Skaarf - The Zeo way by zeogau

Skaarf - The Zeo way

By: zeogau
Last Updated: Jan 6, 2015
4 Votes
New Guide
Build 1 of 1

Skaarf

Build: The Zeo way

Ability Path

Fan the Flames
Heroic Perk
Spitfire
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Goop
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Dragon's Breath
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12

Threat Meter

Threat
Low
High
Show all
Threat Hero Notes
1
Joule Joule should be the easiest to kill. She doesn't have any potential skills that can annoy a Skaarf. Her Rocket Leap is pretty useless on a "keep moving Skaarf".
1
Skaarf When you choose to play Skaarf, you should already know the strengths and weaknesses of this little creature.
2
SAW Saw should not give Skaarf a headache. Make sure you keep moving. When Saw does his Suppressing Fire, if he misses, Skaarf can shoot his Spitfire] and take advantage of the heroic perk to amplify the damage.
3
  No Threat
4
Koshka This sexy cat-girl is a hit and run type. Don't try to chase away this girl. Shooting Spitfire at her is very difficult because she cannot stop jumping around! Just drop an oil Goop at where you stand and burn it. This cat eventually will need to get closer to you anyway.
5
Taka This sly fox is just like Koshka. He will keep jumping around and disappear like a chicken. Same strategy with playing Koshka. Don't panic, just burn your own ground. Once he is burnt, you can start shooting at him maximizing your heroic perk.
6
Adagio Adagio's threat should be somewhere in the middle. He doesn't have a stun skill or any other skills that can make your life difficult. If you are facing an Adagio with lots of Attack Speed boost, you need to be careful though. His Gift of Fire can really be a hassle to Skaarf.
7
Catherine Catherine, Glaive, and Krul, all have a stun ability, which will give you a hard time if you are being ganked. Just shoot Spitfire to scare them away. If they run away, make sure they are not running away to get help and gank you.
7
Glaive Just like Catherine, this big cat has a stunner skill that you can not underestimate.
7
Krul Just like Catherine, this undead creature can throw away his sword to stun Skaarf.
8
Ringo Ringo is very agile and weak, but surely can shoot really hard. Keep a distance from this drunken guy because he is crazy. Once you can burn him with Spitfire, you will still need to keep a distance from him. Let him chase you and don't forget to keep shooting at him once a while to keep the fire on. If he runs away, you can chase him if you have the confidence to defeat him.
9
  No Threat
10
Petal This flower's minions can really give Skaarf a headache, both at attacking, chasing, and running away. Make sure she runs out of energy or you bring a tanker with you to scare away this creature.

Introduction Top

This would be my first post and first guide. I have been playing this awesome game since it is pre release on the Southeast Asia region, then migrate my account to North America region. My IGN (NA) is zeogau and my IGN (SEA) is zeogau+sea.

The first day Skaarf is released I immediately unlock it because I really like a dragon creature. Since then I have been playing with Skaarf and notice that playing this hero is REALLY DIFFICULT. I think the difficulty level for this hero is not MEDIUM but HARD. If Taka is categorized as HARD, I think this cute dragon deserved to be changed to HARD as well. But that's just my two-cent.

The first two weeks playing with Skaarf, I still have an enemy Skaarf sometime. But after that, I barely see Skaarf anymore. I guess what people say in the forum is right. Skaarf is rather disappointing and it is a squishy hero. Hopefully I can help ease the pain of those players who are disappointed wasting their glories by unlocking this dragon.

Before you read this guide, please read other Skaarf's guide first.
The right of of Skaarf

