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[Crawl] (Very) Spoily Questions

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Anonymous
January 2, 2005 8:16:30 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.misc (More info?)

I would like to know about your opinions on (entire game) strategies to
play Crawl. I have made some remarks which follow:

- 9 out of 10 characters die at level 1. I think this can not be
helped. In 50% of my games, RNG puts me in a big room with 12 goblins
and hobgoblins in LOS. I have survived this kind of starting position
only once. (It was yesterday with a DECo.)

- After the 1 level, everything seem to get easy until you reach level
10. Then everything just seem to get too hard to handle. When you start
seeing yaks and horrible things, the Finale of your game has already
begun. How you people, who have escaped with the Orb, manage these
difficulties? (My guess is: with a tons of luck?)

- The middle-game is very incombrehensible. I have very rarely been
able to survive that far, but a level 16 centaur ranger with bows and
throwing skills >20 and all the support of Makhleb is just not powerful
enough to survive any longer. There comes uber monsters like Xtahua or
masses of horrible things and yaks. It is truly frustrating (it is not
easy to get the experience level at 16 and when you have done that, the
RNG says: "You have pestered me for too long! Suffer!!".)

- The Lair, the Orcish Mines, and especially the Elven Halls, they all
have always been too difficult for me. Who could I survive through
them?

- About the endgame: About a your ago, I started a demonspawn fighter.
During the early levels, he got teleport control and sense surroundings
together with enormous amounts of scrolls and wands of teleportation.
After he got the "exalted status" with Makhleb, it was easy to get
runes out of Slime Pits and Snake pits. (I wanted to get the rune out
of Swamp too but I did not have poison resistance that's why I almost
got killed there.) I got a cloak of darkness, and decided to get the
rune out of the Tomb. It was easy too. Just sense surroundings,
teleport on the rune, teleport, pick the rune, choose the upstairs as
your destination, then go up (at the Tomb I also took the most
interesting items out the treasure rooms). With three runes, you can
enter to the Halls of Zot, so I quickly run down to the level 27 and
entered the Halls. I just magic mapped the areas, and literally took
leisurely walks through the levels, then went down. During the levels
1, 2, 3 and 4 I met only few monsters. Only one golden dragon was a
problem, but I managed to get to the level 5. And there I was, at level
5 of the Halls of Zot (first and maybe the last time in my life) with
an experience level 10 demonspawn fighter! (This is why I think warpers
are an interesting class.) Now comes my mistake: I though that I could
just teleport on the Orb, teleport back and pick the Orb, then escape.
I was told that teleport control works on that level. Well, it didn't!!
(Grr...) I was teleported in middle of a storm dragon and a killer
klown etc., with no chance what so ever to survive. How one is supposed
to get the Orb from the middle of those monsters? They seem to be
completely out of depth for any kind of character.

I hope that someone reads this and tells, how to have better chances
with the game.

t. EVV

P.S. Sorry for the grammatical and vocabularical errors in the text,
but English really is not my first language.

More about : crawl spoily questions

Anonymous
January 2, 2005 6:51:57 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.misc (More info?)

esa.vesalainen@luukku.com writes:

>- 9 out of 10 characters die at level 1.

That's a bit much, but Crawl is cruel and there will always
be times that you just can't survive the first level, no
matter what.

>- After the 1 level, everything seem to get easy until you reach level
>10. Then everything just seem to get too hard to handle. When you start
>seeing yaks and horrible things, the Finale of your game has already
>begun. How you people, who have escaped with the Orb, manage these
>difficulties? (My guess is: with a tons of luck?)

Yaks usually aren't a big problem for me... Just don't let more
than one of them get next to you at a time.

I usually do the Mines when I find the entrance. If things get
too dangerous, I retreat. Next comes the Lair, which usually
is quite comfortable. Just be very cautious of spiny frogs.

>There comes uber monsters like Xtahua or masses of horrible things
>and yaks.

