TEK with No Howling?!? – The Trip to F170 of Gods’ Chessboard

Maze: Gods’ Chessboard

Purpose: DP questing, Boss Quest, and experimenting with a few mechanics I haven’t played with before. Specifically Ferocious.

Mainball: Cytus – TEK + Cytus combines to produce a buff of +5 Attack and +50 HP to all summoned creatures every 3rd floor or so, as long as you keep killing mobs. Generally, this is hampered quite a bit by summoning Howling, which is why we’re not summoning Howling. Also, Timestill Cytus is the answer to Bosses for a very long time. No pun intended. If that was even a pun. I can’t tell.

Linkball 1: Three-Eye King – The sweet thing about Skyeye is that, if your Attack is high enough, you can get most or all of your entire Energy spend back by killing mobs with it. So your only real limit on using the Cytus trick is Cytus’ energy, not TEK’s.

Linkball 2: Future Cat – For a few reasons. I wanted the Time Machine, I wanted the piles of spare Statues you get from each Dimension Door, I wanted the ‘enemies don’t block tiles’ from wearing the Future Technology set (so I could get Skyeye efficiency), and I wanted the Timestill-casting items.

 

Magic Title: Planar Prophet – The goal is to build up the largest possible pile of Statues so that I can max out the Book, customize my set of Powers, and then still have Statues left over to execute my late-game plan.

Melee Title: Light Paladin – Having a boatload of HP (and the long-range damage reduction) makes doing deep pretty easy if you have something else — say, a huge supply of high-damage pets — that is doing the killing.

Venture Title: Holy Rune Master – 9 more Timestills (made easy b/c Cytus poops Chain Lightning, the other necessary ingredient for crafting Timestills) (turned into 18 more Timestills because Cytus is Cytus) (plus a big pile of bonus low-level buff spells for survival in the deep floors)? Yes, please!

Dragon Title: Demonized Dragon – For the Spell Resistance Penetration, mostly, though the added +100% Chain Lightning damage was sweet, given Cytus poops Chain Lightnings.

Mechanical Title: Interstellar Defender – Because that’s as far as Cytus can get down that Title chain. 🙂

 

Artifact: Boots of Planar Prophet – More floors!

Potion: Evil God’s Nostrum – Saves a massive pile of Statues if you’re willing to wait until F80 or so to use it.

 

Other Important Items: I happened upon 3 parts of the Dragon Scale set by F70, so I stopped at the next Blast Furnace and threw Knight Statues into it until I got the fourth piece. Also got an Eternal Set just purely by accident while tossing Amber Statues to try to get more God’s Scrolls for the DP quest. Also, of course, the Ring of Inhibition is 100% necessary.

Statue Strategy: I saved all my statues until I had nearly 200 of each on F80-something. Then I drank my Evil God’s Nostrum and immediately maxxed out all my Book abilities, ending up with about 60 of each statue left over (not counting Amber, which I didn’t use at all except to try to get God’s Scrolls). I had set up my Book for spellcasting across my previous runs, and specifically obtained 2 different +Lightning% abilities, 2 different %-to-cast-Lightning-on-attacking abilities, a +Timestill% ability, and an Amber ability that gave me, at level 20, a phenomenal +40% to all spells.

I summoned Ferocious on F99, after filling a floor with other summoned statues. I hadn’t ever summoned Ferocious before, and I assumed that by “consume all other statues,” it would gain the stats of all those statues, which would be magnificent given that all of those statues had like +200 Atk and +2000 HP from all my CyTEKing. It didn’t. Don’t make my mistake! All you need to do is summon 1 of each statue and Ferocious will be as strong as it gets. I’m pretty sure. (Which is still pretty strong, BTW. It survived until F108, which isn’t bad at all.)

 

The Rundown:  I maxxed out Planar Prophet and every other Magic star first (using the Time Machine on F31 to start over), then three-starred Melee up to max Knight of Faith for the extra Power. I got one star each of Fortune Finder, Explorationist, and Rune Master before my first PoE from F59 to F7.

