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 Post subject: [GUIDE]: Masteries, SP Farming, and what it all means.
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2006 6:01 am 
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TABLE OF CONTENTS

1)Intro
2)Mastery Trees
3)How SP Farming Works
4)My SP Farming Strategy When Starting a New Character

APPENDIX
A. Glossary and Acronyms
B. Table of Level Gap Experience Ratios (*to be added later)


1) INTRO
To put bluntly, Silkroad Online is a skill based game. You are given a choice of 3 different weapon styles, and 4 different "elements" to chose from. Skills are what make your character unique and who you are. While the game is still early and more customization will added later, you are going to want to pick your skills wisely. Now, I'm not about to get into builds, and templates and my opinions in this guide. I'll leave that for other guides. This is just a general purpose guide to help people understand the skill system a little bit better and how to develop their character without being so blind about it. Nothing is worse then dumping a ton of time and investment into a character only to realize you should have done something different 20 levels before hand.

2) MASTERY TREES
Your 3 basic weapon skill trees are: Bicheon (for sword and blade skills), Heuskal (for spear and glaive skills), and Pacheon (for bow skills). Your 4 elemental skill trees are: Cold, Lightning, Fire, and Force.

These trees are also known as your MASTERY trees. You need to raise a mastery tree to a certain amount to gain access to skills within that tree. For example, if you want to Smash and Strike skill for your sword, you need to raise your Bicheon Mastery to level 5. Skills bought within a mastery do not count as masteries themselves. They are just skills.

Unfortunately, SRO doesn't allow you to max out every possible tree there is. You are limited to 300 masteries. Each mastery tree also maxes out currently at 80, the max level in the game. If things change the future, please make note that level caps have been known to be raised in other games as an online game matures and the balance of low levels versus high levels changes. This section of this guide may not be as relevant then.

With 300 total masteries you can spend raising mastery trees there are a number of ways to go about building your character. You can max out 3 mastery trees at 80 and leave a fourth at 60, or two at 80 and two at 70, or even 5 at 60, or six at 50, or whatever combination to your hearts desire. Obviously not all choices will make your character the most powerful. What the best route to take when picking mastery trees is for you to decide.

3) HOW SP FARMING WORKS
If you ever taken the chance to look over the skills located within the mastery trees you might start salivating at the endless possibilities to which to build a character. However most don't realize the amount of skill points needed to polish up a character. Each tree is a bit different and how you go about picking skills and trees will ultimately determine how many skill points you will need. Most people do not think about this when initially playing a new character, but instead jump headlong into making a new character then proceed to level away while spending points willy-nilly. This is great for learning the game, it's not so great for making a good character in the long run. Most people reach level 20 or 30 and realize too late then are running out of skill points. They realize they can't afford to purchase anything they want and find their lack of ability compared to others of equivilant level depressing. Hopefully this won't happen to the readers of my guide as I will turn you into the ANT! For those that don't know the reference then please refer to the old Chinese story about the Grasshopper and the Ant. Spending a little bit of extra time in the low levels can pay out huge dividends at higher levels, especially in PVP.

To gain a single skill point in the game you need to earn 400 skill experience. Skill experience is shown by the little yellow bar above your normal green experience bar. You can also view your total skill points next to the yellow bar or in the Skill Window which can be accessed by pressing "S" on your keyboard. Skill experience is awarded by completing most quests, and by killing monsters. This is the same for normal experience as well. The problem is the fact that most people raise their mastery trees of choice as far as it can go when they level. Most people without realizing the ramifications will max out a mastery tree to be equal level to their character level. If their character is level 20, then their mastery tree of choice is level 20.

There is a flaw to this. One, after a certain level, the amount of skill points needed to raise even a single mastery jumps exponentially. It is very difficult to keep even a single mastery tree maxed out to your current level for 80 levels. Even doing so you will be limited to what skills within a single mastery you can pick. No one wants to be a one-trick pony.

