Well, its maybe its not the ultimate summoners FAQ/guide yet Embarassed , but I hope it will with the help of all of you Very Happy

Well, after of trying and testing lots of things with my summons, and after of reading a lot of info on summoners, here it is, mi FAQ/guide, mainly for wizards (human, elven or dark elven) that still don't know what path to follow and for the people that are considering to use a summoner as its sub (and for all those who mistake summons with pets Razz ), so here it is:


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1) What kinds of summons are there? Is it true that they take exp from you?
2) How much time do they last? What happens if they die? Do I have to wait six hours before summoning them again?
3) Do I have to feed them? Do they level?
4) How do I control them? Do they attack on their own?
5) How do the summoners work in pvp?
6) How do summoners grind? What mobs should I kill as a summoner?
7) How do I get the Mark of the Summoner?
8 ) What armor and weapon should I use?
9) What are cubics? Are they of any use?
10) What are the stats on each summon? Are all the summoners the same?
11) Are the summoners any good at sieges?
12) What skills do I have? Do I have any nukes? Where do I get the Spellbooks?
13) Anything else I should know before making my char a summoner?

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1) What kinds of summons are there? Is it true that they take exp from you?
All summons take some exp percentage directly from you (this means, in a party, the summon will take the exp from you, and not the group). But the summoners are designed so they have 0 downtime, so you wonít train slower than other classes, actually the summons are the best soloers.
There are three kinds of summons:

-The standard grinding summons cost several D grade crystals (starting with total of 9 at skill level 5 in level 40, then adding 1 or 2 more crystals per skill level), and take 30% of the total exp you earn. This summons have skills (one skill per summon) that allow the summoners to train longer without resting.
-The PVP and farming summons cost one D grade crystal but take 90% of the exp from you and have DD skills. This summons have the same stats that the standard grinding summons.
-The summons for herding and sieges cost the same that the standard grinding summons and take the same exp from you. These summons have AoE damage skills. They also have less HP (about one third less) and a little less P.Def, as well as more speed and evasion that the other summons.

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2) How much time do they last? What happens if they die? Do I have to wait three hours before summoning them again?
All summons can last up to 80 minutes, as long as they donít fight, when they fight their time runs out four times faster, so if they are fighting constantly they will last only 20 minutes. After that time, they disappear; the same happens if they die.
After summoning a summon, before being a summoner, you have a 3 hour cool-down before summoning it again, but when you become a summoner this time is reduced to a couple of seconds (and since its practically impossible for it to being killed in that short of a time, that means that you can summon whenever you want)

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3) Do I have to feed them? Do they level?
No, instead of that, you spend some D grade crystals to summon them and afterward, while being summoned they consume some more crystals. Though if you think of it, maintaining a shadow for one hour is far more expensive that maintaining a hatchling for the same amount of time. But summons have far better stats than pets, and you win exp and SP from the things they kill.
Summons donít gain exp (though they take exp from you) and donít level by killing mobs. Instead of that, you acquire skills that summons greater level summons. You can acquire all three skills to summmon the three different summons for your class on level 40 and afterwards every 4 levels till level 56, and then every 2 levels.

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4) How do I control them? Do they attack on their own?
You practically have to control them like if they were another character, the only thing they do on their own is to follow you around, unless you order them otherwise.
There are 4 commands that appear in form of an icon in a window when you do double click in the summon (you can move them to the hotkey bar):
-Attack: Sends the summon to attack the thing you are targeting, if it is a character it follows that characters around or attacks it if you press control. If the target if too far, you may have to press the hotkey repeatedly. It will stop attacking/following your target when it is dead or way beyond your field of view.
-Stop: Stop the attack
-Stay: Toggles the follow mode, if you hit it once it will stop following you, hit it again it will follow you
-Special abilities: The summon cast the selected skill on your target (Master Recharge will be always casted on you), more info in point 10
As your summons donít do anything on their own, grinding as a summoner isnít at all relaxed, unlike it is with nukers for example. Because not only you are controlling two characters and grinding without resting ever, but also you are spending crystals and you have to make the most of them.

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5) How do the summoners work in pvp?
One of the things I enjoy the most in the game is pvp at the arena, in which I have spent lots and lots of hours, many people say that summoners are crap in pvp, mainly because the havenít seen any. Summoners are great at pvp, especially against fighters, but anything with sleep and enough casting speed will put you down without to much trouble. At lower levels, the summoners are a team of two, the summoner is a DD/buffer/healer and the summon is a DD/tanker. Even if you die, itís probable that the summon will end up killing your opponent afterwards. But in higher levels, your summons and your buffs become better, while your summoner damage output becomes really low. So it gets a little odd, your main role is healing yourself while your summon kills the enemy. Now I will get a little bit more specific.