Some of the uniques can be very dangerous, yes. Even Sigmund on
dungeon level 1 or 2 is bad. Erolcha can be nasty.

>- The Lair, the Orcish Mines, and especially the Elven Halls, they all
>have always been too difficult for me. Who could I survive through
>them?

Mines: Don't get surrounded. Don't let more than one orc priest
see you at any time. Don't let orcish knights hit you. Kill orc
sorcerors as fast as possible. Don't let trolls hit you.

Lair: Beware of spiny frogs. Fight in corridors, don't get
surrounded. Use the stairs to take one blink frog at a time
with you so you can kill it.

Elven halls: Stay out until you've cleared the Snake Pit, Swamp
and all but the bottom level of the Vaults. Elven halls can be
very dangerous.

>And there I was, at level 5 of the Halls of Zot (first and maybe
>the last time in my life) with an experience level 10 demonspawn
>fighter!

Quite a trick! Of course, that was a death sentence...

>I was told that teleport control works on that level. Well, it didn't!!

It works only after you have the Orb in your inventory. Many
versions ago, you could just teleport to it and pick it up.
My first victory was achieved that way...

>(Grr...) I was teleported in middle of a storm dragon and a killer
>klown etc., with no chance what so ever to survive. How one is supposed
>to get the Orb from the middle of those monsters? They seem to be
>completely out of depth for any kind of character.

I've won 6 times, I think, and 5 times of them I've fought my way
through the monsters. You just have to be very careful, fight one
monster at a time and have the right equipment. Storm dragons can
kill anyone with a couple of breaths if you don't have the
resistance. Killer klowns, Fire orbs and electric golems are very
deadly.

I've had 2 or 3 characters die on Zot 5.

>I hope that someone reads this and tells, how to have better chances
>with the game.

Be very careful, don't get overconfident. Use your equipment
while you still can. Learn to recognize the situations when
it's best to run away and come back later.

-Jukka
--
Jukka Kuusisto
Anonymous
January 3, 2005 1:29:31 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.misc (More info?)

bork bork bork esa.vesalainen@luukku.com bork 2:16:30 PM bork 1/2/2005 bork
bork:

> I would like to know about your opinions on (entire game) strategies to
> play Crawl. I have made some remarks which follow:

I'll try to give answers that don't overlap too much with Jukka's.

> - 9 out of 10 characters die at level 1. I think this can not be
> helped. In 50% of my games, RNG puts me in a big room with 12 goblins
> and hobgoblins in LOS. I have survived this kind of starting position
> only once. (It was yesterday with a DECo.)

<over-precise>DECj.</over-precise> :-)

There are indeed unavoidable deaths on D:1. There are also avoidable ones.
Speaking for DECjs concretely (I've played this particular class so insanely
much I actually got sick of it), I'd say you can work your way up to about a
67% survival rate for level 1. The main thing is to use every trick in the
book to avoid letting them get a hit in -- always make sure you have your
full HP and MP after every battle before you start moving. Always run and
keep them from getting a shot at you if you run out of MP. Keep an eye out
for when you start getting surrounded and run out of the noose (even
"through" it if necessary) while you still can. Line up monsters that have
high evasion so that if you miss one, you may hit another. (This applies for
hunters too.)

The most important newsgroup post for my Crawl-playing skill development EVER
was the following:

http://tinyurl.com/5vkn2 (Link to Google Groups)

It applies even on level 1 (especially as regards hobgoblins, the "ogres of
level 1." Read it, worship it.

One piece of advice not mentioned there: create a central stash. It's a lot
less annoying to go back and pick up the right tool for the right situation
when you have a stash, and the less annoying it is, the more likely you are
to do it. And it will save your life many times.

> - After the 1 level, everything seem to get easy until you reach level
> 10. Then everything just seem to get too hard to handle. When you start
> seeing yaks and horrible things, the Finale of your game has already
> begun. How you people, who have escaped with the Orb, manage these
> difficulties? (My guess is: with a tons of luck?)

