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[Guide] How to Pink Bean as an Archmage (2022 patch)

Discussion in 'Guides' started by faithie, Mar 18, 2022.

  1. faithie

    faithie King Slime

    Jan 27, 2022
    4:35 AM
    F/P Arch Mage

    This guide serves as
    1) an introductory guide for AM players new to PB - on the fundamental roles of what an AM has to do in PB; this will also include a guide on how to PB in general
    2) an advanced guide for AM players who want to maximise their DPM - including small tips on controlling your character
    3) a discourse on the normative method of playing an AM with PB veterans - whilst thinking of the content of this guide, I have without doubt noticed the varying ways of approaching the boss by different AM players. In this guide, I will give my reasons to the intentions behind my belief in several ideas, as well as several potential objections by other players, and then my reply to those. On that note, while (1) and (2) are generally going to be accepted by all players, perhaps (3) might be points for contention as to what I believe is the right way to PB as an AM.

    The motivation for writing this post is due to the fact that I have been asked many times by various players on how to PB as an AM: new AMs wanting to PB, old players wanting to PB on their AM after its essentiality in the 2022 patch, and even people whom I do not know at all. Therefore, I think I would be better off writing a detailed guide once and for all! However, as of the time of writing this guide, I am too lazy to post pictures and videos (I probably don't have any of my own vods anyway, so I would have had to dig for other vods), so this will be a long wall of text, until I have the mood to post some pictures and videos ;).

    On the point of AMs' essentiality in this patch, it is fundamentally because minibeans now have 603k HP, are immune to holy, and can weapon cancel. This means that the most viable option is for AMs to be present in a pink bean run to clear these minibeans. Therefore, there will be some focus on how to position yourself to clear minibeans in this guide - there is quite a bit more finesse in this job than what the general player might think.

    Lastly, it might be apt to add that my method of approaching the boss goes more towards being a team player in this team-oriented boss. That is, my intention is not to guide AM players to be fully dpm-focused in whiting the bean, but really how to be a non-griefing AM player (which I believe a large majority of the players here have such a prejudice of mage mains :)).


