So, you’ve just beaten the nefarious Naughty Sorceress for the first time. Congrats! As a slayer of the evil one, you’re probably asking yourself, what do I do now? I wish to become a truly 1337 KoLer! I, better known as FrolSkobeev, have some suggestions from my many ascensions of KoL. Now, I’m assuming a couple of things; first, that you’re going to do hardcore ascensions (hence the title). Second, that you want to stay hardcore until you’ve gotten all you can from the hardcore rewards. Third, that you will eventually drop to normal (although this is not required; I haven’t done it yet in 10 ascensions, and I want a few more hardcore runs before I do.) This guide will help you with two things: perming skills and choosing which classes will get you the most bang for the buck. The way I’ve done things (or would have, ideally), I did five Oxycore runs along with four hardcore runs (some pathed, some not). I’ll show you what I did and I would do differently.
1st Hardcore Ascension (Oxy): Turtle Tamer. Skill: Amphibian Sympathy.
This was the right move. A permanent +5 bonus to familiar weight just can’t be topped; it’s arguably the single most important skill in the game. Also got the plexiglass pith helmet; the helmet is nice (especially the bonus to fam weight), but the skill was the real reason I went TT first.
2nd Hardcore Ascension (Teetotaler): Seal Clubber. Skill: Lunging Thrust Smack.
This is a mistake, post NS-13, but a good idea at the time. Note that I never have (and never will) do an oxycore seal clubber run; the plexiglass pike is a piece of crap. The shillelagh is far better; this is part of the reason I did two seal clubber runs back to back. It’s a mistake because LTS + Eye of Stoat no longer hits at 100% after NS-13. I’d still do the two clubber runs, but I’d go for Pulverize here…
3rd Hardcore Ascension: Seal Clubber. Skill: Eye of the Stoat.
and Double-Fisted Skull Smashing here. LTS + EoS is still useful, just not as useful. Clubber run two would have been a lower priority.
4th Hardcore Ascension (Boozetafarian): Turtle Tamer. Skill: Wisdom of the Elder Tortoises.
I’ve made worse decisions; however, in the grand scheme of things, I chose the wrong time to make a second TT run AND the wrong TT skill. The bonus to MP made my next two runs marginally easier; Empathy of the Newt would have made them astronomically easier. I think this would have been more useful after the two mage runs.
5th Hardcore Ascension (Oxy): Sauceror. Skill: Advanced Saucecrafting.
I would definitely have bumped this one up, probably as high as third, maybe even second. Advanced Saucecrafting is just so insanely useful, especially with reagent potions, that it’s borderline criminal. With Transcendental Noodlecraft, you’re set for life…
6th Hardcore Ascension (Oxy): Pastamancer. Skill: Leash of Linguini.
So why didn’t I take it here? Because I had two more oxy runs; LoL is more universally useful. I had to think about it, but it was the right move in the end. This would have been fourth.
7th Hardcore Ascension (Oxy): Disco Bandit. Skill: Mad Looting Skillz.
Again, Superhuman Cocktailcrafting was less useful when I still had another oxy run to do. A permanent 20% bonus to item drops is nothing to sneeze at. I did DB first because I thought the sorceress would be harder with an Accordion Thief; I could have switched the two without changing much (although my AT run was easily my shortest run; 1,171 turns over a month. #2 was the second TT run, at 1,742 turns. Fewest days was the second clubber run, at 25, but it took twice as many turns.)
8th Hardcore Ascension (Oxy): Accordion Thief. Skill: Moxious Madrigal.
This was one of the few times I didn’t know which I was going to take before I started. I was torn between the Fat Loot Lyric and MM. In the end, I couldn’t pass up a ridiculously cheap +10 moxie bonus, although sometimes I wish I still had a +25% item drop rate. I was surprised how quickly this went.
9th Hardcore Ascension: Seal Clubber. Skill: Pulverize.
I would never have done three SC runs if I didn’t miss Pulverize the first time around. This is the only run I would have gotten rid of.
10th (and current) Hardcore Ascension (Teetotaler): Pastamancer. Skill: Will be Transcendental Noodlecraft.
I would have bumped this up a place and started a Disco Bandit run instead for Advanced Cocktailcrafting. I’m done with oxy for the moment, although I might make the DB run one that will get me to Bad Moon.
So here’s how I would have changed.
TT Oxy: Amph. Symp.
S Oxy: Adv. Sauc.
PM Oxy: LoL
DB Oxy: MLS
AT Oxy: MM
DB (current): ACC
That’s how I’d do my first 10 ascensions; all the skills are useful for all hardcore ascensions. The last three can be moved around, if you like. If you don’t want to do oxy, TN is more important than LoL, and PM should be the run right after Sauceror. Those are my top 10 overall skills. Any questions? Message me on KoL.