| The Formicids are a species of humanoid ants. Just like their tiny insect ancestors, the Formicids are well adept at earth work, both on the physical and magical sides. Their abilities have been used to tunnel immense underground communities and structures, many of which are tens of thousands of years old.
Perhaps unfortunately, their strong ties to earth have left them completely impervious to being teleported or hasted; Formicids are tied to the earth with a complete sense of stasis. While this is a seemingly bad property for a dungeon adventurer, stasis has the beneficial effect of preventing many types of nasty hexes and maledictions.
With the ability to lift ten times their own weight, the Formicids have strength rivaling that of Ogres. This, along with the fact that they have four arms, allows Formicid warriors to equip both a shield and a two-handed weapon at the same time.
Formicids make good earth and venom mages, but are quite capable at both melee and ranged combat too. They are naturally bad at air magic and conjurations.
- Antennae 3: Formicids can sense monsters within 7 tiles (even through walls) and can also see invisible.
- Formicids cannot wear any form of headgear.
- Four Strong Arms: Formicids have four arms, and can treat most melee and ranged weapons as one-handed. Giant clubs, giant spiked clubs, and large rocks are still too large for them to use, however. Their multiple limbs also allow them to use shields with the same reduced penalties as large races.
- Formicids can dig through walls as an innate ability. First, they have to extend their mandibles, and then move into a rock wall or iron grate to start making the tunnel. Digging takes your normal movement delay per square, inflicts slight HP drain, and makes some noise.
- Formicids can create a shaft under themselves as an innate ability, allowing them to escape downwards. Unlike digging, this ability is silent. Note that you cannot use it on the last level of a branch, nor in the Abyss, Hell, Pandemonium, or Ziggurats.
- Formicids have permanent stasis, rendering them unable to take advantage of translocative effects, Haste, berserk, and Swiftness, but also granting immunity to paralysis and slowing (but not petrification). Okawaru's Finesse, Lugonu's Bend Space, and the Passage of Golubria spell work as normal, however.
- Warriors: Fighter, Hunter
- Zealots: Abyssal Knight
- Warrior-mages: Arcane Marksman
- Mages: Earth Elementalist, Venom Mage
- +1 strength or intelligence every 4th level.
- Average HP.
- 10% more MP than average, before stepdowns.
- +4 willpower per level.
Starting Skills and Equipment
Formicids receive the skills and equipment listed for their background, with a special case:
Difficulty of Play
|Simple • Intermediate • Advanced|
The higher the value, the better the aptitude.
|Maces & Flails||0||Shields||2||Summonings||0|
Formicids are blessed and cursed with some of the most dramatic species mutations in Crawl, resulting in a very unique play experience. Their ability to wield 2-handed weapons and shields simultaneously, coupled with their high Armour skill aptitude and access to almost all armour, allows them to deal stupendous amounts of damage without sacrificing anything from their defenses. Wielding any 2-handed weapon in one hand is still a massive advantage, making a formicid with end-game quality equipment far deadlier than most.
Unfortunately, they also come with one of the heaviest handicaps of any species, making it difficult to survive dangerous encounters that would otherwise be easy to bail from. While permanent stasis does protect you from slow and paralysis effects, it also disables a wide variety of incredibly useful panic buttons; teleports and blinks are the most obvious, but all sources of haste and berserking are also rendered useless. Where some characters can simply buff up and plow their way through dangerous foes or crowds of attackers before disappearing if a fight starts looking unwinnable, a formicid must play more cautiously.
Tips and Tricks
- While formicids can't blink normally, Passage of Golubria, Dithmenos' Shadow Step, and Lugonu's Bend Space ability cause space to bend, not you, and therefore still function as normal.
- Take advantage of the resources formicids have at their disposal. Your innate digging ability allows you to create choke points or even kill holes, making it much safer to fight large bands of enemies. You may want to create zig-zagging tunnels (to break line of sight) in advance, near areas where there are multiple enemies.
- Once you're ready for the orb run, you can dig your way through the rest of the dungeon. Try to take the most advantageous shortcuts. You can also choose to leave a few blind corner tunnels to give yourself a chance to rest or Passwall around any dangerous monsters that bar your way.
- As usual, use abilities before you're at the brink of death. Assuming you aren't at the bottom floor of a branch, your Shaft ability is a guaranteed escape from any fight, but it takes a few turns to kick in, and it's much easier to survive on an unexplored, more dangerous floor when you're relatively unscathed. If the floor(s) below are cleared of danger, the shaft ability can provide a pain-free way to make multiple attempts at raiding a difficult area; eg, when entering a ghost vault.
- Your antennae and high Stealth aptitude allow you to see dangerous opponents before engaging them, making it much easier for you to lure individuals away from a group or simply avoid fights entirely. Don't forget that simply walking away before an impossible fight begins is sometimes the best option you've got.
- Spells that disable enemies (Slow, Petrify, Cause Fear, and other Hexes) are excellent for letting you just outrun enemies you can't handle. Gozag's abilities can disable enemies in the same way.
- Don't overlook your Formicid's excellent Earth and Transmutation aptitudes: Passwall in combination with your innate digging ability is a panic button that only takes a few turns -- and it'll leave a wall between you and your enemies, too. Be sure to leave enough time for the spell to complete (two turns at minimum).
- When pursued by an enemy you can't outrun or hex, luring it over a teleport trap or shaft is a great way to lose it if they're available. Be careful not to enter temporary teleport traps yourself -- you won't teleport, but you'll still destroy the trap.
- In 0.29, Formicids will be able to wield giant clubs and giant spiked clubs (with 2 hand-pairs).
- Prior to 0.28, digging through walls was slower (+2 auts), but did not inflict HP drain.
- Prior to 0.25, formicids could cast Swiftness.
- Prior to 0.18, formicids were able to dig even when transformed, had -2 Throwing aptitude, and could not use Okawaru's Finesse.
- Prior to 0.15, formicids could throw large rocks.
- Formicids were added in 0.14.
- During much of their development, formicids were known as "dwants" (or dwarf-ants). They also had less HP but leveled even faster than humans. In addition, they were particularly vulnerable to poison.
|Simple||Hill Orc • Minotaur • Merfolk • Gargoyle • Draconian • Palentonga • Troll • Ghoul • Gnoll|
|Intermediate||Human • Kobold • Demonspawn • Djinni • Spriggan • Tengu • Deep Elf • Ogre • Deep Dwarf|
|Advanced||Vine Stalker • Vampire • Demigod • Formicid • Naga • Octopode • Felid • Barachi • Mummy|