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immortalwombat
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Sep 6 2006 03:11pm
Ladder slashing: the final frontier

First of all awesome game from njaguar I appreciate the time and effort u put into it and are still putting into it to make it better every day.

The basics:

Ladder slasher is a text based rpg created by the loved and adored njaguar of d2jsp. It is a simplistic turn based game created to pass time when other things just aint happening. The game has no real storyline or plot but it relays all the classic elements of an rpg in gaining experience to level fighting ferocious monsters like hairsplitter the obnoxious and the dreaded nailtrimmer and finding items with an array of possible stats and abilitys to keep you building different chars long after you’ve completed the trek to level 61 and the elusive master quest.

When u first start you must choose a character as is usually the first choice in an rpg u have 2 major choices…melee or magic. In this particular game there are three different characters geared towards melee the rogue, the fighter, and the barbarian. There is only one character geared towards magic and that is the mage, however all characters CAN be made into a type of magic or melee user each character has a main statistic higher than the others in order to make them more appealing to specific builders. In addition each character type is limited by the types of equipment they can wear throughout the game some items which u find may be entirely useless to your own character but quite useful to a friend or a random person in which case u can use a feature I will talk about later called the market place (mp).

When first starting the game you may want to choose a specific char with stats complementary to what u want to raise for a majority of the game.


FIGHTER:
For people who want a melee char but aren’t sure of what they want to make I would suggest trying the fighter, it tends to have a fairly balanced initial statistic setup for any way you want to build him. The fighter starts out with 50 points in strength 40 in dexterity 10 in intelligence and 50 in vitality. Which means he doesn’t tend to lack anything from the get go and can use a wide variety of stat boosting equipment you may find throughout your gameplay. The fighter is only able to equip axes swords or clubs, however they have the ability to wear any type of armor which can be nice when trying to find the right mods on a particular piece of equipment. This character can essentially go any way you want it to however its low intelligence makes it a sub-par magician and its average statistics make it too well rounded to really focus on any one particular stat and have it surpass any other characters ability, a good idea with the fighter when first starting out is to play around with stats find out what u like, fighters are a good build for testing the waters.

BARBARIAN:
Anyone who has played an rpg knows that the very word barbarian conjures up a tank massively strong with the ability to endure for a long while but usually having a weakness to long range or magical attacks. Well that’s the barbarian here too, an as you might suspect the barbarian specializes in the same two areas as most barbarians from other games strength and life. The barbarian starts out with a whopping 60 strength AND 60 vitality however it comes at a price, the barbarian has extremely low dexterity and intelligence. This tends to mean that most barbs will get eaten alive by magic monsters and in most cases will not be the first ones to hit in battle. The barb can be a great powerhouse to either deal damage or take it like a man. They can also be a nice mixture of strength and life leaving them to be able to take and dish out on a regular basis.
The barbarians are restricted to the same equipment as a fighter axes clubs and swords, and like the fighter can wear any armor.

ROGUE:
Now it might seem odd in the scheme of things but in this game the rogue is the real powerhouse. If you want 1 hit kills with an easy build and a very conveniently exploitable power, then u want a rogue. Why is a rogue so powerful? Because they start out with 60 dexterity and although their other stats take a plummet from there why worry about that when dexterity takes care of damage speed and helps you hit more! Add on top of that the fact that rogues are free to use ANY and all weapons found in the game u have a character that can get by easily with minimal work. The downfall of the rogue is in the armor, not only can they only wear medium and light armors such as armors ending in the word “armor” or “robe”, when the occasion happens that the rogue doesn’t strike first or doesn’t do enough damage quick enough they can be ripped apart but just about anything, decent intelligence for not being a main skill is nice for a little defense against magic but none the less they cant take much in the way of hits. The dexterity build of a rogue is by all means not the only way to build a rogue, but if u want to get to the master quest quickly and efficiently without much work, this is the character for you.
however at higher levels their defenses become atrocious leading many to want more hp, in which case the best time to put into vitality is before u level at all. But if u can find enough damage on a weapon the critical can make short work of most enemies.

