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GUIDE for ROGUE v 1.1

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Dec 3rd, 2018
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  1. Guide for Rogue VERSION 1.1
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  21. These spoilers are based on the DOS version of rogue that available at many places and can be played in a browser at
  24. This guide is most applicable to the DOS version but does apply to other versions in very many ways.
  26. ___________________
  27. Strategy:
  29. Strategically, Rogue is a pretty simple game. Explore the dungeon, fight monsters without dieing, efficiently use found equipment, find the amulet and get back to the surface. All without running out of food and starving.
  31. Early on it is good to completely explore out all 9 rooms or dead ends on each level. At about level 16 monsters start becoming very dangerous and it is usually better to just dive down as quickly as possible until you get to level 26 and start going back up. This is when you start using up all of your consumable items to avoid the most dangerous monsters like griffins, medusas, and jabberwocks. It seems like rings of stealth are vital to doing well this low and should be worn at all times if possible.
  33. Identifying:
  34. There are no absolute rules in how to identify items but in general one should save the relatively uncommon identify scrolls for items that are difficult or dangerous to use identify, wands and especially rings.
  36. Unidentified scrolls are almost always safe to read, summon monster and sleep are annoying but reading while standing on the stairs reduces the risk greatly.
  38. Unidentified potions are more of a mixed bag, drinking a potion of strength while not at maximum strength is really sadening, and wasting a potion of restore strength can cause a lot of problems later in the game. Restore strength does drop much more commonly, so if you are looking for one drink any duplicate potions first.
  40. Unidentified rings are difficult to use identify, are costly to wear for long periods, and can be very harmfull if cursed so identify scrolls are often best used on these. If you have extra remove curse scrolls it is nice to find out which ones may be cursed so that you avoid wasting identify scrolls.
  42. Unidentified wands/staves are difficult to identify. Haste and polymorph can easily end games, and even if you correctly identify what kind of wand it is you are still wasting valuable charges. Identify scrolls are often best spent on wands or staves.
  44. Unidentified armor and weapons are generally ok to use barring ranged weapons. Weilding a cursed bow or crossbow without the ability to remove curse will completely nueter good characters.
  46. Cursed armor and melee weapons are not nearly as damaging as long as you dont try on armor or weapons that are already likely lower damage or AC. A cursed negative enchantment two handed sword will be arguably better than a +1+1 mace.
  48. ___________________
  49. Tactics:
  51. The greatest thing that can be done to increase your chance of winning rogue is using tactical tricks and making good tactical decisions to maximize your chances of winning fights and limiting the waste of limited resources.
  53. Running away:
  54. The most important thing to keep in mind is that you can often run away. If you can run to the down stairs instead of having a 10% chance of dying to a monster then always choose the stairs. If you haven't found the stairs yet, then try to run as far as you can to heal up before giving the monster your all by fighting it.
  56. Running away while healing becomes an extremely important tactic as you gain levels. However the longer you wait to start running the more risky it becomes. Each turn you wait to start run/healing is another turn where a monster can spawn between you and where you want to run to. And if you do become a monster sandwich in a tunnel, it is much easier to deal with at 75% life then at 10%.
  58. Maze rooms are often very good places to run to when fleeing. Many monsters will not chase you into them and often there are pillars that you can run circles around.
  60. Once you find the down stairs it can be useful to periodically check your escape route for newly generated monsters to minimize the chance that you will run into one while fleeing.
  62. The Fast Play Mode:
  63. Dos rogue has a fast play mode which is activated using the Scroll Lock button on the keyboard. This mode allows you to fast travel until you see a monster which means you will not accidently attack aquators or wake up sleeping monsters. Unlike the "shift+direction" method of fast travel which will attack monsters or keep on moving after being attacked by them.
