The Continuing Ironman Saga of Roede and Taoni - Taoni_the_Fell
Since both Roede and Taoni were short on clevel to enter Hell difficulty, we did the following training games in NM:
Dec. 20 -- 1st training
During these training games Roede died once to a dog boss on Six, while Taoni died on a different game from a mace goat and desync on Seven.
On January 16, 6th training session and transition. We managed to lup within 5 kills of each other and then packed and moved on to Hell difficulty.
RoedeOrm is base:
Life 142 (no gear)
Taoni is base:
Life 254 (with gear)
To hit 125; damage 32 - 41
Although my notes are incomplete, I know Taoni_the_Fell carried: Crimson Plate of the Stars (+10 all), Helm of the Eagle (+27 life), Ammy of the Tiger (+49 life), Long War Bow of the Giants (+20 Str), Ring of Vigor (+17 life), Ring of the Wolf (+35 life), Amber Helm, Staff Res, Ring of Zest +10, Crystal Ring, &5 res scrolls and one ID scroll.
I know we had to leave behind: Mace of Slaying, Mace of Speed, Mace of Vampires, Crimson Shield, Iron Blade, Staff of Healing (34), Messy's Reaver, and many other items.
We used the amount of 225k for making purchases in the Hell game, as we had found this to be an average amount of money that one collects in a 1-16 Nightmare game.
Adria: Amber staff of HO, elix Str, elix Des, 2 scrolls res, 1 scroll ID, 1 scroll infra, 68 scrolls TP (burnt out our remaining cash; there was simply nothing else to spend it on)
Wirt offered our adventurers Armor(16) of the Lion (+57) for 31.5k, and Breast Plate of Osmosis(-5 damage) for 95k! We declined his offers.
Instead we went to Gris, and bought the following items -- Platinum Great Sword of Haste, Armor of the Tiger (+41), Blessed Helm of Harmony, Crown of vigor. Then we bought a number of unneeded items, trying to force him to offer something better: bow of giants, bastard sword of vigor, sword of ages, and a crimson bow. Nothing decent showed up.
We repaired all weapons and some armor.
17th session -- Jan 14 -- total time 4 hours 45 minutes.
Hell Level One -- the usual suspects. Shrines: none. Drops: book Fbolt, book CB, scroll ID, mag dagger. The level was played as a FFA. Roede and Taoni are both level 30 unless otherwise noted.
Hell Level Two -- Skeleton Captains, Corpse Bows, Rotting Carcasses, Devil Kin. Shrines: Blood Fountain. Drops: book Fbolt, book HO, mag splint mail, field plate (Butcher). The level was played FFA with the rogue having some problems with the archer packs. The warrior made extensive use of his portable Blood Fountain (the Hammer of Blood) and was fine.
Hell Level Three -- Carvers, Shadow Beasts, Plague Eaters, Corpse Bows, Devil Kin. Shrines: none. Drops: book CB, book CB, book FW, book HO, book TK, book Fbolt, 2 scrolls ID, long war bow, book HB (Skullfire), Splint Mail (Bongo), Long Battle Bow (Leo), staff CB (El Chupacabras).
More archers meant problems for the rogue, who was consistantly stunned by their damage. Roedes armor was still valid against these opponents, however, and together we teamed as he bashed his way across the level. When we met Leo, he was alone -- oddly, his bodyguard of 30 archers stood in an adjacent room behind a closed door.
Hell Level Four -- Dark Ones, Devil Kin, Black Death, Horrors, Burning Dead Captains, Corpse Captains. Shrines: none. Drops: 2 elix magic. Traditional teamwork; set and trap; an uneventful clear.
18th Session -- Jan. 15 -- total time 5 hours 15 minutes
Hell Level Five -- Shadow Beasts, Winged Demons, Glooms, Blinks, Black Deaths. Shrine: Murky Pool. Drops: elix Vit, book Flash, book FW, book Inferno, book HB, scroll res, scroll ID, staff Heal (27), great helm (10), ong bow, sabre, amulet (Shadowbeast), ring (Winged Demon), Ring Mail AC 18 (Wraithraven), Scimitar (Foulwing)
We had heavy respawns and desync; once the Rogue cracked a barrel and the Warrior heard the sound of a shrine being triggered. As soon as a safe area of operation was established, we called it a warriors level and let Roede solo. The entire level was double-checked later by the Rogue, without the Warrior on the level.
Hell Level Six -- Unseen, Stone Clan Archers, Flesh Clan Goats, Familiars. Shrines: Fascinating/Divine (desync), goat. Drops: long battle bow, great sword. ring (chest).
Warrior went down first alone (as per usual) and immediately got into a fight with 5 Unseen and 2 goat archers waiting in ambush. He proved up to the task, however. While scouting, Taoni ran into two Unseen and died. Roede took revenge and got a res. The entire level was again double-checked solo at the end.
