A few questions about SpEn


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Mines Malingerer

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 01:57

A few questions about SpEn

First of all, I'm really new to DCSS, and so far, it's my favorite roguelike. It's got the right amount of BS RNG on both my side and the enemy side. After getting a reasonable grasp of the basics, I've learned of the existence of SpEn, which I've liked so far, but I do have a few questions.
1: Should I learn Sure Blade at level 2 since getting Invisibility to a passable failure rate takes a while, but Sure Blade grants a good bonus immediately?
2: Is Sif a viable choice of god? I seem to be somewhat lacking in offensive power in spells when I encounter enemies that resist my EH, and the spellbook gifts provide offensive power beyond stabbing stuff that I've cast EH on.
3: What kind of blades should I be looking for once I've moved past the dagger?
4: Not directly related to SpEn, but what other classes make good enchanters?
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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 02:08

Re: A few questions about SpEn

1) No, as SpEn you shouldn't melee much. Better to retreat, make some space and cast En. Hibernation again.
2) Ashenzari is the strongest god for SpEn IMHO, it allows you to see position of monsters and can boosts many skills. Maybe Dith is better but I have no experience with him.
3) Dagger is the best for stabbing. Anything with electro is good for fighting. Quick blade of distortion/pain/electro is the best.
4) Vp, it can spam invisibility and is the stealthiest species. Also bat form allows to run away.

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 02:15

Re: A few questions about SpEn

For SpEn, a big thing is to just run from stuff that resists your hexes. You aren't supposed to kill everything in Crawl and the game is intentionally designed such that you don't have to, and are indeed actively encouraged not, to try to kill everything.

Also, note that when you successfully stick EH to an enemy, it will be completely immune to subsequent attempts for a period of time (You get a different message, it says foo is "unaffected" rather than it resists). This just applies to hibernation, your other hexes don't have this mechanic. Also you've probably noticed, but some enemies are immune to EH, which is part of the reason you've got Confuse.

Sure Blade can be worth picking up. On SpEn I usually do not bother, personally, but on other enchanters it tends to be more important. However, no enchanter should skip Enslavement.

Sif is a viable choice, absolutely. Probably not my top choice though. Channeling is not particularly needed nor highly useful for the spells in your starting book, and your starting book as Enchanter can take you extremely far by itself. (In Trunk a new change took invisibility out of the starting book, but if your version still has it then this is even more true.) A classic strong god choice for En is Kiku, who among other things lets you brand a dagger with the pain ego by some point in Lair usually, which does tremendous damage and takes care of everything you cannot hex-stab, provided it doesn't resist negative energy. Also you get a bunch of useful necro support spells on the way to that short blade of pain.

The best short blades are a quickblade, but it is rare; failing that, you can upgrade to a sabre/cutlass (depends on version, same weapon just different names). However any short blade of electrocution is going to be a very effective weapon, because that ego adds a burst of damage that is independent of the weapon's base damage (so fast weapons benefit a lot even if they have low base damage—perfect for short blades). The same effect makes pain extremely effective on short blades, but pain brand requires necromancy training and is extremely rare, though Kiku lets you put Pain on a weapon of your choice when you hit six stars of piety (as mentioned above).

VpEn is commonly played, though be warned Vampires have weird food stuff going on; some people are cool with that, others are annoyed. Kobolds/Halflings aren't bad as enchanters. Personally though I like Gargoyle, Demonspawn, Draconian, and Human enchanters. All very fun.

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Mines Malingerer

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 02:27

Re: A few questions about SpEn

From that stems another question: what exactly is trunk? I've heard the term a bit here and have no idea what it is.
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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 02:29

Re: A few questions about SpEn

It is the "development build," things get added and taken out and changed around from day to day in Trunk. Eventually the developers release a new stable version. You can read more about it under "Development Builds" on this page (scroll down a bit):

http://crawl.develz.org/wordpress/downloads
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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 02:33

Re: A few questions about SpEn

There is a general guide to SpEn on the knowledge bot: http://crawl.develz.org/info/index.php?q=hyperbolic though this will be out of date in trunk due to the nerfing of the En book.

When I played the character I basically followed that guide, except I took dex instead of int, and used Kiku to improve my abilities to fight enemies that woke up. I think Kiku is a natural choice for SpEn because, at around Vaults or so, most of the dangerous enemies see invis, making your normal way of killing enemies (invis stab) ineffective, and it can become annoying to recast confuse/EH/dazzle a bunch of times waiting for it to work when you can simply kill enemies with a cutlass or dagger of pain, or send a bunch of zombies at them from out of LoS. Stealth is not really the most reliable thing, even at 27 stealth you will get noticed often by packs that see invis, so I think it's easiest to just have a way to kill things.
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Swamp Slogger

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 03:30

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Since stabbing now = (stealth + short blades)/2 I find in recent versions my effective stabbing stat improves enough as a matter of course throughout the game that I don't particularly notice a a need to use an actual dagger over other short blades.

