Tome Tactics: Our Last, Best Hope For PeaceOctober 8, 2008
Something that doesn’t get a lot of press these days are the little hexagons lurking in your lower-left corner of the screen — your tactics, character modifications that you can change on the fly without spending a single brass coin on a respec or anything. As you collect more tactics along your journey, and as your tactics slots eventually expand to include four career, two RvR and one Tome (PvE) tactic slot, you’ll have access to a bevy of choices in how you want to “load out” your character for various situations. You can even save multiple pre-set loadouts quite easily by clicking on the number next to the tactics slots.
Career Tactics come standard with your class — you’ll get these at various levels when you go to the trainer, as well as a few that you can buy with mastery points. They tend to have a very powerful impact on your character’s abilities and are unique to your career.
RvR Tactics are purchased at the renown trainer as you level up in renown ranks. WAAAGH! recommends quickly purchasing the +5% more XP from scenarios as your first tactic. There’s also a +5% renown tactic that looks tempting as well.
Tome Tactics are the last slot on your load out, and perhaps the least understood in the game. Serious PvPers won’t bother with them, most likely, because they don’t affect PvP play in the slightest, and most players have no idea how to go about getting them or what they do. That’s where we come in. And then rob your house.
As the name implies, you unlock this tactic through your Tome of Knowledge by doing various activities. It could be fighting a specific mob, talking to a specific NPC, or clicking on a specific item, at which point you’ll get a message that you’ve unlocked “part” of a Tome tactic (such as the “Man tactic” or “Greenskin tactic”). This is where it’s a bit confusing — I know it was for me — because you can’t actually get the tactic after your first unlock. No, to earn a Tome tactic, you have to unlock multiple (at least two) entries that eventually cumulate into a real, purchasable tactic that you can obtain in your capital city (the library in Altdorf, for example).
The cool thing is that the more unlocks you get in a particular category (i.e. “Man” or “Greenskin”), the better the Tome tactic becomes. One unlock, and you have nothing. Two, and you can purchase a tactic that may, for instance, allow you to get 50% closer to a Greenskin mob (not a player) before aggroing it. Three unlocks, and you get the 50% closer thing, plus you take less damage from the mob. And so on.
Tome tactics will help your PvE life out considerably, particularly if you find yourself in an area with certain types of mobs all the time. Even PvPers might want to take a second look at them, because at the very least, they’ll help you run through zones without aggroing everything in the tri-state area.
It helps to have a guide point you to the Tome unlockers, because they’re not quite obvious. Start with this thread over at WHA forums that a friend guided me to — it has many (but not nearly all) of the Tome tactic unlock locations. Then mosey on to this much better post at Money News, which will help to clear up any residual confusion.