Any tips on these class combinations?


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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 15:42

Any tips on these class combinations?

Hi, I'm kind of new Crawl and I need some advice on what to do on some of the classes. I do have some experience with Brogue and NetHack, however the only roguelike game that I've ever ascended is Pixel Dungeon(Android RL based on Brogue).

I started with Deep Dwarf Berserker(without any guides etc.) and died carelessly from an orc warrior on D:8 because I forgot to berserk and forgot to equip better items. Before that I toyed around with the controls on D:1 and discovered that Crawl had almost the same controls as NetHack. I've tried a ton of class-race combinations, and have died about 30 times. So far I like CeHu with javelins and Draconian Chaos Knight. I was surprised with Xom, his random attitude is oddly satisfying, and I find his laughter both infuriating and funny >.> As of now, I have an axe-wielding MiBe. Trog has gifted me a +4,+2 battleaxe of flaming, amd currently on the 2nd level of The Lair.

Now, getting back to the main point. I'm interested in trying out the other classes and races and I needs tips for dying less.
I'm particularly interested in Spriggan Enchanter, Demonspawn Chaos Knight, Centaur Hunter, Vampire Assassin and Hill Orc Hunter.
Any tips for getting a good start and not dying in the first 3-7 levels?

Also have this stupid, but funny, situation with Hill Orc Hunter. There was a time when I saw a pack of orcs and I immediately threw a javelin without realizing I'm gonna hit the Orc priest(and I really wanted to convert to Beogh). So time stops, and the while the javelin is in the air the orc priest asks me to worship Beogh. But the moment I hit Y the javelin continues travelling in the air and hits the priest in the face. Lol I just really thought it was funny XD. The priest was like "Hello fellow orc, would you like to jo-" *splat*

Edit: Also, any good choice of gods? I'm currently a big fan of Xom and Nemelex.

Edit 2: Thanks for the advice everyone! My MiBe died horribly on Snake Pit:5, but my current VpEn is at Lair:4, which is pretty great. Nemelex's decks are saving my a** with lucky blind draws :P 8-) The RNG Gods must be smiling upon me

I absolutely recommend everyone, especially the beginners, to read Patashu's great guide below 8-)
Last edited by Naughty Fins on Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 15:16, edited 1 time in total.

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 16:34

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Have you tried Vampire Enchanter? It's probably a lot better for new players as long as you know to stay low on blood except when you need to regen and remember to use Bat Form. It's like Spriggan Enchanter but better. As to your current playstyle, try a Naga melee brawler(not Berserker) of Cheibriados. It's hard, but you gain piety quickly because your speed is so slow it wasn't useful for anything anyway, but so worth it when you finally get all the awesome stuff Chei gives you. Be careful though, that's the only time you should be worshipping Chei. Also, try Deep Elf Conjurer of either Vehumet or Sif if you want to get into playing a caster, it's great damage potential and you can often escape by virtue of Dazzling Array. As for the early game, remember that, besides rats, you can't afford to fight more than two of anything early, so get into a corridor and make them line up to die. Gods really depend on your race/background. The basic list is:

For casters:
Vehumet or Sif Muna
For Brawlers
Yred Zin(mostly used for late game,) TSO(Same thing) Okawaru, Cheibriados if you're a Naga melee or just feel like having your legs broken in exchange for +15 to all skills(It's worse than it sounds)
For stabbers:
Dithmenos if you're being noticed or Ash if you need to optimize your play and have good stealth/stabbing. or Kiku
For everyone:
if you're lacking damage/have high Invocations/feel like having hostile demons demons you summoned remove your face, pick Makhleb, or if you're feeling lucky/suicidal respectively, Nemelex and Xom. Lugonu... I've never really touched Lugonu, so no recommendation.
Last edited by somesortofthing on Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 17:24, edited 1 time in total.
I really should have realized the implications of playing a polearm user named Flaccidity.

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 16:52

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Yred is not for Necromancers (it's for melee dudes who want strong allies and some cool death-themed abilities), Kiku is great for "casters" and is probably the best "stabber" god, Chei is super-awful for Nagas.

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 16:54

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

OP: What do you find most often kills you, or that you most often have trouble with, on D:3 to D:7?

(Also I agree with everything Sar just said regarding god choice btw)

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 16:55

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Also VpEn is much harder than SpEn. Sp can run away when a normal speed monster is adjacent, Vp cannot.

Sar

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 16:58

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

XL3 Vp actually probably can if he has enough foresight to activate batform (though batform has some bizarre satiation requirements IIRC). That said, Spriggans are obviously stronger because lol Spriggans.

One god that is often overlooked by new players - I myself was guilty of that - is Fedhas, which is probably the second strongest god in the game. His first ability allows you to turn corpses into "wandering mushrooms", friendly monsters with 20 damage confusion-branded attacks who will kill anything for you for a solid chunk of the game. And his other abilities are good too!

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 17:26

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Sar wrote:Yred is not for Necromancers (it's for melee dudes who want strong allies and some cool death-themed abilities), Kiku is great for "casters" and is probably the best "stabber" god, Chei is super-awful for Nagas.

I mean melee naga of Chei. At that point, my speed is so low it's useless by the time I've gotten to temple, so why not make use of it? Also, Slouch does good damage when speed's low. And Step from TIme gives Nagas a chance to retreat, something they basically can't otherwise do. Also, what do you mean about the "bizarre satiation requirements"? It's just that you need to be low on blood, something you want to be at anyway.
Last edited by somesortofthing on Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 17:31, edited 1 time in total.
I really should have realized the implications of playing a polearm user named Flaccidity.