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 04:17

Re: A few questions about SpEn

somesortofthing wrote:First of all, I'm really new to DCSS, and so far, it's my favorite roguelike. It's got the right amount of BS RNG on both my side and the enemy side. After getting a reasonable grasp of the basics, I've learned of the existence of SpEn, which I've liked so far, but I do have a few questions.
1: Should I learn Sure Blade at level 2 since getting Invisibility to a passable failure rate takes a while, but Sure Blade grants a good bonus immediately?

You should learn Sure Blade when it doesn't get in the way of learning something else important. It's convenient when you want to melee something, but it's usually not an important bonus, since "run away" is usually the preferable option when meleeing is dangerous.

2: Is Sif a viable choice of god? I seem to be somewhat lacking in offensive power in spells when I encounter enemies that resist my EH, and the spellbook gifts provide offensive power beyond stabbing stuff that I've cast EH on.

I enjoy it. As you're new, Sif gives you an incredible meta-game bonus of letting you experiment with lots of spells easily. And if you decide you really like a particular spellcasting-oriented build, Sif lets you reliably get the key spells you might need, and means you don't have to worry as much about getting low miscast rates on high level spells.

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 08:11

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Welcome!
I also started with SpEn, then moved to VpEn. )) Same pattern. )

and into wrote:However any short blade of electrocution is going to be a very effective weapon, because that ego adds a burst of damage that is independent of the weapon's base damage (so fast weapons benefit a lot even if they have low base damage—perfect for short blades).

Is it already implemented, that stabbing with weapon of electrocution will ruin your stealth?

Also, I should note, that most useful brand for late-game (I mean 15 rune) is holy wrath brand.
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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 13:38

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Weapon brands do not cause noise. They were meant to, but a bug suppressed it. Later the code to cause this was removed entirely because it probably would have been obnoxious anyway.

@original poster, if you find yourself meleeing monsters with short blades, be on the lookout for +Dam bonuses. Because short blades are fast, they make very good use of +Dam bonuses. In fact, they're pretty awful weapons unless they can get a good brand or a high combined damage bonus (weapon enchantment + {Dam+x} property).

I think Sif is a pretty weak god for enchanter. I'd recommend Dith, Yred, Makhleb or Nemelex. Dith greatly increases your stealth and allows you to teleport next to sleeping monsters for easy stabs in addition to some other strong abilities. Yred allows you to Recall huge numbers of scary minions and gives you a stealth bonus in the form of profane servitor umbra. Makhleb gives you health back on kills and lets you summon powerful minions to handle whatever you can't. Nemelex is obnoxious, but gives you a wide variety of strong abilities with little investment.

Mines Malingerer

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 15:21

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Thanks for all the help guys, finally got to the lair for the first time and I'm in good shape. My default dagger has good enchants (+4 +4) but it's still unbranded. I also ended up worshipping Makhleb(Should I start training Invocations for the summons?) ... somehow. Perhaps putting as much as I did into Dex was not a wise choice, however. Also, how do hydras feel about hexes? I found a bow called Piercer and it was guarded by a seven headed one. Having heard horror stories about them, I promptly fled safely. Lair has been pretty easy since the creatures there don't really resist my hexes much, and all can be one-shot with a stab.
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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 15:43

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Hydras are quite easy to hex.

Mines Malingerer

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 16:00

Re: A few questions about SpEn

damiac wrote:Hydras are quite easy to hex.

I somehow don't trust you :shock: I've heard too many horror stories to believe that my level 10 SpEn can take down a hydra, especially for a weapon I don't have any apt or skill for.
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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 16:03

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Distortion dagger with Ashenzari? Seems powerful enough, but as a weakling, I'm nervous of the single case where something gets blinked into my escape route.
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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 16:04

Re: A few questions about SpEn

somesortofthing wrote:
damiac wrote:Hydras are quite easy to hex.

I somehow don't trust you :shock: I've heard too many horror stories to believe that my level 10 SpEn can take down a hydra, especially for a weapon I don't have any apt or skill for.


There is a video on YouTube where someone just SpEn's through the game enchant-stabbing hydrae left and right.
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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 16:07

Re: A few questions about SpEn

somesortofthing wrote:
damiac wrote:Hydras are quite easy to hex.

I somehow don't trust you :shock: I've heard too many horror stories to believe that my level 10 SpEn can take down a hydra, especially for a weapon I don't have any apt or skill for.

When you are in Lair, you should have castable Invisibility. From that point on, hydras (and all other monters who do not see invisible) are free XP. You just stab them in their sleep.

Mines Malingerer

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 16:09

Re: A few questions about SpEn

XuaXua wrote:
somesortofthing wrote:
damiac wrote:Hydras are quite easy to hex.

