5th PSO2 Station Writeup

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The fifth broadcast rolled out just today and only came with 3 trailers. One of the trailers was particularly packed though so there’s a few things to go over in this post that I have opinions about. As always the complete run-down can be found on bumped here.

Trailers

Some collab no one cares about (OK maybe a few do (a lot)…). If you’re only interested in the Emil Head just say ニーア発売おめでとう in chat before March 1st. But yeah, Nier Automata stuff!

Early March Content – NT Grind change, new custom Photon Arts/Techs, the return of Revolucio Files, Skill rings and Battle Arena stuff.

Late March content – The return of Necky, Aura and Orbit files and Class Level 80

Early March Content

NT Grinding Change

NT Grind limits are now additive. That is, if you use a +32 on a +32 item it’ll push the limit to +35 now rather than +33 (+1 from the weapon itself and +2 from the limit on the ingredient item). Not exactly sure about the intricacies of this system, like if it needs the ingredient item to be fully grinded or if it’s just the limits it’s adding up but either way this is a positive change particularly for those who are grinding collection sheets. You’ll no longer have to hold on to every completed Collection File weapon just in case a weapon drops with a higher grind limit.

Photon Art Customisations

Some new Type-0 Photon Arts and Techs are on their way.

Rodeo Drive Type-0

The rush part of the attack will continue as long as you’re holding the button. Letting go results in a slam-dunk attack.

Sakura Endo Type-0

Changes the animation of the 2nd slash to be the last part of Guren Tessen. It also removes the need to charge the attack, so you’ll be able to spam it mid-air which you currently can’t (you have to drop to the ground while it charges up then jump back up again). Because the charge is removed, it may no longer benefit from Average Stance Charge or Weak Stance Charge so be aware of that.

Sacred Skewer Type-0

Turns it into a chargeable attack and hurls the spear directly in front of the user, striking a large number of enemies at once.

It seems like it does decent damage and has good range but it remains to be seen how it’ll compare to the likes of Slide End and most of Sword’s PAs. With Partizans I’m personally left pondering how it’ll synergise with Vol Graptor which I guess depends on if this attack can hit multiple hitboxes of a single target like other piercing Photon Arts can (like End Attract). If it can, this could be potentially interesting against certain bosses.

Ein Raketen Type-0

Lets you place stationary energy blades that deal damage as enemies wander into them. Kinda wierd and probably awkward to apply consistently.

Gigrants Type-0

Amps up the blender part of the attack by extending it into an attack that revs up over time. At the end of the attack, you wield a sword made of light for one powerful over-end style slash.

It’s always hard to gauge power from the test players that they demo these things with, but I wonder if it could beat out Zondeel + Ragrants for mobbing power? Won’t know until it’s released I guess.

Nabarta Type-0

Replaces the ice stream with a shield that consumes a lot of PP over time and deals damage to enemies that wonder into it. If this doesn’t do pulsing damage this feels like a significant downgrade over the regular Nabarta just due to the sheer increase in PP it drains.

Raging Waltz Type-0

Alters the attack so it can home in on any direction instead of just directly ahead.

I’m honestly not sure this will have any greatly appreciable impact on this attack but I’m not well versed in Daggers.

Revolucio Revival

Revolucio weapons will return with significantly relaxed conditions and with an entire year before they time out. They’re meant to serve as a way for players who don’t have +35 13* weapons to obtain them at any time they like as these sheets are not tied to Emergency Quests. Additionally it includes a 13* Wanda egg.

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The old files required 8 different things to farm, the new ones require only 3. However, one of the requirements teased included lv71+ Fang Banther which are not at all trivial to find. Your options are run Super Hard Advance Quests at +11 risk or higher or run the higher floors of the Sylvan Wyverns Extreme Quests.

New Skill Rings

Sanctum and Kuronia will be getting Gathering spots. With these two areas I believe that is every Free Field area to date covered. I’ll go over my thoughts on each of the rings in this section but be aware they are my speculations, we don’t have any solid numbers so it’s hard to judge a number of the rings fully.

R / HP Restorate

Recovers HP while it’s below a certain value. I’ll with-hold judgement until I see the numbers, but it’s interesting that this didn’t end up being an R/Ring which means it could actually stack with Summoner’s HP Restorate skill… Correction, it was mistakenly noted as a left ring. As it’s an R ring it won’t be usable by Summoner main or sub so it can’t stack with the aforementioned skill.

L / Atomizer Lovers

Like Mate Lovers but for Moon, Star and Cosmo Atomizers (if anyone actually buys those). Like Mate Lovers it boosts the speed of use and the amount of HP recovered.

L / Point Weak Bullet

Turns Weak Bullet into Point Assist basically. It lets you apply the Weak Bullet directly to the currently targeted hitbox regardless of obstacles (including other hitboxes). This actually could be pretty useful for Rangers particularly for the more awkward hit-boxes in the game.

 L / Katana Combat Count Up

Not really sure what this one does… Bumped says “Increases the hit counts for Katana Combat” but I don’t know if that means increasing the limit or increasing the number of counted hits per hit, effectively reducing the number of hits you’d need to do in order to hit maximum power with Combat Finish. I assume it’s the latter but I’m not 100% sure. If it is then it’s a pretty nifty ring I guess because it’d make Katana combat slightly burstier and possibly more practical to use on bosses.