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 17:30

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Man, it seems like every second thread turns into a discussion of why Chei is/isn't the best, and why additional speed penalties are particularly good/bad with Chei. I feel like we should have a Chei reasons/unreasons sticky post and then ban any discussion of Chei from other threads. :p

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 17:39

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Sar wrote:XL3 Vp actually probably can if he has enough foresight to activate batform (though batform has some bizarre satiation requirements IIRC). That said, Spriggans are obviously stronger because lol Spriggans.

One god that is often overlooked by new players - I myself was guilty of that - is Fedhas, which is probably the second strongest god in the game. His first ability allows you to turn corpses into "wandering mushrooms", friendly monsters with 20 damage confusion-branded attacks who will kill anything for you for a solid chunk of the game. And his other abilities are good too!


I really must try out Fedhas sometime. The abilities sound awesome. I just don't like the sound of relying on a finite number of fruit...

What synergises with Fedhas? Merfolk definitely, but what else? I'm thinking ranged combat might go well with the ability to fire through plants.

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 17:49

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

I would suggest a Conjurer. All those lasers and bolts suddenly don't harm your plant buddies and they form a living wall between you and the direction of all those spells. I've never actually played a Merfolk, why do you say it synergises with the plants?
I really should have realized the implications of playing a polearm user named Flaccidity.

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 17:50

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

somesortofthing wrote:I would suggest a Conjurer. All those lasers and bolts suddenly don't harm your plant buddies and they form a living wall between you and the direction of all those spells. I've never actually played a Merfolk, why do you say it synergises with the plants?


Being able to flood the area as merfolk should be good usually.

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 17:53

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

@somesortofthing: I don't really get what do you mean, but I agree with Lasty. If you want to discuss Cheinagas, let's do it in CYC.

@zxc23: Not all of your abilities take fruit - the one that do are some of the strongest ones, though. Nowadays you have good chances to run into one or more fruit vaults, and Fedhas followers get "fruit" option instead of "food" when they read a scroll of acquirement. I'd say Fedhas is good for a lot of combinations, but yeah, something like Merfolk Gladiator sounds very good to me.

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 19:31

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Lasty wrote:Man, it seems like every second thread turns into a discussion of why Chei is/isn't the best, and why additional speed penalties are particularly good/bad with Chei. I feel like we should have a Chei reasons/unreasons sticky post and then ban any discussion of Chei from other threads. :p

I feel like at some point people are going to have to acknowledge that Chei is a popular god that wins games:

http://dobrazupa.org/tournament/0.14/sp ... ounds.html

Chei was the 6th most won god. She was won more often than Dithmenos, Yred, The Shining One, Ely, Fedhas, Kiku, Sif Muna, etc. The only more popular gods are the ones that I think everyone would agree are all around powerhouses: Trog, Okawaru, Vehemut, Makleb, and Ashenzari. For a while Chei was beating Ashenzari, but there was a comeback towards the end.

The tournament high score was a troll of Chei.

Now I know that popularity doesn't directly translate to power level, but by looking at wins rather than games played, you're at least ensuring it's a good player and that the god was enough to carry you all the way through. It isn't strictly popularity (games played), but also power in that they had to win for it to count. At some point you should really just admit that Chei's alternative playstyle of raw power is appealing to some players and they consider it to be better than the more evasive standard style. Not everyone is looking to streak, and giving up the reliablity of surviving the early game for more power once you get past that part is a trade off many players with a few wins will take, because they aren't expecting a 100% winrate.

Top 50 players are looking for a nearly 100% winrate, or trying to at least, and thus that early setup phase is terrible and they consider chei terrible. That's extremely one dimensional analysis, and is doing more harm than good. It would alright if they included the total explaination, including their implicit goals of streaking, but they just broadly say Chei is to be avoided at all costs, which is wrong.

Maybe I need to do an all Chei streak or something, my streak of 3 had 2 chei characters, but I guess the first character doesn't really count (you could repeat that one as often as needed), so only one.

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 19:49

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

OH GOD, IT'S STILL HAPPENING!

Seriously, though, I don't hate Chei. Under the right circumstances, I enjoy playing Chei characters every now and then. I think Chei is perfect as-is: Chei gives a lot of power in exchange for a very high price, and people enjoy the Chei playstyle. The problems I'm describing are 1) Chei keeps derailing threads, and 2) aside from the quality of Chei itself, there's the whole discussion about whether Chei combos well or poorly with additional sources of slow movement speed.

These discussions have already been had, and every reason on both sides has already been provided. I just really don't want to see more threads derailed by these conversations. That's why I explicitly said that the Chei thread should include reasons and unreasons. I don't want to limit anyone's enjoyment of Chei, I just want him to stop being this forum's equivalent of Rand Paul 2012!!!!!!

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 19:54

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

There's only one solution to this: We need to elect Chei as president.
I really should have realized the implications of playing a polearm user named Flaccidity.

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 20:02

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Seconded! The motion passes!

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 21:24

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

@ Tasonir: I don't have an axe to grind against Chei or anything, but the fact that people win with Chei, he's popular, and a Tr^Chei was the top scorer, doesn't actually mean very much when it comes to what someone very new to the game should do. If focusing on the early game is a "one-dimensional" analysis (I don't agree), it is nonetheless superior to a simply irrelevant analysis: the OP is struggling to make it to temple reliably, in the first place, and is thus very much dealing with the early game. Any other considerations simply do not matter.

_______


Hey Naughty Fins, what's up.

Nagas have slow movement, and Chei slows your movement down further upon joining him, and slows you down more as you gain piety. The slowness of these two things stack, such that, at high piety, moving a single tile as a Naga^Chei takes up almost three turns (2.8 to be exact).

