AN IRONSNOB WARRIOR'S TALE - Attika
Recently my gaming partner (RoedeOrm/WildViking) turned me on to a variant style known as Elitist, where the character can only use Unique game items, receives a birthday gift at the game start and every fifth level, and has certain constraints on spells that are allowed (see: Elitists). I had been enjoying playing the character as a nice break from Ironman when it hit me -- why not do BOTH -- an Elitist playing an Ironman game! I decided that a warrior would stand the best chance of making it all the way through (the rogue would run out of bow too soon, and the mage couldnt make it without specific spells he is denied by the rules) and started several games. It wasnt until the fourth game that my SNOB warrior romped through dungeon levels one through six and onward into Hell.
Here was my character
development/ battle plan:
I was using Taonis
IronSnob rules as posted here:
as the basis for the IronSnob attempt. Among other things these rules
limit the qlevel of each birthday gift you may receive to clevel +2 or
lower, adding to the IronSnob challenge. (You can look up Unique item
qlevels at this site:The
plan was to use the DFE of items to make up for lack of Blood Fountains
or Purifying Springs, and the inability
foreseen for the attempt include:
Anyway, that was the plan. Here are some of the actual games played, prior to the winning contest.
Game 1: Retired character after dlevel 4 completed as I had chosen a TFoS as my first birthday gift. (This was before I had figured out the above formula.) Although Im having a blast with this character, I decided that I had wasted the opportunity to get a much better first Birthday gift, the Deadly Hunter. Deleted. Restarted.
Game 2: Ambushed by the Skeleton King at the stairs on level 3. I was a level 7 warrior. He and his melee minions took me apart, surrounding me and damaging me faster than I could drink.
Game 3: Levels 1-4
cleared without a single unique item dropping!
Now on to the winning
session! (Please read on)
Church and Catacombs
Town Purchase: ID
The downside to selecting a Deadly Hunter as the first Bday gift is the fact that the warrior cannot equip it until he turns clvl 5 and gets his Dex up to 40, and of course at that time hell be receiving another birthday gift anyway! But there simply wasnt another qlevel3 or less Unique item that I wanted that badly (I know, I know, everyone talks about the CC and using it versus the Butcher, Leo, and Diablo in the final conflict. Naaaah.) So Ill be boxing naked for my first four lups, it seems.
Church Level 1:
The usual suspects. Drops: book HO. Shrines: Stone.
Church Level 2:
Fiends, Skeleton Captains, Hiddens, Fallen Ones. Drops: book Heal, Bladeskin
= book FB, Butcher = book Heal. Shrines: none. Birthday gift: Wicked Axe!
7 warrior (Pre-Butcher stats)
WAAAAUUUUWWWW! The Butcher is dead after hitting only twice for nine points damage (I hit and stunned him consistantly) Didnt even have to drink! He drops a magic Large Axe -- of course, unuseable by an Elitist -- have to leave it. Character level 7 achieved.
Church Level 3: Burning Dead Captains, Shadow Beasts, Plague Eaters, Devil Kin, Corpse Bows. Drops: Skullfire = Staff of Lightning (60 charges! Unuseable, of course); El Chubacabras = book CB (unuseable again), book HB. Shrines: Secluded and Eldritch! Whoa!
Start out this level with the Wicked Axe and prove to be the match of all my foes. The next lup I put into Dex (now at 55), technically maxxing my Dex prior to Leo -- the next lups will go into Str for increased damage. Why not max the Dex to its actual maximum of 60? Because I have 5 more dungeon levels with shrines to clear, and I may meet up with an Abandoned or Mysterious (which hits Dex more often, Ive been told) Shrine. I dont want to waste them!
The level is about 1/2 done when I come upon a door in the West with a tell-tale glow behind it -- I avoid it and clear out the rest of the dungeon (now about 4/5 complete overall by the looks of the map). When I return and open it, sure enough, its the Skeleton King. Open the door . . . .
Leo attacks like a tiger!
I run like a rabbit!
I lead him all the way to the Northeast corner of the dungeon, set a portal, and dive up to town and then walk back down to level 3. Hes effectively parked in the NE corner of the maze and now I can deal with his minions. Behind Leos door is a slew of archers defended by plague eaters. Strangely, these plague eaters wont leave the archers to attack me on the other side of the door, and by sheer numbers the archers are impossible to take on melee-style. No choice; time to break out the Deadly Hunter and even the odds some. At a loss of one durability I take out nine Corpse Bows from just beyond the doorway, then switch back to the Wicked Axe and charge! Yah!
The plague eaters chew me to bits while the archers pincushion me. El Chubacabras is stuck BEHIND a pack of archers, which is why the plague eaters dont pursue! Argh! I kill four plague eaters(minions) and two Corpse Bows and have to retreat behind the door and use a heal scroll. Then time for round two. Grrrrrr! Charge again!
This time I kill three more Corpse Bows and open a path to El Chub and his remaining minions. They scramble after me as I beat a quick retreat behind the door (too many archers still!). At the doorway (blocking arrows) I make a stand, and take out the rat pack and boss. Take THAT you rat! Then its another heal scroll and on to round three.
Charge! This time,
as Im moving deeper into the room, I take out three Corpse Bows
and activate four Burning Dead Captains. Run away! Run away! Back behind
the door and deal with the captains. Charge again! Now three Devil Kin
show up. Run away! Back to the door to deal with them. Sheesh, this is
gonna be my last Heal Scroll! Better find some more, and soon. Charge
again! Finally I destroy the last remaining Corpse Bows. Whew! No Unique
drops, however, just lots of
Cleared out the remaining rooms of the level, opened all chests, broke all barrels, and then its time for the final contest: a single round sudden-death elimination match.
*****DING! DING! DING!*****
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, WELCOME TO THE MAIN EVENT!
In this corner, sporting a massive two-handed sword with life-stealing capabilities, a twisted evil soul, a distorted and deformed demeanor and mad as a hatter to boot, the pawn of the forces of Darkness, the Black King, the Skeleton King, King Leoric! (Boo! Booooooooo!)
And in this corner weilding nothing but a spiffy Wicked Axe and an upturned nose, an Ironman, an Elitist, an IronSnob warrior, Mr. Attitude, Attica(SNOB)! (Crowd goes wild! Its free beer night.)
8 IronSnob warrior (Pre-Leo)
LETS GET READY TO RUMBLE!
We have at each other. Leo hits hard, consistantly. I also hit hard -- stunning Leo when I do -- but I miss quite frequently. Leo knocks my health down and I drink my first red -- only five others are in my belt! Man this guy is tough! Chop! Whack! Taking serious damage here. Drink my second red. I feel like were in a slapping contest, and worry that I might be on the losing end of this one (remembering when Leo took apart my level 7 warrior in the other game). Yeow! Drink another red. We continue battling, with him doing some serious scoring and me beginning to get REALLY worried when -- KER-BLOOM! -- he blows apart! YAH! The drop is a magical -- but not Unique -- Claymore. Have to leave it. Still, I got the Skeleton King at a cost of only three reds! Waahoo! Still character level 8.
Church Level 4:
Devil Kin, Burning Dead Captains, Corpse Captains, Burning Dead (axes).
Drops: none. Shrines: Sacred. Birthday gift: Ring of Engagement
Finished the Church
achieving clevel 10 and the following stats:
An IronSnob has cleared
the Church! On to the Catacombs!
The Wicked Axe still crushes; return attacks do only one point of damage max. I thought I would be breaking out the Deadly Hunter to take out all the archers, but it is actually much faster and less damaging for the most part to stand to either side of the doorway and let the goats come to me and then axe em! Even Bloodskins minions are taken out via this method; Bloodskin himself is pinned in a corner and chopped to bits. Rushing the skelelton archers is also MUCH faster than bowing them, so Attica remains pure melee for this level. Clevel 12 achieved.
