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Author Topic: [U|AoRA|100%|YAFW] Quartermaster Diamond with Blademaster and no AoMC  (Read 1996 times)

Omega Tyrant

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When looking at the people who got Quartermaster Diamond according to the Badge Hunters thread, I noticed all but one (papilio's run) that were listed got it by combining it with Angel of Max Carnage. This inspired me to do it the "pure" way. Also since I usually play really campy and will willingly hit wait -> run for minutes on end to get a single enemy to walk into my vision, I wanted to try this challenge that will force me to play aggressively.

So first thing was deciding the build. I know Gunrunner is popular for this badge and papilio used it for his pure AoRA Quartermaster Diamond, but I had some major problems with it. For Gunrunner to be effective required getting Shottyman, so the build wouldn't truly come online until level 9 at minimum, and that's if I don't make a detour for Intuition, otherwise it would take all the way until level 11 to get everything, by which point I would be through most of the game already (I certainly wouldn't be able to safely handle most of the special levels with the incomplete Gunrunner build to get there faster). Papilio's run apparently did it without Intuition until late into the game, I don't know how he did it but I found Intuition too important to hold off, not only for finding enemies quickly but to also ensure I don't walk into enemy fire; with no time to camp, I really needed to know where enemies were to avoid taking too much damage. I also considered Cateye, which I used to get Quartermaster Gold on HNTR long ago, but for finding enemies, Intuition was usually enough, and rapid fire weapons are crappy at taking out the groups of enemies you often fight on UV. Additionally with no AoMC, I would have to spend levels in Eagle Eye rather than being able to speed myself up. This decision got solidified when I went to finally get Skull Silver a couple weeks ago and was trying Cateye, only to get frustrated with it even on just HNTR, with runs failing without me even reaching City of Skulls/Abyssal Plains, leading me to instead try Blademaster, which worked wonderfully and got me the idea to try it here.

So for the build strategy. First two levels I go straight to Intuition 2, immediately knowing powerup locations and the effectively enhanced vision to find enemies was imperative. Additionally this will delay Blademaster to just level 9, which I can get around the middle of the game, maybe even slightly sooner, quite a bit more workable than Gunrunner. After that I take the first level of Hellrunner, when that's essential for AoRA for obvious reasons and Brute is a dead level this early. After that I go for the two levels of Brute and Berserker however; that second level of Hellrunner would be really nice, but I'm approaching the Chained Court at this point, so I need Brute to effectively use the Chainsaw and Berserker itself is crucial. After Berserker, I go for the second level of Hellrunner, then the third level of Brute, and finally get Blademaster at level 9. Finesse and Whizkid came after for the extra attacking speed and some helpful assemblies.

Another part of the strategy was abusing Berserker to keep myself frequently berserked to do everything much faster. With the base 50 HP, you can reliably berserk yourself by blowing up a rocket in your face, and with good fire resistant armor, you can be taking as low as 1 HP in exchange for 20 actions of berserk, letting you blitz through levels. Combined with Blademaster and the Scythe, I'm able to clear out lategame levels in little over a minute, even when they have vaults with lots of extra enemies. Of course getting to that point wasn't easy, most runs just die in Phobos that I didn't Q+Y on, and by having to spend levels on Brute instead of getting Finesse, SoB, the second level of Hellrunner sooner, or even Reloader, those later Phobos floors got tough when I was still primarily using a Shotgun. Many floors just weren't winnable, but I was happy to exchange a tougher Phobos for ensuring the second half of the game would be a cinch, I would rather keep losing 15-30 minutes of work in Phobos than to lose an hour or two in late Deimos or Hell. Making it past Phobos though didn't guarantee victory; I would still be a few levels away from Blademaster, and indeed I have had quite a few runs die in early Deimos, two making it as far as Deimos 4 and no Blademaster still by that point (the first of those runs I lost from me missing a 98% hit on a Baron in melee when we were both near death and I still had medkits left, the other died when a lone enemy got lost in a maze that I couldn't find in time, while that first run I still also had no Rocket Launcher, and the second wouldn't just give me any armor). Finally after over 30 attempts that I didn't Q+Y near the start on, it came together...

