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Old Man of the Steel

2134 Posts

Posted - 07/02/2003 :  6:22:32 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I don't know what it is, but I'm getting kind of confused by the state of a lot of Melee's knowledge these days.

When I go out to hunt, I meet melees who don't bane a shield. Who don't carry more then one buffed weapon. Who don't know what kind of damage to do to certain monsters to maximize their power.

Who literally can't buff themselves at all, and so when out hunting in fellows have to have someone else be a buffbot or they have no prots or no critter buffs or something.

I'm afraid I'm an old timer, and that means I'm very self sufficent. I could sack some skills I have and take up life magic and cast 7's on myself...but as a Melee, I hate to buff. Furthermore, I despise DIspel traps once I am buffed. I DO appreciate the extra edge buffs give you, and I take advantage of them...but my goal is to be FREE of NEEDING buffs by others.

To be perfectly honest, I equip an Item6 orb, buff up my sword and bane my shield, and I'm ready to go. Okay, I would cast Healing Mastery, but that's about it.

So for all you melee boys, listen up!

1) Bane your shield.
I know you hate doing takes so long and you are not a mage. But it cuts your frontal melee damage in half, or more! Banes are your friend, and your shield is your biggest friend. SOOOOO many melees love to take on stuff beyond their level...without a baned shield, they get hit too much FOR too much.

2) Have your own prots.
You can't rely on someone buffing you with 7's all the shouldn't BE reliant on it.
YOu have two rings, two bracelets and a shirt and pants. BINGO, 7 slots, 7 prots.
O wait, did I forget the new Diamond Shield? No, I didn't. Pierce6, Slash6, Blud6. So you only need 4 SLOTS.
O wait, they have dual spell jewelry and pants. So, if you get the right combo, you need TWO slots. if you get triple spell stuff...ah hell, you can get off with pants, shirt and one peice of jewelry, and not even use a diamond shield anymore.
GET A FULL SET OF WEARABLE LIFE PROTS AND WEAR THEM. Don't beg for 7's unless you are in an area where level 6 or 7 vulns are dont NEED them.
And I don't much care if you HAVE life magic. Wear prots. They never go off if all you do is pop manastones in them once an hour.

3) Wear critter armor.
Yes, the new GSA with the Major Wards is nice...but wth good is major wards against hollow critters? so it removes 7 pts dmg from the thwop that assailer put upside your head...wahoo! It does good against them level 6 spells, I suppose...but saving 15 pts dmg on a spell probably won't save your life all that have to know when to break and run.
Be Independent, and Get some Critter Magic armor.
Find a set of weapon gaunts you can wear, of decent AL you can tinker up. Or sollerets.
Find some Sollies with Quickness or Coord. Tinker them up too.
Find a Helm with Rejuvenation on it, plunk it down.
You now have greaves, tassets, bracers, pauldrons, breastplate and Girth all available.

You want to have Str6 somewhere, on something. Quickness and Endurance come next. Rarely, you can find armor with Regeneration, but Regen all the time is very nice!
You STILL have 3 slots available for, Wards, or Major Str, Major COord, Major Skill Master, or Invulnerability.

Armor with level 6 critter on it and Impen5-6 is all over the place...I stumble across a peice a day random hunting. If you post and make it known you want it, people will give it to you...or shop's COMMON now, unlike when I wanted it.

4) Hey, guys, WEAR UNDIES.
Just because the mages and archers HAVE to doesn't mean you SHOULDN"T.
Find a FULL SLEEVED shirt with Armor6 or Fire6 on it, put it on and never take it off. Find FULL LENGTH pants with the other buff and do the same. Or do's the other common attack form.

When fighting high level stuff you need to minimize melee damage...mages and archers have known this forever, and whose in melee more, us or them? Taking next to no damage in melee means not having to run, not having to heal, and having time to heal when the war spells go off.

