Flayer Stance – Tactics
Flayer stance is at once a remarkably easy stance to use, but at the same time there are quite a few different things to remember that can make all the difference to your performance. The idea behind the stance can arguably be summed up as ‘stand there and take it’ in reference to how tough it makes you.
This is perhaps the hardest aspect of Flayer to get used to, being visible. Not that you have to run around in Flayer all the time, you can use stealth, attack, activate Flayer and use Eye Rake to break the animation. However, unlike Shadow Howler Flayer stance does actually make us tough enough where we can roam around out of stealth.
Personally I don’t use Flayer for generally wandering the map, however, where a fight has broken out you can use it to stay within the vicinity of the fight whilst unstealthed. This is especially good if your group insists upon pulling NPCs, which prevent you from stealthing anyway.
The main point here is to remember that Flayer is going to let you take a few hits so don’t worry about it too much. Obviously focus fire will kill you like anyone else, but being visible in Flayer doesn’t mean automatic death! Try it out, it’s pretty fun!
Much of your damage in Flayer stance comes from stacking DoTs on a target. You can stack three DoTs from Raking Claws, another DoT from Agonizing Maul and yet another DoT from the Crippling Bite/Brutal Fangs combo. That’s a total of 5 DoTs that can, and should, be ticking away on a target.
Don’t forget to stack these DoTs. They may not seem much individually, but once stacked they can all add up to some pretty serious damage.
These are easy to overlook, but please don’t because they can be a really nice boost in a fight. For example, the armour reduction from Brutal Fangs is a fairly hefty debuff, which would be great to have against a tough opponent like a Champ or a Guardian. Make sure you use your Brute skill when you can to increase the chance of these Brute bonuses working.
Flayer gives you the ability to soak up some impressive damage that wargs in the past simply wouldn’t have been able to deal with. This means that you can afford to take more risks so do it! Charge inside EC to get that freep you are chasing. Charge past the keep entrance to run down that fleeing Rune-keeper. Pull those bears on yourself if you need to. Ignore that second freep hitting you as you pummel his mate into the ground.
Ok so maybe I’m going over the top a bit here, but the point is sound enough. Don’t be afraid of taking on odds that you think are too tough. Sometimes the odds will indeed be against you and you won’t survive or get your kill, but sometimes Flayer will kick in and you will pull it off. I’ve come through some pretty tight spots lately using Flayer and it makes me want to take even bigger risks because the bigger the risk the bigger the prize.