Air Magic

Air Magic is a favorite of many and it's easy to see why. It has a good combination of damaging and beneficial spells, most of which are very useful. It's a good alternative to Earth Magic for your Might Hero.

Level 1

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: 1 Round/Power
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 6 / 5
  • Untrained / Basic: Target, allied troop's speed is increased by three hexes/turn.
  • Advanced: Target, allied troop's speed is increased by five hexes/turn.
  • Expert: All allied troops' speed is increased by five hexes/turn.

What do most low-level creatures have in common? A low speed value which prevents them from quickly crossing the battlefield to get to the enemy, even with the Tactics skill. Haste (especially Expert Haste) gives you a tactical advantage in that even slower creatures can be made useful. Since Haste also increases your chances of attacking first, there are no negatives in using Haste. The Slow spell counteracts Haste in addition to Cure and Dispel.

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: Instant
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 5 / 4
  • Untrained / Basic: Troop in target hex receive ((Power x 10) + 10) damage.
  • Advanced: Same as Basic Effect, except that damage is ((Power x 10) + 20).
  • Expert: Same as Basic Effect, except that damage is ((Power x 10) + 30).

There isn't a Magic Arrow spell that's specific to the Air magic school and from my experience, the level of Magic Arrow that you use is the level of the highest magic school that you have. It's available in most Mage Guilds and is good for clearing out the low-level wandering stacks around your starting town. It's a cheap spell and useful in the early parts of a map.

  • Type: Adventure
  • Duration: Instant
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 2 / 1
  • Untrained / Basic: Displays the location of all artifacts on the View World Screen.
  • Advanced: Displays the location of all artifacts and heroes on the View World Screen.
  • Expert: Displays the location of all artifacts, heroes and towns.

View Air is a most useful spell because of the information that it provides. Knowing where the artifacts are can give your heroes an edge in combat, and knowing where the heroes and towns (including neutral towns) are can save you many days of fruitless exploration and lets you guide your main heroes to where they are most needed. Even the strongest force won't do you any good if it's on the wrong side of the map and if the enemy already found all of the artifacts before you. View Air is a spell that I use the most often in the Adventure Map.

Level 2

  • Type: Adventure
  • Duration: 1 Day
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 4 / 2
  • Untrained / Basic: When opponents place the mouse cursor over the casting hero while pressing the Option Key, all of the hero's creature troops are displayed as if they were composed of the most powerful creatures in the hero's army. Troop population numbers are represented normally.
  • Advanced: Same as Basic Effect except troop population quantities are represented as "0" or "few".
  • Expert: Same as Advanced Effect except all troops are represented as if populated by the most powerful creature in hero's longest owned town.

The Disguise spell's biggest problems are that it only lasts until the end of your turn, the artificial intelligence at higher levels is often not fooled by it, and the Vision spell can see right through it. I can't see how this spell would be worth while to use. In my opinion, it can't be used effectively to fool your enemy.

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: Current Battle
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 10 / 8
  • Untrained / Basic: Reduces target, enemy troop's defense rating by three. Spell may be cast on same troop repeatedly.
  • Advanced: Same as Basic Effect except defense rating is reduced by four.
  • Expert: Same as Basic Effect except defense rating is reduced by five.

This spell would be handy against a high-level creature stack that you just want to get rid of as soon as possible. Because it can be used multiple times on the same stack, it has an advantage over other spells that make your own troops stronger. In addition, the effect lasts for the entire battle which means that even a might hero with low Power can weaken the enemy substantially. A very useful and powerful spell.

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: 1 Round/Power
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 7 / 5
  • Untrained / Basic: Increases Luck of target, allied troop by one.
  • Advanced: Increases Luck of target, allied troop by two.
  • Expert: Increases Luck of all allied troops by two.

Positive luck can result in an attack that does twice the regular damage when it is triggered (random chance per attack or retaliation). This luck effect isn't certain to happen and since there's no penalty for having negative luck, there's no real reason to increase it.

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: Instant
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 10 / 8
  • Untrained / Basic: Target, enemy creature receives ((Power x 25) + 10) damage.
  • Advanced: Target, enemy creature receives ((Power x 25) + 20) damage.
  • Expert: Target, enemy creature receives ((Power x 25) + 50) damage.

Lightning Bolt is a powerful offensive spell (especially for just being level 2), and so it is used often by both magic and might users. Overall, Lightning Bolt is an excellent spell to use if you want to damage a particularly bothersome stack of troops.

