Version 3.4 11 January 2012 Notes: A. Tests used a characters with a crafted soulforge. B. For Training, human is a better option, as items are of higher difficulty, at lower skill (gargoyles have to imbue at a higher skill level for the same chance of a gain, resulting in higher material costs). You can then use a race change token, or get a second 120 Imbuing Powerscroll, use it on a gargoyle, then transfer the skill over with a Soulstone. C. Similarly, it is better to avoid the Royal City public soulforges (regular and Queen's) during training, as they lower the difficulty as well. During training, only use the Queen's soulforge when unraveling extremely high end loot for the wider range of intensity that gives relic fragments, as there's still the chance to gain from unraveling, all the way to 120. Gains, 0 to 75. If you so choose, you can start a new character with the skill, up to 50, or on the normal-ruleset shards, buy it up to 40. HOWEVER, I recommend that you do NOT buy any points in the skill at all. The reason for not buying is simple. You can start unraveling, and getting gains and residue, at 0 skill. You will NEED those residue, once your skill gets over 75. All buying the skill, or starting with points in it for a new character, is REDUCE your supplies for later training. No gains off fails - only off successes. Gains work like cooking gains (1 gain check per item, if using the "unravel container" option of the craft window, so you can get multiple gains from one container of items - and below 30 skill (or using an alacrity scroll), those skill gains can be 0.2 to 0.5). Note that what gives gains for you, using this guide, might be different slightly from what works for someone else, due to combinations of character race, forge used, Power Scroll used, and what you perceive to by your optimum gain range, 0 - 75 Skill: unravel items by the bag-load. Note: Residue returned will vary, and one can unravel items made of special material (so making junk with runics, or enhanced with special materials, are a way to try for the higher ingredients). Starting from 0 skill, you are likely to get 500-1000 magical residue from junk items (treasure chests from Maps & SOS, monster loot, crafted stuff that qualifies as special enough for unraveling, etc.) by the time you hit 25 skill. For the first 6 months or so of Stygian Abyss, you could only gain from unraveling until 25 skill. That cap no longer applies. At around 45 skill, you will start having the ability to get enchanted essence. Originally, this was at 50.1, but the changes to how unraveling worked (the same changes that allowed one to continue gaining from unraveling past 25 skill) lowered the bounds for when the more difficult ingredients become available, and when you can attempt to unravel certain items. You will need Magical Residue to all of your training; probably in the neighborhood of 10,000, to complete training. This isn't counting the residue gotten back from unraveling your training steps, so it will probably run closer to 7,000. (The prior number of 20,000 was an accidental hold-over from the version of the FAQ dealing with having to train up from 25 skill, before the changes above that allowed unravel gains at all points of the skill). You will need 500 Enchanted Essence to get your 120 Scroll of Power for Imbuing. You will do this by getting 10 115 Scrolls of Power for Imbuing, then using a Scroll Binder (an item made by Scribes, using wood pulp made by Cooks) to combine the 10 115 scrolls into a single 120 scroll. Trust me, while there is a quest for the 120 scroll directly, it is NOT worth the price of the Relic Fragments it takes. If you plan to train on a human, then soulstone the skill over onto a gargoyle, you'll need to do this once for each character. Once you reach the 70s, your skill gains from unraveling will have diminished, but will continue into the mid to high 70s for low-end items. Unraveling items that give essence can give gains close to 100, and relic-giving items can give gains all the way to 120 - but gaining that way is insanely slow. By This time, you probably have close to 10,000 Residue. It is now time to start to use these to imbue items for skill gains. Training after 70-75 Skill. Preparation: You will need to have a Blacksmith with Grandmaster or better skills, to reliably make your target items. The target items will be EXCEPTIONAL QUALITY PLATEMAIL JINGASA. Note that Jingasa are HELMETS, and are located in the Helmet section, not the Metal Armor section, of the Blacksmith crafting gump. And, as helmets, are substantially easier to craft than the rest of the SE Plate. The Jingasa are chosen for their ease of manufacture, and the automatic Mage Armor property that Samurai Empire expansion metal armor has when made exceptional. This gives you a base of 100% intensity to add additional properties to, at no cost. I suggest the "Light Platemail Jingasa" as 20 of them fit nicely in a backpack/pouch (4 columns of 5) or