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=AK= Help with giving character advice

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3/20/2014 19:03:38   

Hi all,

A while ago I made a post in the Requesting character advice? Read this before posting thread. The quality of character advice has improved and I am pleased to have seen that. However, I feel this thread is also necessary to be put into effect. As I wish to give anyone the chance to be able to give character advice in the Q&A. This thread is basically a starting ground for anyone that has questions regarding how to give advice, improve or anything else related to it they may want help on. Anyone is free to throw their opinion in here to help someone out this is not limited to just a select few people. I myself will also be helping out with anyone who asks questions in this thread as well.

That's pretty much what I wanted to say before you started reading further on in this thread as it's not a short read.

When giving character advice to someone else the best place to start would be to read the guides to each build:

  • The Training Academy: Ultimate Warrior Guide (outdated)
  • The Training Academy: Ultimate Mage Guide
  • The Training Academy: Ultimate Hybrid Guide
  • The Training Academy: Ultimate Ranger Guide

    After perusing the guides and becoming familiar with different types of build will help you in giving character advice to others as well as helping yourself gain a deeper understanding of each build. Also firsthand knowledge is always good to have, such as playing that build type etc. So if you have firsthand knowledge of a certain build try giving advice on similar builds as a starting point. This way you may find it easier to give advice to others as you'll have had some practice with what to do. Such as myself I started out rating hybrids as my character is a hybrid. From there I branched off and expanded onto other builds and since I had started in familiar territory it made it easier.

    When giving character advice try to reinforce your recommendation with facts or some sort of evidence to base your suggestion. Listed below are some generic reasons you can give when recommending someone purchase a piece of equipment. This list however, is only a generic sum up and is here to guide you in improving your own abilities when giving advice. You can use the list as a reference point to create your own summations of why you would recommend something. When recommending an item there are numerous reasons for doing so such as the following to name a few:

  • Swap to X as it:
      Deals more damage than your current weapon. This isn't limited to power so you can discuss other strengths and weakness associated with a weapon such as Bth leans
      Provides spell boosts for your spells increasing your damage output
      Is multi-element and can serve well in both elements allowing for a utility weapon for mages this can be handy as they can carry extra spell boosting weapons
      Triggers such as on certain class of monsters that make this weapon an excellent choice
      Mana regeneration as MP is a main source of a mages power will be useful

  • Swap this to X as it:
      Has a stronger attack which benefits your type of character who relies on weapon damage
      Better elemental resistance which is good for your character as you rely on pet/spell/guest damage and not so much on weapons
      Useful skills such as healing abilities, poison and burn capabilities some armours have to name a few as there are so many
      Covering multiple elements allows for more utility armours such as wizard robes and beneficial against multi-element monsters
      More useful in most situations given its stable attack pattern for short bursts versus a rare strong attack and common weaker attack

  • Swap to shield X as it:
      Provides better elemental than your current shield
      Covers 2 elements allowing for utility shields such as Eye of Naab, Chieftainís IronThorn or the Kindred series of shields for the healing effect to list a few
      Have triggers or effects while providing adequate defence such as full set bonuses, Shield of Awe as an example

  • Swap to spell X as it:
      Deals more damage than you current spell
      Offers strategic value such as inflicting poison to unlock triggers/abilities along with other ailments such as daze, paralyse and burn to list a few
      Ice can cover water, vise versa, so you donít need both spells just hang onto 1 of them and pick up an extra spell to cover another element
      Single hit versus multi-hit. Some people prefer multi-hit spells over single hit for stability reasons
      When it comes to summon spells the reasons you can raise are offers healing, is stronger than this guest or covers this element which you donít have

  • Swap to pet X as it:
      Deals more damage than your current pet
      Has strategic value such as burn, poison, daze etc. which can be useful for strategic type players
      Buffs/Nerfs the enemy allowing for greater accuracy and increased damage
      For non-bms the main reason for recommending pets would be 0 Training Difficulty allowing for a 100% attack rate. Although with newer pets the main reason would be whether or not that have effects that rely on CHA.

