Choosing Ice Angler vs Blade King + Diamond Giveaway

Leave a comment on this post with your Game ID to enter this week’s Diamond Giveaway. Jump to the bottom if you’re just here for the Diamond Giveaway.


We have recently gotten 2 new Ancient Sets — Ice Angler and Blade King. I have been offered the opportunity to borrow one of these sets on these conditions:

Conditions:

1. You have to make a video. Please make a video, not a stream

2. The Set will be issued to you for 2 weeks for a test and creation of video content, after that it will be removed (this should be indicated in your video)

3. Do not reforge and disassemble items ⚠️

Which should I pick? I would love to borrow them both and test them against each other. But since I will only have one, I want to pick the “better” one and test it against my existing sets to see if it good enough to get a spot on my main team.

In this article I’m going to analyze the set descriptions in as great detail as possible to make my decision.

Please leave a comment with which set you think I should get (also to enter the Diamond Giveaway). Then tune into my youtube channel next week so see what I chose 😀


One house keeping note before we get started: I have added Ice Angler and Blade King to the spreadsheet many of you use for tracking your rolls:
https://hustlecastle.site/set-rolls

However, if you are using a previous version of the spreadsheet, I only recommend migrating to the new one if you are starting these sets. I expect we will get 2 more archer sets soon, too. Images of Ice Angler and Blade King were leaked 6 months ago in a group of 4.


How to choose?

On to the main event. How can I choose between Ice Angler and Blade King?

When these sets were added, I gave my initial reaction in this recent video. In that video I go on for quite a while about how much I love daggers for their fast weapon speed. And said that Ice Angler sounded like the best 2/6 mage set (important for a tank-mage, largely considered a must have). However I didn’t think the 6/6 Ice Angler sounded too exciting.

Since then, I’ve seen a lot of 6/6 Ice Anglers and people are really liking them. I have not seen (“noticed” would be a better word, I’m often playing while multitasking) any 6/6 Blade Kings. I’ve seen a few 4/6, but that’s not how I would use this set so that’s not very helpful.

So here’s the plan! First I’m going to analyze how much damage I can hope to get from either. Then I’m going to look at the support abilities that each has and try to predict which will make the bigger difference in my team.

At the end, please leave a comment with your Game ID and which set you think is better! If you think I’m not considering something, then please include that, too!


Damage Potential for Ice Angler from Set Abilities

Damage will come from Set Abilities, Weapon Ability, and Base Weapon Damage (other sources aren’t relevant to comparing sets). We’ll talk about weapon in a little bit. Now lets look really closely at the (offensive) Set Abilities.

When comparing damage from a Mage vs a Tank, one contrast that needs to be pointed out is that we can expect a tank to be alive for more of the battle. So if we see similar damage output per time — that would actually be a win for the Tank.

Let’s focus on the 6/6. Here is the ability from the game:

Once in a while, the unit fires 4 volleys of 2 icicles at random enemies. Each icicle deals 45000 (+bonus of spell power) magic damage and freezes the target. If an icicle hits a frozen enemy, it deals an extra 15000 (+bonus of spell power) magic damage. While frozen, the units are unable to move or attack for 0.7 sec. Also, the cooldown times of the enemies’ gear abilities and artifact abilities are increased by 0.7 sec. The unit is healed, the amount of health restored equaling 10% of the damage done by the icicles. Also, when an icicle hits an enemy, all allies are healed, the amount of health restored equaling 10% of the damage done by the icicle.

Once in a while, when an enemy tries to use a movement restricting effect on the unit, the unit removes that effect from themself. Also, the unit is immune to freezing and burning. All enemies have the cooldown times of all their abilities (except those granted by the set equipped) increased by 10%. Every 2 sec, the unit launches an icicle at a random enemy.

Spell Power Bonus on Ice Angler

First thing — a “spell power bonus” in a set ability?? That’s new! How are we supposed to know what the bonus is?

