audience with the Queen
Twists: Dragonhide 3; Impregnable Mind 3; Draconic Perception 3; Grim Precision 3; Gird Against Demons

Pros: Lots of hit points, good defence, Endless Fusilade for burst damage and otherwise good and constant DPS; Permanent Shield
Cons: Poor Dodge (Does "Scion of the Plane of Air" really increase the dodge cap?) Maybe too much Repair Amplification vs. Attack Speed? Is it worth taking Construct Exemplar instead of Permanent Haste?

Build B: Articifer 20 Warforged with Battle Engineer focus
STR: Base 8 + 7 Tome + 5 Feats and Enhancements + 1 Items and effects = 21 (43 with items switched)
DEX: Base 15 + 7 Tome + 6 Feats and Enhancements + 21 Items and effects = 49
CON: Base 16 + 7 Tome + 14 Feats and Enhancements + 27 Items and effects = 64
INT: Base 16 + 7 Level-Ups + 7 Tome + 15 Feats and Enhancements + 35 Items and effects = 80
WIS: Base 12 + 7 Tome + 6 Feats and Enhancements + 11 Items and effects = 36
CHA: Base 12 + 7 Tome + 6 Feats and Enhancements + 26 Items and effects = 51
Hit Points: 1.265 (Healing Amplification: 40 & Repair Amplification: 110) & Spell Points: 2.483
Armour Class: 198 and Dodge 10%
Fortitude Save: 71
Reflex Save: 78
Will Save:63
BAB: 20
Spell Resistance: 51
Fortification: 288%
PRR: 172 & MRR: 97 (63.24% / 49.24% damage reduction)
Ranged Power: 100 & Doubleshot: 22.94% & Ranged Attack Speed: +22%
Spell Power/Critical Chance/Multiplier: Electric 439/15/0 & Force 379/15/0 & Repair 570/15/0 [Spell DC varies between 59 to 63, i.e. non-existant against legendary foes]

Relevant Skills: (values in brackets are with item switched to purpose)
Spot 87(88) Search 117(124) Open Lock 92(99) Disable Device 111(118)
Repair 90 Spellcraft 99 Heal 44 Concentration 78
Diplomacy 53(80) Bluff 46 Intimidate 42(70)
Balance 52 Jump 38 Use Magic Device 68

Standard Feats:
Adamantine Body; Completionist; Dodge + Mobility + Shot on the Run; Point Blank Shot + Precise Shot + Improved Precise Shot; Rapid Shot; Improved Critical: Ranged Weapons; Quicken Spell; Insightful Reflexes

Epic Feats:
Combat Archery; Overwhelming Critical; Holy Strike; Doubleshot; Epic Reflexes; Blinding Speed; Embodiment of Law; Scion of the Plane of Air

Enhancements:
Warforged: Core 5; Mechanist 3; Damage Reduction 1; Adamantine Durability 3; Memories of the Last War: Front Lines; Memories of the Last War: Final Witness; Weapon Attachment
Battle Engineer: Core 3; Crossbow Training 4; Thaumaturgical Conduits 3; Caustic Shot 3; Shatter Defences 3; Intelligence 1
Renegade Mastermaker: Core 6; Easily Fixed 1; Supporting Construction 3; Well-Rounded Maker 3; Toughness 3; Armor Mastery 3; Convertor; Reinforced Armor 3; Conjure Component; Reconstruct 3; Embed Component 3; Paragon Body;
Autmatic Forcefield; Regeneration Construct; Cureative Admixture: Cure Critical Wounds; Intelligence 2
Harper Agent: Core 2; Harper Enchantment; Strategic Combat I and II; Know the Angles 3

Epic Destinies:
Shiradi Champion: Healing Spring 3 + Illusion of Well-being 1; Prism + Rainbow + Double Rainbow; Pin 2 + Otto's Whistler 2; In the Weeds 3; Nerve Venom 3; Stand and Deliver; Audience with the Queen
Twists: Dragonhide 3; Impregnable Mind 3; Technician 3; Grim Precision 3; Gird Against Demons

Pros: Endless Fusilade and good DPS; Spells; Permanent Shield
Cons: Awful saving throws.


