They commented that Embrava and the more potent nuking abilities are what's changed since he was gone because Scholar melee is generally inferior to their nuking abilities unless it happens to be a mob that is highly resistant to magic damage.
As for self skillchaining on sch its easy.... Very few people can intrupt your skillchain.
If you do Luminhelix and stone it does make distortion. Even if a melee ws's in between that it won't break the skillchain. It can only break if a melee launched a WS after distortionis made. As you have 100+ TP stored it shouldnt take you more than 3 second to walk up WS and walk out to solo darkness. What does the 1.5x dmg. And guess what, even if someone intrupts you, chances are they are doing a 96, relic, emp or mythric ws. And if any of those WS can SC of distortion, you just helped them do 1.5x more dmg off your 35 MP. So even if you don't SC you help the partys overall dmg output and monster kill faster. So if they 3k CATA, or the mnk, or sam WS as examples and then darkness is 4500-5k bonus, wouldnt that do as much as your t5 spell that does 3-6k?
Actually it'd be very easy to break the skillchain, and if a melee were to weaponskill in between, it would still break it. If someone used a weaponskill after an Immanenced Luminohelix, it'd be no different than if someone used a weaponskill right after I used something like Double Thrust to open Distortion. You have the opening act and the closing act of the skillchain, and no matter what, if someone performs a weaponskill in between the opening and closing act, barring some that have no properties such as Spirits Within, it's going to disrupt the skillchain you're trying to make. This is how skillchains have always worked since they were first added, and an Immanenced spell to open doesn't have any unique properties to ignore that effect.
You'd be better off using your stratagems to prepare for a quick Magic Burst if you see one coming up, because the two stratagems you used for Immanence could have easily been used for Alacrity and Ebullience so you could pop off a quick casting Tier V nuke to magic burst off a skillchain that the melees are going to be using, and do far more damage than your self-made skillchain would.
The reason I did say absorb INT + Hailstorm is +32 INT is when I do things inside abby the only atma I rely on for DMG is MM. MM has 50 INT bonus. with those 2 spells I get +32 of it outside. and now with a few new VW and nysle gear pieces they added you can get 50-60 NP beyond what I used.
If the only "mage" Atma you're using inside Abyssea is Minikin Monstrosity, then that explains a good deal as to why you don't find your nukes that high damage wise. Throwing legitimately strong nuking atmas on like Beyond, Ultimate, or Hell's Guardian will see your nuking power skyrocket.
1. Stun, what can use JA to get 15-20 seconds. 2nd weapon bash. This is actually a longer lasting stun than the spell. 3rd absorb TP. If you can steal 30-80 TP then the monster can't get off his TP move. All three combined can make you the best stunner if used right outside of rdm chainspell. And if gilmorse recast or quickcast is also proced you can instant recast the two stun spells.
The stun off Weapon Bash doesn't necessarily have a longer duration on it than the normal cast spell, since both can be cut down due to partial resists. Weapon Bash is one you can rely on as being another stun if Stun is down or if there's a Magic Barrier up, but you shouldn't rely on it to always last longer than the spell's duration. As for Absorb-TP, that's only potentially reliable if the mob is under 25%, because it is well known that if their HP is above 25%, they may hold on to their TP for long periods of time (well above 100 TP), so absorbing 80 TP while the mob has 210 TP will still leave it perfectly capable of performing a TP move. Below 25% they'll use TP as soon as they get 100 TP, which is where something like that might be useful, but above 25% it shouldn't be used with the intent of keeping the mob from using a TP move.
I'd also say that Blue Mage is still a far more reliable stunner than Sch/Drk would be, as they have a number of very short casting and recast stuns (Head Butt and Sudden Lunge just to name a few) and Sudden Lunge has, when unresisted, arguably the longest duration stun in the game available to players. Lastly, unlike with your combo, you don't need a particular subjob for Blue Mage to have those options available.
MBing drain does 300-2k depending on imob and MB as well as gear you use. Or hey MB nocrohelix for 500-800 on a DC mob or 200-400 on a NM. Off your own SC if you dont choose to t4-t5.
While I can believe 300 or so, I find 2k to be a rather unbelievable amount on any normal mob. Maybe on a mob that takes extra damage on top of your existing magic burst, gear bonuses, etc, but on a normal mob, given Drain's base damage, I find that a rather hard number to believe, since that's roughly a 400% increase from the base damage value at best.
/rdm dispil, forget it we have Yes 24 MAB, yes enspells, and other spells. In some cases this sub is perfered. As it does offer something over blm and drk depending on what you do.
You gain Refresh, Haste, Phalanx, Enspells, and Bar-spells which, when coupled with as high Enhancing as Scholar can get, their own native buff spells, and the fact that they can Accession most of them, makes you arguably the most efficient buffers in the game. Sure there are things like Refresh II that Scholar doesn't get, but as a whole you're still gaining so much from /Rdm just by spells alone that it's hard to recommend anything else. Then you also have Fast Cast II, which is a 15% reduction to the cast time of all your spells, and that stacks with the cast time reduction for spells with the appropriate Arts up as well as Alacrity/Celerity.
I had a few parties where mnks have tanked NM's. They asked me to self distortion. So when they WS + darkness they generate MUCH hate, and keep it, as well as the 1.5x extra dmg.
Monks should be reaching the enmity cap fast enough on their own to where they wouldn't need you to toss out a skillchain to build up that much hate. Although, I assume given that you mentioned them closing Darkness, that they're using Asuran Fists, which sadly says a bit about the Monks you're dealing with. A good Mnk inside Abyssea is going to be using either Victory Smite or Ascetic's Fury, and outside, if they don't have Victory Smite, they're going to want to have Shijin Spiral (if they're legitimately trying to be the main DD/tank). A Mnk that only has Asuran Fists and is trying to do any real sort of DD/tanking outside of Abyssea is going to have a hard time against War, Drk, Drg, Sam, and just about every other heavy hitting DDer out there nowadays.
Lastly, a good Sch, just like a good Blm, should be swapping staves on a regular basis depending on what spells they're casting. You're losing out on a lot of damage in your nukes if you're not casting in the proper elemental stave (Magian or otherwise) and if you're doing any curing you should be swapping into a Cure Potency staff routinely from there. A good Scholar should be rotating through spells at a fast enough rate that they wouldn't be able to build TP through Occult Acumen/Adloquium/etc to even get off a weaponskill, let alone do it frequently enough to contribute regularly to skillchains. Black Mage gets Occult Acumen, but you don't see them building up their TP and then going in to weaponskill. Why? Because a good Black Mage will be alternating staves often enough to where they couldn't get enough TP to weaponskill, which is the exact same way it should be with a good Scholar.
There's a reason that Scholars play more towards the style of Red Mages and Black Mages rather than melee. It's just more efficient as a whole to play that way than it is to be up there, attacking with weaponskills and the like. Just because you may have some traits that suggest you can play a certain way doesn't make it the best way to do it, and given how people play this game, they use jobs the best way that those jobs allow.