[slashem] Lucky start (Chaotic Orcish Necromancer)

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Janis Papanagnou

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Dec 15, 2021, 11:28:30 PM12/15/21
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The RNG gave me a chaotic orcish Necromancer. He is slow and wimpy,
as is his pet. He was several times close to death. His staff at +2,
armor (including invisibility) meanwhile okay at -4. A shop at dlvl:6
had a 500$ wand of wishing, turned out to be (0:2). First wish was
charging and since I abstained from arti-wish-less conduct in Slashem
the second wish was the Wallet of Perseus, then the Bat of Hell to
replace that staff. I suppose I'll go for GDSM (to replace my dwarven
mithril) and maybe reflection (without having checked Sokoban for it)
for a safer early game. Speed would be nice as well, as he is so slow.

Janis

Janis Papanagnou

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Dec 18, 2021, 4:28:19 AM12/18/21
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The Bat from Hell was marvellous, even unenchanted, throughout the
whole mid-game. Meanwhile it's at +7 and observing it dealing 40 HP
damage is flashing. Despite I've got no wimpy artifacts in this
game - with the exception of the Elfrist -, with the Bat from Hell
I can ignore all the other praisen artifacts; the Great Dagger of
Glaurgnaa (the quest artifact), Serpent's Tongue, and Stormbringer.
The Bat was really worth the early wish. For a chaotic Necromancer
with Skilled proficiency in clubs it fits perfectly.

Meanwhile done all the upper dungeon (but Moloch's temple branch),
continuing in the Valley.

The only drawback is that I cannot cast spells with my gauntlets of
power (from Grund's level), shield of reflection, and dragon armor
(which affects spell casting in Slashem - I think not in Nethack,
IIRC). Having maximum carrying capacity I could switch the gauntlets
of power for dexterity, but don't want to lose reflection. (Maybe
switch to silver dragon scale mail and cloak of magic resistance?)
Or just continue to play my orc as fighter, which works pretty well.

Janis

Janis Papanagnou

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Dec 19, 2021, 8:27:06 AM12/19/21
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On 18.12.2021 10:28, Janis Papanagnou wrote:
> On 16.12.2021 05:28, Janis Papanagnou wrote:
>> The RNG gave me a chaotic orcish Necromancer. He is slow and wimpy,
>> as is his pet. [...] A shop at dlvl:6 had a 500$ wand of wishing,
>> [...]
> Or just continue to play my orc as fighter, which works pretty well.

My first Necromancer ascended, and he's also my first who had reached
and accomplished the quest. Needless to say, the wand of wishing that
compensated his inherent drawbacks helped a lot; the Bat from Hell(!),
speed boots, the Wallet of Perseus, etc. Finding that wand quite early
when no other wimpy artifacts have been generated was the precondition
for reliable artifact wishes. Prepared the Plane of Air with a wished
c'trice corpse, secured the path through the Astral Plane with another
c'trice corpse. First altar (Famine) Neutral, second altar (Pestilence)
Lawful, I decided to charge the /WoW for a helm of opposite alignment
(I feared the corpse decaying/getting moldy on my way back through the
foes and passing riders). Spent another turn to get my guardian angel
(and due to the turn-loss also Pestilence) adjacent and ascended to my
new god's glory. With T:67369 it was (for my Slashem games) quite fast.

Janis

Chris Bowers

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Jan 17, 2022, 3:04:53 AMJan 17
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Remember on this board when someone said that wishes in the early game aren't that great? I forget who that was... But anyway. To a wise player a single wish is 1/2 of an ascension. An early wand of wishing? Well... if you can't ascend with an early wand of wishing (remember, that's a minimum of 4 wishes, if you exclude the charging wish), then you don't know how to play the game.

The bat out of hell is a fantastic artifact I wish it was in vanilla.

