sudden death challenge week 4 - FoEn


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

Blades Runner

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Post Friday, 24th May 2019, 12:51

sudden death challenge week 4 - FoEn

for those who don't know, crawl sudden death challenge (CSDC) is found on http://csclub.uwaterloo.ca/~ebering/cra ... .23/4.html
6 consecutive weeks there is a race-background combo you're encouraged to play, and there are additional challenges, such as worshipping particular gods and getting the 1st rune without going into lair.

CSDC imposes a Formicid Enchanter this week, with the gods Vehumet, Cheibriados, Wu Jian. The challenge is to get to end of Lair with XL<12, and to the end of Vaults with XL<18.

I'm almost certainly going to go with Chei, and I'll try to enter Zot at XL 20.
I'm actually slightly worried about the initial period where I have a speed of 1.3 and no boosts. I spend a lot of time kiting with my Formicide because my hexes keep not applying. OK that's not entirely fair because sometimes my hexes work the first time. However some enemies resist >6 hexes in a row.

One question which isn't really related to the challenge: I have this unidentified artifact spear. It's probably junk, but it could have *contam or the distortion brand or +10 Int, +inv. Would you wield-id it, scroll-id it or neither? On a normal character I'd just yolo wield-id it, but this game I actually mind if that causes a game-over.
https://underhound.eu/crawl/morgue/pete ... cordia.txt
Last edited by petercordia on Tuesday, 28th May 2019, 01:21, edited 2 times in total.

Blades Runner

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Post Friday, 24th May 2019, 13:44

Re: sudden death challenge week 4

I'm in trouble now because I don't have the tools to fight death yaks and they're killing me (I'm down to 11 hp, nearest yak is 2 tiles away.)
I guess I should have memorized dazzling spray.
I wouldn't be in this situation if I wasn't trying to dive & not kill stuff :|
https://underhound.eu/crawl/morgue/pete ... cordia.txt

Vaults Vanquisher

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Post Friday, 24th May 2019, 15:42

Re: sudden death challenge week 4

I got dead early, rather unfortunate sequence.

Skip grinder D:3 --> D:4 is all stone walls. I manual explore in an expanding circle, but still get an iguana behind me + bullfrog skeleton in front. Hex attempts largely fail, I quaff every potion + read out any blank scrolls, nope. Can't win the fight either.

I should have self-shafted. Shafting at ~half health with literally no consumables and no god probably wouldn't end well, but it would have been one last dice roll attempt to live at least. Pretty rough sequence of events though, I've played >500 games and can count the number of deaths like this on one hand. Too bad I was XL 6.

Dungeon Dilettante

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Post Friday, 24th May 2019, 20:06

Re: sudden death challenge week 4

Which of the four spells you start with are the best? I'm not sure which ones to get.

Blades Runner

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Post Friday, 24th May 2019, 21:48

Re: sudden death challenge week 4

Get them all. I went Hibernation -> Confuse -> Tukima's Dance -> Dazzling Spray
Hibernation is a big improvement over Corona, and more mp-efficient than Confuse, which will make the early levels easier. You could probably skip this one if you really want to.
Confuse is useful for almost everything
Tukima's Dance is useful against everything with a weapon. More importantly, it's really fun.
Dazzling Spray is necessary for anything with high MR which you can't run away from. Like Death Yaks

If you want to go Vehm and safe spell levels for conjurations, you can probably afford to only learn Confuse.