Then I took the other two star of Rune Master for the extra low-level spells, one star of Royal Rune Master, and Holy Rune Master and all three of its Power stars. Around this point, I got a Wish and obtained Dragon Titles. After backfilling Fortune Finder and taking one star each of the Mechanical Titles, i PoEd again from F59 to F4.

Then I filled in the Mechanical Titles and backfilled the Venture Titles before three-starring Heavy Armor Knight. At that point, I saved up enough spare EP to take Light Paladin when I was low on HP and left it alone. With everything else full, I started up the Dragon Titles and three-starred everything step by step to Demonized Dragon. Around F130, I used Light Paladin for HP, but maxxed out Demonized Dragon before maxxing out Light Paladin around F140.  After that, I just purchased every statue I found, ’cause duh.

 

Floor Strategy: Broken into four basic stages.

  • Pre-Future Technology Set: Tap tap tap, reveal an enemy, kill it, keep tapping.
  • W/ Future Tech, Until about F70: As above unless TEK is charged up. Then, instead, reveal everything and kill w/Skyeye. If necessary, cast Bless to empower Skyeye enough to finish everything off at once.  At that point, my Attack was low enough that I had to switch suits.
  • W/Dragon Scale Suit, Until about F110: Back to tap tap kill, but use Skyeye to hurt and get the mild Disrupting Ray effect on any Queens or other extra-big-HP mobs you come across so that you can kill them efficiently.
  • Back to Future Tech, past F110: Summon (floor – 100)/10 Statues, then tap around to reveal one mob, tap other stuff until the Statues kill it, reveal a new mob, etc. Save the Tower for floors with 3+ Ranged units and the Bishop for floors when you’re running low on HP.

 

Boss Strategy: With Cytus and a sh!tload of Timestills, you can basically go without ever getting attacked until you get so deep that the Boss’ “You can’t cast 5th level spells once the boss is below 20% MaxHP” feature kicks in — and even then, you can make it through another 20 or 30 floors with the power of Hex.  I died on F170 not because of lack of Timestill, but because of lack of Hex.

Even then, you can still survive a lot of hits by summoning a Tower and using Stoneskin, as they stack nicely. What finally actually got me, ironically, was the Boss’ randomized special effect, one of which eats a sh!tload of MP per turn. I haven’t died of a lack of MP since I was DP questing in Bloody Fortress, so that was different, which I choose to interpret as fun. 😀

 

All told, this run was damn fun, even if it was a little tedious by the end. I don’t like to go super-generic power team all that often, but God’s Chessboard’s statue-summoning mechanic makes this one so obvious that I had to run with it…and it was well worth it. 🙂

 

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Taking Abyss to F100 Farming Ancient Arena

Maze: Ancient Arena

Purpose: To finish the Honor Quests “Reach Floor 100 with Abyss Roar” and “Fill in Holy Rune Master.” Oh, also, farm the hell out of the Ancient Arena’s audience members.

Main Gumball: Shadow Assassin — We’re going to F100, so I’m pulling out all the cheese stops on this one.

Soul Link 1: Vampire — ALL the cheese stops. With Death Ripples killing most of the foes and Life Drain sucking HP back from the few we do have to attack, we’re going to waltz through the floor mobs all the way down.

Soul Link 2: Mutant no. 5 — So, we need something we can do against the boss, too. Timestill On a Stick sounds like a great idea, and it’ll let us heal up by punching floor-mob faces without counterattacks on the lower floors, too.

Melee Title: Dark Arbiter — Obviously. 40% Death Ripple from Shadow Assassin, 20% Death Ripple from Assassin’s Mask, and 40% Death Ripple from Dark Arbiter means literally every facepunch comes with a Death Ripple. Every. Single. One. That’s bork as furk.

Magic Title: Dark Priest — Because double damage and extra Death Ripple effect is what this build is all about.

Venture Title: Holy Rune Master — Because double damage and extra Implosion effect is a good way to hurt bosses, but Implosions don’t come often enough, so we’ll make our own.

