This guide assumes that you have read the previous New Player Guide and Beginner Guide, have arrived at level 80, finished the Taming the Abyss questline and have several pieces of T5 gear. This guide will cover the progress through level 80 (T5) to level 115 (T7) and will be mostly freeform without set goals, as anything beyond this point doesn't matter as much as before.
This guide will be followed by Advanced Guide and then by the End-game Guide.
The calm before the frenzy
The first order of business is to get every gear to T5, slowly. An important note is to get your T5 mainhand weapon with at least puncture 3 (use it before reinforcing!), as there is no T6 mainhand weapon and thus you will be keeping it for a long time. If you find yourself with a need to empower a T5 gear, the mainhand weapon is the one to do it. Otherwise, I recommend waiting until combat level 115 and make a push for T7 gear, completely skipping the T6 gear similar to how T4 gear was skipped. There isn't really any point to upgrade to T6 gear as there aren't many gains to be made. The 3rd dungeon definitely requires T7 gear with empowerments. The only noticeable gain to be made is from clearing the daily quest Purge the Scourge from Abyssal Riches daily questline since the reward of 300 condensed vapor is worth around 500k gold in the market. However, that requires sacrificing many actions for it since you are sacrificing many max kills.
To get the T6 augments, which are a major part of this guide, we need to complete the Abyssal Pressures questline, which involves several abyss monsters. Getting the T5 gear allows us to kill the requirement monsters for the quest easier, and also allow us to max kill the early abyss monsters. This questline, while critical for progression, is not so yet, as the results won't matter until we hit level 100. Any mainline quests after this point are simply not worth it before getting the T7 gear.
Slow Advance Through Questline
As we're nearing combat level 100, you should start to finally complete the Abyssal Pressures questline to acquire the T6 augments. These augments, as of writing this guide, is the latest tier item of their slots, meaning you want to go all out for these ones. As they aren't craftable and only given from quest rewards, we will need to improve, energize and empower on our own. With the release of T9 augments, they are sold at the market as high level players transition to the T9 augments and sell their highly empowered T6 augments. However, each item will cost an additional 5 credits due to needing 1 redeeming coin to transfer the items, keep that in mind.
While doing the questline, we'll likely not be able to achieve max kills, but keep at it while injecting lvl 2 brutality and lvl 1 juggernaut injections to help kill more. However, with full T5 gear, we won't struggle that hard to finish the questline. There really isn't much to talk about that questline: just kill some monsters, buy some monster drops and proceed. If needed, you can craft higher level injections and use them, but since this is temporary, you can just use what you have in your hand.
The great T6 Augment Preparation Phase
As T6 augments will stay as your equipped gear for a very long time. An estimate places going from level 100 to level 145 to be 2.5 months. you should invest as much as possible for these. All your gold should be invested in these gear, with the minimum goal of max reinforce, appropriate energizements and E9 empower. Buying a highly empowered (E13+) for a good price if you can afford it also works. However, to understand the process of empowering, this guide will follow empowering your T6 augments route.
Reinforce % Energize
First, your gold should go for buying the quality reinforcements and energizing shards to upgrade these. While reinforcing, go for 10%. While energizing, try to get some pierce, as T5 gear doesn't have pierce energizements on them; pierce only starts appearing on T6 gear. Also, the exo-arm should have the 13% damage energizements on it.
If you are planning on getting a VIP (next part), wait until then to reinforce as VIP also adds a flat 5% success chance to reinforce, bringing you from 10% to 15% success chance.
The Empowering struggle
Second, after finishing the reinforcement and energizement, we come to another core part of the game which defines the late game that we have skipped over until now: Empowerment. Up to E9, every empower gives base stats that are then multiplied from the energizements. The most important ones are, as always, the hardest ones to achieve: the 7th, 8th and 9th empowerments. These give 10 pierce, armor and speed. As there are multiple reinforcements that give armor and pierce but none for speed, the E9 one is the most valuable one and the critical goal of empowering. The later ones give 1% stats, but early on these don't matter that much, as we don't have the base stats from all of our gear's energizements yet. However, with the new empower changes, T9 is a checkpoint for failing empowerments, which means that we will always drop to E9 if we fail after it, up to E11, so our goal is to get to E10 empower for all out T6 augments. The downgrade chance is really bad above E10. I recommend stopping at E10 empower until we have all our T7 gear and then push for the 1% stat empowers.
The following sub-sections are about how to prepare, how much to buy/hoard, when to buy and VIP timing.
