This guide will explain and describe build setups and equipment recommendations for the Spectral Wolf, so that new keepers of the Veles bloodline will know more about their spectral familiar.
Spectral Wolf Build Guide
Understanding Spectral Wolf
Spectral Wolf is a crit-based hybrid damage dealer, which is to say, it can use Physical and Magical attacks equally well, and makes use of Crit Chance and Crit Damage to increase its damage. Early on, Wolf has access to strong passives that boost its Attack and Magic, and it will eventually have access to Chill support, Sidekick and Glory support, and Aging.
As a damage dealer, Wolf should be acting last in a turn
One key to dealing high damage is to make use of the combo system. Every action performed by your monsters will build combo, and combo increases the damage (but only the damage) of your monsters. Because of this, it’s important to have your healer or buffer act first, so that the combo from their actions will boost Wolf’s damage.
Prioritize passive skills over active ones
Spectral Wolf has many strong passive skills that increase its damage, and for that reason, active skills must be chosen sparingly, each new one measured against the damage-boosting passives it would otherwise be getting. Because of this, Wolf often runs two or three active skills during the early levels, and doesn’t max out all four of its actives until approaching level 40. It almost never has room to take more than one active skill from a single tree.
Work with your teammates
While Wolf is a powerful monster with versatile traits, no monster can be successful on its own. Wolf is at its most effective when paired with supports that can accentuate the things it does well and cover some of its deficiencies. Wolf can heal itself a little bit but likely wants another monster to keep it healthy. Wolf has strong buff support for Sidekick and Glory, but is very poor at applying those itself, so would work well alongside a teammate who could apply them for it.
The Early Levels
Spectral Wolf has a powerful combination of skills that are available to it right at the start: Lifesteal plus Mana Symbiosis. Lifesteal will heal Wolf for each hit of its attacks, and Mana Symbiosis allows Wolf to regenerate Mana any time it is healed. Taken together, these two skills help Wolf sustain its Mana. The build shown here is available at level 5. In addition to the Mana sustain, we’re grabbing level 2 Air Sickle, since Wind is a useful element for early game.
At level 10, Wolf gains access to two instances of Life Overload, a fantastic skill that raises both Attack and Magic by a percantage of its max HP. This is the level range where Attack or Magic is the majority of your damage, and these skills are almost four times as efficient as taking individual nodes of Attack Plus and Magic Plus. We’re also taking Hybrid Mastery, another strong boost to both our Attack and Magic, and have switched to using Claws as our primary attack for its bonus Crit Damage, as with access to upgraded equipment and a node of Crit Chance Plus, we’re able to make somewhat consistent use of it.
Once we have our important damage-boosting skills, we can get the highest rank in each of our attacks, including regaining access to water coverage thanks to Ice Spears, while Spectral Flame remains an option against monsters specifically weak to Magic. If you’d prefer to have access to spread damage, then Gale is a solid option as well, it doesn’t deal as much damage as Air Sickle but can hit all enemies, and is ideal for clearing weaker groups of monsters.
Wolf gets access to more strong passives at level 20 that directly boost its damage. Aging gives wolf a small but stacking buff every turn, while Outlast supports it with more shielding. Critical Defense will improve our toughness for getting a stat we want to have anyways, and Multi Offense allows wolf to obtain additional Sidekick and Glory buffs. If you didn’t take Gale in the previous rank, then Ice Spear Barrage is another option for AOE damage, if you want it.
Why don’t we take Blessing?
Considering Wolf has access to Multi Offense and would love Sidekick and Glory buffs, you might wonder why it doesn’t choose to take Blessing from its rightmost tree to be able to apply them itself. The reason for this is that Wolf lacks any sort of skill support to make it a strong buff user. It doesn’t have combo buffing, or other passives that allow it to help its team while using Blessing. What’s more, it can’t apply more than one instance of either buff to itself in a turn, so it would need to take two turns of setup to apply the buffs it wants. For this reason, buffing duties, while still important, are best left to allies.
It’s at around the level 25 range where you should look back at the Ice Hail tree. Wolf has access to Flash Freeze, which allows it to deal very high damage when it applies Chill, but its only method of applying it at this point is Cooling, which requires 10 hits on average to apply Chill once. Now that our active skills are starting to get more hits and we have a couple of extra hit passives, Flash Freeze and Cooling are worth taking for the chance at a big damage hit.
A few notes about Flash Freeze on Chill teams
Flash Freeze can trigger multiple times if the user can apply additional instances of Chill, but the monster with Flash Freeze must apply the Chill debuffs itself to get the extra hits, and if it applies a stack of Chill beyond the first, the Flash Freeze proc will deal half damage. As a result, it’s not necessary to run a monster with Multi Chill to support Wolf.
At level 30, Wolf gets some nice additions to its Buff support in Improved Sidekick and Improved Glory, both of which are nice damage buffs. It also gets Primal Rage, which is a significant damage boost over a longer match, ideal when dueling those alchemists.
Ice Storm Chill build
Another thing Wolf gets at level 30 are two major additions to its Chill support. Critical Freeze grants us a free Chill debuff on our first crit, while Multi Chill allows us to apply it more than once. These two things, combined with Ice Storm getting a second hit at max rank and having an innate chance to apply Chill, enable an AOE-focused Mage Wolf build that can deal excellent damage with Flash Freeze procs. This build really shines alongside teammates that can give it buffs and additional Chill support, though it’s weak at fighting Champions.