As you are someone new to the game, I'd recommend that you pretend Nagas and Chei do not exist until you feel comfortable enough with your basic Crawl stuff—how to use consumables well, what early game enemies to run from, how to use positioning/terrain to your advantage, how best to move/retreat in common early game situations, etc.—that you want to experiment with something that
1.) will generally make your game more dangerous, and give much smaller room for errors (or even just mis-clicks) than any other thing you can subject yourself to; and
2.) won't teach you nearly as much that is applicable to other gods/species that do not have the major, game-changing drawback of slow movement speed.

That might sound like I'm saying "never play Chei," but that is not what I'm saying, at all. I am saying, "Don't play Chei until and unless you understand what you are giving up by worshiping him," and that is basically the best advice I can give to a new player regarding Chei.

_______


Now that's out of the way:

Here are my tips on not dying for the first few levels.

I know you are tempted to keep trying different classes, but probably you will improve a lot more if you stick to just a few strong combos, at least until you have the basics down. Berserkers certainly qualify, but I'd suggest Minotaur or Hill Orc Berserker, for learning the ropes. Choose whatever weapon. Wear the armor that gives the best AC. Just keep the skill training in automatic mode so you don't have to worry about it, this way you can focus on tactics.

When you see an enemy, even an easy one, you should get in the habit of making it approach you. For melee dudes this is usually pretty easy. Carry around stones or some throwing item to get the attention of individual enemies at the edge of LOS. Many enemies make noise upon seeing you, but that only draws other enemies to the spot where they made the noise. (They don't shout continuously or anything.) Try not to draw too much heat at once; get the attention of as few enemies as possible, retreat slightly toward an area you have already explored if you need better terrain to make sure the enemy is isolated, and take them out. (You can hit . or s to skip a turn, by the way.)

Even though you are a berserker try not to solve every problem with berserk, or you won't learn as much. But berserk is there if you get in over your head, and against tough enemies like Ogres/Orc Warriors/etc., use it, of course.

Watch how different types of enemies move toward you, and in particular pay attention to how the ways that *you* move affect how your enemies move. With only a few exceptions it is very easy to control where your enemies are by moving in a certain way. This is why movement in Crawl is so important; it isn't just about getting where you need to go, it literally allows you to control where your enemies end up. Once you've gotten good at this little positioning game, you'll find yourself getting a lot better at Crawl. Also pay attention to how different dungeon features and "shapes" of the dungeon affect LOS. Remember that LOS is reciprocal in Crawl; with the exception of invisible enemies (if you lack SInv), if you cannot see it, it cannot hurt you.

Do not hesitate to use consumables. You will find more. Wands, potions, scrolls are all great.

Even if it doesn't do much damage, ranged stuff like darts and stones and tomahawks are very helpful. Chuck them at stuff as they approach, but get into good position/get on to good terrain first.

How are you at the "ID minigame" so far? Do you usually manage to ID scrolls of teleportation, potions of curing, and potions of heal wounds, early on? Those are the most important things to ID first, if you are having trouble IDing them consistently I can give some advice that might help.

Unlike some roguelikes (and RPGs much more generally) DCSS does not require, nor even "want," you to kill everything you come across. The game is intentionally designed around exploring everything and killing everything being unnecessary, and in some cases being undesirable. If you escaped a dangerous unique or bad monster spawn(s) on a floor, just dive a level and come back later. Especially if the level is very open it will be dangerous to stick around.

Finally: Remember that Crawl waits for your input. You have as much time as you want to make a decision. The best reflex to a dicey situation is to take your hands off the keyboard, look carefully at everything on screen, then check your inventory, then check out your situation again... and think.

That's all very general, but I hope it is helpful. If you give me a bit more information about what you find yourself struggling with the most, I could give more specific/tailored advice.

Good luck!

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 21:39

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Naughty Fins wrote:Hi, I'm kind of new Crawl and I need some advice on what to do on some of the classes. I do have some experience with Brogue and NetHack, however the only roguelike game that I've ever ascended is Pixel Dungeon(Android RL based on Brogue).

...

Now, getting back to the main point. I'm interested in trying out the other classes and races and I needs tips for dying less.
I'm particularly interested in Spriggan Enchanter, Demonspawn Chaos Knight, Centaur Hunter, Vampire Assassin and Hill Orc Hunter.
Any tips for getting a good start and not dying in the first 3-7 levels?

...

Edit: Also, any good choice of gods? I'm currently a big fan of Xom and Nemelex.


I also have pixel dungeon. The farthest I got was to the 2nd boss, with a Warrior, and I got slaughtered.

Spriggan Enchanter is one of the easiest combos. You are the fastest race, and for the early game you will outrun absolutely everything except bats. With that kind of ability to run away, a profound stealth aptitude, and an Enchanter start you can choose your fights with impunity. Here seems to be the classic spriggan enchanter guide: http://crawl.chaosforge.org/Huggz%27s_Spriggan_Enchanter_guide


Demonspawn Chaos knight is pretty funny. If you get lucky and mutate a couple of times that will keep Xom's interest level somewhere safe. But other than that Xom is still a prick and not really recommendable unless you are very patient or like teleporting into enemies.

Centaur hunter is another straightforward combo. Shoot anything you can't just kill with your weapon, train Bows until delay becomes something reasonable. Polearms have great synergy with these guys cause they are still faster than most things in the dungeon, and their polearm apts are better than a spriggan's.

Enchanters are about the same as assassin's but better...if you want to play with blowguns and needles you'll find them before Temple. VpEn is my favorite combo (but i'm getting really tired of it...), and they are better at sneaking than Spriggans at lower blood levels. Bat Form lets you run like a spriggan when things go pear-shaped. rC++ and rN+++ help out late game when you are busy filling in resistances. Just watch out for Dispel Undead and those weapons of holy wrath!

