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Author Topic: Meli's Six-Step Punchmurder: A MNK Reborn  (Read 3296 times)

Offline Tunod

  • Meli Bajaa, Elandra Mistyvale, Setsuko Kaminagi
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Meli's Six-Step Punchmurder: A MNK Reborn
« on: February 21, 2015, 02:31:39 AM »
Once upon a time I had a reputation for getting kind of shitdiculous with my DPS ("Jesus christ, Meli"). This was because I played MNK, and on a single target, nobody is going to beat a skilled MNK unless there's a sizable gear difference.

Now, much of the skillset of the 'great' MNK is in knowing how and when to change targets for best effect and how to keep your Greased Lighting up as often as possible, but a lot of the subpar Monks I see are flawed at the very core skillset of the job - rotation. And knowing your core rotation is 90% of being a good MNK. Being a great MNK can only come with practice, but being a good MNK is something anyone can get down with a little understanding of the job.

So here is a guide for what I call the "six-step" rotation, for the simple reason that it takes six combos to come back around to the start.

WHAT THIS GUIDE IS:
This is a guide to what I call the six-step MNK rotation. It focuses on the basic nature of and theory behind the proper MNK50 rotation, including different methods and the reasoning behind each.

WHAT THIS GUIDE IS NOT:
This is not a definitive 'DO THIS ROTATION'. This is not 'use exactly these abilities in exactly this order'. I am trusting players to know when to throw in off-GCD abilities (Steel Peak/Howling Fist, Internal Release, etc.), as well as how to keep Touch of Death up and how/when to use Perfect Balance to get punching fast. This focuses only on core rotation, including mine in specific and why it is the way it is.

THE BASICS:
At level 50, MNK has six core attacks - two for the first step of their combo (Opener/Opo-Opo), two for the second (Raptor), and two for the third (Coeurl). For reference, these are as follows.

    Opener/Opo
    • BOOTSHINE (BTS) - 150 potency. When in Opo-Opo form, automatically crits from behind.
    • DRAGON KICK (DRK) - 100 potency, 150 from the side. When in Opo-Opo form, reduces the target's INT and blunt resist by 10% for 15s.

    Raptor
    • TWIN SNAKES (TWS) - 100 potency, 140 from the side. Increases your damage by 10% for 15s.
    • TRUE STRIKE (TRS) - 150 potency, 190 from behind.

    Coeurl
    • DEMOLISH (DEM) - 30 potency, 70 from behind (the tooltip is confusing on this). Places a 40-potency, 18-second DOT on the target, and gives you a stack of Greased Lightning.
    • SNAP PUNCH (SNP) - 140 potency, 180 from flank. Gives you a stack of Greased Lightning.

    THE THEORY:
    With these six basic attacks, you have the tools to come up with 8 different possible three-hit combos. Many MNKs have different ways they string their attacks together, but before I go into why, I'd like to get down some important notes.

      Notes
      • Twin Snakes and Dragon Kick, at a duration of 15s, have just about enough time for you to go through another combo before coming back to them. That is to say, if your combo is 'Dragon Kick, Twin Snakes, Snap Punch', you have enough time to do the other combo of 'Bootshine, True Strike, Demolish' before coming back around to refresh Dragon Kick and Twin Snakes.
      • After your first two combos, all two-step and six-step rotations are about equal. The order in which you do them, in large part, only matters for your first two combos, and how easy you personally find moving back and forth.
      • What you open your very first combo with does not matter. At all. Dragon Kick and Bootshine both cost the same amount of TP, and without the Opo-Opo bonus, they both deal the same damage and offer the same benefit (none). The only difference between them is that Bootshine does 150 from any direction, but Dragon Kick only does 150 from the side.
      • Dragon Kick Is Important?. Unlike all the other percentage modifiers (Twin Snakes, Fists of Fire, Blood for Blood), Dragon Kick is not a buff to you, but a resistance debuff to your opponent. Which means it is applied after all other buffs. Which means, effectively, it buffs your buffs. Keep Dragon Kick up at all times.
      • I know I said I wouldn't go into Touch of Death, but it at least bears mentioning - at three stacks of Greased Lightning, you have time between combos to refresh this, without losing buffs or Greased Lightning. Whenever you choose to use it? Keep it up.

      The Two-Step
      This is the basic combo method many 'non-career' MNKs use. It does very respectable damage on its own, and when I can't focus on pure rotation (When I'm dodging a lot, when I'm target-switching a lot, when the target won't live long enough for me to build up steam) I even default to this.

      The basic idea is that you have six combo attacks, so you use three in one combo then the other three in the next combo. Thus, you are switching between all six, which keeps all your buffs/debuffs/DOTs up and a healthy flow of damage. There are a few different ways this can be strung together, but from what I have seen, the most common, the easiest, and the one I recommend for newly-50 MNKs is as follows:

      DRK TWS SNP
      BTS TRS DEM


      This method sacrifices some startup damage (you won't have Dragon Kick up until your third combo) for ease of use and memory; it has by far the easiest positioning to remember:

      SIDE SIDE SIDE
      BACK BACK BACK


      My personal two-step is a bit different, in order to get Twin Snakes, Demolish and Dragon Kick all up as soon as possible:

      BTS TWS DEM
      DRK TRS SNP


      Now, this provides a slightly better wind-up in terms of damage, but it also makes life more difficult for the MNK, when you look at the positioning:

      BACK SIDE BACK
      SIDE BACK SIDE


      As you can see, you're changing positions with every single attack. Personally, I kinda like that, because it feels a little more active (and is also useful for baiting tail swipes); but it's very easy to see where it can mess people up, especially in dodge-heavy fights. You could easily come up with a different two-step combo than either of these, and as long as it cycles through all six attacks, it's as good as any other in the end. Mine is just meant to be absolutely bleeding-edge on startup, and it also forms the foundation of...

      THE SIX-STEP
      The crux of this guide. When I can focus on pure rotation - when an enemy will stay relatively still and live long enough to make it worthwhile - this is what I do. It is built upon the important fact that *Demolish lasts long enough to fit two Snap Punches between each use*. When you use the two-step method, you are missing out on an extra Snap Punch worth of damage, as well as losing some of the damage ticks Demolish would otherwise do. By some (admittedly somewhat shaky) math I did, it's about a 5% increase just looking at rotation + Touch of Death. So as a result, my 'full' rotation looks like this:

      BTS TWS DEM
      DRK TRS SNP
      BTS TWS SNP
      DRK TRS DEM
      BTS TWS SNP
      DRK TRS SNP


      And, in keeping with the pattern, the positioning ends up like:

      BACK SIDE BACK
      SIDE BACK SIDE
      BACK SIDE SIDE
      SIDE BACK BACK
      BACK SIDE SIDE
      SIDE BACK SIDE


      Doing it this way, the positioning gets a little crazy - it shifts from 'moving for every attack' to 'staying on one side for three attacks in a row' and back again. I find it actually helps to think of this not so much as 'six step', but as 'two-and-three'; the first two attacks form their own little two-step rotation, while the third forms a separate three-step rotation. 'Six' just ends up being where they coincide.

      Again, this is not something I recommend for everyone - you can use the first two-step combo I mentioned and still do very respectable damage. But if you want to push MNK for everything it can give you, dancing the Sagolii six-step is where it's at.

       

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