Between you and the dragon’s lair, there is the dungeon.
The CavernsThe caverns are infested by simple, but nasty, critters that will rush you with their melee attacks. On the other side of the caverns is a passage down to the mines.
The MinesThe mines are overrun by humanoid-like creatures. In addition to melee monsters, you will also find adversaries that fire arrows and cast spells. On the other side of the mines are passages down to the dragon lair and to the ruins.
The RuinsThe ruins are haunted by undead creatures, which typically have special properties, so be sure to read about the foul things you encounter. You will find powerful weapons in the ruins. Unfortunately, the most powerful ones were cursed long ago by the ancient and evil necromancer, X'lea the Parsimonious. Fortunately mana is on your side, and when you find a cursed weapon, your mana will automatically be used to remove the curse. (+9 items will use up 3 mana.)
TunnelsIn addition to the normal passages down, there is a tunnel that leads from the caverns to the mines, and one that leads from the mines to the ruins. The entrances to these tunnels are in different locations each game. Tunnels are different than other regions for three reasons: 1. They are one-way, so there’s no going back. 2. You slide into a room, notifying the monsters of your presence (unlike other rooms where you can sneak in), and 3. They are filled with slimes (too repulsive to discuss right now).
The Dragon LairThe dragon’s lair is your ultimate destination. Defeat the dragon (or dragons) to win the game and save the village.
When it's your turn, you can first use up to one of each of the three scroll types: Haste, Leap, and Flame. You then take one of the following actions:
|Move||Move to an adjacent, empty floor tile.|
|Loot Chest or Rack||Take the sword, shield, or bow from an adjacent weapon chest or rack. (You'll only keep it if it's better than what you already have.)|
|Sword Attack||Attack an adjacent monster with your sword.|
|Bow Attack||Use your bow to attack a monster that is either 2 or 3 tiles away. If the monster is 3 tiles away, there is -3 distance penalty.|
|Guard||Take no immediate action. If you choose "Guard" you add +2 to your defense for the duration of the next round. You also get a free counterattack against any adjacent melee monster that misses you.|
When first entering a room, you are unseen by the monsters and can keep taking action until you are spotted. The chance of being spotted depends on your action, as shown in the following table.
CHANCE OF BEING SPOTTED
|Move ("Sneak") or Loot Chest or Rack ("Pilfer")||There is a 90% chance of remaining unseen, minus 10% for each monster adjacent to you at the end of your turn.|
|Attack ("Surprise Attack")||You will be spotted automatically, but you gain +3 to your attack for surprise.|
|Guard||You will be spotted automatically.|
When you're spotted, the monsters will take their turn, and combat will proceed in a round-robin fashion.
NOTE: When using a scroll you will be spotted automatically, regardless of your subsequent action.
Your character can use the following items:
|Sword||You can attack an adjacent monster with your sword, adding your sword’s bonus to your attack roll. If you attack with your sword while unseen, you receive an additional +3 surprise bonus.|
|Shield||Whenever you are attacked, your shield’s bonus is added to your defense roll. Exception: If your last action was to use your bow, you gain no shield bonus.|
|Bow||You can use your bow to attack a monster that is 2 or 3 tiles away, adding your bow's bonus to your attack roll. If the monster is 3 away, there is a distance penalty of -3. You cannot use your bow against monsters that are adjacent to you or are 4 away. After using your bow, you do not get a shield bonus until your next action.|
|Health Potion||Each time you are hit, you automatically use a health potion to stay alive. When you run out of health potions, you must flee the dungeon. You can find more health potions in the dungeons. (If you have fewer than 3 health potions, you will gain a +2 adrenaline bonus to your sword attacks.)|
|Haste Scroll||Use a haste scroll to immediately take an extra action. Hasted sword attacks (and dwarf charges) gain a +1 bonus.|
|Leap Scroll||Use a leap scroll to move to an unoccupied tile up to 2 spaces away.|
|Flame Scroll||Use a flame scroll to block up to 3 adjacent tiles with flame. A 1-tile flame will last 5 rounds. A 2-tile flame will last 4 rounds. And a 3-tile flame will last 3 rounds. A tile with a pit or monster cannot be flamed. (Exception: you can flame a tile that has a floating monster on it, like a gas spore or ghost. Gas spores will explode and ghosts will vanish.)|
Scrolls and health potions are found on the floor and are picked up by moving over them. The number of scrolls or amount of health will not be known until they are picked up.
Weapons are found in chests or on racks. If you are adjacent to a chest or rack, you can obtain its contents by taking a turn to loot it. A standard weapon chest/rack has an equal chance of containing a sword, shield, or bow, however its in a chest you won't know what it is until you open it. The bonus of the weapon is random, but the bonuses increase on lower dungeon levels. The most powerful weapons in the Ruins have been cursed and require mana to loot.
