Sacred:Tharkane's Incredible Codex of Daemons (Guide) Part 4

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Originally posted at DarkMatters for review and discussion.


Melee Daemon Builds


[color=red]The Warrior Daemon[/color]

The Daemon is quite different from the other characters in Sacred. Recognizing these differences is the first step in planning what to do with your Warrior Daemon. She is strong and powerful: this helps to compensate for her unique status and different abilities. Amongst the characters she is second only to the Gladiator in her starting health points, and Strength.

A discussion of what makes her different is in order, then, before we proceed any further.

[color=red]*Note Before You Proceed*[/color]: In order to prevent any confusion regarding weapon skills as you read through the build options below, the following background information should be considered essential information:

  • Weapon skills (i.e., Sword Lore, Axe Lore, etc.) are not required in order for a character to use weapons. For example, a Daemon who does not have Sword Lore may still equip and use a sword weapon.
  • Some weapons in the game feature minimum skill requirements your Daemon must meet in order to equip (and subsequently use) it in a weapon slot. Aarnum's Fiery Blade, the two-handed sword component of Aarnum's Regalia set, requires a minimum Sword Lore skill of 10 to use. If your Daemon lacks at least 10 points in the Sword Lore skill, she won't be able to use this sword. This is one limitation (there is a way around this, but that is covered elsewhere).
  • Another limitation: racially-restricted weapon types. The Daemon may not equip and use any weapon designated for a particular class, or the set weapon for another class. She may also never equip and use any weapon restricted to her in general: for example, all ranged weapons are off-limits to her, save for crossbows.
  • In the build guides below, whenever you see the Dual Wielding skill mentioned as a skill pick, assume that your Daemon will also use two-handed weapons and weapon + shield as circumstances require. Dual Wielding is a unique skill in the game. It functions as both a Weapon skill, and the skill which permits two one-handed weapons to be equipped in the same weapon slot. Every one-handed weapon used this way, regardless of its "parent" Weapon skill (i.e., all swords are governed by Sword Lore), are affected by the Dual Wielding skill when wielded as a pair. I explain this more thoroughly elsewhere on the forums.
  • It follows, then, that selecting the Dual Wielding skill affords your Daemon great flexibility and more options when it comes to populating your weapon slots.

Special combat moves - The Daemon doesn't possess the standard complement of combat moves shared by most of the characters in the game. This is a key factor that heavily influences melee Daemon builds.

Lack of racial weaponry - At this time, the Daemon lacks any racially-exclusive weaponry designed to take advantage of her skills and strengths. All she is possesses are the weapons of her special sets.

Weapon Synergies - On the whole, the Daemon excels in the use of the generic Blade Combat weapons: claws, knuckles, three-bladed daggers, and bladed spears. She is fastest with claws and knuckles. Note that she has a very fast attack animation with these weapons despite her statistical weapon speed figure. She cannot acquire the Blade Combat skill, yet this does not affect her actual attack speed when using these weapons. Her actual attack speed will be faster than a Dark Elf with the Blade Combat skill! The only Blade Combat weapon the Dark Elf can employ at a comparable speed are fistblades, exclusive only to him.

The Daemon also excels in the use of swords. Out of all the characters, her attack animation speed with this weapon is the fastest. Two-handed swords in the grip of a Daemon are swift and deadly, making their use a much more practical consideration in her case.

The crossbow is the only ranged weapon the Daemon may equip and use. In any form other than Soaring Daemon, her speed with a crossbow isn't exceptional nor noteworthy. While in the Soaring Daemon form, however, her rate of fire is best described as "automatic weapon fire." Naturally, a Warrior Daemon will want to make use of crossbow while she is flying.

[color=red]Daemon Form Considerations[/color]

The next step in planning a melee Daemon build centers around her five available forms. These forms were discussed earlier in the Codex: Battle Daemon, Fire Daemon, Poison Daemon, Energy Daemon, and Soaring Daemon. Four of the five forms are elemental in basis. The fifth form, Soaring Daemon, is different from the others as it changes how the Daemon interacts with the game environment.

What follows are melee considerations for each form, and their impact on her performance in combat.

