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This page is about the player species. For the monster, see Troll (monster). If you were looking for monstrous trolls in general, see List of trolls.

Trolls are like ogres, but even nastier. They have thick, knobbly skins of any colour from putrid green to mucky brown and their mouths are full of ichor-dripping fangs. They also have fearsome claws, enormous strength, and the ability to regenerate from injuries. Their hunger for raw meat is just as fierce, much to the terror of anyone who crosses their path.

While trolls have poor aptitudes for everything but clawing and smashing and hurling things, they don't actually need them. Trolls are horrific monsters with monstrous stats, and they make just as formidable adventurers, especially if they are wise enough not to stray from their traditional way of life - rending their next meal (and anything else that annoys them) limb from limb!

Innate Abilities

Preferred Backgrounds

Trolls are among the least versatile races in the game, preferring to become Fighters, Gladiators, Monks, Hunters, Berserkers, Death Knights, Healers, and Wizards.

Level Bonuses

  • Trolls gain a Strength increase every 3 levels starting at level 3.
  • Trolls have 30% more HP than average.
  • Trolls have 20% less MP than average.
  • Trolls gain 3 magic resistance per level.

Starting Skills and Equipment

Trolls start with the skills and equipment listed for their background, with these exceptions:

  • Incompatible body armour is replaced by animal skin or robes.
  • Any helmet is removed.
  • Meat rations replace bread rations, and trolls receive an extra ration.
  • If their class does not start with Unarmed Combat skill and offers a choice of weapon, trolls have the extra option of "claws" (and Unarmed Combat skill).

Difficulty of Play


Trolls are an extremely easy race in the early game, despite first appearances. They have the worst aptitudes in almost every skill, and hunger three times faster than average. However, trolls are actually highly effective as all-out Unarmed Combat attackers; they have a decent aptitude, the highest STR in the game, +6 bonus damage (from the Claws 3 mutation), a passive +4 to hit bonus, and they occasionally inflict the bleeding condition for 9% of a living monster's health per turn. They have few problems with food in the early game because they can eat chunks anytime with a trivial chance of becoming sick. Trolls have the highest survivability in the early game with high HP, passive AC bonus, and extremely fast healing - a Berserker is almost guaranteed to make it to the Lair.

Later on, however, trolls become one of the most difficult (and least won) races. Their horrible aptitudes for everything start to catch up with them: low Fighting means they have less HP than one might expect, low Spellcasting gives them fewer escape options, low Dodging and Armour mean poor defensive abilities, even if they do find decent gear. The phrase "glass cannon" very much applies to trolls at this point - they can hit hard, but are themselves fragile. Their ultra-fast metabolism can be difficult to work with even in branches that do have corpses, and make corpseless branches such as Pandemonium or even the Crypt difficult to impossible without the assistance of something like Kiku's delivery service. Additionally, trolls level extremely slowly, at the same rate as demigods - this, combined with their inability to even think of entering certain branches, means they are often very badly prepared for the later parts of the game.

Skill aptitudes

The higher the value, the better the aptitude.

Skill Aptitude Skill Aptitude Skill Aptitude
Attack Miscellaneous Magic
Fighting -2 Armour -2 Spellcasting -5
Short Blades -2 Dodging -2 Conjurations -3
Long Blades -2 Stealth -4 Hexes -4
Axes -2 Stabbing -2 Charms -4
Maces & Flails -1 Shields -2 Summonings -3
Polearms -2 Traps -4 Necromancy -2
Staves -2 Translocations -3
Unarmed Combat 0 Transmutation -3
Fire Magic -3
Throwing -1 Ice Magic -3 Invocations -1
Slings -4 Air Magic -4 Evocations -2
Bows -4 Earth Magic -1
Crossbows -4 Poison Magic -3 Experience -1


Trolls have a few divine options for dealing with their shortcomings. Okawaru's Heroism ability gives a boost to your Unarmed Combat skill, which greatly increases your already impressive melee capabilities. You can also use Heroism to give yourself a modicum of competence with an actual weapon, if you need to use one (like for fighting a hydra with a flaming weapon). Just be sure to save some corpses to sacrifice to maintain piety; whenever you have a choice, sacrifice the stronger monsters while eating the weaker ones.

Trog, being a god who despises magic, works wonderfully for Trolls, who are almost entirely crap with magic. Berserking, while it doesn't add much in terms of versatility, will increase your attack power to the point where you can just shred everything anyway. Brothers in Arms can give you helpful allies for the situations where just tearing into things yourself isn't quite enough, and Trog's Hand gives you a little more survivability for tough fights. Keep in mind, though that going berserk burns through lots of satiation, which is compounded by your need to sacrifice corpses to Trog.

Kikubaaqudgha can be called upon to give you food at any time, which allows you to explore places you normally wouldn't, such as The Crypt. Also, Trolls aren't entirely useless with Necromancy, meaning you'll still be able to make some use out of Kiku's other abilities and the various Necromantic spells he'll give you.

Nemelex Xobeh, while seemingly an odd choice, can work rather well for Trolls. While their Evocations aptitude is poor, that's par for the course for a Troll, and the various decks you'll be getting your claws on can give you a great deal of much-needed versatility; you'll also be able to make better use of the various wands and rods you find lying around the dungeon. If you want to be a Troll that can use anything more than the most basic of magic, drawing the Shuffle card is one of the best ways to go about doing that.

Letting slimes eat stuff for Jiyva will feed you, making him one of the best ways to offset your Trollish metabolism. Jiyva's mutation gifts can also provide valuable resistances and auxiliary attacks, and the various mutations that intefere with your armour have fewer downsides when you're too big to fit into most kinds of armour in the first place. Plus, your extremely high strength means you can carry more stuff with you, somewhat limiting the number of things you have to leave in a stash where they can be eaten by slimes.

See also: