|“||The Toxic Cloud is heavily effective against troops and best used against huge armies.||„|
Toxic Cloud is the second spell the player gets. It's unlocked at level two of the Wizard's Tower, filling the vacant second spell slot. Most players replace this spell rather quickly.
Paladins: Toxic Cloud does heavy damage to paladins, rendering the backbone of many early level defenses useless – not instantly, but within seconds.
Arblasters, archers, and frosters: Against ranged units, Toxic Cloud is a mixed blessing due to its low range. Once within range, arblasters with their weakness to poison die fairly quickly. The same goes for archers and frosters because of their lower hitpoint count.
Ninjas: An active Toxic Cloud can be an effective protection against Ninjas that materialize next to the hero, eliminating them before they can attack.
Range at max: With a range of 5.5, Toxic Cloud can be used effectively against ranged units firing from the middle of the next lane.
Structures: Toxic Cloud is pretty much useless against structures.
Units with Resistance: Units like Mummy, Pyromancer and Knight are resistant to poison thereby making this spell weaker unlike sonic blast which works against all structures.
When first unlocked, Toxic Cloud is used because there's no other use for the second spell slot. As soon as paladins appear on the battlefield, the spell becomes valuable.
When Firestorm or Swordrain are available, Toxic Cloud is often replaced. However, there are some players whose defenses rely much more heavily on paladins than others. In this case, and especially without Mortars available yet, Toxic Cloud can be a valuable alternative even at higher levels.
At higher levels, Toxic Cloud can be improved through forging. At that point, an additional slowdown effect can be added to the spell. At first, with a duration of only 0.2 seconds, the effect is hardly noticable, but after a few forgings, it becomes valuable. The effect can be improved at a steady pace to up to three seconds. After that, improvements diminish with each forging.
When the effect is active, all enemy movement (including projectiles) is slowed down considerably. The countdown itself is not slowed down. The effect can give the player a huge advantage in many situations:
- Right at the start, to give a player more time to build up an army.
- When ranged units fight across a lane border, helping them to gain the upper hand.
- To protect freshly spawned units from ranged units and towers that fire across a lane.
- Against Bomb Towers and sometimes Skull Towers, giving the hero more time to kick back bombs.
- Against Werewolves, providing more time before they can howl.
- Against Ogres and Frosters, providing more time to kill them before they can strike.
- When moving into larger groups of units or towers, providing time to kill them with spells before they can react.
- In all kinds of dire situations, allowing the hero to escape.
It is also possible to just use Toxic Cloud's slowdown just whenever the spell is ready. Since hero and troops are basically always under attack, be it at the front lines or at an earlier chokepoint, this is always helpful.
Once the slowdown effect is forged enough to make a difference, the original poisonous damage effect may become less important. The problem is that these two effects are helpful in different kinds of situations. For example, the poison damage is basically only helpful against troops, whereas slowdown is helpful in many situations. Waiting for a good situation to apply the damage often means holding back the slowdown effect, which can be put to good use more often.
Treating Toxic Cloud mainly as the "slowdown spell" instead of using it as the "poison spell" raises the question how far the spell itself should be upgraded. At lower levels, upgrades improve damage and, starting with level 12, range as well, making the spell more useful overall. However, the upgrades to levels 13 and 14 increase cooldown as well. Players who don't care much about the poison part of the spell could consider to put off upgrades past level 12.
Until an update on December 15 2016, the cooldown increases were at levels 16 and 17, leaving players with the same consideration at level 15. After the update, this reason to stay at level 15 went away. Players, who previously decided to keep their Toxic Cloud at level 15, are now advised to upgrade the spell (just like any other).
|Forgings Levels||Pearls Cost||Cooldown||Success Chance||Max Fails|
|+3||150||1d 3h 54m||44.4%||1|
|+4||200||1d 13h 12m||33.3%||1|
|+5||200||2d 7h 48m||33.3%||1|
|+6||200||3d 11h 42m||33.3%||1|
|+∞||200||6d 23h 24m||33.3%||1|