What's the point of a ToA? (in General)

Vaynard [Fees Dirt Cheap] March 15 2005 12:55 AM EST

First off, I have nothing against them and will probably be using mine on my single tank once I make him. But looking at recent changes has left me wondering if this tattoo should be passed by.

To start with, we all know tattoos add to your PR now. This is fine, since they all give you something unique that would be otherwise unattainable- IE: extra minion, major damage reduction. But what about ToA? It adds strength and dexterity and PR. Just training dexterity and strength does the same thing. Maybe in lesser amounts per PR points, but I think you get my point.

I guess I just don't get what makes it special. It leaves your tank rather armorless, without extra blockers, and because of changes doesn't really do anything that more fighting/training wouldn't accomplish by itself. It's a quick way to raise a tank's stats and PR, but is that such a great thing where your rewards are reduced if your PR is closer to the scores of others you are fighting?

Relic March 15 2005 1:01 AM EST

Yeah, pretty much. :) Recent changes have negated much of the lackluster of the ToA.

Tenchi Muyo March 15 2005 1:01 AM EST

A ToA's DX/ST ratio is 0.6 per level. A ToJ's DX is 0.3, and ST is 0.2. Currently, I have a 78k named ToA. I can kill 150k+ named ToJs, and with my BoTH, I take 0 damage due to the life gained when I hit them, because they miss almost constantly against my DX, while I get double hits everytime.

Chargerz-Back March 15 2005 1:04 AM EST

i was un aware you couldn't get major damage reduction any other way in CB. i was pretty sure massive AC and Protection dulled down damage.

Vaynard [Fees Dirt Cheap] March 15 2005 1:10 AM EST

Yeah, I get that Kiaousama. Higher stats are nice indeed, and they do make you more impervious to ToJ's. However, I'm just wondering why go with a ToA when you can just train your ST & DX high enough yourself and then save the tatoo for a blocker ToJ or to make yourself super-tough with a ToE.

All these questions aren't helping anything though. I suppose that what I should be asking is how ToA's could be made necessary for tanks like the ToE and ToJ are. How about if it didn't raise your PR nearly as much as the other tattoos? Or what if it added something else that would make it equally unique in what it did like other tattoos, such as add a very minor VA bonus (like the MH) to the wearer? Just ideas. And maybe I'm not even looking at ToA's in the right light and they aren't indeed underpowered to the other tattoos. And maybe it's not really a problem that it doesn't give something unique like other tattoos do. Thoughts?

Fishead March 15 2005 1:40 AM EST

I think part of the ToA strat is that you can spend less exp on str and dex and more on other things, like HP. I'm with you, though. I'd go with a ToE.

Todd March 15 2005 6:35 AM EST


You raise a good point. Before tattoos increased your PR, the advantage of a ToA is that it gave your tank a higher than normal (at his old PR level) level of both dex and str. Now the ToA seems to just move the tank team ahead in time, like he would be had he trained that experience himself.

But, it does allow you to kill ToJs where before you could not. However, at what price? Well, a minion. The ToJ familiar is now dead, hurrah! but, erm, wait a minute. Now your battle-weary tank must face other fresh minions who were hiding behind the ToJ.

I'm becoming more disillusioned with the ToA. But, like most of us here, we keep fighting hoping that it will make sense some day. Mind you, I'm trying the archer strat, and everyone says I should have split my NW equally between an elbow and a nice melee weapon.. I tried that, I was doing a lot less damage, but in all of the rounds. Now, I do a lot of damage, but only in ranged. So, what is better? I'm not sure.

QBJohnnywas March 15 2005 7:05 AM EST

Todd, if your tank is moving forward in time, can you ask him to bring back some future changelogs next time he travels?!! =)

miteke [Superheros] March 15 2005 7:15 AM EST

Biggest differences:

ToA adds stats linearly. 1000 Exp gives you the same amount of hp/dex at higher levels. Someone correct me if I am wrong on this.

All tattoos earn experience but do not consume it. A tattoo takes an even share of the experience, but does not take any experience from the other minions, except in that it raises PR and makes it harder to earn it.

Tattoos take up armor slots.

Tattoos are transferable.

A 100 STR/100Dex minion is at a far higher PR than a 50+50/50+50 minion gaining 50 of that 100 from a tattoo. So the tattooed char will gain more experience and money fighting the same fights, and that experience will count double if a single minion team.

Blarg March 15 2005 4:01 PM EST

Good point Vaynard, but...

I use my ToA for all my STR and DEX, saving the XP for other things like AMF, HP, and GA. Basically, a ToA saves XP for other things.

Vaynard [Fees Dirt Cheap] March 15 2005 4:01 PM EST

I'm not exactly sure what your point is there miteke. Yes, it adds strength and dexterity linearly at whatever. Yes, it takes away from your armor slots, and yes it doesn't take experience- but since it adds PR it basically takes away from your rewards (unless your scores goes up an equal amount).

It's going to be interesting though. If Jon implements the tattoo-smithie or whatever it's called, will ToA's largely disappear? I already think I'll switch mine to ToE if that happens. Well, maybe.

Grant March 15 2005 4:14 PM EST

ToAs make tanks on 2 and 3 minion teams viable against single tanks, stat-wise. That hasn't been changed by anything recent.

Tribute March 15 2005 5:50 PM EST

Oh I know! ToA's allow you to wear extremely DX damaging armor instead of training haste and doing the same thing!