    - Do your pre-quest. There's a guide out there.
    - Remember to get your marble at least 24 hours before your run.
    - Bring 1000 PE, 500 ACP, 5 apple or equivalent in cheese.
    1) For advanced players and/or those with higher HP, you can consider using ales. I normally use between 600-800 PEs/ales and 300-400 ACP depending on the duration of the run as well as whether there is an active bishop in your party or whether it is a bishop mule.
    2) As of the time of writing this guide, the cheese price has gone too far off its usability. Some calculations: a non-skimping AM would be using about 4-5 apples, or 20-25 cheese each run. An apple costs 2.6m while a cheese costs 1.2m; an apple lasts 10mins for +100tma while a cheese lasts 2mins for +220tma. The tradeoff would be ~13m for 50min of +100tma vs ~30m for 50min of +220tma.
    Thus, I would think that an AM player would want to use attack potions of equivalent mesos, which would mean 50 min of +100 tma vs 22min of +220tma. I tend to think that using apples currently would be a better choice, but you should bring cheeses as an alternative in case of a scuffed run, where every dpm matters.
    2.1) On that note, I believe that there is no right or wrong as to whether an AM ought to use damage potions or not, but that it is up to the hosts' discretion. For instances, 1) AMs potentially being better off giving apples to the squad because of their tma being not high enough to justify the apple on him/herself 2) duo mages not needing attack potions because they are strong enough to 4-5 hit minibeans in total 3) a solo AM potentially needing to perma cheese to 4 hit minibeans, and 4) many other scenarios to be considered. Hence, it really is up to the hosts' discretion in my opinion, of how they view the strength of their squad, and as to whether it is justifiable for the AM to apple, or cheese, or none.
    2.1.1) Regardless, I believe that AMs should always only use attack potions during the main body. You really don't need attack potions during statue phase. If you feel rich, give apples to your attackers. They benefit more from that, and as a result the squad benefits more. Rice puffs/guavas/energizers aren't too bad though.
    2.1.2) In fact, it is recommended for the purpose of efficiency that you start using attack potions only when main body has 80% HP, because that is when minibeans start spawning. This efficiency is especially important if you intend to cheese. But of course, if the timer doesn't look good, start popping apple/cheese earlier!
    - Recommended HP: 4.6k HP without HB (tier 3)
    tier 1 Have at least 4k HP with HB. This is so that you can tank a genesis/bigbang/sed when PB faces left.
    tier 2 Have at least 5k HP with HB. This is so that you can bang PB without regard for your own life (at full HP). Well, it is kind of important actually, I will explain below.
    tier 3 Have at least 4.6k HP without HB. This is so that you can tank a minibean hit even if you do not have magic guard on. This will be important in my method of approaching the boss, explained below. Generally, tier 3 is sufficient.
    tier 4 Have at least 10k HP with HB. You can now bang PB even if you are zombified without double-potting. What this entails is that you probably will die less to a zombify, and you save some mesos from not having to double-pot all the time during zombify, i.e. not having to be full hp all the time as well.
    tier 5 Have at least 10k HP without HB. For the same reason as tier 4, but now you are not dependent on HB!
    - Bring both your wands, i.e. wand 5 and 6 for FP, wand 7 and 8 for IL. If you have used your AM purely for leech since the dawn of time, bringing even a 16x tma wand 6/8 will do...
    - As an AM, you DO deal damage on statues/PB if you have enough tma. You are not just a minibeans clearing machine. I have seen way too many AMs equipping their wand 5s and 7s all the way. It hurts me even more knowing that some even apple all the way. Even if your wand 5/7 is perfect, a 16x tma wand 6/8 will easily amp your CL/paralyse to have a noticeably higher damage output.
    - Hence, fundamentally, you will want to equip your wand 6 or 8 all the time, unless certain scenarios come to play. As with many pink bean runs, with all the inherent DCs ongoing, it's hard to say when you might need to switch to your wand 5/7 (if your host calls for it).
    1) The most obvious scenario would be an entry level AM having to deal with minibeans by him/herself because his/her partner DCed. This, I think, justifies the use of wand 5/7 during main body to clear minibeans faster.
    2) Another obvious scenario would be that the AM is a minibeans clearing mule :confused: then yes, of course wear wand 5/7 if you are only using meteor/blizz
    - I also recommend wearing Yellow Snowshoes for halved knockback.
    - Ideally, you will want to aim for ~1550 tma (buffed) while wearing wand 6 on your FP for a 100k min damage on meteor; for IL, it is generally about 8 levels or 40 tma higher for blizzard.
    -- I will add, though, that I don't think people really care that much about your tma if you are just attempting to join a 30 man squad as an entry level AM. But it would be helpful if you can 3h gold monks in 5-6 at least before attempting PB. It would be even better if you can do that with your wand 6/8. This is generally very achievable as a 180 FP with average gear.
    - If you are solo maging, you might want to ask your host for SE. There is a 47.6% chance at 1550tma as an FP, and on cheese, that you will be able to 4 hit minibeans by yourself. That's going to be important for the overall higher dpm as a squad.
    Skills needed in order of importance:
    - Maxed paralyse/CL
    - Maxed meteor/blizz
    - At least 1 in hero's will, ideally maxed
    - Maxed Mana Reflection
    I tend to think that Mana Reflection is actually decent, free dpm in main body, just by standing there and getting hit. Basically, the higher HP you have, the more damage you deal to PB when it 1/1s you. I even rate mana reflect damage to be potentially higher for someone that does not have a decent control of his/her summons. However, mana reflect damage done sadly isn't reflected in @dpm, if you are a @dpm lover.
    - Maxed summons
    I rated summons as lower priority in PB than mana reflect because some squads, and I will say ALL attackers, do not like their screen being blocked by a huge summon, for obvious reasons such as being unable to see PB's DR animation. It makes matters worse if the AM is unable to control his/her summon adequately such that it is always hitting. This would mean that the summon is just a mere detriment to the squad. And as such, sometimes the squad decides to tell mages to keep summons off (or at least during main body). But in the case that you are allowed to, I will be elaborating on summon control later on in the main content.

    My personal opinion is that whilst summons really don't deal that much DPM and is generally a bigger detriment than a reward even with decent control, I would say that every DPM counts; and, to put it into another perspective - summons boost mages' DPM by about 5%. That's actually a decent amount on a larger scale. Also, proper summon usage may be consequential DPM in case of scuffed runs, therefore an AM player intending to join PB ought to at least understand how to control his/her summon adequately.
    - MW20; MW30 would of course help
    - Maxed Big Bang [probably rare usage, not absolutely necessary]
    other skills not needed at all.

    Before Entering

    - Make sure you have 1. pet auto hp/mp set, 2. pet loot off, 3. sufficient charms (if required), 4. paralyse/CL unmacroed (to be explained later)
    - I've seen this mistake many times... when you are entering the sign-up map from broken corridor, please single tap your UP key, or else you may risk losing your marble and therefore your place in the run potentially.
    On Sign-ups: Personally, I am of the opinion that AMs should enter near to last (before bishops). There is a thread out there about the entry order with regards to right bird sed, but TLDR the first 15-20 people will be the sed targets. So, why should AMs be out of sed? Almost all AMs cannot tank right bird touch damage twice, which is going to be the case if you are jump-sedded. And without avoidability as a mage, you are most definitely going to die if you dont have will/holy shield on the jump-sed.
    - Objection: the same goes for a lot of other attackers, e.g. archers. it is probably better to keep these attackers out of sed since they have the same chance of dying as the AM, and they do much more damage than an AM on right bird.
    - reply: this objection definitely holds true to a big extent. however, an AM's job is also important in clearing minibeans during this phase. you would definitely remember 10 minibeans in your face with you dealing 1 damage while your AM is sedded and unable to clear the minibeans. That's going to be detrimental to the squad as a whole, compared to an archer being out of sed.
    - reply 2: There also comes the argument where the AM is definitely unable to tank a single right bird touch damage without HB. This entails that if the AM dies on the right bird body, there will be troubles of having to time the res right as right bird dies. But this argument also only holds if the, say, archer is able to tank a right bird damage, albeit being a good point for contention here.

