ToME: the Tales of Maj'Eyal

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 28, 2014 9:14 am 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Tue May 15, 2012 11:44 pm
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http://te4.org/characters/13640/tome/5c ... fd959bef4e

So, this is my first insane win. It was supposed to be a learning run. After having my ass kicked with arcane blades on insane roguelike in the early game (I am probably building them wrong), I wanted to try something different on adventure, to get a feel for insane... After this, I'd consider shadowblades to be one of the better melee classes that I played. Essence of speed, shadow feed, momentum, plus speed buff (in this case Grace of the Eternals, but Blinding Speed or Eden's Guile should work as well) brought me to 200% global speed and 153% attack speed (even with precise strikes). Wilful combat, precise strikes and precision gave me over 100 phys power, 120% crit chance and around 80 apr (about 100 in practice due to high accuracy). The damage that they do in the late game is just crazy, and they pack more utility than most melee (conveyance and temporal).

The problems are 1) High physical resist mobs and that's where you have to rely on respen from gear 2) No way to handle vitality on extremely high hp mobs, but most of these can be skipped. Argoniel and the Corrupted Wyrm were a paaaain though. 3) You are limited by stamina. Normally this isn't a problem - either everything is already dead or you have to run because you took too much damage - but against enemies that are really hard to kill it might become a problem.
I should point out that these are minor issues and most enemies just explode in a few rounds.

With regards to defenses, in the early game time shield and a few points in dual weapon defense go a long way. Usual advice to stack +HP gear asap applies. The high global speed once you get essence of speed going is a great defensive asset as well, there are very few enemies that will ever get a double turn on you. Later on, with providence and draconic will to handle status, decent amount of armor, heroism and shields, along with the crazy amount of status effects you can apply on melee strikes now means that very few things can take you on one on one.

One interesting tactic I have taken away from this is to use a wild infusion with a good resist % before combat to increase my resist all. In essence it acted as a HP multiplier in the end game, and with 3k effective hp + heroism + shield, 40% resist works out to 1200 hp, before respen. Yes, resistance penetration can reduce it but it's hp I couldn't stack otherwise.

With regards to the build, it has no stealth or ambush trees. I don't think I would have survived melee in light armour, so stealth is out of the question, and I didn't feel like spending a category point on opening ambush - the clone is probably good but cat points are at a premium. Time shield does the most of heavy lifting in the early game, and it's a tree I would open first. If I didn't get an ano escort I would have went for vile life instead.

I wouldn't call this an easy win by any stretch of the imagination. I was really strong by the end, but it takes a long time (the clock says 53 hours, and I didn't do any farportals) and it's easy to become distracted/bored and do something dumb. Which brings us to the one death.

It was in an orc ambush. After killing everything and being at half hp, I didn't stop and rest, but hit 'z' instead...and walked into a disarming trap. I still had blood of life and ring of the dead when I ended, so it could have been a roguelike win in theory...but it isn't. I'll have to earn that some other time. Insane is a different game - on normal and nightmare you have long periods of cruise control followed by short periods of intense danger - on insane it was the other way around. I'm not sure I'm ever going to switch to just playing insane, but we'll see.

As a minor point, I started with the purist orc pits addon because I felt nostalgic and wanted to play that dungeon again but it didn't spawn for me.

Questions/comments are welcome.

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 28, 2014 12:38 pm 
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Sher'Tul Godslayer

Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 11:16 pm
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congrats. I just can't get my insane chars very far at all :-(

Quote:
One interesting tactic I have taken away from this is to use a wild infusion with a good resist % before combat to increase my resist all. In essence it acted as a HP multiplier in the end game, and with 3k effective hp + heroism + shield, 40% resist works out to 1200 hp, before respen. Yes, resistance penetration can reduce it but it's hp I couldn't stack otherwise.


i learned this trick on nightmare and i use it all the time now.

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 28, 2014 3:26 pm 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Thu Jan 16, 2014 4:56 am
Posts: 645
Grats, supermini! Thanks for the writeup.

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 28, 2014 3:57 pm 
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Halfling

Joined: Mon Mar 25, 2013 5:39 pm
Posts: 80
grats man, i never can get my shadowblades very far off the ground even on normal, so im impressed :)


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2014 9:24 pm 
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Archmage

Joined: Thu Dec 12, 2013 7:28 pm
Posts: 393
jenx wrote:
congrats. I just can't get my insane chars very far at all :-(

Quote:
One interesting tactic I have taken away from this is to use a wild infusion with a good resist % before combat to increase my resist all. In essence it acted as a HP multiplier in the end game, and with 3k effective hp + heroism + shield, 40% resist works out to 1200 hp, before respen. Yes, resistance penetration can reduce it but it's hp I couldn't stack otherwise.


i learned this trick on nightmare and i use it all the time now.


Isn't this a bad idea because then the wild can't be used to remove statuses like stuns/confusion during combat?

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2014 9:48 pm 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Sat Oct 04, 2014 8:03 pm
Posts: 892
Late game on normal, let alone Insane, you will be getting a ton of status conditions per turn. A Wild Infusion is great to have for emergencies, but you should have other ways of dealing with debuffs. Msasive saves, Providence, status immunities, whatever works for you.

More than that, curing a status condition is no good to you if you die before you get a chance to cure it.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2014 9:57 pm 
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Thalore

Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 10:20 pm
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Thanks for the guide supermini, always nice to have some Insane+ floating around!

I believe he chains Draconic, Providence, Timeless, Draconic, which is ~20 turns of status "immunity" with 10 turn delay (which btw is a great combo you can use on every class if you go Shalore). This means you can keep a wild to top off all res if you wanted to.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2014 10:20 pm 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Sat Oct 04, 2014 8:03 pm
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Is that a better option than chaining Draconic Will with Timeless? Providence, after all, doesn't give status immunity, only great status curing. Is the specific cooldowns why it's better to chain them as Draconic->Providence->Timeless?

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 30, 2014 2:06 am 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Thu Jan 16, 2014 4:56 am
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After 1.3 hits, we won't be able to use Timeless to extend Draconic Will. Would you use Timeless to extend Providence or, once Providence ends, to reduce duration of effects? I'm thinking the former, but haven't done any kind of comparison.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 30, 2014 5:16 am 
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Uruivellas

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What do you mean after 1.3 hits? Timeless should work no matter what hits you take, unless you die or get stunned/brainlocked, but Draconic Will stops that. Right?

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 30, 2014 6:48 am 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Thu Jan 16, 2014 4:56 am
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Draconic Will is changing to type "other", which Timeless does not affect, in the upcoming ToME version 1.3. I should have been less slangy with "hit".

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 12, 2014 6:53 am 
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Thalore

Joined: Thu Dec 26, 2013 2:31 am
Posts: 120
I'm highly impressed.

My noob question is this: does light armour really make such a difference? My only winner (on normal difficulty! noob question!;)) was picking up drakeskin armour almost as good as her heavy plate armour.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 12, 2014 2:05 pm 
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Uruivellas

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It's less about the armor itself and more about how Armor Training improves Heavy and Massive armor. With 5/5 and the right armor, you can have 100% armor hardiness, not to mention the extra crit reduction.

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