  65. Dark rooms:
  66. Dark rooms cause quite a few problems, but there are a couple of things you can do to minimize them.
  68. Waiting for any monsters to come to you(preferably while waiting in a doorway) makes it impossible for you to accidentally walk right next to a monster and for them to get the first hit and it reduces the chance that you will have to fight multiple monsters at a time. This is extremely useful against aquators. Waiting in a doorway can sometimes allow you to have an extra turn to throw a ranged weapon, put on a ring, start removing armor, or zapping a wand.
  70. Ranged weapons:
  71. Ranged weapons do a surprisingly large amount of damage, and should be used as often as possible to weaken strong monsters or kill monsters with harmful attacks. Leprechauns and nymphs should always be killed with arrows and usually can be killed with 2-4 shots.
  73. Arrows do not seem to break if you miss a monster or aim at a place with no monsters. So using arrows to check for monsters in tunnels or dark rooms could be a useful tactic. Just make sure not to shoot too many arrows in the same place, only one item can be on the floor so if an arrow has no place to land it will disappear.
  75. Doorways:
  76. Doors are great places to fight in, monsters are unable to attack you diagonally, but a player can shoot, throw, or zap items diagonally at those monsters. If you run into multiple monsters in a room, you can use wands of teleport to, slow, or haste, to ensure a weak monster will be attacking you in the doorway while using a bow and arrows to take out the stronger monster diagonal to the door.
  78. Food:
  79. Food is pretty simple and similar to other roguelikes, but there are a few things that you can do to reduce the chance of starving.
  81. Firstly, food is guaranteed to generate on lvl 2 and every 3 levels after that. When running low on food it may be worth skipping levels until you are on one with guaranteed food and searching there.
  83. Another important trick to take into consideration is that a couple hundred turns of nutrition is wasted when eating food immediately when you first get the message that you are hungry. Waiting to eat until you are weak will ensure that you maximize the nutrition of what little food you find in the dungeon.
  85. Ring management is also very important to manage to avoid starving. Most rings will double your food consumption and some will even triple it. Removing unneeded rings when you aren't using them is vital, even if you have a lot of food it is still unnecessary to wear most rings most of the time.
  87. When resting make sure to use the "." button to regenerate health. Walking around or searching heals half as much per turn and wastes food.
  89. ___________________
  90. Monsters:
  92. A: Aquators do no damage, on hit they have a 100% chance to disenchant armor by 1 point. These monsters seem to have a very high accuracy and large HP pool so fighting one carelessly will quickly result in your armor being degraded down to the minimum of 2 ac. The only way to become immune to it's attack is to wear leather armor or to put on a ring of protect armor.
  94. By the time you start running into these most rooms are dark so once you see them they are usually already in melee range and often you wont even see one until it attacks you. Once seen you should choose to either run to the stairs down or immediately remove your armor, however know that while removing armor an aquator will still be able to degrade it once before you get it off. These monsters begin appearing around level 7 and generally become uncommon at level 15 or 16. It may be advisable to explore the dungeon with your second best or even no armor at these levels to avoid losing AC to stealthy aquators.
  96. B: Bats are very weak creatures however they are very hard to hit and move about randomly. They don't usually cause problems beyond being slightly annoying. Because of their erratic movement they usually do not chase the player around. Start appearing around level 1.
  98. C: Centaurs are one of the first monsters that pose a serious threat in the dungeon. Starting equipment is usually good enough to take care of them, but they can definitely get lucky and do enough damage to kill a character even later in the game. Thankfully centaurs are the same speed as all the other monsters in the game so running away from them to heal up is just as viable as a tactic for centaurs as it is for other monsters.
  100. D: Dragons don't have quite the highest stats, they are still considered the most dangerous monster in the game. Dragons are uniquely able to preform a ranged attack that makes running away difficult or impossible, higher EXP levels will cause this ranged attack to fail more often. They also deal more damage in melee than any other. Dragons are guaranteed to drop an item and also give almost 2 times more xp than any other monster so it is worth killing if it is possible.
