Pillar Karok Guide

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Concept art of Karok.

Some formatting was borrowed from Tamaki's Hammer Time! Fiona Long Hammer Guide with permission.

Pillar vs. Cestus[edit | edit source]

Pillar pros:

  • More straight forward than a cestus (don't have to think about which blast gauge effect to use, or when to dodge, etc.)
  • The only character that can potentially deal damage to the boss constantly without having to stop in order to block or dodge the boss's attacks thanks to Absorb Shock. This thereby significantly increases pillar karok's overall DPS.
  • Has much longer reach than a cestus (thereby making it easier to disrupt the attacks of trash mobs) which combined Absorb Shock makes pillar karok the veritable king of trash mob killing. This is particularly useful at higher levels such as Ortel castle when even the normal enemies are quite dangerous... stupid hounds.

Pillar cons:

  • Not as fast as a cestus
  • Generally does less damage per hit (note that I did not say less DPS) due to the lack of Blast: Crushing Strike and Blast: Destroyer
  • Potentially more dangerous as Absorb Shock does not absorb all of the damage and the regeneration has to be used to make up for that. During that time however, even a single arrow from a single measly gnoll archer can and will cut off said regeneration if it is not absorbed.

Overall, the two are pretty well balanced and it really comes down to preference. Consult Rod or Fist: an Evaluation of Karok's Weapons for more details on the differences.

Karok's Pillar Smashes[edit | edit source]

This smash doesn't become useful until you get the skill War Slam at level 42, at which point it becomes one of your most powerful smashes.

Not overly useful until you get Chain Combo: Grizzly Uppercut at level 30. At that point, it allows you to use his LR (left-click; right-click) smash and then immediately pull off either his LLR or his LLLR smash.

Karok charges forward attacking 4 times. The beauty of this smash is that anytime before the 4th attack, the player can immediately roll or dropkick out of it, making it quite effective with Absorb Shock

Karok swings his pillar in front of him and then after pressing right-click a second time (LLLRR), he slams his pillar down causing a shockwave. This is pillar karok's only AOE smash. The second part of Mammoth Swing also has a very long activation period for Absorb Shock making it very good for both dealing damage, as well as avoiding it.

Skill Planning[edit | edit source]

Most of Karok's AP should first be put towards maxing his primary skills. After those are maxed, you can safely rank up his secondary skills.

Primary Skills[edit | edit source]

An effective demonstration of how to properly use the skill. Credit to Arcus2658 for making the video

Absorb Shock[edit | edit source]

Absorb Shock (Skill).png

This is pillar karok's most important skill. It sets him apart from from every other character in that it allows him to potentially deal damage to the boss constantly without having to stop in order to block or dodge the boss's attacks. It is also pillar karok's only real way to avoid damage.

  • Ranking:

Max this skill ASAP

  • How to use:

Used by either attacking or dodging at about the same time that the boss would normally hit you. It is important to note that it only works at the beginning of the animation for a normal attack or smash. Thus, Bison Charge will only absorb damage for the first pillar hit and not the other three. However, it is still a very effective smash to use as you can immediately dodge or dropkick as soon as the boss attacks.

Battle Respiration[edit | edit source]

Battle Respiration (Skill).png

This is one of the most important skills for everyone except for Evie as it allows you to regenerate stamina much faster. As one cannot do anything without stamina, it is very important.

  • Ranking:

Get it up to rank A immediately. Don't bother ranking it higher than that though as after rank A the benefits are microscopic and have a huge AP cost.

Smash Mastery[edit | edit source]

Smash Mastery (Skill).png

This significantly increases the damage that Karok's smashes do. As that is where all of his damage comes from, it is a very important skill, especially since he cannot upgrade his individual smashes.

  • Ranking:

Get it up to rank E immediately. After that, it takes precedence after Absorb Shock and Battle Respiration

  • Note:

Must have Combat Mastery at at least Rank D in order to unlock Smash Mastery

General Skills[edit | edit source]

Pillar Charge[edit | edit source]

Pillar Charge (Skill).png

The damage done by pillar charge is truly pitiful. However, it is cheap to upgrade and rank C is needed to unlock Dropkick. Used primarily to destroy misc. objects quickly when searching for magic powders XD

  • Ranking:

Get it up to rank C quickly in order to unlock Dropkick. After that, leave it alone.

Dropkick[edit | edit source]

Dropkick (Skill).png

While Dropkick is not karok's best attack, it is made more useful due to it's excellent synergy with Bison Charge as well as the fact that it has a short recovery time, allowing you to roll out of it quickly if need be.

