- Not to be confused with the Chi stones such as Perfect Stone.
Gems are a standard addition to Armor and Weapons (and with the new Stones, Accessories), a cheap easy effective and therefore important form of character Enhancement. Mostly called "Shards" until higher levels.
Starting players can afford gems if they regularly do Jolly Old Jones; if they do not, but do quests to level that give gem rewards, they will be benefited most from selling these rewards at the Auctioneer, or from using them. The one thing they must not do is combine them; instead, sell them at auction, and use the money to buy higher level gems at auction. The formula below proves it: four gems, or five at higher levels, is always worth more to sell at auction than the next highest gem to buy at auction. Plus you are helping the economy run smoothly. If the prices offered do not reflect the below formula, then either the low or higher gem price has been set too high or low; take advantage of this and buy and resell the gems sold at too low a price or undercut the greedy player selling them too high.
For each level from 7 and up (Flawless, Immaculate, etc), multiply the price by three to get a rough estimate of the price of the next level of shard. This is most true of Citrines or Garnets. Sapphires run for less; this does reflect an unwillingness on the part of Heavy Armor players to do the right thing and make a magic-defense set or pieces of armor, but it is the norm. So, a Flawless Garnet goes for about 250,000-350,000, and an Immaculate Garnet, for around a million or just under, a Perfect Garnet for about 3 million, and an Incomparable for about 9 million. Level 11 Gems are a little cheaper at 17 million, probably due to their relative abundance in a particular pack, and Drakeflame stones and their ilk are way up at 70 million. Even level 13 gems, with bonuses like "+ to attack level" cost little more than that.
Gems are added to and removed from armor by any Blacksmith NPC. In 2013, the PW Boutique Agent was made capable of replacing equipped gems with other gems. The option at the Blacksmith costs half as much as the Agent, even for a single gem, multiplied by the number of gems, usually up to four. Removing shards that are too low for the weapon is already a choice that offers certain loss and only potential gain, and it is exacerbated by the unnecessary degree of warning from the Blacksmith's pop-up dialogue "this will remove all imbued properties", which makes it sound like the Refining level would be affected. It is not. The Purify option at the Blacksmith removes gems, and only gems. All of them, but only gems. Although the database shows the cost of purifying a gem as being equal to the cost of imbuing it, this may not always be the case.
The level 8 "Powerful" gems offered by the Raising Baby Wukon quest had higher bonuses than level 9 gems. For example, Lv 9 Perfect Citrine is +62 HP and Lv 8 Immaculate Citrine is +50 HP, while the Powerful Citrine is +65.
Overwhelmingly, players prefer three types to all the others. They eschew the addition to or protection from Elemental damage types, and instead concentrate on a choice between adding or preventing physical damage (Garnets), or adding or preventing magical damage (Sapphires), or adding HP (Topaz).
The popular conception of sharding is usually that HP gems are preferable. This addresses the fact that damage of both magical and physical types will be faced at some point, so shards that reduce damage of one type are always going to be weaker against the other type of damage.
However this does not address two other considerations: all armor's inherent weakness against one type, and conversely, its strength. What these three considerations have in common is a linear spectrum from most defense (guarding against a weakness) through medium defense (Citrine shards) to most offense (tanking damage that armor is strong against). Not surpisingly, the middle road is the most popular.
Choosing your gem type is about knowing your limitations (and the limitations of those you are likely to be in squad with) and strengths. Covering the weakness inherent in your armor is the defensive strategy; if you have doubts about your chances of tactically avoiding lethal damage, then you should concentrate on the weaknesses, the most likely source of timewasting and trouble. Citrines for more HP are the middle route. And hands down, the most 1337 option is obviously, to maximize the strengths inherent in your armor, so you can be a tank for that type of damage. This last is just not an option for Light Armor; it is obviously without any great weakness, but it will never be as strong as the same grade of Arcane or Heavy.
