WIP. I try to design each section header so that you can use CTRL-F "(<insert in-game term here>)" to find what you are looking for.
When I refer to spell schools you can use CTRL-F ".<insert school initial here>." to look up specific schools. This mainly applies to my other guide.
I sometimes use the term element instead of school. In Rift Wizard, elements and schools are interchangeable terms, but I usually prefer the term "school" for describing spells and "element" for describing damage types.
The distinction is important, as some spells deal damage in elements not of their school, such as some Dark Conjuration spells summoning minions that deal Physical damage instead of Dark damage.
Physical Damage is the default damage type, and is used by many schools.
Schools that are also damage types:
.F.ire .L.ightning .I.ce .N.ature (Nature is not a damage type, but it's exclusive Poison damage is) .A.rcane .D.ark .H.oly
Only 1 shrine can be applied to a spell. If you add a new Shrine to a spell, it overwrites the old Shrine effect.
If a shrine modifies an attribute of a spell, it can only apply if that spell has that attribute in the first place. For example, +Radius shrines can only be applied to spells that either already have a radius or have an optional upgrade that adds a radius. You can't add a Radius to single-target spells like Death Bolt.
If a shrine modifies multiple attributes of a spell, such as +damage AND +minion damage, it applies to all attributes of the spell that apply. For example, the above Death Bolt would receive both the +damage AND the +minion damage to the skeletons it raises.
(This claim is untested) Note that some spells can be modified by upgrades to exchange their initial spell school for a different spell school. For example, modifying Wolf with the Ice Hound upgrade exchanges the Nature school for the Ice school. This causes the spell to no longer benefit from any Nature shrines/spells/skills, in exchange for qualifying for all Ice shrines/spells/skills.
As long as a spell or skill is part of a school, it benefits from ALL spells and skills that modify that school. For example, Wolf, a Nature Conjuration spell, benefits from both the Nature Lord AND Ach Conjurer skills, which can stack to combine their bonuses.
As a rule of thumb, the more schools a spell is part of, the greater the number of skills that can apply their bonuses.
+Damage increases the flat damage of a spell. It applies to each damage instance of that spell separately. If a spell does both Fire and Dark damage, both damage types are buffed by the full amount, for 2x the total damage increase. If a spell does Fire, Dark, and Holy damage, all three receive the flat damage increase, for 3x the total damage increase. As a rule of thumb, the more elements a spell has, the greater the benefit of +Damage.
Damage-Over-Time, Channelling, and Area-Of-Effect spells also benefit greatly from +Damage.
+% Damage increases the damage of a spell by a percentage. This % increase applies AFTER all spell upgrades, spell buffs, enemy debuffs, and skills have been applied. Similar to +Damage, except that it is more useful on spells with a higher base damage.
+Minion Damage increases the damage of ALL minion abilities. This includes all element types, beam attacks, and "negative damage" such as heals. For example, +Minion Damage on a Choir of Angels increases the fire damage, holy damage, and healing, of EACH summoned angel.
+<Element> Damage only increases the damage of a specific element. For example, the 2SP Boiling Blood spell increases the physical damage of abilities, and the fire damage of abilities, but doesn't grant fire damage to physical attacks or vice versa. If you use Boiling Blood on an Ice Dragon, you will increase it's physical melee attack, but not it's ice breath weapon.
+On Damage effects grant the effect to any spell that deals damage. If an enemy is completely immune to a damage type, they will be immune to the effect. If they receive so much as a single point of damage, they will receive the effect.
Note that some enemies will be immune to certain effects due to resistances. 100 Ice Resist grants immunity to Frozen, for example.
+For Every X Damage dealt effects only apply to the damage dealt. If an enemy has 30 HP remaining, and you kill it with a 300 damage Death Bolt, you will only receive credit for dealing 30 damage.
