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Fighter Guide

Introduction

Fighters have two major roles: taking damage from all sources and dealing physical damage. While fighters may not have the same damage output as thieves and mages, their greater health capacity allows for them to deal damage without having to worry as much about position and hate.
This guide is separated into several sections to help you quickly identify your role and to provide tips and tricks on how to maximize your potential.


Choosing your Role

Before you decide to create a fighter, you should choose what kind of role you wish to provide – do you want to be the main tank, controlling aggro and absorbing damage for the rest of the team, or do you want to be primarily a source of damage, and allow another fighter to fulfill the damage absorbing role?
Of course, there will not always be another tank or damage dealer available, so please note that your role may often change depending on the party make-up. However, it is important to decide on a role, as it will affect what your skill choices are and what classes you choose to cross-class from or to.


Basics

Fighters have a lot more versatility in equipment than any other class. They have access to more weapons (1h axe, 1h sword, 1h blunt, 2h sword, 2h axe, spear, 2h blunt) than any other class as well as a variety of armor ranging from purely physical defense to hybrid physical and magical defense.
You will likely find yourself with a smattering of equipment in your inventory due to the changing nature of the game and your role in any particular party. I would recommend at all times to keep a shield and 1h in your inventory, even if you are primarily a damage dealing, light armor wearing version of a warrior. This will allow you to tank or at least hold aggro on mobs that dictate this style of strategy while others deal the majority of damage.


Hate

Mobs choose to attack a player based on a ‘hate’ or aggro table. As you fight a monster, people will move up or down on this hate table depending on the actions they perform. While there is not a large amount of information or testing that has currently been done with the hate table, there are a few things that can be said in general of hate. Fighters have the ability to invest points into skill that generate a large amount of hate (usually referred to as a taunt, the skill in this game is called Provoke), and the ability to invest points into a skill that passively increases the amount of hate they generate (the skill in this game is Hate Increase).

Generating Hate

Attacking a monster will generate hate. The amount of damage you do is proportional (although not necessarily linear) with the amount of hate you generate. Any additional hate generation (such as through passive hate generation) will proportionally modify the amount of hate generated. Often, particular moves will generate additional hate, based on the move type – there is no data in Wizardry about this yet, although I expect that particularly damaging or status changing moves generate additional hate.

Reducing Hate

In Wizardry, being hit by the mob will reduce your hate. It is uncertain whether or not blocking also reduces hate, or keeps hate at the current level. In addition, many classes have the ability to reduce or remove hate passively (such as with the thief’s skill Max Hate Decrease) or actively (such as with the thief’s skill Hate Blame). I have not heard officially, but I assume the amount of damage received also determines how much hate is reduced.

Staying On Top of Hate

As a fighter it is important to pay attention to hate. Luckily, most mobs do not cast spells and determining who the monster is going to attack is quite easy, especially if you face the mob the other direction of the damage dealers. Taunts work particularly well in this game, so re-directing the mob your location is relatively easy. In the case that you are unable to re-direct the mob towards you, even after a taunt (or shortly after a taunt if it re-directs again), applying conditions with skills such as leg bash or stun smash can be incredibly useful.


Tank Build

Being a tank, the most important thing is increasing your defense values. The majority of mobs hit your physical defense, but some mobs use magic attacks (either in addition, or only magic attack based such as with mage mobs) so you cannot ignore magical defense. This can be accomplished by either using some hybrid armor pieces (usually FIG/THI req. armors) or by carrying additional armor with high magical defense. High quality earrings and necklaces are a must, as they often can carry 30% or more of your total magical defense.


Skills


The most important skills, at least initially, are the skills that increase your defense. Luckily, one of the best increases of your defense comes at the very top of the defense tree. This skill is known as Defend Stance. It increases your defense, at the cost of lowering your attack. Initially, the defense increase is very small compared to the offense lowering amount. However, once you have 7 ranks in this skill, you will increase your defense by a static 40% as well as adding an additional 45 defense. The physical attack is always lowered by 40%.
The Physical Defense Increase skill is a must, and is only offered sparsely, so upgrade it every time you can. In fact, I would recommend this skill for both attack and defense oriented fighters because it is so useful.
Self Heal , while not essential, can be quite useful if your gear is not exactly up to par, or if your priest runs low on mana during a particularly long or difficult fight. The more ranks you have in the skill, the better it heals. At rank 5, for example, it can heal for ~300 HP. This is equivalent to about half your hit points (unmodified) at level 20. This is less important than increasing your armor value, however, and unless you are a hybrid class, or solo/duo w/o a priest often, should not be heavily invested (unless you are grandfathered [grandfathering is the process of re-classing to another class, taking fighter skills with you, and then re-classing back into fighter in order to get ‘free’ skill points] and have extra SP to spend).
Over Use is another skill that is particularly useful for increasing your defense. The defense value it adds comes at the cost of damaging you (10% of max life every 10 seconds). The defense value is default an additional 40% + 10flat def., however, and additional levels increase the bonus value up to a maximum of +40. In addition, extra levels lower the re-cast time, so it can be used more often. If you are a lawful character, this also applies the priest’s Divine Armor effect (preventing knock-back and interrupts) which can be useful for large groups of mobs, or mobs that knock back or interrupt you. More than one level is not recommended until you have grandfathered back to fighter for additional skill points.
Sentinel Guard is a skill that is not recommended until you have grandfathered back into fighter. This is not recommended because its utility is not very high as it only decreases GP damage by a maximum of 30%. GP, especially at high levels, does not scale amazingly with damage. Some monsters, at high levels, can hit for 1/6th of your total health, which is often close to 1/6th of the GP a shield can have.
Iron Shell is something you won’t receive for a very long time, but is great for reducing damage to nearly nothing for a short period of time. This is an emergency HELP button, essentially. You’ll want this eventually.
HP Max Increase is a passive way down at the bottom that you’ll like to max out. I would recommend this for both offensive and defensive based characters, however, you will likely have to have grandfathered a lot of skills to reach that far down if you are an offensive spec (unless you brought other skills with you, such as over-use).