    Miscellaneous Items:
  • Swap to X item as it:
      Offers you X Stat boost for your build which will benefit you
      Offers you the ability to reduce elemental resistance further if you're a defensive type player
      Boosts X type of attack if you're an offensive type player (this can apply to defensive types as well such as rangers with the scope misc as an example)
      Allows the summon of a guest, mainly for beast build types

    Those are just a few examples of how you can go about giving recommendations. Of course as these are just examples feel free to make your own summary when giving advice. However, there are times where you will find yourself conflicted as to which item to recommend. Due to the abundance of equipment in AQ this can happen quite a bit. If you find yourself in this situation it would be a good idea to list yourself the advantages and disadvantages each item has. From there you should look at the character your rating and see if you can determine which item has more value to the ratee. If you can't do that recommend both items giving reasons why for each item and then the ratee can try and decide since they would know their playstyle better than anyone.

    So don't be afraid to ask for help in this thread. I know it might seem daunting but I know how you feel. When I first started out it was quite terrifying as you always second guess yourself at the start wondering if you recommended an appropriate item or not. So I encourage you to ask here for any help you may need with any issue regarding character advice/ratings.

    < Message edited by The Forgotten -- 5/23/2014 21:17:45 >
  • AQ DF AQW  Post #: 1
    5/14/2012 2:25:28   
    The Game
    Pegasus Overlord

    As the last AQ CR&A AK before that forum merged with AQ Q&A, I would like to offer my two cents if that is alright with Blace.

    The biggest piece of advice I can give to aspiring raters is that, when you are rating someone, you are selling yourself. What do I mean by that? Well, by the mere fact that you are posting, you are obviously trying to help someone; you believe that your advice is the best course of action that the ratee should take in shaping his character and what you are suggesting may come to define his enjoyment of the game as a whole.

    In order to give advice that not only meets but also raises the standard, one must, first and foremost, possess the necessary knowledge-base in order to administer adequate advice. Blace has already linked several unbelievably useful and informative guides that should form the foundation of your knowledge-base. Having the necessary knowledge is only half the battle, though. One of my previous instructors put it best when she said that "everything's an argument." Through five years of rating, I have always found that typing out your thought process for recommending items and offering advice in general is the most effective style. Give a man a fish and he will be fed for a day; teach a man how to fish and he will be fed for a lifetime. In other words, instead of just telling a ratee what he should get or how he should build his character, walk him through the various options that you considered and explain to him how you arrived at whatever conclusion that you did. This style of rating is successful on two levels. First of all, you are still offering him advice that he can use right at the moment. Secondly, you are conditioning him to think for himself and showing him how the "experts" decide what to get so that, one day, he might become self-sufficient in examining his own character in future years and possibly assist others the same way you are assisting him. Like a good instructor, you are leading him to the answer rather than telling him the answer outright.

    < Message edited by The Game -- 5/28/2012 17:39:55 >
    AQ  Post #: 2
    5/14/2012 3:10:14   

    Indeed. I often find myself being incorrect while giving a rating, which in my opinion is nothing to be ashamed of. However, I feel that I don't do a good job all of the time and I'm giving the wrong advice too often. Perhaps I should research more, because the person I am giving the wrong advice to is getting unnecessary information.

    I will improve with my ratings and advice overtime. This goes for the same to everyone as well. If you have nothing good to say, don't say it at all. It's what I go by, because if you find yourself giving the incorrect information too much then don't say anything at all. However I'm still improving, so nothing to be ashamed of.

    EDIT - And a great way to improve with your knowledge on basic advice and equipment suggestions is to merely research. If you don't know what to suggest or give advice towards, find out on the internet! :-).

    ~ Zeru.

    < Message edited by AQZeruphantom -- 5/14/2012 3:29:30 >
    AQ Epic  Post #: 3
    5/14/2012 3:26:39   

    And that is exactly what this thread is for to ask questions and get help from others. And you are right there is nothing wrong with making errors. Everyone makes me them I did many times when starting out however, I didn't have the luxury of this type of thread to get help from. :P
    AQ DF AQW  Post #: 4
    5/18/2012 7:29:22   
    <.< Ward_Mod >.>

    As a previous Rater around around four years ago, I also would like to point out that there is more to Rating than just numbers alone. Just because one weapon deals more damage than another weapon is not enough reason to get it. One must not only consider the numbers when you rate, one needs to consider if a character is stuck in a "limbo" between levels, then consider which is probably the best option to go with. When rating, one should consider many factors other than simply damage, such as gold supply, farming spots, playing style, level of the character in question.

