View Full Version : No inventory, no equipment, no stores, no artifacts, Ironman

December 18, 2009, 09:06
I participated in competition #75, which was my first attempt(s) at
running an Ironman character. I normally challenge myself by playing
birth-no-artifacts -- I had been meaning to try Ironman, but somehow
never got around to doing it; the contest provided that extra push.
I managed to run a character all the way to defeating Morgoth (although
not in time for the end of the contest).

Unfortunately, having done that, I knew there was only one choice left for
me: I knew I was now going to have to run Ironman with birth-no-artifacts.
And in fact, since Ironman no-artifacts is probably already impossible,
I might as well go all the way since it would only be a little bit harder
and mostly only at the start: I resolved to run a character with *all* of:

. c) Start with more money instead of equipment : yes (birth_money)
. j) Restrict the use of stairs/recall : yes (birth_ironman)
. k) Restrict the use of stores/home : yes (birth_no_stores)
. l) Restrict creation of artifacts : yes (birth_no_artifacts)

and as my very *first* action, I take the stairs down (no scrounging
around the town looking for stuff), arriving in the pits of Angband
with no equipment, no inventory, no prospect of any artifacts, and
no way out.

Admittedly, starting with no equipment is mostly for show, since what
it really means is that I just keep running characters that die of
starvation (or other means) until I eventually get one that is lucky
enough to find stuff early enough to be able to keep going. Starting
with one torch and one ration of food would be more honest. But I had
to admit that starting off buck naked has a certain appeal.

I decided to go with a dwarf paladin: tough enough to survive the
first few levels fighting bare handed, good spells (prayers) down
the road, and resist-blindness is very handy in a no-artifacts

As expected, I pretty quickly burned through my first half-dozen
attempts. Eventually, I had a character find a torch and a stack
of 4 mushrooms reasonably quickly, and I was good to go.

This run was really hard and really time consuming, but I managed to
go all the way with it. The victory is a little tainted in my opinion
since I was more or less forced to rely on breeding black oozes to
replenish my stocks of consumables on more than one occasion. Since
this is pretty much the in-game equivalent to using wizard mode to
generate objects, it was unsatisfying to use it. But now that I know
it is even possible to do this at all (something I wasn't too sure of
when I started), perhaps I can do it again a little more cleanly.
This was done with, and I'm sure the object generation method
in that version (i.e. object_level = max(monster_level,dungeon_level))
helped make it easier. I'll have to try again once the current flurry
of changes slows down a bit.

================================================== ========================

[Angband 3.1.1 dev Character Dump]

Name Brak Self RB CB EB Best
Sex Male Age 47 STR! 18/100 +2 +3 +5 18/200
Race Dwarf Height 48 INT! 18/100 -3 -3 +1 18/50
Class Paladin Weight 141 WIS! 18/100 +2 +1 +4 18/170
Title ***WINNER*** Social Respected DEX! 18/100 -2 +0 +6 18/140
HP 1038/1038 Maximize Y CON! 18/100 +2 +2 +6 18/200
SP 376/376 CHR! 18/100 -3 +2 +0 18/90

Level 50 Armor [20,+128] Saving Throw 100%
Cur Exp 10331410 Fight (+35,+21) Stealth Excellent
Max Exp 10331410 Melee (+52,+35) Fighting Legendary
Adv Exp ******** Shoot (+47,+22) Shooting Heroic
MaxDepth 5000' (L100) Blows 5/turn Disarming 65%
Turns 4150465 Shots 1/turn Magic Device Heroic
Gold 935217 Infra 90 ft Perception 1 in 18
Burden 172.6 lbs Speed 24 Searching 39%

You are the only child of a Dwarven Prison Guard. You are a credit to
the family. You have dark brown eyes, wavy brown hair, a two foot
beard, and a dark complexion.

rAcid:......+...... rConf:.........+...
rElec:......+...... Sound:.........+...
rFire:......+...... Shard:........+....
rCold:......+...... Nexus:....+........
rPois:....+........ Nethr:.............
rFear:+........+... Chaos:.............
rLite:............. Disen:........+....
rDark:......+...... S.Dig:.............
rBlnd:............+ Feath:.+...........

PLite:............. Aggrv:.............
Regen:............. Stea.:....+.++.....
ESP:.......+..... Sear.:....+........
Invis:+............ Infra:....+.......+
FrAct:.+........... Tunn.:.............
HLife:........+.... Speed:..+.+......+.
ImpHP:............. Blows:.............
ImpSP:............. Shots:.............
Fear:............. Might:.+...........

[Character Equipment]

a) a Maul (Holy Avenger) (4d4) (+17,+14) [+1] (+4)
+4 wisdom.
Slays evil creatures, undead, demons.
Provides resistance to fear.
Sustains wisdom.
Blessed by the gods. Grants the ability to see invisible things.

