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I was recently playing a POTD Trial of Iron playthrough and it was my best ToI run yet. I was level 20 and doing end game content, specifically everything in Wael's dungeons (forgot what these are actually called; the place with Wael's body). For context, I had a battlemage (my character), warden, herald, wizard (no subclass), and mindstalker in my party. My battlemage and herald had both never been downed up until this point. I had tons of good gear and, at least for my understanding of the game, fairly decent builds (I retrained pretty much everybody at level 19 to get rid of any old skills I found myself no longer using and take either better skills or passives).

This is where things went off the rails on three separate occasions.

Perma-Death #1: My wizard got disintegrated by somebody in the infected spore area. I actually missed what happened in the combat log, so I'm not sure if it was by an enemy or if maybe my mindstalker got dominated and cast disintegrate on him...? After this, I recruited Fascina to fill the gap and because I suppose she's supposed to be part of this quest anyway.
Perma-Death #2: My mindstalker disintegrated herself lol. Can disintegrate be reflected or something? I looked at the combat log to see what happened and again, I couldn't exactly figure out what happened, but what I saw a "Wren destroyed Wren" (Wren was the name of my mindstalker). After this, I briefly left Wael's dungeons, defeated The Messenger, and then recruited Vatnir to fill the gap.
Perma-Death #3, the nail in the coffin: I returned to Wael's dungeon. Unfortunately, I delved too deep and unleashed the "Frightened Child". The battle was actually going quite well; my team was all still alive and the majority of the summoned ads had been killed. However, Frightened Child was doing some crazy damage to my main battlemage with that multishot crossbow thing (even though I had 10 or so martial buffs cast on my guy). That said, the battle still looked to be going in my favor and I was not too worried about. Then, slow motion death animation... and I notice the portrait for my main character is gone. Once again, f****** disintegrated lol. Trial of Iron game over. Save game deleted.

My Questions
I know what I signed up for and I do enjoy Trial of Iron mode, but to lose my main character at level 20 who had no injuries and previously had never even been downed in my play through did feel pretty unsatisfactory, especially since my other four party members could easily have cleaned up that battle under non-disintegration circumstances. I did not even see the spell being cast that ended up being my character's doom. I'm about to jump back on the horse and make a new party, but I have some concerns:

1. Are there any tips for preventing your party getting disintegrated in general?

2. Is there a way to prevent disintegration via some item and have it result in a standard knockout/injury instead?

3. Is there a definitive list of all the enemies in the game who can disintegrate you?

Having not really even seen exactly how it happened in any of the three perma deaths above, I don't feel very confident I can avoid making these same mistakes on my next playthrough and I really need some tips. Thanks!

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Spores have some wicked abilities, for example "storing magic" - every time they are hit with spell number of stacks of it goes by one, on death for each stack they fire magic missiles (like lv1 spell, autohit), with few stacks they can hit hard.

Spell reflection work vs disintegration, watch out not to cast it on enemies with it and try to keep it all the time on wizards.

Try to use BDD(priests spell, nemnok cloak, wand from Bkarna observatory), street sweeper staff with proper upgrade can help too. IDK how items with "second chance" type of enchantment interact with disintegrate type of spells.

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Sorry this happened to you. FS is probably extremely brutal on trial of iron, because it throws in a lot of possible instadeaths at you, on top of disintegration effects. I think on top of Disintegrate, it might be Death by a 1000 cuts (which cipher-types in FS love to use) that might be triggering disintegration if someone dies. I can't say for sure since it's not mentioned in the ability, but anecdotally my last run I felt like I was getting disintegated left and right and it seemed like the only culprit could have been death by a 1000 cuts. Luminous Spores also have an effect that I don't remember that can act as an instadeath effect IIRC that can come out of nowhere if your'e fighting off other possible disintegration effects. I think Death Cloud might annihilate as part of its instakill.

Important to know that the actual damage tick of a Disintegrate isn't necessary to disintegrate you - so long as a party member has a disintegration or disinstegration-related debuff, if anything else would knock them out they are instead annihilated.

Also your disintegration can in fact be reflected. Many of the vithracks and other enemies in FS will create an arcane reflection shield - it's basically not worth using any targeted effects against them unless you can strip them of this reflection shield via street sweeper, arcane suppression, arcane cleanse, or concussive shot. In addition, I feel like there are some enemes in FS that have some inherent spell reflection.

