Elemental

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(You can read the previous version of this page, which is the Elemental new recruit pamphlet, on this page Elemental/Pamphlet. There's a bunch of information there that would be handy to read through)

All words that appear in bold have in-game files which can be accessed by typing “info <topic>” once you’ve joined the guild.


About the guild

The Elemental guild is based around becoming the embodiment of the classical elements (air, earth, fire, and water) and channeling that power to damage enemies. Once you master the basic four elements, you'll explore the elements that make up life itself and, after that, harness the power of time itself.

An elemental's deep connection to their home plane comes with the intrinsic ability to emit the power held there against their enemies in a way few mortal weapons can match. That connection comes with a drawback, however; an elemental has few natural defenses and relies heavily on armor to protect their physical form.


Location

The Elemental plane is located in the southern side of Pinnacle. (cot,s,w,s,s,w)


Quick start guide

  • chat el: chat on the guild line (and chat el -h for history)
  • info: access the guild help files
  • enhance: shows you the skills you can raise. As you raise your skills, the maximums of other skills may increase
  • powers: lists the powers you have in your current form. Most powers are evoked. Check this often as you progress for newly unlocked abilities!
  • evaluate: gives you information about an enemy
  • energy drain: recovers NRG from the creature you're currently fighting. Enemies have a 'pool' of nrg available to draw from at will.
  • corpse drain: siphons the energy from a corpse back to the Apex in the guild hall which will increase the rate elementals regenerate while there. After recent changes, corpse drain also returns 10% of your NRG max.
  • blast is our superpower. It creates a "grenade" of elemental power that we can activate and then give to an unsuspecting mark. Then it goes BOOM.
  • escore for your guild stats. (there's also escore2 for even more)


You'll start as Water Elemental by default. Anytime before you hit size 10, you can go to the Grand Elemental and shift into a different first form. Eventually, you'll be able to learn all forms.

In general, the forms go Fire, Air, Water, Earth in order from more damage to more tanky (and vice versa). The only catch in progressing is that you can't switch to the opposing elements: Air/Earth and Water/Fire. So if you start with Air, your second form will have to be Water or Fire. If you start with Fire, your second form will have to be Air or Earth, and so on. Once you have the first two forms down, you can finish the other two in whichever order you prefer. Different forms come with some slightly different powers and some powers only come after you've mastered several forms.

In combat, Elementals emit NRG to damage their enemies. For every NRG you emit, you'll gain that much guild experience, experience towards enhancing skills, and that much link energy (see escore for the amount of link energy you have) which is a reserve pool for special powers and emergencies. As you gain guild experience, your size will go increase and increased size gives access to more powers as well as higher emit levels. A key skill to enhance is manifestation which will make each emit cost less NRG (but it will still give the full experience benefits). Raise manifestation whenever you can.

Elementals can wear all equipment slots, but wielding a weapon will block their ability to Emit.


Managing NRG (our GP1 resource)

[Note: the existing Energy Drain section was outdated by the recent Guild upgrades]


Elementals can now use 'evoke corpse drain' to recover NRG from a corpse.

Enemies now have a pool of available NRG to draw upon, enabling 'evoke energy drain' to be used at will until that NRG pool is depleted.

siphon still works as an additional source of slow NRG regen. Useful for prolonged combat. This costs precious Link energy however, so best used sparingly.


The mud mskill 'reflex' is a useful way to trigger Energy Drain, e.g. 'reflex gp1 <60% evoke energy drain'. And the optional VAF 'ktrig' also allows Energy Drain to trigger one final top-up as the enemy dies. Or use the perform alias below; or the mud skill 'repeat'; or a client trigger. Note that larger mobs (usually) have more available NRG to draw from.


Elementals can't recover NRG from corpses and regen NRG very slowly. You will need to use energy drain while in combat to drain NRG from your enemies. Since enemies can you drained multiple times (although generally not for the first time until they're under 50%/), and you really want as much NRG as possible, having energy drain set up to fire every round is a good thing. You can do with with the guild perform command or the mud-side repeat command ("help repeat").