-In most 1 vs 1 pvps against fighter classes, the summon has to be always attacking the opponent, and when you can (Thatís when you donít need to heal yourself immediately, usually at the beginning, when your CP hasnít ran out yet) throw some summon skills and DD or sleep and curses, not only to make the pvp a little easier, but also to activate the cubics. Then, when your opponent really starts damaging your HP, you have to start using battle heal and if you need it use bsps. (Unless the opponent is a DD, you probably wonít even need them thanks to Transfer Pain)
Also, keep in mind that:
-In the lower levels you can use sleep, curses and nukes quite efficiently.
-When fighting a DA, you always have to attack the panther first, he canít heal it, you can kill it in a blink and if he summons it again he will loose precious time.
-When fighting another summoner, never attack the summon first, many players ignore this and forget the 800+ heals. Also, if you are an ES, never attack the summoner with your summoner, your job is to heal yourself. Other kinds of summoners will eventually run out of MP before you and then they are death.
All things being equal:
-All tankers, warlords, gladiators, blade dancers and sword singers will loose against you almost always, some even with many levels more than you.
-Rangers, PWs, THs and AW and SH are a little tougher, but chances are that you will beat them if you play your summoner well enough.
-WCs, OLs, spell singers, sorcerers, necros probably will kick your ass till you see little stars flying around your head Razz

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6) How do summoners grind? What mobs should I kill as a summoner?
The most efficient way to grind as a summoner, is soloing with your standard grinding summon. Even though your cubics can be helpful in a party, they cost crystals, and in after lvl 48 your summoner's damage output becomes a lot lower than that of other chars. So you would be playing as a secondary healer with cubics. In this way you will probably end up slowing down the group. And if you use your grinding summons, you will be an excellent add to the party, but your exp would be terrible and you will probably lose adena.
Summoner can grind faster than any other classes, even if your summon takes away 30% of your exp, you will be able to kill mobs at a stable and rather quick rate, without resting ever. You can even kill dark reds (thoug it would be best to kill whites for grinding). You are the ultimate dungeon room cleanser, and thanks to the fact that your summons doesnít share your drops or adena (but you have to kill 30% more mobs to lvl up), and that you donít have to use bsps/ss. The crystals are not a big problem; if you spend 1M in crystals, your will probably get 2M after using them.
Different summoners racial stats and summons make that:
Most summoners are better off grinding in dungeons or dungeon-like places, where there are a lot of mobs close to each other, but the warlocks fast servitors allow them to train efficiently in open fields, where the mobs give more exp.

Elemental Summoners don't do too much melee damage, and dont have CLD to recover the HP efficiently, but they do have the a great casting speed and an incredibly usefull skill of the boxer to recharge some 120 mana points with the boxer. So you should nuke your way to at least lvl 52.
Phantom summoners have the best strenght and have CLD to recover HP after the mobs are dead, but their shadow doesnt have mana recharge, so the best option would be tanking and meleeing while your shadows do the DD. Though you can let the shadow tank sometimes to take advantage of their regen ability.
Warlocks Have good strenght, good HP and have CLD so they can tank and melee, but they have a decent casting speed/m atk and have the summons Master Recharge, so they cant nuke eficiently too.

The way of grinding as a summoner from lvl 40 to 56 is more or less like this:
First find a place with lots of white mobs spawning more or less close to each other. Then summon, send your summon to attack a mob first (or attack yourself first if you went for light/duals and then send your summon), then use swirls if ES, flames if WL or attack with duals if PS. Then if your summon needs it one or two servitors heals, and then summons master recharge or b2m and CLD if you are PS, then to the next mob. You have to make the time to pick up drops.
This for the time the summon lasts, when it disappears, you summon another and repeat. If you did ok, when the summon is gone, you will have the same HP/MP that when you summoned it. This means 0 downtime.
If you want a little variety, you can use your herding summon to herd slow, green mobs, this doesnít works quite as well as the standard grinding (at least not with warlocks). But is a fun thing to do to add a little variety to your grinding. Remember, the summon donít have to follow you, press stay, and then send it no attracts the agro on the mobs, if you need a little maneuvering, use the surrounding mobs as a point of reference for your summon to move to. Donít forget, one of its advantages is its speed, use that. If you are a warlock, you will have to herd les mobs at a time (no more than three or four).

