Grant's Strategy

Note: The latest Direct Damage (such as fireball) damage reduction and effectiveness of Tattoo of Endurance (ToE) on single minion teams make this somewhat less effective.

Q: Should I use one or four minions?

A: One minion. There are two reasons for this: First, four minions is for geniuses. If you were a genius, you'd be too busy curing cancer to play CB. Two and three minion teams are both more complicated than four minions by an order of magnitude, so don't worry about them. The reason for this is the dilution of offensive power that multi-minion teams have to conquer. One minion teams just have to deal with staying alive.

Second, one minion teams are more effective at low levels because of the reduced cost of healing. While insignificant at higher levels, at low levels, one minion teams net worth grows much more quickly. You're at a low level.

Q: Tank or Mage?

A: Mage. Tanks are for the people in the top 10 who don't have to worry about net worth, for people with more than one minion on their team. None of those should describe you.

Q: Which Direct Damage Spells?

A: Fireball (FB), because you don't have to worry about friendly fire. Cone of Cold (CoC) Mages are similar in effectiveness, but it takes careful balancing to make them survive 5 rounds. You don't want to have to do careful balancing. Use a FB Mage with half its total XP in FB.

Q: Which Tattoo? Tattoo of Endurance (ToE) or Fire Familiar (FF)?

A: Get this equipment first. ToE, because ToE is the ONE way you can reduce AMF. The other way is to use Noldorin Spellcasters. Having played both one minion ToE and FF teams, I can tell you the ToE team beats the FF team silly because the FF normally dies in the first round, and the ToE lasts until the end of the fight. FFs are for 2, 3, or 4 minion teams, which you don't want yet. Remember, your most important investment is having the largest tattoo you can use. RoBF also works well at early levels, both against tanks and against other FB teams. You shouldn't have problems with MM (about 1/2 FB damage) and CoC (takes 3 turns before they attack) unless they have a Rune of Balrog Flame.

Q: What Armor?

A: This is actually nonintuitive, but Hard Leather Caps are better than Cabassets if you plan on upgrading, because they don't have as steep an upgrade curve. Leather Gloves are similarly better than Leather Gauntlets, if you're upgrading them. (Jon doesn't care about this disparity). Leather Boots are your only option for your feet until you can afford Displacement Boots (DBs) far, far in the future. Alatar's Gloves are the only choice for your hands. Wait until over 10,000 MPR to put any upgrades on your armor. You can equip _base_ armor immediately with no power hit, however.

Q: Shouldn't I worry about the Rune of Solitude (RoS)?

A: No, because they are only effective against Mages, so teams that build their strategies around them, outside of farms, have no future, and most farms won't bother investing in them.

Q: When should I hire other minions?

A: If you want to be strong, never. But sooner or later you'll get bored because you really don't have anything to spend your money on except BA and maybe an extra + on your Displacement Boots (DBs), so try to build up extra money to buy your extra minions and the gear for a Wall and a Tattoo of Augmentation (ToA) Tank, which is what the top 10 teams mostly have in common---against the rainy day, as it were. Buy the gear before the minions, of course.

Q: Should I use Enchant Defense Spells (ED)?

A: Now that Protection is gone as a spell, there is no need for any ED spells

Q: Should I use Enchant Offense Spells (EO)?

A: I recommend Dispel Magic (DM) at about 1/4 level of your FB, because DM is only effective to the extent that it double hits defensive enchantments, and you want to hit both their Guardian Angel (GA) and Ablative Shield (AS), the two most used ED.

Edited by PainKiller: I don't think 1/4 level of FB on DM is enough. It is a all or nothing proposition. I say train 1/2 of your total XP into DM, or something like 1/10 to counter VA and other small ED, or none at all.

Q: Should I join a clan?

A: Yes. Because you're going to be fighting more because you're a Mage (and don't have anything to do but buy BA). Also, you'll make the money back weekly from more people trying to fight you even if you don't get in the bonus. Start off in your own clan, and don't join another unless they're in the bonus. Also, look at the clan founder to see how much they fight, because they're the only person who can't be kicked out of the clan for non-performance.

Q: FS/WTB or Auction?

A: Always buy in auction when you can, because upgraded items are sold below net worth. FS/WTB tend to be worse deals, so only use them if you're impatient or desperate.

Q: OK, so I ignored you and became a Tank. What should I do?

A: Make sure you buy in auctions instead of upgrading as much as possible. Focus on Katanas and Executioner's Swords (Execs) at first. You'll probably want at least a 2 minion team and a ToA. And you'll suffer. Because tanks are only competitive for people who know how to build a team and have the funds to do so.

    last edited by Brakke Bres at Jan 25 2009 - Edit Grant's Strategy

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