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MapleStory Guide: Balrog PQ Guide
Comments: 21, Likes: 4
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Just remember - If you're leading a BPQ, the whole party is dependent on you. A party is horrible with a horrible leader! If not, just do your best
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^Big Credits to Alalme on helping me learn how do this PQ when I was a newbie, letting me use parts of his previous guide AND for his previous guide. It was really helpful, but I believe that a new, updated guide should be made. So here it is!

^Yes, I am aware of the Big Bang. I'll see if there's anything different with BPQ, and if there is, I'll update the guide accordingly. Be patient.

^I still need to add some pictures, but I unable to do so due to my account being deactivated and having to wait for Nexon to change my E-Mail address. If anyone could contribute pictures for the two sections (They say Insert Screenie here and the one for normal damage reflect), that would be greatly appreciated!

This is my first guide, so I hope it's as good as the other ones out there!

^What is the Balrog?

The Balrog is a boss that has been out since Version 77. He has thwarted players from KMS and JMS before we have ever got it. This Balrog is nothing like the Junior or the Crimson Balrog. It is THE Balrog. Not much is known about him, but he has had some experiences with some Maple heroes such as Manji, Tristan (A legendary Maple hero) , and the previous Dark Lord. Seeking help, Tristan found the Dark Lord. Together, they went to take on the fierce Balrog. Having turned the Dark Lord into a monster, Tristan was killed by the Balrog. Manji was defeated as well, but he managed to seal the Balrog away. After many years of being sealed, Balrog is breaking free of his seal, and it's up to the world of Maplestory to seal him again! However, if you think this is a walk in the park, then you are sadly mistaken.

^The Basics of BPQ

The basic goal inside BPQ is to prevent Balrog from reviving. You can accomplish this by reducing Balrog's HP to 0, like every other boss. However, unlike any boss you have seen, there are some unique things you should know.

Warning about Skills
Players level 50-69 will have no problems with attacking or using their skills. However, people with third job might have some problems with this. First of all, any third job skills that are NOT passive will not work here. Skills like Burst Fire or Meso Explosion cannot be used here. There is one skill in particular that WILL doom you here. The skill I am talking about is called Full Swing (Yes, an Aran skill). This skill, although will increase your damage outside the PQ, will NOT let you use double swing OR triple swing. So if you wanna continue doing this PQ while still being an okay 71+ attacker in here, DO NOT add SP to Full Swing until you think you have had enough leveling with this PQ.

About Level 71+
People level 71+ get their power cut down drastically. If you're a 15X Buccaneer with a damage range of 4096 ~ 5142, your damage range will be reduced to a fixed one of about 650 ~ 1024. The same thing applies if you are a level 71 Marauder, a level 86 Chief bandit, or a 200 Night Lord. Although each class gets their damage reduced to a certain range, I am only aware of the damage reduction for Pirates. I'm pretty sure each class hits around 600 - 1800 each hit.

Damage Reflection
Another big thing in this PQ is the infamous Damage Reflect. You might be saying "What is damage reflect?" Well, as the name implies, damage reflect is a mob buff that will return a high amount of damage back to you if you manage to hit that mob during damage reflect. For example, if you hit the Balrog during damage reflect, the damage inflicted will show up as 1 and you can get around 8,000-11,000 damage returned to you. Ouch. I will explain how to time damage reflect later.

^BPQ Lingo

There may be some words/acronyms you see in the PQ that you may not understand. Here, I will try to cover most of them.
Looter - Someone who steals all the drops from the bonus stage. These people are usually not trusted and/or liked.
DR - Damage Reflect.
Timer - Someone who able to Predict Balrog's damage reflection.
Medal - A medal rewarded after starting a quest and then finishing 200 successful Balrog runs.
BPQ - Balrog Party Quest/Balrog Expedition Quest.
Zombify - An anti-buff that causes your HP potions' effectiveness reduced by 50%. That Unagi will now heal 500 HP instead of the 1,000 HP it usually does. Clerics/Priests/Bishops can actually kill you by healing.
Split Loot - This is what most parties do during the bonus stage. Everyone gets to choose what they get (if it drops). All uncalled things are usually picked up by whoever gets them.
FFA - Free For All. This means that in the bonus stage, whoever gets an item keeps it. There is no fair splitting or anything. It's just whoever gets the items first.
Uncalled Weapons - Usually referring to the weapons that are not called during Split Loot. Some people call this during Split Loot.
Card - The Balrog Card.
Bain Weapons - A series of "Epic" weapons dropped on the normal BPQ. These weapons are very, VERY rare, but incredibly good.
If anyone knows of a word I left out, please PM me so I can add it!

