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[Guide] Staff Guide

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[Guide] Staff Guide

Postby Lis_ » 19 Mar 2015, 03:38

Yet another guide. This one might take quite some time to complete due to the fact I still need to check some of the most unused skills in the end game content and experiment with them. I am also editing a previous thread to avoid spamming the forums. In case you are wondering where the first few replies came from and what they have to do with the guide here is your answer on why they don't:
Lis_ wrote:Okay, this might sound sound very annoying but does no one want to take this post over and create yet another guide? Currently we have a guide for Wands, Axes, Twin Swords and Odachis afaik. It could be selfish but I feel like we could use some more guides, especially for Bows, Spears and Staves to promote their use. I will eventually create an offensive staff guide if nobody takes the initiative.

Now for the actual guide. Note that this guide is only up to date up until the Edo patch. Feel free to leave any (civilized) comment with some feedback in case I forgot something worth mentioning and not so obvious for anyone who plays the game for more than 15 minutes.

This time it is about possibly the most used and most underrated weapon of them all, at least in offensive terms: the

Staff

"But Lis, everyone knows how to use a Staff LELELELEL :v". Possibly. But Staves are far from being just about Invigorate, Cure and Rapid Storm. In fact I will try and give some meaning to the extremely underrated Staff offensive skills, as they are in fact quite good if one wishes to be a pure Staff. If there is a game where this kind of weapon can make it on its own and put other classes to shame it's this one.
While Staves lack the burst capabilities of Wands and Spears and the DPS of the melee weapons in general, they do have more then enough firepower to not only clear any dungeon on their own (slowly but surely) but also to support themselves while doing so without having to trade off their healing spells potency.
In general, Staves lack the sheer Skill Force other weapons do, and also the (not so) fast casting time Wands do, but are extremely strategical and fun to play. Their spells are mostly a matter of positioning and planning ahead, as this long cast time doesn't allow for many mistakes, as well as their small offensive skill pool. If you are looking for a supportive kind of role that can still switch into an offensive skill set in the blink of an eye without having to decrease its supportive power, Staves are what you're looking for.

Character Types

Cautious or Kind would be the prime choice here, as Staves get their affinity from Mind but also benefit from the SP consumption reduction from Wisdom. However, a character type with high Dexterity and Power and mediocre Mind or even low base Wisdom is bound to function as well, given the fact Staves are not as SP hungry as Wands are and extra HP and Critical is always something to consider. Basically, pick your poison. Keep in mind that perhaps you will want the maximum ammount of Mind you can get since Staves Skill Force is not exactly the highest, meaning you will need to get as much affinity as you can in end game stages (even with the Wands/Staves/Tachis/Holy title). All the above depends whether you are planning to only support, where Dex does not play a major role at all, or if you plan to contribute both to DPS and support. The latter requiring higher HP and the typical around 100 total Dex to get that Critical and cooldown reduction up.

Regular Skills

Note that while in most games Cast Time is shown as a variable time represented with a bar filling up, in Onigiri Cast Time is not displayed that way; but it is there and is as painful as it could ever be. In other words you could call Cast Time the period of time starting from the moment the game recognizes your skill use input up until when the spell is launched with its effect APPLIED. In even simpler words, the time between pressing your mouse button (if you exclude latency values) and the damage/effect taking an actual effect. Also keep in mind that healing spells CANNOT critical hit but are affected by the Attack stat (as is any Staff skill except Ressurection) which implies a variation in the actual healing ammount.
Another important note would be the fact that if you start casting a supportive spell on an ally while he is inside the spell's active range and he moves outside said range during the Cast Time the effect still takes place, which is a relief for someone who might have to stay focused on supporting an ever running party member.
Keep in mind that we now know for a fact that the Attack stat causes every Staff skill except Ressurection to scale in effect, including the supportive skills Idaten's Grace/Rapid Storm, Unbreakable Aura, Strike Boost and Magic Shield.