Catacombs level 6: Stalkers, Glooms, Flesh Clan Mace Goats, Overlords. Drops: a unique longstaff from a chest! (did not choose to ID it, probably the Immolator), book H, Bilefroth the Pitmaster = magic scimitar, a barrel drops an ammy = Gold +22 amulet of Thieves! Oh man, soooo close, and what an awesome amulet that would have been! No can use it though. Shrines: Hidden.
Proper use of doorways and Wicked Axe reduce all foes to bloody heaps. Foes still mostly doing only one point of damage per hit. Character level 14 reached.
Catacombs level 7: Mud Runners, Acid Beasts, and Mud Men. Drops: none. Shrines: Purifying Spring! Birthday gift: Scavengers Carapace.
A few notes here -- although a Purifying Spring shows up on this level, Ive not allocated any lup points to magic and havent been able to read a single book, so I cant cast heal either. Now I am thinking, do I want to get a WizardSpike as my next birthday gift and be able to read Heal and then cast heal on myself? Or should I still get the Scavengers Carapace? These foes are beating me up pretty bad -- doing up to FIVE points damage now sometimes! -- and though the idea of having a blood fountain/purifying spring at my disposal to cast unlimited heals on myself via a WizardSpike is appealing, I decide to go for the Scavengers Carapace instead. That way I wont have to drink as often, and wont be as likely to die, Purifying Spring/unlimited heals or no!
The Scavengers Carapace proves to be a wise choice as once again while I am wearing it, opponents do one point of damage max, even Mud Runner charges! The Wicked Axe continues to stun and cleave all comers.
However -- and this
a very disturbing note -- although foes attacks only do ONE point of damage
at most, standing in acid proves to be a life-threatening experience.
When you stand in an acid pool, your life takes a nose-dive like a thermometer
plunged into icewater! I come very VERY close to dying once, opening up
a door to a large room filled with dogs! There is dogspit/acid everywhere,
and its hard to stay calm and keep track of life remaining while
you try to block the door, swing your axe, step out of acid pools, and
keep an eye on your remaining belt potions. (As an aside: I thought that
by standing to the side of the door -- as you do with archer Goats --
Id minimize the
Catacombs Level 8: Unseen, Acid Beasts, Blood Stones. Drops: Ammy from a dog = amulet of Stability! Shrines: Eerie and Mysterious. The Mysterious shrine goes into my Strength! Doh!
for acid pools, the dogs arent nearly as bad as before. The Blood
The amulet stability is an afterthought as no regular foe can stun me anyway.
The level is no contest, but note that I use my last remaining scroll heal on this level. From now on Ill be drinking potions, or trying to get that WizardSpike as the next birthday gift. The next few levels will tell, influencing me one way or the other. But thats it for level eight! Clevel 17 gained.
by an IronSnob! On to the Caves!
Primed for dogs and moving very cautiously, the level proves easy. Melee attackers simply prove no match for a warrior with a Wicked and a Scavs. Can you say, chopped liver? Character level 17 it remains though -- not enough exp earned to lup! Waah!
Caves Level 10: Mudrunners and Storm Riders. Drops: book Heal, chest = ammy = Ivory of Giants (imperfect), Storm Rider = a Unique Club!, and The Flayer = . . . well, youll see. . . .
When I enter the level, I barely step beyond the stairs when I activate a group of Storm Riders. Yeowch! Their lightning, if I stand still in a corner, hurts about as much as dogspit! When I move Im alright, but packs of these beasts are bad news!
And Ive barely cleared the area around the stairs (southeast corner of the map) when suddenly The Flayer (Storm Demon Boss) and his minions show up! Argh, ambush! Its dlevel 10 so I have to stand and fight, both by IronSnob rules and the fact that there are no other stairs that lead to the level. I dash back near the stairs up and into a corner as his minions round it and pace beyond, throwing lightning bolts at me! I have to drink a red before they even engage me!