MAGICIAN
Magicians are obviously skilled in magic, it is their primary stat and their primary use to be magicians. Unlike other characters whose “weapon” will be their attack the mages rely on “charms” to do their damage and weapons are more of a support to the charms however the weapons can be used to attack usually if u have run out of magic or are very close to having killed the monster you are facing. Magician start out with decent dexterity of 50 and it is definitely a nice stat to have as it increases the mages chance of hitting first, however that’s all it does and can be bothersome to increase because it has little affect on mages unless they chose to use melee attacks. They start out with high intelligence which tends to be their primary stat throughout leveling, and their atrocious 20 vitality and 20 strength make them fairly useless for anything else. Life will most likely be a large problem with mages, although magic hits constantly it can be extremely depleting on your magic especially if you have spent forum gold on a spell beyond your level. You might think that magic shouldn’t be a problem if you stick with intelligence to increase mage damage but due to high costs of stronger spells magic depletion is very common and in some cases mages take more damage to their mana in a battle than their health. Magic is more consistant than melee damage because it doesn’t require dexterity to hit regularly, however some mods such as leech life don’t tend to work, as to whether critical hits work with magic it is somewhat uncertain it appears dex has little to no affect upon a mages critical damage however + critical items may…either way mages regularly hit outside their “range” of possible damage. If u wish to use a mage you should know that patience is needed as they have to regenerate both life and magic however items can come with both life regen and magic regen which in the end could make a mage quicker than most in regeneration. Mages defense tends to be very low however as they can only wear light armors with the word “robe” at the end of the name all of which have a base minimum defense of 0. mages are also very restricted on weapons as they can only use daggers or staves, and unlike other characters whose charms can afford to be low damage mages rely on the magic damage from charms to keep them killing monsters up till the MQ.

Now you have chosen your character you are ready to begin the game. But wait, not only do you have 10 stat points to distribute beyond your initial stats you also have forum gold u may wanna spend in the market place to make your leveling faster. So what should you do first? And how do you do it?

Stat allocation:

You start out with ten stat points which u could save but y? it wont help u to save up stats in this game. But what do these stat points do?

You can either go here for a more complete listing of some stats other than your main 4 or you can just follow the posting below from the topic

(courtesy of njaguars sticky on game mechanics http://forums.d2jsp.org/index.php?showtopic=3770403&f=272 )

Strength:
- Increases physical damage (weapons)

Strength is great for melee chars if u wanna get a nice jump on damage however u can add strength at any time throughout your leveling if u need it and these first ten stats can make or break most characters ability to be decent at higher levels

Dexterity:
- Increases speed and chances to strike first during each combat round
- Increases chances of delivering a critical strike
- Increases damage done when a critical strike occurs

Great if you want to blow through your first few levels and get more stats and higher level requirement equipment but I would only go with this like strength for my first 10 if you already have your gear ready and it is very good.

Intelligence:
- Adds to Max Magic at level up
- Increases offensive damage of spells (charms)
- Increases defensive vs. spells cast at you (hidden value, not shown)
- Items that give +Intelligence do not increase your Magic Points!

As this adds to your magic at level up it is a great stat to put some of your first points into IF you plan on using magic, if not don’t waste your time here but if u do adding points into this stat early on is much better than waiting till later as the magic will accrue as you level more and more

Vitality:
- Adds to Max Life at level up
- Increases defensive properties of armor
- Items that give +Vitality do not increase your Life Points!

Similar to intelligence this increases your life as you level great first stat to use and I recommend unless u already have equipment or know you can afford some later on to put your first ten points into vitality with any character, as later levels you will really enjoy the 600 life point boost.

(all u need to do to add your points is click on the desired stats red + icon)

you will notice if you have any items in your inventory that they have a red + icon as well and a blue – icon, these icons allow u to use or discard w/e item they are in front of and like most other mouse buttons u can put your cursor over them to see what they do (for example if u place your cursor over the + it will say “equip”)

Now you’ve put your stat points in but u wanna see what there is in store before really getting into the game right? Well at the side of your screen are 6 main options 4 of which u will most likely visit on a regular basis. These options are as follows….