When you Impen undies, that extra 100-220 AL goes right onto the armor level of the armor you are wearing. THEN, instead of baning all the different peices of armor, you just cast ONE BANE on the shirt, and it's as if you cast it on all the armor. In short, if you IMPEN, and THEN blud bane your shirt, it's exactly as if you blud baned your BP, pauldrons and bracers.
Thats why LONG SLEEVE shirts are so important, and ditto the pants.
THIS is how you can bane COVENANT armor....simply BANE YOUR UNDERWEAR.

He who wears no underwear, tends to stink!

5) Carry every element you can.

Hey, I know the crap's heavy...I'm melee and always been melee. Suck it up and up your Str score, and pat your Str6 Breastplate.

No matter WHAT, you should have TWO weapons ready to go, if there is ANY chance you might need them. Sure, when fighting tuskers, you can just use fire....sure, when fighting Olthoi, just buff the Pierce or the Hammer/Mace. But if you are hunting outside, take a good look around, and Pick your two best attack weapons...and ALL of them should be available to pick from.

For Instance, in the VOD...everyone should have Fire,and CS Frost, and everyone either Slash or Pierce....and acid for mystics.

On Aerlinthe, I alwasy buffed S/P and elems, vapors and plasmas all went down to frost, and S/P handled everything else.

In the Dires, hunting by Teth and AYAn, I buff AR COLD and Pierce Rend, and my blud rend xbow. Frost tends to see the most use, as I hack on banders and druges with it. The xbow is specifically for luring and taking out plat and pyreal golems.

I can't tell you the last time I buffed my lightning's not widely useful on anything, except lugians...and s/p does good enough I don't bother. I dont carry one...but it sits on the OUTSIDE of my house, where I can take it down two steps after I recall back there...if I need it.

6) Put away the bandit weapons.

I carried my bandit weapon over one year. 6-12 +7/+7 BD6 SK6, inscribed by's one of my cherished memories of the game, and it sits proudly on my villa wall.
I fed 4 other bandit swords to the town crier. All of them better stats then the above.

I don't care if it SEEMS you are doing better piercing damage with a rapier. Once you have a -33 Weapon, your DOT is better then any bandit weapon. Once you IMBUE a 33+ weapon, it blows a bandit out of the water. There IS NO COMPARISON. The studies have been done by the obsessive math wizards...bow your heads to the gods of Decal plugins who collate this stuff, and pack the bandit away.
Save yourself the weight and packspace, kiss it fondly, throw some ivory on it, mule it out, and learn to use that big Tachi. It has a sliding bar, that lets you alternate between slash and pierce. Learn to use it!

7) At high levels, VULNS are better then Imperils...mostly

This applies to mages and archers, too, of course.
At high levels, you start getting some very high armor levels...400-600 pts of armor are everywhere. Armor in this game is on a sliding it goes up in value, the rate at which it reduces dmg slows down. Conversely, it means that if you take away the top 100 pts of armor of a high armor critter, you aren't going to do that much more dmg.
But a Vuln7 is ALWAYS Triple Damage. Regardless of armor level.

Sure, fighting low level tuskers and olthoi, Imperil does the reduce them from under 300 armor to under 100, and damage goes up fast! Certainly enough to frequently one hit stuff, and often more then a vuln would do.

But high level stuff? vuln it. Now the mages do more damage, and the melees took a big dmg hike. There are FEW critters in the game where I don't do more damage to the thing VULNED then imped. usually, it's like +30-50% dmg with an Imperil, and double to triple with the Vuln.

(Notable exceptions...VOD Lugians, grommies, and Druge Seraphs...horrible armor (possibly negative!), excellent vulnerabilities. Use Armor Render, your dmg actually goes DOWN.)

Any tusker with armor (rampagers, assailers, plated, armored) you are better off vulning. Any olthoi larger then a noble (evis+) you are too.

which leads to...

8) If you can, do slash or Piercing damage.

The reasons for this are simple, and should be obvious.

The most obvious is every class has a pierce or slashing weapon. Thus, they can ALWAYS do one of the two damage types.

