DUEL 2 NEWSLETTER Date : 12/25/2004 Duedate: 03/18/2005 NOBLISH ISLAND ARENA DM-93 TURN-182 This Weeks Top Honors THE DUELMASTER IS NIN QUAYNE MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) (93-7959) [3-0-0,40] Chartered Recognition Leader Unchartered Recognition Leader POSITION IS EMPTY NIN QUAYNE MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) (93-7959) [3-0-0,40] Popularity Leader This Weeks Favorite NIN QUAYNE LUGG OPAR MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) (93-7959) [3-0-0,40] (93-7957) [3-0-0,27] THE CURRENT TOP TEAM MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) TEAMS ON THE MOVE TOP CAREER HONORS Team Name Point Gain Chartered Team 1. MATERIA MAGICA (1376) 41 2. MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) 9 IRON DRAGON (495) 3. CRIMSON SHADOW (590) 0 Unchartered Team 4. GRACES MUSES (1372) 0 MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) The Top Teams Career Win-Loss Record W L K % Win-Loss Record Last 3 Turns W L K 1/ 1*MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) 10 5 0 66.7 1/ 2*MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) 10 5 0 2/ 0*MATERIA MAGICA (1376) 3 2 0 60.0 2/ 0*MATERIA MAGICA (1376) 3 2 0 3- 3*CRIMSON SHADOW (590) 6 7 0 46.2 3- 4*CRIMSON SHADOW (590) 2 3 0 4- 0*GRACES MUSES (1372) 0 2 0 0.0 4- 0*GRACES MUSES (1372) 0 2 0 '*' Unchartered team '-' Team did not fight this turn (###) Avoid teams by their Team Id ##/## This turn's/Last turn's rank TEAM SPOTLIGHT + ]H[ + ---:--- + ]H[ The Striking Style ]H[ + ---:--- + ]H[ + by Sir Boyd Strikers are very effective in basic, but have little use in Advanced Duelmasters. This is due to the nature of their primary strength: decise. Young strikers win or lose in the opening few swings. In basic, few styles can match the striker's lightning opening or avoid his initial attack. However, in higher levels of the game most fighters have sufficient defenses to avoid the striker's relatively low attack rating, and the striker has little to fall back on. A striker should be designed to maximize his initial decise (speed) or alternately his ability to learn decise (wit). Strikers have little use for constitution or will. Here are a few comments on which stats are good for strikers: ST: 9-17, the higher the better. ST 9 is required for SC, but unless you have a big fighter you shouldn't settle for less than 11. CN: unnecessary. SZ: up to 14 is great. A good striker will have at minimum 21 points between ST and SZ (this is the average combination for being able to do good damage with a blow.) WT: the higher the better. 17 and 21 are great cutoffs. You want to learn on average 2 to 3 skills per turn to maintain your decise advantage over other styles. WL: 9-13 is all that's required. Longer-term strikers (designed for relevance past invite to Advanced) might benefit from a higher WL, but in my opinion such a design would be better as a different style. SP: 9+. The higher your WT, the less initial SP you'll need. But for a striker, speed is life. Spend lavishly on your striker's speed. DF: 11+. This is also a good stat for a striker to have. DF 11 allows the use of most weapons without coordination penalty, and provides valuable attack skills. Here's my idea of some great strikers: 13-4- 9-21-11- 9-17 11-4-11-17-11-15-15 As for strategy, use weapons that are fast and do decent damage (SC, LO, SS, BS, QS, WH are some of the better ones,) and wear little or even no armor. Run hard, with high offense and activity levels. The decise tactic is well suited to strikers, and use it whenever the opponent doesn't know you're coming. Beware that the Decise tactic can be countered by the use of a Responsive tactic. It's sort of a rock- paper-scissors thing. Decise tactic has advantage over no tactic or any tactic other than Response. Any tactic other than Decise has advantage over Response tactic. Response tactic has advantage over Decise tactic. Sir Boyd, Elanti Hunters (102 and 107) + ]H[ + ---:--- + ]H[ The Lighthouse ]H[ + ---:--- + ]H[ + Jorja sat at her private table at the back of the Lighthouse's taproom and scanned Sir Boyd's article again. Quite good, straightforward, no freakish stuff. Solid. Helpful, she hoped. Well, it had better be, because she didn't feel much like trying to do one on Strikers today herself. She glanced around the room to make sure things were going smoothly. A little rowdiness among a group of young gladiators off behind the piano, but her back-up bartender, Olber Pring, was already moving that way. He'd deal with it. But maybe she could add just a little around the edges.... Below is a list of weapons "well-suited" to use by strikers, and the minimum stats required for effective use. My thanks to Pagan and other number-crunchers who have made this information available. -- Jorja Striker Note that the strikers can use every weapon plus the small shield effectively. This is the only style that has so broad a selection. Twenty-one weapons. Battleaxe ST 15 SZ 9 WT 9 DF 9 Mace ST 13 SZ - WT 3 DF 5 Broadsword ST 11 SZ - WT 9 DF 7 Maul ST 15 SZ 9 WT 5 DF 7 Dagger ST - SZ - WT 7 DF 7 Morningstar ST 13 SZ - WT 7 DF 13 Epee ST 7 SZ - WT 15 DF 15 Quarterstaff ST 11 SZ 9 WT 11 DF 11 Fist - presumably any Scimitar ST 9 SZ - WT 11 DF 11 Greataxe ST 13 SZ WT 9 DF 11 Shortspear ST 9 SZ - WT 7 DF 7 Greatsword ST 15 SZ 9 WT 9 DF 11 Shortsword ST 5 SZ - WT 11 DF 3 Halberd ST 17 SZ 9 WT 9 DF 9 Small shield ST 5 SZ - WT 5 DF 5 Hatchet ST 5 SZ - WT 3 DF 7 Warflail ST 11 SZ - WT 7 DF 5 Longspear ST 11 SZ 9 WT 5 DF 9 Warhammer ST 13 SZ - WT 5 DF 7 Longsword ST 11 SZ - WT 13 DF 11 A couple of specific examples of Strikers, neither of them great, but they both survived to graduation-- Profile of a Warrior Kardo Dosh Kardo was a classic example of the mediocre warrior, starting out as 10-13-15-9- 15-7-15. He was trained as a striker, I forget why. It must have seemed like a good idea at the time. He'd have made a better lunger, but I must not have wanted a lunger. One of the mysteries of the universe. His overview was not impressive, merely stating that he was-- Left handed (no primary wit statement, due to the low number) Seldom wastes his endurance needlessly Is relatively slow and inactive (that 7 SP) Can take a lot of damage (SZ and CN) Cannot carry a lot of weight (relatively low ST) Can do good damage with a blow (mostly his SZ) The mode skills for his stats and style are: three initiative, six riposte, three attack, two parry, two defense, and seven decisiveness. Not impressive, and I must admit that I have not done any research to discover whether he is plus or minus on any skill. At the time he received his graduation notice, he was 21-20-3, running with minimal attention from the management. No challenges, no avoids, and he probably didn't have more than three strategy changes in his whole career. On his graduation fight, he was armed with a hatchet, an off-hand hatchet, and a backup hatchet, armored in leather and a helm, and running 10-10-6 straight across, attacking the arm. It turns out that this was NOTHING like his favorite weapon and rhythm: short spear, moderate offensive effort (5 or 6), very low activity level (1 or 2). In other words, born to scum.... I have a personal bias against running warriors that slowly, as I hate to wade through long fights. He left the arena with a master in decisiveness (his favorite learn) and an expert in attack (this is what he was waiting for; he got it on the same fight as he received his invitation to the Isle). Kardo Dosh is headed for retirement; he's had his fishing spot picked out for months. But he was fun to run and with more attention would almost certainly have done better. Profile of a Gladiator Lord Protector and one-time Duelmaster of Noblish Island arena Olber is a striker, 15-7-14-11-17-5-15. His overview was nothing exciting-- He's right-handed His intelligence is unremarkably average (no primary wit line on the overview) He makes clever attacks (I wouldn't have minded seeing some of these!) He is gifted at avoiding a blow (yeah, right!) He seldom wastes his endurance needlessly He's slightly uncoordinated (that low SP) He is incredibly quick and elusive on his feet (despite the lack of coordination which caused him to trip over his own shadow around the guildhouse) He can do good damage with a blow. From the lack of mention, we also know that he has normal endurance, a normal ability to take damage, and can carry a normal amount of weight in armor and weapons. His base skills, those deriving from his initial stats, are: initiative 5, riposte 5, attack 7, parry 5, defense 9, decise 7. He is plus four in defense, otherwise mode, or normal for his stats. Olber was never a great warrior. After leaving here at 8-2, he went to Aljafir and proceeded to lose fights, ending up graduating at 22-29. He could have done better if I'd paid more attention to his strategy, issued challenges, and so on. Given the neglect he labored under, he could also have done much worse. Good but not great about describes him. Despite this, he has some long-term potential, as indicated by the fact that none of his base skills are lower than mode, and by that 17 WL which would allow him to raise stats relatively easily. I normally ran him fairly fast, 8-6-x or, if he should have been getting the jump and didn't, 10-x-x. Light armor--ALE, H, and, of course, a scimitar and back-up scimitar for weapons. He held his own in Aljafir at first, until the arena pulled out of its slump and began to gather determined managers again. I feel that it was the good management of his opponents, rather than his own short-comings, that resulted in his losing record. I feel that given a couple of decent--not great, just decent--warriors matched against each other, it's the better manager who wins the most. Despite my lack of attention, Olber hung on long enough to get the skills and political points needed to graduate. He will not be run on the Isle (that's why you have to put up with him hanging around the Lighthouse). At the time of graduation, he was 22-29-0, had experts in attack and decise (only! what a slug--that 11 WT doubtless slowed his learning), was found to be naturally adept with the dagger (ick), and to favor a fighting rhythm of high offense and high activity. If I was running him further, I would ignore the dagger favorite and continue to arm him with a scimitar, probably going 8-8-x. An increase in CN would enable him to take more damage without compromising his skill-learning. I thank you all for your patience with this presentation and invite you to 1. Drop in at The Lighthouse any time to talk about managing or mainland politics or any other thing that's on your mind. 2. Let your warriors hang out here between practice sessions. I'll see to it that they get back home okay after closing. 