The first couple floors were uneventful, as was Hell's Arena, where I did my usual strat of clearing two waves and running out. I found I could semi-reliably clear two waves in Hell's Arena, nice to get some extra EXP (enough to get me an extra level early on) as well as a large medkit and maybe a small medkit (if the RNG spawns it in a place I could still pick it up). Usually fully clearing it wasn't viable, and the couple times I possibly could I still declined; getting the guaranteed Rocket Launcher would be really nice (which was crucial for my strategy and the RNG was unkind with spawning them randomly, with most of my runs that made it to Deimos never finding one), but I really wanted the easy Chained Court, as I obviously needed the Chainsaw and wanted those two mods, while UnChained Court didn't seem viable without a big medkit expenditure and maybe still not even then. Speaking of the Chained Court, that went easy as always, but I also got an agility mod, great for speeding my boots up, and a power mod, which I found to be really helpful on the Shotgun for more reliably one-shotting formers and Imps, while also often saving me a shot on bigger demons (and increasing the likelihood that they don't get to me). Normally I would save the power mod for a Tactical Shotgun, but with no Phobos Lab/Military Base, I might not find a Combat Shotgun for several more levels and so learned the immediate utility with the P-modded Shotgun is better (and indeed I wouldn't find a Combat Shotgun this run until very late into the game). Shortly later on floor 6, I would find a Technical mod, which I wanted most on my Chainsaw (I initially would Bulk mod it before, but later found the faster attacking speed is more useful, as it would increase the likelihood of killing things without getting hit and would help activate Berserker quicker, especially important against strong melee enemies like Barons). Floor 7 gave me an easy Pinky/Caco cave, and I always skip Phobos Lab and Military Base; fuck trying to deal with the Nightmare Demons on a time limit, and the latter has so many enemies while the Elite Formers are actually dangerous when you can't just camp them, on top of both also having a ton of required running around and it being very easy for enemies to get lost wandering around in them. Then came Phobos Anomaly; the strategy here was trigger the ambush, run back to the starting room, then berserk Chainsaw through everything and heal back up with one of health globes. Then with the Bruisers, after triggering them, I would retreat to the halfway doorway and wait for them, as there the second one wouldn't be able to attack me at an awkward angle, then berserk Chainsaw through them and retreat back to the second health globe to heal up, with more than enough time to do so.

Then came Deimos, most runs don't make it this far, and while I had no Rocket Launcher yet, I did have several medkits, phase devices, and my Red Armor fully intact, so it was looking promising. First Deimos floor was a maze, which could have been really bad... but a group of Pinkies spawned right next to the start, so I was able to quickly get berserked and run through much of the level, including taking out several potentially troublesome Barons with little time and health lost. After clearing out the floor, I saw I got Hell's Armory, which was great! I have cleared Deimos Lab in a prior run before, but only because I had a Homing Phase and I couldn't grab any of the mods, which would be the likely case in any attempt as enemies get lost too easily in it. While I spent a few medkits in the Armory, it had not only a Super Shotgun, but a Nano Mod, making it more than worth it. The first thought is making a Nano Super Shotgun or a Nanomachic Rocket Launcher or Antigrav Boots, but I decided to go with the unsung Power Red Armor. First, I didn't even have Blademaster yet and was still levels away from being able to get Whizkid, what good would saving up for one of those assemblies be if I end up dying before I could get them? Second, as a melee build that will be rocket jumping and blowing myself up for berserk while time is of the essence, an armor with great fire resistance, melee resistance, no movement penalty, and regenerating durability was really ideal, even with its knockback resistance nerfing rocket jumping. Then in the second floor of Deimos, I not only found a Rocket Launcher immediately, ensuring I wouldn't be deprived of this vital weapon, but I also found this...

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

A second nano mod, this early? This run went from very promising to being the run. The first thought was making a Nano Super Shotgun or Antigrav Boots, but I decided I would save up for the Nanomachic Rocket Launcher, as I believed an infinite Rocket Launcher would work best with my strat here. Of course it would take several more levels before I could make it still, so the game wasn't exactly won yet. Up then came Containment Area, my initial plan was to clear it out without triggering the ambush for the extra EXP, rocket box, and maybe something nice from the crates. However I did get Blademaster by this point and decided to go all the way with it, which went without a hitch. Then came City Of Skulls, which with Blademaster, was still very easy to clear on UV with multiple minutes to spare (I would have skipped Abyssal Plains though, as it would be too easy for enemies to get lost wandering around in circles). The luck with special levels didn't stop there, as I then got Halls Of Carnage; Spider's Lair would have concerned me as a melee build that would need to camp to not get shredded, but Halls of Carnage you need to beat fast anyway and so it was no different (just needed to make damn sure none of the Lost Souls escaped the central room before progressing). Later half Deimos was easy even with just a T-modded Chainsaw still for my melee weapon, one floor got a little iffy when it had a bunch of napalm barrels and a couple enemies got lost near the end. Probably could have still found them in time but there was an Invulnerability, so I just camped it until the end, grabbed it, and then used rocket jumping to also take it with me to the next floor.

