Tuesday, November 22, 2011

What If...?: Fusion Magic

As cheating bosses -- and, potentially, mobs -- become more prevalent, teamwork and playing with a partner (or three) become even more valuable concepts to completing Wizard101 battles successfully.  Venturing with someone whose school matches yours increases your chances of supporting one another, since you can use the same Blades and Traps.  In fact, my Storm Wizard and a friend's Diviner were able to quest all the way to Malistaire after we received Tempest without needing to heal; we demolished the mobs before we took any damage.  Another beneficial -- and more effective -- tactic of teamwork is questing with someone that's the opposite of your school (Fire and Ice, Myth and Storm, Death and Life) to virtually eliminate the need for Prisms (or conversions).  Cassandra Hexthorn and I are able to fly through mob battles just by using our Rank 4 AOE and a few modifiers; she can handle the Ice creatures that I despise, while I wipe out the Fire-based enemies that resist her.  And, other than just ending battles faster, a variety of schools (especially in a full team) is the most optimal tool at anyone's disposal.  Without being able to synchronize effective combos, such as using Steal Ward or Pierce Train to break a cheater's 90% Tower Shield before a Fire or Storm attack is executed, duels can take a copious amount of time.  Let alone, as this game evolves, soloing isn't becoming any easier.  Heck, even the Rhino mount is advocating for increased social interaction!

When we look at the history of game-changing mechanics, there's a common theme to what these updates are focused on.  Critical and Block Ratings, Advanced Pets, Astral Magic, and Armor Piercing (coming soon with Zafaria) can all benefit a single player, whether or not they have teammates.  In other words, when my questing allies have logged off, all of these features (Critical, Pets, Astral, Piercing, etc.) are still available to me, and I'm not losing out on anything when my friends are offline.  It feels great to be able to play and not have to be dependent on matching schedules with someone else.

However, what if there was a game mechanic or feature that becomes an incentive (or a reward) for practicing teamwork and/or coordination between multiple schools?  Instead of four Storm Wizards being the most effective bulldozer to mow down normal mobs, why don't we introduce Fusion Magic, where a tertiary effect occurs when two or more specific schools lay out their spells in succession?

This idea is actually inspired from my Atlantica Online days and from contemplating how it'd feel to be a mob that was drenched in a fierce Tempest and suddenly frozen by a Blizzard follow-up attack.  In AO, when certain DoTs were stacked on top of one another, they'd produce an entirely new spell that would affect the targets in a unique fashion that couldn't be accomplished if the DoTs were cast separate of one another.  For example, if Break Down (visual effect of an earthquake, physical DoT) and Chaos Wind (a vortex of wind magic, elemental DoT) were played consecutively, the affected units are affected by a new spell called Destructive Wind.

If this were implemented into Wizard101, imagine all the different possibilities and outcomes that would follow:
  • Let's say one mechanic would require a new spell called "Fusion," which is a pair of Universal Prisms, meaning any school will affect them.  Two Prisms are placed upon one target.

    To use "Fusion," two attacks of opposite schools must damage the target consecutively (one right after another, without any other school in between).  In other words once the Prisms are placed, a Fire-then-Ice or Ice-then-Fire combo must take place -- it can be on the same OR different turns (under the condition that no other school's spell uses up the second Prism).  Thus, DoTs like Fire Dragon and Snow Angel must be timed correctly, or else one of the ticks from one school will remove the second Prism, nullifying the "Fusion" spell.

    If a "Fusion" is used correctly, the following events can occur:

    If Fire Dragon followed after Snow Angel, for example, it'd create a spell/effect called "Steam Wall."

    (The Snow Angel  tick is removed, only to be replaced by a tick that's silver/grey.  This tick would not do any damage, but it will last for two rounds after it has been placed, and not allow the victim to cast any magic upon anyone else but themselves.  It is almost like a "blindness" effect, where self-target spells do not fizzle, but anything else that targets allies or enemies WILL fizzle.  Enemies and allies, however, can still target the afflicted creature/player.)

    If Snow Angel were to follow Fire Dragon, "Freezer Burn" would take place.

    (The Fire Dragon's tick is removed, replaced by a tick that's pearl white.  This tick would do very little Astral damage (50 per turn) for two rounds, and act as a Stun per tick.  Of course, if a Stun Shield is present, then a Stun is avoided while the shield is removed.  So, someone with 3 Stun Shields under Freezer Burn would have only 1 Stun Shield after the spell is exhausted.)

  • Or, what if any school could "fuse" with any school (except with its own), and what if the order the spells were used in didn't matter, as long as they were casted consecutively?

    Death and Myth could fuse to create "Shattered Dreams," which removes all charms on the target, and adds a 10% Weakness spell for every unique* charm on them (*though Elemental and Spiritual blades consist of three different charms, they will be counted as one single charm, as a whole).