-Chris

Janis Papanagnou

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Jan 17, 2022, 5:07:15 AMJan 17
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On 17.01.2022 09:04, Chris Bowers wrote:
> Remember on this board when someone said that wishes in the early
> game aren't that great?

I don't think that this had seriously been said. Of course, the earlier
the wishes the more chances you have. I recall other strategies - some
of them by me. For example; if you have a tough character (and of course
also a minimum of experience) that you know you can reach Sokoban alive,
then I'd delay a potential wish for reflection until I see whether it's
already provided in Sokoban, so that I can use the wish for something
else. Another example; you can get wishes from fountains, but early you
risk death, and - if you care about every character - don't fiddle with
fountains just for a chance to survive that. Yet another example; don't
wish for something if you really don't need it - that's why in my games
so many wishes are left when ascending. Either I needed them (then I
used them, if available) or not (them they add to the stock of unused
and unnecessary wishes). In Slashem that's a bit different from Nethack;
there's so many dangers and so many tools with good properties that you
have always a huge wish-list of potential items. In Nethack, a random
early wish usually goes to GDSM (or equivalent); it provides a lot AC,
has a minimum weight to not strain your carrying capacity, protects
against some nasty traps (e.g. polymorph that destroys your cloaks),
but there's some exceptions one might to consider. In Slashem wishes
are not that specialized; there's so much and depending on the actual
game, the role, and whatnot.

> I forget who that was... But anyway. To a
> wise player a single wish is 1/2 of an ascension. An early wand of
> wishing? Well... if you can't ascend with an early wand of wishing
> (remember, that's a minimum of 4 wishes, if you exclude the charging
> wish), then you don't know how to play the game.

I wouldn't say so for Slashem, and even for Nethack I'm not so sure,
given the many death experiences I had. What do you need? Reflection,
magic resistance, poison resistance, sleep resistance. - That's four
already. - Then what do you do if you get surrounded by soldier ants
or a mumak? - That's just an example, even in Nethack you cannot solve
all issues with four early wishes and blame the player otherwise. In
Slashem it's even worse. But were there's agreement for sure is that
wishes reduce the probability of death, and the more wishes the better
of course.

>
> The bat out of hell is a fantastic artifact I wish it was in
> vanilla.

Well, it's very overpowered. That might be fair in Slashem, I'd argue,
because of the enormously increased difficulty of that game, but for
Nethack, well, it'd make the monster melee encounters mostly trivial.

Janis

Chris Bowers

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Jan 17, 2022, 3:31:00 PMJan 17
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It wasn't you, but someone on the board definitely said it. I specifically read it and argued against it for like 20 posts about how glaringly wrong such a statement is. I can look it up if you wish. (pun intended)

You yourself have been an advocate for keeping a magic lamp (as a magic lamp) in the early game for a light source. I don't agree, because an early wish gives you such an incredible boost in the early game, giving you things like reflection, magic resistance, or huge damage output. I have kept the magic lamp rather than using it for a wish in some circumstances (for instance, already had an early wish, already have a banging artifact weapon, reflection and magic resistance). In those situations with those key three things, a wish is not as big a boost.

Holding off on wishing until after sokobon is something you can do. I've died twice from wands with a magic lamp in my hands with that strategy. However I still do it, and have succeeded at it many times. Not to be strategic but because it's certainly exciting. If you make it you get reflection and wish up GDSM. Or if you have magic resistance and get reflection you wish up a huge damage source (an artifact or GOP, for instance).

Not using, or not NEEDING to use wishes isn't a STRATEGY so much as it represents a higher level of attainment in game skill. You aren't strategically saving wishes. You don't need them because you are so much better at the game.

> Reflection,
>magic resistance, poison resistance, sleep resistance. - That's four
>already. -That's fouralready. - Then what do you do if you get surrounded by soldier ants
>or a mumak? - That's just an example, even in Nethack you cannot solve
>all issues with four early wishes and blame the player otherwise.

Getting surrounded by monsters is common. Dying from poison or from a sleep effect is rare.

