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The Art of DoA Spiking

#1
About this Guide
This is meant to be an advanced read for players already familiar with DoA.
For a detailed basic walkthrough check this: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1COKjs3TjZYg6WSvK0zzXybH5bCIZvOGS8JK0-md8f4w/

Before the run
Be prepared, you should have the following:
- Ranks: [[Pain Inverter], [["You Move Like a Dwarf!"] and [["Finish Him!"] should obviously be maxed, but even [[Ebon Escape] heal can make the difference!
- Armors: normal energy armor AND a high hp armor. No, removing your headpiece doesn't count as an high hp set.
- Equipment: 40/40, bow, high energy set, spear/shield
- Stones: ghastly stones for damage, random (such as zaishen, mysterious or celestial) stones for breaking aggro
- Pcons: cupcake, apple, corn, egg, pies, war supplies, cookies, res scrolls.

General Usage
Be Proactive
Before every spike select your own target and use preparations ([[Arcane Echo], [[Air of Superiority]) early.
Spike when the ball is ready! A good spiker will cast their skills when the ball is ready. A great spiker will finish casting their first skill a few milliseconds after it's ready.

Communicate
If you are VoR and you need to delay the spike, say so!
Before a lot of spikes, call your [[Mistrust] or [[Pain Inverter] target. For example in foundry say "I'll mistrust Dabi / Su / Despair / etc", that informs other spikers not to mistrust the same target before your mistrust triggers.

Optimize skill usage
This might sound obvious, but understand what your skills do and how enemies trigger them.
You want to do as much damage as possible in the shortest amount of time, so for example when using [[Wandering Eye] and [[Energy Surge], always use wandering first, and then e-surge, because wandering takes time to trigger.

Targeting
Understand the range of your skills and use them accordingly.
Understand the goal of each spike, in small spikes like in foundry the goal is do damage and kill, but in bigger spikes like city, 6-0 or gloom killing is easy, the hard part is killing everything cleanly.
Because of that, in small spikes have your AoE skills hit as many enemies as possible. Save your single-target skills and [[Unnatural Signet] for single-targets.
On big messy balls try to select targets slightly off the center in such a way that your skills will still hit most of them, but you also cover a bit of the side.

Role-specific
Caller
Always use [[Visions of Regret] at the start of the spike. The only exception is when you can cast spells on one target before the ball settles, typically during 360 and 6-0. In those cases make sure you wait and hit most of the enemies with VoR.
FBGM bars have both wandering eye and unnatural signet, but often, if the team is decent, you won't have time to use them both. Using vor->wandering->unnat just to have your unnatural cancelled by the death of the enemies is a waste, so you have to choose between wandering OR unnatural. Typically wandering eye is to be preferred because of the more damage, but it doesn't reliably trigger on everything, in which case you want to prefer unnatural. Try to tab between wandering and shatter, you really don't want to shatter wandering eye! To recap:
VoR->Wandering->[tab]->Shatter on 4man spikes where wandering reliably triggers.
VoR->Unnatural->Shatter on 4man spikes where wandering does not reliably trigger.
VoR->Wandering->Unnatural->Shatter on 2-3man spikes, since with less people you have time to use all your skills. For example City 2nd outside ball, Veil Mesmer trench.

TK
This section is going to be mostly about off-damage, since that's what TK is about.
First of all, you need to understand what it means to do off-damage in each spike and how much eoe will help you. For example on 6-0 the main ball is huge, anything below 90% will instantly die to eoe, but during 360 this is not the case, eoe will do a big chunk of damage but leave them at ~30/40 % health. As TK your job is to not to bring everything below 90%, it is to kill everything, and this means acting in different ways depending on the size of the main ball.
Note that wandering eye or esurge are both enough to bring most foes below 90%. Unnatural is not, so typically you need PI + unnatural if you can't use anything else.

