Feature: Nightmare Circus

Nightmare Circus is back to haunt us (or maybe just Lass) and with the new dungeon mechanics, who knows what we'll expect? Well I'll tell you - Not much; For this event dungeon, there is no Hell Mode nor golden ticket, so the choice is simple - Go in, bust up the Ringmaster and leave with your rewards. Trouble is, Season V is making this difficult for most players, even veteran or SS stat characters are not spared from this difficulty spike

The new system makes the Ringmaster and his Deranged version pretty darn strong to say the least. Jumping back from a measly 8x - 16x HP (During Eternal) to 65x - 100x HP is a huge increase in his HP, factoring in the increase in damage makes their attacks brutally strong as well. Yes, even the poison gas they spew out is equally lethal over time. Again, emphasis on winning is skill here. You can have all the stats but carelessness and complacency will end you quickly.

The Ringmaster's and Deranged Ringmaster's HP are as respectively follows, depending on the number of party members present.
(1) 65x - 100x
(2) 82x - 125x
(3) 98x - 150x
(4) 114x - 174x

*It is also noteworthy that this dungeon scales with your character level, meaning in solo difficulty it will be as difficult as your character can handle, with all the skill you can muster.

Random Buffs
Increased Critical Strike Chance
Critical Strike rate increases, exact % is unknown.
Increased MP Recovery
MP Recovery increases to about 2x the rate.
Damage Deflection
No purpose found for this buff. Does nothing to reduce or reflect incoming damage.
Increased Attack
Attack increased by ~15%
Increased Defense
Defense increased by ~15%
Increased Vitality
Vitality increased by ~15%
Activates the above 6 buffs collectively.
  • If Stage 2 gives you the same buff as Stage 1, you unfortunately only get that one same buff for the rest of the dungeon. The effects in this case do not stack.
  • Joker is stackable with other buffs as a pair. But you will never get two jokers either.

When it comes to rewards, the worth may vary from player to player. Reset forms, socket gems, card chests - you name it. There's plenty of variety of the usual event-based rewards. Thing is they didn't mention what you would find on the website either, so here's a quick general list.

Comes in all continent varieties. Except for Bermesiah.
Chest Coupon
Comes in both Armor and Accessory variety. A pair of Armor and Accessory coupons are assured every run, including additional ones from item drops.
Reinforcement Stone
Comes only in Rare grade. And is always Level 0.
Exquisite Treasure Chest
Contents vary, but contains a variety of rewards unknown to the player.
Duelly's Chest
Provides a choice between obtaining the Duelly Pet or his Upgraded Soul Strike attack. Since the box is transferable, confirm your character choice if and when choosing the Duelly Pet card.
Card Box
Comes in Silver Land, Ellia, Xenia and Archimedia varieties. Bermesiah and Alcubra have not been found thus far.
Socket Gem
One of the few precious event drops but usually too little to make an immediate impact. Vital for unsocketing cards from equipment.
Premium Transmutation Scroll
Used for combining 2 reinforced items together to create a more powerful stone or increased chance to create an Epic-grade stone.
Refinery Scroll
A "+" Grade refinery scroll of various grades. (This is the highest I got currently)
Reinforcement Stone Chest
Chance of obtaining a +7, +8 or +9 stone from this chest.
Pet Ringmaster Card
Grants you the Ringmaster pet. Note that these cards are not transferable and are bound to the character that earned it in the run.
GP Prop Reset Form
A Prop reset form meant for GP items. An especially rare and precious event drop.
(Skin) Clear Chest
A 7-day coordi item which hides the current accessory you are wearing. Opening the chest lets you select a relevant accessory type and the character it is meant for.
Circus Chest of Accessories
Top-tier chest drop for Circus accessories. The first opening determines which Lv (30,50 or 70) of equipment you want. The second opening then determines which accessory type you want. The third opening determines which character it is for.
Circus Chest of Armor
Top-tier chest drop for Circus Armor. The first opening determines which Lv (30,50 or 70) of equipment you want. The second opening then determines which armor type you want. The third opening determines which character it is for.

  • Epic/Relic upgrades are found in the forge under accessories and armor of the relevant grades, and not in the events tab. (Relic upgrades were just made available)

I have to say I'm never fond of most Event dungeons, so like Monster Train from before, I won't be making an in-depth enemy/combat guide on this one as well.

Video Link: Nightmare Circus: Lire
Video Link: Nightmare Circus: Rin
As you may have witnessed from the videos, the Ringmaster really has a ton of health. Particularly Xbow and Rin, have one of the basic highest damage saturation rates against all other classes, yet taking him down still requires a lot of work.

Rin's video in particular shows you how to traverse the jump stage in a quick way. Same goes for Geas but hers is a little trickier to perform while Dragon Knight just joined the fray with his Dragon Flight/Dodge combo (although he doesn't rocket all the way up, just high enough to reach the middle bouncer. But it works)

Well, that's all I have on Nightmare Circus. I think the bottom line would be, if you have the patience to work for all those rewards, then do so. Otherwise, repetition in this dungeon can be really, really tiring and frustrating because of the gimmick battle with Deranged Ringmaster.

Current Play Count as of 16th July - "75"... for now... (ノ ̄Д ̄)ノ彡┻┻

Current reward stash, not including other stockpiled rewards and 6 Ringmaster cards

PSA: During solo runs, always ensure there is a "window of safety" to finish him off.
Due to the immediate cutscene upon killing him, there is no way to move your characters out to safety should he deliberately use his poison gas just before you deliver the final blow on him.

The active time-lapsing and rapid damage from the poison gas will kill you during this cutscene even if you "X" out of it, likely causing you to lose all the hard-earned drops as the game just as quickly will complete the run, leaving you no time to return for your drops.

I have been a victim of this treachery at least 7 times and counting throughout my entire marathon.

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