3. State opinions, raise questions, make suggestions, etc. If you like the idea of a warrior profile each turn, I'd be glad to provide one from my files--pick a style, any style.... Jorja Middle Way 7 +>]H[<+-----+>]H[+ Question of the Week #5 +]H[<+-----+>]H[<+ Question, turn 407: All -- Is there a difference in between an Expert and (AE). It appears to me that your (17, 18, 19th) skills don't seem to make a difference until you get that next rating @ 20? -- Q.O.W. Answers, turn 408: This isn't in answer to the Question of the Week, but it looks like stuff you all might find interesting, so here 'tis. -- Jorja Hanibal -- Here's my advice: Prep your warriors for the Apprentices, Inits, Adepts, then next for the Freshmen. Don't worry about the Champions class unless you have a warrior that received their Invite to AD before the tourney. Also, run rookies whenever you can. It is one of the purest competitions available. Learn about aimed blows then run some as rookies. It is a lot of fun! If you want to get serious about tourneys, think about what every warrior needs to do to be at the top of their class. Take what the megas on the Duel List say with a grain of salt. Someone else will always have a better warrior than you, but the best doesn't always win! Luck plays a great role in determining tournament winners, meaning luck in matchups. -- Generalissimo Puerco QoW -- Each skill makes just a little difference. So little, that the difference might be hard to see in any given fight. I think that the ratings are just there to give the manager an indication of their warrior's progression. -- Generalissimo Puerco If there were more answers in the newsletter in question, I missed them. Also, I didn't see a new question in this one! And I seem to have mislaid the next newsletter, so I will say again, that's all for now, but more next time. -- Jorja It's a little untidier this week, with some delayed answers to earlier questions, and some questions not yet answered. For those of you newly arrived on Noblish Island, these questions and answers are taken from the Aruak City (DM 11) newsletter, mostly asked by Hanibal, a graduate of Noblish Island, and answered by any manager in that arena who has something to say on the topic. Feel free to ask questions of your own. I'll answer, Pagan will answer, various other managers, such as Rillion, who read the newsletter on line will answer, and we'll put it up to the experienced managers of Aruak City as well. -- Jorja From turn 410: The first three continue an earlier discussion of learning rates. Q.O.W. -- I have three warriors that I bumped from 17 to 19 [WT] and it didn't make any difference so I am inclined to believe it is the intelligence rating. However, I have talked to managers who have bumped wit to an even number and sometimes it helps. -- Hanibal Q.O.W -- I think learn rate for a particular warrior (and only the warrior, exclusive of other factors) is centered around the intelligence comment. The mean learn rate is placed there, but there is also a range higher and lower than that mean rate. Kind of like a standard deviation distance in statistics. I feel, though its not provable, that each warrior gets a random roll that places their own general learn rate somewhere in this range. The range is big enough to overlap with the higher and lower categories of intelligence, thus a 13 WT warrior with a lucky roll could learn as well as a 17 WT warrior, for example. This is exclusive of other factors of course that could greatly affect learning as noted in an earlier Q.O.W. -- Adie QoW -- We are convinced that "average-skills-learned-per-fight" is dependent solely upon the wit number. E.G. -- a 14 wit learns slightly better than a 13 who is slightly better than a 12. But ON-THE-AVERAGE-is key. Each warrior is different. -- Kennelworth P.S. Yes, we run even-wit warriors with no qualms. We prefer odd, hence optimizing overall skills, but even works great. Sure thing. All -- I have heard about having a favorite of a double tactic. If you had lunge and dodge as favs would you use them separately or in the same minute? -- Q.O.W. P.S. Do offensive tactics raise your initiative? From turn 411: Q.O.W. -- Yep, it's rare, but you can get double tactics. Though it's usually not recommended to use two at once, I'd try it if it was your favs. It's hard to tell, but I think some offensive tactics might raise init. I don't use them all that much, so I can't really say what exactly I think each tactic influences. -- Adie Q.O.W. -- What is the secret to keeping your warriors alive? Of course winning all your fights is the best way, but let's be for real. I believe that wearing plate armor could help the underskilled win fights, but does not appear to keep you alive once you get a death statement. Would all agree Con keeps you alive much better than will? I never had a warrior die on me who could take a lot of damage. Have any of your teams? High skilled warriors with low con win a lot but do they seem to die a lot when they do lose? Fighting in tournaments and in Andorian arenas is this the best way to get fight experience without dying? What is the number of fights you must have under your belt before it becomes unlikely you would be killed? -- AK47 Q.O.W. To start to hold your own in Advanced Duelmasters I believe now you must have 3 master ratings in skills. I am wondering if I am correct? -- AK47 All -- I have noticed that my great rollups seldom get blessed, but my average ones almost always do. Is this just me? What say you all. -- Q.O.W. Q.O.W. -- Double tactics are optimized separately; offensive tactics raise only that which they are -- decisive to gain the attack, slash and bash to enhance the attack via power and criticals. -- The Bulldogs Q.O.W. -- If one gets an invite, goes to the tournament and is killed, that "dead" warrior will appear alive in the selected ADM arena. (It just occurred to one of our compatriots in this most recent mailer.) -- The Bulldogs SPY REPORT Good day, in NOBLISH ISLAND a quiet thief gets rich, but a quiet spymaster gets poor. So bring me ale and harken to my tidbits of news. Take note that MIDDLE WAY 12 has lost its top team spot, having missed the turn. Where are you boys? On their very first turn, MATERIA MAGICA had a 3-2-0, and with this kind of luck or skill, should do well. Welcome to NOBLISH ISLAND. And let's see, TOOTHSMASHER fought KIRLUA NORIS and gained 21 points and contributed to MATERIA MAGICA's 3-2-0. KIRLUA NORIS has lost to TOOTHSMASHER, falling 13 points, while helping make MIDDLE WAY 12 a 3-2-0 turn. And all eyes were on NIN QUAYNE this turn as she ascended to the throne of Duelmaster. NOBLISH ISLAND has a new victor! Tell me, is nothing sacred? I have heard from unimpeachable sources that The Dripping Blade uses trolls in their stew. Talk about gristle! I tell you, a green quarterstaff lasts longer than a seasoned sapling. A basher friend of mine assures me this is true. The Dark Arena is for those who cannot win, not who cannot lose with grace. Dignity in life or death is the warrior's creed. A brave warrior does not carry a red shield, he has nothing to cover or hide when the fight is over. Consider well. I like this place, NOBLISH ISLAND, the taverns have old wine, and young serving girls. Who could ask for more? Well, I'm burning daylight here in NOBLISH ISLAND and I've a long road ahead of me. Happy Trails. Until you see my quill in NOBLISH ISLAND again, farewell-- Alarond the Scribe DUELMASTER W L K POINTS TEAM NAME NIN QUAYNE 7959 3 0 0 40 MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) CHALLENGER INITIATES W L K POINTS TEAM NAME LUGG OPAR 7957 3 0 0 27 MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) INITIATES W L K POINTS TEAM NAME -SIOBHAN 3428 3 0 0 23 CRIMSON SHADOW (590) TOOTHSMASHER 7968 1 0 0 21 MATERIA MAGICA (1376) HARBRINGER 7970 1 0 0 13 MATERIA MAGICA (1376) -OLIVER DEBARROW 3429 2 2 0 8 CRIMSON SHADOW (590) KIRLUA NORIS 7956 2 1 0 7 MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) -LUTHIEN BEDWYR 3427 1 0 0 6 CRIMSON SHADOW (590) POLI SARCHIS 7971 1 0 0 6 MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) MALLE PENNELIS 7958 1 2 0 5 MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) ZORT 7966 1 0 0 5 MATERIA MAGICA (1376) -GARTH ROGAR 3426 0 4 0 4 CRIMSON SHADOW (590) INITIATES W L K POINTS TEAM NAME IRONHORN 7967 0 1 0 1 MATERIA MAGICA (1376) -KATERIN O'HALE 3425 0 1 0 1 CRIMSON SHADOW (590) IRONBEARD 7969 0 1 0 1 MATERIA MAGICA (1376) '-' denotes a warrior who did not fight this turn. THE DEAD W L K TEAM NAME SLAIN BY TURN Revenge? PERSONAL ADS 28 March 2005 Is there anybody in the DM game who is incarcerated that has had to litigate in order to continue playing? Or anyone in the free world who may be able to help me with case law or legal advice? The Administration has already taken "D&D type games" from us once (though I recently had that decision overturned). I believe it's only a matter of time before they try it again and I am prepared to file a lawsuit if need be. I enjoy DM and any help that could be offered would be greatly appreciated! I can be contacted at: Danny Warren #28341 P.O. Box 250 Draper, UT 84070 or: Heathen, mgr. Misnomers DM 47 28 March 2005 Ladies and gents...get your teams together and join in on the hottest and fiercest contest ever to grace the arena sands! Intrigue, personal wars, you name it...we got it going on! What is this contest? It's the Turf War IV in DM 47, North Fork!! This fantastic contest was begun by my alliance mate Asmo Dius, and I've picked up some of the slack. Contest starts on Turn 225 (approx. date June 9th?). It's an "alliance-type contest", so grab your folks and bring them in for a bang up time. Rules will be printed in the DM 47 newsletter at least until the contest starts. -- Baphomet, Host...Company of Brothers Alliance, Illuminati Confederation of Alliances 28 March 2005 Contest Announcement ==================== It's finally here! ScumFest 2005! The greatest scum in the land of Alastari are formally invited to participate in ScumFest 2005, a contest involving the scummiest scum in all of Alastari! Who: All Scum in Alastari What: Scum Fest 2005! Where: Talahya When: May 23rd, Talahya Turns 490-499 Rules ====== The object of winning ScumFest is to have the longest cumulative time (in minutes) at the end of the 10th round. Should there be a tie at the end of 10 rounds, tiebreakers are (in order): - Head to Head Record - Win/Loss Percentage - Average Fight Length (We'll go into overtime if they're still tied) There are no other rules. A manager may use any means at his disposal in order to accomplish his goal. Collusion, hiring Aimed Blows to take out the leaders, etc. Anything goes! To enter the scum fest, please write a personal ad in the DM 100 newsletter, declaring your intention to join the contest, or send an email to email@example.com Please include warrior name and ID numbers of the contestants. You may enter the competition up until Turn 494. Prizes will be announced after the competition begins. The point of the contest is to prove you have the scummiest scum, and necessarily for a silly prize. Good luck and Happy Scumming! -- Manager LAST WEEK'S FIGHTS NIN QUAYNE viciously subdued CAPTURED ORC in a 1 minute amateur's Title fight. KIRLUA NORIS was demolished by TOOTHSMASHER in a 1 minute one-sided melee. LUGG OPAR