Which weapon should I use?


Ask fellow adventurers how to stay alive in the deep, dark, dangerous dungeon below, or share your own accumulated wisdom.

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Shoals Surfer

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Post Monday, 17th January 2011, 13:38

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Weapon enchantment doesn't add to your weapon's base damage, which is why a weapon's base damage is more important than its enchantment. Anyway, the katana is faster (13 instead of 16 delay). Meaning that you'll hit enemies more often with it.

Vaults Vanquisher

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Post Monday, 17th January 2011, 13:49

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Why is base damage so much more important than other damage stats?

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Post Monday, 17th January 2011, 15:32

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Ah, understood. Is there a chart anywhere?
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Vestibule Violator

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Post Monday, 17th January 2011, 16:38

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Once this is implemented, this should make weapon choice a lot easier:
https://crawl.develz.org/wiki/doku.php? ... rm:weapons

There is receptiveness to this as it does not affect game balance but it's not on anyone's todo list. I'm hoping to try to work on a patch but I'm told it's an ambitious project, and I'm a noob programmer and have a baby on the way.

However, judging by the number of views on this thread, this is a hot topic! This thread has 4x the view count of any other thread in the advice forum.

As an interim, I'm going through the source and trying to create a spreadsheet that will do these calculations.

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co, mageykun

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Post Monday, 17th January 2011, 17:13

Re: Which weapon should I use?

<3

And grats on the baby! And not being able to sleep.
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Vestibule Violator

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Post Monday, 17th January 2011, 21:16

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Okay, I've created a work-in-progress DCSS weapon calculator spreadsheet.

A few notes:
- based on DCSS 0.7.1
- This calculates AVERAGE damage. This is easy to calculate and probably the most useful. Max and min damages could of course also be added if someone wants to do that. I'm already stretching my mathematical expertise without getting into standard deviations, and this is already way too complex a tool for a simple game.
- Avg. damage does not look as impressive as the max damage.
- I'm not sure I interpreted the main damage roll correctly. Fight.cc, line 3781, says:
  Code:
damage_done =
        potential_damage > 0 ? one_chance_in(3) + random2(potential_damage) : 0;
   

There's a wiki article on the random2 function, and this rolls a random number from 0 to one less than the specified value. So if your potential damage is 11, this will give you a result of 0 to 10, and my reading of the one_chance_in(3) is that there's a 1/3 chance of doing an additional point of damage
- The spreadsheet maintains averages throughout. There may be a flaw in this methodology.
- This does not yet factor in speed increases other than the base weapon delay. This is a critical component of damage.
- It also does not factor in chance to hit. This can only be done on a comparative basis between weapons, as to hit chance is also influenced by defender type.
- There is however a line for monster AC damage reduction. If you want to look up monster AC (say you want to know which weapon is best against a certain unique) feel free to do so, calculate their average damage reduction and insert it where appropriate.

The spreadsheet as I'm uploading it has columns for four weapons, feel free to add more or whatever. As a starting point, I pre-filled it with the options available to a Human Fighter at the start of the game, with HuFi's stats, skills, and the stats of the four weapon choices at the start of the game.

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Vestibule Violator

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Post Monday, 17th January 2011, 21:59

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Some things I've discovered in creating this spreadsheet:

- Damage and To Hit bonuses are not straight bonuses where +4 actually adds +4 to damage. Instead, they are randomized, meaning they will give up UP TO +4 damage.
- Acc / Dam bonuses from rings of slaying etc. stack directly onto your base weapon type. So a dagger with a +0,+3 ring of slaying has the exact same base damage as a sabre without the ring.
- Base damage together with slaying bonuses are multiplied by str, skill and fighting multipliers, so they are better than weapon enchantment, which are just added straight to damage. At the start of the game these multipliers are not that significant.
- However, weapon enchantment is still effectively multiplied by speed, so a quick blade will benefit much more than a scythe from being +4,+4 due to the number of attacks you can make.
- Dwarven and demonic racial bonuses are equivalent to +0,+2, meaning they will give an average of +1 damage output per hit. Orcish bonus is half as good, or just as good if you have piety 80+ with Beogh, and potentially even better with higher piety.
- The Str bonus is not easy to increase. Here's how it works - Subtract 11 from your Str. Now roll a random number from 0 to one less than this number, and double it. So with Str 20, you roll 0-8 (avg. 4) and double that (avg. 8). Add that to 78. Now divide the total by 78 and round it. That is your strength-adjusted base damage. With Dex 12 and a mace (str. weight 80%), you need a Str of 33 to increase your base damage by 2 to increase your average damage output by 1 HP per hit. Of course by then you will have other bonuses and be more effective anyway, but the benefit from Str. is very small.
- Similarly, weapon skill and fighting skill do not add much to base damage per level.
- But then, it seems that nothing on its own adds alot to base damage. It is the cumulative effect of your skill, enchantment, str, etc. where you see meaningful differences.

