Iskenderun's Mystic Tower

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Version 0.14: This article may not be up to date for the latest stable release of Crawl.

Suitable for a master of pure Conjurations, Iskenderun's Mystic Tower is a Wizlab which reflects her taste for raw devastation. Among the clouds of purple fog reside deep elven and draconian students of the destructive arts, along with magically imbued statues capable of casting powerful magic.

Layout

This Wizlab consists of a rectangular room with oddly structured rock walls, a wide open area in the middle, and the eponymous Mystic Tower in the center of the chamber. Purple smoke billows out from the walls, which are built with a checkerboard pattern that offers easy access to cover when needed. The entrance (as well as the exit) is located in one of the corners of the outer wall, out of any immediate harm's way. If you don't feel up to handling this area, don't be afraid to turn and run, particularly if you aren't able to benefit from the caster-centric loot at the end.

Eight conjurer statues stand guard in the open area, evenly spaced around the tower and hurling Orbs of Destruction at any intruder that gets within their line of sight. They are assisted by a horde of deep elf mages and purple draconians (roughly equal in composition) which will blast you with arcane forces once they spot you. Beyond these foes, there is a door leading into the tower found roughly opposite the corner you entered from. Inside you'll find one more conjurer statue, a few more draconians, and the Wizlab's loot: two Conjurations-themed artefact spell books, four mundane and random spell books, a robe of the Archmagi, and two miscellaneous decent-quality items.

Monsters

e Deep elf mage.png Deep elf mage- Unlike the deep elf mages found in the Elven Halls, these mages only generate with their Conjurations-focused spell set: Magic Dart (3d4), Force Lance (3d10), Iskenderun's Mystic Blast (3d12), and Iskenderun's Battlesphere. They're relatively weak for Wizlab entrance depth, but are densely packed throughout the border of the tower.

d Purple draconian.png Purple draconian- Lacking in magic but possessing a buff-dispelling breath attack, these comprise the main threat of the vault. Their breath deals a significant, irresistible 3d20, and they possess passable melee damage and high health. Losing buffs while attempting to destroy the conjurer statues can be lethal, so picking the draconians off first from the level border is highly recommended.

Conjurer Statues

At first glance, this piece of sculpted granite seems inert. The red glow from its eyes, however, suggest it is no mere stone. Although it is rooted to its base, you are certain that it can still move parts of itself.

8 Conjurer statue.png Conjurer statue- The conjurer statues spread throughout the laboratory can cast Orb of Destruction against you from any range within their line of sight. This produces a fast-moving projectile that ignores EV and deals immense damage, especially if it's cast at long range. The Orb must actually travel the distance from the caster to you, usually taking a few turns to do so, and will pursue you if you attempt to dodge it. Outrunning it is impossible, but hiding behind walls destroys it.

Strategy

All damage you'll sustain here is non-elemental and subject to AC and SH; as such heavily armoured thugs should have an easy time of it, so long as they go slowly, luring enemies into combat a few at a time and not spending more time in the line of sight of the conjurer statues than they have to. EV-based fighters will have a harder time of things, as Orbs of Destruction ignore EV entirely. It's still certainly possible, but caution is advised, and you may wish to blink into melee range with a statue to greatly reduce its opportunities to kill you. Elemental spellcasters of all stripes should be able to easily out-blast the wandering mages and draconians, but be aware that purple draconian breath will regularly strip you of your buffs, and the conjurer statues are very resistant to most elemental magic. Straight Conjurations or Earth Magic (particularly Lee's Rapid Deconstruction) should carve them up quite easily, however. In all cases, remember: you cannot outrun an Orb of Destruction, but you can hide behind cover safely. The rock walls will crumble after getting hit once, however, so don't expect a single rock wall tile to block multiple Orbs.