Nemelex guide: train Evo, sacrifice everything that is not important, spam decks
114491 | Pan | Entered the realm of Gloorx Vloq.
114491 | Pan | Noticed Gloorx Vloq
114492 | Pan | Killed Gloorx Vloq

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 23:36

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Hi Naughty Fins, I recently gave a small class to a friend of mine over IMs on basic Crawl tactics stuff - I think if I wanted to make it a real 'guide' I'd have to reformat it properly and all that, but if I were to post advice to you it would be basically identical to the following, so I'm just going to repost it here:

EDIT: Rule -1: Don't play Crawl while tired/apathetic/distracted/otherwise low energy if you don't want to die. If you barely have enough energy to play Crawl, by definition you only have enough energy to make thoughtless plays, and you die in Crawl when you stop thinking and the game catches you.

(8:50:09 AM) Patashu: Ok, I'll talk tactics (mostly melee positioning stuff) now

(8:51:07 AM) Patashu: 1) Rule 0: You should almost never move towards an enemy that is in your line of sight. It's not due to one reason, but it's a heuristic due to a few different reasons. In general, you usually want to retreat from an enemy you have just seen rather than approach it.

(8:52:47 AM) Patashu: 2) How noise works: Stuff like melee that isn't stabbing, most offensive spells, monsters shouting and you shouting creates a noise that radiates out in a circle and tries to alert monsters. Monsters alerted will be in a 'hasn't noticed you' state, but will be awake and will beeline towards the center of the noise, and then start wandering. If that brings you to their LoS, then they're only a stealth check away from starting to hunt you, but if it doesn't, they won't go looking for you because they don't know where to look, they'll just go back to random movement.
(8:53:29 AM) Patashu: So there's no such thing as 'pack coherence' in that you can get the attention of the first orc you see, beeline on a retreat path, and after 8+ tiles let it come to you and engage, and the other orcs will either have gone to the original noise and given up or not noticed at all depending
(8:55:06 AM) Patashu: This leads to the general framework for dealing with monsters that are or may be in dangerous groups: 'lure/split'. The moment you see a monster, stop moving towards it. If it hasn't noticed you yet, throw a stone/other ranged attack at it so it notices you (a trick called shoutless - if a monster is in wandering state and you hit it first, it never shouts, it always just silently goes to hunting state). (EDIT: Shoutless got 'fixed', the monster now shouts but only some of the time. So it's still worth trying.) Now back up 8-16 tiles towards a safe escape path (towards stairs, doesn't go through/towards unexplored territory), breaking LoS with corners/doors if you can. Let the one or two monsters come to you. Deal with them as an isolated, safe incident that you know won't attract anything else with the noise. Rest, repeat.
(8:55:57 AM) Patashu: If you don't do lure/split, and instead run at monsters on the edge of unexplored territory and fight them then and there (or even nearby), you'll feel like every battle is an endless torrent of enemies and huge groups streaming in, because the noise of the battle 1) attracts enemies in the unexplored territory 2) they see you 3) they join in the battle guaranteed
(8:56:42 AM) Patashu: Doing lure/split also means you can use things like berserk/all your MP in more comfort and safety, because you are almost guaranteed that no other enemies will show up after the battle ends

(8:58:48 AM) Patashu: 3) Doors are OP
(8:59:59 AM) Patashu: 3a) A surprising number of monsters can't do anything about doors. Anything that has hands can open them, but basically any animal or monster can't, even things like drakes, dragons and elephants that you wouldn't expect to be stopped by a door (the unique Xtahua is a notable exception, being a dragon that can open doors - however, the unique Prince Ribbit, a blink frog, cannot)
(9:00:39 AM) Patashu: 3b) If the monster is the same speed as you, you can close the door as fast as it can open it. This leads to a technique called 'door dancing', where as long as you and the monster are the only thing around the door, you can repeatedly close the door to recover HP/MP/stall for time otherwise.
(9:00:55 AM) Patashu: 3c) If you just opened a door and see a bunch of shit you don't want to deal with, the first step is usually closing the door to break LoS
(9:02:21 AM) Patashu: 3d) If your stealth is meaningful, breaking LoS with an enemy is a requirement for it to forget about you/stop hunting about you, so if you close doors on enemies with good stealth some of them will stop hunting you as you keep doing this, and since it takes them just as long to open it as you did to close it, it's not 'losing turns'

(9:03:52 AM) Patashu: 4) Energy randomization. In Crawl, for monster movement only, there is a random chance that the monster movement will happen 10% faster or slower. These 10% fasters and slowers add up, and eventually the monster will fall behind a tile or advance an extra tile. (If you see one happen, the other is likely to happen again soon, due to the energy randomization going in the opposite direction.) This also applies for opening/closing doors, but it doesn't apply for the monster attacking or casting. If a monster suddenly gains or loses ground on you, this is probably why.
(9:04:55 AM) Patashu: This is what makes the smallest case of 'pillar dancing', where the pillar is only one tile wide, not work reliably (but larger pillars are usually fine depending on the monster), and it is also why 'door dancing' will eventually fail with the monster stepping into the door after opening it on the same turn

(9:08:43 AM) Patashu: 5) Corners are OP. Going around a corner, like a door, is one of many ways to 'break LOS' (there is also fog/smoke/steam, allies/summons, blinking/teleporting away, wielding a lantern of shadows, etc). A monster with broken LOS has to come up to one tile away from you (if it's a tight 90 degree turn) or even next to you (if it's a tight 180 degree turn) before it can fight you again, and this lets you maximize the amount of time you are meleeing them from if you want to kill them, or maximize the amount of time they can't see and thus shoot at you if you want to run away from them.
(9:09:46 AM) Patashu: (also, don't forget about lure/split - you might want to not stop at the first corner/door, but back up 8+ tiles to a corner/door closer to the stairs, so you're not just breaking LoS BUT splitting the group at the same time)