Artifact: Gloves of Dark Arbiter — Because the artifact’s stars give you a second 50% chance to do double damage with Death Ripple (at 2 stars, which is all I have right now). I never actually bothered to sit down and determine whether the two chances stacked (i.e. my Ripples were always doing double damage), or they were independent (and doing quadruple damage 25% of the time and double damage 50% of the time).

Potion: Mixture of Light and Dark — I’ll never understand why Abyssal Rum gives +20% to Fire and Dark and then no other stats, where Mixture of Light and Dark gives you +20% to Light and Dark…and then also +2 Power and +30 MP. Is Light that much weaker than Fire?

Other Gear: I have to admit, I got lucky with gear on this run. By the end, I was wearing almost entirely six-star gear: Istantine, Melee Master’s Gloves, Consul’s Armor, Starmoon Pendant…but the thing that really made it shine was landing the Great Druid’s Cloak from the F60 boss. Without that, I probably would have died somewhere near F85. With it, I cleared those last 15 floors nicely.  My only two low-end bits of gear were Nether Boots — which don’t count, I disenchanted four or five higher-star boots because I wanted that +25% to Death Ripple — and a Ceremony Ring. Yeah, I literally never found a ring except that and about seven Rune Rings.

The Run Down: I ran straight up to Dark Arbiter and maxed out the +Ripple Chance star before I touched any other class. Then it was up to Dark Priest (through Conjurer to keep MP up) and all three +Death Ripple Effect stars in that and then the same from Dark Arbiter. Then I took the two Artifact Stars for Arbiter, then went and backfilled all the lower Magic titles and all the lower Melee titles in that order.

Then it was a straight shot to Holy Rune Master, and maxxed out the damn thing entirely for the XP. Next was a backfill of all the Venture Titles, then my one PoE from F79 to F55. Then I got the rest of Dark Arbiter filled in, and finished off Dark Priest by F83.

I purchased every single Shaman’s Ear I could find, and used them liberally during Arena fights to kill the audience — down to about F65; after that, it was easy to kill the audience by punching the enemy a bunch. For most battles afterward, I actually went ahead and took my Gloves of Dark Arbiter off to lower my Attack so that I could get more Death Ripples off before the enemy died. Got all of 2 gems from killing the audience, but I did manage to pull off the whole Panda-wine Oriental-shrine thing, so that more than made up for it. 🙂

The basic floor strategy was drop-dead simple: reveal as many enemies as possible, punch the one with the lowest Attack, repeat. Arena doesn’t have a lot of complex baddies, so it didn’t need to be anything but that.

The boss strategy was almost as simple: Electrostatic Field, Disrupting Ray, punch face until dead…until F60. Then it became Field, Aurora Barrier, Disrupting Ray, punch face until dead…until F80. Then it was Electrostatic Field, Aurora Barrier, Disrupting Ray, Implosion until dead (s/l once when I really needed the Dark Priest’s crit to go off and it didn’t.) The F90 boss took a Shaman’s Ear before each Implosion and three Holy Rebirths, and of course I didn’t even try to fight the F100 boss. XP accomplished, run over, done deal. 🙂

 

 

 

Experimental Run: Burninating the Countryside

Maze: Dracula’s Castle — Yeah, still here, still looking for random DP quests while I’m playing around.

Purpose: To get the highest percentage bonus to Fire spells I can and see what happens.

Main Gumball: Red Dragon — Because being Red Dragon main gives you +40% to Fire Magic when you take the Hell Crimson Reagent. Yeah, my base Power won’t be so hot, but don’t worry — the heat will come.

Soul Link 1: Hellfire — +75% to Fire magic is basically the core of the build.

Soul Link 2: Vampire Hunter — Yes, I could probably have taken Gumiho here, but I wanted a Venture title, and Dracula’s Castle is half Undead, so progress would have been slow anyway. Also, Vampire Hunter’s Blood Contract helps in maxxing out the Relics quite a bit.

