The upgrading system has changed significantly in Knight Empire (KE). There are now 4 types of upgrade scrolls. Here are the abbreviations used in this guide:
LUS: Upgrade Scroll (Low Class Item)
MUS: Upgrade Scroll (Middle Class Item)
HUS: Upgrade Scroll (High Class Item)
BUS: Blessed Upgrade Scroll (High Class Item)
ElS: Elemental Scroll
EnS: Enchant Scroll
This guide assumes that you are familiar with the upgrading process. If you don't know how to upgrade, read the item upgrade instructions on KO's web site.
This guide provides percentages for anvil upgrading. You may have heard of "burn" methods which claim to boost your upgrading percentages by deliberately burning items ahead of time. I think the burn methods are probably bogus.
Recommended Upgrade Path and Percentages
Here are the steps I recommend for upgrading, based on stats we've collected so far and things I've heard/read:
To upgrade low class items (e.g. wizard staff): LUS-LUS-LUS-LUS-LUS-LUS-MUS. That means use LUS to upgrade from 1->2, 2->3, 3->4, 4->5, 5->6, 6->7 , then use MUS to upgrade from 7->8. The % for those steps are approximately 100-100-70-70-65-35-5, which means:
going from 1->2 with LUS is 100%
going from 2->3 with LUS is 100%
going from 3->4 with LUS is ~70%
going from 4->5 with LUS is ~70%
going from 5->6 with LUS is ~65%
going from 6->7 with LUS is ~35%
going from 7->8 with MUS is ~5%
To upgrade middle class items (e.g. tier 4 armor, kukry): MUS-MUS-MUS-MUS-MUS-MUS-BUS. The % for those steps are approximately 100-100-70-70-60-35-5.
To upgrade high class items (e.g. tier 5 and 6 armor, iron bow, raptor): HUS-BUS-BUS-BUS-BUS-BUS-BUS. The % for those steps are approximately 99-100-70-75-55-25?-5. HUS is unreliable for upgrading past +2. At this time I do not have a sizable sample size for 6->7 so the % is a guess. If you want to be conservative, use BUS from 1->2 instead of HUS.
You can safely upgrade low class items with LUS to +3
You can safely upgrade mid class items with MUS to +3
You can safely upgrade high class items with BUS to +3
KE has tweaked the BUS percentages on items that are now considered high class. 3->4 is now 70% (it was 90% pre-KE) and 5->6 is now 55% (it was 45-50% pre-KE)
It doesn't seem to help to use MUS, HUS, or BUS on a much lower grade item. E.g. using MUS on a low class item from 5->6 or 6->7 doesn't seem to improve the % success compared to LUS, and MUS costs than LUS more. The same applies to using HUS on a middle class item from 3->4 or 4->5 compared to MUS. And to using BUS on a middle class item from 7->8
For enchanting or adding elemental: LEnS and LElS are reliable on low class items, and MEns and MElS are reliable on middle class items. The % of failure is very low. However, I don't recommend you use HEnS for high class items. I've only tried it twice on +7, and one time it failed. Anything high class is worth spending a BEnS on.
Upgrading low class items to +7 is easy! You will need, on average, 9 +1 low class items to get to 1 +7 item. It is now VERY easy to get paper items up to +7/12; that is why their prices have plummeted. I think we're going to see more paper mages. Prior to KE, a single +7/12 armor piece used to cost 30 mil+ to build or buy. Now such armor costs less than a million to build.
For high class items, I'd stick with the BElS over HElS. My gut is that HElS might be like HEnS in terms of %, which is garbage
Trina pieces boost upgrading by 20%. This is what I've heard. Please be aware, Trina'ing isn't 100%
5->6 is 55%
6->7 is 60%
7->8 is 75%
8->9 is 90%
I haven't done enough compounding from 9->10, but I know it does fail (I burned 3 +9 dex necks...doh!)
Calculating the Average Price to Upgrade
We're all lazy, so I've written an Upgrading Calculator to do the math for you. There are no keyloggers, malicious macros, or anything of the sort in that file. It's 100% legit.
