The Highs and Lows of the Direct Damage Spell "Decay" (in General)
August 27 2006 6:12 PM EDT
You can train a base decay 1000 (1) for just about 6645 or so points. And, as the wiki mentions, just this much will inflict damage equal to half the opponent's HP if that opponent has no AMF protection.
First off the highs. Unquestionably, an opponent who has no AMF trained, typically the DM+FB mage out there, is in the meat grinder. Put an AoI on this Decay minion, and watch the opponent dissolving in a few melee rounds.
So, what is the problem? Unquestionably AMF. Now, this is what the wiki has to say about the relation between your Decay and the opponent's AMF:
"Your AMF % is the AMF level to opponent magic ratio. So the AMF % will differ from opponent to opponent.
When used versus Decay, the damage inflicted follows a different mechanism: it is based upon the AMF % multiplied by 1/2 of the opponent's Hit Points at the time of casting."
I used to have 36,100 (1) decay. Not having read the wiki properly, and wondering what the fuss was about extending decay when even 1000 (1) works just as well, I untrained the lot to add to my AMF on the same minion. The results were interesting, to say the least.
If you have just that base 1000 (1) decay, even a moderate AMF level is going to reach 0.90 to 0.99, even 1.0. When that happens, your decay minion's HPs will start halving every melee round, while the decay itself is fizzled to zero. Previously, with 36,100 (1) decay, the AMF active against me from the same team would be 0.30 or so.
This means that it makes no sense to have a base 1000 (1) decay, because even if you selectively target the DM-only teams, AMF teams are going to farm you at will.
So, the compromise solution is to have Decay, in order to target the DM-only teams, but to keep it trained at a high enough level, at least 30,000+(1), so that the opponent's AMF percentage is reduced, and the AMF backlash on your decay minion comes down.
Since I had about 60k HP in this minion, and a 120k AS covered the whole team, I could afford to whittle the HP and rebuild the Decay to 47,000 (1). The lesson learnt: if you want Decay, keep it trained high. Maybe, I ought to update the wiki to reflect these facts.
the key is the combination of the ToE and decay...
my NUB character had a huge Decay decay mage and as novice says the ToE was the key to it working
August 27 2006 10:43 PM EDT
The ToE acts in the preventive sense. How about interpreting the RoS' actions in terms of facilitating a huge AS boost, as well as the DM fizzle it provides, as a compensatory effect that could measure up to the ToE's preventive effect?
the ToE is the only thing that reduces AMF backlash, which increases based on the HP of caster, so no the RoS doesn't compensate.
August 28 2006 5:07 AM EDT
Novice, I beg to differ. The AMF backlash (of Decay) is based on the HP of the target of the Decay, not the caster of Decay (nor the caster of the AMF, unless it happens to be the target of the Decay).
RoS on an AS minion would compensate with higher HP, but probably not as much as a similar level ToE on the Decay mage.
I still think Decay has a major problem serving as the primary DD spell of a strat. The more opposing minions there are, the less effective it is, and as you get further up the rankings, 3- and 4-minion teams dominate.
August 28 2006 10:53 AM EDT
Negator, I do not believe that is true. Decay's AMF backlash is like the Decay spell itself -- it halves the caster's HP. At least that is my recollection.
So yes, Decay backlash in the first round Decay fires can be huge, thereby overwhelming a ToE, but later on, the backlash gets rapidly smaller.
Still not a good idea to put decay on a huge wall with large AC -- better to just let him do the "wall" thing. But on other types of minions, training base decay is a no-downside proposition (with potentially huge upside).
If you need Decay, just put it on an enchanter. Take advantage of any AS you have. But even with no AS, decay can't injure a 20 HP enchanter. Also, if you use two decay enchanters you have a good chance of one of them making it to melee.
August 28 2006 10:59 AM EDT
I bow to your wisdom. Re-reading the wiki, though the wording is not 100% clear, it can be read to support your interpretation, and I am too lazy to investigate. :)
Negator, please drive through...
August 28 2006 12:17 PM EDT
I wasn't sure either, I have not used Decay in literally years... And I am bad about reading the Wiki too. *smile*
Decays AMF backlash is based on the AMF % multiplied by 1/2 the casters HP at time of casting. :)
Endurance will reduce this as usual.
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