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The Official ADOM FAQ

Version 6.0

Last change: March 6th, 2013

 

This document answers some of the most frequently asked questions about ADOM. If you feel that something important is missing, spot errors, typos or inaccurate information, or have other feedback regarding the latest FAQ version, send an e-mail to Ignacio F.I., the official maintainer of the ADOM FAQ, or send a private message to him through the official forums (username "aerol"; this last option is preferred).

This FAQ is available in HTML and as a text file. The HTML and text versions do not differ in content, but the HTML version has nicer formatting. You can also download zip archives of either FAQ version at http://www.adomgb.info/.

Many thanks to Erwin Mascardo, Richard Fowler, Malte Helmert and Léon Planken, ADOM FAQ maintainers, retired.
Also thanks to Tapani Harkila, Joshua Kelley, Eva Myers, Jochen Terstiege, Rachel Walmsley, Stephen White, Andy Williams and Darren Grey for valuable input.

Note on the spoiler policy: I have tried as hard as I can to make this FAQ spoiler-free. However, it is inevitable that some questions may be slightly spoily. Those questions and answers are written in red. (If you don't see any red word in the previous sentence and are using Netscape 4.x, you need to activate the settings for style sheets and, for some strange reason, JavaScript. Even better, upgrade your web browser.) Read spoily answers at your own risk! Also, there is a lot of content in this FAQ that isn't spoily, but may help you in the problem-solving process. See question 1.9: Where do you draw the line in this document between spoiler-type and non-spoiler-type answers? for more details.


Table of Contents

Items that have changed since version 5.1 of this FAQ are marked with a [changed in 6.x] tag.
Items that have been added since version 5.1 of this FAQ are marked with an [added in 6.x] tag.

Section 1: General

1.1: What does ADOM stand for?

1.2: What is the current version of ADOM? [changed in 6.0]

1.3: What hardware and software platforms can run ADOM? [changed in 6.0]

1.4a: Where can I find support and information about ADOM online? [added in 6.0]

1.4b: What about on usenet? Isn't there an official newsgroup? [added in 6.0]

1.5: Where can I get the source code for ADOM?

1.6: What happened to the spoilers that were once in this file? [changed in 6.0]

1.7: I discovered a bug in ADOM. How do I report it? [changed in 6.0]

1.8: I have a suggestion/comment regarding the game. Where do I send it? [changed in 6.0]

1.9: Where do you draw the line in this document between spoiler-type and non-spoiler-type answers?

1.10: Is ADOM Freeware? [changed in 6.0]

1.11: What's this about closed/private prereleases of version 1.2.0? [added in 6.0]

1.12: What is ADOM II? [added in 6.0]

Section 2: Burdens of Command

2.1a: What are some of the basic keyboard commands I need to know? [added in 6.0]

2.1b: I can't seem to move diagonally, but the monsters around me have no problem doing it. What's going on? [added in 6.0]

2.2: How do I light a torch?

2.3: How do I extinguish a torch?

2.4: How do I use lock picks?

2.5: What is Ventriloquism good for?

2.6: Is there a command that allows you to rest safely in order to regain hit points and power points?

2.7: What does "Continuous Search" (keystroke 'ws') mean?

2.8: What is the 'T'actics command for?

2.9: Is there any way to identify monsters at a distance?

2.10: How do I use my Bridge Building skill?

2.11: I can't put points into Bridge Building! Why not?

2.12: How can I open a locked door if I don't have the right key or lock picks?

2.13: How do I buy or sell something in a shop? [changed in 6.0]

2.14: How do I use my Smithing skill?

2.15: What is this Treasure Hunter talent I keep hearing about?

2.16: I just upgraded to a new version, and the manual/the changelog says that several new commands/configuration variables have been added. However, I can't seem to use them. What gives? [changed in 6.0]

Section 3: Playing the Game

Section 3.1: More Basic than Basic

3.1.1: What's the best race/class combination to play? [changed in 6.0]

3.1.2: What's a good strategy for starting the game? [changed in 6.0]

Section 3.2: The Basics

3.2.1: What is the Drakalor Chain? [changed in 6.0]

3.2.2: Where is the Village Dungeon? It's nowhere on my map!

3.2.3: I've entered some dungeons, but I rarely encounter monsters and find very little food. What am I doing wrong?

3.2.4: I can't keep myself fed. How do I avoid dying from starvation? [changed in 6.0]

3.2.5: I'm doing several of the above things already, and I'm still starving. Now what? [changed in 6.0]

3.2.6: How come I don't benefit from eating raw meat?

3.2.7: I've been poisoned! How do I cure it? [changed in 6.0]

3.2.8: How come my Neutralize Poison spell didn't work?

3.2.9: What can I do with colored pools?

3.2.10: What can I do with a waterproof/fireproof blanket?

3.2.11: How do I stop the killer bees from coming out of their hive, or the giant ants from their hole?

3.2.12: What do I do to become Lawful? It's impossible!

3.2.13: I've gotten the Poison Hands chaos power, and every food item I touch gets poisoned! Is there a way around this?

3.2.14: I picked up a "strange item". A few dozen turns later, I notice that I have ten of them! What's going on?

3.2.15: How do I kill a karmic creature without becoming cursed or doomed?

3.2.16: Why is it that I don't always become cursed or doomed when I accidentally attack a karmic creature?

3.2.17: I ran into a named stone giant lord on the second level of the Village Dungeon! I thought this place wasn't supposed to be this tough!

3.2.18: Speaking of impossibly hard monsters, I'm in the cave just north-west of Terinyo with a level 15 barbarian, and I've got rats punching through my dragon scale mail!

3.2.19: How do I get logs for Bridge Building or Fletchery?

3.2.20: I can never finish cutting a tree down because I keep getting hungry! How can I avoid this?

3.2.21: I'm trapped on a level with a thousand brown worms, and they keep multiplying faster than I can kill them! Is this fair? What can I do?

3.2.22: Can I shoot things in the "red" range of my missiles?

3.2.23: Is the "seemingly infinite" dungeon really infinite?

3.2.24: What's with the levels in the Caverns of Chaos that only take up half of the screen?

3.2.25: How are the growth patterns for herb bushes determined?

3.2.26: There's a big stone block in the way in the Caverns, how do I get rid of it?

3.2.27: What's the deal with the impassable wall of flames in the Caverns? Come to think of it, there's another spot like that in another dungeon, but with an old dwarf or a fire spirit, too. What's going on?

3.2.28: I wanna become a billionaire! Where can I find more dough?

3.2.29: The sheriff wants me to kill Kranach, the raider lord. But where is he? [changed in 6.0]

3.2.30: How do I sacrifice monsters?

Section 3.3: Player Abilities

3.3.1: How come my Defensive Value keeps shifting up and down by a point or two for no apparent reason?

3.3.2: How do I make myself resistant to special attacks? [changed in 6.0]

3.3.3: How come I'm still getting hurt by fire attacks when I'm wearing a ring of fire resistance?

3.3.4: How do I learn to read, if I started out totally illiterate?

3.3.5: What about the other skills that I don't know?

3.3.6: How come my combat abilities suffer so much when I wield two weapons?

3.3.7: I've gotten myself the "doomed" intrinsic. What does that mean?

3.3.8: How come my attributes didn't go up when I paid the Dwarven trainer?

