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Old January 12, 2018, 10:06   #1
bron
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Sil-q Morgoth killer

http://angband.oook.cz/ladder-show.php?id=21380

I tried sil-q for the first time as part of the recent competition, but didn't have enough time to run a serious character until after the contest was over. But at that point I studied and experimented with the game for awhile trying to come up with a scheme to kill Morgoth. Eventually, I hit upon a good combination: rapid-fire Poison Flaming arrows, delivered Quickly, shot by a high strength character from a heavy bow. For extra fun, I decided to do this with no-artifacts, because that's just the way I roll.

The initial build was a Noldor Feanor, 3443, with 6 points in Smithing, and only 3 points in Melee and Evasion. This was so I could take Power right away, and then 3 smithing skills at the first forge. This left the character pretty fragile at the very start, as the unfortunate AA and BB can attest. But character CC made it through to the forge. After that, things actually went relatively smoothly, with sufficient forges to make the stuff I had planned: Gondolin Longsword (incredibly valuable, especially for the first few hundred feet), Nargothrod Longbow, Gauntlets of Strength, Dwarf Mask of Brilliance, Corslet of Resilience, to name the important ones, plus as much high evasion other gear as my skill allowed. And of course, the 6 lb. Longbow.

Skill selection and character progression went pretty standard for my sort of "Brute Force" style characters, except I didn't try for the 20th point of Evasion and instead put more points into Archery (I usually stop at 10 after taking the Dex). The idea was to be able to score a critical against Morgoth, even with the massive bow.

The other crucial part was to arrange to fight Morgoth 1 on 1, without lots of other monsters cluttering things up (and getting free attacks of opportunity while I was shooting). I did this by moving to the room in the NorthWest corner of the throne room level, breaking the tension and killing everything over there, getting Morgy to come out after me, and then going down the corridor on the West side of the throne room. The corridor is only 1 space wide, allowing me to go toe-to-toe with Morgy, drinking Healing as required. This went pretty well for the first 5 stars or so, but then a blow from Grond knocked out the eastern wall, and *two* Great Fire Drakes entered the fray. Mercifully, I was able to move further south and into the first room at the southern end, getting out of the Drake's LOS, and without Morgoth managing to heal too much. That position held up for another 30 or 40 arrows, and Morgoth was no more. I was sufficiently annoyed at the Drakes that I killed them next (not too hard while fully buffed). The Silmarils were ripped out with a Great Axe and strength 9, and away we went.

The ascent was fast. I had 5 Revelations charges which got me halfway up, and then searching the smaller upper levels was pretty easy. At the surface I was able to run straight to the outer double-doors without stopping, buff up, and take out Carcharoth with a hail of arrows.


edit: add the URL

Last edited by bron; January 12, 2018 at 21:53.
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Old January 12, 2018, 10:40   #2
Quirk
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Congratulations, bron!

I love the inventiveness of crafting a 6 lb bow to make good use of Rapid Fire. It looks like a very strategic win, with no really overpowered gear; did you burn through a lot of healing vs Morgoth? I guess you got a bit of space in the corridor with Quickness to fill him with arrows so you didn't spend too much time toe to toe?

Leaping's also an interesting pick.

Any comments (positive or negative) on the changes from Sil?
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Old January 12, 2018, 22:22   #3
bron
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Actually, I went toe-to-toe with Morgoth the entire fight. When I was experimenting with other characters, I found that if I broke the tension, and then waited at the end of the corridor, Morgoth never showed up. I had to go out towards the north end of the throne room to lure him to come at me. I could then Sprint down the corridor, but that really only gave me enough time to consume all the buffs: around 10 Quickness, at least 3 each of Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, and Grace, and six or eight Rage; it takes time to do all that.

I also employed a little extra trick: I put stuff on the floor on two adjacent spaces, and waited just to the south of them (I actually used the southernmost of the corridor traps for this, but anything would do). That way, when I knocked off the Crown, it fell under my feet. The advantage is that when Grond smashes things up, the game won't delete the Crown, and so it is much less likely that I'll find myself in a pit or something. It's a small thing, but an accumulation of small advantages can add up.