R / Flame Tech S Charge

Speeds up the casting time of fire element techs. Not sure what use this ring serves as any build using fire techs would involve Force and Force won’t be able to use this ring.

Battle Arena (PVP)

Get some friends or strangers together and beat the shit out each other for a brand new currency; Battle Coins! We already know a fair amount of how it works from previous streams so I’ll go over that briefly;

  • Up to 12 players are split into 2 teams for a 6v6 match.
  • At the spawn point, you “mine” for a random weapon. This weapon is effectively your class. There are mining nodes in the arena itself if you want to re-roll.
    • Available weapons are Sword, Assault Rifle and Rod.
    • If you’re defeated you’ll have to mine again to get a new weapon.
    • Whenever an Update message occurs, stronger weapons will become available
  • The match is a point attack. The team with the highest score wins
  • Earn points by collecting emblems in the arena and defeating enemy players
    • Enemy emblems may be worth more points than friendly ones!
    • Occasionally an Emblem Fever will occur that spawns rainbow emblems around the map. These are presumably worth the most points.
  • Three different maps with differing gimmicks
    • Except Forest. Forest is boring.
    • Caverns has a rising lava mechanic. Don’t touch the lava! Good general life tip really.
    • Tokyo is also kind of boring in that its mechanic is it has greater verticality.

While you can kill enemy players, the main objective is about getting points, though I’m not sure how effective it might be to just ignore enemy players and go for emblems over just killing enemy players. Dead enemies can’t collect emblems, afterall.

The weapon mining mechanic makes me think of Overwatch’s Mystery Heroes mode and it might suffer from the same faults. It’s likely that of the weapon types available some will be much more effective than others. This could lead to one team getting an effective team composition off the bat and end up snowballing the other side into submission or indeed bad RNG on weapons screwing a side over generally. In the long run this should work out because both teams have the same chance to be screwed by random numbers anyway.

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There is a progression system in PVP in the form of your own personal rank. Shown ranks were D5 and D4. Presumably this means the highest rank is S1. It doesn’t look like your PVP rank does anything beyond bragging rights. When you win a match you gain ARP (Arena Points). In the demo the winner gained 20 ARP while the loser (in what seemed to be a different game) gained 0. It’s unknown if you can actually lose ARP or not. It’s possible they could use your rank data to try to do some rudimentary matchmaking but I’m not certain on that.

You’ll earn Battle Coins whether you win or lose, however. It seems like you might earn slightly more for winning as well as for being the MVP in various areas but other than that the difference is pretty small in the example.

You can also set up private games which you  can protect with a password. It’s unknown how this affects Battle Coins but presumably you won’t be able to rank up in private games.

PVP Prizes

So what do you get for your efforts? A few things it seems with potentially 2 items that might be more interesting for min-maxers and the rest are kind of cosmetic.

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  • Battle Sword (Sword Camo)
  • Battle Rifle (Assault Rifle Camo)
  • Battle Rod (Rod Camo)
  • Rappy Make-Up
  • Vraolet 4-slot
  • Vraolet 6-slot (details below)
  • Arena Booster
  • Lambda Grinder
  • Extreme Pass
  • Other items not shown.

The Vraolets include Phrase Receptor and Sentence Receptor, which presumably allow you to transfer the various Sentence and Phrase affixes you can only obtain with certain Special Ability Factors. Seeing as these factors typically come from temporarily available Collection Files tied to Emergency Quests this could be a decent way of carrying these factors on to future gear.

Arena Boosters are as you can imagine much like Photon and Weaponoid Boosters in that they grant access to new weapon Potentials on certain weapons. The preview does not show a description of the example potential however, so I can’t speculate on if these are going to be worth the effort or not. The example weapon series shown however is the Aura series, whose current potential only applies to bosses so it could be interesting.

Other cosmetics include costumes and lobby actions as well as 12* “Shine Series” units. Most cosmetic items will be temporarily available because I don’t know fuck you that’s why. This includes the weapon camos mentioned earlier.

Battle Scratch

After a battle, victory or defeat, you’ll have the chance to roll for a random item. Among the potential items you could get include boosters for the amount of coins you gain in the next battle as well as a selection of weapon camos. You also have a low chance of obtaining an item that lets you raise the grind limit of an NT weapon by 1.

You get up to three scratches per battle, though presumably only the first one is free. Additional goes will cost you Stargems.

Just a mechanic to encourage you to play more games I guess. Though I suspect players will be walking away with EXP+3000 tickets more often than not.

Late March Content

Lv80 Class Requirements

Nothing new here, it’s really just confirming that you will indeed be required to clear the titles in order to unlock lv80 for a class. This means you’ll only need to do it once per class per account and not for every single character. This means the guide I made on getting your classes ready for the lv80 cap raise is still accurate.

Quest Abandon Penalty

If you abandon a multi-party raid EQ you’ll be locked out from the quest for the remainder of the EQ period. This is pretty clearly meant to be a punishment for people who’ll join an MPA then abandon if the classes and gear they see don’t meet their expectations or if a run is going poorly. This penalty will apply if you disconnect, too.

This penalty will only apply to the first person who abandons or disconnects and only if the MPA was at full capacity beforehand. This measure means that anyone remaining who ends up screwed by the fact you’re now down a person can safely abandon the quest to queue up again if need be which is a smart measure.