3.3.9: Is it better to concentrate on mastering a single weapon or to become pretty good at handling several?

3.3.10: My character has turned permanently invisible. How can I become visible again?

3.3.11: My character has turned permanently blind! What can I do?

Section 3.4: Matters Arcane

3.4.1: What do the different altar colors mean?

3.4.2: How can I tell if an item is cursed?

3.4.3: How do I get rid of a cursed item?

3.4.4: How do I get rid of trapped armor?

3.4.5: What do all the numbers on the spellcasting menu mean?

3.4.6: What's all this I hear about corruption?

3.4.7: Okay, so corruption is a Bad Thing. How do I get rid of it, then?

3.4.8: What use is a holy symbol?

3.4.9: How come standard Fireball spells don't hurt me, while a so-called Improved Fireball will hurt me if I'm in the blast radius?

3.4.10: What's the difference between a ring of fire and a ring of fire resistance?

3.4.11: What exactly does a wand of ball lightning do? It sure doesn't shoot lightning balls!

3.4.12: When I cast a spell that lets me choose a target, how do I pick me? I'm tired of blessing everyone else! [changed in 6.0]

Section 3.5: Way Beyond Basic

3.5.1a: What's all this fuss about pre/postcrowning? [added in 6.0]

3.5.1b: What about crowning? Is that the same? [added in 6.0]

3.5.2: I'm trying to do the Kitty quest, and I killed something I shouldn't have, but I didn't get any bad warnings. Does that mean it doesn't count against me?

3.5.3: I think I've won, but I can't escape and finish! What's going on?

3.5.4: I'm bored with this simple little game; how can I make it more interesting? [changed in 6.0]

3.5.5: What are Ironman and Eternium man games? [changed in 6.0]

3.5.6: I keep hearing about a Chaos God ending or Ultra endings; what are people talking about?

3.5.7: Has the Red Rooster thingy or the Scroll of Omnipotence been implemented yet?

3.5.8: How do I get past the eternal guardian?


The List

Section 1: General

1.1: What does ADOM stand for?

ADOM is an acronym for "Ancient Domains Of Mystery".


1.2: What is the current version of ADOM?

The current public version is 1.2.0 prerelease 5. If you want to know about closed/private prereleases, see question 1.11.

ADOM has been around for a while: development started in 1994. If you want to know more about ADOM development history you can read sections "The Past", "Version History" and "Archive" at the old ADOM site. Please note that this site is out of date and no longer being updated. For the current ADOM site see question 1.4a below.

If you are a longtime player of versions 1.1.1 or 1.0.0 I encourage you to try the latest version. Many old bugs have been fixed and game mechanics adjusted. You can check the official changelog for more information on the changes, at the cost of spoiling yourself. If you are new to the game, by all means play the latest version - in the opinion of many of us, it's also the greatest.

If the word "prerelease" has you concerned about stability, know that as far as I'm concerned, version 1.2.0p5 is stable. I have never had it crash. There are some bugs, but they do not prevent the game from being played and won.


1.3: What hardware and software platforms can run ADOM?

A 386 or better PC, a Mac of equivalent processing power or an Amiga with a minimum of 4 MB of RAM and a hard disk drive can run ADOM.

Thanks to Jochen Terstiege (the portmaster) the list of software platforms that can run the game is an evolving one. You can check the official download site for an up to date list. If you want ADOM to be ported to an operating system it doesn't yet support, make your case for it in the official forums in the "General ADOM discussion" subforum, which Jochen and Thomas Biskup read from time to time. See question 1.4a below for the link to the forums.

In the meantime, if you cannot get the game to run on your operating system, you can run it from within an emulator. I recommend downloading the DOS version and running it on DOSBox, a DOS emulator.


1.4a: Where can I find support and information about ADOM online?

Visit the official ADOM blog to find the latest news and information about ADOM. The official download site is where you can download the latest public version and find an installation/configuration FAQ. You can discuss ADOM at the official forums (but beware of possible spoilers). The official ADOM site serves as a hub for the three sites above. Additionally, within the forums you can find the ADOM issue tracker, where you can submit bug reports and feature requests (more about this on questions 1.7 and 1.8 below).

If you are a beginner to the game and you're looking for information or just a place to talk about the game I absolutely recommend visiting the official forums and especially the subforum "General ADOM discussion". You can ask any question you like (we don't bite). Be aware of possibly spoily information when checking the forums, and if you are not looking to get spoiled, please mention specifically in your question that you are only looking for hints and not spoilers. Also make sure to check the "Beginner information" thread.

If your character has managed to win the game, or died horribly in the process, you might want to share your story with the ADOM community. You might also want to read other players' stories. There are subforums dedicated to these at the official forums. There is also Jan Erik Mydland's wonderful ADOM Hall of Fame. These tales of great victory and shattering defeat are, of course, spoily.

Andy Williams' ADOM pages are the official hosting place of this FAQ and have challenge game information, ADOM stories and poems and other sections. They are also the home of the ADOM Guidebook. The guidebook was designed to be an ADOM spoiler compendium and contains spoilers throughout. Please note that the guidebook is no longer being actively maintained and was last updated in April 2010. There is an effort underway to wikify the contents of the guidebook and update them when necessary at this wiki.

For an up to date list of online ADOM resources check the Beginner information thread on the official forums.


1.4b: What about on usenet? Isn't there an official newsgroup?

If you like newsgroups, there is indeed an official one: rec.games.roguelike.adom. A few years ago this was one of the best places to get help and information about ADOM, both spoily and non-spoily, and the regulars have always been friendly. However, because of the proliferation of spam, the advent of the official forums and a natural process of attrition during the nearly ten years that went by without a new ADOM version, many people have migrated away from the newsgroup and many of them can now be found on the official forums. As a consequence, this newsgroup has become remarkably low volume. If you want a lot of interaction, the official forums are my official recommendation.

However quiet the newsgroup is now, it is not completely dead; but regardless of its current state its archives at Google Groups can still be a source of interesting information. If you intend to post and you are not familiar with newsgroup ettiquette in general or with the policies of the newsgroup in particular I recommend reading the newsgroup FAQ to avoid common mistakes.

Another newsgroup where you might find the occasional post by Thomas Biskup regarding only new releases and essential news is rec.games.roguelike.announce, but the best source for news is the official blog these days.


1.5: Where can I get the source code for ADOM?

If you can obtain the source, Thomas would be extremely interested in finding out how you cracked his system's security. Thomas has stated that the source code won't be made publicly available. His reasons for this decision are explained in the readme.1st file that is shipped with ADOM and need not be repeated here. You can also consult the readme in-game by pressing '?' and then 'f' (the "Mini-FAQ" option).


1.6: What happened to the spoilers that were once in this file?

You can follow the links on this post on the Beginner information thread for your spoily needs.

We are also on the lookout for a new maintainer for the old ADOM Spoiler FAQ, formerly maintained by Raymond Martineau. Please refer to this forum thread for more information.


1.7: I discovered a bug in ADOM. How do I report it?

