|As of Master of Magic v1.31, Cloak of Fear (Item Power) is known to be malfunctioning in at least one way. Please read the Known Bugs section below.|
- This article is about the Item Power called "Cloak of Fear". For the Death realm spell, see Cloak of Fear.
|Cloak of Fear|
"Cloak of Fear" is a Death Magic Item Power. It can be imbued on any type of armor or accessory to empower it with the Cause Fear ability. Any Hero equipping this item will be so frightening to behold that opponents engaging them must pass a Resistance check to have any chance of dealing hand-to-hand damage.
Unfortunately, in game version 1.31, this ability has a major bug that causes it to either have no effect or also backfire on the user. "Cloak of Fear" should therefore be avoided unless the game is played with the (unofficial) Insecticide patch or higher.
The singular effect of this Item Power is to grant the Hero an ability identical to the innate Cause Fear Unit Ability.
Cause Fear Edit
- Main article: Cause Fear
The Cause Fear ability grants the unit possessing it a type of Special Attack that forces each opposing Figure during a Melee engagement to resist or suffer Fear Damage. This does no direct harm to the victim, but will afflict it with a paralyzing sense of terror and prevent it from participating in Melee for that round.
For each affected Figure, the game generates a random number between 1 and 10. This is then comapred with its unit's Resistance score. Whenever the "roll" exceeds the target's Resistance, that roll is considered a failure, and one figure is held fast during that combat action. This results in that figure not being able to deal any Melee Damage (and associated Touch Attacks) to the Hero. It does not negate short range attacks (they occur before the Fear Attack), and the effect dissipates immediately at the end of the Melee Attack process (i.e. does not carry over to the next engagement).
Charmed Heroes; units under the effect of Righteousness; and units possessing Death / Magic Immunity are never affected by Fear. Furthermore, units with a total Resistance score of 10 or higher are similarly unaffected, by virtue of being unable to fail their checks. The conditional spells Bless and Resist Magic both apply their bonus to these checks, possibly also making enchanted units immune to the effect.
Because of the bugs described below, in the vanilla 1.31 version of the game, crafting items with Cloak of Fear should be avoided altogether. On the other hand, Heroes relying chiefly on Ranged combat may relatively safely equip any such items that happen to come up as Treasure, considering that some of them have otherwise useful stat bonuses.
Patch 1.40 or later Edit
Cloak of Fear is the lowest cost Item Power available to Death Wizards, and one of the cheapest powers overall (aside from straight up stat boosts). Combined with the fact that it is available through Enchant Item, and has a low requirement of 2 Books; it is one of the best early-game powers. A piece of Jewelry with this power alone costs slightly over 4 times the overland Casting Cost of the identical spell, even without reductions. For that, it has no upkeep, cannot be dispelled, and does not depend on Research availability.
The effect this power confers, Cause Fear, is one of the strongest defensive abilities against early Normal Units, especially on Arcanus, where most races do not possess an innate Resistance bonus. This makes it ideal for both taking out neutral garrisons, and defending against the raiders they may send out. Even in the mid-game, this power provides a measurable damage reduction against Multi-figure Melee units with high figure counts (e.g. High Men Pikemen).
It is not without drawbacks, however. First and foremost, it offers no protection against Ranged Attacks or offensive spells. This is less of a concern in the early game, when ranged Normal Units rely mostly on Missile attacks, as these can be out-ranged for the most part. However, Shamans or higher, and particularly enemy Wizards make poor target choices for a Cloak of Fear Hero unless some other defense can be relied on to counter these obstacles.
This power is also countered completely by Death Immunity, an ability possessed by not only even the weakest Death creatures, but also Phantom Warriors and Phantom Beasts. Considering that most other low-tier Fantastic Units also have some form of indirect protection from Fear (e.g. low figure count, Magical Ranged Attacks, Breath Weapons), Cloak of Fear is a sub-optimal choice for clearing out Lairs, and even worse for assaulting Magic Nodes ( Resistance bonus).
Even despite these limitations though, this is a great defensive ability, especially for Melee-oriented Heroes. It is also one of the few powers that can be enchanted onto Armor, making it a good auxilliary choice, especially for wizards possessing one or more Crafting-related retorts, for whom adding this power on top of whatever Magical Item they are creating will only prolong the crafting by a turn or two.
Cloak of Fear also has very good synergy with spells that reduce the opponents' Resistance. Black Prayer in particular shares the same realm as this item power, and affects all enemies on the battlefield ( -2 Resist). A successful application of the 0 Resist option of Warp Creature would, in turn, make the affected unit unable to deal Melee Damage to the Hero at all.
This works both ways though, and opposing armies containing units with either Holy Bonus, Resistance to All, or Prayermaster will greatly diminish the effectiveness of Cloak of Fear. Such units are best to try and take out first before engaging the rest of their army.
Cloak of Fear may be added to custom Armor and Accessories through either Enchant Item or Create Artifact. Items with this power may, naturally, also turn up in Treasure. While it is true, that in the 1.31 version of the game Cloak of Fear is only useful for smashing on the anvil for a profit in Mana Crystals, it is the complete opposite in patched games. Acquiring one early in the game may make conquering neutral cities significantly easier.
This is even more relevant considering that the patch that fixes this power also eliminates the need for a wizard to possess specific Spellbooks in order to obtain pre-defined items (the last column of the table below can be completely ignored).
The table below lists the pre-defined Items with Cloak of Fear.
|Premade Items with "Cloak of Fear"|
|Item||Attributes||Realm Powers||Required Ranks|
|1150||Devils Eye of Fear||1||2||1|| Cloak of Fear|| ||2|
|1550||Orb of Fear||2||15||-3|| Cloak of Fear|| ||2|
|1250||Plate Mail of Blessed Fear||4||3|| Cloak of Fear|| Bless||2||2|
|1650||Shield of Enduring Fear||6||4|| Cloak of Fear|| Endurance||2||2|
|2100||Protection of Ramses||6||4|| Cloak of Fear|| Endurance||2||2|
|1800||Gem of the Aerie||4||15|| Guardian Wind|| Cloak of Fear||3||2|
Known Bugs Edit
In version 1.31 of the game, there are two distinctive bugs with Cloak of Fear, both of which originate from bugs of the Cause Fear ability itself, and both of which are fixed in the unofficial patches:
- If the Cloak of Fear Hero is defending against a Melee Attack, the power has no effect at all.
- If the Hero is the attacker, they are instead also affected by the ability, in a rather peculiar way. The defender rolls Resistance for each of its figures (a second time), and for each failed roll, an attacking figure also gets feared and deals no damage. This is in addition to the defender being subjected to Cause Fear, and the Hero's Resistance or immunities play absolutely no part. Since Heroes are single figures, this means that if even a single defending figure fails the roll, the Hero will not deal Melee Damage either. While it is technically possible to artificially create a scenario where this power is still useful (e.g. Thrown or Breath Hero attacking a 0 Warped opponent), it is highly unlikely to be worth the effort (not to mention the problem of the opponent's round).