Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.


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

Mines Malingerer

Posts: 31

Joined: Friday, 1st April 2011, 19:48

Post Friday, 1st April 2011, 20:04

Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

So I've been playing this game off and on for a year and I'm reaching new levels of frustration. I'm feeling like I'm just getting screwed by the Random Number God, but I know that's against the design philosophy so I'm admitting I may just be making grievous errors. I've played all kinds of characters, from Tr-Ko-HaBe to DEIE to MDFi and SpEn.

The two I linked to: The DEIE died in Vault:2 soon after that dump when he opened a door on a rock troll skeleton and a red wasp two squares away. I had no healing potions as they all got used up in a daring escape in V:1 where I also ran out of all my teleport scrolls. My V:1 welcoming party included a couple dragons, two Yaktuar squads, and two stone giants scattered across the floor, with roving bands of Orc knights and warriors backing them up and perforating me with crossbows and javelins.

The MDFi was less "dignified" and more "dinged". I got surrounded 3 deep soon after the dump in Orc3 without teleport scrolls, and got smited 4 times a turn, died crazy fast.

Looking at the dumps, am I just doing stupid stuff with skills or armor? Should I worship different gods? Should I have more of a certain kind of item that I might be running through too hastily? I can pretty reliably (1 out of 3 with the MD, 1 out of about 2 with the DEIE and much less reliably with the SpEn) get all the way to Lair and at least through a few areas. My order is usually Lair to 7, sometimes clear out the non-vault part of 8, then Orc down to 3, then Hive, Orc 4 if I'm feeling brave (warlords have a 4-0 score on me), then L8 and then on to vaults. I never make it further than that.

I don't think I'm utterly clueless, but what am I missing?
User avatar

Tomb Titivator

Posts: 857

Joined: Monday, 31st January 2011, 23:19

Post Friday, 1st April 2011, 20:36

Re: Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

The dump doesn't show your death.

Mines Malingerer

Posts: 31

Joined: Friday, 1st April 2011, 19:48

Post Friday, 1st April 2011, 20:45

Re: Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

It was a pre-character dump for when i posted a "What next?" query on the roguelikes reddit on reddit.com.

I generally don't dump after a death because I take it as a sure sign to immediately go to bed. :-) Hence why I described the deaths instead.
User avatar

Tomb Titivator

Posts: 857

Joined: Monday, 31st January 2011, 23:19

Post Friday, 1st April 2011, 20:56

Re: Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

You look like you were doing fine.

I'd think by the vaults you'd have enough consumables to take on the things that killed you. If anything a potion of berserk rage could have saved you in both of those situations, or a blinking scroll, or a dozen other things. Often times it's easier to just blow a bunch of consumables and kill your enemies than run.

Snake Sneak

Posts: 111

Joined: Tuesday, 18th January 2011, 17:51

Post Friday, 1st April 2011, 21:06

Re: Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

When you die the game automatically makes a morgue dump file named like "morgue-leattime20-23421351-2323234.txt"

on my computer (a mac) it's Application Support/Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup/morgue
User avatar

Tomb Titivator

Posts: 857

Joined: Monday, 31st January 2011, 23:19

Post Friday, 1st April 2011, 21:07

Re: Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

Also if you drop down some stairs and are surrounded by 3 enemies in melee range it's a bad idea to go back up the stairs because going up some stairs takes quite a while and they'll get a ton of hits on you.

Snake Sneak

Posts: 125

Joined: Saturday, 19th February 2011, 13:39

Post Friday, 1st April 2011, 21:34

Re: Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

If you go down the stairs and 3 enemies are already next you, i guarrentee there are probably 10 more in vision, so you will want to go straight back up.

Mines Malingerer

Posts: 31

Joined: Friday, 1st April 2011, 19:48

Post Friday, 1st April 2011, 21:43

Re: Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

Here's the morgue files for the DEIE, SpEn and another about-the-same-level MDFi.

Lair Larrikin

Posts: 23

Joined: Friday, 1st April 2011, 02:17

Post Saturday, 2nd April 2011, 03:10

Re: Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

1. I agree that you are doing the Vaults too early. I would definitely do Orc 1-3 and Hive before messing with the Vault. I would consider doing the Swamp and Snake before the Vault too, at least the early levels. Their difficulty can vary greatly depending on what you draw. Sometimes the Swamps are nastier than the Snake Pits simply due to NPC spawns. I don't tackle them in any kind of "set in stone" order.

2. Your Dark Elf could have used some more levels in Dodge and Stealth. It is a huge advantage for a caster to not be noticed the moment the monster comes into range. I normally turn Dodge back on after I get Spellcasting up to 7 or so (Mephitic to low hunger) and leave it on the rest of the game. Dodge is easy to train. Just get a bunch of xp and then go find a megabat. Stand there and let it attack you. Your Dodge will march right on up.

3. Poison Bolt is not as good as Poison Arrow. As a worshipper of Vehemut, you should have access to Poison Arrow. Use that instead. If you have to blast something before level 6 spells work properly for you, use Mystic Blast.