overpowered IRONHORN in a 3 minute mismatched duel. MALLE PENNELIS was unbelievably bested by ZORT in a 11 minute novice's fight. IRONBEARD slimly lost to POLI SARCHIS in a 3 minute bloody novice's duel. HARBRINGER overpowered MORDANT DESERTER in a 1 minute mismatched brawl. BATTLE REPORT MOST POPULAR RECORD DURING THE LAST 10 TURNS |FIGHTING STYLE FIGHTS FIGHTING STYLE W - L - K PERCENT| |WALL OF STEEL 4 PARRY-LUNGE 2 - 0 - 0 100 | |PARRY-RIPOSTE 2 SLASHING ATTACK 11 - 3 - 0 79 | |PARRY-LUNGE 1 WALL OF STEEL 7 - 2 - 0 78 | |STRIKING ATTACK 1 TOTAL PARRY 8 - 4 - 0 67 | |TOTAL PARRY 1 STRIKING ATTACK 13 - 9 - 0 59 | |PARRY-STRIKE 1 AIMED BLOW 8 - 6 - 3 57 | |AIMED BLOW 0 LUNGING ATTACK 10 - 8 - 0 56 | |LUNGING ATTACK 0 PARRY-RIPOSTE 6 - 6 - 0 50 | |SLASHING ATTACK 0 BASHING ATTACK 6 - 7 - 1 46 | |BASHING ATTACK 0 PARRY-STRIKE 0 - 3 - 0 0 | Turn 182 was great if you Not so great if you used The fighting styles of the used the fighting styles: the fighting styles: top eleven warriors are: PARRY-LUNGE 1 - 0 AIMED BLOW 0 - 0 5 WALL OF STEEL STRIKING ATTACK 1 - 0 PARRY-STRIKE 0 - 1 2 PARRY-LUNGE TOTAL PARRY 1 - 0 PARRY-RIPOSTE 0 - 2 2 PARRY-RIPOSTE WALL OF STEEL 3 - 1 LUNGING ATTACK 0 - 0 1 STRIKING ATTACK SLASHING ATTACK 0 - 0 1 TOTAL PARRY BASHING ATTACK 0 - 0 TOP WARRIOR OF EACH STYLE FIGHTING STYLE WARRIOR W L K PNTS TEAM NAME WALL OF STEEL NIN QUAYNE 7959 3 0 0 40 MIDDLE WAY 12 (1374) Note: Warriors have a winning record and are an Adept or Above. The overall popularity leader is NIN QUAYNE 7959. The most popular warrior this turn was LUGG OPAR 7957. The ten other most popular fighters were POLI SARCHIS 7971, NIN QUAYNE 7959, TOOTHSMASHER 7968, HARBRINGER 7970, KIRLUA NORIS 7956, IRONHORN 7967, IRONBEARD 7969, MALLE PENNELIS 7958, ZORT 7966, and 0. The least popular fighter this week was ZORT 7966. The other ten least popular fighters were MALLE PENNELIS 7958, IRONBEARD 7969, IRONHORN 7967, KIRLUA NORIS 7956, HARBRINGER 7970, TOOTHSMASHER 7968, NIN QUAYNE 7959, POLI SARCHIS 7971, LUGG OPAR 7957, and 0. FACE-TO-FACE TOURNEY XXXV ADEPTS TOURNEY W L K TEAM NAME PASSION 2246 (0-0-0) 0 3 0 ROUND FRUITS INITIATES TOURNEY W L K TEAM NAME APPLE 2244 (0-0-0) 0 3 0 ROUND FRUITS NEW GRADUATES--FROM ALL ARENAS (INCLUDING CLOSED ARENAS) For those of you who keep track of such things, 11 additional warriors graduated from regular DM arenas (including closed arenas) since the last tournament. EEK THE CAT (2-4110) of THE FUNNY FARM HADES (11-5338) of MYTHICAL DRAUGHT DODGER (12-5209) of WISH YOU WERE BEER DRACO MALFOY (18-7115) of HOUSE SLYTHERIN FREAK (18-7300) of RUN AND HYDE BETWEEN THE EYES (60-716) of METAL MILITIA II 6 SHOVELING SANDY (65-3584) of STORMNITE SANDBAGGER BLUE BLOOD (73-3657) of BLACK & BLUE JOCK (82-10452) of 4-LETTER ITCHES WILLIE BROWN (82-13201) of 1976 RAIDERS YUENGLING (82-16265) of LOCAL BEER Congrats to the grads. -- Green Eyes HOLD THE DATES! (FACE-TO-FACE XXXV AND XXXVI) Summer Face-to-Face Tournament XXXV in St. Louis! Our next summer FTF will be held in downtown St. Louis, July 29-31, 2005. It will be at the Radisson Hotel & Suites, St. Louis (800-925-1395--ask for the Reality Simulations room block). Room rates are $99.00 per night, 1-4 occupancy. The rooms are blocked--please make your reservation by mid-June before the block is released! Look for transportation info in the tournament information sheet. See you there! Winter Face-to-Face Tournament XXXVI in Tempe! Our next winter FTF will be held in Tempe, Arizona, January 20-22, 2006. It will be held at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Tempe, Arizona (480-894-7444), the same hotel as last year by popular request. Room rates are $139.00 per night (same as last year!), 1-4 occupancy, which includes full cooked breakfast, complimentary manager's reception, free airport shuttle, free parking, high speed internet (for extra charge), fitness center, jacuzzi, and pool. The rooms are blocked--please make your reservation soon before the block is released! (This is prime season for Phoenix, and several people were unable to book rooms last year because they waited too long.) Look for transportation info in the tournament information sheet. We hope you're all looking forward to it and that we will see you there! TRICKS OF THE TRADE Here are a few tricks of the trade I've found out. 15, 17, and 21. Those are the magic numbers for stats; any fighter who starts with a stat (except Con and Size) at any of those numbers will have more beginning skills than normal. Stats: The stats in order of importance with regard to skills, most to least, are wit, will, deftness, speed, and strength, with con giving you no skills, just hit points and endurance. The higher you can start any of these, especially the first three, the more skilled your fighter will be. Logically, therefore, what you really want is a fighter who has wit, will, and deftness at 21. This will be a GOD! And probably go out and get killed immediately due to low con... Raising stats: Care must be taken in doing this. All fighters start out with the ability to learn 20 skills in the categories of Defense, Parry, Riposte, Attack, Decisiveness, and Inititive. When you learn all 120 skills, you've maxed out. You can get skills though normal learns, or by raising stats; however, if you raise stats BEFORE you max out (except for Con), anything gained will count as one of the 20. This is called "burning" skills. If, on the other hand, you wait until you've maxed out, then raising stats will add those skills to the ones you've learned, enabling you to