The Let's Play Archive


by TooMuchAbstraction

Part 45: Liquid Pickpocket

Update 45: Liquid Pickpocket

Last time, Friar Tuck took out a number of uniques, culminating in an expensive battle of attrition against Mim, Betrayer of Turin. We lead off that fight by teleporting away his son, Ibun...

...who turns out to be between us and our stash. Well, if we could kill Mim, we can kill Ibun, even if he is non-evil. Like the rest of his family, he's immune to fire and cold, so our activable attack items won't help us, and we don't have the mana to kill him with Orb, so...

You feel righteous!
You were wielding a Whip (Defender) (1d3) (+12,+9) [+4] <+1>.
You are wielding a War Hammer of Extra Attacks (3d3) (+9,+9) <+2>.
You miss Ibun, Son of Mim. You hit Ibun, Son of Mim (17). You hit Ibun, Son of Mim (16). Ibun, Son of Mim tries to make you move slowly. You avoid the effects!

Nothing says a priest can't get their hands dirty. Mind, Ibun's last melee attack can cause disenchantment, reducing the pluses on our gear...but realistically all we'd lose is a bit of AC, which we mostly don't care much about.

You miss Ibun, Son of Mim. You hit Ibun, Son of Mim (15). You miss Ibun, Son of Mim. Ibun, Son of Mim misses you. Ibun, Son of Mim misses you. Ibun, Son of Mim misses you. Ibun, Son of Mim hits you. Your Set of Leather Gloves was disenchanted!

See? Oh no, our AC dropped from 96 to 95!

Okay, he does hit our War Hammer, dropping its to-hit and to-damage by 1 point each; that's a bit more annoying.

You hit Ibun, Son of Mim (17). You miss Ibun, Son of Mim. You miss Ibun, Son of Mim. Ibun, Son of Mim flees in terror!
Your Iron Shot of Acid (1d4) (+2,+2) dissolves Ibun, Son of Mim (55). Ibun, Son of Mim screams in agony. Ibun, Son of Mim flees in terror!
Your Iron Shot of Acid (1d4) (+2,+2) dissolves Ibun, Son of Mim (55). Ibun, Son of Mim dies.

Total damage to our gear: 4 points of AC and +1 to-hit/dam on our War Hammer. Total consumables used: none. That's a clean victory in my book.

Ibun's drop:

Our first Blessed weapon! "Blessed by the gods" just means that priests can use the item without any penalty, even if it's pointy. The +1 WIS gains us 14 SP (to 82), which is nice; protection from stunning is not a big deal right now though. Honestly I'd rather have the passives from our Defender Whip, especially the regeneration. It's nice to know that we're getting into the WIS scores where our SP will start taking off, though.

Off to the east, we find another pesky unique to take down:

Azog, King of the Uruk-Hai! No doubt peeved at the death of his son. Flavor text:

He is also known as the King of Khazad-dum. His ego is renowned to be bigger than his head.

Azog should be pretty easy; he's fast, but he's not immune to our dragonfire, and Orb will tear his evil face apart. The main problem is getting him to come after us. If we were a mage we could just turn the intervening door into mud, but as a priest we just have to wait for him to wake up and break it down.

You hear a door burst open!

There we go. Of course, we can't see Azog yet, but that won't stop our offense; spells never miss.

It grunts with pain.
You breathe fire. It cries out in pain.
You feel resistant to cold! It grunts with pain.
It grunts with pain.
It cries out in pain.
It cries out in pain.
It screams in pain.

There you are! And just 20% of your health left, too.

Azog, King of the Uruk-Hai is hit hard. Azog, King of the Uruk-Hai flees in terror!
You hear a scream of agony!

No problem. His drop is just a {magical} pair of boots, though. Kind of paltry for a king, isn't it? Maybe Mim stole his crown?

On the plus side, killing his escorts gets us to level 28 (168 HP, 71 SP), and the room they were guarding had this on the floor:

Awright! Let's chug this sucker!

You feel very sickly. You feel very wise!