As The Flayer gets closer, his minions finally engage me. Now I start chopping them down, but there are so many! And the ones in the background just pace and thrown lightning, and I cant move or dodge. My life ball drains like a beer getting chugged by a thirsty college student!
To make matters worse, after I kill one Storm Rider, The Flayer himself steps in to take that fallen foes place! Each of his hits knocks off about 1/5 of my remaining life, and with my low armor class he just doesnt miss! And sometimes he stuns! Gah! Much as Id like to continue to eliminate the minions bothering me -- getting rid of their nasty lightning attacks -- the Boss Storm demons blows are just too powerful. I have to switch my attack to him.
And man does he last a long time! Argh! Were trading shots while his minions continue to claw me and fry me, and I go through the reds in my belt in nothing flat. I think I can feel the skin peeling from my body from all these lightning attacks!
And Im pissed! This is so unfair! An ambush so close to the stairs, with a boss that is so deadly! And no lava bridge, no gate, no narrow corridor, no barrel chute; just a stupid corner that I cant fight my way out of. Grrrrrrr. I am really bummed out -- no belt potions left, looks like this is going be the end -- but Im gonna go down fighting! Bas***ds!
The Flayer explodes in a shower of sparks! Yah! Ive got NO potions left in my belt and five minions left. One that was pacing takes the empty spot to engage me; the other keeps frying me from afar. I kill another one, and open my inventory. Two reds. Im fighting now with my inventory open, getting ready to drink from it.
4 versus 1 now, but the last two guys wont engage. I hack down another melee attacker, but pay the price again in damage in the meantime and have to drink my last second-to-last red.
3 versus 1 and finally one of the far dudes steps up. Im hacking at these two while the third is roasting me alive. My life is diving. Theyre killing me! But I kill another one of them.
2 vs 1 and that last dude STILL WONT ENGAGE ME! I chop down the final adjacent opponent, and with life sub-10 chug down my last red. Dangnabit! That red only adds like 30 to my life, and this was certainly a time I could have used a major heal. As it is I have to step up (getting both fried and hit in the process) to engage the last foe. We trade blows -- and he tosses in the occassional lightning bolt -- and I watch my life dip below 20 before he finally goes down. LORDY!
Fearing more minions might be about, I dont even think twice -- I dash up the adjacent stairs and go to town. There I pick up the five reds left standing by the fountain, the last reds I have (but I havent used the Eldritch shrine yet). Then back to level 10. (Added note: for future reference, probably should have left more scrolls in town and carried every last red/yellow potion I had with me onto the level. Also, would probably be a good idea to check the possible bosses present on each level after you see the regular foes there.)
When I enter, a quick scouting survey shows no foes remaining from The Flayers group. Cursoring for the boss-drop I find a Unique Longstaff! Hmmmmm. I pick it up and see it has charges -- readying it, I see the symbol for the Phasing spell. Ugh, what is this, Gleamsong or something? Lotsa Phasing charges and a minus to all spell levels or something like that? I mule it back up to town to drop it off since my inventory is so full of scrolls (infra, mana shield, town portal) and look it up in a game guide. +25 mana, but I really dont need 25 mana; 76 charges of Phasing --yeah, real useful spell that one!
But wait a minute!
I pick up the staff again -- this staff has only 57 charges total. Huh?
My God, its
Najs Puzzler! That wasnt the Phasing symbol, its the
Teleport symbol! And Najs Puzzler is +20 Magic!! Good Lord! I burn
an ID scroll and sure enough, its the Puzzler. When I ready it (carefully,
it IS -25 to life) my Magic shoots up to 31! Holy smokes, I can read four
books of Heal now! And with the Purifying Spring on dlevel 7, I now have
a limitless number of heal spells I can cast on myself off level (uh,
as long as my life doesnt dip below 25). This is fantastic -- now
I dont have to worry about using a birthday to get the WizardSpike
-- Ive just found even better!
