ToME: the Tales of Maj'Eyal

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PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2016 10:49 pm 
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Thalore

Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 10:20 pm
Posts: 168
SHIBARIXMEX the Shalore Arcane Blade by Mex

This guide is intended for Madness players, although I have provided an alternative optimal Insane build.

Feel free to use this guide on Insane but some abilities such as Harmony are not needed and are better spent on stronger shields or improving crit chance or inscriptions.

Arcane Blade is the class with the highest DPS in the game, with most of the utility of the Archmage but about 1/4 of the EHP. This makes for a class capable of killing any enemy very quickly whilst still having enough survivability to last a few turns. Due to this lack of sustained EHP by the late game the AB has to make proper use of Stone Wall (the spell, the ego and Wrap of Stone) to chain spells and manage cds for burst damage and shields.

Early on AB has a rough start due to stat requirements for abilities and equipment, unhelped by the high number of abilities needed for the AB to function. They do not have any movement options without expending already very tight generic points, which are used to address the weaknesses of the class. Stamina and mana can be difficult to manage as the hand abilities are too weak to pick up early, even after doing so mana is still a problem.

Despite these weaknesses, which are mostly addressed by the mid game, the AB is arguably better than Archmage when played optimally. There is less room for error however.

Index

1. Cheat sheet
2. Build order
3. Build rationale and analysis
4. Change log

Cheat Sheet

Alternative Insane build
Spell/Earth: 3/5/1/5
Spell/Fire: 1/0/0/0
Race/Shalore: 1/2/1/5
Wild-gift/Harmony: 1/5/0/0

Stat distribution priority
MAG/CUN, DEX, WIL

Class Talents [70]
Technique/Dual techniques: 1/1/0/0
Technique/Combat techniques: 1/1/5/0
Technique/Cunning: 1/1/1/1
Technique/Magical combat: 5/5/5/1
Spell/Earth: 4/5/1/5
Spell/Stone: 1/1/1/5
Spell/Air: 1/1/5/0
Spell/Enhancement: 5/1/5/0

Generic Talents [50]
Race/Shalore: 1/1/1/5
Technique/Combat training: 0/3/0/0/0
Cunning/Survival: 1/5/1/1
Spell/Aegis: 5/5/3/1
Wild-gift/Harmony: 1/1/1/4
Celestial/Light: 1/5/1/3

Category Point Order
Technique/Dual techniques, Celestial/Light, Wild-gift/Harmony, Spell/Stone

Inscriptions
[Pre-Aegis/Light] Shielding, Movement, and Manasurge/Movement
Heroism/Movement, Movement, and Manasurge/Movement

Prodigies
Cauterize and Flexible Combat

Equipment priority
spell cd, spell crit, spellpower/MAG, heal mod, dmg shield mod, phy dmg, stun res, on hit (slow/blind/gloom)

Alchemist Quest priority
+2 generic, +2 class +4% spell critical chance

I missed the class points quest!
-2 Stone Skin

Build Order

L1: [1] Rush, [1] Dirty Fighting, [1] Arcane Combat, [1] Arcane Reconstruction, [1] Grace of the Eternals, [1] Heightened Senses
L2: [2] Arcane Combat, [1] Armour Training
L3: [2] Armour Training
L4: [1] Arcane Cunning, [1] Pulverizing Auger, [3] Armour Training
L5: [2] Pulverizing Auger
L6: [1] Precise Strike, [3] Pulverizing Auger, [1] Shielding
L7: [2] Shielding
L8: [1] Perfect Strike, [1] Arcane Feed, [3] Shielding
L9: [2] Perfect Strike, [4] Shielding
L10: [1] Dual Strike, [1] Flurry, [3] Perfect Strike, [5] Shielding, [1] Magic of the Eternals
[Arena]