Damage Build

Offensive value is the goal here, however, keep in mind that having a decent defense will help negate the damage that you will eventually take, as not every attack can be avoided.


Skills


Desperado is the damage version of Defend Stance. Please note that overpower and defend stance DO stack, so running both will increase your offense and defense at high levels. Desperado will greatly increase your attack
Physical Attack Increase is a skill you will want to pick this up, to increase your damage. I would invest in this regardless if you are tank or damage specialized, as it does not come very often and is fairly cheap. If you are tank specialized, you may not be far enough down the tree to receive this until you grandfather in extra skills.
Bash, Leg Bash, and Head Bash are your bread and butter of attacking. Depending on how much OD you have, you may wish to only do the leg bash/head bash combo, but leveling them up will increase damage. Head bash is perhaps the first you should level up, as it increases the duration that mobs deal less damage as well, which adds a lot of utility to your build.
Power Charge is an attack is great for an initial attack, or an attack to charge when a mob is charging a powerful attack and you are not going to be hit by it. Power charge can hit very hard if it is fully charged. Ranking this up decreases the amount of time it takes to reach full charge, so you may want to level it if you plan on using it during a battle, as opposed to before/after charging.
Piercing is a skill you won’t get this for a long time, but it is another way to increase your damage output.

Other Class Skills Useful to Have

Thief

Make Medicine – a thief skill that gives you a potion (max 6) every time you cast it. The cool-down is fairly long at level one, but given the low amount of damage you take, a single level should suffice. The reason that this skill is particularly useful is that these potions heal based on a % of hit points. Thus, a heavy HP class like fighter can receive a lot of HP from one of these potions.
Decoy – if you have trouble holding agro, or there are a lot of mobs that need to be held for a short period of time, a few levels of distract can be quite helpful. Personally, I’d rather not waste the points and instead grandfather in some useful damaging skills (a great way to grab agro on a large group is by leveling up wind attack).
Warzen Blow– if you are a damage dealer, this is almost a must. It hits extremely hard whenever the mob has conditions on them. It is easy enough to find conditions to apply (leg bash, head bash are both conditions, as well as plenty of other cross class skills such as stun smash) and many people apply conditions such as poison fairly often.


Mage

Invest Flame – a great way to increase your damage output for a short period of time. It’s got a really long cool down, so it’s not very useful for everyday battles. Great for bosses, though.
Binds (Action Bind, Hard Bind, Movement Bind) – these can be useful for stopping mobs from reaching other players if you cannot hold aggro. In addition, even if you can hold aggro, they are a great way of reducing the damage you take.
Magic Defense Increase - Ranks of this will help boost your MDef for monsters that use magic. This can be very useful for particular mob types.


Priest

Attack Aura– If you are a damage dealer, this can greatly increase your damage output. Priests tend not to invest much into this skill unless they are buff based, or grandfathered in extra points, so carrying it yourself can be useful. Note that it takes a fair deal of mana and only lasts 300 seconds, so expect to camp a lot more often.
Stun Smash – this skill stuns mobs (all mobs hit by the attack) for 4 seconds. Fairly long recast, but very useful when dealing with multiple mobs (such as when farming). Great skill to bring, don’t really need more than 1 point.
Fast Break– prevents actions (skills) for a period of time. Great for pvp, not as useful for PvE – take it if it fits your play style. You may want to rank this up a few times to get additional time on paralysis.
Divine Armor – I am not really a fan of this, as lawful fighters get this with Overuse, however many suggest to pick it up for PvP and some PvE purposes. This skill prevents you from being knocked around by enemies.
Physical Defense Increase - This will stack with the fighter version, giving you additional physical Defense. Great skill to bring if you plan on going through priest.
Magic Defense Increase - Ranks of this will help boost your MDef for monsters that use magic. This can be very useful for particular mob types.

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