^How do I get to the BPQ area?

This is a very easy process. This is just here to let people know how to get here.
Alalme:
When you are ready to join a Balrog run, you need to head to a map called �The Bottom of the Temple�.This map can be reached in two ways, you can either:
  1. Talk to Manji in Perion, he will teleport you to the room for 10,000 mesos.
  2. Walk down the ant tunnel in Sleepywood. In �The Cave That Lost Light 2�, head to the bottom right of the map, and locate the hidden portal. Go through the portal, and jump down to the bottom portal on the next map. Proceed down the staircase, and enter the map.


^Is BPQ Worth it?

Yes! Even if you are doing easy or normal BPQ (Which I will explain later), every part of this PQ is definitely worth it! How much EXP, you ask? This varies on what difficulty you do. If you are doing easy, then you will get 260,000 EXP! That is a humongous amount for levels 50-70. How much does normal give. Take a guess. 400,000? 500,000? No. 520,000 EXP from one run! Just a side note. Easy takes about 15-20 minutes to complete, while normal takes 20-30 minutes to complete. Even with that note, I strongly recommend that you do Easy mode until Level 71, and then continue until you hit level 80.

^How hard does he hit?

There are several attacks that Balrog is able to inflict on you.
  1. Lightning Strike. This attack hits only the bottom level of the tomb, striking for around 2.5k damage on normal and 800 damage on easy.
  2. Bone Crusher. This attack also hits only the bottom level. A glowing rib-cage looking thing will fall from the ceiling. This will reduce your HP and MP to 1. Same effect on easy and normal.
  3. Dispel. This attack hits anywhere inside the Balrog�s Tomb. This attack is used by the head and the left arm. If being used by the head, Balrog's necklace will flash purple. If being used by the left arm, Balrog will cast a purple circle. No matter which body part is using the attack, a purple jaw will appear around you and promptly snap down. This attack deals around 250-600 damage, easy and normal.
  4. Rock Drop. Another attack striking everywhere inside the tomb. A rock will drop on your head. 300-600 damage, easy and normal.
  5. Inferno. The Balrog�s horns will turn red, and fire will engulf his jaw. Up to 6 people anywhere in the tomb will be hit with a fire-based attack for about 300-600 damage, easy and normal.
  6. Iceberg. This attack is used by Balrog's right hand. He shows a blue circle and strikes you with a mini-iceberg. This can hit 800 on easy and 2.6k on normal.

^How do I join a BPQ run?

You must be level 50 or above to do a BPQ run.
Easy mode can be done on any channel BUT channels 6 and 7. You must be 50-70 in order to participate in a Balrog run.
Normal mode can be done ONLY on channels 6 and 7. Anyone above level 50 can participate.

Before You Join...
If you want to join a Balrog run, there are a few things to consider:
  1. Most people will be talking to their buddies during the PQ.
  2. Something VERY important is organization. A random, unorganized party will get you nowhere.
  3. Trust is key. If no one trusts you, it is very unlikely that you will be able to join a run.
  4. If you are level 50-70, most people will tell you to do easy. I recommend you try to do Normal when you are level 60+.

Signing up
Signing up is now an effortless process due to the version 86 patch. (Thanks Nexon! Took you long enough...) First of all, try to find an expedition on channel one. Saying things like J>PQ or Joining Expedition are fine. Once you find an expedition, change to the channel your leader tells you to. After that, wait for your leader to start the expedition, and follow the below steps.

^About Easy Mode

Like I have stated above, easy mode is for levels 50-70 ONLY.

Easy mode has a minimum of 3 people and a maximum of 6. The whole thing lasts for 20 minutes, but most parties finish in 15. Easy mode is split into three phases.