4. Not sure about your Summon Demon choice. I don't like that spell myself. Haunt and Shadow Creatures are better at higher levels. Dogs and Scorpions will do for low level summons. Butterflies are great for escape in all kinds of situations.

5. Swiftness + Flight is an awesome combo since it gives you extra move speed. Great for escaping and positioning the enemy. Doesn't look like you had Flight though.

6. Mephitic Cloud is a great disabling spell. Even down in the Vaults. It would have helped against the Wasp (though not vs the simulacrum), as well as those Orcs and Yaktaurs.

7. Your SpEn could have used more stealth and stabbing. If you had found a Disc of Storms, you could have used that to train up your Evoc a bit.

8. Your MDFi looked fine for as far as he got. Looks like he got killed in the Lair tackling too many enemies at once. Use corridors and stairs to avoid that, if you can.

9. Also, as a MD, it doesn't hurt to train your crossbow skills when you can. Beats throwing daggers.

10. Lastly, as an Okawaru worshipper, you can learn magic. It will take awhile to get Spellcasting up and running by just reading scrolls, but it is worth it. Many of the low level spells are very useful to a melee fighter: blink, repel, swiftness, brands, regen. Try to horde a bunch of curse foo scrolls, read them all and then use one Remove Curse to wipe the slate clean.

For this message the author Ann Hal has received thanks: 2
Francis, joellercoaster
User avatar

Zot Zealot

Posts: 1060

Joined: Tuesday, 21st December 2010, 17:22

Location: United Kingdom

Post Saturday, 2nd April 2011, 10:08

Re: Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

Ann Hal wrote:10. Lastly, as an Okawaru worshipper, you can learn magic. It will take awhile to get Spellcasting up and running by just reading scrolls, but it is worth it. Many of the low level spells are very useful to a melee fighter: blink, repel, swiftness, brands, regen. Try to horde a bunch of curse foo scrolls, read them all and then use one Remove Curse to wipe the slate clean.


This is great advice, and bears repeating! Figuring out to hoard scrolls and victory dance with them is a fairly nonobvious thing, but it's super useful for the combat wombats.
I am sure I played flawflessly. This was an utmost unfair death. -- gorbeh

Ziggurat Zagger

Posts: 6393

Joined: Friday, 17th December 2010, 18:17

Post Saturday, 2nd April 2011, 10:53

Re: Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

Ann Hal wrote:Try to hoard a bunch of curse foo scrolls, read them all and then use one Remove Curse to wipe the slate clean.


Even better, take all your armour/jewels/weapons off, then read the curse scrolls. They will fizzle but still train spellcasting, and you save a remove curse scroll.

Mines Malingerer

Posts: 31

Joined: Friday, 1st April 2011, 19:48

Post Saturday, 2nd April 2011, 19:14

Re: Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

Here's a question I'm curious about: I've always raised Spellcasting as my highest magic skill for general casters. Is this a good idea, or should Spellcasting be turned off at a certain point, or be below a most-used spell school like Conjurations or Charms/Hexes?

Mines Malingerer

Posts: 31

Joined: Friday, 1st April 2011, 19:48

Post Saturday, 2nd April 2011, 19:19

Re: Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

Ech, also: For the thin-robe types, is a weapon of protection better than other brands early game, or does the lack of heavy armor make even quadrupling your AC from 2 to 8 somewhat worthless in the early game?
User avatar

Vestibule Violator

Posts: 1459

Joined: Sunday, 19th December 2010, 05:45

Location: New England

Post Saturday, 2nd April 2011, 19:22

Re: Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

Spellcasting should be left on in almost all circumstances. As it increases, you get more spell slots, and you whittle down hunger costs in ever higher levels of spells.

Sometimes you can turn it off temporarily if you're trying to rush one spell school to get a success rate to excellent, or if you're turning everything off to try and train one thing in particular (like your first level in fighting, or shields).

For this message the author mageykun has received thanks:
Francis

Lair Larrikin

Posts: 23

Joined: Friday, 1st April 2011, 02:17

Post Saturday, 2nd April 2011, 19:27

Re: Some general help for a sort-of-newbie.

As a general rule, I do not turn off Spellcasting. The only time I would do so is if I really want to train one specific skill up one rank. Spellcasting is expensive to train and you need it for more slots and reduced hunger anyway. I have found that leaving it on 90%+ of the playing time is necessary to keep up with the spell "improvements" (i.e., going from 4th to 5th to 6th level spells) needed to survive the lower levels.

As for attack brands v. protection brand, that depends on your play style. For a primary caster though, I would take a protection item over an attack brand. My primary casters train fighting for hp and emergencies, but I turn off weapon skills after 1. If I can't kill it with spells, I'd rather run rather than stand and hack away with a +x short sword of whatever. One possible exception would be a poison weapon early on. Those are nice for kiting. But in the long run, I would stick to protection--esp in 0.8 with the AC improvement.

Return to Dungeon Crawling Advice

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 14 guests

Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group.
Designed by ST Software for PTF.