Wife’s Run: Speedfarming Prince…with Sage!

Maze: Saint’s Tower

Purpose: Getting Prince (because she hadn’t been arsed to before)/Farming Prince

Mainball: Panda — Because who doesn’t love Panda? He’s like Swordsman, but cuter. Also, there’s no better Maze for main Panda than Saint’s Tower, because once you hit F29 and give Master Turtle some wine, you can take out any floor mob for a number of MP equal to the floor you’re on — and there’s no better way to regain MP than Magic Toffee. Oh, and the other two Panda Wines have a crucial role to play in this as well. ūüôā

Soul Link 1: Sage — Sage¬†completely freaking ignores the Dark Ward produced by the floor pillars. So you don’t need to waste any time or thought breaking the pillars, because punching faces works all the way down. Also, that big pool of extra MP makes Magic Toffee especially magical even though you’re not going to arse yourself with the big 500-MP-granting spell you could get by breaking pillars.

Soul Link 2: Tarot — Because as long as we’re ignoring the Wards, we should bring along someone who has useful magic-like effects that can be used to heal, defend, and otherwise do useful things on floors with an anti-magic Ward. Between Sage and Tarot, you literally don’t even need a single Ward broken (except occasionally on the boss) to get to and win Prince and/or his fragments.

Melee Title: Warrior (via Royal Knight) — Because HP are good, but epic boss facepunches are also good, since Tarot’s Tower can protect us from the nasty hits.

Venture Title:¬†Treasure Seeker — Yep. That’s it. No time for anything else!

Magic Title: Magic Apprentice — Ditto. Get your spells active and dump all your EP into more Melee-title power.

Artifact: Helm of Fighter — Just to make sure you can spend all your EP on the thing that matters.

Potion: Master Designer/Engineer¬†— To make sure you have the EP for Pumpkin Carriage by the time you need it.

The Rundown: Saint’s Tower is usually a slow grind, with lots of fiddling with Crystals and Wards and Special spells that take three-plus taps per mob to work. This team takes all that away and sets you up to tap tap tap all the way to F60 where you can s/l 30 until Prince shows up.

You do still have to save up your 2k EP to buy the Pumpkin Carriage, but other than that, you really don’t have to do much of¬†anything except tap tap tap tap. Ignore Wards, tap everything, move forward quickly.

The Boss fights go facepunch twice, change ward, facepunch some more. For F50 and F60, start with Panda Wine to make sure you can clear the boss super-fast.

It’s really the quickest, most effective brainless Saint’s Tower run you can get. And all this after I spent a good half-hour ranting violently to her about how Sage sucks just about as bad as a gumball can suck and has no purpose anywhere for any reason.

Yeah, she’s smarter than me. But I got at least one over on her — I married¬†up. ūüėÄ

 

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Wife’s Run: Maxing the Magic Vine and More w/ some Highly Unexpected Synergy

Maze: Forest of Whispers

Purpose: Hit the ‘magic vine to level 50’ DP quest, and the ‘get the frozen mushroom to level 5′ quest.’ As it happened, she was also able to get ‘Max out Planar Prophet’ and ‘Go backwards 45 floors in a single PoE’ on the same run. That last one is where the excitement came from, actually.

Mainball: Tarot — Because no single gumball can get you out of more scrapes than Tarot. Also, Venture-main for Farplane Ranger for to get Jack’s Soul for to reduce the total Seed cost of the vine quest.

Soul Link 1: Saladin — This guy can trade useless spells for stats — and there are a lot of useless spells. What’s not to love? There’s even a tiny bit of synergy with Tarot’s “gimme a random spell” card!

Soul Link 2: Lionheart King — She wanted Planar Prophet early, but she had a Venture title main, so Lionheart King was the key to her entire strategy.

Venture Title: Farplane Ranger — Nailing Jack’s Soul on F1 makes the level 50 quest a huge 50 seeds shorter.

Magic Title: Planar Prophet — She didn’t want to go deep, she wanted easy seeds, so multiple and early trips backward were on the menu.

Melee Title: Novice Warrior — Didn’t care, she finished her quests rather than pursue a melee title. ūüôā

Artifact: Hell God of War’s Ring — Because some amount of punching people in the face was vital.

Potion: Nightmare Potion — She needed the 300 EP to get Farplane on F1 so she could get Jack’s Soul, and the extra point of Power was useful.

The Rundown: Was pretty straightforward for most of it. She punched things in the face until F40 or so, then mixed in some spells when the opportunity presented itself (like Dark Ripple in caves, etc.) and as her Power rose as she traveled down the path to max Planar Prophet.

When she hit F49, she decided she didn’t want to deal with another Boss, having found the Sunflower Seed on F40. So, she hit the PoE button, went back 28 floors, and kept going down. When she hit F49 for the second time, she had maxed out Planar Prophet and most of her other potential sources of Power.

That’s when she noticed that her PoE was going to take her back 44 floors. Forty-four. ONE SHY of getting a valuable XP quest (she was like 24 points away from getting Tarot up to 5* at this point, so every single point counted.) But she had already spent all her EP on Titles that provided her with extra Power. She had no EP, no better-Power equipment, heck, no other equipment she was willing to Disenchant, and she had already cast Electrostatic Field.

But she was¬†determined to find a way to eke out that last floor. She pored over her items, her skills, her spells, her Gumballs, her Titles —¬†everything she could find. And finally, she looked up at me with that gleam in her eye that told she had found it.

“I have¬†ten Aurora Barriers,” she smugged.

“Umm…and?”

“And why do I have ten Aurora Barriers?”

“Because you have Sala–oh!”¬†Understanding was slow for me, but it hit.

“Because I have¬†Saladin!¬†Which means I have¬†two Aurora Barriers…and¬†2,400 XP. Which means I can take all three Power stars of Farplane Ranger. Which means¬†I’m¬†nailing that damn Quest!

And she did.¬†Without Lionheart King, she wouldn’t have had the EP to max out Planar Prophet in time. Without Tarot’s +25% to spell effects card, she wouldn’t have hit 45 floors. And without Saladin, she wouldn’t have had the Power she needed to break the barrier, either. Those three gumballs appear, at first glance, to be almost entirely without any internal synergy — but this is Gumballs and Dungeons, and nothing in the game is¬†ever as simplistic as it appears.

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.