Battle Daemon - Her resistance to physical damage increases while in this form. This has obvious benefits in melee. In addition, her physical damage output increases while in the form. The biggest drawback of Battle Daemon is the special attack, Assail. Because the Warrior Daemon relies on the action of her weapons instead of the infernal entities of the Hell Power, a form's special attack assumes great importance to her. Assail is very limited in use. The attack animation sequence is very slow, which can mean death in the higher difficulty levels. The number of hits Assail affords the Daemon is negligible: more can be gained damage-wise by using normal attacks, and in less time. It is for this reason I do not recommend making Battle Daemon a mainstay of the Warrior Daemon.

Fire Daemon - Of the four earthbound forms, Fire Daemon is perhaps the most effective. The special attack of the form, Wall of Flames, is an outstanding ranged attack that features a large area of effect at the detonation point, and excellent damage over time from burning. The spell Infernal Power amplifies the fire damage done by both the special attack, and by the elemental transference properties of the form. In this case, Fire Daemon transforms a percentage of physical damage into fire damage. A Warrior Daemon in Fire Daemon form under the influence of Infernal Power has outstanding damage potential, perhaps the best of all the other configurations. Modifiers which will increase fire damage done by the Daemon's weapons and the Wall of Fire attack: Infernal Power, Fire Damage: + X%.

Poison Daemon - Poison Daemon features as its special attack Poison Ring. The primary limitation of Poison Daemon is the lack of synergies with the Daemon's Hell magic spells. It is possible to compensate for this by focusing on the Daemon's ability to inflict greater poison damage. Because her Charisma statistic begins so low in relation to others, this will be a challenge. The best way to think of Poison Ring is to consider it the Daemon's equivalent of the Multi-Hit combat move, only more effective since all targets in the radius of the ring suffer damage. Modifier which will increase poison damage done by the Daemon's weapons and the Poison Ring attack: Poison Damage: + X%.

Energy Daemon - This is the Daemon's elemental Magic form. While the special attack - ranged magical orbs - isn't as effective as Wall of Fire, it nevertheless has great potential and should not be underestimated. In my estimation, Energy Daemon ranks second amongst the four elemental forms as the most useful and effective for a Warrior Daemon. Many opponents in the game are vulnerable to magic damage - especially undead. Modifier which will increase magic damage done by the Daemon's weapons and Energy Orbs: Magic Damage: + X%.

Soaring Daemon - The most unique of the Daemon's available forms. Soaring Daemon has many benefits for the Warrior Daemon:

  • The form increases defense rating
  • The form increases movement speed
  • Obstacle-hopping power - superior to the Battle Mage's Phase Shift and the jumping moves of the Dark Elf, Gladiator and Seraphim.
  • Rate of fire with crossbows is absurdly fast while Soaring
  • The Descent Attack, a ranged Hard-hit move that features area of effect damage and stun!

It is for these very important reasons I strongly recommend that Soaring Daemon be an intregal part of a melee Daemon build. Since Soaring Daemon does not intrinsically favor any particular damage type, it can fit with any configuration. The Descent attack is extremely effective and can occur virtually anywhere on a screen. A must-have!

[color=red]Statistics and Skills[/color]

Two of her statistics never need draw your attention: Strength, and Mental Regeneration. Both are very high at the start, especially Strength. Her weakest stats are Physical Regeneration, and Charisma. Focus on her weaker stats to increase as she increases in levels, and the rest will take care of themselves.

Dexterity would be a good statistic to increase. Dexterity indirectly influences fire damage, which is a boon for a Fire build. It also will directly influence defense rating, and indirectly affect attack rating. Since the Daemon lacks in the defense department, this is a good choice.

Her Charisma score is very low in the beginning. Charisma influences poison damage. If you desire a Poison build, increasing the Charisma statistic would be a good idea. Neglecting Charisma would be a handicap for a Poison Daemon.

[color=red]Skill Picks:[/color]

Option One:

Weapon Lore

Concentration

Weapon skill (3rd level) (Dual Wielding is a great pick here)

Spell Regeneration skill: Meditation or Hell Power (6th level)

Agility (12th level)

Armor (20th level)

Constitution (30th level)

Parrying (50th level)

Option one takes defense into serious consideration. The Warrior Daemon will utitlize dual wielding, 2 handed weapons and weapon + shield. This build is a bit more secure than Option Two.

