The Biggest Boomstick Around
Not sure if this is the right forum, but whatever.
In this thread I talk about Cannon mains! Yay! One of the most shafted main character classes (and general mercenary classes) in the game. Let's look at some pros and cons, then I'll talk about my own experiences.
Slash damage on AoE attacks
Excellent for PvP stun builds
Deep Insight makes leveling quick and easy, not just for the main character, but for mercenaries as well because of the defense debuff
Devastation Shell is a powerful DoT skill. It drops enemy defense, does good damage per turn, and drops enemy multi-hit rate.
Weapons and skill books are comparatively cheap to other main character classes
Damage is abysmally low, especially on splashed targets
Cannot hit flying enemies
Defensively weak as well, can be remedied in PvE by deep, deep pockets
Cannon craft teachers are few and far between, better have deep pockets to pay Choi Moo Son
Because of the lack of cannon crafters and users, decent cannons can be hard to find on the market, deep pockets can fix this, too. Get crafting!
Except for Deadly Shot, the cannons main's only magic abilities are DoT type
Boss fights are much longer, especially if you have a cannoneer or another artilleryman
Stun builds aren't as effective as they once were
For now, that's all I can think of for that. The cons don't really seem like much, but they can really hurt your wallet. For underfunded players, being a cannon main can be difficult in the endgame. Damage is low, but a high +'d cannon can fix that. Even with a +10 cannon, your damage will still be low in comparison to everyone else, even staff types.
DI makes leveling quick and easy throughout the whole game. It's also pretty good for leveling underleveled mercs, especially ones with an AoE attack. Just get a new witch? Let DI whittle down a whole formation then throw out a Meteor Strike and watch the EXP roll in. Or just take advantage of the defense debuff and let your physical attacking mercs get easier kills.
As soon as I hit 100 I started playing around with Devastation Shell. Long story short, it's a buffed up Deep Insight with a mini War Cry effect. At level 60 it takes of 14% multi rate, which isn't much but definitely helps. If stacked with DI, the negative defense is crazy and makes things a LOT easier to kill, especially with Seth's Will/Brutal Will.
That's all from a PvE standpoint. How do cannon mains fair in PvP? Not well. DMF makes stun pressure pointless, as well as making DoT builds equally pointless. As cannon main, sticking to ABFL is your best bet because there you DO have a chance to stun. But in manual PvP, you don't really stand much chance unless you follow the flavour(s) of the month. But if you're bandwagoning like that, there are better main character choices.
So let's sum this up. Cannon mains, in short, need a buff. Really, really badly they need a buff. Sure, they do okay in PvE, but are outclassed by Guitar and Staff mains. Or most others, to be truthful. For PvP, stick to ABFL if you want a chance. At the moment, there are much better choices for main characters. In my opinion, cannon is the second worst path you could choose. Axe being the worst, in my opinion.
(Took me two weeks to get around to finishing this. Wrote it because I was bored and felt like it. Not much point to it.)