I'll take that trade. Down to 167 HP, but up to a whopping 113 SP! Holy cow! Our minimum failure rate is now 3%, too. The reason for the massive gain is that our internal WIS stat got its first "above 18" bonus, going from 18 to 18/34, which in turn took our effective WIS stat from 18/70 to 18/104. In practice we gained 3 points of effective WIS from a single potion. Nice.

The Blessed Rapier still only gains us 14 SP, and percentage-wise that looks a lot less important now. We'll just chuck the thing. Between our considerably-larger mana pool and regeneration from our Whip, we should be able to sling a lot more spells around now.

The last corner of the map has some Vibration Hounds (which breathe sound, naturally) and a pack of Gnome Mages. The Hounds are a bit of a pain since sound breath causes stunning (naturally, immediately after we ditched a weapon that provides protection from stunning), but there aren't too many of them, so we just tank the hits and keep trying to cast until we overcome the increased spell failure rate.

Naturally the chest is trapped, and naturally we trigger the trap, losing a point of STR Nothing worthwhile in the chest either.

That's it for the level, so we make our way back to our stash. We can leave the Defender Two-Handed Great Flail behind now, since we have a much lighter version. I still think it's absurd to have a weapon that weighs 28 freaking pounds, but I guess realism is not exactly Angband's strong suit.

Heading to the next level, here's what Tuck looks like:

We're nearly 50 pounds overweight, putting us at -3 speed. Much of this stuff needs to get dropped as soon as we arrive. We're keeping the Drain Life wand around on the off-chance that we find a Scroll of Recharging, since we don't have anything else worthwhile to spend it on. Odds are it'll blow up, though.

Better rings would be welcome, but otherwise we're doing quite well on the equipment front!

Drained STR

Everything important for this depth is covered. Let's rock!

You enter a maze of down staircases. (to 1500')

Under attack before we can drop our stash. Stupid Gnome Mages!

You breathe fire. 12 Gnome mages die.

Take that!

Better. And there was a Potion of Brawn in the loot!

You feel very clumsy. You feel very strong!

Up to 18/32 internal STR, or 18/22 actual. Our stats are now hilariously min-maxed. And we haven't had a single STR <-> WIS swap yet!

Down in the southwest is a special room: a mushroom farm.

We find a Mushroom of Vigor here, to go with the one I forgot to mention finding on the previous level. Their restore-all-stats ability is valuable mostly for dealing with Time Hounds or if we get cornered by some Dreads (who come in groups, move through walls, and hit to drain STR, as you may remember). That's enough to make them worth hoarding though.

Bleh. Purple Worm. Acidic melee attacks, plenty of HP, and not evil. It takes us two tries to cast Teleport Other (current failure rate: 35%), but that's still preferable to actually trying to kill one of these things.

Heeeeyyyyy...a thief pit! This should be fun.

We have a pack of adventurers coming up behind us, but they're a secondary priority, honestly. Our first priority is to try out Dispel Evil.

8 Cutpurses dissolve! 10 Bandits dissolve! The Master rogue shuddes. The Easterling champion shudders. The Easterling champion flees in terror!

1d84 damage to every evil monster in LOS, baby. It's a shame the damage spread is so wide, but the potential damage is pretty good (it's 3x your character level), so repeat castings can take down large groups of evil monsters in a hurry. On the other hand, it's 20 SP per cast, and currently at a 40% failure rate.

We switch in our War Hammer of Extra Attacks to melee down the rest of the thieves, rogues, and miscellaneous ne'er-do-wells. One of the Master Rogues steals 4k AU from us and takes off; we'll want to track him down later since he's also carrying a bunch of drops from the other monsters. Besides that, though, we pick up 2 Potions of Speed, a couple Potions of Restore Mana, a Ring of Strength <+2>, a Potion of Brawn, and...

The Master thief misses you. The Master thief hits you. The Master thief hits you. Your purse feels lighter. 4690 coins were stolen! The Master thief hits you. Your War Hammer of Extra Attacks (3d3) (+8,+8) was stolen! There is a puff of smoke!