Fighter type
1. Blessed scroll of Charging.
2. +1 GDSM
3. +1 Shield of Reflection
4. Gauntlets of Power.
5. Escape/Speed/Safety item: Wand of polymorph, boots of speed, AOLS, etc.

Spell Caster
1.Blessed scroll of Charging
2. SDSM
3. Magicbane/Sceptre of Might (magic resistance and damage output)
4. Blessed spellbook of Identify.
5. Escape/Speed/Safety item: Wand of polymorph, boots of speed, AOLS, etc.

Note also that spell casters or hybrids can play as "Fighter Type" all the way up to the castle and they'll be fine. Combat spells aren't necessary in order to reach the castle. Certain classes, like monks, are trickier, but GOP still works well with them, and they can wish for amulet of reflection, cloak of magic resistance and speed boots, which makes their damage output fabulous. Wizards in the above don't need to wish for magic resistance because they start with it. Rogues wishing for magicbane is an absolute home run and saves a wish. Lawful priests can wish for sceptre of might, saving a wish. Knights and lawful Valks might not need damage output as they can dip of excalibur, again saving a wish.

Yes, I could ascend any player with an early WOW in vanilla, barring YASDs (or even with them as one of the wishes can be for AOLS). Yes, Slash Em is different and more difficult, but still, you're RADICALLY increasing your chance for ascension.

-Chris

Janis Papanagnou

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Jan 17, 2022, 10:11:02 PMJan 17
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On 17.01.2022 21:30, Chris Bowers wrote:
>
> You yourself have been an advocate for keeping a magic lamp (as a
> magic lamp) in the early game for a light source.

This is true and I still and strongly stand to it.

The reasons had already been disputed and beaten to death, but...

> I don't agree,
> because an early wish gives you such an incredible boost in the early
> game, giving you things like reflection, magic resistance, or huge
> damage output. I have kept the magic lamp rather than using it for a
> wish in some circumstances (for instance, already had an early wish,
> already have a banging artifact weapon, reflection and magic
> resistance). In those situations with those key three things, a wish
> is not as big a boost.

...since you don't mention these a refresh might be necessary. The
goal is to survive, so we have to take into consideration a few facts.

There's, say, five or six common death types where you'd want some
wish to address that. (Fix one and there's still four or five left.)
I mentioned that some items (like a GDSM) address more than one issue
(that's why GDSM is a typical early wish for me in case of random
early wishes, like from smoky potions).

Analysis of one's personal death experiences lead in my case to the
observation that in unlit areas you suffer from a couple situations
that typically increase the probability drastically to die, or lead
to death. With light you see potential threats in advance and can act
to prevent that; position yourself, protect yourself, flee, get into
good attack situation, do threat-specific inventory management, etc.
With light you don't need to explore that many areas, meaning less
squares to step on, meaning less traps you trigger that brings you
in danger; trapdoors put you in unknown territory where you yet don't
know the escape routes (the stairs), they put you in deeper and more
dangerous areas (monster difficulty). With light you need less time
for exploration, have thus less issues with your hunger status. Traps
of sleeping make you immobile and susceptible for deaths by monsters
that are even wimpy. Magic traps create a lot of foes and blind you.
I'm sure there's a lot more to mention but you already get the point.

Then a magic lamp is not reliable. Even if you find a blessed one or
have (enough) holy water to bless it it may fail in 20% of the cases.

Depending on the character played you have to decide which dangers
are a greater threat. It's a trade-off and everyone has to decide
for himself or herself what works in context of the own skills and
experience.

In mine town one may adjust one's strategy.

Special case for Slashem; there's magic candles as good substitute,
so all lamps may serve for tries for wishes once you have a candle.
And there's also a magic lamp guaranteed, but only around level 30
(where it's already very very dangerous, and you need quite some
supporting items to get it).

>
> Getting surrounded by monsters is common. Dying from poison or from
> a sleep effect is rare.

