|Revision v1||5 February 2004||Revised by:|
The militia of Vaerlon is mainly a guild for those who wish to join parties instead of adventuring alone. The primary strength of the militiamen and -women is in their ability to endure heavy hits while hitting their enemies very hard.
The most important stats for the militia are strength and endurance, not to forget dexterity. Mental powers are not as important, though they too can be useful. The larger races are fairly good for all kinds of careers in the militia.
The bonuses for levels, both stat and regen, are fairly good, so smaller races can be good fighters too. If you have the exp to burn, humans trained in the Militia of Vaerlon are the best leader for any party, due to their excellent leadership capabilities.
The guild is divided into the main guild, Militia of Vaerlon, and several subguilds. The main guild teaches the basics of melee combat, as well as some ranged combat. I suggest that you train, at least for the first ten levels, all the skills you use to as high a level as possible. After that, train if you have the funds, if you are out of money, make a level - or advancement points for the next few levels. In my opinion, it's not worth it to train stats at this point of your career.
In the beginning, the easiest way to fight, especially if you have selected one of the bigger races, is to forget weapons and fight unarmed. This lets you to save some money, and the skills are quite cheap to train. Armour is not very important, though you will want to get some protection fairly soon.
The next step up from the main guild is Basic Infantry of Vaerlon. It teaches you the basics of some of the more advanced combat skills, such as concentrated attack and concentrated defence, as well as basics of almost all the skills you will need later on.
Once the Basic Infantry training is complete, you have two choices. You can either join the Light Infantry of Vaerlon, which is an offensive guild, or the Heavy Infantry of Vaerlon, which is a defensive guild. Heavy Infantry is the definite guild for the so-called 'Eq-tanks'. The choice is up to you, but make it carefully, for it affects the rest of your career quite a bit indeed - of course you can reinc if you change your mind, but that's another matter.
The difference between the guilds is not that great at the first few levels, but the main difference is in the armour skills - Heavy Infantry, naturally teaches the use of heavy and medium armours, while Light Infantry concentrates mainly on light armours.
There is also a third option available at this point, though I would not recommend it to be chosen at this point - but if you feel like it, you can join the Weapon masters of Vaerlon, once you have high enough skills. They can teach you each and every combat style, as well as hitstyle, so a grandmaster of weapons is a very dangerous opponent indeed.
The guild of Weapon masters is best taken after you have some levels in either Heavy of Light Infantry, since the training is quite expensive, and the benefits are not that great without some of the non-weapon skills. You can also ignore the guild until you have completed the Elite Infantry of Vaerlon, but that might not be very wise.
The final stage of the guild is the Elite Infantry of Vaerlon. As the name suggests, once you get there, you can get the best infantry training available to anyone. The most important skills include battle strategies. Those with full training from this guild are almost unstoppable fighting machines, shrugging off wounds that would kill lesser beings while delivering grievous injuries to their opponents.
At advanced levels, the guild requires levels both in Heavy and Light Infantry of Vaerlon, but the skills you can learn here are limited by which one of the two you have completed. No-one can learn all the skills completely, but Elite Infantry of Vaerlon will train you to fair levels in all the skills you will ever need to use.
In the beginning of ones career in the militia, everyone is taught some simple combat maneuvers, such as kick and headbutt. While these are effective for their cost, nothing compares to the fabled 'Strike'. Though somewhat slow and difficult, it does tremendous damage, and you have a chance to increase your mastery of Devastating Strike, which enhances your damage output even more.
To get the full potential out of Strike, you need to train quite a few skills, for it can be used in several different ways. The first is to use the Strike simply without any extra arguments - this is fairly easy, but the damage is not very high. The next, and most useful application is to use strike to injure. This increases the damage you do with a successful Strike quite a bit, but it makes it harder to actually score hits. You can also use Strike to stun, which is good against enemies who cast spells, or to wound, if you wish to try to cause bleeding wounds on your enemies. Strike itself, as well as injuring, wounding and stunning are learnable by doing. The skill Strike Mighty Blow enhances your damage with Strike, so train it as high as possible.
The other very good combat maneuver of the Militia of Vaerlon is Shield Rush. It too is learnable by doing, but it requires that you wield a shield. It can cause stuns, and prevent enemies from acting for a few moments. This is a good combat maneuver for the defensive fighters.
Technically, the militia has quite a few masteries, but there are only four classes of masteries. The most easy to get mastery is Devastating strike, which greatly enhances your damage with the strike combat maneuver. You can check your masteries with the command army_masteries, which shows your current percentage of all the masteries you know, as well as the percentage you have learned of the next full percent of each mastery.
The second mastery is actually a class of masteries, for each weapon type has its own mastery, Grandmaster of weapontype. Depending on the weapontype, the mastery either stuns or wounds the enemy when it works. Generally, blunt weapons stun, while sharp ones wound.
The third offensive mastery of the militia is battle training. If you are in a party with some other members of the militia, your co-operative skills might enable you to score a few extra strikes every now and then.
The final militia-mastery is the Shieldwall. Unlike the others, it must be actively used, with command army_shieldwall. To use it, there must be at least two members of the militia in a party, and in the front row of the party. When this mastery is used, each one joining the shieldwall gets a bonus to their battle points on defence, while their offence is reduced. This greatly enhances your chances of dodging and parrying attacks, at the very least giving you an opportunity to react, but makes you almost totally ineffective offensively.
The next big thing, ranks. Each member of the militia gains rank-points for killing things and participating on army_events. The more rank-points you have, the higher your Rank in army_who will be. The higher the Rank, the better stats your weapon belt will have. However, there is only a limited amount of Ranks available, so you need to get as much rank-points as possible as soon as possible to get a good rank. The army_who-command also shows you how much rank-points you have, compared with the one who hold the position just above you. If you have more than 100% on the column 'Next', you can be fairly sure that you will get a promotion on next reboot; the ranks are only sorted out on reboots. You do not lose any rank when you reinc, but if you have not logged on for more than three days, or you just reinced into militia from a different guild, you are not show on army_who until the next reboot.
At the moment, there are two different army_events. The first is roll-call, which is simply a gathering where Grurg the Conqueror checks who is present, and gives bonuses to the one who gained most rank-points during previous week. The other event is the Horde, in which a band of monsters tries to attack Vaerlon, and they must be killed before they cause too much damage. Both events give you bonus rank-points.
One of the most important decisions anyone in the Militia of Vaerlon will have to make, is the selection of weapons and armours. I suggest that you concentrate on one weapon, and train all the skill required for its efficient use as quickly as possible. In the beginning, bludgeoning weapons are a good choice, for they are quite easy to both use and find. Using bludgeoning weapons also has the advantage that if you use a shield, you already have some basic knowledge of its usage. Once you get a good weapon, either magically enhanced or a high-quality one made of good material, you can either keep going and train new skills, or reincarnate. You can always use the talent compare weapons to find out the differences between two weapons.
Armours are a bit more tricky in Icesus. It might seem that using as heavy armours as possible is the best way to ensure your survival chances. That is true, but heavy armour greatly hinders your combat effectiveness, by reducing your effective strength and dexterity. It still offers, if of good quality and material, very good protection, but if damage is what you seek, light armours are the way. If you are not sure whether you prefer protection or offensive power, you can always use medium armours. Non-hit-slots one should fill with equipment that is magically enchanted, regardless of their armour value. Use the talent compare armours to check which piece or armour gives you the best protection.