    Statue Phase
    Phase 1
    You will be hitting the left man statue. So just CL/paralyse with summons on in the corner.

    Advanced tip: If you dont have holy shield/smoke up, when left man attempts to stun you whilst u are in the corner (please find the animations guide somewhere out there), TP right and jump. You will be tanking left man's body so you wont get stunned. Alternatively, you can use the balrog mount trick (also somewhere out there). Basically the idea is to tank the body for the iframe to prevent getting stunned. After that, go back to left corner.
    Note that this method does not work all the time due to paralyse/CL's animation duration. That is, you may be mid paralysing/CLing and you wont be able to jump in time to tank the body. So, recall why I said to unmacro your CL/paralyse? This is because you will be hitting in too quick succession to be able to teleport in between your paralyse/CL sometimes. You are also better off not using macro so that you don't die to damage reflect (will be explained later).

    Phase 2
    There will be a short delay from phase 1 to phase 2. Take this time to jump to the rope to cast your booster, or if you are lazy just booster when phase 1 left man dies. Phase 2 starts with left man statue again, so that will be the same until left man dies.

    Next, you will be crossing right to right man. I normally cast my booster while tping towards right man too. This is also the time when minibeans may start to spawn. Please go find the animation elsewhere in the forum. But basically, the signal for minibeans spawning is when PB starts waving its glowing flags. I personally think it isn't hard to miss. So, after it starts waving, minibeans will start spawning in ~10 seconds. I tend to type to my partner "minibeans in 8", which could help if they didn't catch the animation.
    For this phase, it's okay to just clear minibeans freely, i.e. meteor/blizzing in the middle. I tend to like charging big bang for this.
    Objection: AMs should just be good boys and girls and continue hitting the right man until the minibeans come to harass us. This would be losing dpm on the statue. The minibeans if untouched will just fly up and not harass the squad.
    Reply: Fair enough, but in the case that they DO harass the attackers, which is more often the case than not, why not clear all of them at the same time? Minibeans that fly to the top left will also eventually need to be cleared anyway.
    Objection 2: Also, this is going to be good habit for later on in other phases where you CANNOT meteor/blizz in the middle.
    Reply: The onus is on the AM player to know which stage he/she is in and when to be careful of triggering right bird (stage 4 onward).

    Remember why I said you will ideally want at least 4.6k HP without HB? This is because right man DPs (yes, the bane of mages). There will eventually come a time where you will be DPed while clearing minibeans. The highest damage I have seen from a minibean is about 4.5k. You probably don't want to die in the middle of nowhere while clearing minibeans. So this can be avoided with that HP, since you can't instantly MG mid-meteor/blizz.

    Back to right man. Basically really simple stuff of holding paralyse/CL at the corner with summon on until it dies. Make sure to always be at the corner, especially when you get KB-ed left. This is especially important in phases 4 and 5. Right man will also DP (again, see animation elsewhere). Just in case, there's no need to tp-jump to tank body for right man, no point in doing it really.
    - for advanced players, you can consider staying on the left side of right man for phases 2 and 3 (but not 4 and 5). This prevents minimal movement as a whole, especially in the case where minibeans do spawn - you will be in position almost instantly. But if you intend to stay on the left side, you might, then, want to tp tank body to iframe dodge the staff slam, which KBs to the right.

    Advanced tip: Sometimes it fake DPs, meaning the animation is seen but the DP does not go through. Sometimes it also only DPs some people in your party, but not you. [To my knowledge, entry order affects who gets DPed (which might be another good contention for why AMs should enter slightly later due to potential deaths from minibean duties).] This means that you don't have to rebuff until you really get DPed. Also, unless your bishop does not have MW20 (or you have MW30), just cast MG, and then booster as your priority. Scream at your lousier mage counterparts instead i.e. bishops to MW20. AM dpm matters. Booster animation is extremely long.

    Important: If your squad decides to cross left to start off Phase 3, TURN OFF YOUR SUMMON. This is to prevent your summon from hitting right man, leading to aggro turned on, and it casting its spells, e.g. darkness, while you are still on the left side. If your squad decides to start Phase 3 with hitting right man, then it's okay to leave your summon on. [On that note, both strategies have their merits, so just listen to your host on this.]