  102. E: Emus are one of the weakest creatures in the game and, barring extraordinarily bad luck, should usually be a pushover in a fight. Start appearing around level 1.
  104. F: Fly Traps grab the player and stop them from moving while doing progressively more damage each turn they are being grabbed. These monsters are very dangerous, but they are also unable to move so killing them with a barrage of arrows is a great way to gain a fairly large amount of EXP with little to no risk. Start appearing around level 16.
  106. G: Griffins are one of the strongest monsters in the game. They have a huge HP pool (second only to the Jabberwock), are very hard to hit, and regenerate HP which makes run while healing tactics unreliable at best. They also hit for a lot of damage, though quite a few monsters hit harder. Even with extremely good equipment fighting one of these always poses a large risk, though a very high EXP reward and a 20% chance of dropping an item makes fighting one tempting. They usually require the use of some kind of consumable to kill. Start appearing around level 18.
  108. H: Hobgoblins can kill low level characters if they are unlucky, but usually they don't pose much of a threat if careful play is utilized. Start appearing around level 1.
  110. I: Ice monsters will freeze a player on attack allowing other monsters to easily kill him. These almost alway generate asleep and have the worst AC in the game so they are very easy to take out with arrows before they can hit you. BEWARE, in some versions or rogue these can sometimes one shot instant kill any character! Start appearing around level 1.
  112. J: Jabberwocks are the second most deadly monster in the game. They hit super hard and have more health than anything else, their only weakness is that they have relatively poor AC. These guys are almost never safe to fight and are often generated sleeping, but if you manage to beat them there is a 70% chance of an item dropping and a huge amount of EXP.
  114. K: Kestrels are similar to emus except they hit harder and are harder to hit. Still very easy. Start appearing around level 1.
  116. L: Leprechauns are generated asleep and steal hundreds of your gold and disappear on a successful hit. Killing them will give you a good amount of EXP and gold though. Are usually pretty easy to kill if you are able to get 4-5 good arrows into them. Start appearing around level 7.
  118. M: Medusas are very difficult to deal with. On hit they have a high chance of confusing the player, though the chance is reduced at higher EXP levels. On top of that they also hit super hard and have a ton of HP. Running away while confused is almost useless, it is better to fight them. These can be very dangerous to fight for any character. Running away or using wand charges to kill is recommended. Has a 40% chance to drop an item, but gives a disappointing amount of EXP for how difficult it is. Start appearing around level 18.
  120. N: Nymphs are generated sleeping. They have a 100% chance to drop an item, but will steal one from your inventory and disappear if they hit you. Before attempting to fight these you may want to drop your most valuable items. Carrying junk items will also reduce the chance that a good one will be stolen. They have little hp and terrible AC so you can usually kill one with 3-4 arrows. Start appearing around level 10.
  122. O: Orks are pretty much pushovers by the time you run into them. When you see them and if there is gold in the same room they will run over to the gold and defend it. This often allows you time to pull out your bow and kill them very easily. For such a weak monster they offer a 15% chance to drop an item. Start appearing around level 3.
  124. P: Phantoms are kind of like stronger invisible bats. While potions of see invisible help when fighting them, it is by no means necessary. By the time you run into these they seem relatively weak compared to a lot of the stuff that deep. Running from these is very easy, they seem to move slightly less randomly than bats but they will still lose you pretty quickly. They give a surprisingly large amount of EXP, as much as a troll does. Start appearing around level 14.
  126. Q: Quaggas are pretty easy usually compared to a lot of similar depth monsters. They can take out a pretty sizeable chunk of health though if you get unlucky or have poor equipment. Start appearing around level 9.
  128. R: Rattlesnakes are pretty tough monsters. Not only do they have great AC for a low level monster, they also reduce your strength stat when hit. The chance of this happening reduces as you level up, but it is often hard to not get hit for a point or two of strength drain before you can kill them. At low character levels these can kill a character if you get particularly unlucky. They give a pretty decent amount of EXP, but you might consider skipping the rest of the level if there isn't much left. Start appearing around level 4.