Empowerment success chance starts from 100%, decreases until you hit E9 empowerment, where it drops to 30%. There is also a downgrade chance that also goes up as you progress. VIP adds a flat 5% success chance, and is quite helpful at the highest levels on empowerments. Things can do wrong easily and we may suffer greatly. Adding a 5% chance to not suffer is quite a good deal.
There is only 1 time to buy the VIP, and that's after you've completed your hoarding, reached level 100 and are finally ready to put on the T6 augment gear on yourself. My suggestion is to just buy the starter pack directly and support the game developer. It's the price of a coffee after all. The starter package will give you 20 credits (that may be sold to bankroll this investment!) and 3 days of VIP. Otherwise, you can buy 10 credits from the market (approximately 50M gold cost) and activate VIP for a week when you're ready to empower.
Ores & Us
Every single empower costs some gold, some monster parts, and definitely not cheap 12800 ores. The type of ore rotates, starting from Orthoclase and going to Anorthite and so on, every 2 empower levels. Since there is a chance to fail and there is a chance to downgrade, it's better to stock up on the higher ores more. Try to match the ratios stated below when hoarding ores. My pessimistic estimate of the ore cost for getting a T6 augment from E0 to E9 is:
- 2x 12.8k Orthoclase (1-2 empower)
- 2x 12.8k Anorthite (3-4 empower)
- 4x 12.8k Ferrisium (5-6 empower)
- 7x 12.8k Rhenium (7-8 empower)
- 8x 12.8k jaspil (9-10 empower)
The reason for these ratios are the success rates and downgrade rates. The first 3x empowers are 100% chance and then it drops by 10% each level until 30% chance to get E10 and above. We will stop at E10, which is 2 levels of the first 5 ores. We are guaranteed on Orthoclase, near guaranteed at Anorthite so those are only 2x ore amount. Ferrisium empowers will mostly pass and rarely downgrade. Rhenium now starts at the E6 breakpoint; it won't downgrade further from E6 after we reach there. The success chance is 50-60%, however, we have a 40% downgrade chance when attempting the E9 speed empower with Jaspil, which adds up a lot of Rhenium usage. The most used ore is Jaspil, with the low 30% chance to pass for both E9 and E10. After reaching E9, the E10 empower is the easiest click, but 30% chance is seriously low, so expect a lot of attempts.
There is also the gold and monster drop cost. The monster drop cost is medicore, around 100k gold. The raw gold cost however, is significant: at 400k. With our estimate of 23 empower attempts: this totals out to 11.5M gold for a single T6 equipment.
By our 23 empower attempts for E10 estimate, empowering a T6 item to E10 empower requires 294.4k ores. Ore costs are constantly on the change, but an estimate of 50 gold per ore should be good. With that calculation: the ore cost is around 14.7M gold, which we can round up to 15M as we won't easily find that average price of 50. Combine gold and ore cost and we get an estimated 26.5M gold cost for a single T6 equipment to empower to E10.
Since we have 4 T6 augments, we need to 4x it all too. That means a hefty 106M gold. If you also want to add in the new shoulder equipment slot that opens at T6, add in that too while you have the VIP. That means, for 5 T6 pieces to E10, you need to spend 132M gold. Give or take a few million depending on chance.
VIP decreases these costs and would give you an ease of mind, so it's very much worth it.
How do we get that much ore???
Check the market. Generally after corporation donation event runs out, the prices drop by quite a lot. 2-3 days after the event end is the best time to buy the ores. Make buy orders for it and be patient. However, you have until level 100 to hoard all your ores. After all, we want to switch to better abyss monsters and be able to actually contribute on corporation incursions (level 4 is the best for now). Remember that this investment will stay until the game gets updated and T8 or higher augments are in place. For now, it's a permanent upgrade that will stay there forever: think about that when you are shaking your head at the colossal amount of gold you have spent. It will be worth it!
The long wait for T7
Now we have reached level 100 and presumably upgraded all our new T6 equipment up to E9 with the VIP boost. We are now powerful enough to easily contribute to lvl 4 incursions in Corporation, which, at the max 20 reward tiers, gives us 700k gold. That's the long term income we were after. We can now kill a few of the early abyss monsters with max kills, which was another goal of ours. Then, what now?
Now, we wait. For a loooooong time. Until we hit level 115 and can equip T7 gear. That's a lot of exp. It will take weeks to arrive there. You must be patient to wait for T7 gear; temper yourself to not fall for instant uprade with T6 equipment.
