A True Power Team Laughs at Spartan Farming

Maze: Ancient Arena

Purpose: Farm Spartan fragments, and test just how depth-crushingly sweet this team might be.

Mainball: Ripper — As main, has a 15% damage boost vs. humans. Also, gains significant stat boosts and a number of other cool tools on the way down.

Soul-Link 1: High Priest — There’s just no caster like him. High Priest is currently the only way in the game to get truly random scrolls every floor (as in, you get just as many 5th-level scrolls as 1st-level scrolls). All other “random scrolls” are weighted so that you get proportionately more low-level spells than high-level ones. Also, he gives you a random stat boost every floor, which will turn out to be very important.

Soul-Link 2: Monkey King — Obliterates every 3rd-ish floor all by his lonesome…which oddly is not why we’re taking him here. We’re taking him because, like High Priest, he also gives you a random stat boost every floor. Though the floor-wiping totally does help. 🙂

Venture Title: Great Enchanter (Anvil) — Because adding a full Mage set to our existing High Priest’s Spellbook means another free spell every floor. And if we can manage to get a Demon or Wizard’s set, it’s even a decently high-level spell, which is awesomeness squared.

Melee Title: Sword Sage — Just like with the bonzo stat-gains of the legendary Nobunaga/Saladin/Crusader combo, we want to jack ourselves up to absurdity right on the verge of inevitable demise, so that we can squeeze out another dozen or so floors if we’re careful.

Magic Title: Planar Prophet — Because our goal is to travel down as many floors as possible, to maximize the stat gain and the spell acquisition on every floor as we go.  

Artifact: Boots of Planar Prophet — Even though we’re hoping to eventually wear Wizard Boots instead, these will give us a solid early boost to Power and another +9 floors to our PoEs. Totally worth it.

Potion: Lich’s Enhancement Potion — Need Moar POWAA!

The Rundown: The whole way down, you want to buy every single one- and two-star treasure you see, and every piece of magic-suit gear that is better than the one you’re currently wearing.

Take one star of Magic Apprentice, Black Mage, Conjurer, Earth Master, and Planar Prophet. Then max out Black Mage, then Earth Master, then Planar Prophet, starting with Power and the Artifact stars, then HP, then MP. You should be able to do this pretty easily before you actually get deep enough to use all of the backtravel you’ll have access to. As soon as you get deep enough that an Electrostatic-Field-Empowered Portal of Earth will get you somewhere around F2-5, use it.

On your second run, focus on maxxing Blacksmith and Great Enchanter, and get your Wizard Suit progressed as far as possible. Then PoE again as soon as it’ll take you to F2-5 again.

As you run out of Quenching Essences to spend your EP on directly, shift to building up Melee, plodding star-by-star along the straight-line path to Sword Sage — but don’t take Sword Sage itself until after you’ve narrowly scraped by death a few times in a row, and taken at the minimum every single point of Attack that all of your Titles can give you. (If you happen to get ahold of the Dragon Titles, wait until they’re finished up, too!)

Generally speaking, you’ll run out of EP to spend around F70 after both PoEs (assuming you haven’t gotten the Noble, Hunter’s, or Forging suits — they’ll make it faster.) That’s OK, because even without any more titles to buy, every floor you’re traveling is still giving you 2 random bonus stats and 2 random (generally high-level) scrolls.

Use Monkey King whenever it’s at 90 or 100/100 points, and High Priest on every Boss and every floor ending in 5 just for fun. The other floors shouldn’t be too difficult at any point in time.

Bosses, you’ll have too many options for. Stick with whatever saves you the most Timestills for later on. You’ll want them. Also, you have Earth Master, so feel free to spam Gravity instead of Implosion up through Boss F70 or so. You’ll want the big guns later.

Once you do take Sword Sage, you’ll generally have the EP to take all of it. Go for it. 🙂

As an example of the absurdity of the spellgain, by the time I got to Spartan using this method, I had 9 Armageddons, 12 Aurora Barriers, 11 Timestills, 7 Holy Rebirths, and 3 Implosions. (Guess how I killed the F80 and F90 Bosses? It was Implosion.)

How deep can you go? I’m not the kind of person who enjoys that kind of gameplay, so I quit on F129 because I got Hamster and wanted to test him out — but I had a few thousand HP and MP, several hundred Attack and almost that much Power, and about 400 spell scrolls sitting around. So if this is your kind of game…love it! 😀

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The Fastest (and Funnest) Way to Speedfarm Kraken Captain

Maze: Pirate’s Seaport

Purpose: Farm Kraken Captain

Main: Spartan — It’s him or Monkey King, and fully feeding Spartan is easier to justify.

