Ringwraith Rune Lore

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Contents

Introduction

This is my Ringerwielder's guide to domination and servitude, building upon or updating the advice found in the Newbie's Guide to a Ring of Power. I began serving our lord Ahrikol as Sinister Stairs, then Ixithoth, and my current general is Corvynna Kinslayer the betrayer.

My primary purpose for writing this guide was to share my experiences with the plethora of runes, but with the spurt of new Ringwielders in recent weeks (in contrast to me being the only Ringwielder logged on), this guide has grown to answer common questions as well.


Spoiler warning: information below includes details, such as solutions to puzzles or quest procedures, that you may prefer to discover on your own.



Races

Personally, I pick race & guild based on an envisioned theme (i.e. pseudo-roleplaying). Because that's the way I roll (pun intended), I can only provide general guidelines for those whose real question may be "what's the best Ringwielder race?"

  • Ringwielders accommodates any playstyle (e.g. melee, spellcaster, or something in between), so you need to take your preference into consideration. Melee warriors place more importance on the physical stats, while spellcasters focus on the mental, and hybrid ringwraiths have well-rounded stats but master none.
  • Our primary skills are power tuning (intelligence), power focusing (willpower), power generation (charisma) and power direction (perception). Even if you choose to play a melee-based ringwielder, you'll want to put a modest amount of spec points in them (e.g. 40 charisma).
This article is a stub. You can help Lost Souls by expanding it.



Joining

I don't know the precise requirements, as I've been denied for both insufficient rune lore (with few quest points) and lack of deeds (with little-to-no rune lore). I think quest points weigh more than rune lore.

Easy quests you can do with no fighting include At'lordrith's Riddle, the Devonshire Murder, the Inner Sanctum, the Lost Kentaur and the Source of the Slime.

The Assassination quest has minimal-to-no fighting required. Gwalin's Quandary, Hardin's Gauntlet and the Dunwich Mystery require fighting, but they are routinely completed (incidentally), so the quest items may already be readily available for you.

There are other easy quests as well, such as the trivia quest, but these are the ones that can be completed the quickest, IMO.

Petitioning

`Help runes' describes how your "runespace" is determined (i.e. how many runes you are allowed), so read it carefully!

New Runes

To quote that help file: "[Ahrikol] holds in high regard those with a strong innate sense of ethical integrity, he also recognizes that the world requires difficult moral choices of one and appreciates those willing to make hard decisions."

I believe that advocates a Diabolic Ordered alignment: On several occasions I've been refused runes while Saintly Ordered, but then granted those same runes after correcting my alignment to D/O (with no other significant changes in stats/skills).

I have not tried petitioning while Chaotic Diabolic, but I have it on good word that as of ~2010/01/15, Ahrikhol himself is C/D; perhaps C/D would allow even more runespace.

Removing Runes

The help file says, "Ahrikol will only perform it at extremely lengthy intervals." This is actually an understatement! Ixithoth removed a rune in 2009 November and couldn't remove another until 2010 February (~3 RL months). Corvynna removed a rune on 2010 Feb 2 and couldn't remove another until 2010 Mar 28 (~54 RL days).

Another way to put it in perspective: It's faster to level up a new ringwielder than to have your next rune removed! What does this mean? Rune selection really is critical, because it takes a long time to correct mistakes.

With that sobering thought in mind, please:

  • Share your experiences on the wiki to aid others. :)
  • Consider playing multiple ringwielders to "try before you buy."

Training

Training your skills is not easy as a Ringwielder. For starters, there are only two trainers:

To make matters worse, their training maxes are fairly low, particularly Merethus's. As a final insult, they don't even train the full of multitude magickal control skill available to Ringwielders.

What does this mean to you? If you don't like slowly honing your skills over time through usage, you may want to consider specializing in the magickal lines that are more accessible:

These facts may affect which magick lines you choose to specialize in.


Runes (Getting Started)

There are a myriad of runes available to ringwielders and perhaps just as many different playstyles, so it may seem overwhelming which runes to select.

No two ringwielders will have the exact same runes (or at least, I should hope not), but I wish to provide advice to get you started and help your decision-making.

Initial Runes (Enhancements)

Newly appointed soldiers invariably ask, "So what runes should I take? How many runes can I start with?" While I can't precisely answer the second question, I can offer that I've never had a ringwielder who couldn't take the runes I suggest for the first question:

The stat enhancement runes are a good (and cheap) foundation, no matter what your playstyle is.