Skaarf is why you died

How to burn Halcyon Fold

Analysis Top

Let's just lay out all basic facts about Skaarf.
  • His Heroic Perk is a very nice thing to have. It is basically an amplify damage skill. Once an enemy is burnt, each of your basic attacks will refresh the burning period and amplify the burning damage. However, it is a very hard task to make use this perk to the fullest, especially on a hero. You have to keep shooting periodically to him/her. This means Skaarf needs to have a fast movement and good attack speed. Since the only way to burn a hero is by using (1) Spitfire , (2) Goop + Spitfire, (3) Dragon Breath , Skaarf also needs a decent energy regenerate rate and low skill cool down.
  • Skaarf's first skill, Spitfire , will allow this cute dragon to spit a fire into any heroes/creatures on the screen. If you see the range of this skill, WOW, it is very far. But of course there is a catch! This skill will burn the FIRST hero/creature on its path. To be able to use this skill nicely, Skaarf must be very agile and Skaarf's player must have a very good instinct on where a hero will go. I would say this is difficulty #1 playing a Skaarf. An overdrive on this skill is quite impressive jumping from 150 to 325 (more than double up!). It also has a 90% Crystal damage. I would recommend having an overdrive on this skill. Totally worth it!
  • Skaarf's second skill, Goop , will allow Skaarf to do some zoning. No other hero has this kind of skill before on Vainglory. Hero most like will have to make a reroute if you drop a Goop on his/her path. You can also use this as a psychology attack, just drop a Goop in front of a hero and never burn it with a Spitfire (for saving some energy of course). Other heroes do not want to be burnt to death because they never know whether you have an overdrive on this skill or not.

    Goop can also be used as a tool for running way. When a hero chases a Skaarf, just drop a Goop on Skaarf's foot and keep run away after that. An overdrive on this skill is also quite impressive. Ignite damage increases from 115 to 290, damage per second increases from 55 to 155, its duration is increased by 50% to 15 seconds, its duration on fire is increased by 50% to 6 seconds, AND one last thing, its cooldown is reduced from 19 to 12! WOW, quite significant overdrive. Totally worth it to have its overdrive. Crystal power on this skill is just mediocre, though, a 50% Crystal damage. If you ask me to choose which one between Spitfire and Goop to have an overdrive, I would choose Goop! No need to think further, easy choice for a Skaarf's player.
  • Skaarf's third skill, Dragon Breath , is like Ringo's Hellfire Brew , a massive damage. However, Skaarf has a much bigger damage! Imagine that you are being hit by Ringo's Hellfire Brew, it's really stung, isn't it? Well, Skaarf can stung you really really bad! Compare to Hellfire Brew 480 of true damage with 80% Crystal damage, Dragon Breath has 1390 damage (I don't think it is a true damage), with 600% Crystal damage! Enough said. The numbers really say it. I guess we can never compare a fire from a drunken master with one from a True Dragon!

    However, it is extremely hard to master how to use this skill properly. Practice makes perfect I guess. Skaarf will also stop blowing this burst fire if he is stunned by any stunners. Make sure you have your Reflex Block item in your arsenal if you do not want to waste Skaarf's energy after activating this skill. Not like a Ringo , he can hide in a bush to activate Hellfire Brew. Skaarf cannot follow Ringo's footstep hiding in the bush. Since this skill is an area damage skill, you will most likely have to activate this skill in the middle of ganking. I just hope this skill will not be nerfed since it is already hard to play Skaarf in overall.
  • Skaarf's stats are very weak I say. The HP is second lowest after Petal , but Petal have 3 minions to cover her *** and the longest basic attack's range. Skaarf's basic attack's range is the shortest among rangers, pretty pathetic right. Skaarf is a ranger with the shortest range and second most weakest HP. No wonder Skaarf is pretty squishy and cannot shine as good as Petal. Definitely, Skaarf need a extra HP booster to survive on the Halcyon.

Conceptual Top

Based on the analysis, I come up with the following requirements when playing Skaarf.
  1. Skaarf needs a good boot, at least Travel Boots .
  2. Skaarf needs good energy booster, because definitely Skaarf depends on all the three skills. Skaarf needs lots of energies to spam all these skills. Having Eve of Harvest and Frostburn definitely will help this poor cute creature.
  3. Skaarf needs cooldown acceleration items, if you want Skaarf to spam his skills, definitely cooldown is a mandatory. Having Clockwork and Aftershock will not hurt. I personally think a slice damage on next basic attack on Aftershock will help a Skaarf too much.
  4. Skaarf needs attack speed booster. Remember the heroic perk? Yes, having good attack speed will definitely help a Skaarf. I would choose Tornado Trigger , Bonesaw , Breaking Point , or Alternating Current . I don't think the armor slicing on Bonesaw and Breaking Point will help Skaarf that much. Skaarf already has the better heroic perk that serves the same purpose.
  5. Skaarf needs additional Crystal damage. Having Shatterglass or any Crystal items should boost your Crystal power. What is a mage without Crystal power? If you afford it then don't play Skaarf. It is like having a Ferrari running an a 45mph speed limit.
  6. Skaarf needs additional defense item to harden his scale. Having Crucible , Aegis , Fountain of Renewal , Metal Jacket , or Atlas Pauldron will never hurt I guess. Just choose two of them should make your Skaarf scarier.
  7. Lastly, Skaarf needs attack booster against minions. Remember that Skaarf basic attack is so weak and the range is so short. Bummer, how can he farm? Yes, just have Ironguard Contract or Stormguard Banner on your arsenal to help you gain lots of gold.