In detail:
- During 360 hit all the offdamage hard, only stop casting on them if the other spikers are terrible and offdamage is at 50% while main ball is still alive, in which case swap to main ball. Pro-tip: target and call the left fiend on 6th wave, use PI on it, and use your other spells on the other fiends.
- During 6-0 all you want is to bring as many enemies as possible below 90%. Target and call a fiend in the right side, then target a fiend in the left side. Left side will run in earlier so you can use wandering eye on it, then use your called target to cast e-surge on the right side. That's all.
- During all spikes where you are not sure what is going to be offdamage such as city or gloom, try to select something in the back or in the hardest part to target, then when the ball settles you can quickly evaluate if your decision was good and easily select a close, left or right target if it was not.

IaU
Nothing specific about iau... don't forget your gaki! Oh and read the Black Beast section below on how to pull it.

MLK
You need to understand a simple thing, mobs in doa use skills a lot, so [[Wastrel's Demise] is a terrible skill that generally does no damage. Don't spam it!
MLK is the only spiker without a third main aoe spiking skill, so you should use echo often to have double e-surge.
Don't forget about your other skills in your bar: you should almost always use backfire on Ki's, but also try to use backfire on casters and empathy on attackers outside the ball. This includes for example Runds and Vus in foundry or fiends in veil.

Location-specific
City Wall
On the wall, everyone's job is to maximize the damage and avoid running out of energy, I will list each spell energy efficiency and comments below:
- [[Unnatural signet]: ~63dmg/energy. Best skill at the wall. Mandatory to use on recharge.
- [[Energy Surge]: ~20dmg/energy. Be careful, with its big range you may hit a spirit placed just below the wall by one of the Tuks.
- [[Wandering eye]: ~22dmg/energy BUT it will make VoR trigger for less or not at all if you cancel an attack skill, be careful on when you use it. Prioritize E-surge over wandering.
- [[Backfire]: ~11dmg/energy/trigger. It will trigger a lot, use once on each Su.
- [[Visions of Regret]: ~12dmg/energy/trigger. It will trigger a lot, use once on each Mank.
- YMLaD and FH only have ~7dmg/energy (14 counting the deep wound from FH). DO NOT USE. Only exception if you have energy and need to finish the LAST enemy, in which case feel free to use FH.
- [[Empathy]: ~6dmg/energy/trigger. It won't trigger a lot since Manks are often busy casting Unguent and being rupted by Wandering. Empathy will also reduce VoR damage by a lot making the overall damage not much better. In meta tactics the mesmer with empathy also has Backfire, and he doesn't have enough energy to use both. Generally don't use, only exception is if you need to finish off the last Mank or if you don't also have Backfire on your bar.

TL;DR: MLK and VoR stay ahead and cast backfire and VoR on recharge. MLK on SUs, VoR on Manks, everyone else use e-surge, wandering eye, focus mostly manks, kill whatever is left behind, including non-hexed SUs. Everyone always use Unnatural on recharge.

Darknesses -> Earth spawns
Darknesses spawn in an arc around the greater darkness. Earths spawn in an arc around each darkness. Because of those 2 things, the earths will not spawn on a tight ball, so on this spike it's really important to select a center target and hit as many as possible so that everything will die to eoe.
As soon as Earths spawn press and hold Ctrl, if any Darkess is still alive target and hit that ASAP, otherwise find a target somewhere around the middle and cast on that. You don't have to spike the instant they spawn, but don't wait more than 1-2 seconds.

Black Beast
One big important thing for whoever is doing the pull (typically IaU): As soon as black beast spawns you have aggro of it, regardless of where you are. If everything goes alright, Black beast will spawn as soon as you aggro the titans, and then you don't need to run deep into cave to aggro it, just care about the titans. The exception is when there is a big delay from black-beast trigger to when you aggro the titans, in which case you do have to walk to the black-beast spawn point. Your job is to (1) spawn black beast and (2) block the titans and their subsequent spawns. Do the last part of the pull moving sideways, block at the claw, and when they die take a small step back to ensure nothing spawns behind you.
Everyone else should start spiking as soon as the titans are blocked, regardless of where the black-beast is. Whoever has YMLaD in their bar should keep the black beast targeted and rupt the touch of aargh. Tip: target the rages and use mistrust - not only you will prevent powerful aoe spells, but you'll also deal tons of damage!
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