Monday, August 27, 2012

Odds and Ends, Prisms, Spell Drops, Pagoda Badge, Friends

Today, this will read more like a diary entry than anything. Just stuff I've experienced recently in the game.

1) I had tested this before, but I made a more pure test to be sure. PRISMS! You cannot keep setting up prisms as swaps. When I was trying to figure out how to get that million damage in one shot, I came across several assertions that you could "prism swap"... keep layering opposite school prisms with traps stuffed between to keep pumping up the damage. Not only do the traps you layer inside these "swaps" get ignored (if they are the exact same trap as those layered after it), but the prism itself cannot be counted if it already came up.

 So... This works (in order it was cast): Storm Trap > Myth Prism > Myth Trap > Cyclops (example of myth damage spell). The cyclops will be cast, the myth trap will be figured first, then the prism, then the storm trap for a big hit.

This works... but only up to the point above: Storm Trap > Myth Prism > Myth Trap > Storm Prism > Storm Trap > Myth Prism > Myth Trap > Cyclops. It will do the exact same damage, and leave the first four spells cast on it remaining on it.

2) This may only be news to some, but the following spells can now be learned by everyone. However, you have to farm the boss that "teaches" them over and over, as it is a rare drop for each. (from Stars of the Spiral blog
Shoji drops the Samoorai Spell in Shirataki Temple (First boss before lever)
Zaneki drops the Goat Monk Spell in Shirataki Temple (Air Shrine Boss)
Koto drops the Ninja Pig Spell in Cave of Solitude.

3) The bosses in the Midnight Sun Pagoda cheat. I haven't figured it all out yet. But the final boss (and I was only fighting the Tier 2 boss) had some sort of continuously popping shield that was supposed to be his halberd? Something. Because sometimes he gave a message about beating his halberd block and then his shield didn't come up. We don't know how. All I know is that I skated by with less than 200 health at the end of this. It didn't help that he was fire.

4) Rachel Starsong now is able to view my blog. Hi, Rachel!

5) A new friend showed me how to access my master account and password stuff. I never thought about it and didn't feel I needed it. But lo and behold! I now have full open chat, and the ability to gift. I am getting pretty tired, so I'm going to have to give details in my next odds and ends entry.

6) Trying to get sunstones still is... well, awful. Running around to all the worlds rich in stone blocks, realm jumping, opening up chests, etc. Very tedious.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

One in a Million Picture, Bonus Malistaire Picture

OK. So this is the poor skeleton laid out, knocked over by that ominous seven digit number.

You may notice I told my friend that I was fighting a solo boss. I was worried he might jump in and help me, which would have taken away from that whole 'solo' thing. I told him after, and he congratulated me. I marked through the name to protect the innocent.

Also! From awhile back, I soloed Malistaire, and took a screenshot from just BEFORE I fired off a helephant at him to finish him off. Note how I really needed for my spell not to fizzle. He was but a dark sprite away from knocking Alexander back through the Spiral. As above, I marked through the name of my friend I was chatting with on an unrelated topic.

Getting the One in the Million Badge Solo

I felt I had got pretty close the other night to hitting for a million damage, so I gave it another shot tonight. I chose the same spot (Lady Blackhope Tower), but bought a few more treasure cards, and crafted one additional item.

First, I did some research on the net. So very many people youtube their million damage shot, but even when they show you their deck setup, it's hard to eyeball what exactly they have in it. Most of them have a lot of spell duplication (since they want to use those to discard to draw their treasure cards). I knew I'd get confused if I did too much of that. Prisms and pixies are easy to figure out, so they and my fortify spells would be the ones I'd discard first. I also noticed most people don't include reshuffle, which for my strategy is nearly mandatory. Since ordering my spells is key, I needed to failsafe my deck drawing.

Here's the best web page I found for describing how to get a million damage in one shot (solo even!). I compared what he had in his lists with what I was running, and as well, how hard it would be to acquire some of those cards. I'll let you look at his stuff yourself. It's going to be more informative than what I have here (unless you are a pyromancer).