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Blades Runner

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Post Friday, 24th May 2019, 22:30

Re: sudden death challenge week 4

In my game I'm close to death. I'm fairly certain that my best option is either
shaft self -> quaff invis if monsters in LOS
or quaff invis -> shaft self

If I go with the first option, a death yak will be able to attack me once, and with the second option I can expect to be attacked twice. If I'm hit I probably die. Can anyone tell me which option is better, or whether I missed something?
My dump: https://underhound.eu/crawl/morgue/pete ... cordia.txt
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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Saturday, 25th May 2019, 00:35

Re: sudden death challenge week 4

I would probably read the ?fear first, if that fails, quaff !invis.
...{MfWnMiAK}TeAMDrIE{FoVMVSFi}{MuVMGhGlVpMo}HaWrSpWz{OgGlTrMo}{CeWnMfBeMiSk}DrEE
{GrFiFoGl}DgEnFeNe{OpGlHuSu}DDArHaCKSpAEGrTmDgFEDsCjGhMoHuVM{HaAMBaEn}{HuMoHOWn}DsWz
DDHu{DgWnGnBe}FeIE{MiEnMfCj}SpNeBaEEGrFE{HaAKTrCK}DsFESpHu{FoArNaBe}FeEE{HOIEMiAE}GrGl

Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Saturday, 25th May 2019, 06:25

Re: sudden death challenge week 4

I believe invisibility won't help much in corridor. I would use shaft. Fear (both spell and scroll) are unlikely to affect death yaks because of high MR. I assume the death yaks are not wounded, otherwise it can make sense to kill them with a wand.
Underestimated: cleaving, Deep Elf, Formicid, Vehumet, EV
Overestimated: AC, GDS
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Blades Runner

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Post Saturday, 25th May 2019, 07:28

Re: sudden death challenge week 4

Thanks for your suggestions everyone.
I did some wiz-mode testing, and it turns out that shafting immediately gave me the best survival chance, at 65%.
(My survival-per-hit chance increased to 70% with invis, and fear had a 45% chance of working.)

I shafted, and now I really need advice.
screenshot8.png
screenshot8.png (73.85 KiB) Viewed 1951 times

I think I should be able to (probably) survive this. I hope to dig a passage and use sleeping/confused/feared weak slimes to stop the stronger slimes from reaching me.
However, I do not understand how waking-up or pushing-past work very well.
I think that when I dig this will make noise and that will wake everyone up?
If I quaff right now, are the slimes likely to do anything useful?
Am I safe as long as the 3 weak slimes adjacent to me don't wake up?
Is there any way for one slime to wake up another slime?
If I dig a passage, and polymorph the nearest slime, will that stop all the other slimes from pushing past (because they'll be of different types)?
These are some of the things I do not understand.

I'm also slightly considering an immolation play. I probably shouldn't do it, and I definitely don't plan to do it before I heal up, but I want to put it out there :P
Character dump is still on https://underhound.eu/crawl/morgue/pete ... cordia.txt

Blades Runner

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Post Sunday, 26th May 2019, 16:54

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - how to block deadly slim

Haha that is a funny picture..... I looked at your dump very quickly, so please don't consider this a most optimal response, but based on what I saw, probably the strongest response I see is:

1) quaff curing potion - why? you're lethally poisoned with 3 HP, you're slowed and the slimes next to you are still asleep.
2) dig into the corner so that only one slime at a time can hit you
3) quaff potion of invisibility, now you'll have at most one slime that'll have a harder time hurting you - probably an optional step
4) use your wand of clouds to fill the room, this will ensure they will all die before they wear you down

You might have to adjust tactics depending on what damage you take, but I doubt you would take much. Worst case scenario, you might need to quaff more healing before you use the wand of clouds. You also don't know for sure what you might see on the other side of the dig, but I think digging into the corner isn't very optional considering your situation. If there is something bad near the other side, at that point you might just want to go invisible and try running away to a safer position overall.

On second look, there are some pretty dangerous slimes in there (the fast moving ones and the paralysis), so I might dig once, then cloud, then dig one more space back and then try to use one of the weaker slimes to block the corridor (sleep and confuse could be useful) while clouds (hopefully) kill the slimes. I'd also consider using the immolation at the point you are two corridor spaces back, but only if you manage to get your health up high enough to withstand at least one blast. A good immolation plus clouds should be enough to take out the whole lot of them, including the ones that you won't be able to kill in a direct confrontation.

