Closed Beta begins on October 30th
The Closed Beta dates have officially been announced for NA and EU.
Purchase your Founder's Pack now!
Buy a Founder's Pack now for access to CBT weekends, exclusive costumes and more!
Black Tower added to KR's Test Server
A new 24-man team dungeon is shown on the test server, plus other patch notes.
Sep 21, 2015 - 1:02 PM - by 13 Comments
Focus on the Blade Master
Welcome to the first of our ongoing series leading up to launch, where each week we focus on a class you can play in Blade & Soul. Today kicks off the Blade Master Week!
Check out our updated Class page on the Blade Master, where you can download some wallpapers, watch the class video, or print out a page from the Hongmoon Secret Tome, where it shows you the techniques to be a Blade Master. Join us on our official livestream September 24 at 10am PDT to see some high level Blade Master play, or check out Twitch streamer Bajheera on September 23 at 2pm PDT as he jumps on our closed beta build to try out the Blade Master.
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The Blade Master is a popular class to play for one great reason: their versatility. Equally effective in both offensive skills and defensive capabilities, they’re the jack-of-all-trades martial artist.
Most of the Blade Master’s skills are accessible depending on the stance that the Blade Master is in: Basic Stance or Draw Stance. Flock of Blades is a powerful but short-lived technique, with associated skills, that can be used within either stance for whenever you need a strong burst of damage or protection.
Blade Master in Play
The Blade Master focuses on dealing two types of damage: Fire and Lightning. Not all skills will have an associated elemental damage, but those that do will have their damage increased with the selection of the right items. Building a focus around these damage types is advantageous in the long run, especially as you get to the end-game dungeons.
While in a party the Blade Master versatility becomes equally advantageous. Typically the Blade Master takes on the role of keeping the boss occupied while the other party members fulfill other tasks. The Blade Master captures the boss’ attention by initiating the battle with a set of high damage combos, then switching to a more defensive set of skills that can maintain threat.
In Arena PvP, delicately balancing the stance switches is vital. Draw Stance and its associated abilities ensure your damage is high; but if you can’t effectively react and block your opponents skills, it doesn’t matter how high your damage potential is if you’re constantly movement-locked or condition-afflicted.
1. Block (1)
2. Cyclone (LMB)
3. Anklebiter (3)
4. Breeze (LMB)
5. Gale (LMB)
6. Divebomb (F)
1. Blade Call (V) - Tier 4 Move 2
2. Lightning Retribution © - Tier 3 Move 2
3. Whirling Scourge (V)
4. Lightning Draw (4)
5. Blade Storm (X)
6. Blitzblade Scourge (Z)
1. Blindside (Q)
2. Flicker (LMB)
3. Honed Slash (RMB)
4. Blindside (E)
5. Pierce (RMB) - Tier 3 Move 1
6. Pierce (RMB) - Tier 3 Move 1
7. Pierce (RMB) - Tier 3 Move 1
1: Rush (2) – Tier 3 Move 1
2: Take Flight (F) – Tier 2 Move 1
3: Blade Call (V) – Tier 4 Move 2
4: Heavenly Dance (RMB)
5: Soaring Falcon (Z)
6: Ascend (LMB)
7: Lightning Retribution © – Tier 3 Move 2
8: Greater Lightning Draw (4) – Tier 5 Move 2
9: Five Point Strike (3) – Tier 3 Move 1
10: Rising Eagle (LMB)
11: Ascend (LMB)
12: Shoulder Charge © – Tier 2 Move 2
13: Blindside (Q)
14: Honed Slash (RMB) – Tier 2 Move 1
15: Flicker (LMB) – Tier 4 Move 2
Sep 20, 2015 - 1:33 PM - by 6 Comments
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Source - Twitch Channel
Teamwork is key when battling the toughest foes.
Once you have learned the technique of executing a combo by yourself, you’re ready to learn how to perform group combos and continue your path to becoming a master of the martial arts. Perfecting group combos takes effort and determination, and requires dedicated teamwork and coordination.
While in a group, and when performed correctly, conditional and situational combos work normally against opponents and other players.
For example, an Assassin can place their Landmine at the enemy’s location, while the Summoner sends their Familiar in to attack. The Assassin begins the combo by detonating their Landmine and knocking the enemy down, which allows for the Summoner to use the Familiar’s “If it Fits I Sits” ability to grapple with them. Finally the Assassin can finish the combo on the grappled enemy with a Flash Kick.