First, make sure that the "bug" isn't actually a feature of the game. Sometimes this is hard to tell in a game with so many little details, but you can always ask in the official forums in "General ADOM discussion" if you are unsure. Second, if the game crashed with a fatal error, take note of the exact wording of the error message (or take screenshots). If the game successfully saved itself during the fatal error crash, check to see if it restores properly. Then, submit a bug report at the ADOM issue tracker, part of the official ADOM forums. To do this, click on "Post new issue", then on "Bug" (not on "Feature"). If that doesn't seem to work you can follow this link.

Before you submit your report please use the search function (click on "Search this project") to make sure the bug hasn't already been reported. Time spent cleaning up duplicate bug reports is time the developers could be spending actually fixing bugs. For more information about bugs and bug reporting check the readme, and especially section VII, which deals specifically with bugs.

You'll need to include the version number of the game (this is very important), the operating system you were playing on, the fatal error message (if applicable), and as detailed an explanation as possible of the state of the game at the time of the bug and the action that triggered it. Please note that some crashes produce error logs (a file called adom.err). You should upload this file as well as any screenshots you took as attachments to your bug report. If you have a feeling you know what caused the bug, by all means include your hypothesis.

Even small details like typos and spelling mistakes are worthy of bug reporting; in fact, this is encouraged. Go to this link and post it as a comment to that bug report.


1.8: I have a suggestion/comment regarding the game. Where do I send it?

You can suggest new features on the issue tracker at the official forums. To do so, click on "Post new issue", then on "Feature" (not on "Bug"). If that doesn't seem to work correctly just follow this link. Feature requests are also sometimes called RFEs (Requests For Enhancement).

Before you post your feature request please make sure that it hasn't already been requested before. To do this, use the search feature by clicking on "Search this project". After checking that, please consult section III of the readme, and especially section III.A, which lists some features that have been suggested many times before but will not be implemented. Another list of common suggestions previously submitted and rejected can be found at this link.

Think about whether your feature "fits" with what we already know about the fantasy world of Ancardia (here's a hint: lightsabers and space aliens are probably not going to gel with Thomas' vision for the game). If you still have a question after this or want to get some feedback on your feature before submitting it, you can post about it on the "General ADOM discussion" section of the forums. Our users will be happy to discuss it with you and then you can decide to move ahead and submit it on the issue tracker.

If you want to send an ADOM-related comment to Thomas that is neither a feature request nor a bug report (use the issue tracker for those), the e-mail address is creator@ancientdomainsofmystery.com. Please note that Thomas is a busy man with a job, a family and other responsibilities, and likes to spend most of his ADOM-alloted time actually working on the game, so not all emails will receive a response. There is more information about emailing Thomas in the readme; do consult it before writing. Thomas also has a facebook page if you are so inclined. Just search for him by name.


1.9: Where do you draw the line in this document between spoiler-type and non-spoiler-type answers?

The astute reader will note that I haven't included a number of questions that pop up fairly frequently. In my opinion, a spoiler is information which bypasses the problem-solving process; while a non-spoiler is information which doesn't necessarily solve a game puzzle, but does help you get around a problem of interface, basic survival (as opposed to direct advancement toward victory), or something that is necessary but woefully unobvious. Only non-spoilers, for the most part, are included here.


1.10: Is ADOM Freeware?

At the moment, ADOM is postcardware, and will likely remain so. Thomas' snail-mail address:

Thomas Biskup
Zu den Tannen 5
58456 Witten
Germany

However, if you enjoy the game and want to support its future development, you might consider going to the official ADOM blog to make a small donation using the PayPal system. The money will be used for ADOM-related investments (hosting costs, software, hardware).


1.11: What's this about closed/private prereleases of version 1.2.0?

A bit of recent ADOM history: ADOM development was frozen for nearly ten years from 2002 to 2012. During those years, many of us kept playing. In 2012 a crowdfunding campaign was carried out to resurrect ADOM development, with surprisingly resounding success. A portion of the donors, depending on their donating level, got access to a prerelease tester program where they get access to all the prereleases on the way to the final release of 1.2.0.

The first prereleases (p1, p2 and p3) were released to the general public; the following prereleases were released to this select group of donors. On christmas eve 2012, prerelease 5 was released publicly too, making it the latest public version. All later prereleases (the latest one is p11) are only available to those special donors in the crowdfunding campaign. However, there is now a way for latecomers to donate and join the private prerelease party.


1.12: What is ADOM II?

ADOM II: Legends of Ancardia (formerly known as JADE) is another game by Thomas Biskup. It is the spiritual successor to ADOM, both a reimagining and a sequel, and it is also set in the world of Ancardia, but it is not limited to the one valley in the Drakalor Chain. It is designed to be a more "larger than life" game and it is playable and winnable at this point, but it is still earlier on the development stages than ADOM, which is more of a "finished" game (although there is still a lot to come for ADOM in 1.2.0 and later versions).

The latest version of ADOM II can be downloaded at the official ADOM blog (also the official ADOM II blog), where all the latest news about the game can also be found. This document otherwise deals with ADOM exclusively, so if you want more information and community interaction about ADOM II, or you want to report bugs or suggest features, I suggest checking the relevant section of the official forums.


Section 2: Burdens of Command

2.1a: What are some of the basic keyboard commands I need to know?

- Press ' > ' to enter a location on the wilderness map (hamlet, village, cave, tunnel, wilderness square, etc.)
- Press ' C ' to chat with creatures.
- Move into creatures to attack them with fists or wielded weapons/items.
- Press ' t ' to use a missile weapon/throw something.
- Press ' i ' to bring up your inventory.
- Press ' , ' to pick something up.
- Press ' d ' to drop something.
- Press ' e ' to eat something.
- Press ' D ' to drink something.
- Press ' l ' for the look/examine command. This lets you move the cursor around the screen to examine your surroundings.
- Press ' @ ' to bring up information about your character. Depending on your operating system the command can be 'alt-q' instead.
- Press ' S ' to save your game.
- Press ' ? ' at any time within the game to bring up the look/examine command, a complete list of the keybindings (commands), the manual and the readme (mini-faq). The list of keybindings is there to help - don't neglect consulting it. (Reading the manual doesn't hurt either.)

Don't be intimidated by the total number of commands. You do not need to use each and every one of them to play the game, and within a few games the ones you use will stick, and then become second nature.


2.1b: I can't seem to move diagonally, but the monsters around me have no problem doing it. What's going on?

Your character can move in all eight directions (up, down, left, right, and all diagonals) as well as wait in place. In the game the cardinal points are also used to refer to these eight directions (north, south, east, west, etcetera). You can use the numbers 12346789 to move in all directions and 5 (or '.') to wait in place; the arrow keys can also be used for north-south-east-west. You will notice that this has been designed with a numpad in mind. If your keyboard has a numpad, ideally you will use it to move.

If you do not have a numpad, see this forum thread or this other one for alternatives. If after reading that you want to change your default keybindings by editing the adom.kbd file, see this post if you need help with finding that file.


2.2: How do I light a torch?

Put the torch into the tool slot and 'u'se it, or put it into either hand and 'U'se it. In order to make this work you also will need to have a tinderbox and flint and steel in your backpack.


2.3: How do I extinguish a torch?

You can extinguish a torch the same way you can light them, by 'u'sing or 'U'sing them, or you can simply remove the torch from its slot and answer 'yes' to the confirmation question.


2.4: How do I use lock picks?