Build C: Articifer 20 Warforged with Renegade Mastermaker focus
STR: Base 8 + 7 Tome + 5 Feats and Enhancements + 1 Items and effects = 21 (43 with items switched)
DEX: Base 15 + 7 Tome + 6 Feats and Enhancements + 21 Items and effects = 49
CON: Base 16 + 7 Tome + 16 Feats and Enhancements + 27 Items and effects = 66
INT: Base 16 + 7 Level-Ups + 7 Tome + 12 Feats and Enhancements + 35 Items and effects = 77
WIS: Base 12 + 7 Tome + 6 Feats and Enhancements + 13 Items and effects = 38
CHA: Base 12 + 7 Tome + 6 Feats and Enhancements + 26 Items and effects = 51
Hit Points: 1.596 (Healing Amplification: 40 & Repair Amplification: 110) & Spell Points: 2.425
Armour Class: 198 and Dodge 13%
Fortitude Save: 79
Reflex Save: 79
Will Save:67
BAB: 20
Spell Resistance: 51
Fortification: 313%
PRR: 170 & MRR: 99 (62.96% / 49.75% damage reduction)
Ranged Power: 100 & Doubleshot: 22.94% & Ranged Attack Speed: +22%
Spell Power/Critical Chance/Multiplier: Electric 356/15/0 & Force 272/15/0 & Repair 473/15/0 [Spell DC varies between 57 to 61, i.e. non-existant against legendary foes]

Relevant Skills: (values in brackets are with item switched to purpose)
Spot 88(89) Search 115(122) Open Lock 92(99) Disable Device 109(116)
Repair 88 Spellcraft 97 Heal 45 Concentration 88
Diplomacy 53(80) Bluff 46 Intimidate 42(70)
Balance 52 Jump 38 Use Magic Device 68

Standard Feats:
Adamantine Body; Dodge + Mobility + Shot on the Run; Point Blank Shot + Precise Shot + Improved Precise Shot; Rapid Shot; Weapon Focus: Ranged Weapons; Improved Critical: Ranged Weapons; Quicken Spell; Insightful Reflexes

Epic Feats:
Combat Archery; Overwhelming Critical; Holy Strike; Doubleshot; Epic Reflexes; Blinding Speed; Embodiment of Law; Scion of the Plane of Air

Enhancements:
Warforged: Core 5; Mechanist 3; Damage Reduction 1; Adamantine Durability 3; Memories of the Last War: Front Lines; Memories of the Last War: Final Witness; Weapon Attachment
Battle Engineer: Core 3; Crossbow Training 4; Thaumaturgical Conduits 3; Caustic Shot 3; Shatter Defences 3; Intelligence 1
Renegade Mastermaker: Core 6; Easily Fixed 1; Supporting Construction 3; Well-Rounded Maker 3; Toughness 3; Armor Mastery 3; Convertor; Reinforced Armor 3; Conjure Component; Reconstruct 3; Embed Component 3; Paragon Body;
Autmatic Forcefield; Regeneration Construct; Cureative Admixture: Cure Critical Wounds; Intelligence 2
Harper Agent: Core 2; Harper Enchantment; Strategic Combat I and II; Know the Angles 3

Epic Destinies:
Shiradi Champion: Healing Spring 3 + Illusion of Well-being 1; Prism + Rainbow + Double Rainbow; Pin 2 + Otto's Whistler 2; In the Weeds 3; Nerve Venom 3; Stand and Deliver; Audience with the Queen
Twists: Dragonhide 3; Impregnable Mind 3; Technician 3; Grim Precision 3; Gird Against Demons

Pros: Healing aura; Spells; Permanent Shield; Forcefield etc. will no doubt be useful in a group for a little supplementary healing although the aura loses a lot of potency when soloing Reaper.
Cons: Awful saving throws; mediocre DPS. It's an awful shame that the Runearm attacks of the Mastermaker cannot be performed whilst wielding a ranged weapon - they would have been fun to experiment with.

Sooo, are there any Artificer Experts out there? :D

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