Combat info:
5 blows/round.
Average damage/hit: 60.4 vs. evil creatures, 71.9 vs. undead, 71.9
vs. demons, and 48.9 vs. others.

b) a Long Bow of Lothlorien (x3) (+12,+22) (+2)
+2 dexterity, shooting power.
Cannot be harmed by acid, fire.
Feather Falling. Prevents paralysis.

c) a Ring of Speed (+11)
+11 speed.

d) a Ring of Constitution (+6)
+6 constitution.
Sustains constitution.

e) an Amulet of Trickery (+4)
+4 dexterity, stealth, infravision, speed.
+20% to searching.
Provides resistance to poison, nexus.
Sustains dexterity.

f) a Lantern (Everburning)
Cannot be harmed by fire.
Radius 2 light. No fuel required.

g) Leather Scale Mail of Elvenkind (-1) [10,+21] (+2 stealth) {dark}
+2 stealth.
Provides resistance to acid, lightning, fire, cold, dark.
Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.

h) an Ethereal Cloak of the Magi [0,+29] (+1) {esp}
+1 intelligence, stealth.
Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.
Sustains intelligence.
Grants telepathy.

i) a Small Metal Shield of Preservation [4,+24] {shards,disenchant}
Provides resistance to shards, disenchantment.
Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.
Sustains strength, dexterity, constitution.
Stops experience drain.

j) a Golden Crown of Serenity [0,+15]
Provides resistance to fear, confusion, sound.
Cannot be harmed by acid.

k) a Set of Gauntlets of Power (+2,+5) [3,+10] (+5)
+5 strength.

l) a Pair of Iron Shod Boots of Speed [3,+14] (+9)
+9 speed.

[Character Inventory]

a) 5 Holy Books of Prayers [Words of Wisdom]
b) 5 Holy Books of Prayers [Chants and Blessings]
c) 2 Holy Books of Prayers [Exorcism and Dispelling]
d) a Holy Book of Prayers [Ethereal Openings]
Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.

e) a Holy Book of Prayers [Godly Insights]
Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.

f) 29 Potions of Cure Critical Wounds

When drunk, it heals you a large amount (1/4 of your wounds, minim
um 30HP), heals cut damage, and cures stunning, poisoning, blindne
ss, and confusion.

g) 4 Potions of Healing

When drunk, it heals you a really large amount (35% of max HP, min
imum 300HP), heals cut damage, and cures stunning, poisoning, blin
dness, and confusion.

h) a Potion of Life
When drunk, it restores 5000 hit points, restores experience and s
tats, heals cut damage, and cures stunning, poison, blindness, and

It can be thrown at creatures with damaging effect.

i) 7 Potions of Restore Mana
When drunk, it restores your mana points to maximum.

j) 12 Potions of Speed
When drunk, it hastens you for 2d10+20 turns.

k) 19 Scrolls of Phase Door
When read, it teleports you randomly up to 10 squares away.

l) 8 Scrolls of Teleportation
When read, it teleports you randomly up to 100 squares away.

m) 5 Scrolls of *Destruction*
When read, it destroys an area around you in the shape of a circle
radius 15, and blinds you for 1d10+10 turns.

n) 6 Rods of Illumination
When activated, it lights up an area and inflicts 2d8 damage on li
ght-sensitive creatures.
Takes 102 turns to recharge at your current speed.

o) a Massive Iron Crown [0,+6] {squelch}

p) a Blade of Chaos of Frost (6d5) (+9,+10)
Branded with frost.
Provides resistance to cold, chaos.
Cannot be harmed by cold.

Combat info:
5 blows/round.
Average damage/hit: 93.5 vs. creatures not resistant to cold, and
52.9 vs. others.

q) 26 Seeker Arrows of Lightning (4d4) (+12,+14)
Branded with lightning.
Cannot be harmed by electricity.

Combat info:
Hits targets up to 160 feet away.
Average damage/hit: 724.5 vs. creatures not resistant to
electricity, and 241.5 vs. others.
35% chance of breaking upon contact.

