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Veteran Maelstrom Arena tips for 2019 Orsinium Event Thread.

I ran veteran Maelstrom Arena four times yesterday and thought, this would be a good time to start a thread with tips for players who might still be struggling with the mechanics of the arena. Feel free to post any helpful (or not so helpful) tips and tricks you have for completion. For example, I use an add on that allows me to quickly and easily change my gear and bars in between arenas. This comes in handy for my archer who needs an interrupt (venom arrow) for the frozen arena troll ice blasters, but doesn't want an interrupt for the Argonian Behemoth, as this will enrage him. Of course, the next arena I need an interrupt again for the fire mages, and also for the final arena -interrupts are very helpful, both on the final boss and the ads.
  • TeamSeinfeld
    My three tips that have helped more than any:
    1. Read about mechanics or watch videos
    2. For stam characters, get VO gear; helps a ton!
    3. Each time you die, read the death summary, because if it will tell you exactly why you died. So a true learning experience every time.
  • Gariele
    1. If you are struggling take breaks. You will tilt and just make things worse.
    2. Read guides, watch vids. Tons of info out there
    3. A vMA Build can differ from a Trials/Dungeon Build.
    4. Don’t be scared to ask friends that have completed for help.
    5. Tea and Discord in between stages. Don’t worry about score
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  • beadabow
    The frustration factor can get pretty high for me sometimes, but after completing the entire arena, I feel a sense of accomplishment and reflect upon the areas I can improve. For my stamblade, I try to keep the following things in mind (and this is just for MY playing style- it may be different for others):

    1. Keep Physical and Spell Resistances at around 18k- seems to be enough with CP damage mitigation for all 9 arenas.
    2. Try to have at least a stamina restore of around 1600. If not, know when to work in heavy attacks for rotation.
    3. 3k unbuffed weapon damage seems to work, but the more base damage, the better.
    4. Use potions AND sigils when needed.
    5. Be aggressive, but be smart.
    6. If you die, respawn at the wayshrine in the arena to talk to the merchant, repair armor, eat food, recharge enchanted weapons, adjust skill bars, swap out gear for different sets, and get a snack or drink. Reentering the arena starts you back at whatever phase you were on, as long as you don't leave the zone. Otherwise, you have to restart at the beginning of the level you were on when you left. In other words, if you are on the last boss and die, you can respawn at the wayshrine and come back to the boss fight. If you leave the zone, you have to start from the beginning phase of the level you left.
    7. Consider the arena your ultimate target skeleton, because it fights back, and it hits hard. Like dueling a friend, if you lose, don't get so upset- laugh it off and try again. Not all malfunctions are bugs (though there are plenty of bugs in the arena). Some are actual mechanics. Figure them out. I have said this so many times to myself, that I think my computer is very grateful now for having been spared the hammer of scorn!
  • Heatnix90
    EZ stam build for vMA (crafted/purchased/non-trial gear):
    - 5x Night Mother's Gaze (must-have for Major Fracture debuff)
    - 3x Vengeance Leech (Bruma boxes, literally the poor man's Vicious Ophidian, restores Health/Stam/Mag on kills)
    - 2x Agility Weapons (Sharp Dagger/Precise Dagger + Infused Bow)
    - 2x Kra'gh or 2x Slimecraw or 1x Kra'gh + 1x Slimecraw (easiest monster helms to get)
    - Lover Mundus
    - Silver Leash, Whirling Blades, Ballista

    When you start a round, drop your AoEs (Volley/Caltrops/Shards for Stamplar) on a spawn then pull everything else into your AoE killbox and spin2win a few times. Use Ballista on elite bosses/final bosses. Use the sigils as needed, you're not getting a 600k or a Flawless Conqueror on your first try. If nightblade, slot Power Extraction over Whirling and make sure to have Killer's Blade slotted.
  • goldenarcher1
    Personally found the bow skill draining shot very useful in VMA,especially on the ice round for all the ranged mobs,and also round 7 to knock down the Argonian archers.
  • tsaescishoeshiner
    The #1 vMA tip that helped me with my first clear: Take a break if you get frustrated.

    Someone else mentioned respawning at the wayshrine in order to repair, but it's also invaluable to just think about what happened and relax a bit.
    in-game: @tsaescishoeshiner
  • ihazzit
    1. Never stop moving. Other than the areas where you have to wait, i.e., Stage 6 melee spiders and Stage 7 boss scream, keep moving while laying dots and attacking. Standing around too much gives the enemies an easy stationary target and sometimes you'll get multiple aoe's on you and have to spend extra resources dodging, blocking, and shielding. If you move more often you'll find yourself already halfway out of harm's way by the time you are targeted.
    2. Learn to move on to your next target asap. You don't have to watch your target die before you move on, if your target is low health and you lay a dot, move on to the next or be moving to the next target while finishing up a heavy attack. That way you are attacking targets quicker and they have less time to live. Plus, in the off-chance the first target didn't die they will when they walk into your dot on your follow-up target.
    3. Sigils, they are available every round, use them freely.

    Stage 1 boss: DPS
    Stage 2 boss: Avoid blades and bring them close just like the bosses in Volenfell
    Stage 3 boss: Just like boss in Arx Corinium, stay on dry land. Kill any stranglers if you can't dps the boss right away.
    Stage 4 boss: Follow boss in the safe zone underneath it and dot until it stops to bellow fire and then ult/heavy attack in front of it to kill adds and boss. Just stay slightly out of range of its fire aoe it bellows out just below it.