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: 1 Round/Power
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 8 / 6
  • Untrained / Basic: Target, allied troop with ranged attack has its attack rating increased by three when making ranged attacks.
  • Advanced: Same as Basic Effect, except attack rating is increased by six.
  • Expert: Same as Advanced Effect, except all allied troops with ranged attacks are affected.

While this is a nice spell in theory, I think that Bless is a far better spell to use. A battle only has a limited number of rounds and I'd rather use as many of them with offensive spells or spells that weaken the enemy. Unless your army consists of many archer stacks (more than 2), there are many other spells that makes your entire army and I suggest that you use one of them instead of Precision.

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: 1 Round / Power
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 7 / 5
  • Untrained / Basic: Damage from Air Magic spells is reduced by 30% for target, allied troop.
  • Advanced: Damage from Air Magic spells is reduced by 50% for target, allied troop.
  • Expert: Damage from Air Magic spells is reduced by 50% for all allied troops.

There are only two offensive Air Magic spells that you have to be concerned with; Lightning Bolt and Chain Lightning. Whether Protection from Air will be worth it depends on how frequently the enemy hero is using one or both of these two spells.

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: 1 day
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 4 / 2
  • Untrained / Basic: Displays number of monsters in a wandering monster troop and whether or not the troop will offer to join the casting hero's army. Range is equal to Power or three, whichever is greater.
  • Advanced: Same as Basic Effect, except an enemy hero's primary skill stats, and the composition and quantity of that hero's army can be viewed. Range is (Power x 2) or three, whichever is greater.
  • Expert: Same as Advanced Effect, except an enemy town's statistics and garrison composition and quantity may be viewed. Range is (Power x 3) or three, whichever is greater.

Knowing the enemy is an essential part of combat because lessening the number of troops that you lose in a battle is very important. Many times I have skipped battles with wandering stacks since I knew that there were too many of them and they would not flee or join. Many times I have waited for another week's troops or used another hero before attempting to take over a town. I don't see this spell in Mage Guilds as often as I'd like, but it's very important to a good battle strategy.

Level 3

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: 1 Round/Power
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 12 / 9
  • Untrained / Basic: Target, allied troop takes 25% less damage from ranged attacks.
  • Advanced: Target, allied troop takes 50% less damage from ranged attacks.
  • Expert: All allied troops take 50% less damage from ranged attacks.

Air Shield would be a super spell if it worked against siege towers, but is only effective against ranged troops. Therefore, unless there are a lot of archer stacks (more than 2), I usually use an offensive spell or Forgetfulness (Water Magic) or just send over fast troops to kill them. Even if my troops can't kill all of the enemy archers, just being next to them prevents them from shooting their arrows. I don't use Air Shield at all because of these reasons.

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: Instant
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 15 / 12
  • Untrained / Basic: All undead creature troops receive ((Power x 10) +10) damage.
  • Advanced: All undead creature troops receive ((Power x 10) +20) damage.
  • Expert: All undead creature troops receive ((Power x 10) + 50) damage.

Just as with Death Ripple, Destroy Undead does a small amount of damage. The only time that it would be worthwhile is if you were facing a Necromancer hero with many low-level undead stacks and even then, it would only tickle his troops unless your hero had a lot of Power. Also remember that it hurts any undead that is in your army as well just as Death Ripple does.

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: Special
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 15 / 12
  • Untrained / Basic: Target, enemy troop of less than ((Power x 25) + 10) Health is put under your control. Allied troops may attack hypnotized troop without fear of retaliation.
  • Advanced: Same as Basic Effect, except that Health of target must be less than ((Power x 25) + 20).
  • Expert: Same as Basic Effect, except that Health of target must be less than ((Power x 25) + 50).

What this spell does is that it multiplies the hit points of every a creature stack by how many creatures in the stack to get the total health. For example, you can't hypnotize a stack that has a total of 1,000 health unless your hero's Power is 38. Plus, many creatures are resistant to this spell so it is not always guaranteed to work. On the other hand, having an extra stack to attack on your side or to not do anything at all can be very helpful, especially since it won't retaliate when attacked by your troops.

Level 4

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: Instant
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 24 / 20
  • Untrained / Basic: Lightning bolt strikes target troop for ((Power x 40) + 25) damage. Bolt then strikes closest troop for half the damage. Effect continues until 4 troops are hit.
  • Advanced: Like Basic Effect except that initial strike does ((Power x 40) + 50) damage, and bolt strikes five troops.
  • Expert: Like Advanced Effect except that initial strike does ((Power x 40) +100) damage.