This is not true. Falling into poisonous pit traps, meeting hordes of
orcs with poisonous arrows, a swarm of killer bees; all are common in
the early game, and getting poison resistance I'd certainly consider
an achieved milestone in being prepared for surviving.

That aside, the by far most common death reason - statistics based on
NAO data from 2019:

General killed by monster (if relevant) list
1 91920 5.730 killed by <something>, while helpless

Poison is the #1 in the special deaths subset
1 47146 2.939 poison related

Coincidental deaths list
1 91932 5.730 helpless
2 27548 1.717 being immobilized
3 20829 1.298 food management
4 16345 1.019 clerical business
5 11314 0.705 sleeping


Janis

Chris Bowers

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Jan 18, 2022, 12:28:52 AMJan 18
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>This is not true. Falling into poisonous pit traps, meeting hordes of
>orcs with poisonous arrows, a swarm of killer bees; all are common in
>the early game, and getting poison resistance I'd certainly consider
>an achieved milestone in being prepared for surviving.

>Poison is the #1 in the special deaths subset
>1 47146 2.939 poison related

How rare is the "special death" subset?

Couple things. A wished for artifact weapon (as I laid out) is going to completely mitigate many of these deaths. A wished for artifact weapon will be selected, so it will be very powerful (rather than a random one from a sacrifice). The +d5 and double (or more) damage from an artifact weapon will kill bees in a single hit, (they only have 1 hit die) and you will most likely hit the first time because of the bonus to hit. That completely mitigates (doesn't eliminate but highly mitigates) that form of poison.

When you are looking at "death by poison" I think you are really looking at "Death by killer bees". Killer bees are one of the most common ways to die in nethack. Players even die with poison resistance from killer bees, they are very fast, and if you keep missing them,

For orcs, the reason people get killed by them is that they use their pets to fight at a long distance from them, which is a mistake. The proper strategy is to only fight these orcs up close. Since most people meander at a distance using their pets, they will get hit with poison missiles. Because of my pro-artifact petless combat strategy, I can only remember one time when I was killed by an orcish arrow. This is also an experience thing. Most players don't know they can be killed by a single arrow. It's mitigated by knowledge as well.

Poison resistance is mitigated by knowledge as well. Once you have a unicorn horn to mitigate the penalties from eating corpses that can give you the resistance, you are off to the races. This can vary by game, but often happens that you encounter a unicorn way before the castle (usually after completing sokobon and the mines). And yes I kill co aligned unicorns, because poison resistance and the ability to negate all status ailments is key.

This leaves dart traps, poison spikes, and chests. I would say those are rare. You can go the whole game without hitting a dart trap. Chance of poison 1 in 6 and chance of death 1 in 10. I have never been instakilled by a dart trap.

Iron Golems and Green Dragons? You will have poison resistance by then.

People also die of eating poisonous corpses (not food poisoning, but actual hp loss from eating poisonous corpses). Newbies die from eating kobolds all the time. I did it many times as a newbie, and even once after I could ascend.

Poisonous pit traps that kill you are not "common". That has happened to me... uh... 3 times or so over 20 years of nethack. Sure that happens. It's a hater. But not something I would wish/prevent.

Barbarians, Orcs, Healers and Monks don't have to worry about poison resistance, so they wouldn't wish to prevent being poisoned. I haven't died from poison in... many years now. I know how to avoid it. (and playing petless helps).

In my wish list, you could, instead of wishing for an escape item or wand of polymorph, use your fifth wish on amulet of poison resistance. I think that would be a waste though. Since dying of poison is rare for experienced players an AOLS is also an "Amulet of not dying from poisoning".

This is also the WORST likelihood. You have a 1/3 chance of only getting 5 wishes from a WOW. You may get 6 or 7.

