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Thread: Crossbow vs Bow?

  1. Default Crossbow vs Bow?

    So I brought a Forest Gnome Ranger to level 35 before I grew tired of him. He absolutely destroys war camps from hiding, but having to use a short bow leaves me wanting.

    I was told to try a crossbow and just want some opinions. I was looking into the gnomish ones since I heard gnomes get an advantage. What type of advantage do they get? I've never even tried a crossbow tbh. Advantages, disadvantages?

  2. #2


    They offer significant DS penalties and tend to be much slower, but if you can stay in hiding the whole time, you could get the AS bonus from kneeling and the AS bonus from Camouflage and destroy things. I'm not sure whether you'd find the 5-shot mechanical bow or the speed bows to be better. I'd generally say the 5-shot, but the speed bow might be better in a warcamp overall.

    Edit: I'd max every hiding skill to make this happen, so 2x hiding, CMAN Shadow Mastery, and even blessings lore if you can work it in.
    Last edited by BriarFox; 12-08-2017 at 03:14 PM.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    The Danger Zone
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    I have a mechanical crossbow and not aware of any gnome-specific advantage.
    Last edited by Taernath; 12-08-2017 at 03:16 PM.
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  4. #4


    Get a mechanical crossbow from Duskruin that can hold 3+ bolts (max is 5 bolts).

    As long as you have 1 bolt loaded into the crossbow, the cock time is 2s flat. Fire is 2s, aimed fire is 3s. So you're looking at 5s RT + the time it takes for the game to process your commands. Additionally, Rangers have a specific perk if you're using 608 as an opener. You can cock a crossbow while in casting RT. This makes them faster than bows on the initial shot after using 608. For bows you have 3s cast RT, then you can fire for 5s RT. For crossbows, you have 3s cast RT, combined with 2s cock RT, and fire in 2-3s (depending on aiming).

    Secondly, you can kneel for +30 AS.

    None of the above actions will take you out of stealth.

    Order of operations - cast 608, cock my crossbow, get 1 my bolt from <container>, load crossbow, *optional* kneel, fire target, stance defensive, stand (if kneeling). This is a lot more commands to process vs a bow, but it comes with higher DF, and potentially higher AS if you decide to use the kneel option. Recommend you develop a simple script or macro to manage the command sequence. You don't need to stance into offensive either, doing the cock action forces you into offensive.

    As mentioned, you'll lose some parry DS. I don't think it's significant in offensive stance, but can be noticeable in defensive stance.
    Last edited by Maerit; 12-08-2017 at 03:27 PM.

  5. #5


    Quote Originally Posted by Taernath View Post
    I have a mechanical crossbow and not aware of any gnome-specific advantage.
    The gnome-specific advantage is simply that they work the same no matter what STR stats you have. Gnomes have the worst STR modifier, so it's usually harder to fire longbows in the 5s min RT.

  6. #6


    Forest gnomes get a reduction in cocking rt for standard crossbows. There's no bonus for the mechanical crossbows though.

    Mechanical crossbows are the only way to go for halfling and gnome ranged users.
    Last edited by khorpulent; 12-08-2017 at 05:00 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Orange, CA


    I have a level 62 halfling ranger and use a mechanical crossbow with the afformentioned 608 and kneeling. I love it.

    However, this hunting style is fiddly so make some good macros or scripts... Kneel, cast 608, fire, cock, load bolt, loot, gather bolt(s), put bolts in quiver, stand... For each critter. If you don't mind the fiddly it's a blast.

  8. #8


    I used the original mechanical crossbow on my gnome rogue, and loved it.

    Like others have already stated, it's really the only way to go for a small race as they negate STR for cocking purposes and will cock in a flat amount of time, which is the biggest draw.

    Being a rogue has it's advantage due to being able to stand during an attack, so you won't suffer DS penalties while being caught kneeling.

  9. #9


    It's definitely a little fiddly, but so is ranged in general. The biggest problem I ran into was accidentally cocking the crossbow with no bolts in it, since it behaves like a standard crossbow when unloaded (as far as cocking RT is concerned). I just made a macro that loaded a bolt after (or probably before?) every shot I fired.

    I liked it well enough with my halfling rogue, but eventually gave it up for UAC. Though now that I've basically abandoned my rogue for my monk, maybe it's time to try ranged again...

  10. Default

    thanks for the advice... going to give the suggetions a try

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