Instead of trying to use the lock picks, 'a'pply your Pick Locks skill. You will automatically use lock picks that are in your inventory.


2.5: What is Ventriloquism good for?

If you manage to use it successfully on a monster, the monster might be confused for a few turns.


2.6: Is there a command that allows you to rest safely in order to regain hit points and power points?

Yes, actually you can use the walk-mode to do this. Simply press 'w' to activate the walk-mode followed by '5' (your own location). This makes your character "walk on the spot" and is great for safely recovering. You'll automatically stop waiting if something comes near, if you get shot at, etc.


2.7: What does "Continuous Search" (keystroke 'ws') mean?

Similar to "walk on the spot", this is equivalent to searching until you find something interesting, you are interrupted, or a given number of turns (the default is 20) have passed.


2.8: What is the 'T'actics command for?

Changing your combat tactics allows you to trade offensive ability for defensive ability, or vice versa. It costs you no game time to change tactics, so feel free to experiment.

Warning: if you fight too defensively, your melee weapon skills won't improve, although the shield skill will; on the other side if you fight too aggressively, your shield skill won't improve. There is more information about this in the manual in the "Weapon Skills" section.


2.9: Is there any way to identify monsters at a distance?

The 'l'ook command lets you move the cursor onto anything on the screen to identify it. Additionally, just aiming a missile weapon will tell you what you're aiming at and whether it's already hostile.


2.10: How do I use my Bridge Building skill?

You need to have a log and a hatchet in your inventory. Either put the hatchet into your tool slot and 'u'se it, or 'U'se it from your backpack.


2.11: I can't put points into Bridge Building! Why not?

You need to have a manual of bridge building in your inventory, and be literate. There are several skills which require some piece of equipment in order to improve (cooking/cooking set, fletchery/fletchery set).


2.12: How can I open a locked door if I don't have the right key or lock picks?

You can 'k'ick the door down. Note that this may prove hazardous to your health, more so depending on where you are standing at the time. There are magical alternatives to this, as well as ways to go around the door instead of opening it.


2.13: How do I buy or sell something in a shop?

To buy something, first pick up the items you're interested in, then move next to the shopkeeper and 'p'ay.

To sell something, don't give the item to the shopkeeper; just 'd'rop it while inside the shop. He will make an offer if interested.


2.14: How do I use my Smithing skill?

Smithing is a complicated task. You need the following ingredients:

  1. Any kind of hammer.
  2. An anvil. There are two guaranteed in the game, but they also rarely appear in dungeons.
  3. Something to smith! You need to know what kind of metal it's made of.
  4. An ingot of the appropriate metal. A lump of ore won't cut it, but can be converted into ingots by applying the Smithing skill to it first.
  5. A forge. You can't carry these around with you, but you can hope to find one in your travels. There are two locations in the game where forges are guaranteed, and there can be additional forges at random locations.

Stand on the forge, wield the hammer, and 'a'pply your Smithing skill to your metal item. (This will also serve to make metal ingots out of ore lumps.) I've also heard whispers that wearing a leather apron helps in some mysterious way.


2.15: What is this Treasure Hunter talent I keep hearing about?

The Treasure Hunter talent was accidentally omitted from the ADOM manual. It increases the chance that a random item is generated upon death of a monster, and is considered the most powerful talent of all by some players. Its prerequisites are the "Alert" and "Miser" talents; the former can only be chosen when generating your character at the start of the game.


2.16: I just upgraded to a new version, and the manual/the changelog says that several new commands/configuration variables have been added. However, I can't seem to use them. What gives?

The answer to this question involves two files created and used by ADOM: adom.kbd and adom.cfg. The first file contains the keybindings (and can be edited with a text editor to change them from the default ones); the second one contains the configuration variables (and can likewise be edited to change them from the default variables). In short, you can edit these files to change the keybindings and the configuration for ADOM.

It is recommended to delete your old adom.kbd and adom.cfg files whenever you upgrade to a new version. Otherwise, the game will happily use the old set of keybindings and configuration variables, unaware that a new functionality has been added.

If this doesn't help and the command that isn't working is supposedly bound to a key combination involving the 'Alt' modifier (displayed as '\M' by ADOM), then you can try rebinding the command to a different key. On some operating systems, the 'Alt' key does not work as intended in ADOM.

If you need more information, or are having trouble locating these files on your computer, read this forum post.


Section 3: Playing the Game

Section 3.1: More Basic than Basic

3.1.1: What's the best race/class combination to play?

While this is indeed a frequently asked question, it's one without a single correct answer. It depends heavily on your style of play, your accumulated experience in playing, and how seriously you want to be challenged. The following recommendations should help the beginner pick a combination with above average chances of survival.

Warrior types (fighters, paladins, rangers, monks, weaponsmiths, barbarians, beastfighters) tend to survive better at the start, but they'll start having problems near the middle of the game unless they can find a way of getting rid of their more dangerous opponents from a distance. Training missile skills is one way of doing this, keeping yourself well stocked in magical items or picking up a few spells along the way is another. Don't expect to win if you engage in melee with every single opponent you encounter. Monsters don't play fair, so make sure you don't either; use ranged combat and trickery to your advantage.

Among these classes, I think that fighters, paladins, barbarians, beastfighters and monks have the edge. Fighters and paladins start with excellent equipment to give them a running start. Barbarians are extremely tough and strong and have lots of hit points. The unarmed combat abilities of beastfighters and monks keep getting better and better the more experienced they get. Beastfighters have excellent physical attributes, although they are not as tough as barbarians. A nice thing about monks is that they are always literate, even if you pick a dumb race like trolls. Combine these classes with a physically strong race like dwarves, orcs, drakelings or especially trolls, and you are ready to roll.

Spellcasters (wizards, priests, druids, necromancers, elementalists) need a bit of care because they are physically weak, but with their offensive magic, many find them easier to keep alive, on average, than any other class. Of these classes, some consider necromancers hardest in the early game, one reason being that they don't start with the Healing skill. Elementalists are among the easiest classes to play because they don't have to hunt for books and start with two offensive spells that complement each other well. Elves are weak and frail but have great mana and learning; if you are having trouble keeping a spellcaster alive in the early game you can try a gnome instead. They have better toughness than elves and advance quickly in levels. For Elementalists, gaining levels quickly is important (to avoid running out of spells), so a gnome is an even better fit for this class.

Archers are deadly with their missiles. They are another class with excellent chances of survival. In my opinion, only bows, crossbows, slings and thrown rocks are worth practicing, because only for these ammunition is plenty. I recommend picking a race that specializes in thrown rocks or in bows, especially hurthlings or high elves. Don't forget to practice with your melee weapons in case you run out of missiles in the middle of a dicey situation.

Priests and rangers are kind of hybrid classes - priests being a warrior/spellcaster hybrid and rangers a warrior/archer hybrid. It will work to your advantage to play them that way, keeping both of their fighting abilities well trained throughout the game. With rangers, it pays to use missiles to soften foes up before they get in melee range; this strategy works well with every class, but is especially effective with rangers and other classes adept at archery.

Healers can absorb damage pretty well, though they have a hard time dishing it out. Top priority is getting a decent weapon - even a hand axe or mace will do better than that scalpel. Since they're not really spellcasters, pick a race with some backbone like the ones mentioned before for warrior types. However, note that one of the easiest combinations to play is the trollish healer! They are virtually invincible after you have gained around 12 levels. They are extremely strong and tough, start with a heavy club and have incredible healing abilities.