================================================== ==========
================================================== ==========
1 0' 1 Began the quest to destroy Morgoth.
1 50' 1 Arrive on level one
4010 50' 2 Reached level 2
7828 50' 3 Reached level 3
21491 100' 4 Reached level 4
31353 150' 5 Reached level 5
42163 200' 5 Killed Fang, Farmer Maggot's dog
42163 200' 6 Reached level 6
43153 200' 7 Reached level 7
47165 250' 7 Killed Bullroarer the Hobbit
47165 250' 8 Reached level 8
62562 350' 9 Reached level 9
66599 350' 9 Killed Mughash the Kobold Lord
66599 350' 10 Reached level 10
68508 350' 11 Reached level 11
80942 400' 12 Reached level 12
88823 400' 12 Killed Wormtongue, Agent of Saruman
92567 400' 13 Reached level 13
100347 400' 13 Killed Grip, Farmer Maggot's dog
104944 500' 14 Reached level 14
130996 550' 15 Reached level 15
149357 600' 16 Reached level 16
174917 650' 17 Reached level 17
196383 700' 17 Killed Ufthak of Cirith Ungol
197836 700' 18 Reached level 18
212921 700' 19 Reached level 19
222541 700' 20 Reached level 20
236191 700' 21 Reached level 21
253421 700' 22 Reached level 22
277071 700' 23 Reached level 23
283477 700' 23 Killed Orfax, Son of Boldor
296692 750' 23 Killed Lagduf, the Snaga
310709 750' 23 Killed Brodda, the Easterling
335663 800' 24 Reached level 24
364723 850' 24 Killed Grishnakh, the Hill Orc
372109 850' 24 Killed Ulfast, Son of Ulfang
380723 900' 25 Reached level 25
456568 900' 26 Reached level 26
531657 900' 26 Killed Golfimbul, the Hill Orc Chief
555150 900' 27 Reached level 27
638676 1400' 27 Killed Sangahyando of Umbar
659999 1500' 27 Killed Shagrat, the Orc Captain
659999 1500' 28 Reached level 28
677462 1500' 28 Killed Angamaite of Umbar
831194 1500' 29 Reached level 29
851239 1550' 29 Killed Ugluk, the Uruk
860137 1550' 29 Killed Boldor, King of the Yeeks
865555 1550' 29 Killed Ibun, Son of Mim
877311 1550' 29 Killed Mim, Betrayer of Turin
969580 1550' 29 Killed Smeagol
993094 1550' 30 Reached level 30
1037129 1550' 30 Killed Bolg, Son of Azog
1127317 1550' 30 Killed Gorbag, the Orc Captain
1132577 1550' 30 Killed Nar, the Dwarf
1270835 1600' 31 Reached level 31
1289882 1600' 31 Killed Ulwarth, Son of Ulfang
1476650 1650' 31 Killed Lugdush, the Uruk
1513060 1700' 31 Killed Bert the Stone Troll
1518491 1700' 32 Reached level 32
1815067 1750' 32 Killed Khim, Son of Mim
1818020 1750' 32 Killed Beorn, the Shape-Changer
1830955 1750' 33 Reached level 33
1853145 1800' 33 Killed Azog, King of the Uruk-Hai
2031901 1900' 33 Killed Bill the Stone Troll
2110680 1950' 33 Killed Lokkak, the Ogre Chieftain
2110770 1950' 34 Reached level 34
2165298 2000' 34 Killed Quaker, Master of Earth
2185307 2000' 34 Killed Kavlax the Many-Headed
2192927 2000' 34 Killed Waldern, King of Water
2268539 2000' 35 Reached level 35
2427869 2050' 36 Reached level 36
2725752 2150' 36 Killed Ren the Unclean
2728542 2150' 36 Killed Itangast the Fire Drake
2728542 2150' 37 Reached level 37
2728565 2150' 37 Killed Castamir the Usurper
2728607 2150' 37 Killed Ulfang the Black
2743649 2200' 37 Killed Adunaphel the Quiet
2781142 2500' 37 Killed Akhorahil the Blind
2811357 2550' 37 Killed Smaug the Golden
2823221 2600' 38 Reached level 38
2829168 2600' 38 Killed Eol, the Dark Elf
2877417 2750' 39 Reached level 39
2880846 2750' 39 Killed Scatha the Worm
2928222 2900' 40 Reached level 40
2932915 2900' 40 Killed The Balrog of Moria
2947584 2950' 40 Killed Ji Indur Dawndeath
2989422 3000' 41 Reached level 41
2996746 3050' 41 Killed Uldor the Accursed
3045529 3150' 41 Killed Shelob, Spider of Darkness
3077389 3200' 42 Reached level 42
3096323 3250' 42 Killed Ar-Pharazon the Golden
3106149 3300' 42 Killed Ariel, Queen of Air
3111023 3350' 42 Killed Uvatha the Horseman
3130672 3350' 42 Killed Thuringwethil, the Vampire Messenger
3161426 3450' 42 Killed Fundin Bluecloak
3161426 3450' 43 Reached level 43
3163845 3450' 43 Killed Hoarmurath of Dir
3167937 3450' 43 Killed Saruman of Many Colours
3202941 3500' 44 Reached level 44
3208993 3500' 43 Killed Khamul, the Black Easterling
3226450 3500' 44 Killed The Lernaean Hydra
3233447 3550' 44 Killed Draebor, the Imp
3242883 3550' 44 Killed Polyphemus, the Blind Cyclops
3242883 3550' 45 Reached level 45
3255942 3550' 45 Killed Tselakus, the Dreadlord
3267843 3550' 45 Killed Rogrog the Black Troll
3274518 3550' 45 Killed Dwar, Dog Lord of Waw
3300043 3650' 46 Reached level 46
3339713 3700' 46 Killed Glaurung, Father of the Dragons
3341364 3700' 46 Killed Gabriel, the Messenger
3347190 3700' 47 Reached level 47
3454038 3800' 47 Killed Ungoliant, the Unlight
3459588 3800' 47 Killed Harowen the Black Hand
3459622 3800' 48 Reached level 48
3501898 3850' 48 Killed Feagwath, the Undead Sorcerer
3514304 3850' 48 Killed Gorlim, Betrayer of Barahir
3551762 4100' 48 Killed Vargo, Tyrant of Fire
3563438 4100' 48 Killed Pazuzu, Lord of Air
3563438 4100' 49 Reached level 49
3566997 4150' 49 Killed Uriel, Angel of Fire
3570741 4150' 49 Killed Medusa, the Gorgon
3683850 4250' 50 Reached level 50
3687076 4250' 50 Killed Maeglin, the Traitor of Gondolin
3690183 4250' 50 Killed The Witch-King of Angmar
3700954 4250' 50 Killed Omarax, the Eye Tyrant
3702948 4250' 50 Killed Ancalagon the Black
3709228 4250' 50 Killed Qlzqqlzuup, the Emperor Quylthulg
3802205 4250' 50 Killed The Mouth of Sauron
3852170 4500' 50 Killed Huan, Wolfhound of the Valar
3881745 4650' 50 Killed Baphomet the Minotaur Lord
3886345 4650' 50 Killed Kronos, Lord of the Titans
3895702 4650' 50 Killed Vecna, the Emperor Lich
3908090 4650' 50 Killed Gothmog, the High Captain of Balrogs
3908185 4650' 50 Killed Lungorthin, the Balrog of White Fire
3967260 4650' 50 Killed Cantoras, the Skeletal Lord
3984517 4850' 50 Killed Draugluin, Sire of All Werewolves
3986739 4900' 50 Killed The Tarrasque
3997048 4900' 50 Killed The Phoenix
4143771 4950' 50 Killed Sauron, the Sorcerer
4149059 5000' 50 Killed Morgoth, Lord of Darkness
4149172 5000' 50 Killed The Cat Lord
4149178 5000' 50 Killed Tom the Stone Troll
4149200 5000' 50 Killed The Queen Ant
4149221 5000' 50 Killed Lorgan, Chief of the Easterlings