At what a cost it came, however -- dropping me to my last four reds. But then again, Ive got over 30 blues and havent used the Eldritch shrine yet. Ill keep working at it and see if I can get up to 48 blue potions before I use the Eldritch.
Moving slowly and carefully, and using my newly found Puzzler for heals, I clear the rest of the level without incident. Character level 19 achieved.
Caves Level 11: Red Storms and Storm Lords. Drops: book TK. Shrines: none. 20th Birthday gift: Gotterdamerung (sorta/kinda. . . .)
Ouch, these Storm Lords hurt! And the lightning attacks again! I am getting severely drained and mauled each combat -- running off the level to drink from the PS and heal after every major combat. The Storm Lords are doing 2-3 points damage per hit, and they hardly ever miss! The lightning is deadly as always, too.
Near the end of the level when I turn level 20, its a no brainer: got to get my Gott! Unfortunately, its on another character and theres no one I know on at this time, so Attica must carefully clear the rest of the level and leave the game to find someone to hold a game for a birthday present transfer (and actually, I choose to clear dlevel 12 before exiting, just because that way gameplay wont get slowed down. It just takes so long to find someone willing to hold/clear a game sometimes, you chose to continue on heedless of the danger rather than risk having to STOP gaming for an unknown period of time.) Carefully our IronSnob warrior clears the rest of the level. Not much in the way of drops, but still alive and kicking!
In investigating chests on this level a Nova trap gets triggered -- 5 points damage! Whew! I was really worried about that -- now it doesnt seem to be a big deal. Character level 20 attained.
Caves Level 12: Obsidian Lords and Overlords. Drops: Elix Mag from an Obsidian Lord. (Pumps my natural magic all the way to 12! Zowie!). Shrines: none.
Absolutely loved this level -- no ranged attackers, and even the Obsidian charges do only one point of damage! Attica makes mincemeat of these opponents. Unfortunately, there isnt enough experience offered on this level to lup him again. Still, Caves completed by an IronSnob warrior!
20 IronSnob warrior (post-Caves)
Now to the nitty-gritty. Happy Birthday! I get a Gott transferred to my IronSnob and enter Hell.
Hell Level 13: Vortex Lords and Snow Witches. Drops: elix Dex from a witch, elix Mag from a chest, ring from a witch, Book H from a Vortex Lord, Book Golem from a witch, ammy from a chest = obsidian amulet +35 resist all, Witchfire = magic Tower Shield AC 19, Gorefeast = ammy = amulet of Wizardry +25 Magic. Close, but cant use it. Shrines: none.
MAN, is it DARK down
here! The Gott cuts visibility down to about five tiles in any direction!
Sheesh. Attica stumbles around level 13 trying to find walls and instead
bumps into Vortex Lords and Snow Witches. The Vortex Lords do only one
point melee damage, but their inferno casts HURT! Hurt as in dogspit;
hurt as in Lightning! And even though the axe is doing major damage (28-38)
it doesnt seem to interrupt their casting! Each Vortex Lord drains
about 1/4 of Atticas life -- after three opponents he dashes off
level to drink (from the Purifying Spring) and heal hmself.
The witches are a piece of cake -- each Bloodstar does 1 damage. Theyre a bit of a pain to chase down, but cornering and killing them isnt that hard. Even with its slow swing speed, the axe stuns then and kills them. It takes between 3 and five chops, but gets the job done nicely. About one in every ten witches slips away and runs, but with my terrible light radius Attica simply runs a bit the other way -- they pursue, and when he turns around and runs back he practically bumps noses with them! As a matter of fact, Attica gets quite proficient at killing of these witches using a tactic Ive named Death Spiral.
(A pause in the telling of the tale here.)
***** TACTICAL NOTE: NEW(?) TACTIC DETAILED. NAME: DEATH SPIRAL *****
DEATH SPIRAL: this is a hell tactic useful probably only in Normal and Nightmare games, only versus witches, only if your damage stuns witches, and only if your light radius has been decreased by 40% or so. Some minus DFE is helpful too.
