Ashenzari

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Version 0.23: This article is up to date for the latest stable release of Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup.
Ashenzari altar.png "Partake of my vision. Partake of my curse."
While it seems inconceivable that the divine could be shackled, Ashenzari is just that: bound to the sky for eternity, the unbudging god is all-knowing, all-seeing. Devoted worshippers are allowed to grasp shreds of this knowledge and foresight, but be warned: to Ashenzari, power and blessing and curse are all the same thing.

Ashenzari exhorts followers to garb themselves with curses, and appreciates exploration while using cursed armour, jewellery or weapons. Followers will soon be granted the ability to scry through walls. Ashenzari will passively grant followers increased skills depending on how cursed they are by equipment associated with those skills, and will reveal the invisible and grant clarity of mind. The truly devout will gain the ability to transfer a portion of their knowledge from one skill to another.

Ashenzari likes it when you explore the world (preferably while bound by curses). He protects completely from those new "trap effects" independent from terrain traps (alarm, shaft, and teleport near monsters).

Note that Ashenzari does not demand training of the Invocations skill. All abilities are purely based on piety.

Racial restrictions

Demigods cannot worship Ashenzari (or any other god).

Appreciates

Ashenzari likes it when you explore the world (preferably while using cursed gear).

You have four equipment categories: armour, weapon, shield and jewellery. A category is considered "partially bound" if more than half the slots available for your species contain cursed equipment (this takes later effects such as Ru's Sacrifice Hand, the macabre finger necklace, or Lear's hauberk into consideration); a category is "fully bound" if all slots available contain cursed equipment. The more bound you are, the faster you'll acquire piety, and the more powerful several of Ashenzari's gifts will be. When transformed, your bound status is based on your equipment pre-transformation.

For piety gain, felids simply count cursed jewellery, with an additional bonus if all jewellery is cursed.

Deprecates

  • Abandonment.
  • Inactivity (loses about 1 Piety every 500 turns).

Given Abilities

Piety level (0): "Cursed"

  • Scrolls of remove curse are immediately identified upon converting to Ashenzari.
  • Curse Item: curse items in your inventory. Costs one scroll of remove curse per item, and can't be used if the player has no scrolls.
  • Improved behavior of curse-related scrolls: Ashenzari worshipers reading a scroll of remove curse may select which pieces of equipment they wish it to apply to (instead of automatically uncursing everything as usual). Also, any weapons, armour, or jewelry you receive through a scroll of acquirement will be pre-cursed. (Passive)
  • Prevent Curses: Prevents external item cursing from death curses and miscast effects. (Passive)

The Detect Foo abilities start with a radius of 0, but their radius and power increases with piety.

  • Detect Curses: All items in sight will display as Cursed or Uncursed. (Passive)
  • Detect Items: Shows the location, but not the type, of items beyond your field of vision. (Passive)
  • Detect Traps: Provides immunity to traps triggered by exploration. (Passive)
  • Detect Monsters: Shows the location and relative strength, but not the type, of monsters beyond your field of vision. (Passive)
  • Detect Terrain: Maps random tiles beyond your field of vision, similar to the deep dwarf mutation. It works in Labyrinths and the Abyss. (Passive)
  • Portal Detection: Instant detection of portals, including in the Abyss ("You have a vision of a gate."). (Passive)
  • Partial Identify: The type of ego weapons and armour is identified. Jewellery is identified. Weapons are completely identified if you are wielding a cursed weapon; armour is if you are wearing cursed armour in the same slot. (Passive)

Piety level (*): "Initiated"

  • Scrying: When active, all walls are transparent for you, but not for monsters. You cannot smite-target through them. Costs 4 MP, 50-100 Food, 2-3 Piety.

Piety level (**): "Soothsayer"

  • Skill boost: For each equipment category you bind, Ashenzari will boost your skills. Different kinds of equipment offer different bonuses. There are 3 levels of bonus given, depending on the type of slots involved and if the category is fully or partially bound; the bonus rises as you gain piety stars beyond **. The bonus respects skill aptitudes, so a higher aptitude skill will get a better bonus, all else being equal.

If you have piety ****** and skill level around 5-15, a high boost to an aptitude 0 skill will give over 5 bonus skill levels, a medium boost will give around 4, and a low boost around 2.5. This bonus drops off slowly as skill levels get high, but is always significant (though you can never have an effective skill level over 27). The bonus is reduced dramatically at very low skill levels (for example, a high boost to an untrained skill is only 0.7 skill levels).

