Part 63: Tollymain, SpAs - TwoThe Misadventures of Tollymain: Part 2
So, our sprightly little hero found his place in life; that is, as a face-ripping violent barbarian.
I exited the Ecumenical Temple, taking a snapshot of the entry vault as I did. I tooled around the level for a bit stabbing hobs and what not until I noticed an unused stairway going up and decided to check it out. Bad idea.
Yeah that hurt a lot. Those gnolls pounded me, and followed my bony fairy ass down to the next level. While I was escaping from them a centaur rolled up and pincushioned me, but I managed to survive by ducking down a stairwell.
After exploring a couple rooms, I found Sigmund.
Thankfully, he was asleep and easy prey. Sigmund can cast Confuse, Magic Missile, Throw Flame, and Invisibility. He's an utter bitch to fight early on in some games, especially if you're frail (like say, a spriggan) or if he spawns with a wand of some sort.
After a bit more pottering around, I went back up, hoping the gnolls had split up after I'd left. They had, to some extent.
These two were together, but neither really noticed me and I got very lucky with my stabs.
This is Berserk Rage
Berserk Rage, if I recall correctly, doubles your speed. It also adds a 1d10 damage bonus to every hit you make. Afterward, it slows you and may even cause you to pass out. Trog protects you from this to some extent.
During the last few fights I'd been training Short Blades some more. The good news: the centaur's XP got me to rank 5. The bad (only in a way though) news: the centaur's XP pushed me a bit farther than that.
... I'm going to be using that emoticon a lot in my LPs. I frankly suck at Crawl. It's not a matter of knowledge. I abuse the knowledge bots for every scrap of information I can. It's just that I tend to gamble and do stupid things without thinking it through and you only get lucky so many times.
Use-IDing my first wand on a zombie rat. That having failed to produce a more wanted result, I went ahead and shanked the oblivious little thing. Wands of digging are great, really. Especially with savvy stabbers. I just really like having a wand of cold/flame/lightning/draining as a backup.
A short while later, my OCD-ish tendencies finally let me rest. I switched Stealth back on. Stealth is, as I've probably said earlier, the one linchpin of the SpAs strategy. The backstab is incredibly potent, but you only get one shot unless you want to flee and try track the fucker down later. Not something I really do very often. The case of those gnolls was an exception, and I didn't really wait long enough.
Decided to go back and take out those uniques. Grinder died to a judiciously applied Berserk.
Pikel was admittedly a dumb idea, but I went after him anyway. This room is full of fairly intelligent and potentially loud creatures. Thankfully, only one of them did, and did so quietly:
Pikel went down to a single shanking. When Pikel dies, his slaves become friendly-neutral. They won't follow you or save you from anything (barring accidental movements into enemies) but they won't attack you either. This opened up an opportunity for this:
Let's just pretend that picture isn't gratuitous and that I'm showing what freed slaves look like.
Blork the Orc. I'm honestly not sure what his shtick is other than being somewhere between an orc and an orc warrior in difficulty. He usually has a decent weapon, occasionally supplemented with a wand.
Oh. Is he a magic-user? I've never really noticed it before. His spells aren't too obvious then, I guess. Checking the bots, it seems he can haste himself. All right then.
I got tired of waiting for a scroll of detect curse and just wield-IDed the weapons I was carrying.
These were the viable-looking results. All of these are great weapons in the early, middle, and even to some extent the end-game. Electricity is just plain good for killing shit, proccing 1/3 of the time for an additional 9+d15 damage. That's a hell of a lot early on. It is not effective on things that have rElec or are flying, something to keep in mind. Venom is great in the beginning, because most living enemies are going to die very quickly if you can poison them multiple times in a row. And it has a whopping 50% chance of poisoning the enemy on each strike. Draining is powerful on living creatures as well, with a 2/3 chance of doing an extra 25% damage and a chance to drop the creature's health by 2-4 hp permanently. Weak in the late game, but by then you have options. We're in the early game where oftentimes you take what you can get.
I surprisingly do have some options here. First I'm going to use them a bit so I can learn the enchantment bonuses on them. Every time you use a weapon, you have a (weapon skill)% chance of learning how accurate/damaging (or not) the weapon is.
A phantom. I decide to leave him alone for now. They hit pretty hard and are pretty hard to hurt. They can be extremely easy or difficult to get away from, depending on which direction their random blinking takes them.
A surprisingly small amount of hitting things with daggers later, I get the verdict. Not terrible, not amazing. It's mostly the brands that are the draw here. I drop the vanilla dagger. The slight enchantment difference isn't enough to make up for the lack of a brand.
Ironically, I immediately run into a weapons shop. Shops won't buy random dungeon trash from you, preventing you from hoovering the place for enough cash to buy that +15 triple sword of overcompensating. The joint is pretty useless to me though:
I find a kickass robe. I really, really like some of the new robe designs that have popped up in the game. It's also +1, so it's a no-brainer to wear it instead of my silly original +0 one.
I'm starting to get a little cocky, really. I'm kind of bulldozing everything that's of proper depth on this level. So I decided to go back and take on that phantom with my dagger of electrocution.
Sadly, I do not survive the attempt. Looking back, I should have just run from him once my health got low, but I was just so sure that the next blow was going to drop him. Even fired off a potion or two to recover health, which should have been my biggest warning. Hubris is a bad thing in Crawl, and probably kills a good third of my characters who make it to the Ecumenical Temple.
So, what should