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Old 07-28-2009, 05:14 PM
damedley damedley is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 5
Default Mind Skills are Pretty Good

Thanks to the OP for this extensive write-up. I disagree with a lot of his comments on the Mind tree, though. I think it is at least as useful as the Might tree.

Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
1: 2/0/0 swordsman skill smashing blow
2: 3/1/0 bowman: flaming arrow
3: 4/2/0 knights: circle attack
Only has value if your army is composed primarily of humans.
Swordsmen and bowmen you will use only in the early game; knights are very slow. IMO there are better options. Get 1 level only to meet prerequisites.
I may disagree. The Flaming Arrow is a very nice bonus to Bowmen, especially against plants.
Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
Combat readiness: troops receive less physical attack damage in the first round
1: 2/2/0 -10%
2: 3/2/0 -15%
3: 4/2/0 -20%
Diminishing returns and the first round only impact of this restrict its use. Furthermore, only limited physical damage is dished out in the first round because troops are too far away except for missile attacks or very fast units. Get this only at level 1 as a prerequisite and save higher levels for later if you need them at all.
Diminishing returns, yes. Still, this skill is amazing! It is best if your force uses mostly melee units, but also helpful vs archers. If you have ranged units and your enemy is melee then it is useless.
Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
Master of Spirits: increases experience of spirit of rage in combat
1: 4/1/0 +10%
2: 5/1/0 +20%
3: 6/1/0 +30%
Useful once you actually get the spirits of rage.
I find this to be a total waste. It's pretty easy to level up SoR. I can't understand how you can give this a more positive review than Learning.
Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
Frenzy – increases attack bonus for hero’s troops
1: 4/1/0 +2 attack
2: 6/2/0 +4 attack
3: 8/3/0 +6 attack
A great skill, everyone should get this ASAP as attack makes a big difference. These are big bonuses to an attribute that is hard to raise by other means
As others have noted, this only kicks in after killing an enemy stack. I still find it useful.
Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
Mind skills are by far the worst on the skill tree. There are fewer skills; many go only to level 2 instead of 3, and skills are less useful.
I disagree wholeheartedly! Part of the problem may be the OP never played a Paladin to the end and therefore never had an abundance of Mind runes. (Pure speculation.) Many of the Mind skills work well together, at a few of the skills at the top are only useful if you get them early in the game.
Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
Glory: increased leadership
1: 2/5/0 +100
2: 3/6/0 +250
3: 4/7/0 +500
A nice boost, but expensive. Still one of the better skills in the Mind skill tree.
This skill is only useful if you take it early. If it allows you to pass on leadership when advancing through the low levels it's worth the runes.
Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
Reserve: allows the hero to keep a reserve troop which does not participate in combat
1: 3/3/0 1 reserve troop
2: 3/3/0 2 reserve troops
A nice convenience that can save some running around, but it does not offer any advantages in power or combat that can help you perform better. Save the points unless you have runes to burn.
I very much disagree again. So cheap and so useful. Recruit a full stack, put them in reserve, then recruit another full stack. Instant reinforcements!
Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
1: 1/5/1 +10% combat experience
2: 1/6/1 +15% combat experience
3: 2/7/2 +20% combat experience
Level 1 is useful; 2 and 3 reach diminishing returns. This skill helps you get levels faster, but levels are still capped at 30 and so this won’t necessarily change the end-game dynamics. Stick with level 1 unless you have lots of useless might runes and nothing else to do with them.
This is another skill that is most useful early. Even with the diminishing returns the upper levels are worthwhile. Level cap is 31 not 30.
Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
Entice away enemy troops if you have enough leadership and the same troops in your army
1: 1/6/0 entice 5%\
2: 2/7/0 entice 10%
3: 3/8/0 entice 15%
You are rarely going to have spare leadership, and enemies will rarely have the same troop types. And it’s expensive for only a small boost. Skip it.
When I read the OP I was convinced that he was probably correct on this score. However, this skill is wonderful!

First of all, the OP doesn't seem to change his armies up much. That's fine, but it heavily colors his opinion of skills like this and Dark Commander and Training. But I like to use the armies that I can recruit locally.

