Ability FireBreath
Fire Breath is one of the many Unit Abilities found in Master of Magic. With this ability, a unit making a voluntary Melee Attack starts this attack with a blast of Fire Damage. It is one of only two Breath Attacks available in the game (the other one being Ability LightningBreath Lightning Breath).

The Attack Strength of the Fire Breath ability is noted after its name (e.g. "Ability FireBreath Fire Breath 30"). This indicates the maximum Icon Damage.png damage that it can cause (per Icon Figure.png figure in the unit), though this is subjected to Icon ToHit.png To Hit rolls and the target's Icon Defense.png Defense rolls.

There are 12 units in the game that possess a Fire Breath attack by default. 7 of these are Normal Units (almost all from the Draconian Race), 4 are Fantastic Units from the Icon Chaos.pngChaos Realm, and one is a Hero. The Icon Chaos.pngGreat Drake has the strongest Fire Breath by far - at a whopping Icon Breath.png 30! The Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channels spell can also be cast on a Normal Unit or Hero, and may have some chance of adding the Fire Breath attack to that unit. However, Fantastic Units cannot acquire Fire Breath if they don't already have it.

There are many different modifiers in the game that can increase the strength of a unit's Fire Breath. The available modifiers differ based on the unit's type, however, none of them can modify the Attack Strength of Fire Breath gained through Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channels.

Description Edit

Fire-breathing monsters have long haunted the nightmares of humans in our world - but in the world of Master of Magic they are quite real. Not only that, but certain races (evolved from fire-breathing dragon ancestors) take this ability for granted.

Fire Breath offers a great way for a combatant to start its attack. Only those enemies who aren't burned to a crisp by this deadly breath will be able to stand up to their attacker in hand-to-hand combat. Thus, the creature delivers a preemptive strike that can weaken its opponent considerably.

Effect Edit

Fire Breath is automatically used whenever the unit voluntarily makes a Melee Attack against an opponent. Before the unit commences its actual attack, it will unleash a Breath Attack delivering a certain amount of Fire Damage. This occurs before any other exchange of damage or other attacks between the unit and its target. It precedes Gaze Attacks, Touch Attacks and any exchange of actual Melee Damage.

As a result, any Icon Figure.png figure in the enemy unit that is killed by the Fire Breath does not get to retaliate at all - it is already dead by the time its unit begins the retaliation (that is, if the unit even survived). This confers a great deal of protection to the Fire Breath unit: if it can kill a large number of enemy Icon Figure.png figures (or all of them) with the Fire Breath, the target can return very little damage at it.

The Breath Attack itself is carried out in a similar fashion to a regular attack. The Fire Breath unit makes a number of Icon ToHit.png To Hit rolls equal to the strength of its breath attack. The target then gets to make Icon Defense.png Defense rolls to try and block some of the incoming damage.

Note that Fire Breath is not used when the unit is Counter Attacking to an enemy assault. It only works when the unit is the one initiating the Melee Attack. On the other hand, this ability allows a Icon Movement GroundGround unit to engage a Icon Movement AirFlying unit in melee combat, even if said unit is actually immune to fire.

Immunities Edit

Since Fire Breath delivers Fire Damage, it is somewhat inferior to Thrown Attacks: Fire Damage can easily be blocked by either the Ability FireImmunity Fire Immunity or Ability MagicImmunity Magic Immunity abilities. If the target possesses either of these, its Defense score is temporarily raised to Icon Defense.png 50 for the purposes of blocking damage from this attack. Thus, even the Icon Chaos.pngGreat Drake's impressive Icon Breath.png 30 Fire Breath would cause only little damage to such a unit. Furthermore, Fire Breath is associated with the Icon Chaos.pngChaos Realm, and thus may be blocked partially or completely by the spells Icon Nature.pngResist Elements, Icon Nature.pngElemental Armor, Icon Life.pngBless and Icon Life.pngRighteousness. This last Enchantment actually has the same effect against Fire Breath as the immunities mentioned earlier.

Units with Default Fire Breath Edit

There are exactly 12 units in the game that possess Fire Breath by default. 7 of these are Normal Units, 5 of which belong to the Draconian Race, which has Fire Breath as one of its racial traits. 4 other units are Fantastic Units from the Icon Chaos.pngChaos Realm, many of which can deliver quite devastating Fire Breath attacks. Finally, there is Fang the Draconian, a mid-tier Hero.