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Slime Squisher

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Post Sunday, 26th May 2019, 21:10

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - how to block deadly slim

I rate your chance of survival as low. You obviously need to drink a cure potion. Since you have no way of escaping the already awake death oozes and digging will probably wake the rest of the slimes, I would say you need to kill them and that you are unlikely to do so successfully with clouds. The only way I see to do that is immolation, so I would try curing, read immolation, dig into corner, try to create a gap with hexes, then kill something.

edit: Regarding clouds, this would probably be a wasted turn. The most probable effects will not even damage the slimes and none of them will keep any slimes from approaching you. There is absolutely no chance that you'll kill a death ooze with clouds before it kills you in my opinion. You should use scattershot to get immolation going if the plan above gets that far.

edit 2: Since you probably need to kill the death oozes and you can't do that without creating a lot of noise, you will also need to kill the acid blob. The acid blob will shoot through other slimes, but in the event that you manage to get immolation to work and the acid blob somehow survives the initial explosions, you can't break line of sight because you need the clouds to finish it off and they will disappear if they leave your line of sight. Acid blobs and death oozes see invisible, so don't bother trying to go invisible.
This is where mechanical excellence and one-thousand four-hundred horsepower pays off.

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Blades Runner

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Post Monday, 27th May 2019, 19:37

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - how to block deadly slim

I went with curing - dig - confuse - curing - mutation - immolation - scattershot
screenshot9.png
screenshot9.png (116.44 KiB) Viewed 1796 times

Not sure whether I'm lucky.
I think I need to keep the acid blob in LOS here, though that makes me really scared. Other monsters also heard the explosions :?
I consider going around and sneaking into slime. If there's anything waiting for me there that'd kill me though.

I might need to hurry up, because I only have until Thursday.

For anyone else in CSDC wishing to avoid this situation, 3 pieces of advice:
1 find a way to deal with high-MR enemies
2 shaft early (at high hp)
3 Chei doesn't appear to be good for stabbing

Blades Runner

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Post Monday, 27th May 2019, 20:09

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - how to block deadly slim

This is why I suggested trying to put clouds on the far side of a confused or slept lower level monster in the corner, so the mean ones would be trapped in there with something that could possibly kill them. Of course there was no guarantee what type of clouds you could get, but that's stupid to say there was zero chance because of fire/ice/draining/lightning.. etc most definitely could have hurt them, and particularly if you *finished* with immolation instead of *led* with it. At least if you didn't use a deadly cloud immediately, you had a chance to confuse and sleep blockers and make a getaway. Since you used scattershot and clearly blew away any chance of lower level blockers between you and the bad guys, I'd say you have a slim chance of survival now.

I definitely wouldn't suggest you sit there and hope it won't launch acid at you instead of advancing all the way to you (in fire) and dying before it can make it out of the box. You need to get out of LOS of that thing immediately. Yes, this wastes all but one cloud next to you, but hey... this wasn't my advice. You're probably going to die unless you get really lucky or slam consumables like there's no tomorrow. Step out of LOS, buff up, read a scroll of summoning or get any cheap summons if you can and go ballistic on that thing while it sits on the remaining cloud of fire. Do not try and run away beyond the first step, you'll just waste precious time to use consumables and you'll die for 100% sure.

Blades Runner

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Post Monday, 27th May 2019, 20:32

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - how to block deadly slim

I now I understand your advice a bit better. (Too late :oops:) I still don't understand how I'd get a weak slime between me and the damaging clouds though - most weak slimes die when they spend 1 turn in flames.

The only consumables I have left are potions of might and scrolls of enchant armour - enchant weapon - brand weapon. I can also shoot with an untrained +2 shortbow of velocity (with 2 slaying, so effectively +4) or wield an unidentified artefact spear.
If I can't fight & win, I can try to get into the Slime pits and hope nothing awaits there. There's a 50/50 chance of surviving that based on my wiz-mode testing. I'd have to kill the acid blob when I come out.
EDIT: oops I mistook the Yiyva altar for the Slime entrance. I guess I could convert to Jiva to make the slimes go neutral :lol: That would cost me my god point though. It's the only option I can think of that will probably lead to survival though. A bit of wiz-mode testing appears to have shown that I cannot survive fighting an acid blob.
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Slime Squisher

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Post Tuesday, 28th May 2019, 01:01

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - how to block deadly slim

I'd say this is gg. You need to step back from the flames to avoid death from fire damage. The acid blob has tons of hp somehow, so I don't see how you can kill it. I am amazed that svendre is still talking about using a wand of clouds. You're completely, utterly wrong about this, bud.

