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gem helper

Capture Soul/Simulacrum Preferences

12 posts in this topic

I'm replaying Exile 3 for the first time in years and I found myself really getting into Capture Soul. If memory serves I had the same kind of silly exuberance over it as a kid too - it's really a great little mechanic, one of a bunch of really neat mechanical things the later Exiles add to what's basically an Ultima clone at heart.

 

I'm wondering, as I do this: what are the best and worst options for Simulacrum? Some abilities are really powerful against other monsters, and some monsters are more beefy than their level really answers for, and for some both is true.

I like having a Bladesman for sheer physical damage - Dervishes do a little more, but it's really just the 20+ skill, 5+ speed that does the trick.

A Null Bug as sort of an alternative delivery mechanism for antimagic fields - at level 12 only slightly more expensive than Antimagic Field, and available earlier.

And finally, but most importantly, I like Ruby Skeletons a lot. They seem to do less damage against monsters than against PCs, but they still get 4 attacks a round, and Fire is an uncommon immunity. In Exile 3, at least, they're level 10 (!!!), which is probably three times cheaper than they should be. (And way, way less experience.)

 

When I was a kid I used to like Basilisks and Empire Archers a lot, but lately I feel like Empire Archers are expensive for their (admittedly good) special, and basilisks are cute but not a viable alternative to the half a dozen or so debuffs, disabilities, or kills that can be inflicted on a magic-vulnerable monster directly.

 

What do you like to capture? Doesn't really even have to have a justification - honestly I think part of why I liked basilisks so much was how it looked when I summoned a couple dozen of them. (Also doesn't have to be E3 or E2 or Blades specific.) Alternatively, what would be bad to capture and use? A few abilities outright don't work against other monsters, or don't really have a friendly application. (I think anything that splits does so as hostile - so Viscous Goo is out, and so would be Doomguards if they weren't magic immune.)

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I like to capture a Quickghast as my go-to melee summon -- it's not as well-armoured as a Blademaster or Dervish, but 9 attacks per round plus a slowing effect is hard to beat.

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I like to capture a Quickghast as my go-to melee summon -- it's not as well-armoured as a Blademaster or Dervish, but 9 attacks per round plus a slowing effect is hard to beat.

I've considered that, actually! The bladesman is mostly in the lineup to act as a damage sponge, and also mostly on the list because it's real, real easy to just find and capture. I forget if either ghasts or quickghasts summon any other way but whether or not they do being able to pop one at will would be 100% worth it for the slow/paralysis special, and I'm going to grab one to replace my current fourth ASAP.

 

The fourth monster I've got there right now is actually, oddly enough, an Emerald Slime - they've got lousy skill and are made of tissue paper but they do occasionally act as a cheap and unreliable sleep. Plus they're sort of pretty.

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In Exile 2, an Ur-Basilisk often gets me out of some nasty situations, despite the drop in XP points gained.

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I like Ur-Basilisks too. And Null Bugs aren't just an alternate mechanism for an Antimagic Field, they're a significantly *better* mechanism. The reason is that they generate a fresh field every round, so you don't have to worry about the "whoops, that one tile's field decayed and that's where the Rakshasa decided to walk" syndrome. If you send melee attacks in shoulder-to-shoulder with them, they are sturdy enough to survive a while against most opponents.

 

One of the stronger ranged attackers had a pretty useful attack for range setups, I forget which one.

 

In at least some of the games, it was sometimes possible to capture a dragon that way (though it took a lot of reloads). This may have been one of those unintended,, 1-in-101 chance effects that resulted from the way Jeff coded a lot of his percentile roll algorithms.

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If capturing a dragon was possible in any of the games, it would've been Exile II. Exile 3 and Blades forbid capturing large monsters (anything that takes up more than one space).

 

(Note, I can't speak for the Avernums since I haven't played them as much; but this is the Exile forum, so I didn't think they'd be relevant anyway.)