Normal Units Edit

Tactical DraconianSpearmen Draconian Spearmen Fire Breath 1
Tactical DraconianSwordsmen Draconian Swordsmen Fire Breath 1
Tactical DraconianHalberdiers Draconian Halberdiers Fire Breath 1
Tactical DraconianEngineers Draconian Engineers Fire Breath 1 **
Tactical DoomDrakes Doom Drakes Fire Breath 6
Tactical DragonTurtle Dragon Turtle Fire Breath 5 *
Tactical StagBeetle Stag Beetle Fire Breath 5 *

Fantastic Units Edit

Tactical Chimeras Icon Chaos.pngChimeras Fire Breath 4
Tactical GreatDrake Icon Chaos.pngGreat Drake Fire Breath 30
Tactical HellHounds Icon Chaos.pngHell Hounds Fire Breath 3
Tactical Hydra Icon Chaos.pngHydra Fire Breath 5

Heroes Edit

Tactical Hero Fang Fang the Draconian - Fire Breath 5

* These units are almost always created with one extra Icon Experience.png Experience Level, which gives them an extra Icon Breath.png +1.

** Draconian Engineers are not available in version 1.31 of Master of Magic.

The Icon Chaos.pngGreat Drake has the most powerful Fire Breath ability, but it's important to remember that Icon MultiFigureUnit.png Multi-Figure units, including the Icon Chaos.pngHydra, deliver a Fire Breath attack of the listed strength per each live Icon Figure.png figure, giving them a greater overall potential for damage (though not against heavy Icon Defense.png Armor).

Acquiring Fire Breath Edit

The only way to add the Fire Breath ability to a unit that does not already possess it is via the UnitEnchantment ChaosChannels FireBreath Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channels effect. This can be obtained either through the spell of the same name, or as a result of the Global Enchantment Icon Chaos.pngDoom Mastery.

Chaos Channels Edit

Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channels is an Uncommon Instant Spell that can be cast on friendly Normal Units and Heroes; all other units, including the Undead, and units already affected by Chaos Channels, are invalid targets. The spell may only be cast on the overland map, for a basic Casting Cost of Icon Mana.png 50. It has two effects on its target:

  1. Adding one (and only one) of three powerful bonuses at random.
  2. Permanently associating the unit with the Icon Chaos.pngChaos Realm.

One of the three available bonuses is Fire Breath 2. It is only available for selection by the Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channels spell if the unit does not already possess a Ranged Attack or Fire Breath ability - otherwise another bonus will be selected.

On the other hand, if the unit had the Ability Thrown Thrown ability before this change, a new Fire Breath ability will replace this entirely. This may be seen as somewhat disappointing, since there are no immunities that avert Icon Thrown.png Thrown Attack damage, and they are also easier to improve. However, it's worth noting that players using the unofficial Insecticide patch do not have to worry about this oversight, as it forces the game to choose a different effect for Ability Thrown Thrown units instead (as it normally does for every other type of ranged attack).

Once a unit has been altered by Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channels, its new Fire Breath ability is entirely permanent, with a fixed Attack Strength of 2. The spell requires no additional Upkeep Costs, and the change to the unit may never be undone.

Doom Mastery Edit

Icon Chaos.pngDoom Mastery is a Very Rare Global Enchantment that can be cast on the overland map for a basic Casting Cost of Icon Mana.png 1,100. While this spell is in effect, whenever a new Normal Unit is produced in any of the caster's towns, Icon Chaos.pngDoom Mastery will automatically apply Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channels on that unit - for no extra charge. The resulting effects on the unit are identical to those described above.

Improving Fire Breath Edit

There are several methods of improving a unit's Fire Breath. The availability of these depends on the type of unit involved, and may affect either the ability's Attack Strength, chance Icon ToHit.png To Hit, or both.

Experience Edit

First and foremost, for Normal Units and Heroes, the strength of the Fire Breath ability will improve as the unit gains Icon Experience.png Experience. It is one of the only Unit Abilities in the game that does so. For Normal Units, Fire Breath improves at a rate of Icon Breath.png +1 for every 2 levels - meaning Icon Breath.png +1 at level 2 (Icon ExpLevel 1.png Regular), Icon Breath.png +2 at level 4 (Icon ExpLevel 3.png Elite), and Icon Breath.png +3 at level 6 (Icon ExpLevel 5.png Champion). For Fang the Draconian, the Fire Breath ability improves by Icon Breath.png +1 for every Icon Experience Level.png Experience Level (above first).

