ToME: the Tales of Maj'Eyal

Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art
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Author:  Orangeflame [ Mon May 05, 2014 3:53 pm ]
Post subject:  Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

No one knows what dark thoughts drive people to necromancy. The art of necromancy is as old as magic itself, and it's creations have plagued all the races.

Nightfall - "Darkness is my friend, and your worst enemy." - Nightfall has few equals when it comes dealing death, but has long cooldowns; this is the core of most practitioners' lexicons.
Invoke Darkness..... Good damage, good range, but a cooldown of 4 reduces its spammability.
Circle of Death....... Effective at disabling a group of enemies and spellshocking, but requires good spellpower to consistently land the effects, and is useless if resisted.
Fear the Night........ Amazing crowd control. AoE Knockback is a lifesaver against melee foes. With investment, this also gets nice range and is viable as a room-clearer.
Rigor Mortis.......... Boss-killer. High damage, strong slowing effect. Range is an issue.

Necrotic Minions - "Fetch me my staff!" - Minions are disposable. They can kill a boss in a matter of turns, but can barely accompany you on your journeys.
Create Minions....... The basic summon. Heavy investment is all but mandatory for a necromancer looking to have a personal army.
Aura Mastery......... A necessity for effective soul harvesting and summoning, but not necessarily required to have maxed.
Undeath Surge........ A mediocre buff to your minions. Worth using in a fight, but not worth investing in.
Dark Empathy........ Manathrusts to the back from your mages used to hurt. Not anymore. Saves & resists are a boon.

Grave - "I feel a chill, and it's not just the cold..." - Cold is a nuisance to your foes, and support for yourself.
Chill of the Tomb..... Fireflash clone, but... No wildfire-like YASD protection, and you won't stack +%cold damage.
Will o' the Wisp....... Good support for a minion necromancer, useless otherwise.
Cold Flames........... Poor damage, but a 25% chance to freeze is fairly useful. Creates a good 'area of denial' in conjunction with Circle of Death.
Vampiric Gift.......... Very useful bonus to survivability. Whether it's worth the mana cost and investment in the rest of the tree is up to the you.

Animus - "You see these wisps? These are what souls truly are, not that the religious fools care." - An interesting and unique branch of necromancy.
Consume Soul........... A much-needed way to restore mana and heal. Worth a point for everyone.
Animus Hoarder........ If you find that you require more souls, this is for you. Out of curiosity, why do you require more souls, anyways?
Animus Purge........... Create a husk of a rare monster to have a powerful friend. IMPORTANT: Friendly Fire is ON.
Essence of the Dead.... This generically empowers several of your spells. Worth putting a point or two in, if you take the rest of the tree.

Necrosis - "...they told me I was mad to try! Mad, I tell you! Mad!" - This is the thematic core of the art; lichdom lies within reach of the driven.
Blurred Mortality...... A very useful buff to your health pool in the early game. 'Float' points into this, as it loses greatness as you gain more health naturally.
Impending Doom...... Boss-killer. Capable of dealing huge damage at low levels, this loses potential at high levels, capping out at 1200 damage. The healing stop is always effective.
Undeath Link.......... A horrible ability. If you use minions, you may use this once or twice, but this is generally useless.
Lichform............... Epic power. Get this to 5/5, and then die with it sustained, ASAP. This does not work for undead.

Shades - "Darkness isn't just the absence of light." - This is what separates an advanced warlock from their peers: utter dark power.
Shadow Tunnel...... Useful to create a wall of meatshields when you are already at your summon cap, and can keep your army with you when exploring. 1 point is all that is ever needed.
Curse of the Meek.. Multi-purposed evil! Restores souls, greatly impedes melee enemies, and draws some nasty attacks away from yourself. Not effective vs AoE.
Forgery of Haze..... What's better than Fear the Night? Casting Fear the Night twice! There is no good reason not to 5/5 this. Make sure to use buffs before creating your evil twin!
Frostdusk............ Darkness res pen. Until you get this, Dreads and their nastier brethren will seem invulnerable. Getting this is highly important for a spellslinging warlock.