(9:12:21 AM) Patashu: 6) Weapon swap trick. This only works on monsters that have a slower-than-you-can-take-a-step melee attack, due to having a very heavy melee weapon in their hands (ogres and their clubs are the most common reason). Here's how it works: After said monster swings, it takes more than 1.0 of a turn before it can take its next move. With the monster next to you, swap weapons or take off/put on one piece of jewellery (both are the fastest action you can do with any character) until the monster swings. Step away. A gap will almost always form. Why would you want a gap? A few good reasons are 1) You want to take the stairs (if the monster is not next to you when you START taking the stairs it cannot follow) 2) You want to cast conjure flame or otherwise make a summon in the tile between you both that requires an open tile
(9:14:56 AM) Patashu: Btw, a monster with a weapon in its hands is a lot more dangerous than one without, instead of doing 1d(hands damage) then subtracting 1d(your AC) it does 1d(hands damage + base damage of weapon) then subtracts 1d(your AC)
(9:15:02 AM) Patashu: (Base damage of the weapon being what it says when you examine it)
(9:15:27 AM) Patashu: And brands work for enemies the same way they work for hands, so a monster with a glowing/runed/shiny weapon might be packing electrocution or distortion

(9:20:43 AM) Patashu: 7) Monster blocking tricks. There are a few ways you can get monsters to unhelpfully block other monsters:
7a) If you're standing next to a sufficiently 'respected' monster that is not hellfire resistant, enemies won't cast hellfire at you (because it is area of effect) (in particular, deep elf sorcerers are not themselves hellfire resistant, so they will never hellfire you in melee, except maybe to suicide?) (there are some other kinds of area of effect attacks that this will work with, but hellfire is the most notable example because it's really dangerous)
7b) Monsters that are approaching you tend to funnel towards the orthogonals ('enemy funneling rule'), so if there is an enemy on that orthogonal, enemies behind it will lose LoF and not be able to cast LoF requiring spells at you (you can also do this on a diagonal, but it's really stupid to visualise if it will work or not, so it becomes probabilistic trick if you don't have a lot of enemies on that diagonal for blocking)
7c) Stronger monsters will push past weaker monsters to get into combat with you... BUT, if the monster is confused/paralyzed/petrified/constricted/netted/batty (bat, harpy, unseen horror, etc) then the monster cannot be pushed past!

(9:26:08 AM) Patashu: 8) Folly of friendship trick. Monsters that are animal intelligence or higher, if they see another monster behind them that would like to join the melee but is chokepointed and can't reach you, they will step to another tile adjacent to you so that that monster can also attack you. So imagine there's two orcs next to the 'elbow' of a corner and you're fighting the first one on the diagonal. Eventually it will decide to step into the elbow of the corner instead of attacking back so its friend can step in. Now take a step back. You have essentially gotten a free hit without retaliation when this happened. Doesn't sound like much - until you realize that if you have a large loop of sharp corners to pillar dance the orcs through, you can do folly of friendship trick over and over.
(9:27:03 AM) Patashu: (The corollary of folly of friendship trick is that you should never stand in the sharp elbow of a corner while fighting a group of enemies, because eventually the front enemy will move to trap you into that elbow - but being in the sharp elbow of a corner is bad for other reasons too, it's usually a wasted move that would be better spent cutting the corner with a diagonal so you are moving/escaping/breaking LoS faster)
(9:28:54 AM) Patashu: This is a minor trick relative to the previous 7

(9:34:01 AM) Patashu: 9) Hack and back. This tactic requires you to attack (thus know your weapon delay) faster than the enemy moves, so it usually only applies to zombified/skeletal enemies, elephant slugs, goliath beetles and early game worms. If you wait near a slooow monster until it steps next to you, hit it with your sufficiently low delay weapon and then walk away and repeat, it will never hit you once. (EDIT: In 0.15 most slower-than-you melee-only monsters are being removed, but you can still create hack and back situation with haste or by slowing the enemy.)

(9:29:48 AM) Patashu: Ok, now let's talk about skilling

(9:30:21 AM) Patashu: 1) Here is how you skill in Crawl. You raise your killdudes skill until your killdudes options are online. Then you train the skills that help you not die to dudes. If in the future you're having trouble killing dudes again, swap back to killdudes skills.
(9:31:42 AM) Patashu: 2) Melee weapons have a concept called 'min delay'. Examine the weapon and look at what its delay is - every 2 skill for that weapon, it will drop by 0.1, until it reaches 0.7 (if it is 1.4 or heavier) or half the original rounded down (if it is 1.3 or lighter, e.g. a 1.0 weapon reaches 0.5 after 10 skill, and a 2.0 weapon reaches 0.7 after 26 skill)
(9:32:15 AM) Patashu: The closer you are to getting a weapon to min delay, the more rapidly training it and using it gets better - until you reach min delay, after which the benefits of further training that weapon skill are a lot more marginal, so unless you can find a heavier weapon to swap to, you should train notdietodudesskills now
(9:32:52 AM) Patashu: (Also, the advantage of a heavy weapon's higher base damage isn't just a constant addition of damage - the base damage is multiplied by your skills, whereas enchantment and slaying damage is just added on unmultiplied, so heavier weapons will hit a lot harder than the numbers indicate, if you can get them to respectable minimum delay
(9:35:33 AM) Patashu: Also, random comment, the skill 'evocations' improves elemental evokables (that go in the misc category of your inventory), rods and wands by a LOT, but ofc if you're training evocations that's exp not going anywhere else, for something that can run out, so it's an opportunity cost thing, but a bit of evo makes wands a lot better

(9:39:27 AM) Patashu: Also, how to handle the Identification Minigame in Crawl:
1) Read all unidentified scrolls when you're not in danger to ID (the floor is 100% cleared - otherwise teleportation could put you in the middle of angry monsters)
2) Use identify scrolls ASAP on unidentified potions in your inventory, don't quaff potions to find out what they are unless it's literally the only way to not die left
3) Once you have most/all of the potions out of the way, you can start using identify scrolls on other stuff
4) AS LONG AS you have one or more remove curse scrolls available, don't use identify on weapons/armour/jewellery to identify them, put them on first to get a wear-identification. (The only thing you need to worry about are weapons of distortion, so don't wield random junk ego weapons unless you'd be happy with being stuck with them as distortion until xl18 or so)
5) Zap unidentified wands the moment you see them, if you're playing 0.14 or later you don't need a target, they identify automagically.