I somehow don't trust you :shock: I've heard too many horror stories to believe that my level 10 SpEn can take down a hydra, especially for a weapon I don't have any apt or skill for.


There is a video on YouTube where someone just SpEn's through the game enchant-stabbing hydrae left and right.

Alright, maybe I do trust you. Probably not gonna go get that bow though, I'm unlikely to ever need to use it. Also, if you remember where that video is, please link me to it. It sounds entertaining.
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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 17:16

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Don't try to stab the hydra with non-dagger. Even with dagger you'd need to have about 11 stabbing for reliable stabbing. One of my NaEn died after a hydra survived tier 1 stab with 10 stabbing and a dagger.

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 17:22

Re: A few questions about SpEn

If you confuse a hydra it sometimes will bite itself and explode.

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 17:55

Re: A few questions about SpEn

XuaXua wrote:
somesortofthing wrote:
damiac wrote:Hydras are quite easy to hex.

I somehow don't trust you :shock: I've heard too many horror stories to believe that my level 10 SpEn can take down a hydra, especially for a weapon I don't have any apt or skill for.


There is a video on YouTube where someone just SpEn's through the game enchant-stabbing hydrae left and right.

It's true! If your skills are up to snuff, Hydras are large chunks of free exp for a SpEn!

The real danger they pose is if you get cornered. Other than that, the only danger is if they wake up when you move next to them in a sleep-stab attempt. But if you aren't damaged, and you haven't been neglecting dodging, you can take an attack or three without much trouble, especially with a buckler.

Confuse stabbing is dangerous, though. Especially if you picked up a good short sword or cutlass, and forgot that you were using one of those this game rather than a dagger or quick blade.

The threats to a SpEn are really quite different than to most characters. I played the game for months before I learned that Spiny Frogs are actually dangerous creatures, for example.

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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 18:59

Re: A few questions about SpEn

RIP Sebastian the SpEn, killed because of a stupid decision to stab a sleeping ice dragon and subsequent awakening of said dragon and a sequence of highly improbable miscasts. He had a good run, even killed a sleeping hydra. YASD.
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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 19:11

Re: A few questions about SpEn

*Lair as a whole* is almost literally free XP for SpEn (except that I just read here five minutes ago that they're taking invisibility out of the enchanter book :( )
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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 20:33

Re: A few questions about SpEn

somesortofthing wrote:RIP Sebastian the SpEn, killed because of a stupid decision to stab a sleeping ice dragon and subsequent awakening of said dragon and a sequence of highly improbable miscasts. He had a good run, even killed a sleeping hydra. YASD.


I've always thought (without evidence to back it up) that Ice magic (EH) doesn't work so well against those guys.
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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 20:40

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Next time you splat try this

0. Play a vampire enchanter instead. (stabs heal you when you're bloodless)
1. Turn off everything except Hexes.
2. Level 2, learn Encorcelled Hibernation (but nothin else)
3. Keep training Hexes until you get to level 6
4. Memorize Invisibility

Hilarious early game fun.

On topic, don't forget you have +5 to stealth and it should probably always be your highest leveled skill. Stabbing will take you all the way to Zot and is good for lots of other places too. If you are doing well consider finding and learning some conjurations (Iron Shot is op), because there will come a point in the game where the enemies are too powerful to risk walking up and stabbing. Don't neglect those magic aptitudes.
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Post Friday, 18th April 2014, 21:10

Re: A few questions about SpEn

XuaXua wrote:
somesortofthing wrote:RIP Sebastian the SpEn, killed because of a stupid decision to stab a sleeping ice dragon and subsequent awakening of said dragon and a sequence of highly improbable miscasts. He had a good run, even killed a sleeping hydra. YASD.


I've always thought (without evidence to back it up) that Ice magic (EH) doesn't work so well against those guys.

My primary weapon there was Confuse. Also, I never actually realized that EH is ice elemental. Live and learn(Or die and learn, as it was in my case) I suppose.
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Post Saturday, 19th April 2014, 05:25

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Lyrick wrote:Next time you splat try this

0. Play a vampire enchanter instead. (stabs heal you when you're bloodless)
1. Turn off everything except Hexes.
2. Level 2, learn Encorcelled Hibernation (but nothin else)
3. Keep training Hexes until you get to level 6
4. Memorize Invisibility

Hilarious early game fun.

On topic, don't forget you have +5 to stealth and it should probably always be your highest leveled skill. Stabbing will take you all the way to Zot and is good for lots of other places too. If you are doing well consider finding and learning some conjurations (Iron Shot is op), because there will come a point in the game where the enemies are too powerful to risk walking up and stabbing. Don't neglect those magic aptitudes.

