The Essential Core Crafting Strategies
Crafting Core Equipment can best be described as falling somewhere between an interesting challenge and an onerous burden… It’s a fascinating puzzle that can stretch your nerves almost to the breaking point. Crafting Cores is probably the subject that I get the most questions about. It seems that almost daily I get personal messages, emails, or Line contacts asking for help with Crafting Cores. In this article I’ll be explaining all of my Core Crafting Strategies.
If you have never Crafted Cores and want to start learning how, you should start with the basics. This article will delve further into Core Crafting principles.
The Art of the Set Bonus has been discussed in detail previously. Set Bonuses apply to Core Sets, and there are some important points to remember:
- Set Bonus: Applies to a full Set of Core Equipment. Again, a full Set is defined as one each of Weapon, Helm, Armor, and Foot item, plus three Accessories. The amount of your Bonus depends upon Research and Hero Skills.
- Mystery Bonus: Applies only to a full Set of Core Equipment that is Crafted according to the secret recipe. You can access all of the secret recipes here, or view the maximum possible mystery bonuses for each set.
What this means is that a full Core Set that is crafted using corresponding Cores will also receive the Set Bonus. You can use that to your advantage when crafting your own custom sets.
Some Basic Tips
Before crafting Cores, I recommend always equipping your Salvager’s Set, if you have one. If you don’t have one, you should Craft one if you intend to get serious about creating your own Cores. Crafting Cores in Salvager’s Gear will drastically increase the Duration of your Cores (i.e., they will last much longer). It is also possible to get Special Bonuses that increase Crafting Speed or decrease Crafting Cost, making the process a little more efficient. With Salvager’s Set Core items will generally last about two hours, with some variation.
Another tip, though of questionable importance, is that Core Items will derive their names from the first piece used to Craft them. So Sets created with the same Piece in the first slot will share part of their name. For example, using a Black Acorn as the first Piece in your Core will result in “Blackwood” being added to the name of each item you create.
Using Legendary Cores items results in Legendary Core Equipment…regardless of the color of Pieces you use. I have tested this a few times, and even using Epic Pieces my Equipment has turned out Legendary. As a point of caution, Core Equipment Crafted with Epic Pieces is NOT the same as if you had used all Legendary Pieces, regardless of what color it is. This becomes glaringly apparent when you compare Set and Mystery Bonuses. A Suit Crafted with all Legendary items will result in MUCH high overall Bonuses than even a Suit with a single Epic Piece added in. While there has been no official announcement, it appears that MZ has “nerfed” the practice of using Epic Pieces to cheat your Legendary Cores. This phenomenon has been mentioned repeatedly (and independently) to me multiple times recently. My advice? If you want to get the most out of your Core Equipment, only use Legendary Core items and Pieces (if you are intending to Craft Legendary Gear).
Simple Core Suit Crafting
I always Craft Cores with a purpose in mind. What that usually means is that I create Core Suits that are aimed at a specific Troop type. Infantry, for example. The most basic approach is to create a suit emphasizing a single Infantry statistic, such as Attack (or Defense, etc).
While I am sure everyone approaches this a little different, I start with a notebook (and a healthy dose of nerdiness). I know other people that keep an Excel spread sheet with Core and Piece stats. Find a method that works for you. I begin with Core stats, which can be accessed in the Forge under the Cores/Pieces tab, or by first clicking the Craft Core Equipment tab and then clicking the “Cores Stats” button in the lower left hand corner of the screen.
I begin with Core Weapons, scrolling through and recording the name of each Core with Infantry Attack, along with the value of its Boost. I do this for each Equipment Slot. After finishing with Cores, I do the same thing for Pieces (which is a little easier, since all Pieces with Infantry statistics can be found under a single sub tab). When you first start, this process can be very time consuming. But after a while, it becomes much easier.
To keep things simple, at first I would just pick the Cores with the highest Infantry Attack. I would then choose the six Pieces with the highest Infantry Attack (or four, or five Pieces, depending on how many you have unlocked with your Research). While there is no rule that says you have to, I usually use the same Pieces for each item of Core Equipment I Craft, because I think it saves time and simplifies the process. This is strictly a personal preference, though.
