Guide to vaettir farming
- 1 Overview
- 2 Farming
- 3 Builds and equipment required by profession
Spectral Vaettirs are a special type of Nightmares wandering in the phantom norn town to the south-west of Jaga Moraine. They are unique foes in that they are the only ones to drop the Glacial Stones required for the Glacial Gauntlets. Using a dedicated build and equipment in Hard Mode, it is possible to solo kill all 60 spectral vaettirs, then exit and reenter the map in under 2 minutes. This provides the fastest way to collect the following:
- Glacial Stones (which can be salvaged for dust, a material required for the crafting of Essences of Celerity);
- Event drops (for the Consumables titles notably, but also to get the required quantity of items for event-exclusive items and hats);
- Gold items (for the Wisdom title);
- Experience (280xp/foe = 16 800xp/run, which makes it one of the fastest ways to get the Survivor title);
- Miscellaneous drops: dyes, lockpicks and mesmer tomes.
A minor benefit is the possibility to increase the norn rank of the character (with 120-150points per run).
Eye of the North campaign with Hard Mode unlocked is of course required. Hard Mode requires having completed the story at least once on any character on the account. The farming character must have completed the Blood Washes Blood primary quest for all 60 vaettirs to spawn.
Additionally most builds require the use of the skill Shadow Form, which requires Factions, used in conjunction with Deadly Paradox, which requires Nightfall: it is however still possible to use the dervish farming build (the fastest one) with Nightfall only. If owning Factions only, it is possible to fetch an A/El build with Shadow Form+Glyph of Swiftness (see below), but the build will be rather slow because it will struggle to deal damage.
Getting to the farming spot
About consumables and inventory: Keep free slots in your inventory for drops. You can bring Mercantile Summoning Stones if you do not plan on going back to Longeye's Ledge too often. Anti-death penalty consumables such as Peppermint Candy Cane or Wintergreen Candy Cane are advised, especially if you are new to the run: death penalty may indeed make your energy and health harder to manage. Any Morale boost is kept between two runs, so consumables such as Honeycomb or Rainbow Candy Cane will give you up to 10% permanent increase in energy and health: great if looking for more security or if your builds needs it (for example dervish builds using Intimidating Aura). Lastly, Legionnaire Summoning Crystal is an interesting summoning stone to bring, since it can help finish surviving foes; the skill point required for one use is generally easily refunded by the end of the run.
Leaving from Longeye's Ledge, there is a rather straight route which allows you to reach Jaga Moraine and avoid all groups along the way (see the map on the right). You may still encounter Frost Wurms and/or Frozen Elementals: using a spell-preventing skill can help you finish your route nevertheless. If your build has none, you may be required to restart. Once you have reached the location, you can do as many runs as you want.
More drops, safer runs
- Two times 24+36 vaettirs
Aggro all vaettirs of the southern part (below the horizontal line with the resurrection shrine). Going south first then west (toward the Sacred Altar) is the optimal route. If using any Spell targeting prevention enchantments, cast your enchantments before engaging the first vaettirs and maintain them. Using your enchantments/stances/weakness and other survival skills you have you should now take limited damage from the vaettirs' regular attacks, especially when not moving (when moving you may take critical hits from the back). If using Shadow Form, you may also sometimes take more damage due to the strange damage reduction behavior of the skill. Depending on your build, you either have to wait until all vaettirs make a compact ball around you or keep foes together but not around you (if using skills such as Wastrel's Worry and Wastrel's Demise and other skills with adjacent Area of Effect damage, this ensures no foe avoids it). Use your damage-dealing moves, switching between targets if needed using Tab. Repeat the process at the northern part (going north then east once you have the last norn house on your left). Rezone using the same portal from which you came.
More experience, faster runs
- All 60 vaettirs at once
Aggro first all southern vaettirs (see above). You need to ball them together but not around you so that they don't bodyblock you. To avoid scattering, let them hit you at least once. Don't hit them. Then, proceed to the northern part with all vaettirs following you and aggro all other vaettirs, again avoiding getting bodyblocked. Once a vaettir starts taking damage or health degeneration too far from its spawning point, it will try to go back there using the shortest path: to avoid that, find a spot where your character can bodyblock all the vaettirs, for example the north-east house (block the vaettirs between your character, the house and the nearby norn sign. Your path should form some kind of hook). Now use your damage dealing moves. Once all vaettirs are dead, rezone.