NOTE: You can hold an unlimited number of scrolls and health potions. You can only have one sword, shield, and bow at a time. Whenever you find a better one of these items, the new item automatically replaces and upgrades your older item.
It's hit or miss
The attacker rolls a random # from 1-10 and adds its attack modifiers. Then the defender rolls 1-10 and adds its defense modifiers. If the attack total is as high or higher than the defense total, the attack is a hit. Otherwise, it's a miss. A hit removes one health from the target.
Your attack modifiers consist of the bonus from your sword or bow, plus any extra modifiers such as a surprise bonus or a distance penalty. Your defense modifiers consist of shield bonus (unless your last action was a bow attack), plus any extra modifiers such as a bonus for guarding. A monster's attack/defense modifiers are simply their attack/defense stats, but in some cases these stat can change - if the monster has been enlarged, for instance.
- You do a surprise attack with your +4 sword against a swamp troll (Attack: 1; Defense: 3). You roll 7 and the swamp troll rolls 8. Your roll of 7, plus 4 from your sword bonus, is 11. The swamp troll's roll of 8 plus 3 from its Defense stat is also 11. Because your attack total is as high as the marsh troll's defense total, it's a hit.
- A Goblin Champion (Attack: 1; Defense: 1) attacks you, rolling a 4, for an attack total of 5. You roll a 4 and have a +3 shield, so your defense total is 7. Because Goblin Champion's attack total is below your defense total, it's a miss.
- After you shoot your bow at a Lizardman Warlock, a Lizardman Hulk (Attack: 2; Defense 1) attacks you. It rolls a 2, which adding its attack stat of 2 makes for an attack total of 4. You roll a 3, but you do not get a shield bonus because your last action was to fire your bow. Because the attack total of 4 is higher than your defense total of 3, the Lizardman Hulk hits you.
- SWORD/SHIELD/BOW BONUS - When attacking with your sword or bow, the bonus of the weapon you're using is added to your attack roll. When you are attacked, the bonus of your shield is added to your defense roll (unless you're the elf).
- SURPRISE - Your attack roll is at +3 if you attack before the monsters have spotted you.
- LONG DISTANCE - Your bow attack roll is at -3 if you attack from 3 tiles away (unless you're the elf).
- GUARD - Your defense rolls are at +2 when gaurding.
- FOCUS - You gain a +1 attack bonus (cumulative) for each consecutive attack against the same monster. Taking any other action, including scroll use, will break your focus.
- ADRENALINE - Your sword attacks get a +2 bonus if you have fewer than three health potions.
- SPECIAL MONSTERS - Some monsters have special properties that involve attack modifiers. See the Special Monsters section for details.
There are three types of heroes: the human, the dwarf, and the elf.
- When playing the human, you use the default game rules.
- You do not use the bow.
- You gain a +2 bonus on counter-attacks.
- You can charge a monster that is two away if there is an empty space between you and the monster. A charge attack uses your sword or shield bonus, whichever is higher.
- You do not use the shield and thus gain no shield bonuses.
- For your move, you can leap to any unoccupied tile within 2 spaces.
- You have a 30% chance of dodging attacks that would otherwise hit. (60% if Guarding)
- When guarding, you counter-attack ranged attacks with your bow (no sword counter-attacks).
- You do not suffer the -3 distance penalty when using the bow against targets that are 3 spaces away.
- You are twice as likely to attract cavern crawlers, and their only goal is to eat you.
Once a hero has been unlocked, you can choose that hero before beginning the game. During the game, you can change heroes by reaching a portal. Each portal can be used once. (Portals must be unlocked as well.)
A list of all monsters by name is found here.
Melee monsters can attack from 1 space away. If a melee monster is adjacent to you, it will attack. If it is not adjacent to you, it will advance along the shortest, unblocked path toward you.
[If there is no unblocked path, the monster will advance along the path it would take if all non-adjacent monsters were ignored. If ignoring non-adjacent monsters does not result in a path to you, the monster will wait and do nothing that turn. If there are multiple path options that are equidistant to you, the monster will eliminate any option that requires backtracking and, if still more than one choice remains, choose randomly which path to take.]
Missile monsters can attack from 2 away, or 3 way with an attack penalty. If a missile monster is:
- adjacent to you: it will withdraw to a space that is 2 tiles away. If it has no way to do that, it is “cornered” and can take no action.
- 2 tiles away: it will attack.
- 3 tiles away: it will move towards a space that is two 2 away. If there is no path, it will attack with a -3 attack penalty.
- 4 tiles away: it will move towards a space that is 2 tiles away, if it can.
Missile monsters take their turn before melee monsters.
Spellcasters have unlimited range, but it takes a turn for them to prepare a spell.
