So you want to make big damage, eh? Let's get into it. This page will take you through the principles of high damage wand creation and provide simple examples. Those basic examples are enough to kill any enemy in the game, but if you want to really perfect a wand and maximize dps, that takes creativity. Let's get into it.
For really high damage wands, you need a good damage modifier. That can be either of:
- Gold to Power: You need infinite gold for it to be good (gold becomes infinite if you get more than 2.1 billion of it), but it adds 10,000 damage if you do. Consistent and powerful after you farm up infinite gold. This can be done by stacking Greed perks by visiting parallel worlds and breaking the reroll machines.
- Blood to Power: You need ambrosia so this spell doesn't kill you, but you take no damage while you have it applied. BtP scales with your current health, up to 55,000, where it caps out at dealing 24,000 damage. So it's more powerful than GtP, but it's dangerous and finicky.
Spells to Power
Spells to Power is a major way to increase damage. Every projectile with StP copies damage from every projectile without StP, for each stack of StP on the projectile. So, if you have 100 projectiles with 10 StP applied to each, and 10 projectiles with GtP applied already in the air, that's 10,000 (GtP) x 10 (number of feed projectiles) x 10 (number of StP applications) x 100 (number of payload projectiles = 100M damage. In this way, our use of StP has multiplied the overall damage of the cast by 1,000.
StP is a computationally expensive spell, though, so it can freeze your game for minutes if approach the reasonable maximum, and crash the game if you exceed it. From experimentation, the StP limit is about 100,000 - 200,000 calculations, (calculations = # of feed projectiles x # of StP x # of payload projectiles). here's an example setup using GtP, StP, and divides to make good damage:
This wand needs 80,000 calculations (800 StP x 10 feed x 10 payload), so it's in the range where the game will start freezing for quite a while but won't crash. This wand does 128 billion damage, calculated as follows: 10,000 (GtP) * 800 (copies of GtP) * 10 (feed projectiles) * 800 (StP) * 10 (payload projectiles) * .2 (boss's projectile modifier) = 128B.
Crit is our next ingredient. The best way to apply crit is with the Water and Crit on Water spells (or blood or oil, whatever you prefer). The Water spell causes all projectiles in the same cast state to automatically activate Crit on Wet; you don't need to hit the enemy with the drop of water that the spell makes.
Every copy of Crit on Wet on the wand will increase the critical damage modifier by 5x, so if you have 800 copies, your payload projectiles will be dealing 4000x damage from the critical damage modifier.
Here's an example wand using BtP, StP, and crit:
This one does nearly 600 trillion damage. Getting quite good!
Velocity damage is the last main ingredient, and it's a bit of a pain in the ass. The mechanics of it are that when a projectile hits an enemy, the projectile damage applied is multiplied by velocity damage multiplier. The multiplier scales with the ratio of the projectiles current speed to the projectile's starting speed. So, the goal is to get the projectile to start at as slow a speed as possible, and then accelerate to the game's maximum projectile speed. The is achieved by using Accelerating Shot, which multiplies starting speed by x0.32 and adds acceleration.
- The game's maximum speed is 20, and your target initial speed should be around 0.00015. That's close to as slow as you can get it.
- Spell lab allows you to see the starting speed of your projectiles. Go to "enable toggle options" and then "enable spell logging." This is very useful for tuning your velocity.
- If the starting speed is too slow, the projectile won't spawn at all. If this happens, remove some accels or add some Speed Ups or Light Shots.
- If the starting speed is close to right, the projectile will spawn when shot downwards, but not when shot upwards. This is because of gravity lowering the shot speed when pointing upward, I think.
- Order matters for application of speed modifiers. This is because the starting speed is capped to 20 at all steps in the process, so a Speed Up does nothing if it's already at 20.
- Be careful when using Divides on your speed modifiers - they can lead to unintuitive spell orderings and thus strange interactions with the speed cap.
- You'll probably want a homing modifier, since you need to be shooting downwards all the time. Rotate Toward Foes is the only one that doesn't break velocity damage, so use that.
- Be careful: wands have a hidden stat that multiplies speed by a number to begin with, and this is different across different wands. A setup that works on one wand may not work on another.
- If you do it right, you'll be getting a 200x damage modifier or more from velocity damage.
Here's a setup that uses only BtP and velocity damage:
This wand does around 4.5M damage, instead of the base 24,000 from BtP, for a velocity multiplier of close to 200.
Here's an example that uses everything so far:
This one actually only does 300 trillion damage, because of the sacrifices made on damage ( x2 lost), StP (x4 lost), and crit (x2 lost) to make room for the velocity setup. This also isn't a great velocity setup, and appears to only be providing us with a x8 multiplier. Fitting everything on one wand is a challenge,
Here are some details and other things you'll probably want to put on your wand:
- Piercing: While this will make your bullets kill you, it will also make make them apply their damage 60 times per second. They probably won't hit you, right?
- Rotate Toward Foes x10: Dividing your rotate will make your projectiles permanently live inside the enemy and not do loops through them. This is how you get maximum damage form Piercing.
- Projectile Weakening Curse: Against the boss, this curse ends up being 2.25x damage, which is pretty good for a single slot if your wand is optimized. It doesn't stack, though.
- Luminous Drill with Timer: This is the nicest way to create a separate cast state so StP doesn't contaminate your feed projectiles. Either make feed and payload two separate casts, or use this.
- Bouncing Burst: This is a nice projectile because it has a long natural lifetime for damage over time with piercing and won't die if it hits a wall.
Fitting all of that onto one wand is a serious challenge, given that we were suffering with just the added imperfect velocity setup, but it can be done with effort and creativity!
As you can see, space is a serious concern, even with 26 capacity, if you want to put on all of the important things. In the velocity example, we weren't making full copies of damage or crit or StP, and we didn't even have piercing, multiple copies of rotate toward foes, or projectile weakening. There are clever ways to conserve space to fit everything in and more, but it takes a lot of creativity! You don't need to do that for any reasonable target in the game, though. The 33 orb boss is swiss cheese to even a simple and unoptimized setup - it has a mere 1 trillion health. If killing that guy is your goal, then just make a wand and go blast him. That being said, it's quite satisfying to try to push damage per second as high as possible using all the obscure mechanics that you can bring to bear to make a better wand. Give it a try, if you feel up to it, and have fun! Spell lab is the wandcrafter's best friend. Can you tackle the 61-orb boss challenge in the challenge section of spell lab with you've learned?
Written by Zoldort