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Old June 8, 2013, 08:47   #1
Ingwe Ingweron
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Randarts vs Standarts?

I've been mostly playing with Standarts, but from reading the forums and watching a few of the excellent "Let's Play Angband" YouTube videos, it seems like most of you are playing with Randarts. I was wondering if it is to make the game more interesting and less boring for experienced players. It seems to me, so far, that the Standarts are more purposeful in their combinations of abilities that are helpful, but I also guess that Randarts could randomly generate some surprisingly powerful combinations in addition to some of the ridiculous ones I've seen. Any advice on whether to continue with Standarts or should I switch to playing Randarts?
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Old June 8, 2013, 10:20   #2
eMeM
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If you get bored of standard artifacts (same kit every game) you will try randarts then. Also randarts are weaker: it's hard to get big speed bonuses from randarts. These few great randarts are made from best standard artifacts.
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Old June 8, 2013, 10:23   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eMeM View Post
If you get bored of standard artifacts (same kit every game) you will try randarts then. Also randarts are weaker: it's hard to get big speed bonuses from randarts. These few great randarts are made from best standard artifacts.
Note also that people posting the 'ridiculous' randarts are often (though not always) posting from the spoiler, rather than having actually found them. Randarts you actually find will often tend to be slightly more disappointing than the familiar standarts (whose abilities you might unconsciously have built into your kit planning), though every once in a while something surprisingly good will come along. Which is kind of the point.
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Old June 8, 2013, 13:15   #4
Thraalbee
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My experience is that in average, the set of found randarts will be less powerful than the found set of standards. But with randarts the variation between games will have a wider spread from boring to amazing. So if you try it just once it's hard to say if it's a good idea or not.

I like randarts and I like the fact that even if you find a superb e.g. bow in the early game you can still hope to find an even better one later. Several times! In some games, many of the high powered items will be of the same type. The set of randarts listed below were used in the end game by one of my rangers. The missing items are non-artifacts.

Code:
a) the Spear of Hernion (4d6) (+8,+27) <+2>
     Dropped by a Barbazu at 4900 feet (level 98).
     
     +2 intelligence, constitution.
     Slays orcs, trolls, giants, dragons.
     *Slays* demons, undead.
     Branded with frost.
     Provides resistance to poison, light, sound, disenchantment.
     Provides protection from fear.
     Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.
     Slows your metabolism.  Aggravates creatures nearby.  
     
     When activated, it attempts to magically enhance a weapon both
     to-hit and to-dam.  Also gives a chance to break a curse.
     Takes 774 to 1135 turns to recharge at your current speed.
     Your chance of success is 91.5%
     
     Combat info:
     5.0 blows/round.
     Average damage/round: 594 vs. orcs, 594 vs. trolls, 594 vs.
     giants, 594 vs. dragons, 594 vs. creatures not resistant to cold,
     749 vs. demons, 749 vs. undead, and 438.5 vs. others.
     
b) the Long Bow of Rathilon (x3) (+14,+19) <+4> {!d!x!v}
     Found lying on the floor at 1800 feet (level 36).
    
     +4 speed.
     Provides resistance to cold, dark, sound.
     Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.
     Slows your metabolism.  Prevents paralysis.  
     
     When activated, it restores your charisma.
     Takes 141 to 154 turns to recharge at your current speed.
     Your chance of success is 93.5%

c) the Ring of Elinta (+2,+7) [+9] <+5> (charging)
     Dropped by a Pit Fiend at 4200 feet (level 84).
     
     +5 strength, intelligence, wisdom, charisma.
     Provides resistance to fire, cold, poison, light, dark, nether,
     chaos, disenchantment.
     Provides protection from confusion.
     Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.
     Grants the ability to see invisible things.  
     
     When activated, it restores both intelligence and manapoints to
     maximum.
     Takes 705 to 1032 turns to recharge at your current speed.
     Your chance of success is 90.7%
     
f) the PalantŪr 'Aenna' <+2> (charging)
     Found lying on the floor at 3800 feet (level 76).
     