Cure - A stronger version of the Heal spell. Single target, fast Cast Time and a painfuly high Durability cost. Its composition is 100% Holy so Heavenly Shield Ornamentation and Holy titles help here. While Holy is useful, there is a reason why Cure's Skill Force is stupidly high: it is literally asking for Skill Force Ornamentations such as Return of the Condor Heroes for higher healing ammounts. A Range of 30 meters allows you to cure from literally the other side of the field but stay sharp as most targeting spells only take effect if you start casting them with the blue target icon showing on your screen. Requires SkillRank*10 Mind to have a visible effect.
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Energy Ball
- Easy to acquire skill that casts a ball of energy right in front of your staff's melee range. This orb restores a low-medium ammount of HP to any ally touching it and grants a small regening buff that lasts for 10 seconds, a tick per second of 2/5/8 HP depending on the respective rank of II/III/IV. Quite useful in early stages as it is so easily acquired at max rank from Lucky Boxes. The long time between summoning the orb and receiving its heal stops being effective for its healing potential as you progress further in the game. You can, however, cast the skill and quickly switch into a high Attack weapon, causing the game to heal you for the latter weapon attack value instead of the previous one. This sort of makes Energy Ball a bit more useful at the cost of an even longer time before the actual heal.
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First Aid - Slightly weaker version of Heal with a faster Cast Time but much longer cooldown and self targeting only. Useful if you are planning on having a side Staff with Triple First Aid V, otherwise it is too weak to rely on.
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Heal - Fast cast, low cooldown, low durability consumption ally healing spell. Useful when used 3 times with a side staff, otherwise stick to Cure as it heals for much, much more per durability point taken and scales much faster as your Skill Force Magatama build up. Do not simply and completely discard this skill though as it is quite useful when you dont feel like wrecking a Staff's durability.
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Healing - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1xHJUAdihoc

Invigorate - And here it is. The signature skill for a Staff slave. There are a few things to take into account when using this. First, its basic effect: it heals an ally's SP for a rank based ammount and duration. Secondly, even though it is 100% Holy element in composition, Holy Element has no effect whatsoever on this skill. Third, unlike other supportive spells this skill will completely miss depending on your Mind, increasing its chances to take effect for every point in Mind you take until you reach 100%. Fourth, Attack stat grants +1 healing unit for each 1000 (Attack obviously). This effect stacks and is added to the rank based value (Burai Magatama for some comic effects). Also, it uses your MAX Attack range, meaning it will heal for a fixed ammount rather than a variable ammount.
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Ressurection - Fast cast skill with a absurdly high durability cost that ressurects an ally at the cost of a one stage lower grade on their dungeon final rating. Slightly shorter range than Heal/Cure. Currently only obtainable by buying it off of a player who spammed enough the New Year's event. Requires 75 TOTAL Mind to activate at its maximum rate but having this much does not grant a 100% occurence of the effect; it still may miss.
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Sanctuary - Creates a circular area below and centered on your character that regularly heals for a small ammount. The same trick used with Energy Ball can be used here by swaping weapons but the skill is not really worth the waiting nor the SP cost in my opinion.
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Idaten's Grace - Single ally target skill that grants +35 movement speed (which includes rolling speed). Contrary to what one may think getting higher ranks of this skill only allows for a longer duration of its effect. It does not grant extra movement speed in any way whatever the rank. It does however grant more speed with higher Attack values, so if you want to have higher movement speeds add this skill to a decently enhanced and high Attack Staff. Skips ranks IV and VI.
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Magic Shield - Single target buff that grants a small base boost in the Magic Defense stat of its target for a short duration. Not worth the slot unless you come across a rank VII and get it in a high Attack Staff, improving its boost effect.
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Strike Boost - Similar to Magic Shield (boosts Attack instead, even further with higher Attack values from the caster) but much more useful as the attacker's Attack stat scales with Skill Force and Elements providing a decent after-math effect. Whatever the rank it is a good addition to any support skill set.
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Unbreakable Aura - Similar to the above two skills but boosts Defense instead. Not worth its slot unless get your hands on a rank VI or higher and in a high Attack Staff to further boost its effect, as Defense is not something we can rely on, currently.
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Breath of Light - Fast casting low SP cost low cooldown multiple hitting and multiple combo skill that casts a holy cloud in front of you for an effective range of 2 meters. Its low area only allows to try and mob 3 mobs at most but its incredibly quick cast makes it useful if anything gets too close.
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Chase Blister - Extremely long cast animation and single target skill that casts a wave of bubbles that follow your target similar to a Wand's Hellfire but much slower travelling speed and shorter range. Surprisingly good damage for its overall usefulness and speed. Could be much more effective if it weren't restricted to single target mechanics.
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Holy Light - Easily the most practical single target skill in a Staff's arsenal. Relatively slow cast time but fast travelling speed projectiles and decent Skill Force combined to a 100% Holy Element composition make Holy Light a reliable skill. Use and abuse it as much as a Wand abuses Hellfire.
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Holy Pillar - Hard hitting and relatively fast cast time skill that raises a pillar of holy light to strike the targeted area multiple times. It does have a major flaw; while the targeting process is accurate and relatively fast, if a mob moves away from the yet to raise pillar this skill will completely miss, similar to a Wand's Aqua Geyser and Dark Pillar. Could be far more useful if it had a greater AoE. It is still a decent tool to mob with and hit multiple slow moving foes from afar.
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Rain of Judgement - By far the longest casting time of all the Staff's skill. It waves your Staff to summon randomly placed droplets of holy water within its area of effect. This skill's Skill Force is divided by its number of falling drops meaning it will hit extremely low values per hit. However it does have its bright side. Know how every high boss has a hidden stun treshold? Well, this skill has the blessing of being able to deplet this hidden meter lightning fast. A single cast of a higher rank will stun whatever boss it comes in contact with if the majority of the drops actually hit. Do not try and mob with this as it will only get you killed by its annoying long Cast Time.
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Rolling Thunder - The very best melee range AoE multiple combo skill for Staves. Extremely hard hitting if you manage to stay alive long enough to deliver the full combo and an increasing area with each (combo). Have a decently enhanced Maximillian? Place this skill in it and watch groups of enemies fall or getting paralyzed as they enter Rolling Thunder's area.
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Shadow Ball - Long cast and slow travelling speed orb of shadow that stalks your target until it makes contact. If you put aside its 100% Dark composition (which can be seen as a plus in case you main a Bloodsucker Staff) it is the hardest hitting single target spell for a Staff. This alone makes up for its cast and speed turning an otherwise unpractical skill into something you can use to deliver a hard single hit spell on your enemy's face.
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Soul Strike - Fast casting melee range spell that makes you swing your spell enhanced Staff to strike everything directly in front of you, reducing its Magic Defense. Decent Skill Force and excellent mobing capabilities, its only downside is the fact it is melee. A perfect solution to quickly strike any entity that comes into your melee range; similar to Breath of Light in that regard but much quicker to land damage at the cost of lower total damage. Personal opinion: love this skill.
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Super Sushi Time - Uses up one random Nigiri in your item slots to place an orb similar to Energy Ball that heals for the exact same ammount the consumed Nigiri would. Quite useful to quickly use your own Nigiri or to pre cast for an ally in the run for his life. Extremely low cooldown and durability usage makes this about your best healing spell for a long time until you get Cure VII. Stills useful when used with powerful Nigiri even at end game.
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Ougi Skills