Maximize effect of race/class bonuses : yes (adult_maximize)
Randomize some of the artifacts (beta) : no (adult_randarts)
Restrict the use of stairs/recall : yes (adult_ironman)
Restrict the use of stores/home : yes (adult_no_stores)
Restrict creation of artifacts : yes (adult_no_artifacts)
Don't stack objects on the floor : no (adult_no_stacking)
Lose artifacts when leaving level : no (adult_no_preserve)
Don't generate connected stairs : yes (adult_no_stairs)
Adult: Monsters chase current location : yes (adult_ai_sound)
Adult: Monsters chase recent locations : yes (adult_ai_smell)
Adult: Monsters act smarter in groups : yes (adult_ai_packs)
Adult: Monsters learn from their mistakes : no (adult_ai_learn)
Adult: Monsters exploit players weaknesses : no (adult_ai_cheat)
Adult: Monsters behave more intelligently (broken): no (adult_ai_smart)
Score: Peek into object creation : no (score_peek)
Score: Peek into monster creation : no (score_hear)
Score: Peek into dungeon creation : no (score_room)
Score: Peek into something else : no (score_xtra)
Score: Know complete monster info : no (score_know)
Score: Allow player to avoid death : no (score_live)

December 18, 2009, 09:09
Although I'm sure no-one other than me is particularly interested,
I kept a running log; below is the play-by-play.


Had to tread carefully around level 2 since I was still just punching
things. Found some pebbles, but no sling. Didn't want to try the
potions just yet for fear of one of them being salt-water and wasting
my precious food. Found a second torch, and another 'shroom.

Found a Main Gauche on level 3; decided to wield it immediately and
just hope it wasn't cursed. Fortunately it wasn't. With my 18/40
starting strength I get 3 blows/turn at +3 damage. I immediately
descend to dlvl 5, where I fell through a trap door to dlvl 6. Explored
until I was weak with hunger, then tried some potions. One of them
was the feared salt-water, so my caution paid off. Luckily, I then
found a stack of 5 Satisfy Hunger scrolls! That should get me pretty
far. Haven't found any more light; I'm down to part of 1 torch. It's
hard to remember to un-equip the torch when I'm forced to backtrack
down a known path. The dwarfish infra-vision makes that reasonably
safe, and I need to conserve the light as much as I can for now.

The next couple of levels look to be murderously hard until I can
find the second prayer book and learn Portal, as I have no effective
means of avoiding monsters I can't (or don't want to) fight. PB2
doesn't start appearing until dlvl 10, and I haven't even found
PB1 yet. I did pick up a (normal) sling, so I have at least a minimal
range attack.

Killed Wormtongue on dlvl 8, and he dropped .. only gold. I really
coulda used an exceptional item. But the RNG more than made it
up to me when immediately afterwards when I killed a small band of
novice rangers and found a Lantern, and a Mace (+5,+11) (Defender).
The one blow I get from that is worth almost as much as the 3 blows
I get from the Main Gauche. I'd like to be able to wield the mace
most of the time and swap in the Main Gauche when the extra blows
will be worthwhile, but the regen just eats too much food I don't have
(even with slow digestion, regeneration still burns food twice as fast
as normal). I still have 4 scrolls of Satisfy Hunger at this point,
so I have some leeway. I'll probably start using it at dlvl 10 until
I'm down to only one scroll, or I find something.