L11: [4] Pulverizing Auger, [1] Arcane Shield
L12: [3] Arcane Combat, [1] Aegis
L13: [4] Arcane Combat
L14: [4] Perfect Strike
L15: [1] Mud Slide, [1] Stone Wall
L16: [5] Pulverizing Auger
L17: [1] Backstab
L18: [1] Switch Place
L19: [1] Cripple
L20: [1] Arcane Destruction, [5] Perfect Strike, [1] Healing Light, [1] Bathe in Light, [1] Barrier, [3] Providence

L21: [5] Arcane Combat, [2] Arcane Reconstruction
L22: [2] Stone Wall, [1] Secrets of the Eternals
L23: [3] Stone Wall
L24: [4] Stone Wall, [1] Timeless
L25: [3] Arcane Feed, [2] Timeless
L26: [4] Arcane Feed, [3] Timeless
L27: [5] Stone Wall, [4] Timeless
L28: [5] Arcane Feed, [5] Timeless
L29: [1] Fiery Hands, [3] Arcane Reconstruction
L30: [1] Earthern Barrier, [2] Shock Hands, [4] Arcane Reconstruction
[Heart of the Sandworm]

L31: [3] Shock Hands, [2] Arcane Shield
L32: [4] Shock Hands
L33: [5] Shock Hands
L34: [2] Fiery Hands
L35: [4] Fiery Hands
L36: [1] Waters of Life, [1] Elemental Harmony, [1] One with Nature, [1] Healing Nexus
L37: [2] Bathe in Light
L38: [3] Bathe in Light
L39: [4] Bathe in Light
L40: [NOTHING]

L41: [1] Charm Mastery
L42: [1] Earthern Missiles, [1] Body of Stone, [1] Earthquake, [5] Crystalline Focus, [1] Heightened Senses
[Wyrm Bile]
L43: [2] Arcane Cunning, [1] Evasion
L44: [3] Arcane Cunning, [5] Arcane Reconstruction
L45: [5] Arcane Cunning
L46: [2] Stone Skin, [5] Bathe in Light
L47: [3] Stone Skin, [3] Arcane Shield
L48: [4] Stone Skin, [2] Charm Mastery
L49: [1] Lightning, [3] Charm Mastery
L50: [1] Chain Lightning, [5] Feather Wind, [5] Charm Mastery, [4] Healing Nexus
[Both Alchemists]

Rotation Example

Although only truly necessary for the final fight the perfect rotation is as follows:

Stone Wall (spell), use x amount of abilities 5 turns before Stone Wall ends (including spells to proc +spellpower), Heroism, BiL, Arcane Reconstruction, wait or cast other abilities until walls crumble, Aegis, Perfect Strike, Movement Infusion, hit stuff in 2-3 turns, use other Stone Wall abilities until BiL/Arcane Reconstruction come off and repeat.

Analysis and Rationale

Class Talents [+2 from Alchemist Quest]

Technique/Dual techniques

[1] Dual Strike: Useful early/mid game when you can still hit stuns and against rares in the late. You will always want to use this as a follow up to Dirty Fighting in the early game to ensure enemies are stunned before fighting them.

[1] Flurry: Main damage skill. Only need 1 point as we do not care for weapon damage/physical power.

Technique/Combat techniques

[1] Rush: This was recently changed such that you can target the ground and you will rush to it. Useful to initiate with but usually kept as an escape option. You can rush into walls when you have Burrow active allowing you to dig one square past the wall (this is probably a bug).

[1] Precise Strikes: Can be turned on when needed but otherwise avoid using.

[5] Perfect Strike: Gives us the accuracy needed to hit enemies. Early game this makes our procs do insane damage (as it takes def-acc as bonus for staves). Late game it is a necessity and adds some nice damage.

Technique/Cunning

[1] Dirty Fighting: No loss ability. Either you get a stun off or you get a free hit. Use this to initiate and is useful early/mid game to stun enemies as we have huge acc.

[1] Passive: Unlock.