    Phase 3
    Phase 3 onwards starkly differentiates an advanced AM with comparison to an afk AM. Don't be lazy.

    Assuming your squad starts on right man first: it's going to be the same method in clearing this statue as with phase 2 and with regards to minibeans. After right man is down, follow the below strategy.

    Now, assume that your squad starts on left side first: ideally, you would want to prioritise damage on left bird. This is because of the existence of damage reflect (DR) on this statue (again, animation elsewhere). What this means is that right bird tends to take a bit more time with a bit of waiting time in between. What this also entails is that bowmasters will be focusing on left man. Hence, to spread the damage across both statues, you will want to prioritise damage on left bird. When magic DR/double DR is up, hit the left man then.
    - Of course, familiarise yourself with DR animation so that you stop attacking when DR'ed.

    So, here's the advanced tip: (summons on, as usual) when you are attacking left bird, stand directly below the left man; vice versa, whenever magic DR/double DR is up, stand directly below the left bird. Whenever left man attempts to stun, jump and tank the respective statue's body. Repeat this until left man is down.

    Still assuming your squad is starting on left side, after left man is down, and depending on hosts' decision, squads may decide to attack right man when left bird is DR'ed. [Of course, if your squad starts on right side, you won't need to do this.] So you may want to start playing in the middle if this is the case: 1) you move minimally to clear minibeans, and 2) you can move to the right more easily when left bird is magic DR'ed. Also take note of DP calls when you are attacking left bird. Depending on the resolution you are using, you might not be able to catch right man's animations at all.

    Advanced tip on summons and left bird hitbox: Left bird hitbox is slightly higher. This means that if you are standing too close to left bird, your CL/paralyse wont be able to reach it. Therefore, you need to stand further. The best gauge I can give without a pictorial guide is the left edge of the left platform to the left bird - that's the range you want to be at if you are CL/paralysing in the middle. That's why there wouldn't have been an issue if you had stood directly under left man.

    But if you are standing too far from the left bird, would your summon not hit the left bird, you may ask. Here, I will give the first guide on how to control your summons' movement.
    Normally, when you first summon your elquinas/ifrit out of its melee range, it will just linger around you, right? So, what you have to do is to:
    Method 1
    1) Summon
    2) TP towards your intended target for your summon to be hitting. i.e. Left bird for this current juncture.
    3) TP back
    when this happens, your summon will move towards the intended target, and once it has locked unto it, it will continue until you either 1. make any sudden movements like tping AWAY from the intended target, or 2. perhaps get KB-ed. If that's the case, repeat the same steps for your summon to lock unto the target again.

    Another method you can use is:
    Method 2
    1) TP towards your intended target
    2) Summon
    3) TP back
    if this is the case, then your summon won't be directly on top of you, but somewhere in between you and your intended target. This is also fine. But I tend to use the first method because your summon should, for the most part, already be on. This means that you can already skip step 1 of the first method. But method 2 might be useful for stage 5, specifically when you attack Ariel. I will elaborate on that later.

    remember to turn off your summon prior to phase 4 again if your squad started with left side in phase 3, again so that you wont proc any hit on the right side at the start of phase 4.

    Phase 4
    !IMPORTANT!: Phase 4 includes the existence of right bird, which is arguably the hardest part to get through during PB statues phase.
    What this entails:
    - You MUST NOT attack right bird at all, because it will start activating SED and that will be really bad until all the other statues are down. Basically, right bird is almost always left for the last to clear.
    - SO, you cannot meteor/blizzard in the middle of the map anymore, because you will hit the right bird.
    - ideally, you don't want to big bang in the middle as well, in case you get knocked to the right upon releasing your big bang, and potentially hitting the right bird by mistake.
    - IL: you need to take better note of minibeans spawning, because CL can bounce to the right bird regardless of how you position yourself on the left side when minibeans spawn. As of this current time of writing, there is still no confirmation as to whether CL's bounces can activate right bird. That is, whether right bird is only triggered when an attack is done within its proximity. Hence, currently my opinion is to stop CLing at least 2 seconds before minibeans spawn. And, anyway, onto my next point,
    - AMs will want to meteor/blizz directly under the left bird to clear minibeans, while on the left side. [There is a bit of leeway as to how far right you can be, that is, up to the first pillar to the direct right of the left bird, but to be safe, don't do it.] Make sure that you are on time for this, or else the minibeans will scatter all across the map. This is why you probably will want to stop CLing at least 2 seconds before minibeans spawn anyway. If you do not stop CLing in time, minibeans will get aggroed to you at different junctures, and come at different times, leading to you having to blizz for a longer period of time. But this is not good for your dpm on statues. Furthermore, minibeans will come to you with weapon cancel already active, therefore, your attackers will not be able to deal chip damage on the minibeans too.

