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by Linkzoid

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Ability Guide by Linkzoid

Version: Final | Updated: 12/16/08


This guide designed to explain Abilities. Abilities are skills or powers that you can make more efficient as you spend experience in the schools of Strength, Skill and Will.

I hope that my guide allows you to make an early decision about which Abilities are worth trying to get the Mastery level of. This is especially true when looking at Will Abilities. By looking at my guide, you can compare all of their damage and effects easily without having to worry about making the wrong choices.

Gaining experience

As you kill enemies you will notice that they drop green and other coloured orbs of light. These are experience orbs. The green orbs come from the enemies' own powers and knowledge. These always appear when an enemy is defeated. Blue, yellow and red orbs appear when you use Strength, Skill or Will (respectively) to kill an enemy. To collect your experience orbs after or during a fight, pull and hold the right trigger. If you are knocked out when there are experience orbs around, they will disappear. If things are looking bad, collect that experience in case you lose it! You can also drink potions to give yourself different types of experience. General experience potions cost more because general experience can be used to increase any Ability in any school (more on that later). You can practically buy experience too. When you donate gold to the Temple of Light you get some experience.

Bonus experience

As you get better at fighting (using special fighting moves, mixing up melee, ranged and will) you will notice that you get bonus experience at the end of a fight. Bonus experience increases the experience you collect by the percentage shown at the top of the screen. This can be very useful to help you increase your abilities faster. A clever tactic to use when increasing your abilities is to save any experience potions you have until after a battle in which you think you did extremely well. The bonus percentage also applies to experience from potions. The more experience potion gives, the better. This tactic can allow you to gain high amounts of experience when using the highest quality potions (62,500 experience).

Spending experience

So, you've just cleaned out a field of beetles or a cave of Hobbes and now you have a ton of experience to spend. There are 2 ways in which you can get to the abilities screen. As you gain enough experience to get a new Ability, it will tell you at the top of your screen. Press up on the D-pad at this time to go to the abilities screen. The other way is to pause the game and use the left thumbstick or the bumper buttons to scroll to the abilities page. From here you can choose your school and then the Ability that you want to increase. If you decide you don't need or want a certain Ability anymore, press Y to discard it and get half the experience back as general experience.

Leftover experience

For example, if you have maxed all your strength abilities and still have hundreds of thousands of strength experience left over, you can actually use that experience to raise your other skills. Simply discard a strength Ability and then buy it back using your left over strength experience. The experience you have returned goes to your general exp. Do this until you have as little strength exp left as possible. Make sure you stop discarding and re-learning your strength Ability just before you start to use your general exp.

The basic process is as follows:

1Discard AbilityHalf the experience used to purchase this skill is returned to the general pool.
2Re-learn AbilityUse the general experience that you receive to increase other Abilities.

The end result is whatever spare strength, skill or will exp you had is halved and added to your general exp where it can be put to good use helping you level up.


Strength is the most important school for warriors. It increases their power and knowledge of advanced combat techniques such as Flourishing and Blocking attacks. There is one Ability though, that can be useful to other types of Hero: Toughness. Increasing your Toughness is practically a must no matter what type of Hero you are. Relying on Potions of Life to increase your health is not a good idea. Later on in the game, enemies can kill you with a single attack if you have low Toughness, even if you used Potions of Life. Increasing the Physique Ability will make you look much more muscular.

Brutal Styles

Brutal Style 1: Blocking - Exp: 300

Hold X to block all incoming strikes, from any direction. You'll take a step back, but you'll be safe.

Brutal Style 2: Flourishes - Exp: 3,000

Hold X to charge up for a Flourish. When you feel a rumble, release X to deliver a blow powerful enough to smash through an enemy's block, or send unblocking enemies flying through the air! This will knock them to the ground where your dog will be able to attack them. Be warned: if you're attacked while charging a Flourish, you'll automatically block, and then have to start charging again.

Brutal Style 3: Chain Attacks - Exp: 18,000

By timing your strikes perfectly, you can chain strikes together, speeding them up and increasing their damage. Watch for the subtle clues that let you know the exact time window in which to press X. In addition, while reloading a ranged weapon, if you tap Y at the moment you hear the reloading sound, you'll reload instantly.

Brutal Style 4: Counters - Exp: 72,000

Just as an enemy is about to strike you, tap X while pointing LS in his direction to Counter his move. He'll be spun around and left dazed for a finishing move!

Total Experience: 93,300


Increases the damage you inflict with melee weapons.