How To Play Top

Okay, up to this point, you should have an idea why playing Skaarf is so difficult. Yes, you need more that 6 slots on your arsenal, I think 8 should be enough. And one more thing. Let's say Skaarf is allowed to have 8 slots of arsenal, how can he fill them up, since Skaarf is so weak and squishy?

So this is how I play based on my research and trial of errors of course. I will try to put down the reason why I choose to go down this path. Please feel free to give me some inputs and we can make this cute creature becomes the worst nightmare on Halcyon Fold!
  1. First item to buy is Ironguard Contract . This item has a nice +5 health regen, which should help the way you farm on the lane. Never go to jungle if you want to survive long in the game. I actually encounter one player playing Skaarf on jungle, using single item boot. Yes, Skaarf is very strong for the first 6 level. Skaarf can push almost all melee heroes with his Spitfire and heroic perk . But if you want to sustain in the game, you need lots of gold. Yes, I cannot emphasize more, farm lots of gold guys!

    And some of you might ask, why only buy 1 item? Can I buy two additional potions, since I have an extra 50 gold as a start up? Actually, the way I play Skaarf is NOT to buy a single potion until midgame. If you cannot survive without a single potion, then choose another hero. Skaarf is just not for you maybe.

  2. On the lane, make sure you stay alive, and kill some heroes. I would say you can kill almost any heroes for the first 6 level on the lane, especially Saw and melee heroes. Just do the trick, Spitfire + Fan the Flames . The best laner friend you here is Petal or Adagio , this is because you need to perform lots of last kill. I think having Saw or Ringo will make Skaarf having difficulty on doing last kill. On this step, you don't have any energy booster yet, so be wise using your Spitfire. Don't use any Goop at all cost.