Bosses, on the other hand, are not as easily affected by conditions. These powerful foes will require careful coordination with your group in order to successfully complete a combo. There are two additional bars under the boss’ health that start out empty, and through coordinated group efforts can be filled to apply a desired condition.
When a player performs an ability on the boss that creates a condition such as Daze, a bell sound will ring, a pop-up notification will appear the name of effect, and one of the boss’ status bars will light up in a color that is specific to the condition.
The boss isn’t automatically affected by that condition; instead, the boss is now vulnerable to that type of condition. In this example, for the boss to become Knocked Down, the party members will need to act quickly and perform Knock Down-afflicting abilities to fill the second bar to successfully knock down the boss.
Working together with your teammates will help tame even the fiercest foes, and you’ll find that the greatest strength lies in coordinated attacks.
Sep 17, 2015 - 10:09 PM - by 5 Comments
Maximize the power of your hero with combos.
As a martial artist, you have at your disposal a number of skills that are powerful and deadly on their own. However, a more experienced martial artist will have learned to chain abilities together to make a more effective and devastating series of attacks. The series of a consistent, fluid sequence of skills is referred to as a combo.
Conditional combos use a certain sequence of skills based on a condition being triggered on either yourself, or on your opponent, such as being knocked down or stunned.
An example of a conditional combo is an ability of the Summoner’s Familiar called “Anklebiter”. When used it applies a Knock Down condition, and as soon as that happens the ability called “If It Fits, I Sits” becomes available, which applies a Grapple condition on the opponent, and allows the ability “Headbutt” to be used. If you’re swift, chaining these abilities together will make for an effective combo. Practice will make perfect!
Situational combos take advantage of an opponents situation, such as being rooted. With enough experience you’ll find what skills work best together depending on what you’re trying to achieve.
The Force Master, for example, has a situational combo using “Dragonfrost” to root an opponent in front of them. Once immobilized, the Force Master can drop a “Blazing Wall” of fire on the opponent’s location, and they will continuously receive damage until they break free.
High Impact Combos
When you string together a series of attacks that cause massive amounts of damage, you’ll receive a boost—giving certain other skills a buff. For example, when the Blade Master successfully “Blocks” an attack, their “Pierce” skill gains Maximum Boost, which allows them to strike back multiple times in rapid succession.
There are wise sages throughout the Earthen Realm who will clue you into new combos concepts. There are no completely defined combos—you’re able to creatively explore and find ways of stringing abilities together that works best for you and your combat style.
Proper use of one’s abilities is the key to success.
Through training, effort, and perseverance, a martial artist hones the skills of their style—their class. These skills vary greatly from class to class, and through the wielder’s wisdom and preparation, their individual style is defined. The skills a martial artist applies themselves to can be focused upon, improved, and increased in power and impact. And by specializing one’s focus, even those of the same class can call upon vastly different abilities.
At the start of your journey, you will receive a Martial Tome that explains the secret abilities of the Hongmoon Clan as applicable to your class. As you progress and learn more, you’ll unlock the ability to customize your skills; and with each character level gained you’ll also gain a skill point to spend.
Most skills can be enhanced and customized through a skill tree defined in your Martial Tome—a series of options that allow a skill to be increased in strength, or specialized in a number of ways. When opening the skill window, one can see all of the skills they have access to, how to activate them, as well as a description of the skill’s abilities—including any prerequisites or conditions that need to be met, and the type of damage that a skill may use.
Skills are customizable at any time out of combat, encouraging martial artists to focus their attention on improving skills for different situations. Skill choices can also be saved, as there’s an opportunity to unlock additional pages in the skill book to save individual builds to swap between at-will. You could, for example, have one build to balance damage and survivability for adventuring alone, and another that’s more attuned to supporting other players in a world PvP setting.
How you choose to customize your skills is up to you, but recommendations on builds that work well for your class are also provided, for those who prefer to purely focus on combat.
While a martial artist can train, level up, and increase their ability in most skills, there are rumors of secret techniques to unlock—the ultimate mastery of a skill. These are the kinds of legends and stories whispered about in hushed tones in local taverns, the kind of fables that all martial artists believe they can aspire to, but that only a few may ever attain. Discovering secret techniques is the utmost challenge for anyone hoping to master their skills, and the ultimate in martial prowess.
