General Tips and Tricks
First, Escape Options
You don’t need to kill every enemy you run into. Eventually you will run into something that your current build just can not kill or survive well, and having multiple gtfo options ready is incredibly valuable. Movespeed infusion, Blink rune, jump talents from items, and many classes have build in escape options as well.
It’s often also a good idea to run away and hide/rest behind a wall in order to reset some of your cooldowns. Taking on an opponent with fresh skills is usually better than trying to bump it to death, even if the enemy you’re fighting also recovers while you’re trying to hide.
With more experience you’ll be able to tell exactly when it’s time to run or keep fighting. Until then I recommend to err on the side of caution and run away often, at the earliest sign of danger.
The game has a number of talents that allow you to scout ahead, such as Track or Arcane Eye. Knowing where enemies are before they see you can be incredibly valuable and allows you to engage enemies on your own terms. Unfortunately there’s also a fair amount of tedium involved with proper scouting. Auto-explore is a convenient tool almost everybody uses, but it doesn’t allow you to scout ahead. Putting Track on auto-use while auto-exploring doesn’t really help much either.
However, there are plenty of times where you can still use Track without it really taking away from the speed of auto-explore. At the start of a new floor, or right after combat for example. Try to Track near large open spaces if you can. Nothing more dangerous than running into a big room and be greeted by 5 rares or worse. It’s perfectly possible to play most of the game using just auto-explore (even on insane difficulty), but it requires you to build tanky enough to survive some initial hits and the ability to gtfo fast if things go south.
Learning where to go first, where to go next, and where to avoid is important. Everybody has their own preferences so nobody ends up doing it the same way, but developing an idea of where to go next so you’re least likely to die is important. Places like the Egress Portal with the default code you get upon entry are widely considered a no-go for example (too random to properly prepare for early on, leading to deadly bosses).
My personal zone order is as follows:
- Race/class starter dungeons (if any), then Trollmire, Kor’pul, Norgos, Rhaloren, Scint Caves, Heart of the Gloom, Maze/Sandworm Lair, Old Forest/Daikara, Slave compound, Hidden Tunnels, Tempest Peak, Halfling Ruins, Dreadfell.
That covers my first half of the game. I may swap places around a little depending on alternate layouts or nasty enemies blocking the way. I often skip Spellblaze, Lake of Nur and Last Hope Graveyard. Other places I may do if I feel like them, but not before lvl 25+.
The thing that will kill you the most is not hard-hitting enemies, it’s debuffs. A single Wild infusion that clears one type of debuff is not going to be enough beyond the early game. You’ll need a Shatter Afflictions or later a dual type Wild (or more than 1 of them). Physical and Mental debuffs are the most dangerous ones, while Magical debuffs are usually just annoying. You will also want Immunities you find on equipment and talents. Stun immunity is the big important one, closely followed by Confusion. Silence Immunity if you’re a mage and Disarm immunity if you’re a weapon class are also quite valuable.
At the same time, using your debuffs on the enemies is also important. Know which ones your class has available and what they do. For example, if you’re a zerker and you’re not constantly stunning and confusing potential threats, you’re not using your full potential.
Consider checking out the Acid Wave and Biting Gale runes. Instant aoe disarm and aoe freeze are great crowd control. Much more valuable than a Healing, Regen, or Shielding in most cases.
Stores in town get new stock added on top of their existing stock every 10 lvls. Checking them out regularly for inscription upgrades can help a ton. Or maybe you don’t have a health lamp yet early game, Derth might have one. If you got at least 200 spare gold, consider checking out the ring store in Angolwen. It’ll often have life/stun res rings and if not you can try your hand at crafting one. Sometimes you end up with crap, other times you end up with a very nice ring or 2. There is no other early game gold sink, so if you already got decent inscription upgrades, go for it.
Try Out Different Classes
The most dangerous enemies have 1 or multiple classes. The best way to learn what enemies are capable of is by playing those classes yourself. Seeing a Solipsist or Psyshot means that you may get hit with Inner Demons and be put to sleep. Seeing shadows means a Doomed is nearby. Seeing a Corruptor means you’ll likely get hit with powerful Blight attacks and get taken to the Fearscape. Seeing a Rogue means you’re likely to get poisoned and take a Fan of Knives to the face. Stuff like that.