  • Most ringwielders would agree the must-have rune for all wraiths is memtholin (spiritual energy), which greatly buffs one's centering and channeling.
  • Depending on your playstyle, other must-have may include klizmaphex (recuperation) and uvmodath (access/enhance strength skills, particularly armour use.)
  • Most ringwielders select irimdes (quickness) and/or hae-kadzi, which are boons in both combat and travel.

Offensive Runes

Where you start running into debate is when deciding which attack runes to select. There honestly aren't any "best" runes (other than "all runes"), but here's some rules-of-thumb for you to consider:

  • Go back and read the Training section if you haven't already. Some magickal lines are much easier to train than others.
  • If you don't have many spec points (i.e. low level), you should focus on a line. For example, choose to specialize in aeromancy before branching out to other types.
  • You probably want to take advantage of your race's natural abilities; e.g. pyromancy for phaethon or necromancy for nylocs.
  • The "best" attack rune is whatever your opponent is vulnerable to. If you're fighting a fiery foe, cold is your friend. If you are strugging with an adversary subsisting of stone, then acid may be your solution.
  • Work towards an AoE rune (area attack -- originally "Area of Effect") for dealing with multiple opponents. It's important to note, however, that Ringwielder AoE are risky in groups! Most, if not all, have a chance of striking friends & neutrals (to varying degrees). Practice before you spam, or you'll have some very unhappy teammates and/or dead followers.
  • If you can afford the spec/runespace, take a secondary attack rune in case your primary attack rune is resisted by a particular opponent. As you conquer more and more powerful foes, you will find they are more and more resistant to various damage types.
  • Different damage types may have different side effects. For example, electricity tends to shock & stun, while cold can have a slowing effect. I believe fire does the most raw damage.
  • If you're a melee warrior, then ironically the active defense runes offer some nice ways to augment your damage. (Gevel and lgladzi)

Defensive Runes

  • Ciiv (slashing resistance), n'rax (crushing resistance) and zadash (piercing resistance) are very popular runes to start with, because they protect against the most common damage types.
  • Specific defense runes (e.g. uanedryl) tend to be more protective and far less costly than generalized defense runes (e.g. kaonfar).
  • Cover your weaknesses: If you're a slaan, then wojun, rethnal and/or aphari are no-brainers.

Miscellaneous Runes

The various "utility runes" (which I include both utility runes and teleportation runes) are just that -- they're utilitarian. They won't help you defeat foes faster or make you more durable, but they do make life easier or even make the game experience more enjoyable.

  • Cover your weaknesses: If you're allergic to sunlight or dazzled by it, then laelinak (light control) may be your answer.
  • Make up for deficiencies:
    • If you can't fly, then aerinax (flight) grants you that ability. (And even if you can fly, aerinax can be a lifesaver when your wings are amputated, or you've died and lost your ring of flight.)
    • If you can't see in the dark, then colapha (night vision) may correct that.
  • Mitigate annoyances:
    • If you hate traveling across the oceans to reaffirm your allegiance to Ahrikol, then teleportation runes such as ispiri (teleport home) may be your new means of travel.
    • Does it seem as if you can never carry enough loot? You may want to check out teleportation runes such as glochar (teleportation) or xantaras (personal microcosm).
    • Tired of camping Lucanius's for lenses of insight? Look no further than xiriaq (insight).


Runes (Annotated)

In this section, I provide insight into the runes I've tried. If a rune isn't listed here, it doesn't mean it's "bad," I simply haven't had experience with it. Conversely, if a rune is listed here, that doesn't make it "good" either; I either haven't figured out how to make it useful or I've had the misfortune of being stuck with it. In order words, go through the `help rune summary' and form your own opinions before you accept my experiences.

Feel free to correct or update this section with your own experiences.

Offensive Runes

I refer to "offensive runes" as any rune that does damage to your foes, making them fall faster. That includes the official attack runes, along with some of the active defense runes.

Auras

Offensive auras are excellent for new ringwielders: Turn them on, and the monsters hurt themselves while trying to harm you! This is great against melee foes, which most newbie monsters are.

  • Gevel (vampiric aura): With Necromancy I, I don't notice the "channeled energy." You wouldn't want to use this against undead, either.
  • Lgladzi (cold aura): I haven't used this, but list it for completeness.

The auras may be used in conjunction with one another, as well.

Slaying

"Slaying runes" can immediately finish a foe when they're mortally wounded.