box (5 columns of 4). You will probably need only about 200-300 of these to get to 115 skill from 75, though you will only work on 20 or 40 at a time. As gains get progressively slower after 115, you will probably get 10 or less gains per container of 20 as you near 120, so the variance on the total amount needed will differ from person to person. Each item can have TWENTY successful Imbues. Typically, you'll do one high-end imbue one time, per item, followed by one mid or high level imbue or a second (third, with the free Mage Armor) property, and the remaining 18 all low-level imbues of a last property. Training: The following methods use only Amber (LRC) and Citrine (Luck, Reflect Physical), with Residue. OPTIONAL VERY Early Training: Some people have had difficulty gaining in the 60-75 range from just unraveling. Starting at about 60 skill, take the Exceptional Jingasa, and imbue some value of luck between 1 and 19 (whatever puts you closest to 50% success) FOR ALL TWENTY SUCCESSES. Skip steps 2 & 3. Early Training: When you get where you are imbuing 89 or 90 luck regularly, you will go into "late training" - which adds and additional Imbue between the first & second ones below. Step 1 - First Imbue: Add Luck* to each Jingasa. Initially, your target will be to bring it up to close tob50% success chance** (where the optimum range supposedly starts), but eventually you'll work up to 89 or 90 Luck* as the default for this Imbue. (4 Residue, 8 Citrine for 89 Luck; 90 uses 1 citrine more than 89, and will give a slight increase to difficulty). Even as you get into the 110s, you'll still occasionally get a rare gain in this part of the process, but they will only be common below 100 skill. At around 70-75 skill, this will be a 19 Luck Imbue (the max 1 residue, 1 citrine imbue). Use Imbue Last Property to switch between items (hitting reimbue on failures, until success) to get all 20 items in the container imbued with this property. Once you hit where you're doing 89 or 90 luck as the first imbue, it's advisable to set up 2 or 3 containers of Jingasa at once, to keep things rolling (and to maximize the chance of a rare gain in set-up) Step 2(3) - Second (Third) Imbue: After reaching where 89 or 90 luck becomes your default first imbue, this becomes your third step. In the "Casting" Section, choose "Lower Reagent Cost". Typically, you'll want to keep the LRC imbue in the 1-3% range (where the cost is 1 residue and 1 amber) with the success chance is around 45%-55%**, and this is done by choosing your first two steps properly. Start with the first item in the bag. Step 3(4) - Third (Fourth) through Twentieth Imbues: Repeat last Imbue on the SAME item, until you hit the 20th successful Imbue (often, you'll know only by seeing the indication that you're going past the 20th), as that's where reimbue gains of the same item drop off (but can still happen). At that point, switch to the next item in line, using "Imbue Last Property", and doing the remaining Imbues on it on it to get to 20. "Lather, Rinse, Repeat", adding materials into you backpack as necessary. And, slowly adjust from 1% LRC up to 3% LRC, as needed, to keep your target success chance in the area around 50% (really, anywhere between 45% and 60% is probably good). Skip to the last step when you get where your success chance at 3% LRC gets out of your comfort range. Step 4(5) - When all the items in the training batch done (or you get out of your target difficulty range): a. When you decide that the chance at 3% LRC isn't good enough, finish up the batch you're working on. b. Move any items that have been imbued 20 times to a new container, then unravel the bag you have all the 20-times-imbued items in, to reclaim a small amount of residue from them. c. Go back to the luck Imbue step (or start with a fresh bag of jingasa, if the reason you stopped was running out of them). Increment your planned Luck imbue value up in your regimen 10 or 20 points (this may mean reimbuing a few items) if needed, and re-evaluate your LRC target number (increasing luck 10, and going from 3% to 1% LRC SHOULD result in the difficulty remaining as it was). d. When you hit 89 Luck and 3% LRC being too easy for your plans, move on to "later training" Later training (as you close in on 120): Add the following step into the above sequence (which displaces step 2 to become step 3, etc.) This is why the previous sections are numbered 2(3), 3(4), and 4(5) Step 2 - Second Imbue: At this point, go back to the first item in the container. Choose "Reflect Physical Damage". Again, choose an intensity that puts around the 50% success range, for a single successful imbue. But, as this is closer to the point where regular gains come in, you'll only want to do 1 container (or less) of the jingasa at a time (leave the others to do with a higher value) You can take this as high as 13%, without using special materials, and will probably do so, near the end of your training. Step 5e: Modify Step 4 above (now