The Joker. Why would I start a Star Wars article with a Batman character? What is the connection ? No, this is not the Sith Warrior 1.2 armor. But this is the right faction, and the right starting planet. Who better than the Joker to represent madness, the tree common to the two specializations of the Inquisitor?
Madness is a difficult name for a skill tree. Managing it involves a certain method. We usually fight by following a cycle… We tend to see madness as a source of Chaos. Or it's just being manic. I refer you to the film The Dark Knight by Christopher Nolan (by the way, the title of this article is a reference to this film). Yes, the Joker is crazy, there's no denying it. Yet the burglary at the beginning of the film is a masterpiece of organization and thoroughness. In his clash against Batman, he must put several elements in place in his plan before unleashing mayhem.
And then there is another connection to remember between the Joker and Star Wars.
The big advantage of going the Mad Way is its basic style changes soon after specialization. The alternating force attack / melee attack that we use on Korriban remains the basis of combat. No attack from behind under cover of invisibility or keeping the opponent at bay. Compared to other specializations (assassin or sorcerer), the cycle changes are very slight.
In the assassin, the fighting style may display someone using the Force to deploy trapped “shields” around themselves. Or a ghost that comes out of the invisible to strike and then returns. The Madness Specialist Assassin is the melee fighter who uses the Force the most offensively. On the wizard side, we move away from the pure distance fighter and the classic healer for a pure hybrid.
The Death Field talent (Rank 3) will bring back many memories to KOTOR players. But if it still steals health from targets in a certain area, its effect has been greatly reduced. Much lower than what could be recovered with a medipack. But coupled with the Mark of Death (rank 5), it increases the damage of regular powers (electroshock, Force lightning, etc.). These powers can be enhanced by talents at ranks 1 and 5 to facilitate the critical chance of melee attacks. And if you manage to place this critical melee, the Tidal Wave (rank 4) allows you to have a free attack. And not just any. Crushing Darkness is a powerful attack that deals damage over time (dowry for initiates) and amplified by the Mark of Death. An expensive attack in Force normally. But having it for free makes it very beneficial and makes it a big chunk of the madman's arsenal.
The other attack added by the madness tree is its ultimate attack: Creeping Terror. Another dot attack, but less powerful than Crushing Darkness. It is not subject to Death Mark bonuses, hurts less and lasts less. It can be used to control (CC) a weak target. But her lower hit in Crushing Darkness makes her more interesting for dealing continual damage to elite opponents and champions.
The main lines of the combat cycle are described, I'll let you adapt them with simple additions from your advanced class, such as the assassination (attack under 30% health) of the Sith assassin. Depending on whether you play as a wizard or an assassin, the strike periods with Force attacks or melee attacks will be more or less long.
I am not showing you a template for organizing your talents. The madness specialization is a nesting of several elements that interact together plus a few extended variants. If you want to specialize in this branch, you will look for as many elements as possible. But the basic talents are also very useful to amplify the other branches of combat. Or even look higher to create a hybrid. But that's another subject ...
For the characteristics to be privileged, they remain the same as for all the dps inquisitors: will, endurance, precision (until reaching 100%), power and critical.
Why choose the path of madness for his sorcerer or his assassin? Because the way of the inquisitor is that of power and power drives you mad. No, that does not satisfy you? Your sanity doesn't want to rock like mine? No problem, I have other arguments.
The Madness specialization is the closest way to the fighting style you adopt on Korriban, before choosing your advanced class. Getting started and adapting to additions to the cycle is therefore the easiest. The damage that is inflicted is buffs, and everything is mounted. We inflict damage on a continuous rhythm and not a big attack which hurts very much then several all to cause only scratches. When the game came out, it was the Inquisitor's specialization that did the most damage. A 1.1 nerf to melee critical chance lowered this damage, but it's still very competitive.
The disadvantages of the madness route? Like all Inquisitor's dps, the defense is quite weak and if the enemy is focused on us it can easily be expensive. Personally, I had a hard time passing the phase with Telos Drellik (Inquisitor's heal companion) when we get him because all the mobs were throwing themselves at me. The madness branch doesn't have any big damage peaks either, from this burst from which some "hardcore gamers" like to define the quality of their dps.
Finally, how can we sum up the madness special in a few words? Ah yes: the purest branch of the Inquisitor! And to stay in tune, I'm going to start from the particularly off-center laughter. Ahahahahahahahahahahahah!…