    Stage 5 boss: Adds and the troll are the focus, save the ice island with the two sigils for last, if the troll heads for it before the other islands just go to the troll and kill it and move to another island. The boss will destroy the island you are on around 70%, it will pause and say some gibberish and then jump and destroy the island. Get away quick or die, a tough enemy appears (like the enemy at waterdancer falls in Reaper's), you must kill it. Once the island with double sigils is last you can go to it for the two sigils there and kite, ult, and kill the boss. It's possible you might have to survive the boss in the water after it destroys that last island, good luck.

    Stage 6 boss: If you can't dps it then take the time to kill any spider trying to web up an open obelisk and single light attack a hoarver to lead it to a webbed obelisk to remove the web. If you kill that hoarver before that then go to the dead hoarver and a prompt will allow you to throw its dead husk to a webbed obelisk and free it up. Once all the obelisks are free it will stun the boss for you to dps it. If a spider comes out to re-web an obelisk kill it right away and if the angry melee spiders show up then get to the glowing obelisk for safety.

    Stage 7 boss: Dot it right away and kill any adds first, especially the adds in the corners. Keep moving, if a poison mushroom hits you (the one random rng which ruins many a run) then hit the cleansing pool. Those poising spawn mushroom things can be ridiculous. Two archers appear and once you kill the furthest away the boss will scream and you can hide under the shield of the archer closest to the boss (just like the mid boss in Arx Corinium). Then lay dots immediately on the boss and after ~5 seconds kill the archer too. Rinse and repeat.

    Stage 8 boss: There are 3 totems, run straight to the closest totem and destroy it first. If you can make it to the second totem destroy it too, you should be able to do that, otherwise you will see a spawn point for a ranged flaming spam enemy and you need to interrupt it and kill it first. Then a spawn point for two flame (those female atros) enemies will spawn close together and you can kill them and then go to destroying the other totems. Once you destroy the third totem the boss is stunned and you can dps the boss. If you don't kill him just repeat the process but go to the totem the furthest away from the boss and shield first.

    Stage 9 boss: Die

    Kidding. There is a lot going on but the boss does the same thing every time. You should check out a video on this for the strategy as it's exhaustive to explain how to play this round but here are some tips. There are differing ways to play here, as in WW or one bar heavy attack or high dps, but either way the timer is the same every time. Again, please check out a video on what the boss does right away, it's the same every time and you have learn how to defend and attack up front, especially with the crematorium guard that spawns. When you get the boss to 70% the boss will taunt you, that's when you need to stop hitting the boss and kill that healer and the clannfear by leading it to the glowing portal spawn point. Once you port up to the crystals you must attack (then shield) a crystal immediately but keep moving, as a meteor aoe spawns quickly, as soon as the meteor aoe expands fully the boss will throw a stun skull (about 5 seconds into the start of the crystal round), either block or roll dodge, you don't need to look at the boss, the timer is the same every time. Again, this is the same every time. You should then be able to move and finish the first crystal and avoid the meteor aoe's. Once the first crystal is close to being destroyed move to the second crystal (to the right) and dot it and get behind that moving brick barrier while avoiding the meteor aoe's. Once the barrier is shattered then you go back to the crystal you passed to attack it but about 7 seconds after that barrier is first shattered the boss throws another stun skull and then about 4 seconds later throws another stun skull. At the same time you are attacking the crystal and looking then for another barrier wall moving around the arena. Get behind the barrier wall again and once it breaks you go to attacking the crystals but there will be three stun skulls, about 5 seconds apart. If you haven't destroyed the crystals then you will probably die or you need to jump down and kill the adds below as before and port back up and the cycle starts again but with only the remaining crystals you have left to destroy. Either way, before you port up to the crystal phase you must kill the healer beforehand.

    Once all 3 crystals are destroyed you get knocked down and you need to immediately run to the defense sigil (or interrupt the boss) due to the skull spam. Then lay a dot and run to get the golden ghost. Go back to killing the add that spawns and get the second golden ghost after a few seconds. The boss will also do its aoe lich stun and then a skull stun, so move away and be ready to roll dodge or block the skull. Then once the 3rd ghost appears you can run to get it and then a crem guard appears so get the power sigil, run to the boss, and then perform the explosion to stun the crem guard and boss near each other and ult. If you don't kill the boss then relax, the process repeats itself with the ghosts and adds. After the second run of this you should be victorious.

    Again, check out a video for the timing, it's always the same with the same adds.
    If you are angry about anything in this game you are only punishing yourself.
  • beadabow
    Thank you ihazzit for a truly awesome post! :)
  • AndyMac
    - Read/ watch the mechanics guides - there’s plenty of very detailed mechanical explanation out there and for your first clear assume you’re going to need to know mechanics and play them correctly to beat each round.

    - you’ll need a specific build and bar setup for vMA. My vMA setup on my mDK is very different to my trial or PvP setup. There’s plenty of info out there and one skill or armour change can make a big difference when you need it. Your skills will need to be on muscle memory too - no time to look at keys when fighting.

    - learn spawns and kill priorities - in my experience, there is always one mob or more that is the biggest pita in each round - does the most damage or gives the most grief when fighting everything else. Learn where it/ they spawn and kill it before it causes grief. Like the stranglers in the third arena, the biggest monster isn’t always the worst problem you’ve got. The secret weapon in the You Tube stomp clears is experience imo - those players know exactly how each round plays out and they have the fights down cold.

    - expect severe rage attacks - the arena is buggy and laggy and will cause serious rage at times. vMA is hard content for learners and it is legit trying its best to beat you as a player and a person - stay chilled, take breaks and don’t lose the mind game.

    - use sigils until you don’t need them anymore.

    Andymac - Magicka DK - EP Grand Overlord - Flawless Conqueror
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