The other is more subtle...ARCHERS.
Look at archer's ammo. Notice something about Frogs and AP arrows?
Yeah, those do more damage. Therefore, all other elements being equal, you want to do slashing or Piercing damage, so the archers can maximize their damage potential.

Examples of this in the VOD are Virindi and Shadows. All of these creatures are basically the same to all elements...therefore, you should use Slash or Piercing on all of them (slashing if you want big hits from sword guys).

9) Have a ranged attack.

Yeah, this is crazy, but it's the reason I untrained Life Magic and got Xbow back. I want to be able to poke and lure...and if they don't want to come, I want to be able to kill them. My life magic was pitiful and couldn't do the job fast enough.

I dont mean take bow, or xbow...if you have a good life score, fine...use a wand throwing war spells if you have to. But have a ranged attack so you can draw stuff...if you have thrown weapons or xbow or bow, even trained you'll find there are situations it comes in handy.

10) Try not to break off a fight for loot.

people do this in VoD all the time...I'm fighting stuff and the archer drops out to check the three virindi we got done killing. This is not only irking me, it's making me wonder why I'm killing stuff if I never get to loot.

I'm a loot maven, but I can go for a while without looting if the fellow is rolling along butchering stuff. But if someone is doing nothing but loot while I kill? Then I stop and loot everything that drops to me, middle of a fight or no.
This is common sense, but still happens.
And yes, I'll let RR kill stuff while I'm looking over bodies on the ground...but then, he gets more xp when he kills the level 125 bander then I do when I kill it for him;)

10) It's weird, but some monsters are vuln to dif things from spells to melee.

Banders are one example.
I did a lot of tests a while ago, using same size swords on the same size settings, and measuring crits.
Lighting weapons are WORSE against banders then pierce. It was freaking odd.
But for mages? Lightning is far and away the best thing to use.
I never feel bad when a mage vulns something to blud, which I don't long as they vuln for me too! One spell does XXX popping the vuln, he just increased my dmg 200%, which certainly is more dmg then any single war spell he could get off instead!

And, of course, different banders are vuln to dif stuff. You can use pierce fine against all of them...but aggressors and savages? Cold all the way. Aggressors take a 460 pt NORMAL swing from my frost sword...a crit is an outright kill. Ergo, I use frost.

11) Know the elements stuff is vuln to.

Fire against grievvers is an exercise in patience. Use slashing, pierce if you must. They were put in game BECAUSE there was nothing out there most vuln to slashing!

You can use s/p on lugians easily...lightning is usually best. Frost is usually fine at higher levels (CS Frost RULES on VOD lugians!)

Fire is best on tuskers...but if you don't have it buffed, pierce does just fine as a backup. Olthoi die like ants to blud, but pierce is a good second string attack. Swarm olthoi particularly hate pierce.

reedsharks? Use Cold! Dillos? use pierce. Just about any solid golem does blud...but most of the metal ones are soft to some degree to acid.
Vapors are vuln to frost, less so to acid
Plasmas are vuln to acid, less so to frost.
Pyreals? Just like plasmas..acid best, frost second. Blud good too!
Platinums? Frost is best, acid is second. Blud good too!

Just about all virindi have a fire vuln, but are worse against slash then pierce.

Rifts? they just suck..but pierce seems to be the best, followed by slashing.

A whole slew of stuff is equally vuln to the physical knaths and druges are only marginally worse to fire. USe the best physical if you can, to maximize everyone's damage, unless everyone has a better element available.

11) You want Armor Rending, but have one Crit Strike weapon.

There's some stuff in game that has no armor but high elementals...crystal golems and lords come to mind. Imperil doesn't help against stuff with no armor, so neither does armor rending. Therefore, I keep one crit strike weapon (for me, it's frost) handy for use against these things when in fellow. Otherwise, just pull out an elemental render and start hacking.

