Skill Trees, also known as Tripods in certain regions, offer an array of effects that enhance a character’s Combat Skills in Lost Ark. These effects can range from altering damage and cooldowns to influencing range, crowd control, element, and activation modes. With such diverse options available, skill trees can completely transform the way Combat Skills function, allowing players to adapt to different challenges.
For instance, players can tailor their skills to excel in single-target boss damage or AoE group damage. They can also focus on various crowd control abilities and Super Armors. Starting from Tier 3, players unlock the ability to upgrade the level of Skill Tree Effects, amplifying their impact. In this guide, we’ll cover the fundamentals of Skill Trees, where to obtain Skill Tree Effect level upgrades, and how to apply and preserve these upgrades.
Accessing Skill Trees
To access Skill Trees, players need to navigate to their Combat Skills page by either pressing the default keybind ‘K’ or clicking on ‘Character’ at the bottom-right corner of the UI. Unlocking a Skill’s Skill Trees, or Tripods, requires allocating a specific number of Skill Points to that particular Skill. Each skill, excluding Awakenings, has three tiers of Skill Tree Effects. The first two tiers offer three options each, while the third tier provides two. Players must reach Skill Level 4, 7, and 10 (requiring a total of 4, 20, and 48 Skill Points respectively) to unlock the first, second, and third tiers.
Acquiring Skill Points
Skill Points are predominantly obtained by increasing a character’s Combat Level. By reaching the maximum Combat Level of 60, players can acquire a total of 312 Skill Points. Consumable potions like Greater Skill Point Potions (6 Skill Points) and Skill Point Potions (3 Skill Points) provide an additional 96 Skill Points. These potions can be obtained through various activities such as Adventure Tomes, Quests, Collectibles, and Towers (first-time clear). Currently, the maximum number of Skill Points attainable in the game is 408.
Players can utilize the Codex (Alt + D) to discover specific methods for acquiring these potions. It’s crucial for players to strive towards collecting Skill Points as they allow for more allocation to each Skill. Skill Level plays a pivotal role not only in unlocking Skill Trees but also in enhancing the base effects of Skills. At Combat Level 55, Skill Levels can be increased to 11, and at Combat Level 60, they can be further increased to 12. The allocation of points entirely depends on players’ playstyles and goals. Skill Points can be freely reallocated without any penalty, so players are highly encouraged to experiment with different setups.
Each character has two free Skill Preset slots, and additional slots can be purchased with blue shop Crystals.
Skill Tree Level Upgrades
Skill Tree Effects begin with a base level of one. However, once players reach Tier 3, they gain access to a feature that allows them to upgrade these effects to a maximum level of five. Increasing the level of Skill Tree Effects significantly boosts their impact, such as increasing damage, crit rate, or cooldown reduction. These level increases often result in substantial power surges when compared to the base level.
For example, the Flurry Expertise Skill Tree Effect for Glaivier’s ‘Half Moon Slash’ Skill exhibits an impressive 25% increase in single-target damage between level one and five.
These upgrades are applied to the characters’ weapon and armor pieces. Each piece can hold up to three Skill Tree Effect upgrades, amounting to a total of 18 different upgrades. The level applied to the gear augments the base level one effect. Therefore, applying a level three upgrade results in a level four effect for that Skill Tree Effect. Players can accomplish these upgrades through ‘Transfer Skill Tree’ NPCs located in all major cities. We will delve into the details of this process in a later section.
Multiple instances of the same Skill Tree Effect for the same Skill do not stack. Only the highest level effect is applied.
In Tier 3, weapons and armors obtained through drops and crafting come with random Skill Tree Effects. The number and level of these effects vary depending on the rarity of the pieces. Chaos Dungeons and the Market offer the main avenues for acquiring these gear pieces. While it is possible to reroll the effects on crafted gear by dismantling and recrafting, this is not recommended due to the associated high costs involved.
To assist players in keeping track of their desired Skill Tree Effects, the game features a notification system. By clicking on the ‘Settings’ button below the Skill Tree area in the Combat Skills page, players can set up notifications for specific effects. Gear pieces containing tracked effects will be marked with the Skill Tree symbol, allowing players to easily identify desirable pieces.
Notably, players can track up to a total of 48 Skill Tree Effects. The way Skill Tree notifications work can be adjusted in the Gameplay Settings under ‘Controls and Display’ in the section titled ‘Skill Tree Notification’. This notification system proves extremely useful, so it is highly recommended that players take advantage of it. Additionally, the tracked effects conveniently appear in the Market’s Advanced Search Options, facilitating swift sorting of desired items.
