Saturday, May 28, 2011

By Crom! By Mitra! By Set! It is DONE!

 It has finally happened: I have acquired a full minigame armor. Back in black so to speak.
I am still needing 1 more dagger for offhand, but in truth I already have my offhand dagger and I have my eyes on much better one that can be bought from Hyrkanians (aka the bullshit faction).

It took a lot of minis, but its done.

It felt great to sell last pice of lvl 5 pvp "Nipple set" to the NPC. It was like snake shedding his skin and going off to a greener pastures (to bite sheeps no doubt).

In the end I am glad that I have not went for the Bori. I am feeling strangely fulfilled now that my set is completed. I cannot imagine how it must have felt to get the full set effortlessly via hitting rocks. Perhaps this is why there are hardly any "Bori-baked" assassins running around nowdays, at least on Aquilonia.

Now, I am not quite pleased about the head gear. I think it looks silly both for minigame gear and Bori gear - it reminds me for burqas.

This is why I am eagerly awaiting the social tab because I will be wearing THIS:
I will use this when social tabs are in game

or....Shadows of Jade armor. We shall see.

Anyhow, I will be focusing on getting my combo books now.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

[Guide] Fatality and YOU

 It is time for a little update to my old old brutality guide. Some things have changed, some are now better and of course you can enjoy the stunning visuals of dream world engine's zoom in on fatality. 

What is fatality?
Fatality is an killing animation that procs on killing hits. Not only it is a signature move of Age of Conan mmo, but it's also very beneficial to your character: 

1. you cannot be harmed during the animation,
2. animation cannot be interrupted,
3. you are still healing/regenerating during animation (from pots, hots, etc.)
4. you are dealing AOE damage to mobs/players in close proximity to your victim,
5. you gain great +20% dmg buff for 10s and amazing stamina regen.

How do I gain fatality?
Fatality is a proc. It means that you have certain chance that your spell/combo will proc the animation.
There is but one catch: you combo, spell or miasma has to be a killing show. It means that the damage dealt is higher than your target's HP. High damage spike is preferable and more reliable. For some reason landing combos on the side of mob/players that has shields stacked will proc fatality less often.

Here is what can proc fatality for assassins:
1. All combos. Death Whirlwind and Grave Blossom are preferred for their great damage spike. 
2. Spells. Soul detonation and Face stab + SDS/GC often proc fatality. 
3. Pure miasma. Even pure Face Stab/Soul Strike can proc fatality.Lotus dart can do it too,but on chickens ;p

Are all fatalities the same?
No. Some animations are longer than others, while some finishers won't give you animations at all. Here is the breakdown:

1. All combo proced fatalities will give animation on human type MOBs and players
2. No combo proced fatalities will give animation on non-human, humanoids or animals. 
3. No miasma or spell fatalities will give animation - regardless of target type.

Without animation you will only gain buff. You lose precious invulnerability time in animation and AOE damage, BUT you can use your the fatality buff longer and more actively because you are not locked in animation.

Is there cap/cool down on fatality?
No, you can proc them as many times in a row as you like. In fact fatality is most beneficial for its "chain-killing". You can get fatality, after fatality and by doing so you can take down LARGE amount of mobs which you wouldn't be able to kill otherwise because of your hit points.

How can I improve my fatality chance?
First of all your base fatality chance is 20%. That on it's own is pretty damn good. There are several means of upgrading your fatality chance:

1. fatality rating stat - utter crap. For example 40 fatality rating gives 1.1% fatality chance. Its a rare stat anyway. Do not sacrifice other stats for this.

2. brutality (feat, 3/3, +50% fatality chance) - you can read about it here. In current build hybrid reigns supreme and general tree is largely underpowered for assassins. Therefor brutality is hardly seen nowadays. If against your better judgement you are going deep into the general tree then pick up this gem. It is still worth it and stacking it with relish in death makes it better than ever.

3. relish in death (feat, 1/1, +15% fatality chance) - best feat you can get. If you are going with hybrid build I simply cannot imagine anyone skipping it. It upgrades your fatality chance to whooping 35% and you will REALLY notice the difference. It is passive, cheap and reliable. What else would you want? Mandatory for both solo PVE and PVP assassins.

4. The sixth con of Cang-Jei (pet, +100% fatality chance, +82 hit rating) - the king and queen of fatality. Period. You can buy this pet for mere 30g and 800 MOAs at rank 4 from Shadows of Jade faction. This pet has 2m cool down and it does what is says: 100% fatality, like always, all the time. The buff lasts 15s so you can really chain-fatality the mobs. There are only 2 downsides to this gem: it cannot be combo molded and it's usable only in solo instances and open world (out side the Border Kingdoms).

1. combo mold - you cannot drop this pet during animation (unlike brutality). You can use it between combo steps thou.
2. open world - you won't abuse this in minigames or while doing Bori which is damn shame. It is however a great addition to your solo PVE and open world PVP. 

Tips from brutality guide are applicable to this pet.

There is absolutely no reason not to get this pet. If you are going to buy JUST ONE Khitai pet make it this one. 

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Age of Conan: things that really get under my skin

There are few things in Age of Conan that are driving me insane. I find myself SCREAMING at the monitor when those things happen. My head shrink (aka doctor) said it would be very therapeutic for me to vent those feelings on me blog and share it with the rest of you cutters. Who knows, perhaps some of this also drives YOU crazy?