exceed your limits. But raising stats will give an immediate boost to your abilities. It's a question of short term vs. long term gain, you see. And aiming at vital areas - head, chest, and abdomen - will increase your chances of getting kills. And being bloodfeuded, and maybe getting your fighter killed in return. Keep in mind that what you send forth will come back to you. Sometimes redoubled. Roku Warrior Handedness, is he a Righty, Lefty or Ambi? Greetings, Joy and Happiness to everyone!!!! I hope everyone that reads this article is doing well and remembering not to drink and duel. This article discusses things about the handedness of a warrior. Most managers only worry about things like skill, weapons and trains. Handedness is not a major factor in playing the game but it's nice to know some things about it. Most warriors will be right handed, with a small percentage left handed. Even more scarce is the ambidextrous warrior. I believe that the defensive styles have a higher percentage chance to be a lefty or an AMBI than offensive styles do. It's just an observation that I made in the 513 warriors surveyed. Another note on that, I notice that out of 211 parry-ripostes that I was using for a PR article, about 43% of them were AMBIs. The highest percent of AMBIs out of all the styles polled. When a manager puts weapons into his warriors hands and also when he tells his warrior where to strike, handedness plays a key role in the manager's decision making. I had a team with 4 AMBIs on it, and I started to do some experiments with them to see how the AMBI thing worked. I noticed that in general the AMBI favors using the left hand more than the right hand. But, there are a small percentage of AMBI warriors that are reversed, where the right hand is used more than the left. There also seems to be some confusion amongst managers that get the USE of a hand mixed up with which hand the weapons go in (IE which is primary and which is off- hand). Right handed warriors USE the RIGHT hand the most and the primary weapon is the RIGHT hand, off hand is the left hand. For left-handed warriors, it is the opposite of right-handed warriors, of course. The confusion comes with the AMBI handed warriors. AMBIs USE the left hand more BUT the RIGHT hand holds the primary weapon, and the left hand holds the off hand weapon. Every so often you will get an AMBI that this is reversed, where the RIGHT hand is USED more and the PRIMARY weapon is held in the LEFT hand. But this kind of ambi is extremely rare. Well, that's it for now. Have fun, and watch out for that right hook... 'cause it might be a left hook!!!!! For more DM info, or just to chat you can DIPLO me at ADM 103, THE JOKER'S WILD. You can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit my DM web site at the following address: http://ourworld.compuserve.com./homepages/jessiejest/homepage.htm Ta-Ta, Sir Jessie Jest Name-Change-O-Rama The winter tourney brought a lot of people to the Isle who didn't appear there normally. This included Commission employees. Half a dozen arenamasters regarded each other warily in the mirror behind the bar at the Pig in a Haystack. The Pig was obscure and mediocre, drawing few gladiators, which is what they had all been looking for. They saw gladiators every day. Most arenamaster were convinced that this was some kind of punishment. You could always pick out the arenamasters in a crowd. There were superficial differences: One of these had clearly Adantri features, one wore an eye-patch, two were female. But there were, in significant ways, alike. The same size, the same hair-trigger alertness, the same deadliness. The one-eyed man broke the ice, raising his beer mug in salute. "I'm Zrof One- Eye from Zukal. Sugar of Arvat--" One of the women bowed slightly. "I know Sugar. The rest of you...?" The Adantri matched his salute. "Dernal of Dayla Kiv." "Daiyla Kiv? Ah...." "No, without the 'I' in it. These damned bureaucrats can't spell, and they thought adding an unnecessary vowel was exotic." Disgust dripped from his voice. "Tell me about it!" another man growled in agreement. "Khagal of Niatoli, and what they do to the spelling of THAT simple word--!" "I thought Daiyla, I mean Dayla Kiv had a different name right now," Arenamistress Sugar said. "The arena, at least, because of a contest?" "Chavez Ravine." Dernal's tone was the one that substituted in polite company for spitting on the floor. Zrof blinked, taken aback by the bitterness. He wouldn't have minded a contest in Zukal, and damn what they called the place. "It's only temporary, though." "Temporary, shmiperary," another man muttered. He seemed well into his drinking, although, like all arenamasters, he carried his liquor well. "They do it all the time in Aradi. No reshpect. Go around changing thish, changing that. I wish I could change shome thingsh." He signalled the bartender for a refill. The second woman put her hand over his mug. "You've had enough, Harkon. Try the coffee, instead." "You should be mad, too, Ripplesh," Harkon said. "They're going to do shtuff like that in Jahnsh, aren't they?" Ripples Dorrigan shrugged. All the men paused, some with glasses half raised, to watch. "It's the way things are," she said. "Not much we can do about it." "You know," Khagal of Niatoli said, "maybe we could make a few changes. Fix the spelling of Arena 33, for one, change a few standby titles--" "The Commission hates changes." Dernal of Dayla Kiv topped up his glass and drained it gloomily. "Yes, but if we disguise it," Sugar of Arvat said, excited, "make