    Some note on investing skill points, as you can see above, the first skill you should get is Spitfire and after that Goop for points 2-5. Although you may not be able to use Goop yet, I recommend to invest on it as quickly as possible. Goop will help you to do attacking, zoning, and defending. You might notice that when you reach level 5, you will NOT be able to spend it on Goop. Just save that point, when you reach level 6, you will have 2 points, spend them altogether on Goop and Dragon Breath . The reason behind it is because I like to have Goop's overdrive by level 8 and having a second Breath Fire by level 9. Since Spitfire is very hard to be used, I decided to maximize Goop first. Goop is also handy when fighting Skaarf's nemesis, Petal .
  3. After you farm at least 1200s, you can start your getting your Stormguard Banner and Energy Battery . Don't wait any longer because you need those items to farm better. With Stormguard Banner, Skaarf will be able to perform last kill at much better rate. Energy Battery will also help Skaarf spamming on Goop and Spitfire. If possible, buy this on the center market to save some time. Don't go back to your base because you don't have a boot yet. If you manage to get 1500s gold instead, you can grab your boot as well. If you decide to buy on the center market, make sure you go there with your melee friend. Don't go alone, especially if there is a sneaky foxy .
  4. At this step, the game will start to become more intense. I cannot give you a detail step by step instruction anymore. All really depends on the situation of the game. Make sure you keep on the lane until you reach level 6. With your ultimate , Skaarf should be able to help the team.
    Focus on getting on Warhorn first. Why Warhorn? This item has a nice combination of stats that are needed so badly by this cute creature. Since Skaarf actually needs 8 slots, until that happens we need a way to combine those requirements into lesser items if possible. Just peek on the stats, this item has almost everything a Skaarf needs: cooldown acceleration, basic attack's booster, active speed booster, energy regen, and health regen. Wow, 4 out of 7 requirements have been satisfied, at least a bit.
  5. Next, you should focus getting an Eve of Harvest . I choose this item instead of Frostburn , because of its Crystal's lifesteal than a slow effect. Since Skaarf is too weak and squishy, I don't think having a slow effect will make a game changer. However, having a life steal will help those tiny HP that Skaarf has.
  6. With Eye of Harvest in your hand already, Skaarf should be able to start spamming the skills and carrying the game. Next focus on building your health and armor. Instead of getting a special defense item, I like just to go to have tier 3 boot .
  7. Up to this point, we still lack of 2 requirements, having a good Crystal power and a good attack speed item. You can get Tornado Trigger and Shatterglass to fulfill these requirements.
    OR the second option, you can choose to get two Alternating Current , yes two please. Two will give you 80% increased attack speed and 120 additional Crystal damage, compared to the first option, 75% increased attack speed and 110 additional Crystal damage. In my opinion having critical chance and damage on Skaarf will not help too much. You need to buy another weapon item to increased your weapon power, otherwise your crits are rather useless. But we are talking about a mage here. Skaarf is not supposed to deal weapon damage. Beside that Alternating Current has a nice passive skill of dealing increased basic attack based on a percentage of your Crystal power. So this single item will actually help you dealing a big basic attack also.
  8. The last item you should get is of course a defense item. I always like to build Aegis , regardless what enemy hero's builds are. When I play
    Skaarf, I usually avoid any head to head fight. Always do a hit and run strategy, since Skaarf is a mage. He is just a cute creature that cannot deal lots of bashing attacks like Glaive or Krul. Having that reason in mind, my Skaarf just needs to protect from burst attacks. So yes, Aegis should be a wise choice, since I would be able to activate it for a Reflex Block, too, when I am executing my ultimate .

Allies To Choose/ Avoid Top

Skaarf is best played with either one supporter

OR one melee tanker .

Ally that you should avoid is hit-and-run melee heroes .

Taka or Koshka is very unpredictable in terms of keeping the fight on the spot, because they are a runner so they can run pretty quick when situation is going worse. How about Skaarf? This poor creature will be left alone and sliced to death!

TIPS Top

I will continuously add some more tips playing with Skaarf in this chapter.
  • I find out that Skaarf is actually VERY STRONG against all melee heroes in the jungle for the first 5 level. Just spit your fire and keep hitting enemy hero. The safest way to do this is, you still need to go to your laner, once you reach level 2, you should have got about 400 gold in your stash. But a boot and couple of potions and start roaming on the enemy side jungle. This is to prevent enemy jungler to farm. I usually just go back and forth between jungle and lane, because Skaarf still needs to fight on the lane to farm lots of gold. Look at ALT - FIRST STOP.
  • Your worst enemy on lane during the first 6 level are Petal and Adagio. Petal is not so good for Skaarf since she can spam lots of seeds and pets . Adagio is because of his Gift of Fire . Both together will make Skaarf really in pains an headache. Thus, Skaarf needs to adapt to this situation. If you encounter one of these heroes, you better equip yourself with lots of energies ASAP. Beside that, your boot has to be on-par with enemies' boots. Hence, don't wait until you have 1200s gold. Once you reach 600s gold, find a good timing to go to jungle shop and get yourself a boot and battery. This step is very important because you don't want to be in a position where your equipments do not match with enemy's. And don't worry about going to jungle shop during the first 5 level. It is actually pretty safe for Skaarf, as long as you don't get ganked 1 vs 3.
    Look at ALT - FIRST STOP [PETAL/ADAGIO] .

    And to make Skaarf still IN the game, do not rush into Warhorn or Travel Boots , get a Reflex Block , instead. This will make Skaarf's scale a bit tougher especially against that suicide pet bombs (really hate it, I think Petal is going to be nerfed pretty soon, pet bombs are so strong).
    Look at ALT - MID GAME [PETAL/ADAGIO] .


Final Words Top

I agree Skaarf is a difficult hero to play, but it does not mean that he cannot be played at all. In the right hand and the right build, Skaarf could really burnt the whole Halcyon Fold.

Please feel free to try the build and give some comments. GO BURNSSS!!!

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