Welcome, aspiring shieldsfighter! If
you seek to better yourself in the ways of parrying, look no further!
This essay is comprised of hundreds of hours of research, hard work, blood
and sweat on the part of many other shieldsfighters in the land. Hopefully
this knowledge that has been collected will aid you in your own quest
The Tale of a Shieldsfighter
I've always been one for a challenge. As it turned out, parry would
be one of the greatest challenges I've ever sought. Starting my life
in the land with a generous amount of skill (50), my first destination
was the east Britain woods. I started fighting Ettins and Trolls on
a regular basis. Both creatures seemed to give me moderate gains in
skill. In a few days I had gone from 50 parry, into the low 60's. On
average, I would gain .1 per every other monster I fought. Skill gain
was slow at this point, so I decided to look elsewhere for my skill.
I had heard that fighting Earth Elementals was excellent for gaining
parry, so I gave it a shot. I traveled to dungeon Shame, level 1, and
started brawling the Earth Elementals that roamed the caverns. I did
manage to gain a few full points of skills, which took me into the mid
60's, but I wasn't gaining skill at an acceptable rate. I've heard Earth
Elementals can take you all the way to 80, but still, the rate in which
I was gaining skill was steady, but very slow. I'd gain maybe .1 every
4 to 6 elementals that I fought.
I ventured into the new lands in seek of further advancement. I first
journeyed to the ridges near the Ophidian fortress, east of Papua. There
I fought Ophidians, usually 2 at a time. I got some decent gains from
them. I then moved into the heart of the Fortress and started fighting
Terathan Warriors. My parry skill literally skyrocketed! I was gaining
anywhere from .1 to .4 per fight! Terathan Warriors can get a good wallop
in every now and then, so I had to be careful and watch my Hit Points
very closely. I spent about a week straight, dodging the local PK's,
trying to avoid those pesky Terathan Matriarchs and Avengers, while
my focus was on gaining parry. One monster at a time.. then two.. sometimes
even three, which was very risky. Thanks to my healing skill I was able
to keep myself from death. I ended at 73 Parry before I grew tired of
killing the spiders, not to mention spider blood is very nasty stuff!
I peered north to the desert to see what awaited.
I sampled the inhabitants of the desert to see which monsters satisfied
my now vampric thirst for parry gain. I fought my way through imps,
orcs, hoards of scorpions, and other various monsters. When I came across
my first Stone Gargoyle I had hit the jackpot. My thirst was quenched
when I saw my first gain in a full day of fighting. I would typically
gain .1 parry per melee with a Stone Gargoyle. Fighting 2 at once seemed
to help even more, but unfortunately coming across 2 Stone Gargoyles
at once was rare. I stumbled upon another stone creature. A Stone Harpy.
I engaged it in a fierce battle. Both the Stone Gargoyles and Stone
Harpies would hit through my studded leather armor for an average of
about 13 points of damage per hit. I often fought to near death, then
retreated to heal. Sometimes running circles around the monsters while
waiting for the bandages to take effect, other times running around
the corner and hiding while healing.
I came across my first Cyclopean Warrior in the desert. Mean looking
beast. That lone beady eye, with its placid look of stupidity was almost
mesmerizing if you met its gaze for too long. Shaking off the distraction,
I charged. I was welcomed with a ferocious blow for 20 points of damage.
Then another for 25.. then again for 20.. *OUCH* I backed away, thinking
I had made a mistake. I healed my wounds then decided to try once more.
This time it didn't hit me as hard. More along the lines of 10-15 per
hit. Must have just been lucky before. It did occasionally land a blow
causing up to 30 points of damage (makes you wonder if they're a cousin
of the infamous Ogre Lord). I could tell when I parried a blow because
instead of loosing a chunk of health, I would only loose 1-3 points
of health. I didn't let my 100 HP's fall below 40 before backing away
to heal. After the fight was finished I checked my skills and noticed
I had gained .2 parry! So it appeared as though Cyclopean Warriors,
and stone creatures were the way to go at my current level, which was
slowly rising from the low 70's. At this point in my quest for parry,
gains were sporadic. Sometimes I would not gain a single point from
fighting multiple creatures, while other times I would gain .2 per fight.