Another point to remember is that when evaluating the stats on both Cores and Pieces, they are given as a range. For example, the Infantry Attack stats of this Black Acorn Piece are 25.00%-31.20%. How much of this Boost you actually receive will be based on how much of the Crafting Research Tree you’ve completed. In reality, even if you have completed all Research you will probably never get the maximum Boost for each Core and Piece you use. There will be some variation in the ultimate stats of any Suit you Craft, even if you do it exactly the same way every time.
[include picture of the black acorn piece and it’s bonus range]
Simple Core Recipe Example
For “training purposes,” we will start with an Infantry Attack Core Set. Since I am focusing on Attack, I select my Cores and Pieces without really considering the other Boosts they possess. Again, to make things a little easier on myself I tend to use the same six Pieces for each Item in my Set. The Cores for this Set are: Paw Puncher Core, Seeker’s Greathelm Core, Inflated Armor Core, Fallen Champion’s Gauntlet Core, Plated Greaves Cores. The Pieces I will use are: Black Acorn, Vase of Sea Water, Lacquer Box, Manticore Pin, Rosemary, and Star Sigil.
This is an example of a decent, but by no means spectacular, Infantry Attack Suit. With the right gems, you should end up with a Suit that has total Attack Stats somewhere between 3100-3400%. That being said, you don’t always need a spectacular suit. Crafting customs lets you save those for special situations (like Kill Events, or larger targets). Utilizing Cores and Pieces you already have also keeps the Game fun by allowing you to increase your Gear stats without spending a fortune every time you use Cores.
Know thyself, know thy enemy
The complete quote from Sun Tzu is, “Know thyself, know thy enemy. A thousand battles, a thousand victories.” Crafting more complex Core Suits is dependent on your understanding of some of the basic principles of Game of War. To begin, you need to understand each Troop type’s strengths and weaknesses.
The next set of principles you will need to understand are basic Troop Boosts:
- Troop Attack: Increases damage done by your Troops
- Troop Defense: Reduces damage dealt to your Troops
- Troop Health: Increases Troop Health
*Note: A “Troop” boost applies equally to all Troop Types, while Troop-specific Boosts only apply to that specific Troop type.
These basic Boosts have corresponding Debuff Boosts:
- Enemy Attack Debuff: Decreases the Enemy’s Attack bonus
- Enemy Defense Bonus: Decreases Enemy’s Defense bonus
- Enemy Health Debuff: Decreases Enemy Troop Health
Ultimately, these Boosts do one of two things: kill more Enemy Troops or keep your Troops from dying. These Troop Boosts can be combined with their complementary Debuff Boost with a synergistic effect.
- To kill more enemy Troops: increase Troop Attack, ad Enemy Health and Defense Debuff
- To lose less of your Troops: maximize Troop Defense and Health, and Enemy Attack Debuff
Pro Tip: under the Boosts screen, you are able to apply both one of the basic Troop Boost bonuses and an Enemy Debuff Bonus at the same time.
How to Create the Deadliest Core Set
Unfortunately, nobody seems to agree on the exact combination of Boost/Debuff Boost that combines to make the most deadly Set. There are probably three main schools of thought about this. You will have to experiment on your own to decide which you agree with. The three main theories are:
- Maximizing Attack is the best; everything else is fluff.
- High Attack stats (over 3000%) with moderate Debuff stats (300-500%) is best.
- Moderate Attack stats (2500%) with high Debuff stats (>900%) is best.
Another point of disagreement concerns which Debuff is best: Will I kill more Troops by maximizing my Health Debuff or Defense Debuff?
Creed’s Debuff Theory
I have derived my own opinion from personal experience and speaking with friends about their experience. So, while it is completely anecdotal, here is my Debuff Theory: The simplest answer is often the best one. So, the best Debuff (in combination with Attack) depends on your target.