After reviewing this, I realized I wasn't running optimally with my equipped items. However, I didn't want to go out running dungeons to get better gear for this, since I wanted to do this NOW. The one concession I made was getting a wand item that gave bladestorm. The critical chance I was losing was being made up for in an additional percentage boost. I also noted that he eschewed the use of prisms, feeling that there might be too much room for mistakes or getting caught having to discard before getting all of your post-prism damage cast (which means in our case, getting all your ice damage cast before casting prism). Every single damage buff has to go on for this to work. Well, almost... which I'll mention at the end.

I also discovered an angle that I had not thought of before. While reviewing the treasure cards I already owned when putting in my newly bought cards into the sideboard, I discovered that I owned a Polymorph Colossus treasure card. Hey, don't those things cast ice spells? I looked it up, and sure enough, one of the spells they cast is ice trap (I think the 30% variety). I looked up the other polymorph spells to see what other spells might aid my endeavor. You must note, that these are school cards. If you already cast any of these, the polymorph is a wasted effort... your using up six turns for one spell. This is a desperate wizard's gambit. In my case, the colossus, the ninja pig, and the mander polymorphs all gave good school cards that I couldn't cast (ice trap, feint, and balance blade). I did have versions of ice trap and feint, but as treasure cards, so these spells would be able to stack. I was only able to buy the polymorph ninja pig, unfortunately.

I got my equipment ready. It was nearly the same as before but with the following changes:

· Hammer of the Stone Sky (gives 25% BladeStorm item card)
· some other ring that I forget, but gives 4% fire damage boost instead of general damage, but gives a little extra percentage for incoming heals. I didn't need it at all last time (constantly hovered within 200 of my maximum health, mostly due to pet casting spritely), so whatever.

What was important were the additional spells in my deck. For my main deck setup, I removed one elemental trap and one prism.

For my treasure card sideboard, I added in the following spells:

· 40% Ice Trap (Bartleby Series)
· 35% Fire Trap (Bartleby Series)
· 40% FireBlade
· Polymorph Colossus (for 30% Ice Trap school card)
· Polymorph Ninja Pig (for 70%/30 Feint school card)
· 2 x Reshuffle (added one in, just in case)

I also removed the extra elemental trap. The six additional boost cards should bring me over the top. Right? Well, almost. Everything is working right, and remembering how I kept trying to wait it out for my ice cards before... this time I just aggressively discarded, saving only my reshuffle as it came up, and casting every treasure ice card I got. The first time I tried this, I had ice blasts from my wand, and that is how I took out the minion. This time I did not have them, since my wand had changed to non-damage spells only. I did have an extra Grand Phoenix from my pet, but worried that I'd already have blades on me by the time it would show. I thus planned to use the polymorphs to take out the minion. Well, there was no need for worry. Phoenix came early, and I elected to just send it toward Ms. Blackhope herself. The remainder of the fight would be with her skeletal minion.

A bit later, I drew the polymorph colossus. I had to be very careful, as there is a lot of damage in the colossus arsenal. One mis-click would spoil the whole thing. I got my ice trap cast on my target, and then just passed the rest of the time until the polymorph expired.

A few turns after this, calamity! I did NOT put Polymorph Ninja Pig in my deck. Rather, I had put the Ninja Pig damage spell in. That meant I would be without an extra feint, which is a big damage boost. Oh man! That meant I was really cutting down my numbers. I didn't have time to re-calculate the whole effect, and it didn't matter. Treasure cards had already been cast. I had to see it through. I finished putting all of my ice damage on, not worrying about the in-between cards that wouldn't matter which order they were cast and finished up the battle.

Here was my battle plan, executed about right. I don't know if my Phoenix pet ever cast his fire trap or not... I didn't notice it.