After level 56, unless you want to start killing lower level mobs, you should give up your nuking or if you tank, start tanking less. After level 58, your best bet is only to send the mob into the fray and heal it. MP itís not a problem. Nuking its now impossible as most attacks will fail and end up doing 1 damage. Even with TP you are not a tank, and your melee damage output is pathetic, especially if compared to that of your summon. You wont want any accidental aggros and you will need to keep your summon at full health, so when he finish one mob, he goes immediately after another one. If you are close to the skills or if you have enough adena, you can accompany this with sleep and cheap curses to activate your cubics. For this matter, youíll want to tank on 2x hp mobs, some cubics fire more, the more hp the mob has left.

As for the best mobs to grind with, as now the speed doesnít mater, the best thing to do is to avoid most slow mobs, usually the have worst drops, or the speed is a trade off for some special skill.
One of the best places to grind from level 40 Ė 44, is with the Leto Lizardman Overlods, west of oren, they drop quite a lot of brigandine shields and helmets, and there is an excellent place with some 7 overlord spawn points, with no other lizardman to bother, north of a lizardman fort and south of a hill. Or you can train in the ivory tower crater while doing the orbs quest for cema and sell the enchant D armor scrolls. Though the mobs here give 20% less of exp due to the crater being considered as a dungeon hunting ground.
From level 44 to 48, by far, the best place to grind, is soloing in cruma (10% per hour in lvl 44!) lugar 1 lugar 2. From 48 to 52 you can start to grind in dragon valley and cemetery and if you are careful in cruma level 2. After that, you should hunt wherever there are quest related mobs.

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7) How do I get the Mark of the Summoner?
Itís pretty easy; here http://legion-elite.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=39 is a walkthrough for that quest.
The quest consist basically in getting the quest in gludin, then to the magic trader in dion, then find 20 and 30 quest items, give it to the trader, fight 2 summoners npcs get another 20 and 30 items, fight another to summoners, get another 20 and 30 items and fighting the last two summoners, and then, give the items they gave you to the one who gave you the quest in gludin.
Fighting the summoners consists in talk to them, say you want to take on the challenge, kill their summon only with your summon (you can only heal your summon, if you attack the other summon, you lose) and talk to them again. To find the summoners, go to onlinewelten and find the npc ďsummonerĒ the 6 should appear, then you can click on the map icon to see the location.

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8 ) What armor and weapon should I use?
Well, it depends on what kind of summoner you are, on lower levers, I would say that:
-Being a phantom summoner, light armor and duals would be the best choice. Light armor because PSs have to tank more often than other summoners because their summons donít recharge their MP, but they do have CLD. And while tanking you canít cast, so you have to go melee, and as we donít have any specific masteries, the best melee weapons are the duals to use that strength bonus you have. First go for Theca and then for Blue Wolf light.
-For an elemental summoner, the best choice is robes and staff. You have low strength, but high casting speed and your summon recharges your MP, so your best bet is nuking while your summon tanks. At lower levels you can still do some good damage without bsps. Though if you pvp frequently you may want to change robes for light armor. Go first for Karmian, and then for Blue Wolf light.
-Being a warlock you have more freedom at this, your summon recharge your MP and you have decent casting speed in robes so you can nuke, but you have more HP that other summoners, a decent strength and have CLD. So you can go melee like the PS too. Go first for Theca or Karmian and then for the Blue Wolf Light

But in higher levels, itís the same for all summoners. Your damage output either nuking or in melee will be shameful, more so if compared to that of your summon and even with Transfer Pain, you are not a tank to a death wave or similar level mobs and as you get worse and worse, your summon gets better and better.
So now, your equipment has the only purpose of protecting you against accidental agros and from other players attacks.
The main thing you have to worry about now is your armor; you can even stay with a C grade weapon, while you wear A grade equipment. Best A grade armor for summoners is the Dark Crystal robe set (Ok, so it is low A, and it isnít light armor. But it has a huge P.def bonus and casting speed bonus)
The weapon is only as good as its Special Ability, something with Health or regen for pvp or Acumen for grinding would be the best, and it would be better to use one handed, so you can use a shield (yes, its not all that useful, but its better than nothing, and the atk now is too low to be useful anyway). Here are a list of the special abilities and how the system works http://wiki.cobbs.ca/index.php/Enhance_Your_Weapon_Quest

