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Old November 25, 2018, 20:32   #1
Narry
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Early game problems

Someone suggested me diving strategy recently, but I have a few problems with that, especially in the early game, so I'm kinda stuck with "traditional" grinding. Perhaps someone could help me with these...

My problems begin practically in every game at about DL 15. Umber hulks hit to confuse me, and do it often, so without rConf, I'm in trouble. Of course, I usually find an item that provides it much later in the game.

At about the same level, wolves begin to appear. And even though I have monster AI off, they seem to behave very intelligently: as soon as I enter the room, one of them runs to block the entrance and all others surround me. If I manage to leave the room, they won't follow me to the corridor. If they are this smart with the AI turned off, I don't want to know what they're like when it's on.

Of course, spiders appear about this level as well. They're fast and have poisoning attacks, so rPois is highly recommended. Again, I typically get that later in the game.

My early game strategy at the moment is as follows:
- harvest potions of Cure Light Wounds on DL 1-9, use them when needed, same thing with scrolls of Phase Door
- as soon as potions of Cure Serious Wounds begin to appear, change to them and get rid of CLW, later on same kind of update from CSW to CCW
- get a ring of Strength as soon as possibly, most likely in the black market

Any suggestions for improvements?
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Old November 25, 2018, 21:14   #2
Grotug
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Play a class that gets monster detection? Or play half troll warrior and just bash your way through the umber hulk while in confused state. Better yet, make it a *top* priority to buy a staff of teleportation as soon as you can afford one. It is a *very* essential tool for the early game, especially for getting away from dangerous monsters that are faster than you and monsters that put you in an endless loop of confusion.

Speed potions are also very good against umber hulks as they allow you to cure the confusion long enough to ?phase and then get off the level ASAP.
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Old November 25, 2018, 21:28   #3
fph
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1. don't wait to find C?W potions in the dungeon; actively buy them every time you go back to town. Same for ?phase. Take about 10 of them at least on each trip, and use them liberally. ?recall, ?phase, and cure wounds potions should be around 90% of your shop purchases in the early game.
3. as already said, get a _teleport as soon as you have the money, but you can survive umber hulks even without them. Just chug a potion at each turn until they get a miss, then phas-ta-la-vista away.
4. wolves: here phase door will save you once again, but if you routinely get surrounded, you must first work on your tactics. Learn to fight them at the entrance of the room. CTRL + direction will help you not to inadvertently take a wrong step.
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Old November 26, 2018, 02:16   #4
Pete Mack
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1, 2, 3: Use archery.
When an Umber Hulk appears next to you, phase away. Then illuminate the room and plink it from a distance.
For wolves, you can stand in a door and shoot them when they are visible. Or fight them in a moat. If you are a little stronger, fight them just inside a room, and retreat when you get to 50% health. They will follow you into a hallway then, and you can pick them off one by one. This strategy is more dangerous with spiders and other poisoners.

Finally: always, always carry enough phase door and curing potions. When you are low, recall immediately. Do not flirt with death by exhaustion.
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Old November 26, 2018, 03:09   #5
Derakon
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It sounds like you're trying to kill everything with melee. This is not a viable strategy; even the half-troll warrior needs to have more options in their bag of tricks. If you find an enemy that has dangerous effects on their melee attacks, then you need to avoid melee range with them. Phase Door scrolls are vital for this, and are cheaply and infinitely available at the alchemist. If you do get tagged by a status effect, Cure Serious/Critical Wounds potions will cure it...but if you're still in melee range, then the monster may well just hit you with it again. Staves can be used even when confused (though the failure rate goes up), so in extremis you should be carrying a Staff of Teleport.

For wolves and other group monsters: first off, I believe the AI options you're talking about govern use of spells, not the group monster behavior. IIRC the group monster AI option was permanently set to "on" (and removed from the options list) years ago. Second, why are you letting them surround you? You should strive to only ever let at most one monster into melee range with you at a time.
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Old November 26, 2018, 08:28   #6
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Thanks for the tips, everyone. They make sense... seems that I was doing something right though, as I was collecting means to teleport / blink and heal myself.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Derakon View Post
For wolves and other group monsters: first off, I believe the AI options you're talking about govern use of spells, not the group monster behavior. IIRC the group monster AI option was permanently set to "on" (and removed from the options list) years ago. Second, why are you letting them surround you? You should strive to only ever let at most one monster into melee range with you at a time.
I try to avoid them surrounding me, but sometimes this happens: I enter a room, take a few steps and then... "oh crap, wolves... has one of them already blocked the entrance? Yupp... oh well, phase door or teleport." I suppose I hit the keyboard a bit too fast sometimes.
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Old November 26, 2018, 13:34   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Narry View Post
enter a room, take a few steps and then... "oh crap, wolves...
This type of pack animal in Angband are cowards and usually will not willingly leave the safety of a nice big room where they can surround you. This makes them fairly trivial to deal with unless they have a breath weapon. Just hang around the mouth of the corridor but don't enter the room and pick them off at range.

For packs of breathers it's usually better to hide than to enter line of sight of multiple breathers. You can still use the corridor to eliminate them one by one but avoidance is probably the better bet.

Note that the thing that makes them trivial is being aware of their existence before you stumble into their preferred territory. This becomes crucial as you approach more dangerous monsters.
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Old November 26, 2018, 21:09   #8
Narry
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I'm still not getting this. I bought a staff of Teleportation and descended to DL20 (I was surviving okay at DLs 14-16). I kept your tips on mind... be careful, use Phase Door and Teleportation often, use ranged attacks...

No freaking way to survive at DL20 yet... tigers are too quick, poison hounds are deadly... teleport away and they still find you quite fast. After a little bit of survival battle, I decided this was too tough for me, WoR'ed back to town and descended slowly back to DLs 14-16.

I don't understand how you do it... I'm pretty sure I've already wasted more turns than it takes Grotug to win the whole game.

Oh well, back to grinding. *yawns*
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Old November 26, 2018, 22:07   #9
Sphara
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ECn2T_TeepU

Checking this might help. Here one of the better players go through the levels you find difficult. And he does it as a priest, below normal speed, weak melee attack and low MP.

The game has changed quite a bit after this upload but the basic strategy going through levels around DL20 still holds as good as it did nearly 5 years ago. I hope fizzix doesn't mind me holding his torch here
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Old November 26, 2018, 23:23   #10
Pete Mack
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1. Try playing a Rogue. It is easier to avoid fights when you have good Detection.
2. Weapon quality matters a whole lot. Once you get a little luck, killing monsters at DL 20 suddenly gets easy again.
3. Carry sources of light. Illuminating rooms and hallways makes a huge difference in avoiding unpleasant surprises.
4. Work on tactics. I mostly try to avoid hounds. But sometimes you can't, and sometimes they are a convenient souce of EXP. There are a number of ways to fight them one at a time.
5. If poison is too much of a problem, try kobold. It is a pretty strong race.
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