  • Ranking:

Immediately rank it up to rank E. After that, it is really personal preference whether to focus on Dropkick or Boss Bash first.

Boss Bash[edit | edit source]

Boss Bash (Skill).png

Boss Bash is used when the boss has been knocked down by pressing E. It deals good damage and more importantly, makes Karok invulnerable while doing so thereby making it ideal when soloing multiple bosses simultaneously, such as in Source of the Rumor. Unfortunately, it 1.) pushes the boss away, which can make it difficult for your allies to hit the boss. Also, there are a lot of bosses who cannot be bashed.

  • Ranking:

While it is an effective skill, due to the problems mentioned above, it should probably be ranked only after his other general skills (except for Clash).

War Slam[edit | edit source]

War Slam (Skill).png

War Slam is a powerful ability that allows Karok to, after reaching rank A, slam the ground as many times as his stamina allows.

  • Ranking:

Should be upgraded to Rank A as soon as it is acquired at level 42.

Standing Endurance[edit | edit source]

Cloth Armor Proficiency (Skill).png

Reduces the chance of knockdown and at rank 9 allows the character to immediately roll out of being knocked down.

  • Ranking:

It is cheap and potentially life saving at higher levels and it is thus recommended to get it up to rank 9 as soon as you reach level 30.

Critical Hit[edit | edit source]

Critical Hit (Skill).png

Critical Hit simply increases the chance of getting crits and the damage that they do.

  • Ranking:

Can safely be upgraded to rank E as soon as it is acquired. After that, it falls below the above skills and his SP skills in priority.

Clash[edit | edit source]

Clash (Skill).png

Clash is an ability that allows karok to stop a boss's attack in it's tracks. Even when maxed out it doesn't do a lot of damage and thus generally isn't very useful while soloing. In a group however, it can be quite good as it provides up to 10 seconds for the other players to attack the boss without fear of repercussion.

  • Ranking:

It can safely be ranked to rank E as soon as it is acquired. After that though, the damage bonus isn't that good and even when maxed out the cool down is still 100 seconds. As such it should probably be saved until after all other general and SP skills.

  • How to use:

Press E when the E key shows up on the boss. Once you have entered the clash, press the left mouse button repeatedly to win the clash. In order to prolong the clash in order to extend the boss's vulnerability window, left-click three-four times quickly, let off for a second. Repeat until the clash ends.

Pillar Toss[edit | edit source]

Pillar Toss (Skill).png

By holding down E, Karok throws his pillar, damaging any enemy within it's path and allowing Karok to use unarmed combat.

  • Ranking:

In my experience, Pillar Toss is not a particularly effective skill and thus I would recommend not ranking it up until after all other useful skills have been maxed.

Combat Mastery[edit | edit source]

Combat Mastery (Skill).png

Increases the damage done by normal attacks.

  • Ranking:

Should be ranked to rank D quickly in order to unlock Smash Mastery. After that, it is very low priority.

Chain Combo: Grizzly Uppercut[edit | edit source]

Smash- Grizzly Uppercut (Skill).png

This is a good skill as it allows the player to use karok's LR smash and then immediately jump to his second normal attack, thereby allowing karok to quickly pull off either a Bison Charge or Mammoth Swing. Good for both damage and shock absorption.

  • Ranking:

Only upgrade this when every single other useful skill has been maxed out. Even maxed out it only reduces the cool down by .17 seconds which I've personally never found any use for.

SP Skills[edit | edit source]

SP skills are skills that can be used only after the SP gauge has been filled to a certain amount. Karok gains SP by dealing damage with his smashes. He gains his first two SP skills at level 30.

SP: Howl[edit | edit source]

SP- Howl (Skill).png

Howl costs 1 SP bar and allows Karok to remove a single debuff. When successful, he activates a health regeneration buff. As only a handful of bosses have debuffs and since when used properly Absorb Shock prevents them, it is a highly situational skill.

  • Ranking:

Even maxed out the health regen buff is negligible and that combined with the fact that Howl is very situational, it becomes a very low priority.

SP: Whirlwind[edit | edit source]

SP- Whirlwind (Skill).png

Whirlwind costs 2 SP bars and can do a lot of damage, especially when maxed out. Unfortunately, it does not seem to work with Absorb Shock and should thus be saved for the bosses' vulnerability phases.