I've only gotten the Orb up to level Zot:1, but...

Yaks: Like Jukka said -- only fight 1 at a time. Melee characters: use
Berserk Rage if you can and must. Abuse staircases if you can [1]. Missile
characters: maintain distance if you can. Magic characters: USE your delaying
spells (Conjure Flame [2], Mephitic Cloud, Evaporate, etc.) to maintain
distance, abuse staircases if you can.

Horrible Things: Hmm? These seem a little deep for level 10, though of course
out-of-depth monsters are nothing unheard of in Crawl. What can I say --
either use delaying tactics and/or consumables (wands/potions/scrolls) to
pull through, or avoid that part of the level until you can handle them.

Now unseen horrors on the other hand are unfortunately in depth for D:10. I
usually avoid the part of a level (and unneeded travel on a level) where I've
met and fled from an unseen horror. I only go back to face them when I either
have SeeInvis or I can lure them into a corridor (where I don't have to see
them to kill them) and I can handle a few turns of being whacked at by them.

> - The middle-game is very incombrehensible. I have very rarely been
> able to survive that far, but a level 16 centaur ranger with bows and
> throwing skills >20 and all the support of Makhleb is just not powerful
> enough to survive any longer.

Hunters are tough in general. You have neither the killing/delaying power of
a magic-based character nor the defensive/killing power of a melee-based
character. Centaurs are nice in that they can run, but you can't run forever,
sadly.

> There comes uber monsters like Xtahua or masses of horrible things and
yaks.

Divide and conquer, if you can.

> It is truly frustrating (it is not
> easy to get the experience level at 16 and when you have done that, the
> RNG says: "You have pestered me for too long! Suffer!!".)
>
> - The Lair, the Orcish Mines, and especially the Elven Halls, they all
> have always been too difficult for me. Who could I survive through
> them?

The Lair: Abuse staircases if you can. Pendulum between the Lair and other
branches whenever the Lair becomes too hot to handle (this applies to all
branches, in fact). More than ever, always rest to full health before
continuing. Develop a ranged attack. If you have delaying magics or other
renewable ways of dividing and conquering, use them.

Try to clear the ENTIRE Lair, including the hard-to-reach parts. The extra
experience and goodies will help you later on.

If you can dig connections between unconnected parts, do. This will save you
travel time. Travel Time = Food = Ability to Rest = Life.

The Orcish Mines: Always assume you will be surrounded whenever you enter a
new area -- use your preparing magics or invocations before stepping up or
down that staircase. A magic-heavy character who enters a staircase in the
Mines and is forced to run because they're surrounded will not be able to
safely return until much later than otherwise (they'll still be surrounded
when they return). Keep in mind that if, as a magic-user, you're surrounded
when you go up a staircase, you're unlikely to survive the turn of free
attacks. If you must give up, give up one turn earlier than that can happen.

Never try to solve your problems in the Mines by teleporting unless most of
the level is already cleared. You most likely will land in bigger trouble
than you already had. (This applies for any level, but especially for those
with lots of open space, a high monster "density," and few or no corridors.)

The advice above for the Lair also applies.

The Halls:

Missile characters: No clue.

Magic characters: Hit hard, hit first. Kill them before they can seriously
hurt you. If you can't kill things quickly, you're not ready for the Halls
yet -- leave. (Soldiers, for example, should be dying in 1-2 shots.) Kill
summoners with a passion. Find out how much Elf Power you can handle at once,
and whenever more than that shows up, RUN and leave something behind you to
delay your pursuers. Be somewhat prepared to survive a trip to the Abyss (be
more prepared to kill Demonologists before they can send you there). Be
scared of "open" levels -- hit and run is your best friend in the Halls.

