How to win as an adventurer!!!

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Update May 2017

Please note that in the latest version of KeeperRL, adventure mode has moved from a single map battle to a campaign battle. This has changed the game-play somewhat. My game-plan may look something like this (these days):

  • Level 5 - Kit up on all the friendly tribes
  • Level 5 - Level 6 - Take out all bandits - get a bow and arrow
  • Level 6 - Level 8 - Shoot all ogres and orcs. Take out zombies.
  • Level 8 - Level 9 - Shoot all lizard men
  • Level 9 - Level 10 - Shoot Cyclops
  • Level 10 - Level 12 - Wipe out mini tribes of dwarves
  • Level 12 - Level 14 - Take out minor villains
  • Level 14 - Level 15 - Major villain 1
  • Level 15 - Level 16 - Major villain 2
  • Level 16 - Level 17 - Major villain 3
  • Level 18 - Level 20 - Take out keeper dungeon.

--What follows mostly applies to the latest version, but needs a bit of editing to make it accurate (at the time of writing).

The basics

  • Keeperrl adventurer mode RPG is hardcore and old style.
  • If you die, your save file is deleted. Very unforgiving. One wrong move and it is over very quickly.
  • Realisticly, you won't beat a map first time you play it (unless you are an expert).
  • All the maps you face were generated by another player's dungeon game.
  • You are not guided through a story. The storyline is made by you.
  • Nobody has checked to see if the maps are "fair". You will need to use your own initiative.
  • If you beat a map that has no wins against it, you are probably the first human in the world to ever do so. You are on your own.
  • Some of the maps seem virtually unwinnable, but time and again people have found they can still be cracked.
  • Unlike most modern RPGs, there is nothing forcing you to level up before facing the final boss.
  • If you try and storm the dungeon at level 3 wielding a knife you will die. Don't be silly! Don't complain! The game will let you do it though.

The game set up

  • Map selection is the single most important choice of the game.
  • Choose a map that someone else has already beaten for a better chance. Look at the stats.
  • If the map is lagging or impossible, choose another. (Some maps stop lagging if you kill all the imps on it).
  • The second most important choice is the handicap
  • If you like a decent chance, go with maximum handicap
  • Scout out the map you wish to play to get a feel for it.

Eliminating all the imps

Before you do anything else, kill all the keepers imp's so he cant arm any more traps or improve his armory any further.

  • Tempt them out of the dungeon by knocking down their front door - shoot them when the come out to investigate! (Very occasionally there are no bows and arrows. Throw stuff instead).
  • Armed traps - Try to get a feel for these during a quick scout at the beginning, before committing to the map.
  • With all the imps dead, there is a limit to the number of traps you will face in the dungeon.

Staying alive and exploring the map

  • Rest your cursor on all enemies to judge their stats and level before attacking.
  • If your enemy has higher defense and attack stats than you, run away.
  • Alternatively find somewhere to hide and use the h key to escape.
  • If you think the enemy has a ranged attack, avoid lines of sight where it can shoot you or potion you
  • Slower enemies without a ranged attack are just asking to be shot by you.

Night beasts

  • Vultures: Tiny amount of XP and score. Possible to level you up from level 3 to 4.
  • Kill the keeper's night animals if you need xp. Right outside the dungeon entrance is the prime spot to do this.
  • Once you have killed any of the keeper's army, reinforcements will come in from off the map.
  • Intercept reinforcements before they enter the dungeon and you will have a supply of monsters to level up on.
  • Werewolves are the worst of the keeper's night explorers. Be careful if you meet one.
  • The price you pay for this is that eventually, the keeper will be left with no night animals and a full population.

Minor dungeons and tribes

  • Orc and harpy tribes provide some low level XP if required.
  • Neutral and hostile tribes provide bonus score, XP and loot. Shoot arrows at them to force into combat. Care needed. If you cant find a bow you can throw things at them.
  • If you don't need XP or loot then keep the tribes alive for now. You may need them later.
  • Orcs when you are high level: Herd them into the keeper's traps during daylight hours to get past the traps.
  • Gnomes: Shoot some with arrows to declare war. Loot for potions. Herd into traps if desperate.
  • Dark elves: Shoot to declare war. Loot.
  • Dark elf lord: Look out for an artifact weapon like a silver sword to slay undead!
  • Dwarves: Some survivors of the dwarven tribe may exist in lower dungeons but will be hostile. Use for XP/Score.
  • Vampire Lord (in his coffin), Minotaur, etc: XP. Loot. Only if you can get the advantage in combat.
  • Cyclops, driads, other minor tribes and creatures. XP. Loot.
  • Visit the extinct tribes to see if the keeper has left any loot behind.