The remaining classes are somewhat more challenging. It is true that Mindcrafters are among the most powerful classes once they get going, but it is hard to get them to survive the early stages of the game. Using the Confusion Blast power a lot, training missiles and bashing monsters while they are confused helps.

Thieves and assassins are a little frail to be exclusively hack-and-slash fighters, but they start out with some nice skills, including the always useful Detect Traps. Making good use of missiles is a good strategy, but don't worry if you cannot keep them alive - it isn't easy. Farmers are similar in this regard.

Merchants and bards can be quite easy to very hard, depending on the luck of the dice. The random element of merchant item specialties and bard skills makes every game with one of these classes unique. All in all, they are very challenging classes to play. With bards, there's the additional consideration of the starting pet, as different races get different pets. Almost any race works here; these classes are a test of the player's ability to adapt.


3.1.2: What's a good strategy for starting the game?

Head for the little village right at the end of the first road. Stop there for a moment and evaluate your character. Put on useful rings, 'D'rink useful potions, 'r'ead useful scrolls and, if you've got them, read spellbooks a time or two. If you're concerned about food, buy some from the shop. Advice for buying food: you get what you pay for. At this point you should 'C'hat with some NPCs. As a general rule, it's a good idea to talk to nonhostile NPCs, especially if they have a name. They usually are a source of important or interesting information and quests.

You should talk to either the village elder or the druid to get a quest; the choice between elder or druid is important, as their quests are mutually exclusive. What to do at this point wholly depends on how experienced you are at the game. If you are a beginner, take the village elder's quest: it's easier. Go southwest and into the dungeon (you'll know it's the right dungeon if, when entering it, "VD:1" is displayed to the right of the bottom display, directly left of your speed). Survive and succesfully complete the quest. Then talk to the elder again for an idea of what to do next. Try the druid's quest with your next character: after you have completed it, and have compared the rewards and difficulties of each quest, you are in a good position to choose whichever is more beneficial to each different character you play next time around. Now that you're a bit more experienced, you can try the sheriff's quest sometime, too. Just talk to him when you first come to the village. At some point you might want to visit the other village to the southeast and explore who and what can be found there.

After this, you can follow the village elder or the druid's words for what to do next. If you really want to be a goody-goody, talk to the tiny girl; but keep in mind her quest is difficult and frequently a quick death for inexperienced players. If you are not feeling ready to head east and look for the place the elder or druid told you about yet, you can head south, then west and into a tiny, strangely distorted cave. But be careful not to wander too deep. After you've gained a couple more experience levels, head east.

If you are a slightly more experienced player, you can take the following alternative route: after coming to the village and getting the quests you are interested in carrying out, leave town and head northwest. The small cave there has several useful items, one of which is difficult to find elsewhere. Moreover, it's a good place to gain a couple of experience levels and practice weapon skills, but be warned! Many, many premature deaths come from staying in this dungeon too long; inexperienced players may wish to avoid it, or just run as soon as things look dangerous. The monsters are tougher than normal, and they only get much worse as you gain levels. Find the down staircase and/or the items you came for, then leave quickly. I usually head out of there after experience level 4 or so.

If you wish, you can take the down staircase in the small cave instead, into the other dungeon beneath, and go down until you find the bottom and come out the other side, but this can be risky - it can be better to save this until later. Then, complete any remaining quests.

When you are ready to head east and look for the place the elder or the druid told you about, heed their words carefully, especially regarding their description of the cave you need to find. Set out south, around the river, then east, toward the center of the map, past the pyramid into a cave (its description is not "a non-descript tunnel"). Try to stay alive.


Section 3.2: The Basics

3.2.1: What is the Drakalor Chain?

The Drakalor Chain is the mountain range represented by the "world" or "wilderness" map. The whole game takes place in the Drakalor Chain. Trying to leave the chain will end the game.


3.2.2: Where is the Village Dungeon? It's nowhere on my map!

The Village Dungeon doesn't appear until you speak to Rynt the village elder for the first time about Yrrigs, and it won't appear at all if you speak to Guth'Alak, the druid, before talking to Rynt; the entrance for the Druid's quest will appear instead. There are other locations throughout the game which will not be available until certain quests are undertaken.


3.2.3: I've entered some dungeons, but I rarely encounter monsters and find very little food. What am I doing wrong?

You are probably running the game in a screen resolution higher than the 80x25 for which the game was designed. Some players consider this an advantage, but if you're a novice it might be a better idea to try at the normal resolution, first.


3.2.4: I can't keep myself fed. How do I avoid dying from starvation?

The first thing to do is to avoid getting hungry so often in the first place. Moving in the wilderness map takes more game time and will make you get hungry much quicker - especially if you are traversing forests or hills. Also make sure you are not too burdened. Excessive burden is displayed by the status messages "Burdened", "Strained", "Strained!" and "Overburdened!". Being too burdened increases your food consumption rate; drop some stuff until you're less burdened.

There are several ways to keep yourself fed. First of all, there is a food shop in Terinyo; make good use of it. Second, you can eat monster corpses. A high Food Preservation skill will both increase the likelihood of a monster leaving a corpse when it dies and allow you to keep a monster corpse in your inventory longer. Cooking corpses will keep them preserved even longer, in addition to making them more filling.

A high Herbalism skill will help you identify a particular herb that can feed you very well (experimentation with unidentified herbs isn't a very good idea, since the bad ones can be very dangerous). A few hundred gold pieces and some patience can buy you a good amount of food on the arena level from the ratling traders - not all of the wares they have on offer are worth buying, though. If you are spending a lot of time in the wilderness (which you should avoid if you are short on food), 'a'pplying the Survival skill can keep you from starving. I suggest not relying on it though, because it takes up a lot of game time, which is bad for you. In an emergency, you can pray to your god if you're in reasonably good standing. If you are really desperate, drinking potions also makes you character slightly more satiated.


3.2.5: I'm doing several of the above things already, and I'm still starving. Now what?

Take off any items that make you invisible. Items that grant invisibility increase your food consumption rate. The same is true of artifacts. If that doesn't work, stop playing trolls until you get the hang of keeping yourself fed, as trolls have a high inherent rate of food consumption (however, this is counterbalanced somewhat by the fact that trolls can eat almost anything).


3.2.6: How come I don't benefit from eating raw meat?

Different races and classes have different ideas of which foods are appetizing, and which foods go down okay but don't sit too well in the stomach, and which foods do nothing except induce vomiting, and which foods are too revolting even to think about eating. You can try cooking it, if you know how to cook.


3.2.7: I've been poisoned! How do I cure it?

Certain potions, herbs, and spells are effective in this regard. Poison also wears off with time, so a means of replenishing hit points might be all you need. Try 'a'pplying First Aid after each time the effects of poison kick in. A real crisis is a good time to become religious. A more permanent solution is to become resistant to poison: see question 3.3.2 below.


3.2.8: How come my Neutralize Poison spell didn't work?

The effects of poisons are cumulative, and the Neutralize Poison spell only eliminates a certain amount of poison from your system with each casting.


3.2.9: What can I do with colored pools?

You can 'D'rink from a pool. The effects aren't always beneficial.