However, within the game itself are the mechanics to diversify and build a powerful character a tad more slowly. This is done by NOT raising your mastery trees to the max.

You see, when you kill a monster within the game there is a TOTAL amount of experience that is generated by that monster based off your level versus the level of the monster and it's hitpoints. A monster of the same level as another but with more hitpoints, like champions and giants, will give more total experience. This total experience is then sorted out by a ratio into skill experience and normal experience. The ratio is determined by the level difference of your highest mastery and your character level. If your highest mastery tree equals your current character level, then the ratio is going to be higher for normal experience. This means when you kill a monster, most of the experience will be normal experience and not skill experience.

As the level gap increases between your highest mastery tree and your current character level the ratio skews more in favor of skill experience up to a level 9 level difference. Beaware, skill experience is more costly then normal experience. Take this for example, with no level difference at level 16 and killing a level 16 monster you shoudl recieve about 100 skill experience and 400 normal experience. This makes a total of 500 experience. If you have a 6 level gap, then you will receive 185 skill experience and 230 normal experience roughly. This is a total experience of a 6 level gap is now 415. If you have the max level gap of 9 between your highest mastery tree and your current level then you would receive roughly 30 normal experience and 220 skill experience which is a total of 250 experience for that monster. Going beyond a 9 level gap no longer changes the ratio.

As you can see, the value of skill experience versus normal is experience is not equal. Skill experience is worth more. In the furture, I might try to build a table with the ratios and experience values based off the level gap from 1 to 9. If someone doesn't beat me to it. It will be an update later when I get a day off and time to roll a new character.

SP Farming works by deliberately keeping a gap between your highest mastery tree and your current character level. You gain less normal experience per kill, and as a result level slower, but gain much more skill experience per kill. The net result is that when you finally decide to spend your skill points to start maxing out your mastery trees, you'll have plenty to use at your disposal.

Why do SP farming? While it seems to make leveling at lower levels almost tediously slow... it is in no way a comparison to how slow you will level at higher character levels. When you reach level 60 and complain how slow it is to level because you can't solo kill anything near your level due to lack of skill points, you'll wish you spent a little extra time at the low levels building skill points. I can easily say that an extra hour spent SP farming at a low level is well worth 5 or more hours of time at higher levels. You spend more time now to save time later. Hence, you become the ANT.

Also, as pointed out below, another reason to do SP farming a bit earlier is that as your character progresses, the level gap needed to increase the ratio in favor of skill experience earned versus normal experience earned changes. To the point where a 5 level gap when your character is level 10 is similar in ratio to a 9 level gap when your character is 50+

4) MY SP FARMING STRATEGY WHEN STARTING A NEW CHARACTER
First off, create a new character. Second, pick BOW as your weapon of choice. I don't care WHAT weapon you plan on using later, it doesn't matter just pick the bow when making a new character. Now get into the game. If you need to do the newbie things like familiarize yourself with the controls and the game, please do so. Once done run outside town and start popping Mangyangs. These guys drop gold, which you'll need and usually plenty of arrows. Sometimes a melee weapon. If you manage to scrape up a few hundred gold, which takes about 10 or so kills, before you find a weapon drop then run back into town. Head over to the blacksmith and buy a glaive or blade. It doesn't matter which. If you have some extra money for ammo and arrows buy them.

Now back to killing mangyangs, but before that, we need to make a few hotkeys. Open your inventory window with the "I" key and drag the icon of the bow to a hotkey spot on the bottom bar of your screen. Do the same for the melee weapon. You can also add the hotkey for auto-attack from the Action window or you can continue double-clicking on monsters to attack them. Whatever tickles your pickle.

Now, use the bow to attack with initially and as the monster gets into melee range, use the hotkey to switch to the melee weapon you have. This will save you in the long run on potions, arrows, and downtime. Kill mangyangs this way until you reach level 2. Head into town to grab your quests. However, what you do NOT want to do is spend your skill points after reaching level 2. You can spend your character points however you want. These are points that raise either your STRENGTH or INTELLIGENCE. That's your choice and has nothing to do with SP farming. Now back out to kill stuff and complete quests.