Open world treasure chests - aoc had given "treasure" a new meaning: its worthless junk, hidden around the world. Would you call 1 esteem token and a daggamalt pot a treasure? Yeah, more like TURDsure (see what I did there?). Sometime I am wondering why am I even bothering to open those shit boxes.

Trader - aoc has to have most broken economy in all of mmos. With useless crafting, very rare recipes, drops being BOP and no world epic there is hardly anything on trader. Hell, you could have quit the game in may 2008 and come back now and you would see same crap being sold. It is hard to imagine that in some games trader or auction house is a minigame of itself: there is always something shiny to buy or sell.

Crafting - I have posted on this already so just a reminder: still here, still broken, still pissing me off. I love crafting, but what is being offered in aoc is 1990' MUD style crapfest.

Mob drops - one of the insanely addictive aspect of MMOS is that the very next mob could drop some amazing item. Not in aoc or to be honest: not in Khitai. While the old world mobs can spit out some blues their khitaian counter parts will only shower you with bags from which a shower of garbage will fall out. I have spent in Khitai like a year and during my solo PVE I have been getting around +10 bags a day (from drops and from digging in Kara Korum). To this day I got like 4 blue items out of it. There are some LEGEND of equally mythical few players that got an epic drop out of it, but I don't think I believe it.

Random vs Random minigame pvp - Seriously, pull you head out of your ass Funcom. I have QQed about it few months ago and its still here. I got an advertisement for your pvp FC, feel free to use it: experience epic randomness of minigames with people you don't know to create teams that you won't like.

No longer bullshit:

CC - as of 2.2 CCs are back to being reasonable. Loving the change both in PVP and PVE

Faction progression and MOAS - another great change. It is no longer a living hell to progress through ranks and the MOA gains are great. It should have been like this since day 1.

Good start, now please tackle the rest of craziness :X

What drives you nuts in AOC? Drop me a line in comments.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Dagger and a bowl of rice ep.7: Shadows of Jade

*This post is spoiler free*

Recently I have been pretty dry on content to do. Yes, there are some epic items I want to buy with my rare tokens from Apostate runs (that's new solo instance), but lets get serious: it will be MONTHS before I will get 1 item (so far I have 50 tokens, WTB 100 more :X). That's hardly a content. I have made up my mind to do a crazy thing: I have ditched my rank 4 Brittle Blade (even thou I WANT their epic death's ward ring) and started Shadows of Jade. I remember how couple of months ago I have decided to go with Brittle Blade because Shadows didn't seem cool enough. Well they certainly have a little different vibe. First of all I have fallen in love with Shadow's gear.

Honestly I have craved it ever since I have seen that youtube video showcasing Jade armor. It reminds me of good old armors from vanilla AOC: simple yet detailed, very assassiny. I have collected quite few pieces of Jade armor and looking forward to upgrade it further. Having very advanced BB set (2 epic items, 1 dungeon upgrade, full solo gear)  there is difference between performance (in favor of BB DPS monster of course), but its not game breaking. I like this armor so much that I will willing to have it on all the time when social tabs are introduced to the game (could it be SOOOON? Check out GD letter. Is it the big surprise? Hope so.). Beside for some reason I find thief vibe to suit my character better than his original class of assassin. Its like Garrett vs Altair. For me Garrett is just cooler.

Altair from Assassin's Creed

Garrett from Thief series


I could NOT have done it. Period. I had to used like 70 of my veteran tokens to push myself through all the story. Good thing that the faction revamp is right around corner because I am 100% sure I wouldn't have leveled any faction to rank 4 the old fashioned way: through PAINFUL grind. The revamp in 2.2 will introduce 20h cool down on quests, but at the same time it will add a lot more MOA rewards (like instead of ...2 MOAS you will get 16 for same quest, sounds good eh?) and faction rep. I want to check the story from all perspectives which means leveling all the factions to rank 4.


Having completed both Brittle Blade and Shadows of Jade story line I must say that OBVIOUSLY someone have put more effort into writing the Brittle Blade stuff. Shadows of Jade story is decent at best, but falls short most of the times. Basically you are out to sabotage Brittle Blade and steal stuff. Stealing is good. There are some cool part too: in one quest you do some thing that affects the Brittle Blade story. Meaning: when you are playing as Brittle Blade you have a quest that you perform while not being aware that you got fooled by Shadows into doing the thing you did. Have I lost you? It was supposed to be spoiler free :P Trust me, its awesome. Another big surprise is the leader of Shadows of Jade. It will blow your brains out. Didn't see that coming.

The lootie

Apart from great armor (at least visually) there are 2 things that I want from Shadows: the pet and the pots. The pet gives fatality chance (which is great to stack with +15% fatality chance from relish in death feat) and the pot is good for some pvp. I plan to stack up on both Tiger's and Shadow's pots before betraying them.

There you have it. Give this faction a chance is you are just starting out. A lot of people are running in Brittle Blade gear so it will give you that distinctive look too. 

Shadows of Jade
Pet: The Sixth Con of Cang-Jei
grants +82 Hit Rating, +100% Fatality Chance, 15s duration (via Faction pets summarized)