    Storm and Fire could fuse to create "Acid Rain," which creates a personal bubble around the target (similar to Star magic) for three rounds, which imbues an additional 15% Armor Piercing to any incoming attack.  Thus, if an attacker already has 20% Armor Piercing on their spell, this bubble will increase it to 35% Armor Piercing onto the victim.  (Of course, the victim could always play another Star Magic spell to cut off its normal duration!)
Keep in mind that the concept of fusing is NOT meant for increasing damage (Meteor's damage + Blizzard's damage != fusing), but it is meant for creating an effect with unique properties on a chosen target.  Thus, it's possible that Fusion Magic will result in lowered damage output (like removing a Snow Angel tick in the first example), but, as I've explained to Ronan when he feels uneasy about using his Nova when he's stacked with three different types of Weaknesses, spells don't always have to deal significant damage to be useful.  

For example, while I may lose my Snow Angel tick in the Steam Wall spell, a hypothetical boss will be unable to cast anything onto anyone but itself for two rounds.  That means we could nullify a cheat (instant-fizzle, per Steam Wall's effect) together.  

I do have my solo-happy friends in mind, however.  So, I'll reiterate that these Fusion spells are not required to beat certain bosses, but rather, to help cut down time and act as an optional, auxiliary mechanic (just like Gardening, where you don't have to utilize this feature to be able to fight Morganthe).  I just feel that it would be interesting to introduce a type of "chemistry" where reactions occur between two different "elements."  Thus, with the Mastery Amulet and/or a minion, Fusion magic can be achieved without another player, and there still exists the essence of "team strategy," timing, and combination spells.

I'd like to hear your thoughts on this matter: whether you agree, disagree, or want to "fuse" your own ideas with mine, or make up some of your own spells using my prescribed system, please leave your responses down below!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Petnome's Pet Feeding List

Another tool/reference page the Petnome Project is providing and maintaining is a "library" of all the possible Pet Feeding rewards for certain items:  The Pet Feeding List.  If you need a quick way to access this without adding it to your favorites, just remember that you can find this over at the Petnome Project (one of the links at the top of the front page), or visit:

The link must be typed in verbatim to this, or else your browser will become lost in the interwebs!

If you'd like to help us out, please visit

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Petnome Calculator 2.0.0 Released!

Right click and select "Save As..." to download it to your desktop, or simply left click the link below to use it through your web browser (Adobe Acrobat 6.0 or higher must be installed):

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Zafaria Test Realm Patched!

Recently, the Test Realm has been updated with a few new tweaks:


Kevin:  Hey guys, Battleblood here.  So, there're some exciting updates in the game now, in Zafaria!  I'm actually on the Live Realm farming Nastrond -- I'll soon explain why we're farming here.  

First of all, there's been an update to the Henchmen.  You can actually fight with creatures of the Spiral...next to you.  So, you can literally have a Helephant -- well, not a Helephant, but one of the Black Cultists from Zafaria -- as a Level 70 Henchman.  They're supposed to be stronger, since they're more expensive.  I think they're 400 Crowns, but they're (supposedly) worth it.  They're worth buying -- I guess -- if you're in a rut, or if you're stuck somewhere.  They have higher Critical Rates...

At the same time, the creatures of the Spiral (in Zafaria) also have higher Critical Rates themselves.  Thus, your battles could be a lot longer than before.  I know their Health has spiked up along with their Critical Rates.  What that means is that there's a chance you might be spending much more time fighting than running around and questing, depending on how many teammates you have, and it might be harder to Block their Criticals.  You might have to shield more, or even use Conviction in your decks now, especially to ensure that you don't become stunned.  I remember from last night fighting Life mobs, and they've used Forest Lord on their first turn, and they actually saved up Pips to to another Forest Lord after that.  Because I was by myself, I had to work out some heals, get my own Vengeance up (so I can Critical better on them) and escape the battle faster to collect the Health wisps.  That's the good news: there's an abundant amount of Health wisps flying around.  Therefore, you might not struggle that much, but it's all about what you do in the battles now.

I don't know if the Bosses themselves have changed, but I'll do a Vlog on that when I get the chance.

As for now, Pet Feeding has also been tweaked a little bit!  But, before we get to that...

Some spells have been amp'ed up or nerfed:  there are the Sirens, which have been nerfed -- it went from 900-something damage to 800-something; Dr. Katzenstein's Monster has been renamed -- or, maybe it's always been that way (I haven't been paying attention) -- but it's called Dr. Von's Monster, and it does Life Steal still, but now it's buffed so that it adds a 25% Infection on the target; and, Chimera has about 30 damage added to each head, so it's an increase of 90 -- they didn't really add any other special effects (which is a little disappointing for some Balance wizards; I was kind of hoping that one of the heads might give a small DoT that does 90 damage to help remove shields from one Spiritual School).

The reason why I'm in Nastrond is because KingsIsle has expanded the window on what items can give Pet XP (PXP)!  To follow up on the last Vlog, where I said that it was based on regular or holiday Crowns items: now you can feed Auctionable items!  Last night, I went into the Bazaar, and bought a bunch of Level 0-1 Amulets (which gave Firecat), and started feeding my pet those.  It actually gained 1 XP here, and 1 XP there!  Most of the time, though, it received gold.

