An in-depth arcana guide

Hello,

As an Arcana main since the release of the Korean version, I have played this class on the Russian servers as well as the Japanese one and am waiting for the European/American release. I wanted to bring a guide for all people looking forward to the class.

But enough of me, today I’m here to give you all the information that you need to know how to play Arcana, and get hyped up like I am.
(Note that all the names in english of this guide are not the official translation by AGS).
Disclaimer: I took the stats of the actual Russian version. All of the ratios are expected to change.

                                  What is Arcana?

First of all the most important thing to know is, what Arcana are the pros and cons and what it does:

Pros:

  • Outstanding mobility (depending on your build)
  • Fast dps skills
  • Can be close/mid range (depending on your build)

Cons:

  • Squishy and low health
  • Hard to play and master
  • Almost no support to the team

The class have three types of skills:

  • The yellow skills called the General Skills

  • The blue skills called the Stack Skills

  • The red skills called the Ruins Skills

Those skills have to be combined to make a maximum of damage, that is why this class is unique on its way because you are “stacking” up the damage over time to release the big damage at the very end.

The General Skills (yellow) are like any other skill in the game, just doing damage in the most simple way and helps you build your dps as well as charging your Identity Meter which is the RNG and what makes the class so much interesting.

On another hand, you have the Stack + Ruin Skills, those two are working as a pair to make damage.

Like the name suggests, the Stacks Skills (blue) allow you to stack up to 4 cards (also called Doom cards) on the mobs/boss/adventurer and then with the cards accumulated on the enemy, you can “unleash” them by using a Ruin Skill (red). You have to know that the more cards you are stacking (up to 4), the most damage you will be able to do with your Ruin Skill.

This is how the stack of the Doom Cards look like:
1 card 1 card.
2 cards 2 cards.
3 cards 3 cards.
4 cards 4 cards.

         Skills

Now that you know the basics of the class, let see what skills the Arcana have:

arcana skills

As you can see, we have:
6 General Skills;
7 Stack Skills;
4 Ruins Skills.
And 2 Ultimates (like any other class).

The outstanding mobility comes from the Stack Skills mostly. For the General and Ruin Skills, we are more on par with a Sorceress Igniter or a Summoner.

So now that you know how it works, let’s get in detail of what those skills do (in the most basic way, without any tripods).

         General Skills

Call of Fate Call of Fate : Deal damage in the specified location, knock up enemies into the air.

Unlimited Shuffle Unlimited Shuffle : Aoe staggering and knocking up then knocking down enemies.

Return Return : Deal damage in the specified location then knock down enemies.

Mysterious Surge Mysterious Surge : Move to the left and throw a card. Then come back to the initial position to throw a second card.

Dark Resurrection Dark Resurrection : Deal damage in the specified location, fearing the enemies.

Evoke Evoke : Deal damage in the specified location, after some seconds knocking enemies up.

         Stack Skills

Quadra Accelerate Quadra Accelerate : Throw 4 cards in a straight line increasing your movement speed but locking you up in one direction. Apply up to 2 doom cards.

Scratch Dealer Scratch Dealer : Dash 7m forward dealing damage. Can be used a second time to knock down enemies. Apply up to 2 doom cards.

Spiral Edge Spiral Edge : Performs a somersault up to 7m at the end of the jump, deals damage and applies 1 doom card. (Usable 2 times)

Dance of the Spine Flower Dance of the Spine Flower : Leaves a card on the ground then moves forward while attacking. Using the skill again allows you to teleport back to the location of the card. Apply up to 3 doom cards.

Checkmate Checkmate : Throw cards forward continuously. Can turn the character around. Apply up to 3 doom cards.

Stream of Edge Stream of Edge : Create two portals creating a line dealing damage for 5 seconds up to 15 hits. Apply up to 2 doom cards.

Infinity Shower Infinity Shower : Throw cards in the specified location, throwing up to 3 cards while pressing the skill. Apply 1 doom card.

         Ruin Skills

Celestial Rain Celestial Rain : Deal damage in the specified location, enemies knocked up will receive additional damage and are getting knocked down. Consume the doom cards applied.

