SavageFantastic the Slayer (level 27, 196/196 (197) HPs)
  Began as a Kobold Artificer on June 23, 2018.
  Was the Champion of Dithmenos.
  Escaped with the Orb
  ... and 3 runes!

The game lasted 03:57:47 (101509 turns).

This Kobold Artificer of Dithmenos was fun. I won my first Artificer. I was sneaky. I wore three separate armours! I had acceptance around an early mutation. I used Blade Hands and Unarmed Combat. I used quicksilver dragon scales for the first time. I made a mature decision to leave a Ziggurat early again. I trained invocations just in time for Dithmenos to save my life.

I poked through the early dungeon playing the Artificer background as expected -- clearing most mobs with my short sword and using the wands to soften more powerful enemies, such as adders and ogres. FloorGod was stingy with additional evocables until Depths, but I still enjoyed playing Artificer as a very unique and actually quite strong background, laser-focused on early game survival.

I [again] neglected my official habit of read-identifying my identification scrolls and using them to ID my high stacked potions on D:4, and quickly got into trouble with a Sky Beast. I quaff-identified a lucky potion of berserk rage and left that fight with 3 hit points. From there, I proceeded more carefully and found an altar to Dithmenos. I had recently won a CeHu^Dith on my practice account (first Dith win) and was happy to worship the god again.

I danced through Lair with a venom rapier and a homemade +4 troll leather armour, but in the late dungeon I ran across multiple undeads that I could not budge with my short blade. In retrospect, I should have used my many available enchant weapon scrolls on the rapier, rather than waiting on something better; although the undead were impervious to the poison brand, the real weakness in that situation was simply a weapon that did very little damage on its own. I could have later used a scroll of branding to convert my +9 rapier of venom to something more useful for the mid-game. As it happened, I obtained a rapier of electrocution from a scroll of acquirement and used my scrolls of enchant weapon on that.

FloorGod refused to drop me a fancy weapon before Vaults, and I would not crossbow because I was roleplay-committed to an artifact buckler I'd found earlier, but I discovered Blade Hands in my spell book and eagerly chose that for an end-game weapon.

The story of Swamp and Snake Pit is one of playing with great care and finding the limits of melee in troll leather armour, and then in swamp dragon scales. When playing carefully, only a guardian serpent and its "Blink Allies Encircling" presented an honest threat, but with aggressive tabbing I often found my hit points plummetting into the danger zone.

At some point in the descent, my house went to sleep IRL and I began to play as quietly as possible, making almost no commentary into the videos. It was very fun to play a stealthy character while being real-life stealthy!

Through Depths, I continued to be squishier than I would have preferred, but by now Blade Hands was online and I was having too much fun to much notice. Eventually I found quicksilver dragon scales, and was happy to see that my armour training made them still more AC effective than my +5 swamp dragon scales. After Depths:$, I cleared some safe early floors of a Ziggurat and found the delicious +2 hat of the Bear Spirit {Spirit, +Rage rN+ MR++}. I had full pips of both MR and Stealth after that!

I did Vaults:$ with the scroll of teleport strategy, and my very first teleport landed me in a perfect position to stab two sleeping enemies and then get my bearings. After that, the entire clear was bizarrely easy -- especially considering my harrowing mid-game.

In early Zot I stabbed an Orb of Fire! Good golly was that satisfying. After that, Zot was Zot, and Blade Hands was DAMAGE. There are almost certainly better end-game killdudes, likely involving more range or more armor, but Blade Hands must be the highest single target damage in the game.

My three big lessons from this game are that 1) heavier armour really is that good, 2) Dithmenos amps up stealth big big big time, and 3) bad guys frequently wake up no matter how stealthy you are. I would like to try Dithmenos with a heavy armour user, as I have a feeling the stealth score will still be multiple pips even untrained.