Melee characters: Be very prepared to survive the Abyss. Have an amulet of
resist mutation -- you won't be able to consistently kill summoners before
they summon, and sometimes they summon nexoqecs, which have a mutating
attack. Be very scared of "open" levels. On the bottom level, use wands if
you must to kill summoners at range.

All characters: on the bottom level, clear the entire level before entering
the main hall. This means that if you must teleport, you are less likely to
land in trouble. But try to avoid teleporting anyway... do whatever you can
to fight as few elves as you can.

> - About the endgame: About a your ago, I started a demonspawn fighter.
> During the early levels, he got teleport control and sense surroundings
> together with enormous amounts of scrolls and wands of teleportation.
> After he got the "exalted status" with Makhleb, it was easy to get
> runes out of Slime Pits and Snake pits. (I wanted to get the rune out
> of Swamp too but I did not have poison resistance that's why I almost
> got killed there.)

The Swamp can be done without poison resistance, as long as you are a)
confusion resistant, or b) you are i) not dependent on Berserk Rage (which
prevents the drinking of potions) and ii) have plenty of potions of healing
(to heal confusion -- and keep in mind that !ofHealing are plentiful and
there are few places where they are useful, so you might as well use them
here). Poisoning itself is livable, although the lack of non-poisonous,
non-contaminated [3] corpses in the Swamp means that if you have a "silly"
source of poison resistance, you should bring it along anyway, so that you
can retreat to a safe place occasionally, switch into, say, that
Magic-Hindering Suit of Really Heavy Plate Mail of Poison Resistance, and
have lunch.

(The Hive can be done without poison resistance as well. However, the Hive is
a very convenient source of food when travelling between your stash and the
lower dungeon, and by a convenient source of food, I DON'T mean the
honeycombs and royal jellies at the bottom. My grandmother always told me not
to waste food, and I live by that rule to this day. Bless my grandmother. So
it's best to have at least a "silly" source of poison resistance when you go
there.)

> I got a cloak of darkness, and decided to get the
> rune out of the Tomb. It was easy too. Just sense surroundings,
> teleport on the rune, teleport, pick the rune, choose the upstairs as
> your destination, then go up (at the Tomb I also took the most
> interesting items out the treasure rooms).

No longer possible -- you can't control teleport in the Tomb any more until
you have its rune.

> With three runes, you can
> enter to the Halls of Zot, so I quickly run down to the level 27 and
> entered the Halls. I just magic mapped the areas, and literally took
> leisurely walks through the levels, then went down. During the levels
> 1, 2, 3 and 4 I met only few monsters. Only one golden dragon was a
> problem, but I managed to get to the level 5. And there I was, at level
> 5 of the Halls of Zot (first and maybe the last time in my life) with
> an experience level 10 demonspawn fighter! (This is why I think warpers
> are an interesting class.) Now comes my mistake: I though that I could
> just teleport on the Orb, teleport back and pick the Orb, then escape.
> I was told that teleport control works on that level. Well, it didn't!!
> (Grr...) I was teleported in middle of a storm dragon and a killer
> klown etc., with no chance what so ever to survive. How one is supposed
> to get the Orb from the middle of those monsters? They seem to be
> completely out of depth for any kind of character.

At level 10? Certainly. At level 27? No. Still dangerous, though (dangerous
enough, for example, to kill a DECj with enough experience for a theoretical
level 31 or so, if he lets his guard down).

>
> I hope that someone reads this and tells, how to have better chances
> with the game.
>
> t. EVV
>
> P.S. Sorry for the grammatical and vocabularical errors in the text,
> but English really is not my first language.

I know the situation well -- see my address's top-level domain. No problem.

Erik

[1] Abusing staircases comes in (at least two forms): the obvious one of
luring small groups of monsters up stairs at a time, and the less obvious one
of escaping up one staircase and returning down another, to flank-attack the
horde that was previously surrounding you. (Sorry if I'm using too-rare
English words... in war, a flank attack is a side attack.)