EDIT: I'm deleting the attachment as I've posted an improved version in it's own thread: viewtopic.php?f=5&t=359

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marikvulpina, Priority7, szanth

Lair Larrikin

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Post Tuesday, 18th January 2011, 14:07

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Mountain Dwarf Berserker

Using +8,+4 broad axe of the Warrior (weapon) {god gift, flame, rElec rPois MR Dex-2 SInv}.

No skill in M&F yet but Maud had a +5,+4 demon whip of speed.

Lair Larrikin

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Post Tuesday, 18th January 2011, 18:13

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Is that one obvious? Switch to the whip unless I need the resists or sInv?

Halls Hopper

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Post Tuesday, 18th January 2011, 18:57

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Playing KoAs L7 on D4. I intended to go with Trog. Started with assassin for the better start stats,etc. Haven't found the temple yet.

Skills:
+ Level 3 Fighting
- Level 5 Short Blades
- Level 4 Throwing
+ Level 5 Dodging
- Level 4 Stealth
- Level 2 Stabbing

Which to use?
a - a +7,+1 elven sabre of draining (got off Duvessa)
x - the +1,+4 mace of Mutilation {speed, rElec rF++}

Aptitude for SBL is +3 while M&F is +0.
The sabre is avg speed. The mace is "quite fast".

I can use both of course. But would it be better to go with one skill long term?
Not sure how much draining addeds to the mix.
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Spider Stomper

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Post Tuesday, 18th January 2011, 19:06

Re: Which weapon should I use?

I say go with short blades but find a different one, draining will lead you to a horrible death like mine over here - viewtopic.php?f=12&t=287
You see here a dire elephant corpse.
You start butchering the dire elephant corpse with your claws.
You continue butchering the corpse.
You are engulfed in roaring flames. You stop butchering the corpse.
You die...

Halls Hopper

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Post Tuesday, 18th January 2011, 19:13

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Un67 wrote:I say go with short blades but find a different one, draining will lead you to a horrible death like mine over here - viewtopic.php?f=12&t=287

Ouch, didn't know that about drain.
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Vestibule Violator

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Post Tuesday, 18th January 2011, 19:20

Re: Which weapon should I use?

I might actually go with the mace. Eventually you can get a demon whip.

The mace has amazing resistances that will be useful all game.

Or, download the spreadsheet above and calculate your actual average damage with each weapon.

Spider Stomper

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Post Tuesday, 18th January 2011, 21:56

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Aw man..Ok so the game has been torturing me during the whole day. I've been trying to get a Half Orc Fighter off the ground. My plan is to go for Okawaru for awesome armor and weapons then switch to TSO if I live that long. I died so many times it's not even funny. Current game somehow managed to survive for a bit and I guess as payment, the game presented me with this:

+3 +4 demon whip "Byfiur" {drain, Str - SInv}

It's pretty nice I guess and also first time I ever actually see a demon whip. Thing is, I was planning on using long blades and already have a +3 Longsword and 6 levels in long blades. I really don't think this whip is worth switching over my entire character concept, but you guys know better.

Halls Hopper

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Post Tuesday, 18th January 2011, 22:18

Re: Which weapon should I use?

danr wrote:I might actually go with the mace. Eventually you can get a demon whip.

The mace has amazing resistances that will be useful all game.

Or, download the spreadsheet above and calculate your actual average damage with each weapon.

I went with the mace. Got to Lv11 on D12 before I made the fatal mistake of forgetting to use Trogs abilities.

