Strategy Thread for talking about Strategies

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Re: Strategy Thread for talking about Strategies

Postby dislekcia on Sat Jun 08, 2013 2:03 am

Naoya wrote:Sometimes I really wish there would be a complete changelog where everything with all its incarnations listed. I'm the kind of person who loves digging through such stuff.

We used to have one around here somewhere... Although during the early balance phase a lot of god boons were changed in undocumented ways as we tried out new things ;)
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Re: Strategy Thread for talking about Strategies

Postby Blovski on Fri Jun 13, 2014 5:23 pm

Sidestepper wrote:Strat time again!

I wanted to make a build that could basically ignore all of the annoying effects on Cursed Oasis and have a direct answer to every threat on the board. This is what I came up with.

JJ Altar
Black Market
Extra Attack
Bear Mace
Compression Seal
Health + Mana + Burn Salve + Fortitude

Veterans have probably already guessed what I'm up to.

Early game: Explore the entire map. We aren't going to do any wussy regen fighting. This is a strat for damage spiking he-men (or she-women) only. As you go, use JJ's guaranteed WEYTWUT to capture every single monster on the map. If you find WONAFYT, GETINDERE, or BYSEPS use those too, because they also accrue JJ piety and are more efficient. Carefully arrange your monsters in anticipation of future knock back games. Make sure that every Animated Armor can be knocked into another monster, and have the bosses and very high level monsters aligned with a long set of walls. Also, make sure to expose the walled in subdungeon. With WEYTWUT + Bear Mace, you have a 100% percent chance of accessing it.

JJ will almost certainly curse you before you complete this project. That traps you in curse world, but that's okay. Don't bother fighting things or trying to clear your curse stacks until after you have Petition, which should happen somewhere around the 25% explored mark.

With the whole map explored, you have defanged the Shades and their irritating Life Steal. It may seem like a horrible waste to burn your exploration at 1st level, but with Life Stealers on the board, you never really had that blackspace to begin with. Do leave a few odd corners unexplored. Basically, anything that you know for sure is going to be a wall tile or part of the lake should be left black if you can help it. We aren't going to regen fight, but we will need a few scraps to manipulate our health levels.

Now, vacuum up all of the resources. Buy and convert shop junk. We need tons of potions. The Fireheart is the only item that might be worth keeping. Trash most of your glyphs except for Fireball , GETINDERE, and IMAWAL. Don't leave anything on the ground because we are about to dive into the curse world and aren't coming back until the very end.

Take two levels of Boost Health. You do not want the third level and you will not benefit from Boost Mana. Keep everything else for Chaos Avatar and Last Chance.

Now level up with as few kills as possible. Take on the biggest thing that you can while only using one potion. Aim for 3 or 4 levels higher than yourself. Use every bit of health and mana during every round. If a monster knocks you down to 49% of your health, don't drink your potion like a chump, explore a tile to get up to 52% and then let the monster knock you back down to 1% and THEN drink your potion. If you find yourself in the middle of a level with your heath and mana empty, just eat popcorn to get back up. Use Choas Avatar when your piety is in danger of overflowing. Since every monster is exposed and positioned by you, you should be able to use CA with zero waste of xp.

Keep going. Your goal should be to get all of the 7+ level monsters off of the board, as well as wear down the mid level AAs. You want to get all of the 'hard xp' off of the table. Kill the Shade boss the moment that you can do so with only 2 potions or one potion + a level up.

When it's time to square off against the Dragon, you should have enough pre-slowed popcorn to level up twice. You should also be approaching 100 piety again, which means that you have Last Chance as an option. Don't pop your potions until you hit level 10 for maximum efficiency. Every single hit on the Dragon should be a knockback through a wall, or maybe into a level 9 monster that you left hanging around just for this purpose. You should win with plenty of leftover potions.

This strat works because it brutally screws almost every monster type on the map:

Thrall: Priest + Trisword lets up pop those guys like balloons. Their mana burn and poison abilities don't matter as much when you are relying on dings and potions for all of your refills.

Animated Armors: Because you explored the map, you will always have the Fireball glpyh. With that and the Bearmace and guaranteed ideal positioning you can tear through their death protections.

Shades: Exploring at 1st level preempts Life Steal and makes Blink irrelevant (notthat Blink works against the Bearmace anyway). Their physical resistance is little help against a Priest with a Trisword.

Bandit: You don't care about curse. That's the advantage to health stacking versus resistance stacking. Without curse, bandits are nothing.

Dragon: Okay, so you don't have a direct answer to them, but with your piles of health you'll be okay.