Option Two:

Weapon Lore

Concentration

Dual Wielding (3rd level)

Spell Regeneration skill (6th level)

Constitution (12th level)

Armor (20th level)

Skill of your choice (30th level) (possible pick: Magic Lore)


Defensive skill: Agility or Parrying (50th level)

Option two isn't as concerned with defense. Bear in mind that you will need to compensate for this with generous amounts of life leech on your items and equipment. A melee Daemon doesn't have the benefit of infernal entities constantly feeding her life through life leech, making defense a higher priority for her then it is for a more dedicated spellcaster. The Hell Caster compensates for her lack of defenses with widespread damage saturation across entire screens.

With the selection of Magic Lore at level 30, she effectively becomes a "hybrid" with the ability to deploy limited amounts of infernal entities in combat. Magic Lore makes the use of her damaging spells more practical. Although far from the equal of a Hell Caster, she can possess enough ability to make a difference. This skill pick will also have the side effect of increasing the fire damage of the Infernal Power spell. All of this could help compensate for the lack of defense in comparison to Option One.

[color=red]The Focus of the Builds: Damage, Critical Hit bonus, and Life Leech[/color]

Dishing out damage in tremendous amounts is what the Daemon does best. She seeks critical hit bonus modifiers to drive that damage up even higher. She needs Life Leeching to help offset her lack of defensive powers/spells, for in the higher difficulty levels of Sacred, she will be hit quite often. For veteran Seraphim players, this will be very familiar to you.

A common pitfall of many melee Daemon prototypes is short-sightedness. What works well in Silver and Gold will begin to fail in Platinum, and utterly perish miserably in Niobium! A build needs to take the following important criteria into consideration:

  • 1. Is adequate offensive power provided?
  • 2. Is adequate defense provided?
  • 3. Are the rigors and dangers of higher difficulty levels planned for?

The best build is designed with Niobium difficulty level in mind. For the Daemon, criteria #1 is a no-brainer: Infernal Power. The other two criteria, however, are more difficult to meet. I consider melee Daemon Option One as the one most likely to survive Niobium, as defense is provided for more sufficiently. Option Two can work, but will require more effort. Both will require studious attention to the amount of damage she does per hit and a high percentage of life leech in her favor.

The Daemon cannot acquire the Trading skill. Therefore, she will need to rely on her set items (jewelry, armor and weapons), and unique weapons and jewelry to provide Life Leech. Vampiress CA runes can be used throughout levels 1 - 20...after that, however, you would need to use a great deal of them to supply the life leech you will need in tougher areas. Using that many will adversely affect your ability to dish out high damage (you need those slots for damage rings!!!). It is important that you spend time combing areas that spawn bosses in search of unique and set drops.

For a Daemon hunting in Soaring form, it's all too easy. Spot a gaggle of victims on the edge of your screen, switch to a heavy-hitting two-handed sword, and dive directly on the boss. You should only have to take one or two swings to mop up any unfortunate survivors after your feet hit the ground. Piece of cake.

[color=red]Melee Daemon Forms and Spells[/color] =

The Fire Warrior: Fire Daemon/Wall of Flames, Soaring Daemon/Descent Attack, Infernal Power, Call of Death, Dread. For skill pick Option Two, add Hell Sphere and Abysmal Choir.

The Poison Daemon: Poison Daemon/Poison Ring, Soaring Daemon/Descent Attack, Infernal Power, Call of Death, Dread. For skill pick Option Two, add Hell Sphere and Abysmal Choir.

The Magic Daemon: Energy Daemon/Energy Orb, Soaring Daemon/Descent Attack, Infernal Power, Call of Death, Dread. For skill pick Option Two, add Hell Sphere and Abysmal Choir.

Option Two Specific: The Battle Daemon: Battle Daemon form, Soaring Daemon/Descent Attack, Infernal Power, Call of Death, Dread, Tentacles, Hell Sphere, and Abysmal Choir.

Keep in mind that you will find you can concentrate on a primary elemental form, on Soaring Daemon, and another elemental form as a secondary. I only suggest Battle Daemon as a primary form if you go with Option Two and pick Magic Lore at 30th level. You will need to compensate for the lack of a decent form special attack with Hell Magic entities like Hell Sphere and Tentacles.

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