An easy way to do this is is to type the following commands:

   alias autoed evoke perform as combat evoke energy drain:9999,autoed
   alias .login autoed

This assumes you don't have a .login ("help login") already. If you have one, then just add the "autoed" to it. You may want to use your client to gag the fail message (which is "That creature is not weak enough to be drained of energy.").


Healing

Elemental's hit point (HP) healing power is rebuild. Rebuild uses your spell points to heal your physical form.

Note that you can only Rebuild once per round, so ensure you have sufficient HP to survive!


Keep an eye on your Spell Points (SPs). Once they're depleted you can no longer heal.

Elementals can recover SPs employing a variety of tools:

  • A Form specific regenerative power: earth tap; the four winds; tidal wave; heat wave; and soul wave.
  • After size 50 they can utilize mental depletion to draw SPs directly from an enemy. Time Elementals of sufficient size can also 'evoke mental depletion corpse' for an additional source of SP healing.
  • Create Soul Gems using trap the soul for a defensive barrier and SP heal.
  • Use natural convergence(NC) for a full SP heal once per mental reset (10 minutes). You eventually unlock a 2nd NC.

Goes without saying that SP regen items and outside SP healing sources are extremely beneficial for Elementals.


It's very useful to automate Rebuild. Note that the ratio of SP->HP doesn't care how large or small the heal is. There's a variety of methods available to do this:

  • You can evoke preservation, e.g. 'evoke preservation as 400 evoke rebuild' this will trigger a heal every time your health drops below 400.
  • Mud skill repeat, e.g. 'repeat combat/evoke rebuild/0/0'
  • Mud mskill reflex, e.g. 'reflex add hp <80% rebuild'
  • Mud skill panic, e.g. 'panic rebuild/80%

I'd recommend rebuilding every combat round regardless of incoming damage, using the Repeat method (or perform), but there are efficiencies around setting the Rebuild threshold below 100% to allow HP regen items and healing to land.


Ability summary

[Due to recodes and tweaks over the years, many useful sounding powers no longer work as well as expected. I'll attempt to highlight some of what's good and what's not]

Note that many powers unlock after reaching a specific size (glv) and when you complete one form and begin the next you'll lose access until re-obtaining the required size. Check powers often to see what's being unlocked. Note that additional powers are unlocked at Spirit and Time forms, these are seen via 'info spirit' and 'info time'. Some powers, like 'self illumination' and 'flare' only work in certain forms; and your SP-regen 'wave' ability changes name as you progress through the forms.


Works as expected

  • element shield works as intended.
  • engulf works as intended. Very niche ability.
  • equipollent is your room attack. Works well once you get your equipollent skill high enough.
  • siphon works as intended as a (very) slow NRG regen ability. Useful if energy drain (and corpse drain) isn't sufficient to keep you topped up. Watch that Link Energy though.
  • solidify is an extremely useful defensive power that toggles on and off. Drains significant Link Energy however. It's the primary reason Time Elementals raise their conveyance skill.
  • trap the soul is another extremely useful power. Worth buying the ktrig vaf just for this as it trivializes capturing the soul (and for the final slurp of energy drain!).


Not so much

  • barrier sounds good, but underwhelming. You're essentially using more nrg/rnd for a very small defensive buff. *
  • diffuse is another potentially useful sounding defensive power that isn't worth using.
  • condense is an ultra specific defensive ability that causes you to deal no damage.
  • energy wave is a NRG regen for OTHER elementals in the room, i.e. not you.
  • enshroud sdds a very small amount of specific AC to items that aren't very good.
  • disperse is our peace ability. It's clunky with drawbacks making it awkward to use.
  • age (Time) has no noticeable effect
  • spiritwrack (Spirit) Roll the dice! Will likely kill you or stop your heartbeat.

Skills

As you spend NRG in combat, you'll gain a reserve of NRG to use on skills which you can enhance. All skills have their own info file. Like gxp, you'll earn energy to spend on skills for each emit. Skill energy is a separate pool from size energy.