    For example, for a Summoner Beastmaster Mage, you shouldn't be telling him to get raw damage spells or picking up defensive armours. As a Summoner, he doesn't need to tank so much as deal as much damage as possible along with a Guest (Unless a Bow is in use.) If a Mage is level 125 and needs a Water spell, you should consider whether he can make it to 130 for Blue Blazes or he should grab level 105's Everlasting Guardian Gumn, once again, this is dependent on farming location. If a Warrior is level 123 and only has the level 105 Usterik's dagger. Don't just tell him to upgrade to, say the 117 Katana just because the level 117 Gaiden's Razor Edged Keen Blade is more damaging than the 105 Dagger. The next upgrade is the level 125 Usterik's dagger. Can the warrior hold out with the level 105 Dagger for two more levels? These are just a few example to illustrate the factors you have to consider.

    With the gold being particularly tight right now, considering the gold supply is even more important than before. Once again, damage isn't everything. There are far more factors to consider when rating.

    As an AK in Guides, I'd also like to point out how Guides recommend equipment.

    In the Guides, Equipment is recommended according to an "Ideal" state where you have "Unlimited" gold. When I say "Unlimited" I mean that you have enough gold to buy everything necessary at that level and still have gold left over to experiment and train stats. Generally speaking, Weapons for each element recommended in Guides are recommended at 10-15 level intervals. Armours (for each element) are recommended at around 15-20 level intervals, shield intervals ranged between 15-30, and spells ranging between 15-20 as well. Pets generally have a 10-25 level interval (In some very rare cases, due to equipment shortage, up to 30.) The guides try to recommend cheap and overpowered equipment, such as the Fyre Force, Fyre Force Ultimate, Fwying Wonder, Everlasting guardian Gumn and so on to save you some gold through the progress of your game, however, Guides are more concerned with having "Optimal" equipment, rather than having "affordable" equipment. We do try to balance that, but it's a difficult line to walk.

    With that said, when rating, don't simply look at a Guide and see "Oh, this equipment is best for the level, so I recommend people to get it." this is NOT the case. As mentioned, take a fresh perspective to every single character you rate. Everyone's gold supply is different, as is their playing style. I personally farm Essences, so I have a pretty large gold supply for my level (Almost 3 times the normal gold supply of the RA-farming player. Once you're able to consider the many factors and attempt to balance them will you be truly successful at rating.

    < Message edited by Ward_Point -- 5/18/2012 7:37:34 >
    AQ  Post #: 5
    5/23/2012 16:57:13   
    aq DarkKnight

    Nice guide, you guys inspire me to learn from my mistakes that damage isn't all that matter. As a fledgling member of the forum, I often have trouble giving good rating for other players and is afraid to give them what I think is not completely right yet but is on the point. This guide kindle my wish to help other players out more and not worry too much about it has to be perfect. Thank you very much guys. This guide is very informative.

    < Message edited by aq DarkKnight -- 5/23/2012 17:18:01 >
    AQ  Post #: 6
    5/28/2012 15:09:37   

    wow this is a really cool guide! It's really helpful too. Great job guys!

    Also, idk if this is that important or not, but sometimes you can't just recommend a weapon to someone just because you have it/used it a lot. Sometimes that weapon is not the best option even if you use it. Also, if you don't use a weapon, you shouldn't tell the person to NOT use the weapon just because you didn't like it. This basically falls under "playstyle" but just wanted to point that out.

    Whispering Rainment is a great armor to mention for about level 100s because of it's a source of harm damage and the initiative bonus.
    Also, maybe add a little note on armors about class titles for classes such as wizards for mana efficiency and maybe assassin for the initiative bonus? Just a thought

    And basically, you live and learn when giving char advice because as a rater, I honestly can say that I've learned a lot from other forumites as they correct me and give me other options
    AQ AQW  Post #: 7
    5/29/2012 0:49:38   


    Whispering Rainment is a great armor to mention for about level 100s because of it's a source of harm damage and the initiative bonus.

    And for the sufficient water defense, too. It covers as a nice gap-filler until the player farms enough gold for a more valued armor.