- Defense Debuff is the most effective Debuff over all for killing Enemy Troops. It works especially well in situations where you are attacking a Stronghold with a Hero that is a) in Defensive Gear, or b) trapping, with Defensive Skills set.
- Health Debuff works well as a complement to Defense Debuff, and in situations where you are attacking a Stronghold with a) Hero in non-War Gear (i.e., Research, Monster, etc), or b) a Stronghold with no Hero.
- Attack Debuff is the best overall Debuff for Defensive Cores.
I will qualify this with simple logic. According to the descriptions provided by MZ (which are listed above) Attack is the only Boost that inflicts damage to Enemy Troops. Defense is the only Boost that reduces it. Troop Health…increases troop health. While I assume it means it makes the Troops more difficult to kill, the purpose of Troop Health isn’t ever clearly stated in an official MZ description that I was able to find.
So, to kill more Enemy Troops you use Attack to maximize the damage you inflict, in combination with a Defense Debuff to limit the amount of damage the Enemy inflicts.
For a defensive player, use a Defense Boost to reduce the amount of damage the Enemy inflicts. Add an Attack Debuff for the same purpose.
Remember that the majority of Boosts provided to your Troops come from your Hero. With a Level 60 Hero and completed Research, these Basic Boost stats are still dependent on Gear and Hero Skills. Wearing non-War Gear significantly limits the magnitude of these stats. Without a Hero, you are extremely vulnerable even for players with completed Research. If I don’t need to use a Defense Debuff boost on an enemy Hero, I opt for a Health Debuff, following the assumption that further decreasing Enemy Troop Health has to be bad for Enemy Troops.
Genius. I know.
Let the disagreements begin.
The Additive Principal
There are many things you can do to maximize the stats of your Core Sets. In the first example, I chose Cores and Pieces based on one parameter: Infantry Attack stats. While there is nothing wrong with this (and I use this method regularly), understanding how the Boosts work and applying that knowledge can lead to higher stats. The next principle for Crafting Cores is utilizing additive stats. In the most simple terms, this is the 1+1=2 approach to Crafting. An example of this is Infantry Attack and Troop Attack.
For this suit (it will be theoretical, since I’m not giving a specific example) I would select Cores and Pieces based on their overall Attack stats. My best available Cores/Pieces, then, would have the highest overall stats I could find. Consider the following three Pieces, chosen base on their stats. From left to right, I chose these Pieces because they had the highest stats for Troop Attack, Ranged Attack, and Overall (Ranged + Troop) Attack, respectively, that I was able to find quickly. These Pieces are: Jade Dragon, Dragon’s Soul, and Emerald Egg. Comparing their stats, it is fairly obvious to see the benefits in using additive stats.
We just learned about additive principles for Crafting Cores. And if you think about it like that, you are correct. Being correct and being the most effective, however, aren’t always the same thing.
The last principle is that of synergistic Crafting. To master this approach you have to learn one very important fact. At least in my opinion, the most effective suits maximize Enemy Troop Deaths and minimize losses to my own Troops. This is probably affected at least as much by target selection as it is by your Core Suit stats.
Synergism is the 1+1=3 (or 4, etc) principle. It means that two things together are better than either of those things alone, and even better than expected when they are together. Combining Attack with Debuff fits this description. By that, I mean that I have had better hits with Suits possessing 3k Attack and 400 Defense (or Health) Debuff than I have using Suits with 3500% Attack and minimal Debuff. Unfortunately, I don’t have a way to qualify that observation. Other than with the flawless logic already provided. I haven’t figured out a way to mathematically calculate Core Suit Efficiency (my GoW equivalent of QBR in the NFL). So, while these observations are anecdotal, I do feel that the majority of players I’ve talked to tend to agree.
Core Strategy contributed by CREED XS
Article 1: All Core Crafting Basics Article 2: The Essential Core Crafting Strategies Article 3: How to Craft Great Core Gear Article 4: Crafting Cores with a Purpose Article 5: Crafting Your First Core Article 6: When to Take Chances While Crafting Article 7: The Most Under Rated Core Gear Article 8: The Best Core Gear You Can Craft