LevelDamage MultiplierExperience

Total Experience: 618,600


Increases the length of your health meter.

LevelLife IncreaseExperience

Total Experience: 463,950


Skill is the most important school for rangers. It increases their damage and accuracy with ranged weapons as well as teaching them advanced tactics such as aiming for certain body parts and rolling to avoid damage. Like Strength, there are a couple of abilities here that can aid other forms of combat. The first Ability is the Dextrous Styles. The first level of Dextrous Styles allows you to roll, which is useful for any Hero about to be hit by a bandit lunging at you with a club aimed for the back of your head. Another useful Ability - this time for melee characters - is Speed. The more you increase Speed the faster you can swing your melee weapon. Increasing the Accuracy Ability will make you taller.

Dextrous Styles

Dextrous Style 1: Roll - Exp: 300

While facing an opponent with your weapon unsheathed, tap A to roll in any direction. You won't take any damage while rolling, so use it to stay alive in tough spots!

Dextrous Style 2: Aimed Ranged Attack - Exp: 3,000

Hold Y to enter Aim mode, which allows you to manually aim using the LS. Once your reticule is close to an enemy, it will stick to them for easier targeting. Flick the LS while you're locked onto an enemy to instantly switch to other nearby enemies.

Dextrous Style 3: Zoom - Exp: 18,000

Holding the aim button Y longer will zoom you closer to a locked enemy. The more you zoom, the more powerful your shot will be.

Dextrous Style 4: Sub-Targeting - Exp: 72,000

While holding the aim button Y, hold LT to bring up the Sub-Targeting cursor. You can use this to choose which part of the enemy's body to aim at. Use LS to switch between body parts. Experiment with different enemies to see what you can hit!

Total Experience: 93,300


Better accuracy will allow you to increase the damage you do with all guns and crossbows.

LevelDamage MultiplierExperience

Total Experience: 618,600


Increases the speed of all your strikes, and how quickly you reload your ranged weapons.

LevelSpeed MultiplierExperience

Total Experience: 463,950


Will is the absolute most important Ability school for Will Users. Increasing Will abilities will make your lower level spells more powerful and your higher level spells charge quicker. You can only have 1 spell for each spell slot at a time. So finding the right combination of spells is important. Practically any Will Ability (or spell) can be used with melee or ranged characters to aid in combat. For example, slowing time while you line up a headshot or raising the undead to help you fight a large group of bandits. I think it is wise for any Hero to invest some experience in this school for support spells during combat. Increasing your knowledge of Will powers will make you develop glowing Will lines on your body.


Damage your enemies with a blast of electric energy.

Shock Level 1 - Exp: 450

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Shock Duration1 second1 second
Max Number of Targets13

Shock Level 2 - Exp: 2,700

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Shock Duration1.5 seconds1.5 seconds
Max Number of Targets14

Shock Level 3 - Exp: 16,200

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Shock Duration2 seconds2 seconds
Max Number of Targets15

Shock Level 4 - Exp: 64,000

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Shock Duration3 seconds3 seconds
Max Number of Targets16

Shock Level 5 - Exp: 194,400

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Shock Duration4 seconds4 seconds
Max Number of Targets18

Total Experience: 277,750


Send forth a ball of trailing flames at an enemy, or scorch all those around you by summoning a ring of fire.

LevelExperienceTargeted DamageSurround Damage

Total Experience: 216,650

Time Control

Slow down time to gain an advantage over your sluggish enemies. You can also target a single enemy using LS to rush towards him for a surprise attack.

Time Control Level 1 - Exp: 600

Targeted Spell - Appear Behind Target

Targeted Distance10m
Damage Multiplier1.2
Damage Duration2 seconds
Target Stun Duration0 seconds

Surround Spell

Duration4 seconds

Time Control Level 2 - Exp: 3600

Targeted Spell - Appear Behind Target

Targeted Distance: 10.0m
Damage Multiplier: 1.25
Damage Duration: 4.0 seconds
Appear Behind Target
Target Stun Duration: 0.0s

Surround Spell

Duration6 seconds

Time Control Level 3 - Exp: 21,600

Targeted Spell - Appear Behind Target

Targeted Distance10.0m
Damage Multiplier1.3
Damage Duration6.0 seconds
Knockdown Strength1.0
Target Stun Duration2.0s

Surround Spell

Duration9.0 seconds

Time Control Level 4 - Exp: 86,400

Targeted Spell - Appear Behind Target

Targeted Distance10.0m
Damage Multiplier1.4
Damage Duration8.0 seconds
Knockdown Strength1.0
Target Stun Duration4.0s

Surround Spell

Duration12.0 seconds

Time Control Level 5 - Exp: 259,200

Targeted Spell - Appear Behind Target

Targeted Distance10.0m
Damage Multiplier1.5
Damage Duration10.0 seconds
Knockdown Strength2.0
Target Stun Duration6.0s

Surround Spell

Duration15.0 seconds

Total Experience: 371,400


Summon mystical blades to fly at your enemies.

