Just gonna get this out of the way first since there's been a little confusion here and there with people impersonating me etc: My only IGN/character in DFOG is Azatek (Anyone who claims otherwise you should probably avoid for your own sake). In the old game I played a few characters, one of which was Azala. This thread is basically a reincarnation of what my age old "Best Summoner Builds" thread became: 85cap Summoner Skill Builds, a general 1-84 SP Allocation Guide, and a list of various information about Summoner. Nobody should feel obligated to use any of the builds, but if you want to play similar to me/how I would then you should probably follow them. __________________________ I'll put the general Summoner factoids here (important): Spoiler: Various Information about Summoner Summoner's Intelligence, Magic Attack, Base Attack, Magic Crit, and Elemental Damage can all affect the damage of summons. Elemental Damage on the Summoner affects summons through a "snapshot" method, which means that if you have it at the time of summoning it will stay in effect even after you lower the stat back to normal (and if you swap to it once the summon is already out, it won't boost that summon's stats at all). This also means that if you are receiving an elemental damage boost from an aura (such as Ordinary Spirit: Selist's fire damage aura) then the summon will be boosted because the aura was on you at the time of summoning, and then boosted again because said summon is in the aura itself (so it is good to summon ordinary spirits first and then other summons that benefit from their elemental damage auras after). INT/Matk/Batk/Mcrit are calculated actively for all summons now. This means if you change these values after summoning a summon, it will change said summon's damage. Overall stat boosts that modify the values in your status window affect your summons as well (Usually these are labeled as an "Attack Strength +%" value). Pet skills such as Endairon's and Marbas's Magic Attack Strength boosts affect summons as well. Summoner's weapon element, any status effect or "self-status" procs, and any "attack damage" or "additional damage" procs (effects that create a 2nd hit/damage number, such as a growth/phoenix weapon) only respond to damage based directly on the Summoner's own stats (i.e Mark the Target ticks and procs, Lasher, Moonshade, etc, and sacrifice-based attacks) unless specifically stated otherwise. I do not believe that the Summoner's Hit Rate affects summons, but I don't know for a certainty. You can often tell if/which elemental damage a summon does by the visual effect that happens when that summon's attack makes contact with a target. All T1, High Spirits, and Ordinary Spirits do damage of their respective element. Big Sis Louise does ice damage on certain skills (Ice Needles, Ice Pillar) and fire on others (Fireball, Meteor). Freet does fire damage. Black Knight Sandor does shadow damage (Enraged Sandor only does neutral damage). Certain summon attacks cause status effects or have unique properties. Wisp/Alicia's attacks can stun the target. Stalker/Sheyd's attacks can curse the target. Naias/Ratrina's attacks can freeze the target. Ador/Selist's attacks can easily hit the same enemy twice in one swing (a double attack basically). Aquarius's attacks can freeze the target. Dead Murker's attacks can blind the target. Louise's ice attacks can freeze the target. Hodor's "Power Smash" attack (the club swing with superarmor) is 100% chance to stun a target of the same level or lower (so it is a very high chance still even if the target is higher level). Echeverria's basic melee attack takes on the element that the target has the lowest resistance to (according to the ingame description - haven't confirmed). TP skills increase a summon's raw level, not their skill's level. This means their cooldowns and attack values do not increase, but they will do more damage, have higher HP, and higher chances of status effect proc/duration due to the level difference between them and their targets. TP skills that "Increase a summon's level per skill level." are referring to the TP skill's level, not the original skill's level. High Spirit TP skills only give an additional summon on the first level of the TP skill. Summoned Creature Aura is summon attack and defense up, not summon attack and summon critical hit rate up. The "Elemental Resistance