Honestly, converting to jiyva might work, though I doubt you'll survive enough turns to do it.

edit: The problem here, I think, is that you needed to read immolation with as many slimes around the acid blob in line of sight as possible. Looking at your long chain of commands and the weird positions of the slimes now vs. the initial screenshot, it seems the acid blob and (crucially) many of its closest friends somehow evaded immolation and this is why it's still alive. That's why I recommended immolation before digging out.
This is where mechanical excellence and one-thousand four-hundred horsepower pays off.

Blades Runner

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Post Tuesday, 28th May 2019, 01:21

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - how to block deadly slim

I walked round the stone to convert to Jiyva, but the Acid Blob disappeared
screenshot10.png
screenshot10.png (117.68 KiB) Viewed 1769 times

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
I have no idea where it went
Still alive somehow
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Slime Squisher

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Post Tuesday, 28th May 2019, 01:26

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - how to block deadly slim

It's next to the crocodile.

edit: The position the OP finds himself in is interesting and raises questions I don't know the answer to:

Q1: How long does it take to renounce religion?

Q2: If he performs a short delay action like removing a ring, which way will the blob pursue him? I would guess it will move southwest, which would be good, but I don't know for sure. Would the noise from digging introduce an element of chance here?
This is where mechanical excellence and one-thousand four-hundred horsepower pays off.

Blades Runner

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Post Tuesday, 28th May 2019, 19:14

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - FoEn

I'm a Formicid, with Antennae 3; I can basically see though walls. I'm fairly certain the Acid Blob forgot about me and wandered off north.
To answer your first question, renouncing a religion and switching to Jiyva is instant. You can do it when slimes are next to you and you won't take damage.

I actually decided not to convert to Jiyva, killed everything coming at me with kill-holes and hexes, and rested to full hp. I then proceeded to explore half the level using self-dug tunnels for save travel. Didn't find any stairs :(. I got to **** piety because I killed so many frogs. I bumped into a death ooze, who noticed me, and I had to use my potion of might to kill him. I had to use my potion of invis to deal with a catoblepas. I was then noticed by a hydra, who repeatedly refused to get confused despite my 55% chance, and whilst I was fighting the hydra the acid blob showed up again. Long story short, the acid blob killed me.
It might have been possible to survive if I had lured the hydra into a kill-hole (so that the acid blob couldn't wander into LOS), or if I had used a scroll of fog to block LOS to the acid blob before he noticed me. Maybe I should have sprayed the hydra with acid or scattershot. Maybe I should have switched to Jiyva as a precaution, or used my enchant armour & weapon scrolls to increase my survival chance. (I didn't because my equipment would be out-dated very soon.)

Regardless, I think Enchanter^Chei sucked. I don't think I'll ever try that again if I want to win.

morgue is here, for anyone interested: https://underhound.eu/crawl/morgue/pete ... 014807.txt

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Halls Hopper

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Post Tuesday, 28th May 2019, 23:21

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - FoEn

I applaud you for trying so hard to save that ant. You, sir, are a better Crawl player than I.

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Blades Runner

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Post Wednesday, 29th May 2019, 01:46

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - FoEn

Too bad... that's the way the cookie crumbles.