Phase One
Phase one lasts from 20:00 - 14:59. During this time, no damage to Balrog is dealt. So it would be a waste of pots to attack, right? Wrong. During this time, you MUST deal about 120,000 damage to Balrog or else you will get kicked out of this PQ. Most parties I have PQed with do the following during the first phase:
  1. Start the expedition
  2. Stay outside
  3. Go in at 0:30

In case you did not understand that, most parties, after starting the expedition, stay outside until the timer on the top of the map (The Bottom of the Temple BTW) reaches 0:30. Why? Most parties do this in order to save their potions. No one wants to waste potions, right? Some parties might go in earlier. Sometimes a bit too early. Try to avoid parties that do not know what to do at all.

The only parts you are able to hit are the head and the hand to the right. Make sure that the close ranged classes (Bralwers, Warriors, Bandits, etc.) are attacking the hands and the long ranged classes (Sins, mages, Archers, etc.) attacking the head. If this differs, this could mean one of three things;
  1. The party is likely due to fail due to poor organization.
  2. Some people, like Arans, like attacking the head instead of the arms, which is NOT recommended until the third phase.
  3. A close ranged person cannot survive on the floor, which is very rare.

Phase Two
Phase two lasts from 14:59 to about 50% of the Balrog's health, where the HP bar is in the middle of the minutes and seconds in the time left.
A Visual Example: insert screenie here

During this time, you are now dealing damage to the Barlog. However, unlike the first phase, tombstones with the word 'hit' on them will pop up, either on the top left, the middle or the top-right. The Balrog's head will also turn purple. All attacks to the head will miss. It is ABSOLUTELY IMPORTANT to hit the tombstone ASAP. If you don't the Balrog WILL regenerate almost ALL of his health, resulting in a fail party. Make sure to hit these when they pop up.
Another Visual Example: Insert Screenie Here

Balrog's right hand (Or the hand to the left) will also be freed from its chains and be left open to attack. Brawlers/Marauders will find this hand more convenient to hit since the hand to the right forces them to jump in order to hit it.

Phase Three
This is where most parties perish and fail. This is the dreaded phase three, where Balrog uses his damage reflect. This starts when Balrog shows a message saying "Silly Greenhorns, trying to seal me with such ameturish strength..." However, damage reflect does not start immediately. On easy mode, damage reflect starts when the HP bar reaches the Letter M in "Time."


Damage reflect starts when Balrog's Horns flash red and he shows a circle with an axe in the middle. I explain how to time damage reflect in the section below Normal Mode. You should check it out!

When the HP bar reaches the little clock, that is when Balrog is going to cast zombify. Don't worry if your time seems off by more than 20 seconds; it's just zombify.


Go and tell the Balrog "Good game sir!"

Bonus stage

Congrats! You have reached the bonus stage! Just hit that thing in the middle, split the drops evenly, and celebrate your well-earned 260,000 EXP and one FREE Balrog leather! The Bonus Stage
Confirmed drops for easy mode:





In more detail:
Balrog�s Pheonix Wand
Balrog�s Magicodar
Balrog�s Varkit
Balrog�s Cursayer
Dragon�s Tail of Balrog
Balrog�s Angelic Betrayal
Balrog�s Leomite
Balrog�s Morningstar
Balrog�s Vifennis
Balrog�s Gaea
Balrog�s Fraute
Balrogs Khan
Balrog�s Kage
Balrog�s Blue Marine
Balrog�s Omega Spear
Balrog�s Fairfrozen
Balrog�s Helios
Balrog�s Colonian Axe
Balrog�s Blue Screamer
Heaven�s Gate of Balrog
Balrog�s Berzerker
Devil�s Sunrise of Balrog
Balrog�s Eclipse
Balrog�s Hellslayer
Balrog�s Marine Raven
Balrog�s Fire Raven
Balrog�s Golden Raven
Balrog�s Dark Raven
Balrog�s Casa Crow
Balrog�s Marine Arund
Balrog�s Fire Arund
Balrog�s Golden Arund
Balrog�s Dark Arund
Balrog�s Metus
Balrog�s Steel Renault
Balrog�s White Evil
Balrog�s Black Mamba
Balrog�s Casters
Balrog�s Leather Shoes
Balrog�s Fur Shoes
Balrog�s Infinity
Balrog�s Peacemaker
Balrog's Twilight Scroll 5%

^ Normal Mode

Normal mode is not that different from easy, but a LOT harder. For the most part, the procedures are the same. However, there are some major differences. Some are that instead of a max of six people, you have a maximum of 15 people at a time. This mode lasts for 30 minutes, unlike the 20 minutes on easy. So what makes this so hard? Keep reading and find out. Since Easy and Normal are so alike, I will only point out the differences in this section.

