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Old February 3, 2008, 04:41   #1
Anne
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Some newbie questions about Angband types

I'm new to Angband and its variations, having only played Nethack before, so here's a question for any kind-hearted soul who feels like responding.

I understand that there are enchanted items, ego items, and artifacts. The one I'm not clear on is the ego item category. I did discover that some can offer resistances, but beyond that, I'm not clear. Could an ego item only have enchantments on it, nothing else special about it? What about those weapons 'of slaying' and such? Are those ego items? Do they ever give special abilities, or alter primary stats, or would that only apply to artifacts?

Next question - is there any way to make 'fixed' armor and weapons? Back in good ol' Nethack, we could read a scroll of enchant armor while confused, and the item would become damage-proof. Is that just wishful thinking here?
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Old February 3, 2008, 05:53   #2
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Originally Posted by Anne View Post
I understand that there are enchanted items, ego items, and artifacts. The one I'm not clear on is the ego item category. I did discover that some can offer resistances, but beyond that, I'm not clear. Could an ego item only have enchantments on it, nothing else special about it? What about those weapons 'of slaying' and such? Are those ego items? Do they ever give special abilities, or alter primary stats, or would that only apply to artifacts?
There are ego items which only give enchantments (Bows of Accuracy, for example, just have a big plus to hit). Weapons of slaying are ego items; they don't give other bonuses, but weapons of *slaying* do. There is pretty much no useful property that an artifact has that no ego item has (plusses to stats, resists, sustains etc), but artifacts tend to have more of them. And there are very good items which aren't even ego items (like Dragon Scale Mail and rings of speed).

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Next question - is there any way to make 'fixed' armor and weapons? Back in good ol' Nethack, we could read a scroll of enchant armor while confused, and the item would become damage-proof. Is that just wishful thinking here?
Basically, yes (although some variants do have the ability to proof things from the elements). Some ego types and all artifacts are immune from damage by the elements, but some egos are not. Also artifacts can't be stolen or even picked up off the ground by monsters.
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Old February 3, 2008, 07:22   #3
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Originally Posted by Anne View Post
I understand that there are enchanted items, ego items, and artifacts. The one I'm not clear on is the ego item category. I did discover that some can offer resistances, but beyond that, I'm not clear. Could an ego item only have enchantments on it, nothing else special about it? What about those weapons 'of slaying' and such? Are those ego items? Do they ever give special abilities, or alter primary stats, or would that only apply to artifacts?
Ego items are ones that are marked {excellent} (or {worthless}) when playing Warrior, Rogue, or Paladin. Weapons of slaying are the weakest weapon type, and are mostly useful for cash. Less common ego types do give stat bonuses, resistances. abilities, and sustains. "Branded" weapons often do the most damage early in the game. (Note that Bows marked {worthless} can be quite useful, because they provide See Invisible, and can eventually be enchanted up to do useful damage. Other {worthless} items are really bad; {worthless} weapons are disastrous--usually game-ending--to wield.)

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Next question - is there any way to make 'fixed' armor and weapons? Back in good ol' Nethack, we could read a scroll of enchant armor while confused, and the item would become damage-proof. Is that just wishful thinking here?
No, you can't do that; it would be a pretty useless effect anyway. Basic armor isn't worth much, and the only ego armors that are really worth using are acid-proof in any case. (Resistance, Elvenkind, Dwarven, and Permanence.) Weapons are more of a problem. Some useful weapon types can be destroyed by acid or fire while in your pack.
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Old February 3, 2008, 17:35   #4
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I thank you both for the replies - that clears up some of the mystery for me. I've noticed that I end up needing to replace the cheaper beginning items pretty frequently (arrows, boots, gloves, helmets) due to damage or outright destruction, but the more expensive ones such as body armor don't seem to receive damage as often. Very helpful for new characters with little cash.

And then I'm also learning that I don't necessarily have to kill every monster I see. I've seen that mentioned a number of times before, but it took awhile to truly sink in (old habits and all). And I don't necessarily need to explore every part of the level if it means I'd have to defeat a particularly risky foe. On Nethack, we'd lose wisdom if we made a habit of not discovering all areas of a level, and that isn't the case on Angband types. I think that's key for me, really - as I play these more, I'll gradually get out of the habits ingrained by having only played Nethack before.
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Old February 14, 2008, 10:18   #5
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I thank you both for the replies - that clears up some of the mystery for me. I've noticed that I end up needing to replace the cheaper beginning items pretty frequently (arrows, boots, gloves, helmets) due to damage or outright destruction, but the more expensive ones such as body armor don't seem to receive damage as often. Very helpful for new characters with little cash.
Hmm.. I think this is just chance, at least when it comes to stuff you're wearing. Anyway, the easiest way to deal with acid is to pass through the 20s as fast as you can- Acid Hounds are common there. 1500' isn't much more dangerous than 1000', and it has much better stuff. And less Acid Hounds.

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And then I'm also learning that I don't necessarily have to kill every monster I see.
Once you really understand this you'll be a good Angband player- all you need is that and an understanding of the basic tactics. Angband is about avoidance and escape. It is very different from Nethack.
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Old February 27, 2008, 21:09   #6
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An simple enchanted equipment will be for example

A robe(2, +5)
Or a longsword(+4,+1)


An ego weapon will be

A sword of slay demon
A soft leather armor of resistance
A mace (Holy Avenger)


And artifacts have a name like

The sword 'ringil'
The axe 'mundwine'
The one ring


As for the Angband/Nethack comparison, I'd say the main difference is that in Angband, if you have a plan and know what you're doing, you shouldn't die (Well, it would take longer for you to die), as opposed to Nethack where picking a rock, tunelling a wall, reading a scroll, drinking from a fountain, taking a step, walking down stairs when burdened can all bring you death. I'm not saying that one is better than the other though, as it's fun to always discover new ways to die in Nethack, it's just that Angband is more I'd say... stable
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Old February 27, 2008, 21:14   #7
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My personal explanation for egos is "Half-Artifacts".
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Old February 28, 2008, 03:44   #8
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Those are all very helpful, especially the examples of how they're named. Thank you.

And speaking of Nethack death, the great majority of mine were from starvation in the very low levels. It was just too darn hard to find food until you got deeper down. That's one thing I appreciated right from the start in Angband types - food is not nearly such a major issue for new characters!
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