Blades Level 1 - Exp: 450

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Number of Blades33
Total Damage30.010

Blades Level 2 - Exp: 2700

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Number of Blades44
Total Damage180.045

Blades Level 3 - Exp: 16,200

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Number of Blades55
Total Damage720.0144

Blades Level 4 - Exp: 64,800

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Number of Blades66
Total Damage2160.0360

Blades Level 5 - Exp: 194,400

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Number of Blades88
Total Damage4320.0540

Total Experience: 278,550


Summon mighty elemental forces to create powerful whirlwinds that sweep your enemies up and send them flying. Target individuals for massive damage, or use an area affect to affect more enemies for less damage.

Vortex Level 1 - Exp: 400

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Duration2.0 seconds1.0 seconds
Total Damage15.010.0
Max Number of Targets12

Vortex Level 2 - Exp: 2400

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Duration3.0 seconds2.0 seconds
Total Damage90.060.0
Max Number of Targets12

Vortex Level 3 - Exp: 14,400

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Duration4.0 seconds3.0 seconds
Total Damage360.0240.0
Max Number of Targets13

Vortex Level 4 - Exp: 57,600

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Duration5.0 seconds4.0 seconds
Total Damage1080.0720.0
Max Number of Targets14

Vortex Level 5 - Exp: 172,800

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Duration6.0 seconds5.0 seconds
Total Damage2160.01440.0
Max Number of Targets15

Total Experience: 247,600


Summon a Mask of Madness to scramble the minds of your enemies and you never know what might happen. Maybe they'll attack their friends, or maybe they'll scrub the floor to get those blood stains out. Cast your spell wide to catch more enemies in your web, or target a single one for a much longer effect.

LevelExperienceTargeted DurationSurround Duration
16005 seconds3 seconds
23,60010 seconds6 seconds
321,60015 seconds9 seconds
486,40020 seconds12 seconds
5259,20025 seconds15 seconds

Total Experience: 371,400

Force Push

A solid wall of energy will push back all enemies around you, giving you more room to manoeuvre. You can also target single enemies.

Force Push Level 1 - Exp: 300

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Collision Damage18.012.0
Target Stun Duration0.0 seconds0.0 seconds

Force Push Level 2 - Exp: 1800

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Collision Damage45.030.0
Target Stun Duration3.0 seconds1.0 seconds

Force Push Level 3 - Exp: 10,800

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Collision Damage90.060.0
Target Stun Duration6.0 seconds3.0 seconds

Force Push Level 4 - Exp: 43,200

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Collision Damage180.0120.0
Target Stun Duration9.0 seconds5.0 seconds

Force Push Level 5 - Exp: 129,600

EffectTargeted SpellSurround Spell
Collision Damage360.0240.0
Target Stun Duration12.0 seconds7.0 seconds

Total Experience: 185,700

Raise Dead

Summon the spectral shadows of fallen creatures to fight by your side.

Raise Dead Level 1 - Exp: 500

EffectTargeted Spell & Surround Spell
Shadows summoned2
Duration8.0 seconds
Flourish InvulnerabilityYes

Raise Dead Level 2 - Exp: 3000

EffectTargeted Spell & Surround Spell
Shadows summoned3
Duration12.0 seconds
Flourish InvulnerabilityYes

Raise Dead Level 3 - Exp: 18,000

EffectTargeted Spell & Surround Spell
Shadows summoned4
Duration18.0 seconds
Flourish InvulnerabilityYes

Raise Dead Level 4 - Exp: 72,000

EffectTargeted Spell & Surround Spell
Shadows summoned4
Duration25.0 seconds
Flourish InvulnerabilityYes

Raise Dead Level 5 - Exp: 216,000

EffectTargeted Spell & Surround Spell
Shadows summoned5
Duration35.0 seconds
Flourish InvulnerabilityYes

Total Experience: 309,500


Thanks to Chuban for informing me of repeating the strength description.