Soul-Link 1: Monkey King — No Venture (alternately, Magic, see below) title isn’t a problem when Spartan + Monkey King literally wipes out every other floor basically all the way down.

Soul Link 2: High Priest (alternately Guardian) — With Spartan in play, High Priest gets enough mojo to go off once in between each boss as well as on top of each boss, making this an even faster blitz. If you don’t have High Priest, Guardian is a good substitute as with Spartan, the Shield Throw does crazy damage and stuns long enough to obliterate 2 boss attacks, which is gold.

Melee Title: Sword Sage — Yup. You don’t care about anything except keeping your Attack high enough that Monkey King keeps clearing the floors every time you hit that button.

Magic Title: Oracle –> Light Master –> Light Bishop — Really, you don’t care that much about what exact magic you end up with, but Oracle gives more Attack points, and healing isn’t a bad gig when your offense comes mostly through your active abilities, so this will do.

(Alternately Venture Title: Great Enchanter (Crucible) — doing basically 50% more damage to every face you punch makes for faster floor- and boss-kills, so…that’s good.)

Artifact: Gloves of Dark Arbiter — Punch faces. (If Guardian, take Cape or Necklace of Facepunching instead, for reasons seen below.)

Potion: Vampire Hunter’s Potion — Punch. Faces. And let’s give High Priest a small nod, here, too, as he does in fact need a little Power to get the job done.

The Rundown: Save your EP. Seriously, you don’t even need it. Save up like 2.5k just for giggles, and buy the Demon Suit or the Wizard Suit if it pops up in one of those sweet here’s-an-entire-suit shops. That’ll give High Priest everything he needs. (If Guardian, buy Dragon or Oracle Suit instead. This is the reasons mentioned above.)

Once you have your suit, spend EP maxing out your Attack until it won’t max anymore, then do whatever. This maze gives you a stupid amount of the stuff, so just have fun. 🙂

If you don’t get Davy Jones’ Treasure at 60, you can s/l 30 for it, or go to 70, but don’t waste time going further than that. s/l30 till you get it, then pop it, don’t feed it a damn thingand let it kill itself over the next few floors. Job done!

The Safest Way to Speedfarm Predator

Maze: Lost Temple

Purpose: Max out Predator w/cert for Fane purposes.

Mainball: Predator — I don’t want to s/l 30 a bunch whenever I lose a coinflip. Alien Helmet works whether you bring it in or find it, so this is 100% vital.

Soul Link 1: White Chess Bishop — When Vampire won’t suck, White Chess Bishop rises up to blow! …the enemies attempts at killing you out of the water.

Soul Link 2: Checkers — Predator is great at facepunching through floors, and White Bishop keeps him alive to do it, but you need a solid boss-killing tool that can get you through F80 or so in case your luck sucks. Checkers is that tool.

Melee Title: Silver Knight –> Heavy Armor Knight –> Light Paladin — You don’t care if you have to punch faces twice as often, because Bishop thrives on face punching. This makes high HP significantly better for your survival than high Attack.

Magic Title: Oracle –> Water Master –> Light Bishop — because Oracle gives more Attack, and Water Master and Light Bishop both make White Chess Bishop amazing-er.

Venture Title: Who Cares?  Never had time to get a Venture title. Probably if I did, I’d go for Great Enchanter (crucible) for the added facepunching ability.

Artifact: Armor of Light Paladin — More with the facepunching, and some Defense is clutch for taking full advantage of Bishop’s healing.

Potion: Cactus Juice — Just in case you run into a long enough string of Earth Elementals that it might suck.

The Rundown: Seriously, you just speedtap everything to death. You don’t even have to worry about Earth Elementals. Just tap tap tap tap your way to the boss, drop 3-4 Checkers Dudes, tap tap tap the boss to death, repeat. If you find it, save your PoE so that if you reach F74 or so you can jump back to F51 for more easy chances to stumble upon Predator. Keep your Alien Helmet on at all times.

Use the Altars to snag +100 EP as often as possible, and whatever else you like as you go. Fill Magic Apprentice, then fill up your Melee titles from the ground up, pausing and saving 500 EP for a free heal by taking Light Paladin when desirable. Then take one star of Oracle, max out Water Master, take Light Bishop and all three stars of +Power.