Advanced Necrotic Minions - "What can stop me now? What could possibly stop me now?" - A mediocre extension of your minions. Becomes better with Necromancy+ version 1.5+.
Undead explosion............ Destroy a minion for low blight damage. Can be used to fine-tune your undead army.
Assemble..................... Create a bone giant that deals very little damage. On the plus side, they are slightly harder to kill than an armored skeleton warrior.
Sacrifice...................... Destroy a bone giant for 1-shot protection for a while. Useful, but is it worth the cost?
Advanced Minion Mastery... Liches are the only good things here without Necromancy+. With it, this is great, especially if you take the Blighted Summoning prodigy.

Star Fury - "Your doom is written in the stars tonight." - A lich gets power from the heavens, augmenting its abilities.
Moonlight Ray....... The ultimate compliment to Invoke Darkness; 5/5 this. Caution, friendly fire is ON!
Shadow Blast........ Moderate damage, short-range, AoE.
Twilight Surge...... Best used to regenerate Negative energy in a pinch.
Starfall............... The other good spell in this tree. AoE stun is great, but it may be resisted by some foes. Damage is moderate.

Author:  Snarvid [ Sat May 17, 2014 12:29 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

Decision trees:

1. Do you want to use minions or not? Opinions vary, but I would say yes, or else play an Archmage or Corruptor for significantly more versatile and punchy spells. If you are going to minions, you really ought to play a Higher, which at level 24+ can use Bloom to ignore the soul cost of your spells.
2. Do you want to become a lich? I would say yes. Ordinarily I would say yes unless you're playing a Ghoul, but if you were a Ghoul you're ignoring 1, above.
3. Do you want to use Vampiric Gift or Probability Travel? You don't have to use either, of course, but the mana sustain costs of using both are prohibitively high for most of the game.
4. If you're running Forgery of Dusk, and you are, you should consider the opportunity cost of splashing low level spells that your Forgery might use. In particular, you might consider skipping Grave entirely and only investing in a maxxed Moonlight Ray from Twilight, or else your Forgery will waste turns on under-leveled spells and might freeze your minions with Cold Flames. If you do so, leave room for Channel Staff and Staff Mastery so you've always got something to do.

Other uses of skills that achieve more potency when you no longer have to address soul costs.

-After a combat, turning off your Necrotic Aura and/or using Undeath Surge allows you to destroy your minions efficiently. This then lets you hurl your next group of Created Minions into your foe's face rather than having them follow you, which is generally preferred for blocking lanes and getting your melee minions into enemy faces pronto. It also keeps your Mages from shooting you in the butt before you have Dark Empathy.

-Essence of the Dead lasts forever until used, so with Bloom you can prep for your next fight with Essence each time. The big two that I use are the +2 additional minions off Create Minions and the Invoke Darkness becomes a cone. I like having 2 points in it so that if I feel compelled to use Create Minions before Forgery of Dusk my forgery still has an Essence of the Dead charge left to cone-ize his Invoke. If you're using Advanced Minions you'll also want to use it for the bonus Bone Giant.

-Using the previous two ideas, if you're throwing 7 level +3 minions into enemy faces (or 8 minions of level +5 with the Scepter of the Archlich) at the beginning of each significant combat, Undeath Surge becomes worth investing in.

- Assemble's 20% chance to create a Runed Bone Giant becomes a simple time-tax for the player when you can create an infinite number of minions over time, assemble them, and explode any non-runed bone giants. Phase Door 5 can be useful here if you want to protect your other minions from the exploding giant. Also, killed Giants, as of 1.15, reassemble x1. These giants no longer count against your minion numbers but don't follow you off the level you're on, which could potentially allow you to, say, outnumber the room of death if you really wanted to be obsessive about it.

- Sacrifice's cost is markedly lower if you're not fussing about the souls that fuel the giant. Capping incoming damage is always nice, especially when you're playing on Nightmare (and presumably beyond, although I haven't done so).

Author:  sofocles [ Fri Jun 06, 2014 9:28 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

havent played minions. have played minionless (have several posts)
the basics havent changed it seems.
ice damage sucks, because it has no beam or direct damage, and if its still as previous versions scales pretty badly.
because of the 2 beams, darkness damage is the obvios choice to go with. (get umbraphage if posible)

all in all, i found minionless lich rather boring. compared to archmage. I feel there should be bigger play on your own life. use it , get it back.

Author:  Alamo90 [ Sun Jun 22, 2014 5:35 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

So I had not realized until I got to level 25 that not only can Undead Necromancers not become Liches, but because they can't even start the quest they can't get the beating heart from Celia. I was pretty disappointed, though if I'm mistaken and just missed my opportunity somehow I would love for someone to tell me where I went wrong.

