Dark Elixir is a rare resource, and it is hard to obtain in steady and consistent amounts without a Dark Elixir Drill. Even with multiple drills there is really only one way to obtain large quantities of Dark Elixir quickly, and that is to steal it.
Stealing Dark Elixir
As a Dark Elixir Storage is not obtainable until a player has constructed a Town Hall of at least level 7, a certain amount of Trophies is generally needed to be able to attain this resource in large quantities.
- At around 1,100 Trophies you will begin to regularly find players with below 100 Dark Elixir.
- Players near 1,500 Trophies will typically have a Dark Elixir Storage with 100~500 Dark Elixir.
- At Trophy levels above 2,000, essentially every player will have an upgraded Dark Elixir Storage with more than 500 Dark Elixir.
Preferred Army Compositions
Dark Elixir Storages are usually placed near or at the core of every single TH7-9 base you probably find. With a cored storage comes a more powerful army rather than using typical farming strategies such as Barch and GiBarch. These armies ranged from farming(Storages) to war like compositions.
For TH7s, options are limited and so does walls surrounding the Dark Elixir Storage. Wall Breakers and Giants and Healing Spells will be a staple since you will need to have your dps troops survive until they reach the core so using Wall Breakers to bust in, tanks to soak up the damage and the Healing Spells to have them hold on longer is needed, dps troops can generally be Archers and Wizards if you don't mind waiting longer to train them. TH7s can also use war like attacks such as Balloonion, Dragloon and Mass Dragons, these are very expensive yet guarantees the Dark Elixir is stolen.
For TH8s, there's a wider array of choices ranging from Giant+Healer, GiWiz and GiWiPe. Mass Dragons, GoWiPe and GoVaPe for war attacks. The Earthquake Spell is also unlocked at this level making it easier to reach the core, Rage Spells will make their debut as well to speed things up. The same principles applied to TH7s will also apply for TH8s. I guess that there's no need for further explanation since by this stage, a player should have known the general fundamentals of their attacks.
In TH9 it gets a bit better, options such as Queen Walk and using Jump Spells make it much easier. In this stage, farming attacks can prove useful such as GiBarch because of the Jump Spell with the combination of Healing Spells and a Rage Spell. At this stage, war like compositions such as GoWiPe, GoWiWi and Lavaloonion are almost unstoppable.
The rule of thumb is being able to have tanks and dps troops whilst being able to penetrate through the walls is the core of what makes up a good army for farming Dark Elixir.
Understanding Trophy Leagues
At Silver II-Gold III is where majority of dead bases are found, within this range Dark Elixir is scarce apart from full Dark Elixir Drills of TH8s and 9s who have them maxed out. This however isn't quite enough to satisfy your needs.
At Gold II-Gold I is where lots of active TH8s and 9s are chilling to farm. They have a moderate amount of Dark Elixir; Dead bases are still able to be found.
At Crystal III-Crystal I is generally the most abundant range for Dark Elixir due to the activity and at the same time, the league bonus and Star Bonus increasing. At this range, war like attacks cannot be avoided as bases do tend to get harder.
Finding Suitable Targets Easily
A free and often very effective way of finding enemies with large amounts of Dark Elixir is by using your battle log. If you have had a player attack you that has a Dark Elixir Drill, you can check to see exactly how much of the resource they have and then attack them via the "Revenge" feature. However, keep in mind that you can only receive up to 3,000 Dark Elixir. Follow this link for more details on how much Dark Elixir will be available in a particular battle.
Another benefit of using the battle log for finding Dark Elixir is the fact that you can examine any Dark Elixir Drills that the player may have as well. Although the drills have a much smaller capacity than the storages, 75% of the uncollected Dark Elixir in a drill may be stolen (up to 1,350 in a fully-upgraded drill at maximum capacity).
One thing to keep a particularly sharp eye out for in your battle log is attacks by a single high-level unit, especially if that unit is level 6. These bases are usually very well-developed Town Hall level 9 bases with a highly upgraded Dark Elixir Storage and several Dark Elixir Drills. Attacking these bases when seeking multiplayer matches can be dangerous, as it opens you up for a "Revenge" attack that will likely result in a 3-star loss; however, in this case they have attacked you first, and their massive store of Dark Elixir is free for the taking without fear of reprisal.
Prior to the July 2015 Update, Storage Buildings are susceptible to spell damage. However, clashers can still loot a lot of dark elixir if you snipe down drills. The main strategy will be to scan through targets in multiplayer battle for targets with fully-filled drills. You can use swarms of Tier 1 troops to get to them if they are exposed, or use 3 level 3 lightning spells to snipe them down. This strategy won't fit everyone, and it heavily depends whether or not a clasher wants trade off their elixir and trophies for dark elixir.
There are also folks who wait for a maintenance break and boost their spell factories. Since the bases are left alone in the past few hours, they are likely to have dark elixir that is free to raid.
Protecting Dark Elixir
Now that you have been successful in acquiring some Dark Elixir, you'll want to ensure that no one can take what you've rightfully stolen, right? Well, fortunately there is a way to protect at least some of your Dark Elixir, which is by queuing up troops in your Dark Barracks. Like the regular Barracks, troops queued in the Dark Barracks can be un-queued with no penalty, and as long as your Army Camps are full, no troops will be trained. A maximum of 5,030 Dark Elixir can be protected in this way (queuing 7 Witches and 1 Hog Rider in two maximum-level Dark Barracks).
A few points to note about protecting Dark Elixir in this fashion:
- Make sure that all of your Army Camps are full before queuing up troops! This strategy can backfire if your Dark Barracks actually trains troops and wastes the Dark Elixir you were trying to protect.
- Be sure to un-queue your Dark Barracks before attacking with troops, otherwise you will return from your attack with brand-new Dark Elixir Troops waiting for you.
Another option is to create a base design where the Dark Elixir Storage is almost untouchable. Doing a TH7 base in this fashion is extremely hard as such bases require 3 layers. The purpose of these bases are to make the tanking troops wrap around the base which leaves the dps troops exposed allowing the core defenses to kill them with no problem.
These three layers namely:
- Outer Layer - This usually consists the majority of defenses with the exception of vital defenses such as X-Bows, Inferno Towers Hidden Teslas and 1-2 Air Defenses.
- Moat Layer - Consists ALL of the Storages, traps(exception of spring traps as they belong to the Outer Layer) Heroes and the Town Hall.
- Core - This consists of the defenses exempted from the Outer Layer, Clan Castle and of course the Dark Elixir Storage.
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