Dropped to dlvl 10, found another lantern, a flask of oil and one more
Satisfy Hunger. Plus I got my Strength dinged so I'm down to only 2 blows
with the Main Gauche. I'm definitely going to wield the Defender full
time now. I've pretty much overcome the startup handicap (other than the
lack of PB1) at this point. I'm at clvl 15 with 155 HP. Doing ok for
dlvl 10, but I still lack any effective means of running away: no
?phase, no ?teleport, no =teleport, no =escaping, no (remaining) !speed.
Normal monsters I can handle, but even the comparatively weak Orc uniques
could probably take me out. My only effective technique is to fight
for awhile, then run away one step ahead of the foe and let the regen
heal me, then turn and fight some more. Plenty of things can go wrong
with that. Nothing to do for it but push on.

dlvl 12, clvl 16. Found PB1, several Identify staves, and a Rod of
Fire Bolts (!). Still can't run away, but things have definitely

dlvl 14, clvl 23. Found another stack of Satisfy Hunger scrolls, so
I decided to invest one of them killing giant fruit flies for the
experience; gained 6 levels. Kinda boring, but the extra 50HP are
very useful. Found a ring of escaping and a sling of extra might,
both welcome additions to my kit.

dlvl 18, clvl 25. Some nice drops recently: 2 staves of Teleportation,
a wand of teleport away, and a ring of damage +9. The ability to
teleport away from a bad situation significantly improves my survivability.
Had two near deaths before I got the teleport drops: a Ranger walked in on
me in a big room and immediately summoned a lot of fire hounds; and had a
pack of Blink Dogs pull me into the middle of a room full of orcs.
I burned through pretty much all of my paltry store of consumables getting
out (barely) alive.

dlvl 19, clvl 27. Found an out-of-depth black ooze, and decided to farm
it for awhile to replenish my consumables and look for PB2. I got some
pretty astonishing drops: PB2 and PB3, some ego shots for my sling, gloves
of slaying, a HA Lucerne Hammer, and a Robe of Permanence (RDisenchant).
Suddenly I'm hugely more powerful; time to dive to stat gain.

dlvl 30, clvl 27. The dive was mostly uneventful, except I picked up
an Amulet of Wisdom +6 (!). I should be doing pretty well as long as I
don't get my prayer books destroyed.

I'm walking down through the dlvl 30's very slowly: clear a level, cast
Satisfy Hunger, rest until hungry, then go out and clear the level again.
This hugely inflates my Turn count: it takes 65,000 turns on the counter
to get through the full rest cycle. But without artifacts, I really
need to get my stats up before dropping below dlvl 40 (in particular, HP
and number of blows), and I can't bounce between levels in an Ironman.
I may have to abandon this scheme once the Gravity Hounds start appearing.

dlvl 40, clvl 34. Just arrived at dlvl 40 after a long slow walk through
the 30's. Miraculously, I saw no Gravity Hounds at all. I'm at well over
two million turns at this point; about two-thirds of that from resting
to let levels replenish. I did pretty well with the stat gain potions:
not maxed out on any, but over 18 on all of Str/Wis/Dex/Con. I'm now at
650HP and 5 blows with a Short Sword of Westernesse. Picked up a couple
of items of better equipment, notably a set of Cestus of Slaying (+5,+7).
I think (+5,+8) is the very best possible; this is certainly the best I've
ever seen in any game. I also found a copy of PB6 (Godly Insights).
Detection and Identify are great, although I find myself resting a lot to
replenish SP since Identify is expensive and my fail rate is high.

The immediate task is to find something with RPoison. After that, the next
item on my shopping list is a Crown of Serenity to get RConf. Assuming I
get that far, I'll then face the difficult question of how fast to descend.

dlvl 42, clvl 36. And you thought the 30's went slow. Spent half a million
turns on dlvl 40,41,42 looking for Poison Resistance. Just now got a drop
of Green Dragon Scale Mail. Not quite what I was expecting, but it will
do nicely. Importantly, I also found some Boots of Speed (+6). The RNG
has been good to me. With the common causes of Insta-death now covered,
and with the speed bump, I could descend a lot if I wanted to. I'd really
like to get RConf before going too much deeper.

dlvl 50, clvl 37. Mostly killing monsters and looking for Crowns. Avoiding
non-unique fire breathers to try and preserve my prayer books. Found a ring
of Resist Poison which I am wielding in preference to the Green Dragon Scale
Mail since that lets me wear the Robe of Permanence with RDisenchant. Also
picked up a Heavy Crossbow of Extra Might and some Bolts of Flame. Just the
thing for Ringwraiths.

