Lineage 2 Group Theory Guide

Lineage 2 Group Theory Guide by Warper

Chapter one. Introduction.
General group theory terminology.

Damage output – it is the average amound of damage per second that fully prepared group makes on mobs. Makes sense as integral value, that is skills spam etc. is averaged.

Damage max – it is the maxumal amount of damage the group is capable for. Makes sense for critical situations. Generally acquired through soulshots/blessed spiritshots spam, skills spam etc.

Kill rate – it is the number of mobs per minute group kills. Under similar conditions kill rate is proportional to XP rate, but influence depends on other factors. Most xp groups work on maximisation of this factor.

XP rate – the amount of expereicne group gets per minute. Most xp groups work on maximisation of this factor.

MP regen speed – the speed of mana regeneration (mp per minute). The parameter has meaning for each individual mana user. For group as whole makes sense as slowest mp regeneration for some sort of work, in conjunction with rechargers availability or coverage of the role with some substitution. For example, tho healers in a group add up the MP regen for healing, two interexchangable tanks add up mp regen for hate purposes, two buffers add up the mp for buffs, recharger adds up the mp for nukes of mage he/she rechargers.

MP usage speed – the speed of mana usage (mp perminute). The value has meaning for each individual mana user and as integral value for group with “weakest chain”.

MP balance – the proportion between MP regen and MP usage. Again, has two meanings – for individual mana user and for group as whole. In the latter case it depends on weakest chain. Generally MP balance determines downtime.

Downtime – the time (percent of total grinding time) that group spends on rests. Generally happens due to weak MP balance (the neccessary mp rest for “weakest chain” stops the whole group) as well as grinding procedure (for example, buffer demands the whole group rest during rebuff) or outer reasons (slow mobs respawn rate, hot chats, coffee breaks etc.).

Controlability – the measure of coherence of the group, existance of effective answers for critical situations, mutual understanding among group members. There is no strict scale of controlability, but with better one group tends to be less risky.

Risk – general risk factor for the group in chosen place with chosen grinding procedure. Might be evaluated as the chance for death of one or more group members in an hour interval. Generally it’s the reverse for controlability, but includes some external factors (zone, mobs, PKs around etc.)

Spawn speed – the speed with mobs appear in the territory controlled by a group. It depends on time between mobs respawns, the total number of mobs there, the territory size and external factors (like other groups in the area).

Targeting time – integral value, expresses time between killing processes. Sometimes makes sense as percentage of time in total grind time. For example, in crowded dungeon with clever tank group can have 0 targetting time, while in open area group run from mob to mob for several seconds (for each mob).

Costs over time – the amount of adena group spends on killing mobs per minute. Integral value, includes costs of soulshots, spiritshots, potions, scrolls, teleports etc. divided by the time of grinding.

Farming speed – the amount of adena group gets from killed mobs over time.

Farming over exp – the amount of adena group gets per experience gained. Makes sense for long-term forecasts of group prosperity in a long run.

Chapter two. Roles in group.
Roles of characters in a grinding group, not class names

Main roles
Tank (tanker)
Tank is the one who gets most hits from mobs. Tank engages mobs first or intercepts mobs from puller.
Generally tanker is the person with most powerful defense, that can keep mobs on himself, but it’s not necessary.
Often tank also plays roles of puller, hater and leader. Partially – damage dealer, debuffer or group saver.

This player provides mobs for the group. His duty is to bring mobs in minimal parties, but enough for most effective group experience. Puller makes or breaks targetting time. Good puller also adds to controlability. The one who aggrovates all mobs in a room is rarely considered as a good puller.

Damage dealer
This player kills mobs. The more the better. Sometimes provides crowd control/ works as a sleeprr. Generally DDs are divided by melees, daggers, archers, nukers and pole users.

This player provides buffs for his/her comrader, increasing their effectiveness. Generally attak/defense are increased, but soem bufs increase healing or crowd control abilities.

This player heals group mates in a timely fashion preventing their death due to lack of health. Most healers play other roles as well – buffer, debuffer, crowd controller, recharger, damage dealer.

Crowd controller
This player controls mobs behaviour with spells or special abilities so that the group is not hit by every mob in an area. Most effective methods are sleeping clowd, sleep, dryad root, stun, anchor, veil
Generally this role comes along with healer and damage dealer.