PHASE 1, laying on the ice
30% Ice Trap, colossus spell (and kill minion in colossus form)
35% Ice Trap
40% Ice Trap

PHASE 2, switching damage types

PHASE 3, the in-between spells... ones that didn't matter if they were cast before or after prism
25% Elemental Trap
30% Elemental Trap
70% Feint, pig spell
70% Feint
75% Feint
35% Elemental Blade
40% Elemental Blade
Gargantuan, stick it on Efreet whenever they are both in hand
35% Fireblade
40% Fireblade
40% Fireblade
25% Curse
35% Wyldfire

PHASE 3, adding fire
25% Fuel
30% Fuel
25% Fire Trap
30% Fire Trap
35% Fire Trap
35% Fire Trap

PHASE 4, draw back and punch
35% Dark Pact (best to have the feint traps on yourself cleared before casting...)
25% BladeStorm (important! must not cast bladestorm before dark pact)
35% Berserk
1145 modified-damage Efreet

Survey says? BOOM! 1,000,000 damage rolled up the screen above the poor skeleton's (once again) lifeless body. Damage displayed is capped at a million, and I'm pretty sure my damage wasn't too much higher than that. Were I to be sure that my pet cast his fire trap, and I had actually gotten the polymorph ninja pig's feint cast, it would have been around 2 million.

I did get a screen grab, but upon reviewing it, I realized that once again, I had left my chat window open. I may post it here eventually, but first I will have to "shop" the names and/or text out of the image. Maybe a blur or strike-through will suffice.

This is how I soloed for a million. To be sure, this is more easily done in a group, as long as communication is clear. You won't need to spend so much gold on treasure cards, and if you review the link I put in earlier, you can see there are a lot of treasure cards possible. Also, no school comes close to storm for the top damage ability. I don't know if fire or death or some other school comes in second, but it's pretty distant from the top. If you're storm, you almost HAVE to get this badge to remain in the club. I just had to see that I could do it, so here you go. I hope this helps anyone else trying to get the badge.

Final advice? Plan it out. Do the math! It will save you some gold. Don't be afraid of prisms, as they give you a pretty cost-effective avenue of boosting your damage. Just make sure you stick with the plan and lay your cards on in the right order. And use Reshuffle! It will help avoid potential mistakes. If you decide not to solo this, be kind and return the favor for your friends. Keep extra treasure cards on hand that you can trade to them or cast on them. Load up shields and heals, and communicate through the whole thing. Everybody loves a winner.

/PS. I didn't critical here either. Counting on a critical might make you sad. You may find yourself attempting the feat over and over hoping for a different result from a critical, which is luck. Plan it out, and you won't need luck. Paying extra gold up front saves you from spending more on retries.

Attempt One on the Million Damage badge

I had an interest in trying this for awhile, and had already begun crafting gear that would give me some bonus spells. Sunday night, I decided to finish what I started. Unfortunately, I spent about two hours gathering up the materials to craft my helmet and my boots, only to discover (after crafting both), that I had already crafted the boots. Ah me. Good bye, gold.

I didn't think I'd do it the first time out, but I needed to see how close I could get. I chose Lady Blackhope's tower in Unicorn Way. No one would be able to jump into my fight (watch out for porting friends, though!), the two monsters were very light on damage dealing, and they wouldn't put up spells that would hurt the effort (like Weakness, or any kind of shields). I wouldn't get any kind of cross-school boost, but I could easily live with that.

Here's how I was equipped:

· Blazing Chieftain's Helmet (gives 40% Fire Blade item card)
· Chief's Garb of Flames (gives 35% Fire Trap item card)
· Boots of Wyldfire (gives 35% Wyldfire item card)
· Dragonbreath Bow (gives 37% critical chance)
· Raven's Ruby Talon (gives 5% fire damage boost)
· Jewel of the Feint Amulet (gives 75% Feint item card)
· Ring of the Wolf's Song (gives 4% general damage boost)
· Pet Phoenix (gives 5% fire damage boost, can cast Fire Trap pet card, gives Grand Phoenix spell)

And here was my deck (Bundle of Eternal Flame):

· Efreet (895 fire damage)
· 25% Fire Trap
· 35% FireBlade
· 25% Fuel
· 35% Elemental Blade
· 2 x 25% Elemental Trap
· 7 x Fire Prism
· 3 x Fortify aura
· 6 x Pixie

My sideboard, of course, is where the main damage was stored:

· 250 Gargantuan TC
· 35% Berserk
· 25% Curse
· 35% Dark Pact
· 70%/20 Feint
· 30% Fuel
· 35% Ice Trap
· 30% Fire Trap
· 40% Elemental Blade
· 2 x 30% Elemental Trap

You'll notice that I included ice damage, which I accessed through my prism. All of my ice damage (except from elemental trap) rested in my sideboard, so I started pulling from my sideboard early. I had some pretty good draws and thought I might not need to use a reshuffle, but eventually I got stuck without putting on my ice trap, so I cast what I could, discarding all fire traps until I got it. I then cast it, followed it up with a prism, and reshuffled.