Enter the market place

Ye ole market place is pretty much the nickel ads, a giant viewing of everyone’s for sale items and their prices that you can search through at any time sometimes u can get great deals on really good items for your character, and sometimes u may have to pay through the nose. While other times u can try your luck by buying items to transmute in the cube which I will explain more about later. The downside of such a great place, u have to use actual forum gold to buy the equipment if you want it. And if u don’t have forum gold well then u will be hard pressed to find your own items or make some fast.

When u first click on the enter market place link u may notice next to any items in your inventory with a prefix in front of them (magical – unique) will obtain a slanted arrow icon, if u click this icon u may paste your item for sale on the market. But beware! The market takes its share 5% of the price u place the item for will be deducted from the total price and if you place an item on the market for 20 or more you will have to pay the cost upfront. Also keep in mind that someone must buy your item from the market place for you to get money, it is not a store to sell and buy from a “bank” type system. It is merely a classifieds ad showing your item to potential customers, much like a pawn shop u will receive nothing until someone has bought your item. The on screen instructions are fairly simple to figure out how to sell your items just follow them u will need your fg password if u have one on a regular basis to buy or sell items.

You want to find items right? So your character can level quickly, well just click the perform market search button and watch it unfold. There’s TONS to search for here u can choose if u want weapons armor or charms (the three types of equipment in the game) what level requirements they must meet how much fg they cost and up to 3 stats they could have! You can make your search as broad or as defined as you want. When u search u can find helpful links at the top and bottom of the search results to take u back to the main menu or search for something different, also links to other pages if there are lots of items falling under your search topic. To buy an item all you have to do is click on the little red + sign and ok it and put in your password and poof the item is in your inventory and your fg is sent to the other person just like that!

Exit back out to the main menu using one of the links and you will find yourself in a familiar place. Click on the enter market place icon again and u will notice another link to manage your items if you click on it u probably wont see anything but when u go to sell items this is where they are saved in case u forget. You can lower prices every 3 hours on an item and you can remove items after 24 hours of inactivity. Many people tend to make a lot of money using this market place in conjunction with the d2jsp ladder slasher trade forum.

Enter the combat arena

The second link leads u to the place where pretty much everyone will spend most of their time the combat arena! This is where u level up and fight monsters and the second place where items can be obtained, u don’t HAVE to spend fg to get items u can fight a lot of monsters and get items tho the chances of finding good items is low so its not the best idea to depend on.

You can choose the level of the monster you wish to fight, being level one u cant choose any higher level monsters or lower level monsters but later you can choose which u want to fight, lower level monsters will give u reduced experience points, and it takes 1million experience points to level once, the entire goal of the game is to reach level 61 and take the master quest. So this is where a lot of your time will be spent. There are also player vs player option u can do if you wish or aren’t good at leveling. You can choose from reading a list of available pvp requests or u can make your own to begin you simply click the red + and when the fight appears just like a monster you attack, however unlike a monster the battles are real time not turn based so u have to click immediately as fast as you can or you wont be alive long enough to tell about it.
immortalwombat
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Sep 6 2006 03:12pm
second half:

The transmutation box

You may recognize the name from d2 but the transmutation box is much more interesting here you don’t need to find a whole array of floofy crappy items like in Diablo 2 to make something and have it turn up bad every time here you, unfortunately that makes it all the more addicting when u start. The transmutation box lets u take two of the same base items with a value greater than normal and merge them into one item in order to make a new item with hopefully better mods. I suggest not wasting items on transmutation until lvl 30 + when u can obtain charms with 30 to dex and beyond (which is very helpful to most meleers) or high stat items period. A personal strategy I enjoy is getting a mage up to lvl 35 because they tend to level fast till then and then use them as a transmuted for your lower leveled characters, however this employs a strategy of transferring items which is quite risky.