This role helps group to cut endges in MP balance. Recharges gives his/her mana to those who need them most, so that group will have less downtime due to MP balance reasons.
This role tends to increase controlability since party savers/crowd controllers will have mana for handling critical situations.
Due to class restrictions, this role comes along with healer and buffer roles.

Special roles
This player decides for general directions of group. Where to go, who and how to kill – it’s all important.
By default it’s the one who created group, but sometimes it’s clan leader or more experienced player in group, or the player who has time to analise the situation on the battlefield.

In some fashion it’s crowd controller. The main role for him – intercept mobs (with aggression or hate aura) attacking vulnerable players. As general tank can be of any class, hater is the player of class having aggression skill. Tankless groups in fact has tank, but they don’t have hater.

Evasion tank
It is a specific type of tank – the one with high evasion value. Unlike general tank, he evades many attacks and gets overall less damage making tanking pocess hp/mp-effective.

VR tank
It is the sort of tank that relies on attack rather than defense. In conjunction with vampiric rage buff many melee classes can heal themselves quite effectively to have not best defense (and/or evasion). Many melee classes are capable of being good VR tanks. With better damage than natural tank classes they heal themselves negating the effect of high defence normal tanks have.

This role might be not distinguishable from regualr buffer, but sometimes it’s important who is the first buffer and who is second. Also battle songs, dances and special sommons buffs are no way the substitution to normal buffer role.

Subhealer, second healer
This role is different from main healer role. If main healer starts to heal someone, second healer steps aside thus saving mana. Without agreement between healers it’s quite possible they’ll heal one person more than needed spending more mana, partially in vain. Sometimes subhealer helps with group heals through chant of life or heart of paagrio etc. It’s common in groups with two healers to switch between them. Once plays main healer role, another one rests. Then they switch over.

Unlike buffs debuffs don’t always make the day of grinding. But sometimes it’s useful to affect mobs with some debuffs like hex, gloom, surrenders etc.

Group saver
This player watches his six and saves group in hopeless situations. He can quickly transport the whole group to safe spot, neutralise all mobs for a time or bring all mobs far away and keep them there.
Many groups don’t think about it ahead of time, but only in a perfect world critical situations don’t come.

Spoiler, Seeder, crystal pumper
This player increases the amount of drop from mobs with spoil/sweeper skills, seeds or powering up soul crystals.
Generally this role comes along with roles of damage dealer or finisher.

This player finishes mob with special attack or spell allowing overhit. Due to overhit kills group takes more experience from the mob.

Chapter three. Monsters behavoir
Classification of most important mob behavoir aspects

Agro (agressive mob) – it is the mob, that seeing player next to it runs wooping after him/her, or attacks player with other means (for example, casts bad spell).
Generally agressiveness is the property of monster type. Some mobs are agressive, some aren’t.
Some mobs are agressive during night time – bats in Druins of Despair are an example.
Unaggro mob doesn’t care about player walking around as far as he/she is not in mobs hate list.
But since you are put there, mob behaviour changes to agressive towards you. Though such mobs don’t live long
Agressiveness can be calmed down for a while by some spells and skills (Requiem, Veil).

Agro radius – it is the radius at wich agressive mob will react on your presence.
Generally it’s rather small range – about 400 game range units.

Social (helper) – this property makes mob assist its comrades when you hit them.
Each mob has a list of mob types it helps. Generally social mobs help each other or mobs of similar race.

Group mob – there are many group mobs in Aden. They are like this: leader of the group and several minoins.
Minions in this case follow group leader and help it. They are always social in the group, but not always social to similar groups.
In general only mob group leader is agressive. Other mobs don’tattack you first, they roll in fight after you hit one of them.
Raid bosses groups are another story – in general their behaviour is similar to group mobs, but raid bosses are not aggro.
Some people say “group mob” meaning feeble type, but you better divie these properties since they are not the same.

Feeble type (1/2 hp) – this property means that mob has 1/2 of normal hp amount for its mob level. Many group mobs on the ground are like this. But not only group mobs. For example, Mialle Lizradman plains are full of feeble type lizardman guards not belonging to any mob group. The experience amount and drop from feeble type mobs are a bit more than half of normal for its level. In general it’s not effective for players with active tanking to kill such mobs. Regular hp mob of lower level with the same amount of hit points may give you same experience and drops, but will have lower attack/defense rating. They are good for mages though, since they can be killed quicker and won’t hit mage a single time before they die.

