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15th Circle (53)

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A pulsating throb of power emanated from the massive pyramid before the adventures, as scattered sand carried on the wind lost its drive and sprinkled to the ground around the unsettling calm of the monolith.  An assorted gathering of Xornn's companions stood around him; Annoden the powerful, wily human magician; Rhedd, his beautiful and savy wood elf wife; Aelgar, the mighty half-elf warrior; Dessari the woof elf ranger, Aelgar's wife.  Atop the pyramid, their wizard guide stood solemnly, staring into the sky at something only he could see.

"It's time," he hissed, "gather close, we planeshift now."

As they clambered atop the monument they felt the air blur with each pulse of the mystic energy it trapped at this nexus.  The wizard began his casting, speaking in a lost, inherently evil portal.  With a folding shift of reality, the journey began and ended and Xornn was looking at a pitched battle before his party, the first wave of the raid.  Several were down already, including the first enchanter to go up.  Xornn found his initial steps hindered, then realized he was gripping his wife's hand.

He mouthed a silent phrase to her as he released her grasp then strode purposefully into the throng of attackers, as they began their assault into the Plane of Hatred.


Actually I hope you have been going to Hate already by this point, but if you haven't yet, go now.  Go before you have Clarity II.  Go before resists become a rarity rather than commonplace.  This place used to see raids of level 46 to 50, and they succeeded.  But no matter where you go or what you do, excel.


Spells

Aanya's Quickening - Upgrade to Swift Like the Wind, and one of the best haste spells you'll see.  The upgrade in haste is 64% (from 60%), which is great, but that's not the major improvement in this spell.  The mana cost is 275 mana (from 250 mana) which is a very small increase, not the improvement.  The duration is 24 minutes, 8 minutes longer than SLtW, and it casts in 4 seconds as opposed to 8!  Get used to hearing "AQ plz" because you're going to hear it a lot.   Fantastic haste spell, all around great upgrade.

Boltran's Agacerie - Upgrade to Allure, and an amazing upgrade at that!  First the bad side, with is the oppressive mana cost of 400 per cast.   This is huge, admittedly, but what do you get for 155 mana more than Allure?   You get a higher level cap (53 for normal mobs, 51 against planar), which is great, especially with the increasing level of mobs you're encountering in experience grinding groups.   But that's not why this spell is amazing--the casting time is 4.0 seconds!   This means that with a 20th level Color Shift, you can cover the casting time!   Once you have Boltran's Agacerie you won't look back--just an awesome upgrade all around.

Cripple - Getting into the hardcore shaman debuff now, with -75 STR, -65 DEX, -75 AGI, and -33 AC to the target.  This all takes 225 mana to cast, and finishes in 2.5 seconds.  The defensive capabilities of a mob drop signifigantly from this spell, and this is quite useful when there is already a shaman in the group slowing.   Still, your shaman is typically going to be throwing this spell out over you.   Something to keep in mind though, especially on a raid where you are playing 2nd or 3rd enchanter in line and need something to do.

Recant Magic - This is the king of dispels, nailing not only 4 effects at once, but casting as though you were nine levels higher than normal.  You will cast this spell as though you were level 62 for effectiveness purposes when you first get it.  In the situations where you need to dispel a mob (especially in raid environments where a mob is SoW'd and 100% magic resistant... dispel will take out that running speed and probably save your entire raid--Spite Golems in Plane of Hate being the mob I'm speaking of).


Buffs-Solo - Soloing is becoming increasingly rare at this point, as Kamikaze styles will be hard pressed to find plentiful blues that can be dropped (Dreadlands is just about wholly green, and Burning Woods is getting a tad strong for the animation to handle).  The other option is charm soloing, but be warned that mobs are beginning to get increasingly high amounts of hit points, meaning that you will find finishing of the pet to be a major investment in nuking mana, and fight times will get very long as they just can't kill each other fast enough.  Couple in the fact that hits are beginning to get extremely powerful as well, and you'll find that grouping is looking more and more attractive.  I suggest snagging a healer partner more than ever for charming, or fear kiting if you don't want the full group experience.  Still, Clarity/Boon of the Clear Mind, Arch Shielding, JBoots/SoW (this is a must if you plan to solo now, experience is too valuable), Adorning Grace if charming.

Buffs-Group - You have a new haste.  Your mana load is about to lighten so much, as you snagged an extra 8 minutes duration with this haste, and you'll find you can even do four tanks at a time with minimal trouble now.  Outside of this change, buffing stays the same.


Tactics Changes

Charm-Solo - As I said, run with a healer these days, the only experience you're losing is the full xp for killing the pet; all the other kills your pet took half the experience when soloing.  You will last much longer, and often never need to stop fighting.  Boltran's will allow you to recharm much easier, though monitor your mana closely.  If you have two fast breaks on charm in a row, consider abandoning the fight, as a 3rd charm means 1200 mana invested in controlling a pet, and that's probably at least half your mana pool.


54th level is the level to hit.  At that point, you will be invited everywhere to do everything.  Clarity II and Aanya's Quickening are all you need to be welcomed to any raid that occurs when they are short on enchanters.  16th was huge with Breeze, 29th was awesome with Clarity, and Clarity II will change the way people treat you completely.  This is your last "single-hell" level, so enjoy it while you can, your experience bar is about to get awfully sluggish at 54th.  Good luck, Illusionists...

 

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