Part 58: Mr. Ed, CeHu - OneMr. Ed, Centaur Hunter.
They say the Orb of Zot exists deep, deep down, but nobody ever got it!
We start with leather, two bread rations, standard bow, 25 +1 arrows and... a short sword. Short swords are awful, they're really bad weapons whose only saving grace is the low attack delay won't screw you over even with 0 skill.
A Gnoll on D:1 is uncommon, but they give >2 XP, so they're very lucky finds provided they don't one-shot you. I use the short sword for dispatching weaker enemies like rats and goblins, but at XL 1, I'd draw my bow even for hobgoblins, this quickly changes. I do this because ammunition will commonly break, or mulch, when you fire it, this chance goes down as the enchantment level of the ammo increases. I need these 25 arrows to last me till at least D:5, where I might, if lucky, have 100+ plain arrows that can allow me to be more liberal with them. Still, I want to stack those +0 arrows till I enchant them up for end-game, and so keeping as many as possible is important.
Ed's a Centaur, a race of folk who get a whole slew of bonuses and are generally considered good, with a few downsides. Like Naga, centaurs wear bardings on their lower half instead of boots, though centaur bardings are overall more common. Like Trolls, centaur have a voracious appetite, it's not quite as bad as trolls, but it'll play a huge part of this game.
I do this about every other level, to make sure I haven't missed any arrows, as auto-pickup doesn't normally include them. You can change that setting, but I don't want to for a couple of reasons, none of which are important. I'm picking up bolts, darts, stones and such so I can supplement my ranged capabilities. This is because of the final centaur bonus, they are faster than normal PC's. Most races have speed 10, but centaurs have 13-14 I think, slower oonly than Spriggans.
I hit 4, the dungeon has been eerily quiet, I'm not worried anyway, with centaur speed I can kite most anything and I've more than enough projectiles to whittle away at anything dangerous.
This turns into...
This. Ijyb had two potions that healed him to full, wasting two of my heal wounds potions. I take care to kite and kill, using the nice arrows and everything to prevent any issues from sparking up.
The encounter gives me level 5, and an increase to the two skills that I really want.
The apartment vault, nothing in here is too dangerous for someone who can take the 1 free turn most monsters will get against you.
Oh hello, what's this? I memorize swiftness, and turn on charms to get it castable.
Pity, I have no intent to be able to read any of the three it could be. (This is one of the three big books for necromancy, summoning, or conjurations.)
Finally, the iron cross is in our sights, Ed dedicates his life to the glory of Okawaru, that he might be given lots of ammunition. Oki starts gifting ammo before weapons and armour, so I should have the machine online in a couple of DL's. Later, I find a +2 robe (Int+3, Acc-2) and wear it, making swiftness decently castable (30% failure).
Sewers are lovely places to get XP and kills to raise piety, Behind this and the three other doors there are ~4 Kobolds and a few potions, it ends up giving me a nice haul.
A fake temple vault that has a pair of monsters in it that are of the same race as you (I dunno what they are if there's no monster analogue). Well, I wish that's what it was, it's basically sealed off except for a staircase from the level under it, but there are a pair of centaurs in it. I've already got Oki, so I don't want to risk it against them right now.
That one vault with the big fish and the Merfolk, it gives me my first ammo gift, 15 poisoned arrows. They're nice, but not the most useful.
The entrance to the lair, it's a weird vault.
Still making strides, I kill an ogre (only enemy in this vault, at the end) and hit XL9, I'm training invocations so I can use god abilities without issue.
Welcome to da lair!