it... maybe a general Name-Change-O-Rama! Then we could slip OUR changes through and no one would notice or mind." *-------*-------*-------*-------*-------*-------* By popular demand, we are holding a Name-Change-o-Rama during the month of March. If you wish to change the name of your warriors or teams, please contact RSI Customer Service. The charge for a name change is $1, unless you're in DOOMCorps, in which case you take your chances. (Just kidding, guys! *snicker*) The Arcane Slasher I love the Slashing Style! Slashers are finesse artists, but they're much more aggressive than your aimed-blow. Well-designed slashers are formidable opponents; they are as ready to defend as to attack, though they prefer the latter. Fate has been to kind to this style, perhaps too kind. Even a badly-designed slasher may do well in basic, prompting many well-intentioned managers to promote questionable set- ups as "the slasher ideal." After reading another `Eureka!' article, I am compelled to add my 2 cents. I've learned how to design great slashers, and I'd like to pass on my ideas to the rest of Alastari. I can't tell you how to keep them alive (in four years I've only gotten one to ADM) but I can outline guidelines for creating a spooky character that will win for you--until they die or get to ADM. Just remember that decent opportunities to make a slasher aren't very common! WT, WL, & DF--15 pts each at least. Period. If you don't have it, you don't have a great slasher. Believe me, you can't afford to skimp anything here! ST--Anything from 7-11 is fine. The smaller the character the higher the number, but anything with a +9 size can get by with a 7 ST. For light armor use an epee, for anything heavier use a pair of hatchets, a scimitar, or a broadsword, depending on ST. CN & SP--Ideally, both are single-digit; if your con is high you're probably looking at a WASTE. Whatever else you do, don't add them. SZ--Since this is something we can't change anyway, don't worry about it. The bigger they are the less points to spread around to other areas, though. My slashers come up with the best overviews when I follow these guidelines. Most earn at least four wit statements; about 50% either start out with an Expert or two, or they pick them up within a couple of skills. One of my very best died in a tourney: 6-3-11-15-51-11-17. He started out doing good damage; picked up Experts in att, init, def, and rip. in two skills or less. This is an extreme example, but it seems to me that the well-designed slasher gets more than their fair share of luck on their overview. I've run one a lot worse that did fairly well--a winning record, until he was killed by a veteran lunger: 11-7-14-15-15-7-15, good bases in attack and init, four wit statements, great damage. Running them? Start out with an offensive effort of 10, and never let the OE drop below 7. How quick you taper down depends on the endurance rating. Slashers burn endurance very quickly; if you don't have good endurance drop right away from 10 to 7 and leave it there unless desperate, then go back to 10. Otherwise try 10, then 9, then 7. Remember, these are aggressive beasts; keep 'em on the offensive! Keep the activity level fairly low except in the very beginning, when you should be running 10. Then drop to 5 or 6, then 3 or 4m then 1. Go back up to 7 or 10 in desperation. Match your kill desire to your offensive effort, always. Summary: 10-10-10, 9-5-9*, 7-3-7, 7-1-7 across. Desperation: 10-10-10 or 10-7- 10. Avoid armor unless you MUST, but no higher than ARM and H. Don't use tactics--they seem to inhibit the slasher's ability to riposte and respond well to their opponent. Exception: to take out scum pick the heaviest weapon your character can lift and use the slash tactic--go for the legs or the arms: 7-1-7. Slash all the way! These `rules' have worked for me. The biggest problem I've had is that my slashers rise too high too quickly. Within five or six fights they're fighting warriors with 15 fights' experience. So be forewarned; give them sometime off every few turns so that they won't get clobbered by some old-timer looking for an easy win! Good Luck! The Arcane Kid, of Astral Kin, Osksi DM-3 *Remember, with `good' endurance only! "The Basher" My friends would laugh if they knew I was writing this, but who cares what they think? The basher is not a bad style in my opinion. It starts with the same base decisiveness as the striker, but has 4-5 more skills in initiative, and 3-4 more skills in att. That's what makes this style so good. I mean, you have the ability to get the jump on your opponent, you have the ability to hit your opponent, and who cares about their high riposte with your high att rating combined with your exp+ in initiative, they won't know what train hit them, much less think about the counter attack. O.K. I only make two types 1st the WL Basher: #1 #2 12 13 10 11 10 9 21 16 15 15 9 13 7 7 Example #1--Currently 8-3-1 in Firehold (68) has Master+1 att, Master +1 init., and Adv.Exp. dec., and is already sitting pretty with 80 recognition points. Example #2--Currently 8-3-0 in Jhans (36) has Exp.