3.2.10: What can I do with a waterproof/fireproof blanket?

If you have one of these in your backpack, it'll protect anything in the pack from water/fire. It doesn't help with the items that you have equipped, however. Note that fireproof blankets will eventually burn away.


3.2.11: How do I stop the killer bees from coming out of their hive, or the giant ants from their hole?

Insect colonies have finite populations. With bees, you can speed up the process by disturbing the hive. If you really just want to stop them from coming out for a little while, stand on the hive/hole or get someone else to do it (a nice use for a well-trained pet). Certain items can be useful here.


3.2.12: What do I do to become Lawful? It's impossible!

As in real life, it takes a lot of time and trouble to prove that you're a good person, while it takes only a few quick actions to show that you're a Bad Guy. Be generous, fair-minded, noble, and above all else, patient; tolerance and generosity go a long way here. Oh, and there's a certain man of the law that might give you a useful present if he likes you. You'll get that L+ eventually.

You'll notice that there are a number of things that help your character a great deal, but are considered chaotic acts. This is intentional. These acts are often the easy route to power, and (to misquote Yoda) "take not the easy path, to the Dark Side it leads!" Nobody said that being a paragon of Law would be easy...


3.2.13: I've gotten the Poison Hands chaos power, and every food item I touch gets poisoned! Is there a way around this?

You need to wear thick gauntlets (that is, the pair of gauntlets with the description "thick gauntlets").


3.2.14: I picked up a "strange item". A few dozen turns later, I notice that I have ten of them! What's going on?

You've discovered one of the more interesting artifacts in the game: the si. Its value lies not in its use, but in the manner in which you dispose of it. (There are at least four productive uses for this item.)


3.2.15: How do I kill a karmic creature without becoming cursed or doomed?

Ranged attacks and spells don't affect your karma, as it were.


3.2.16: Why is it that I don't always become cursed or doomed when I accidentally attack a karmic creature?

The cursing/dooming is a special defensive attack, like the acid splash of a gray ooze or the paralysis of a floating eye, and like all attacks, it doesn't always hit... unless of course you were already cursed and doomed, and so didn't notice.


3.2.17: I ran into a named stone giant lord on the second level of the Village Dungeon! I thought this place wasn't supposed to be this tough!

When you run into a tough monster that has a name, there is an artifact somewhere on the level (the exception here are great wyrms of any color, who always have a name, and some "guaranteed" characters, like the village elder). Artifact guardians are scaled up in difficulty to be more appropriate to the object they guard.


3.2.18: Speaking of impossibly hard monsters, I'm in the cave just north-west of Terinyo with a level 15 barbarian, and I've got rats punching through my dragon scale mail!

The fact that you're level 15 is the reason. The small cave to the north-west of Terinyo is meant to be a launching pad (or a challenge) for very low level characters. Its difficulty level deliberately increases tremendously as your experience level goes up.


3.2.19: How do I get logs for Bridge Building or Fletchery?

Cut down a tree. Note that the wilderness is the only place where you can find normal trees to cut down, but is not the only source for logs, and as far as Fletchery is concerned, sticks are merely small logs.


3.2.20: I can never finish cutting a tree down because I keep getting hungry! How can I avoid this?

If you want to play at being a lumberjack, you'd better eat a lumberjack-sized breakfast before you go out! Note that potions increase your level of satiation and can be consumed even when "Bloated".


3.2.21: I'm trapped on a level with a thousand brown worms, and they keep multiplying faster than I can kill them! Is this fair? What can I do?

While I won't address the discussion of "fairness" in the code which handles breeding monsters, I can supply a few pointers on how to get through this situation. Wielding a larger, higher damage weapon might help you deal more damage and so kill them faster. If you don't have a deadlier weapon, you can wield two. The extra attack might help your killing speed. (For more information on fighting with two weapons see question 3.3.6.) If you are not hitting the monsters often enough or for high enough damage, try switching your 'T'actics. Speed enhancers can be helpful, as well. Offensive spells (particularly area effect ones) work nicely. Closing (and locking) room doors can help hem them in. If you're dealing with gremlins and a water trap, hack your way to the trap and sit on it till all the gremlins are dead. There are also means both magical and religious that might be useful in these situations.

Note that there is one level where this is meant to happen, and it was placed as a tactical exercise.


3.2.22: Can I shoot things in the "red" range of my missiles?

Yes, but only if you've got the Archery skill, and it doesn't work for thrown weapons. From experience, an archer can hit anything within vision range, and a non-archer can make it out to 1 or 2 squares of red on a good roll.

In some game situations, there is also a "gray" range, which comes between yellow and red. This indicates a square which is within your weapon's base range, but is outside of your field of vision.


3.2.23: Is the "seemingly infinite" dungeon really infinite?

Seek out the madman who speaks in verse, for he can answer better than I...


3.2.24: What's with the levels in the Caverns of Chaos that only take up half of the screen?

Every dungeon (except for the pyramid) level fills the entire screen, more or less. The trick is finding a way over to the "dark" section.


3.2.25: How are the growth patterns for herb bushes determined?

This is a bit of a spoiler, but the majority of the work is left as an exercise to the reader, so here goes...

Consider a given herb bush. Count up the number of bushes in the surrounding 8 squares.

  1. If the bush has 0 or 1 neighbors, it will die.
  2. If the bush has 2 or 3 neighbors, it will live.
  3. If the bush has 4 or more neighbors, it will die.
  4. If a given empty square has exactly 3 neighboring bushes, a new bush will grow there.
  5. All births and deaths are simultaneous.

If you haven't figured it out already, these are the rules to the classic mathematical game called Life, invented by John Conway. Growth and death occur at random intervals, and the explanation above will only work on empty spaces.

Based on these rules, you should be able to figure out bush patterns that will allow you to harvest infinite herbs without ever running out of bushes (with suitable delays for successive generations, of course).


3.2.26: There's a big stone block in the way in the Caverns, how do I get rid of it?

Well it's a big stone portal of dwarven origin; go talk to the dwarves about it.


3.2.27: What's the deal with the impassable wall of flames in the Caverns? Come to think of it, there's another spot like that in another dungeon, but with an old dwarf or a fire spirit, too. What's going on?

Well, let's just say that you must have a particular item in your possession to pass the wall of flames; if you can't pass, you don't have it. The other two guards are only there to make sure the door isn't opened from their side first - which is to say that once you find that door from the other side, they won't bother you anymore.


3.2.28: I wanna become a billionaire! Where can I find more dough?

Collect valuable items and sell them. Go dragon hunting. Play in the Casino.


3.2.29: The sheriff wants me to kill Kranach, the raider lord. But where is he?

Just walk around the wilderness area near Terinyo; he can be found in a random encounter. If you've picked up a few experience levels since you were assigned the quest and he seems nowhere to be found, talk to the sheriff again, as he might have some news.


3.2.30: How do I sacrifice monsters?

When the monster is standing on an altar, press 'O' (shift-o).


Section 3.3: Player Abilities

3.3.1: How come my Defensive Value keeps shifting up and down by a point or two for no apparent reason?

There's a reason for everything in ADOM, even if the reason isn't obvious to the eye. The most common reasons for having your DV shift is having your hunger status shift from "Satiated" to normal, or vice versa, and having your encumbrance status go to "Burdened" or worse, or vice versa.


