Rezek's Ogre Warper of The Shining One guide

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Version 0.17: This article may not be up to date for the latest stable release of Crawl.
This article contains advice from other players, which may be subjective, outdated, inaccurate or ill-advised. Read at your own risk and alter to fit your play style as necessary!


Introduction

Ogres can use the most fun weapons in the game: giant spiked clubs and large rocks. They have a number of weaknesses, but I think this combination offsets these nicely and leads to fun gameplay (especially if you can make it to level 10 or so, which is a big if!)

Take a mace as your starting weapon, and start the game by hitting m and focusing Maces & Flails, Throwing, Spellcasting and Translocations, turning off Stealth, Dodging, and Unarmed Combat, and leaving Fighting and Armour on but not focused. You might also hit \ and set javelins, large rocks, stones, throwing nets, and "miscellaneous" to be auto-picked up.

The beginning of the game is a very vulnerable time for you. As usual, be very careful around any enemy you haven't already confronted, and around any uniques. Flee as necessary, especially from centaurs and the nastier uniques, and if a level is very hard remember that the next one may well be easier! Try to use throwing to soften up enemies at a distance, and don't be shy about using up your 5 tomahawks of dispersal -- those need to do damage to work, and as enemies get tougher they quickly become quite unreliable. Potions of lignification are especially good to use at this stage, as well as of course berserk rage. Be very aggressive with any wands you find, especially any evil ones that The Shining One won't allow you to use later. Learn Shroud of Golubria as soon as you reach Level 2, and try to cast it before almost every fight -- often it's worth recasting in the middle too, once it unravels or falls apart. Then learn Blink as soon as you can -- always a wonderful escape spell, and then Portal Projectile. All three of those spells, as well as (to some extent) Apportation, will be useful for the whole game. Other than that at this stage you will mostly be bashing enemies over the head (also works well for the whole game). I'll go over some specific kinds of skills and items I recommend next, and then go back to discussing strategy for the rest of the game.

Weapon

Switch to heavier weapons in the Maces and Flails category as they become available (although a nice brand on a lighter weapon may also be attractive for a while), culminating in a Giant Spiked Club (by far the most powerful melee weapon in the game), which you will hopefully be able to pick off an Ogre by dungeon level 5 or 10 at the latest. After your attack speed with that becomes average you might turn Maces and Flails back down to a lower level of training (or not!). Save all your enchant weapon scrolls for the GSC, and then use them right away on it. When you find scrolls of brand weapon, wait until you have started worshipping The Shining One, and then use them until you get the freezing brand -- the best all-purpose brand for a heavy weapon (worshipping TSO rules out many brands, making it quicker to get freezing). Later you will want to pick up and enchant a second GSC, which will get the holy wrath brand once TSO blesses it (more situational but incredibly powerful -- it will deal massive, massive damage to even the nastiest enemies if they are vulnerable to it).

Throwing

Throwing is always useful, although after a little while stones will become underpowered. Tomahawks are always at least OK, and javelins and of course large rocks are amazing and make it worthwhile to keep Throwing focused for the whole game. Portal Projectile is extremely handy to throw past summons, whether your own or the enemy's. Throwing nets can be good too, although TSO's strict code of honor makes them a little more situational.

The Shining One

Start worshipping him as soon as you find an altar, and then focus Invocations and leave it focused for the whole game. All the special abilities will be very useful -- see TSO for more details. Just be careful not to accidentally harm an ally! Especially handy in your case are the halo for attack accuracy and revealing invisible creatures, free protection from negative energy (saves some precious equipment slots), and blessing your secondary GSC. Summon Divine Warrior is amazing for any player but especially for you and once it's available should be used before any difficult fight. (The same could be said of Divine Shield, although that has a smaller impact).

Armour

Ogres are very limited here -- always keep a sharp eye out for any decent artefact you are capable of wearing (especially if it has a big AC bonus or a nice intrinsic/ability: see the section on Jewellery below for the ones I especially like here). Troll Leather Armour works well, and you might use Swamp Dragon Armour if you can get it for areas with lots of poison. Later on, Quicksilver Dragon Armour and Fire Dragon Armour are both good options, if you don't mind the casting penalty. Nice hats and cloaks tend to be uncommon and you may have to just take what you can find. I usually leave the armour skill on but do not focus it, and ignore dodging altogether.

Jewellery

Teleportation is great if you can get it, and nice intrinsics include slaying, AC/EV, wizardry, magic resistance, regeneration, fire/cold/poison/electricity resistance, later on corrosion and mutation resistance. Also boosts to Strength/Int can be good. Clarity, stasis, and flight can be good sometimes, as can extra MP and gourmand. You won't be able to have all of it at once, probably, so you will have to switch depending on what branch you are in and what you are fighting.

Evocations

Focus this skill as soon as you find anything that uses it and leave it focused. Use wands liberally, especially early on, except for heal wounds and hasting, which are precious resources. Later on things like sack of spiders, box of beasts, phial of floods, lamp of fire, stone of tremors, fan of gales, and disc of storms will all be handy as you find them, and also any rods you can get, especially rod of inaccuracy, and any decks, especially ornate and legendary ones (save scrolls of identify for those and for good wands -- you can rely on remove curse for a lot of item testing, since you won't be interested in most weapons or armour). Items which summon allies combine nicely with Summon Divine Warrior, and also with summoning spells (see below), and with your trusty Portal Projectile, which allows you to fight while hiding behind allies. Be extremely careful with anything that does damage if you have allies around -- your god will (temporarily) take away all your special abilities if you give any of them even the smallest scratch!