     +2 strength, intelligence, constitution, infravision.
     Provides immunity to acid.
     Provides resistance to lightning, fire.
     Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.
     Sustains strength, constitution.
     Speeds regeneration.  Sustains your life force.  
     
     When activated, it maps the entire level and detects nearby
     objects, traps, doors, and stairs.
     Takes 219 to 430 turns to recharge at your current speed.
     Your chance of success is 91.5%
     
     Radius 2 light.

g) the Leather Scale Mail of Neiglade (-1) [20,+14] <+5>
     Dropped by an Ancient gold dragon at 4450 feet (level 89).
     
     +5 strength, dexterity.
     Provides immunity to fire.
     Provides resistance to acid, lightning, cold, disenchantment.
     Provides protection from blindness.
     Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.
     Speeds regeneration.  
     
h) the Cloak 'Lumelmas' [1,+18] <+3>
     Dropped by a Dread at 3850 feet (level 77).
     
     +3 intelligence, dexterity, constitution, stealth, infravision.
     +15% to searching.
     Provides resistance to cold.
     Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.
     Sustains wisdom.
     Slows your metabolism.  Prevents paralysis.  
     
i) the Wicker Shield of Tirya [2,+16] <+5>
     Dropped by an Osyluth at 4500 feet (level 90).
     
     +5 wisdom, dexterity, charisma, speed.
     Provides resistance to acid, lightning, fire, cold, nether.
     Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.
     
k) the Set of Caestus of Belwe (+8,+8) [5,+19] <+4>
     Found lying on the floor at 2900 feet (level 58).
     
     +4 strength, constitution, charisma.
     Provides resistance to lightning, poison, dark, shards.
     Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.
     Grants telepathy.  
     
     When aimed, it creates an acid ball with damage 125.
     Takes 387 to 473 turns to recharge at your current speed.
     Your chance of success is 96.4%
     
l) the Pair of Leather Boots of Dirch (+3,+7) [2,+15] <+8, +1>
     Found lying on the floor in a vault at 4150 feet (level 83).
     
     +8 speed.
     Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.
     Sustains intelligence.
     Feather Falling.  
     
     Radius 1 light.

*** ADDITIONAL FINDS ***

h) the Ring of Arthothor (+6,+3) <+3, +1> {wow but aggravation!d!x!v}
     Found lying on the floor in a vault at 4900 feet (level 98).
     
     +3 strength, intelligence, wisdom, dexterity, constitution,
     charisma, infravision, speed.
     Provides immunity to acid, fire.
     Provides resistance to lightning, light, dark, sound, chaos.
     Provides protection from fear, confusion.
     Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.
     Sustains intelligence, dexterity, constitution.
     Slows your metabolism.  Feather Falling.  Prevents paralysis. 
     Aggravates creatures nearby.  
     
     When activated, it raises your intelligence at the expense of a
     random attribute.
     Takes 881 to 1397 turns to recharge at your current speed.
     Your chance of success is 88.9%
     
     Radius 1 light.

From: http://angband.oook.cz/ladder-show.php?id=14008
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Old June 8, 2013, 15:27   #5
Nomad
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I always play randarts. My problem with the standart set was that, being not too brilliant a player, the only ones I was really seeing were the same small selection of early ones again and again and again. (The Phial, Cap of Thengel, and the *thancs, mostly.) So when you're playing at a level where you're not likely to find more than two or three artefacts before you get killed, randarts add a little bit of excitement to the individual finds instead of always getting the same ones you've seen before.

I should probably actually try playing standarts again now that I'm a slightly better player, but I still find them deadly dull in the early game.
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Old June 8, 2013, 16:23   #6
Philip
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The stuff posted is pretty nice-particularly the boots, shield, caestus are nice, while the rest of the kit looks something like what a winner might be using.
A comparison reveals that a 3.2.0 winner had inferior stat boosts from eqiupment, and seemed to have a harder time finding resistances, forcing certain equipment choices.

