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Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Forest of Spirits quests Guide

My favorite part of Atlantica Online is the strategy involved in the combat. As I told Ten Ton Hammer readers in my Atlantica review, most games drop players into hundreds of hours of Whack-a-Mole, but the moles whack back in Atlantica. To this day, I see a new player asking for help with the early quests in Peer chat because they are not used to games that require thought. In particular, I see requests for help with the Hell Scout, Mutated Trees, and Hellish Fairy. These are all encounters players experience before level 15, and that so many gamers have trouble with them is a testament to the thought required to succeed at Atlantica.

Always looking out for the little guy, Ten Ton Hammer has asked me to compile a level 1-15 guide that will help new players get through the tough early battles in Atlantica. Follow my guide, and you'll be able to take on all of the foes that make the average gamer stumble, and you'll reach level 15 with a decent sense of how to survive the more difficult tasks to come.

Mercenary Basics

Start by talking to Lea, the first of three sisters who guide you through the tutorial quests. Lea wants you to recruit two mercenaries to join your hero.

Forest of Spirits quests

After you talk to Lea, head over to the Mercenary Manager. Don't take this choice lightly. These recruits will be with you for a while. Here are some suggestions:

* If your hero is a Cannon, Rifle, Bow, or Staff...choose at least one spearman or swordsman for the front row.

* If your hero is a Sword, Spear, or Axe...choose at least one gunner or archer for the back row.

* Consider having at least one archer no matter what else you have. Their Silence spell will be a big help against Hellish Fairy in a few levels. Having two archers will allow you to keep the silence spell going on a target each round, greatly reducing the damage Hellish Fairy can cause to your whole squad via AoE spells.

* Click on My Info and then Formation from the top menu bar. You can rearrange your units here. Later on, you'll get a quest that tells you to do this, but why not do it now? Put ranged fighters in the back two rows and stick melee fighters in front of them for protection.

Return to Lea when you have recruited two mercenaries. She'll give you 500 gold and ask you to go see her sister, Ellesian. Just head over to the glowing blue tile, indicated by a doorway symbol on the mini-map.

Forest of Spirits quests

First Battle

Ellesian wants to teach you how to fight. She asks you to defeat three Rabeil. The monsters won't really fight back, so you can concentrate on the battle tutorial. You'll need to follow all seven steps to complete that part of the tutorial, or it will keep popping up in each new battle at the step where you left off. Be patient as you adjust to the battle timer. You may miss a few turns while reading the instructions, and you may find yourself needing to fight more Rabeil after you have your three kills to complete all seven steps. When you return to Ellesian, she'll reward you with some 500 gold and a Spirit Weapon Box.

Forest of Spirits quests

Arm Yourself

Ellesian next teaches you how to get equipment from boxes like the one she just gave you. Simply right-click the box and a randomly-generated weapon will pop out. Equip it to complete the quest by right-clicking on it from the inventory of the character it fits. You'll get 500 gold, Life Potion (Low) x5, and 50XP, enough to reach level 2. Now Ellesian will send you to see the final sister, Lilith.

The Second Battle

Lilith commands you to bring her three pieces of memory from the Rabalis and Rablus nearby. It is important to pay attention to the two types of enemies here. They share the same graphics with different colors, and they behave a little differently. It's an important lesson that will mean more and more as you progress as most monsters come in two flavors. Delivering the quest items nets you 1000 gold.

Forest of Spirits quests

The Third Mercenary

Now Lilith wants you to recruit a third mercenary to bring your squad total to four. My suggestion here is to make sure you have at least two front line characters. Your squad will be taking a lot of damage in the upcoming fights, and having only one frontline character will get you in a lot of trouble very fast. Return to Lilith for 500 gold.

Select Location

Lilith explains that you are about to awake from your dream and must select the land where you want to wake up. Your choices are four cities in Japan or North and South Korea: Hanyang, Pusan, Sapporo, and Harbin. Your selection does not matter as your next quests will be largely the same with different NPC names. I prefer the Japanese architecture and most often start in Sapporo. For this guide, I chose Pusan.

Forest of Spirits quests

Part II of the Forest of Spirits quests brings in the doctor who can help save the forest for the encroaching evil. He will need your help to do more research before he can make the potion the guardian asked you to retrieve. He'll also teach you a few more gameplay elements.

PART II - Dr. Huh

Medicine for the Forest

Dr. Huh examines the Spirit Powder you brought him and rewards you with 60XP, 700 gold, and Healing Potion (Low) x10.