I also think that your first win should be Minotaur or Gargoyle Berserker, because they and their god's abilities are tuned for melee fighting and it forces you to make use of all melee tactics and positioning techniques, while at the same time not having to worry very hard about skilling or building your character (just always pick dex for the stat, always wear the heaviest armour you can find and the biggest weapon that you've trained to mindelay, train weapons until mindelay then swap to fighting/armour and later dodging, maybe evo if you find good evokables, that's basically it already!). You can of course do your first win with anything, but then you are learning two things at once, both how to play Crawl and how this specific start needs to be built and played to survive well.

EDIT: Forgot this part:

  Code:
(9:56:41 AM) Patashu: Also, in Crawl your HP melts very fast and restores very slow
(9:57:02 AM) Patashu: If a fight could potentially go south, at 100% hp you should already be acting cautiously/safely, making sure you have a good retreat line to the stairs, thinking about what you'll do if it starts to get hairy, etc
(9:57:15 AM) Patashu: At 75% hp you should already be ready to use consumables/abilities/powers or think about retreating
(9:57:32 AM) Patashu: At 50% hp your life is in danger and you should treat the situation like it could kill you right now
(9:57:57 AM) Patashu: Don't let it drop any lower because then you don't have any 'buffer' left at all, a lucky hit can do 20~ and later in the game 50++ damage
Last edited by Patashu on Monday, 28th November 2016, 09:07, edited 5 times in total.

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 23:40

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Lyrick wrote:Nemelex guide: train Evo, sacrifice everything that is not important, spam decks

Always use peek-at-two on unknown decks (even in fights, it is instantaneous), never ever blind draw from decks of wonder, always use triple-draw and/or stack-five (preferred method is peek-at-two for id, 2x triple-draw, then stack the rest, avoid Wild Magic).
Best item for Nemelex worshippers is an amulet of faith, it increases piety and gifts by 1/3, meaning you'll get more decks and by drawing from them you'll get even more decks!
Spamming decks is good, because it raises piety and therefor increases the chance of getting a deck of wonder.
Blind drawing decks of escape when no enemy is near can send you to the Abyss.

Edit: Nemelex is pretty strong, let's you cast attack, buff, teleport & summon spells etc. with only one skill to train and 2 mp, while wearing any armor you like. Plus decks of wonder give you a huge exp bonus!

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Post Tuesday, 29th April 2014, 23:45

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

and into wrote: If focusing on the early game is a "one-dimensional" analysis (I don't agree),

And neither do I, because that's not what I said.

Expert players focus on streaking and high winrates, which means you want to smooth out the difficulty curve of dungeon crawl as much as possible. Since most of the more dangerous parts of crawl are early and not later, you want a god that helps with the early game. A god that makes the early game even harder, as chei does, is therefore a terrible choice, regardless of what happens later on. Newer players aren't trying to maintain a 20% winrate - they're trying to get their first or maybe even their third win, and still having trouble keeping characters alive. For them, it might make sense to splat a few more characters in the 10-30 minutes of play time range, in exchange for someone who will be a lot harder to die with after surviving the first 2 hours.

They aren't focusing on the early game though - they're focusing on streaking/high winrates, which is one dimensional. The vast majority of crawl players haven't yet gotten the point where they win reliably enough to care about a win percentage.

and into wrote: it is nonetheless superior to a simply irrelevant analysis: the OP is struggling to make it to temple reliably, in the first place, and is thus very much dealing with the early game. Any other considerations simply do not matter.

While he did ask for advice on early levels, he's also indicated twice that he can get past temple depth:

"died carelessly from an orc warrior on D:8 "
"currently on the 2nd level of The Lair."

And finally: I didn't suggest nagas of Chei. Someone else did; and correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe they're a fairly new player (definition: Less than 5 total wins). Why is it that inexperienced players keep recommending Chei? I've seen a lot of first win's with Chei, Chei was my second win, and newbies keep saying they recommend nagas of Chei...Makes you wonder. I don't think they'd recommend it if they never got to lair with the combo.

In any case, perhaps a sticky about it would be good, but it might be hard to please both sides with one document.

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Post Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 00:10

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Berlioz wrote:Blind drawing decks of escape can send you to the Abyss.


ftfy. Chance to be banished is 1/(N+1) where N is number of monsters in LoS.
So it is 100% when alone, 50% with 1 monster, 33% with 2, 25% with 3 etc.

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Post Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 00:16

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

@patashu: excellent post/chat! If you could refine a bit, that could be the best "short" guide to dcss I've read, as it explains how most important things works and what are the general strategies needed by every char to win the game.

Only three little things:
1) the friendly fire rule with aoe effects isn't always respected: for example the aferomentioned sorcerer will routinely blow up himself when near to you with hellfire, if low of health, in a last kamikaze attempt to kill you, so while it's a good idea to use other monsters to block spell which require free line of sight or have aoe, it's also very important to know that won't always work.

2) when read Id scroll for me a safe spot is a totally cleared level, at least until tele and noise have been identified, because you really don't want to land into an early orc pack.

