Tikki Tooki is the trickster serpent god. He has a particular soft spot for gold, accepting it as tribute and granting it to faithful followers. This makes him quite versatile both for purist runs (where gold is in short supply) and with heavy preparations (where you often have more than you can spend). He can also be of help to those seeking to fuel items which comsume gold for activationg their abilities, such as Crystal Ball or Alchemist Scroll.
Tikki Tooki is uncovered in the south in a small subdungeon where you must defeat a form-changing imp without getting hit by it in return several times.
Depends on how much you want to depend or rely on him, and when in the course of the run you begin worshiping him or convert into his religion. Early worship requires planning before a run, as does heavy reliance. He is relatively easy to gain piety with, but his few restrictions will severely alter your gameplay, and punish some strategies. He promotes top notch play and rewards it, but there is a chance of locking yourself into a downward spiral if you aren't careful.
Likes and Dislikes
TT rewards piety for killing monsters that are lower level than yourself (+5 piety). He awards successful dodges (+3 piety) and use of the WHEYTWUT and WONNAYT glyphs (+1 Piety). He also awards you +1 piety every time you poison a monster for the first time. You can also gain piety from him by using his "Tribute" boon which gives you +10 piety for 15 gold.
TT dislikes you getting hit by monsters too much, so you get -3 piety every time you get hit by a monster after the first. If you prep TT from the kingdom screen you will get -3 piety every time you get hit by a monster at all. He also dislikes using up death protections which he punishes by -10 piety. He won't punish casting a CYDSTEP glyph, or otherwise acquiring a death protection, but he will punish using it up.
If your piety drops below zero, he will give every monster first strike and weakening blow, which is a severe punishment. Consdering that he actually has very few way to lose piety with, it is easier to avoid than it seems.
Rare Hazard - if you hit a monster for the second time and spend a death protection at the same time, you will lose 13 piety "at once". Since this is a rare occurence, it can be easy to overlook. If you are going tight and playing risky, you can plan for either losing 3 piety or 10 piety and the sudden loss of 13 can mess your careful plans up. Since death protection as a mechaninc is relatively rare, and TT only punishes one other thing, it's easy to forget TT dislikes them. Not being aware of his dislike of using death protections at all can also land you in this situation.
Desecrating TT's altar - should be avoided unless you're confident about what you're doing, and/or are a heavily focused spellcaster. Even then, it's prefferable not to do it until you are well into a bossfight and are certain that you won't be relying on first strike (or even physical attacks) to finish the boss off.
Early worship of TT is tricky and requires forward planning. At lvl1 the piety for killing lower level monsters can't be acquired, and that is what he awards the most piety for. Using WHEYTWUT, WONNAFYT and APHEELSICK while you explore will give you one piety per use, and in case of the first two it will prepare lvl1 monsters to be harvested later for added benefits. Finding other altars and collecting the piety sparkles around them can also help, and investing some gold into a tribute will get you closer to your first boon. Bringing items which provide you enough XP to level up at least once in order to "start" at lvl2 is also an option (False Beard, Cracked Amulet of Yendor, Amulet of Yendor, even Balanced Dagger), or using the Goblin conversion bonus for an early level up will also let you harvest lower level monsters for piety. Playing a Fighter (easier to reach lvl2) or an Assassin (starts with APHEELSICK) is beneficial to this approach.
What you are looking for is a fast and eficcent level2, and the soonest possible purchase of the Tiki's Edge boon, which will provide 10 gold and +1 XP per monster killed. After you gain enough piety for the Dodge boon, you gain 10 more gold and allow yourself to gain +3 piety of random dodges. Where you take it from there is up to you to decide, but gaining 50 piety shouldn't be too hard, and with that you can convert to another God with up to 20 extra gold, two helpful small boons, 25 piety to spend with the other deity, and the free GETINDARE glyph TT provides if he is the first deity you join.
The approach works better if you join at lvl2, because you can get your first level without adhering to the principles of not being hit more than once that TT mandates.
Provides you with an ease in early leveling, while leaving many low level monsters to be harvested later with more ease. The principles are the same, except there is much less pressure, and if you convert to his religion with extra piety or join him with extra gold picked up, you can grab Tikki's Edge more easily.
If joined at the right time, this can allow you to mop up all the low level monsters you have saved for a big boost in piety and experience, potentially letting you level up and heal both your health and mana without exploring. Whether you pick anything else up or swap into another god depends on the situation.