  130. S: Snakes can be pretty annoying at low levels, but are generally not a problem, much like emus or kestrels. Start appearing around level 1.
  132. T: Trolls are the first monster that give most characters a lot of trouble. They hit hard, have good AC and HP, and worst of all regen HP every turn. Running from them to heal is far less effective but still works somewhat, often you are forced to run to a down stairs when you meet your first one unless you have good equipment or are lucky. They give very good EXP and have a good 50% chance of dropping items on death. Start appearing around level 12.
  134. U: Ur-viles are very difficult to kill with any level of consistency. They have extremely high AC, have more HP and hit harder than a troll. Because of their great AC, most fights will come down to getting lucky hits in before it can do too much damage to you. Running away while healing helps, but even with that there is a good chance that you wont be able to kill the first couple that you run into unless you have very good equipment. Give a good amount more EXP than trolls but never drops items. Start appearing around level 16.
  136. V: Vampires are very dangerous to fight. They have good AC and HP. They hit fairly weakly but have a good chance to drain max HP each time they hit. They give quite a bit of EXP, but it may be wise to avoid these if you can't dish out damage quickly. They give quite a lot of EXP and have a 20% chance to drop items.
  138. W: Wraiths are pretty easy to kill at the levels in which they appear. And they are often generated asleep too. But be careful when fighting them, they are able to reduce your EXP to one less than what you need for your current EXP level. This can be quite a bit of EXP if you are close to leveling up and it is possible to lose more than one in a fight. This effect happens pretty rarely but you may choose to avoid these if you would lose a lot of EXP. Begin appearing around level 13.
  140. X: Xerocs mimic items but have really low HP, AC and damage. When fleeing from monsters it may be wise to avoid running over items because it could be a xeroc. Start appearing around level 16.
  142. Y: Yetties appear slightly before trolls, but are somewhat easier to deal with. They give pretty good EXP and have a respectable 30% chance to drop an item. Start appearing around level 11.
  144. Z: Zombies appear quite deep for how weak they are. They have low HP and terrible AC. Almost never cause problems beyond blocking escape routs occasionally. Start appearing around level 9.
  147. ___________________
  148. Items:
  150. Rings:
  151. Rings give some very nice abilities, but beware that they all increase food consumption (with the exception of rings of slow digestion). Care should be taken to remove an unneeded ring when you are not using its effect.
  153. Ring of regeneration: Regenerates 1 HP per turn. This is incredibly useful early game. Even later on when a character already has an incredible amount of HP regeneration it is still useful to wear during fights because fighting suppresses natural regeneration. You should only wear this while fighting or healing damage, this ring vastly increases your food consumption even compared to the other rings.
  155. Ring of protection: This ring increases or decreases your AC from -1 to +2 depending on its enchantment. Rings with negative values are generated cursed.
  157. Ring of maintain armor: This ring stops aquators from damaging your equipment.
  159. Ring of strength: This ring gives you 1 to 2 extra strength. Strength gives you extra to-hit and to-damage.
  161. Ring of damage: This ring increases damage on hit by an amount equal to its enchantment.
  163. Ring of dexterity: This ring increases hit chance by an amount equal to its value. It can be generated cursed with a negative value.
  165. Ring of searching: This ring causes your character to automatically search for traps or secret doors each turn. This becomes more and more useful at lower dungeon levels as traps are generated more frequently.
  167. Ring of slow digestion: This ring lowers your food consumption by 50%. Two of them will make you not need food. If you stand on a scroll of scare monster with two of these rings you can stay on a level indefinitely to farm monsters. Watch out for medusas though, they will still be able to confuse you. Phantoms can also be a bit of a pain and trick you into walking off the scroll if you don't have see invisible.
