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Old July 1, 2017, 08:01   #1
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The last few randart games I played, I got to DL35ish without seeing a single artifact drop. First artifact in the most recent game was DL44. I've heard similar things from others. When they do come, they seem absurdly good: higher resistances by the half dozen, immunities all over the place, weapons with every slay in the game.

I think the generation algorithm needs looking at. The randart option seems to be more like "would you like to wait longer to get better artifacts?" as it stands.
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Old July 1, 2017, 08:23   #2
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OK, so it looks like two potential problems:
  1. Not enough low level artifacts. This can be fixed by spreading out the lower half of the power distribution.
  2. Artifacts in general a bit too good. This is a bit more complex. It could just be that all the upper end needs toning down a bit, or it could be about what specific properties artifacts are picking up. You mention weapons having lots of slays; are you noticing any other trends across particular gear slots?
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Old July 1, 2017, 08:38   #3
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Do artifacts still choose a random type first and then try to scale off of a base artifact? As in, when it tries to make a randart for nimthanc, does it first choose a random type and then try to build it? I remember this is the way it used to work and it tended to cause a lot of the low level artifacts to be based off of weapons that you wouldn't use until mid or late game.

It's also been a while since I looked at the item generation code, but I think the way it used to work is that it generated an item first an then tried to make it magical/ego/artifact. The type of item was based level based, so you were more likely to get a lot of leather armor and daggers early, and two handed swords and plate mail later. Which also means if nimthanc got reincarnated as plate mail, you have a super useless platemail that will never be generated.

I have no idea if things still work like this (or maybe they never did and my memory is a mess), so I will refrain from suggesting fixes at this time.
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Old July 1, 2017, 08:38   #4
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The first artifacts I find all tend to be neckgear. I think this is because they're based on lower valued items like amulets of adornment or searching. Most of the rings I find seem to be bands - they show up as 'A Band of & Band' before being identified (as when the duplication bug was happening). The more powerful artifacts tend to be cursed as well, which is probably intended to offset their power but the curses that aren't nullified by equipment can often be removed - with no effort if they're low power, or by holding out for *remove curse* if higher powered.
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Old July 1, 2017, 12:03   #5
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I've definitely noticed the issue with an excess of slays - weapons with the full set of all eight slays or nearly that don't seem to be particularly uncommon, even fairly early on. (I also just got a shield from Khim at 1450' that has two off-weapon slays.)

The earliest artefacts I find usually seem to be either necklaces or Phials/Stars without many properties aside from the base activation. (I really like the latter trend, incidentally - it's pretty neat to have early low-level randart lights.) I've seen a few randart Lanterns too, though usually not until after I've already got a better light.

I currently have fire immunity on both a cloak and a shield I got from uniques at 1500' and 1550', but I haven't noticed a flood of immunities in previous games. Then again, I don't think I've really seen much randart armour at all.

So I guess my observations for a series of warrior games where I usually make it to somewhere between dlevel 30 and 50, tackling most pits, vaults and uniques along the way, would be that I generally find multiple amulets, multiple randart lights, perhaps a couple of pieces of armour (usually good if I find them) and 0-1 weapons (but they'll be loaded with tons of slays and brands if I do find them).
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