My clan mate Cocolino has made a 6/6 Ice Angler. So I took a visit to his castle, and if you open the Set Description from the fighter, then it shows a value for the spell power bonus. And since we can also see this fighter’s spell power, we can calculate the spell power bonus

Here is my friend Cocolino’s 6/6 Ice Angler, Scooby-Doo. We can see and the set ability’s “Spell Power Bonus” shows when it’s equipped. His has a +19397 spell power bonus (for both fields, seen in green). The fighter has 100829 spell power. So we can calculate the spell power multiplier of the bonus:

X is the multiplier for the Spell Power Bonus
100829 * X = 19397
X = 19397/100829
X = 0.192 or roughly 20%

My own incinerator’s Spell Power is 132185. If I assume I would get an Ice Angler to a similar SP, then the bonus for me would be 25380.

Icicles

Now let’s look at these Icicles… the Ice Angler will throw 8 icicles (2 each at 4 targets) that each do 45k damage, plus the (lets say) 25k damage from spell power. That’s the possibility for 560k damage. Not bad!

Of course that’s before armor filters some percent of that damage. And projectiles can typically be dodged. However, with a Dragonborn on the team, much of the opponent is “off balance” and unable to dodge. In fact I’m seeing very few dodges happening in real battles.

There’s a clause about hitting an already frozen target. But how does that happen? The freeze lasts less than a second, so it can’t be from two different times this ability triggered on my Ice Angler. It sounds like each target gets hit with 2 icicles — so would every one of the 4 targets be “already” frozen for the second one if they didn’t dodge? Seems doubtful. Does this only apply if you have 2 Ice Anglers? That’s a little odd… but also not a really important point. We’re just talking about an extra 15k + ~25k damage.

Frozen means that they cant attack for 0.7 seconds and gear cooldowns increase 0.7 seconds. This is certainly nice but doesn’t impress me too much. Most of the popular sets are using slow weapons that only hit once every 1.5-2 seconds anyway. A fraction of a second isn’t normally going to make a big difference. Unless if you’re both sort of racing for something (like the first to fire Dino Wand and silence the other, or first to trigger Dragon Eye and “use up” all the dead bodies).

The Ice Angler also heals herself and all allies 10% of the damage done by any icicle.

Now this is interesting because in the battles I’ve seen with an Ice Angler, they are doing almost no healing. Does that mean those icicles aren’t really doing much damage and the damage that I see is mostly coming from the Dino Wand?

Alright, so main damage ability is throwing 8 icicles, that (before armor and dodge) are worth about 560k (depending on spell power) damage. 10% of the actual damage done will be given as healing to self and ALL allies (extra nice for 8men squads). There’s also some other icicles sometimes. And these “freeze” the hit target for 0.7 seconds.

Survivability

One other set ability that I’m not sure where to put is that Ice Angler has some extra survivability: immune to fire, freezing, and movement restriction. This doesn’t seem like a huge deal, except maybe it could make a difference to have her alive longer using that dino wand and rez soul. Though, from the battles I’m seeing, Ice Angler seems just as floppy as Cultist.


Damage Potential For Blade King from Set Abilities

Lets remind ourselves what Blade King does at 6/6:

Once in a while, the unit performs a circular attack, dealing 80000 physical damage to all enemies around themself and stripping them of their armor. The affected enemies lose 60% of their armor stats and are unable to use their armor abilities for 2 sec. Also, those enemies take 100000 damage that ignores their armor over 5 sec.

The unit deals an extra 25000 physical damage to the enemies that have been stripped of their armor or weapons. Once in a while, the unit throws 5 daggers at random enemies. Each dagger deals 85% of the unit’s attack damage. Each subsequent dagger deals 10% more damage. When hit, the enemies have a 50% chance of having all buffs removed from them.

Every 14 sec, the unit deals a crushing blow to an enemy, inflicting 600% of the attack damage. That damage ignores the target’s armor. Also, the unit is granted a shield whose durability equals to the damage done. The shield lasts for 3 sec. If the enemy has less than 20% health left after the attack, they are killed. If the target is killed by the crushing blow, the unit’s ability cooldown time is reduced by 6 sec.

Let’s focus on the damage abilities for now. There are 3: the circular attack, throwing daggers, and the crushing blow.

Circular Attack

I’m not sure why the “deals an extra 25000 physical damage to the enemies that have been stripped of their armor or weapons” clause is separate the way it is. Perhaps this is dealt even when armor is stripped by something besides the Blade King. But is seems clear this would apply to all those hit by the Circular Attack.

So the Circular Attack is 80k physical damage, plus 100k pure damage, plus the 25k for stripping armor. I’ll add that up to 205k, even though it’s a mix of pure and regular damage.

