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A lot of people recently have been having a hard time earning and holding onto their souls recently, even to the point they’re feeling like the game is P2W. Here, I’ll talk about all the ways you can earn a horde of souls, and one way to hold on to a few more instead of spending, as well as earning a passive income of souls.
Soul Saving and Earning Principles
This game doesn’t exactly come with a manual, and sometimes if you don’t spend a lot of time in the discord or in the discussion page, you can miss some vital advise that could mean the difference between swimming in a bounty of souls for the glory of the gods, or wallowing in poverty with nary an offering to any of the gods.
So! I have collected a few bits of advise that I found over time, as well as some bits I found out while playing the original Ascend on XBLA years ago, and compounded them all in one location, for your convenience. Enjoy!
Spending Souls – Spells
Spells are easily your absolute best friend in the game, and the utility you will likely get the most use out of, especially in the first half of the game before you start acquiring superior gear.
In fact, the first 50,000 souls you are gifted for joining the game really ought to be spent on maxing your spells. My suggestion, really is either Seekers or Ionized Bolt. So, a start as either Light or Void is heavily suggested, even though Dark typically dominates the Meta Game.
The reason for this is because Seekers is an absolutely massive damage dealer, especially when fully upgraded, and shoots several projectiles at once, who will target a new enemy once the first is dead. Meaning, this stands to be an excellent tool to clear up large groups of enemies until you can get Chain Lightning. When fully upgraded, just one cast can kill regular trolls, and have two projectiles left over in the single cast to hurt additional trolls.
Ionized Bolt is another amazing spell to start with, and helps tremendously in fighting Ogre bosses (something I, and many new players, always struggle with), by adding stun. When fully upgraded, it is tremendously easy to stunlock the Ogre, apply heavy amounts of damage with heavy attacks, then dash away to use your other damage dealing spells, and then come in for another go. With upgraded cooldown, you can do this on repeat until dead, making bosses so much easier to deal with. Even better if you have Chain Lightning to take on the smaller enemies around it first.
Spending Souls – Gear
For your overall gameplay, I really cannot suggest that you spend much on gear until you’re ready to ascend. You will pretty regularly find equipment in chests that are just a hair better than what you have, and, with my luck, as soon as I purchase, say, a chest piece, I’ll almost immediately find an equivalent in a dungeon. It’s almost like the game is mocking me.
That being said, once it is time to Ascend, you ought to purchase the best gear you can in order to equip him to fight well in the Meta Game (he does serve a purpose once Ascended other than changing colors on a map, I’ll get to that in a bit), which will earn you more rewards.
I can *not* recommend purchasing grey or green named gear. You want purple or gold. So, save up quite a lot of souls while you play so that you can equip yourself well for Ascension.
The featured items store also rotates pretty frequently, so I suggest saving souls by not spending anything on refreshing the page. Which is also a pain, because you might find some gold item you want, grind the souls out, only to come back only ten minutes later to find it’s been replaced by the damned fish head hat.
In looking for new gear, in my opinion, you should look for: Superior stats to your current gear, nothing lower level than your Caos’ level, and rune sockets. Runes can vastly improve function, for example, lightning on a weapon can add a chance to stun, and that stacks if you assign several lightning runes. This makes grinding a whole heck of a lot easier.
Saving Souls – The Forge and Keeping Gear on Reserve
Something people all to often do, is repairing their items in the field when they really do not need to at *all*. You can repair every item equipped in less than 5 minutes by warping back to the sanctum.
Behind you is The Forge, where you can repair everything for free and skip the cost of repair entirely. It’s a good opportunity to get yourself a drink, use the bathroom, get a snack, or whatever. By the time you get back, everything will be repaired. It also repairs offline, so when you’re done playing, head back to the forge before you log off.
To avoid having to repair gear in the future, I recommend not selling your gear when you upgrade, always keep just one set of gear on hand so you can quickly switch over to it instead of having to repair for a price. You can always sell it before you Ascend – those souls aren’t going anywhere. Reserve gear might save you a lot in repair costs, especially in particularly deep dungeons.
Earning Souls – Endless Dungeon
One of two primary methods people earn their souls.
If you don’t feel like wandering the map clearing random dungeons, this is the way to do it.
