Forum:Ascend with original (non-poly) pet in tow?

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Hi :)

Question on 3.4.3 vanilla..

Is it realistically feasible to take your original pet right through the game to ascension, *without* polymorphing it into something tougher?

I get rather attached to my kitty (actually I have a bad habit of restarting anytime it gets killed) but if I read the spoilers right, they never get past xp level 9 normally. Seems wraith corpses can break this cap, but I dont know of a way to farm these effectively outside wizard mode. That and zapping with speed monster is all I've found for boosting them up at all.

Are there any other tips / strategies for toughening them up, and getting them through gehennom and the astral planes?

Any help would be much appreciated!

I hate to break it to you, but it's going to be quite difficult to keep your kitty alive that long. There are ways to get lots of wraith corpses (lure the wraiths out of the valley, use reverse genocide), but even if you have a level 50 large cat, it still won't have resistances or decent AC and can't use equipment to get any. That means it will be vulnerable to fire traps and all the powerful attacks of late-game monsters, not to mention wands and breath attacks. Also, it will constantly be picking fights with more dangerous monsters, especially if you've raised its level above its natural max. You'd have to heal your cat constantly, since it doesn't have regeneration and can't heal itself. It's possible to do, I'm sure, but it will take healthy portions of both skill and luck. Your best bet might be a healer or a wizard that starts with a healing spell or can find one early, and careful use of a magic whistle (or possibly a leash) to keep your cat out of harm's way later in the game. Aaxelb (talk) 16:31, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
Oh, one more thing: If you learn turn undead or have a wand of undead turning, you can bring it back to life when it dies and leaves a corpse. Unfortunately, cats and dogs only leave a corpse 1/3 of the time, so that's not too useful. Horses, on the other hand, will always leave a corpse unless killed in a way that prevents it. Just FYI. Aaxelb (talk) 17:07, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
Of course, if you only want to *ascend* with it, you could leave it on level 1 and retame it when you pass through with the Amulet. But I don't think that's what you're asking :) Aaxelb (talk) 16:33, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
If you only want to ascend with it, I'd suggest leaving it on level one, coming back later and stoning it, then stone-to-fleshing and retaming it when on the correct high altar. But yes, I too don't think that is what you're asking. Guest41 (talk) 16:41, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

Wow, that was fast!

Thanks for the tips! Pretty much what I thought, except for the stone to flesh trick, that's particularly devious.. Portable kitty! Shame there's no other ways to toughen them up, I guess polying is the best option after all.

As you've probably guessed I've not ascended yet (outside wizard mode) so assuming I eventually get the hang of ascension, I'll probably try this as some kind of nuts semi-conduct.

Thanks again :) -- 17:51, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

Probably your best bet is to acquire hordes of pets and polymorph the other ones into balrogs etc. Then those others will "dilute" your pet's fighting and remove it from harm. Then the enemies level up faster than your cat. This is good, because from a certain point on, it won't attack monsters anymore (who have become too difficult). BTW, if you go the wizard route, don't be chaotic. Healing your pets as a chaotic ruins your alignment. --Tjr (talk) 06:19, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
I think the best option would actually be to not level up the cat at all. It won't be of any help in fighting monsters in the midgame no matter what you do, so there's little point in even trying. If it stays at a low level it won't even try to fight anything, which should help keep it alive. It'll still be extremely susceptible to traps, but if you manage to map them out on every floor I think that'll greatly help keep it alive.
The easiest way to do this would be to just abandon it on level 1 and come back with the amulet. You don't need to stone it, as you can just retame it with food. You'll need to bring it through the planes, but only fire has traps, and you'll probably want to use confused gold detection there anyway. On all the other planes, the only risk will probably be crossfire, e.g. from dragon breath. No enemy should be low enough level to attack it. You could also give it a huge chunk of meat at the start of every level to stop it from moving for a long time. If you actually want to bring it with you the entire game... well, that's going to be a lot trickier. -- Qazmlpok (talk) 14:30, 23 April 2013 (UTC)