+Redeal <Element> Damage as 50% <Other Element> Damage grants a +50% damage bonus, with the bonus damage being the <Other Element>. For example, an 18 damage Fireball with a shrine upgrade that redeals 50% of fire damage as holy damage, will do 18 fire damage and 9 holy damage. Redeal <element> spells, skills, and shrines stack with eachother.
Not that Redeal works of the base damage of a spell, not the damage an enemy receives. In the above case, if an enemy has 100 Fire Resist but no holy resist, they will be immune to the fire damage but receive the full 9 holy damage.
WARNING: The above only redeals the damage that was actually dealt. If a target is immune to Fire damage in the above example, it will NOT take any Holy Damage, as no Fire Damage was received in the first place!
(WIP: If a skill redeals 50% of fire damage as holy, and a shrine redeals 50% of holy damage as fire, what happens?)
+Range increases the range at which a spell can be cast. This DOES improve the range of AOE Beams like the 1SP Lightning. This has no effect on cascade range or radius.
+Radius increases the AOE of a spell. Some spells have separate AOE and target effects, such as the 1SP Icicle. In this case, only the radius (ice damage) is improved and the target effect (physical damage) is unchanged.
+Radius shrines can only enhance spells that already have a radius (fireball) or are eligible for +radius spell upgrades (WIP: Example). They do not enhance the AOE of beams.
A Burst is a diamond shaped radius. It starts out looking like a "+" sign at a 1 Tile Burst, and gets larger with each +Radius upgrade.
A Line is a beam that is perpendicular to the caster. 2SP Blazerip is an excellent example. Increasing the Radius increases the length of the line (NOT to be confused with a beam!)
Some AOE's have more exotic shapes, such as crosses, or combinations of beams and bursts. In each case, any lines, crosses, and bursts have their radius increased as normal whil any beam/single target effects are unchanged.
+Cascade increases the range at which a spell can jump from one enemy to another enemy, usually under the condition that the spell needs to kill the first enemy. This does not change the range a spell can be cast at.
WARNING: Unless specifically stated otherwise, all cascade spells can and will target you and your minions. Normally, spells can only target each unit once, but overlapping AOEs can catch you (and your enemies) multiple times. Pay close to attention to whether a spell targets all "units" or just "enemies" before adding Cascade to it with spells such as Death Cleave.
Chain spells will jump from target to target, hitting each target exactly once, even if they are not damaged or killed. Cascade spells require actually killing each target in order to continue jumping.
It is possible for a spell to have a larger Cascade range than it's Cast range, which makes it very unsafe to cast.
(All) (LOS) (Line Of Sight) (Blindcast)
Line of Sight triggers an effect, usually once per turn, provided that eligible targets can see the relevant unit.
"All" spells such as Boiling Blood and Darkness apply to ALL eligible units on the entire map.
Note that minions acquired through unconventional means, such as Dominate, qualify for any relevant minion buffs including Protect Minions. This includes both units spawned from friendly spawners, units that summon units, as well as friendly spawners themselves.
Ranged attacks that ignore Line Of Sight, aka blindcast, can be aimed at enemies through walls. This is especially useful for abilities that dig through walls, such as Blazerip.
Resistances are element specific and function as a percentage.
100 Physical Resist means 100% physical damage immunity. This may grant immunity to status effects, such as Frozen in the case of 100% Ice Resist.
50 Fire Resist means 50% fire damage resistance, and that a unit takes half damage from all fire.
-100 Holy Resist, or what I refer to as -100 Holy Weakness, means that a unit takes DOUBLE damage from the Holy element.
Resistances can be raised and lowered by a variety of spells, skills, and shrines. Note that some resistance-lowering skills, like Melting Armor, require that a unit take damage first, which is impossible in the case of 100% elemental immunity.
Raising a resistance above 100 has no effect (WIP), other than making it more difficult for debuffs to reduce the resistance back below 100. This is especially useful against enemies that stack elemental debuffs.