Forest of Spirits quests

Investigating the Hell Soldiers

Dr. Huh requires further evidence to know what he's dealing with and asks you to return to the Forest of Spirits. He asks you to kill Hell Soldiers and Hell Warriors to collect ten pieces of their polluted armor. An easy way to travel back is to open your NPC catalog (Game Info and then NPC) and type Joo Hye in the search field. This will result in one hit. Simply pull down the menu to select her name and click the Auto-Move button. Your character will walk back to her location! The Hell Soldiers are on the path behind Joo Hye leading to the right.

Just as with the fairies you killed for The Strange Spirits, these soldiers have a couple of different flavors. The ones with orange highlights can inflict tremendous damage to a single character with a special melee attack. The longer they stay alive, the more likely you are to suffer from their special attacks. The version with blue highlights can revive fallen companions. The revived mobs will be stunned for one round and have only a fraction of their normal health. The best bet is to eliminate the hard-hitting ones as quickly as possible and loot their corpses before the blue ones can revive them. Keep killing these monsters until each member of your squad is around level seven. Then you can use the Auto-Move feature to return to Dr. Huh, who will give you 60XP, 800 gold, and Mana Potion (Low) x10.

Forest of Spirits quests

When You Need Cash Fast

This simple quest asks you to find a local merchant and sell any item. In Pusan, that person is Kim Man Duck. You're getting ripped off at the price you get, but the lesson here is how to raise cash in a pinch. Return to Dr. Huh for 60XP, 800 gold, and Life Potion (Low) x5.

When Mercenaries Die

If you have been following this guide, you have not been surprised by the might of the Nike spell used by the Evil Sky Spirits or the devastating blows dealt by the Hell Soldiers. Other beginners may not be so lucky and find themselves with a dead merc. Dr. Huh explains that Life Potions revive fallen mercenaries (the squad retreats if your hero dies). Players need to right-click the item stack from an inventory slot of any living merc. A list will pop up with all of your dead mercs and the option to revive one of them.

To complete this quest, you just need to show Dr. Huh that you were paying attention. Type Life Potion in the blank to receive 60XP and Commodity Box (Low) x5.

Delivering the Potion

Dr. Huh finally has that potion ready for you. He asks you to deliver to Joo Hye, who will reward you with 70XP. You can use Auto-Move to get to her.

Part III of the Forest of Spirits quests really ups the ante on difficult battles and further cements the notion that gamers need to know their bestiary to clue in on which mobs to slay first in combat. You'll also learn about using scrolls in this section.

PART III - Back to Joo Hye

Deepening Battle

Joo Hye knows that powerful foes stand in your way and wants to educate you about how to make your mercenaries even stronger. She asks you to use one Growth Vial, which will randomly boost the stats of the merc or hero who uses it. Your reward is 60XP, 800 gold, and Scroll of Vortex (Beginner) x10.

Useful Scrolls

Another useful tactic that can turn the tide of combat is the use of scrolls. Joo Hye asks you to go use a scroll five times in combat. First equip the Scroll of Vortex (Beginner) in one of the two quick slots on any of your mercs. I recommend against using it on your hero because your hero is already super strong in comparison to the mercs regardless of class.

Now run off to fight some of those Hell Soldiers and Hell Warriors you slaughtered for Dr. Huh earlier. When the merc who's equipped with the scrolls gets a turn, press F1 or F2 to activate them. The scrolls take time to prepare, so continue to the battle. When the spell is fully charged, a small tornado will rip through the enemies. Repeat this process until you have used five scrolls. And try to get your squad to level 8. You'll earn 60XP, 800 gold, and Spirit Equipment Box x3.

The Unicorns Attack

The aggressive behavior of the normally docile unicorns in the forest upsets Joo Hye. She needs you to gather 15 Black Horn pieces from Polluted Unicorns and Tainted Unicorns to see if she can discern the cause of the problem. If you haven't learned it yet, you have the option to display a pointer that tell you which way to go to find the unicorns. If the option is not displayed already, just click the pointer arrow at the top left of the screen just under the menu bar.

As with previous creatures, the unicorns come in two varieties. The Tainted Unicorns (green wings) will use standard attacks, but the Polluted Unicorns (black wings) have a lightning-based skill that does major damage. Since most front row mercs have poor magic defense, it is a wise move to kill the Polluted Unicorns first. Completing this quest nets 70XP, 900 gold, and Healing Potion (Low) x5. You'll also be around level 9 or 10.