The standart character didn't have ESP. Speed from artifacts was 27 vs. 17 in favor of standarts. Actual weapon damage was similar, although for a cost of 10 speed, the speed advantage of standarts, the character could have had well over the damage of the randart ranger. Bow damage was higher for standarts, due to Bard, but it bears mentioning that for 4 speed the randart could have had either 5 shooting speed, ImmLightning and res_pois; or a bow superior to Bard in damage. Overall, standarts seem to be better for damage and speed, while randarts are superior for the rest.
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Old June 8, 2013, 16:30   #7
Derakon
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Randarts:

* will basically never give you pConf and pBlind together
* almost never provide useful early telepathy (c.f. Thranduil) and often don't provide useful telepathy (in an item with other helpful attributes), forcing use of a Helm of Telepathy or Amulet of ESP.
* often have major resistance holes in the early/mid-game, forcing use of Resistance or Elvenkind armor (c.f. Arvedui, Rohirrim)
* tend to give more stat boosts
* almost never have Slay Evil

Randarts certainly can be superior to standarts, and in the late-game you can see some breathtakingly powerful gear, but in my experience the equipment dance tends to be more complicated than when playing with standarts. And while you can find good randart weapons, my last several melee winners have all ended up using a "big weapon" (Sycthe of Slicing, Mace of Disruption, etc.) with a Slay Evil brand on it (typically via Holy Avenger) instead because the damage output of that weapon just put everything else to shame.
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Old June 8, 2013, 17:37   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derakon View Post
the equipment dance tends to be more complicated than when playing with standarts
This. When adding to the standart set (which was pretty rare for about two decades, though a small handful have been added in 3.x), you cannot help but think about their usefulness/brokenness alongside other standarts. The randart generator isn't sophisticated enough to do that, so it more often produces 'meh' combinations and very occasionally produces 'OMG' combinations.
Quote:
And while you can find good randart weapons, my last several melee winners have all ended up using a "big weapon" (Sycthe of Slicing, Mace of Disruption, etc.) with a Slay Evil brand on it (typically via Holy Avenger) instead because the damage output of that weapon just put everything else to shame.
This is for a similar reason - the randart generator doesn't think "ooh, this looks like an endgame weapon, we'd better have an additional check for SLAY_EVIL", so you can get big dice randarts without slays, or randarts with big dice and slays but lousy +dam, or ... etc. You are more likely to be using a big HA in a randart game because there's no Ringil, Deathwreaker, Eonwe etc.
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Old June 8, 2013, 18:36   #9
Timo Pietilš
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derakon View Post
Randarts:

* almost never provide useful early telepathy (c.f. Thranduil) and often don't provide useful telepathy (in an item with other helpful attributes), forcing use of a Helm of Telepathy or Amulet of ESP.
I usually find Lordliness/magi crowns with ESP sooner or later in the game, and also many other ego-items can give it: Lothlorien bows, Blessed, Gondolin and *slay evil* weapons, magi cloaks. Keep checking egos.

Thranduil is not that great item, in many games I find it too late for it to actually make any difference. In fact ego-items in many games are quite competitive to standarts except for items that give CON or speed. CON is something only crowns of Might, Dwarven armors and Westernesse weapons give (well there are gauntlets of combat, but those aggravate), and only egos giving speed is BoS and Elvenkind boots (there is ego type "of speed" for DSM but I pretend that that does not exist).

The area where standarts are great are weapons, you need to get really really great ego or randart for it to beat Pain or even something rather common like Thunderfist.
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Old June 8, 2013, 19:43   #10
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I can't remember the last time I found a Magi or Lordliness crown with ESP. However, Crowns of Might are very useful -- helpful stat boosts and they sustain all physical stats, which can be hugely important in the late game. Thranduil shows up before any of these, though, and in addition to ESP it gives INT/WIS and pBlind, all useful abilities.

Blessed and Gondolin weapons almost always have lousy damage output. ESP is incredibly rare on "random ability" weapons, too -- off the top of my head there's pStun/Conf/Blind/Fear, FA, SI, featherfall, Slow Digestion, Hold Life, Regeneration, and ESP as valid powers. That means you have a 1 in 11 chance of getting ESP on any given random-ability item; lousy odds.

That said, my last winner did end up wielding a Lothlorien bow with ESP that he found immediately before fighting Morgoth. It was a pretty terrible launcher, but he was a paladin anyway.
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