Author:  cttw [ Sun Jun 22, 2014 10:54 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

You are not wrong. No lichform for skellies and ghouls. The quest is obtained from the Last Hope alchemist quest giver.

Author:  Alamo90 [ Mon Jun 23, 2014 4:20 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

Well I knew you couldn't become a lich, it was the Heart I was wondering about. Seems a bit odd that you can't even get that item, considering its pretty useful for the class overall, even if you can't go full lich.

Author:  Faeryan [ Mon Nov 02, 2015 10:17 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

Necroing this thread a bit (no pun intended) but I just recently started my Ogre Necromancer, hoping to go Lich. I did Celia's quest at lv18 and carried my trek. Later on when checking the quest log it shows the quest with me not having the Still Beating Heart of Celia. I checked my inventory and there is none.
I didn't drop it, I looted her remains and everything. Also I'm not undead granted by any item worn.

Only thing I would imagine possibly screwing the stuff is not activating Blurred Mortality before going there. I only activated it later when fighting Urkis.
Would this be fixable by fiddling with the powers of the yellows if I call them on it? Usually it wouldn't be such a big trouble to replay this far but this is my least liked class and I have terrible gaming experiences with it from previous runs. Wouldn't want to quit now that I'm doing this fine.

Author:  Radon26 [ Mon Nov 02, 2015 12:51 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

before... do you mean not at all?
because yeah, you don't get the quest started without activating it at least once.
as for after that, you should be able it have it off and still get it marked.

Author:  Faeryan [ Mon Nov 02, 2015 9:11 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

I went through some old Necro saves I had and those who didn't spec the tree at all and had completed the graveyard had the quest exactly the same as non-necros.

For this guy here I had the tree specced but don't remember activating Blurred Mortality before Celia (I did later though when fighting Urkis cause his thunderstorm nearly downed me. The lore pop-up appeared just then, that's how I remembered to check the quest progress) but the quest for lichdom was active on me. I had two of the four things checked, the two missing were the heart and preparing it.
I actually tried to talk to Sher'tul and activate the heart in the middle in case it would allow it but no.

I even went as far as deleting the graveyard map to redo it but it only respawned the coffins but not Celia.

Author:  Radon26 [ Mon Nov 02, 2015 10:05 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

"...coffins, but no celia"
over a thousand posts and haven't heard of it?
a unique (as in, boss) mob, CANNOT spawn the second time.
even if you reset the lvl files.
in fact, if you reset the floor, before killing that boss, he is just gone. (of which there were bug reports.)
i think there is another separate file that marks the boss spawns. you will have to find it, and then again reset the lvl.

Author:  Faeryan [ Tue Nov 03, 2015 6:45 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

How does post count account to file diving?
I'm more used to playing the game than cheating with game files.

If post count matters any then my defense is that most of my posts come from the times of ToME2 which was a bit different game.

Author:  Radon26 [ Tue Nov 03, 2015 12:36 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

i meant that if you write so much, you would have to read a lot too.
so, you should know about "boss can only spawn once".

the part with files i mentioned because i didn't think you would know.
ofc, i do not expect you to be a constantly file diving cheater, but you did mention resetting the graveyard.

as for your excuse... its a valid one.

Author:  Faeryan [ Tue Nov 03, 2015 6:05 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

Problem got solved by starting new char.
Still, I feel that Ungrol could notice if a player is a Necromancer and give a subtle hint about the heart when acquiring the quest.

This way all the Necros could get the heart as it's useful for non-lich Necros as well and getting it on each played Necro it would make it a possibility for players to acquire lichdom later in the game if they so want.

With how the game currently is you'd need spec the Necrosis tree and activate the first skill before going to graveyard to get the heart.
While it's a life saver it's not an entirely must have for a Necro so many players might forgo the thing entirely, even IF they wish to become liches.

Author:  Radon26 [ Tue Nov 03, 2015 6:23 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

necrosis category is unlocked from the start.

go to a city.
put a point.
receive the quest.
take the point out.


yes, you can still take the points out, as long as you are in a village/town/city.

Author:  Faeryan [ Tue Nov 03, 2015 8:47 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Lichdom and You: The Fundamentals of the Art

I know that. Does everyone? How should a first time Necromancer player know these things? Even if he knew why should he have to resort to such menageries?

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