Four Cards Four Cards : Throw four cards where the character is facing, dealing damage and pushing enemies. Consume the doom cards applied.

Serendipity Serendipity : Throw cards in a fan shape to deal damage and knock back enemies. Consume the doom cards applied.

Secret Garden Secret Garden : Create an immediate aoe around the character. If 4 doom cards are applied to the enemies, knocking it down. Consume the doom cards applied.

         Ultimate Skills

Prismatic Mirror Prismatic Mirror : Summons cards in a circle shape that bounces little cards around who stagger the enemies. Allow to draw 2 cards from the Identity card instantly.

The fate of Death The Fate of Death : Summon a big card summoning the Reaper dealing damage in front of the card in a fan shape and knocking enemies back. The higher doom cards applied, the more damage.

Explanation on the infinite combo of Prismatic Mirror


The most common skill build is this one:

Call of Fate Return Quadra Accelerate Scratch Dealer Spiral Edge Celestial Rain Serendipity Secret Garden Prismatic Mirror

Why this build? It allows you to stack up the Doom Cards really fast and have the best mobility possible with the Arcana as well as dealing the most damage possible in the safest way.
Also we are using Serendipity and Return for their counter.
Most spells used have low cooldowns allowing you to spam.

         Identity of the Arcana

Now that we have seen all the skills that Arcana can give you, let’s talk about the Identity that makes this class so particular. We are calling those cards Tarot Cards.

So what is the Identity of the Arcana?

The Arcana has a gauge that when it’s full allows the class to use a Tarot card that will give you a bonus. You can hold that card or use it instantly, this is entirely up to you, but notice that only 2 cards can be held at the same time, the gauge will be blocked at 0% until you use one of the 2 cards.
This is the most important part of the gameplay of the Arcana and you have to learn every Tarot card that the RNG can give you to maximize your dps, survivability and fun.
There are 12 cards to learn + a 13th card that will only unlock with one of the two class engraving.

This is how the Tarot gauge look like:
Identity (Quite nice isn’t it?)
Notice that the white button on the bottom of the gauge allows you to open a window that explains all the cards you can get.

Let’s see what the cards can give you one by one.

         Arcana Card Deck (Tarot Card) 

Samdusa Medusa Samdusa/Medusa : Allow you to throw 3 cards in a cone instead of 1 while auto-attacking dealing more damage. (This card changed a bit in the Korean version)

Madness Madness : For 30 secs when you attack, increase your attack speed by 3% per attack up to 15%.

Twisted Fate Twisted Fate : For 4 secs, increase your damage by 40% or remain unchanged.

Corrosion Corrosion : Apply a debuff with 30% chance that increases damage on an enemy by 10% for 5 seconds.

Ghost Ghost : For 16 seconds increases movement speed by 20% and allows you to pass through enemies. Plus, reduce the damage received for the next 3 attacks by 50%.

Culling Culling : Increase your critical hit chance by 100% and critical hit damage by 50%.

Balance Balance : For 30 secs, apply an additional doom card for every skill used.

Judgment Judgement : For 4 secs, whenever you use a Ruin Skill, it will always hit as if the enemies have 4 doom cards on them.

Moon Moon : For 30 secs, cooldown -10% and the mana regeneration rate +20%.

Star Star : Recover 100% of the mana and reduce the cooldown of the skill by 15%.

Royal Royal : Give your instantly two Tarot cards.

Wheel of Fate Wheel of Fate : The cooldown of the next skill is reduced by 100% including your ultimate.

Emperor Emperor : Special card that unlock only with the class engraving Emperor’s Edict.
Deal damage within 14m.


Are you still there? This is why this class is hard, you have to combine everything to make yourself great during fights. But it doesn’t look as difficult to learn as it looks, in a matter of days of playing the class you’ll learn everything.

         Engravings and Stats for PVE

Emperor's Edict
Emperor’s Edict : Skills fill the Identity Gauge 50% faster and increase their damage by 10/20/30%. Allow you to use the Emperor Tarot Card.