    ~ Zeru.
    AQ Epic  Post #: 8
    8/4/2012 16:22:31   
    The Game
    Pegasus Overlord

    This thread hasn't really lived up to what we thought it would be where people could voice their apprehensions or seek advice in helping others to a greater degree. In an endeavor to help the helpers, or so to speak, anyone is free to join #CR&A on IRC. This gives helpers another avenue to seek advice if necessary to better themselves by communicating directly with some of the former raters turned AKs and Moderators. From personal experience, talking with other raters about items and equipment is conducive to becoming a better helper. Many of us there have been rating for years. We can rebuild you. We have the technology.
    AQ  Post #: 9
    9/5/2012 22:25:26   

    This thread is dying D:

    Well I'm just gonna put a little thing here. This is a little guide to current compression shields, so you can pick 2 elements at random and hopefully you will see one on here. Also, if there are multiple ones, I have little notes to help you choose one or the other. In addition, this list will get updated as we get better compression shields over time :D

    If any 2 elements don't have a combo, then either it doesn't exist or I forgot about them... feel free to add and/or correct info.

    Compression shields:

    Major ones:
    1) Daylight Savingtime shield; SUPERB compression; -25% to 2 different elements when you click it to switch between 2 elements at only the cost of magic defense. <-- best compression shield xD

    2) Fur of Igneus. Decent fire and ice resistance (actually best dual elemental compression shield). Both have great effects when you block attacks; either a heal or backlash damage :D

    3) For LOW LEVELED players, the Chameleon shield is great too. It has a "floating" effect that switches between water and earth. Great for low leveled players, but I don't think shields are a big worry for this range...

    4) Elemental Compression shields (will edit by color..) (Non-rares only):

    Fire and Ice: Fur of Igneus (Note: Great ice and fire compression... even has handy abilities)
    Fire and Earth : Nova Knight shields (Note: alright fire and earth compression... great ranged defense at the cost of magic defense)
    Fire and Energy and Light: Supernova Shield (Note: Triple resistance shield, so it gives up good bit of defense at the cost of having 3 superb defenses)
    Fire and Darkness: Demon Wraith Prison series (Note: Great fire and darkness compression; excellent synergy with Falerin's Suit armors)

    Water and Wind: Kindred shields (Note: Not the BEST compression shield... it's got alright water defense and decent wind defense; it has a very handy SP heal though)
    Water and Ice: Spell Blocker series (Note: Great compression PLUS excellent Magic defense (at the cost of the other 2 combat defenses))
    Water and Earth : Chameleon shields; Magnetic shields (Note: It has a bit less water/fire resistance due to a bit of all rounder defense AND an effect that reduces monster bth if triggered)

    Wind and Water : The Crane Umbrella Series (Note: Great wind resistance with decent water defense but have excellent wind defense when triggered)
    Wind and Earth : Shield of Sands (Note: Third best compression shield for higher leveled players; -21% rather than just -20%)
    Wind and Energy : Assassin shield series (Note: Only for wind and energy defenses); Sublime Tower shield series (Better option. Same resistances as Assassin shields but with BETTER ranged defense)

    Ice and Fire : Fur of Igneus
    Ice and Water : Spell Blocker series
    Ice and Wind: Crystal Aegis shields (Note: Great ice resistance with DECENT wind defense)

    Earth and Fire : Nova Knight shields
    Earth and Water : Chameleon shields; Magnetic shields
    Earth and Wind: Shield of Sands
    Earth and Light: Sackelberry shield series (Note: GREAT melee defense and good earth/light compression; great synergy with Jester's Masquerade)
    Earth and Darkness: Crystal Skull shield (Only get if you are focused on magic defense and compression); Shadowslayer Shield (only get if you face Darkovian creatures a lot); Monster Talon (Best option for guardians)

    Energy and Fire and Light: Supernova Shield
    Energy and Wind: Sublime Tower shield series

    Light and Fire and Energy : Supernova Shield
    Light and Earth : Sackelberry shield series
    Light and Darkness: Daylight Savings Shields (Note: BEST compression shield available. Freely toggles between Light and Darkness resistances with great resistances; only downfall is poor magic defense); Luminous Shields (Note: Great darkness and light shield; VERY helpful against Shadow creatures! Also triggers for massive MRM boost :D)

    Darkness and Fire : Moglin Prison shield series
    Darkness and Earth : Crystal Skull series; Shadowslayer shields; Monster Talon series
    Darkness and Light: Daylights Savings Shields; Luminous Shields

    Special considerations: The Mogloo shields and Asguardian shields have 4 element resistance. Only get it if you know you will face multielemental monsters a lot though...