In terms of "Light", that is, seeing monsters in advance, many things give you that ability. In every game I am of course looking for ways to see monsters. The main dark areas are the gnomish mines, the levels just before medusa's island (which are often dark) the Valley of the Dead and maze levels in gehennom. Telepathy gives you that ability, for instance. With telepathy, set your blindfold to (a) and then just tap "a", "a" to turn it on and off rapidly. In my last game I used normal lamps and polypiled for potions of oil. Only took me 7 potions of oil (and spellbook of magic mapping) to get through the whole game with the same effect of a magic lamp. Game before that I played wizard and used the Light spell all the time. Game before that I used a lamp wish for SDSM and then wished up helm of telepathy at the castle. One of my favorite artifacts to wish for (if I get the chance) as a lawful is the eyes of the overworld. MAN x ray vision is FANTASTIC (plus you get magic resistance from them). Rings of warning even are good. This game I got Sunsword, which does the exact same thing as a magic lamp, and also is, you know, a weapon that deals damage and extra to undead.

At the castle I usually also wish for spellbook of magic mapping if I can, this is less time walking around in the dark, so rather than doing those levels with no light source you can do them wiht a regular oil lamp. I also have been known to use wishes at the castle for a magic marker: all of the charges (and after recharge) being used for magic mapping the maze levels of gehennom. Less time wandering around in the dark.

Extrinsic Telepathy also has a range larger than a magic lamp. Consider the value of wishing for an artifact that ALSO grants intrinsic Telepathy. It does, (better than a magic lamp) what you want, but is also an artifact that grants other properties. Helm of telepathy, amulet of esp, longbow of diana, Orb of detection, magic mirror of merlin, and PYEC all produce extrinsic telepathy, meaning you can see monsters up to 18 diameter around you. This is strictly better than a magic lamp and not only that, these artifacts provide other important properties as well (reflection, magic resistance, magic resistance, magic resistance/charging). You can't compare a magic lamp to these and rationally conclude a magic lamp is better. That's madness!










Janis Papanagnou

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Jan 18, 2022, 1:03:36 AMJan 18
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On 18.01.2022 06:28, Chris Bowers wrote:
>> This is not true. Falling into poisonous pit traps, meeting hordes
>> of orcs with poisonous arrows, a swarm of killer bees; all are
>> common in the early game, and getting poison resistance I'd
>> certainly consider an achieved milestone in being prepared for
>> surviving.
>
>> Poison is the #1 in the special deaths subset 1 47146 2.939 poison
>> related
>
> How rare is the "special death" subset?

Sorry for the probably inappropriate naming. It's just certain cases
accumulated. The number still compares against the whole set; what I
mean is that it's not a percentage of a percentage, but an absolute
percentage. There are 1.6 million death entries stored, where 91920
(.5730 %) are entries marked as while helpless; this included sleep.
The separate mentioned "by sleep" entry is only a specific case or a
change in the NAO code to differentiate it better. And the entry for
"poison based" with 47146 entries (.2939 %) is the second most entry
in absolute numbers, but its (as said) accumulated from different
accidents; poisonous stings, hits from poisonous arrows, poisoning
traps, etc., so effectively is the perfect indication for deaths due
to the lack of poison resistance.

(I have to leave now and will read the rest of your post later.)

Janis

PS: The complete deaths table is still available at the gridbug page
http://nh.gridbug.de/naodeaths.html

Chris Bowers

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Jan 18, 2022, 1:08:25 AMJan 18
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Where the heck are you going? It's a pandemic.

LOL.

-Chris

Janis Papanagnou

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Jan 18, 2022, 1:13:42 AMJan 18
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On 18.01.2022 07:08, Chris Bowers wrote:
>
> Where the heck are you going? It's a pandemic.

Incidentally to the doctor! :-)

> LOL.
>
> -Chris
>

Chris Bowers

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Jan 18, 2022, 1:54:01 AMJan 18
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OH SHIIIIIIIIIIIIII

[Makes prayer to his god for purification[

Janis Papanagnou

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Jan 18, 2022, 4:27:34 AMJan 18
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On 18.01.2022 07:03, Janis Papanagnou wrote:
> On 18.01.2022 06:28, Chris Bowers wrote:
>> [...]
>
> (I have to leave now and will read the rest of your post later.)