Not sure if the armor is striped before or after the physical damage is dealt. Maybe it is 80k damage, then 100k pure damage, then strip armor, then 25k damage. That could also be an explanation for why that 25k is in a separate clause. Though honestly, it’s a waste of time to try to read too much into the English in Hustle Castle since the game makers are not native English speakers.

Anyway. Circular attack we’re looking at something like 205k damage and most of that will bypass armor — very good!

It only effects enemies “around self”. I’m guessing that will be anyone else on the front line (or archer line if the Blade King was using backstab). So I’m going to guess that this will generally be effecting 1 to 2 enemies when triggered. But still 200-400k mostly direct damage is really good!

Throwing Daggers

To remind ourselves:

Once in a while, the unit throws 5 daggers at random enemies. Each dagger deals 85% of the unit’s attack damage. Each subsequent dagger deals 10% more damage. When hit, the enemies have a 50% chance of having all buffs removed from them.

These I don’t think are going to be substantial damage. As a fast weapon the damage per hit is low on daggers. I previewed a craft for Blade King Daggers and looks like a high roll can expect 10k damage per hit. Though that’s before gems and elixirs; you could get this to be something, but it’s not going to be “battle changing” damage, IMO.

However, I’m very interested in that “all buffs removed” part. We’ll come back to this when talking about support abilities.

Crushing Blow

Every 14 sec, the unit deals a crushing blow to an enemy, inflicting 600% of the attack damage. That damage ignores the target’s armor. Also, the unit is granted a shield whose durability equals to the damage done. The shield lasts for 3 sec. If the enemy has less than 20% health left after the attack, they are killed. If the target is killed by the crushing blow, the unit’s ability cooldown time is reduced by 6 sec.

Again, 600% of a low damage per hit is only going to be around 60k damage (higher with good gems). However, this direct damage! 60k direct damage is a bit more interesting.

Will the insta kill ability trigger? My EoL has 800k health and my Legio 525k health. Equivalents are what I can expect the Blade King to hit. And, well, it might but I don’t know how often. However, if I gave the Blade King backstab (which is looking more and more like a good idea as I keep writing) then I’m hitting archers with 400+ health and could have a good chance of knocking them out.

OK, so damage from set abilities will about 200k (maybe 2x plus if more enemies are “around”) mostly direct damage from circular attack; about 50k from throwing daggers; and about 60k direct damage (with possibility of instakill) from crushing blow.


Consideration for Weapons and Runes

It’s worth talking about weapons and runes because these 2 sets we’re comparing are for different classes and weapons.

There is always an advantage to a Mage because she can wear a resurrection weapon soul. And for a staff weapon, it’s not even that hard to get it (buy Priest and reforge it). So that’s a “plus 1” for choosing the Ice Angler set.

Also I have 2 nice staff weapons — the Dino Wand currently in use by my Incinerator, and the Kaido wand is also very good. I don’t have the Angel wand, but if I did that would be a huuuuge +1 for going Ice Angler.

Since the Shadow set (the existing dagger ancient set) has not been in fashion for quite a while, I’m not sure if any of the daggers I have sitting around are actually super great. Unfortunately, I suspect not. I think in general, Mage weapons have the best abilities. That balances the low DPS.

Runes

There are only a few runes that have a different ability based on weapon type (opposed to fighter class). If I added Ice Angler, then I would not have access to anything that I don’t already have access to with my Incinerator. However, Blade King would mean I could use runes with dagger abilities. Here are the rune abilities that would be new if I added daggers:

I like the sound of the new amulet rune on daggers. The electric rune could also be a good combination with backstab; make those enemy archers target their own.


Ice Angler’s Support Ability

I didn’t hide my bias for Blade King going into this. There are only 2 things that make me unsure what to pick: 1) that I’m seeing strong Ice Anglers in the wild, and 2) this clause:

All enemies have the cooldown times of all their abilities (except those granted by the set equipped) increased by 10%.

Whhhhhattt? Everything? Just all the time?

So my Dino wand triggers first and silences yours? So my Dragon Eye triggers first and doesn’t leave any bodies on the ground for yours? So my Dusty Antiques triggers first and yours triggers never?