If the spellcasting monster does not have a spell prepared and can increase the distance from you with one move, it will do so (randomly choosing if there is more than one choice). If the spellcaster does not have a spell prepared and cannot increase the distance with one move, it will prepare a spell for use during the next turn. The results of spell preparation are:
- 10% of failure - no spell gets prepared
- 30% of a summon spell preparation
- 30% of an enlarge spell preparation
- 30% of a fireball spell preparation
If the spellcaster has a spell prepared, it will cast it. After casting, the spellcaster will no longer have a spell prepared.
The spell effects are as follows:
|Enlarge||A random monster in the room gets enlarged, thus increasing its attack and defense stats by 2. The monster stays enlarged until the spellcaster is killed. A monster can be enlarged up to 7 times. If nothing in the room can be enlarged, the spell will fizzle.|
|Fireball||The fireball results in an attack (the spellcaster's Attack stat plus 1-10) against you and any monster next to you. Fireballs automatically hit gas spores and ghosts. Fireballs do not harm the caster.|
|Summon||A random monster is added to the room. (Spellcasters in the Mines cannot summon monsters that are found only in the ruins.) If the room doesn't have any empty spaces, the spell will fizzle.|
Spellcasters take their turn before missile and melee monsters.
The monsters below have special properties. Unless otherwise noted, they behave according the rules for their monster type (described above).
- Dragons start asleep, so there is no penalty for sneaking or pilfering next to them.
- Dragons have an additional attack action, a breath attack that is unleashed if at any point during their turn they are 2 tiles away from you. However, a dragon cannot use its breath if on the prior turn it attacked, was hit, or was asleep. If a dragon does not have a path to you, but it does have a path to a tile that is two away from you, it will go to that tile so it can breathe on you.
- Dragons normally behave like melee monsters. However, if reduced to 1 health, the dragon will instead behave like a missile monster and rely on its breath attack (if cornered, however, it will do a melee attack).
There are 5 types of dragons:
|White||Melee Attack +8 Breath Attack +7 Defense +7|
|Black||Melee Attack +8 Breath Attack +8 Defense +7|
|Green||Melee Attack +8 Breath Attack +9 Defense +7|
|Blue||Melee Attack +8 Breath Attack +10 Defense +7|
|Red||Melee Attack +8 Breath Attack +10 Defense +8|
Advanced players will find themselves facing an ever increasing number of dragons. But the maximum number of dragons that will start in the lair is between 3-9, determined randomly when you enter the lair. So if you are facing 7 dragons, and a 5 is rolled, then you will find 5 dragons in the lair, while 2 are out flying around outside. Each turn there is a chance that one of the outside dragons will fly into the lair. This chance is equal to 2% for each of the lair's unoccupied tiles (a tile a dragon could land on). So if there are 8 unoccupied tiles, there is an 16% chance that a dragon will return that round. If a dragon returns, it will fly to a random open tile and start taking actions the following round.If you kill the last dragon in the lair, but there are still more out there, one of the dragons will automatically fly in.
Gas Spores explode when hit, resulting in an attack (the spore's attack stat plus 1-10) against everything adjacent to it. Gas spores float, so they can move over pits, and you can put a flame under them. They automatically explode if within the range of another explosion or if next to a flame. Each room in the Mines or Ruins has a chance of having gas spore in addition to the other monsters.
Purple worms lurk beneath the mines. When your or a monster is next a pit, there's a 1% chance per round that a purple worm will emerge. Once emerged, it will randomly choose an adjacent target to attack. A purple worm will withdraw back to the depths if either you hit it or it has nothing adjacent to attack. Worms will not emerge if you are not spotted.
Shamblers lurk in the watery pits of the caverns. They will not emerge from the water unless they see you take a weapon or attack something. An emerged shambler will advance to attack you, attacking any monster that stands in its way! If you attack a shambler in the water, it will dive, with a 30% chance of resurfacing each round.
Each round, there is a 3% chance that a cavern crawler will enter the cavern you are in. The crawler will take a direct path to one of the exits it did not enter from. If you or a monster is next to a crawler, it will postpone its journey in order to attack a random target. EXCEPTION: Cavern crawlers have a taste for elves, so if you are playing the elf, the chance of a crawler appearing is twice as high, and the crawler will seek out the elf as would a standard melee monster.
Firebugs turn to flame when hit, resulting in the tile they are on being blocked for three rounds. They will also ignite if next to a flame or explosion. Firebugs are most common in the caverns, but can be found in the mines and ruins as well.
Slimes are highly acidic creatures that ooze around the tunnels. If a slime moves onto your tile, there’s an 80% chance of being hit (70% if you were guarding), and you’ll scurry to a random, adjacent tile. A slime will be destroyed if a flame is placed on it or if a fireball or gas spore explodes next to it. There is no other way to hurt a slime. Yellow slimes move in a random direction, but will not backtrack unless it’s their only choice. Green slimes are slightly more intelligent, and will move onto your tile if next to you. Otherwise, it will keep moving in a straight line if it can, otherwise it will choose a new direction randomly, but only backtrack if there's no other option.