You need maintained spell prevention to be able to use this method. Otherwise the southern vaettirs will reevaluate their target after casting a spell and realize they are too far from their spawn point.
Builds and equipment required by profession
All of the following builds require all 200 attribute points.
Vaettirs cast various health degeneration hexes for up to -10 health degeneration. They will also cast Clumsiness, an anti-melee skill, as often as possible to punish attackers (such as Zealous Scythe users). Vaettirs can also inflict Deep Wound with Phantom Pain which lowers healing. They deal up to 35 earth damage at melee range. However, the most important point is the fact that they will spam Ether Feast for healing (and heavy energy loss on you) if their health goes too low. Three ways to counter that do exist:
- Using spell targeting prevention enchantment spells, most notably Shadow Form. This solution will also counter all hexes and conditions and limit the vaettirs to mere auto-attacks. It is absolutely necessary to be able to maintain those enchantments, for example using a +20% of Enchanting mod and skills increasing their duration/decreasing their recharge, as vaettirs have extremely fast activation time for their skills and will hex or ether feast you in between enchantment recasting if given the chance.
- Using energy denial skills to deny access to Ether Feast. The easiest way to do so is by using Sympathetic Visage and/or its duplicate Ancestor's Visage (another idea could be to use Complicate to AoE disable it, but is nearly impossible due to the extremely fast activation time of Ether Feast).
- Killing in one blow. This ensures that the vaettirs don't have the time to use even one Ether Feast. This can be accomplished by using two Mark of Pain and one sweep of VoS+Eremite's Attack.
Once that first part has been taken care of, three things are necessary:
- To survive the vaettir's auto-attacks damage (and possibly degeneration). Plenty of ways do exist: increasing armor rating, blocking chances, ensuring health regeneration or healing, reducing incoming damage, causing AoE blind, weakness.
- To have decent energy management if required. It is not necessary to use a dedicated skill for energy management if attacking with a Zealous Scythe (3 energy/sweep when attacking a vaettir ball if not under Clumsiness) is enough.
- To deal Area of Effect damage and/or degeneration.
- Safest method
- For survivors and beginners unfamiliar with the run
- Fastest method
- For experienced players
Weapon: Of Enchanting mod ("enchantment last 20% longer") (staff, sword, axe or spear). If martial weapon you'll need +5 energy ("I have the power!" inscription) and a shield with +10 armor vs earth damage. Staff is okay if you know the run (take more damage but more energy and 20% chance of half recharge).
Farming process: If /Mo, cast Balthazar's Spirit on yourself (not on Jarnskeggi !). Always use Deadly Paradox before Shadow Form. Recast Shroud of Distress and Way of Perfection on recharge, if possible under deadly paradox. If /Me, use Mantra of Earth right after Shadow Form (this and Deadly Paradox are both stances so using one when the other is still active means that it will cancel it). /Me versions must ball foes together and not around the player otherwise some vaettirs may avoid the AoE damage. If using /El and having energy troubles, use a Zealous Scythe and auto-attack to get energy.
Attributes: Shadow Arts 12, Smiting Prayers 8, Protection Prayers 10, Deadly Arts 1 Divine Favor 2
Armor: Any armor rating with Radiant insignias and superior runes (at least one protection and smiting prayers)on all armor pieces. Headgear with +1 protection prayers or smiting prayers, it doesn't really matters).
Weapon:One-hand weapon granting the bonus "enchantment last 20% longer" (sword, axe or spear). You'll need +5 energy ("I have the power!" inscription) and the -50HP Grim Cesta.
Farming process: Do not display the norn title. When Shadow form recharge reaches around 3/4, cast protective spirit followed immediately by shielding hands. Maintain Shadow form, again always under deadly paradox. If going for survivor, beware of your 55HP when traveling to the farming location, especially if spawning wurms or aggroing jotuns, berserkers or elementals on the way. Protective Spirit + Shadow Form can leave you some time especially against wurms. Alternatively, you can use a normal/high HP equipment set for the run to Jaga Moraine.
Contrary to shadow form based builds, damage is not reduced under Obsidian Flesh.