[2] Conjure Flame won't maintain distance with Yaks, as they are not afraid
of fire. However, it WILL burn them every turn they spend in the cloud, so
it's still sometimes a good idea, as long as it's OK to spend a few turns
with a Yak next to you (which, admittedly, it often is not).

[3] Contaminated corpses are the ones that sometimes make you sick (33%
chance IIRC)
Related resources
Anonymous
January 3, 2005 8:12:02 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.misc (More info?)

<esa.vesalainen@luukku.com> wrote in message
news:1104671790.724193.234800@c13g2000cwb.googlegroups.com...
> I would like to know about your opinions on (entire game) strategies to
> play Crawl. I have made some remarks which follow:
>
> - 9 out of 10 characters die at level 1. I think this can not be
> helped. In 50% of my games, RNG puts me in a big room with 12 goblins
> and hobgoblins in LOS. I have survived this kind of starting position
> only once. (It was yesterday with a DECo.)

I don't think 9 of 10 should die on level 1 (exception: ghouls and mummy
fighters. But somebody smarter than me could probably get them going, too).
But yeah, beginnings in Crawl are hard.

> - After the 1 level, everything seem to get easy until you reach level
> 10. Then everything just seem to get too hard to handle. When you start
> seeing yaks and horrible things, the Finale of your game has already
> begun. How you people, who have escaped with the Orb, manage these
> difficulties? (My guess is: with a tons of luck?)

Yaks you should be able to handle the same way you deal with Ogres and Orc
Warriors, which apparently aren't giving you trouble. Just stay away from them.
Throwing poisoned needles (or even using a blowgun!) is useful. If you can do
it, Sting is almost always worth memorizing for these sort of situations, too.

By "horrible things" I'm guessing you mean unseen horrors. They're tough if you
can't see invisible. Try backing them into a corner. They don't have too many
hit points, so if you can figure out where to shoot a blast or two from a wand
of fire or cold should be enough. They're also not poison resistant.
Evaporating a potion of poison or casting Poison Cloud on yourself might be a
good idea if you're out in the open.

> - The middle-game is very incombrehensible. I have very rarely been
> able to survive that far, but a level 16 centaur ranger with bows and
> throwing skills >20 and all the support of Makhleb is just not powerful
> enough to survive any longer.

That's not a very powerful combo, I don't think. If you're having trouble
getting to the middle-game, I'd recommend Spriggans. Stalkers are easier at
first, Spriggan Enchanters are the most fun class in the game. The late game is
very difficult (I did win with a SpEn, but did it by pretty much just running an
end-around past the monsters in Zot, and then teleporting away).

If you want easy the whole way through, try a Troll. Deep Elf Conjurers and
Minotaur Fighters are also relatively easy. For Fighters, I think Okawaru's
probably a better choice than Makhleb. For Conjurers, Vehumet's pretty awesome.

There comes uber monsters like Xtahua or
> masses of horrible things and yaks. It is truly frustrating (it is not
> easy to get the experience level at 16 and when you have done that, the
> RNG says: "You have pestered me for too long! Suffer!!".)
>
> - The Lair, the Orcish Mines, and especially the Elven Halls, they all
> have always been too difficult for me. Who could I survive through
> them?

I think a Troll Berserker would be a good bet. Reading below, it doesn't look
like you're playing the most current version, so I'm not sure how valid any
advice I'd give you would be. The best way to get better at clearing these
areas is really just experience. There's not really a special trick to doing
any of them. Watch out for Spiny Frogs and Deep Elf Demonologists, I guess.

--
Jeremey
Anonymous
January 4, 2005 5:51:26 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.misc (More info?)

Thank you all for your advice! I try to remember it when playing.
t. EVV
Anonymous
January 4, 2005 12:11:09 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.misc (More info?)

A troll fighter is better than a troll beserker.
A trollbeserker has no real advanage over a fighter,because the temple
should be easy to reach with a troll and you get berserk realy fast,while
the troll fighter start with better fighting skills.