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Old September 9, 2020, 20:52   #21
DavidMedley
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam View Post
effect scaling with the number of enemies adjacent to @
This is what it does
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Old September 9, 2020, 21:35   #22
whartung
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I haven't played it, so grain of salt mode.

But I would think that WW should be a timed spell. Like 5 rounds. You cast it, your next X (5) attacks are WW attacks. Vs a "Roundhouse" kick, it's a spinning dervish.

This, perhaps, makes it worthwhile against weak monsters.

As stated, the game is more about survival than overpowering and damage. But the BG is the kind of character that wants to be in the thick of it, so should be encouraged to get in the thick of it.

Maybe while in WW mode, you gain more health, become immune to things "He's too fast!", etc. And if it scales up with surrounding monsters, make it "worth while" with 3 or more" and "not very good" with just one so folks are just routinely WWing for the sake of it.

Just imagine the spectacle of WW in a room with monsters advancing, and others getting clobbered and running away until the entire pack is dead on the floor or scattered to the winds.

Great for Orc and Troll packs.
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Old September 10, 2020, 04:47   #23
archolewa
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I struggled a lot with Blackguard early on, but now that I've gotten the hang of it, it's easily my favorite class in the game (though I love me berserker classes).

As far as a berserker that casts spells, I have no problem with it. Pathfinder has a berserker/sorcerer hybrid for example (Bloodrager), so it's not unprecedented. Besides, it allows us to keep Angband fairly small (i.e. all active abilities are spells). No sense in adding an entire new system that's just spells with a different name.

Most of Blackguard's spells are very niche, but that's fine because they fit different niches. I don't remember all the spells off the top of my head, but here's those that I remember making use of, and in which situations:

0. Detect Fear - Second best detection spell in the game, after Detect Monsters. Almost every enemy is susceptible to fear, and thus almost every enemy is detected by it.

1. Leap Into Battle - A major source of damage and healing in the early game, especially if you can find a heavy weapon once the spell gives you two blows. Casting that every round against orc uniques *massively* increases your survivability. Yes, it becomes less useful later in the game, but so does Magic Missile.

2. Whirlwind Attack - I find this very useful against those wall-traversing monsters, especially packs of Dreads. Also good for clearing packs of relatively high experience, low risk monsters (like mumaks and Vrocks).

3. Venom - *Very* nice with a high damage weapon that doesn't have a brand (like the Glaive of Pain), though the fact that it's poison seriously hurts its usefulness. So many enemies are resistant to poison. Something like acid or electricity would probably make it overpowered, but maybe fire? Lots of enemies resist fire, but there are plenty that don't. Though as it is now, it's still very useful as a Titan killer.

4. Werewolf form - My favorite. Yes, you can't use consumables when you're in it, but since you can change back without losing a turn, I don't consider it to be a big deal. And the increased damage output and survivability is *massive*. My go-to for killing single dangerous monsters (like uniques). I always feel like my Blackguard hits another tier of power when I get this reliably castable.

5. Relentless Taunting - More useful than it might appear, because it increases the chances that enemies will attack rather than breath or cast spells (and lets be honest, regular attacks are much less scary than spells or breath from most enemies). Great to have, especially since it remains active even in werewolf form.

6. Bloodlust - I'm allergic to losing control of my character, so I only use it in very controlled circumstances. I can definitely see why some people may enjoy it, but I honestly only use it as a pre-werewolf buff before fighting uniques in an anti-summon corridor. Fighting one on one, I find it gives a slight buff, but rarely if ever took away control or induced hallucinations.

7. Knock Enemies Away (I forget the name) - The spell that knocks enemies away. A *wonderful* spell that completely neutralizes some otherwise dangerous enemies, and synergizes wonderfully with Relentless Taunting. Knock an enemy away and pepper them with arrows or spells while they mostly approach, or use the turns it buys you to heal and shift back into werewolf form.

8. Quake - Underwhelming in my opinion. Doesn't screw with the dungeon level enough to provide good enough line of sight blocking. By the time I get it online, I usually have enough *Destruction* available to serve the same purpose, except much better. If this spell gave you the same kind of mess that *Destruction* gives, but doesn't blast away your enemies (but does still blast away the loot to keep it from being overpowered) then I think it would be much more useful.

I general though, I found that I pretty consistently used quite a variety of the spells, even in the fight against Morgoth. As opposed to a paladin, where the only spells I consistently use in the endgame are:

1. Heal.
2. Single Combat.
4. Slay *Demon*.

With Blackguard I fairly consistently use in the endgame (in no real order):

1. Whirlwind Attack
2. Werewolf Form
3. Bloodlust
4. Relentless Taunting
5. Venom
6. Smash Walls
7. Detect Fear
8. Knock Enemies Away Spell

Now, some of these I only use in particular situations (like Whirlwind Attack against Dreads and other wallpassers, Venom against Titans), but those situations arren't that rare.