  • Ranking:

Rank it up to rank E immediately. After that, it falls below his primary skills in priority.

SP: Earthquake[edit | edit source]

Earthquake is a powerful ability that causes Karok to slam the ground with his pillar, damaging and slowing every enemy in a large area-of-effect. More importantly, it makes Karok invulnerable during the animation. As it costs 4 SP bars as opposed to the 2 for whirlwind, whirlwind can probably do significantly more damage. However, the invulnerability makes earthquake ideal for soloing. Thus, I would recommend using SP: Whirlwind in groups and SP: Earthquake while soloing.

  • Ranking:

Since it is one of Karok's most powerful abilities and because it isn't acquired until level 52, at which point all of his other important skills should be maxed, I would recommend maxing it immediately.

Transformations[edit | edit source]

Transformation skills allow Karok to transform into either a paladin or a dark knight for 2 minutes. Both transformations grant 50 extra stamina, 500 extra HP, and 700 more ATT. This differences don't come into play until the player has used their transformation enough times in order to level it up a few times.

The most noticeable difference between the two is that a paladin has Grace: DEF which can increase DEF up to +750. A dark knight on the other hand has Revelation: ATT which can increase ATT up to +1500. Thus, the paladin takes less damage and the dark knight deals more. Since Absorb Shock does not absorb all of the damage that Karok takes, I find that the increased DEF of a paladin is more effective on pillar Karok. It is the player's choice however. Take a look at the path skills of the two transformations before you make your decision.

Dark Knight Transformation[edit | edit source]

Dark Knight Transformation (Skill).png

Paladin Transformation[edit | edit source]

Paladin Transformation (Skill).png

Training Skills[edit | edit source]

Training skills are simply skills that grant passive bonuses to a character's attributes.

Strength Mastery[edit | edit source]

Stamina Mastery (Skill).png Grants bonuses to STR. Since every point of STR is worth 2 points of ATT, it is Karok's most important attribute.

  • Ranking:

After all primary and general skills

  • Since Strength Mastery is the only particularly useful training skill for Karok, I shall list the other ones in the order that they should be ranked. Note that they should only be upgraded after all other useful skills have been maxed.

Willpower Mastery[edit | edit source]

Willpower Mastery (Skill).png Eventually get it up to rank D for Life Flare

Stamina Mastery[edit | edit source]

Stamina Mastery (Skill).png

Health Mastery[edit | edit source]

Health Mastery (Skill).png

Agility Mastery[edit | edit source]

Health Mastery (Skill).png

Meditation[edit | edit source]

Meditation (Skill).png

Intelligence Mastery[edit | edit source]

Intelligence Mastery (Skill).png

Equipment Skills[edit | edit source]

Equipment skills are ones that have to be at a certain rank in order to wear certain armors and use certain weapons. At the levels when such equipment is available, these skills take precedence over all other skills. I shall list what ranks of each skill (other than Cloth Armor Proficiency since it's useless to Karok) he should have at various levels

Light Armor Proficiency[edit | edit source]

Light Armor Proficiency (Skill).png

Heavy Armor Proficiency[edit | edit source]

Heavy Armor Proficiency (Skill).png

  • Level 40: Get it up to Rank C for the Exquisite Spider Lord Set (if you decide to use Spider Lord armor, afterall, one only has to wait another 4 levels before getting the much better Laghodessa armor)

Plate Armor Proficiency[edit | edit source]

Plate Armor Proficiency (Skill).png

  • Level 40: Get it up to Rank C for the Exquisite Spider Lord Helm (if you decide to use Spider Lord armor, afterall, one only has to wait another 4 levels before getting the much better Laghodessa armor)

Pillar Mastery[edit | edit source]

Pillar Mastery (Skill).png

  • Level 30: Get it up to Rank D for Ulchas

Misc. Skills[edit | edit source]

HP Potion Proficiency[edit | edit source]

HP Potion Proficiency (Skill).png This is a cheap skill that can easily save you a lot of money on HP potions.

  • Ranking:

After all other primary and general skills

Campfire[edit | edit source]

Campfire (Skill).png A cheap skill that can give Karok both invulnerable armor (not as important for him as Fiona, but still nice) and up to 225 ATT

  • Ranking:

After general skills and HP Potion Proficiency

Life Flare[edit | edit source]

Life Flare (Skill).png A very expensive skill that even when maxed out, only gives Karok a 35% chance of surviving a fatal blow.

  • Ranking:

After primary, general, and all other misc. skills and after Strength Mastery