Melee Title: Magic Warrior –> Dragon Warrior –> Hell God of War — because Fire magic, obviously. I didn’t want to take Duke of Destruction, because (and yes, this gets a bit obsessive) the Artifact Stars for Hell God of War give you an item called Hell Dust that casts Armageddon followed by a randomly-targeted Meteor Storm…and gives you a permanent +3% boost to all your Fire magic. ;D

I took 3 levels of Novice Warrior, 3 levels of Magic Apprentice, and then took one level each of Warrior, Magic Warrior, Dragon Warrior, and Hell God of War. Then I took all three of the +HP/+Trigger% stars, and then the one Artifact star that I had available to me. Then I moved on to the Magic titles.

Magic Title: Wizard –> Fire Master –> Lord of Elementals — I debated going Mage of Destruction, but Lord of Elementals plays nice with Fist of the Heavens and Holy Bolt, and I figured that might be useful at some point. I took one star each of Black Mage and Wizard, then all three stars of Fire Master and one star of Lord of Elementals, then all three of the +Power stars of LoE. Then I went back and grabbed all three +Power stars of Hell God of War before moving on to the Venture titles.

Venture Title:  Holy Rune Master — for to turn useless Blinds into useful Meteor Swarms and useless Blades of Ruin into useful Armageddons. I never got that far, though. I got all three stars of Treasure Seeker, one star in Explorationist, and three stars in Rune Master. Then I got sidetracked because I remembered that I had Dragon Titles.

Dragon Title: Medium Dragon — All three stars of Wyvern Bloodline and Primary Dragon Bloodline were next. Then I went back and took the +Attack stars of HGoW, and remembered to take one star of Royal Rune Master…then I died on F88.

Artifact: Gloves of War God of Hell — Because they’re named backwards, and that’s awesome. Oh, and that thing about the Hell Dust above.

Potion: Hell Crimson Reagent — Also as mentioned above. +40% boost to Fire magic is what it’s all about.

Relics: Embrace Protection, Corrosive Bracelet, Mutu’s Belt — No real rhyme or reason here, just some stuff that I thought would help me stay alive to achieve maximum burnination.

Other Gear: I did dink around using the Hunter’s Long Whip for a while, since it was an extra +5% for Meteor Swarm, but in the end the much bigger attack and enemy dodge reduction from the Corrosive Bracelet won out. I did acquire and keep a Belt of Electric Arc and a Fire Lizard’s Bracers.

Floor Strategy: Open up all of the enemies that you can, then punch the face of the one with the lowest attack, waiting for long enough that the summoners can summon their zombies. Let your Meteor Swarms clear as much as possible.

Boss Strategy: Swap in the Belt of the Electric Arc and the Fire Lizard’s Bracers.

  1. Electrostatic Field
  2. Meteor Swarm
  3. Meteor Swarm
  4. Icicle
  5. Electrostatic Field (note that if you cast Field while your old Field is still up, your new Field will be even bigger!)
  6. Disrupting Ray
  7. Meteor Swarm
  8. Timestill
  9. (Start over at turn 1.)

Final Notes: I saved up all my Venom Gland Samples and Armageddons to blast from F81 to F88 without really having to do a lot. On F88 I miscalculated (forgot that Werewolves have a chance to counterattack for double damage) and died and decided I didn’t need 5 Soul Reaper fragments for 3 Gems at the moment.

If I was going to do this again, I’d swap out the Corrosive Bracelet for the Nibelungen Spear; I needed more Power more than I needed the +Attack, and the Hunter’s Long Whip would have been a great way to fill my Hand slot for the entire game. Also, having a stun effect that wasn’t Icicle would have felt like I wasn’t cheating on my desire to burn everything to the ground. ;D

It’s always a little counterintuitive for me to take a Melee-statted Gumball main if I’m trying to do mad Magic damage, but ultimately, the survivability provided by Red Dragon was necessary, and because my main offensive weapon was Hell God of War’s Meteor Swarm (so I could save the spellcasting for the Bosses), it turned out to be the right choice. Burninating the countryside wasn’t just a fun experiment — it turned out to be a pretty sweet power play, too.  Win!