*Special thanks to Kei for providing the BS Staff, Nether Trap and Fascinating Fallen Light VI that allowed me to continue with the offensive staff counterpart at its fullest and to Kabana Joe for being there when I took the screen shots to demonstrate the skills.

Fascinatng Fallen Light - Quickly casts an expanding light wave that hits everything in a radius of about 5 meters and applies the Stun effect by a moderate rate. Even the highest rank lacks the sheer Skill Force to be an otherwise destructive Ougi. However, its 100% Light Element Composition is a plus and its similar to True Spirit Blast use makes it a reliable mobing tool for a weapon that lacks AoE skills. The Stun effect is far more useful than what it seems at first even if used as an emergency skill for pure support Staves, buying you a few seconds to get some distance to potential melee threats.
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Extend Heal - AoE and more powerful version of the Heal skill, this Ougi does exactly what its name implies: it extends a heal to every party member (including self) at the cost of a moderate durability consumption. If you are looking for a high digit Extend Heal the best bet is to invest in Holy Element and Skill Force and only then in raw extra Attack power, as the latter does not contribute as much as one would think.
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Meditation - A weaker but Area of Effect Invigorate that extends its effect to every party member (again, including one self) at the cost of lower regen values. Same mechanics as Invigorate. Note that you cannot apply an Invigorate on an already meditating party member so you might want to check with your own party if you should or not be meditating frequently.
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Nether Illusion Trap - Smashes your Staff into the ground to create a circular area that lands 5 consecutive damaging waves to anything standing within its area of effect. Illusion Trap's center is created at about 7 meters from where your character is standing and right directly in front of where it is facing. It is the most damaging single combo skill for a Staff and can go even further when paired with Bloodsucker so use it, abuse it, make love with it as this is your only way to safely deal heavy damage from a distance.
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Rapid Storm - AoE version of Idaten's Grace (including self). Note that Rapid Storm's duration is always the same as its Idaten's counterpart rank minus 1 stage, meaning that a Storm rank V lasts as long as an Idaten's rank III. Currently, Rapid Storm rank V requires 40 TOTAL Mind to have any effect and offers more Movement Speed the more Attack you have the same way Idaten's Grace does.
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Magatama Usage

There are a few things to point out here. First, due to the lack of offensive Staves around the server there is not much feedback for Magatama sets, so this is purely my own opinion based on what I have tried. Secondly the following sets greatly differ according to your purpose: offensive or support. Finally, note that the most viable offensive builds as far as I know are Holy Element and Dark Element ones. Holy is a no brainer given the sheer ammount of Holy spells a Staff has and Dark is simply 'cause Bloodsucker grants a 20% damage bonus (if you exclude mob resistances and defenses) for every Dark spell (all Onigiri spells except Fuujin/Raijin are composed of a single element). A pure Holy build works best with a Maximillian variant but could also be used with a Bloodsucker, the latter being the prime choice for a Darkness build.