Empress Grace
Empress Grace : Ruin Skills deals 20/25/30% more damage on enemies with 4 Doom Cards and restores 30% of spent mana.


Now, with the recent change on the KR version, the Emperor’s Edict is better now, but the strongest build remains the Empress Grace one.
The Emperor’s Edict is really good for all the “casual” content like the Chaos Dungeon or the Cube.

Now, with the basic engraving settled down, you still have to get a few more engraving, at some point in the game people will ask you to have 5 lines of Lv3 engraving, so what would be useful to maximise your dps? The sooner you know which one to get, the sooner you can prepare.

Like any other dps in the game, the best way to improve your dps is by using Grudge at Lv3, it’s very expensive I agree, but this is the best dps engraving you can get.
What’s nice with the Arcana is you can have different engraving but still be viable, Grudge is very important but it’s high risk, high reward and if you are not confident enough of your skill you can always keep it for later, but we will go with Grudge as the final engraving build.


What are the most interesting engraving then:

  • Empress Grace Lv1 / Emperor Edict Lv3.
  • Grudge Lv3.
  • Keen Blunt Weapon Lv3.
  • Barricade Lv3.
  • Adrenaline Lv3.
  • Cursed Doll Lv3.
  • Hit Master Lv3.

With the recent changes on the KR version, two builds are viable to play.
The first build is the one that ever got played so far, which use the crit rate and crit damage, but it seems that this build is less stronger than the second one.
The second build plays with the flat damage that Hit Master can give you. This build seems to be the stronger one now.


So now let’s deep into what are the best engravings for each set of equipment.


With Legendary stuff (from ilvl 1370 to 1415) :

(Note 1 : This build is the best you can get, you don’t necessarily need the 4x3 line, you can go with the easier 3x3, in that case either Barricade or Adrenaline can be removed depending on how you want to play).

(Note 2 : You can also get Empress Grace at Lv3 and reduce something else.)

(Note 3 : This build is a bit better than the other one for this ilvl but cost more, but if you want to play with flat damage already it’s possible, in that case change Keen Blunt Weapon for Hit Master).

  • Grudge Lv3.
  • Keen Blunt Weapon Lv3.
  • Barricade Lv3.
  • Adrenaline Lv3. (Can switch to Cursed Doll/Hit Master Lv3)
  • Empress Grace Lv1.


With Relic stuff (from ilvl 1415 to 1540) :

To play with flat damage and some of crit procs :

  • Grudge Lv3.
  • Cursed Doll Lv3.
  • Barricade Lv3.
  • Hit Master Lv3.
  • Adrenaline Lv2.
  • Empress Grace Lv1.


Or to play with your crits :

  • Grudge Lv3.
  • Keen Blunt Weapon Lv3.
  • Barricade Lv3.
  • Cursed Doll Lv 3.
  • Adrenaline Lv2.
  • Empress Grace Lv1.


With Ancient stuff (from ilvl 1540 to 1xxx) :

To play with flat damage and some of crit procs (with the recent KR changes, this build seems to be the strongest one) :

  • Grudge Lv3.
  • Cursed Doll Lv 3.
  • Barricade Lv3.
  • Hit Master Lv3.
  • Adrenaline Lv3.
  • Empress Grace Lv1.


Or to play with your crits :

  • Grudge Lv3.
  • Keen Blunt Weapon Lv3.
  • Cursed Doll Lv 3.
  • Barricade Lv3.
  • Adrenaline Lv3.
  • Empress Grace Lv1.

(The Emperor Edict is the same build but you’ll want to get the Lv3 instead and put another engraving at Lv1).

More explanations for the current meta build


I guess you are all wondering why using Barricade with the Arcana when none of its tripods allows you to get a shield?
It’s common to use the Runes for shielding with the Arcana that makes a great combo with the Tarot Card that the class can bring you. With that, it makes the use of Grudge less hard since you can shield quite often.

More explanations for Barricade and the Runes


Let’s see now what stats are the most important for Arcana and what they do.

Crit :
Improve your critical strike chance of x.x%.