Experience further improves these units' chance Icon ToHit.png To Hit, and this will also apply to Fire Breath. Each Icon ToHit.png +1 represents an extra 10% chance per Attack Strength to cause Icon Damage.png damage (on top of the base 30%). For Normal Units, this attribute improves by Icon ToHit.png +1 at every level above 3rd (only the first of which can be obtained without the Warlord retort or Icon Life.pngCrusade spell); while Heroes gain a natural Icon ToHit.png +1 on every 3rd level instead (up to a maximum of Icon ToHit.png +3 at Icon ExpLevel 8.png Demigod level). Unlike modifiers to Attack Strength, modifiers Icon ToHit.png To Hit do apply to the Fire Breath of Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channeled units, and present the only practical way of improving this attack.

Heroes Edit

The Ability Might Might ability does not increase the strength Fire Breath. However, Ability Leadership Leadership does help - it can increase not only a Hero's own Fire Breath, but also that of any Normal Unit or other Hero accompanying them into battle. However, Leadership has no effect on either Fantastic or Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channeled units, making Fang the Draconian the only actual Hero whose Fire Breath can ever benefit from it.

With the basic version of Ability Leadership Leadership, this bonus is Icon Breath.png +1, and starts to apply once the Hero reaches Level 6 (Icon ExpLevel 5.png Lord). It does not improve beyond +1. Heroes with Super Leadership attain the same bonus at Level 4 instead (Icon ExpLevel 3.png Commander), and can improve its magnitude to Icon Breath.png +2 if they manage to reach Level 8 (Icon ExpLevel 7.png Superhero).

Icon ToHit.png To Hit bonuses from the Ability Blademaster Blademaster (or its Super version) and Ability Lucky Lucky abilities both apply to a Hero's Fire Breath attack. Akin to natural Icon ToHit.png To Hit modifiers, this holds true even for Fire Breath gained through Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channels.

Most Magical Items have no effect on Fire Breath. The exception is Jewelry, which can be enchanted to provide an all-round Attack Strength boost. This affects every type of attack that the Hero makes, including Icon Breath.png Fire Breath. On the other hand, Icon ToHit.png To Hit bonuses on such an accessory do not apply, unless the game is played using the unofficial 1.40 Insecticide patch (or later).

Node Aura Bonus Edit

Whenever a Fantastic Unit of the Icon Chaos.pngChaos Realm enters battle in a Chaos Node or its area of influence, it will enjoy an Aura Bonus granted by the Node. This also applies to any Normal Unit or Hero mutated by the Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channels spell (see above). The bonus is transient however: it applies only while the unit is doing combat within the vicinity of the Node. It is not applied when doing combat anywhere else.

This Node Aura bestows a +2 bonus to many of the properties of any Icon Chaos.pngChaos Creature affected by it. This includes the unit's Fire Breath, if it has one. It's a small bonus, but is nonetheless welcome - and can be quite beneficial to Fire-Breathing Icon MultiFigureUnit.png Multi-Figure units, for whom the bonus is applied to each Icon Figure.png figure's attack.

Chaos Surge Edit

Icon Chaos.pngChaos Surge is a Very Rare Global Enchantment with a base Casting Cost of Icon Mana.png 1,000, and a relatively high Upkeep Cost of Icon Mana.png 40 per turn. This is for good reason though: as long as this spell is active, any Icon Chaos.pngChaos (or Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channeled) creature entering battle anywhere in the game world (on either plane) receives a +2 bonus to all of their Attack Strengths, including a Icon Breath.png +2 to Fire Breath. This effect is fully cumulative with the Node Aura described above, effectively doubling its magnitude with respect to Attack Strength.

The only downside of this spell is that it indiscriminately applies to both friendly and enemy units. However, two instances of the spell (cast by different Wizards) do not stack, the effect will only be applied once per battle (but will always affect both sides).

Hurting an Enemy's Fire Breath Edit

There are several spells in the game that can reduce the strength of an enemy's Fire Breath, thus reducing the danger from that enemy unit. This is the only area where Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channeled Fire Breath actually has an advantage: its fixed Attack Strength of 2 is not subject to any of these reductions either.

Spell Effect Notes
Icon Death.pngBlack Prayer Icon Breath.png -1 affects all enemy units
Icon Sorcery.pngMind Storm Icon Breath.png -5 can't target Ability IllusionsImmunity Illusions-Immune units, Icon Resist.png Non-Resistable
Icon Chaos.pngShatter Set to Icon Breath.png 1 Normal Units and Heroes only, Icon Resist.png Resistable
Icon Life.pngTrue Light Icon Breath.png -1 Affects all Undead on the battlefield

Spells and Abilities affecting Fire Breath Edit

Effects that decrease the Attack Strength are listed separately in the table above.