Aura" value on Ordinary Spirit skill descriptions is actually Elemental Damage. Zealous Creature functions as an aura from the Summoner when activated, so even though it only drains HP from summons that are out when you first cast it, it will boost all summons that are out/brought out during it's active period. Mark the Target does damage to a target every second ("tick" damage) as well as damage every time a summon hits the target ("proc" damage). Both the tick and proc damage are based on the Summoner's stats and are completely independent of the attacking summon's properties/level/etc. This means that if a LV85 Summoner uses a LV60 summon and it hits a marked target, the mark proc damage will be the same amount it would've been had said summon been LV130 instead: It is considered a direct attack from the Summoner. For the Elemental Resistance down effect of Spirit Sacrifice, the target does not need to be hit by the T1's explosion to receive the resistance debuff; They only need to be somewhere inside of the circle. At least one T1 of the respective debuff element needs to be sacrificed for the debuff to be applied to enemies. The debuff stacks twice, but simply sac'ing 2 or more of the same spirit will stack it fully. The debuff is factored into the initial sacrifice damage dealt as well. One level in a Sacrifice Passive now allows you to summon two T1 (of that element) during a single cast naturally/without any elemental sources nearby. Certain Assists such a Gale Force can be used to consistently multi-summon T1s (Ador in this example) and thus can be very helpful to a summoner. __________________________ As for builds: Summoner builds will constantly expand as you level. You will probably be changing a large part of the layout of your build all the way up until around 75+, so for the sake of people who are still leveling I'll give my thoughts on general build direction pre-85 as well. Keep in mind that this 1-84 section is a rather "solid" guideline, but a guideline nonetheless. You may have to do minor tweaks as needed while leveling. Spoiler: SP Allocation Guideline for Summoner 1-84 LV1-15 Max Magic Missile and spam it/use it to clear. Max Hodor Max Manashield Max Ancient Library Get 1 in Phase shift from now on. LV16-29 Max MM and use it to help clear. Max Hodor Max AL Get all T1 spirits Level Spirit Sacrifice and sacrifice passives for summoning/use it to 1-shot bosses or etc. Get 1 in Mark the Target. Get Freet to 5. Max Sandor from now on. Leave Manashield at 1 from now on. LV30-39 Max MM and use it to help clear. Max Hodor Max Louise from now on. Max Echeverria from now on. Max AL Level lasher Get 1 or 5 in all High Spirits Level Spirit Sacrifice and sacrifice passives for summoning/use it to 1-shot bosses or etc. Get 1 in Mark the Target. Get Freet to 5 or 10 40-49 Level MM (it starts to become less necessary/unnecessary) Get 1 in Summoner's Train and Mass Teleport. Max Hodor Max AL Max Lasher from now on. Get 5 or 10 in 2-4 High Spirits Max one T1 and leave the rest at prereq from now on. Level Spirit Sacrifice and sacrifice passives for summoning/use it to 1-shot bosses or etc. Get 1 in Mark the Target. Get Freet to 10. Get 1 in Zealous Creature (try to build a habit of using it all the time/watching cd). Max Spirit Bond from now on. LV50-59 Leave MM at 1 from now on. Max Hodor Max AL Max Mark the Target from now on. Max the normal Magic Crit passive from now on. Max 2-3 High Spirits from now on. Max Spirit Sacrifice and 0-2 sacrifice passives (Get at least lvl1 in the passives of the T1s you still use - Maxing the passive is optional) from now on. Max the TP skill of every High Spirit you use from now on. Max Lasher's TP Passive from now on. Level AL's TP passive. LV60-69 Leave Hodor at 1 from now on. Leave AL at 0 (optional). Leave Freet at 0 or Keep at 10+ (optional). Leave Summoner's Train and Mass Teleport at 0 from now (unless you find you need it for a specific dungeon). Max Elemental Burn from now on. Max Zealous Creature from now on. Max Ordinary Spirit: Selist from now on, and get 1, 2, or max in another Ordinary Spirit from now on. Level/Max Elemental Burn's TP Passive from now on. LV80+ Max Louise TP Passive. Spoiler: 85cap Summoner Builds (Also ignore the extra levels caused by my gear etc and just look at the large white numbers under the skill icons) Build 1 - Standard Summoner: Top Bottom TP Freet as an SP dump (mediocre on his own but good synergy with a fire/fire res down build). Max Ador Sacrifice is also a viable alternative. 