Though type (x2 x3 x4 x5 hp) – this thing means the mob has more hit points than regular mob of the same level. Generally they produce corresponding increase in drop/expereince. If you use manor, such mobs produce more fruits out of one seed as well. Most such mobs live in dungeons of any sort. They are intended to be the target for groups of players. Killing of though mobs decreases targetting time (see above) thus increasing experience/drop rate.

Archers, Mages, Healers, Buffers – out of curiosity, mobs can do all these things.
Generally archers shoot from moderate distance and hit hard each time (like other bow users in the game). They can be not only archers, but dagger or spear throwers. Some archers (for example, Plando) are notirious for shooting lowest player in grinding group.
Mages cast debuffs on attackign players and cast damage spells on players. Frequently mages cast not on tanker, but on other players in grinding group.
Buffers cast buffs on themselves or friendly mobs, healers heal themselves or friendly mobs.
Critical hits or magical critical hits are things that can kill you once if you fight such mobs. So, don’t neglect protection, mobs are not always as dumb as they are treated.
Many mobs use attack skills like power attack, stun etc.

Silencers – few mobs cast silence among other debuffs. Mages try to avoid hunting such mobs, since they can block casting for 2 minutes with this single debuff.

Paralysers – few mobs in game can cast paralyse effect on players. They are mages in general, but this effect is so deadly that players specifically designate it from others. There is nothing that can heal paralyse other than time (2 minutes), purify (the spell available to Shilien Elder and Bishop classes from 44 level).
There are also death and cancel that can help, but they are not practical (cancel can’t be cast on friendly or neutral unflagged person).

AOE stunners – some mobs have special attack called area stun, one of devastating things, afecting everyone in range.
It might be dangerous if tank and healer are both stunned. So clever healers stay a bit away from such mobs. It’s one of most pros for healers hitting mobs.
Generally atack has small radius (100-200).

Vulnerable to… – mobs of this type are specialy vulnerable to some sort of attack. Mostly vulnerability means 30% more damage is inflicted with named attack type spells/skills/hits.
Golems generally get more damage from blunt weapons. Flying creatures generally get more damage from wind magic. Wooden creatures generally get more damage from fire attacks.
There are also skill vulnerabilities. Forexample, undeads are the only subject for Hold undead spell and insects are the only sunbejct for increased damage from gladiator under Detect insect weakness buff.
It’s clever to exploit vulnerabilities when you select grinding group. Mobs in right place will die faster, thus giving you more experience/drops.

Resist/resistant to… – there are many resistances in the game.
For example, some mobs have resistance to arrows. Some have resistance to sleep. Some have resistance to magic and sleep and dark attacks.
As like with vulnerabilities you’d better chose hunting ground with mobs appropriate to your types of attacks.
For example, archer group will be not that effective hunting golems rather than hunting flying creatures.

Quest mob – this property is always shown above mob head.
Such mobs don’t drop anything useful and don’t give any experience. They are useless for grinding, since they are intended to be killed by players making some quest.
Decrease in appeal to normal grinders is a good thing in a long run. Once they produced good drops such mobs were all dead by the time a player making important quest tries to find them.
Only few quest mobs are agressive (I know only flying eyes near Felmere Lake).

NPC – these “mobs” are not intended to be killed at all. Trying of attack you generally open conversation dialogue with them. You can force attack them though (ctrl+attack), but they are either of high level or invulnerable/immortal.

Guard – these guys stand around city gates or patrol newbie locations. They attack every chaotic player at sight. guards are some 60-ies level mobs in regard to combat power, so lower level chaotis players stand no chance against them.

Chapter four. Two Minutes Hate.
Introduction into hate theory

As you already know from definitions, each mob has its own hate-list. It is a list of characters, mob has seen in game and got oppotunity to hate due to different reasons.
Worth mentioning though, mobhates every player with different power.

What are the reasons for mob hate?
Agressive monster hates every player entering its hate range while mob is not occupied.
Social monster hates every player that attacks friendly monster (second monster should be in social range of first one).
Monster hates player that hits/attacks it.
Monster hates players that aids those attacking it.
And last, but not least, monster hates player that uses aggression or hate aura on it.

But it’s not all that easy after all.