That said, I feel like this penalty is going to be incredibly annoying for those occasions where the quest bugs out and enemies take far longer to spawn than they should. It does also doom random Magatsu MPAs to excessively long runs should they have the misfortune of having no Weak-Bullet.

More Collection Sheet Revivals

The Orbit and Aura weapon collection files will be returning with some slight changes.

Aura sheets will be up until May 2018 which is over a year, while Orbit weapons will be up until the 24th of May this year. Hey that’s longer than they were around for first time, so if you got some Orbits to finish you’re in luck!

Aura sheets will require you to defeat lv70 Dio Hunars, which makes it possible to clear by just running the Level Up Quests (which will be returning once the event is over), even on Super Hard! They no longer require you to defeat Odin.

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Orbit Sheets seem to be largely unchanged however so they will require you to run the upcoming Necky’s Challenge quest.

Really at this point I don’t know why they don’t just ditch the time outs on these files and just leave them up permanently. I guess it would get awkward for files that are tied to seasonal EQs and EQs that only turn up on rare occasions but then I’d argue that’s an issue with them tying Collection Files to Emergency Quests period.

The Return of Necky’s Challenge

Necky’s Challenge is back, baby! Only this time without Necky as Sierra will be the one talking to you throughout the quest. The developers claim it was a popular quest though the reaction from the community was a fairly mixed one as I remember. Of course I’m only exposed to the English speaking community so who knows maybe it really was well recieved over in Japan.

It’ll have some slight differences however as Esca Darkers will be added to the mix of enemies trying to break the towers down.

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Esca Ragnus is seen latching onto and hugging a tower during the trailer (daww). It looks like it might be spinning a web around it…

The old datamined “PhantomBugLegion” (the phantoom version of Damoth) will be showing up in this quest with the name “Esmoth”.

Dataminers might be slightly disappointed that the unreleased Mining Base Defence didn’t turn out to be another fight with Apprentice (presumably her airborne Mothra mode instead of the one we fight deep underground) but honestly I think that boat has long sailed. Depends on exactly where the story goes after Episode 4 I suppose, speaking of which…

Final Episode 4 Raid: Deus Esca

Yggdrasil! The raid appears to function much like Yamato did where players will be fighting through hordes of regular enemies before squaring off against the boss itself. Unlike Yamato though we’ll be doing this on foot.

I have my worries that this boss will function much the same way as Escafalz Mother did, where we’ll be destroying it’s “arms” (more like heads in this case given it’s a Hydra) which will expose the real weak point which we then wail on before it gets up and repeats the process. This phase far out-stays its welcome with Escafalz Mother unless you have a very burst heavy composition so I’d rather not see a repeat of that.

Beyond that, there’s not a lot you can really ascertain from this footage. Presumably we’ll be getting a demonstration before its release.

Incidentally, data-mining doesn’t really hint at much more than this trailer does. From that, all that’s really known is aside all the storm based attacks displayed here it has some attack involving a horn.

With this raid arriving in late April, it seems Episode 4’s story will be coming to its conclusion fairly soon. With that, one is left pondering where the game may go from here and just how long it’ll be before we have announcements concerning Episode 5…

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Also, segways.

Preparing for the lv80 Cap

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So we’ve had some clarifications as to how the level cap requirements work. Thankfully, it’s not quite as bad as everyone thought but not everyone is ready for the new level cap all the same. Hopefully this post will help people be better prepared for when the update hits on March 22nd.

Conditions

  • You’ll need to have the classes you want at lv75. Seems obvious but you can’t complete the other conditions easily without it and as it is there are a few class combos that get by just fine if their subclass is under 75, so many may have just no bothered to finish them.
  • You’ll need to have completed all of your target classes SP COs.
    • This means getting 21 class cubes which you earn by “levelling up” after hitting lv75.
    • This unlocks a title so you’ll only have to do this once per class per account!
  • You’ll need to have a +35 13* of one of your classes main weapons
    • Qualifying weapons (One per class):
    • Hunter: Sword, Partizan, Wired Lance
    • Fighter: Knuckle, Twin Dagger, Double Saber
    • Ranger: Rifle, Launcher
    • Gunner: Rifle, Twin Machinegun
    • Force: Talis, Rod
    • Techer: Talis, Wand
    • Braver: Katana, Bullet Bow
    • Bouncer: Dual Blades, Jet Boots
    • As you can see, GuRa and FoTe players have it a little easier than everyone else.
    • If you’re a Summoner, you’ll need a 13* pet at lv120.
    • This unlocks a separate title per class.
  • Turn both of these titles in per class and you unlock the right to level up to 80.

So yeah it’s a little bit less mean than the 4th Broadcast indicated. It’s not much different to someone with one character but this makes life considerably easier for those wishing to keep all their alts up to date.

So generally, you can split the requirement up into two main parts: Experience and 13* NT weapons or a 13* Egg. Those are going to be the main targets of any class you wish to bring to the new cap.  As such the guide is really going to just address techniques to approach either of these goals and the pros and cons to em.

Update: OK with the live broadcast tidbits released last night it seems things might change down the line, particularly with regard to the weapon condition. They may be making +35ing a weapon easier and reviving the Revolucio Files for a year to make it easier to get weapons in the first place.

Experience

To complete all of your SP orders takes a considerable amount of experience points. If you’re starting from scratch, you’re looking at 41,307,000 EXP per class in order to complete them all. Considering its 39,357,500 EXP to go from 1-75 in the first place you can see this is a considerable amount to get. There are a few ways to make this more manageable though.