2 Levels in Ratrina because 1->2 increases the Water Damage Aura amount. It doesn't increase again until LV4. Use Ador and Naias sac to debuff whole rooms and bosses, giving somewhere around a 15-25% damage increase to all fire/ice attacks (and mark if you have an inflict ele dmg weapon). Use Sac right before Ador skill comes off CD, so you can immediately summon more after the sac and they'll start up their DPS again while also taking advantage of the -46 fire resistance. Louise TP passive at LV5 is 100% chance to activate (this is why I wouldn't bother with it until 80+). Elemental Burn is easy to keep up if you do something like MM on A, Pluto on Z, Frosty on space. Doing it when you first enter a room and maybe again when theres just a straggler left is usually good enough. If you're partying with a Necro friend or a friend that stacks a certain element, you can for example move all of the Ice Spirit Tree (Ratrina, Aquarius, Naias, Naias Sacrifice, and Aquarius TP Passive) into the Shadow Spirit Tree equivalent. If you're doing speed runs of a dungeon, you may get better results by swapping the Ice Spirit Tree with the Light Spirit Tree (Ordinary Spirit: Alicia gives alot of mspd). Build 2 - Sacrifice Main (Experimental Build): Top Bottom TP Naias as a SP dump (more regular attack damage and survivability). Ancient Memory is another viable alternative. Ancient Library Upgrade as a TP dump. 2 Levels in Sheyd because 1->2 increases the Shadow Damage Aura amount. It doesn't increase again until LV4. Zealous should make it easier for T1s to get in a favorable position for sacing. Try to make sure to cast Zealous Creature while Magic Festival is active, so the cooldown is shorter than the duration (100% uptime on it). Magic Festival will lower Spirit Sacrifice's CD and T1 spirits' CDs by alot, so you'll want to be ready to capitalize those time periods. It should also be possible to multi-summon Naias off of Naias's own sacrifice when MF is active. Most Elemental Burn lights will probably stay up naturally, but it still helpful to consider doing something like MM on A, Pluto on Z, Frosty on space. Doing it when you first enter a room and maybe again when theres just a straggler left is usually good enough. Spoiler: Skill Hotkeys and Inputs Setup When I still had a normal build (changed my own abit to make use of an epic) I basically had these hotkeys/skills on hotkey; So I have MM on A still as part of a EB rotation; MM on A, Pluto on Z, Frosty on Space. I also have Lantern Bomb on Down + Z but rarely use it (Ador will cover fire if it's your main T1). I leave Summoner's Train, Echeverria, Manashield, and Dismiss on their default manual inputs because I'm used to those. Generally speaking, I usually assign extra summons (usually contracts; I try to keep spirits on hotkey since they have shorter durations) to combinations of: Up + Z Up Up + Z Down + Z Down Down + Z I have EB on Up + Space, AL on Up Up + Space, Zealous on Right + Space, and Kasijas on Down + Space (it may not be a bad idea to move Echeverria to one of the Z combinations before you get used to his input since every once in awhile I may accidentally do Kasijas when trying to do his default manual input). Spoiler: Tower of Death For the smoothest ToD runs, it's probably good to augment your build to have: Max Hodor Max Freet Max Magic Missile and/or Frosty Head Max Indomitable Spirit (SA during spell-bar part of spellcasting) Important to keep it up at like F30+ for sure; Use it some seconds before you move up to the next floor) Max Magic Festival Good for speeding up MM spam clears. Important to keep it up at like F30+ for sure; Use it some seconds before you move up to the next floor) Max Manashield Max Phase Shift Spoiler: PVP There are different ways to build for PVP, but some of the really standard parts of an 85 Summoner build would be: Max Hodor Max Magic Missile (or Frosty Head; Arguably more effective) Max Manashield Max Phase Shift Indomitable Spirit Max Summoner's Train Max Palm Blast 7 or Max Disenchant 1 in Leap Quick Rebound Max Magic Festival is preferred (A must if you use Sacrifice). It's a very good idea to look at some veteran Summoner players/players from other regions and to see their builds and how they play. There is a thread