3) elementar evokers get power's cap around 12ish evo (I don't remember exact number). New rods probably improve up to 27, I don't know, but I don't believe evo has effect on wand power (I'm positive it hasn't at least for hw and haste) , and I if it has it's quite negligible - in other words, I wouldn't ever train evo for wands alone, while it's a very good idea to get at least to 12 at some point if you have found evokers and maybe very early if you have got some very good rod
screw it I hate this character I'm gonna go melee Gastronok

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Post Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 00:19

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

  Code:
A wand's spell power equals 15+2.5×Evocations, though this is still limited by the spell power caps for the spell cast.


http://crawl.chaosforge.org/Wand

So I usually train some Evocations if I find paralysis early.
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Post Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 00:37

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

nago wrote:@patashu: excellent post/chat! If you could refine a bit, that could be the best "short" guide to dcss I've read, as it explains how most important things works and what are the general strategies needed by every char to win the game.

Only three little things:
1) the friendly fire rule with aoe effects isn't always respected: for example the aferomentioned sorcerer will routinely blow up himself when near to you with hellfire, if low of health, in a last kamikaze attempt to kill you, so while it's a good idea to use other monsters to block spell which require free line of sight or have aoe, it's also very important to know that won't always work.

Hmm, I didn't know the caster's own health modified how reckless they were (in such cases). I have to give this a second look, as it would explain a lot of things I've noticed.

2) when read Id scroll for me a safe spot is a totally cleared level, at least until tele and noise have been identified, because you really don't want to land into an early orc pack.

Yeah, definitely, I could be more clear on that. (Torment if alive/holy word if undead as well.)

3) elementar evokers get power's cap around 12ish evo (I don't remember exact number). New rods probably improve up to 27, I don't know, but I don't believe evo has effect on wand power (I'm positive it hasn't at least for hw and haste) , and I if it has it's quite negligible - in other words, I wouldn't ever train evo for wands alone, while it's a very good idea to get at least to 12 at some point if you have found evokers and maybe very early if you have got some very good rod

I don't think evo effects the 'big three' wands either, but it improves MR piercing of status effect wands and damage of damage wands.

EDIT: Updated a bit appropriately.
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Post Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 02:12

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

nago wrote:3) elementar evokers get power's cap around 12ish evo (I don't remember exact number). New rods probably improve up to 27, I don't know, but I don't believe evo has effect on wand power (I'm positive it hasn't at least for hw and haste) , and I if it has it's quite negligible - in other words, I wouldn't ever train evo for wands alone, while it's a very good idea to get at least to 12 at some point if you have found evokers and maybe very early if you have got some very good rod


Elemental evokers definitely get more powerful past 12 evo. Around 20 evo, you begin getting three elementals per blast with each evoker, and the various elemental attacks grow more powerful as well.

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Post Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 05:19

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

and into wrote:As you are someone new to the game, I'd recommend that you pretend Nagas and Chei do not exist until you feel comfortable enough with your basic Crawl stuff—how to use consumables well, what early game enemies to run from, how to use positioning/terrain to your advantage, how best to move/retreat in common early game situations, etc.—that you want to experiment with something that
1.) will generally make your game more dangerous, and give much smaller room for errors (or even just mis-clicks) than any other thing you can subject yourself to; and
2.) won't teach you nearly as much that is applicable to other gods/species that do not have the major, game-changing drawback of slow movement speed.

(Ignroing the part about Chei, because there's enough talk on that already)

I know it seems like I always disagree with and into, but this is something I feel very strongly about. Speaking purely from personal experience, I can't disagree more. When I first started playing this game back in the day, I was having zero luck advancing in the slightest. I couldn't get a grasp on the basic concepts of the game. That was until I started running Nagas. And because of their inability to just 'run' from things, it forced me to make meaningful progress as a player. It forced me to take time to carefully consider my options before making a move. It forced me to learn to use consumables, positioning, and terrain. It forced me to be a better player, and when I went back to trying to play other races I was astounded at how much better I had gotten at the game.

Maybe I am an anomaly. Maybe this is not the typical response. That is a possibility. I just know that for me personally, that playing Naga was the best decision for me in the beginning. And it is largely because of that, that Naga is far and away my best and most favorite race.


Back on topic: My advice would be to pick a single combination, and stick with that for a bit. Ask advice around that. With half a dozen class/race combinations, it's difficult for people to suggest advice that applies to most/all of them without just being general gameplay advice. So take a class and race you like. Get some feedback deciding on a God to compliment it. And then develop a strategy based on that. And refine that strategy over several(dozen? hundred?) attempts. And as for your chosen combination, I'd try to keep it simple. Vampire might not be the best choice because of its atypical food consumption. Chaos Knights lead you to pretty high variance games and may stunt your advancement to start. And stealth-heavy classes(like assassins) are surprisingly difficult for new players to transition with. So from your list, i'd lean towards hunter, which has a lot of good races to pair with. And as for God, Okawaru is always a strong choice for a not-mage. And is also pretty straightforward.

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Post Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 08:20

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Thank you everyone for helping me out! Especially to Patashu for giving out a great semi-guide. :D


and into wrote:OP: What do you find most often kills you, or that you most often have trouble with, on D:3 to D:7?

(Also I agree with everything Sar just said regarding god choice btw)

Hmm lemme see. Sigmund, orcs, giant geckos, iguanas and my character ghosts. :P
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Post Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 09:31

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Naughty Fins wrote:Thank you everyone for helping me out! Especially to Patashu for giving out a great semi-guide. :D


and into wrote:OP: What do you find most often kills you, or that you most often have trouble with, on D:3 to D:7?