What You Should Not Do

Grab an Emperor Axeon or Edel Io with EXP Boost III and go leech in an emergency quest. It’s a dick move that might get you banned for one thing and it’s honestly not the most efficient way to get EXP in general.

VHAQ Urban Exit Burst

This is the most effective way to get EXP in the game but I don’t like it for various reasons.

Essentially, you have your intended class you wish to level as your main and you sub-class Force. Then you simply trigger a PSE burst near an exit and just spam your techs while firing off your Photon Blast as soon as you can (preferably the one that restores PP). If done right, you can have a ridiculously long PSE burst which can net you potentially millions of EXP. There’s a number of caveats however:

  • You’ll need to have 3 other people with you, otherwise not enough enemies will spawn to make the PSE burst itself any good. It scales with the number of people you have in the party and AI Partner Characters won’t count towards it.
  • You’ll need spare Advance Capsule – As in order to raise the quest’s risk to 50. Max risk boosts the number of enemies that have, well, boosts which dramatically increases the EXP per kill. Only one person in the group needs to do this, mind
  • It’s possible the PSE can trigger in an inconvenient spot on the map. If this happens you might not trigger a Cross Burst or get a One More, leading to a fair amount of time wasted.

So yeah, because you need to find 3 other people to group up with you this method isn’t for the unsociable. In general, I don’t like playing to other people’s schedules so that plus the RNG factor of when a PSE burst can happen and just how boring it is to stand in one spot spamming techs turns me off from this method. It is unarguably the best way to get EXP (outside of Bonus Quests) in the game though so if you can pull it off go for it.

VHAQs and SHAQs

This takes advantage of the high rate of enemies in Advance Quests, the rate of boosted enemies at high risk and the boosted EXP rates the quest offers.

In terms of EXP, I actually feel like VHAQs are slightly better than SHAQs. It’s less EXP per kill, but you’re killing things much faster in VHAQs and its considerably cheaper to run. However, SHAQs do have marginally better drops and because items can drop with Ultimate Buster you can get higher affix slot counts on dropped weapons.

If you’re going to run SHAQs though, I recommend pushing to +12 risk because the drop rate of capsules is considerably higher and it also puts you in range to potentially get some decent drops. It’ll also potentially be useful for Collection Files that require lv71+ enemies that are otherwise difficult to find in the general game.

The downside to running SHAQs is you will need to run them fairly regularly in order to not have fewer caps than you started with. Ideally you want to make a profit so I advise clearing out the entire map which is kind of time consuming.

If you’re running VHAQs I actually suggest not clearing the entire map unless you really need caps. For one thing VHAQs only cost 1 cap per attempt, so you really don’t need to clear the map to make the quest pay for itself anyway. For another, getting rare boosted bosses is a ridiculous chunk of EXP (figures like 350,000 exp per kill aren’t unheard of). As a result, I argue it may be worth just killing mobs that happen to get in your way and just getting to the boss to increase the number of shots per hour you get at a rare boss.

One upside to this approach is you can get shots at Arks Clones appearing as well as Apprentice. These both can give very useful Affixes, though for clones it’s better if you have more people with you. You may also get shots at Tagami which can net a huge burst of EXP but it’s extremely rare.

Featureds

Run the daily featured quests. This will keep your daily boost up which is a 50% tri-boost plus it will give you shots at getting bonus keys. Bonus quests, particularly Gold-Key Tokyo can give insane amounts of EXP if you use enough boosters on them.

This is the most casual approach to levelling up and considering we have until March 22nd until it’s available even those with limited amounts of time to play should be able to use this method to be more than ready when the day comes. You won’t get a key every day, in fact you may go multiple days with no keys at all. However it’ll be more than worth it when you do get one because a Gold Key could net you up to two class cubes in one go.

Catch Emergency Quests

Naturally this has the disadvantage of having your playtime held hostage by the EQ schedule. I don’t recommend this as your main way of gaining EXP but it can be a nice way to supplement it.

Not all Emergency Quests pay out a good amount of EXP, but the following are of note:

  • Chaotic Tranquility – Nothing but boosted enemies. Very nice EXP.
  • Mothership – Again, nothing but boosted enemies. Includes Goldrahdas and shots at a boosted Nove Ringadahl, Dark Agrani and Rigshrayda. Generally a high EXP quest.
  • Mining Base Defense 3 – Probably the best emergency quest for EXP. Focus on killing enemies as quickly as possible. Succeeding at the quest isn’t actually required.
  • Dark Falz Elder – The Arms phase pays out a huge amount of EXP, though it can get repetitive fairly quick.
  • Dark Falz Loser – I’ve heard that Apos Dorios pays a decent amount of EXP on Extra Hard. Not played the quest in years so I can’t confirm.
  • Raidboss EQs – If the group is fast the boss can pay a pretty nice chunk of EXP. Not as much EXP/min as some of the other EQs here but its not a bad little chunk plus you get shots at some very nice items in some of them.

Bribing Franka

Franka has a large selection of Client Orders which all require items that can be bought off the player market. If you turn them in all at once it totals up to something in the region of 1M exp. They’re on a weekly cooldown, so its not an awful way to get some EXP however some of Franka’s Client Order items might be quite expensive.