Approach the shrine of Mu’rakar

Mu’rakar? Ftw? Anyways this is basically your healing potions for the entire game, if u don’t wanna wait on regening mana or life come here with spare items and toss them in using the same technique as marketing an item. This will tend to heal you a decent amount if you put in a decent item, however decent items may be better spent on the market to gain fg and buy regen increasing items to switch onto your character when u are outside of battle.

Approach the well of malevolence

Ooooh sounds…malevolent… anyways this shrine is a great new extention to the game it allows those of us who are finding crappy items that have no regular use at all to send them away in order to possibly find a GREAT item. However these monsters will most likely be beyond your level unless you are packing some good items for your level or you roll a really weak monster tongue.gif. these monsters are very hard don’t expect to beat them unless your having literally no trouble with monsters your own level, u could get lucky, but most likely not. A good strategy for implementing against these monsters is high damage reduction either the mod on equipment or massive vitality (preferably by a nice barb) to help u manage the attacks of these monsters.

Complete the master level quest (available at lvl 61)

As many people have completed this quest and still many haven’t announced what it is I will NOT be giving any spoilers. Simply know that it’s a good quest it’s a hard quest and it’s a fun addition to the game, one I hope to enjoy again soon. If you fail this quest your character will be rerolled to level 1 but your equip remains in your inventory for you to level back up quickly or to sell to create a new one. If you win this quest you will unlock a new char however your old char will be rerolled to level one anyways and if u decide to use the new char your other character will be replaced by that new character unlocked, upon completion of the master quest for the first time EVERY character will get a samurai unlocked. It is NOT a character upgrade based on your class chosen at first.

View ladder rankings/view pvp ladder

These are lists of the top 50 people in experience in the game or the top in player versus player win match points. Both the total experience of these characters or the pvp points are shown as well as the characters levels in the ladders. Its nice to see how u compare to others and compete to win first J.

Forum gold costs/equipping

Now you are ready to begin leveling monsters your own level is often the best bet even if you cant kill them they give from about 10k exp (rare low) to around 55k exp (rare high) and you need 1 million exp per level so get ready to fight a lot of monsters even if your equipment is very good, if there is equipment on the market buy it cheaply but don’t waste lots of fg on items that will only be helping you for 5-10 levels. I wouldn’t spend more than 5 fg on any one particular item unless it was VERY useful to my characters build type. If you find yourself dying a lot most likely you need vitality to increase your life. On weapons you will be looking for cheap items with decent stats OR simply high damage items at lower levels, they can get you easily through your levels, if there’s little on the market you may have to rely on fighting well monsters or low level transmutes. As for armors defense only becomes REALLY affective during later battles in the 30’s or so, so go for whatever has good stats towards damage or life, also a good strategy is keeping regen items on switch. The benefit of forum gold buys is speed, if you are searching for your items the items you find tend to drop 10 levels below your own (for an example u most likely at best will find a lvl 20 sword with a lvl 30 char). That tends to be the main reason that buying items is affective, but beyond a certain level items just don’t do that much of an advantage (the highest level req is 45 and that’s almost 20 levels below the level goal ur sposed to reach).