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I like Ur-Basilisks too. And Null Bugs aren't just an alternate mechanism for an Antimagic Field, they're a significantly *better* mechanism. The reason is that they generate a fresh field every round, so you don't have to worry about the "whoops, that one tile's field decayed and that's where the Rakshasa decided to walk" syndrome. If you send melee attacks in shoulder-to-shoulder with them, they are sturdy enough to survive a while against most opponents.

 

One of the stronger ranged attackers had a pretty useful attack for range setups, I forget which one.

 

In at least some of the games, it was sometimes possible to capture a dragon that way (though it took a lot of reloads). This may have been one of those unintended,, 1-in-101 chance effects that resulted from the way Jeff coded a lot of his percentile roll algorithms.

 

This is a lot of information I didn't actually know - especially the possibility of capturing a dragon. Celtic Minstrel is right it'd have to be E2 - multiple-tile monsters were introduced (and made uncapturable) in Exile 3.

I could swear I remember capture resistance in Exile 2 only being conferred by level, not by level and magic resistance - so if true that's another reason E2 would have allowed for that. Magic immunity, IIRC, makes capturing things impossible in E3/BoE, whereas high level just makes it prohibitively difficult.

 

I never tried it but it's amazing to imagine it working.

 

Having played all the way through E3 again, my crystal is now Null Bug / Mad Monk (cheap for their health/armor/skill at level 12) / Ruby Skeleton / Slith Archmage (hasting friendly monsters). I think I'm happy with that.

 

Also, I think the monster you mean is Empire Archers - they're really strong at range and unlike most other monsters with a ranged special, switch to melee consistently when something is in range of it. (I want to say razordisks and regular archer also work this way.) They also get ranged attacks for 2 AP each and a lot of AP and resistances. They're a really strong get if you can capture them and afford to summon them.

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Magic immunity definitely doesn't make Capture Soul impossible -- you can (with difficulty) capture Wizards and Rakshasas, which are both immune to magic. Being of the "Special" monster type does make Capture Soul ineffective in BoE, though.

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Simulacrum was my favourite Exile 3 spell too. I used it all the time, especially when I faced tons of monsters at once - like in golems factory for example - 3 or 4 summoned Vahnatai Lords cleared the whole dungeon for me :).

 

I think one of the best summons at certain levels are:

low lvl: Talking Spider (poison + hard hitter), Troglodyte Khazi, Vahnatai Warrior(ranged), Vahnatai Warrior(melee), Witch (lvl 5 mage spells).

 

med lvl: Mad Monk, Ogre Mage, Quickghast, Slith Archmage, Slith High Priest (lvl 7 priest spells).

 

high lvl: Empire Archer/Empire Dervish, Lich, Mind Crystal, Crystal Soul, Order Mage, Pack Leader, Ur-Basilisk, Vahnatai Blademaster, Vahnatai Lord (my fav summon), Wizard.

 

I also tried the summons that you can't usually capture with hex editor and that aren't even in the game - fun times.

 

gem helper likes this

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Like Siobhan, Eurydice, Solberg, Giants (not cave ones)... (or something like that - probably left from Exile 1 and 2), there are also few Experimental monsters with random abilities and such :p. Had to try em all :). And also dragons - sometimes they have bad graphic, since they take 4 spaces (and sometimes not).

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For me, it's simple. In E3 (never really use it in E2), it's Vahnatai Lord, Empire Archer, Ur-Basilisk, Empire Dervish (although I switch the last one out for Pack Leaders). Perfect blend of magic, melee, ranged, and special abilities. Although I'm half tempted to switch out the Ur-Basilisk for a Null-Bug, for two reasons. First, the Vahnatai Lord loves to summon basilisks from his Soul Crystal (that's what I love about him, he can and will summon high level monsters constantly. Aside from Rakshasha, who are really hard to get, most summon low level monsters. And even Rakshasha limit themselves to daemons). And second, as mentioned above, Null Bugs are great for anti-magic fields. Pack Leaders seem to be Dervishes on steroids. Harder hitting, and have a virulent poison in those claws. Plus, like the Dervish, they are FAST. And all of them (with the exception of the Ur-Basilisk) are gotter really early on. You get the Lord from Ghikra, the Dervish from Silvar, and the Archer from the second level of the Slime Pit.

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