 

1 hour ago, Yefo said:

1. Are there any tips for preventing your party getting disintegrated in general?

Nothing to prevent disintegration. The main way to protect against it is to also protect against death/instadeath. Keep your party members above near death will protect you from instakill effects, and something like Barring Death's Door or Shieldbearer's Lay on Hands will give you a death prevention shield which will guard you against from being suddenly blasted. You could try to use potions of major recovery, but -10 sec duration is nothing compared to typical durations of distinegration effects i think. I think Veilpiercer (or somet other bow) has a unique effect that in addition to cleansing benefical effects, also cleanses hostile effects in a wide area, but it's 1/rest. Street sweeper enchanted to do -10 sec hostile effects may help.

Arcane reflection and other spell reflection can help, but are only useful for wizards or wizard multiclass since otherwise the effect is too rare, too expensive (potion of perfect arcane reflection uses adra ban iirc), or too inconsistent (imperfect only gives you a 50% chance and konstanten's resting bonus only gives you a 30% chance). but enemies *will* happily bounce disintegration and death of a thousand cuts back onto themselves. You just have to pay attention to ensure proper uptime because it's not easy to AI script "cast this whenever the reflection wears off" and disintegration effects are high spell levels so will eat up your arcane refleciton pretty quickly.

 

1 hour ago, Yefo said:

2. Is there a way to prevent disintegration via some item and have it result in a standard knockout/injury instead?

not as far as I can tell.

 

1 hour ago, Yefo said:

3. Is there a definitive list of all the enemies in the game who can disintegrate you?

sorry, not that I'm aware of. But I can say in FS beware of all cipher-types, beware of luminous spores of all types, and beware of wizard-types (due to Death Ring, which may annihilate on instakill). That's a lot of enemies. edit - FS is the main problem area that I can think of for disintegration. I think Concelhaut's fight might have some disintegration risk (I seem to remember being surprised once). There are a couple of high-level cipher encounters scattered throughout where they will use disintegrate on you. sorry, i can't remember where they are. but I think FS is the only place where you'll see death by a thousand cuts being used.

Luminous Spores and sporelings are the worst because they can periodically use an extremely painful effect that does IIRC a buttload of damage and importantly does an arcane cleanse effect (-1000s on beneficial effects), so barring death's door or lay on hands won't protect you against death/insteadeath/disintegrate when they're around.

 

 

also be careful - frightened child and a few others in FS will use petrification (the tier 9 wizard spell) on you. All the anti-death and disintegration proactivity in the world won't protect you against a permanent petrify at near death. You can't suppress it or cleanse it and it doesn't wear off at end of combat. The only solution is to repeatedly re-equip an item that bestows dexterity resistance, have a chanter chant that bestows dex resistance, or a party member who can buff dex (i think limited to just chanter or paladin).

 

 

edit - rats! ninja'ed by @Waski :)

Edited by thelee
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Thanks @Waski and @thelee, this is a ton of good info! It sounds like basically I need to be super careful in FS and avoid being near death at any time. Also watch out for enemy statuses like reflect as well as their numerous ways of insta-death.

One noob question: how do I inspect the various status effects on a given enemy on PC? I feel I should know this by now having played 200+ hours, but I do not lol. I know highlighting an enemy, I can see the list of statuses show up on the left, but can I actually see what each status does? For example, @Waski mentioned the "storing magic" status, which I actually saw, but I did not know how to see what that status was actually doing. I just see the name of the status in the window that pops up, but when trying to move my mouse over to the window to highlight the status, of course the window disappears.

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4 hours ago, Yefo said:

Thanks @Waski and @thelee, this is a ton of good info! It sounds like basically I need to be super careful in FS and avoid being near death at any time. Also watch out for enemy statuses like reflect as well as their numerous ways of insta-death.

One noob question: how do I inspect the various status effects on a given enemy on PC? I feel I should know this by now having played 200+ hours, but I do not lol. I know highlighting an enemy, I can see the list of statuses show up on the left, but can I actually see what each status does? For example, @Waski mentioned the "storing magic" status, which I actually saw, but I did not know how to see what that status was actually doing. I just see the name of the status in the window that pops up, but when trying to move my mouse over to the window to highlight the status, of course the window disappears.

unfortunately, there's no real way to do this, which sucks. best bet is just paying close attention to the combat log and mousing over rolls and effects for clues.

 

i think for the extremely dedicatedly curious, you can use console commands to give your own characters the abilities and read the auto-generated tooltip.

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