Armor Rending tops out at 330 skill for archers, 400 skill for melees with a 60% reduction in armor at that level. That is huge, as you can see. There is no other damage effect that compares over time to the average damage a high level melee weilder can do with an AR weapon.
Armor/Elemental Rending is THE effect to use Granite for. Anything that ups your average damage does better with AR. Thus, you can get to about a 40% variance (for a big sword, thats two tinks over 50%) before it's better to use Iron and up the max dmg.

Use Critical Strike on High Variance Daggers, Spears, and UA. Don't use Granite..up the max dmg with Iron.
Why? Simple. Crit Stike changes DMG variance by itself. Ideally, at 400 skill you should be getting 60% crits instead of 10%.
so lets say you have a buffed 9-36 UA.
Your Average Dmg is (modified by Str/Skill) 22 22 22 22 72 72 72 72 72 72.
If you use Granite once, you get roughly a 12-36 weapon.

So your average dmg is now 24 24 24 24 72 72 72 72 72 72 72...8 pt increase in DoT.
But if you do Iron once instead, you get 23 23 23 23 74 74 74 74 74 74
which is a 16 pt increase in DoT. And what are you killing stuff with, average dmg? Hells, no, with the crits! Increase the damage and get them crits up there!

Crushing Blow is for the people who like one shotting stuff with huge crits. You can use Granite and Iron okay up to about 40% variance, then Iron is better. Generally, your crits will be huge enough to kill something instantly. The problem with Crushing Blow is 'waste' tons of dmg with your crits. If the olthoi only has 300 Hp and you crit for 500...thats a waste of 200 dmg best used elsewhere. So you either have to take small swings so your max crit doesn't waste dmg, or waste crits.

So, I prefer the other two. That being said, critting Gaerlan for 1600+ pts dmg is a lot of fun, so I've heard.

12) if the head guys say Bane, then Bane.

mages with uber spellcasting bane everything as a matter of course. Fizzle prone melees hate it.
Tough. Do it anyways.
You are in melee more. You are more likely to get clocked from behind...ooops, no shield there. You are more likely to fight something higher then you...oops melee def didn't save me. If the dungeon is all uber tuskers, then trot out the blud banes...if you have undies, thats two Impens and 5 blud banes. You DO have Undies now, right?

13) Don't trust Melee Def, trust your )*(&)(* shield.

Two nights ago I was running looking for a goobs body out in the middle of nowhere. A grommie hit my foot for 268 dmg from behind, and before I could heal I was dead.
This is with 487 +32% melee def.
Last night, me and RR were wasting time out by Ayan working a spawn. Platinum golem spawned behind him, walked up, and smacked him from behind for over 100 pts. If he'd have been blunt vulned at the time, he'd have been one shot.
I've been one shot from behind by a platinum golem, I know. Thats 300 pts dmg in one hit, you goobs. No, I didn't have blud bane on my helmet at the time, or I'd have lived. I trusted my melee def.

So what I'm saying is, Don't Let Stuff Get Behind you. Especially big, mean, nasty stuff. Find a wall and sit there...rotate around to get your enemies in front of you. Sure, I can avoid most of the hits from things out in the VoD. But it only takes one grommie to hit me from behind for 122 dmg, or an olthoi mutilator hitting me once a second for 8,6,12, 67 to get me to swing around fast!
Annihilators clock me for 80 from the front...devastators do about 40. Fully baned up and ready for him, the Obliterator does 68. They hit too often to let them behind me, even if they ARE shield ignorers.
Melee is nice, it keeps you alive. But trust your facing and your shield...your melee works better on stuff ahead of you, so put your shield between you and the enemy, and you will live longer.

And here's something really odd I've noticed.
Archers do better with melee def.
When I have my crossbow out, I get hit LESS then I do when I have my pierce render out...which has a higher def mod. This stumped me, until I wondered if perhaps archers never suffer a melee penalty for being attacked from the sides like melee does. It's absolutely weird how much I can evade when I'm in xbow mode, being attacked from all sides...and then I go to sword and shield and the dmg starts tinking up quickly.
Of course, when I do get hit with xbow, it tends to be for more dmg because of the lack of a shield...but then I tend not to bane every peice of armor against every attack form. If I did bane against everything, I don't think I'd have much to be afraid of at all...