Second, 5% or even 15% doesn't sound like much, but think of how many armies you kill that are roughly equal in number to your own! This turns out to be way, way, way better than Necromancy to do basically the same thing - keep your stacks refreshed.

Works great with the cheap and useful Reserve skill. It helps you pick up hard to find units like Evil Beholders, though you have to have some to start. Put your half-stack of Beholders in reserve and bring them out before fighting an enemy with Beholders in it. Obviously, you'd only do this in regions where you anticipate coming across Beholders.

I wonder if it decreases your XP, though. If so I might have to change my opinion.
Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
Sell items and scrolls for higher price
1: 0/1/0 items 50%, scrolls 30%
2: 0/2/0 items 75%, scrolls 40%
3: 0/3/0 items 100%, scrolls 50%
Given the great abundance of cash if you play well and the relative scarcity of items and scrolls, this skill has little use. Its only upside is that the rune cost is low.
Depending on what difficulty you are playing and your level of savefile abuse, you might be right. However, since it's so cheap I maxed it out. The 100% items clause has the benefit of allowing you to buy everything a vendor sells. This can also save you a lot of money when you get divorced since your wife takes 1/5th of your money on hand, not your net worth. But if you've got more money than you know what to do with, what's the difference? Nevertheless, you don't need to max it out right away... You can buy up everything knowing that for a few runes you can sell it all at max should you need to.
Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
Order Mage
1: 0/2/2 allows hero to learn order spells from scrolls
2: 0/4/4 allows spell upgrade to level 2
3: 0/8/8 allows spell upgrade to level 3
You need at least one point of this to qualify for healer and archmage skills.
One level is good at the beginning. The later spells, like resurrection, aren’t available in the early game.
This is the very first skill a Paladin needs to target since he starts with the Resurrection scroll. Level 1 only allows rez of level 1-2 units. If you are disciplined and can wait to use higher level units then you can hold off on the higher levels. Still, it seems advisable to get level 2 here so you can rez level 3 troops (inquisitors).
Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
Increases effectiveness of divine spells (healing, resurrection, bless, god armor, light of life)
1: 0/1/1 +15%
2: 0/2/2 +20%
3: 0/3/3 +25%
One level is useful and needed for archmage and the skill is fairly cheap. However the increase from level 1 to level 3 is small; I recommend holding off on higher levels until endgame unless you are playing as a warrior or paladin and use magic mainly for healing.
This is a nice bonus for Rez and Mass Bless (+1 duration per level). First level is a no brainer at 2 runes.
Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
Allows hero to restore mana during combat
1: 0/3/8 +2 mana/combat turn
2: 0/3/9 +4 mana/turn
3: 0/3/10 +6 mana/turn
Very useful, but also quite expensive. Get one level (needed for chaos magic) at start and upgrade later as you can. You won’t need to invest as much in mana if your mana regenerates at a high rate during combat.
A lot of people abuse Magic Spring instead of leveling this up.
Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
1: 0/2/4 Resurrects 15-20% of slain soldiers after a battle, necro call + 10%
2: 0/3/5 raises 20-30% of soldiers, necro call +20%
3: 0/4/6 raises 30-40% of slain soliders, necro call +30%
Sucks. Very disappointing. My first game I played as a Mage and went straight for this skill. I thought it would be more like HOMM.
Originally Posted by Falconhurst View Post
Leadership (varying amounts): leadership is important, but it scales with level. At level 20 you will get a much bigger leadership increase than level 2, whereas other attribute increases offered will stay at +1 at low and high levels alike. Therefore I recommend adding attributes at low levels (Attack and Defense particularly), and picking up more leadership at higher levels. This makes the early game somewhat harder, but the late game easier. Some players like leadership the most; higher leadership at the beginning does make the game easier to start but does not increase the abilities of your troops in any way. As late game leadership can reach 20,000+, I think the attack/defense skills offer more long-term value.
I agree, and that's why Glory can be useful early on.

Thanks again to the OP for giving us something to debate over!
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