An even more high-functioning (but all in all, not recommended) alternative would be to switch out armor or accessory types, depending on the type of damage faced. This obviously could take up a massive amount of precious Inventory space, but using gems for each Element type would be exactly twice as effective at reducing magic damage, compared with Sapphires. Eg: Immaculate Sapphire Shard, +42 to Magic Defense, vs Immaculate Alabaster Shard, +84 to Metal Resistance.
There is one final consideration: Physical damage is by far the more frequently encountered, while magic damage has a tendency to be more powerful, if only tactically (dealt at range, and sometimes area effect damage dealt at range).
Garnets address Arcane Armor wearers' concerns about the likelihood of dying. Note, that given that this is addressing a losing proposition, and that the winning strategy is to prevent the chance of death in the first place, a player not concerned about facing melee damage, since they would almost always successfully avoid it, the slots in their armor would be free to devote to Sapphires, so that they could be a tank for magical damage. The compromise, of course, is to protect against all damage types with Citrines.
An example of the effectiveness of Garnets against physical damage vs Citrines :
- Level 80 Mystic with base 1740 HP (no gear, and not counting bonuses from Meridian and War Avatar). To make the comparison between HP and Physical defense more than fair instead of less than fair, HP gems possible to add to level 8 armor are considered as part of the equation, since they are as much a part of armor equipping as the armor defense itself. So the maximum HP from four gem slots at 50 HP for each of three of the four pieces of armor makes the total HP +600, for 2340. The last piece of armor can either be four more Citrines, or four Garnets. Physical defense for the four pieces of armor is taken to be 480 (with a selection of armor more arbitrary than ideal). Four Citrines would make the HP 2540, for an 8.5% difference. Four Garnets would raise the Physical Defense to 4 x 53 = 212 + 480 = 692, for a 44% increase.
Although Light Armor is in between Arcane and Heavy armor, its balance of physical and magical defense is closer to Arcane than it is to Heavy, so the above example is representative of an advantage to Garnets over Citrines. Although it is not so overwhelming a differences, Light armor Assassins and Duskblades are also dealing their damage as close range and thus facing more physical attacks.
- Garnet + to physical defense or physical attack
- Sapphire + to magical defense or magical attack
- Citrine + to HP, whether on weapon or armor
- Turquoise + to MP, whether on weapon or armor
- Amber + to Evasion (armor) or Accuracy (weapon)
Equipped gems can be added, or all equipped gems removed at the same time. Blacksmiths in more remote villages such as Swiftwind do not offer this service.
PW Boutique Agent
Equipped gems can be replaced individually for a fee. Lower level gems can not replace higher ones, and high level gems cannot be added to low level gear.
Gems come in grades, and can be upgraded with multiple lower levels to make one single gem of the next level. This is done for a small fee, using the Combine menu option, at any Jewelcraftsman. These NPCs offer different levels of upgrades on menu tabs. They also:
- Sell Average gems at 60,000 apiece.
- Upgrade Dragon Orb items to give higher bonuses to equipment
- Shabby Shard is for Level One gear and up and costs 530 Coin; Shabby Shard x 3 makes Rough
- Rough Shard is Level Two and costs 1,590; Rough Shard x 3 makes Blemished
- Blemished is Level Three and costs 4,770; Blemished Shard x 3 makes Common
- Common Shard is Level Four and costs 14,310; Common x 4 makes Average
- Average Shard is Level Five and costs 57,240. It takes 108 Shabby Shards to make one Average Shard. The 57,240 Coins it costs to convert them all is cheaper than the 60,000 it costs at the Jewelcraftsman to buy them ready-made.
Because Average gems can be bought, it is almost always better to sell Common gems to players who want to be able to outfit their new characters in the finest. Three Common gems can almost always be sold for the price of the fourth required to make an Average: 60,000.
Five Common gems, maximum, can be acquired from doing quests.