    Now, on to the general guideline on phase 4. Your squad will most certainly be starting on the left side. So, the only difference now is having to deal with minibeans differently. Focus on left bird, jump tanking body, still the same. When left side is down, remember to TURN OFF YOUR SUMMON before crossing, so that your summon does not touch the right bird. That's bad for obvious reasons as stated. Then, focus right man.

    But at this point, clearing minibeans is still the AM's job. Therefore, what I do is to not use my summon at all when doing right side in phases 4 and 5, because I will want to cross to the left side to clear minibeans. But, very IMPORTANTLY, clearing minibeans is different now because you cannot just unthinkingly meteor/blizz for fear of hitting right bird. So, what I do is, 2 seconds before the minibeans spawn at least, I will already be on the left side, directly under the left bird statue, ready to meteor/blizz the minibeans. What this does is that the minibeans will all be aggroed onto you, and you can shift your character a bit more to the left to clear them slowly. This is, in my opinion, better for the squad because minibeans wont harass your attackers. See Objections in phase 2 for the rationale.

    But what if you did not catch the minibeans spawn animation, or if you are not in time? Don't worry, it's not the end of the run. You can still meteor/blizz on the right side to clear these minibeans, but you must hug the rightmost corner to meteor/blizz. This means that you MUST always go back to the rightmost corner when you are KB-ed to the left a little bit [this is in line with all other attackers to reposition upon KB].

    Also, it might be apt to add here that, at this current time of writing, the hitbox for right man is extremely high. What this means is that you can CL as an IL on the right man without fear of triggering right bird even when minibeans are up.

    Accidents do happen though. You may accidentally meteor/blizz the right bird, perhaps because 1) you meteored/blizzed right as you were KB-ed to the left, and that hit the right bird, 2) you meteored/blizzed too close to the middle while trying to clear minibeans on the left side. In such a case:
    1) !IMPORTANT! Run+TP as fast as you can to the leftmost corner and afk
    2) Wait until the right bird is de-aggroed. To my knowledge, this happens rather quickly actually
    3) Go back to whatever you are doing, probably go back to the rightmost corner and continue CLing/paralysing the right man.

    Okay, now assume right man is down. I will not elaborate here on the general strategy to how to deal with the right bird, with all the holy shield timings/swaps and TLs and whatnot, you probably have no role in that anyway. What you have a role in, however, is once again clearing the minibeans.
    1) If you are out of the first 20 people to get sedded, it's fine to go to the middle to clear minibeans.
    2) But if you are not, please make sure you are on holy shield before you go to the middle. If SED still hasn't happened and you are not on holy shield, then just meteor/blizz the minibeans when they come. (I shall add here that this is also another reason why I think AMs should enter last few.)
    - The reason why you want to be on the left side of the right bird to clear minibeans is, again, because you want to get the aggro of minibeans on you, instead of them flying to the right and harassing your attackers. That would be a lot of dpm lost, and dpm matters a lot when killing right bird.

    There may be instances when you do not down the right bird in time after both holy shields are down. In that case, do refer to this right bird massacre prevention guide:
    1) In case both shields are down before right bird is down, you might enter mass sed.
    2) Assuming you are staying on the right side of the right bird, ONLY will when you are SED JUMP LEFT. That is, you are safe if it is sed jump right, sed walk left, sed walk right.
    2.1) so, assuming sed jump left has happened. it will be more likely that the next killer sed will be sed jump right. therefore, please continue staying right of right bird.
    2.1.1) the same theory works for the vice versa scenario. So, if sed jump right has happened, you should cross to the left of the right bird, because the next likely killer sed will be sed jump left.
    Then, assume you made a mistake and died on right bird's body. You likely won't be able to get ress-ed until the right bird is down, because ressing here would mean that you have to eat touch damage from the right bird. Realistically, I don't think any AM in ML can survive that without MG. The res timing is thus crucial for this. You MUST tell your bishop to res you THE MOMENT RIGHT BIRD DIES. There is a small buffer of about 2 seconds for the statues to get reset and be active in terms of being physically present.

    Prior to right bird dying, if you have your summons on, again, please turn it off before crossing back to left. (I normally don't have my summon on for phase 4 right bird, because it's pretty hectic)

    Phase 5
    In phase 5, there will be the introduction of Ariel. What this entails that if you aren't on holy shield, and if you do not dodge the stuns, you will likely be perma stunned since mages have 0 avoidability. This is the reason why squads decide to down left man first, to remove one of the stunners out of two.
    So, while left man is up, what I like to do is stand under the right edge of the platform. This allows me to do two methods of dodging stuns:
    1) Left man stuns: You can jump right, into the left bird, to tank touch damage. Then, go back to the same position and continue hitting left man.
    2) Ariel stun (i.e. the falling boulders): Duck under the platform if you see one coming. That way, you can dodge the rock and won't get stunned.
    These take a lot of practice to do perfectly, and again, it is likely that you may still fail, if left man really does decide to cast stun while you are mid-paralyse/CL (as stated in Phase 1).