Now, that's not totally profitable if you're looking for an income of gold.  In the example above, I'm purchasing these Amulets for 38 gold each, but received only 2 gold back if my pet didn't gain XP.  My strategy is to collect as many Non-Auctionable items as possible, and feed that to my pets!  The cool part is that there is no difference between feeding your pet a No Auction item (and receiving gold for that) than selling it to a Shop Vendor (like the Seamstress, for example).  

So, what I'm doing here is collecting as many No Auction items as possible -- since it's from a high-level world, I'll have a chance of 4 XP per feed, if I get lucky.  Or, I can get the same gold I'd get if I sold it to a vendor, (plus some additional rewards like Reagents or Treasure Cards).

Plan to plant many Pink Dandelions, King Parsleys, Silver Trumpet Vines, or any of those plants that tend to give their own seeds at Mature or Elder.  I know that Silver Trumpet Vines sometimes like to give two of their own seeds at Elder; Prickley Bears also do this.  There's a small chance for Pet XP when you feed your pet these surplus seeds.

If your items are Auctionable, I would recommend selling to the Bazaar if you're short on gold, rather than feeding it to your pets.  If they're not Auctionable, you can feed those items on-the-go to make room for Auctionables!  If you'd like to see the results of the Pet Buffet Survey yourself, you can go to http://tinyurl.com/petnomefeedresults, or you can conveniently visit the Petnome Project and browse the links towards the top of the front page.  There will be a spreadsheet which has collected a bunch of data from numerous contributors, and if you scroll down towards the bottom, you'll pass the light-blue colored text (which represents the data accumulated before this Test Realm Patch) and come upon the current data in solid, black text.  It will help give an idea of which items are giving PXP!

Last, but not least, if you look at the Update Notes on the official site, they've scratched out the word "sometimes" and written in "occasionally" (in the Pet Feeding section).

I hope you've enjoyed this video; if you did, please Subscribe, Like, and/or Comment if you have some questions, and I hope to see you guys in the Spiral, and hope you've enjoyed your day!  Peace out!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

How We've Truly "Transcended"

Why I think this title is a perfect fit for us as wizards AND as gamers...and a little info on the Pet Buffet Survey and small update to the Petnome Project:

Saturday, November 5, 2011

"Next World" Leveling Preparation

Ever reach the level cap and feel like you've accomplished everything, and end up ignoring the side quests hiding around the Spiral?  Or, if you are a hardcore "completionist," ever feel the need to clean out your Quest Book?  Here are some tips on how changing those impulses may be beneficial for the long run:

Haiku Interpretation of Zafaria and Upcoming Updates

Zafaria comes
Stampeding, my heart beating
With the native drums.

Soon, Legendaries
Become no more, searching for
Unbound Transcendence.

New monsters, new spells
Lie in wait by promised fate...
Of what strength, pray tell?

Decorations are
Becoming one, balancing
Their large, wrathful form.

Demonic creature
Speaks thrice; empty of advice,
But full of terror.

Pieces no longer
Resting in peace, but released
Combined and stronger.

Giant beasts charging
With an ivory present
Granted to a foe.

A shower of heat
To wash away confidence
From one’s enemies.

A corrosive spray
To drown away defenses
And immobilize.

Beauties of malice
Evoke a cold melody
For those who listen.

Spheres of translucence:
One aiding blessings, while
One's eye for an eye.

In flows new concepts:
Penetrating resistance,
And pet engorging,

Aside from small games,
Critters and creatures shall fight
A large invasion

Along a long path
Foes arrive with stubborn drives;
No rest 'til their end.

Warriors, shamans,
And elders alike struggle
With their own kinship.

Ominous evil
Of parasitic nature
Infests lands and hearts.

Water defiled,
Spirits crushed like fine powder,
Homeland turned war zone.

Harmony shaken,
The black widow is spinning
Her destructive web...

It is now the time
To seek out the Dark Nest's queen
And purge her poison.

Uncover secrets
And restore alliances;
Enlighten yourselves.

Under the red sky,
Wizards will raise their wands high;
To cast back darkness.

(Add your own haiku
Within the comments section
For Zafaria!)

Friday, November 4, 2011

Test Realm: Acquiring the Level 68 Ice Spell, Woolly Mammoth; Testing Mend and Berserk Star Spells

The lovely Cassandra Hexthorn and I quested through Zafaria to finally reach Level 68. This video explores three new spells from Zafaria: Woolly Mammoth, Berserk, and Mend.

Test Realm: Acquiring the Level 68 Fire Spell, Rain of Fire

The lovely Cassandra Hexthorn and I quested through Zafaria to finally reach Level 68, and she had to go to sleep. So, I took over to visually document the fight to obtain this spell and analyze its capabilities.

Test Realm: Zafaria (Day 1)

Review of the new updates released today, and a new extended project for the Petnome Team.  A careful look over the new Pet feeding system, and a short glimpse into Zafaria!  More to come this weekend!