The Cyberdemon went down easy, the first floor of Hell was easy, and then came the Cathedral, which was free as usual for a melee build, where I got the Scythe and the game was essentially won, compounded farther when I finally got that Nanomachic Rocket Launcher a couple floors later. At this point I was easily completing levels in under two minutes while taking minor damage, and even an Arachnotron cave was of little threat. I probably could have did the Mortuary but skipped it just to be safe (not that I needed the Nuclear BFG for a full win in AoRA anyway). In fact the only thing that threatened the run at this point was some hardware failure, which did nearly happened when my shitty keyboard started fucking up on the sixth floor of Hell. After many unplugs, replugs, and about an hour of troubleshooting while the game was still running, I finally got my keyboard and mice working properly again (which is the reason why the gameplay time stretched over three hours when it should have been around two). With that issue out of the way, I clear out floor 6 of Hell, clear The Lava Pits easily when Blademaster again let me kill all the Lost Souls in little time (and berserk Scythe gibbing Pain Elementals so they couldn't spawn Lost Souls was also nice for preserving my radsuits). The lategame also started drowning me in very good armor, with me finding a Plasma Shield on floor 5 of Hell, The Lava Pits had an Energy Shield and Lava Armor, and floor 7 had a Duelist Armor, but the Power Red Armor was all I needed and I never made use of them.

With an uneventful penultimate floor, I wait out the nuke's timer against the Mastermind before popping the Lava Element at the last second, then rocket myself ten times to build up berserk before entering Hell's Fortress. There I rocket jumped across to maintain my berserk and killed Carmack in a few clicks, finally netting me Quartermaster Diamond (my fifth diamond badge). Overall this is the most I grinded for a badge yet, but it was quite fun to be forced to play so aggressively. I don't think you need anywhere near as much luck as this run got to make the Blademaster strat work, just having some Red Armors and securing the Rocket Launcher in early Deimos should have been enough (which I cannot stress enough how much the RNG was hating me before this run by denying me Rocket Launchers), but I'm certainly not going to complain about the RNG giving me a break with the amazing item luck I got here.

With that all said, here's the mortem:

--------------------------------------------------------------
 DoomRL (0.9.9.7) roguelike post-mortem character dump
--------------------------------------------------------------

 NOTIME33, level 15 Arch-Vile Lt. General Scout,
 nuked the Mastermind at the Hell Fortress.
 He survived 66091 turns and scored 440520 points.
 He played for 3 hours, 11 minutes and 24 seconds.
 He was a man of Ultra-Violence!

 He killed 1158 out of 1158 hellspawn. (100%)
 This ass-kicking marine killed all of them!
 He was an Angel of Red Alert!

 He saved himself 3 times.

-- Special levels --------------------------------------------

  Levels generated : 11
  Levels visited   : 8
  Levels completed : 7

-- Awards ----------------------------------------------------

  Medal of Prejudice
  UAC Star (bronze cluster)
  Aurora Medallion
  Hell Armorer Badge
  Quartermaster Diamond Badge

-- Graveyard -------------------------------------------------

  ###########################################################
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  ..........................................................#
  ..........................................................#
  ..........................................................#
  .......................................................%..#
  .......................................................%||#
  .......................................................X}%#
  .......................................................%%%#
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  ###########################################################

-- Statistics ------------------------------------------------

  Health 31/50   Experience 107250/15
  ToHit Ranged +0  ToHit Melee +6  ToDmg Ranged +0  ToDmg Melee +9

-- Traits ----------------------------------------------------

  Class : Scout

    Finesse          (Level 2)
    Hellrunner       (Level 3)
    Brute            (Level 3)
    Juggler          (Level 1)
    Berserker        (Level 1)
    Intuition        (Level 2)
    Whizkid          (Level 2)
    Blademaster      (Level 1)

  Int->Int->HR->Bru->Bru->Ber->HR->Bru->MBm->Fin->Fin->WK->WK->Jug->HR->

-- Equipment -------------------------------------------------

    [a] [ Armor      ]   powered red armor [5/5] (86%)
    [b] [ Weapon     ]   Azrael's Scythe (9d9)
    [c] [ Boots      ]   tactical boots [0/0] (100%)
    [d] [ Prepared   ]   shotgun (9d3) [1/1] (P1)