Effect Description
Attack Strength
Icon Experience Unit Level Icon Breath.png +1 for every 2 Levels (up to Icon Breath.png +3)
Icon ExpLevel 8 Hero Level Icon Breath.png +1 for each level above 1st (Fang the Draconian only)
UnitEnchantment BlackChannels Icon Death.pngBlack Channels Icon Breath.png +1 (normal units become Undead)
SpellIcon ChaosSurge Icon Chaos.pngChaos Surge Icon Breath.png +2 for all units associated with Icon Chaos.pngChaos
(Icon Chaos.pngHell Hounds, Icon Chaos.pngChimeras, Icon Chaos.pngHydra, Icon Chaos.pngGreat Drake, Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channeled units)
CombatEnchantment ChaosNodeBonusAura Chaos Node Aura Icon Breath.png +2 for all units associated with Icon Chaos.pngChaos (stacks with Icon Chaos.pngChaos Surge)
CombatEnchantment Darkness Icon Death.pngDarkness Icon Breath.png +1 for all Undead units;
Icon Death.pngCloud of Shadow and Icon Death.pngEternal Night have the same effect
Ability Leadership Leadership Icon Breath.png +1 for Normal Units and Fang if Hero reaches Icon ExpLevel 5.png 6th Level
Icon Breath.png +2 if Hero has Super Leadership and reaches Icon ExpLevel 7.png 8th Level
Item Misc 1 Jewelry up to Icon Breath.png +4
To Hit Modifiers
Icon Experience Unit Level Icon ToHit.png +10% for every Levels above 3rd (up to Icon ToHit.png +30%)
Icon ExpLevel 8 Hero Level Icon ToHit.png +10% for every 3 Levels (up to Icon ToHit.png +30%)
Ability Lucky Lucky Icon ToHit.png +10%
CombatEnchantment Prayer (High) Icon Life.pngPrayer Icon ToHit.png +10% for all allied units
UnitEnchantment Vertigo Icon Sorcery.pngVertigo Icon ToHit.png -20% if unit fails to Icon Resist.png resist
CombatEnchantment WarpReality Icon Chaos.pngWarp Reality Icon ToHit.png -20% for all non-Icon Chaos.pngChaos units
Ability Blademaster Blademaster Icon ToHit.png +5% per Level rounded down to 10%s (Icon ToHit.png +7.5% if Super Blademaster)
Item Misc 1 Jewelry only in unofficial 1.40 patch: up to Icon ToHit.png +20%
Ability Invisibility Invisible
units attacking this opponent receive Icon ToHit.png -10% unless they have Ability IllusionsImmunity Illusion Immunity
Conditional Defense Modifiers
Ability FireImmunity Fire Immunity Defense is increased to Icon Defense.png 50
Ability MagicImmunity Magic Immunity Defense is increased to Icon Defense.png 50
Ability LargeShield Large Shield Icon Defense.png +2
UnitEnchantment ResistElements Icon Nature.pngResist Elements Icon Defense.png +3
UnitEnchantment ElementalArmor Icon Nature.pngElemental Armor Icon Defense.png +10
UnitEnchantment Bless Icon Life.pngBless Icon Defense.png +3
UnitEnchantment Righteousness Icon Life.pngRighteousness Defense is increased to Icon Defense.png 50
UnitEnchantment Invulnerability Icon Life.pngInvulnerability absorbs the first 2 Icon Damage.png damage coming from each enemy Icon Figure.png figure
CombatEnchantment Blur Icon Sorcery.pngBlur roughly 10 % of all enemy Icon Breath.png attacks will miss (regardless of hit roll)
UnitEnchantment Haste Icon Sorcery.pngHaste Icon Breath.png Breath attack is executed twice during each Melee Attack sequence
UnitEnchantment Immolation Icon Chaos.pngImmolation adds a strength Icon Ranged Magic.png 4 Area Damage attack to the Fire Breath (before patch 1.50);
this is in addition to the Immolation attack in the Melee Damage stage
UnitEnchantment ChaosChannels FireBreath Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channels unit might get Icon Breath.png 2 (Attack Strength is fixed at Icon Breath.png 2)
Ability PoisonTouch Poison Touch affixes this Touch Attack to the Fire Breath (in addition to the Melee Damage stage),
only available by Icon Chaos.pngChaos Channeling Wyvern Riders, Manticores, Nightblades, or Tumu