Treasure Shop

Keep an eye on the Treasure Shop. Occasionally it sells bonus keys (silver Tokyo is 1.6M and gold Tokyo is 5M). It’s expensive, but if you have the Meseta to spare it may be worth considering dumping some in exchange for that sweet Bonus Quest EXP.

Weapons and Pet

This one is a bit trickier, because the ways you can obtain these items changes much more frequently than ways to gain good amounts of EXP. These will kind of be more general suggestions for now.

Collection Files

These are likely going to be the most effective way you can meet the +35 requirement, though it does depend on what the file is dependent on.

If it’s tied to an Emergency Quest you’re going to have to be able to catch as many instances of that quest as you can. In otder to +35 a 13* star weapon you will need to complete a file 6 times, which can be a tall order given that the files are usually on a limited timeframe.

You may have to use Stargems to reset your completed sheets in order to speed things up, otherwise you’ll end up having to wait 2 days which can be precious opportunities lost if any EQs happen in that time.

There’s also the downside that not all Collection files cover all weapon types. As it happens, we currently have one that does and another coming up.

Collection files are by far the easiest way for Summoners to get a 13* pet. If you’re a summoner, this is pretty much your only way. Don’t care about which pet happens to be available at the time, just get it.

Astra Files

Astras are a pretty good one for now as there’s plenty of time before they expire and it doesn’t take many Escafalz Mother kills to clear a file. You’re still going to have to plan your schedule around the Emergency Quest schedule though which just isn’t practical for everyone to do.

Ray Files

Ray files will be back next week. Like Astra, it covers every weapon type but unlike Astra you will be able to make progress on these in your own time. You’ll be able to buy Quest Triggers for the Emergency Quest these are tied to for 50 2017 Gold Badges each which you can earn in a mere 5 runs of the current Limited Quest. This Limited Quest will be gone next week, however the quest taking its place might pay a similar or better amount. It has to pay some at least because the Web Event’s progression is based on Badges earned.

Bare in mind however that parts of Ray files will require you to run other quests to get kills of specific high-level Darker bosses and enemies. This might involve running SHAQs or doing runs of either of the Heaven and Hells. The sheets are also likely to be around for a limited time, possibly only a month which means you’ll have very little time to clear all 6 files that you’d need. You may need to use Star Gems to help.

Revolucio Files

Late March will see the return of the Revolucio Collection Files. Unlike the other two mentioned here, these files are not bound to any Emergency Quest and can be progressed at your own pace. They’ll allegedly be available for an entire year, which gives you plenty of time to obtain the weapons you need in order to satisfy both the level up requirement and the future Expert Block requirement.

They’ll also apparently be making them less demanding to grind out, which is potentially a good thing because the original files required enemies that were pretty difficult to find in the general game. Things like lv71+ Goronzoran, which only shows up occasionally in Sanctum’s SHAQ or certain Emergency Quests (Who knows though, maybe one day we’ll see Extra Hard added to all Free Fields and Arks Quests…). The amount of time it took to progress certain files was also pretty harsh, with boss kills netting maybe 1 or 2% towards completion.

NPC Client Order Weapons

Fairly easy weapons to get when they’re available.

One downside is they  tend to only offer two weapon types at a time. This only covers a very small portion of classes as you can imagine.

Another downside is the client orders are on a 1-week cooldown and are typically only available for a month. The good news is if you have alts this is less of an issue, as the weapon hand-out cooldown is only 2 days. So as long as you complete it on alts and turn in one of your alt’s quests every 2 days you should easily get the 6 weapons required to +35 a weapon. If you don’t have any alts then this option is impossible for you.

2016 Badge Weapons

The old 2016 badge weapons are 13* NT weapons, so if you have enough 2016 Badges laying around (about 1200 gold at least) you can pick up enough weapons to make a +35 that way.

The very obvious flaw in this approach is that 2016 Badges aren’t available anymore, so this isn’t an option for new players or anyone with less than 1200 gold badges.

2017 Badge Weapons

Xie’s current selection of weapons are 13* NTs as well though! If other methods are impractical to you then saving up enough weapon badges might be the best option you have. You’ll need 1200 badges total in order to get 1 +35 weapon.

The big advantage to this approach is these weapons are permanently available. As you’ll be able to earn 2017 Badges all year this method doesn’t suffer from the limited time-spans that the EQ limited Collection Files or NPC Client Order weapons suffer from. So you really can progress these entirely at your own pace. If you’re a casual player this may be the best way to meet this condition by far.

The downside of course is this consumes 2017 badges, which might be better spent on other things.

Summary

So for gaining EXP, consider any of the following methods:

  • Get a team of 4 people together and see if you can get VHAQ Urban exit bursts Boring but very effective if you can pull it off.
  • By yourself or with other people farm EXP in VHAQs or SHAQs. Lucrative EXP but need to play often to not lose Advance Capsules.
  • Run Featured Quests and hope you get keys. Fairly RNG but Bonus Quests have the highest payout of EXP of any quest.
  • Keep an eye out for particular Emergency Quests. Some pay good amounts of EXP
  • Consider dropping Meseta on Franka Client Order items for a decent chunk of EXP per week.
  • Consider watching the Treasure Shop and dropping Meseta for Tokyo keys.

These methods ought to help with actually getting to lv80 as well.

To meet the +35 weapon condition or the lv120 13* pet condition consider the following approaches:

For Eggs:

  • Do whatever Collection File happens to be up at the time. You only need one 13* Egg.