Leveling strategies

These battles can go two ways, one way is to assume you will find godly equipment to damage the foe before taking enough damage to kill you and focusing PURELY on damage and not defenses etc. this tends to be a nice way to climb the ladder quickly but at around 1-2k fg expense, which most people aren’t willing to take or cant take. The second strategy is to pump lots of points into vitality, it doesn’t matter how much damage you do if you cant die, and with around 100 vitality you should have no problem with taking damage as even level 57 monsters tend to do only 30 hp on an average hit (beware of criticals or possible defense striking attacks mostly from boss type well monsters). The cost to your damage is obviously atrocious and u wont kill things fast by any means, however you will be able to consistently gain experience whereas with the damage build you may find that eventually even your massive damage isn’t enough to keep you from getting killed regularly, however don’t be discouraged if you die because pretty much everyone dies once or twice and most of the higher levels have died 50+ myself I did well and had over 250 deaths by lvl 61! However if u do die try to not die at higher amounts of experience because you will loose 10% of however much exp you have accumulated since your last level (at 900k exp 100 away from level you would loose 90k setting you back to 190k from level which is 3+ monster battles and can take a lot of time to replenish). Running is not a crime so feel free to use the option whenever necessary, if you have 1800 hp and the monster hits you for 800 on the first hit, get out you aint gonna beat him most likely, however if the hit is 300 or so don’t go running it could just be a fluke and he does low damage the rest of the round. Focus on the halfway point whatever you halfway hp point is from the time u start the battle you should not continue it if they do more damage at the halfway point than you have done to them at the halfway point. However, when u have just leveled it is a good strategy to test your limits in every battle, the monsters are stronger every level and you may need to focus your first few minutes in a level figuring out the statistics of the average monster how much damage they do to u and u to them, and if u die with low exp gain you loose less, often you can gain more exp quicker by using this strategy for your first 500k exp beyond that you loose too much exp for dying to be worth it.

Finding equipment/buying equipment/getting frusterated

This game was not meant to be completed in a day, although some have attempted to accomplish this feat quite effectively. So don’t expect your amazing ability to blow through all enemies at level one to carry you all the way to level 61, cus it just wont happen unless someone has found a godly weapon AND you have enough fg to buy it with and are willing to waste that much on such a game. First of all this game is NOT entirely about equipment, although many tend to believe and follow that ideal I find often that a single stat can make your char able to beat monsters even without good equip, and that statistic is vitality. It increases your life AND makes you take less damage. If you don’t expect to find great amazing items throughout your questing and such then you should pump a lot into vitality it will keep you alive long enough that your damage will be able to kill monsters no matter how much you do (within reason), I know this because my lvl 61 mage was able to kill monsters and advance regularly but not quickly with a charm that barely ever hit 200 damage which is fairly ridiculous at that level, however my vitality and life adds (mostly combat per round hp) helped me to survive, as well as the ability to run from monsters. I truly suggest making a mage till 35 if your not having luck purely to transmute items for a lower level character and take off leveling like crazy. Chances are you will have little problem and little cost using this strategy.

Builds

Heres a few of my personal favorite builds that seem to be affective in their own rights for different reasons.

The tank

This barbarian is extremely simple to build and has absolutely NO dependence upon equipment, what is the drawback? You will kill slowly but consistently. If you have low forum gold I would TOTALLY suggest this build. Just pump all points into vitality, and try your best to find a high defense armor, if the armor has good defense keep it and use it, since barbs can wear the highest defense armors in the game AND have the highest life base possible in the beginning barbarians are great for the defensive bonuses of not only having more life but taking massively less damage, your weapon may fall short from time to time in damage but you may be able to pump some points into dex in order to hit criticals more often instead of relying on a good weapon, kills wont be fast, but your vitality and defenses should suffice to keep you alive to kill monsters well into the high 50’s.

The assassin

The assassin is a one hit killer fast lethal and destructive, the drawback? Low defenses and very dependant upon a high damage weapon to drive critical hits up, this character is a rogue type. Since rogues have such high dexterity they are great for this build and will make the most use of it, it doesn’t hurt that they can wear all types of weapons. This char with a good weapon has been known to do 2000 damage in a single turn with a high damage weapon which is well beyond ANY beginning char in the game. However they have also been known to have low hp and take lots of damage which can be a draw back at higher levels when monsters critical for 900+ damage. A good build, but an expensive build to maintain beyond the lower levels, works very well with the lvl 35 mage transmuter strategy.

The scientist

The scientist is a build meant purely for testing out what equip works well with what char and how the stat points help. The scientist is a fighter build, as fighters are the most well rounded starting character they are a great build for testing out the bonuses on certain equipment, the suggestion I have for this build is to vary your equipment regularly to see which is effective, as fighters can tend to go just about any way with statistics they can show you how the same character reacts with different stats.

