Elynae's Fire Elementalist guide
FE is rather easy but should not be a newbie's first choice. This guide is made for species suitable to play a Fire Elementalist. These include: Hu, HE, DE, HO, SE, Ko, Na, Ce, Te, Dr, Ds, Op. Since this guide has a lot to do with gods, for the purpose of this guide, forget about Dg. This guide suggests a hybrid-style with Kikubaaqudgha and a ranged-blaster style with Vehumet as easy FE routes. In general your species' aptitues should determine which one is suitable. For many species, both will be suitable (such as Hu or Ds). In addition, factors such as HP or natural AC can influence your decision in favour of hybridising.
Early on Flame Tongue will be your main attack spell. Throw Flame is useful rarely, such as against early ogres who should be wounded before they even get close to melee range. Conjure Flame has great utility: it can block off corridors, allowing you to flee or hide behind a wall of fire for blasting. Also, more resilient monsters such as orc warriors or some player ghosts are not afraid to stand in the flames while taking very high damage, so it also has offensive uses.
A fire elementalist's first goal skill-wise is Sticky Flame - it clears everything up to and including Lair. After getting Sticky Flame you probably want some Spellcasting followed by Fireball at ~10% failure rate. Following that, Fireball at sub-Honeycomb hunger and then some Dodging to EV 17-18 or so. If you find a buckler, put it on because there are barely any penalties for using it with a robe.
If you ever lack spell levels get more Spellcasting.
Now there are various routes to which you can take this character, depending mostly on god. I'll give you a short summary of my two favourites below. A simple (FE-style) choice is Vehumet, who gives full-range 4 MP fireball which is extremely powerful, and also gifts Bolt of Magma (which he enhances too). Fireball you should use against groups, Bolt of Magma against groups lined up in corridors and fire resistant enemies. Kikubaaqudgha isn't strictly FE-style, but helps in building a necromancy hybrid with a pain weapon and high Necromancy skill, which is also extremely powerful.
If you are Kikubaaqudgha, this, if you are Vehumet, skip to 3):
You want a weapon skill to min delay (and Necromancy 15) after step 1) is completed. Good weapons to pain-brand at ****** are:
- Sabre (very fast, low-investment)
- Demon anything (very fast, high damage, low investment, but rare)
- Trident (standard speed, decent damage, common)
- Quickblade (insane speed, extremely rare)
The demon weapons or quickblade are obvious choices if you do have them by the time you hit ******, because pain damage does not depend on weapon damage but is calculated separately (1d Necromancy skill), so a fast weapon is a good choice for maximum pain damage. However, don't wait for them if you don't, but instead brand any of the others with pain. In combat, cast Sticky Flame first and proceed to hit the monster with your pain weapon till it dies. Aptitudes can determine which weapon type to pick.
From Kiku you want the following spells:
- Vampiric Draining (optional)
- Dispel Undead
- Sublimation of Blood
Further Skill Progression
After those it depends on book finds (both Vehumet and Kiku). Bolt of Fire, Haste, and Controlled Blink are extremely useful spells for either, besides the standard set of charms and translocations. Training evocations to ~14 and some more fire for a staff of fire is also good, in the case of Vehumet. You then want 12 staves. Fighting 10 after 1) and 2) is especially important on a necromancer melee hybrid but also doesn't go amiss on a Vehumet blaster.
Melee with Vehumet
On a Vehumet char with suitable apts, get some melee skill if you find:
- Staff of fire (12 staves)
- Good lajatang (brand-wise) (14 staves)
- Demon weapon (12 maces for whip, 14 long blades/polearms for blade/trident)
- Good quickblade (brand-wise) (8 short blades)
Note that -2 is often a "suitable apt" and -1 is nearly always a "suitable apt". If your apt is bad and you feel that your magic skills are lacking, you might want to delay this step for some time. However, don't underestimate the importance of a melee backup option for Vehumet followers.
This should be done if you run across one of the above weapons. You completed step 1). For basically every character melee skill is important, and Vehumet characters with no melee are screwed when they run out of MP.
If you are a Kikubaaqudgha char and have completed steps 1)-3), and you find a Necronomicon, get Borgnjor's Revivication and probably Haunt. If you find a Grand Grimoire probably get Demonic Horde and Haunt. You probably want 10-12 Summonings and the rest of your skill in Necromancy to achieve this.
Defensive Skills Later On
More Fighting and Dodging never go amiss. Before Zot you want 5-10 Traps&Doors.
As usual the content of this guide is something I'd commonly do, but it isn't optimal in all cases. Floor finds can suddenly change the course of any character. Fire Storm is nothing you want for a three-rune game, and if you want to do extended with it I strongly advise waiting training for it until you have everything described in steps 1)-4). And of course you can pick other gods too, such as Nemelex or Sif Muna, and still get an easy win. This guide is just about Kiku and Veh.