“Let he who ventures into the mines know that without skills, death is certain, and with skills, riches are vast and never-ending - but death will still hover over you.” - “Maxx”, Master of the Villain’s Guild
The Dungeon

Haven of monsters, treasure, and the unknown, the old Mines are usually made up of rooms and corridors.  As a character walks through a door into a new room (or ‘territory’), they will often encounter a group of monsters - unless you or somebody else has recently been through and has already killed them.  The dungeon will repopulate over time, so a room that was empty on the way down might have monsters in it on your way back up... 
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The Dungeon
In the above picture, you can see the dungeon (looking in a room with a door on the other end), and a few slaves. 

The numbers in the top left corner that read ‘17,3,3 W [1]’ show the character’s current location (x,y,level), direction, and the number of characters in the room (in brackets).  If there are ever dead characters in the room, a number will appear (representing the number of dead characters in the room) with a ‘+’ in front of it in the same location (e.g. [1+1]).  If you ever stumble over a dead body and don’t know who it is, simply use the ‘area look’ command (see Commands for more information).  If your character (or party) ever becomes lost, you may lose the x,y,lev and direction information until your character (or party) finds out where they are. 

Resizing the Dungeon Window 
You can resize the dungeon window by either double-clicking on the main dungeon viewport, or clicking on the small red arrows that are located to the upper left of the dungeon window (for wide view), and then on the arrows located to the lower right of the dungeon window (for full screen view).

Moving around the Dungeon 
Use the arrow keys or your numeric pad (Num Lock off) to move around the dungeon.  Hold down the Shift button to make the normal (non-shift) turns plus a step forward.  You can also look around the room you are in by holding down the ALT key and hitting up, down, left or right, or by holding down the right mouse button (while in the dungeon window) and moving your mouse.  This will allow you to examine walls and objects better.  To center your view, hit ‘5’ on your numeric keypad (or release the mouse button).  You can also move up and down (provided that your character is flying and there is no floor or ceiling) by using the ‘+’ and ‘-’ keys on your numeric pad. 

For an overview of Game and Dungeon Commands, please see Commands at the end of this Online Information System. 

Knowing the Dungeon 
There are several neat features and nasty traps that you can encounter in the dungeon.  Below is a known list of them: 

Go either up or down (surprise!).  To walk up stairs, simply walk up them in the appropriate direction.  Be aware that the deeper you go, the tougher the monsters. 

These can either take you to a specific place (only way to find out is to take them more than once) on the same level or on another level; or they can take you to a random place on the same level.  Unlike the teleport spell, teleporters will not cause you to land in rock.  If a party of characters runs into a random teleporter, each character in the party will be teleported to a different location on the same level. 

You will take hits if you fall into them.  Pits become more dangerous as you go deeper into the dungeon.  Levitation will allow you to hover over a pit, although levitation has a small chance of failing. 

Prevents you from seeing the maze.  You must ‘feel’ your way around.  Sometimes the Fog/Darkness will be so thick that it might be hard for you to identify monsters within it.  Intelligence and Wisdom help. 

A square that is solid rock.  The only way to enter a square that is solid rock is with a teleport or portal spell, and if you do so, you will die.  To get out, you must be summoned out of rock by another character with a spell. 

Will turn you in a random direction and cause you to become disoriented, and sometimes lost as well. 

Water & Underwater 
General Water is harmless, and sometimes even fun to splash around in, however, you must be careful that you do not fall into deep water, or get stuck underwater.  Once your character goes underwater, a breathing timer will be activated and will change from blue (ok) to red (drowning) quickly or slowly depending on how long you can hold your breath underwater (spells can affect this).  Once you start drowning, if you don’t get out of the water, you’re fish bait.  For more information on races and their breathing abilities, see Race Statistics

Will not allow the character to cast spells.  Other spells already cast (e.g. Resist Magic) will stay intact. 

This stuff is bad news.  You take hits and can lose items if you are not levitating. 

These squares will have the same effect as Anti-Magic and will take away any spells cast on your character (e.g. Resist Magic). 

In general, these squares will contain tougher monsters, usually from one level deeper than the current level. 

Some areas of the dungeon will not allow the casting of teleport or portal spells.  These areas also cannot be entered by any type of teleportation or portal magic. 

It has been heard that half-molten rock exists in the depths below.  It is assumed that very few can survive this hot liquid if they are not levitating – and even then, the heat and gases can be deadly.  If a character drops an item into this deadly liquid, it will be lost forever... 

There are also some squares that are a combination of the squares that were previously described. 

Listening to your surroundings 
If you are playing Ascension with sound effects on, you will be able to hear creatures all around you while in the dungeon (in single-player mode, at least).  If it’s quiet, you know that you did a great job cleaning house!  These sounds can quite often serve as both an invitation (maybe if you hear a monster that you recognize and they carry lots of gold) or a warning (you could be dying and hear a nasty monster in the room ahead of you).  Quite often, a single character, or party of characters, can stand in front of a door and listen for what’s on the other side!  As you learn more about the world of Ascension, you will be able to recognize the sounds that monsters make. 

Keep your eyes open  
While wandering the depths, you may enter rooms that are unique – written in the corner of a small room could be the words which help you solve a quest, or sitting in the middle of a corridor could be an item that you’ve been looking for.  Be sure to explore all of the squares of each level  – if you don’t, you just might miss something! 

Note that a character’s sight combined with any brightness spells can mean the difference between life and death.  For example, Humans have poor eyesight in the darkness, while Trolls and Saris have the best eyesight in the game.  If you are running a party of characters that have poor eyesight, it’s recommended that you cast the proper lighting spells to help them out!  Remember that it’s easy to fall into a hole that drops you to your death! 

Always be careful when you find an item lying around if you can’t identify it – if it’s cursed and you pick it up, it may become attached to you!  On the other hand, items that are lying around one trip may be gone by the next... 

It’s a good idea to use the Annotations feature of the Automap to mark special areas in the dungeon.  For more information, see the Automap section. 

Additional things to remember 
Some rooms will quite often contain tougher or easier monsters (relative to surrounding rooms).  Learn to recognize these rooms; your character’s life may depend on it. 

Characters with a high perception ability are usually able to detect a difference in the maze when walking around.  If the character is high enough level and has a good enough perception ability, they may even be able to completely identify the area they are in. 

Rumor also has it that secret doors exist within the dungeon.  One can check a wall for a secret door by attempting to pass through it.  If a secret door is there, the character will be allowed through the wall. 

In general, the dungeon becomes nastier as you go deeper.  If you get teleported and can’t find where you are, remain cool, and cautiously adventure until you find yourself and the AutoMap kicks back in. 

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