Shifting your Wolf
At a certain point in the game, you’ll gain access to Monster Shifting, which allows you to choose one of two powerful passives for your monsters, and Wolf is an excellent choice to use your first Shift Stone on.
Both of Wolf’s Shift passives are quite strong, and neither is strictly better than the other. Equipment Mastery lets Wolf hold an extra Accessory, and is the shift that brings higher damage, assuming you have four strong damage-boosting accessories for Wolf to hold. Assault Shield offers some bonus Crit Chance, which will be more than a single accessory’s worth at low upgrade levels but less once fully upgraded, and it also provides strong passive shielding. Light shift is more commonly used, but Dark is very much usable as well, and would be stronger at lower levels.
Gearing Your Wolf
Wolf wants Crit from its equipment, prioritizing Crit Chance because it gets Crit Damage from food and starts with 50%. It also wants Attack and Magic for more damage, and Health, both for toughness and to power Life Overloard.
Shuriken is Wolf’s best non-unique weapon, giving us Crit Chance as well as both Attack and Magic. Coat is our most important accessory, giving Crit Chance and Health, while Fang and Cape both add even more damage.
While Wolf doesn’t need Mana Regeneration as much as other monsters do, it can still help it cast its skills, especially around levels 10, 20, and 30 when you’ve just unlocked the new ranks of your skills. Gauntlet is an option to boost your toughness, while Bracer can be used if you have allies who can consistently boost your Crit chance.
Scythe and Torch are both strong weapons for Wolf once you’ve found them, with Torch offering higher damage but being less consistent. Fin is a fantastic accessory for Wolf, giving us all three stats we want, while Buckler is an option on teams that can apply Sidekick.
Unique Equipment, Part 2
Two of Wolf’s best accessories aren’t available until the very end of the game, so they won’t be discussed in a guide focused on in-game. Once you get these, they’ll be a nice upgrade for however much of the game you have left to play.
As a crit-based damage dealer, Wolf wants Crit Damage from its food. Initially Berries, eventually Raspberries, which not only boosts damage, but also defense, thanks to Critical Defense.
Teammates for Wolf
This is by no means a complete list of every monster that works well with Wolf, but here are some strong options to consider if you’re looking to build your team.
Available in Mountain Path, Yowie can serve as a healer for the team, and is one of the earliest monsters to get Congeal, and important piece of support for Chill teams. It can also apply Sidekick to Wolf with Helping Hand and support it with Heroic Party, and appreciates Glory support to power its Critical Healing.
Easily one of Wolf’s best teammates, Frosty can buff Wolf with Full Offense, eventually twice thanks to Buff Mastery, it can keep it safe with Ice Shield, and it has Multi Chill. It’s available as soon as you reach Blue Caves.
One of only two monsters in the game with access to Multi Sidekick and Multi Glory, Monk can be a solid healer and buffer for Wolf, using Assistance to apply Sidekick buffs with its Heal. It’s available as a Champion in Mountain Path but you can get it as a wild encounter in Blue Caves.
Ice Blob is the only monster with access to Multi Chill and Congeal at level 10, so if you intend to build a Chill team in the early levels, it’s essential, and it’s a solid shielder and defensive support for the whole game.
While it doesn’t have much direct synergy with Wolf, Goblin Warlock is the only monster with access to Mass Restore and Full Offense, and thus it can be quite helpful when facing the plethora of debuff teams used by the alchemists.
Koi has access to Multi Glory and can be a great healer and buffer for Wolf, it brings the rare Mass Restore to clear debuffs, and can boost Wolf further with its Charge support.
Dodo has access to Multi Sidekick and Multi Might to boost Wolf’s damage, can buff it with Helping Hand combined with Bolster, can keep the team healthy, and its unique tribal passive gives Wolf extra defense.
Asura has access to Multi Sidekick, Multi Glory, and Full Offense, so can be a solid option for buffing Wolf
Ornithopter has Multi Sidekick and can buff Wolf with Critical Boon while building combo to boost its damage further,
Dracozul has access to Multi Sidekick and Multi Chill, it can apply Chill quickly with Dragon Mastery and supports it with Sub Zero, though it uses Flash Freeze itself to get more hits. It’s a great option to support Wolf after level 30.
Sutsune is another fantastic healer, can buff Wolf with Assistance, and support it with Multi Sidekick and the rare Cleansing Sidekick
Ascendant is the only mon to have both Sidekick support and Aging, can keep Harmful stacks off the team with Age of Purification while buffing Wolf with Helping Hand, as well as being a strong healer.
Putting It All Together
Here’s one possible max level build for Wolf, which largely combines the two level 30 builds shown earlier, adding strong Chill application and its water AOE to the standard build. We’re able to reach the maximum rank in all of our offensive skills, giving us an attack of each element as well as one AOE, and take every passive we want. Other combinations of attacks are also viable (for example, you could use Ice Hail and Ice Spear Barrage) depending on your team and the monsters you expect to face.
For equipment, Wolf uses Scythe as its weapon, and three different accessories that each provide Health and Crit Chance, allowing us to make use of Health Focus to power our double Life Overload. Fang and triple Raspberries boost our damage even more.