Trained By: Bowyer, Beekeeper, Carpenter, Farmer, Ranger
The archery skill improves your chances of using bows and crossbows effectively in combat.
The thing about archery is that it's only effective when used as a secondary or complementary skill to some other (melee) fighting skill. Since bows are a ranged weapon, archery isn't supposed to work in hand-to-hand combat, only against other MOBs using ranged firepower (like spellcasters or other archers/marksmen). All the same, archery is a VERY useful skill here because bows allow you to attack a MOB from a distance without having to chase after it (spellcasters and archers will run away from you if you try to melee them). What's more, you can also shoot at things that are not directly accessible to you on foot (like sea monsters or trapped MOBs). So just like melee fighting isn't the answer for every combat scenario, archery is useful on certain situations and on others it isn't.
Now as far as bow speed goes, the fastest bow is the common bow and the slowest is the firebow. As a general rule, the slowest the weapon the more damage it deals. If you're skill is high enough you should probably go with the regular bow because the faster you shoot the arrows the more damage you'll manage to produce; if you're skill is low you'll miss a lot and that advantage is lost so you're best bet is on better firepower, i.e. slower bows. Whatever the case may be, bows are generally better weapons (damage-wise) than close combat weapons.
You're dextrexity plays an important role too (are you wearing full plate armor? are you dexs buffs high enough?).
Finally, if you're trying to play an archer you WILL have to run A LOT, so you better get yourself a fast steed that can help you keep that required distance between you and your adversaries. Mounts are simply a must.
With a decent dex, good bow, and some luck, you'll manage to make three solid shots before a MOB can get to you after it has targetted you (assuming it was outside screen range from the start) and sometimes that's enough to take down a lesser monster. If you can't kill it on three shots (or miss some) just run back to get some distance and try again. The other option (and the most sensible one too) would be to simply switch to melee as soon as the MOB closes in on you and just finish it off that way. As effective as archery is, sometimes the best tactic is to simply reach for your sword and slash away until it drops. This is true most of the time I believe because most MOBs are the close combat kind.
So in a nutshell bows are pretty useful on their own but you'll always need some form of melee fighting abilities when you're hunting by yourself. Like I already said, archery is more of a complementary type of skill meant to be used only in certain situations. When use properly, it is a definite plus in a combat situation that can save you a lot of time and sorrow. Almost all types of characters can make use of this skill in combat (even wizards).
|Weapon||Speed||Damage||Range||Skill Used||Cast While Holding||Hands Required|
|Elven Composite Longbow||40||3d6+18||25||Archery||No||2|