As I was cleaning-up my daughter's My Little Ponies the other day (I swear, they're not mine), I came to a realization - these horsies have some bling! The old ponies in her collection have a plain stamp on their asses, or maybe a pink comb - but that is all. My daughter's newer ponies have jewel-encrusted saddles, gem-studded mirrors, and shiny crowns. Clearly, these newer ponies have done some raiding!
Atlantica is much like other MMORPGs - the quest for "stuff" is strong, even if the mechanics for gaining that stuff are a bit unconventional. To help you achieve your goal to glow in the dark, Atlantica Online offers an important "Enchanting" and "Enhancing" system to keep you chugging toward that elusive +10 carrot.
Enchanting requires two things: enchant stones and a sacrificial item of identical quality. The number of stones needed is equal to the enchantment level (+1, +2, +3, etc) right above the enchantment level of the item you are enchanting. So, if you wanted a +2 Spirit Sword, you must have 2 enchant stones and 2 Spirit Swords of +1 Enchantment.
You gain enchant stones from randomly dropped enchant boxes. Like most boxes in Atlantica Online - the enchant boxes come in varying qualities which match the level of the creatures you are fighting. So, expect to find many Enchant Boxes (Beg) in the newbie and lowbie areas (Beg = Beginner). As you move on, you will encounter Enchant Boxes (Int) and higher. Basically, the higher level gear requires higher level enchant stones. The beginner boxes drop quite frequently and you will soon be inundated with them. Not so with the higher level boxes. You may find yourself buying these better stones off the market or running guild town quests to stock-up.
So, to gain the enchant stones you must open the enchant boxes. You are asked which type of stone you want - an armor stone or a weapon stone. Most of the time, you will gain one of the chosen stone type from the box, but sometimes you will gain two stones (this appears to be completely random). To enchant rings/accessories you must use an Accessory Enchanting Stone - which are far rarer than the normal stones.
To do the actual enchanting, Right-Click on a stone and click "auto" (or, you can drag the item to be enchanted and a duplicate to the enchanting window). Click Enchant, and when the progress bar completes three things will happen: the item will be enchanted to the next level (or beyond), a number of enchant stones will be used equal to the next enchantment level of the item and the sacrificial item will be gone. Congratulations!
Why enchant? Well, the items statistics are raised. So, weapons do more damage, armor defends better, and the attribute bonuses in the items are also raised.
Who doesn't want to glow in the dark? Starting at enchant bonus +3, weapons glow white/yellow. At around +5 they will glow blue. At around level 7-10, they will glow red. Some special equipment may have a unique glow as well.
At +5 enchantment, items will have a durability rating - to represent wear and tear. This durability rating takes a long time to go down, and once it reaches zero, the item fails to provide its bonuses (armor, damage, etc). You must use a repair stone to repair the item, but this reduces the max durability by 5 (yes, items can break). At +10 enchantment, the durability rating goes away and the item is indestructible.
At enchant level +7 thru +9, items have more limitations similar to "soulbound" items in other popular MMORPGs. Once enchanted, you cannot use the item unless you unseal it. Once unsealed to your party, the item cannot be sold or traded. However, you may enchant it again (to the next level) to "seal" the item again. Items with a +10 enchantment are not sealed, so this concern goes away at that time.
If you do not have a sacrificial item, then Enhancing is the way to go. Speak with Vulcanus in Rome (Bazaar) with some Enhance Stones in hand and get ready to roll the dice! You still need a number of stones equal to one above the current enchantment level of the item you are enchanting. What's the downside? Well, the item has about a 50% chance to break. So, the only question you have to ask yourself is - are you feeling lucky?
Good to Know
Don't bother enchanting Spirit gear. Save your stones for the Ocean gear you can wear at level 15. Since you level fast in the beginning, and Ocean gear can be bought cheaply on the market - just hold out until level 15 before you start enchanting your gear.
Enchanting gear has such a large effect, you may find yourself keeping your +7 Cardboard Sword long after you've discovered Shiny Swords of Much Death. Well, at least until you get some enchants on those shiny swords...
Randomly, the item will be enchanted/enhanced further than one step up from its previous enchantment. For example, if you were enchanting an Ocean Sword for the first time - there's a chance it could come out as a +2 or +3! However, like scratch lottery, you'll enchant plenty of items in-between those moments of celebration.
In Arena fights (PVP), a recent patch reduced the effectiveness of enchanted gear. This was done to level the playing field, but if your whole game is PVP, then you may not have a real need to enchant items. Though NDoors hasn't released any raw numbers, speculation puts the reduction around 50-80%. So, if you have a +5 item, expect it to function like a +1 or +2 item.
Instead of repairing damaged items, simply enchant them to the next level! They are automatically repaired and set to a higher durability rating.
Enhance Stones can be crafted with the proper crafting skill (Mana Stone).
With 9 characters in your party all with head, arm, chest, leg, weapon, off-hand and many more item slots to consider - you'll be enchanting gear pretty much constantly as you play through the game. The system is almost a mini-game as you shuffle gear around your ranks and make decisions on what gear to keep/sell/break. All of this leads into inventory management, which is the focus of my next article. Until then, grab your stones and light the darkness with your glowing weapons!