Continue this until level 5 of killing things, completing quests, and NOT spending any skill points. At level 5, run around the stalls in town and look for a el cheapo level 5 bow and melee weapon to buy that you can afford. This assumes you haven't found a level 5 weapon drop on your own. You are going to need a level 5 weapon since we aren't going to be getting any skills yet. The shops won't have anything until level 8 for you to buy, and we won't be getting the normal level skills like others just yet.

Now back to the normal fighting and questing until level 8. FINALLY! You can buy a even better bow and melee weapon. I say look around at player stalls for a bit for the level 8 weapons you want. They tend to be a tad bit better and cheaper then the NPC shop. If you can't find anything then just buy the level 8 weapons from the NPC. Back to the grind until you reach 10.

At level 10 you will now be finding life difficult. You can buy level 10 weapons but it's not going to be that big of a help for the monsters you'll be fighting. NOW we spend some skill points. You should have plenty skill points available to you for your level. Pick one weapon mastery tree of choice and ONE elemental mastery tree of choice. Forgo the FORCE elemental tree for healing for now. If you really, really, really want force for your character then go ahead and spend points. Before you go overboard, we are only spending points to bring each mastery tree we want to level 5. Do not take any mastery tree over level 5 right now.

Once we have the weapon and elemental mastery tree we want at level 5, spend a few more skill points to gain the first skills available for each tree we picked. For elements this will be called an imbue skill. This level 5 skill is very important as it will give your weapon attacks for a few seconds added elemental damage that is ONTOP of your regular damage. This will make a huge difference. Combined with a weapon skill, your damage numbers will start to allow you to tackle more difficult monsters with ease.

At this point, you'll also need to start stocking up on MP recovery herbs. Since you now have skills that take mana points, you'll want to replinish them. Personally, I hate sitting down to rest and recover HPs and MPs. I rather use a potion and be a non-stop killing machine except to head to town to resupply and look at stalls for better gear. I like to be constantly doing something with my character and sitting down is boring for me. Not to mention sitting in a highly agro area can be very dangerous. What you do to regain HPs and MPs though is your choice.

Now back to the grind! Kill stuff, finish quests, and buy better gear as it becomes available. What you do NOT want to do is spend skill points again until level 14. You'll level fast enough off the quests you do.

Once you reach level 14 though, you'll notice a SHARP decline in your leveling speed. Why? Because your highest skill mastery should still be only level 5 which leaves you now with a 9 level gap. Here is where I and the Koreans differ on SP farming strategy. The Koreans will slowly grind from 14 to 16. At 15 they raise their max mastery to 6, and at 16 they raise it to 7. At this point, they completely stop. They find a nice level 16 SOS or SOM weapon and SP farm like crazy on monsters they can kill in 1 hit. If they happen to level they die repeatedly to get back to the beginning of level 16. They continue this process for several weeks in a row until they reach around 30K sill points. To me that's NUTS!!! It's a game not a job! I can't see myself standing in the same spot, killing the same monster as fast as I possibly can for weeks on end. I'd go crazy.

Hence why many people make and use bots at this point. It's my opinion that bots are for losers, but do whatever you feel is needed. This is why I diverge in strategies from the Koreans at level 14. Instead of using a 9 level gap here, I use a 8 level gap. At level 16 I used a 7 level gap. At level 18 I used a 6 level gap and have been ever since. I find that with a 6 level gap you gain a decent amount of exps and SPs. You still feel as if you are accomplishing something and still level while not making this game into a job. Of course, this is my personal opinion so you can either choose to follow my advise or not. As I said before, "Whatever tickles your pickle."