I'm sorry, I'm sure you don't want to hear this, but that advice is not very good, especially for this player. Following those steps creates a number of problems, the most significant of which is probably that you are unable to kill anything with more hp than a regular orc without using invisibility, and even with invisibility, you are still not going to kill it very efficiently. A newbie should not be playing a bloodless vp, stealth does not need to be your highest skill, and learning conjurations like iron shot as an enchanter is a common newbie mistake. A lot of people think that because monsters later in the game tend to have higher mr, stabbing becomes 'unreliable' or 'impossible', but you really can go through the game stabbing virtually everything. If it were the case that you couldn't, your xp would be best spent not on iron shot but probably on long blades or something.
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Post Saturday, 19th April 2014, 05:41

Re: A few questions about SpEn

mikee wrote:I'm sorry, I'm sure you don't want to hear this, but that advice is not very good, especially for this player. Following those steps creates a number of problems, the most significant of which is probably that you are unable to kill anything with more hp than a regular orc without using invisibility, and even with invisibility, you are still not going to kill it very efficiently. A newbie should not be playing a bloodless vp, stealth does not need to be your highest skill, and learning conjurations like iron shot as an enchanter is a common newbie mistake. A lot of people think that because monsters later in the game tend to have higher mr, stabbing becomes 'unreliable' or 'impossible', but you really can go through the game stabbing virtually everything. If it were the case that you couldn't, your xp would be best spent not on iron shot but probably on long blades or something.


I've attempted that strategy and pretty much everything you've said applies. So many ghosts were made. Also, I'm kinda unsure on what my blood level should be for a more orthodox VpEn. I've been trying to stick to Near Bloodless since I kinda instadie regardless whenever I get into a brawl, so I only really get benefits from regen when resting.
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Post Saturday, 19th April 2014, 09:28

Re: A few questions about SpEn

somesortofthing wrote:I've been trying to stick to Near Bloodless since I kinda instadie regardless whenever I get into a brawl, so I only really get benefits from regen when resting.

This is a right choice. I succesfully guide a few VpEn to D:27 with this strategy.
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Post Saturday, 19th April 2014, 14:07

Re: A few questions about SpEn

@mikee

Could you please elaborate why learning Iron Shot on SpEn of Ash is a mistake? IMHO it does not require high XP and is very good for dealing with dangerous monsters in extended and Zot.

I didn't have Iron Shot at XL 25 but I did have it at XL 27. viewtopic.php?f=12&t=8430&p=114070#p114394

  Code:
 O Level 27 Spellcasting
 + Level 10,2(14,5) Conjurations
 + Level 14,4(18,4) Earth Magic

o - Iron Shot             Conj/Erth      #########.   1%          6    None

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Post Saturday, 19th April 2014, 15:36

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Nothing costs high XP for spen, they have everything they need to win the game at like XL10 and after that skilling is who cares. Iron Shot is just not a very good choice for that XP. The common newbie mistake would be the misconception that Enchanters need to develop high irresistable damage to succeed. They don't, of course.

somesortofthing wrote:I've attempted that strategy and pretty much everything you've said applies. So many ghosts were made. Also, I'm kinda unsure on what my blood level should be for a more orthodox VpEn. I've been trying to stick to Near Bloodless since I kinda instadie regardless whenever I get into a brawl, so I only really get benefits from regen when resting.

TBH I would tell you not to play Vp in the first place until you feel confident enough in the normal game to add a crazy and unnecessary extra mechanic like Vp thirst. But if you want to play a Vp, I recommend staying towards the alive end of the spectrum, because regen is very good all the time, while undead resists don't matter in a majority of situations and even crazy amounts of stealth are not reliable against dangerous stuff.

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Post Saturday, 19th April 2014, 15:43

Re: A few questions about SpEn

SpEn really benefits from high power LRD which breaks walls in rune vaults and I think training some Conjurations does not hurt much provided there is little where Sp can put EXP into after getting Necromutation (another newbie mistake I guess), Haste and cBlink. I even ended the game with 4% Shatter just for fun :)

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Post Saturday, 19th April 2014, 16:20

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Can someone just explain the ability to win the game purely through stabbing at XL10...especially if you are not leveling stealth first.

When you get into the point of the game where everything you meet:
-Can see Invisible
-Resists all your Hexes
-Never Sleeps
-Immediately notices you even with max stealth
-Have high enough threat density that you can't sneak past them

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Post Saturday, 19th April 2014, 18:11

Re: A few questions about SpEn

NessOnett wrote:Can someone just explain the ability to win the game purely through stabbing at XL10...especially if you are not leveling stealth first.


Depending on how narrowly you define "purely through stabbing skill," you cannot do that with any degree of reliability. Particularly since Stealth directly increases stab damage. In any case, it would be much simpler to fool around with Kiku and flick hard-to-stab things to death with a pain dagger, use simulacra, whatever.