Otherwise, I think they're pretty bad.

Vaynard [Fees Dirt Cheap] March 15 2005 5:59 PM EST

Tribute: that is true. But still, it means you miss several key armor pieces as well though, the AC and SC would mean a ton of missed armor. What good is a heavy armored tank if you can't equip half of it?

Grant: That's probably the best point yet. Maybe I'm looking at this wrong, maybe single tanks aren't meant to have or use these. Maybe it's for the 4 minion teams that can't keep their tank ahead of massive EC's in middle/late game.

Cossadinha March 15 2005 7:53 PM EST

Hey Vaynard, I cannot prove this, but maybe the ToA improves ST/DX in a cheaper way, thus making the tank stronger than a fellow with same PR without the ToA. Then again, I am just guessing

spydah March 15 2005 8:06 PM EST

If I remember right, a Tat gains xp = to the minin it is attatched to, so if you have 4 minions, it is only a 1/4th share. Not a huge climb in stats there, so not sure how good it would do for that tank. Assuming that is right, better buy a big tat :p

As others have mentioned, ToA is used primarily for XP funneling (that has got to be spelled wrong, but I don't care wnough to look it up :p). I use mine so I can have archery 'free'.

A little strat talk as I see it here in Tat Blender. ToA is only usefull if you are going for a ninja. If you want a Spid of CB1, you want a ToE, or just armor. I am going for the ninja effect here, so I want HUGE dex, along with archery at 1, amongst other things. So, how to do that without sacraficing st or hps? ToA. I have 3rd highest HPs in he game and the highest st and dx (effectivley, heck, somehow I am on the top 5 base st... that shouldn't be :p).

So, had I not the ToA, where do you think my stats would be? If I had 700k worth of armor/AC, would that be nearly as useful? Would I be able to do nearly as well? I seriously doubt it.

Long run? It's a lot of extra focused xp.


AdminJonathan March 15 2005 8:11 PM EST

contrary to CB urban legend, tattoo xp gain is not affect by the number of minions it is around.

Myonax March 15 2005 11:35 PM EST

I Personally don't see ToA or ToE as being a viable long term tattoo.

ToA Pros:
Good for a 3-4 Minion Team w/ a tank.
Great for 200k-1 million PR Single tanks.
ToA Cons:
At extreme PRs 1.5Million+ St/dex gains have limited Returns

ToE Pros:
AMF reduction/Damage reduction is Great for tanks/mages
ToE Cons:
Very hard to balance at 1million plus level. There is a very Fine line between a ToE being so good that no damage gets taken and a 1 million ToE being nearly as effective as a 500k ToE.

Jon is much smarter then me, so maybe my fears are unfounded, but personally I see a DD/Jiggy is the only safe way to go, you know exactly what your getting and the gains will be always consistant.

Nightmare [NewNightmares] March 16 2005 12:28 AM EST

Myonax.. I can see your point with the ToE, but the STR/DEX gained, even at high prs, will make or break ToA tank vs. non-ToA tank fights. Using your 1.5M PR example, say you grabbed the ToA at lvl 20, and levelled it solely on a brand new pr 1 character on up. The ToA would have a level of approx. 1.05M, therein giving a bonus of about 630k to STR and DEX. At equal PRs, the ToA tank will get hit less (DBs may be necessary to stop weapons with high +'s), and hit harder/more often. Or, the ToA tank will have a similar STR/DEX, but a much higher HP, which makes for an even fight. Either way is a decent deal.

[FireBreathing]Chicken March 16 2005 12:38 AM EST

ToAs have awesome uses. If you have a CoC/decay mage, slap on a ToA and an exbow, and you got an extra tank-disabling minion helping out in ranged. Just imagine all the possibilities! :D

Vaynard [Fees Dirt Cheap] March 16 2005 12:38 AM EST

I guess looking at it that way, Nightmare, a ToA may become pretty good to get. However, I still wish I could see some numbers. Such as say how high a PR a tank would have to be to naturally have 100k Strength and Dex and HP (and nothing else), vs how high his PR would be with a tattoo and stats adding to 100k. Maybe if I get motivated I'll try and find out...

Looks like my only other problem with the ToA then is that it makes it easier to die. It's a paradox really, since you have higher stats from the ToA you don't train them as much and instead go higher HP & AMF to offset your lack of armor. But then your stats will fall behind, and you will need to train them to take on other tanks and a ToJ or two.

Nightmare [NewNightmares] March 16 2005 12:43 AM EST

Ah, but to let STR/DEX fall behind would just be foolishness on the part of the ToA tank :-D The extra stats allow for your natural STR/DEX to fall behind a bit to train HP (and AMF at this point.. when those single mages become less and less prevalent, that can be unlearned and put right into the offensive stats)

Tenchi Muyo March 16 2005 1:24 AM EST

The other big bonus is, you can use heavier penalty items for DX/ST. % modifiers do not affect ToA stat gains, which can be very useful when outfitting your tank.

QBJohnnywas March 16 2005 5:44 AM EST

FirebreathingChicken, you do love that CoC archer don't you?!?!? Check out Warchild's Alucard for a good use of a ToA. I did the same strat for a while but only had a Lesser. I found the slower levelling speed of the lesser made it impossible to move up in score quickly. The ToA, as several people have said, leaves your xp free to be channelled into other areas - HP can be huge, you can have archery, and a large AMF for example while your st/dx rises on it's own. Yes your muscles can have a mind of their own!
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