Transferring Skill Trees
It would be frustrating if players had to repeatedly upgrade or craft gear to acquire their desired Skill Tree Effects. This is where the ‘Transfer Skill Tree’ NPCs come into play. These NPCs, located in every major city, allow players to transfer desired Skill Tree Effects from acquired items onto their current gear pieces.
While level one effects are guaranteed to be transferred, levels two to four have varying success rates. The transfer of level two effects has a 30% success rate, followed by 15% for level three and 5% for level four.
To initiate a transfer, players must first select a ‘Transfer Target Gear’ on the left, designating the piece they want the Skill Tree Effect transferred to. Then, on the right, players will select a ‘Material Gear’ that contains the effect they wish to transfer. Next, players choose one of the slots on the left to place the desired effect, followed by selecting the corresponding slot with the effect they want on the right. Players have the option to utilize one ‘Powder of Sage’, a Support Material, to double the transfer success rate. Regardless of success or failure, the Material Gear is consumed during the process.
A green arrow on a Material Gear indicates a Skill Tree Effect of a higher level than the player’s current equipment.
Powder of Sage can be acquired through various methods. The first is through the ‘Sylmael Bloodstone Exchange’ NPC found in major cities. Sylmael Bloodstone, obtained through various Guild activities, can be exchanged for one to three Powders of Sage each week, depending on the Guild Level. The second method involves the Crafting Workshop in players’ Strongholds. Each Powder of Sage costs six Iron Ore, six Timber, and one Stone of Sage. The Stone of Sage can be purchased from the NPC ‘Monet’ in the Stronghold for 810 Adventurer’s Seals. The third method is completing the current weekly Challenge/Trial Guardian Raids. Lastly, players can purchase Powders of Sage directly from the Market.
Skill Tree Inventory
The Skill Tree Inventory is located on the second tab of the ‘Transfer Skill Tree’ NPC. Its primary functions are storing acquired Skill Tree Effects and applying stored effects onto items. Selected gear effects are copied directly onto the corresponding slots in the inventory, and vice versa. Similar to gear pieces, the inventory can hold up to three effects per slot, with a maximum of 18 per inventory page. Storing and applying effects incur no cost or penalties.
It’s important to note that effects can only be copied and applied between identical slot locations, such as headpieces to headpieces or gloves to gloves. Unlike Skill Tree Transfers, this process does not destroy items when copying effects.
Players can use the lock symbol next to each inventory slot to prevent accidental overwriting of saved inventory. The same can be done for items by holding the control key and right-clicking on them.
Each character has two free inventory pages, and additional pages can be purchased with blue shop Crystals.
Since using the Skill Tree Inventory incurs no cost, many players leverage this system to mitigate the randomness of Skill Tree Transfers. By acquiring multiple high-level and desirable effects on an item, players can store those effects and then copy them onto their selected gear. However, obtaining such a piece from random Chaos Dungeon drops requires considerable luck. In such cases, players can check the Market to see if their desired effects are available for purchase. Depending on the effects and levels, this approach can be expensive, but players can attempt to recoup their investment by reselling items later.
For players on a tighter budget, a combination of the two systems can be employed to apply desired Skill Tree Effects. Attempting to acquire all level four effects can be challenging due to the RNG of drops and transfer rates, not to mention the potential costliness on the Market. As a compromise, players can focus on obtaining the six ‘most’ important effects at level four, either through drops or the Market, and then copy each effect to a slot in the Skill Tree Inventory. Gear pieces with one high-level effect and two undesirable, low-level effects are comparatively cheaper and more likely to drop. Afterward, players can use the Skill Tree Transfer to replace the two undesirable effects per slot with ‘less’ important effects at levels one to three, as they are more affordable, commonly dropped, and have higher transfer rates.
The Integrated Preset feature (Alt + E) enables players to set up different character loadouts for various activities, including Legion Raids, Guardian Raids, Chaos Dungeons, and more. This feature allows players to automatically enter content with their desired loadouts, eliminating the need for manual adjustments each time. It encompasses all Skill Tree Inventory pages, ensuring players don’t need to reapply different sets of effects for different content.
Acquiring higher levels of Skill Tree Effects stands as one of the most effective ways to enhance a character’s performance in Lost Ark. While the investment cost can be steep, it is undoubtedly worthwhile. One major concern for players regarding this system is the need for reinvestment after class balance patches. The necessity to alter Skill Tree Effects based on buffs and nerfs can prove frustrating for many players.
Fortunately, the developers are aware of these concerns and are actively working on a new ‘library’ system to address the issue. Many players speculate that this system may function similarly to the current Engraving library. We hope that this guide has shed light on the Skill Tree System in Lost Ark!