I made a fairly obvious error. I THOUGHT that I might be able to double up on the elemental traps, casting one of each kind (regular and treasure card) before the prism, and then again each kind after the prism. My logic was that the fire would be used from the one, and the ice from the other. It just don't work that way. When the routine for determining which spells to register in the stack, it will ignore all subsequent cards that are exact. Treasure cards, item cards, school cards, and pet cards are all treated as different spells, even if the card is otherwise exactly the same (for those who didn't know this). Treasure cards of the same name but different percentage level are also treated as separate non-duplicated spells. So the extra school and treasure trap cards were ignored. The good thing is that the elemental trap doesn't matter in what order it is cast (before or after the prism).

I knew enough to save my berserk for last before casting my efreet. No need to take any more boosted damage than I had to.

Final result? Around 420,000 damage. Had I sat down and calculated it on paper, I could have avoided going in and using up my treasure cards, but hey. Sometimes you have to actually feel how it plays. I was a little disappointed, but not much. I didn't get a critical, and that would have gotten me close to the million, but even that wouldn't have been enough. So I needed to re-examine my cards and calculate it out for a second attempt.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Waterworks: a quick through

Several points about Waterworks to know.

1) You will always have four opponents with the mobs you fight, regardless of how many are in your group. The will average between 2500 to 3100 health. I think you'll find every school except myth in the mobs. You can try two tactics in building your deck. A couple of gargantuans, blades, and meteor strikes, banking on two being enough, or instead, one or two blades with either dragon fire or rain of fire. The safer bet would be Rain of Fire, elemental blade, fire blade, and amulet fire blade if you're me :P Then making sure to have something like Storm Lord or Tempest in your Sideboard (some other off school in case your fire won't be up to snuff). Don't forget Empowerment aura to speed things up for a second hit if you are relying on firing two heavy hitters. Empowerment is also useful for getting pips for any heals you may want to cast. This is if you are doing all the damage even. Likely not. If two others also have speed damage-all casts for turn two, that's going to be an average of 3000 to every enemy out and on to the next.

You really don't want to be doing Waterworks without a Theurgist or Sorcerer, or at least a really tough Thaumaturge tank. Three wizards in the dungeon just makes it go that much longer. Two can be a real long haul, and one of the two has to be a dedicated healer/shielder.

There are two "puzzle" rooms that turn into fight rooms. The follow-the-leader eel room is easy enough. One person reads book, and immediately swims forward to the switch ahead. The eel will get there first. Pull that lever and keep following the eel to the next switch and pulling that one after he pauses there (don't get ahead of him). The clams, however, I've never been able to pass. You have to open them up before time runs out, but something about not opening yellow ones? I might be thinking of another room. I'll consult and edit this after I find out. <looks it up> I was right! What they may NOT tell you is, the time is short AND the difference between yellow and blue clams can only be seen in the mouth... the blue is a sort of turquoise-tint blue, and the yellow is a pale maybe yellow-green yellow. You'll know when you pass it when red health balls appear. You'll know when you fail when someone gets sucked into combat. Some say you can bypass. This is probably done by everyone just exiting the room before the puzzle timer expires.

The bosses. There are two: Luska the squid guy (no minions), and Sylster the Manta thing (who has a fire and a death minion).