Attributes: Earth Magic 12, Domination Magic 11, Air Magic 6, Energy Storage 2
Armor: Max armor rating (60) with Geomancer insignias on all armor pieces and attunement runes. Headgear with +4 earth magic.
Weapon: Any weappon set with 20% longer enchantments (staff, sword, axe or spear). With geomancer insignas and stoneflesh aura you shouldn't need any additional armor.
Farming process: Similar to the previous builds but avoids damage reduction from shadow form. Use Storm Chaser or Mindbender to get to the location and to avoid body blocking while aggroing Vaettirs. Maintain Mantra of Earth or Storm Chaser for energy management. Again, cast your enchantments before engaging the vaettirs. Always cast glyph of Swiftness before Obsidian Flesh. Maintain Stoneflesh Aura. Try to have all your foes bunched up together but not around you for wastrel skills. This build is the fastest of all non-dervish builds since wastrel skills' damage is not reduced by Shadow Form: it is also safer than Dervish builds that rely on maximum health to maintain damage reduction. With 6 in air magic, Glyph of Swiftness can pretty much speed up your entire bar but make sure you able able to cast wastrels just after re-enchanting yourself so that you can kill before the enchantments expire. If you start casting mid-enchantments you will have to use glyph of swiftness and your enchantments again and it will delay you. If you cast wastrels on multiple foes by tabbing very fast you will effectively be able to kill before you have to worry about enchanting yourself again.
- Core build
- Variant build
Attributes: Shadow Arts 12, Fast Casting/Domination Magic 11, Inspiration Magic 6, Deadly Arts 2
Armor: Max armor rating (60) with Prodigy insignias on all armor pieces and attunement runes. Headgear with +2 or more fast casting.
Weapon: one-hand axe or spear with heavy prefix ("lengthens weakness by 33%" ) (sword, axe or spear) and with "enchantments last 20% longer". You'll need +5 energy ("I have the power!" inscription) and a shield with armor +10 vs earth damage.
Farming process: As per A/Me with some variations: When you've stopped moving and foes are beginning balling, kick first Feigned Neutrality. When its effect expires (foes should be balled by that moment), use "You Are All Weaklings!". The rank 2 norn is required for a reliably maintained weakness. With "You Are All Weaklings!", Feigned Neutrality, Shadow Form, Mantra of Earth, Ether Nightmare and Cry of Pain you will almost always have 5 skill recharging, hence the use of prodigy insignas. This is less useful if going with Wastrel skills.
- Fastest method all professions considered
- For experienced players (Run can be done under 1:43)
Attributes: Mysticism 12, Curses 10, Earth Prayers 8
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Armor: Max armor rating (70) with Windwalker insignias on all armor pieces and vitae runes. Headgear with +4 Mysticism.
Weapon: Running Set and Aggroing Set: one-hand (sword, axe or spear) with "enchantments last 20% longer" and a shield with armor +10 vs earth damage. You may need +5 energy ("I have the power!" inscription). Any Scythe, of fortitude/warding advised.
Farming process: Cast Eternal Aura upon entering the map. Maintain Drunken master for improved attack and movement speed, if possible while drunk (easy during most events since you'll get alcohol consumables anyway). Cast Intimidating Aura and Great Dwarf Armor and Mystic Regeneration, recast them when needed. You should have over 820 HP. Since you'll rezone between explorable areas, you can use Morale Boost consumables to further increase your health. Cast Mark of Pain on a vaettir and begin balling everything regardless of hexes. Recast Mark of Pain on a different vaettir and once everything is balled (not around you but together), use Vow of Strength followed by Mystic regeneration (otherwise you'll remove VoS with Eremite's Attack). Switch to scythe and wait until Clumsiness wears off to use Eremite's attack.
- Safest method
- For survivors and beginners unfamiliar with the run
Attributes: Mysticism 12+1+3, Shadow Arts 12, Scythe Mastery 3
Armor: Max armor rating (70) with Windwalker insignias on all armor pieces and vitae runes. Headgear with +4 Mysticism.
Weapon: Running Set and Aggroing Set: one-hand (sword, axe or spear) with "enchantments last 20% longer" and a shield with armor +10 vs earth damage. You may need +5 energy ("I have the power!" inscription). Zealous Scythe of Enchanting.