dlvl 52, clvl 38. Found a Crown of Serenity. With RConf I can finally dump
the heavy Teleport Staves. With the RFear I'm also thinking about replacing
PB1 with a couple of Rods of Illumination. I'd really like to keep Light
Area, but the Rods would be lighter and slightly less vulnerable. It's all
moot unless I find some Rods however. Not sure if I should just dive straight
to dlvl 70 to try and save consumables, or if I should clear levels to try
and find more.

dlvl 60, clvl 41. Just shy of 3M turns. Sort of cherry-picked my way
through the dlvl 50's, neither diving nor level clearing, just looking
for targets of opportunity. Didn't really find anything of interest; didn't
really expect to. Killed a bunch of Vrocks and Mumaks for the experience.
The dlvl 60's I'll pay more attention to: since "good" items get a 10 level
boost, there is a legitimate chance of finding an Amulet of Trickery or
(after dlvl 65) a Ring of Speed.

dlvl 67, clvl 42. Found my long desired Amulet of Trickery. It's only +2,
but I also managed to upgrade my boots to +8, so together it's a good speed
level. I can now take off my =RPoison and free up the slot for an eventual
=Speed. Right now I'm filling it with =Acid. I've also managed to get all
my useful staves destroyed. This is unfortunate, but also liberating, since
with no charges to drain, and with Hold Life and RDisenchant, I'm willing
to melee a number of things I would have otherwise avoided (e.g. members of
the Lich family).

dlvl 71, clvl 44. Found 3(!) Shields of Preservation on dlvl 71. All of
them had worthless random resists. I'm wielding one anyway since it has
good AC, and the RDisenchant allows me to switch out the Robe for some
Elvenkind armor with RDark. Found a Scythe of Slicing of Westernesse:
8d4 + =Acid is HUGE, and lots of things are vulnerable to acid. I'm (almost)
going to miss it once I find a =Speed. I've also decided to swap out
my Heavy Crossbow of Extra Might for a Longbow of Extra Might. Not quite
as strong as the Crossbow, but a lot lighter, and I found some stacks of
interesting ego arrows, in particular some seeker arrows of Holy Might.

dlvl 76, clvl 47. =Speed +5. Need a bigger one, but I'm not complaining.
3.4M turns. Still don't have RNether or RChaos. My only source of RLight
is a Ring of Light I'm carrying as a swap. I'll probably be able to abandon
it if/when I dispose of Huan and The Phoenix. Carcharoth and Azriel are
hard to deal with without RNether, but I'd really rather not have Morgoth
summon them. I can probably do without RCHaos since none of the uniques
have a breath chaos attack. Hoping to find a Blade of Chaos, but I'll need
a source of Free Action.

dlvl 77, clvl 48. Decided to take on Feagwath since he didn't have too
many Black Reavers in his entourage. Feagwath himself wasn't too bad,
but it took quite a bit longer than I expected to kill all his buddies
(and all the buddies they summoned). Lots of good drops though. Upgraded
my Boots of Speed to +9, Ring of Speed to +10, and Amulet of Trickery to +3.
After considerable debate, I also decide to wear some Pseudo-dragon scale
mail and carry a Defender weapon. This gives me resistance to everything
except Chaos and Nether without needing any swaps, and an AC over 150.
The downside is that it seriously complicates my ability to add RChaos
since I can't wield just any Blade of Chaos, and the Defender weapon
averages less that 50 damage per hit, so the fights last longer, giving
the monsters more chances to do something bad.

dlvl 84, clvl 49. Some bad luck and over optimism have toasted a number
of my prayer books. It would be annoyingly ironic to lose my last couple
of PB2's and starve to death, given the food problems of the first few
levels. But it's my last copy of PB4 that I'm the most worried about.

dlvl 85, clvl 50. 3.7M turns. Sadly, I succumbed to temptation and stopped
on dlvl 85 to farm some black oozes. I didn't feel too bad about doing
this on dlvl 19 given the circumstances, and the fact that there aren't
any uber items to be found at that depth. But dlvl 85 is another story.
I felt I needed to replenish my store of prayer books, but this tactic
sort of taints the game. Not as bad as pillar dancing perhaps, but still.
Found several !Exp which pushed me to clvl 50. Found a Cloak of the Magi
with telepathy (finally some esp); I'll gladly give up RShard for that
although for the moment I'll carry the Cloak of Protection as a swap.
The one really notable piece of equipment I found is a monster: a Long
Bow of Lothlorien (x3) (+12,+22) (+2). It's random power is Feather
Falling, which is worthless, but the Free Action allows me to potentially
wield other melee weapons (I can get See Invis from PB3 in a pinch). The
damage this puppy puts out with some ego ammo is amazing: my arrows of
Holy Might will do over 800 (!) damage to a demon, and 540 against evil.
Even just enchanted mithril arrows do 200+. Found a couple of Blades
of Chaos, but none with good egos. Am carrying one anyway as a swap.

dlvl 85. I stopped with the black oozes once I had a total of 3 copies
of PB4. Of course I'd like more, but this seemed like a reasonable
compromise. Found a couple of uniques that had been generated while
I was farming. One was Qlzqqlzuup, who summoned a couple more uniques.
Killing them all took awhile. The Mouth of Sauron dropped a 2-handed
flail (HA), which does 70 dmg per blow to evil monsters (at 5 blows per
round), which is really good in a non-artifact game. Also found a
Cloak of Aman (Rlight), which is a much more reasonable swap item than
the Ring of Light I have been carrying.

