Incorrect.If you have 20% crit chance instead of 5% crit chance, you will indeed do more damage -- but the reason is because you have 15% more native crit, not because of anything sharpshooter does.
Yes, it is. Your understanding is wrong. That's the problem we are encountering here.Your explanation is kind of confusing to me because it shows your understand of the skill is different than my understanding.
Sounds good.So let us try to clear up any confusion there may be.
Yes.You state that sharpshooter will "kick in" more often based on your crit chance.
It is 100% correct, as I will disclose.This is incorrect for a few reasons.
Here's your first problem. The assumption that a passive skill simply exists and provides a benefit. This is a grave misestimation of what passive skills are. Numbing Traps is a passive. But if you never use Caltrops, then it will never actually function...which is to say: kick in. Some passives have activation requirements (Numbing Traps), some do not (Blur for Wizards), and some have both (Sharpshooter).First, the benefit that sharpshooter provides "kicks in" when you select the skill as one of your passive skills. That's it, that's all you have to do for it to "kick in".
But when you land a crit, Sharpshooter KICKS IN. This has two immediate effects:Nothing you do, EVEN IF YOU LAND A CRIT, will stop sharpshooter from having at least SOME effect.
#1 Your crit chance goes down to your base crit chance from wherever Sharpshooter had boosted it.
See below for #2
No, that's not all.Stating that it kicks in implies that there is some active component to it, when all it does is move your crit chance up and down, depending on whether you've crit recently or not, that's all.
Let's put in 2 scenarios:
You have a well geared hand crossbow character with piles of IAS, sufficient that in one second of time, you can fire off 5 nether tentacle elemental arrow orbs. We have a 20% innate crit ability. In our example, you fire all 5 orbs off at a pile of monsters who are all more or less lined up, so that each of the 5 orbs will hit 10 monsters. For simplicity's sake, each orb does 5000 damage to each monster, no crit boosting gear is in place (so crits are 10k) and each monster has 50,000 hitpoints.
Scenario 1, this character does not have Sharpshooter:
All 10 monsters are hit for 25,000 damage (5 orbs, 5k damage each). That's 50 total hits, and statistically, you would expect 10 of those hits to be critical, so that's another 50,000 damage and a total damage infliction of 300,000 damage, and odds are that all of the monsters are still alive. Maybe 1 of them dies, but that would be a major statistical fluke as it would require that 1 monster eats half of all of the expected crits.
Scenario 2, this character does have Sharpshooter, and either from sitting around so a 100% crit chance is achieved, or a lower crit chance rolls a crit, the first orb hitting the first monster goes critical:
All 10 monsters are hit for 50,000 damage (5 orbs, all critting each monster for 10k each). That's 50 total hits, with a 100% crit rate, for a total of 500,000 damage, and every single monster dies on the spot. To put it another way, Sharpshooter is providing a 66% increase in total damage inflicted.
Thus illustrating the second effect of a critical hit with Sharpshooter running:
#2 ALL OF YOUR ATTACKS FOR THE NEXT SECOND ARE AUTOMATICALLY CRITS.
This is what is known as "kicking in".
This is also why Sharpshooter benefits from high base crit. Unless you have UBER high base crit (85%+), or you are willing to wait for Sharpshooter to spool up to high crit chance numbers between every attack sequence, then having a higher base crit means you are more likely to get huge piles of critical damage coming in massive chunks. A high base crit or a low base crit will feel the same effect when Sharpshooter kicks in, but the high base crit build will get that effect a lot more often, and overall be inflicting a pile more damage.