(Shield) (SH) (Health)
+Minion Health increases the max health of all minions. (WIP Untested: increasing Max HP also heals for that amount. WIP untested: When MaxHp expires, that amount of health is lost, killing the unit).
+Heal/+Regen heals minions or heals minions each turn, respectively. Unless otherwise specified, undead, demons, and constructs can be healed just like any other unit.
+Shield adds a shield to units. Each shield protects against a instance of damage, no matter how much or how little damage the attack deals. In the case of attacks that deal multiple instances of damage, such as spells with multiple elements, EACH instance of damage removes a shield. For example, using the 1SP Icicle on an enemy with 1 Shield will remove the shield with the Physical damage and deal Ice damage to the health of the unit.
(WIP Untested) +Shield Burn, a Magic Missile spell upgrade, lets the spell penetrate 3 layers of shield at once. If the target has 4 or more shields, four of the shields will be destroyed (3 from shield burn, one from arcane damage).
Shield does NOT protect against status effects that don't require dealing damage to activate. Dominate, Freeze, and Darkness are the more obvious examples, but less obvious status effects like Poison also work. In the case of Poison, the 1/turn poison damage will steadily remove Shields once per turn.
(WIP Untested) The Lightning Shrine that adds Stun to damaged enemies and enemies adjacent to lightning spells would presumably NOT stun isolated shielded/lightning immune enemies, but WOULD stun shielded/lightning immune enemies that are adjacent to non-shielded non-immune enemies, as the AOE stun does not require damage to procc - just the single target damage.
Spells that summon many weak minions (Ghost Ball), deal damage in multiple elements (Nightmare Aura), a combination of the above (Frostfire Hydra), or have the potential to deal multiple instances of damage through overlapping AOEs (Chain Lightning, Meteor), are especially useful for stripping shields.
(Charges) (Free Charge)
+Max Charges increases the maximum number of charges a spell has whenever you restore charges using a mana potion or a similar effect.
+Free Charge grants a free charge EACH time the triggering condition occurs. For example, an Icicle with Icicle Harvest gains a charge EACH time a frozen enemy is killed with ice magic. This means you can kill restore multiple charges at once by killing multiple frozen enemies with the same Icicle spell.
Similarly, the Golden Crusade upgrade of the Golden Drake grants a free charge for EACH demon or undead present on the current level. Note that this only applies when you enter a rift, enemies that spawn from gates don't count.
+On Kill effects trigger EACH time a spell kills an enemy. If you have a "1 Free Charge on killing a demon" on a Lightning upgraded to be Channelled, you can get multiple charges by killing multiple demons with one beam and/or killing multiple demons by channelling the spell multiple turns.
Free Charges can never increase your number of charges above the maximum.
(Buffs) including Death Cleave stack if cast repeatedly. (WIP: Do all buffs/debuffs stack unless otherwise noted, or do stuns like frozen tend not to stack?)
(Stunned) units cannot act for the duration.
(Frozen) units cannot act for the duration. They unfreeze upon taking Physical or Fire damage. Units with 100 Ice Resist are immune to being frozen.
(Petrified) units cannot act for the duration. They gain 100 Ice and Lightning Immunity, along with 75 Physical and Fire Resistance.
(Glassified) units cannot act for the duration. Similar resistance changes as Petrified, but -100 Physical Vulnerability instead of physical resistance.
(Conductance) units have -50 Lightning Vulnerability, and receive most Lightning spells twice.
(Poison) deals 1 damage per turn, for a number of turns equal to the Poison duration. Units with 100 Poison Resist are immune to being poisoned. Shielded units lose 1 shield each turn they are Poisoned due to the 1 damage per turn. Note that some spells apply Poison, while others apply Poison Damage directly.
(Regeneration) heals a number of HP each turn.
(Reincarnation) Upon reaching 0 HP, a unit heals to full health and is stunned for 1 turn.
(Frenzy) Each time a unit makes an attack, they gain a bonus to their melee damage.