[1] Swap: Good for repositioning in tunnels or onto stairs. Particularly good when dealing with summons.

[1] Cripple: Excellent when you can land it. 1 is enough as it does not benefit much from further points.

Technique/Magical combat

[5] Arcane Combat: This is where the magic happens. This scales very well with CUN. Note that with the new update we can choose our proc which opened up the AB build a lot.

[5] Arcane Cunning: Bonus spellpower is always nice.

[5] Arcane Feed: Crit chance and mana regen is always nice.

[1] Arcane Destruction: You would need 4 more points to make this twice as good. We do not care for physical power so 1 point is enough. This proc does not crit either.

Spell/Earth

[4] Stone Skin: Armour is necessary when going into melee all the time so it's nice to dump some points into.

[5] Pulverizing Augur: Our proc. It uses more mana than the others but does the equivalent in damage:mana. We are focussing on physical damage for the mercy proc anyway and we have the +physical sustain so this is a no brainer. When making zig zag tunnels keep the enemy close to the edge so you dig into the edge of the map.

[1] Mudslide: Can be used in the early game to knock stuff back and deal some damage, you probably won’t be skilling this until you need Stone Wall however. 1 point for unlock.

[5] Stone Wall: Essential for this build. It can be used to wait for cds or debuffs to go down and generally gives you control over the battle.

Spell/Stone

[1] Earthern Missiles: Unlock. Can be used to proc +spellpower on cast.

[1] Body of Stone: Unlock.

[1] Earthquake: Unlock.

[5] Crystalline Focus: This keeps the build relevant with res pen and benefits mercy proc as well.

Spell/Air

[1] Lightning: Unlock. Can be used to proc spellpower on cast.

[1] Chain Lightning: Unlock.

[5] Feather Wind: Helps manage stam and mana.

[0] Thunderstorm: If you happen to find gear with mana on crit which gives more than 1.5 mana on spell crit cast then a point in this will give you some additional passive mana regen if you need it.

Spell/Enhancement: 5/1/5/0

[5] Fiery Hands: Helps manage stam and increases damage a bit.

[1] Earthen Barrier: You can reach the physical res cap easily with this. 1 point is enough and it has a long duration. High mana cost however.

[5] Shock Hands: Helps manage mana and gives us damage with a daze proc.

Generic Talents [+2 from Alchemist Quest]

Race/Shalore

[1] Grace of the Eternals: Gives you a nice speed buff. 1 point as it only gains a cd reduction.

[1] Magic of the Eternals: Increased crit chance and damage. We do not have enough generics to invest further here.

[1] Secrets of the Eternals: Unlock.

[5] Timeless: Reduces negative effects which is nice. This will double (max 5) any of your beneficial benefits and reduce all your cds by 5. Absolutely insane and the main reason we picked Shalore as it straight up makes the character better. 5 points.

Technique/Combat Training

[3] Armour Training: 3 points allows us to wear heavy armour and Shields (2). It gives us a nice crit dmg reduction (when wearing heavy) and more equip options. Shields usually have good wards and keeping it in the alternative set is a good way to use them.

Cunning/Survival: 1/5/1/1

[1] Heightened Senses: Mainly an unlock but the sight is a nice bonus.

[5] Charm Mastery: This is essential to the build to make use of Stone Wall egos. As a bonus it allows us to abuse other charms such as the ones listed below.

[1] Piercing Sight: Unlock.

[1] Evasion: As we are always in melee to damage opponents and we focus on CUN/DEX this gives us a 35% chance to evade weapon attacks. This is much needed EHP and its long duration makes it a great pre-cast.

Spell/Aegis

[5] Arcane Reconstruction: Great heal which is used to get huge shields.

[5] Shielding: Improves duration and strength of our shields.

[3] Arcane Shield: A good cut off point to get most of the benefits.

[1] Aegis: This doubles our shield but does not warrant further points. We only use one damage shield type as opposed to AM.