NessOnett wrote:When you get into the point of the game where everything you meet:
-Can see Invisible
-Resists all your Hexes
-Never Sleeps
-Immediately notices you even with max stealth
-Have high enough threat density that you can't sneak past them


Invisistab stone giants, ettins, and yaktaur packs, enslave tengu reavers and sic them on other dudes, run away from Mennas since you're faster than him, etc. That's how it works in 0.14, anyway.

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Post Saturday, 19th April 2014, 19:29

Re: A few questions about SpEn

NessOnett wrote:Can someone just explain the ability to win the game purely through stabbing at XL10...

Winning at XL10 would be insanely hard due to having no HP. It's not that En somehow wins with low skills, it's that Sp has really huge aptitudes in every skill En wants, so SpEn gets enough skills for the endgame very early in the game, and then has the luxury of spending the majority of the game's XP on whatever it wants without worry. Plus spriggan movement speed makes an unbelievable difference.

-Can see Invisible
-Resists all your Hexes

Even in Zot, all draconians and some of the dragons cannot see invisible. All draconians except purple have low MR, too. Monsters that can't be hexed can be killed by enslaving/discording/reanimating/etc. the ones that can. Of course there's no prize for killing the most dudes. Spriggans can easily avoid most enemies, and god abilities or spells (+4 tloc apt!!!) make them very hard to kill. Gods like Nemelex/Kiku/Zin/Lugonu allow you to easily handle the very few situations that are troublesome for spen.

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Post Saturday, 19th April 2014, 19:43

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Yes to what TheDefiniteArticle said. And just to drive the point home:

+ You can get a pittance of summoning ability and memorize shadow creatures.
+ You can branch out into needlestabbing (very far from best option but better than relying on stealth alone IMO)
+ You can use berserk
+ You can just melee them with short blades. This option can be difficult without some luck in the item department, but between right egos (pain elec distortion) and/or slaying and !might you can make it work. It isn't *that* hard to make it work by late game though. A highly enchanted vorpal quick blade can do fine on its own, with just a bit of extra slaying it becomes a very *good* endgame weapon, not a liability at all.
+ You can just melee them by training long blades and picking up a demon sword or scimitar (albeit losing buckler in process but w/e). Or take a page from Agnes and go with a Lajatang. :)
+ You can get evocations and use the strong elemental evokers and/or rods

Note that spriggans have crazy good aptitudes in most of the skills involved in any of the above strategies. Except long blades, but you get the crosstraining bonus so it is still cheap.

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Post Saturday, 19th April 2014, 21:38

Re: A few questions about SpEn

basil wrote:
NessOnett wrote:Can someone just explain the ability to win the game purely through stabbing at XL10...especially if you are not leveling stealth first.

Depending on how narrowly you define "purely through stabbing skill," you cannot do that with any degree of reliability.

That question was mostly in response to statements like this:
mikee wrote:A lot of people think that because monsters later in the game tend to have higher mr, stabbing becomes 'unreliable' or 'impossible', but you really can go through the game stabbing virtually everything.

I was mainly curious how one would go about playing with only stabbing enemies to kill them, and having no other offensive potential as that was what was eluded to. Or of it was prudent(necessary) to train in something else like longblades/invocations/evocations/etc for when stabbing isn't feasible.
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Post Saturday, 19th April 2014, 21:54

Re: A few questions about SpEn

mikee wrote:I'm sorry, I'm sure you don't want to hear this, but that advice is not very good, especially for this player.


i didn't say its good advice :P
you won't be able to stab anything and you might blow yourself up from magic contamination trying to cast invisibility but its still fun.

somesortofthing wrote:I've attempted that strategy and pretty much everything you've said applies. So many ghosts were made.


I don't think undead players leave ghosts. So thank god for that or all my other characters would be getting invisistabbed somewhere around dungeon level 6.

somesortofthing wrote:Also, I'm kinda unsure on what my blood level should be for a more orthodox VpEn. I've been trying to stick to Near Bloodless since I kinda instadie regardless whenever I get into a brawl, so I only really get benefits from regen when resting.


Bloodless for stabbing! Or whatever you are comfortable with. Near Bloodless and Bloodless aren't too much different in main game, but the regen from bloodless doesn't really help during fights and stabbing to heal is fairly quick and effective. If you want to get into brawls play MiBe.

NessOnett wrote:When you get into the point of the game where everything you meet:
-Can see Invisible
-Resists all your Hexes
-Never Sleeps
-Immediately notices you even with max stealth
-Have high enough threat density that you can't sneak past them


-If they see invisible you think for a bit. If you have passwall that's a silent method to approach them if they're up against a wall (and there's not too much wall to pass through). If they don't you can wake it up, lure it next to you, and THEN try hexing it. Scroll of blinking is a costly but 1-turn method to instantly get to a target.
-if it resists all your hexes hopefully you have a good melee/spell option! If you don't then you run.
-If it's cold resistant you can confuse it or bash it to death.
-There's no max stealth, but after a while it does become unfeasible to attempt sneaking up to foes. At which point, you should have had some time to prepare some other options to deal with them.
-Lure them one by one. I even (tried) to do this in Zot:5 and it worked pretty well for a while.

mikee wrote:but you really can go through the game stabbing virtually everything. If it were the case that you couldn't, your xp would be best spent not on iron shot but probably on long blades or something.


