Abjure is an incredibly versatile art that has applications from Ritual, to Solo or Group Combat, to Aiding an Ally. So, how do you make the best use of this art? And at what plateau does it become useful? As usual, there isn't any one single "Right" answer. Here however, are some guidelines and idea's that I've found from being in the field and USING Abjure in these different situations.
Learnable: Orbit 50, Soulmaster Major
Cost: 30 Resilience
Effect: Strips one effect from the target at random. Also has a percentage chance of causing an echo, that will strip another. Each echo has an identical chance of causing a second echo that would strip a third effect, and forth. That chance seems to start off at 5%, making it very unlikely to get an echo at unplatted. The chance rises slowly, to what seems to be roughly 10% at 60 plateau. Reflectable, Reflect also includes the same echo chance it seems.
General Use Notes:
Abjure is one of those arts that is completely useful for its intended purpose, as soon as you learn it.
Any ritual uses for abjure are fully viable at this point, as well though... the higher the plateau, the more powerful the art is in ritual application, as with any other art. Generally this art is usual for ritual or ceremonial purposes to pierce defenses, strip or suppress an effect, or similar.
Against a Hostile:
For use against hostile entities in combat, the art has a long enough evoke that... unless you can plateau it high, and practice using it a lot... stay in an "In-Room Support" type role. Out of direct engagement, arting from the sidelines. Also of note, is that reflect Loves to bounce your own Abjure evokes back on you. So it's advisable to keep some high charge, low duration alterors (5-10 minute, 2-6 minute, etc) of your critical arts (RF, FA, Prot, Vis) right near your main Resilience and Dreamsoul Elems.
Always keep a good Dreamsoul elem or two right in easy reach as well. The moment you start tossing off Abjures, most opponents will make you a very high value target to come after, so you'll have to keep yourself coherent until an ally can pull the opponent off of you again. The same also applies to shields. Make sure you have a good shield (At least 30% Absorb, and very high durability) on, with a couple of backup shields close to hand.
Another point to keep in mind, is what effects your allies are using... or what effects you've already placed on the target. Nothing is more annoying than finally getting a poison through an opponents Reflect... then having your next abjure strip it off of them.
Aiding an Ally:
For general ally support, be ready with essential arts (RF, FA, Prot, Vis) either by art or charm, particularly if the ally your trying to strip a hostile art from is in battle. Abjure doesn't make any distinction between the effects on the target... so your as likely to strip the allies Free Action, Reflect, or Recall, as you are the Curse or Deafen or whatever your trying to get off of them. Make sure you can quickly renew the critical arts you may strip. If your trying to use Abjure to strip a hostile effect and help them against a Dreamstriker.... Don't use Abjure. If you strip their Recall, you are basically the reason they got struck... albeit inadvertently. It is often better to restore, or otherwise bolster the target instead of stripping potentially life saving effects.
This is going to be formatted by plateau for easy reference. What works for any given plat, also works for any plats LOWER. That does not work in inverse. What's true for 30 plat is not necessarily true for 60 plat. So, without further rambling from me....For your consideration, here are the plats:
Unplatted through 30 plateau: At these levels, make sure you are not engaged or under direct threat before evoking the art, as it has a several pillar evoke speed. Otherwise, please reference the above, General Notes.
40-50 plateau: At these plateaus, the evoke speed decreases enough that the art becomes more usable. Even routinely evocable in single combat (With lots of practice at knowing it's exact trigger point, and with targeting the evoke). You also start getting echo's every 4th to 8th evoke quite routinely.
60 plateau At this plat, it's evoke speed is a single pillar (roughly 1.5 seconds). So this is the plat that the art truly starts to become usable even in single combat. The biggest concern here is getting enough distance from your opponent, being sharp on your targeting, and having a hand on a Dreamsoul elem before you start evoking. If your opponent is a Gatekeeper, or multi-focal, it is STRONGLY suggested that you ensure to have alterors of critical arts such as vision and free action scattered among your dreamsoul and other main combat items so you can reach them quickly when your Abjure gets sent back at you.
70-90 plateaus: At this range, Abjure fires at speeds approaching half a pillar. And evokers are likely to have enough resilience to get two or three evokes off before having to replenish their resilience. You can also start reasonably expecting to get an echo every 2nd or 3rd evoke.
Suggested Equipment layout for In-Room Support Soulmasters:
If your a soulmaster that specializes in in-room support, or routinely finds themselves in that role. The following is the suggested minimum load out of supplies that you should carry at all times.
- 5 Dreamsoul Elemens of 12 to 40, flat 30, or flat 35 level.
- 2 full sets of critical alterors. One in a cluster, with durations in the 20-40 minute+ range. And one set with shorter durations (anything from 1 to 15 minute and up). If you have to skimp a bit on your 2nd set of alterors, go with Vis; FA; and RF.
- 5 fully charged Resilience elems of the same levels as the Dreamsoul (Higher sphere SM arts burn a Lot of resilience).
- 4 30-50% absorb shields. Get as high of a durability as possible, and keep them repaired.
- 2 10-20% absorb shields. Get as high of a durability as possible, and keep them repaired.
- 3 fully charged chakrams of the highest level you can use, and moderate+ speed. If for no other reason than it gives you the chance to use defensive fire or hurt an attacker enough to make them give you some breathing room.
Hopefully, the above tips will come in useful for people. Enjoy, and... just as a note. I reserve the right to shoot anyone using these against me, with a 60. Repeatedly.
~ Arnaya, Soulmistress
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The most important lesson I've learned over this past year, is not to let anyone make you cruel. No matter how badly you want to give the world a taste of it's own bitter medicine, it is never worth losing yourself.