Wild-gift/Harmony

[1] Waters of Life: Nice counter to diseases/poisons.

[1] Elemental Harmony: Keep it active but don't waste time trying to trigger specific elements. We do not have enough points to invest into this as much as I would like to. It is also an easy combo with 1 point in Flame.

[1] One with Nature: Unlock.

[4] Harmony: This is necessary to counter Vitality and other heals. Enemies usually use heal abilities when they are at 80% or idling. You can use this with BiL to get heals from all enemies. I don't think the heal triggers the shield generation.

Celestial/Light

[1] Healing Light: This can give you a small shield and heal which is useful to deal with dots when you are away from battle.

[5] Bathe in Light: Broken. Pre-cast your other abilities then use this. Follow up with Arcane Reconstruction immediately. Wait until BiL runs out and use Aegis. You now have a 12k shield for 3 turns.

[1] Barrier: As per Healing Light.

[3] Providence: As we do not have Draconic Will this is our way of dealing with status effects. Can be used with Stone Wall on stairs to make easy use of stair dancing.

Prodigies

Cauterize: Damage smearing and one-hit protection. Unless you make no mistakes you will need this.

Flexible Combat: Greatly increases our damage (and regen) through proc chances and allows us to out damage the orc pride heal.

Items

Equipment focus

Spell cd reduction: 20% is necessary to chain abilities together by the late game.

Spell crit: You need to get this to 100% by the late game.

Crit multiplier: Benefits all abilities and gets better as the game goes on.

Spellpower/MAG: This is important for Stone Wall duration 90-100 is what you should aim for.

+Physical damage: Benefits our proc damage and mercy proc.

Physical res pen: Nice to have but not a priority as we have 50% from the sustain.

Healmod: Aim to have about 150% (you have 100% base) as this will cap at 250% with BiL anyway.

Stun resist: Useful to have at 100% but we will be using mov infusion anyway.

Damage shield mod: Nice to have and can be found on hats.

Armour: Nice to have.

On hit effects: Global slow, blind, gloom in that order are probably the best. You will hit many times a turn so aim to have a spread of these if possible. They are not so important late game.

Essential Artifacts

Image
Mercy: Necessary to scale into the late game.

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Wrap of Stone: Free Stone Wall.

Very Useful Artifacts

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Wintertide phial: Free mental clear that scales with MAG.

Image
Spelldrinker: Helps manage mana and also drains mana which can render some enemies completely helpless.

Image
Life Drinker: Probably the best dagger if you don't care about the mana drain and Mercy isn't as effective yet.

Image
Windborne Azurite: 8% chance to miss any damage is very powerful.

Image
Girdle of Calm Waters: Probably the best artifact belt and can help get healmod up. The resists are also very good.

Image
Dakhtun's Gauntlets: Likely the best gauntlets you can find, the +50% crit mod is just crazy in addition to the spell/phy crit chance and +phy dmg.

Image
Morrigor: This is a mixed bag but getting Stone Wall on it is pretty crazy. Another good one is Greater Weapon Focus.

Image
Burning Star: Free Vision and doesn't require a slot.

Useful Artifcats

Image
Frost Lord's Chain: Free Shivgoroth Form.

Image
Prox's Lucky Halfling Foot: Great early game item and can save you from stun/pins/daze but should not be relied upon.

Image
Daneth's Neckguard: Free Juggernaut.

Image
Skullcleaver: If you are patient you can trigger GWF with this on your summons (the spiders ideally) before using stairs.

Image
Lightbringer's Wand: Summons, good precast.

Eggsack: As above.

Image
Omniscience: Free Vision.

Neira's Memory: Free shield, can be nice early game.

Image
Mnemonic: Blocks mental effects, good precast.

Image
Spellhunt Remnants: It's antimagic but a tier 5 can help deal with magical sustains.

Image
Stormbringer's Guantlets: Good crit mod and spell crit chance.

