The adventure table is an “upgrade” of the previous expansions mission tables. There are introductory missions that lead you through the basics of using them, but here’s a few things that aren’t obvious:
- You have to send one named companion to start a mission, and you can send as many of the troops as you want to.Each additional troop costs 1 anima, but it’s worth it (even on the introductory missions that pay 5 anima, you break even).
- The top two rows of 4 slots are the bad guys.The bottom two rows (3 and 2) are your side.The two rows nearest that center line (your row of 3 and the bad guy line of 4 just above) are considered “melee”.If you have a companion that “attacks all enemy in melee” that’s the row they will attack if there are any bad guys in there.When you slide a unit into place, there’s often a red arrow on some number of the bad guys—that shows where the unit’s special attack is going to go.If the unit buffs it’s side, there will be a green triangle over the slots that get buffed, and a green cross if it’s a slot that gets healed.
- Units have a special ability that they use (which then goes on cooldown for some number of turns), and a standard attack.Most attack the nearest enemy, a few attack units at range.The unit descriptions will tell you what they do.
- The game defaults to the left when it has equal choices.So, if you have a healing or buffing unit, they will always try to buff/heal the unit to their left.Only if that spot is empty will they move to another, trying up and left next, etc.This means that the spot on the left of your melee line is usually the spot that gets attacked the most.
- The numbers displayed on each side are the total health of the side and the ‘regular’ damage done by each side.For a quick estimate, take your total damage, multiply it by 10, and compare it to the enemy health.If it’s bigger, you’ll kill them in less than 10 turns.Take their damage, multiply it by 10, if it is less than your health you’ll survive at least 10 turns.The various specials can change this drastically, but for the early missions this is a safe guide.
- Buffs applied by units stack additively.If the bad guys have a unit that reduces damage taken by 50% for one turn, and they have two of them, those will stack to 100% damage reduction.They can’t be hurt for that turn, only for the turns that the ability is on cooldown.
- Troops have a level that is the median of your named companions.You start out with one named companion, so the troops will always be their level. When you add a new companion the new one will be level 1, so the troops will drop in level to midway between the two.However, companions level up quickly, so this becomes less of an issue.
I would recommend that you at least do the missions that reward anima. At the start, there are missions that take 4 hours, cost 14 and return 30 anima (6 objects of 5 anima each). Put any of your named companions in the lower left slot, but your highest hit point troops in the melee line, and one of whatever your other troop is in the other open range slot. This is a steady drip of anima for very little effort.
There will be special missions that have a reward of a token that enhances your campaign. This increases the range of what’s available at the mission table. At around table level 10 you can start getting missions worth 50 anima, missions that award pets, or enchanting boxes that contain crystals. At level 60 there is a mission for a mount. Gear drops tend to be the same as you’d get from world quests, but there may be a piece or two that helps an alt. However, as you level up the table the missions become more difficult. There is a bit of a trap reported, if you level the table too far (more than 16) then missions that award bonus experience disappear. On a level 12 table, the top mission offered is 12 above the highest level companion, but this may be a coincidence.
The tables are not balanced between covenants because of the troop abilities. The Night Fae ones are the easiest, the Kyrian the hardest with the others in the middle. However, all can do the low level anima missions easily enough; they and the occasional experience mission (to catch up new companions) should be the focus for most people. Side note: the WoW app for your phone/pad has an interface for the mission table. I find it easier to pause the fight playback there and look at the combat log on the app in order to try to figure out what does what. In addition, you can set up and collect missions without logging in that character, traveling to the table, etc.
I struggled with the missions until I made a concious effort to level my champions. I was surprised how much the experience missions leveled them and after a few I was doing each experience mission that was available. That quickly made the difference for the harder special adventure missions and even enabled me to get a Soul Ash mission! So if you are struggling - try a few days of power leveling hitting each experience mission!
Also - you can get a few new champions from Torghast. I got Meatball and one other...but getting them helped out a ton as well. It's great having a full team of champions instead of the standard troops. It's random that you'll find a champion in Torghast (they come from the side quests that appear sometimes on floors) but it didn't take me too terribly long to get the two I have now from there.
Last recommendation - I don't think healing your champions with anima is worth it. I wish they made it less expensive. Sure it can be tempting but if you just give it time your champions will heal on their own.
To second Roenn's point on not spending anima to heal champions--any time they level they heal to full. You can sometimes find an easy mission (or two) that will put them over.
Just a note--in January Blizzard made significant changes to the mission tables. Kyrian and Venthyr were greatly improved, and the Night Fae was noticeably nerfed. It's probably safe to advance the Kyrian and Venthyr tables further than before, just watch the mission levels vs. your troops levels.
There are two new addons that help with mission tables. I've not used either one, but have seen a lot of good comments on each. The first one to be developed isn't on curse:
is the author's site, but it is also mirrored on github, which means you can maintain it automatically with WowUp. To do so, open WowUp, click on the GetAddons tab, then the Install from URL button. Copy/paste this:
into the box and go.
The other addon is somewhat newer:
(or use wowup to find covenant mission helper).
Is there interest in a discussion of the strategies for the tables?