    Bolded shields are shields that I personally recommend, whether it's for compression or effect

    edit: Please tell me if I should add stuff or change stuff :)

    (Please don't delete this AKs if it's not supposed to go here... I spent forever on this ;____;)

    < Message edited by battlesiege15 -- 9/5/2012 22:52:08 >
    AQ AQW  Post #: 10
    9/8/2012 23:23:25   
    Tha Killa

    ^Pretty epic

    What I would just like to say is that raters give equipment usually based on highest DPT results. This usually leads to other players suggesting nifty items which the original poster not knowing which to pick. So what I though was that maybe in the *Requesting Caracter Advice, Read Here* thread should receive some sort of extra line for ex:

    Type of weapons wanted:

    Then the players would be able to choose whether they want the highest Damage Per Turn possible or if they want only ranged weapon, or even asking specific types of weapons.

    I know this can be specified easily but I just wanted to get this out and sorry if this is the wrong place to post it.
    AQ  Post #: 11
    9/9/2012 0:40:21   
    The Game
    Pegasus Overlord

    That's not necessary because it is the rater's job to mention viable alternatives to the item that is most effective in terms of dealing and resisting damage.
    AQ  Post #: 12
    9/9/2012 8:56:44   
    Tha Killa

    All right then:)
    AQ  Post #: 13
    3/21/2014 6:00:18   


    Swap to X as it:
    Deals more damage than your current weapon.
    This isn't limited to power so you can discuss other strengths and weakness associated with a weapon such as Bth leans
    Provides spell boosts for your spells increasing your damage output
    Is multi-element and can serve well in both elements allowing for a utility weapon for mages this can be handy as they can carry extra spell boosting weapons
    Triggers such as on certain class of monsters that make this weapon an excellent choice
    Mana regeneration as MP is a main source of a mages power will be useful

    i find this colidal with the rule:

    Equipment Comparison

    If you want to compare two or more items or see which item(s) is best for your current or future build, AQ EC is the place.

    so what is the degree of that rule ?
    when is this rule applying ?

    saying anything about an item and the other is comparing the item to the other
    AQ Epic  Post #: 14
    3/21/2014 6:56:09   

    The rule is more directed at making requests. The other is backing up your suggestion with basic knowledge of the item or making a counter argument.

    If someone asks "What item is best" no one should answer the question.

    If you however are making a recommendation in a rating you are more then welcome (and advised to) back up your suggestion with sound reasoning.
    This however does not mean run numerical comparisons for everything you suggest. Thou some numbers are allowed if a counter argument for a suggestion needs validation.

    edit: Limited general comparisons for the purpose of making suggestions is fine, if it goes too far (back and forth over more then a few posts) or the OP starts making requests it will likley be dealt with either by redirecting people or locking etc. if need be.

    edit: use common sense, if you think it is too much of a comparison or it becomes too much of a discussion take a step back. You can always let the OP know you are willing to discuss it more in the EC.

    < Message edited by afterlifex -- 3/21/2014 7:05:23 >
    AQ DF MQ AQW Epic  Post #: 15
    3/21/2014 7:19:43   

    so only basic comparisons are allowed , ie: it deals more damage or has a trigger to deal more damage or it has a better effect , but it shouldn't go back and forth or deep , got it
    AQ Epic  Post #: 16
    3/21/2014 7:23:14   

    Yeah you can point out the differences & occasionally a few numbers are ok if a point needs to be made*. If it is something that needs to be discussed or gone over very meticulously the EC is best.

    It it best to keep the thread on topic rather then going off and focusing on 1 item.

    * As far as numbers go:
    If 2 people can't agree on a suggestion you can back your suggestion up with data. If that does not end the issue it should head to the EC.


    A) Player 1 suggests X
    B) Player 2 suggests Y (point out the differences and give reasoning for your suggestion)
    C) Player 1 does not agree (???)
    D) Either can back there suggestion up with numerical data.
    F) /End

    < Message edited by afterlifex -- 3/21/2014 7:32:16 >
    AQ DF MQ AQW Epic  Post #: 17
    5/23/2014 15:50:10   

    The Links to the Guides are all Dead.
    Post #: 18
    5/23/2014 21:20:10   
    The Forgotten
    Exquisitely pathological

    Fixed. Warrior guide is still to the old one, but no one's picked that one up yet.
    AQ AQW  Post #: 19
    8/29/2016 15:09:00   

    For compression shields, there is also the Tortilla shield series
    Post #: 20
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