Now, the 6 level gap will change to an 8 level gap once you reach level 30. Why? There is a long lull at this point in which you won't be aquiring new skills within a mastery tree. Also, the total experience from mobs will be high enough to allow a decent gain of exps on a level 8 gap ratio while a 9 level gap ratio would be just too harsh still. Continue this 8 level gap ratio from level 30 to 36 or 37. At which point you should have over 20K SPs and MORE THEN enough to stop the madness of SP farming. Have fun with a super powerful character from level 37 onward!

APPENDIX A. Glossary and Acronyms
HPs = hit points = The amount of damage a character can sustain before dying. Indicated by a red bar with numbers overlayed in SRO.
MPs = mana points = The amount of power your character has to use skills and spells in SRO. Indicated by a blue bar with numbers overlayed.
SPs = Skill Points = A valueable character commidity that can only be obtained by killing monsters or completing quests. Skill points are spent on Mastery Trees to gain skills. More skills leads to a more powerful character.
SRO = Silkroad Online = The game you are reading this guide for Aho!
SOS = Seal of Stars or Seal of Sun = A special item denoted by a yellow title within the SRO game. These item are VERY powerful for their respective level when obtained. Roughly equivilant to a +4 ot +5 weapon of the same level. Be forewarned that many people will charge ridiculous prices for a SOS item just because it's SOS. A level 16 SOS weapon should not exceed 200K IMHO unless more bonuses such as a super high crit rate or higher plusses are added on top.
SOM = Seal of Moon = Same as SOS as above, just a different name. The order of strength goes Seal of Stars, Moon, and then Sun.
Aho = Japanese word for idiot.
Farming = In reference to online gaming this means to stop gaining character levels to advance your online character and instead use extra time to aquire something else to be used later to advance your character easier and faster. In other words, You Reap What You Sow.
SP Farming = The act of deliberately slowing down your characters leveling process to gain more SPs. This is done by reading the guide above Aho!
Level Gap = The level gap is determined by the level difference of your current character level and your highest mastery level.
Imbue = The first level 5 skill for the Cold, Lightning, or Fire mastery trees. It is a very important skill for any character played in SRO.
Grind = Spending way too much time in a location to endlessly kill monsters for a result. The amount of time to be considered a grind is somewhat subjective, but if it's an 8 hour stretch or more then just about everyone will consider it a grind.
The Ant and The Grasshopper = an old Chinese story involving these two mystical beings and a moral. If you haven't heard about it then get some culture you hillbilly.
Hillbilly = if you live in Arkansas, married your cousin, know only how to eat hamburgers with mac & cheese, reference yourself in the 3rd person, everyone you know has a nickname, and/or don't remember having a shower (let alone a dental visit) in recent memory then you might be a hillbilly.

APPENDIX B. Table of Level Gap Experience Ratios (*update to come)


Last edited by kagenutto on Sat Mar 18, 2006 8:05 am, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2006 12:30 pm 
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also, another reason to start early...... as you gain levels your exp/sp ratio given automatically leans more towards exp. at level 1, you have a huge slant in your ratio towards sp. as you gain, it goes down, even if you do keep a gap. basically, what i'm trying to say is that a 5 level gap at level 10 is going to give a better sp ratio than a 5 level gap at level 20 or 30.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2006 2:54 pm 
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There are also Seal of Sun items which are the highest.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2006 3:06 pm 
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good guide :)


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 02, 2006 12:03 am 
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i didn't get my imbue until lvl 14-16. i don't remember.

lol. started to farm from day one.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 04, 2006 2:25 am 
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ok, correct me if i'ma wrong

so, say my SP highest level is 12, my level is 20, 8 level difference, so 80% of the monster's exp goes to SP, the 20% goes to level...

i am fighitn workers, and my level is as above, i get 102 level exp and i get 200 skill poitns exp...... that does'nt work out

now i just added two more levels to my skills.. so it's level 14 now and my level is still 20.. the difference now is 6.... and guess what, i get 200 level exp and 170 SKILL POINTS EXP... WHAT IS GOING ON?