Equipping yourself

Equipment is different on each keeper map. The contents of the chests are a random surprise each new game. Everything else stays the same until you change map.

  • Do not overload yourself. Watch out for your speed going down! Speed below 100 is bad.
  • Consider using leather instead of metal armour for speed.
  • Important potions: invisibility (best), speed, blindness, sleep, slowness, healing, poison
  • Important scrolls: teleport (best), armour enchantment, weapon enchantment, flies, deception, fire sphere
  • Decent mushrooms: Strength, dexterity
  • Weapons: silver sword artifact (best), or high stat artifact, use light weapons at low level, bow, arrows
  • Armour: telepathy helm (best), speed boots, dex gloves, high stat armour, low weight armour for speed bonus.
  • Jewelry: 1 fire ring, 1 poison ring, healing or defense amulet

Collecting Magic

  • Potions, scrolls and mushrooms are the only way adventurers can use magic. Get as many usable ones as possible.
  • They are light to carry.
  • Blindness, sleep, slowness and poison are better used when dex/ranged accuracy is higher, since they are thrown.
  • Armour enchantment - Choose a good piece of armour and remove the rest to target the enchantment at the remaining worn armour.
  • Try to keep a teleport spell for emergencies.
  • Try to get an invisibility potion to take out the keeper at the end.
  • If you want to loot potions and scrolls from monsters then you must kill them quickly, before the monster users those items itself.

Accessing the enemy dungeon safely

  • It is not normally time to take on the enemy army or keeper yet.
  • Invisible opponents: Usually, you have 3 options - go invisible yourself, run, or die!
  • Running is the best option because invisibility spells have a cool-down. If you have too much heavy kit you just can't run.
  • Get the enemy to use all his invisibility potions up during the mid-game.
  • Web trap: You can still fight from within the web. Teleport if you are webbed and attacked by stronger enemies.
  • Poison trap: Works in your favor if you have a poison resistance ring
  • Surprise, alarm and panic traps: Trigger the trap and run away again. Come back later.
  • Undead: They are tough. You really need the silver sword artifact, or else behead/dismember them
  • Unarmed traps: If you discover the enemy's workshop you may find unarmed traps. Take the boulder and web ones for later.
  • Loot: Potions, scrolls, mushrooms especially. Find the labs and storage rooms and empty them of all the useful items. Check corpses for these items after killing enemies.
  • Some enemies have artifact weapons that stun you. Very dangerous. Try and blind or shoot them.

Line of sight

  • Potion throwing enemies and archers: Shoot them or avoid direct lines of sight or hit them with slow, sleep, blindness or poison
  • Stun ray - This is one of the most powerful spells the keeper has and other monsters sometimes have it as well. You walk onto a square in the line of sight of an enemy and the screen spams as you have your arms and legs cut off while you watch. Try to get the keeper's weak minions in front of you as a human shield or avoid line-of-sight squares until you are fighting hand to hand in the late game.
  • Ideally get a level 4 zombie in front of you in a passageway and put him to sleep while behind him the frustrated keeper and all his army are wasting potions and triggering spell cool-downs.

Facing boulder/web combos

If there is a boulder trap with a web trap in front and you get webbed, you must use any teleport spell immediately. Without that you will die. If you already know that trap is on the map, then herd neutral or hostile tribes into it. They will die not you. Alternatively, trigger the trap using deception, flies or fire sphere scrolls.

  • Some maps force you to play "Indiana Jones" with the traps.
  • Smashing a sleeping potion over a boulder trap will send the trap to sleep, much as if it were a living thing.
  • Lone boulder trap: Often you are able to trigger the trap and then step aside. If not, treat it the same way as a boulder web combo and trigger the trap without stepping near it.