with links to tons of video here: http://www.dfonexus.com/threads/dnf-pvp-videos-various-streams-youtubes-etc.4896/ Avatars for PVP (Emblems do not work in PVP) Hat/Hair - Casting Speed Face/Torso - Attack Speed Top - Spirit Bond is probably the most well-rounded choice. Waist - Evasion Pants - HP Shoes - Movement Speed In regards to 2nd awakening: This was the build I was using when I last played http://www.dfonexus.com/posts/172422/ Besides that, just gonna give my general recommendations as far as each skill; Spoiler War Maiden Lamos - Very worthwhile summon, in particular when paired up with max MF, Eclipse Hive, and manual input to get around 75-80% uptime. Dark Moon - LV1 is recommended for pretty much every type of build. Makes summons immune to status effects and lets you get a single sac without losing any T1s. Moonshade - Very worthwhile active buff that pumps out alot of damage. Eclipse Hive - Highly recommend even if just for the passive boosts atm (although current Louise active is powerful); active get buffed quite abit in the future. __________________________ Other important information: Use a staff whenever possible and at 30+ try to keep it on level always. Try to use pinks if you can at 60+ and/or "Superior" grade purples. Don't bother reinforcing weapons until 70+. Try to get "Inflict "x" Elemental Damage" that matches your main element (usually fire) on weapons at 65+ if possible/endgame. Magic Crit is the next best choice. Doing this will boost Mark the Target's damage tremendously, since it will now benefit from Spirit Sacrifice's Elemental Resistance Debuff and Ordinary Spirits' Elemental Damage Aura. Roll for INT mseals at lower levels (1-64) and Mcrit at higher levels (60+). Double stat Mcrit & INT rolls with a priority on high Mcrit is ideal at 70+/ current endgame. Spoiler: Avatars, Emblems, & Enchants for PVE Avatars and Emblems for PVE Hat/Hair INT Avatar Dual Emblem: INT/Mcrit Face/Torso Status Res Avatar Dual Emblem: MSPD/CSPD, All Ele Res, All Status Res, or Dual Emblem: CSPD/Hit rate all have their benefits. It's a low priority spot generally speaking for summoner. Top Spirit Bond Avatar Mcrit Emblem Bottom HP or MP Avatar. Both have their merits. Mcrit Emblem Waist Evasion Avatar MSPD, Hitrate, All Ele Res, and All Status Res all have their benefits. It's a low priority spot generally speaking for summoner. Shoes MSPD or VIT MSPD, Hitrate, All Ele Res, and All Status Res all have their benefits. It's a low priority spot generally speaking for summoner. Aura/Skin Mcrit Emblem Enchants for PVE Weapon INT Inflict "x" Elemental Damage if you have a epic/legendary that doesn't give an inflict ele dmg naturally. Top/Bottom INT Shoulder/Belt/Shoes Mcrit (only Yellow Dragon's Blue Bijou Bead gives this to belt/shoes). Spirit for belt/shoes if Mcrit is too expensive. Max MP is fine too. Bracelet/Necklace/Ring All Elemental Damage The element that matches your mark the target (preferably fire or ice) if you can't get all elemental damage. Sub Equip Card: Anodron of Darkness (Matk+12, Mcrit/back Mcrit skill) __________________________ Also for anyone who was looking for Summoner C2/C3 Armor set information: Spoiler: 2nd Chronicle Spirit Union 3 Set: Spirit Summon: Ador/Naias/Stalker/Wisp: Increase damage by 30% 6 Set: Spirit Summon: Flame Hulk/Aquarius/Dead Murker/Glaerin: Increase damage by 25%, Decrease number of T1 Spirit tribute needed for summon by 1. 9 Set: Spirit Summon: Sprit King Echeverria: Increase maximum number of maintainable on field at once by 1, Decrease summon duration by 100 seconds, Decrease Cooldown by 50%, Decrease MP Consumption by 25% Mark the Target!: Increase additional magic weapon damage by summon monsters by 15% Infernal Contract 3 Set: Hired Summon: Hellflower Aukuso: Increase maximum number of maintainable on field at once by 1, Increase damage by 10%, Decrease Cooldown by 25% 6 Set: Hired Summon: Hellflower Aukuso: Increase maximum number of maintainable on field at once by 1, Increase damage by 15%, Decrease Cooldown by 40%, Decrease MP Consumption by 20% 9 Set: Hired Summon: Big Sis Louise!: Increase maximum number of maintainable on field at once by 1, Decrease summon duration by 100 seconds, Decrease Cooldown by 50%, Decrease MP Consumption by 25% Hired Summon: Hellflower Aukuso: Increase maximum number of maintainable on field at once by 1, Increase damage by 20% Forbidden Sacrifice 