Special Let's Play Angband status update!
Hi everybody! Because it's going to be a while before the next real update (GREs, work, not knowing what character to roll next, etc.) I've decided that you're all going to get a substitute teacher for the next few weeks. Because there was some (one) interest in Tales of Middle Earth, VorpalEdge has volunteered to act as substitute teacher and deliver some guest lectures on it until such a time as Let's Play Angband updates resume properly.
Please obey the regular substitute teacher rules (pay attention, no spitballs, etc.) and also I would like to kindly ask you to refrain from Angband discussion until my triumphant return (there is nothing ruder than interrupting a guest lecturer with questions about the course's normal content).
Do not worry, this is not the end of Let's Play Angband. It will return with more fantastic adventures and links to youtube videos of terrible FMV games in, let's say... around October, sometime.
Hi! I'm your interim administrator, here to cover for the kidnapping - er, make fun times for all. While I'm following through on my nefarious purpose, I present to you:
GameFAQs ASCII Art: The Game! Let's get started. This game is, like sCthAngband, a skill-based game. Unlike sCthAngband, it's not completely horrible, and also unlike sCthAngband, skills don't level up via use. Instead, you get 6 skill points per level, and you get to put them wherever you choose, within limits set by your class. Before we pick our class, however, we must pick our race.
Stiv would be crying right now, if we hadn't chloroformed him. This is a monstrous list, full of redundant races that have next to no difference from each other. Even You, with your history of only-looking-at-the-screenshots, should be able to figure out that there aren't that many ways of bashing something over the head. I mean, you theoretically could bash things at high speeds with the Rohirrim and their intrinsic speed bonus, or you could bash things from atop your Eagle steed as a Thunderlord (who also happens to gain resistance to all four basic elements intrinsically, with immunity to electricity at level 50... at the cost of hideously terrible stealth and taking twice as long as a Dunadan to level), but aside from style points you can't do much. Ranged doesn't have many more options either. While having a Deathmold blink around the map casting [color="white"]Magic Missile[/color] Manathrust is kinda enticing, their, you know, lack of legs makes everything difficult. And let's not even start with Yeeks and their tendency to die when you sneeze on them.
Screw this; we're picking a Dwarf. But before we get to choose our class, we get a rather special option. Do you want to sneak around to vacation homes worldwide? Do you like pulling pranks and administring divine retribution? Do you have an extra-spooky howl, and are invisible, or would you like to be these things? If so, sign up to be a Lost Soul today! </Billy Mays>
Well, this list ain't so bad. You can come out again, Stiv. Anyways, if we pick a Dwarf as a race we of course have to play a Priest, so...
The list is nested. There are, by my count, 32 classes in the game, organized under the categories you just saw. Since you will be choosing a race and class for me to play for the next couple months, I suppose I have to give a quick overview of them. But even a quick overview will be a wall-of-text, so...
skip down to the red X to skip this
Warriors: Each weapon type has a weapon type. There is a generic warrior who has ok growth in the skill corresponding to each weapon type (which increases damage and accuracy when using that weapon), but that's fucking stupid, since you're much better off picking one weapon type and focusing on it. As such, you also have a class devoted to each weapon type -- swordmasters, axemasters (dwarves get a special bonus to axemastery!), polearm masters, and hafted-masters (blunt weapons). Left untold is why darkgod didn't just give the generic warrior class good growth in all the skills and eliminate the specialized types. I mean, if we want to waste points in more than one weapon specialty, that should be the player's perogative, right? Whatever. We also have unbelievers, who do not believe in magic so hard that they generate an anti-magic field around them, within which spells have a chance to fail. Finally, there's Demonologists and they're basically swordmasters except, in exchange for wielding less-powerful equipment, get to cast a group of spells from said equipment as if they were books. The class as a whole is totally useless, however, since there's an (extremely risky and completely random) method for getting the Demonology skill with another character, and at a higher rate of growth. Suckers.
For archers, we have generic Archers and Rangers. Both are relatively self-explanatory -- generics have higher growth in the 'shoot stuff with a bow' skills, and Rangers take more skill points to shoot stuff effectively but have access to a small school of spells as a consolation prize. It's actually a good consolation prize since that school has the Healing spell, but still.
For rogues, there is basically one way you can build them. That didn't stop the devs from giving you two rogue classes, though! As such, Rogues are useless and Assassins are ok. You basically run around with maxed stealth stabbing sleeping stuff in the back and getting free criticals with the Backstab skill. Fun stuff, although I don't know how effective it is late-game.