Buffs and debuffs, and heals in smaller degree, increase hate more than general hits.
General hits increase hate power. Critical hits increase hate power more than general hits.
With other equal aspects more damaging player will get aggression upon himself.
First player entering into aggro radius of a mob, gets “initial hate”.
Generally this hate power is equal to 1-2 hits or 1 debuff/heal.
If players attack from from outside aggro raiuds, first attacker gets this bonus. Social mobs hate attacker of their friend with about half of initial vaule.

First attacker gets bonus hate on him – tanks use this feature all the time.
So good tank can keep mob on himself even without aggression skills.
This feature is very important in hateress groups. It is important in such groups that tank should attack mobs first, not common damage dealer (with weaker defense). The rest of group should wait for 1-2 hits on mob from the tank and then assist.
If an archer attacks a mob puller is bringing to the group not yet hitting it once, there is a good chance the archer will tow mob on himself. It applies not only to archers though. If healer drops a heal on puller before attack begins, aggressive mob will probably turn on the healer.

Socialisation and agressivness work separately.
This allows puller to get agressive mob out of mob group social with him. Puller comes close enough to agressive mob, the mob runs toward the puller, then puller retreats to his group.
Other mobs (social with first one) won’t follow him.
Puller with lure can get mobs one by one similary even if they are not agressive.
And puller with lure under silent move can get agressive and social mobs one by one.
Sometimes Veil helps as well – some agressive mobs become non-agressive for a time, then you pull one-two agressives left.
There is a bad news though – this trick doesn’t work with group mobs.
Group mobs keep a distance to their mob-group leader. It’s much less than any social radius.
But there is another fact that helps dealing with group-mobs. Mostly minions are not agressive by themselves. They only support their leader wich is agressive (sometimes).
So if you hit leader/minion, the whole group will attack you, but as far as you only run around, leader will be the only one inmob group attacking you.
That is, puller does not attack group mob, it only attracts attention of group leader (entering into aggro radius or using lure skill), then comes to player group where all mobs are killed. It saves a lo of health of pullers.

Social unagressive mobs only attack after they see agressive action toward their friends/themselves.
That is, they do no attack if their comrad attacks someone. This feature saves players in hard situations of bad pulls.
For example, we take Antharas Lair – Pytan and Pytan Knights group.
Pytan is agressive demon, but it hits not that hard.
Pytan Knights are minions of Pytan. They are group mobs (minions, they keep distance to Pytan) soial with Pytan and between themselves.
If Pytan attacks a group of players, attacksing Pytan is not the only possibility. Sleep and root are not the only possibility as well.
Instead of controlling masses, player group can simply ignore the beast for a time, killing its current target.
For eaxmple, player group kills Plando, and Pytan attack damage dealer of the group.
As far as noone will hit Pytan, both Pytan Knights will stay calm next to it, doing nothing.
Attacked player can be buffed or healed – in this worst case Pytan (and only Pytan) will attack healer/buffer.
But if anyone will hit/hate/debuff the Pytan, all Pytan Knights around will put the player into their hate list and will start attacking.

Crowd control if not the goal in itself. It only saves mana. But if you ignore Pytan group for a while, you should heal 3 times less than after they attack. Sleeps/roots are not always worthful in this case.

One more charming possibility coming from this feature – mob trains.
If you kill Pytans and someone passes by with few Pytan groups on him, you can stop attack and Pytans in the train won’t come to you by themselves.
You group will stay alive as far as healers will be able to heal it. Most of the time its more than minute of idling.
Unfortunately, in real situations common “stop attack” action is a rare case. Group should know this trick and be organised enough to have a success.

Social hate is twice as lower as direct hate.
This means that sleeper in the group will probably not be attacked by mob his group is attacking. Also, even if mob will attack him, direct damage hate will overcome sleep-related hate easily.
There are nuances though. Chain sleeps add to hate of the mob. And if you sleep a group of 5 social mobs, you’ll probably be the target of each one after they wake up.

There is one more thing to say. Puller/tank attacking one mob out of several socials will do his job bad.
He should attack each mob instead or use aggression/hate aura. Otherwise second and following mobs will attack healer.

And one more thing about mob trainer. If you heal/buff a player with mobs on him, those attacking him due to social factor will change the target to healer/buffer. It becomes a common reason healer deathes.

Buffs affect aggression very well
The deal is not only about single buff. Generally buffer works in series of 10-15. At the end of buff cycle, buffer will become primary target for all mobs if tank/hater/sleeper won’t pay attention to the situation.
What can be done? If you are to be buffed, stay clam for buff time, don’t attack mob. It will make buffer less hated and in the end may save his life or at least a lot of mana for yoru healer.