  • Arkonaad (detonate): I haven't used this, but include it here just for completeness.
  • B'ryzmkel (shatter): A few creatures resist this (e.g. scavdreks), but I've seen it even slay creatures that had cold affinity/was strengthened by it! This rune doesn't actually cause foes to shatter (i.e. they still leave a corpse, where appropriate).
  • Vilix (drink life): This rune seems to get resisted a lot; i.e. it's less successful slaying foes than b'ryzmkel (shatter), even with my higher necromancy than cryomancy. For example, it doesn't work against undead at all -- it even heals them. Vilix can leech both health and spirit, but with my Necromancy I, the gains are minimal, if any.

Single Target

"Single target" attack runes focus on one foe at a time.

  • Aagmyn (chaos bolt): Doesn't seem fully resisted by much (other than the obvious), but the Requirements to Use are pretty steep!
  • B'padhax (dispel magick): I still haven't used this one, but it seems very potent.
    • Depending on how you interpret "acts on the area surrounding you," it may be an AoE.
    • I wonder if it could be used to dispel summoned creatures, such as Montezuma's hyperiads or Helborg's skeletons.
  • Gaj (poison): Untested, but it seems like a good rune that theoretically wouldn't be resisted by many living beings.
  • Somnverax (silence):
    • This rune sometimes hit objects in the room, smashing then (i.e. destroying them). I have not observed this unwanted behaviors since low level, so either it's been removed or a matter of one's control skill.
    • I haven't ever conclusively observed its silencing side effect (e.g. Reanada babbles on just fine), so I don't know if it's because my control skills are too low, or there's no indication when it is successful, or a monster's combat chats aren't affected.

Area Attacks

In general, Ringwielder AoE attacks will hit everyone in the room including neutrals, and sometimes even friendlies. Some AoE seem more likely to hit friends & followers than others.

  • Clazaphar (firestorm): Perhaps the most damaging of the Ringwielder area attacks.
  • Grynovsk (eskaric cloud): This is a DoT (damage over time), not direct damage! Also note the rune's detailed description describes it as "entropically-infused esakara." In my experience, that's accurate because loirekthen resist it and spirits are barely affected. The likelihood of grynovsk hitting followers & friends seems to depend on their size or perhaps dodge.
  • Ravarak (force blast): A nice explosion, good against stone golems and other physically resistant foes; however, the force can also damage items carried by the victims. I haven't tried it with friendlies to know how frequently it may hit them, but it certainly nails neutrals.
  • Zerivalak (chain lightning): You can zap yourself with this on occasion, so until you have good control with it, be wary using it when severely injured. With no specialization in aeromancy, it seems decent at avoiding friendlies & neutrals; definitely better than grynovsk and ravarak.

Defensive Runes

I define "defensive runes" to mean runes that either make you more difficult to damage, or make your foes less harmful. So this actually includes several attack runes along with the obvious passive defense runes.

Personal

  • Batarim (electrical resistance): If you are a nyloc, you really need this. In my experience, electricity is even more fatal to nylocs than light.
  • Dysamak (evasion): Departs increased dodge, elude pursuit, escape, stealth and perhaps others. As far as I know, it doesn't actually affect entropy affinity.
  • Kaonfar (adaptive resistance): Overall, I think this is a great rune, but I wouldn't rush to get it if you are lower level:
    • Ciiv (slashing resistance), n'rax (crushing resistance) and zadash (piercing resistance) go a lot further for you since they're ubiquitous damage types, and barely cost you spirit to use.
    • The problem with kaonfar, particularly at low levels, is that it can be very draining on your spirit while it "ramps up." Even at mid-levels, I've been in some fights where I was completely out of spirit within a few rounds because the foe did so many damage types, kaonfar sapped all my spirit.
    • My theory is that kaonfar can work in conjunction with the more specific resistance runes; i.e. if you have fire resistance, it will cost less spirit & time for kaonfar to ramp up against fire. I have not made the effort to test this yet.
  • Leminkail (situational awareness): For those who don't know, this grants the situational awareness trait.
    • This rune has High significance, so you may choose to put it off until you start fighting spellcasters regularly (at which point it's indispensible).
    • I believe your control skill determines the frequency of its spirit maintenance.
  • Mragsh (force shield): I'm still trying to figure out this rune,
    • Despite its name, it doesn't appear to protect against Force, or physical damage.
    • I think it adds to your armour class, a la rings of protection. To be further tested!
  • Uanedryl (necromancy resistance): Besides its resistance (entropic), it's interesting to note it also grants recuperation degree II specialty access.
  • Venglar (paraneurism): A lifesaving rune, but note it's high maintenance cost.