Tikki Tooki provides three options for dedicated worshipers:
1) Tikki's edge - if focused provides more XP for "cleaning popcorn", and helps spellcasters level-up while fighting the boss. This restores your health and mana, so you can unload more spells on the boss, as well as increasing your fireball damage directly and PISSORFF damage through physical damage increase. The extra gold can also help you buy cheap items for conversion, expensive items for use, potions from the alchemy shop or simply fuel a Crystal Ball. Just one level ot Tikki's Edge is enough, but some situations can make second helpings worthwhile.
It is effective with Fighters and Assassins, but also works with regular spellcasters, especially ones with large enough mana pools.
2) Poison - acquireing several levels of the Poison boon can help regen-fighting strategies greatly, and the first level can sometimes "pay for itself". The boon was recently reworked so the exact strategies still have to be determined.
It is effective with Monks and Gorgons if you can pull it off.
3) Reflexes - For 35 piety and 1 health potion, TT will provide you a set of potions. The quicksilver potion gives you dodge prediction and 50% temporary dodge chance. If you can "set up a dodge", that is, get hit by non-lethal attacks until your prediction says "DODGE", that means your next attack will cost you no health. You will also get 3 TT piety with that dodge. Before you apply your "free hit" on the boss, you drink the other potion, Reflex. It gives you double strike on your next attack, with the monster hit in between. Since you have secured a dodge with Quicksilver, the monster doesn't hit you, but you hit it twice!
It is effective with any physical damage dealer, particularly Rogues and Berserkers, but can be made to work with most classes provided enough practice. It is also the best way of dealing with certain bosses, namely Bleaty.
Concentrated TT worship and channeling many resources into repeated uses of the Reflexes boon is TT's piety spike. It requires a moderate ammount of health potions, 35 piety per helping, and decent damage to work, but provides a string of free hits on the boss. That amount of concentrated damage is sometimes difficult to imagine until you try it, but it works spectacularly well against bosses with high health and low hit points like Aequitas, Bleaty and even Namtar.
It is doable with both early and late worship depending on the situation and expirience of the player. It is also advisable to save popcorn with first strike (Goblins, Gorgons), to help setting up dodges with the Quicksilver potion. Hits you take move the dodge prediction counter, and monsters who are lower level than you generaly can't hit you unless they have first strike.
Stuff that makes it work better are damage items, the Dodge boon and Rogue's Dodging, and knockback. If you have a knockback attack, you will knock the enemy back twice when using a reflex potion, causing extra damage. Halflings have a distinct advantage in being able to convert for extra healing potions, because the number of potion sets that can be acquired is limited by the total amount of healing potions at your disposal. Subdungeons which provide healing potions can also help in this regard.
Fuel Health potions, Tikki Tooki piety, popcorn monsters with first strike.
Pro Tip If you want to plan ahead, avoid slowing popcorn with first strike. You will need their weak hits to set up confirmed dodges.
Tips and Tricks
If you want earn a little bit more gold from a run you have already won, and want to experiment with TT a bit, you can worship him or convert into his religion after you've allready killed the boss or bosses. You can then pick up Tikki's Edge and Dodging for gold, and mop up the remaining lower level monsters and desecrate the remaining altars (except the Glowing Guardian's one) to buy more his of Tikki's Edge.
One little-known trick with Tikki Tooki is that plants can be farmed for piety. It's entirely possible to dodge a plant's "attack" against you, and Tikki Tooki rewards you with piety every time you dodge. This means a Tikki Tooki follower can build up large amounts of piety just by clearing plants (this is also possible with Jehora Jeheyu, but that deity doesn't offer a boon that enables you to dodge). As well, attacking plants will trigger the quicksilver potion, causing your dodge chance to rise. In this way, you can continue to attack plants until your next attack is predicted to be a dodge then attack the boss. On levels with large numbers of plants (Western Jungle, Southern Swamp, and Ick Swamp being the most common) this can make Tikki Tooki a very powerful deity, and also an exceptional choice to convert into after worshipping the Earthmother.
Also, don't be afraid of one or two extra hits which would punish you if it would provide a large enough advantage.
Overall, Tikki Tooki is one of the best "last hour" deities, offering enormous amounts of piety for slaughtering defenseless monsters and superb boons which can improve your odds. His piety spike is also the go-to solution to several bosses and PQI scenarios for several game veterans.