Hell Level Seven -- Familiars, Night Clan Archers, Fire Clan Archers, Mud Men. Shrines: Religious, Stone, Mysterious, goat. Drops: book Flash, book Phasing, book Heal, book Inferno, staff Heal (22), staff CB, staff Phasing, cap, amulet (Night Clan Archer), Warhammer (Blightfire), Amulet (Gorestone).
The Warrior broke out the Gold blade for this level. Interesting beginning: from the stair area we could have gone either North (Up and right), or East (down and right). When the Rogue enters the level, the Warrior is set at a corner to clear the North. Rogue has a bad feeling about it (too large an open area) and we confer and decide to clear the East first, running into four goat archers supported by two Mudmen. Its a hairy fight, but we conquer and set a portal in this dead-end room. Turning attentions back to the North, the Warrior sets, and the Rogue barely takes a step beyond him when the air is filled with Bloodstars! Blightfire! The Rogue retreats and returns fire; the Warrior tries to remain at the set, but the volume of incoming is simply too great and he falls. The Rogue high-tails it back to the portal to drink and regroup. She comes back down and stone curses with a vengence and takes out the group, then resses the Warrior. Looking back, had we tried to go North first we would have triggered the Boss pack, and when we retreated East (the only other direction available) we would have run into the four goats and two mudmen waiting there and the game probably would have ended. As it was, clearing the East first prevented a disaster.
We continued teaming through the rest of the level and had some good doorway sets where the enemy archers would pursue Taoni right into the swinging blade of the warrior. Gorestone was a tricky customer, however. He ended up appearing in a long, narrow room accessible by only one door, and there were six minions between him and the door, blocking his movement. Because he wouldnt move, they wouldnt move. Whenever either the Rogue or the Warrior entered the room, a veritable hailstorm of deadly arrows drove them back. It took about ten minutes of moving and peeking and taunting and a Flamewave scroll before we got the pack close enough to the doorway that the rogue could safely cast a Firewall that reached them, taking out some of their numbers and allowing the rest to move. After we finished the minions, the warrior was able to freeze Gorestone from a doorway while Taoni finished him.
Later, the warrior died once due to three archers at a bad set point. Rogue revenged and ressed. Overall, very tough level that took a lot of time!
19th Session -- Jan 17 -- total time: 3 hours 40 minutes.
Hell Level 8 -- Magma Demons, Night Clan Goats, Acid Spitters. Shrines: abandoned (Taoni)/stone (Roede). We chose to use the Abandoned shrine, as we already had a Stone waiting in the background. Drops: book Elemental, 3 scrolls ID, staff Flamewave, short battle bow, unique ring (of engagement), ring (goat), amulet (Magma Demon), Spiked Club (Firewound).
This level was extremely tough going. The mace goats were hard on the warrior, and if they got in the first blow the fight usually cost two reds to survive. Three deaths to mourn here:
At the second door
set a goat backed by dogs appeared, resulting in a dead warrior.
The third time was the rogue falling to a goat that cut off her retreat during a scouting foray. Strangely enough, this goat was a ghost -- the warrior couldnt spot him. We chose to Town-Res the Rogue, who then used stairs to return to the level. There was the ghost goat, pounding away at the warrior who still couldnt see/feel him. Grrrrr. She slew him and we moved on.
Taoni lups to 31 this level, as does Roede!
20th Session -- Jan 21 -- total time: about 3 and 1/2 hours.
Hell Level 9 -- Mud
Men, Frost Chargers, Poison Spitters. Shrines: none. Drops: elix Dex,
A single Mudman welcomed the warrior at the staircase. The ensuing combat was a reminder to be careful: just one hit cost 80 life and required a visit to the Blood Fountain afterwards. Since even the highest AC setup Roede could come up with would still be consider naked by the game, it was time to change his gear. New body armor: Garnet Quilt of Precision. Several hairy fights lead Taoni to break out the Fire Bow; its effects are mixed. A few times we meet Mudmen on opposite sides of lava rivers, and both characters break out bows. All told at the end we are quite proud to have finished the level with no fatalities.
21st Session -- Jan 22 -- total time: 4 hours 5 mins.
Hell Level 10 -- Red Storms, Poison Spitters, Pit Beasts. Shrines: none. Drops: elix Dex, axe, club, unique staff (Stormspire), ring (Red Storm), Splint Mail (Plaguewrath).
The very first set left little room to maneuver, and in a disturbing desync situation Taoni dies to a Red Storm that runs right past the Warrior and pins her to the wall. That was Taonis take anyway. Roedes perspective is to watch Taoni run past him to her firing point two tiles deep. The Red Storm pauses two tiles away from Roede to the 90 degree position, but Roede cant step up to engage as the Rogue is firing down her fire lane. Then Rogue stops firing, Roede steps up and slays the Storm, and both Taoni and the Storm die simultaneously?! Bummer. Plaguewrath and friends end up on the opposite side of a lava river; several firewall casts later yield hotdogs! We have a second death when Taoni is pursued by three dogs who ignore the warrior and concentrate their vile projectile vomit upon the Rogue. Roede has a tense retreating battle on his hands (singling them out), but in the end triumphs.