Luska... (from a youtube blurb of JuneAndAlyssa's)
"Every round, Luska will INK at the beginning of the round before any other actions. 
At the start of battle, he only INKS the first spot (sun), which places a Smoke Mantle on them, and a Hex on all other players. 
Only the INKED player can SINGLE attack Luska without consequences. 
This includes: SINGLE attack one enemy spells, SINGLE traps, SINGLE negative charms such as Weakness or Infection. 
If anyone else does these, he instantly removes all wards on everyone and says "If you can still see, don't look at me!". 
He then casts a 1,200 damage Skeletal Dragon or 700/round Power Link (200/round heal). 
Other players can cast all-enemy trap spells, attack-all spells, etc. with no consequences. Global spells work fine. 
When he loses 25% of his health (15,862) he starts to INK the second player (eye spot) each round as well. 
When he loses 50% of his health (10,575) he starts to INK the third player (star spot) each round as well. 
He never INKS the player in the last spot (moon). 
Some recommend a "tank" on the first place, a "booster" in second place, a "hammer" in third place and a healer on last place."

For this guy, I used Infallible auras. It might also be useful to include some Sniper spell enhancers in your Sideboard. If you are not in first position, you should just stick to using attack-all-enemies spells. And for heaven's sake, blades blades blades! I was using efreet spells since I was in first postion and started with the ink on me.

Sylster... (this is from Rogan at
9th Fight: Prepare for the final boss fight with Sylster Glowstorm. (Sylster is Star with 24,980 health points, the water-wing is fire with 8190 health points, and the SpellHammer Sorcerer is death with 6560 health points.) Allow yourself a few minutes to freakout quietly then get your head back in the game!
From the first turn, Sylster will cast a doom and gloom around your fight. What actions are and are not allowed during the round are determined by the colour of this doom and gloom. When the bubble is white, you can place any types of traps on the bosses. When the bubble is black, you can place any blades on yourself. Please note that whether the bubble is white or black, it does still function as a regular doom and gloom as well and will cut healing in half. Sylster will always begin with a white doom and gloom / traps permissable bubble, so feel free to place traps on your first turn.(Unused Traps and Blades will be removed when he changes the bubble)
Exceptions: windstorm, pet blades and pet traps are permissable at any time. They will, however, be removed the next time the boss changes the bubble.
He will change the bubble every four rounds Whether you start first or second it will be CHANGED make sure to count the rounds and attack before he removes your traps or blades.
IMPORTANT!!! (TO WHO READ THIS GUIDE BEFORE): Cloak doesnt work anymore, he will remove the cloaked blades.
Some stuff I learned about this boss: Try to kill the minions as fast as you can because they are mean. Killing the boss first is NOT a smart thing because he will come back to life. Every time you attack him he will heal himself and he can heal the mini bosses too it is part of his cheat so try to do big and fast attacks to kill them faster, even after killing the other mini bosses you will have to be prepared to do one or two huge attacks to over kill him by 3000 to 4000 to make sure he stays down

Some changes to the above blurb - attack-all-enemies spells won't provoke him to cast his heal spell. Neither will attacking with a target damage spell (him being your target) IF you have a blade or trap with the attack at the time. This depends on the white/dark phase of the rings. So if you attack him during white doom and gloom phase with a trap on him, he just takes it. If you attack him with a blade during dark doom and gloom, he just takes it. If you attack him specifically without the necessary buff, you fire off his special ability. If both his minions are dead, his special ability is cheat casting a RA spell. So think about it. If you can kill him with one shot (which is probably not gonna happen unless he's really low, since you won't have much of a buffed attack going), then you won't have to worry. Don't forget that the doom and gloom is gonna mess up healing on you. And finally, the doom and gloom colors switch every THREE rounds, not four. At least with us. Perhaps it's variable between 3 and four, but really, you're going to have to time your blade and trap casts. If they go first, you will have to anticipate the change and cast for your intended color on that round while the other color is up. It will switch on their turn, so your cast should then go off. Example, white circle been up 3 rounds, you know it will switch on this coming round, so you cast blade. Sylster goes, switches to dark circle, then on your turn you cast the blade and it sticks. Importantly, you may be able to cast multi-traps and multi-blades on the switch side, but it will take off one of them. The fire will be removed from blade if you attempt this with elemental blade! Fuel is just great.