Wither has become the bane of large scale PVP battles. The side who has the most players casting Wither almost always wins. A fight between two sides of 20+ players can be decided in mere seconds with a rush of Necromancers spamming Wither. The only way to combat Wither is to field more Withering players than the other team, which isn't a very balanced way of handling things. The data speaks for itself so here it is compared to its closest relatives. <u>Wither</u> Speed: 1.25 or 1.5 seconds (0.75 or 1 with 2 faster casting) [casting speed in dispute] Mana 23 (14 with 40% LMC) Hit Delay: None Effect: 4 tile radius around caster Attack Area: 9x9 tiles Allowed in Guard Zone: Yes Damage Type: Cold damage (lower used resistance) Damage: 20 maximum damage at 120 Necromancy, 120 Spirit Speak, 15% SDI against 70 Cold Resistance <u>Meteor Swarm/Chain Lightning</u> Speed: 2 seconds (1.5 with 2 faster casting) Mana: 40 (24 with 40% LMC) Hit Delay: Slight (about 1/2 second) Effect: Hits target creature or tile Attack Area: 5x5 tiles Allowed in Guard Zone: No Damage Type: Meteor Swarm is Fire, Chain Lightning is Energy (both highly used resistances) Damage: Total damage is reduced by number of targets attacked. At 8 targets only does 6 damage to each that has 70 fire resistance (highest number of players we could gather to test). No matter the number of targets, Meteor Swarm never does better than Wither. At 1 target it is a waste to cast (25-27 damage but double mana), at two it comes close but it is roughly equal (25-27 damage but Wither is half Mana and casts quicker) , after 3 targets it does less damage (16-18). In a straight comparison Wither clearly has the edge in all categories. Plus when you combine Wraith Form which allows you to freely move through players and get back mana for all the damage you deal, it comes out miles ahead. If you have 10 mages cast Meteor Swarm that does 60 damage against 8 players. If you have 10 Necromancers cast Wither that does 1600 damage against 8 players, 200 to each player with quicker casting and for less mana! Plus Wither is target free, meaning no pesky "target can not be seen" mistargeting accidents, just press your key and hit everyone around you. Another tactic to close a distance quickly is to teleport right in the midst of your opponents and spam Wither. Your opponents are forced to try and get away quickly, blocking each other in panic. But not the Necromancer, they just run away freely because of Wraith form if they are in trouble. I just want to make sure everyone understands how far Wither can reach. A common defense for the spell is that the range is rather "limited" and can not be targetted like the 7th circle mage spells. The water tiles are the area Meteor Swarm/Chain Lightning would hit. The water tiles and lava tiles is the area Wither will hit. That area does not seem very limited to me. In big battles today the outcome is not decided by the number of players, it is the number of witherers. You can fight with dozens of people only to be cut down by a handful of Witherers. Wither is a spell that does massive damage for little cost. Energy Bolt does a similar amount of damage, but only affects one target. Withering is like sending out wave after wave of Energy Bolts on everything in range. Imagine how unbalancing that would be, that is Wither.