3.3.2: How do I make myself resistant to special attacks?

Besides the use of suitable items, the gods have been known to grant certain invulnerabilities to their most loyal servants. It is also said that "you are what you eat". "They" also say that "if you eat the heart of a dragon, you will share in its strength".


3.3.3: How come I'm still getting hurt by fire attacks when I'm wearing a ring of fire resistance?

In ADOM, resistance isn't the same as immunity. Resistance only protects against a given amount of damage. For fire attacks, you can combine sources of resistance to improve your level of protection. It is possible to acquire total immunity to certain special attacks, but this is much more difficult than gaining resistance.


3.3.4: How do I learn to read, if I started out totally illiterate?

Again, "you are what you eat". You need to find the corpse of an extremely well-read monster. Solving a certain quest can also help.


3.3.5: What about the other skills that I don't know?

A potion or scroll of education always has a chance of giving you a skill you don't have. There are a few people scattered around who can teach you skills, although they all have different ideas of payment. You can also always wish for specific skills.


3.3.6: How come my combat abilities suffer so much when I wield two weapons?

Many factors are considered when calculating the to-hit penalties for using two weapons. The exact formula is in the manual. Using lighter weapons, having good weapon skills, being good in the Two Weapon Combat skill and being a ranger help.


3.3.7: I've gotten myself the "doomed" intrinsic. What does that mean?

Just as being "lucky" or having "Fate smile upon you" causes the game to fudge some internal calculations in your favor, "cursed" and "doomed" cause the game to add a fudge factor in the opposite direction. Being doomed is worse than being cursed, and the two can combine, just as "lucky" and "Fate smiles upon you" are cumulative. Note well that the negative effect of being doomed is worse than the positive effect of having Fate smile, so they don't simply cancel each other out.


3.3.8: How come my attributes didn't go up when I paid the Dwarven trainer?

Assuming you paid enough gold, the effects of training are not immediately visible. The game makes periodic checks to see if your attributes have increased or decreased due to your actions, and the effects of training are applied at the next check point. If your attribute scores are low, paying 100 gold pieces times your current attribute score is usually enough, but be prepared to pay far more than that if your attribute score is high.


3.3.9: Is it better to concentrate on mastering a single weapon or to become pretty good at handling several?

There's no single good answer for this one. Before you get an artifact weapon, it certainly helps to have some proficiency in multiple weapon classes in case you lose your favorite weapon to an exploding door or rust monster. If you go this route, practice when you're in relatively little danger - you certainly shouldn't wait till you find a vault full of gelatinous cubes and green slimes to figure out which end of a spear is the business one.

Once you've gotten your artifact weapon, it still might help to work on other weapon classes a bit, because there's usually a better artifact out there to be found (unless you're lucky enough to get crowned with Vanquisher in the Village Dungeon, or some such). Of course, very high weapon skills do grant some nice benefits, and if you're spending your time practicing many weapons, you won't get extremely good with any of them...


3.3.10: My character has turned permanently invisible. How can I become visible again?

The only known way to lose permanent invisibility is the same way you can get it, by drinking from a pool. Pool effects are random, so this is dangerous and is far from guaranteed to make the character visible again. There is a certain rare potion that will make you temporarily visible, but the effect does not last for a very long time. Therefore, this is not necessarily useful for completing the one quest for which it is required that the PC is visible. Not being able to complete this quest is part of the price that you must pay for permanent invisibility.


3.3.11: My character has turned permanently blind! What can I do?

Did you turn blind by being hit in the face by a glob of mud? If yes, try the wipe 'F'ace command.


Section 3.4: Matters Arcane

3.4.1: What do the different altar colors mean?

White corresponds to the lawful deity, gray to the neutral, and black to the chaotic.


3.4.2: How can I tell if an item is cursed?

Drop it on an altar matching your alignment, or play a character with the Detect Item Status skill and develop it. Be warned, however, that some particularly diabolical items become cursed when you attempt to use them, even if they're not cursed to begin with...


3.4.3: How do I get rid of a cursed item?

There are again several approaches. Dipping the item in holy water will remove the curse, as will reading a scroll of uncursing. If you don't mind getting roughed up a little, find a suitable trap or monster that has the ability to destroy the item in question, and go a few rounds with it... however, this method also puts your other equipment in danger, as does reading a scroll of item destruction. If the cursed item is a weapon, pick a fight with a monster that has the ability to disarm you, and unless you have an ungodly Dexterity or incredible weapon skill, you'll be rid of it before you know it. If you're desperate, kick an altar (preferably not a co-aligned one) until it falls over, which will offend its patron god enough that he'll zap you with a bolt that destroys everything you're carrying.

Note that artifacts are immune to destruction, so you'll have to go with holy water, scrolls of uncursing, or (for the nasty artifact weapons) getting forcibly disarmed.


3.4.4: How do I get rid of trapped armor?

This is a more difficult one. In many situations, the only feasible option is to try to have it destroyed by the usual means of item destruction, such as exposing yourself to fire or repeatedly triggering acid traps. Of course this is dangerous and puts your other equipment at risk. Be sure to take the necessary precautions!

Another option is to read a scroll of item destruction, hoping it will get rid of the trapped armor. However, scrolls of item destruction only work if you are carrying at least three types of items, so the trick of dropping all your other items first does not work.

The most reliable and safest option is to dip the piece of armor into a blessed potion of exchange.


3.4.5: What do all the numbers on the spellcasting menu mean?

The number to the right of the spell name is its cost in power points. The leftmost number is the most important. This is a representation of how many times you can cast the spell. It's not a straight indicator of the number of zaps a spell has left, because this number usually goes down by more than one per casting. The effectivity rating tells you how experienced you are with that particular spell; raising this through use can lower the spell cost, increase the power of the spell (damage, healing, duration, range), and is generally a good thing.


3.4.6: What's all this I hear about corruption?

Corruption is a warping of your body caused by your proximity to the Chaos Gate. This effect can be accelerated by corruption traps and attacks from Chaos beings. When you've absorbed a sufficient amount of Chaos energy, it manifests itself in a Chaos power.

Chaos powers are sometimes helpful, although many of them have nasty side effects (like Poison Hands). However, if you become too badly corrupted, you mutate into a writhing mass of primal Chaos. Game over.


3.4.7: Okay, so corruption is a Bad Thing. How do I get rid of it, then?

Scrolls of chaos resistance help greatly here, and potions of cure corruption don't hurt, either. The potions can be earned from a certain authority in the Chain, while completing a certain quest will net you the reward of having all of your corruption removed - once. If you are lawful, reading a tract of order also helps a little bit, but apart from that, the gods cannot (or will not) remove corruption.


3.4.8: What use is a holy symbol?

Every time you use one, you become a tiny little bit closer to your god. It can also be used as a meter for whether your god likes you enough to help you or not.


3.4.9: How come standard Fireball spells don't hurt me, while a so-called Improved Fireball will hurt me if I'm in the blast radius?

Well, I hear that the extra incantations required to launch fireballs at a distance took up so much space in the spellbook that something had to go, so they decided to eliminate the incantation which shielded the caster from the fireball's effect...