Not so sure if this will work in VICIOUS. Leveling is a lot less efficient in VICIOUS. The spiral of having to spend more potions for less xp is pretty nasty.

OK, doing this with a Naga Cauldron instead of the Trisword absolutely *does* work in VICIOUS. In general I'd say the Naga Cauldron is a slightly better choice for the strat. Addition - pick up a health potion before you get cursed if at all possible so you don't end up unable to boost health in the curse world. On Vicious I conserved potions for the bosses and started fighting them at about level 6 (Shade boss is low damage so you can really square up to him very early). I also saved Chaos Avatar for the mid-fight Ding against the Shade boss.
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Re: Strategy Thread for talking about Strategies

Postby Sidestepper on Sat Jun 14, 2014 1:43 am

I like the Cauldron angle. That's an artifact that I don't play with very often, which is weird because I like Priests and the Cauldron was practically made for Priests.

How did your leveling go? Since you weren't burning your potions like in the original strategy, I'm guessing that you picked fights with Thralls when you could avoid poison/mana burn and Bandits when you could not.
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Re: Strategy Thread for talking about Strategies

Postby Blovski on Sat Jun 14, 2014 2:18 am

Cauldron is just one of those items that hangs around in my locker so any excuse to bust it out...

Uh, Shades, Thralls, AAs (they hit hard but with health boost you can sort them) and Bandits pretty much depending on circumstances, manaburn/poison risk and whether I wanted to get back topside to pick up the stuff I'd explored in the interim. Occasionally dragons as well. Beauty of the strat is, as you said, that pretty much everything's a target. I wasn't hitting more than 1 or 2 levels ahead most of the time and I had to kill a level one to get back topside after the initial curse. That said, because Shade is kind of wussy, weak to priests and JJ gives you the bonus level.

I picked up Unstoppable as well for giggles. I think there's room for playing it more like the original with the higher-level kills but since I was just trying to see if it was viable I went for a safer doomspike.
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Re: Strategy Thread for talking about Strategies

Postby Astral on Fri Jul 04, 2014 6:02 pm

Ick Swamp is a very easy place thanks to it's awesome drops so I'm not sure if any strategy is needed for that dungeon, but I'd like to share it cause it's so fun to try:


Is that a strong vampire? How about now?


Stack damages and lifesteal like crazy and everything becomes a bloodcow!


The idea came from PQI sending me there for a warmoonger run, and I spiced it up. With the usual tranmsutaion scroll + Namtar's ward + less glyphs CP frenzy prep it was set up for greatness. I also took the perseverance badge to boost my damage, the weakening/corrosion cure potions so I can kill whatever I want, and Patches for anything but more mana.
Funny thing is I could have made my character even stronger if I had better shops: I only found a single good CP fodder and 0 useful items. One of my shops had the spoon :D
When you try it out don't forget to cut all the mana burn/poison plants as soon as possible, they give spoons and cannot hurt you. When you discovered most of the map kill all the corrosion plants you see for more spoons, if you do it during a fight it heals you too, then drink your burn salve before taking a hit.

Another fun thing to try in Ick is playing it with an Orc Warlord with prepped Patches and Soul Orb + your preferred stuff.
That always results in something hilarious:

Somebody spilled raspberry juice all over the place!
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Re: Strategy Thread for talking about Strategies

Postby Astral on Mon Aug 18, 2014 4:27 pm

Here comes yet another application of the CP frenzy prepset: the fireball avalanche!

So take an elf wizard with Namtar's Ward + transmutation scroll + less glyphs, prep JJ, bearmace, shops scroll and more gold. For potions Schadenfraude, mana pot, and the anti debuff ones.

Before even doing your 1st kill, you just farm piety to increase your max mana, and also take a health boost. You can wait with converting stuff untill finding your altars, if you see GG, convert under him, otherwise stay with JJ.
When you transmute NW and convert your least useful glyph, you immediately gain 340 CP, and a handy 50 gold! With looting the shops, from 25 mana you can easily skyrocket all the way up to 40-45, and can also afford spell casting items.

Btw you won't even run out of blackspace. You can save about 20-25%, and be done with piety farming and popcorn bowling too.

Time to kill your 1st monster. On hard it's a lvl 4 (even if you could kill a 5, don't do it to avoid double dinging), on VT it's 3. Then just keep keep killing the highest stuff that dings you, but doesn't make you double ding. So you play like a mana based version of a health monster.
The great thing about it is that you save all your blackspace left, and remain with a massive popcorn bowl.