  • Manifestation: This is a big one. It's generally expensive, but well worth it. For every point you have in manifestation, your emits will cost one fewer NRG. So if you're using emit 4 and have manifestation 1, your emits will cost 3 NRG but you'll still do emit 4 damage, get 4 gxp, and 4 enhance energy.
  • Control: Control is closely tied to eec which is visible on escore2. If your control/eec are low, you will fail emits (the message says you emit weakly) and you will still consume NRG, but you won't get any gxp or do much damage. Keeping your control up will keep your EEC up, which will mean more consistent gxp.
  • Resistance: We're not a tanky guild, but what taking we can do is helped by the resistance skill. The effectiveness of your barrier power is also tied to resistance.
  • Resolve: Resolve is both a power and a skill. As a power, it can alter our damage type based on the elemental form you're in. The skill helps us do that damage type more consistently.
  • Efficacy: Efficacy will make our energy drain recover move NRG when you use it.
  • Elucidation: Elucidation will provide more (and more accurate) information when you use the evaluate power.
  • Equipollence: If you're in combat with multiple enemies, you can use the equipollent power to attempt do deal damage to all of them at once. The equipollence skill make us more effective when doing so.
  • Continuance: Increases our maximum NRG.
  • Cohesion: Make the rebuild power work more efficiently.
  • Vortex: Our elemental vortex (guild object) also doubles as a bag. The vortex skill will increase the number of items you can store in your vortex.
  • Intensity: Increases the damage we do.
  • Blast: When we create blasts, the blast skill makes our blasts blastier and more blasty. You also will get more time to give away your blast to enemies.
  • Vinculum: As you emit NRG in combat, you gain a reserve of "link energy." One of the things you can do with that link energy is siphon it off to regenerate your own NRG. Vinculum makes that transfer more efficient.
  • Focus: When using plane taps (earth tap, tidal wave, four winds, heat wave), focus will extend the duration of those taps.
  • Finesse: Finesse makes us more effective at dealing damage. It doesn't have a huge effect, but it definitely has some.
  • Conveyance: You will not start out with this skill. Once you get it, it will lower the link energy used for powers that use link energy. Mostly important for solidify which is a tanking power that uses link energy. Solidify costs 28 link energy per round and each point of conveyance reduces that by one. So, if conveyance + emit are at least 28, you will not lose link energy while using solidify.


Stats

  • Wisdom: This is our prime stat. Your wisdom directly affects how much damage you do with your emits.
  • Intelligence: More Spell Point means a bigger pool to draw from when using rebuild.
  • Constitution: Hit Points are important so we can stay alive. A dead mental does no damage.
  • Dexterity: It's listed as neutral, but it helps us avoid attacks and that's a good thing.
  • Strength: You'll need strength to carry gear but your guild object (elemental vortex) doubles as a bag which can help.
  • Charisma: It's listed as lower, but it's pretty important to an Elemental's damage (see below)


There are two "sets" of stats for Elementals and the ratios of those stats are very important.

For damage, you must keep your Charisma one more than half your Wisdom.

For tanking, you must keep your Strength one more than half your Dexterity.

If you don't watch this, you will take big hits to your ability to deal and mitigate damage. Stat buffs can bring up your Cha/Str to keep your abilities balanced, but getting your Wis/Dex buffed won't negatively impact the balance.


Final thoughts

Changes over the years have greatly increased the progression through the basic forms. And tanking, damage, and NRG repletion upgrades have greatly improved the overall experience.

Even the rules around the infamous Spirit Quest have been relaxed to the point one can ask for hints, or even VAF for an auto-complete!

But we're definitely a long-form guild in terms of progression. If we were to consider Time size 1000 as a college freshman (slightly earlier, but 1000 will do), then the four basic forms are elementary school; Spirit is middle school; Time to 1000 is high school. We're only starting to unlock our true potential after a combat-year+ of grinding... And I mean this in the real sense that meaningful abilities are freshly unlocked and progression choices exist.

The downside is, there's a lot of progression to work towards.

The upside is, there's a lot of progression to work towards :)