We ID the ring from the Storm -- of Star +9 all. Rogue ring.
22nd Session -- Jan 29 -- total time: 3 hours 45mins.
Hell Level 11 -- Pit Beasts, Flayed Ones, Obsidian Lords. Shrines: none. Drops: elix Vit, battle axe, cap, small shield, small shield, staff Fbolt.
Roede finds his ability to hit opponents is becoming questionable, and has to switch from the ammy of precision to the silver amulet. All in all, however, this level is a disaster: four deaths, three of which are in the last 1/3 of the level.
Taoni dies at our
first set to a Flayed one when it walks right past the Warrior and she
has nowhere to run.
Each time the partner was able to salvage the situation and bring a res.
23rd Session -- Jan. 31 -- total time: over four hours.
Hell Level 12 -- Flayed Ones, Malestorms, Lava Maws. Shrines: none. Drops: book Guardian, composite staff, Quarter staff, bastard sword. We enter the level with our best weapons (Bow of Fire, Kings Dagger) readied and sure enough, just one step to the west reveals an ambush with 3 Flayed, 2 Storms and one dog. Lots of running, slashing, and SCing later the area around the bottom of the stairs is won. (We have to visit the Blood Fountain after that one though.)
Roedes difficulty resides in the fact that although the Kings Dagger performs admirably, it is now down to 7/13 durability. Were hoping to use it for the final battle with Diablo, and so must put it away for now (hell break it out every time he takes stairs down to the next level). The Gold Blade hits fairly well but doesnt stun, so the Warrior breaks out the Silver Falchion of Slaying, which only connects about 1/2 the time but stuns.
Desync harries us the entire level. Taoni loses life to lightning blasts while Roede sees no lightning at all. Taoni would see no attack connect with Roede, but at the end of the battle would see over 1/2 his life is gone.
Some Flayed Ones appear at the opposite side of lava rivers. Bow time.
Casualties on this
After each situation Taoni would drink heavily, stone curse, and clear the area.
Regardless, we use our last small red potion and our last small yellow potion on this level. Oh boy. We use the Stone Shrine to recharge our Res Staff. We use the Religious shrine to repair armors and weapons (especially the KDoStars). Getting down to the nitty-gritty here.
We ID the bastard sword -- of Titans, and of no use to us.
23rd Session -- Feb 5 -- total time:
Hell Level 13 -- Succubi, Cave Vipers, Lava Maws. Shrines: none. Drops: elix Dex, small shield, cap.
The stairs are adjacent
to a large open area we must pass through in order to get to the next
area. This first set, by the stairs, was awful. Opponents walked right
past the Warrior to engage the Rogue, and the open area gave the witches
freedom to fire on whoever they chose. We went through potions like nobodys
business until we finally clear the area. The second set is much better,
with the Warriors position able to freeze witches without
him taking receiving fire. Still, dogs and snakes are another matter,
and he finds that if a dog gets in the first hit it would often drive
him into blocklock, and often it took two full reds before
he could fight his was free, even with the Rogues help. The third
set was the best: a U-shaped with Roede waiting at the bend, and a shish-kebob
Taoni_the_Fell -- yep, this one was my fault and I know it. I just didnt think that a single level was going to take over five hours to play! If we had continued on at the rate we were progressing on that level, it would have taken about 6 hours and 15 minutes to complete the level. I just didnt have that much time. I was hoping that stone cursing would save us in tense situations. It didnt. It was my bad. Other than that, in Hell/Hell it becomes painfully obvious that the Warriors abilities are the key to winning your way to deeper levels. In my opinion, a good to hit melee weapon is the most important item you can find in the game. You can juggle equipment setups to address resistances, and you seem to find plenty of +life items and reading glasses for spells and books. But if you dont have a good to hit with a hefty weapon, the team simply cant survive. Finally, I think I put too many points into magic. Although Stone Curse is a wonderful spell to have on occasion, the lack of consistant stun by the Rogue was horrendous. After level four she pretty much couldnt go one-on-one with any ranged attack foe. Bad choices on my part. Grrrrrrr.
RoedeOrm -- to hit ruled my weapon/jewelry choice from Cats onward. The Kings dagger would surely get the job done, but the low durability here allowed for only limited use such as entry into level and dealing with boss packs. I was in a constant gamble of trading off stunning power and /or Dex to get sufficient connect rate. This odds were rigged, however, and drifted slowly to the foes side each level we went. This resulted in increased potion use in midbattle from caves on. Running dry of small reds on 12 was a blow, too (we still had big ones). The foes we faced on 13 were an acceptable group. The third set point was excellent, and would have let us clear the level had time permitted in my opinion. Future levels would have been dangerous; cant expect to have such a lucky draw again, but who knows? Well try again.
And thats it, the most recent installment of the Roede and Taoni Ironman series. Can you believe it? Nearly THREE MONTHS of gameplay, and we failed. Man!
Yes, weve started another game. In fact, weve finished Normal already and are on level 7 of Nightmare. Well just keep struggling and see what happens. Well try to keep you posted.
31 Ironman Rogue