Phase One

This Phase lasts from 30:00 - 19:59. Note, Balrog's attack and HP are buffed up drastically. Another thing: anyone over level 71 will get their damage reduced by a ton. Everyone who is a ranged attacker (Bowmen, Sins, Slingers, etc.) should NOT touch the head. It hits a DEADLY 1,800 Damage, which would probably kill anyone who is ranged and level 70- instantly. Everything else is the same.

Phase Two

This phase lasts from 19 59 till about 50% of Balrog's HP. His head and hands have more defense, so you will deal less damage here. Again, this phase is pretty much the same as easy.

Phase Three

This is where most parties fail. Unlike easy, damage reflect is casted MUCH sooner. In fact, damage reflect is casted when the HP is somewhere between the minutes and seconds. Have your ranged people stop attacking and your unranged (Warriors, Brawlers, Dits, etc.) attack when the Balrog himself attacks. This is the safest way to attack. Damage reflect has a different timing, too. Everything else is the same, too.

This is about the point damage reflect starts.

Now, go claim your Bain weapons!

Bonus Stage
Congrats! You have beat the Balrog on Normal mode! Normal mode has the same drops as easy, but not only is there more, there are also the "epic" Bain Weapons! In my opinion, I think these are some of the godliest statless items available. Here's a list:
Bain Shooter
Bain Biter
Bain Long Bow
Bain Pole Arm
Bain Sword
Bain Wings
Chaos Scroll
Clean Slate Scroll 3%
Eternal Bullet

^How do I lead a Balrog run?

Leading Balrog runs is not for everyone. Leaders must be patient, patient, patient, and patient. People WILL be late for runs, people WILL screw up on runs, people WILL ask stupid questions, and there�s nothing you can do. Leading a Balrog run comes down to three parts.
  1. Assembling. If you�ve pre-organized and scheduled a run with people, be sure to show up well in advance of the run time, and party people as they arrive. If not, sit in channel 1 recruiting people. As you recruit people, send them to an �organizational channel� . This allows you to get away from the spam while you are briefing your crew. Assemble the runners into 3 parties of 5 people, (or as even a split as you can get with however many people you have) and proceed to step 2.
  2. Briefing. Give your runners a quick rundown of how the run is going to work. Appoint �Tombstone� players (People who stay at the tombstones during the second phase and who get the tombstones during the third phase) and Damage Reflection timers, and make sure everyone knows who they are. Make sure to mention how you want to work the drops (free-for-all, split, etc) and whether you want them to attack the hands or head for the first ten minutes. If they are a totally new, refer them to this guide. You, as the expedition leader, should start the expedition and tell your team when to go in.
  3. Timing. During the third phase, Balrog will start to damage reflect. You will need your timers to be on-guard and ready to time. If you cannot do this, chances are that your party will fail. It would be best if you, as a leader, can time. Why? Sometimes, your timers WILL screw up and not time, so it would be best if you can time yourself. I will explain this in detail in the next section.

^Timing

Most people think of timing as "too hard." It's the exact opposite. There are two timing methods for Easy and Normal.
QUICK NOTE: You will need to stop BEFORE the time given. If you stop At or after the time, chances are that your party will hit Balrog during damage reflect, and die out. I stop 3 - 5 seconds before the given time. Also, please note that server lag also plays a crucial part in your timing. This may cause your time to be too early or too late. Sometimes, a person's clock is different than someone else's, so be aware of that. (Thanks Poison Control for reminding me to include the info.)

  1. Safe Method - This method is not only safer, but allows time to have all your Expedition members to stop about 5 seconds early. How do you do this? Simple. Let's say that Balrog has casted damage reflect at 8 53 and finished the animation at 8 50. Instead of using the casting time, use the time when the animation finishes, which is 8 50. Get that time, subtract it by 1 minute, and you got your safe timing. In this example, that would be 8 50 - 1 00, which is 7 50. I prefer this method when I am on Normal Mode.