am i not getting this? or something is wrong... please help me


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 04, 2006 3:28 am 
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It's 80% and 20% compared to the normal ratio with levels equal. The normal ratio is not 50-50. The ratio also changes with your character level. SP farming with max separation at level 20 will not give you the same ratio as max separation at level 25.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 04, 2006 6:42 am 
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anyways, i'm not sure where anybody got this 10% per level gap thing from.
i'm working on an exp/sp table, and as far as i can tell, it's nothing even
close to 10% per level. not from the normal ratio, not from anything. i can
post up what i've got so far, but it's VERY incomplete as of now, since it's
hard to do with one person ^_^


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 04, 2006 11:57 pm 
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Im screwed

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2006 11:19 am 
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lol i trying out... but i reached lvl 9 and bumped out trying to get to lvl 10... i am dying like almost every 3% i gain... and my damage is that low... got round 300++ sp shld i start adding now? btw i am a full int/ice/ archer


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2006 5:46 am 
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just some info I learned from my SP farming....

At character level 23 and mastery level 16 (7 level difference), I was getting
about 49/51 (EP/SEP) distribution. At level 24, with the same 7 level
difference (mastery level 17), I get now about 51/49 points distribution.

its probably even closer to 50/50 (like 49.75/51.25) because soloing a giant
(orange mob) gets me something like 3200ish points of each (SP and SEP)
and the difference is only by a couple hunderd. I'll get real numbers when
the server is back up.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 15, 2006 11:22 pm 
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I'm currently doing SP farming as well at level 11. How many SP should I farm? The full 30,000? What's a good number to start just maxing out your skills every level and levelling "normally"?


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 16, 2006 11:25 am 
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I just started this on my lancer and yes the percentage scales back at higher levels, what does this mean? Do it when you're lower level, you get more out of it. Big Jumps happen at 4-5 level difference and 7-8.


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 Post subject: Should I restart
PostPosted: Fri Mar 17, 2006 10:52 pm 
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Im a total newb at this game and didnt know about sp farming when i started. I a now level 17 with realy hgh masteries in sword skills and ice skills. I know realise that although i ka know this wont be the case at higher levels. My question is - should i start again or just sp farm hardcore, die to stay down levels and stuff.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 17, 2006 11:01 pm 
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no need to kill youself repeatedly or start over. just leave your masteries where they are for a few levels, maybe 5, and stock up on sp that way. if you get low, scale it back more. if you have a surplus, level your skills some. it's not an impossible situation or anything. you can start at any time, it's jsut quicker to build up if you start early on, that's all.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 17, 2006 11:19 pm 
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eekamouse wrote:
I'm currently doing SP farming as well at level 11. How many SP should I farm? The full 30,000? What's a good number to start just maxing out your skills every level and levelling "normally"?


I'm also interested in this. if I"m planning on maxing out two trees and perhaps a third if it's possible (I havn't done the math yet so I don't know how far that 300 point max will get me) how much SP is "enough"?

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There's a chart somewhere (linked on the forums) with lists of skillpoint costs which you can use to determine how many SPs you'll need at 60. If you're only planning to max 2 trees, you probably do not need to worry about SP farming at all. Just maintain a 4-5 level gap for the whole game. If you want more trees, your gap will need to be larger and/or you will need to SP farm.

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nice :) but i want to know if i can take 2 elements, cause a i want ice and lightining, can i take bot for sp farming?

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saw some people's post that in order to max out 1 skill tree you need 30k. lol bot....

of course you can take 2 elements. but if the cap is higher and basing from biggietymer that highest lvl is 150 you might not have enough masteries to max out 2 elements since the max mastery is 300


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 12:05 pm 
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so if this g uide is followed, does that mean that at level 37, you don't need a level gap between our masteries and your current level anymore? or should you keep a smaller gap difference, such as 2 or 3 levels?