The magical transmutist

Now don’t get the idea that mages transmute better items than other characters cus that’s simply ridiculous, however they do tend to level with little equip and little help to 35 fairly easily and that’s why this is a good build to make, quick lvl 35 mage and transmute stuff for lower level char to get up there quickly works good on chars dependant upon equipment such as the assassin among the ability to make moneys tongue.gif

The cookie cutter

This isn’t really a build but a basic strategy for any character as you complete the master quest and may very well have to continue with different characters with different strengths and weaknesses. A characters beginning stats are its best possible builds, so play to the characters strengths, in some cases like the mage playing to the weakness can be a great advantage if you cant find equip well enough (vitality adding). And pretty much any character can use vitality effectively to gain life and defense if the equip just isn’t coming in for you. Dex will always outweigh strength in ability because it increases damage on criticals AND chance for criticals which means that you will be hitting at least double that of strength more and more often. Also unless you are a mage intelligence has little to no real affect on you unless you are a pvper looking for a means of reducing mage damage, otherwise its best to simply ignore mage types as they are few and far between.

If you have any questions pm me I’m free and usually in a good mood and will help you out to the best of my ability J

http://forums.d2jsp.org/index.php?showtopic=3827582&f=272 for item requirements and information on what items to look for at what levels

special thanks to everyone who wrote a guide and anyone on jsp who helps people out J as well as those who read this beforehand and their positive feedback, most of all y’all have fun out there tongue.gif

SeasoN
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Sep 6 2006 03:12pm
Ty....but why make yet another guide when theres already 2.
immortalwombat
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Sep 6 2006 03:15pm
boredom, ability, completion, disagreement with other guides.

and this paragraph tongue.gif from raras guide

Hi everyone, I am writing this to guide Ladderslasher with some advice and suggestions for players. For those that do not know me, my character is RaraStab and I was the first to reach level 61 in roughly 4 days, the last two of which I played 20 hours each. This guide is intended solely for leveling and getting to Master Quest; this is not a guide showing you how to make forum gold, use magic find to get gear, build design/hybrid characters, or will contain spoilers about the Master Quest. If you read all of this, it will be long and very detailed, I guarantee that you will have a much better understanding of this game. It took me about 60 hours in 4 days to get to the Master Quest; take the time to read and understand this guide and you will do it in 20 hours.
SeasoN
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Sep 6 2006 03:18pm
Quote (immortalwombat @ Wed, Sep 6 2006, 09:15pm)
boredom, ability, completion, disagreement with other guides.

and this paragraph tongue.gif from raras guide

Hi everyone, I am writing this to guide Ladderslasher with some advice and suggestions for players. For those that do not know me, my character is RaraStab and I was the first to reach level 61 in roughly 4 days, the last two of which I played 20 hours each. This guide is intended solely for leveling and getting to Master Quest; this is not a guide showing you how to make forum gold, use magic find to get gear, build design/hybrid characters, or will contain spoilers about the Master Quest. If you read all of this, it will be long and very detailed, I guarantee that you will have a much better understanding of this game. It took me about 60 hours in 4 days to get to the Master Quest; take the time to read and understand this guide and you will do it in 20 hours.


gg...well ty anyways lol
gmaster90
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Sep 6 2006 03:19pm
very nice guide biggrin.gif
69.
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Sep 6 2006 03:22pm
i like more this guide, raras guide is only for rich ppl like him, but here theres different builds etc
SFunk
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Sep 6 2006 03:24pm
I think you deserve to know that I started a new character because of this guide alone, thank you wombat, before I had,"The tank" going, and now I realize why I looked around and told everyone that it wasn't as expensive as they thought, then again, I also thought it was a miracle that people could level to 60 in 4 days...thanks for the guide Wombat
mysticalkakarot
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Sep 6 2006 03:28pm
this deserves a sticky... very thurough, very well rounded
SeasoN
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Sep 6 2006 03:29pm
Hopefuly paul puts this up top with the other guides happy.gif
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