Specialization :
Increases the damage of skills inflicted with the Doom cards (Ruin Skills) by x.x%
Increase the rate of the Identity Meter by x.x%.
Increase the damage of the awakening skill by x.x%.

Swiftness :
Increases attack speed by x.x%.
Increases movement speed by x.x%.
Reduce the cooldown of skills by x.x%.

As you could see with the two class engravings viable, you won’t need the same stats for both of them.


For the Empress Grace we are doing 75%/25%.
- 75% Specialization and 25% Crit.

You’ll want to get the Crit only from your Necklace, all the other accessories will be with Specialization.

Why this build?

With Empress Grace we are looking for the biggest number thanks to the Doom Cards.
When you combine the crit stats + the good engravings, you’ll hit mostly with crit that will make your Keen Blunt Weapon to proc at almost every hit and gain a huge gain of dps.


For the Emperor’s Edict we are also doing 75%/25%.
- 75% Swiftness and 25% Crit.

You’ll want to get the Crit only from your Necklace, all the other accessories will be with Swiftness.

With the Emperor’s Edict we are looking to generate the most Identity rate to get that Emperor Card as fast as possible.
The Swiftness will allow you to “spam” skills and let you unleash cards way more often and the more cards means more chances to get that Emperor Card.

         PVP

Is Arcana any good at PVP?

Yes, it is thanks for its (again) outstanding mobility. You won’t have the role of doing the most damage, even though with some build it’s possible to go over the 1M dps in 3v3.
With how squishy it is, you’ll wait for the opportunity to burst down someone really fast or be the one that will stagger your enemy as much as possible to open the way to your allies to kill them.

I will share my PVP build and Stats that allowed me to win quite a lot of time and gave me the most fun possible:

Call of Fate Return Dark Resurrection Scratch Dealer Spiral Edge Dance of the Spine Flower Stream of Edge Celestial Rain Prismatic Mirror

For the stats:
1 Crit
249 Domination
750 Swiftness

PVP Build Arcana

The basic idea of this build is to do the most damage thanks to the crit tripod as well giving some control to get out of bad situations like in 1v3 and be able to keep one enemy locked in one place to give space. As well as giving enough mobility to catch up on some mates.


I hope this guide will help you understand more of the Arcana and will hype you up for it.
I’m hoping the class will arrive as soon as possible.

Also, don’t take this guide as 100% accurate because it can change in the future before it comes to our servers.

Sorry for the typo this guide could contain. I will make a french translation of this guide later on.
Thanks for reading this guide, don’t hesitate to ask questions if needed, I will do my best to answer you.

20 Likes

This is a FANTASTIC guide. And has confirmed for me that I will NOT be playing Arcana haha

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I was just looking into Arcana more in case it comes before Summoner so this was a good read, thank you for putting this post together!

Since you have played a lot of Arcana, I’m curious to know if you think that the recent balance patch on KR made the Emperor’s build more viable? I recently saw a guardian raid and chaos dungeon video on Youtube of someone running it and it looks like a lot of fun, and from what I’ve gathered perhaps a bit easier to manage for someone who likely plans on playing it as a higher ilvl alt (though I haven’t looked at much Empress content yet either).

I’ll be sure to revisit this post once she’s released :grin:

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The recent changes on the KR made the engraving of the Emperor to be on the gems that have to be refined.

I couldn’t try myself these changes, but if so it doesn’t change much from the current meta as in the biggest changes have been made on the four ruin skills that deal way more damage with the doom cards. So in the end, the Empress’s build seems way more powerful than it was before (and then it is currently on the RU and JP).

And yes, the Emperor’s build is easier to play as you don’t have to stack the cards entirely to make great damage.

In a sense the Arcana have the “problem” as the current Sorceress, both build can be used, some top KR players are using the Emperor’s build, but one is prefered because the high damage will be too important later on in the game.

Also notice that for the Empress’s build you can go with a Lv1 engraving while for the Emperor’s build you’ll need the Lv3, something that significantly reduces the damage overall.

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Thanks for this guide. You’ve really sold Arcana as a potential alt/main for me when it releases.

I hope useful/informative threads like this become more prevalent as the game grows.