Past the forge and to the left you will find the entrance to the Endless Dungeon, here’s how it works: The Endless Dungeon is, as it’s name suggests, endless. You descend each level, with each one progressively getting harder. However: you do not need to kill every enemy, you can simply rush past some and they won’t follow after a while. You just need to kill a set number of them. That being said, you do get souls for every kill, so think strategically here. Will you risk dying here if it means a few more souls, or should you retreat to heal, or skip past them altogether? You also must kill each boss in a level. After you clear a level, you get an extra 1,000 souls, plus an additional amount of souls per level cleared, that multiplies per level, So, level two isn’t a massive bonus, but level three has double that bonus, and so on. Each level ends with a big boss, and a few smaller enemies around him. If you have it, you can just round up all the small enemies together and kill them with Chain Lightning, then use Ionized Bolt to stun him, heavy attacks, then dash away and hit with Seekers, rinse and repeat until the job is done. Sucks early on when you have bad gear and no spells, but gets better.
Early on when you have very little in the way of gear or spells, you should only be doing the first two levels of the dungeon. Later on you can delve deeper once you have fully upgraded spells.
With the souls you get from killing just the regular enemies alone, you can get quite a bit of souls fairly quickly.
Earning Souls – Ring of Bones
Ring of Bones has always been one of the favorite grinding spots, and can be a little easier to digest than Endless Dungeon. You get to it just before the first Apex, in the first zone of the game after Mount Crimhorn/Tutorial Zone, so you get it fairly early on. Filled with easy enemies, and can be done quickly with a huge combo, earning you thousands of souls after a grind of only a short while. You can seriously make quite a bit here, especially with fully upgraded Chain Lightning.
All you need is to have the level unlocked and converted to your current god. If you just converted it in the instance you’re in, you’ll need to travel in and out to make this work.
Immediately to your left upon entering is a small human village with a lore library. Walk into it, then walk out. That’s it. That will spawn a *lot* of easy to kill enemies, mostly regular trolls, which can be dispatched quickly at a high combo rate, especially with Chain Lightning stunlocking them. I think the minimum you can earn is around 600 souls, and you earn that in just a few seconds, really.
Then walk to the level adjacent, which is only a stones throw away (NOT the dungeon), and then walk back in. Head back to the human village and they’ll spawn again. Rinse and repeat. In just an hour you can be swimming in souls. It’s a bit tedious so shift+tab and put on a podcast or whatever.
Earning Souls – Combos
This one is pretty simple. You gain 2x souls for a set number of hits you make without taking damage. Just learn to block and you’ll rack up huge combos, all the way up to *several* times what you normally would make, making grinds like Ring of Bones so much more lucrative.
Some people with unequip their weapon so they use their god’s knife, which does little damage, to rack up huge combos on stunlocked Ogres before performing a finisher for a massive payout of souls, but I have never done this and don’t know quite how much they make. That being said, using your gods knife can be a good way to rack up massive combos without killing anything so that you can use a spell or switch back to your main weapon to kill them all for just as large a payout. Like stated previously, this makes Ring of Bones amazingly high paying, just so long as you make well sure you do not get hit after pulling off a large combo. That can be so horribly frustrating!
Earning Souls – Dominion Sites
Lastly, Dominion Sites, this is the one way in this game to earn passive income, even when offline. It’s extremely simple, and low effort. All you need to do is Ascend. That’s it.
Your Ascended champions will fight in the Meta War, and for every site occupied you will earn a small stipend of souls. Because of this, you will need to Ascend regularly, with very well equipped Caos. Most people, instead of Ascending at their level cap, Ascend every 5 levels, which earns the most Emblems, giving you better bonuses to your stats, as well as giving you many Ascended champions to earn you lots of souls through controlled Dominion Sites.
So, make sure to equip yourself extremely well before you Ascend. The better prepared you are before you Ascend, the better you will perform in the Meta Game, the more you will receive in Dominion Sites as well. You can start to earn a fair bit of souls this way, sometimes to the point where it basically makes the grind obsolete.
Currently, the Dark Goddess tends to absolutely dominate the Meta Game, and so Dark Caos tend to perform the best. This has been the case since the XBLA days, and I honestly have absolutely no idea why.
I hope this has come in handy to any newer players who might be a bit put off by how troubling coming across souls can be if you don’t know what you’re doing, and I hope it might put some people at ease over P2W concerns. My hope is that this guide makes it absolutely simple to play the game without even thinking about having to spend a dime (although that being said, definitely throw the devs a few bucks if you can, they worked hard to get this game up and could use a cup of coffee) and so I want it to be as 100% accurate as possible. So, please, if you notice something I’ve said that isn’t factual, or some other bit that might be important to know, let me know in the comments! If I can verify it to be the case, I will happily amend this guide so that it can stay accurate, relevant, and most importantly, helpful.