Bound part Equipment Bound level Boosted skills Bonus
Hands Two-handed weapon N/A Weapon skill High
Weapon hand Weapon N/A Weapon skill Medium
Weapon hand Enhancer staff N/A Staves and Evocations Low
Weapon hand Evokable staff N/A Evocations Medium
Weapon hand Other staff N/A Spellcasting Medium
Shield hand Shield N/A Shields Low
Armour Light armour^^ Partial Stealth and Dodging Low
Armour Light armour^^ Full Stealth and Dodging Medium
Armour Medium armour^^ Partial Armour and Dodging Low
Armour Medium armour^^ Full Armour and Dodging Medium
Armour Heavy armour^^ Partial Armour Medium
Armour Heavy armour^^ Full Armour High
Jewellery N/A Partial Magic schools and Evocations Low
Jewellery N/A Full Magic schools and Evocations Medium


^^ - Armours with an encumbrance rating from 0-5 count as light, 6-11 count as medium, and 12+ count as heavy.

Piety level (***): "Seer"

Piety level (****): "Oracle"

Piety level (*****): "Illuminatus"

  • Transfer Knowledge: Pick a source and destination skill and experience will move from one to the other as you gain more experience, at the cost of some piety and 10% of the exp being transferred. Costs 20-30 piety.

Piety level (******): "Omniscient"

  • No new abilities.

Punishments

Ashenzari does not appreciate abandonment, and will call down fearful punishments on disloyal followers!

Ashenzari's wrath is not like other gods'; it is constant and unrelenting for its duration. Victims find their skills impaired, and their enemies divinely guided - never losing track of them, never ending the hunt.

Upon abandoning Ashenzari, you will receive -4 to all skills until you've gained an amount of XP equivalent to two experience levels.

Additionally, monster AI gets a boost:

  • They track you better.
  • They never forget about you.
  • They are more likely to know your position while you are invisible.

Strategy

Ashenzari provides a significant power boost relatively early in the game, soon after the player has managed to become partially bound. Cursing one's weapon and 2 pieces of jewellery are enough to make piety take off. As a result of the ensuing skill boosts, melee combat types will be able to go toe-to-toe with much stronger enemies, and casters will see high level spells become castable much more quickly and low level utility spells castable with very little training. Since Ash offers no abilities that fill the escape or combat-support roles often provided by gods, players must take advantage of the skill enhancements and retraining flexibility to fill these roles themselves with the spellbooks and equipment they find. Changes in overall strategy can be made amazingly quickly, so if a powerful spellbook/evocable/artifact weapon shows up that doesn't fit your current strategy, consider adopting a new one.

A single scroll of remove curse can remove as many curses from your equipment as you'd like; consider saving them for when you want to make multiple equipment changes.

Scrying is cheap to cast, and is very useful for playstyles that like knowing where out-of-sight enemies are (Stabbers using invisibility or Passwall to sneak up on things, Earth Elementalists blowing things up through walls with Lee's Rapid Deconstruction and Shatter, Fire or Ice Elementalists casting area spells to damage unseen opponents).

Remember that Ashenzari does not punish uncursing equipment, nor adventuring with uncursed equipment. The tradeoff is merely certain less-boosted or un-boosted skills, and slower piety gain. So if a strategy or dungeon branch requires a swappable slot (e.g. for rings of protection from cold or fire in Depths), go ahead and leave it unbound as needed.

Ashenzari worshipers may discover occasional disconnected vaults (which often contain treasure). Normally these are only found via magic mapping or the Passive Mapping mutation / Deep Dwarf passive.

Knowledge Transfer lets you make mid or late game shifts with ease. Found an early crystal plate armor as a stabber? Transfer stealth into armor. Found an artefact great mace as a polearm specialist? Transfer weapons! Didn't find any good spells in your starting school, but did find plenty of spells in another? Transfer away. Of course, consider whether switching will actually be a net improvement to your character's build.

Felids can start gaining piety with Ashenzari particularly quickly, as one cursed jewelry item is slightly bound, two is partially bound, and three is fully bound. However, this comes at the cost of losing much of your ability to swap resistances on the fly.

History

  • Prior 0.23, Ashenzari provided the only source of full monster equipment identification. It also provided a passive boost to finding traps rather than immunity to exploration traps.
  • Prior to 0.18, players would have to pray over scrolls of remove curse to convert them into the now-obsolete scrolls of curse armour, curse weapon, and curse jewellery.
  • Prior to 0.14, scrolls of curse item could be randomly generated, but Ashenzari gave fewer of them for sacrificing remove curse.
  • Prior to 0.12, Ashenzari's altars often had an artefact spell book next to them with only one spell: Animate Skeleton. This was to assist in butchering corpses while wielding cursed blunt weapons.
  • Prior to 0.9, worshipers of Ashenzari would receive a bonus to experience gain instead of a boost to skills, and shields were not considered a separate equipment category in regards to being bound.
  • Ashenzari was added in 0.8.
Gods
Good ElyvilonThe Shining OneZin
Neutral AshenzariCheibriadosFedhas MadashHepliaklqanaGozag Ym SagozNemelex XobehOkawaruQazlalRuSif MunaTrogUskayawVehumetWu Jian
Chaotic JiyvaXom
Evil BeoghDithmenosKikubaaqudghaYredelemnul
Chaotic and Evil LugonuMakhleb