Single Target Debuffs

  • Czon (chaos disjunction) can be used, among other things, to strip a pesky Chaos Knight of hir protective parageos.

Area Debuffs

  • Domwrelin (mana shunt): I haven't used this rune yet, but I can envision situations where preventing your opponent from using magic is worth the rune's tradeoff. Hypothetical situations:
    • Defeating pure spellcasters, whose magic far surpasses your own and/or are weaker melee fighters.
    • Neutralizing bezhuldaars (by luring them in) who would disable your Ring of Power anyways.
    • Prevent foes who teleport you or themselves to safety
  • Poltradn (slowness field): Note this rune behaves like an AoE; it does not "bathe your immediate surroundings." This rune only attacks your current opponents; it cannot be used to start a fight, does not aggro neutrals, and won't affect foes who join afterwards.

Enhancement Runes

I define "enhancement runes" to be runes that make you more effective or grant traits. This include both the official enhancement runes and some of the utility runes.

  • Aaglyth (chaos favour): A cheap rune if you want chaos favour.
  • Aerinax (flight): Specced flight can actually aid you in combat, too; and this rune is cheaper to run than a ring of flight.
  • Colapha (night vision): Handy if you don't have night vision or need to penetrate magically dark environs. If you gain light sensitivity from this rune, it can be mitigated it with mizakral.
  • Elglaur (phlogiston glands): Seems very useful for races that have breath attacks, but I never met its Requirements to Use to test its replenishing powers. If you don't have a natural breath attack, they use endurance rather than spirit; and rune is particularly intriguing if you have affinities that further alter its damage type.
  • Fyegreh (luck): If the help is still not clear to you, it grants luck.
  • Hae-kadzi (haste): I'd say hae-kadzi is preferable to irimdes (quickness) because it's more effective, albeit it takes more spirit to run. But a more intriguing question is, why not both? :)
  • Irimdes (quickness): Its description can be misunderstood ("long-term use improves the user's natural quickness"). It can [slowly] raise your quickness towards your specialty max, but training is still more effective.foes.
  • Laelinak (light control): A great way to achieve darkness if you're heliocaustic, or produce light if you can't see. Note:
    • Its maintenance cost is heavy, although you don't have to refuel it like a lantern.
    • Laelinak does not grant you additional ability to see in darkness! You may want colapha to complement it.
  • Mizakral (anti-dazzle):
    • Even if you don't have light sensitivity, it can be useful: It can grant you negative sensitivity, making it difficult for foes to dazzle you.
    • With awareness I and unspecialized blindfighting, I have not been able to neutralize colapha's light sensitivity entirely.
  • Oal (paravision): Grants the paravision trait. Note that oal grants you paravision in your immediate surroundings, but it doesn't necessarily bestow the ability to see into adjacent locations.
  • Somagth (invisibility): It permits one to become invisible and indiscreetly travel through hostile environs, among other things.
    • Most NPC (shopkeepers, trainers) will not interact with you while invisible.
    • Unprovoked creatures will not aggro.
    • Somagth remains active even if you enter into combat. From my experience (still testing), this means:
      • Hostile creatures that have become aggro and are present will detect you.
      • Creatures that have become aggro but weren't present (e.g. guard reinforcements) seem to notice you depending on your control skills.
  • Yisaa (smithing): I don't think this rune has any relevance now! But hopefully someone will correct me because I'm wrong.
  • Ylamari (psychic integrity): This rune gives you the requisite bonus spec for psychic integrity, along with a skill buff. (If you remove the rune, however, you lose the bonus spec.)

Summoning

I define "summoning runes" as runes which result in a follower. This includes both the domination runes and some of the conjuration runes.

Conjuration

These runes are most useful at lower levels, but if you keep your pet alive, it can level on its own. Conjured followers will not turn on you like Dominated followers can.

  • Abrinth (summon darad shi): While the darad shi doesn't fly, I've been told it is a much hardier mount and better in combat.
  • Onichald (summon rhug shi): A flying mount, included for completeness.

Domination

Dominated beings behave just like followers; i.e. they can be commanded, train -- and even more interestingly, may join affiliations!