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You are welcome!
Just by reading this guide doesn’t make feel the gameplay of Arcana, I do hope people can feel how special it is compare to all the other classes. :slight_smile:

omg ! THANK YOUUUUUUU

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Thank you for this guide, it’s quite interesting! Does it take into account the Arcana changes that KR got a last week? I saw Arcana now has a gem to increase the Emperor’s card damage!

You are welcome!

I didn’t mention all the changes except for the Samdusa/Medusa and indeed the Emperor’s Edict gem. All the major changes were the buff of damage for some tripods of Celestial Rain, Serendipity, Secret Garden and Four Cards.

Return and Mysterious Surge had their Head Attack removed and Checkmate deals 12% more damage in PVE.

Since I didn’t use any numbers and didn’t talk about the tripods I thought it was irrelevant to talk about the changes except for the Emperor’s Edict and the Samdusa changes. :slight_smile:

I was mainly wondering if it had changed the engravings or runes, but it seems like it hasn’t :slight_smile:

Hopefully we don’t get rejected from parties like some classes at the moment!

Genuine question, not criticising your build at all, the number 1 player in kr for arcana doesnt keen blunt, they run hit master instead

https://loawa.com/char/킹쌈녀

My question, asside from the crit as a substat on the necklace, what % crit chance does she have? I can’t find info anywhere, like some classes have extra crit chance with back attacks but arcana doesn’t back attack, isnt her crit chance below 60% therefore making it inefficient to run keen blunt over hit master?

to clarify this is an actual question, not trying to criticise the post as its great

I didn’t take this as a criticism, and of course, all forms of criticism are good and welcome. :slight_smile:
I don’t intend to be the best Arcana, take this guide as a way to step into the learning of the class.

While the build I suggested is a common one, it can be changed to the one you pointed, it’s also possible to change Keen Blunt for Hit Master.
It’s normal you are getting confused because I didn’t say it properly because I didn’t put the tripods and just showed the engravings bluntly.
To make it short, in the build I showed, only three skills don’t have a tripod that boost the chance of critical chance, and that’s why we are playing with these skills mostly because they have these tripods.
The skills who don’t have those are : Call of Fate ; Quadra Accelerate and Spiral Edge.
While it’s possible to play without the tripod of the crit rate for Scratch Dealer (like the guy of your link), all the other spell are played with it and it’s safest bet to be with Keen Blunt Weapon because you are bound to have more than 50% crit rate on most of your skill (the one that make the most damage aka the Ruins Skills).
But if you want to play with flat damage while keeping some decent crit rate, you can totally go for a build without Keen Blunt Weapon and take Hit Master.

The Arcana have back attack and head attack, most of the blue are back attacks for example.
I can’t give you the exact crit rate chance, but with the ~500 you are at ~20%.

(I checked about the current build in Korea and most of Arcana aren’t playing with Keen Blunt Weapon anymore but with Hit Master instead, I wonder why, I do not have the answer to this question, I will try to make some research).

It’s my mistake to not talk about it in my guide and I’m gonna change it soon, thank you. :slight_smile:
I hope my explanation is clear enough and satisfies you.

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So with my bit of research, I could find an answer that seems to be the correct one.

Basically the build I made is still viable, but with the recalculations from the new patch, it seems that using Keen Blunt Weapon isn’t as necessary as it was before (for me in the RU ver).
To give an idea of the calculations, now :

We can compare the Adrenaline 2 and Empress Grace 1 to this new builds :
Adrenaline 3 + Empress Grace 3 = 14.9% more dps than before with the Adre 2 and EG 1.
Adrenaline 2 + Empress Grace 1 + Cursed Doll 3 = 15.4% more dps.
Adrenaline 2 + Empress Grace 1 + Keen Blunt Weapon 3 = 13% more dps.

So overall, you will gain just by changing KBW with Cursed doll a gain of 2.4%. And of course if you add it with Hit Master at 3, the flat gain will be even higher, hence better than KBW now.

Like I said it’s still viable but you"ll need:

333321 > Grudge/KBW/Barricade/Hit Master/Adrenaline/Empress Grace.

