New Player Tips
Building a Character
- Regardless of character try one with at least 11 in agi/wis and 14 in int (yes even a character whos mostly doing damage with slashing/piercing/blunt), the extra card draw and AP can be paramount to surviving early levels. Memories of past life background will give you another +1 card draw.
- I would go for a class/race combo with a minimum deck size no bigger then 24 while still new. A class/race with decent starting AP can also be helpful for early game. Starting out you should have (around) 11AP and 5 hand size.
- Starting kits are important. Try to go for one that has a CC component (like fossil talisman) or a way to restore AP (like the manacube thing). If your class/race doesn’t have that option go for a weapon (or two) so you at least will be drawing cheap damage cards every turn.
Optional – Combat is an amazing starter skill (yes even spell casters). It has a huge variety of equipment it gives you access to as well as solid defense cards (and gives you access to adrenaline surge a great early game option to restore your AP). One of the cheapest perks in the game also increases stuns caused by combat by +1. And a fair number of combat equipment items inflict stun, ensuring you will draw CC cards every single turn.
Before You Start Your First Battle
- Equip your starting kit! Cut your deck down to minimum size. Cards that cost 3-4+ are probably going to be too expensive to be worth playing early on so I would cut those first.
- Check out the shop! If your gamemode allows it, hitting up the shop right away can be a good idea. You are looking for low/no expertise equipment items. Something like enforcers cloak (heal every turn) is a great early game pickup. You may also want to check out consumables. Items to heal, or some of the no expertise wands can be really helpful (wand of despair for freeze, wand of woodland ally for an early game ally/bonus damage source)
- Check the leyline of the area you are about to do! Trying to go into an area where a majority your cards are starting out at minus damage is not going to be a good time. Likewise try to chase areas where you will do bonus damage.
- Check what enemies you are going to fight. Again… This is something that comes with experience. But if you have a bleed focused deck and are going to be going to a graveyard (with lots of skeletons who are very resistant to bleed) its not going to be a good time.
So you just entered a battle and are looking down the barrel of three enemies who are all doing different things. Well what do you do and who do you attack?
- Figure out the targets you are prioritizing first. Generally the ones who are going to be damaging you but early game maladies can be run enders (log trap/lamenet etc). You can alt+left click on an enemy intent to see more in detail what it does.
- Enemies change intents as they take damage. You won’t always have enough damage to kill all the enemies right away. So your best bet is to do damage and minimize damage. An enemy may decide to try to heal or shield themselves after taking so much damage. Once these intents change to a non-threatening one, focus on the enemies who are still attacking you! Try not to over commit resources to just one target. Keep in mind every enemy is different. Animals for example get mad when they take damage and do MORE damage, so sometimes the best way to minimize damage from animals is to leave them alone until you can kill them.
- You can drag enemies around to change the order they will act in. This is a paramount mechanic of the game. If an enemy is flanking (reduces your defense) and another enemy is attacking, the one attacking should be in front of the one flanking. Just for me personally I usually drag enemies in order of which are the scariest. So if I land a stun on an enemy…He’s not a threat to me this turn so I throw him into the back of the pile.
- Pay attention to the damage each of them are doing. Not all enemies are created equal some hit much harder then others. These targets should be priority. The only caveat to this rule is make sure to check how much damage your attack will do before you use it! (you can pick up a card and hover over an enemy to see the estimated damage). You might be missing that the enemy is super resistant to your attack and its at a large negative! In that case you are better off focusing on a couple of the smaller guys whos intents you actually have a fair chance of changing.
- Deciding what you are keeping/discarding can be important as well. While some modes automatically discard your hand down to a certain size, the cards you keep can be key to your next turn. In addition if your current battle is about to be over, you may want to “stack your hand” for the upcoming battle. Make sure you go into it with one of your stronger cards/CC options. In addition you have the ability to shuffle your deck once a turn. If you have already drawn all your best cards but are only halfway through your deck… You may want to shuffle it.
- Dont forget consumables! I hope you brought along some items to restore AP and or inflict CC.
- Allies can be important regardless of build. Many enemies use an intent called single combat where they attack your ally. If you don’t have an ally they will flank you (reduce defense) then attack. At the very least having SOMETHING on the board can help absorb a couple single combats (and it also damages the enemy back!). Wand of woodland ally is a great pickup that any character early will benefit from.
Finally… If you are trying to play the game as a “roguelike” I would recommend you dont until you are more experienced! If you die to a fight reload and see if you can play it better. When I was new I kept dying at level 2-5 and making a new character. I figured I play a lot of strategy/card games, I’m good at other games so roguelike MUST be the way to play. But I was wrong, reloading and figuring out how to play fights I died to was very important to me learning and improving as a player. I would STRONGLY recommend you get at least 1-2 games under your belt WITH reloading just so you can build a better understanding overall of how the game and its complex mechanics work.
In addition if you are playing it as a roguelike and still have enemies with hidden intents you are basically just rolling the dice. A HUGE part of this game is knowing what the enemy will be doing and reacting accordingly to it. Having 4 enemies who all say “unknown intent” and trying to play as a roguelike is probably just going to lead to frustration. There is a console command to unlock all intents which I would also recommend if you are getting frustrated (I used it, no regrets.).
Honestly I wouldn’t even recommend playing as a roguelike period unless you already had a fair number of games under your belt and really wanted an extra self challenge. Personally I will play it now that I have hundreds of hours into the game but I am bringing my A game with builds/expertise I already have a good understanding of and chasing areas/quests I know before even entering my deck is good against.
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