I learned to live with it. I spent many weeks in the desert fighting
these creatures. I did make a decent amount of profit, since my only
real expense was armor repairs and bandages, which isn't too costly.
I even found several treasure maps!
Once I hit 85 Parry, the gains seemed to come to a drastic halt. I
only gained .1 every hour or so. I accepted the fact that no other creature
would give me the satisfying gain of .1 or .2 every single fight, since
my skill was now at a very high level (at least as far as parry went).
I battled on against the Cyclops's and stone creatures. Slow gains,
but still gains none the less. A few more weeks of this brought me to
92. One of my good friends, whom I considered my "Parry Buddy"
had gotten all the way to 96.9 parry. I picked his brain for advice.
He told me he fought the same creatures I did up to about 92, then started
fighting summoned Daemons. I would have done this instantly, if it wasn't
my very poor magic resist.
So how do I make GM?
Oh.. isn't this the question of the century? HOW do I achieve
GM in the elusive skill of Parry? Three words for you my friends:
Daemons or Drakes!
I hit GM Parry fighting summoned Daemons in my Tower. It worked
out fairly well for me since I had a guildmate who was working towards
GM Magery. She would summon the Daemons, I would fight them, usually
2 at a time. Of course, I did die a LOT. This works very
well in a tower, or another type of house that has stairs. You
can position yourself just right on the stairs, so you can attack the
Daemons while they're on the floor and you're on the stairs. When
you're almost dead, simply take a step up the stairs, and you are out
of harms way. Play around with it, and you'll should be able to
figure out what I mean. While fighting 2 Daemons at once, I would
usually gain a steady .1 every 30-45 minutes (from around 94 to 100),
on average. While fighting 2 Daemons at once, it wasn't uncommon
to take 70 points of damage within 1.5 seconds, so watch out!
It will work you up in skill though, trust me. Just keep at it!
But what if I don't have a house with stairs, or any sort of house
at all? Well, not all hope is lost. You have a few options.
You can fight just 1 Daemon on open ground. This isn't too lethal
if you're using a decent character (high resist helps, 65+). You
need someone to summon for you, unless you have the abilities to do
it. Just stand toe to toe with the Daemon and go at it.
You won't gain as fast as if you were fighting 2 Daemons at once, but
you'll gain, none the less. If you get gutsy, go ahead an try
going toe to toe with 2 summoned Daemons on open ground.... but I don't
recommend it! If your friend who is summoning can heal you,
that makes it all the better. If not, you'll more than likely
need to run out of range of the Daemons attacks, and heal yourself.
This can get very tedious and time consuming! I have not tried
fighting normal Daemons (like in Hyloth). I am guessing these
will work close to the same.
So you don't have a house.... you don't have friends who can summon
Daemons.... and Hyloth gives you the hebee-geebies. What do you
do? You head down to your local dungeon (Destard, or the SE corner
of Wind are both good places) and fight some Drakes! You will
die A LOT, so don't bring valuable loot. Just your parry armor,
weapon and bandages! Drakes hit pretty hard at times, and that
firebreath can really cook ya, so watch out! This is very dangerous
and I would only resort to this method if you simply cannot find someone
to summon Daemons for you. Drakes will work, and take you to GM,
along with Daemons.
Tips and Facts about Parry
Fighting multiple creatures at once seems to help. If you think about
the way parry works, this makes sense. Parry is only checked when you
get hit. If you get hit more (since you're fighting more than
one monster), your parry skill gets checked more. Therefore you should
theoretically gain skill faster.
I've noticed two things that seem to be in consensus amongst shieldsfighters.