I am mostly ready to take on the big two at this point, with a couple
of caveats: I only have 2 ?Banish and 2 ?MassBanish, 2 !*Heal* and
3 !Life. This is pretty minimal, but might be just enough. And I
would like to kill more of the powerful uniques so they can't be

dlvl 87. Found a Shield of Preservation with RShards. Shards isn't
my first choice, but at least it is worth something.

dlvl 93. 3.9M turns. Well, that's torn it. I carefully stashed my
scrolls before taking on Gothmog, but not my books. I took him out,
and Lungorthin whom he summoned, but they burnt all 3 copies of PB4.
I really don't see anything for it; I can't really take on Sauron
and/or Morgoth without the Heal prayer (or a couple of dozen !Healing).
"Cure Mortal Wounds" should let me limp through most ordinary fights,
but it's just not enough for the big two. I'll just have to spend the
time to find a couple of new copies. Sigh.

dlvl 93. Got lucky; found one after only 30,000 turns. Definitely
need at least one more before I push on.

dlvl 93. Got VERY lucky; found another one after 30,000 more turns.

dlvl 98. Just shy of 4M turns. Killed the Tarrasque, but not before
he toasted both copies of PB4 and both ?Banish. You'd think I'd learn.
I'm guessing it's going to take a lot longer to find replacements this
time around.

I decided to exchange my HA 2hd-Flail for an HA Maul. The Maul does
about 10% less damage per hit, but it is +4 Wisdom, which is sweet, and
has Sustain Wisdom, which (with the Shield of Preservation) covers all
the sustains I want for the final battle.

dlvl 98. Killed the Phoenix; I can now stop carrying around the Rlight
swap cloak, freeing up a valuable inventory slot for some more Slay Evil

As far as remaining uniques: there's Carcharoth and Azriel who I don't
want to fight without RNether (and I haven't seen a single RNether item
the entire game). There's Lorgan, the Queen Ant, and The Cat Lord,
who I have been deliberately preserving since they are not too dangerous,
and they all summon a lot. (I'm hoping Morgoth will summon them, and
they'll fill the floor with comparatively weak monsters and so reduce
Morgoth's ability to bring in really serious nasties.) There's Atlas
and Tom, who I haven't seen at all yet. That's it except for Sauron and
Morgoth. Oh, and Maggot.

dlvl 98. Found a black ooze, which I was hoping would shorten the time
it would take to find a couple of PB4's. But I guess I already used up
my luck on that score the last time I got my books burnt. 125,000
turns to re-equip. No excuses left; Sauron here we come.

dlvl 99. The fight with Sauron went remarkably smoothly: dug an ASC
and peppered him with Seeker Arrows of Slay Evil. Sauron spent too
many of his turns either attacking physically, or casting ineffective
spells. It's finally time to take on the big guy.

dlvl 100. Success! For once the fight with Morgoth actually went more
or less as planned. Broke up an area with Earthquake, and fired all
of my seeker arrows of Holy Might (that I've been carrying since dlvl 71
for just this purpose), and Slay Evil. This took Morgoth down to about
half strength. He summoned both Azriel and Carcharoth, but I was able to
teleport them away and they didn't reappear. Eventually he summoned both
The Cat Lord and The Queen Ant, and their entourage plus their summons
(summonses ?) really cut down on Morgoth's ability to call in uber baddies.
A hard fight as always, but not nearly as harrowing as many other occasions
I could name. Realistically, I just got lucky.

December 18, 2009, 09:20
That is really, really impressive.

December 18, 2009, 09:40
That is really, really impressive.It's mind-boggling. Well done.

December 18, 2009, 10:39
Wow. Didn't think artifactless ironman was possible. Nice write-up too.

December 18, 2009, 11:43
Well done. That is quite incredible. Infact I'm staggered by your patience alone.

December 18, 2009, 13:24
Although I'm sure no-one other than me is particularly interested,
I kept a running log; below is the play-by-play.

Haha, it was very interesting. Thanks for the log, it was enjoyable to read.

I wouldn't worry about the black ooze farming, consider it fair game because of the limited drops of the PBs.

And, like everyone else, I am very impressed.

December 18, 2009, 17:12

December 18, 2009, 17:35
Well done!

Clearly we need some new options to make things even harder for you. Some ideas: no_shooting, dyslexic, picky_eater, forbid_left, perma_blind.

What do you think?

December 18, 2009, 17:40
How about making him a custom variant where all items decay after 1000 turns?