I guess it's a good thing I'd switched back in our Defender Whip for the loot analysis.

Regarding that Potion of Brawn, I think our STR is actually good enough for the moment, especially with that Ring of Strength replacing our old Ring of Light. No sense risking it dinging our WIS score, after all.

We finally track down the Master Thief; he fled to our stash!

Sneaky bastard. Still, he can't take even a single Orb to the face without falling over.

Weirdly, the Master Rogue that fled from us earlier is nowhere to be found. Oh well; he only took money and some of the loot from the Thief Pit. The important thing is that we got our War Hammer back.

We pick up our stash; now it only puts us at -1 speed to carry it all! Most of that is due to the 6 Staves of Identify. Between those and the scrolls we've found, we now have 56 uses of Identify. When I started this game I thought Identify would be at a premium, but it seems to be reasonably common now -- or else we've just been lucky. It helps that our pseudo-ID is nigh-instantaneous now, which means we can pick up and then discard practically every piece of equipment we find, most of which are {average} or {magical}.


You enter a maze of down staircases. (to 1550')

Nice and quiet. That room to our northwest is interesting, but we can't find out what's inside without trying to disarm a trap door, and given our past history with traps, I'm reluctant to make the attempt.

We find a couple of Scrolls of Enchant Weapon To-Dam, which we burn on our Sling (now (+5,+9)). Then

You are getting weak from hunger!

Whoops I have a tendency to forget to eat while I'm playing, and we no longer have Slow Digestion to help us out. It doesn't help that the hunger indicator is way down at the bottom of the screen, where I hardly ever look. Easily fixed by casting Satisfy Hunger, though.

You are full!

We blast through the trolls in the room to our east, head south, and find a couple of Misty Potions...of Intelligence Oh well.

You feel very smart!
You feel very smart!

Congratulations, Tuck, you're now up to 8 INT! Pretty soon you'll have average intelligence!

Sangahyando and Angamaite of Umbar, two Black Numenoreans who are only really notable for having identical stats, always showing up together, and being able to cast Amnesia. But our saving throw is 72% so that's unlikely to be a problem. Aggravatingly, they resist fire, but hey, at least they're evil!

We try to sneak through to the other side of the room, but Sangahyando wakes up.

Waking Angamaite with an Orb, we Phase Door and land on the other side of the room.

With Angamaite awake, we can focus fire on Sangahyando and get Angamaite with the splash damage.

Sangahyando of Umbar is hit hard. Angamaite of Umbar is hit hard. It grunts with pain. Sangahyando of Umbar tries to make you move slowly. You avoid the effects! Angamaite of Umbar tries to make you move slowly. You avoid the effects!

Twins! Also there's something else in the room, but who knows what it is. Probably a mold or something since it doesn't seem to be move.

Sangahyando of Umbar is hit hard. Angamaite of Umbar is hit hard. It grunts with pain. Sangahyando of Umbar flees in terror! Sangahyando of Umbar tries to cast a spell, but fails. Angamaite of Umbar tries to cast a spell, but fails.

I swear, it's like the Two Stooges here

Angamaite of Umbar is hit hard. It grunts with pain. Sangahyando of Umbar dies. Something makes scary noises. You are terrified!

Okay, what's doing that?

You are surrounded by a white light. The Vampire wakes up.

...oh, a Two-Headed Hydra. Eat Ring of Ice, hydra!

You feel resistant to cold. The 2-headed hydra freezes and shatters!

The Vampire eats two Orbs and topples over, and we get back to blasting Angamaite. He manages to stagger into melee range, but only for one turn -- the next turn his health is brought low enough to make him flee. He never did manage to pin us with a successful status ailment.

Our reward is nothing much; we get a pair of Mithril Gauntlets [6,+6] that are an improvement over our old gloves (now that we don't care about equipment weight so much, anyway), but that's it. But hey, another pair of uniques killed without using any consumables! Looking good!