Magic Schools

Mostly these should be trained very little and even switched off -- Spellcasting, where you have a better aptitude, will help here, and should always be focused -- but the following three can be worth training higher:

Translocations

Phase Shift is a great buff for a low EV character like you. Dispersal can be very nice. Controlled Blink and Disjunction are amazing if you can get them online but that will be late in the game, if at all.

Charms

Repel Missiles and Swiftness are great for you. Ozocubu's Armour can be excellent if your armour allows it. Spectral Weapon is great. Haste is amazing as always if you find it -- if available this one spell should be made reliably castable at almost any cost (put on rings of wizardry, switch to lighter armour, train the skills exclusively -- whatever it takes). Deflect Missiles is lovely but probably too much trouble to get functioning due to its Air Magic component.

Summonings

These are great for a melee character, and combine great with Evocations and Divine Warrior. I usually keep the skill focused for as much of the game as possible. Essentially all of the summonings are handy if you can get them working (although some are forbidden by TSO), but some of the lower level ones become underpowered and you might want to forget them later. Again, hiding behind allies and casting Portal Projectile is amazing once you get it working.

Stats

I like to dump every possible stat increase into intelligence, to improve spell success. Strength is another good choice, though.

Acquirements

If there is something you are saving up for in a shop (remember to use the $ key to add things to your shopping list) then gold is probably the best thing to pick if you get a scroll of acquirement. Armour can sometimes be good but more often than not it results in a shield or a crappy robe or something. Book can be a good choice if you are trying to get some of the nice spells listed above. Ammunition can be good too, although large rocks are plentiful in the Depths and Vaults.

Branches

The usual order works well here -- descend the Dungeon until it gets too hard (skipping levels as necessary and coming back to them when you are stronger!), and then try the Lair. Bad situations can often be escaped using random blinking and teleporting until you end up somewhere safe, but it's better if you start the process early when you have lots of health! Also, unless you have a ring of teleport, you won't be able to do this too often. Random blinking by itself is sometimes enough: if you blink in a lucky direction you may be able to run behind a corner or into a hallway where the enemies can't surround you, or you may be able to run away altogether.

Be especially careful when going down any stairs in case there is a nasty ambush (more and more likely the farther along you get!). If there is a trampling creature right next to you it will probably knock you off the stairs if you try to climb back up. You can try to escape using the random blinking and teleporting strategy described above, or another option is to use a random blink right away, lure the monsters away from the stairs, and then use a scroll of blinking back onto the stairwell and up once the tramplers are safely away from it.

When the Lair gets too hard try the Orcish Mines, try going deeper into the Dungeon, and later on try Swamp/Shoals/Snake/Spider and Elvish Halls (hopefully you are at least level 15 or so by now). When those become hard try the Depths and the Vaults (you need at least one rune for the latter). The Shining One will make the Crypt and Abyss easier than average for you -- just be liberal with Divine Warriors and Cleansing Flame and use your holy wrath weapon (and of course always be careful -- don't wait too long to summon more allies as needed, or to blink and teleport away in an emergency!). You can probably clear the Crypt as soon as you find it, and start dipping into the Abyss once your level is in the 20s and you have a source of mutation resistance (stay on level 1 at first, and descend for the rune only after making sure you are strong enough for it!).

As always explore the last level of each branch carefully: try all the staircases first and start exploring around the one with the fewest enemies around it, moving in the direction of corners and quiet corridors first if you can find them. Try to advance especially slowly and lure enemies back towards the already cleared areas. (These are good practices always, really, but especially important on those bottom levels). Remember also that skipping a level is always an option to consider, and sometimes skipping a bottom level or a rune is the right thing if there is a very nasty enemy in the way or if you are missing some crucial ability or resistance. You can always come back later (possibly much much later!) or just decide to try to ascend without it.

In the case of the Vaults expect a very tough fight the second you set foot on the bottom level (read the article on that area carefully!). The best thing may be to have the spell Haste and to use that and Portal Projectile to quickly pummel any Vault Wardens and any monsters like dragons that might trample you, and then to run back up the stairs (then kill any monsters that followed you, blinking/teleporting away to safety first if necessary, and repeat the process as many times as necessary). Otherwise you can try random blinking and teleporting as soon as you go down the stairs (keep repeating until you find a relatively quiet spot and then start summoning like crazy) but it might be suicide.

Another good thing to try might be the Slime Pits: if you can make it to the bottom without almost dying (remember there is no need to clear each level here -- there is no loot until the end and the enemies aren't worth a ton of experience for how hard they are) there is a good chance you are strong enough to take on The Royal Jelly (and TRJ is relatively easy to escape from if everything goes to hell).

By now you should be around level 27 and ready to enter Zot and/or the Vestibule of Hell. You can decide if you want to go deeper into Hell/Tomb/Pandemonium and get more loot and runes, or clear Zot and quit while you are ahead (assuming you haven't died yet!). Just as with the Crypt and Abyss the combination of GSC of holy wrath, TSO, and miscellaneous summons is great for those branches, but they are hard!