Image
Hand of the World-Shaper: Pretty good gauntlets although I find a lot of randarts outclass this.

Image
Fortune's Eye: Free Track.

Charms

Stone Wall: Necessary, is found on hats as Earth Runes.

Track: Nice to have but not necessary.

Arcane eye: Short cd which means we can actually use this with other charms.

Mana surge: Useful if needed.

Thorny: Nice armour boost in the early game.

Mental: Blocks x amount of mental effects. Short cd and can be used pre-emptively against enemies that sleep or confuse, as it is often the first skill they use.

Poison/disease removal: Poison and disease can do a lot of damage and have very long durations and this is a good way to counter them.

Burrow: Found on mindstars. Makes the digging process a lot easier in combination with Movement Infusion.

Temporal shield: Good early/mid game to get a stacking shield.

Inscriptions

Infusions

Heroism: Gives you a bit more EHP. If you can afford to take it do so.

Movement: Excellent infusion that allows you to initiate and escape whilst avoiding stuns, the worst of the status effects. Very useful with Stone Wall to get a clean cast.

Runes

Shielding/Reflection: You will want to hold onto and upgrade this until you get Celestial/Light, by which point it will have fallen off. It can’t be stacked so Heroism is a superior choice once you start doing prides. Reflection is useful but take a stronger shield over it.

Manasurge: If you have mana issues you will need this. Casting Stone Wall drains mana pretty fast.

Changelog

[1.4.x]: Guide created.

Notes

Comments and questions are welcome!

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<shesh> cursed is fine


Last edited by Mex on Thu Sep 08, 2016 7:17 pm, edited 7 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2016 4:17 am 
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Higher

Joined: Fri Aug 14, 2015 11:47 pm
Posts: 56
This is excellent! I've been working on getting an arcane blade of my own through insane and was using your character as a reference for how to build my character, and am very glad to see this guide appear for general build order and play style.

I noticed that your final character has no investment in conveyance, which I thought would be a very useful tree for the targeted phase door + teleport - was this to free up generics for healing nexus/aegis/light?

Awesome work, and congrats on the win. Any plans for future madness runs?


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PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2016 7:56 am 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Sun May 19, 2013 1:58 am
Posts: 719
For what it's worth, Shesh went 1/5/0/0 in Conveyance for the controlled Teleport. I don't recommend Harmony or Stone on any difficulty lower than Madness, though Stone is borderline; I would rather have a Heroism Infusion than either category.

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PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2016 1:41 pm 
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Halfling

Joined: Fri Jul 18, 2014 11:48 am
Posts: 83
I think, there is nearly nothing more to say. An outstanding victory!

Well, actualy i have a few questions.
Is burrow/wraithform/manaburn cratures deliver a troubles, or any other annoying enemies? Was it neccessary to leave some portals opened(and which ones)?

BTW awesome pickaxe. Rarest as heck.

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PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2016 6:21 pm 
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Thalore

Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 10:20 pm
Posts: 168
Creatures that have burrow/wraith form hardly ever use it but when they do it can be a problem assuming that burrow leads you to be exposed to other creatures. In those cases its usually best to get as far away from the burrow creature as possible.

Likewise mana burn does not really get cast but you can always retreat with mov infusions.

Disperse Magic and Corrupted Negation are a lot scarier. Corrupted Negation is cast relatively often and the only counter is to wait for their vim to run out. Likewise using Spelldrinker to drain mana on casters can render them pretty useless and it is worth keeping to use against such enemies. In the final fight when Elandar ran out of mana it was much easier to kill him.

Ghosts etc are annoying but usually you can kill them very fast.

For the final fight you will want to close the demon portal and the undead portal. This is to prevent being called into battle by demons and having the ghost/wraiths pass through Stone Wall and using Disperse Magic on you all the time. For some reason the bottom left creatures can't dig into your Stone Wall so they are not a concern.