3 Set: Spirit Summon: Ador/Naias/Stalker/Wisp: Decrease Cooldown by 40% Spirit Sacrifice: Decrease Cooldown by 10% 6 Set: Ador Sacrifice: Increase explosion size by 15%, Increase damage by 25% Naias Sacrifice: Increase Ice wave lifespan by 10%, Increase damage by 25% Stalker Sacrifice: Increase dark explosion size by 15%, Increase damage by 25% Wisp Sacrifice: Increase attack range by 10%, Increase damage by 25% Spirit Sacrifice: Increase Elemental resistance decrement by 22% 9 Set: Ador Sacrifice: Increase explosion size by 30%, Increase damage by 40% Naias Sacrifice: Increase Ice wave lifespan by 20%, Increase damage by 40% Stalker Sacrifice: Increase dark explosion size by 30%, Increase damage by 40% Wisp Sacrifice: Increase attack range by 20%, Increase damage by 40% Spoiler: 3rd Chronicle Freedom of Spirit 3 Set: Spirit Summon: Ador/Naias/Stalker/Wisp: Decrease cooldown of attacks by 15%, Increase damage by 20% 6 Set: Spirit Summon: Ador/Naias/Stalker/Wisp: Increase summon duration by 30%, Increase damage by 25% 9 Set: Spirit Summon: Ador/Naias/Stalker/Wisp: Increase summon duration by 20%, Increase damage by 15% Ordinary Spirit: Selist: Increase damage increment for ally by 75% Restrained Contract 3 Set: Hired Summon: Black Knight Sandor: Increase damage by 30% Hired Summon: Hellflower Aukuso: Increase damage by 30% 6 Set: Hired Summon: Black Knight Sandor: Increase damage by 25% Hired Summon: Enraged Black Knight Sandor: Increase maximum number of maintainable on field at once by 1, Decrease Cooldown by 50%, Decrease summon duration by 50%, Decrease MP Consumption by 25% 9 Set: Hired Summon: Black Knight Sandor: Increase maximum number of maintainable on field at once by 1, Decrease Cooldown by 50%, Decrease summon duration by 50%, Decrease MP Consumption by 25% Lasher: Increase Status increment of buff by 20% Hired Summon: Enraged Black Knight Sandor: Decrease Cooldown by 50% Dangerous Liaison 3 Set: Spirit Summon: Ador/Naias/Stalker/Wisp: Decrease Cooldown by 20%, Increase maximum number summoned at once by 1, Increase maximum number of maintainable on field at once by 1. Spirit Sacrifice: Decrease Cooldown by 10% 6 set: Spirit Summon: Ador/Naias/Stalker/Wisp: Increase maximum number summoned at once by 1, Increase maximum number of maintainable on field at once by 1. Ador/Naias/Stalker/Wisp Sacrifice: Increase damage by 20% Spirit Sacrifice: Decrease Cooldown by 25% 9 Set: Spirit Summon: Ador/Naias/Stalker/Wisp: Decrease Cooldown by 30% Ador Sacrifice: Increase explosion size by 20%, Increase damage by 25% Naias Sacrifice: Increase Ice wave lifespan by 13%, Increase damage by 25% Stalker Sacrifice: Increase dark explosion size by 20%, Increase damage by 25% Wisp Sacrifice: Increase attack range by 13%, Increase damage by 25% For Otherverse, I Suppose I can post some small things that should generally always be helpful; Spoiler Get 1 in Dismiss, Summoner's Train, and Mass Teleport. If you have a set group, try to take note of the flow of things and adjust your summoning periods to that; Go into the next room and then finish summoning there if you have to. If you're using a fire weapon, you can use mark the target to light the oils in room 5 of goblin kingdom (not really safe though unless you have a nen or etc). In room 1 of Castle Nebulous, you can speed up the process by letting summons get stabbed and then using the dismiss skill around 7-12 seconds later (amount of time needed may be wonky, but once you get the hang of it it should be faster than a real player being grabbed). In Ranjelus' Guerrillas, it might be helpful to wait until bethural in room 2 is almost dead before you bring out the bulk of your summons; Either that or make good use of train to keep him walking over mines. If you're trying to contribute to killing void boss in his first transition and you don't have sacs built for damage, just go up and sac when the bar is far from full to get the -ele res debuff on him ahead of time (it will land even when while hes invincible), and then when its almost time get out selist/get all buffs/EB marks lit and use Louise's hive command when the attack window is open (or a kasijas slash, but this is much more difficult). In room 2 of Dark Side, as soon as hit tornado stage/ghost releasing stage starts its very helpful to use train and pull all the summons into a corner. This speeds up the ghost process by quite abit.