Monk Gold - Too Much Luck

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Monk Gold - Too Much Luck

Postby Eiphel on Tue Jul 01, 2014 6:50 am

I'm currently working my way through the class challenges before doing the Vicious dungeons. So far I've cleared all the Adventurer classes and also the Priest. Now I'm trying to do Monk. I think I've attempted it more times than I attempted all the previous four golds combined. It must be, by far, my least enjoyable level in the game. Am I missing something? Because it seems to be ridiculously luck dependent. If you don't get the right monsters nearby at the start, or you don't find shrines early, or you don't get useful glyphs, or you don't find the glyphs early, you're pretty much out of luck. And even if all of that goes your way, if you have to waste blackspace finding a monster to kill, you're probably wrecked anyway. I've never got Superduper below 300HP on my best runs. Earlier on I had what seemed an amazing run, starting by Earthmother and attack boosters, finding Burndayraz and Apheelsik within a few moves, cruising up to level 7 with about half the blackspace remaining - basically as good a run as you could hope for. I then proceeded to uncover the entire rest of the map before finding Superduper, literally in the last area of blackspace wide enough to conceal him. There's nothing entertaining when the main reason you fail the challenge has nothing to do with playskill. I actually suspect that even if you had perfect information, quite a few times the generated dungeon would actually be unbeatable. And everything else aside, it seems like beating the boss requires an amount of blackspace remaining that it's really not possible to control for. Am I just playing this badly, or is it the lottery it seems like?
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Re: Monk Gold - Too Much Luck

Postby dislekcia on Wed Jul 02, 2014 10:09 pm

Golds usually are about playing the class really oddly in order to win. What can you do with a Monk that seems non-obvious, but might be edge-case powerful?
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Re: Monk Gold - Too Much Luck

Postby TheSchachter on Wed Jul 02, 2014 11:50 pm

dislekcia wrote:Golds usually are about playing the class really oddly in order to win. What can you do with a Monk that seems non-obvious, but might be edge-case powerful?


Funny, I'd always assumed that Monk Gold was one of those challenges that simply forced you to play the Monk at an extremely high level. I can't think of a way of playing the Monk in an significantly unusual way that would apply here, other than learning to deal with horrible horrible monsters... but then I'm pretty terrible with the Monk, as far as veteran players of the game go (I *think* I'm allowed to call myself that now?)

In the first place, I honestly don't know what to do about the question of "what happens if you don't find the boss until the last blackspace square", other than smart exploration (know where the walls are, and don't explore their tiles until the rest is revealed) and glyph usage (Lemisi is obviously exceedingly useful). If anyone has any thoughts about this, I would love to hear them myself. Or any insight as to what dislekcia means in the above quote, actually :P

That being said, Eiphel, if you're interested (and in case you haven't seen it yet), I've made a video playthrough of the Monk Gold challenge on my youtube channel. It definitely shows that my Monk play is less-than-stellar, but it might also perhaps give some ideas that you hadn't considered before... also the ending is pretty funny :) The most interesting part of it, in my opinion, is that it doesn't use Taurog or Apheelsik, which are the two most reliable tools for the Monk, especially in this challenge. And finally, if you do want to watch the video, I recommend reading the comment section, which has good suggestions as to what I could have done better in it. Here's the link: http://youtu.be/Om0nMBxvIhM
(and sorry for the shameless promotion!)

But yeah, ultimately, the easiest time I've ever had with this challenge has been when finding Taurog early and obtaining the sword and the armour (as well as the shield in some cases). If you're not above scumming for a good start, that's probably the best thing to look out for. BISSEPS and APHEELSIK are also obviously great.

Hope this helps!
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Re: Monk Gold - Too Much Luck

Postby Eiphel on Thu Jul 03, 2014 1:40 am

Hmm. I might be undervaluing Taurog then/overvaluing burndayraz and apheelsik. I only ever switch into Taurog very late because of the piety loss for casting those glyphs. Or possibly I'm being too scared about engaging the weakening/corrosive enemies? I'd probably burn up less blackspace if I wasn't so desperate to avoid engaging them. But I don't know how to deal with racking up weakening or corrosion, it seems like it'd be hard to take more than one or two hits of it.
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Re: Monk Gold - Too Much Luck

Postby TheSchachter on Thu Jul 03, 2014 2:23 am

Eiphel wrote:Hmm. I might be undervaluing Taurog then/overvaluing burndayraz and apheelsik. I only ever switch into Taurog very late because of the piety loss for casting those glyphs. Or possibly I'm being too scared about engaging the weakening/corrosive enemies? I'd probably burn up less blackspace if I wasn't so desperate to avoid engaging them. But I don't know how to deal with racking up weakening or corrosion, it seems like it'd be hard to take more than one or two hits of it.