Implementation: simply locate a shish-kebob graphics anywhere in a room or corridor. Then go search for and activate a witch. With the minus 40% light radius, she has to be about five tiles away before she sees you and shoots you. You, in the meantime, take off running simply stepping one tile to either side to dodge her ranged attacks. Run back toward the shish-kebob graphic.
As you pass the corpse-on-a-stick graphic, run about three tiles beyond it. The pursuing witch stops five tiles away a shoots. Step one tile away from her and in such a manner as to begin putting the shish-kebob graphic between you and her. She fires again. You step again. Repeat until her shots begins hitting and stopping on the obstruction. Then charge her, continuing to run around the graphic, making her shots continue to detonate uselessly on it. When you engage her, hit, stun and kill her. If she starts to run, immediately run back toward the shish-kebob graphics and stop about three tiles beyond it, and follow the above instructions again.
Ill try to present a visual; this is a long North/South running corridor:
G = shish-kebob graphic
Funny. I spent all this time worried about how damaging the witches were going to be and how a triple witch level would doom this IronSnob attempt, and it turns out that witches are almost the easiest opponents I face! Go figure!
Even Witchfire is easy. Attica activates her and runs, turning a corner and laying in wait. As her boss-glow approaches, he begin swinging the Wicked Axe. As she turns the corner she walks into the axe and is immediately stun-locked. Then its just continue to swing until she expires.
Gorefeast is spooky. You cant imagine how strange it feels to approach a bosss glowspot, only to move to within five tiles before activating him! Gorefeast charges! Attica tosses off a quick Stone Curse and wades into the attack. He gets in about 7 solid swings before the SC wears off and Gorefeast retaliates. Its a slugfest -- 20 hits later the Demon is down and the Scavengers Carapace is down another durability too. The ammy id is a disappointment, but then again, that stability ammy should come in handy versus Diablo himself.
Even after the level is complete I have to make sure by taking OFF the Gott and walking the entire level to make sure nothing -- foe, chest, barrel, or corpse -- was missed. Its just THAT DAMN DARK! Character Level 22 achieved in over 2 hours of gameplay to clear this one level!
Hell Level 14: Black Knights and Snow Witches. Drops: elix Mag from a witch, ring from a chest. Shrines: none.
This was a tedious level -- the knights did one point damage and were a piece of cake. The witches did the same damage but it took some time chasing them down. I used the Death Spiral tactic guite a bit (see above). Several times when Attica foolishly pursued them they led him to a nice large group of witches and knights! A quick retreat by walking the length of an entire screen would lose all but one or two pursuers however. Then it was just a case of slowly retracing ones steps and re-engaging the foes singley. Kinda boring. Character Level 23 attained.
(A side note here. At clevel 23 my Wicked Axe is doing 33-43 damage, enough to stun Diablo every time I hit him! From this point onward, all points from lups go into Vit. Dex is maxxed, and no reason to pump Magic.)
Hell Level 15a: Balrogs and Snow Witches. Drops: Elix Mag from a Witch, Red Vex = Studded Leather, BlackJade = Gothic Shield, Bloodlust = Cloak. Shrines: none.
The witches, as per usual, are easy as far as the damage they do but tough to corner. The Balrogs are another matter, however, as even ONE of their inferno casts costs about 1/4 of Atticas life! We are talking lots of corner-killing (as in, I run around a corner, they pursue and immediately engage and I kill them) and then visits to the Purifying Spring to drink and cast Heal.
I clear the entire level and start in on Lazs Chamber, nailing the casino twins via stunlock. In preparation for taking on Laz I decide to grab a few Stone Curse scrolls I left in town.
Put up a Town Portal.
The game crashes. Data Error 0000:222 etc. whatever boots me out to Windows. Argh! Two hours of gameplay, gone! Only Laz and the Advocates remaining, and its all gone! Waah!