-- Inventory -------------------------------------------------

    [a] combat shotgun (7d3) [4/5] (T1)
    [b] nanomachic rocket launcher (6d6) (T1)
    [c] super shotgun (10d4)x2 [2/2] (P2T2)
    [d] BFG 9000 (10d6) [130/130] (B1)
    [e] duelist armor [2/2] (100%)
    [f] plasma shield [0/0] (100%)
    [g] energy shield [0/0] (100%)
    [h] Lava Armor [4/4] (100%)
    [i] shotgun shell (x70)
    [j] shotgun shell (x70)
    [k] shotgun shell (x4)
    [l] shotgun shell (x70)
    [m] power cell (x70)
    [n] large med-pack
    [o] large med-pack
    [p] large med-pack
    [q] large med-pack
    [r] phase device
    [s] homing phase device
    [t] hatred skull
    [u] gothic boots [10/10] (200%)

-- Resistances -----------------------------------------------

    Bullet     - internal 60%   torso 60%   feet 60% 
    Melee      - internal 60%   torso 85%   feet 60% 
    Shrapnel   - internal 60%   torso 60%   feet 60% 
    Acid       - internal 60%   torso 60%   feet 60% 
    Fire       - internal 60%   torso 95%   feet 60% 
    Plasma     - internal 60%   torso 60%   feet 60% 

-- Kills -----------------------------------------------------

    120 former humans
    104 former sergeants
    52 former captains
    127 imps
    81 demons
    384 lost souls
    51 cacodemons
    21 hell knights
    59 barons of hell
    22 arachnotrons
    17 former commandos
    41 pain elementals
    14 revenants
    27 mancubi
    23 arch-viles
    6 nightmare imps
    2 bruiser brothers
    1 shambler
    1 lava elemental
    1 agony elemental
    1 Angel of Death
    1 Cyberdemon
    1 Spider Mastermind
    1 John Carmack

-- History ---------------------------------------------------

  He started his journey on the surface of Phobos.
  On level 2 he entered Hell's Arena.
  He saw, left a present and left.
  On level 5 he stormed the Chained Court.
  On level 8 he encountered the Phobos Anomaly.
  Level 9 was a hard nut to crack!
  On level 9 he found the Trigun!
  On level 9 he assembled a tactical boots!
  On level 9 he entered Hell's Armory.
  On level 9 he assembled a power armor!
  He decided to nuke Hell's production center.
  On level 11 he arrived at the Containment Area.
  He emerged from the Containment Area victorious!
  On level 12 he found the City of Skulls.
  He wiped out the City of Skulls.
  Level 14 was a hard nut to crack!
  On level 14 he ventured into the Halls of Carnage.
  Level 15 was a hard nut to crack!
  On level 16 he found the Tower of Babel!
  On level 17 he invaded the Unholy Cathedral!
  On level 17 he found the Azrael's Scythe!
  He then destroyed the Unholy Cathedral!
  On level 19 he assembled a nanomanufacture ammo!
  On level 19 he found the Mjollnir!
  On level 22 he entered the Lava Pits.
  On level 22 he found the Lava Armor!
  He managed to clear the Lava Pits completely!
  Then at last he found Dis!
  He defeated the Mastermind and found the TRUE EVIL!
  Then finally in Hell itself, he killed the final EVIL.

-- Messages --------------------------------------------------

 You need to taste blood!
 Fire -- Choose target...
 You see : floor
 You need to taste blood!
 Fire -- Choose target...
 You see : floor
 You need to taste blood!
 You need to taste blood!
 You prepare the Azrael's Scythe instantly!
 You hit John Carmack. Carmack raises his hands and summons hellspawn! You
 need to taste blood!
 You hit John Carmack. You're going berserk! You need to taste blood!
 You hit John Carmack. You need to taste blood!
 You hit John Carmack. John Carmack dies. Congratulations! You defeated John
 Carmack! Press <Enter>...
 You feel relatively safe now. Next! You're going berserk!

-- General ---------------------------------------------------

 180 brave souls have ventured into Phobos:
 67 of those were killed.
 48 didn't read the thermonuclear bomb manual.
 And 6 couldn't handle the stress and committed a stupid suicide.

 59 souls destroyed the Mastermind...
 6 sacrificed itself for the good of mankind.
 29 killed the bitch and survived.
 24 showed that it can outsmart Hell itself.

--------------------------------------------------------------
« Last Edit: August 01, 2023, 10:38 by Omega Tyrant »
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