General wisdom about the Monk: there are two things that Monks want above all, and that is more attack power to overcome their weakness and even more resistances. The attack power makes your regen-fighting much more efficient, and the thing about resistances is that the more you already have, the more useful additional resistances will be (without going into a too detailed explanation, consider: it takes 50% resistances to halve a monster's attack. From there, it takes only 25% to halve it further, and so on). Taurog, of course, provides both. Furthermore, Taurog is generous enough with Piety that you can afford to cast glyphs quite a lot; you're only trying to get a few specific boons, after all, since Unstoppable Fury isn't that useful on Monks and you can't get enough magic resists to make a difference anyway (and the magic-attack monsters you want to avoid in the first place).

You should definitely avoid engaging corrosive and weakening enemies much (or at all), but there are occasions where you won't have much choice. If that's the case, take Corrosion over Weakening. A couple of corrosion stacks at high levels isn't a huge difference, but weakening, especially for the Monk's already nerfed base damage, is really bad for the endurance fight against the boss.

One trick you can use early on if you don't find good targets is to use BLUDTUPOWA if you find it, since you can kill any level 2 enemy at level 1 if you stack burning and regen-fight with it. The monk uses it especially well since he can convert his double health regeneration into mana. You can use it on any target, but do avoid the cursed slimes. Don't depend on the glyph for long, though because it burns a ton of blackspace which you'll need for the boss.

Be careful about Bandits; once you reach a high level you might feel enclined to burn popcorn to fight them, but don't forget that doing so will make the Meat Men poisonous very quickly.

Also, I'm realizing that I forgot to mention HALPMEH as one of the best glyphs to find here. Especially when the meat men become poisonous.

Bottom line for the Monk is that you want as high damage as possible, and more physical resistances when possible. Don't hesistate to convert a lot of glyphs to boost your damage (you are playing as Orc right?), the early damage boost makes a huge difference at low levels and stays really important throughout.

EDIT: One last thing, which took me a long time to realise about the Monk: A Monk's Level is very important. Unlike many classes which will want to try and get as many level canons as possible and burn exploration to preserve popcorn, the Monk in particular is more likely to burn Popcorn to level up to ensure efficient continued levelling-up against stronger foes without using up too much blackspace, even if it means mid-boss fight dings. This is because the power of the doubled regen-fighting becomes more and more significant as you level up (at level 1, you match the regeneration of a level 2 monster. At level 5, you match the regeneration of the boss, and from there, your regeneration keeps becoming more absurdly powerful).

The above, of course, comes with the disclaimer that if any experienced Monk players contradict what I say, you should probably listen to them :P And also that I might be completely oblivious to the strategy dislekcia is talking about. I'm just listing random thoughts that were helpful for me before going to bed :)

Good luck!
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Re: Monk Gold - Too Much Luck

Postby Eiphel on Thu Jul 03, 2014 5:22 am

So of course I go for one more run before bed and this happens:Image

What you can't see in this screenshot is that I still had 3 health pots and 4 mana pots remaining on top of all that blackspace leftover. I had definitely undervalued Taurog, but that said, the major difference I felt between this devastating run and all my abortive failures was still how lucky I got with finding stuff without spending too much blackspace.

Gods, I hope Paladin Gold takes less tries than that.
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Re: Monk Gold - Too Much Luck

Postby Nurator on Thu Jul 03, 2014 6:43 am

Congratulations :) One additional tip for monks: Cast Fireball before you leave the enemy alone for regenerating. This way, he regenerates one less health per tile, effectively reducing his lvl by 1.

And never forget the simple equation. If Your Level* Your Damage*4>Enemy Level*Enemy Damage you can regenfight him. ALWAYS do that while exploring. Never explore without engaging a fight, then you will be fine :)

Good luck with Pala, the game is just getting harder by now :) :D
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