In general, this Wizlab is only truly dangerous if you fail to take your time. Conjurer statues are deadly if allowed to hit you multiple times, or while fighting other foes. A single Orb of Destruction, however, is unlikely to one-shot even the weakest (reasonably leveled) character, and since you can always just walk away from them, there's little excuse to get killed by them. Explore the level, keeping to the wall edges and avoiding the deadly open space, killing off mages and draconians as you go and exploring further when you run out of opponents. They aren't terribly dangerous individually, but a large enough group can deal heavy ranged damage quickly, especially for low-AC, low-HP characters; keep your buffs up to minimize the Iskenderun's Mystic Blasts and don't abandon cover carelessly. If you have Silence and feel comfortable in your melee skills, killing off the deep elves is easy, but the draconians and statues will still be trouble. Invisibility works well here, except in that it has no effect against the deep elves. Finally, if you have a scroll of fog, you can cut line of sight to all attackers, stopping most attack spells briefly. This has no effect on any Orbs of Destruction already in flight, however.

Once you've cleared out the mobile forces, take out the statue guarding the entrance, heal up, and head inside. The final statue isn't any different than the others you've faced so far, but it is several tiles away; blinking into melee or to avoid its shots is advisable here. Once you've cleared that, take out the last few purple draconians and the loot is yours.

Recommendations

Map

The symbols in the map below are defined as follows:

v Metal wall

x Rock wall

. Floor

+ Door

" Purple smoke generator

= - One of these two will be the entry door to the tower (60% chance of =, 40% chance of -).

1 Thirty-two potential deep elf mages or purple draconians, divided as follows: four have a 95% chance to be draconian, and a 5% chance to be deep elves; six have a 60% chance of draconian, 40% of deep elf, and twenty-two have a 60% chance of deep elf or a 40% chance of nothing. This produces an average of 7.4 purple draconians and 15.8 deep elf mages.

2 Conjurer statue

D E F Treasure (with a purple draconian on top)

' Swaps places with F if - is the entry way

MAP
vvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvv
vxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxv
vxxx..x.x.x.x.x.x.xx"xx.x.x.x.x.x.xx.xxxv
vxx<xxAx.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.xx.xxv
vx.x"xxx.x..........x.............xx"x.xv
vx.xx...............................xxxxv
vxxAx...............2...............x.xxv
vx.xx................................x.xv
vxx.......2.......v...v.......2.......xxv
vx.xx...........v.vv.vv.v............x.xv
vxx............vvv11.11vvv............xxv
vx.x..........v.v1vvvvv1v.v..........x.xv
vxx..........v.v1vvvEvvv1v.v..........xxv
vx.x........vvv1vvvv+vvvv1vvv........x.xv
vxx..........v1vvv.....vvv1v..........xxv
vx.x.......vv1vvv.......vvv1vv.......x.xv
vxxx........v1vvv.......vvv1v........xxxv
vx".x...2.....vD+...2...+'=.....2...x."xv
vxxx........v1vvv.......vvv1v........xxxv
vx.x.......vv1vvv.......vvv1vv.......x.xv
vxx..........v1vvv.....vvv1v..........xxv
vx.x........vvv1vvvv+vvvv1vvv........x.xv
vxx..........v.v1vvvFvvv1v.v..........xxv
vx.x..........v.v1vv-vv1v.v..........x.xv
vxx............vvv11.11vvv............xxv
vx.x............v.vv.vv.v............x.xv
vxx.......2.......v...v.......2.......xxv
vx.x.................................x.xv
vxx.x...............2...............x.xxv
vxxxx...............................xxxxv
vx.x"xx.............x.............xx"x.xv
vxx.xx.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.x.xx.xxv
vxxx.xx.x.x.x.x.x.xx"xx.x.x.x.x.x.xx.xxxv
vxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxv
vvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvv
ENDMAP

[0.14.1 source link.]

History

  • Prior to 0.14-9ae1ffb6 and 0.14-ffe6da32, this Wizlab had many minor differences. The level was more rectangular and the outside was fringed with stone walls, which made it resistant to the statues' Orbs of Destruction. The top- and bottom-most statues weren't present, and statues would dilute their casting slots with Iskenderun's Mystic Blast. The entry door was fixed at the point where the = is on the above map, the robe of the archmagi was absent from specific definition, and all of the 1s had equal odds of being draconians, deep elves, or nothing (as an artifact from before purple draconians got their dispelling breath). All told, the vault was significantly less dangerous.