On the other side of the dungeon, just lying on the floor, we find some new armor:

Armor of Resistance is handy, though we don't actually need the resistances right now, it's 10 pounds heavier than our current armor, and we'd lose the dragonbreath activation. Still worth adding to our stash, if nothing else.

We find a Ring of Lightning, which can replace our Ring of Ice; electricity resistance is slightly more rare than cold resistance by my reckoning.

In this room, a Ranger summoned animals at us and pulled a Nexus Hound; we breathed fire at the abomination and destroyed it before it could replace, say, our WIS (internal score 18/34) with our DEX (internal score 8). Speaking of DEX, there's a pair of Gold Potions of Dexterity in one of the chambers. Score!

You feel very dextrous!
You feel very dextrous!

Marginally less min-maxed!

A suit of Blue Dragon Scale Mail. Tempting, but we'll pass -- its breath activation only does 150 damage (compared to 200 for Red DSM), and lots of undead are vulnerable to fire.

Level done, we recover our stash and move on to the next.

We sure have a lot of spare spellbooks now. Probably we don't need to hoard so many, but if we got blindsided by, say, a pack of Fire Hounds, then our books could get burned up fast. Since we're setting up a stash each level anyway, it doesn't hurt us much to carry lots of spares.

Wandering around, minding our own business, we turn down a corridor and

Something commands you to go away.

Dumped into a room with a Five-Headed Hydra, and it's awake! And I ditched our Ring of Ice, so we can't freeze it Still, firebreath does in about half its health, the Ring of Lightning takes off a good chunk of the remainder, and Orb kills the thing while it flees. Hydras are nasty things, but having a few nukes on your side greatly simplifies fighting them. Of course, their money drops are totally pointless to us.

The monster that teleported us was most likely a Nexus Quylthulg, and it'll be near-impossible for us to fight. We can't detect it from a distance, after all. At least it doesn't have Teleport Level, so we don't have to worry about getting separated from our stash.

Sadly, nothing else of interest happens on the level. Next!

You enter a maze of down staircases. (to 1650')

Ahh, so nice to see so many evil monsters around, ripe for the Orbing.

One room after setting up a stash, we find an interesting item on the floor:

Check that recharge time -- we could actually use this multiple times in a single fight. Is it worth sacrificing an inventory slot for? Maybe! We'll carry it for now anyway.

Another Thief Pit, this time with 3 Master Thieves in it. Unfortunately all thieves can open doors and many of them move quickly, so we're unlikely to be able to get line-of-sight on most of the pit and dissolve it with Dispel Evil like we did last time. Still, Orb will mop things up trivially.

Some White Wolves jam things up. Stupid wolves, getting in the way, slowing us down. I guess they slow the thieves down too.

Welcome to level 29. You hear a scream of agony! You hear a scream of agony! The Master thief is hit hard. You hear a scream of agony! It screams in agony. It writhes in agony. The Master thief flees in terror! The Master thief dies. 2 White wolves die.

(175 HP, 117 SP)

The Brigand tries to pick up a Lead-Filled Mace (4d3), but fails.

Oh, excellent. Monsters are unable to pick up items that either can slay them or are artifacts, so that mace should be worth checking out. Also, LOS on the pit!

14 Cutpurses shudder. 3 Bandits shudder. 2 Brigands shudder. The Master rogue shudders. 13 Cutpurses flee in terror!

Guess we rolled low on the dispel effect this time. Blast. And we don't have enough SP to cast it again. Oh well; two Orbs (which we can afford, just) do in almost the entire pit; the remnants fall to melee.

You have a Lead-Filled Mace (4d3).
You feel the Lead-Filled Mace in your pack is excellent...
You have a Morning Star (2d6).
You feel the Morning Star in your pack is excellent...

No artifacts, oh well. In fact, the Lead-Filled Mace just has Slay Evil, and is too heavy to be a practical weapon for us anyway. I was hoping for a Holy Avenger

(The Morning Star is just Slay Orc)

We also find a Ring of Acid; less damage than the Ring of Lightning, but even fewer monsters resist it...sure, why not?