Of course I save my character after each level is completed, so I reload Attica(SNOB) prior to his entering level 15 and enter a new game. (Helpful DSF Channel persons cleared 13 & 14 for me prior to my IronSnobs entrance to 15.) Grrrr. Have to do the level all over again.
Hell Level 15b: Hellspawn and Doom Lords. Drops: Elix. Str from a chest, Elix Mag from a witch, Elix Dex (cant use, maxxed) from a Witch, Elix Vit from a Doom Lord, BloodLust = Small Axe, Red Vex = Gothic Plate, BlackJade = Cape, and Laz = Book Phasing. Shrines: a weapons rack (Longsword).
The prior level 15a took over two hours to clear; this one takes 50 minutes as the Doom Lords swarm to me while the witches must be hunted down, ambushed, or Death Spiralled. Each only does one point damage per successful attack, so I hardly even have to go back to town to drink at all.
What really has me feeling good is the fact that the Advocates guarding Laz werent near as deadly as I feared they would be. Standing at the entrance to the Laz chamber Attica readies the bow and begins firing, listening for hits to begin registering. Then its just an artillery duel, and one that Attica consistantly wins since the Advocates fireballs are doing 2 points damage max! Plus, walking close to them without activating them means that the Deadly Hunter is going hit consistently at short range. Can hardly wait for level 16 and the Advocates there! Character level 24 achieved.
Hell Level 16: the Usual Suspects. Drops: RoE from a Blood Knight! Birthday gift: RoE -- given about 5 minutes prior to killing the Knight that dropped another one! Total of three now! Sir G drops an indestructible magic tower shield. Advos and BKs drop a ring of heavens, ring of stars. Both unusable. Shrines: none.
The Blood Knights
do between 1 and 5 damage when they hit, and since my life tops 140, they
arent that big a deal. The Advocates Fireballs do 1-2 damage
and are a piece of cake. However, I find to my horror that when I stand
adjacent to them to hack at them and they cast their Flash spell, the
Flash is as damaging as Dogspit or Storm Demon Lightning -- hitpoints
take a dive! And since my swing speed is too slow to keep them from teleporting
away, Im spending a lot of time and hit
Sir G is inside the
fourth room along with Diablo himself. When Attica finally coaxes Gorash
And what game would be complete with Mr. Murphy showing up? When I turn clevel 25 I dash back to town and celebrate another birthday and unwrap another Ring of Engagement. Iding it I find it to be -2 DFE -- all right! Back in the dungeon, Im fighting the Blood Knights guarding the third (two-lever) room when --DING! A gold ring drops! Im thinking Constricting Ring, something nice, but as soon as I pick it up, the squared appearance tips me off -- a THIRD RoE! Doh! And this happens about five minutes AFTER I use up my 25th birthday gift! Dagblasted Murphys Law!
Ive cleared all the rooms and areas except Diablos room now. Attica tosses up a town portal inside and at the south end of the two-lever room, and throws up a Mana Shield. Then he walks back to the fourth room and uses an infra scroll to scope out Diablo and the Advocates surrounding him. Checking his belt (full), Attica runs in and runs out, the Demon Lord and a flurry of fireballs in hot (and I do mean HOT) pursuit! With some fancy footwork he makes it to the TP without having to drink a single potion (lost the MS though), and dives up it to town.
There he packs and uses the Eldritch Shrine (and 37 small blues become 37 small yellows; five large blues become 5 large yellows). I leave the reds (8 total) as they are. Since I still have 7 ID scrolls, I ID the longstaff (The Immolator, as expected) and the club (Gnarled Root). Stock up on potions. Belt up. Drink from the Purifying Spring. No need to repair at this time. Leave the Immolator. Leave all golem and SC scrolls to make room for potions.