Armed with that information, here is the process for calculating the average price it costs to build a given item (e.g. +7/56 wizard staff, +5 iron crossbow), starting from +1 (e.g. +1 wizard staff, +1 iron crossbow):
Determine the market price for the item at +1 with nothing on it (i.e. elemental, enchant, etc). If it's sold by an NPC, use that price. If it's sold by players, ask around or check out the prices at the market in Moradon
To get to +3, add the cost of 2 of the appropriate scrolls:
2 LUS for low class
2 MUS for middle class
2 BUS for high class
For each upgrade step after +3, the % success is less than 100%. So what you do is add the cost of the appropriate scroll to the running total, then divide that sum by the % success for the upgrade step
Repeat the previous step until you've reached the desired + rating
If applicable, add the cost of the appropriate elemental/enchant scroll, then divide by the % success for the scroll. Adding elemental and enchant seems to work 95% of the time for the low, mid, and blessed high class scrolls
For mage staffs, if you need to dispel from lightning to fire or ice, add the cost of the dispel scroll plus whatever the anvil charges you for the dispel operation (I think 50k for middle class staffs)
For example, here's how you would figure out that a +7/56 lightning wizard staff is worth under 1 million using LUS-LUS-LUS-LUS-LUS-LUS-MEnS (and assuming % success of 100-100-70-70-65-35-95). Please note prices will vary by tax rate; this is just an example with numbers rounded for simplicity:
+1 wiz staff = 8k
+3 wiz staff = +1 wiz staff + 2 LUS = 8k + (2 x 11k) = 30k
+4 wiz staff = (30k + 11k LUS) / 70% = 59k
+5 wiz staff = (59k + 11k LUS) / 70% = 99k
+6 wiz staff = (99k + 11k LUS) / 65% = 170k
+7 wiz staff = (170k + 11k LUS) / 35% = 517
+7/56 lightning wiz staff = (517 + 165k MEnS) / 95% = 718k
Lessons Learned / Tips
If you are buying a +3 item, remember that it is only worth the price of a +1 item plus 2 scrolls. If you learn nothing else from this guide, please remember this:
+3 low class item = +1 item plus 2 LUS
+3 middle class item = +1 item plus 2 MUS
+3 high class item = +1 item plus 2 BUS
Never upgrade an item unless you have a suitable backup. Especially for your main weapon. Otherwise you'll hamstring your ability to hunt.
Upgrade with 1 scroll at a time
You should upgrade all upgradable items you are using to at least +3, because there doesn't seem to be any risk in doing so
Don't apply elemental/enchant to items less than +6 for low and middle class items and +5 for high class items. It is relatively easy to upgrade that far in KE. You should not apply elemental/enchant until you've finished upgrading the rating. I don't know if elemental/enchant makes further upgrades worse in terms of % (in my experience it doesn't seem to matter), but if you upgrade an item with elemental/enchant and it burns, you lost not only the upgrade scrolls you put into it but also the elemental/enchant scroll as well.
You'll see people selling stuff for much less than the average cost to build. That is often the case as people have moved up to better equipment and are trying to unload their old stuff
If you are building or buying +stat armor (e.g. +dex, +mp, etc) for high class items, in general, 2 or more +5 pieces cost the same as a single +6 piece. So if you are tight on coin, you can build or buy a +5 set first, then build or buy a +6 set and sell the +5 set, etc.
Please post them on the upgrading thread at KnightsUnited.com.
Appendix A: Anvil Myths
In my experience upgrading in KE, you can't predict ahead of time whether a given non-100% upgrade will succeed, and you can't do anything to improve the probability of success aside from using the appropriate scroll and / or Trina. For a given upgrade, you "roll" the dice, and if your roll is less than or equal to the percentage for success, the upgrade succeeds.
I have read a lot of posts claiming that you can burn items deliberately to improve the chances of a subsequent upgrade. That may (or may not) have worked pre-KE. Back then I didn't track upgrade stats. Here are my arguments why the burn methods are probably bogus now:
In KE, I've tried some burn methods, they don't make a statistical difference. E.g. I have upgraded 13 +7 items in a row, all of them burned. According to some of the burn methods I've read, at least 1 of them should have gone through
If there was a true KE burning method, someone(s) would have figured it out by now. And even if people wanted to keep it secret, some big mouth would probably post it. I mean everything about the game (e.g. boss spawn locations, etc), you can find if you look around enough, even though some people don't want to share the info.