Support: as a supporter you want to heal both the HP and SP of your allies and you want to do it efficiently but unfortunately you can only go as far as maximizing either Invigorate/Meditation or Cure/Extend Heal/HP healing spells in general. There are a few choices to make here but I will try and give the shorter version to keep it simple. If you want to maximize your SP healing output it is as simple as crafting 4 Burai Magatama and try and ornament them with extra affinity and/or HP/SP. This is simply because you will want as much attack as possible and some HP to avoid being one shot. The extra attack stat also gives a slight boost in your HP healing spells so this works as a decent all arounder too. As for maximizing HP healing there are 3-5 obvious choices of Magatama depending on the rank of your Cure skill. Fake Staff/Magic/Taiitsu for rank V, Gyokutei for rank VI or Reihou for rank VII (although these ones do not cover Extend Heal currently). Of course you could use a full rank V set with a Cure VII if you wish so. Ornamentation wise, extra Staff Skill Force is what you will be aiming for (Return of the Condor Heroes for instance) nearly as much as Holy Element (Heavenly Shield/Untarnished Weapon) and only then extra attack (Untarnished again). This will easily make you Cure for over 12,000 and Extend for 6,000 without that much investement. It also provides decent firepower if you wish to switch to an offensive Staff and quickly finish off some remaining enemy (be careful as you will lack the Critical to deal heavy blows).
All of the above can be mixed with Fated Contracted Magatama for the extra HP/SP in case you find any of those fields lacking.

Offensive: pretty similar to other weapon types, rank V/VI (VI in case you manage to get every one of your skills to rank VI or VII)/VII (VII if you don't have access or don't want to use Ougi) Magatama with Fated Contractor. There is the possibility to give up some HP/SP/Dex for extra Holy/Dark (or Rain/Thunder if so you wish) Element from Heavenly Shield, hence the Holy/Dark builds. Chian Magatama is an option but I would try to avoid it as Extend Heal does the healing job pretty well with Chidori and SF Magatama and you will want as much of it (Skill Force) as you can to make up for the low SF nature of your spells. Basically, check the skills you are most confortable with and invest in HP/SP/Critical/the corresponding Element for such skills.

Keep in mind that Setsuna Magatama is an option for both builds especially if you are lucky with its Confining Terrors, at the cost of HP/SP. Avoid using rank VII general SF Magatama as those have stupidly high Chakra costs and offer little bonuses when compared to the "appropriate" Staff Magatama.

Stat Points

Mind. And lots of it. At least until you reach your affinity cap or near without sacrificing the Holy Element title in case you picked that one. For pure supporters Mind, Wisdom and only then Vitality is the best bet to keep a continuous ammount of supportive spells flowing without sacrificing too much survivability. You can ignore Dexterity and Power as they offer little to no practical bonuses to such build, unless you want the Dex's extra cooldown reduction to stack with your Mnd's cooldown reduction (each 12 and 24 point invested, respectively). As for an offensive build, you can still ignore Power but Dexterity is a must get (cooldown reduction and Critical, as well as some extra Attack Speed). Mind, Dexterity, Wisdom, Vitality in this order, is what you should be focusing at. If you manage to stay at a safe distance while dealing damage you can ignore Vit, however some extra HP never hurts. This is especially true for Fallen Light and Rolling Thunder/Soul Strike/Breath of Light users. If you find yourself never running out of SP lowering your Wisdom is also an option but in my opinion you are far better with it rather than with high ammounts of Vit since Staves also benefit from the SP consumption reduction that Wis offers. Try to match those according to your needs, as always.

THANGZ

Will eventually polish the guide according to future feedback and further experience. Feel free to comment regardless of agreeing or not with the little this guide has to offer, as this is more of a set of guidelines than a walkthrough/guide. I am trying to avoid as much as I can giving off very specific builds and comments in order to let the readers actually think about what they want and experiment for themselves. Be original.

