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Preparing for WAR


by ohitzme

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It's an exciting time to be a Neopian, and with the recent AMA, we learned that there will be an upcoming PLOT! This likely means there will be an opportunity to battle in the Battledome for plot-related points and prizes! In the event of a war plot, it's best to be ready, and that's the goal of today's article. If you could use more prepping before diving in, let this article guide you!

     Picking the right Pet for you!

     Most Neopians have a favourite Pet. For some, that is their Battledome Pet; for others, it isn't. At the end of the day, a Battledome Pet is needed; if you don't already have one, now is the time to start. There are a few options. One thing that I would recommend is going to the Neoboards and visiting the Pet Trading Board. If you're brave enough to make a board, it is usually pretty easy to get help finding an old Lab Pet. Lab Pets are good because the owners typically zap them a lot of times until they get a decent colour and then re-pound them, making them easier to adopt. Lab Pets tend to have unbalanced stats, which is good and bad for you. A Lab Pet will typically have a lot of Strength and Hit Points but a low level of defence. This is what is commonly called a lab rat or unbalanced Pet. While this may sound challenging, it can give you a solid start breaking into Battledome Pets and would be immediately viable for low-level battles. The drawback is that converting it into a balanced Pet would be very expensive, which is trainable in the respective training schools.

     If the idea of getting out in public on the Neoboards is intimidating, you could create your own lab rat using the Secret Lab Ray and build your stats up as best you can by repeatedly zapping day in and day out. With the Lab Ray Fortune Cookie NC item, you can get additional zaps and increase your chances for higher stats. You could even combine the two options: get someone else's lab rat and then start zapping it yourself until it is what your goal is for it. This is not the best option because every suitable Battledome Pet needs the Lens Flare ability, which only unlocks when your Pet reaches level 50. Unfortunately, one of the Secret Lab Ray options actually resets your Pet's level to level 1, undoing any work you've been doing, and it's a fairly common role to get there.

     The third option is to take a Pet of your choice and start training them. The cheapest training option is typically the Swashbuckling Academy, spending Dubloons and training Pets up to level 40. Still, the faster and pricier option is the Mystery Island Training School, spending Codestones and having shorter training courses. You can also get the Training Fortune Cookie NC item to decrease the training times. There are other ways to gain stats for your Pets, but these training schools are the most consistent. It is worth noting and mentioning that Fairie Quests are a very common way to get additional stat points, and Faerie Quest Fortune Cookie NC item will give you a guaranteed Faerie Quest daily while it is running. Regardless of your choices here, I recommend looking up a training guide. The basic idea is that you can train stats to two times your Pet's level before you have to increase the level. So, a level 10 Pet could have strength of 19 and train strength, but if their strength goes to 21, then you have to increase the level to 11 before you can increase strength again. These are called balanced/trainable Pets and are the overall preference of most Battledome players. THANKFULLY, you only need to worry about increasing Strength, Defense, and Hit Points (ENDURANCE). Move Speed can be neglected as it is not relevant in the Battledome.

     Picking the Battledome equipment you're going to need

     Battledome equipment ranges from very cheap to very expensive, and the effectiveness will vary based on your Pet's stats. If you're just starting, though, you're not going to need the best of the best to get started and beat basic enemies. I'd recommend a few key pieces of equipment, the first being multi-use items. These are weapons you can use over and over again during a battle. One of the cheapest and most reliable is an item called Scroll of Ultranova, which is the most affordable way to get a reliable amount of icons in battle. Icons are how the Battledome calculates damage, so the more icons, the better. A cheap alternative to that would be the Ridiculously Heavy Battle Hammer, but it does less damage for similar pricing. If you can afford something a bit more expensive, I'd recommend either Roxtons Trusty Bowie Knife, which deals damage and blocks 75% of earth icons. This item has increased value for lab rats as you don't have to worry about defence as much since it automatically blocks that percentage before it even occurs. Still, it's equally good and valuable for balanced Pets, too! There are a couple of alternatives in terms of damage worth considering if you'd instead look at other weapons. Turned Tooth and Void Blade are both solid and good choices if you feel they're right for you. If you're looking at more expensive Battledome weapons, then this guide is likely less relevant for you because you probably know better than I do what you need to do to be successful!

     Another Battledome item you're going to need is going to be a Bomb. Bombs are once-per-battle items (though some are one-time use, so be careful when selecting). The best bombs currently for general use are the Varia is the Bomb and Ghostkerbomb items, but these are both pretty expensive. The sad truth is that there really aren't alternatives that are cheaper, so if you're able to get your hands on one or both of these, then you should. The only options I'd even mention are various snowballs, but those are single-use and barely do enough damage to consider. If you can't afford Varia is the Bomb or Ghostkerbomb, then I'd actually recommend you just skip getting a bomb in lieu of getting more/different multi-use weapons.

     Healing is essential, and there are only two affordable, consistent, in-battle options at this time. Parachuting First Aid kit and Feel Better Soup, of the two, the soup is the better option, though a little more expensive. These are not species-specific and can be used on any species of Pet. They heal 33% and 50%, respectively, and the only upgrades are very expensive, so these would be the ones I'm recommending as of this time. Greater Healing Scroll heals a flat 50 HP, which is okay if your Pet is under 100 total HP, and there is also the Rejuvenating Jar of Brains that heals for 60 HP but is more expensive. Stat-wise, if your Pet has 120 HP or more, your best option is going to be Feel Better Soup if you can afford it.

     Finally, there are shields. Shields are important as they block icons. What shields are good depends on the opponent you're facing. Since we have yet to learn about what kind of potential enemies we'll be facing, it is very hard to make recommendations. The better shields also tend to be a bit pricey, which can make getting them for use a bit challenging on a budget. Cheap shields would be Leaf Shield, Patched Magic Hat, and Sophies Magic Hat. Gathering some of these shields would likely give decent coverage in general, but the better shields would be things like Hubrid Nox Memorial Shield, which is probably the best shield available in the game at this time.

      What to do next...

     Now it's time to go out and do it. Acquire your Pet, train them up, and gather the weapons, healing items, and shields you think will be the best fit for you. And prepare... for war!

 
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