  169. Ring of stealth: This ring causes you to not be noticed by other monsters. This is incredibly useful in many situations, but especially when fleeing from monsters(either to replenish HP or to go downstairs) or when healing after a hard battle. This ring can also be used to loot treasure zoos extremely easily. Rings of stealth are worth wearing at all times, especially at lower depths, if you have enough food.
  171. Ring of aggravate monster: This ring wakes up sleeping monsters (Leprechauns, Nymphs ,Ice monsters, Wraiths, vampires) and also helps to attract monsters to your location from across the entire dungeon level. These are generated cursed. Can be used to get the most out of a scroll of scare monster.
  173. Ring of adornment: completely useless, bet you feel great identifying this huh?
  176. ___________________
  177. Scrolls:
  179. Aggravate Monster: This scroll wakes up monsters on the level. Can be used to get the most from scrolls of scare monster. Does not auto identify on reading but does display the message: You
  181. hear a high pitched humming noise
  183. Create Monster: This scroll creates a monster right next to you. Can be used as relatively safe source of extra xp, but reading it will give the monster one free attack on the player. Does not auto identify on reading.
  185. Enchant Armor: Raises the enchantment of the worn armor by 1 and uncurses it if cursed.
  187. Enchant Weapon: Raises either the to-hit or to-damage enchantment of wielded weapon by 1 and uncurses the wielded weapon if it is cursed. Appears to raise the lower one more often.
  189. Food Detection: When read it will show you food on the level if there is any and will auto identify itself. If not you will hear a growling noise. There are rumors that this also detects the Amulet of Yendore.
  191. Hold Monster: All adjacent monsters will be unable to move or attack for a good number of turns when this scroll is read. Held monsters give you a large bonus to hit when attacking them. Gives no message when read away from monsters. If you get no clues for what a scroll is after reading it it was probably this.
  193. Identify: Allows you to identify any item in your inventory.
  195. Monster Confusion: Causes the next monster you hit to become confused for a good number of turns. It can be usefull when running away but dont rely on them to win fights. This works with thrown, shot, and melee weapons. Does not auto identify itself but causes your hands to glow red.
  197. Magic Mapping: Maps out the entire level and shows secret doors. Save these for when you cant find a secret door, or when a huge amount of time will be wasted exploring large mazes for the stairs.
  199. Scare Monster: Does nothing when read except causing you to hear some maniacal laughter. When it is on the ground monsters will be unable to enter that square. If you stand on it then no monster can attack you. The second time it is picked up it will turn into dust. This is a great item which enables you to kill just about any monster without taking damage except dragons. You can try to identify this item before picking it up by trying to lure monsters over it. You can avoid picking this up a second time by having a full inventory.
  201. Sleep: This scroll puts you to sleep for a small number of turns.
  203. Teleportation: This scroll teleports you to a random point on the map. It also confuses you for a few turns. It will occasionally teleport you to the same square you started and not auto identify.
  205. Remove Curse: This scroll removes curses from all worn rings, armor, and weapons. Does not identify itself but displays the message that you feel somebody watching over you.
  207. Vorpalize weapon: This scroll increases the enchantment of your currently worn weapon by +1+1. It also gives you an additional +5+5 against a random monster and gives the weapon 1 charge that when (z)apping your weapon instantly kills that monster one time. What monster is chosen can be found out by identifying the weapon, and occasionally the weapon will flash white when fighting the monster that the weapon has been vorpalized for. The monster that is randomly choses in determined partly by how deep in the dungeon you are, so it may be worth saving for a while. DO NOT TRY TO VORPALIZE THE SAME WEAPON TWICE, IT WILL DESTROY YOUR WEAPON.
  209. Blank paper: This scroll does nothing. Pretty cool huh?
  211. ___________________
  212. Potions:
  214. Confusion: Causes confusion for a around 20 turns
  216. Poison: Reduces current strength by 1-3 points
  218. Gain Strength: Increases current strength by 1 point. If this would increase it past your current max strength then it also increases the max strength by 1.
