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Old April 16, 2016, 02:42   #20
Ingwe Ingweron
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Manhattan Beach, CA
Posts: 1,995
Ingwe Ingweron is on a distinguished road
Rocketband - Rock My World

Rocketband - was supremely difficult. Some postmortem thoughts:

1. Early levels:

- Stair-scumming is absolutely necessary in the early levels, and, actually, throughout the game. Stair scum relentlessly. Never start a level with unknown terrain around you or monsters danger-close, if you can help it.
- See-invisible is a must have right from the start as is great magic device skill to reduce failure rate on the launcher. Hence, High-elf is probably the best bet.
- A stack of ?Phase door is required. Major care must be taken not to be in the blast radius of your own shots, so phasing out of danger-close range is often called upon. NEVER stand in your own blast radius!!! (At the later levels, my @ sometimes did stand in fringes, but was able to survive the spillage and heal.) Check every shot before firing!
- Get to know the targeting mechanism. You will need to do a lot of creative targeting to place shots on target (or even close to target is good sometimes).
- Speed and stealth are the only stats that matter. As fast as possible and as stealthy as possible. Resistances, armor class, and hitpoints are all virtually irrelevant.
- Detect monsters (supplemented by detect invisible from scrolls or staves) is vital at nearly every turn. Detect as often as possible. You cannot let yourself be surprised, even for a moment. Upgrade to Reveal Monsters, or better yet, a stack of Detection rods, as soon as you can.
- Having a melee weapon (must be an artifact, as Derakon has removed all others) is helpful for weaker (non-packing) monsters.

2. Mid levels:
- Continued stair scumming.
- Telepathy, speed and stealth are the must finds.
- As is getting the failure rate down on casting stone to mud. Since Derakon removed all wands, the only potentially viable characters are Mages, Rangers, and Rogues. You must get the failure rate down on casting this vital spell. Playing a Rogue, I never used the Detect Objects ability, stealth and magic device skill was all that mattered. I might go with a mage if I were to do it again, just to be able to get a zero-fail on stone to mud and virtually unlimited banishment and mass banishment for the later levels.
- Reveal monsters is vital at nearly every turn. Even better are a stack of Detection rods.
- Mapping is also quite important. Once you get stone to mud and telepathy, you can map and plan hockey sticks to take out powerful uniques and troublesome monsters.

3. Later levels and end-game:
- More stair scumming.
- I never found it, but a great find would be the Arkenstone, as it would allow for hockey-stick planning on a global scale.
- Creative uses of permanent walled vaults and long, hockey-stick tunnels, will allow you to take out every unique, including Morgoth.

4. Epilogue:
-Luck is the biggest necessary factor. No matter how careful I was, there were times when @ was exposed. Monsters failing their rocket shots at a few critical moments or having intervening monsters that took the brunt of enemy blasts saved me.
“We're more of the love, blood, and rhetoric school. Well, we can do you blood and love without the rhetoric, and we can do you blood and rhetoric without the love, and we can do you all three concurrent or consecutive. But we can't give you love and rhetoric without the blood. Blood is compulsory. They're all blood, you see.”
― Tom Stoppard, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead
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