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9) What are cubics? Are they of any use?
Cubics are shining symbols that float above the character head, they are not summons. You canít target them, kill or damage them, you cant interact with them in any way and you canít give them orders. They exist only as an animation in your character and by the things they do. All cubics cost the same amount of D grade crystals (a lot less than your training summons) and last for 15 minutes.
What they do is use some skills automatically when they are needed. Cubics use their skills randomly on an opponent when you hit them (being with melee, bows, curses or nukes) except for the life cubic that use the heal skill randomly when your HP is low (the lower, the more they use the skill). All except the life cubics appear to use their skill more or less based on how much HP the thing you are hitting have left.
With Cubic Mastery, you can have the two cubics out at the same time.
Cubics are useful in three things: To train faster when you are close to getting new skills. To aid your character in pvp and to make the summon more flexible (meaning that you are not completely useless in a party without your summon out). More info on the different cubics on point 10

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10) What are the stats on each summon? Are all the summoners the same?
All the grinding and pvp summons have all the same stats, and the herding summons have the same stats, except that they have 2/3 the HP, a little less P.Def and some more evasion and speed.



The diversity of the summoners is in each summonís skills, the specific cubics and the specific buffs of each summoner and their racial stats:


Warlocks specific buff is one that raises the speed of the summons, like wind walk, which allows the summons to reach their target in less time, to take full advantage of this skill you should hunt lower level mobs in open fields (not only they give 30% more exp, but also you wont spend most of your time running as you would with less speed), this skill also allows the summon to hunt down fast opponents like the rangers, and when a player is kitting your summon, the faster speed will guarantee that he will catch up with your opponent faster and will hit him more often.
-Mew the Cat, the warlockís pvp summon, has a DD skill similar to a wind strike.
-Kat the Cat, the warlockís grinding summon, has a skill that recharges around 120 MP to the summoner.
-Kai the Cat, the warlockís herding summon, has a skill that reflect part of the damage given to it.
-Binding Cubic: It casts a sort of anchor to the target. The landing rate is rather low.
-Storm Cubic: It a little activates more than the binding cubic, and when it does it throws a sort of wind strike.


Elemental Summonerís specific buff greatly raises the M.Atk of their summons; with it the pvp summons special ability hits harder than a sorcererís nuke. This, is very useful at pvp or when farming, but the only effect it has for grinding is with the herding summon (the grinding summon doesnít have any attack skill)
-Unicorn Mirage, the ESís pvp summon, has a DD skill similar to wind strike
-Unicorn Boxer, the ESís grinding summon, can recharge around 120 MP with his skill.
-Unicorn Merrow, the ESís herding summon, have an AoE damage spell, similar to frost wall.
-Life Cubic: It heals the summoner, it fires accordingly to the percentage of HP of the summoner.
-Aqua Cubic: It has a really powerful DoE damage skill, firing rate is rather low.


Phantom summonerís specific buffs increase the P.Atk of their summons; like the Might skill of prophet, itís useful in pvp as well as in grinding.
-Silhouette, the PSís pvp summon, has a life drain
-Shadow, the PSís grinding summon, has a passive draining skill that gives it HP when it hits an opponent.
-Soulless, the PSís herding summon, has an AoE poison skill and a Corpse Burst skill that are useful for taking out guards.
-Poltergeist Cubic: It debuffs the opponentís P.Atk, P.Def, and Atk Speed, it fires fewer times than the spark cubic
-Spark Cubic: It has a high firing rate, and it has a skill that can stun the opponent for a short period of time.

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11) Are the summoners any good at sieges?
You arenít going to best char for a siege, but you can hold your own in them. With the herding summons, and servitors empower, you can do a LOT of damage to a group of guards or chars, and they wont chase after you if you are careful enough, so when your summon is dead, you can immediately summon another a continue with the killing. Also summons inflict full exp damage to players in sieges, so nobody wants to die from the damage of a summon. And when they die, the more the level. the chance is higher that they wait for a healer to rez them with exp instead of just respawning. So you can keep other chars incapacitated to. And if you use the pvp summons, you donít even have to heal them (first because its cheap to summon another and second because few people attack summons instead of other players). A cheap way to fight in a siege is with the summon hiding somewhere away from the main fray, while your summon attacks, You are not that easy to kill with light armor and TP, but your healer appearance is your worst enemy, if you can ask for a friend for a heavy armor, so you will appear like a tanker (and nobody attacks a tanker, specially when they are just standing).