December 18, 2009, 17:46
Some ideas:.... dyslexic



"You cackle evilly"

December 18, 2009, 18:34
Clearly we need some new options to make things even harder

Trust me when I tell you: you really don't :)

December 18, 2009, 23:18
Maybe breeders who breed shouldn't give drops. Specifically add a flag on the newly-spawned monsters that prevent drops. After all, it makes sense that some ooze might have picked up some items while oozing around, but it's "child" that spawns in front of you wouldn't have anything other than what it finds after it is born.

Could also apply this kind of thing to summoned things in general, and rebalance things as needed. (e.g. increase the drops of the summoner).

December 18, 2009, 23:49
Crazy. Just crazy.

It's one of those things where you think 'I could do this given enough time' except you haven't thought of the sheer amount of time/patience required.

December 19, 2009, 02:29
Maybe breeders who breed shouldn't give drops. Specifically add a flag on the newly-spawned monsters that prevent drops. After all, it makes sense that some ooze might have picked up some items while oozing around, but it's "child" that spawns in front of you wouldn't have anything other than what it finds after it is born.

Could also apply this kind of thing to summoned things in general, and rebalance things as needed. (e.g. increase the drops of the summoner).

Seconded (and padded).

EDIT: I was seconding the breeders no droppie. I don't really care about the summoners/summonees/whatever.

December 19, 2009, 02:33
Maybe breeders who breed shouldn't give drops. Specifically add a flag on the newly-spawned monsters that prevent drops. After all, it makes sense that some ooze might have picked up some items while oozing around, but it's "child" that spawns in front of you wouldn't have anything other than what it finds after it is born.

Could also apply this kind of thing to summoned things in general, and rebalance things as needed. (e.g. increase the drops of the summoner).

I've thought the same thing. But I also think that summoned monsters shouldn't be able to summon (except uniques).

December 19, 2009, 02:45
Breeders don't breed. That's just silly. They summon another of the same type, but we mislabel it "breeding". No reason the summonee should not have loot.

Pete Mack
December 19, 2009, 08:09
Classy win!
Sounds like you need a real challenge--you can always go back to the original roguelike. I've never won it, or even come close.
Also, I've never considered farming black oozes as a really bad thing, though i've never done it quite so systematically. If you want to get a lit of drops in a little time, you can't beat black puddings... They are extremely profitable, evenif you have to drop
most of your inventory first.

December 22, 2009, 00:47

The discipline alone needed to survive those first 15 levels is staggering

Also, thirded on the pudding-drop issue

April 7, 2010, 20:09
Wowie. Very very cool. :)

April 8, 2010, 19:04
That's an incredible effort and a great story. Wow.

April 9, 2010, 15:52
This is sick.

April 9, 2010, 18:58
Bravo! I am most shocked at how many grizzled old grumpy *band veterans are also amazed. :)

So I guess the only way to make it harder for you is to turn on all the extra AI intelligence? (Exploit weaknesses, follow player, etc.)

edit: I don't have the patience for anything close to this, things like taking off a torch to backtrack up a path.

April 10, 2010, 21:57
I guess the only way to make it harder for you is to turn on all the extra AI intelligence?

I had completely forgotten about this since I never change any of those. What settings do you recommend? [No promises that I'm actually going to *do* that you understand :) ]

April 10, 2010, 23:02
The most devilish one is "monsters exploit player's weaknesses", which basically causes the monsters to know what resistance holes you're missing and go after them reliably. I can't remember if Vanilla has "monsters behave stupidly", but if so that should obviously be off. Smart pack behavior should be on.

April 11, 2010, 03:32
The "exploit weaknesses" is indeed devious. Sometimes they chain the same kind of bolt turn after turn that all hurt bad. Chase player location isn't too big of a deal near the end, but it's almost like starting with permanent Aggravate.

Pete Mack
April 11, 2010, 05:54
The nastiest is turning on full AI (broken). Monsters with healing spells (think: Morgoth) become almost impossible to kill. You need to do well above 500dam/turn to make a dent in him.

April 11, 2010, 06:03
Yeah they definitely weren't balanced to be able to spam heals at will. Is that a real working feature? Or just a place-holder?

Pete Mack
April 11, 2010, 06:34
If by "working" you mean "has an effect on gameplay" the answer is yes. The usual way to fix this is to give monsters a finite amount of mana. Perhaps in V M is just smart enough to stash !rMana.

April 11, 2010, 06:41
Angband has always been a game that compensates the monsters' crippling stupidity with overwhelmingly superior force. Remove the stupidity and suddenly they have way more force than is really all that fair...

April 11, 2010, 18:34
I think Sauron would be harder than Morgoth with intelligence. Sauron could teleport away any time and heal himself and you'd have to go find him.

April 12, 2010, 01:49
Has limited (monster) mana being introduced to Vanilla been discussed somewhere already?

April 12, 2010, 02:34
Has limited mana being introduced to Vanilla been discussed somewhere already?

I am pretty sure I've seen it mentioned in other threads, but I don't recall any topic-specific discussions of it. A quick search doesn't reveal much...

April 19, 2010, 21:02
I'm wondering if the next challenge is Naked Ironman, no artifacts, no ego items...

now that really should be impossible! :)