Learn to glide through the air, dash on water, and sprint up walls.
As a martial artist capable of exceptional feats, none is more admired than the ability to defy gravity through windwalking. This natural extension of a martial artist is both a manipulation their inner chi, and the chi of the natural world. By exerting control over these forces they are capable of propelling themselves over land and sea, and effortlessly gliding through the air. It is a mastery of their physical selves, spiritual selves, and of their harmonious existence with the world around them.
Known as qinggong (“ching-gong”) in wuxia (“woo-shya”) literature, windwalking is only able to be achieved when outside of the physical exertion of combat. By either double-tapping the forward (W) key, or holding SHIFT while moving forward, movement speed is instantly increased. Windwalking allows for travel over water, up walls, and through the air. But it requires great concentration, and thus windwalking can’t be maintained forever; while windwalking is active you’ll be consuming stamina—a green bar shown below the character’s health. The exception is that no stamina is consumed while gliding, and instead the gentle descent will allow you to regain stamina—allowing for combinations of sprinting and gliding to quickly bound throughout the Earthen Realm. While gliding one generally moves slower than the increased windwalking ground movement speed, but with the obvious advantage of flying far above the heads of their enemies. Those who master the mechanics shown below can even sustain their glide for extended flights.
Similar to these fantastical personal abilities is the opportunity to travel even greater distances by activating a Dragon Pulse—yellow beams of energy found throughout the world. When activated they propel you across great distances—both vertically and horizontally—to arrive at a specific location.
You are taught the basics of windwalking at the very beginning of your adventures—learning to sprint across the ground, and then glide gracefully through the air.
As your abilities improve, the secrets to dashing across the water, propelling through the air, or vaulting over obstacles while maintaining your momentum will be revealed.
However, in the more advanced stages of your progress, learning to dive out of the sky without taking damage, increasing your stamina, or racing up a wall will take more specialized training.
Windwalking provides a fun, interactive, and skillful way to get around the world.
Warring Factions Poster Contest Winners
The goal of both factions is to eliminate the growing evil, but the Cerulean Order and Crimson Legion have violently differing views in how that should be achieved. You are presented with a choice—blue or red—and for those of you who are still undecided, the winners of our Warring Factions Poster Contest may help you choose a side!
NA Winner – Cerulean Order - Juel
EU Winner – Cerulean Order - Knusper
NA Winner – Chaotic Legion - MissMajor
EU Winner – Chaotic Legion - Willy Wanka
Congratulations to the winners and a huge thank you to everybody who entered! The winners will be contacted by email regarding their prizes.
Don't forget to keep up to date with Blade & Soul by following us on Twitter, Liking us on Facebook, or subscribing to our YouTube.
Sources for all NCSOFT articles
Windwalking the Earthen Realm
Warring Faction Poster Contest Winners
Sep 09, 2015 - 11:41 AM - by 22 Comments
Join us for the first beta weekend for Blade & Soul!
We’re excited to announce that our closed beta weekends will begin on October 30! Our Founder’s Pack holders will be among the first to experience the Western release of Blade & Soul.
There will be at least five beta weekends, the first two of which will focus on testing the English version of the Western release. With over 20 days of total playtime, the beta weekends will all run from Friday at 10am PDT to Monday at 10pm PDT. The extended beta weekend November 24–30 will then include all launch languages—English, French, and German, with subsequent weekends including these three languages.
Closed Beta 2015 Weekend Schedule
Weekend 1: Oct 30–Nov 2 [English only]
Weekend 2: Nov 13–16 [English only]
Weekend 3: Nov 24–30 [English, French, German]
Weekend 4: Dec 11–14 [English, French, German]
Weekend 5: Dec 18–21 [English, French, German]
If players don’t purchase a Founder’s Pack there will limited opportunities to gain access through the official beta signup on the Blade & Soul website. We’ll also have additional chances through beta code giveaways via official Blade & Soul social channels, as well as offers from participating partners—stay tuned for more info!
Also be sure to watch our livestream September 9 at 10am PDT over on http://twitch.tv/bladeandsoul for more info on the closed beta, and what to expect while testing.