Help for a Nether Stronghold

My character is around level 90+ and I’ve played for a bit more than 40 hours so far. I was going to make a Nether Brim Smith first but I still haven’t found what I’m looking for a Green Orb, so that will wait, even my thirty gems are ready.

So I decided to create a Nether Stronghold, instead. I’ve got the choice between two Orbs, and they are almost the same, it just depends which attribute I want to boost. I have a Pink Orb (9 activations, 26 gem slots) and I have a Indigo Orb (9 activations, 26 gem slots). Those are pretty good, especially due to the number of activations. But one is oriented towards a Health build while the other on is oriented towards a Defense build.

From what I’ve gathered reading both on this forum and on the Steam forums, I should go all-in for the Pink Orb that will give me the Health boost, mainly due to the percentage-based spells that are devastating for Defense builds. Then, I should create a Defense artifact—I don’t really know why it is OK to put Defense on an artifact, though.

And should I try to make it (the Stronghold) a Nether Demon, or is it not worth it for defensive creatures? I’ve got two Demon Dusts in my inventory but I thought it would be best to keep those for attacking creatures. Oh, and is the Demonic Tome a permanent item or do you have to re-buy one each time you want to re-roll a Demon ability? I’ve read that someone re-rerolled an ability for a long time before finally finding a good one, but it would be extremely expensive buying a new one every time.

Anyway, that’s my plan. Please let me know if this a good idea. Also, it seems that there are a lot of Lucky Gem Boxes the further you go into the realms. Is that just a coincidence or is that a real thing? If so, I should farm on those levels to speed up the gem-levelling process.

Yeah, never a good Green Orb around when you need one. (I have been wanting to make another High Attack Nether Creature in my current game for the past week and haven’t been able to find an appropriate orb that is up to my standards … maybe I am too picky )

In any case, you are correct that there are a number of things in the game (like Poison, Infection or certain creature abilities) that can by-pass defense entirely. Therefore, going all Defense and no bonus health on a Nether Stronghold is certainly a mistake.

That being said, Defense is still useful. A Stronghold tank will take a lot of hits, and it is very nice for most of those hits to be tiny in size. (If you have a creature with very low defense, even the weakest enemies will hit you for a large chunk of damage.) Basically, Defense allows your Nether Stronghold to shrug off weak attacks. It is very possible to create a reasonable Nether Stronghold with an Orb that grants bonus defense. (I forget what the weakness of Indigo is – but an orb that grants bonus Defense is great as long as it doesn’t give you a Health penalty.) If you want to use an Orb with bonus defense, consider like the following:
– 5 Activation for Red, 4 Activation for Blue
– 16 Gems on Red/Health and 10 Gems on Blue/Defense
(The exact numbers aren’t important, but by going something close to half-and-half you can create a creature that can ignore weak hits and still have enough health to not die quickly to things like Poison or Troll Arsonists.)

That being said, there is also a lot to be said for the tried-and-true method of “Go All-in on Red”. You can get an incredible Health pool with 9 Red activations and 26 Red/Health gems. If you go this route, I would strongly encourage you to consider something like an all-Defense artifact (getting 8 or 9 stacks of Defend-All on an artifact makes a significant difference), or else perhaps a Dark Crystal Smith. If you go for the all-red option and you don’t do something to provide a bit of extra defense, the weak attacks on your tank will get quite frustrating.

Finally, as always, if you haven’t read Kejal’s guide to Nether creatures, you should do so. (It is incredibly valuable!)

OK, I think I’ll make my Stronghold a healthy creature. The Pink Orb’s strength is Health but its weakness is Defense, so it would kind of be a waste to put some Defense gems on it. The Indigo Orb is strong in Defense and normal in Health, but I think I’ve heard stories saying that Health enchants on artifacts don’t scale as rapidly as gem activations on a Nether Orb.

So what I’ll do will be: go all-in on Health on my Pink Orb, create a Heavy Shield artifact with a legendary material and only Defense enchantments to complete it.

By the way, how is damage taken calculated? Is it: damage taken = enemy’s attack value - defense value - special defense (Death, Chaos, Sorcery, Nature, Life) value? Or is it something more complex?

Anyway, thank you for your help! And yes, I’ve read Kejal’s guide on Nether Orbs a few times already, it’s a pretty useful resource.

All right, I made my first Nether, woo! I had a really lucky batch of Pandemonium tokens (about six or seven “level up all your gems”) so it was really quick to get the gems to level 10.

And wow, it already has more health than my level-120+ creatures while it’s only level 15. I can already tell that it will be a beast when it will be high-level!