This sounds absolutely must have. A game changer. This little phrase hidden near, but not quite at the end where I didn’t even notice it on first read.

I read this and think: I have to have this, the only question still left is do I need the full 6/6 for this or will a 2/6 (tank mage) be sufficient.

2/6: Also, the cooldown times of the enemies’ gear abilities and artifact abilities are increased by 0.7 sec.

4/6: All enemies have the cooldown times of all their abilities (except those granted by the set equipped) increased by 5%.

6/6: All enemies have the cooldown times of all their abilities (except those granted by the set equipped) increased by 10%.

One immediate question: is the slight difference in wording a bad translation? Sometimes “gear” is used to mean archer armor. But I would think in this context, the 2/6 description means all gear; so the same as the 4/ and 6/ just for different amounts of time.

For anything with a cooldown of less than 7 seconds — 0.7 is better than 10%. For anything with a cooldown less than 14 seconds 0.7 is better than 5%. But I think what really matters here isn’t the amount, it’s that when we have the same item (very very common at the 25mil level), that mine goes first.

So I stand by my initial reaction to this set — this is the best of all mage sets for a tank mage. And if I decide to go with Blade King, then I’m still going to be needing to make room for a 2/6 Ice Angler tank mage. But if everyone starts having 6/6 Ice Anglers, then I’m gong to need a 6/6, too, to match that 10%.


Blade King’s Support Ability

Blade King throws 5 daggers which, “when hit, the enemies have a 50% chance of having all buffs removed from them.” Definitely love this ability!

I already have a Cultist who “curses 3 enemies for 5 sec […] have all positive effects removed”. I would say that its redundant, but some have found this ability so critical that running 2 cultists has become popular.

I also use a ring rune on my tank-illu that “has a 30% chance of removing all positive effects from all enemies”.

Over all I would say this is really really good, but I do already have some of this ability in my squad. So comparing to the support ability of the Ice Angler, this seems less of a “must have”. However, if I compare it to my Legionnare (a possibility for being replaced by the Blade King) then this sounds 1000x better than those shields.


Consideration for Fighter Class

Now, of course, my squad isn’t lacking a fighter. If Ice Angler or Blade King comes in, someone has to go out. I’m 7man and this section is going to be a bit specific to 7man squads.

For Blade King, it could potentially replace Legionnare. Between Legionnare and Blade King, I think Blade King sounds like a clear improvement. For Ice Angler, the assumption would be to replace Incinerator. I would test it if I had it, but I have a hard time imagining a top squad without the resurrection block that comes with Incinerator. I would also test out replacing my alien scepter tank mage, but I’m also skeptical of that being an improvement.

In reality, it would probably be my second Dragonborn that would lose her spot on the Varsity Team, even though she has earned that spot over some other very good sets that I’ve built and just put right back into storage.

Dropping my second archer would mean not using Cursed Rangers (CR) anymore. I’m not going to consider dropping Under Cover of Night (UCoN) alliance for my other 4 at this point, so let’s look at what I could do with the remaining 3.

If I add BK and remove the second archer, my options would be would be to put Blade King (or Legionare) in a Battle Brothers (BB) with the remaining archer and leave the mage that was in CR without an alliance. Or the 3 could make Bombers. Both have the advantage of working with any Talent of the correct class.

If I add BK and remove Legionnare, I could just keep UCoN and CR alliances.

If I add IA and remove the second archer, I would have 2 mages and an archer. I could try Bookworms alliance, which I don’t know much about. The Alliance ability sounds nice but the Talents don’t excite me. Or I can use an Immortals for 2, which has the advantage of working with any archer and mage talents, so I can pick good talents.

I can’t see myself dropping any of my existing mages (alien scepter tank mage, cultist, incinerator). Nor, of course, can I imagine using less that my 2 current tanks. So If I add IA, it would have to be the second archer who leaves. Which doesn’t leave me with good options for Alliances.

Honesty, I don’t like the options for how to fit another mage in my squad. This section the point goes to BK.


What are we seeing in the wild?

This is all based on the descriptions, and I’ve said it before and will say it again: description gets us about half way. What are we actually seeing?

I’m seeing some Ice Anglers… not seeing the healing I would expect. Which makes me think that the icicles are not doing very much damage. And the damage IAs do is mostly coming from Dino Wand.

