23 February 2006

Nethack: Death by Exploding Wand

Things weren't going so well for Mannix the Monk. He'd finished exploring the Sokoban levels but only found a bag of holding, not an amulet of reflection. The Gnomish Mines had no co-aligned priest and the only temple in the main dungeon wasn't co-aligned either. He scraped together some money to gain some holy protection but that was all he could manage. Then, he killed a nymph with a force bolt spell and broke her looking glass (bad luck!).

Things go from bad to worse; he discovers a level with a barracks with plenty of soldiers. His centaur was too wimpy to take on these soldiers and was just hanging around. Retreating to the stairs, Mannix fries a soldier with a wand of fire. A sergeant rushes into the room and zaps Mannix with a wand of lightning, causing the wands in his pack to explode. Mannix cops the full blast and dies.

This was a pretty hard game. It really sucked not getting an amulet of reflection in the Sokoban level. Not finding a co-aligned temple or even a plain altar made it impossible sacrifice monsters to improve my luck. I didn't find any good gloves, helmets, boots or cloaks from any of the corpses. None of the floating eyes left any corpses, so I couldn't scan monsters in a level.

On the other hand, I suppose I was forced to be a bit more inventive. I tamed many cats, dogs and horses because I needed help fighting monsters, and used the magic whistle to herd them up and down levels. I even managed to charm a centaur and increased my skill at casting enchantment spells just before I walked into the fatal last level. If I'd been thinking straight, I'd have charmed more monsters (for example, I found some stone giants) and brought them with me to the last level, then zapped them with my wand of teleport to drop them among the soldiers.