I consumed maybe 15 (?) Healing items (Potions, Herbs, Miruvor) during the fight. With 123 HP from all the Con, I could usually absorb a hit or two before needing to heal. And Morgoth didn't always connect, and sometimes he'd sing a song or something instead of a direct attack. I certainly used a lot of healing, but not impossibly much.


As to the other question, I take Leaping because it is a prerequisite for Sprinting, which I find vital. Sprinting is generally how I deal with Balrogs : I run away through already cleared areas, until I get somewhere with a long LOS: a straight corridor or a big room, say. Then shoot poison arrows from the Nargothrond bow until they die. I find Leaping more useful than Dodging (the other possible prerequisite) unless I intend to take Flanking, which this character did not.
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Old January 12, 2018, 22:46   #4
bron
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As for my impressions on sil-q as compared to sil: I thought that the game was not different enough. A couple things were tweaked in various ways, but nothing that really makes we want to play it as compared to the original. It was more like a stab at a Sil 1.4, rather than a new game based on the old. Nothing wrong with that of course.

I was never very good with the songs even in the original game, and removing Slaying and Sharpness meant that I just don't take songs at all. This is one of the major changes in sil-q, and it largely just passes me by.

I like the removal of Artistry from Smithing, but don't quite understand all the cost changes that were made. Some things are cheaper, some things more expensive, and I don't quite follow the rationale for it all.

I like the addition of "resist fear" to Clarity.

I find the Silmarils are too easy to cut out of the Crown, but clearly that is partly because I run high strength characters who can wail away with heavy weapons.
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Old January 13, 2018, 08:59   #5
Quirk
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bron View Post
As for my impressions on sil-q as compared to sil: I thought that the game was not different enough. A couple things were tweaked in various ways, but nothing that really makes we want to play it as compared to the original. It was more like a stab at a Sil 1.4, rather than a new game based on the old. Nothing wrong with that of course.
Yes, this is pretty much precisely how sil-q began: with a thread on features people wanted to see in 1.4, and it being apparent the game was not under active development.

From there there were three main philosophies: make choices less obvious and remove clutter, make Morgoth harder to kill, and design skills for the whole game not the throne room.

Removal of broken swords, filthy rags etc was easy as those were non-choices. Throwing Mastery and Song of Este and some other skills were rather similar. The other extreme, removing things like Momentum which largely negated the usefulness of whole classes of weapons was a little harder because people were used to taking these.

Finding new skills and things to fill in the gaps has been an evolutionary process.

I was actually considering a very much more serious overhaul to level and item generation, but I think my appetite for development is waning a little, and I'm not sure if it would have much of an audience.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bron View Post
I like the removal of Artistry from Smithing, but don't quite understand all the cost changes that were made. Some things are cheaper, some things more expensive, and I don't quite follow the rationale for it all.
I think only a handful of things are more expensive. The ones I suspect you're thinking of are sharpness and +evasion. With regard to the former, Smithing had (and still very much has) a U-shaped power curve. Instead of crafting slays, brands, etc people would go straight to sharpness. I've been trying to flatten out the power curve a little so useful ego items are more viable to craft mid-game, and the endgame items are a little less broken. I liked the Smithing progression in your run, it was broadly what I was hoping to see.

Evasion initially gained in expense because I felt giving Artistry might be just too good, but when one of the consequences of this was making +2 Evasion rings less affordable at 50' I wasn't too upset; these rings were better than practically anything else you'd find before the late game, and were perhaps too much the obvious choice.

Quote:
I find the Silmarils are too easy to cut out of the Crown, but clearly that is partly because I run high strength characters who can wail away with heavy weapons.
Heh, well, part of the balance now is that cutting Sils angers Morgoth, which makes him hit harder and have higher will and perception, making your escape harder. Of course if you kill Morgoth that's not a problem, but so far the majority of victories have been cutting Sils rather than killing him.
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