Seriously, though, the "improvement" with an Improved Fireball is that you can indeed launch it away from yourself, and it does more damage. It was designed for distance work, not close-up work - that's what the regular Fireball is for.


3.4.10: What's the difference between a ring of fire and a ring of fire resistance?

Rings of fire resistance and cold resistance protect you. Rings of ice and fire protect your gear.


3.4.11: What exactly does a wand of ball lightning do? It sure doesn't shoot lightning balls!

This fires a standard lightning bolt in a random direction. Dangerous indoors.


3.4.12: When I cast a spell that lets me choose a target, how do I pick me? I'm tired of blessing everyone else!

When asked which direction, press either '5' or '.' to aim at the space you occupy. The same applies to the use of wands and several other tools.


Section 3.5: Way Beyond Basic

3.5.1a: What's all this fuss about pre/postcrowning?

Precrowning is the reward of a random artifact gift from your god, but it is only given under strict conditions:

- You must be "extremely close" to your god when sacrificing
- Your experience level must be above or equal to 8 + (3 * n), where n is the total number of artifacts generated by the game so far, including divine gifts and even ones you missed and never found
- Must not be cursed or doomed, including by worn equipment
- May not be of extreme alignment (L+, N=, C-), otherwise you'll get crowned instead! (see question 3.5.1b below)

If you satisfy these conditions and pray then your god will be nice and give you a random artifact. You will find that the artifact has just as good a chance of being useless to your character as it has of being useful.

Because of the restriction based on the number of artifacts generated most people like to do this early on in the game, as it becomes pretty much impossible later on. Typically players see an early altar in a busy area as being the best route to a precrown. With a convenient altar and no artifacts generated you can get a precrown as early as level 8. Neutral characters should be careful when vying for a precrown, as sacrificing draws them towards N= alignment. Normally you would get to the required level of piety, do something chaotic (or lawful) to move away from N=, and then pray.

Postcrowning is the same as precrowning, but after you are crowned. Typically this is harder because more artifacts have been generated, but it doesn't have any alignment restriction.

You can have multiple pre/postcrowns, but this becomes difficult because each one costs more piety (and thus more sacrifices) than the last one did, and each artifact generated pushes up the level requirement. There is also no guarantee that any artifact you generate will be of much use, so putting too much effort into this can be a big waste of time when you could be enjoying the game instead.


3.5.1b: What about crowning? Is that the same?

No, crowning is almost entirely separate. Crowning is a one-time only event, and is completely independent of character level or artifacts generated. To be crowned you must be "absolutely close" to your deity, not cursed or doomed, and be of L+, N= or C- alignment. You then pray and your god crowns you champion of your alignment, giving you a random artifact from a subset based on your class and race, a random elemental immunity (one you don't already have) and permanent Blessed status (like the Bless spell). Crowned characters can also equip more artifacts without it affecting their hunger rate.

Once crowned, if you deviate from your alignment (lawful, neutral or chaotic), you lose your crowned status and become a "fallen champion". This, of course, greatly angers your god, and they will let you know; though with devotion you can get back in their good graces. However, fallen champions can never be crowned again, not even under another alignment.


3.5.2: I'm trying to do the Kitty quest, and I killed something I shouldn't have, but I didn't get any bad warnings. Does that mean it doesn't count against me?

Let me make sure I understand this. You broke the rules of a quest and want to know if you can still succeed in the quest? The answer is no. Not getting an obvious message doesn't mean your Kitty Karma is unstained; it just means your character didn't notice the negative effects of their actions.


3.5.3: I think I've won, but I can't escape and finish! What's going on?

This is a twist that was introduced to make the ending a little more interesting for those using certain tactics. If you look carefully, the message didn't say you did succeed; rather, it appears you have succeeded. Perhaps someone is still alive who could undo your actions without too much difficulty. There is more than one way to resolve the endgame and escape.


3.5.4: I'm bored with this simple little game; how can I make it more interesting?

Okay, so this isn't a frequently asked question, but it's info that might make the game more fun or a little more challenging (if you like that sort of thing). Your self-imposed challenge can just be an arbitrary goal or limitation, or it can be a roleplaying restriction, playing a certain way to play a certain type of "character".

Roleplaying challenges: Try magic users that do not use weapons. Try fighters that do not use spells. Keep illiterate characters illiterate. Fighters without any magic use at all (including scrolls and wands). Keep monks from wielding any weapons. Arm trolls with logs or anvils instead of normal weapons. Have Hurthlings only eat baked/cooked goods (bread and cooked things). Always use gifts from your deity. Never shop. Never use money for any purpose. Never pray. Have your character go through the game naked.

Arbitrary goals: Finish the game in as few moves as possible. In as few game days. Play a vegetarian. Play a mute (no 'C'hatting at all - it is possible to win this way, just a little tricky). Never unwield your starting weapon - you can only replace it if it is destroyed in your hand. Self-limit your carrying capacity. Sacrifice everything you aren't wearing/wielding the first chance you get.


3.5.5: What are Ironman and Eternium man games?

These are specific challenge games where you never intend to save the world, just achieve certain very difficult goals. These can be good for quick and dirty games when you don't have the time to commit to anything too long. The basic idea is that you start by taking your character to a specific dungeon and accomplish something. The rough rules are below.

Ironman: Go immediately to the Infinite Dungeon. Your character must descend when the downstairs are spotted, although some allow you to finish any current battle and pick up loot in the room with the stairs. The goal is to get a certain artifact on a fairly deep level (you'll know it when you hit it) and resurface. The difficulties are several: the dungeon levels tend to get harder faster than you increase in experience levels; there are no special features generated in this dungeon, so there is little help from deities and none from shops; sometimes the stairs are on the other side of something you just aren't strong enough to deal with. This is possible (i.e. it has been done), but very difficult.

Eternium man: Go immediately to the Small Cave and stay there until you reach experience level 50. This is extremely difficult since the monster generation there is intended to be outrageous. No leaving the level at all unless you're dead or at level 50. Some have claimed to live into the teens of levels, but to my knowledge the challenge has only been completed a handful of times, and never in the latest version.

For more information about these and other challenge games, check Andy Williams' challenge game page and The ADOM Domain. These links are possibly spoily as certain very specific game mechanics are discussed.


3.5.6: I keep hearing about a Chaos God ending or Ultra endings; what are people talking about?

There are specific quests assigned by some shady characters that will get you going down this path. You will need to find certain locations that are not needed for a normal win. Note that most who have attempted it agree that this ending is much more difficult than the traditional ending.


3.5.7: Has the Red Rooster thingy or the Scroll of Omnipotence been implemented yet?

The Trident of the Red Rooster has been implemented and is accessible. As for the Scroll of Omnipotence and the Red Rooster Inn, nobody but Thomas knows. Solve either of these two puzzles and your name will go down in history forever!


3.5.8: How do I get past the eternal guardian?

Talk to the mad minstrel, he will give you some clues about a mysterious ring of the ancients buried somewhere in one of the distant dungeons.


© Copyright 1996-2013 by Thomas Biskup, Erwin Mascardo, Richard Fowler, Steve Zhang, Malte Helmert and Léon Planken. This FAQ may be freely distributed as long as this and the following copyright messages are distributed with it. Karmic creatures are exempted from this restriction.


ADOM is © Copyright 1994-2013 by Thomas Biskup. All rights reserved.