In hard you will never have a problem, and by lvl 5 you can spike weaker bosses without any sort of refills. The tougher ones go down to a single level catapult. If you wanted to do something super silly, you could play the entire dungeon pure caster style - with no refills and catapults.
Just to mention a lvl 10 wiz with 50 mana (common to reach with this strat), and a battlemage ring spikes for 610 damage, then for 700 if burning is kept.

For VT runs some planning and strategy is needed too. Even if you pile up that massive popcorn, that doesn't mean you will be able to consume it. Also pulling off the insta-ding kills will need some creativity: mixing in well timed hits (this is where the health boost pays out, and when activating Schadenfrauds), pisorfs or combining melee items with your caster set ( witchalok pendant, FH, whurgarbl etc.). Sometimes you will overkill the target by a few fireballs, in cases like this plan ahead and choose your next target, and gift him with your excess mana before doing the kill. Tricks like this can enable wonderful kills.
At times no matter what you do the ideal kill is unreachable. You could switch to a god who helps by a refill or boon, or kill something lower and eat popcorn, or use blackspace and kill something similar again.
During your harder bossfight it's recommended to chew on fatter popcorns between dings, this way you ultimately can squeeze out more levelups. For the same reason sometimes a portion of your mana is better spent on fireballing popcorn if you're just a few xp short of yet another ding.

This strat comes with a lot of counting since even burning plays a big role in kills, and you constantly have to keep an eye on bonus xp to save resources. To ease the latter I made an xp-table.

A very good kill pattern is 3 - 5 - 7 - 9, then if possible the weaker boss, and now you're lvl 6, 1 xp short of a ding.
Even if you can't instakill your first boss, at level 5 you only need 3 xp for a level catapult.

Want to see some pics how effective this strat is?
From the 1st time I tried it, and was still experimental:

After some refinement:

And finally some VT tests:

What I really like about this strat is that how reliable it is. On that VT Slime Pit run my lvl 9 monsters were awful - meatmen and gelatinous thing, many of my popcorns were meatmen too, my only real spellcasting item was blue orb,
I wasted a lot of piety by taking spirit pact and staying with JJ too long, and then I haven't even mentioned my big mistakes. Like autoconverting soul orb when my sub was the spider temple :P
In the end I still blasted SMM to crisps easily.
Somebody spilled raspberry juice all over the place!
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Re: Strategy Thread for talking about Strategies

Postby Blovski on Mon Aug 18, 2014 8:58 pm

OK. New thing, or new old thing. Not really a tough hard-nosed vicious level strategy or anything though I'll give it a shot at that sort of thing sometime.

Glowing Goblin

Premise: take a goblin transmuter of GG into a dungeon.
Optional extras: Whurgarbl, transmutation seal + sword, your pick of boosts, maps like Labyrinth, Havendale, Ick Swamp and Shifting Passages where declogging is desirable, strength potion like the good old days, tiny statue of Napoleon in a fish tank.
Desired result: entertainment, novelty synergy, victory in pretty much any sub-vicious scenario.

Anyway, basically the premise is not too far from the old Havendale Bridge-Troll Absolution strategy. Goblin transmuters seem to be one of the very few classes who can reliably get a few beads, get enlightenment and get out. The increased health/damage/mana makes up for the basic goblin weakness in the late game, while the Transmuter's spiking skills make up for the early game softness, while the goblin's cascade of level-ups offer a ton of GG piety and the late-game levelling spikes that Glowing Guardian devotees often have trouble getting (because of absolution clearing the popcorn).

It's not a super-build or anything but it's good if you want to fiddle around with Transmuters a bit and play GG a bit more like I think he's meant to work.

Also, Astral, you are a scientist of this game. I doff my hat in your direction.
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Re: Strategy Thread for talking about Strategies

Postby Astral on Mon Aug 18, 2014 10:09 pm

Wow, thank you Blovski :D

That sounds fun, I'll definitely give it a try. Speaking of goblin transmuters, they are another bunch who can go silly with increased mana.
Once I played a sorta 'pacifist' run with them - tried to reach level 10 and win without killing any monsters besides the bosses.
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Re: Strategy Thread for talking about Strategies

Postby Nurator on Tue Aug 19, 2014 11:02 am

This game is hardcore science :D You dont want to know on how many notepad sheets I scribbled while thinking about strategies :D

But Astral, you surely are even more devoted than me^^ You should study math if you didnt already do that ;-)
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Re: Strategy Thread for talking about Strategies

Postby Astral on Tue Aug 19, 2014 11:56 am

Haha I know that feeling. I used to write DD stuff into a small maths exercise book, but it got filled back when I was calculating infinimuter builds. Had to move to notepad and excel to save paper :P

Unfortunately it's to late to change my career for maths, but I can still treat it as a hobby :D
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