What do we do until we reach combat level 115? We grind Compendium, and most importantly, Multikill. Just check the multikill page to understand why it's so important to farm the 1M kills per monster. My personal preference on the stats to focus on are speed > armor > pierce. Therefore, my recommendation to focus on which monsters are, in order:
- Excavator - 4 speed at 1M kills (hardest one, you can switch this to when you can max kill and do others first)
- Karth Drake - 3 speed at 1M kills
- Warped Tormenter - 7 armor at 1M kills (you probably farmed this at your lvl 80 grind)
- Shadow Giant - 7 armor at 1M kills
- Flamebreather - 7 pierce at 1M kills
At the end of this list, we should likely hit level 115. If not, continue in the same trend, looking to get the multikill where you already have many kills in. I recommend buying a lot of lvl 1 exp injections from the market since they are cheap and use them wholesale. Occasionally, use the lvl 3 exp injections that incursions bring for your dungeon runs. At this point, you can stop running the 1st dungeon and only do the 2nd dungeon, as the 1st one no longer should give you more exp than what you can normally do with max kills.
There is no shortcut to combat level 115 here. The only factor that mildly speeds up the leveling progress is the Drone companion's Frenzy ability. This is the most useful ability, so it really should be leveled up as much as possible (after making sure the companions themselves have good level cap and are leveling), if we are after getting more kills per action.
The next questlines requires killing the hardest abyss enemies in vast quantities to reach the 2M combat exp per quest rewards that are way later than they should be. It's not feasible to rush for them, as killing even 2 steamdrake or deathwhisper will be a challenge. It's a waste of actions: don't do it.
The T7 gear acquirement
T7 gear is the gateholder equipment for the end-game gear. They are much more abundant than any gear in the game as they are the most commonly used gear, even by the late game players. The reason is simple: T8 equipment is, comparatively to T7, hideously expensive. A single T8 piece requires around 500-600 Mechanoid Reinforcement to fully reinforce, and the empower items are also expensive. The lowest T8 piece can cost around 200M gold to fully upgrade. Some pieces, such as mainhand weapons, require 8.5 reactor cores which are just ridiculous to craft, costing over 600M gold to craft it. However, this opens up a neat opportunity for us that wasn't very profitable to do before: trading gear via redeeming coins. The T8 helm and T8 boots require the lowest reactor cores of 8.1, which means people will substitute that gear the quickest, meaning they will get rid of their T7 ones and try to make a profit off of them by selling them.
Here are the T8 gear requirement rankings, entirely determined by their reactor core models, from most valuable to least valuable:
- Rifle (8.5 core) (most valuable)
- Sidearm (8.5 core)
- Chestpiece (8.4 core)
- Leggings (8.4 core)
- Boots (8.3 core)
- Earring (8.3 core)
- Shoulder (8.2 core)
- Gloves (8.2 core)
- Belt (8.1 core)
- Helm (8.1 core) (least valuable)
Therefore, when you are looking at the trade channel for T7 gear, you should look at that order, as we will be crafting the T8 by ourselves. Since T9 came out, everyone is quickly swapping out their T8 equipment, so buying T8 from the market in the future is a very profitable endeavor. I would recommend crafting T7 and buying T8 items from other players at this moment, as they are in high supply at the moment, making their prices low.
When looking for gear, prioritize these things, in order:
- The rifle must have puncture 4.
- The T7 item should be at least E13. The coin cost, now that credit prices are rising, is high. Therefore, you should always look for E13 and above when buying an item to be worth it.
- If you are buying leggings or boots, they must all have 15% speed energizement. You might spend a couple million on rerolling the energizements otherwise.
- The chestpiece should have +4 armor per 10 levels in all cases, even if you're not doing a full armor build.
- The sidearm and rifle should have either IDR or damage% energizements.
- The speed stat of the item should be average or above average.
- If your IDR is below 60%, bolster it with IDR energizements on glove until it's above 60%.
Keep at acquiring the T7 gear as much as you can (preferably E11 or above for the future), focus on acquiring the T7 sidearm and get it to E9 empower, and keep at it.
The general goal is to have decent T7 gear (with speed being average or above average on the equipment, the most important) all around, with maybe the exception of a T6 shoulder if you invested to E10 it.
The next guide covers the road to the ultimate T8 gear combat level of 130, and the one after that covers the push for daily 4th dungeon unlock: Advanced Guide and End-game Guide.
Thank you for reading my guides,