Higher level Jewelcraftsman tabs deal with the higher level gem transactions
- Average Shard (L5, 60,000) x 4 makes Beautiful 18,000 conversions
- Beautiful Shard (L6, 240,000) x 4 makes Flawless + 4,500 conversions
- Flawless Shard (L7, 960,000) x 5 makes Immaculate + 900 conversions
- Immaculate Shard (L8, 4,800,000) x 5 makes Perfect + 180 conversions
- Perfect Shard (L9, 24,000,000) x 5 makes Incomparable + 36 conversions
- Incomparable Shard (L10, 120,000,000) x 6 makes Gem + 6 conversions
- Gem (L11, 720,000,000) x 6 makes Stone
- Stone is level Twelve, requires seventy-two thousand Average Shards, for a total cost of 4 billion, 320 million coins.
It would take 23,623 conversions from Average. At two seconds per conversion, that is over 13 hours.
- Drakeflame Stone (Garnet)
- Icebourne Stone (Sapphire)
- Stone of Gaea (Citrine)
- Turquoise Stone (Turquoise)
- Golden Soulgem (Amber)
Perhaps unsurprisingly, these highly prized gems cannot be obtained from any quest, but can only be crafted from level 11 Gems. These can be obtained from quests, albeit in the vast majority, the 'quests' that operate when opening Boutique packs.
- Diamond of Dragon - level 12, for level 12 or higher equipment (although it says level 14 in the database), Defense level +1. About 90-100 million at catshops.
- Jade of Steady Defense - level 13, Defense level +2
- Serenity Stone - level 14, Defense level +3
- Diamond of Tiger - level 12 or higher equipment (although it says level 13 in the database), Attack level +1. About 90-100 million at catshops.
- Deity Stone - level 13, Attack level +2
- Devil Stone - level 14, Attack level +3
This is where the Jewelcraftsman can convert Chi stones
This is where the Jewelcraftsman converts the various aids to Refining weapons and armor
- Socketing on the other wiki
This service is performed at the PW Boutique Agent, using Socket Stones. This is, early on at least, a fairly expensive form of enhancement, as the number of socket stones required increases dramatically with the total number of sockets. E.g. increasing armor from 2 sockets to 3 might require 27 stones, and from 3 to the maximum for armor, 4 sockets: 90 stones. Increasing weapons from one socket to the maximum for weapons, two slots, requires more, for example 2000 stones! At somewhere between 3,500 and 4,000 for each stone, that is upwards of 8 million coin. The crafting level of the gear affects the price: ☆Armor of Grieving Sorrow and ☆Blood Bracers of Fang are both Gold armor, both level 78, and the latter is even a cheaper, lower-protection arm slot piece, but the latter costs 10 times as much sockets to upgrade: 300 stones to the body armor's 30 for going from 2 sockets to 3. The character level and grade of the gear do not appear to affect the cost, so this is a fabulous option for high level rich characters.
The formula for armor at Lv. 9 and 10 appears to be: Level of the gear (not level to equip) times three for the third socket, times ten for the fourth. at Lv. 11, it goes up to 300 and 1000 for 3rd and 4th sockets. At Lv. 12, higher still.
Bonuses can be added to Accessories. Accessory Socket Stone
- Genie Stone Attack Level +1 > Yaksha Stone +2
- Battlement Stone Defense Level +1 > Sovereign Stone +2
- Magic defense: Flood Stone > Expedient Flood Stone > Perfect Flood Stone > Abyss Stone > Divine Stone
- Physical defense: Pyro Stone > Expedient Pyro Stone > Perfect Pyro Stone > Magma Stone > Blessing Stone
- Vitality: Bloody Stone > Expedient Bloody Stone > Perfect Bloody Stone > Sunflare Stone > Sky Stone
- Spirit: Brilliance Stone > Expedient Brilliance Stone > Perfect Brilliance Stone > Astral Stone > Raven Stone
- Jade of Steady Defense + to Defense