Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing - Lady Katarina Skills

This post has general tips and tricks for The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing played on the PC at Heroic Difficulty. For a list of all our Van Helsing posts, click here.

Lady Katarina Skills
  • Percentages are off. If you take off all her gear, you can see the percentages listed aren't exactly what you get.
  • Eventually Van Helsing will probably tank or be forced to tank for Katarina. You can cheaply respec Katarina, so focus on buffing Van Helsing first, then on Katarina's damage output.
    • Best buff is to keep Katarina active and healing Van Helsing with Withering Kiss.
    • Maximize her attack speed with Wraith Frenzy (+20%) since that increases any per-Hit healing effects as well as the healing and mana restoration from Withering Kiss and Touch of Oblivion.
    • Maximize Van Helsing's attack speed with Spectral Boon (+11.5%) so that his per-Hit effects are also maximized.
    • Then maximize Katarina's staying power by increasing her Health with Spectral Resilience, as she starts with a lot of health even if you put no points into BODY.
    • Finally, optimize her damage output with Power of Vengeance.
  • Defense skills have diminishing returns so they are a comparatively poor investment.
Stroke of Terror Katarina's attacks have a 4% - 20% chance of freezing opponents for 2 seconds.
  • The one time this really shines is against small mobs of really tough foes. Doesn't seem to work on bosses (it might just briefly slow them down instead of outright paralyzing them).
Spectral Boon Increases Van Helsing's attack speed by 2% - 11.5%.
  • Be careful of raising Van Helsing's attack speed too high. Odd things start to happen around Attack Speed 2.00. See our discussion under General Tips.
Empowering Presence Increases Van Helsing's Physical damage by 3% - 12.5%.

Withering Kiss Katarina's attacks heal Van Helsing for 0.7% - 2.75% of his maximum HP with each strike.

Touch of Oblivion Katarina's attacks rejuvenate Van Helsing for 1.4% - 5.5% of his maximum Mana with each strike.
  • If you take this, you can really help Van Helsing focus on other things with Essences instead of Mana per Hit or Mana Regeneration, which are only on Weapons and Accessories, which compete against HP per Hit or HP Regeneration.
  • It is pricey, so take only one level unless you have skill points to burn.
  • An alternative is to use Diamond Essences and rely on enemy attacks to recover Mana.
Incorporeal Defense Increases Van Helsing's Defense by 4% - 20%.
  • Defense has diminishing returns, so even 20% in the mid to late game won't amount to much.
Spirit Guardian Transfers 10% - 35% of all damage received by Van Helsing to Katarina.
  • This is quite an interesting power as Katarina typically has a lot more health than a Van Helsing build, when neither of them have put any points in BODY. And Aura of Counterbalance provides a fast way of healing her, even at just 1 level. Even if you want to reserve your Aura choices for something else, it can still work if you are willing to use potions on Katarina.
  • The main issue with this power is that you can't turn it off. Even if Van Helsing could normally recover from the incoming damage on his own, a percentage still gets channelled to Katarina, and she has less gear and abilities to continuously heal herself. And if you don't let Van Helsing get into that much trouble, then this power is wasted skill points. Overall, seems like lose-lose to invest here.
Arcane Awakening Increases Van Helsing's Spellpower by 3% - 12.5%.

Otherworldly Senses Increases Magic Item Find chance by 5% - 26.5%.
  • Useless. Most items you get will be sold anyway and money is generally plentiful unless you focus on wasting it by continuously buying things you will toss in a level or two. Even at +500% Magic Find, the chance of seeing an epic item is rare.
Gift of Resistance Adds 3% - 15% to all of Van Helsing's Resistances.
  • Resistance has diminishing returns, so even 15% in the mid to late game won't amount to much more than a couple more percentage points of resistance by mid to late game.
Wraith Frenzy Adds 4% - 20% to Lady Katarina's Attack Rate.

Power of Vengeance Lady Katarina's Damage is increased by 25% - 105%.
  • Considering you can triple her firepower with Mirror Image, this is a huge boost.
  • Theoretically great, but Van Helsing will be taking care of most mobs with his area effect attacks since the mobs will get big in a hurry. Just worry about keeping Van Helsing alive instead.
Armor of Defiance Lady Katarina gains +20 - +85 and +20% - +63% to her Resistances.

Curse Blast With each attack, there is a 4% - 15% chance that an area effect spell is cast centered on the target, giving 25% Vulnerability within 5 meters for 3 seconds.

Ethereal Evasion 20%-80% at level 10 to avoid attacks that would cause her to lose at least half her health.
  • This is presumably on top of her normal deflect and dodge.
  • The main problem with this power is that it kicks in when two hits would kill Katarina. So if she is in that kind of trouble, even 80% might not last long when faced with the large mobs and lots of attacks coming her way. Other than this, compared to the skills that add to diminishing-returns defenses, this is still better, however, since a dodge stops an infinite amount of damage.
Spectral Resilience Lady Katarina receives a 20% - 104% boost to her Hit Points.
  • Even without putting any points in BODY, Katarina has a lot of Health. It is probably safe to leave this alone unless you have a build where Katarina is tanking. Even so, it is generally better to just switch her out to Ghost Mist temporarily while she heals. Hopefully you have HP Regeneration items on her to help with that.
Wail of Vengeance Upon Death, Lady Katarina will release a huge explosion for damage equal to x5 - x35 BODY.
  • Since you are better off keeping Katarina alive, don't bother spending points here. Besides, it's hard to have her detonate to order, meaning it could be completely wasted. You could send her into suicide melee, but you'd still have to deal with the stragglers after, and without her help.
Chillwave With each attack, there is a 4% - 15% chance that an area effect spell is cast centered on the target, slowing every enemy within 5 meters down by 50% for 3 seconds.

1 comment:

  1. Will Withering Kiss stack with Ghostly Mirage? That is to say: can the copies heal Van Helsing?