Okay, thats enough for now!


Edited by - Aelryinth on 07/04/2003 12:55:31 PM

Feeder Mosswart

64 Posts

Posted - 07/03/2003 :  5:32:18 PM  Show Profile  Visit Asmodius's Homepage  Reply with Quote
great post Aelryinth

Go Saints!!!
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Standard User

425 Posts

Posted - 07/03/2003 :  8:04:02 PM  Show Profile  Visit evono's Homepage  Send evono an AOL message  Send evono an ICQ Message  Send evono a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
maybe i missed someting.... YOU Don't Buff????

Everything I ever Put In My Profile Is Always Innapropriet. So I wrote this...
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Head Facilitator

1877 Posts

Posted - 07/04/2003 :  08:58:36 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
nice post.
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480 Posts

Posted - 07/04/2003 :  11:40:43 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
No Evono he does buff, he just uses critter armor. He still banes and casts life spells (at least those not covered by clothing and jewlery.

Nice post Ael.

For mages it is so much easier.

BANE EVERYTHING BUFF EVERYTHING even your undies helps with at least IMP on it.

I could not agree more about not have to have others buff you ALL the time. I is very anoying when you get a person in a fellow who has to recall to the mansion so the buff bot could buff him.


MST In Game most evenings
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Old Man of the Steel

2134 Posts

Posted - 07/04/2003 :  1:08:38 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Evono...I buff. I buff all the time.

But I never, ever ask for life prots unless I'm in a place where I know the dmg will be HUGE, or high level war and vulns are flying. For instance, I will ask for BLud7 (and ONLY blud7) when running Bobo. Why? Because Devastators and Annis suck if they hit you from behind.

I dont ask for regen, and I dont ask for Rejuv. It's all covered.

I can grab an item 6 orb, buff up my main sword, and am good to go. I'll have the following buffs in force.

Coord6 (ring)
Acid6/Focus6/Self6 (bracelet)
Light6/Manacon6 (ring)
Blud6/regen6 (brace)
Fire6/Armor6 (full sleeve shirt)
Cold6 (full length pants)
Invuln6, Pierce6, Blade6 (diamond Shield)
rejuv6 (Helm)
Str6 (bp)
Minor Blud Ward (pauldrons)
Sword6 (gaunts)
Major Str (girth)
Major Sword (sollies)
Major Coord (Bracers)
End6 (greaves)
Minor Invuln (Tassets)
Moderate Magic def, Magic def5, Minor Focus, minor self - GMAN magic def Necklace.

IN short, I'm missing Quickness. I have a pair of Quick6 tassets I can swap in if I don't critter buff.

If I wanted to go Xbow, I could swap in my blade6/coord6 gorget, put on a pierce6 ring, and I STILL have all the prots covered.

Sure, I'd love to have a pair of cold6/pierce6 pants...woo hoo, one more prot always taken care of. Sure, I'd like a coord6/quick6 ring...woohoo, two buffs always have...or better yet blade/coord/quick!

But, not yet! I'm still looking...and so should you be. I can still spend Steel on my armor, all my armor has at least Impen4 built in.

My default buffing is spellcasting buffs and loy/leader for the chain. On top of this, I almost always cast Healing Mastery, Str, and Quick (since I don't have a quick buff I can wear Atm.)...then Sword7, Invuln7, magic def7, coord7.

Nowhere do I need or ask for any life buffs. About the only place I'll ask for a full set of 7's is against Gaerlan, since he vulns7 and has them close range ring spells which suck bad. Even in the VoD, I don't ask for 7's....I have the HP to spare, and maybe you dont, but I still don't ask.