    Okay, now assume left man is down. You now have two options to choose from: 1) Hit left bird, or 2) Hit Ariel. My opinion is that you should always be hitting left bird if possible, i.e. if left bird is not DRed, because:
    1) You can continue dodging the rocks by standing under the left edge of the platform. You can either duck, or tp to the left. If you were on Ariel, these rocks can still hit you at the top platform.
    1.1) Being stunned is dangerous during this phase, because Ariel has DP as well. If you are DPed while stunned, you can only pray you dont get hit by Ariel's skills. They do deal a lot of damage.
    2) For ILs, Ariel is strong to lightning. This means half your potential dpm output on these statues.
    3) Remember that you are still on minibeans duty. Being on the bottom means that you can be in position to clear these minibeans faster. i.e., less time spent on moving about.
    With regards to summon positioning, you can refer back to the miniguide (in Phase 3).

    But of course, left bird will magic DR/double DR (unless it is bugged). If that's the case, and where Ariel isnt on magic cancel, you will want to go up to hit Ariel. It is pretty much straightforward, just watch out for the DP call and MG immediately (do familiarise yourself with Ariel DP animation).
    Advanced tip: You can actually see the rocks forming prior to them dropping. If it's the case that you are standing directly on top of one, you can TP either front or back to dodge the rocks. If you are going to get hit regardless of whether you TP front or back because of multiple rocks formed, then... too bad i guess!
    With regards to summon positioning in relation to Ariel, I will prefer Method 2 instead of Method 1:
    Just reiterating Methods 1 and 2 here:
    Method 1
    1) Summon
    2) Judge your distance between you and the right edge of the platform. Walk until you are a teleport's distance away from the right edge.
    3) Teleport towards Ariel
    4) Teleport back

    Method 2
    1) Go to the right edge of the platform.
    2) Summon
    3) TP back

    As mentioned, for Ariel, I prefer using Method 2 instead of Method 1. This is because Ariel's attacks tend to KB left. What this means is that your summon will be slightly shifted and thus out of range, unless you TP right immediately upon KB and while the summon is mid-whacking Ariel. If it is the case that your summon is out of range, you will have to redo Method 1, steps 2-4 again. But this wastes a lot of time, as you might have to physically walk about.
    On the other hand, if you use method 2, even if you get KB-ed left, your summon won't be shifted out of its attack range, as it will be stuck at a position that is slightly closer to Ariel than if you were to use Method 1. Just a bit of re-positioning and you will be fine.

    At this point, I will mention that I have seen at least two IL players who actively bigbang to damage Ariel while left bird is DR'ed. How they do this is that they charge bigbang and jump-release it while in the middle, next to PB. This is because, as aforementioned, Ariel is strong to lightning. I can see its merits, but my opinion is that it's a big risk that gains little, or even negative, reward:
    Objection at hand: ILs should BB Ariel because it does more dpm. You also are at the bottom and can therefore be in position to clear minibeans faster. I mean, you can even use big bang to get aggro on minibeans instantaneously!
    Reply 1: I don't actually think you are dealing more DPM on Ariel by using BB. Assuming some x tma where you do an average of 80k per BB and 53-55k per CL, it will be converted to 26.5-27.5k per CL vs 80k per BB. in one BB cast, you can easily cast 3 CLs under freefire. And, that's not counting summons damage on Ariel, whereby the risk is far to great to have summons on while in the middle of the map (to be mindful of not proccing a hit on right bird). What this means is that you can easily outdamage using CL instead of BB.
    Reply 2: Even if I'm wrong in reply 1 (as this is just a theoretical standpoint without using empirical data), BBing in the middle is far too risky of an idea for the amount of, perhaps, extra damage it contributes to the squad. I can think of many instances where it can go wrong, but for one, attempting to jump-release big bang only to get knocked to the right by minibeans, then releasing BB unto right bird. I just don't think it is worth it.

    Objection 2: Okay, then I'll just BB while on the top platform on Ariel. In that case, [Reply 2] is void, and [Reply 1] is undermined because now my summon is hitting Ariel too.
    Reply: It is not impossible for you to get KB-ed to the right, perhaps by minibeans. Standing on the edge of the platform to BB would mean being knocked off. This is potentially even more dangerous if you have summons on, which will very likely hit right bird whilst you are falling off. It always makes me sweat seeing bishops big bang, but they normally don't have summons on so that's fine.

    So, my argument here is that ultimately 1) CL + summon > BB, and 2) BB + summon isn't viable.