Farming process: Maintain shadow form and the other assassin enchantments. Ball all vaettirs (they can be balled around you, just make sure you hit 3 of them with your scythe). For energy, use Zealous Renewal and keep attacking with your scythe until you have enough (6 energy/strike). Cast your feeder enchantments and remove them with Pious Assault for damage from initial holy damage, burning, Aura of Holy Might and all damage from pious assault. Don't be suprised to see Pious Assault disabled, as this is due to Deadly Paradox. If using this build for survivor, try to kill all vaettirs at once for faster runs.
Variants: Signet of Pious Light/Signet of Pious Restraint can be used instead of Pious Assault if you really fear to be too low on energy and because Deadly Paradox will not disable those signets. Reap Impurities can be used over Zealous Renewal but will be disabled by Deadly Paradox.
Attributes: Wilderness Survival 8+2, Domination magic 12, Illusion Magic 7, Expertise 8+1
Armor: Max armor rating (70+30) and Earthbound insignias on all armor pieces. Attunement runes everywhere else.
Weapon: Off-hand with heavy prefix+Shield with armor +10 vs earth damage.
Farming process: Maintain Melandru's Resilience for up to +20 health regeneration (-10 health degeneration from Phantom Pain+ Conjure Phantasm) and +5 energy regeneration. Cast Sympathetic after having used two or three wastrel skill to avoid ether feast spamming on you. Ball foes together but not around you for wastrel skills. Using a Famine hero is possible to speed up the run, but not necessary at all. Chaos Storm can be used if you have troubles with the short post-sympathetic visage period.
Slow and Inefficient
Attributes: Shadow Arts 12, Leadership 12, Deadly Arts 3
Armor: Max armor rating (80) and Blessed/Centurion insignias on all armor pieces. Headgear with +2 Leadership. Attunement runes everywhere else.
Weapon: Running and Aggroing Set. Zealous Scythe of Enchanting.
Farming process: The assassins skills must be used as in the previous builds. You can't afford to do all 60 vaettirs at once. Once everything is balled, switch to your zealous scythe and begin attack. Maintain Blazing Finale and spam GftE!, using Glowing Signet when having trouble with energy. Be very energy conservative.
Attributes: Curses 12, Shadow Arts 12, Deadly Arts 3
Armor: Max armor rating (60) with Undertaker's insignias on all armor pieces and attunement runes. Headgear with +4 curses.
Weapon: High energy staff of Enchanting. Zealous Scythe of Enchanting
Farming process: Do all 60 vaettirs at once. Use Enfeebling blood as a way to inflict weakness on all vaettirs, but "You Are All waeklings!" at rank 5 works too (EB lasts longer but requires health sacrifice). Use Suffering and Mark of Pain for damage (you must bodyblock the vaettirs to avoid scattering). Use Insidious Parasite on the last standing vaettir or ignore it and simply rezone; if you do so this leaves a free slot for Signet of Corruption or Great Dwarf Armor, for example.
It may be possible to use a VoS build similar to the dervish one.
Attributes: Channeling Magic 12, Shadow Arts 12, Deadly Arts 3
Armor: Max armor rating (60) with Blessed insignias on all armor pieces and attunement runes. Headgear with +4 channeling.
Weapon: Main hand of Enchanting and shield with armor +10 vs earth damage. Zealous Scythe of Enchanting.
Farming process: Flag a hero in the mob to have a corpse to fuel the additional damage of Lament (which is armor ignoring) with. You will not be able to resurrect him for a second ball though, should there be one.
Variants: Weapon of Aggression for energy management through faster zealous scythe sweeps and to use Ghost Forge insignias. Spirit Rift is yet another way to deal damage, but vaettirs have a high armor. A build centered around Vengeful Was Khanhei will cause the vaettirs to scatter.
Warrior (not tested)
Attributes: Dagger Mastery 8, Shadow Arts 12, Strength 8
Armor: Max armor rating (80) with Blessed insignias on all armor pieces and attunement runes. Headgear with +2 strength.
Weapon: Main hand of Enchanting and shield with armor +10 vs earth damage. Zealous Scythe of Enchanting. Any daggers. A staff with high energy is advised due to the high initial energy investment for Deadly Paradox+Shadow Form+Shroud of Distress (30 energy)
Farming process: Counterattack is for energy management along with your zealous scythe. When dagger attacks are available again (deadly paradox disables them half of the time), switch to daggers and use your skills.