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Twisted Heat
Slayer of Beasts

731 Posts

Posted - 09/08/2003 :  09:29:03 AM  Show Profile  Visit Twisted Heat's Homepage  Reply with Quote
LOL and on tomorrows episode of Ael Miller.. he talks about george bush and the fall of humanity!!

YAYAYA lolol..


"Strength and Honor"
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PK Extraoridnaire

146 Posts

Posted - 09/08/2003 :  09:54:56 AM  Show Profile  Visit Violated's Homepage  Send Violated an AOL message  Reply with Quote
if u cant buff yourself, why are u in VoD?

Violated (lvl 160)
Violated Archer (lvl 90+)
Snoop Doggy Dogg (lvl 75+)
Trix Of Da Trade (lvl 70+)
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Twisted Heat
Slayer of Beasts

731 Posts

Posted - 09/08/2003 :  11:42:33 AM  Show Profile  Visit Twisted Heat's Homepage  Reply with Quote
cuz they like to leech ? dunno .. my mage has all 7's archer has al 7's my sword has 6's but i dont take him there.. mainly to tusker island aka melee heaven :)

"Strength and Honor"
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Board Troll

6545 Posts

Posted - 09/08/2003 :  12:10:16 PM  Show Profile  Visit Stargrove's Homepage  Reply with Quote
it's not about leeching, it's about the XP and loot :)

One of the great things about AC is that we have the ability to not only change our hunting style, but also change our template to try different things.

For example, I was taking to a co-worker and i wanted to know why he was having so many problems in VOD (he was dying a lot). He's a level 120ish mage. He kept getting hit and got a lot of resists, do he'd use a health exlier, which because of the time.. kept dying. Well the problem was that he had de-speced life and did not take into account the affects of it.

How can we help someone to be more efficient.
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PK Extraoridnaire

146 Posts

Posted - 09/08/2003 :  12:28:47 PM  Show Profile  Visit Violated's Homepage  Send Violated an AOL message  Reply with Quote
macro 24/7 in a drudge skulker dungeon until you hit lvl 200 and then go to VoD

Violated (lvl 160)
Violated Archer (lvl 90+)
Snoop Doggy Dogg (lvl 75+)
Trix Of Da Trade (lvl 70+)
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Old Man of the Steel

2134 Posts

Posted - 09/08/2003 :  9:42:17 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Skulkers? heh. wonder how long that would take...

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Twisted Heat
Slayer of Beasts

731 Posts

Posted - 09/09/2003 :  08:03:05 AM  Show Profile  Visit Twisted Heat's Homepage  Reply with Quote


"Strength and Honor"
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Standard User

12 Posts

Posted - 11/03/2003 :  08:29:00 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Try electric on Vapors & Plasmas.
Works well.
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Len the Great

393 Posts

Posted - 11/04/2003 :  02:16:15 AM  Show Profile  Visit Len the Great's Homepage  Send Len the Great an AOL message  Send Len the Great an ICQ Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks for the assistance, I will take these thoughts in mind, I am an archer and always use 7 buffs, they were hard to obtain but got them. The only problem I have is they (the creatures) most of the time resist my vuls, and as an archer I always fight from a distance but if I keep on trying to cast vuls, I lose the advantage ( distance ) trying to get that vul to take effect. So at times I dont use the vuls and get my bow 154 dmg and my deadly arrows and try to kill them before they get to me and most of the time it works if it dont I will battle for a few seconds ( using trade health exliers )to see how it goes then run like hell.

Len the Great of Leafcull
Lvl 121 Archer

Edited by - Len the Great on 11/04/2003 02:18:09 AM
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Old Man of the Steel

2134 Posts

Posted - 12/05/2003 :  2:01:29 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Time for Len to get some Render bows or to hunt with a mage.

Offensive casting of life debuffs is the only reason an archer should spec's also the entire reason behind the existence of OG archers. This template is, however, fading fast with better no-mage-req weaponry, and the tank archer predominates at higher levels with Armor Rending and Elemental Rending bows.

Drinking stuff lowers your melee def and gets you hit more. Ouchies.

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