Ropers cannot move, but they can attack a target 1, 2 or 3 tiles away, with no distance penalty. A roper will not attack if next to a flame. Each room in the mines has a 10% chance of containing a roper.
Monsters found only in The Ruins
Each time you kill a monster in the ruins, there is a 5% chance that a reaper will appear somewhere in that room. If you leave the reaper behind in a room, then the next time you kill a monster in another room, the reaper will appear.
Wraiths fear fire and suffer -3 to their attack and defense if they are adjacent to a flame.
Mummies emanate despair, causing you to suffer a -2 attack penalty for each mummy adjacent to you (it's cumulative).
Skeletons are bony creatures, causing you to suffer a -3 penalty to your bow attacks against them.
If a ghoul hits you, you become stunned and are unable to take an action the next round.
If hit, a ghost will vanish out of the room. For each round that you are in the room, there is a 10% chance that a vanished ghost will return to a random space and immediately take an action. But if at any point all the ghosts have vanished, you will have rid the room of ghosts, and they will never return. Ghosts can move over pits and are automatically hit by flame or an adjacent gas spore or fireball explosion.
Gargoyles turn to stone whenever attacked. They can't do anything while in this petrified condition. There is a 30% chance each round that the Gargoyle will return to flesh.
The Ruins contains the three bosses, which will be unlocked as you progress in Fame. Each boss has its own room which always has an exceptional weapon, in addition to a random set of room contents. Each boss will guard a different type of weapon.
The Two Specters
Specters are invisible unless adjacent to either you or a flame. If a specter appears right next to you, you will run in horror (away from the specter if possible). And specters float too, so pits offer no protection. Placing a flame under a specter will engulf it until the flame reaches its lowest level. While engulfed, the specter can take no action other than to defend itself.
The Lich Queen
The Lich Queen is a skeleton spellcaster that occupies the far room in the ruins. She does not move, but will cast spells from her throne. The lich automatically spots you if you sneak next to her.
The Mummy King
The Mummy King radiates deep despair, causing a -4 penalty to your attacks if you are within 3 tiles of it.
You gain fame in the village by finding weapons and slaying dragons.
When you find a weapon, you gain fame equal to the weapon's bonus. When you slay a dragon, you gain fame based on the dragon type: White/Black/Green/Blue/Red Dragons award 11/12/13/14/15 points. If multiple dragons are killed in one game, the fame for each successive dragon multiplies. For example, killing 3 White Dragons in one game would produce 66 fame points (11 for the first, 22 for the second, and 33 for the third).
20 fame points are required to reach level 2. The number of points needed for each successive level increases by 30% each level.
As your fame level rises, the villagers will try harder to procure starting weapons and scrolls for you. [Each weapon bonus and scroll quantity starts at +1, with a chance of an increase equal to 10% plus your Fame Level. So if you are Fame Level 5, there will be a 15% chance (for each item) of +1 going to +2, and if so a 15% chance of +2 going to +3, and so on till +9.]
You can progress from Fame Level 1 ("Village Unknown") to Fame Level 50 ("Village Legend").
What is mana? No one knows precisely, but it has something to do with time, space, and money. Use mana to:
TELEPORT TO VILLAGE - Skip the trip home after a defeat. Costs up to 3 mana.
UNDO TURN - Go back one turn. Combat and stealth will be re-rolled, but loot will not change. Up to 3 uses per game, costing 0/2/3 mana.
SWAP HERO - Instantly change to a different hero. Up to 3 uses per game, costing 0/2/3 mana.
Mana doesn't grow on trees. But it does grow on crystals. You can find mana crystals in the mana shaft located in the mines. You can also buy mana at the Mana Fairy's Shop.
The Mana Shaft
The mana shaft is a one-way passage leading out of the dungeon, so do not enter unless you're abandoning your current dragon slaying effort. Each room has a crystal containing 1-4 mana, depending how long it's been since it was last harvested.
You can take crystals, but to keep them you need to reach the dungeon exit in the fifth room of the shaft. If forced to flee, you'll drop the crystals, losing them forever.
Harvesting a crystal depletes it of all its mana. It will then regrow with 4 growth spurts, each adding 1 mana. The first spurt occurs while you are returning to the village. The next ones happen after 1 day, 1 week, and 1 month. Spurts don't happen if you are in the room.
You may enter the mana shaft twice per week. It's best to wait a day between entries, so that there is more time for the crystals to grow back.
The shaft has the same monsters as in the mines, but there's no treasure and no sneaking.
The following tables show the item counts used when generating rooms for each level.
Exceptional Gas Spores
To Hit Matrix