In the very next room, we get a chance to try it against this asshole:

Colbrans are jerks. Flavor text:

A man-shaped form of living lightning, sparks and shocks crackle all over this madly capering figure, as it leaps and whirls around and about you.

Why they're golems instead of elementals, I have no idea, but Colbrans are fast, cast lightning bolts half the time, have two damaging electrical melee attacks the other half the time, and have a ridiculous 520 HP. And the kicker? They're native to 1350 feet. Very few characters can cope with a Colbran when they first start showing up.

Our dragonbreath and Ring of Acid take off a bit over half this one's health. Naturally, they aren't evil, but we can still Shoot 'n Scoot it to death with Orb after that.

A bit later, I finally figure out why we've been detecting a pack of Werebears in the middle of the dungeon all this time.

Beorn, the Shape-Changer claws you. Beorn, the Shape-Changer claws you. Beorn, the Shape-Changer bites you. Beorn, the Shape-Changer crushes you.

Beorn's not evil. His escort is, but he isn't! Also, ow. Also, his flavor text, since I forgot it with Freude and both Brysons.

Beorn is only occasionally seen in human form these days, preferring to appear in the shape of a giant black bear: he also prefers the company of beasts to that of humans. He has never taken kindly to strangers, even in human form - and still less when in bear's shape, as he is now.

We could probably kill Beorn now. He has no spells whatsoever; he's merely fast, escorted, and has a painful melee. But I want better terrain; if nothing else, we're too close to his escort (who are in the east-west corridor to our northeast). So we cast Portal to get away.

And teleports like this are why Portal is effectively Teleport Self.

Beorn's probably in that elbow in the corridor to our north; I just know we won't be able to lure him into the corridor we're in except by heading all the way to the eastern room. Oh well.

Okay, or near enough as makes no difference. We chug a Potion of Speed to reach speed parity (we currently have 7 of the things stocked up), and start with our ring and dragonbreath; Beorn doesn't resist anything.

You feel yourself moving faster! You have 6 Vermilion Potions of Speed.
You breathe fire. Beorn, the Shape-Changer grunts with pain.
You feel resistant to acid! Beorn, the Shape-Changer grunts with pain. Beorn, the Shape-Changer misses you. Beorn, the Shape-Changer misses you. Beorn, the Shape-Changer bites you. Beorn, the Shape-Changer crushes you.

And now we play the Shoot 'n Scoot game.

By the time our mana is half-gone, so is his health. We'll run out before he dies, but maybe our Rod of Drain Life will tip the balance. Or our acidic Iron Shots.

Your Iron Shot of Acid (1d4) (+2,+2) dissolves Beorn, the Shape-Changer (75). Beorn, the Shape-Changer grunts with pain.

Yeah, that should help. For comparison, Orb of Draining currently does 43+3d6 damage against non-evil targets.

Your Iron Shot of Acid (1d4) (+2,+2) dissolves Beorn, the Shape-Changer (70). The Iron Shot of Acid breaks. Beorn, the Shape-Changer squeals in pain.
Beorn, the Shape-Changer shrieks in pain. Beorn, the Shape-Changer flees in terror!
Your Iron Shot (1d4) (+4,+5) hits Beorn, the Shape-Changer (32). Beorn, the Shape-Changer cries out feebly.
Your Iron Shot (1d4) (+4,+5) hits Beorn, the Shape-Changer (36). Beorn, the Shape-Changer dies. The Iron Shot breaks.

Victory! And it just cost us a few shots and a Potion of Speed. A damned sight better than the fight against Mim. Beorn drops {magical} Blue Dragon Scale Mail and a {magical} War Hammer, both junk.

And now to deal with Beorn's escort.

All those bears can take a serious beating, but we have enough mana to wipe them out in one pass.

And that does it for this level.

You enter a maze of down staircases. (to 1700')

Looks like some interesting rooms here. Which we'll tackle next update, along with a serious bout of drinking.