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I'm having a lot of trouble with the new challenge arenas that were introduced with the PvP update in Magicka. I got the Final Frontier DLC and am trying to beat the Vulcan arena (though I'm assuming this question applies to all of the new arenas); however, I can only manage to get to the second or third wave each time.

I believe my problem is that against enemies in other challenge maps (and in adventure mode), it is a good strategy to play defensively. However, the enemies in the new challenge maps cast high powered spells very often, more frequently than I can defend against with shields.

Are there any good strategies for being successful in the new challenge arenas?

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First of all I suggest to find a friend that can help you. We successfully completed the Volcano challenge in two, after many attempts, but I failed alone.

Try to play defensive during the initial waves, create walls/barriers to block enemies and resistance auras like SAFE (Shield+Arcane+Fire+Electricity)

The key is to wait that chests drop the summon Magics: Raise Dead and Summon Elemental. This two spells are probably overpowered but very effective: when you get those spam them and the monsters will distract and hurt enemies. Remember to rebuild your protections and you should be able to complete the challenge.

In the next days we will try to complete the challenge without summon spells, and if we succeed I will update my answer.

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I like your suggestion about SAFE, I don't usually use shields of more than one element but that seems to cover the most damaging ones. I find that Raise Dead is useful at early levels but looses effectiveness as you get to higher waves. However, I agree with you that summon elemental would be very effective. – Aviv B. Jul 8 '11 at 17:06

What I did was simply move left to right and spam spells.

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