    Okay, now assume that left bird and left man are both down. Remember once again to turn off your summon before crossing right. From here on, it is mostly going to be the same thing as a large part of Phase 4's right side strategy. The only difference is that I would start turning on my summon the moment right man is down to get a bit more damage on right bird.

    Prior to right bird going down, if you do not have at least 5k hp with HB, do go to the left side as PB is spawning. Alternatively, you can jump up the right platforms to the highest platform, then jump down after your squad has shifted PB to the position of their liking. Otherwise, just make sure you are not directly on top of the bean either way, because that could mean your summon taking aggro on PB, which will be annoying for the Buccs to move the bean at the start.

    PB [Main Body Phase]
    PB has several moves (please refer elsewhere for animations guide):
    - 1/1 + seal: this KBs you towards PB. this is also what PB will do most of the time.
    - whistle blow: summons minibeans
    - big bang (confuse): casts towards whichever direction it is facing
    - musical notes dropping (sed): only when facing left
    - genesis (stuns): only when facing left
    - zombify: remember to double pot
    - damage reflect: stop hitting

    In the main body, an AM only has two jobs (better than attackers who only have 1!):
    1) paralyse/CL PB
    2) clear minibeans
    For the most part, your job is pretty simple, assuming that all else goes well.
    - Generally, you will want to be attacking from the left, unless you want to get big banged on the right.
    -- Honestly, it's not a bad idea to just get knocked to the rightmost corner and afk paralyse/CL all the way, but you will have to cross every time it DRs to get buffs (SE, HB). Plus, if PB faces left and casts genesis or sed, you likely won't get holy shielded. Lastly, whenever PB casts big bang and KBs you, you won't be able to attack for like roughly 1.5 seconds from the KB. Hence, I prefer playing on the left.
    - Remember to use Mana Reflect, and your attack potions accordingly.
    - Remember to rebuff during DR, and don't go too far off so that you can 1) be in position immediately when minibeans spawn to meteor/blizz, and 2) be in position to start attacking immediately after DR

    Here, I will give a couple of scenarios during Main Body phase.

    Scenario 1: PB is a good boy
    That is, PB is facing right, only casting 1/1+seals. All you have to do is to paralyse/CL.

    Advanced tip 1: Generally, you will only need to TP left after two 1/1 + seals to reposition.
    Therefore, during the second 1/1 + seal...
    Advanced tip 2: You will want to self-ACP immediately (whether you have an active bishop or not) so that you can TP while getting KB-ed in midair. This saves a little bit of time to reposition as compared to landing, then TPing left. Generally, I also just press my ACP regardless of whether I have an active bishop in my party or not.
    Advanced tip 3: This is in line with tip 2 on how you can "TP while getting KB-ed in midair". To further clarify this statement, how this works is some form of buffering to reduce the KB. If it helps, it is a similar idea to hurricane buffering. It's not easy to do as an AM for sure, but a general guideline could be tapping your arrow key somewhere between your paralyse/CL cast and getting hit.

    Scenario 1.1: PB is a good boy and you are allowed to use your Summon
    Again, this is a short part on summon control. Here, I will introduce you to Method 3 of summon controlling, which after some thought probably only works in PB main body itself out of every other boss:
    Method 3
    1) Summon and paralyse/CL accordingly
    2) Wait until PB's 1/1+seals knocks you all the way such that you are directly on the left of PB. Your summon is now in its melee attacking range.
    3) TP back. Your summon will now be hitting PB.
    [4) Continue as in Scenario 1]

    This method can also be used if you are too lazy to do methods 1 and 2. Method 3 is doable in main body because PB's 1/1+seal knocks you towards its direction.
    The potential drawback of using method 2, I must add though, is that your summon will be positioned slightly closer to PB than methods 1 and 3. [The reason behind it is in line with why method 2 is good for Ariel in Phase 5.] That is, if PB isn't kept at a stagnant position i.e. gets pushed left a bit, your summon may block vision of PB. If that's the case, do reposition accordingly such that it doesn't block the entire bean. I would, in this case, reset the summon positioning and do method 1 (3 works fine as well). This can be done by TPing to the left, out of paralyse/CL range, then TPing back once into paralyse/CL range.

    Scenario 2: PB summons minibeans
    meteor/blizz until they all die.

    Scenario 2.1: PB summons minibeans while in DR
    meteor/blizz until they all die.
    Advanced tip: you will likely take aggro on PB whilst meteoring/blizzing to clear minibeans if this exact scenario is the case. If as such, PB might face left. We do not want that to happen as it can cast genesis/sed. Therefore, if PB faces left during this scenario, immediately cross right until the buccs have verified that they have aggro on them. Remember I said it is important that you can tank PB? This is why.