The Devil Trees Attack

Your mission this time is to slay ten Devil Trees. You should be used to the pattern by now; you'll be facing two types of the same monster, with the purple one (the Devil Tree) being more dangerous. This time, the powerful attack can do heavy damage and stun a character, so watch out. Try to be level 10 by the time you finish chopping down trees. You'll also gain 70XP, 100 gold, and Mana Potion (Low) x10 from Joo Hye.

Forest of Spirits quests

Important: Getting to level 10 at this point is crucial because it allows you to recruit a fourth mercenary, raising your squad size to five. More importantly, it allows you to recruit a shaman, the first healer available to you if you did not select Staff for your hero. You'll have to go find the local recruiter, who will be near the city you chose as your starting location. The shaman costs 10,000 gold, but you should have that by now. Here are some suggestions for which merc to pick:

* If your hero is anything other than Staff...hire a shaman.

* If you have at least two front row characters and only one archer...consider a second archer.

* If you have only one front row character...get a swordsman or spearman for extra defense.

Your new mercenary will be a paltry level 1, so you'll need to do some fighting to get the new recruit up to speed. If you haven't learned it by now, monsters can randomly become worth more XP in the middle of a battle. The physical manifestation of this is a yellow circle with a red plus sign (+). Hitting that enemy gives extra XP, and killing the enemy even more so. Additionally, killing the marked enemy often yields an Enchant Box, which produces stones that allow you to combine two identical weapons or armors to produce one of higher quality. Just set up as many one-shot kills as possible for your new merc, and try to get him or her to at least level 5 before moving on to the next quest.

Unexpected Accident

Joo Hye managed to get injured on her last trip into the forest. She needs you to go to the local hospital and pick up some ginseng. The point of the quest is to teach you about consumable items you can use outside of battle to heal your squad. Travel over to your local town and go inside. Once there, click on the Hospital button and buy a ginseng.

Forest of Spirits quests

Scout from Hell

It looks as though the infiltration of Hell Soldiers is due to the leadership of the Hell Scout. Joo Hye asks you to kill just one. How hard can it be?

The Hell Scout is something of a mini boss battle and is the first major stumbling block the uninitiated player faces. The typical Hell Scout travels with a row of Hell Warriors (remember they can revive) and a row of Hell Soldiers (massive damage on their special skills). This is likely the largest enemy squad you've faced to this point. Be sure you have stacks of Healing Potions on each of your front row characters.

The Hell Scout is not only large in size, but it has a deep pool of HP also. Even if you clear a path to the Hell Scout and concentrate only on him, you won't be able to survive all of the special attacks you'll suffer from it and the Hell Soldiers. First, take at peek at the enemy formation.

Forest of Spirits quests

Start taking out one of the two Hell Warriors to open a path to the Hell Soldier behind it. Use your unit with the lowest attack (the shaman or Staff hero) power to loot the corpse to prevent a revival. Now take out the Hell Soldier and loot it. By now, the other Hell Soldier will be unleashing his special attack along with the Hell Scout. The shaman can heal one victim, but you'll need to start the process of using a potion on the other.

Repeat the process of elimination on the opposite column of enemies. Keep in mind that the spearman's special move, Lightning Strike, depletes the enemy's action points. So use that on the Hell Soldier when you get the chance. Any method to delay the devastating special attack is helpful. Also remember you lesson about Vortex scrolls, which can hurt multiple foes at once.

Eventually, it will come down to just you and the Hell Scout. This big mother hits hard even when he doesn't use his special attack, so it's likely you'll lose a front line character. Just make sure that isn't your hero. Keep pounding away with everything you've got and the creature will finally succumb. Go brag to Joo Hye for 80XP, 1000 gold, and Spirit Equipment Box x3.

The Mutated Tree

Now Joo Hye needs you to eliminate the culprit behind the ferocious trees you faced earlier. She asks you to kill one Mutated Tree. Like the Hell Scout, this battle is another major skirmish that will test your skills. The Mutated Tree can use the same stun attack the Devil tress uses, but it can hit the entire front row. Kill any front row Devil Trees and clear a path to the Mutated Tree. Use any leftover Scrolls of Vortex to clear the rest of the trash. Concentrate your firepower on the Arbor Day experiment gone wrong and you will emerge victorious. Your spoils include 90XP, 1000 gold, and Scroll of Vortex (Beginner) x10.