Using room based strategies

  • Some rooms have things to hide behind. Cages, beds etc. You can hide and sneak attack or just choose enemies to pick off that walk past.
  • Pigsty - This is a great place to visit. Kill the enemy when he gets hungry and comes for lunch - one by one.
  • Workshops - Once the imps are dead, these are a great place for goblins to make you traps. The keeper can't arm them.
  • Laboratories - Leave little goblins happily making potions. You can usually acquire them yourself later
  • Dormitories - Catch monsters in their sleep. When you have cleared the dormitory, pick off monsters one by one as they enter for a nap. Finally, burn down the dormitory so the keeper can't recruit orc shaman healers.
  • Forges - There is almost always a surplus of weapons and armour. Ignore them. Kill inhabitants. Pick off workers as they enter.
  • Jewellers - Amulets and rings. Not useful unless you missed these from the start.
  • Ritual rooms - These undead are often pretty useless to the keeper. Consider leaving the ghosts alone to do their rituals.
  • Beast lairs - Often no need to kill the weak monsters in here. Werewolves and legendary beasts can cause a problem and are worth killing if you can.
  • Graveyards - Zombies and vampires tend to train and you don't want that. Kill them when they go to their grave to sleep. A silver sword is very useful to do this.
  • Weaken down the army as much as possible before trying to sort out the training room or library.
  • You can normally hide anywhere in a library or training room if it is empty. Let the clock pass a while and see what enemies are walking through.
  • Libraries: Can be burnt to the ground with fire sphere. Vampires and orc shaman here. Vampires are worse. Is sometimes possible to burn the keeper alive if he doesn't resist fire.
  • If the keeper is living in the library avoid taking him on surrounded by shaman and vampires.
  • Training rooms - Often where you find the keeper. Can be full of the worst armed units in the game
  • Flaming swords are good at burning rooms down during combat, once you have fire resistance.

Defeating the enemy army

  • Orc shaman: Take them out ASAP because they go invisible and also heal other monsters.
  • Always consider your enemy before attacking. Rest your cursor on an enemy to judge their stats and level.
  • Pick them off one at a time.
  • Fight enemies in corridors in preference to rooms. With multiple enemies, you can fight one at a time.
  • Try to fix it so that you get the first hit.
  • Compare their stats to your own.
  • To be reasonably safe you need attack and defense about 10 points higher than your opponent.
  • Wounded opponents however, are normally safe to fight.
  • Also blind and sleeping opponents are safer. When you are invisible, most enemies of a similar level are fairly safe to kill.
  • Realise when you are about to die and retreat. Use a speed potion if you need to.
  • Take being wounded VERY seriously. Never just keep on fighting.
  • Retreat and use a first aid kit. If you are chased, go for a speedy retreat and a heal potion.
  • Don't heal yourself in battle, even with a heal potion.

Using the enemy's population limit against him

  • Statues and thrones - It is sometimes possible to destroy these. It will decrease his army size. Try scroll of power, force bolt or fire sphere.
  • Kill off the high level monsters and deliberately clog him up with useless ravens etc.

Making war using magic

  • The magic available is different on each map. This forces you to improvise.
  • Going invisble is your single best move. Try to keep one in reserve. Speed is also great.
  • Blinding enemies with potions seems to be like going invisible but the potion has to hit your target (dex needed).
  • If you can't afford to go invisible, fast or blind them...Put them to sleep, slow them down or poison them (these

are weaker potions). Again, dexterity is needed.

  • Scrolls: teleport (You need this whenever you are about to die). Other scrolls may come in handy.
  • Enchant up your best weapon and armours. When the traps have now been dealt with, use the extra deception, flies and

fire sphere. Fire sphere is also useful in burning down some rooms.

  • Use Strength and dexterity mushrooms when you most need a buff.
  • Don't let yourself die when you still have loads of magic options available to use.

Planting traps

  • Use the keeper's spare traps against him. Pick up the unarmed traps and click apply.
  • Boulders and web traps are worth arming against the enemy. Try and put them somewhere that you expect the keeper or high level minions to go. Web/boulder combo works against your enemy as well as against you.
  • Don't plant a trap while in combat. It will most likely go off straight away and kill you!

Winning the game

  • Killing the end boss is always dangerous. Don't come this far and just rush it.
  • Use up your spare traps and magic to weaken down the keeper's army.
  • Send vollies of arrows into the keepers location (often a training room or library)
  • Don't get too close to the keeper in his line of sight, or he may use stun ray on you. (This is normally game over)
  • You can sometimes execute the tyrant keeper in a ranged attack shootout, although he may still have some army left and he will also heal himself.
  • When you turn up, the first thing he normally does is to go invisible for about 15 turns. This will wear off and has a large cool-down, so just retreat and come back in a few turns. Make sure you are wearing your telepathy helm if you have one.
  • Trap him if you can. Choose your moment and take your chance. Go invisible if at all possible. Speed yourself. Buff strength and dex. Go kill him to win the game.