Another strength for the Blackguard is that the dungeon spellbook only has three spells, and none of them are critical to how I play the character. As a result, I don't have to hope to find my really powerful spells in the dungeon, like I do with Rogue or Paladin. Having that kind of dependability is really nice.
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Old September 15, 2020, 21:07   #24
Egavactip
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidMedley View Post
Whirlwind goes up to 2 blows at CL25 and 3 at CL40. That's not the kind of scaling you're looking for?
It should probably be one blow less than the character can deliver (with a max of 4).
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Old September 15, 2020, 21:13   #25
DavidMedley
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That would reward having lots of blows, which all the other classes do already, and why a lot of players struggle with the heavy weapon preference that we're trying to encourage.
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Old September 16, 2020, 03:13   #26
DavidMedley
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I'm in a door way fighting a troll one on one. CL26 BG at DL31.
Quote:
You miss the stone troll.
The stone troll hits you (4). <2x>
The stone troll bites you (5).
At this point a beetle and hound step next to me. With most characters I take a step back, no problem. Of course, that gives the hound a chance to breathe on me. My Blackguard had plenty of SP, as they often do if you do you're fighting up close, so I cast Whirlwind Attack instead.
Quote:
You dissolve the killer stag beetle (45).
You dissolve the earth hound (51).
You dissolve the stone troll (51).
You have slain the stone troll.
You dissolve the killer stag beetle (57).
You have slain the killer stag beetle.
You dissolve the earth hound (45).
You have slain the earth hound.
My character is using The Beaked Axe of Hurin and only gets 1.1 blows with this marvelous weapon. With Whirl I got 6 blows in a turn instead. But nobody ever casts this spell? Your loss.

EDIT: OK, it was actually 5 blows since the troll died on the first pass.
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Old September 16, 2020, 15:37   #27
Eric
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I'm with archowela on most counts, and even use whirlwind early on when it's just 1 blow per adjacent.

I'll add that

0.5 - Howl of the Damned has come in handy a few times, as does the fear effect on Werewolf form (which I *think* has the same power level?).

6.1 - My last blackguard was constantly using Taunt -> Venom (when applicable) -> Bloodlust -> WW, and then absolutely tearing things up. pConf and rChaos prevent the worst side effects, except for the occasional extra attack when you really wanted to de-WW and 'q' some healing (but this comes down to remembering to 'q' a bit earlier than usual). Getting up to 9 and 10 blows with the right artifacts is just ridiculous, and I enjoy it so much that I forget to do things like use

7. Forceful blow, which rocks when I am smart enough to use it.

8. Quake - used once or twice, failed to block enemies effectively a few times, so gave up on it for the most part. Some kind of status effect that would typically work on deep monsters might be nice here, like a 'Bewildering Shout' that slows, or 'Crippling Stomp' that slows adjacent... but balance is hard and I've probably thought about it for all of 7 minutes, so I'll promise to attempt forking & tweaking instead of just talking (which is something I've been wanting to play with anyway, but unallocated time is scarce to say the least).

Trying my first 4.2.1 plain warrior now to see what to compare against, at any rate, as it's been years since I played one.
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Old September 19, 2020, 18:07   #28
Egavactip
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric View Post
Trying my first 4.2.1 plain warrior now to see what to compare against, at any rate, as it's been years since I played one.
I just uploaded my second 4.2.1 plain warrior win (out of 5 tries) to the Ladder.

My impressions were much the same as with the first warrior and first blackguard wins:

* the upgunned artifacts and upgunned monsters are just pointless. You need the stronger artifacts to deal with the stronger monsters, so what's the point?

* the food system is just so broken. I spent most of the battle with Morgoth slowed by -5 to -10 simply because I was healing myself. It would have been fruitless if I had not constantly used rods of slowness on him. Basically, I need a postit note next to the computer reminding me to starve my character before the final two battles. It's just ridiculous. I've been in many situations now where trying to heal myself actually jeopardizes my survival. It makes no sense at all and is really aggravating.

* Staffs of destruction are even more necessary for warriors than ever, because they are the only thing that can stop the character from constantly being chased by unique and greater balrogs and other super-powerful tunneling and rock-slipping monsters during the end game.

* Trees seem far too numerous.

* Scrolls that enhance weapons need to have a greater chance of success than they currently do.
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Old September 20, 2020, 07:17   #29
whartung
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Originally Posted by Egavactip View Post
* Scrolls that enhance weapons need to have a greater chance of success than they currently do.
Honestly, the only thing I use ?EW scrolls on are arrows. Just a waste of time for anything else.
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Old September 20, 2020, 08:57   #30
wobbly
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Pretty sure ?enchant weapon was made useless in a deliberate accidental way. A lot of stuff had its +s spiked a long time ago because "you'll just enchant it anyway and its annoying & repetitive". This was back when the scrolls were in the shops.
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