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What's the use of sp farming?
to master al masteries and to use any types of weapons?

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Great guide, I learned alot, especially about my hillbilly culture. Unfortunately, I didn't know about needing to keep a gap between levels. I'm level 16 now, I have level 16 lightening, level 11 bicheon and level 11 force....is it possible to farm once I get to level 22 or so? I've started my character over 3 times now due to screw-ups and I REALLY don't feel like doing it again.


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Something I have learned while SP farming, is that it is almost pointless to have a gap between levels until you get to level 5. Do that, get your imbue, and stop for a while (untill you get to level 14 or 15).

I tried the method suggested in this guide and had only about 300 - 400 SP by the time I got to level 14. Once I got to level 15, I could get those 300 points in just a couple hours.

I am level 17 str/archer, now and have 3500 SP. I have a 9 level gap. At level 15, you can kill the stone ghosts wih one arrow. Level there til level 16. Add a point to your skills (to level 7) and go hunt the Yeoha's. Again, one shot, one kill with your imbue. Level there til level 17. Skills go up a point, then start killing Bandit Subordinates (again, one shot one kill).

Each of these will give something like 15 - 20 exp points and 100 toward sp.
One whole sp point for every 4 kills. Use a gold ticket and it is 1 sp for every 2 kills.

Moving around keeps the boredom away, and partying with others helps break the monotony as well.

While using the gold ticket and 3 hours a day, I am getting 500 SP everyday.

Of course, do not do this beyond your tolerable level. This is just a game. Since I usually have some one to party with, it is still fun for me.

Oh yeah, remember this is a str/bow character, and I can't say how this would work out for any other. I am starting an int/nuker soon, so we will see.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 02, 2006 6:49 pm 
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the coder, me too i started like u, but at lvl 14, i did all quest,i had 30xp 200 skill exp, so it was to difficult to wait until lvl 15, so now i have 6 lvl gap, and i think it ll be fine, i ll tell u when ireach about 10k

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 Post subject: help my weak character pls!!!
PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 4:05 pm 
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regarding to the sp farming as above i dont know either my levels is correct. pls help me n my details as follows:-

now im currently lv 26
skill point 40
master level total 79/300

using weapon as Heuksal - lv 25
1.wolf bite spear lv 9
2.dancing demon spear lv 8
3.soul spear - move lv 6

force

1.cold lv 18
(weak guard of ice lv6)
2.lighting lv 15
(must - piercing force lv 3, grass walk - flow lv 2)
3.fire lv 21
(river fire force lv 9, flame body - wisdom lv 2, basic fire protection lv 3)

pls help me, im so weak n slow facing gaint n champion.... so hurt ... help help!!!


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 Post subject: ok so let me understand this
PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2006 2:09 pm 
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im lvl 19 right, my sword skill i around 17, fire 17, lightning 16.
if i keep a 5 lvl cap for example, ill stack more skill points, there for maxing out talents or abilitys faster or at least until the required skill level. Whats the use of stacking like 20k skills. is it to have the required lvl for specific abilitys?


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2006 2:14 am 
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Hey

As a newbie who has just downloaded the game i was wondering approximately how much sp should we have at each level? for example I'm at lvl 16 atm, and currently i have about 2000sp. Should I have more? less? Or is there no amount and will vary between players?

great guide by the way! :D


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 17, 2006 4:23 pm 
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Realy nice guide, helped me a lot starting out.
Ty very much.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 17, 2006 7:47 pm 
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Ok i feel stupid, im new to the game and this has been my first character.
Im level 22 and my glaive mastery lv is 21 and my fire force lvl is 22!!!
am i screwed and should i start on a new char, this char is a full str/glaive/fire build. i feel like im doin pretty decent damage for my level but reading this i feel like im gonna b in trouble


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 17, 2006 8:53 pm 
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Great guide, I only have one question...

I'm level 13 and have 571 skill points, from farming since level 1, is this about right for my level, or should I have more than this?


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