10113 Denniz the Nimble (level 11, 0/65 HPs)
Began as a Kobold Assassin on Jan 18, 2011.
Was an Elder of Trog.
Slain by a dragon skeleton (1 damage)
... led by Josephine
... on Level 12 of the Dungeon.
The game lasted 00:55:55 (18415 turns).

I guess I would have been better with out that artifact.
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Vestibule Violator

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Post Tuesday, 18th January 2011, 23:16

Re: Which weapon should I use?

I've unstickied this thread in favour of the new one that starts with my new weapon calculator spreadsheet(which is significantly improved from the one I posted here).
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Vestibule Violator

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Post Thursday, 20th January 2011, 20:38

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Trog just likes to tease me.

a - the +12,+10 sword of Jihad (weapon) {holy, *Rage rN+ MR EV+3 Stlth--}
(You bought it in a shop on level 4 of the Dungeon)
Z - a +2,+10 quick blade {god gift}

I get an unbelievable unrand before I get my first gift, and what does he do? Just when I'm starting to get long blades up, he tries to tempt me back to short. Petty sure I'm sticking with Jihad, though.
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Vaults Vanquisher

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Post Saturday, 22nd January 2011, 13:45

Re: Which weapon should I use?

I've finally gotten my Demonspawn to a late level, and I just ran into Margery's band of hell knights. So I have the following to choose from:

a) +5, +4 whip of pain (my weapon until I met up with the Hell Knights. I have level 18 in Necro)
b) +4, +5 demon whip of flaming
c) +4, +4 demon trident of piercing (read an unidentified vorpalize scroll on it)

Maces & Flails skill is 7, Polearm skill is 3

I'm heavily armored (scale male + shield) if that also makes a difference.
  Code:
Jory screams, "No, no!" before exploding into a cloud of blood!

Vestibule Violator

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Post Saturday, 22nd January 2011, 14:12

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Stick with the whip of pain against enemies vulnerable to pain. Use the flaming demon whip against everything else. Also you want to get your m&f skill to 12 for minimum delay with whips/demon whips.

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Post Wednesday, 26th January 2011, 19:45

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Actually, on that note, there's something I'd like clarified as well - is the hunger hit on wielding the only hunger cost, or is there also a cost while wielding it, e.g. does it speed your metabolism as well?

I'd stick with the sabre. Venom + running away with spriggan speed is a much bigger benefit than the slight feeding you might get with the dagger. As a spellcaster you probably won't be doing that much melee, so it might take a long long time just to recoup the initial hunger cost of wielding the weapon.

Mines Malingerer

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Post Wednesday, 26th January 2011, 20:35

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Is there ever any point where a character specializing in unarmed should switch to weapons? Transmuters have this covered by Blade Hands, but how about other builds, such as troll berserkers?

Shoals Surfer

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Post Thursday, 27th January 2011, 00:19

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Lugh wrote:Is there ever any point where a character specializing in unarmed should switch to weapons? Transmuters have this covered by Blade Hands, but how about other builds, such as troll berserkers?


AFAIK you get a +1 bonus to damage for every level of unarmed combat and -1 to delay for every 5 levels, though I don't know how this bonus is affected by other factors such as those danr mentioned earlier. Hence, at high levels of unarmed combat, the only weapons that deal more damage than kung-fu are speed-branded high base damage ones like giant spiked clubs, triple swords, executioner's axes, etc (and weapons of pain if you're a necromancer).
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Post Thursday, 27th January 2011, 03:35

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Lugh wrote:Is there ever any point where a character specializing in unarmed should switch to weapons?


If you're playing a MeTm, haven't invested in blade hands yet, and you find a ridiculous artifact polearm. That game was fun.

More generally: you have to be tempted by a suitably awesome artifact with effects you want and considerable damage potential. A brand and positive enchantments alone usually aren't enough (unless the enchantment is very high or it's one of the rare, highly desired brand/base combinations). The earlier in the game you find said artifact, the easier and more tempting it will be to alter your build. If it happens to be something you can train up fast, you'll be more tempted.

It's kind of hard to call though. It depends very much on how far in the game you've already gotten, and how awesome the potential weapon switch is.