    (What I tend to do when PB summons minibeans during DR is that I just cross right of PB immediately to cast my meteor/blizz. That way, it almost guarantees that PB will not face left, unless due to other reasons out of your control, e.g. an attacker lingering about on PB's direct left.)

    Alternative microplay: upon minibeans summoning, you can charge and release big bang, then tp to the left while luring these minibeans. After you are not in range of meteoring/blizzing PB, meteor/blizz until all the minibeans die. This almost always ensures that you won't take aggro on PB (unless the initial big bang does take aggro, then that would be unfortunate). This is especially appropriate for single AM squads.
    - however, this might also be detrimental if minibeans are summoned only towards to the end of DR. If this is the case, then you would want to clear the minibeans as fast as possible so that attackers can continue hitting PB immediately. Therefore, if you want to use this alternative method, use it sparingly whilst taking note of DR timers. (I might or might not have mentioned it, but DR in main body lasts ~22 seconds.)

    Scenario 3: PB faces left
    Now, you need to be careful. Big bang (confuse) doesn't especially cause much of an issue for an AM. The main concerns are genesis/sed, where you will want, or rather need, to dodge them. Don't ever trust your bishops!

    There are two main methods of dodging these skills:
    1) Be within a teleport's range away from the right edge of the middle platform. The moment you see a genesis or sed coming down on you, TP to under the middle platform and duck. Note that this method does not guarantee a 100% dodge on genesis, as it sometimes can go through the platform for whatever reason. Therefore...
    2) Be within a teleport's range away from PB. The moment you see a genesis or sed coming down on you, TP to tank PB's touch damage. This is indeed a 100% dodge using iframe. Remember I said it is important that you can tank PB? This is why.

    Method 3 which I don't quite recommend is literally TPing front or back to dodge genesis/sed. This isn't a guaranteed dodge at all, because there will be more than one genesis line/musical note dropping. You would be better off having sure methods of dodging than depending on RNG.
    - if you do indeed make a mistake and get sedded, immediately will. the 1/1 always comes...
    - if you get stunned, good luck!!

    Scenario 3.1: PB faces left during/after DR
    In this case, immediately ask yourself two questions:
    1) Was I lingering about very near to PB while it is under DR?
    2) Was I the first person to attack (paralyse/CL) PB right after it got off DR? While the buccs weren't actively hitting (because they got BBed to the corner)?

    These two situations will not 100% lead to you taking aggro on PB, but may potentially lead to you taking aggro - the first being proximity aggro, the second just being normal aggro taken due to damage done. At this point, I'm not going to give a full guide on how aggro fundamentally works, because that deserves an entire guide by itself. But my point being, if you suspect that you have the aggro on PB, immediately cross right.

    And that's it! If you have managed to survive after reading through my tremendously long wall of text, you deserve to be good at the game!

    Feedbacks are of course appreciated in terms of
    1) How to beautify/structure my guide. NO, I won't be posting pictures/videos for now :p
    2) Anything I might have missed out, or any other tips that should be added to the guide
    3) Discussion on what ought to be the right way to play an AM in PB

    I would like to also thank OradiousOradious, Nightz777Nightz777 & Subjugate (tommy) for their inputs!
    • Great Work x 24
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    • Agree x 1
    • Informative x 1
    • Useful x 1
  2. lemonpasta

    lemonpasta Horny Mushroom

    May 21, 2020
    4:35 AM
    Great guide Faith! But what's even better is an illustrative ppt guide Onionthehehe pls senpai
    • Useful Useful x 1
    • Creative Creative x 1
  3. Estrahl

    Estrahl Mr. Anchor

    Feb 1, 2021
    1:35 PM
    Kiyomasa, kage, miko, zoku, etc
    Dragon Knight, Cleric, Bowman, Bandit
    It's a great guide, I'm not really a mage in this game but it was good info nonetheless.

    I think what I'd do to beautify it is spoiler tag every section, especially the preface and each phase. It's enough text wall to already struggle finding your place if you ever need to come back for reference, being able to expand and collapse a single phase will help others organize the guide and get just the information they're looking for. SlimeGrin
    • Agree Agree x 1
  4. Nightz

    Nightz Supervisor Staff Member Supervisor Game Moderator

    Oct 22, 2020
    10:35 PM
    I/L Arch Mage
    Funk & Pasta
    • Like Like x 8
  5. akashsky

    akashsky Horntail

    Jun 10, 2017
    United States
    1:35 PM
    • Agree Agree x 7
  6. Syrinz

    Syrinz Game Moderator Staff Member Game Moderator

    Sep 22, 2020
    4:35 AM
  7. OP

    faithie King Slime

    Jan 27, 2022
    4:35 AM
    F/P Arch Mage
    update: edited some stuff here and there, but main additions in Phase 2 and Main Body Scenario 2.1
    • Like Like x 1

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