From there, you can do whatever you want, because you’re going to survive long enough to get your fragments. You can whip out this run in half an hour on average, an hour if you get mad unlucky and have to go deep despite a PoE.

Good luck!

Let’s Playtest Merman!

Maze: Ancient Arena

Purpose: To playtest Merman at length, and farm some arena audiences along the way.

Main Gumball: Tarot — Because he’s my go-to when I don’t know what else to stick in the Venture slot. Also, I wanted Mage stats as my main, and Ghost Capitan was too expensive to feed up just for a playtest. :p

Soul-link 1: Merman — Which is the point, after all. What can this guy do for me?

Soul-link 2: Ghost Capitan — Because seriously, you’re not going to dink around ‘playtesting’ some Water-mage-ball without bringing the real water mage along for the ride.

Venture Title: Great Enchanter (crucible) — To make our iffy Attack useful a little further into the dungeon.

Melee Title: Duke of Destruction — Same as above, but this time with some counterattack-avoidance built in.

Magic Title: Legendary Mage — To synergize with both Merman’s custom spell Water Mist, and Duke of Destruction.

Artifact: Necklace of Legendary Mage — Because I didn’t realize that Merman brings a custom necklace with him even soul-linked.

Potion: Hell Crimson Reagent — Power is good, and Fire spell means Blade of Ruin. Sure, why not?

The Playtest — With Legendary Mage, Water Mist lasts 6 rounds instead of 3. With Ghost Capitan, Water Mist deals (Power*.525) damage per round. All while reducing enemy Attack and Accuracy by 40% and restoring 5% of your own HP per round. And it comes from a spell that everyone reasonably expects to have hanging around in the double digits all the damn time.

It’s actually surprisingly good at killing the audiences in the Arena — until you run out of actions you can take. Since it counts as a buff and is overwritten by any other buff, the typical strategy of ‘cast two dozen Blesses’ doesn’t work. And there are vanishingly few spells you can cast with no legitimate target if buffs are off the table.

I was able to harvest 100% of the non-named-Gumball audience members from F5 to F75. I only left named gumballs behind on F65 and F75, too.

Water Mist does make a staggeringly good opener on a lower-level floor where what you want is to activate Duke of Destruction without dying in the process. Reducing enemy Attack and Accuracy by 40% is just what the doctor ordered to get some free deaths on the table to kickstart counterattack immunity.

I thought I might even have a chance at nabbing some Spartan fragments for my trouble — but while this build can dance through floors all day long, it has some trouble with Bosses, and the F80 boss took me down despite my massive Icicles drilling holes in his brainpan while my Water Mist kept up a constant minor tick of life swing in my direction.

Ultimately, the Merman has a second fatal flaw: giving up Cure for a spell that does so much more than restore HP means you use the spell up doing things that aren’t restoring HP, which means your supply of spells that can bring you back from the brink of death is a lot lower than you think. Even with Tarot’s healing and defensive abilities, every floor past 69 was an optimization exercise in how to best conserve HP so the 30% heal I’d get from the one Water Mist I cast would keep me out of harm’s reach.

Maxxing out City of Steam Manual while Testing Earth Elemental

Maze: City of Steam

Purpose: Gotta get that manual maxxed out! Also, we’re getting the XP quest “Max out Great Enchanter,” ’cause it’s my last Adventure Title. Just as importantly, we’re playtesting Earth Elemental to see if it makes it any easier to devote your Magic Title to Planar Prophet. (tl;dr: It does!)

Main Gumball: Odin — We’re doing City of Steam right, in full magic mode, bitches.

Soul Link 1: Earth Elemental — Sweet, sweet Earth Master synergy, here we come!

Soul Link 2: Machine Herald — Because I hadn’t played him yet, and I figured a near-constant 50% Attack boost would help me melee my way down without using too many scrolls/MP.

Magic Title: Conjurer –> Earth Master –> Planar Prophet — Because the whole point is to see if we finally have something that synergizes effectively with Planar Prophet. Also, manual maxxing.

Venture Title: Rune Master –> Weapon Master –> Great Enchanter — Gotta get that sweet Adventure Mastery trophy. Also, we’re going to need some extra damage to keep punching faces in the lower floors as our Attack isn’t going to keep up very well, and this’ll help.

Unexpectedly, one of the hidden power-plays in this run turned out to be Rune Master. In City of Steam (and Avallon Fortress, too), the Crucible actually gives +25% low-level spells (instead of +15%) — and over all the many floors I traveled, that ended up being super strong. I quit with more than 40 Cure spells in my inventory, and that was after averaging 2.5 per floor for the last 17 floors.

