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Old November 17, 2010, 19:28   #1
Derakon
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Hints and tips

From this thread came the idea of collecting a selection of useful hints and tips for playing Angband. These are things that are important to know and non-obvious. The goal is to collect them and make them available to new players so they can avoid some of the more painful parts of learning how to play.

I'd recommend trying to meet the following guidelines:

* The hint should be something that is non-obvious. We don't need to tell newbies that 2 blows is better than 1 blow, but telling them that they get more blows with high STR/DEX can be useful. Even better is telling them to 'I'nspect their weapons to see how much damage they deal, since that will lead them to discover the STR/DEX relationship on their own.
* The hints should be brief; ideally, they should fit onto a single line in-game. Short and digestable, that's the goal here.
* The hints should be global. A warning about drolems is less useful than a warning about big breathers in general and a note on the poison damage cap.

I've copied my and bio_hazard's suggestions over from that thread; if you'd like to make your own additions, or edits to existing hints, feel free.

* Cure Critical Wounds potions also cure blindness and confusion. Carry lots; they're cheap.
* Potions of Heroism will keep you from being frightened.
* Staves of Teleport can be used even when confused or blinded.
* Breath attacks deal 1/3rd the monster's current HP in damage, up to 1600 for fire/cold/acid/electricity and 800 for poison (and less for others).
* Resistance cuts damage to 1/3rd for fire/cold/acid/electricity/poison, but are less effective for other elements.
* Resistances on your gear stack with temporary resistances from spells and items.
* Never underestimate the value of Constitution. Hitpoints keep you alive.
* Rods of Probing can tell you about a monster's abilities.

-Quivers can hold different types of ammo, but after 99 they will take up more inventory slots
-Many items are bad, but few are cursed to the point of needing magic to remove them.
-Congratulations on finding a nice item! if you don't want to accidentally sell, drop, or destroy it, consider inscribing it (the '{' command) with !s!d!k
-A bigger weapon isn't always better- make sure to check your damage using 'I'nspect
-Can't keep track of all the information on the screen? You can add extra windows to show previous messages, items on the floor, monsters present, and more. Set these up from the '=' menu.
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Old November 17, 2010, 20:02   #2
Sirridan
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-Flasks of oil do a large amount of damage when thrown ('t'), and are cheap. Carry lots if you're a weaker character to kill early tough enemies like Maggot's dogs or Bullroarer.

-If you use teleport other on a tough / dangerous monster, beware of teleporting afterward, you may run into your former friend.

-Resistances to higher elements (Nether, shards, confusion, disenchantment, darkness, light, chaos) are somewhat random (between 1/6th and 5/6 resisted).

-Hold life and Nether resistance will not block all exp drain, just most of it.

-Fire damage can destroy scrolls, books, and staves in your inventory. Cold damage can destroy potions, and electrical damage can destroy wands and rods. Consider dropping them in a safe place before fighting enemies that do these kinds of damage, but be sure they aren't in the line of fire!

-Immunity to an element prevents inventory destruction from that element.

(Edit, fixed, thanks fizzix!)
-?Phase door is a good escape if the terrain is appropriate, however in open rooms it may well waste a turn and keep you in the line of fire.

-?Phase door, and any other form of teleportation will always teleport you outside of a vault, no matter what.

Last edited by Sirridan; November 18, 2010 at 00:44.
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Old November 17, 2010, 20:33   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derakon View Post
-Congratulations on finding a nice item! if you don't want to accidentally sell, drop, or destroy it, consider inscribing it (the '{' command) with !s!d!k
nitpick: don't you need to add !v to prevent accidentally throwing your preciousss?
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Old November 17, 2010, 20:42   #4
fizzix
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sirridan View Post
-Resistances to higher elements (Nether, shards, confusion, disenchantment, darkness, light, chaos) are somewhat random (between 1/6th and 5/6 resisted).
1/6 and 1/2 I think.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sirridan View Post
-?Phase door is not a good escape, it may well waste a turn and keep you in the line of fire.
?phase is a great escape if the terrain is appropriate. This is bad advice.

here are my suggestions, I specifically am limiting suggestions to things that are opaque from the interface, not tactical considerations. I.e. I would say 'staves can be used when blinded or confused, and not staves of teleport...

-resistances on equipment do not stack.
-+10 speed causes you move twice as fast.
-too much stunning will knock you out. Curing potions and spells lower or eliminate it.
-unresisted nexus attacks can either, teleport to, teleport away, teleport level, or switch two of your stats.
-time attacks are not affected by sustains
-drain charge attacks remove all charges from one of your stacks and partially heal the monster that drained them.
-you cannot cast spells or fire missiles at monsters who share space with the wall, although you can hit them with melee. They are free to cast spells on you though.
-rsound will prevent you from getting stunned by sound, plasma, gravity, or force attacks.
-acq scrolls produce items depending on the level at which they are read on.
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Old November 17, 2010, 20:47   #5
bulian
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Electricity can also destroy jewelry as well, no?

Staying on a level too long can cause awake random monsters to spawn.

Wands and staves sell for a good price even with 0 charges, so don't feel bad about using them.

Gold is mainly meaningless after a certain point, so walking around encumbered with lots of heavy weapons is not necessarily a good idea.

Carry around extra copies of spellbooks 1-4 in case one gets burned.

The shops partially reset their inventory every XX game turns.

Something about carrying swaps to cover resists, perhaps?
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Old November 17, 2010, 21:51   #6
bio_hazard
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fph View Post
nitpick: don't you need to add !v to prevent accidentally throwing your preciousss?
thanks! I will start doing that from now on.
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Old November 17, 2010, 21:55   #7
Derakon
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If you're that worried about messing with your gear, mark it with !* to get confirmation on anything.
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Old November 18, 2010, 00:38   #8
Lord Fell
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It might be beneficial to separate the most critical "Fundamental Knowledge" from advanced hints.

If I'm a newbie, and have never, ever played a game of Angband before, it's beneficial to know that there are different qualities of items (cursed, ego). It's beneficial to know that enemies have a variety of attacks, and in addition to healing health, that there are Resistances and Cures for all of these attacks, and that I need to build a collection of equipment and consumables to handle these contingencies.

I think really specific notes, such as the formula for a monster's breath-weapon damage is just a bit too arcane for a new player, and is maybe something they'd want to read through once they've figured out some basic concepts.
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Old November 18, 2010, 00:45   #9
Sirridan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fizzix View Post
?phase is a great escape if the terrain is appropriate. This is bad advice.
Fixed, thanks for the catch
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Old November 18, 2010, 00:55   #10
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Lord Fell: the goal is to cover things that are nonobvious and also not obviously important. Basic concepts of gameplay don't fall into that category, as the player is going to figure them out pretty quickly just through experimentation. If the player isn't willing to experiment there, then I am perfectly fine with directing them to the documentation.
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