Anyways, to clarify - what I was suggesting was to heal, dig out (you're standing in the corner), put clouds down (they would miss the corner space you were standing on), back up again, and if any of the weaker monsters made it to that corner square with no clouds, sleep them, confuse them, etc. to buy time for damage to start inside the box, followed up with immolation, so you could have possibly even stepped back one more before the explosions went off. At the time you would have laid down the clouds, it would have drawn the rest of them towards the corner escape square, so immolate would be a tightly packed explosion on a pile of (hopefully) already damaged critters. Clouds on the entrapped slimes could have damaged them (pushing them over the edge of damage needed from immolate to finish the job. There's literally no argument why they couldn't possibly hurt the slimes, it just depended on some luck. But in either case, as I said, if it didn't damage them, you would still have several weaker slimes bottlenecked at that corner square to mess with to buy yourself time to try and get away or do whatever you can, plus you weren't as committed to making that much noise at a time when you didn't know what was nearby on the outside of the box. It also would have drawn them all tightly toward the corner to maximize immolate when you were ready to light it. Immolate followed by an immediate scattershot wasn't enough damage to kill the worst slime, as you saw. Scattershot doomed your chances of having interfering weaker monsters and that sequence also put you with about zero odds of not being hit with an explosion, versus a chance for it to go off after you stepped back (diagonally) again.

Sometimes it is key to not kill stuff immediately just because you can. Try it with freezing cloud sometime. Disable a monster next to you and let all the stuff behind it freeze to death. It's a little easier with the spell because there is one less step you need to take.

Tea, you can repeat that clouds can't possibly do any damage all you like, but it's not provable, because it's not true. It also was not the full scope of the strategy.
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Slime Squisher

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Post Wednesday, 29th May 2019, 03:14

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - FoEn

My claim was that he could not expect to kill any death oozes with a wand of clouds before getting killed himself. I'm not going to read your ramble about how to wedge a wand of clouds into what is a very simple strategy: Use immolation to blow up a lot of slimes. As far as I can tell, the OP's execution of the immolation strategy was less than ideal and I would attribute his temporary survival to blind luck (and indeed, with correct execution the acid blob that eventually killed him would have gone down), but I can say with confidence it would not have been improved by using a wand of clouds at 1 evocations against monsters that resist or are immune to most of its effects and in any case would easily kill the OP in one round of combat. Then of course, there's the fact that he would need to deal with the acid blob as well, which could kill the OP at range, regardless of supposed blockers, and which I would assume the wand would wake up, another monster that would easily kill the OP before taking enough damage from clouds to make a difference.
This is where mechanical excellence and one-thousand four-hundred horsepower pays off.

Blades Runner

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Post Thursday, 30th May 2019, 00:42

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - FoEn

tealizard wrote:My claim was that he could not expect to kill any death oozes with a wand of clouds before getting killed himself. I'm not going to read your ramble about how to wedge a wand of clouds into what is a very simple strategy: Use immolation to blow up a lot of slimes. As far as I can tell, the OP's execution of the immolation strategy was less than ideal and I would attribute his temporary survival to blind luck (and indeed, with correct execution the acid blob that eventually killed him would have gone down), but I can say with confidence it would not have been improved by using a wand of clouds at 1 evocations against monsters that resist or are immune to most of its effects and in any case would easily kill the OP in one round of combat. Then of course, there's the fact that he would need to deal with the acid blob as well, which could kill the OP at range, regardless of supposed blockers, and which I would assume the wand would wake up, another monster that would easily kill the OP before taking enough damage from clouds to make a difference.



Fun facts:
I didn't notice he had evocations at 1, but anyways without digging through the code, I tried a simple test in wiz mode with evocations at level 1. On the third try I got clouds of freezing. The last cloud dissipated after 20 turns. According to what I understand and have been able to determine looking at code, clouds do flat damage, so that has nothing to do with his evocations skill. Freezing cloud: 6 + (3d16)/3 to monsters (affected by cold resistance). That's a lot of potential damage. Actually, with high evocations, you also get more chance of acid clouds and less fire/ice.