The more you damage, the more you are hated
A tank with low damage can’t keep mob on himself all the time. That’s why tank should use spiritshots.
Mostly mobs turn to tyrants, daggers and archers. Tyrants hit fast, thats it. Archers and daggers hit hard, but they also crit often. Due to ineresting random generator in the game, critical hits often come in rows. So, 2-3 critical hits in a row is not uncommon thing.
This becomes a headache due to difference in defense between tank and tyrant/dagger/archer. With Vampiric Rage buff first two can tank themselves well enough, but archers can’t.
Second bad thing with archers is their behaviur. Kiting is a common tactics for archers in solo. But for mixed group it makes melee damage dealers work ineffective. Players run after the mob instead of hitting it.
Sometimes it becomes easier to reduce archer damage output rather than deal with kiting/archer tanking.
For example, archers are ordered to stop attack if they get mob on themselves, or never use soulshots (it was common on 4x levels).
Also damage dealers always getting mobs on themselves can be denied in berserker spirit.
Also haste can be not applied to archer (it will save some mp for archer in addition to reduced DPS decrease).
In general, if group can work with many tanks, the problem is not that big. You only need some buffs like VR or some additional mp.

How to deal with unneseccary hate?
First possibility – stop your attack. A pair of seconds will add zero hate power to you, while others will have possibility to draw mob to themselves with hate/hits etc.
Second possibility – elven skill Charm. It reduces hate power of the mob toward the player. If silver ranger wants to “give mob back” to tank, he can use charm on the mob. It’s not very reliable skill though.
Third possibility – debuffs/special attacks from other players. Not very reliable thing as well. Mostly kills sleepers.
Fourth possibility – fake death skill. If you trick the mob thinkin you are dead, it will turn to other attackers.
Fifth possibility – trick/switch/chaos skills/spells. It throws a mob to some target nearby.
Sixth possibility – peace spell. Similar to charm. Not very reliable, but sometimes it works. Better than idle, at least
Seventh possibility – repose/song of eva spells. Massive spells, work like mass versions of peace.

Mobs don’t run far
If a mob runs after you, you can try to outrun it. After about a minute of chasing, it will fade in air. But if you meet it later, mob can remember you.
Hate reduces over time. So if you can run from mob for few minutes, it can stop chasing you after all. But generally it takes way too much time.

Tricks and facts
Deads are not bad. Resurrection is not bad as well.
Mobs throw a player out of their hate list as far as they kill him. That is, if player gets killed and the resurrected, he is clean for the mob that killed him.
And the one resurrecting him will not be hated as well.
If player group dies on raid boss, and there is not possibility to run, then resurrection of one of already dead people will save the drop.
Player being resurrected should not attack again. Then he will resurrect the rest of raid people.

Respawn is a thin thing. Stationary target is not always target.
Newly respawned mob is not aggressive or social for some time.
Socialability wakes up in a pair of seconds, aggressoveness – at random, from zero to 15 seconds or more.
If you don’t move, then newly spawned mob can ignore you for more than minute.
It is especially useful for archers and healers. You can ignore newly spawned mob for rather long time.
You just drop “add” in party chat and wait for dealing with current target.
I have seen as a group rested for about 10 minutes with agressive mobs spawned and walked around them.
But some mobs are the exception. You can’t be 100% sure in chaotic world, can you?

Rooted mob will think twice before attack
If you root a mob attacking you and step back, it can forget to attack someone else next to him if the mob is not attacked directly.

There is a possibility that mob will attack weakest target
If there are significantly different levels in a group (40 and 55, for example), there is a probability for mobs to hit lower levels regardless of general hate theory.
For example, Plandos tend to attack lower levels, and it’s very painful, since Plandos hit hard and use skills.
So… keep your eyes open.

Spells are not always related to hate
Mobs don’t always attack tank with their spells. Generally spells are distributed at random. Hate won’t make mob to cast all spells on tank.

Log on attracts agressive mobs. Resurrection doesn’t
If you log into the game within aggro radius of mobs, they will immediately see and attack you. Generally you’ll be dead by the time you get control upon you character.
That’s why good tone for a group you are in is to keep your disconnection spot clean.
If you are being resurrected, you don’t attract all the mobs around. They can notice you like in the case of standing, but generally you have time for immediate soe or buffs.

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