Iron Shot was a very heavy XP investment (had to get about 15 conjurations and earth i think), and after two games with it it did not pay off as well as I thought it would. If you find yourself a good long blade that's most likely a better option since you'll cross-train fast and it don't cost mana.


NessOnett wrote:I was mainly curious how one would go about playing with only stabbing enemies to kill them, and having no other offensive potential as that was what was eluded to. Or of it was prudent(necessary) to train in something else like longblades/invocations/evocations/etc for when stabbing isn't feasible.


What they probably meant was that you can still stab things in the end game, just like stabbing an ogre. Whether or not you can PREPARE those stabs as effectively as you can versus, say, an ogre is another matter. Ancient liches are stabbable, but they see invisible, don't fall asleep, and are magic-immune, so good luck sneaking.

You definitely need to plan your game out. Pick up some buff spells, CBlink and maybe some summons, etc. But adapt to what the game gives you.
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Post Saturday, 19th April 2014, 23:12

Re: A few questions about SpEn

somesortofthing wrote:Also, if you remember where that video is, please link me to it. It sounds entertaining.


I think this is it; it might be a different user's videos.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TuBfrutb-GQ
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Post Saturday, 19th April 2014, 23:55

Re: A few questions about SpEn

NessOnett wrote:Can someone just explain the ability to win the game purely through stabbing at XL10...especially if you are not leveling stealth first.

When you get into the point of the game where everything you meet:
-Can see Invisible
-Resists all your Hexes
-Never Sleeps
-Immediately notices you even with max stealth
-Have high enough threat density that you can't sneak past them

I am a little bit conflicted here because I want to provide some information, but from reading your posts in another thread I'm not sure that you will really listen to it (I am certainly less patient than and into).

Um, maybe this will help: let's assume that monsters in the last three categories you mentioned do not exist. (I at least cannot think of any monsters that never sleep; given the way stealth works there is no such monster with a guaranteed chance to notice you; and I don't fully understand the last category, but I think it means impossible to ninja, and there is no such area in the game that is impossible to ninja.) What relevant monsters can you think of that fall into the first two categories? I am sure I am missing some, but I can only think of shadow dragon and fire giant - maybe a few uniques. In any case, the actual number is so small that it is perfectly reasonable to apply what you have learned about early game threats: you can either avoid all of the shadow dragons and fire giants and whatever, or use some small resource like berserk, might, a god ability, etc., to kill them. That being the case, it doesn't really make sense to invest in a highly power dependent spell school like conjurations just to kill all the shadow dragons and fire giants in the game.

The primary reason you are finding yourself so at odds with people who have been playing the game for a long time is probably because crawl is very unlike other games, despite seeming like it is similar, and the most popular resource for obtaining information about the game is extremely misleading. Try to be patient and open-minded as you get used to this game; I have played crawl for over a decade and giving correct information is important to me. If I am conflicting that much with something you've read before it's most likely because what you read was irresponsibly written.
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Post Sunday, 20th April 2014, 01:29

Re: A few questions about SpEn

I expected Lich, Ancient Lich, Greater Mummy, Mummy Priest, Orb of Fire, Electric Golem, all fiends, Orb Guardian (MR 120), Killer Klown (MR 160), Tentacled Monstrosity (MR 153) etc. since I don't think there is practical difference between immune and high MR monsters because if you need high spell power (and thus high level in Hexes), you might as well spend the XP in other skills (high levels are much more expensive). I think avoiding all those monsters is possible as hasted Sp but it can be as tedious and luck dependent as "Vp of Makhleb who is always in bat form challenge" from Dart Board subforum.
Last edited by Sandman25 on Sunday, 20th April 2014, 01:32, edited 1 time in total.
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Post Sunday, 20th April 2014, 01:31

Re: A few questions about SpEn

mikee wrote:(I am certainly less patient than and into)..
[snip]
The primary reason you are finding yourself so at odds with people who have been playing the game for a long time is probably because crawl is very unlike other games, despite seeming like it is similar, and the most popular resource for obtaining information about the game is extremely misleading. Try to be patient and open-minded as you get used to this game; I have played crawl for over a decade and giving correct information is important to me. If I am conflicting that much with something you've read before it's most likely because what you read was irresponsibly written.


This may be true; And into seems very patient. But you are, unlike some people almost always non-offensive about your corrections and that means a lot. People who get cross about someone not understanding something or having wrong information are likely to be turned off/tuned out very quickly. Your tact is appreciated.
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Post Sunday, 20th April 2014, 01:45

Re: A few questions about SpEn

NessOnett wrote:Can someone just explain the ability to win the game purely through stabbing at XL10...especially if you are not leveling stealth first.

When you get into the point of the game where everything you meet:
-Can see Invisible
-Resists all your Hexes
-Never Sleeps
-Immediately notices you even with max stealth
-Have high enough threat density that you can't sneak past them


Assume you are playing an SpEn.

I don't think there are many monsters in all these categories if any, infact I don't know off the top of my head any monsters that never sleep. Anyways you have a number of options for enemies that are troublesome to hex and see invis:

0. Avoid
1. Netstab (good on stuff like lichs)
2. Dazzle-stab (does not check MR)
3. Spectral weapon + melee may occasionally get you a distract-stab, and is at any rate good for killing enemies in melee especially if you have elec, slaying, pain etc. Might will provide you with slaying that will help in this regard.
4. Evokers
5. God abilities (slimify, kiku corpse drop, etc.)
6. Walk up and stab

So as we can see there are a number of ways to deal with enemies that are troublesome to hex and see invis, and don't really require any investment in anything that you wouldn't normally be training.

In areas like Zot you can always just tele ninja the orb, which is actually not that unsafe, especially due to the fact that you have a good amount of "leftover" XP in the game as Sp to get stuff like borg, ddoor, etc.

Thus it isn't really worthwhile to invest a bunch of XP into conj/earth to cast iron shot.
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Post Sunday, 20th April 2014, 02:37

Re: A few questions about SpEn

mikee wrote:I am a little bit conflicted here because I want to provide some information, but from reading your posts in another thread I'm not sure that you will really listen to it (I am certainly less patient than and into).

I'm sorry I came off that way. I am actually very open, and appreciative of your advice(as well as that of tabstorm, those were extremely specific and useful suggestions, which is what I was looking for). In regards to that other thread, I don't wish to drag this one off-topic, but it's simply that I dislike being bullshitted, so if someone gives me information that I know is wrong, I will challenge it until I get an adequate response. And can't subscribe to the concept of "I've been here longer so I'm right."

mikee wrote:Um, maybe this will help: let's assume that monsters in the last three categories you mentioned do not exist. (I at least cannot think of any monsters that never sleep; given the way stealth works there is no such monster with a guaranteed chance to notice you; and I don't fully understand the last category, but I think it means impossible to ninja, and there is no such area in the game that is impossible to ninja.) What relevant monsters can you think of that fall into the first two categories? I am sure I am missing some, but I can only think of shadow dragon and fire giant - maybe a few uniques. In any case, the actual number is so small that it is perfectly reasonable to apply what you have learned about early game threats: you can either avoid all of the shadow dragons and fire giants and whatever, or use some small resource like berserk, might, a god ability, etc., to kill them. That being the case, it doesn't really make sense to invest in a highly power dependent spell school like conjurations just to kill all the shadow dragons and fire giants in the game.

The primary reason you are finding yourself so at odds with people who have been playing the game for a long time is probably because crawl is very unlike other games, despite seeming like it is similar, and the most popular resource for obtaining information about the game is extremely misleading. Try to be patient and open-minded as you get used to this game; I have played crawl for over a decade and giving correct information is important to me. If I am conflicting that much with something you've read before it's most likely because what you read was irresponsibly written.

Just to clear up a misconception which started in a way I'm unsure of, I never suggested Iron Shot. That was someone else. But it was eluded to that it was possible to kill every enemy in the game purely with stabs(at a relatively low level), and I was curious how that would work, since from my(admittedly limited) experience, there is a point that occurs when enemies regularly can both see invisible and have such high MR as to be nearly immune(or completely immune) to hexes regardless of their strength. And my assumption was that if it were possible, it was because I had been mistaken on this point and merely had poor luck hexing them...hundreds of times in a row. Or that there were alternative methods of achieving stabs...such as netstabbing which seems exceptionally useful.

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Post Sunday, 20th April 2014, 09:43

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Do you talk about small win with 3-5 runes, or full game? Because I now, that Hell's mystic force spawn never-sleeping fiends right near you.
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Post Monday, 21st April 2014, 18:15

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Mephitic Cloud can confuse monsters with a poison check instead of a MR check too.

It took me a while to realize that Ensorcelled Hibernation and Confuse have very different spellpower, so things that take a bajillion casts of EH to hex might still succumb to Confuse without as much trouble. I think Enslavement and the higher level hexes have a better chance to stick than Confuse, even at the same spellpower too.