Your parry gains will come with hard and FAST hits from your opponent.
I've noticed the majority of my gains are coming when I get hit 3 or
4 times in a row within a few seconds. Getting hit hard and fast seems
to be the way to go! Of course, monsters don't always hit you with a
hefty thump, not to mention a hefty thump 3 or 4 times in a row without
A MUST for a shieldsfighter is HEALING. I cannot stress how important
this skill is! You will get nowhere fast without it! You gain parry
from monster that all hit fairly hard. You will need to heal a lot.
Reagents and potions are not cost effective because you WILL do a lot
of healing. Bandages are the way to go. Dirt cheap, and they do the
Fight on foot. For some odd reason, your parry seems to go up quicker
while on foot, as compared to on horseback.
Your chance to get hit has to do with your chosen fighting skill,
and your opponents fighting skill. So it makes sense that the
lower your fighting skill, the better chance you have of getting hit.
It may be wise to start your parrying career earlier in your characters
development, when you're chosen fighting skill has yet to reach GM.
Also remember that while you have a spellbook equipped, you do not gain
any skill in wrestling... so if your wrestling skill is already low...*hint,
Earth Elementals will NOT take you to Grandmaster. Neither will Bone
Knights. I have fought these for hours upon hours,and even at the low
90's, I haven't gained a single point. The skill level of your opponents
parry seems to be one of the determining factors if you will gain skill
or not. Monsters will much higher parry than you, will provide you with
better gains. Earth Elementals and Bone Knights don't seem to have much
to offer once you reach the mid 80's. Other people have mentioned that
Paladins will take you to GM. I would have to agree with that... if
you play on a brand new server where no one is working on the parry
skill. I've sparred with 2 Paladins for hours, and not gained any skill
from my current level. Their swords will hit you pretty hard, but they
don't hit you very fast. Blade spirits hit you with extreme speed. I
sparred with these for a bit, but didn't gain anything at my level.
I have seen Blade Spirits work well for lower levels of parry, sub 75.
Other people say NPC Harbormasters give you good gains (go figure).
If you can stand the poison, Wyverns and Silver Serpents work well
towards your advancement in parry. During the period of time when monster
poison was broke, I fought a few Silver Serpents & Wyverns and saw
pretty decent gains. Other monsters that have been passed my way via
advice for gaining parry are: Ice Fiends, Snow Elementals, Drakes/Dragons
and Corpsers. These seem to work for mid range levels of parry, ranging
from 60-75, possibly higher.
At one time, taking more damage helped in gaining skill. This may not
be the case anymore. So you may see the same results if you went out
in Full Plate, as compared to studded leather. Just be aware of this.
In ending, I will leave you with a few more miscellaneous tidbits
of advice that will hopefully aid you in your adventures in parry.
Sparring with friends may help. If your friend has significantly higher
parry than you do. Significantly higher meaning 15 points or more.
For all you powergamers out there; macroing parry is not exactly feasible.
You'll see what I mean when you wake up in the morning and find yourself
dead from a mis-timed macro! Earn it the legitimate way, and you'll
feel better about it anyway, guaranteed!
You WILL die a lot. Don't get discouraged. You'll be fighting that
Cyclopean Warrior, hit a lag pocket, and wake up dead. If you follow
my advice, the only thing you'll loose when you die is some old beat
up studded leather, bandages, your weapon and shield. I usually carry
150-200 bandages on me for ever trip out into the wastelands of parry
searching. Even 200 bandages will only cost you a couple hundred gold.
You'll loose more time stacking them than anything else.
- Batlin/Devlin of BaH - Napa Valley
Editors note: This essay was put together with information
from numerous sources. The essay itself is comprised of the most common
instances of shieldsfighters in agreement regarding the parry skill
and skill gains. Nothing in UO is for sure; hopefully you'll find the
information in this essay more of a guide than an exact path to your
own success in raising your skill.