I didn't think 20% cd reduction on a pickaxe was even possible but I don't account for such an item in this guide due to how improbable it is to find it reliably.

I'm not sure I value an inscription slot over having the 40% global with an easy trigger with Flame and Celestial/Light is just too good not to have. I would probably take points out of Healing Nexus (+ the unlock) and put 3 into Elemental Harmony and 2 into Magic of the Eternals (to smooth out the inferior gear). On Insane you will basically 1-2 hit everything anyway. This is debatable and I don't play Insane really so make of it what you will.

Phase Door is great of course but we have Switch Place and movement infusions to get around properly. The reason I miss out on it in particular for Madness is that you can Phase Door and end up with an enemy next to you which will prevent you from getting a clean Stone Wall off. I don't think a 6 point investment for Teleport is warranted given that you really want to abuse the other generics. Teleport is used to get away but if you use movement infusions you should not really need to teleport to the other side of the map but can use the zig zag tunnels which will confuse the enemies anyway. If you get stuck between two enemies then you should use Switch Place and as you usually get a summon stuck behind you it will not resist it.

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PostPosted: Sat May 28, 2016 3:08 am 
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Higher

Joined: Fri Aug 14, 2015 11:47 pm
Posts: 56
Is there a specific length to which you should build the tunnels? Or can it be just long enough that only one enemy reaches you at a time?

The character link's also been changed to your madness necromancer.


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PostPosted: Sat May 28, 2016 3:34 am 
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Sher'Tul Godslayer

Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 11:16 pm
Posts: 2131
Outstanding guide Mex. Thanks muchly.


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PostPosted: Sat May 28, 2016 9:14 am 
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Thalore

Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 10:20 pm
Posts: 168
Not sure why it did that but reloading my AB seemed to fix it.

I usually make zig zag tunnels on the border of the map all the way around so I have plenty of room to get away.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 8:29 am 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Fri Oct 10, 2014 4:00 pm
Posts: 781
Nice win and guide. I'm glad to see people are taking advantage of my AB changes.

I'm going to try an Insane/RL run with a similar build.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2016 1:23 am 
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Wyrmic

Joined: Sun Aug 24, 2014 11:37 pm
Posts: 267
The Tapir wrote:
Is there a specific length to which you should build the tunnels? Or can it be just long enough that only one enemy reaches you at a time?

The character link's also been changed to your madness necromancer.


My experience with the tunnels, specifically on Madness and hunter! buff, is that you need them to be at least 3-4 squares deep but they are never entirely reliably. Rather they confuse the monsters and make it improbable that a monster gets to you. In general they have the most trouble getting into a zig zag tunnnel in the first place but they can sometimes manage to get in. Once they are in, a long zig zag tunnel will confuse them enough to make them slow but they are capable of eventually navigating fairly far down one.

Like Mex I have often dug the entire outer perimeter of many maps with zig zag tunnel on various maps. I almost always do this in the Lake to get to Fortress. I have also made 3 square zig zag tunnels in the assasin lord/merchant map corners work to some extent.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2016 10:46 am 
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Thalore

Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 10:20 pm
Posts: 168
Completed the artifacts section and added an Insane build option.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2016 12:37 pm 
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Sher'Tul Godslayer

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Maybe explain DPS and EHP for noobs...


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2016 9:57 am 
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Sher'Tul Godslayer

Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 11:16 pm
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Mex, I'm following this but have only 18 accuracy at level 8, missing most things. How come you don't put points into accuracy?


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2016 4:55 pm 
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Thalore

Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 10:20 pm
Posts: 168
I get Perfect Strike maxed out or 3-4 pointed very early on which solves the acc issue. You can also float 3 generics into acc.

EDIT: I'll add a build order guide, it's a bit tricky to give a clean one because of all the different stat requirements.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2016 7:18 pm 
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Thalore

Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 10:20 pm
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Build order added, keep in mind that you will likely deviate from it because of stat requirements; just try and keep as close to it as possible.

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