Melee Title: Knight of Faith –> Armored Knight –> Titan Knight — Because Earth synergy is the name of the game, and this will give us a regular, if not predictable, way to add damage based on our enormous Power to our face punchings.

Artifact: Crown of Pope — All of my in-Title artifacts are magic-slotted, so I can’t take any of them and still use the Electric-Powered Set. So of the melee slots, I wanted to take either a Crown or a Belt because they’re the two slots that usually don’t give anything but HP. I had my eye set on a Lightsaber for an Accessory, and a Belt of Electric Arc because Odin, mothafokka, and so the headgear was my option. And I was determined to go Full Mage, so we went for the Magic-oriented headgear.

Potion: Potion of Great Designer — Manual maxxing, plain and simple.

Other Gear: Totally ended up with the Green Lightsaber and the Belt of Electric Arc. I also ended up carrying around a Book of Water for a good portion of time as well. Managed to find Dragon Scale gloves and Sapphire Armor so I was busting out phat Disrupting Rays to go with my phat Electrostatic Fields. Really the thing that I loved the most gear-wise, though, was the Fishbone Spikes — the City of Steam consumable item that pops out an Earth Spike and gives you a permanent 1% bonus to Earth spells. I think I burned through at least 18 of them. Any time I could hit 3 or more enemies, out they came. I kept all the consumables until I had one of every Science, though, so that I could eke out every benefit possible.

The Run Down: I started by maxxing out Magic Apprentice, then took one star of Wizard and Conjurer, than maxxed out Earth Master, then (gritting my teeth) I stuck around and maxxed out 100% of Planar Prophet, including two Artifact stars. By the time that was done, it was F54, and as it turned out, I had just enough PoE power to go all the way back to Floor One…so i did!

Starting over again, I maxxed out Novice Warrior, then one star in Knight, three stars in Knight of Faith for more Power, one star in Armored Knight, and then took Titan Knight and all three of the +trigger% stars. Around floor 55 (take 2), I switched over to Venture titles and took one star each of Fortune Finder and Explorationist, then maxxed out Rune Master. One star in Weapon Master, and then one star in Great Enchanter.

Around floor 70, I started backfilling: first Conjurer for the MP gain, then Knight of Faith for the Power, then I basically just backfilled everything from cheapest to most expensive, ending up filling in the last of Great Enchanter at F96.

The floor strategy was challenging — I had no way to deal with all the Damage Reflect robots except for spells, and I was pretty concerned about keeping my MP up. So I carefully, carefully used all of the Frag Grenades and Flamethrowers and Grenade Launchers — not to mention the aforementioned Fishscale Spikes — to clear the spiky sumbitches for as long as they lasted. Then I let the Lightning Bolts and Fireballs flow like water, only using my Earth Elemental Orb when it’s spread-damage effect or tile-flipping effect would be valuable.

Without Rune Master’s extra 10% bonus, I would have ran out of Bolts and Balls around F75. As it was, I ran out around F80 and resorted to mostly Earth Elemental Balls…only to discover that I probably should have been using them for a while before that because they were much stronger than the low-level nukes thanks to Earth Elemental+Earth Master+all those Fishscale Spikes. I would have used less MP per kill if I’d switched around F70.

All of the non-reflect bots I facepunched using Machine Herald’s 50% attack bonus + Great Enchanter’s 50% damage bonus until F80 or so. I facepunched the low-attack Repair bots all the way down. From F80-F87, I used Metal Charizards to avoid taking counterattack damage by keeping Blade of Ruin up for seven straight floors. Past F87, I just magicked down absolutely everything.

End Result: Painfully, I found myself in a deathtrap on F97. A magic-cancelling trap was all the way across the floor from the door, and three high-damage ranged units were guaranteed to kill me before I got there. I had no tricks left up my sleeve, and I had already Revived once thanks to a nearly-identical situation on F88. I wasn’t going to Revive again — I have pride — even though it meant that I died with 2 Sciences left to go before I maxxed out the Manual.

All that way, and all that awesome synergy and amazing fun (and seriously, this was one of the funnest runs I’d ever had!), and I was unlucky in one simple but ultimately purpose-foiling regard: I never found a second PoE. That would have made the Manual-filling-out thing easy.

Oh, well. Guess I’ll have to try again with Water Elemental and Archbishop. 🙂