I’m really not seeing any 6/6 Blade Kings. I’ve seen a few 4/6 but that’s not going to be the same because I’m looking for those 6/6 support abilities, too.

Sherman’s Arena (my favorite Spanish speaking Youtuber) has already made a live stream with his borrowed Ice Angler. I think it’s interesting to see the stat screens in this video. The damage is not super impressive and the healing is close to 10% of the damage done (900k and 100k are typical). Which is consistent with my suspicion that the damage from IAs we’re seeing in the wild is coming from Dino Wand more than the set abilities. So… for me I would take the Incinerator’s burning and rez block over the IA’s damage and healing. It’s really just that cooldown reduction that could put IA above Incinerator.


Conclusion

So what do you think?

I’m thinking the Blade King could replace my Legio or second Archer now and that would be an improvement.

I’m thinking that a 6/6 Ice Angler can’t replace my Cultist, Incinerator, or tank mage. It could replace my second archer, but that will leave me with worse alliances. That cooldown ability sounds must-have, but do I want it in the 6/6 form or would replacing my illu-tank with an ice-tank be sufficient?

Please let me know what you would pick when you comment to enter the diamond give away 😀 (though only your game id is necessary to enter the giveaway)


Diamond Giveaway

I have recently been added to the Creator Partner Program and can now hold weekly drawings to give away 5 sets of 250 diamonds.

Leave a comment below on this post to enter for this week’s giveaway.

You must enter by Thursday night. Friday morning i will choose the winners via random number drawing (recorded and sent along with the list of winners for honestly) and send them to the Community Manager. Winners should hopefully get them the same day.

Diamond Giveaways are, of course, sponsored by the Official Hustle Castle community.

Last week the drawing was held on this video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ah4saoN074A

Last week’s winners:
65790593
60873405 PIRIPICCHIO
48286239 leshy
68566857 mayank
67543278 Rae

I will also add this week’s winners here when the drawing is over.

cheers,
–Foon

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21 thoughts on “Choosing Ice Angler vs Blade King + Diamond Giveaway

  1. 7 vs 8 is so different. Cant compare.
    4/6 incerator with 2/6 illusionist/Oracle is what im going for.
    That way i can fit (8) cultist and ice angler in. Not tested, but the combo seems very nice to me.
    Grtz, keep it up, Richard 12143638

  2. very nice read.
    i think ice angler is better and more interesting.

    btw how is 7 fighters working for you? i am at 6 but can also have same alliances as you if go to 7. so i am now thinking shall i do it or not.
    thanks

  3. I’d love to see a test with Ice Angler. To me it’s way more interresting… not even thinking about including BK in my squad, but IA is something I’d really love to build, but can’t find a place in my squad for it, not to mention it’s a bit expensive for me.

    If you do a test with IA, could you please test its performance against some other popular mage sets with event items… as you can’t reforge it yourself.

    My Game ID: 62303960

    1. Yeah room in the squad is the problem. I don’t want to drop Cultist, Pala Illu, or Ash. But also no good alliance set up for 4 mages in 7man 🙁

      1. Hey Foon! Many thanks for all of your great content creation, you’re best second best content creator after PLG Mike lol but don’t worry, you’re a pretty close second and I appreciate the female voice 😂. I wanted to ask a bit of a personal request for me (ID – 50219652) and to be able to help my clan – Legend hunter with Expeditions.. A youtube explainer vid about Expeditions would be really appreciated and I know alot of other players would love to see it.

        Additionally I believe Ice Angler would be better than Blade King but the biggest drawback for both will be getting the better gear for reforging anything which are hidden behind the red dragon.

        Many thanks and continue being great Foon😊

  4. I’m new to the game but reading articles like this help me prepare for the future. I would go for the blade king.
    69288877

  5. My opinion is that since this will given as a test for 2 weeks you should pick the BK. We are already seeing IA in the wild and forming some opinions, but not many BK’s to base judgement on. If you get a BK and 2 weeks later decide it is not good, then you are not out any of your own resources to find out. If you pick IA to test, you’ll still have to spend your own arena badges and mithril just to see if BK works.

    Game I.D. 43866474

  6. Muchas gracias por el post, magnifica explicación en detalle de los nuevos conjuntos.
    Mi ID: 66772227

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