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12)What skills do I have? Do I have any nukes? Where do I get the spellbooks?
The skills upgrades are each 4 levels from 40 to 56, and then each two lvls till 74.
The group of the summoner skills after level 40 consist basically in the passive skills of all mystics with second class change, transfer pain, light armor mastery, summons and heals and buffs for them (your heals and buffs are for pets too, which make it a very viable option to train them).
We donít keep gaining levels of nukes and crowd control spells (though you still have the ones from level 35)



*The first level light mastery skill gives the summoner more atk speed, casting speed and MP regeneration when wearing light armor. (Remember that all mystics also have similar abilities for using robes too)
The spellbooks:
-Aqua/Spark/Binding Cubic: Hatu Windsus - Bee Hive (Semi-Rare to Rare Drop)
-Life/Phantom/Storm Cubic: Manashen Gargoyles - Ivory Tower / Satyrs - Enchanted Valley (Common - Uncommon drop)
-Merrow/Kai/Soulless: Liangma - Cruma Tower (Uncommon to Semi rare)
-Transfer Pain: Giant Fungus - Sea of Spores (Uncommon)
-S.Empower (UD): Grave Priest - Catacomb of the Branded and Worshippers Necropolis (Uncommon)
-S.Cure: Same as Servitor Empower
-S.Physical Shield: Liele - Enchanted Valley (Common)
-S.Magical Shield: Fline Elder - Enchanted Valley (Uncommon)
-S.Haste: Liele Elder - Enchanted Valley (Common - Uncommon)
-S.Blessing : Crypt Sage - Ascetics Necropolis, Martyr's Necropolis, Catacomb of the Witches (Uncommon to Semi Rare)

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13) Anything else I should know before making my char a summoner?
Yes, A forum that should be an obligation for all summoner to visit:
http://l2pets.com/forums/viewforum.php?f=5&sid=af6ddb5b686d3522ada25f0022b52c03
Itís a place in a forum that is dedicated only to summoners and it has, by far, the largest amount of information about them, that the rest of the places where there are info about summoners put together.
One thing you should do if you are planning to become a summoner, is take every offer on cheap D grade weapons or armor, usually the bagh-nakhs and other dual fists are better, you should be able you get them pretty cheap. And not to sell your D grade equipment (only the set drop only parts), instead of that, use it until you have adena to buy your C grade equipment, and then crystallize it. You are going to need LOTS of D grade crystals to reach level 75, no quantity is to big, you will eventually going to use it.
One particularity about summoners, is that the equipment is not to important to train, I did one level without a weapon, and it didnít take me more than 10% more than with a weapon, so you are not completely screwed if you drop an important piece of equipment.
One good thing to do as a summoner, is to have always your pvp summon with you (especially if you have enemy clans), it only costs 1 crystal, and it can last 80 minutes (600 adena for one hour an a half protection is pretty cheap). If you are on your way in a dungeon to your training spot, or just exploring the map and you get an agro on you, on lower levels it will be a nuisance, but on higher levels it can get really complicated, if you get interrupted once or twice while summoning or your sleep fails a couple of times the situation can get very grim very quickly.
Some thing to keep in mind is that you donít have to restrain yourself on using SSs or specially BSPSs while you are training, your main expense is your summon, and while grinding they will always last around 20 minutes, so if you use BSPSs you will kill faster, and that helps you pay your crystals (so you are really gaining the same adena, but with more exp and SPs and more chances to have a good drop). This is specially so if you can find a good quest to couple with your grinding. Then it might actually be better to spam bsps that not doing so.
Being a summoner have two main disadvantages, first that the exp the summon drains, makes you want to avoid any parties. You will train a lot faster on your own (though at times it can be boring training alone). And second that you canít do casual grinding. By this I mean that, when you where a wizard, it was fun, and easy so kill mobs in your way to anywhere, but now, you have to take out the summon, buff him and train for the full 20 minutes to make the best of your crystals.

And at the last, there is something VERY important that you should know before becoming a summoner.
Yes, summoners CAN grind faster than any other class; however DO NOT choose the summoner only because of that. Because even if summoners can make more exp/time than the other classes, the grinding is a lot more demanding, and for that I mean, that one hour training a summoner, feels like a lot more. Not only because your character never have to sit, but also because you are constantly healing, hitting, tanking and controlling two chars at the same time.
I for example can grind a spell singer for 8 hours while reading a book (literally), but after I train 4 hours with a summoner, I have to stop, because I feel as if I had been doing a Juggling act during those four hours. If you want a char which is easy to train, donít choose the summoner.

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