Update Log

*General English grammar corrections
*Added images for every Staff skill
*Updated for the past 14th April 2015 update, especifically the Stat Points and Supportive Skill's texts
Last edited by Lis_ on 27 Apr 2015, 16:46, edited 56 times in total.
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Re: Potential guides

Postby zay. » 19 Mar 2015, 08:22

Yo balloz, I could greate a bow guide since i know some stuf from it and i was bow untill level 70, but i am twinsword now.. So idk.. + my english is bad + i cannot upload screenshot some how to the forum.. It always says blabla bord is full i got the right MB and stuf for the picture
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Re: Potential guides

Postby SupremeTentacle » 19 Mar 2015, 08:48

Don't think it's selfish. In fact, quite reasonable.

But there's a few things I'd like to point out as well, that is, some guides are outdated. Specifically, I believe that the wand guide is outdated/not optimal, and that the sword guide should be brought up to date as well as its more of a general guide towards power weapons. I can *almost* write the spear guide, but honestly, I pretty much gave up on the weapon in Edo. I've also never used the fourth ougi, so I doubt I'm qualified for it anymore.

That said, I don't really mind making a couple new charas and making myself more up to date with all the information, considering that I'm farming resonance anyways.
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Re: Potential guides

Postby Lis_ » 19 Mar 2015, 09:18

Yes zay, you should try and create it if you feel like you are updated on the matter and have played enough on that class.
Ryth, I dont think the lack of Ougi 4 makes you outdated as far as Spears go, so imo go ahead and create it. If there's anything one of you both feel like not having enough experience with for instance a specific skill, we can always go and earn said experience and edit it out later.
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Re: Potential guides

Postby SupremeTentacle » 19 Mar 2015, 13:28

The thing is, the ougi appears to do a significant amount of damage, leading to a potential change in and build-style for spear users.

As an example, let's go on a limb and theory craft a bit here. What if, the two earth skills (ougi + stonespire) were both extremely viable, high power skills that had the potential to outclass water dragon spear/ice blossom in terms of damage? If that were the case, then an earth build might be viable.

However, to ensure the viability, that would imply that someone out there would need to make spear mag with the correct ornamentation, as it's a bit difficult to conclude how often the player would be able to one hit kill specific mobs, and whether or not the player would be able to efficiently clear through recent dungeons.

But again, all of this is theory crafting. I've never used the ougi and don't know exactly how much damage it does. I've just seen numbers rather than qualitative information. Another example of a skill that looks good at first, but is rather bad in practice is revolving blast, which takes five years to get to the real damage output.

Dark tornado on axes is also a skill that looked good on paper, mostly due to a skill force of over 1k. But it's literally not useable.

Spirit blast spam also might still be viable if the player stacks some holy.

I feel as if this would require some sort of practical experimentation before a guide is created.
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Re: Potential guides

Postby Lis_ » 19 Mar 2015, 15:42

SupremeTentacle wrote:If that were the case, then an earth build might be viable.
However, to ensure the viability, that would imply that someone out there would need to make spear mag with the correct ornamentation(...)
I've just seen numbers rather than qualitative information.
I feel as if this would require some sort of practical experimentation before a guide is created.

True true and true. Nothing else to be said here.
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Re: Potential guides

Postby Momiji » 19 Mar 2015, 16:29

Edit: Good job Lis.
Last edited by Momiji on 31 Mar 2015, 23:00, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Staff Guide

Postby SupremeTentacle » 27 Mar 2015, 11:45

Iunno if you think this is significant, but there's been some floating discussion about the damage potential provided by Doukou magatama in future patches. In the past, we ruled it out as invalid because being buffed with over -100% hp would result in your instant death, but they fixed this glitch, so it's now possible for the player to sit at one HP and actually take an invigorate.

That said, I don't think its too relevant yet, because not even JP has rank 8 skills implemented at the moment.
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Re: Staff Guide

Postby Lis_ » 27 Mar 2015, 17:51

SupremeTentacle wrote:Iunno if you think this is significant, but there's been some floating discussion about the damage potential provided by Doukou magatama in future patches. In the past, we ruled it out as invalid because being buffed with over -100% hp would result in your instant death, but they fixed this glitch, so it's now possible for the player to sit at one HP and actually take an invigorate.

That said, I don't think its too relevant yet, because not even JP has rank 8 skills implemented at the moment.

It is indeed relevant given the ammount of Skill Force they add, however I think it is best to not include that info yet as we won't see rank 8s for some time i assume. Once they come out I will be sure to add that in here. As always thank you very much for the feedback.
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Re: Staff Guide

Postby Lis_ » 15 Apr 2015, 13:47

Updated according to the 14th April 2015 patch. Refer to the Update Log to easily get what was changed.
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