Forest of Spirits quests

The Root of the Problem

Joo Hye knows the culprit behind all of her woes is the Hellish Fairy. She sends you to Sun Hwa to learn more. You'll find this NPC near the town you selected at the end of the tutorial. Just follow the pointer to get there.

Part IV of the Forest of Spirits prepares players for Hellish Fairy, their first real boss battle. Almost every new player has a hard time with Hellish Fairy, and the quests that precede the battle are designed to be sure your squad is at full strength before engaging such a tough foe.

PART IV - Hellish Fairy

Minimum Abilities

Sun Hwa's first request is that you train until your hero is level 10. If you have been following this guide, you should be level 10 already. You'll collect 100XP, 1200 gold, and Dumpling x20.

My Allies Are My Strength

For the next task, Sun Hwa wants you to hire a fourth mercenary to increase your squad size. Again, you should already have a fifth unit if you have been following this guide. Your reward is 100XP and 1500 gold.


Sun Hwa advises you to go see Jeon Woo-chi, who can teach you Action: Search All. As always, you can just follow the arrow to find the NPC for your quest. The rewards include 120XP and 1000 gold.

Drinking Snacks

To prove you are ready to learn from him, Jeon asks you to collect ten fresh meats from the Red Deer in the area. The deer are straight up fighters that won't cause you any problems. Jeon will give you 100XP and 1000 gold.

Forest of Spirits quests


Now Jeon needs you to collect ten pieces of rough leather from the deer. He'll repay you with 100XP, 100 gold, and the Search All skill.

Search All

Predictably, Jeon wants you to practice your new skill. He requires you to use it battle one time and return to him. The payoff is 100XP. Use the deer to level up a bit. Try to get the last mercenary you hired up to about level 9. The rest should reach level 12 or so along the way.

Go Back For Now

Jeon Woo-chi has taught you what you need to know for now. He asks you to return to Sun Hwa with Hellish Fairy's name, which is simply Fairy. Doing so is worth 120XP.

The Hellish Spirit's Name

Type Fairy into the box when Sun Hwa asks you to name the creature. You'll get 100 XP and Health Check License (Beginner) x2.

Poor Hellish Fairy

It's finally time to end the madness that has plagued the Forest of Spirits. Sun Hwa asks you to bring a fairy wing as proof Hellish Fairy is dead. Before you battle her, you need to be ready.

Important: Before engaging Hellish Fairy, you should get your squad to levels 13 and 14. Your chance of surviving the encounter, which displays when you enter the battle) is less than 50% if your squad is below level 14. Go back to the Mutated Trees, Red Deer, and anything else to grind out a couple of levels. The time you spend getting the extra XP will save you a lot of frustration in the boss run. Also remember that the battle is both solo and timed. You cannot get any help, and you have five minutes to win the battle.

Forest of Spirits quests

Hellish Fairy's squad features a mix of the enemies you faced in the Forest of Spirits. You'll see fairies and Hell Soldiers and Warriors.

Forest of Spirits quests

On your first turn, concentrate your frontline units on one of Hell Warriors first, and loot them with your healer. Meanwhile, use any archers gunners you have (or the Cannon hero) to interrupt the fairies as they attempt to cast Nike's.

On your second turn, use your spearman (if you have one) to attack the center column to delay the actions of the two Hell Soldiers up front. Squads without a spearman should concentrate on the other Hell Warrior. If you have an archer or Bow hero, cast Silence on Hellish Fairy before she can unleash her devastating special attack, which hits all of your units. Use any other range units to keep the fairies busy.

On your third turn, try to kill both fairies and the second Hell Warrior. Now you won't need to loot again since none of the mobs can revive. It's okay for the corpses to decay. If you have a spearman with Lightning Strike available, use it on the center column. If you have a second archer, cast Silence again. The archers should alternate casting Silence every two turns to keep Hellish Fairy to standard attacks.

Squads with only one archer will take a shot from Hellish Fairy's special attack. The only thing you can do is use your shaman to heal. Theories in the forums say that arranging your formation very spread out will keep members from being hit, but my testing proved those theories wrong.

If Hellish Fairy gets to use the special attack more than once, you will lose some units. Just try to whittle down her squad until only she is left. Use Lightning Spear and Silence as often as possible to keep depleting her action points while preventing her from using magic.

I died four times in this battle with units under level 14. I went back with four level 14s and a level 13 shaman and won on the first try with some casualties. My squad is in the image above.

When Hellish Fairy falls, loot her wing and return to Sun Hwa for 150XP, 2000 gold, and a Viking Summon Marble. Congratulations, you beat the first boss!

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