For weapons:

  • Do Collection Files if you think you can satisfy their conditions, ie: if you can make every Emergency Quest it needs. Consider using Stargems to reset files to speed things up.
  • Collect 2017 Weapons Badges for Emergency Quest triggers for the upcoming Ray collection files.
  • Consider clearing NPC Client Orders that give out 13* weapons. This method is only practical for people with alts. Remember that the Client Orders are on a weekly cooldown but the weapons themselves can only be given out to an account every two days.
  • Consider 2016 Badge weapons if you have enough 2016 Badges left (at least 1200)
  • Consider 2017 Badge weapons as they’ll be available permanently and you can make progress towards them at any time.

These are all the techniques I can think of for now. Let me know if there’s any I’ve forgotten about or if there’s anything wrong with the techniques I’ve laid out. I hope this at least helps some people out there because I know these conditions have taken people by surprise.

Hi, Mom!

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With the latest update we got to face off against Episode 4’s second raidboss; the malevolent shell of Escafalz Mother. I hope you’re somewhat used to the Rideroid by now!

I did want this post out sooner but new information kept kinda trickling in, making me re-write good portions of it. It’s possible some of the information in this will turn out to be wrong later on anyway..

The Fight

Chase

mom_chase

You’ll chase Mother around the moon base on your Rideroid. The base is more like a racetrack, which you can end up doing multiple laps of before it times out. Each lap the course gains additional obstacles, making keeping up with Mother increasingly difficult.

As well as avoiding obstacles, Mother herself will be throwing a large array of attacks at you all of which do considerable amounts of damage. There’s not much you’re going to be able to shrug off, as the healing circles restore very little of your health.

You’ll need to keep up with her, as if you get too far away you’ll take constant damage and be killed.

mom_walls
Get close and break her balls! You can also barrel-roll into her wall attack to deflect them into her. Doing so seems to slow her down.

In order to defeat Mother, you’ll need to break her four cores which stuns her. In that time, you’ll need to do as much damage to her as you can! Repeat this a few times (she’s typically down on her third break) and she should be defeated with relative ease. They give you a huge window of time to do this, so after people get used to the Rideroid part you should see very few failures. If you do fail, you’ll get a B rank which has a huge impact on the amount of drops you’ll get. At that point, you may want to consider abandoning unless you’re not sure you’ll get an additional run. It’ll still count just the same for collection file progress even if you do get a B-rank.

You have a few abilities at your disposal:

Autoshoot

Autoshoot will automatically fire at Mother as long as your crosshairs are over an attackable point.

Missiles

Fires a bunch of homing missiles that do decent damage. Again, you need to have your crosshairs over an attackable target for this to work. Take the environment into account, too, because the missiles can crash into them wasting your attack.

Do a Barrel Roll

You’ll spin on the spot, dealing damage within melee range. This is by far your most damaging attack and you should be mercilessly spamming it when the opportunity presents itself. This attack also serves other purposes, such as reflecting Mother’s spinning wall attacks back at her!

Overboost

Puts your Rideroid into overdrive, letting you catch up to Mother more quickly. It should be noted that most of the time you’re moving faster than Mother is but she can move in bursts or you spend too much time dodging and she gets away from you.

Dying

Well it’s sort of an ability! If you run out of HP you’ll be “dead” and have to wait 5 seconds to be respawned. You’ll be respawned right in front of Mother and are allowed up to 12 deaths before it negatively impacts your rank. As a result, if you fall behind far enough it might be better to die and respawn than attempt to catch up.

Phase 1

Phase one is relatively straightforward. She uses a bunch of well telegraphed attacks, based largely on which arms happen to be up. The main body is invulnerable while arms are alive, so the only thing you can do here is DPS those down. Once all arms are dead, Mother will be stunned for a while, exposing her core. Burn the core as hard as you can, as you only have a limited window.

She’ll repeat this cycle a few times, summoning more arms each time you down her. The more arms she had at the time, the longer she’ll be stunned for when you break them all. The number of times you’ll have to do this depends on your MPA’s DPS, as if your MPA fails to meet the DPS check while she’s stunned you’ll have to stun her an additional time meaning you’ll have to kill more arms. Their HP is not shared with Mother, so failing these checks will mean a significantly longer fight, overall.

Each arm has an attack or two borrowed from a Dark Falz. You can tell which arms are generating which attacks by looking at their crowns; Loser has wings, Double has a wall , Apprentice has sort of bug-eyes with mandibles and Elder has the head and fins from its Falz Arms. Due to the way they attack, generally Loser’s arm ends up being the last one to be taken down as it’s the most mobile. The most dangerous one is Double’s, which can put up a circular wall around the party and deal devastating damage to anyone who fails to escape. The rest deal very little damage and isn’t difficult to heal through.

Overall I like this phase but it overstays its welcome if your MPA’s DPS isn’t up to scratch. You can end up going through the cycle of breaking arms and assaulting Mother’s chest up to six times and personally by the fourth I’m bored of it. It feels repetitive, which is a shame because otherwise mechanically I quite like it.

There’s other minor annoyances in this part too, such as Mother’s hitbox taking priority if an arm wanders near her. If this happens, the Arm won’t take any damage! This is because the arms are not considered separate targets like Falz Arms are, which means you can only hit one at time even if they’re clumped together.