  220. See Invisible: Tastes like mango juice. Allows you to see phantoms for a very long time. It is by no means necessary in order to fight them though.
  222. Healing: Heals a large portion of your HP and cures blindness. It heals more if you have more max HP. If the amount healed is more than your missing HP then it also increases your max HP by one.
  224. Extra Healing: Heals all of your HP and cures blindness. If the amount healed is more than your missing HP then it also increases your max HP by 1 or 2 points.
  226. Monster Detection: Allows you to see monsters from across the level for a number of turns. If there are no monsters it doesnt identify itself and it displays the message that you feel a strange feeling.
  228. Magic Detection: Allows you to see where magic items are in the level. This includes items that monsters are carrying. If there are no items it doesnt identify itself and it displays the message that you feel a strange feeling.
  230. Raise Level: Increases your XP to the amount needed to reach the next level. It is probably good to save these untill you are a higher level.
  232. Haste Self: Makes you move at two times the normal speed for a small amount of time.
  234. Restore Strength: Hey, this tastes great. It makes you feel warm all over. Restores your current strength to your maximum amount. There is very little difference in fighting ability between a 16 strength and a 10 strength attack, but there is a large difference between 15 and levels higher than 16. It is probably better to wait until you have significantly low strength before drinking these.
  236. Blindness: Makes you blind for a very large number of turns. You can wait it out or drink a potion of healing or extra healing. Drinking this can prevent being confused by medusas.
  238. ___________________
  239. Wands/Staves:
  240. Any of these can be generated as a wand or a stave. The only difference I can find is that wands tend to have a larger number of charges.
  242. Light: Lights up a room. Good to use after climbing down the stairs or while resting in a dark room to allow you the time to shoot some arrows before fighting.
  244. Lighting: Does 6d6(?) damage. If it misses it will bounce off walls. Also lights the part of the room that the beam passes through.
  246. Fire: Does 6d6(?) damage. If it misses it will bounce off walls. Dragons are immune.
  248. Cold: Does 6d6(?) damage. If it misses it will bounce off walls. Yetis are immune.
  250. Polymorph: Will change a monster into a different type of monster. These monsters are deturmined completely randomly without regard for dungeon depth so out of depth monsters are extremely likely to be generated.
  252. Magic Missile: Does 1d4(?) damage.
  254. Striking: Does 1d6(?) damage.
  256. Haste Monster: Causes a monster to move faster. Can be used to ensure that a weak monster gets between you and a stronger monster.
  258. Slow Monster: Causes a monster to move slower for some time. Can be used to perfectly kite a monster with mellee or ranged weapons.
  260. Drain Life: Drains half of your HP and does that much damage to a monster. Very powerfull, and usually a better HP trade than fighting high damage output monsters like trolls and dragons.
  262. Teleport Away: Teleports a monster away from you.
  264. Teleport To: Teleports a monster next to you. Can be used to unsure a weak monster gets between you and a stronger monster.
  266. Cancellation: Permanantly supresses a monster's special ability.
  268. Nothing: A staff that does nothing, but still has charges.
  270. ___________________
  271. Weapons:
  272. These stats are taken from other guides and may not be accurate for this version of Rogue. However from my experience these numbers seem consistent to DOS rogue.
  274. Mace: 2d4 damage
  275. Long Sword: 3d4 damage
  276. Two Handed Sword: 4d4 damage
  277. Dart: 1d3 thrown
  278. Spear: 2d3 wielded, 1d6 thrown
  279. Dagger: 1d6 wielded, 1d4 thrown
  280. Bow, arrows: arrows do 2d3 damage when bow is wielded
  281. Crossbow, bolts: bolts do 2d5 damage when crossbow is wielded
  283. ___________________
  284. Armor:
  285. leather armor 2
  286. studded leather armor 3
  287. ring mail 3
  288. scale mail 4
  289. chain mail 5
  290. banded mail 6
  291. splint mail 6
  292. plate mail 7
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