IMO, the problem with Iron Shot is that it's simply not overpowered enough. It's niche overlaps too with stabbing; it's inefficient to build a character sinks a lot of experience into being able to kill dangerous single targets with Iron Shot and sinks a lot of experience into being able to kill dangerous single targets with stabbing.

Iron Shot would work best, I think, if you planned on building a character that transitioned into an earth elementalist mid-game.

But for spell damage options, Fulminant Prism makes for a much better complement to stabbing; it's lower level and benefits from all that Hexes training (and doesn't anti-train with Air). It can still be used as a single target blast when needed, but can also be used for wiping out groups.

Sticky Flame is a lower experience option for massive damage. It's still just single target, but a much smaller experience investment and easier on the MP bar. Yes, you have to get close to the enemy, but SpEn is well suited to get in, last a round of melee, and get out.

My SpEn of Sif Muna build aimed for Freezing Cloud, however. It's more experience than Iron Shot, but is really strong, and it wasn't simply "I'm training just for this spell": Ice/Air complemented my build and playstyle quite effectively. Mephitic Cloud is useful for stabs, Ozocubu's armor is a good boost when I transitioned to being able to melee more nontrivial things, Metabolic Englaciation is an excellent complement to a strong weapon if you find one, Silence trivializes a number of dangerous fights, Deflect Missiles is a very powerful defensive tool, and Sif Muna means I can get them reliably and usually early enough to be the most useful. And I really wanted to play with Tornado in extended anyways.

Although keep in mind, I picked Enchanter as my first character because the disable magic appealed to me, not because I wanted to be a sneaky stabber. This also gave me a huge blind spot, in that I don't think I used invisibility much at all until after my first victory, since I was too focused on making disable magic work; I make this last comment to point out that you don't have to lean on invisibility to be successful as an Enchanter.
Last edited by Hurkyl on Monday, 21st April 2014, 18:37, edited 2 times in total.

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Post Monday, 21st April 2014, 18:35

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Meph isn't only a rPois check, it's also a HD check (HD is sort of like monster's XP level).

https://loom.shalott.org/learndb.html#meph

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Post Monday, 21st April 2014, 21:16

Re: A few questions about SpEn

The major obstacle to a SpEn build is the obsessive need to kill everything. The true ninja is happiest teleporting into the middle of a pack of nagas on Snake:5, apporting the rune, and teleporting out. The true SpEn goes down to Vault:5, blinks down a corridor, and runs around the outer ring, then sneaks through the rest of the vaults, until the rune is spotted & apported. (Discord makes this even more fun, but is strictly speaking superfluous).

The true ninja only kills things that can be stabbed, although dispel undead is super nice, and it's highly entertaining to enslave weaker enemies to gang up on stronger ones. For everything else, there's running away.

SpEn can win with nothing but the starting book and dagger, although finding some nice tloc, charms and necromancy books is nice too.

My advice (which worked for me to cure me of the killing stuff habit) is to practice. Set a challenge, like getting to D15 without entering Orc or Lair, or descending to Lair, entering Lair and not leaving without a rune.

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Post Monday, 21st April 2014, 21:45

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Sandman25 wrote:I expected Lich, Ancient Lich, Greater Mummy, Mummy Priest, Orb of Fire, Electric Golem, all fiends, Orb Guardian (MR 120), Killer Klown (MR 160), Tentacled Monstrosity (MR 153) etc. since I don't think there is practical difference between immune and high MR monsters because if you need high spell power (and thus high level in Hexes), you might as well spend the XP in other skills (high levels are much more expensive). I think avoiding all those monsters is possible as hasted Sp but it can be as tedious and luck dependent as "Vp of Makhleb who is always in bat form challenge" from Dart Board subforum.


That was my list, too. I'm pretty sure mikee means that fire giants are more "relevant" than orbs of fire because they are vastly more common but I think that's not obvious to the person who asks this question who is usually picturing something like Zot 5. While it is true that there is no enemy which cannot be stabbed *ever*, I think the real answer at that stage of the game is that you can use melee, or summons, or necrosummons, or god abilities, or just run for it, supported by any consumables you have because you're almost done.

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Post Monday, 21st April 2014, 22:01

Re: A few questions about SpEn

Orbs of fire are much less relevant than fire giants, because they most often only appear on one floor in the entire game (one where you should not be aiming to kill anything with a typical enchanter), whereas fire giants can appear anywhere in depths and at least in v:5 also.

Of course fire giant MR is actually low enough that enslaving them is reasonably possible if you have good spellpower and then you can just go get the fire giant killed by sending it to fight some other dudes.

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Post Monday, 21st April 2014, 23:04

Re: A few questions about SpEn

GlassGo wrote:Do you talk about small win with 3-5 runes, or full game? Because I now, that Hell's mystic force spawn never-sleeping fiends right near you.


This calls for running away as quickly as possible. Spriggans can and should do the extended game without many fights at all.
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