I saved this for last, because it is THE most important consideration when you think about it: it would be against K2's financial interests for there be an easy way to upgrade items, particularly high class, to +7 or +8, without Trinas. That anvil makes K2 a ton of money. It is a brilliant gaming business concept, because people pay real money for Trinas to upgrade their precious goodies.
There is an interesting thread which debates this topic on KOR. If you have any thoughts on the burn methods, email me firstname.lastname@example.org or post on that thread.
I've heard that pre-KE, it mattered which slots you used to place your scroll, and that there was a 33-step pattern to getting to +9. But the general consensus is those things don't work anymore.
For those of you who believe that the slot you put the scroll in matters, read this from sweetcamelhump at KOR:
Packet sniffing does not lie. Same packet is sent to the server no matter what slot you use. Rewording for idiots: When you're upgrading the slot number is NOT sent to the server, which means it has no damn idea what slot you put it in.
Appendix B: Upgrading and Compounding Stats
Here are the stats that clans I and a few others (e.g. Tbrncl, GrouchArcher) have collected so far in KE. Approximately 95% of the upgrade data is from my personal experience. I've stopped collecting stats for LUS and MUS from 1->7 and for compounding from 5->7 because we have decent sample sizes:
LElS: Elemental Scroll (Low Class Item)
MElS: Elemental Scroll (Middle Class Item)
MEnS: Enchant Scroll (Middle Class Item)
HEnS: Enchant Scroll (High Class Item)
BEnS: Blessed Enchant Scroll (High Class Item)
MDS: Dispel Scroll (Middle Class Item)
HDS: Dispel Scroll (High Class Item)
->2 ->3 ->4 ->5 ->6 ->7 ->8
369/369 369/369 293/410 213/288 138/203 57/153 LUS on low class item
100% 100% 71% 74% 68% 37%
02/04 08/12 09/17 25/79 MUS on low class item
50% 67% 53% 32%
00/01 BUS on low class item
16/16 LElS on low class item
199/199 199/199 186/265 135/185 86/136 46/131 12/207 MUS on mid class item
100% 100% 70% 73% 63% 35% 6%
01/03 02/06 HUS on mid class item
04/05 02/02 03/04 03/05 01/16 BUS on mid class item
80% 100% 75% 60% 6%
13/13 02/02 04/04 MElS on mid class item
100% 100% 100%
01/01 BElS on mid class item
02/02 BEnS on mid class item
03/03 126/128 11/11 01/01 MEnS on mid class item
100% 98% 100% 100%
03/03 02/02 03/03 MDS on mid class item
100% 100% 100%
01/01 HDS on mid class item
258/260 09/15 05/07 02/04 HUS on high class item
99% 60% 71% 50%
14/14 167/167 92/125 70/90 39/72 03/17 02/31 BUS on high class item
100% 100% 74% 78% 54% 18% 6%
04/04 04/04 05/07 03/03 BUS+Trina on high class item
100% 100% 71% 100%
00/01 HElS on high class item
10/10 01/01 BElS on high class item
01/01 01/02 HEnS on high class item
05/05 07/07 14/15 BEnS on high class item
100% 100% 93%
08/08 01/01 HDS on high class item
01/01 01/01 BUS on unique item
03/03 03/03 02/02 00/01 BUS+Trina on unique item
100% 100% 100% 0%
COMPOUNDING (only +5 and up are compoundable)
->2 ->3 ->4 ->5 ->6 ->7 ->8 ->9 ->10
N/A N/A N/A N/A 89/165 91/155 120/160 25/28 00/01
54% 59% 75% 89% 0%
If you have feedback / comments for this article, email me at email@example.com. I may add them to this page. Please note that any stats from the comments below are not included in the stats we've collected so far.
WhaleClan (2005/10/03): SO I started with 100 sword breakers
got all 100 to +3
got 78 +4
all with LUS (lots of em) added poison at +6 with les (lost1)
BUS from + 7 to +8
got 1 +8 sword breaker with 76 attack and 80 poison GLOWS
took a LONG time
spent total 60.8 million
update the +7-+8 with blessed to 5 or 10%