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Old March 15, 2018, 16:53   #50
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60s is not really any more safe than 80s. For the last ~third of the game, about all that changes is more nasty uniques show up and fewer low-level monsters do. That is, the non-unique enemies you face have about the same threat level, they're just more densely-placed. In particular, a vault at level 98 is pretty much identical in threat level to a vault at level 60. But the items in the vault can still be better than what you'd find on the floor at 98 (let alone 60). By the way, level 99 has Sauron on it, which is why I said 98. Usually you don't go to 99 until you feel ready to fight Sauron.

You're right that you're never going to be a statistical match for high-level enemies. Mostly what you need to survive deep down is careful play. You don't have to banish hounds as long as you can see them before they can get LOS on you, via ESP or monster detection. You should be able to just turn around and go somewhere else instead. Keep in mind that with high STR you can tunnel through solid granite in only a few turns, so if there isn't a tunnel going where you want to go, you can make one.

When you do go to fight nasty foes, you generally need three things: speed, damage, and healing. The more you have of the first two, the less you need of the third, but you should always assume you'll need some healing. Carry potions of Healing as soon as you start finding them, always buy more if you see them in the Black Market, and don't be afraid to use them. Osse is a pain not just because his nether breath hurts (even resisted, it can hit for up to 470), but because he has a lot of health and no slays or brands apply to him, so it can take awhile to wear him down -- but if you have enough healing, the fight's really just a matter of time.

Oh, and you should be fighting all uniques, and plenty of other monsters, from within what's called an "anti-summoning corridor". You dig a zigzag corridor through the rock (e.g. alternating between digging NE and digging NW), and lure the monster into the corridor. That way if they summon the summons will appear behind them. Obviously this works less well for monsters that can walk through walls, and is especially limited against enemies that can bore through walls, but the basic principle of limiting how many open tiles a) are next to you, and b) are in line of sight, still applies. The fewer monsters that can see you, the fewer that can hit you with damaging spells/breaths.
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