Phase 2

mom_fight

Mother plants herself in the arena and starts using a number of new attacks. She is incredibly aggressive in this state and can dish out surprisingly high amounts of damage out of the blue. Techers will want to try to keep pumping Resta out or putting down Megiverse fields just so your DPS can keep it up.

So much happens here that it’s kind of a cluster-fuck and as a result I can’t say I’m much of a fan of it. At least a lot is happening and she does have a wide variety of attacks it’s just the speed and number of them might be a little much for me. Mother herself also moves a lot, so if there are any mechanics attached to breaking parts I’m not going to find out any time soon as a sword Hunter! Otherwise the only thing I could really pick out so far is she summons bombs which I think you can break to neutralize.

That said, this phase is a welcome sight in certain groups after the first phase has long out-stayed its welcome.

Death Cubes

cube_mom

This is Mother’s raid-wipe move. She’ll use it at 50% and at around 25% HP. She creates a ring of cubes that slowly make their way to the center of the arena, while also gently pushing players out toward the edge of the ring. You’ll need to break as many cubes as you can before they reach the center of the arena, as the damage she deals after scales with the number of cubes left alive. I’m not sure what the lethal cutoff point is, but the attack pulses and hits around 4 times (possibly more at higher numbers of cubes left). With 4-5 cubes left, she was dealing 350 damage to me, for a total of 1400 damage which is only just under my maximum HP. So I’d say you wanna shoot for 1-5 cubes left, as any more and unless you have a tank or Deband Toughness up you’re going to lose people. The damage is Tech based, so the higher your T-def the less damage you’ll take from the attack.

cubesplosion

You can’t guard the damage but you can dodge it if your timing with evasion skills is spot on.

Note that the cubes are not considered separate targets, so area-of-effect attacks will still only hit one cube.

Your typical MMO raidboss DPS check. I was never a fan of this kind of thing and it’s sad to see it come up more in PSO2. It’s not the most strict check, but again it’s the classic problem with raiding in a game like this; its intended for random groups to run it so you have little control over everyone’s builds and such. You don’t know if they’re going to be running ideal builds or having ideal weapons for dealing with the raid-wipe mechanic, which favors classes that can do sustained damage in an area without the worry of the push-back effect moving them out of effective range. Worse is when you have a bunch of people giving up before the DPS check begins; holding the Photon Blast button while those without end up doomed to the attack!

That said, the raid doesn’t end when everyone’s dead so there’s no punishment for being caught in the attack. So it’s not really a big deal.

Loot

Mother can drop the game’s very first 14*s but you’re basically never seeing them. She can also drop 12* units, but their rate is similarly dire. Not comparable to 14*s but I wouldn’t be surprised if they were comparable to Invade Units.

The 14*s

Just gonna go over what is currently known about the weapons. The information out there is still shakey and at times outright self-contradictory. Expect this bit to change as things become more well known.

Kazaminodachi – Increase effect of Katana Gear (12% at lv3) as well as Gear fills up when weapon is unsheathed.

If it’s as it sounds this is potentially fun at least. It means that you’ll be under the effects of Katana gear for longer so you’ll want to be triggering it to get the most out of the weapon. I mean you kind of have to do that anyway, so the only real difference is in theory it’ll be easier to keep the effect up with this weapon.

The below twitter video demonstrates the gear aquisition effect while the weapon is unsheathed during Katana Gear. That’s a sentence that’s gonna make no sense to anyone not familiar with this game… Anyway so yeah as you can the regeneration rate isn’t enough to neutralise the decay, but it does greatly slow it down. The clip shows the regular decay later on in the vid for comparison.

Spread Needle – Increased damage and chance to stun enemies. Also damage increases when you get closer to enemies.

This one’s hard to call because there’s so many unknowns around it. Does the effect apply to Photon Arts? How strongly does the close range damage effect scale? Unfortunately this doesn’t align with the rumoured potential which is unfortunate all things considered. I’ll have to update my opinion on this when we actually know more about it.

It does fire multiple projectiles like the classic Spread Needle, but it’s believed this is just a visual effect and only the regular center bullet is the valid one. Scratch that, it’s not just a visual effect! This makes its basic attacks significantly stronger than any other rifle in the game, potentially.

I still don’t have any numbers to hand, but apparently the “close range” effect kicks in on the same range that Sharpshooter counts from. This means there’s a narrow range in which you can have both bonuses up, which makes it an overall impractical weapon for traditional RaHus. GuRa is probably gonna be the one to get the most out of this weapon, as they can abuse it’s multi-projectile effect on Parralel Slider and One Point the most. This information is still tentative.

Eternal Psychodrive – Confirmed as Boosts Element Conversion’s power, reduces PP consumption
Its Special Ability Factor is “Ability IV”

As far as far as I’m aware the only one confirmed is Eternal Psychodrive with one known drop. Its potential apparently boosts the power of Element Conversion by 50%, which means you get 45% additional damage with matching element instead of 30%. If the element doesn’t match, it’s boosted by 200% so instead of 15% you do 45% damage. So if the stars align and you do get one, you only ever need that one! Now of couse forces can get 30% from element convert with any 13* rod, so really the effective potential is a 15% boost in damage. Boring, but it does mean getting one will free up a few slots in your inventory!

Max potential Gix is allegedly slightly stronger than this, but realistically you’re not going to have that up at all times.