25 IronSnob Warrior (Pre-Diablo)
Walked back down to level 15 and threw up another Town Portal. Cleared out the remaining minions in room 4 using the Deadly Hunter to great effect. Interestingly, with the reduced light radius of the Gott, I face the Advocates only one at a time. In a ranged attack battle, with their fireballs doing only one to two damage apiece, the result is a foregone conclusion.
Walked toward the third room. Burnt an Infravision scroll and spotted Diablo inside. Picked a secondary fight spot-- an outside corner-- and dropped nine small yellows there. Walked to my primary fight spot and checked belt: 5 small reds and 3 large yellows. Cast Mana Shield. Drank a big yellow from the backpack. Flexed fingers, took a deep breath and then walked around the corner to peek at Diablo and activate him.
In dashing back to the primary fight spot (southeast outside corner of the third room) Diablos apocalypse brings down Atticas mana shield in two hits. Att stops in the corner and waits for Diablo, who is hot on his heels -- I dont swing until Diablo engages, as I DONT want to knock him back and suffer apoc blasts from a distance. I want this to be a bloody, hand-to-hand battle as soon as possible.
Diablo obliges, smashing into the warrior. The battle is on! We both tear into each other, and each side can stun the other! Attica is chopping away; Diablo in turn seems to prefer clawing him in this battle. Each hit seems to remove about 1/6 to 1/5 Atticas life, so after a few seconds of meleeing, its time to drink the first red.
More fighting, neither side giving an inch. It would appear that Attica can interrupt Diablos apocalypse attack animation, so practically all damage is coming from the Demons claws. Attica is doing some serious scoring on Diablo whenever he tries to cast apocalypse, swinging and stunning. As soon as he misses, though, the Demon Lord swings back and stuns, returning the favor! Drink the second red.
Neither party is tiring, and the fight remains fast and furious. Both parties bleeding now. Everyone is scoring hits big time. Drink the third red.
Atticas axe connects consistantly with Diablo, who in turn takes advantage of each of the warriors misses and connects in return just as consistantly. Now Im beginning to think Im really glad I found that silly amulet of stability, as Diablo is stunning quite a bit. Diablos stun recovery seems to beat Atticas, but the number of times Attica stuns BigD seems to be greater than Diablos return attacks. A lot of Diablos attacks just dont seem to stun, and ATtica swings right through the damage. Drink the fourth red though.
Im getting a tad worried now -- half my belt gone and Im not connecting and stunning Diablo nearly as often as Id hoped I would, and his attacks are much more damaging than I envisioned theyd be. With belt potions disappearing fast Im thinking that I may be opening my inventory soon and do a Slayer number as I did on dlevel 10, when . . . .
The blood-spewing animation scene shows up! Yaaaaah! Got him! Diablo defeated by an axe-wielding IronSnob in Normal Difficulty! Hoorah! Total fight time: about 30 seconds. Nice battle.
Epilogue: Checked my Scavengers Carapace, its now at 71/80 while the Gott is 56/60. That was a lot of stunning and durability lost in one battle!
Overview: This game was a blast! Boxing naked to clevel 5 was actually quite challenging. The Wicked Axe proved to be a viable weapon to use versus both the Butcher and King Leoric. The Leo battle was quite evenly matched for a while there. Things got dicey again on dlevel 7 just before the Scavengers Carapace was received as a birthday gift. The battle with The Flayer on level 10 was downright scarey! I thought I was a goner there! This battle was, without question, the hardest, most hectic, most deadly fight of the game. Then that drop (the Puzzler) really turned out to be a terrific one! The conflict was again getting pretty bloody and frantic by the time you reach clevel 20 and get the Gott. Then you romp again, albeit very slowly since your light radius is restricts vision so much. With the Gott/Scav/Wicked combo, only bosses are serious threats to your life the rest of the game. Diablo proves worrisome but not all that difficult.
Whew! Thats it, the telling of the IronSnob tale, the victory of an Elitist Ironman warrior over the forces of darkness and the Demon Lord himself.
Thank you for reading, and hope you enjoyed it.
Posted Aug 11, 2002