the 5th step) as follows: e. When you are at 89 luck, and at 1 RPD, and 3% LRC gets out of your personal optimal gain range, you'll begin incrementing RPD up, instead of taking Luck over 90. If your training style hits 13% RPD on the second step (possible if using the Royal city public forges), you may need to go higher LRC than 3% (possibly as much as 7% LRC = 1 residue, 3 gems) to stay near the low end of the "optimum range" for LRC. Notes: *89 Luck: Choose "Luck" Property from the "Misc." category, then hit the far right "triple" arrow to take it to 100, then the middle left "double" arrow once to back it down to 90, then the single left arrow once to go to 89. As noted, if you are comfortable with the extra spending, you can leave out the last one and spend more ingredients, to go to 90. Note that between 70 & 90 skill, you will start at some lower level of luck (ending in 9 for max efficiency in gains), slowly working your way up to 89 or 90. **Perhaps into the 45% to 60% range - some people seem to gain better in different parts of the 40% to 60% range - gain chances go down closer to 60%, but you waste less per attempt - the extra attempts required to gain at higher skills may or may not balance out with the reduction in failures. Choose your own comfort zone, after testing the waters. See a reply below for the costs of various amounts of the 3 skills used in this guide. Sources of stuff to use in Training: Ingots (for making the Jingasa): Mine them yourself (if a crafter, you may already have the several thousand iron ingots you'll need, on hand, from your miner), or go to the Random Gypsy Camp Spawns^ in Ilshenar. The random ones come and go, but the Vagabond and Iron Worker NPCs at the Random sites always respawn at default price (8 GP each for the first 1000, +1 GP each per additional 1000, on regular shards), so there will be a regular source of default price ingots, if you go looking, even if all the permanent Ilshenar Gypsies and the smiths of the other five facets are all overpriced. Gems: You can get some from mining, or fighting elementals, dragons, gargoyles, etc. But, that can take way too long, unless you were hoarding looted gems from before Stygian Abyss launched. Your second-best option will be the Jewelers in various cities (including vagabonds in the permanent Gypsy camps). But, like with the Smiths, these can get overpriced real quick. Your best bet, again, are the Vagabonds that can occur at the Random Gypsy Camp Spawns^. They respawn at default gem prices, when they occur. And, because of the sheer cost of buying 500 gems at a time, gem purchases of such size (including from normal Jewelers) will auto-deduct from the gold in your bank (unlike the ingot purchases), so long as the gold is in Coin form (if not, use the gypsy banker at the site to break your check). Magical Residue: If you're working up loyalty, the Ter Mur Toxic Sliths give decent loyalty, are fairly easy to kill, usually have 2 or more pieces of junk to unravel (up to 5, maybe more), and additionally are things that a quest from Percolem wants you to kill, for which he will give a backpack with 10 Enchanted Essence, gems, and more junk to unravel. He also gives a quest for the normal Sliths, which don't have as good loot, but the quest for them gives Residue in the bag, instead of Essence, so both are good to accept (and both have cool-downs, so you will probably do both, one after the other, in any given night. If gathering with another of your characters, any good spawn of crappy equipment will do (especially if you can get away with riding a Giant Beetle while doing it). Swoops and Miasma are favorites (but about anything named from Mondain's legacy, will usually do), and the leftover junk in Peerless & Spawn Champ bosses also are a pretty good haul. Typically, you'll average 1 Residue per 2 stone of junk loot (plus some essence, and the rare relic). A last source, if you have a tailor, might be using low-end BOD reward runics. Spined Kits are especially good for this. 45 leather caps made of normal leather will produce a lot of Residue (and a few essence) for just 90 leather and 1 Spined kit, while making the items with spined leather will produce less Residue, and several times more essence than using normal leather would have done (for getting your 115 PS to scroll-bind into a 120). ^ Gypsy Camp Spawns are located HERE. (the first section of numbers - ignore the permanent camps, unless the permanent vendors on the shard have also reset recently, in which case you probably wouldn't be looking for the Gypsies for about a week, anyways) Note that not every random camp will have a Vagabond or an Iron Worker (in fact, the only two NPCs guaranteed at each will be the Banker and the healer/mage hybrid, the Fortune Teller), and typically only 3-5 spots of the 10 or so random spawn locations (there were a couple more not listed, but they have not been active since Mondain's Legacy was released) will be active at any given time.