Okay, I've read it. There's a lot wrong in it and I don't feel
inclined to comment on each point, it's just too much. Instead
I resort to the actual death numbers taken from NAO from many
players and games over decades, and these numbers contradict
very clearly your personal experience (or subjective memories
of your experience). What you think and say to be rare just
isn't rare. We have clear evidence for that.

You've also been digressing in other formerly also already
disputed topics, like the "AoLS - here in context of poison -,
but it's also here the same; the first poisoned arrow effect
might be annulled by the one-time live-saver but the second
one kills you.

So much in short for the deaths by poison. We disagree.

I don't want to discuss your preferences concerning light,
because I already elaborated on that, and your statements,
I'd say, don't really add anything that would substantially
address the presented reasoning. So let us agree to disagree.

Janis

Chris Bowers

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Jan 18, 2022, 4:55:00 AMJan 18
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The idea that you'd be instakilled by a first arrow, pop your aols and then be instakilled by the second arrow is so rare that it's out of the realm of real consideration.

Hit by an arrow= Chance to get through armor class. Chance that an arrow is poisoned at all? Not sure but around 50%. Then chance that it's deadly? Poison entry on the wiki says 1 in 30.

So what you're saying is, the monster rolls and gets through your ac (remember this is greatly reduced by wishing for SDSM and +1 Shield of Reflection as I directed you are already at AC -2). The probability roll of it being poisoned succeeds, and then the 1 in 30 chance that it's deadly succeeds. Then after it succeeds on three rolls, you pop your AOLS. Then, what you're saying is that it succeeds on all three rolls including the 1 in 30 chance AGAIN on the next turn.

I would like you to see you roll six times in a row and hit on every single one. That is so unlikely it's not worth consideration. Even simply hitting 1 out of 30 is only a 3% chance and then rolling and hitting that 3% chance (again, sequentially) is too remote to consider. The statistic that a monster missile weapon instakills on 1 out of 30 is here: https://nethackwiki.com/wiki/Poison

Okay, Janis, tell you what to do. Get two d10 sided dice. One for each digit of a percentile roll. Now roll both dice. Tell me how soon you hit either 98. 99. or 00. Then, after you do that (Could take 100 rolls) then you have to do EXACTLY THAT again, on the very next roll. You could start now and do that for 24 hours and not hit it.

>I resort to the actual death numbers taken from NAO from many
>players and games over decades, and these numbers contradict
>very clearly your personal experience (or subjective memories
>of your experience).

They do not. If you recall, I said that death by killer bees and death by poison alone are different. Death by killer bees poison is mitigated by a powerful artifact weapon. You can't be hit by killer bees if you 1 shot them every time.

If "death by poison" includes "death by killer bees" then you are mistaking one for the other. A powerful wished for (and thus, you wish for a powerful one) artifact weapon deals with killer bees handily.

So, yes, people often die by "poison" if "killer bees" are included in that (because people VERY often die from killer bee swarms, which they can't run away from, and killer bees are hard to hit early game without an artifact weapon). And if each of those people attacked by killer bees could one shot each of them, they woudln't have gotten poisoned and wouldn't have died.

Yes it is very common for early players to get killed by killer bees. They are AC -1, speed 18, can't be outrun without enhanced speed, attack in groups multiple times a turn, and have poison. But if you would compare people that die to killer bees in terms of having vs. not having an artifact weapon, I think you would find that bees attacking someone with a powerful artifact weapon rarely succeed in killing them.

>What you think and say to be rare just
>isn't rare. We have clear evidence for that.

I think you are misunderstanding. I've been killed by killer bees all the live long day.

I never have been when I had a powerful artifact weapon. Not once.

-Chris
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