+3 att, Adv.Exp. init., and Exp+3 dec. with 87 recognition points. O.K., the other kind I like to call it the "High damage, low will, needs to end the fight before he passes out with exhaustion" Basher. This type of basher relies on his high damage capabilities to make up for his low WL. I've not had the best of luck with these types of bashers, but I do know they can win (Warbeast has proved that to me). The key is to get at least great damage on the roll-up. O.K. some examples: #1 #2 #3 11 13 17 11 9 12 16 17 10 17 17 17 7 10 11 11 11 10 11 7 7 Example #1--I DA'ed, he didn't win Example #2--Killed in round 1 of the winter FTF, went 4-3 in the Oct. Tournament, learned 6 skills 5 being Att. Example #3-1-0 in Jhans(36) I run both styles ALE +L, WH light armor, mace medium armor, and WH heavy armor. Go 10-10-7 dec 1st minute, and after min 1, go 8-8-5. WL basher, and the other kind drop down drastically. Always aim for the head (it gets you an att bonus and could score you a kill every now and then) unless you know you're gonna be up against a TP or waste, then aim for a leg. Well that's gonna be it. Somebody write me and tell me what you think. Uncle Charlie Mgr. Genocide (68) Helter Skelter (36, 100) The Anti-Thesis Slasher Greetings all. No, this is definitely not another "Perfect" article. In fact, it actually is just the opposite--finding success with a warrior whose stats were just average. I am not an expert at this game and do not have near the experience that some managers have. What I do have is some now solid experience with Slashers thanks to this guy. So what I will do with this article is show you how my first attempt at building a Slasher went, what it taught me, and maybe I can show a new or old manager something about the style that can help their game. This Slasher was my first attempt at the style. His starting stats were average at 13-11-12-10-16-11-11. Definitely no Primus-quality warrior. By most people's standards, he wouldn't have even been thought of as an ADM warrior because of his low wit and will combo. Today, I don't know if I would even keep this guy, but at the time I didn't know any better and kept him. I'm glad I did because he turned out to be a good warrior, not great, but good and a fun one to watch. He had three statements to start: "...learned how to be decisive and quick", "...conserve his endurance past what might normally be expected", and "does great damage". The last statement I think helped him a lot in many of his fights. Weapons and Armor Weapons-wise, all I knew about the Slashing style at the time was that a scimitar was good, so I gave him one. He did well with it, so I kept using it. I didn't use any off-hand weapon because I knew that an offensive-styled warrior could make quicker attacks with a weapon using two hands. I gave him one back-up scimitar, knowing that scimitars break though not that often. Early on, I may have given him light armor and a helm, but later I discovered that if he didn't get the first hit, he almost had no hope of winning. After all, the credo of an offensive warrior is to "hit first, hit hard" and hope it ends the fight quickly. I also started to realize he would never be a "great" warrior. My philosophy changed and I could only hope to get him to ADM. So, I decided to use no armor or helm, which slows warriors down. Strategy: Ah, the most important part of this warrior's winning ways. Looking back at his early strategy, I wonder how he did so well. I started him going 10-10-10, attack and protect the head with no tactics. My desperation strategy was usually 10-10-5, which did nothing to help him. I used the decisiveness tactic since his overview said he was decisive. Through observing his fights and looking at what he preferred, I ironed out a general strategy which I think is good for a lot of Slashers: min. 1 2 3 4 5 6+ desp OE 10 8 6 4 4 4 5 AL 10 4 2 2 2 2 8 KD 6 8 6 4 4 4 5 AL RA HE -----------------------> PL AM BD -------------------> HE Against more parry-type warriors like WOS and TP's, I've used a 10-6-6 min. One strategy that he seems to like. Design and Trains: I started him off training skills only. But I soon learned that his average stats meant that he wasn't going to learn very well. I decided late to train skills, then stats, every other turn. The training of his will to 17 really helped his endurance out. He finally went to ADM at 15-11-12-12-17-12-11. If I had recognized earlier that he would not be a great warrior, and accepted that, then I might have been about to train everything twice like in the "old" days and he would have gone at 15-13-12-12-18-13-13. Record: He started out great at 4-0-0, then was 8-4-1. He hit a rut and was soon 9-7-1. He was mediocre in his middle fights but was above .500% at 14-12-2. He was under .500% once at 14-15-2. Near the end of his regular DM career, with some careful challenges and strategy changes, he went 5-0-0 and ended up 21-16-2. He was Duelmaster for three turns in Cliffhome. Final Notes: So, what's the purpose of all this? It's to show that anyone can take a mediocre warrior and through careful strategy and design build them into a formidable warrior. I recognized long ago that this Slasher would never be great and accepted it. That's what turned him into the warrior he is today. I was willing to take the risks necessary to make him win. His name is E.G.B.D.F. (Every Good Boy Does Fine) and in this case his name is true. I couldn't have asked more from him in his accomplishments. He can be found fighting occasionally in Darkholm. He's taught me an incredible amount about this style and has contributed to my 65% overall win-loss record with them. I'm open to feedback, positive or negative, and hope in some way that I've helped someone learn more about this style. So, good luck to all and may your swords ring true! Brought to you by Talon, mgr. of Eagles Claw (38,104), Farfignewtons (32) where I'm known as Volksie, and other teams throughout Alastari.