Next, in Wiz mode, I created a slime and confused it, then created an acid blob behind it. Here's what happens: the slime periodically hits the acid blob, or itself, or whatever, as per the usual confusion effect. The confused monster can't move where there is no empty space. The acid blob sits behind the slime, chilling out. It does not push in front of it, and it does not attack the slime. This pretty much debunks your argument that he coudn't have had enough time to kill the acid blob behind a weak confused monster. If all he did was go to the corner and confuse one of the three very weak easily confused monsters to block the more dangerous acid blob, he could have bought a ton of time, maybe even almost indefinitely. This is proof that the odds of surviving longer *without* using scattershot were higher, clouds or no clouds at the back....

We could agree to disagree, but you made it clear you weren't even trying to completely understand what I was saying by not even reading what I wrote. You call it a ramble, perhaps because it is a more complex maneuver, but I don't think players ask for advice for serious situations always needing a simplified answer that even a new player could come up with on their own. I guess it's more like, I just disagree.

Swamp Slogger

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Post Thursday, 30th May 2019, 14:33

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - how to block deadly slim

tealizard wrote:The acid blob will shoot through other slimes

Have you double checked this? In a recent game I used portal projectile + lightning spire, and as I recall, when fighting acid blobs, the acid projectile would hit the spire and stop there without hitting me. So I'm pretty sure the acid shot is a simple projectile, not a bolt, and thus I assume it cannot shoot through slimes.
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Slime Squisher

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Post Friday, 31st May 2019, 04:02

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - FoEn

Yeah, I haven't seen this situation in a while and my recollection may well be wrong about that.

As for this continued question about clouds, if the idea is to simply walk away after hexing an ooze or whatever in the corner to block other monsters, that would be a fine way to go, but spending a turn to use a wand of clouds, which again will most likely damage no monsters, is at best irrelevant. Having more monsters awake, some of which may wander out of the vault while the player is pinned there waiting dozens of turns for the luckiest wand of clouds use in crawl history to kill three death oozes, an acid blob, and an azure jelly (and a priori perhaps more hidden high level slimes we don't see in the initial screenshot), seems ill-advised to me. It's not like he can just teleport out or walk away if things don't go well.

So then we get to the obvious point: if you don't just walk away, then the other option is to kill everything and the only plausible way to do that is immolation. To do the immolation thing right, the player and slimes need to be in a position similar to the one seen in the initial screenshot. Otherwise, you'll have missed slimes and fewer explosions that risk leaving the acid blob alive (which is what actually happened and led to the OP's death). In particular, the player cannot use clouds and then do immolation from that position because explosions will immediately kill him. Ideally, the player uses immolation from that position, backs off through the wall, EH's a trash slime if necessary, backs away again, then scattershots to trigger the explosions -- or just uses scattershot immediately on backing into the corner if somehow nothing follows. Now maybe some slimes will move around and screw you up anyway, but this sequence should kill everything in the vault without exposing the player to any fire damage (which probably could have killed the OP on a bad roll the way things actually played out). Using clouds at any point in this sequence either wastes turns on totally ineffective actions, wakes or kills monsters we'd like to keep where they are, or destroys our ability to control when and where we can do immolation.

So while I may have made some errors of fact in my advice above, I think my overall analysis of the situation basically stands, although I have to admit the hex and walk away approach may have been safer than I thought at first. Walking away and abandoning the level probably would've been pretty safe, but even with the way the OP actually executed my suggestions, it sounds like he would've survived if he had abandoned the level.
This is where mechanical excellence and one-thousand four-hundred horsepower pays off.

Swamp Slogger

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Post Monday, 3rd June 2019, 12:59

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - FoEn

Heh, I like these type of small survival challenges. And Chei is often the god to give them.
Regarding slime situation: I think you should've read ?immo before burrowing into wall, this way you'd have enough fiery bombs around the blob.
If you spot a grammar mistake in my post I will appreciate if you PM it.

Dungeon Dilettante

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Post Thursday, 27th June 2019, 15:05

Re: sudden death challenge week 4 - FoEn

Yeah, immolation is always my go-to tool against the little shi... slimes. Still, it was quite the unpleasant situation and it's great that you managed to wriggle out of it!

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