This build is weaker but more comfortable to play with as in you are counting on your crit to build damage and makes you safer in general battles. You can also rely more on your pots (and use Major HP potions instead).

But then, with the new patch, the best build seems to be :
333331 > Grudge/Cursed Doll/Barricade/Hit Master/Adrenaline/Empress Grace.
333321 > Grudge/Cursed Doll/Barricade/Hit Master/Adrenaline/Empress Grace (less expensive).

This build is more expensive and will require you to be perfect in the execution of the class.

I hope it clarifies why there are using this build. Although mine is still viable at our current state of the game if the Arcana is coming before the Ancient gear is coming.
But like you saw, it’s still viable to play with KBW, you’ll have a bit less damage but safer overall.

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This is great. I really wanted to see the cards effects individually beforehand. Great stuff!

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Hi, why is Prismatic Mirror better than The Fate of Death? All videos I’ve seen of her, they use the second awakening. Also, isn’t Return a counter ability too?

Yes you are right, it’s my bad!

Thanks for letting me know, I’ll change it right away! :slight_smile:

For the ultimate it can depend on the boss.

Why Prismatic Mirror is better:

Like I said in the guide, you can get two Tarot Cards by using Prismatic Mirror, just still alone makes the ultimate more interesting because you can get more reward by using it.

Now in the perfect configuration, let’s say that you have the Wheel of Fate tarot card, you can reuse your ultimate (works also with the Fate of Death) but in that way, you will get a slight chance to get another Wheel of Fate and use your ultimate a third time and get two more new cards and if you are lucky you can just spam the ultimate possibly.

The chance is slight but definitely doable in real battle hence having 4 different cards that will improve your dps way more depending on what you will get or just a quality of life.

In the RU version, while writing this, I went to try and I had the chance to get not once, but twice this combo of 3 ultimates and 6 tarot cards.

So basically :

Wheel of Fate > Ultimate > Ultimate / Wheel of Fate > Ultimate / Wheel of Fate > Ultimate / Wheel of Fate >>>

The second ultimate is good when you need Destruction (like Valtan) or a lot of staggering as it it’s mid-high and doing more damage when you have 4 doom cards applied on an enemy.

So, both of them are good to use, but Prismatic Mirror is more interesting for the combo you can potentially make with it. But both are fine on their own.

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Oh, that combo of Wheel of Fate > Prismatic Mirror looks pretty nice. Thanks for clarifying it!!

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I don’t understant :no_mouth: Can you explain a bit plz

As you could see with this guide, I wrote about the best build you can have, in that build you have 3 Ruins Skills which are the ones with the least cooldown (minus Serendipity).

In that build, we are using the Protection Rune (shielding) on those three Ruin Skills because you can use another skill with it to improve the damage (or even The Fate of Death).
In the case that the three of the skills have the rune, you have 3 skills that can make +16% damage without any down side, just that alone it’s pretty strong.

Now imagine having all T3 gems at level 10, it will give you 20% of cooldown reduction on all of your red skills, you are bound to get shields between 70 to 80% of the time of the fight, can you imagine spending most of the fight with shields? Doesn’t it look great? Furthermore, with the Empress build, you get more burst on your red skills and give you back mana.

If you have the ghost card activated and you get your shields, you will take 50% less damage for the next 3 attacks that will go in your shields, so basically, you’ll take no damage.

Since the Arcana have to set up the damage, you are often at risk because you will go from close to mid range or vice-versa during your combos, and that alone will make you have more sustain as well as giving you more damage.

It’s a cheap engraving, very useful for long fights and will make you less dependent on potions if you are careful enough.
There is really no bad side to Barricade for Arcana.

(Note that it’s possible to also change Barricade for something else if you can’t meet the lines necessary, it would be more expensive depending on what you are taking).

Thx for the clear answer !
Wondering now if an other class can do the same :smiley: Like gunslinger ?!

If I catch you. To make use on barricade, u need to set protection runes on High damage skill with low cooldown.

I couldn’t find the uptime on the protection rune, do you have it plz ?