What to choose: Resists or constitution?

Best practices and optimistic theories.
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Crystal Ooze
Posts: 373
Joined: Sat 15.09.2007, 18:42

What to choose: Resists or constitution?

Post by serina » Wed 01.05.2013, 14:25

I see alot of people dying recently diving beneath 2k feet with less than 400 HP, which is extremely suicidal even if you resist everything. Thought I'd offer a few coppers of knowledge and even bring a spoiler. So here goes.






My conclusion is this: You need resist acid, cold, fire, lightning and poison. Res Blind/Confusion can be extremely important for making sure you can activate your "escapes" immediatly. I definately get those before maxing CON, but I know others who don't. After these crucial resists, getting 18/200 CON is MUCH more helpful. My conclusion is based on what's written below:

CON above 18/200 doesn't give more HP, but the closer to 18/200 you get, the more HP you get. Having 18/180 vs having 18/200 = 2.5HP per lvl of your character. So for an average mid-game char lvl 35 = 87.5 HP, which is ALOT.

The major damage below 2k feet comes from breath attacks. Some nasty monsters have high-damage spells (most resists won't help here). In addition some are very rough meleers (resists won't help much here),

Below is a chart on how resistances work.

Studying this chart, it becomes quite clear that you NEED basic resists, acid, cold, fire, lightning. 1600 damage kills anyone - no matter class/CON.
In addition, poison breaths can heal as much as 800 damage without resistance, so you'll want that.
You still take 1/3 damage from these attacks = that 1 fire breath from a biggie still deals 533 damage. This means that any standard wyrm can kill you in one breath if you have less HP than 533.
With double resistances (item and spell), you only take 1/9th damage, which makes the late basic-resist breathers WAY easier, but also signals the importance of having double-resists activated when fighting the meanies.

Then there are those resists that give you 6/(6+1d6) damage with resistance. Chaos, disenchantment, nether, nexus, shards... (Side comment: Oh is this most of what the balance DSM offers?). These breaths you can take 6/7th of the damage even with resistance.

Chaos is the meanest, as that has a maximum damage of 600. So a bad luck resisted chaos breath from a monster with 3600+HP = (600*6)/7 damage = 514. IF you have bad luck and below 514 HP, you can die in 1 breath. Yep. 2 bad luck chaos breaths is all it takes to finish off even the most sturdy mid-lvl characters.

Consider how hard it is to max all the resists in order to be safe compared to how easy it is to max CON in order to be safe. Maxing CON for me is the way to go. Universal protection rather than protection against some breaths, but certain 1-hit death vs. other breaths.

Damage Max Damage taken
Damage Type Done with resistance Side effects
acid HP/3 1600 1/3 acid Standard acid damage
chaos HP/6 600 6/(6+1d6) none Confuse[9+1d20], other
confusion * HP/6 400 5/(6+1d6) none Confuse[10+1d20]
darkness HP/6 400 4/(6+1d6) none Blind[2+1d5] **
disenchantment HP/6 500 6/(6+1d6) none other
fire HP/3 1600 1/3 fire Standard fire damage
force HP/6 200 Full cold Stun[1d20]
frost HP/3 1600 1/3 cold Standard cold damage
gravity HP/3 200 Full none Stun[1d(5+D/3) max 1d35], Slow![3+1d4], other
inertia HP/6 200 Full none Slow![3+1d4]
light HP/6 400 4/(6+1d6) none Blind[2+1d5] **
lightning HP/3 1600 1/3 elec. Standard elec. damage
nether HP/6 550 6/(6+1d6) none other
nexus HP/3 250 6/(6+1d6) none other
plasma HP/6 150 Full fire/elec. Stun[1d(5+3D/4) max 1d35]
poison HP/3 800 1/3 none Standard poison damage
shards HP/6 400 6/(6+1d6) cold Cut[D]
sound HP/6 400 5/(6+1d6) cold Stun[1d(5+3D/4) max 1d35]
time HP/3 150 Full none other

Hope som of this was useful to the mid/high-lvls who die to "bad luck".

EDIT: Check out the list in a better format here (you need to scroll down a bit more than half-way:

Last edited by serina on Fri 03.05.2013, 22:42, edited 1 time in total.

Posts: 1574
Joined: Sun 27.11.2005, 15:57

Re: What to choose: Resists or constitution?

Post by PowerWyrm » Thu 02.05.2013, 12:00

High resists are pointless in this game, because they offer too little protection, except to avoid the side effects of attacks. Mainly:
- blind/confusion: required to activate your escapes; a MUST HAVE
- nexus: avoids body scramble (you don't want your warrior to end up with 3 STR and 18/*** CHR); pointless once you have max stats
- chaos/nether: avoids xp drain; pointless if you have hold life
- shards: avoids cuts; pointless (a plain CSW fixes that)
- sound: avoids being knocked out; a MUST HAVE
- disenchantment: avoids AC damage on worn objects; up to you, but remember that high level enemies HIT to disenchant and could wipe all those nice tohit/todam/toac bonuses
- light/dark: pointless if you have resist blindness

I didn't mention resist poison, because even if it's listed as a high resist, it is actually an elemental resist which can be double resisted and does enough damage to kill you if you don't have it at all. So get it as you would do for the base ones.

So yes, the rule of thumb is: if you dive below 2k, you should have resist base, poison, blind, confusion and 18/200 con; get sound/disenchantment if you can; if you cannot max your con naturally, then remove those rings of speed and use rings of con instead! Remember that a Great Crystal Drake (2100ft) can breathe shards for 400 damage, and a dracolich (2750ft) can breathe nether for 600 damage. So keep in mind those numbers to see how deep you can dive (remember that some monsters can SUMMON those, even if you try to avoid them).

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