Mines Malingerer

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Post Thursday, 27th January 2011, 15:51

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Alright, I'm at work and not playing right now, but my problem when I left home: A dagger of chaos I got off some of Xom's altar guards, or a dagger of venom? It's a KoAs, and the effects that let you get free stabs are pretty good, but I also polymorphed a newt into an iguana on D:2, which almost killed me. I'm thinking I should just use chaos on boss mooks and uniques, but then there's the issue of possibly berserking them. Of course, I'm going to die anyway if Sigmund ambushes me, so... yeah. Does it make a good boss-killer, or should I stick with "if you're about to die"?

Dungeon Master

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Post Thursday, 27th January 2011, 16:10

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Chaos is pretty fun but I wouldn't recommend it if you want to actually live. :P

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Post Thursday, 27th January 2011, 16:33

Re: Which weapon should I use?

There's really no safe way to use chaos. I mean come on, it's a relic of Xom. You're putting your faith in capricious insanity. That said, it's probably worth using if you decide to go with Xom- you're gambling anyways, and it helps keep him happy. Alternatively, the only other good use I've found for chaos items is given them to Orc followers as a HOPr. Really helps their damage early on, and if it rolls a bad effect, it's not necessarily you who gets killed.

Mines Malingerer

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Post Thursday, 27th January 2011, 18:29

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Well, I got Beogh-smited twice in a row about 50 turns after I got back home and continued, so it's a moot point for now anyways. Definitely not going to go berserk ogres anymore, though.

Spider Stomper

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Post Monday, 31st January 2011, 21:19

Re: Which weapon should I use?

My DDNe was going with axes, just found a war axe as well..and a few steps later I run into a quickblade (not glowing or anything, just normal quickblade). Are they really worth switching to, or should I just stick with the axe?

Vaults Vanquisher

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Post Monday, 31st January 2011, 21:35

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Well the "pain" brand works best with a faster weapon, and quickblade is the fastest one you can get that can have the pain brand on it.

Spider Stomper

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Post Monday, 31st January 2011, 21:37

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Except it doesn't have pain on it, and I worship Mekhleb, so no way to get it enchanted by Kiku.

Vaults Vanquisher

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Post Monday, 31st January 2011, 21:55

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Hrm. Well, stick with the axes, then. But if you find a quickblade of pain, jack short blades up to 13ish and wield it, then switch out to a big axe when something's immune to pain.

Spider Stomper

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Post Tuesday, 1st February 2011, 09:07

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Well it's not a quick blade, but I think I found a solution to my weapons dilemma:

the spiked flail of the Fulmar {pain, Str+2, Int+2, Stlth+}


Gotta use it a bit to see it's enchantments though.

Mines Malingerer

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Post Tuesday, 1st February 2011, 16:10

Re: Which weapon should I use?

If I throw a branded weapon, does the brand affect the target as it would if I wielded then hit that monster?
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Post Tuesday, 1st February 2011, 16:28

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Yeah. Notice how the brand only "comes alive" when you wield the weapon. Unwielded, the magical brand stays dormant.
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Shoals Surfer

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Post Tuesday, 1st February 2011, 17:05

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Lugh wrote:If I throw a branded weapon, does the brand affect the target as it would if I wielded then hit that monster?


There are two types of brands: melee and ranged. Melee brands don't activate when launched.

Spider Stomper

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Post Friday, 11th February 2011, 08:09

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Yeah I know there's the spreadsheet, but this is not about damage. I have a Troll Paladin. Do I stick with the Giant Spiked Club I have or do I switch over to the Great Mace of protection I found? It's damage is lower than the GSC, but that +5 AC sure helps when all you can wear is robes and cloaks. I just can't decide.

Vaults Vanquisher

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Post Friday, 11th February 2011, 11:34

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Use GSC, TSO will brand it holy eventually.

Spider Stomper

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Post Friday, 11th February 2011, 12:43

Re: Which weapon should I use?

Well, eventually - yes. I am going to use up all enchant weapon scrolls I find on the GSC anyways, but my question is of more immediate concern - A few more points of damage or +5 AC?
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Post Friday, 11th February 2011, 21:24

Re: Which weapon should I use?

I would run around with the protection mace because ultimately your HP are more important than others. If you are not losing too much HP in fights and want to speed them up, then switch out to the GSC.
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