(Also I agree with everything Sar just said regarding god choice btw)

Hmm lemme see. Sigmund, orcs, giant geckos, iguanas and my character ghosts. :P

For orcs, I recommend practicing crate's law + lure/split + shoutless on them. One individual orc wizard or orc priest is ok, but if you fight a whole mess of them at once in unfamiliar terrain it goes south more often than not. Better yet, if you see a sleeping orc - X, move target to orc, e to place an exclusion, then go leave them alone! (Assume any orc has orc priests/wizards nearby, it is a good tactic)

Also, are you retreating towards known stairs and resting after each fight and before autoexploring again?
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Post Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 09:48

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Patashu wrote:For orcs, I recommend practicing crate's law + lure/split + shoutless on them. One individual orc wizard or orc priest is ok, but if you fight a whole mess of them at once in unfamiliar terrain it goes south more often than not. Better yet, if you see a sleeping orc - X, move target to orc, e to place an exclusion, then go leave them alone! (Assume any orc has orc priests/wizards nearby, it is a good tactic)

Also, are you retreating towards known stairs and resting after each fight and before autoexploring again?

Alright, I'll practice them. I don't have any idea what "e" does, I assume it places some kind of trap? Gotta try that out now..

Hmm, I rest, but I don't retreat back to stairs. I know about auto-explore and it can save lots of time on the first few levels, but it's never really my type. I'll try that out on other playthroughs and see how well auto-explore goes :V

Thanks again

Edit: Realized it was eat *facepalm* forgot lol
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Post Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 10:51

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Naughty Fins wrote:
Patashu wrote:For orcs, I recommend practicing crate's law + lure/split + shoutless on them. One individual orc wizard or orc priest is ok, but if you fight a whole mess of them at once in unfamiliar terrain it goes south more often than not. Better yet, if you see a sleeping orc - X, move target to orc, e to place an exclusion, then go leave them alone! (Assume any orc has orc priests/wizards nearby, it is a good tactic)

Also, are you retreating towards known stairs and resting after each fight and before autoexploring again?

Alright, I'll practice them. I don't have any idea what "e" does, I assume it places some kind of trap? Gotta try that out now..

Hmm, I rest, but I don't retreat back to stairs. I know about auto-explore and it can save lots of time on the first few levels, but it's never really my type. I'll try that out on other playthroughs and see how well auto-explore goes :V

Thanks again

Edit: Realized it was eat *facepalm* forgot lol

The key part is actually 'x' then 'e' or 'X' then 'e', at the spot you wish to avoid. It will create a no fly zone for you to avoid when auto-traveling with 'o'. Also I recommend hitting ? then ? again and reading each key entry so you get an idea of how to do other things in game that might be handy. And then keep doing that whenever you are thinking "If only I could just..."

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Post Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 11:55

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Try Death Knight (DK) background; you train your skills like fighter, but you have summons to help you to get through.

Shift+x, then e (at wanted location) will set exclusion;
shift+x then ctrl+e will remove exclusion.
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Post Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 12:48

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Auto-explore will make you play a lot better. It's not laziness to use auto-explore - if you always use auto-explore to explore the level, then you will never 'overshoot' an enemy by exploring the level and stepping an extra step towards it before realizing something has happened. This is vital for being able to implement good, safe tactics.
(Another useful form of movement is run - shift + direction. It only works if no enemies are in LoS, so it can also be used to safely explore, since it will stop working the instant an enemy is visible)

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Post Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 14:43

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

archaeo wrote:
nago wrote:3) elementar evokers get power's cap around 12ish evo (I don't remember exact number). New rods probably improve up to 27, I don't know, but I don't believe evo has effect on wand power (I'm positive it hasn't at least for hw and haste) , and I if it has it's quite negligible - in other words, I wouldn't ever train evo for wands alone, while it's a very good idea to get at least to 12 at some point if you have found evokers and maybe very early if you have got some very good rod


Elemental evokers definitely get more powerful past 12 evo. Around 20 evo, you begin getting three elementals per blast with each evoker, and the various elemental attacks grow more powerful as well.


Archaeo is right, but to expand a little, wands derive their effective spellpower from Evocations. Wand spellpower is 15 + 2.5*Evo, which means it caps out at about 80 for very high Evo. Two things are evidently true from this: first, the gain per level of Evo is quite small; second, because the initial power is so incredibly low, you can double it with 6 levels of Evo or triple it by getting 12 levels of Evo; doing so will significantly increase the power of wands alone. Almost every wand is affected by power -- Tele wands use power to determine effectiveness when zapped on enemies, and Haste and Invis wands use power to determine duration (I think -- I could be mistaken).

A phial of floods performs a ZAP_PRIMAL_WAVE attack using power = 25 + EVO*6, with a max power of 200, meaning that you reach max power at Evo 29 (not quite attainiable). The damage done is 14 + (3/5 * spellpower) distributed across four dice, e.g.:
  Code:
Power  Evo   Dice   Avg Damage
25     0     4d8      18
50     4.1   4d12     26
75     8.3   4d15     33
100    12.5  4d19     41
125    16.6  4d23     48
150    20.8  4d27     56
175    25    4d30     63

(note: numbers are slightly fuzzy, since if power doesn't divide evenly into 4 dice, you randomly round the number of sides up or down -- in this calc, I rounded up every time)

As you can see, the damage inflicted by Primal Wave is quite high at high Evo, potentially killing even an ancient lich in one shot (though more likely dealing about 60% damage in one shot).

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Post Wednesday, 30th April 2014, 14:59

Re: Any tips on these class combinations?

Edit: the other elemental evokers are similarly enhanced up to quite high limits:
* lamp of fire generates more streams of fire which do more damage -- 2d(5+(9/4*evo)) (if I'm reading that right)
* fan of gales pushes others back more effectively
* stone of earth does 3d(5 + Evo) damage and is more likely to shaft nearby monsters.

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