For mages, there are a bunch of classes. There's a total of, eh, around 14 basic schools of magic, and said classes have different rates of growth in the skill associated with each school. A bunch of the schools are mostly useless, however. A noteworthy feature are Sorcerors, who have a skill of the same name that gives points in each magic school - but at the cost of HP. For example, a character with Sorcery 25 would have 25 points in each magic school, but at the cost of 25% of his HP. I'm not going to detail the schools of magic here (this is a big enough wall of text already), so either pick a sorceror or leave it up to me, k? Geomancers are the other noteworthy mage class -- in addition to casting spells, they can gather elements from the dungeon and create spells from those. Meaning, that lake of lava over there can be drained to create a wave of lava you can surfboard down and annihilate ice dragons with ([size="1"]surfboards not included[/size]). Alchemists are also found here, but their thing is that they make overpowered equipment with +1000% life, so we won't be playing one. [color="white"]Actually, they're the one class I have no idea how to use.[/color]
For priests, we have a class for each of the five gods. These gods are Eru Iluvatar, creator of the world and most associated with magic, Manwe, his divine middle-management who focuses on extra speed and accuracy bonuses, Yavana, who is mostly useless and extremely hard to worship anyways, Tulkas, fighter god of I'll-Beat-You-Up, and Melkor, the evil guy at the bottom of Angband every single character is aiming to kill. Yep, he's also known as Morgoth, and even if you pick a dark-priest, your goal is still to kill him. Except this time, you aim to take his place. Melkor doesn't mind -- he just laughs and saps your INT. As a Dwarf Priest, we will of course be worshipping Tulkas and beating stuff up. There is also a 6th priest class, Mindcrafters, who can worship whoever they want and have a generally useless skillset. Don't use them.
Lastly, Loremastery is a catch-all for a bunch of miscellaneous skills. There are Summoners, who summon monsters from totems you create of their corpses, Possessors, who possess said corpses, Symbiants, who charm dungeon molds and carry them around as pets, letting them cast various spells and add to melee, and Mimics, who transform into other creatures. Monks, a combination of barehand-combat and dodging (while wearing almost no equipment) are here too. There's also Bards, but if you guys make me play one I'll kill you all.
So yeah, be thinking about which race/class combo you want me to play! You get bonus points if you correctly identify something that's utterly broken. And anti-points if you make me play a fucking bard. I'd use your recommendations from the beginning of the thread, but this game has so many just-plain-weird classes that I figure you guys should get another vote, you know?
Anyways, it's time for our Test Run of the Halls of Mandos. Let's do this!
DeadMeat's first action upon spawning is to convert the Rock Lizard to Tulkasism. Maybe his Piety would go up, too! Tulkas likes it when you kill evil monsters, but is a lizard evil? These questions and others bound about through his head as he lumbers over.
DeadMeat's second action is to be ambushed by a bunch of Nexus Hounds, who breathe (what else?) Nexus at him, which teleports him over to them right before he dies. And the splash damage killed the rock lizard too. Bastards.
Bet you didn't expect to see an 'it breathes -more-' death so soon, did you? Fucking hounds.
DeadMeat the 2nd spawns right here, in the middle of hounds and Ogrillions. Converting all these heathens is beyond even him. He steps up the stairs under him immediately, before they notice him and his giant gold fist of a religious emblem. But not before turning his tactics and exploration meters alllllll the way down, to Cowardly and Slug-like, respectively. He needs all the stealth he can get.
That is the strategy you need to take to get out of here alive, by the way. You always spawn on top of some stairs, so you'll go back and forth between the next floor and your current one, looking for easy exp and equipment. Eventually, when up stairs spawn next to you and you get lucky, you can head up a floor and repeat the entire process all over again. Sound fun?
Well, you do get lots of late-game equipment in the process.
Some of which is so awesome that, even despite the curse, you still want to wear it. I guarantee you wouldn't be finding artifacts like this lying on the floor this early otherwise. DeadMeat picks it up so it can be burned and purified later. And he wears it for now, because God's plan must include heathen religions for this very reason.
DeadMeat can't succumb to temptation, though. I wouldn't be surprised if Morgoth himself was in that vault over there. Yeah, the levels are permalit, but monsters are still only visible in your line of sight.
And damage traps are insta-death, too. Those level-6 Snagas will live to fight another day.
And it's about fucking time. DeadMeat the 12th spawns next to a group of phantom knights, and manages to kill one on the first turn! Levels are gained. And since we have skill points now, it's about time you see how they work.
This is the skill screen. The skills listed here are determined by your class. Of the two numbers listed to the right of each skill, the first is your skill level in it, and the second is the modifier -- that is, how many skill points you get for each point you put in the skill. All of the skills max out at 50, no exceptions.
More indepth discussions of the skills will come later, when it actually matters. For now, I spend most of the points I just gained. There's a cap, though, as you can see. I put the rest of my points into magic-device and have two remaining.
Of course, I die 10 seconds afterwards, after being ambushed by a Greater Balrog (who burrowed through those walls in two turns) and a rather high-levelled Demi-Lich.
Since DeadMeat is not going to be getting out of the Halls of Mandos anytime soon... race/class plz. It's time to start an actual game, shall we?