You assert, "followers, say teach /me/ scholarship, linguistics, anglic in anglic" in lyrically-accented Angrak.
The dark-green-skinned female orc child asserts, "teach me scholarship, linguistics, anglic" in halting, gutturally-accented Anglic.
The dark-green-skinned female orc child and Miss Amelia haggle for a bit, settling on a price of nine hundred six gold, which the dark-green-skinned female orc child pays.

...but you can lose control of them:

You feel your control of the dark-green-skinned female orc child slip.
The dark-green-skinned female orc child looks dazed for a moment.
The dark-green-skinned female orc child runs westward.
  • You can re-dominate a follower whom you've lost control over, but it will develop "resistance" to you each time. I don't know if it is permanent, or if it "stands down."
  • Failing to dominate a neutral being will cause them to attack you:
You thrust your right hand forward, and a burning white spark of energy flies forth from your tiny gray-crystal-set gold ring to strike the greenish-skinned female orc arena guard in the head.
You feel resistance curling the power of your rune back in on itself.
The greenish-skinned female orc arena guard flies into a berserk rage.
The greenish-skinned female orc arena guard attacks you.
  • Dominating a follower does not remove its natural aggressiveness towards other beings.

Miscellaneous Runes

  • Elithban (sense location): No longer as useful with the new map system (`determine'), but it does give you spec access to orienteering (and spatiomancy) if you'd like to be able to navigate precisely without a compass or local savvy.
  • Hytelmos (mindspeak): Another practical use for this rune, beyond circumventing language barriers, is overcoming speech difficulties (i.e. train) while tongue-tied or mute. However, this rune does not grant the ability to comprehend languages, nor does it appear to permit one to subvocalize runes if speech impeded.
  • Ivaescaa (blood flow): I'm not sure how this rune is supposed to work:
    • It didn't remove my anhumouricity trait when activated, it just gives the message "Nothing seems to happen."
    • I can get healing from healers now (e.g. Ariende), but I didn't need to activate the rune; and when I try deactivating it after healing, it merely says "Your ivaescaa rune is not active."
    • I believe the help file is out of date, and this is a passive rune that [temporarily] de/activates on its own when beneficial.
  • Izimiscav (appearance moderation): As far as I can tell, this is purely a cosmetic change, returning your immaterial flesh & skin and eyes to their original colors.
> subvocalize izimiscav
Your flesh and skin turn gray and your eyes turn dull red.
> subvocalize izimiscav nis
Your flesh and skin turn black and your eyes turn glowing red.

As of this time, I haven't found a practical use for the rune; e.g. my charisma did not improve with my "superficial appearance of complete normality."

  • Xiriaq (insight): Works like a lens of insight, but success is determined by your control skills. Still, you can recast it multiple times, and it doesn't use keep points.

Weapons

Nice for non-physical melee damage, and also useful on the occasions you've died and have no weapons.

  • Fyl'thyrzha (wind whip): Included for completeness.
  • Nysevrak (flame blade): From what I've heard, the flame blade turns to plasma if your control skills are high enough. (note: nysevrak functionality has changed. see changes #6441, #6453 -Dalton)

Teleportation

Note that there are no public trainers nor associations joinable by Ringwielders that teach spatiomancy, so training the teleportation runes can be slow sledding.

  • Glochar (planar pocket): The rune behaves as one would expect, thanks to a recent update[1].
    • The purported persistence across reboots is still being tested.
    • Artifacts can be stored in the planar pocket for a short period. I've observed ~1 hour, but neither timed it nor tested if the duration changes based on the artifact itself.
    • My suggested guidelines for planar pocket etiquette:
      • If you want to pocket items for yourself, first put them in a container; conversely, do not remove other people's containers (unless empty) or their contents.
      • Consumables and empty containers, such as lenses and potions, are available for all; but make an effort to later replace what you've used.
      • As a courtesy, ask first before cleaning junk out of the pocket -- another RW may be be using the pocket to temporarily store shop trash.
  • Ispiri (teleport home): Does what it says; a handy travel shortcut.
  • Jainz (teleport back): Useful even by itself for toggling between two locations; works even better in conjunction with the other teleportation runes.
  • Tzakhos (teleport to): Not only can you teleport to fellow Ringwielders, but the NPCs as well. (Merethus, Ven, Fulmaris, etc.) Haven't tried teleporting to Ahrikol.
  • Vynlari (teleport other): I haven't used this, but it has great potential -- both to remove someone in your way, and/or also to "anchor" a location for the other teleportation runes.
  • Xantaras (personal microcosm): Mewling swears by it. To be tested!


End of spoiler information.
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