Falz Drops

During the Christmas broadcast it was revealed that the 14*s can actually drop from all old Falz raids and Profound Darkness. However the drop rates in those quests are even lower than they are in Mother’s raid if you can believe that. Still, good to know that they didn’t forget about the old content.

Astra Weapons

The replacement for Austere is here! They’re not really much of a replacement…

collection_files

Alright I’m being a little unfair. They’re solid weapons, it’s just for something that was heralded as something to topple Austere I was just expecting something a bit more than a tiny bit of extra attack and PP regen. For those who’ve had Austere for months it’s an upgrade you’re barely going to even notice for most weapon classes. For those who haven’t and instead are wielding previous collection file gear such as Gix you might also feel a little underwhelmed. However, their potential is active at all times without stringent conditions that Gix weapons have.

Suppose I should actually say what the potential is:

  • 12% additional damage and 40% additional PP recovery on attack.

Their special ability factor is “Phase Recovery” which boosts PP recovered on attack by 5%, so you can put this on your Astra weapon to boost it up to 45%.

The files themselves are pretty generous enough, with a 250% booster meaning you’ll need  to attend something like 18 runs to get a 60% (assuming no cooldown time on the files). The rest of the file can be done in Riding Quests, which are fairly active again because of this. With a 250% booster on you’re looking at 4-5 kills for each boss. The alternative is to see if your target weapon drops from an enemy elsewhere, because it’ll also count towards your file progress is so. As far as I know, for Summoners the only option is the bosses specified. If you’re need Train Ghidorans I’d suggest going to Train Ghidoran’s Arks Quest.

Astra Units

They exist, I assure you. You just might not ever see one if the rates are anything like Invade Units.

Stats:

  • S-DEF – 233
  • R-Def – 230
  • T-Def – 236
  • S/R/T-Atk+20
  • All def attribute +2%(S/R/T and all element)
  • HP+60
  • PP+10

Pretty good, overall. They have a set bonus with the weapon and arm unit which grants 60 Dexterity. I don’t know why they bother with set effects that terrible, honestly. If you’re gonna drop Set Bonuses because you’re put off by the idea just drop them entirely don’t half-ass it.

Like the weapons, these can be recolored which is neat!

Ledran

ledran

The newest addition to Summoner’s ever-expanding selection of pets. This time though it’s a badass little dragon with moves reminiscent of Panzer Dragoon. Or maybe I’m justing seeing Panzer Dragoon in it because I want to, I don’t know. It has homing lasers!

I don’t really play Summoner enough to give an in-depth so I’ll only go over some factual stuff and the rest is kinda third-hand info.

Personalities

It has two personalities like all the other pets (with rare drop variants of course)

The first is a stacking buff where Ledran’s power increases with every kill by 0.8% / 1.0% / 1.2% / 1.4% / 2.0% up to a rather staggering maximum of a 50% boost. Whats more is according to rumours, this carries across to new areas. The effect is reset on swapping pets or getting into a vehicle however.

The second is a scaling buff which depends on the number of enemies near the pet. It’s 1% / 2% / 3% / 4% / 6% for 1-4 enemies, 2% / 4% / 6% / 8% / 12% for 5+. While weaker than the other personality in total, this one doesn’t require you to kill enemies to generate it. “Nearby” in this case means within its auto-attack range, which is fairly big.

Between the two I think I’d prefer the killcount one, but the other would be superior for raid boss quests where you don’t get the chance to kill anything. That’s just my gut feeling though, I’d need to play the class more to really judge because there might be nuances to either personality that I don’t understand.

Attacks

Ledran Laser

ledran_laser
It looks like a homing attack!

It has a homing laser attack which can be charged up. The longer you hold it, the more lasers will lock onto things. I believe it stacks up to 8 lasers, which all deal a moderate amount of damage each. It functions a little bit like Homing Emission in that it can lock on to targets that you can’t. While each individual hit isn’t much, it does charge fast so I feel like it’s an alright mobbing PA so far.

Ledran Slash

A simple melee slash attack which also returns the pet to the user. Helpful for ending its auto-attack but not much else.

Ledran Gravity

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Creates a gravity well wherever the projectile lands. Similar sort of effect as Gravity Bomb but I think it persists for a bit longer.

Ledran Burst

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Like Ledran laser except it locks on to one target and charges up to 8 projectiles to launch at it. Unlike Laser, each hit is pretty strong making its overall damage fairly high. Useful for high HP single targets and bossing.

Ledran Mine

Not gotten to use this yet, but it places a mine on a target which when detonated by most other Photon Art creates a damaging area (it can’t be detonated by Ledran Slash). This mine works much the same as the Vol Graptor projectile, as in if Ledran is too close to the enemy (launching the projectile inside an enemy hitbox I believe) the mine will disappear even though it displays the hit effect.

This includes Ledran Gravity, so placing a mine then firing the gravity well results in enemies trapped inside the AoE. It’s also apparently fast enough that you can sneak one in before the homing lasers reach their target, allowing you to deal additional damage.

Consensus

Again, this is really third hand stuff but the general consensus I’m getting for Ledran is it’s an overall solid pet. It’s good at both bossing and mobbing (it’s likely inferior to Aero and Maron for bossing power, however), so for Summoner mains or alts this might be a good one to get. Though for a while it’ll be expensive to get one with a different personality than the Collection File offers.