A lot of people really like this spell because, unlike every other spell except Armageddon, it can hurt troops that aren't next to each other. On the negative end, after you select the target troop, you can't control who gets hit with the bolts. Your own troops could very well get struck if they are closer than the enemy troops. So in some ways, you still have to make sure the enemy troops are close to each other just as with all of the other multi-target spells. My method is to use Chain Lightning in the first few rounds when my troops are on the opposite side of the battlefield and when the enemy troops are usually close together. Then there is no chance of the bolts striking my own troops. Once the enemy gets close, I find that Chain Lightning is too dangerous and so I use other spells that can be controlled better.

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: 1 Round/Power
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 24 / 20
  • Untrained / Basic: Target, allied troop can retaliate against one additional attack per round.
  • Advanced: Target, allied troop can retaliate against two additional attacks per round.
  • Expert: All allied troops can retaliate against two additional attacks per round.

The usual tactic is to surround a tough enemy and whittle it down because it can only retaliate once per round. However, with Counterstrike, you have a good defense against such a tactic because you can retaliate up to three times each round. This is especially useful when the surrounded creature can't fly to another location on the battlefield and is basically stuck there unless the enemy has the Teleport spell.

Level 5

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: Combat
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 25 / 20
  • Untrained / Basic: A troop containing (Power x 2) air elementals appears on the side of the casting player. Only one type of elemental can be summoned.
  • Advanced: Same as Basic Effect, except that (Power x 3) air elementals are summoned.
  • Expert: Same as Basic Effect, except that (Power x 4) air elementals are summoned.

Air Elementals are very fast and can easily cross the battlefield to attack the enemy archers or distract some of the enemy troops. The computer likes to attack Air Elementals even more than your archers but they can usually last long enough for you to resurrect your troops or to cast some defensive spells. All of the summoned Air Elementals will disappear at the end of the battle.

  • Type: Adventure
  • Duration: Instant
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 25 / 20
  • Untrained / Basic: Teleports hero to target, unoccupied, visible location on the Adventure Map. Spell may be cast twice per day and reduces the hero's movement by three tiles for each casting. If movement is reduced to zero, the spell may not be cast.
  • Advanced: Same as Basic Effect, except the spell may be cast three times in a day.
  • Expert: Same as Advanced Effect, except the spell may be cast four times in a day, and movement allowance is reduced by two tiles.

When you cast Dimension Door, the hero is centered on the map which reduces the distance that you can travel by half although you can teleport into an unexplored area. I found that casting Dimension Door until all the spell points are used and then using the hero's remaining movement is the best way to use this spell. Unfortunately, it is often disabled so that you don't accidentally miss scripted events and areas.

  • Type: Adventure
  • Duration: 1 Day
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 20 / 15
  • Untrained / Basic: Casting hero can fly over terrain obstacles to an unoccupied map location. Distance traveled may be up to 60% of normal movement.
  • Advanced: Same as Basic Effect, except the hero may fly up to 80% of normal movement.
  • Expert: Same as Basic Effect, except the hero may fly up to 100% of normal movement.

You have to end your turn on a place where the hero would normally be able to walk to and it won't work in the black areas underground, which makes sense because you can't fly over that. Apart from this, Fly is a great adventure movement spell second only to Town Portal and better than Water Walk and is not as disabled as often as Dimension Door is. You can use it for the capture of undefended towns or to attack a hero after one of your other heroes has whittled them down and before they can get reinforcements. As a bonus, Fly works for the entire turn, even after combat has occurred.

  • Type: Combat
  • Duration: 1 Round/Power
  • Untrained Cost / Trained Cost: 25 / 20
  • Untrained / Basic: Enemy spells cast on targeted, allied troop has a 20% chance of being redirected to a random enemy troop.
  • Advanced: Enemy spells cast on targeted, allied troop has a 30% chance of being redirected to a random enemy troop.
  • Expert: Enemy spells cast on targeted, allied troop has a 40% chance of being redirected to a random enemy troop.

If you want to protect a creature stack against magic then use Anti-Magic because that works all of the time for spells below a certain level. If the enemy hero is using a spell like Meteor and you want them to have a taste of their own medicine then use Magic Mirror although it won't work all of the time. I myself would rather use Anti-Magic but I can see how Magic Mirror would be a real pain when it worked.