  1. More Damage Method - This method can be a bit dangerous, but is safe for the most part. This allows your party members to stop one second before the damage reflect is about to happen. Let's use the example from above. Using the time the animation finishes, 8 50, subtract 1 minute 3 seconds. That would be 8 50 - 1 03, which is 7 47. I prefer this timing method on easy. On normal, however, this can pose danger and may kill your party if you are not careful.

^Tips and Tricks

Questing!
If you decide to obtain the Hero's Gladius through the quest, you are able to do a series of quests. Unfortunately, Hidden Street does not have the quests on their database. However, I am able to provide some information about them. After the following quest (http://global.hidden-street.net/quest/victoria-island/manji-and-balrog), Mu Young tells you to kill one Balrog, regardless of difficulty. You get around 100,000 EXP from the quest. After that, he tells you to find a suspicious man, who can be found by walking down the Ant Tunnel until you reach a map called "The Cave That Lost Light II." Go to the bottom portal, and then go to the other bottom portal (The one with the figures I can't describe). Just walk down, and you'll see him. He will ask for 20 balrog leathers. I haven't completed this quest, but I'm assuming he gives you a pair of leather shoes.

The Suspicious Man also gives scrolls for leathers. These are all the scrolls you can get.
� Balrog's STR Scroll 30%: Improves STR on Balrog Leather Shoes. Success rate: 30%, STR +2
� Balrog's INT Scroll 30%: Improves INT on Balrog Leather Shoes. Success rate: 30%, INT +2
� Balrog's DEX Scroll 30%: Improves DEX on Balrog Leather Shoes. Sucess rate: 30%, DEX +2
� Balrog's LUK Scroll 30%: Improves LUK on Balrog Leather Shoes. Success rate: 30%, LUK +2
� Balrog's HP Scroll 30%: Improves HP on Balrog Leather Shoes. Success rate: 30%, MaxHP +30
� Balrog's MP Scroll 30%: Improves MP on Balrog Leather Shoess. Success rate: 30%. MaxMP +30
� Balrog's Speed Scroll 30%: Improves Speed on Balrog Leather Shoes. Success rate: 30%, Speed +3
� Balrog's Jump Scroll 30%: Improves Jump on Balrog Leather Shoes. Success rate: 30%, Jump +3
� Balrog's Accuracy Scroll 30%: Improves Accuracy on Balrog Leather Shoes. Success rate: 30%, Accuracy +5
� Balrog's Avoidability Scroll 30%: Improves Avoidability on Balrog Leather Shoes. Success rate: 30%, Avoidability +5
� Balrog's Defense Scroll 30%: Improves Defense on Balrog Leather Shoes. Success rate: 30%, Weapons Defense +10, Magic Defense +10
� Balrog's Twilight Scroll 5%: Improves the function of Balrog Leather Shoes: STR +4, INT +4, DEX +4, LUK +4, Speed +4, Jump +4, Avoidability +4, Accuracy +4, Weapons Defense +14, Magic Defense +14, MaxHP +40, MaxMP +40.

The Hero's Gladius
There is only one known trick inside the Balrog PQ. This is the Hero's Gladius. All you have to do is obtain the Gladius through the FM, Quest, or MTS. What does it do? It gives a buff that gives you 30 weapon attack and 30 magic attack. However, this buff CAN be nullified by party buffs such as Rage and Meditation. NX buffs have no effect on your Gladius, however. The quest can be started by finishing "Maya and the Weird Medicine" first.

^Conclusion

In conclusion, I hope you have learned how to PQ through this guide. Again, I would like to give many thanks to Alalme, Alalme, and Alalme for not only writing his guide on how to do this, he provided most of the info and helped me fix this up. Thanks Alalme!
If you have any questions, suggestions, or spot an error, Please PM me!
I hope you enjoyed this guide! Bye~!

ChangeLog
July 8, 2010 - Minor edits. Updated credits as well.
June 28, 2010 - MAJOR Update due to the Version 86 patch. Thanks everyone who contributed! (Forgot to finish a section AND add some pictures! >.<
May 22, 2010 - Guide Published! Yay.

Credits
Thanks Happywilly15 for helping me clear something up.
Thanks KazeKishi for correcting a part in my guide.
Thanks BlazeLeo for giving me some additional info.
Thanks MSforlife for spotting a really stupid error I made.
Thanks Alalme for A TON of things.
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