Stone to Flesh Mania

The story behind

After a huge brown P farming session, I wanted to do something different. My game had glitched up, so I was unable to resume until paxed could manually recover my game many hours later, giving me plenty of time to think of something impressive to do, and then it hit me: Every so often, the monsters in the castle will line up and spell something out. I could setup a pile of statues and stone-to-flesh them to spell something out. Remembering a joke about getting really nervous and then realizing you're looking at your email address, I decided to do that (it's long enough to make it challenging to pull off). The very first thing I did was learn the Stone to Flesh and Sleep spells (with my robe and Helm of Brilliance, both a 0% fail rate).

I started off with a wand of polymorph and many scrolls of earth. I managed to poly up most the necessary monsters, including a cockatrice statue to serve as the 'c'. Then I mapped out all the letters I was going to need, and the possible monsters I could use. I went back upstairs to where I had tamed a trice and collected a hill orc statue. On my way back down there was a hobgoblin to provide the fourth 'o' (two of them, another hobgoblin and an orc captain, came from polypiling). I reverse genoed cockatrices and used charm monster to make them my pets, then led them back upstairs, got the hobgoblin (boy are their statues heavy!) and put it into place. I then took my trices back to the Dungeons to get the rest of the stuff; they provided me with statues for the gremlin and the zruty. The zruty was the hardest, because it was in the main branch on DL5 or so, and boy was that thing heavy. The second-to-last trip was to my quest. As a rogue, my quest's most common monster is the leprechaun, and statue generation chooses monsters based on region-specific chances. Polying a pile of boulders left by giants gave me three leprechaun statues on the second try. Thankfully, l's are small, so they easily fit into my boh without putting me to Stressed (which would have prevented going upstairs, and I was out of cursed teleport scrolls).

Placing the l's in their places, I had to come up with a dot and two mimics for the m's. The dot was easily achieved by worthless glass (won't become a meatbal when s2f'ed), but the mimics would be harder. I had already cleared out all the shops but Izchak's, and he only had one mimic. I got that one, then thought long and hard about how to get a second.

I went back to my farm on DL8, which I knew had dropped an ice box. Lo and behold, inside were two fresh small mimic corpses! I took one out, zapped it with a /oUndeadTurning, then let my pet trice make a statue out of it and hauled the statue back to its final resting place.

I had finally done it! I had collected all of these monsters, without even reverse genoing any of them. Now I had to actually make it happen. After a quick wizmode test to see how far Stone to Flesh would go (7 rocks turned to meatballs), I calculated a plan of attack:

  1. Stone to Flesh from the second mimic, towards the right
  2. Sleep (twice, in case I missed a monster the first time)
  3. Stone to flesh from the @ space (mine) towards the right
  4. Sleep (again, twice)
  5. Stone to flesh from the giant rat towards the right
  6. Sleep (yet again, twice)
  7. Stone to flesh from all the way left towards the right.
  8. Teleport self with a wand to the empty square reserved for myself, the @.
I was doing the g and m separately (steps 3-4) because two of my creatures were sleep resistant, so I needed to do the homunculus and the fog cloud last, so I could teleport to my final square before they had a chance to move.

I finally had everything together and then realized I had forgotten most of my spells, including the key Stone to Flesh and Sleep spells. I had to take a trip back to my stash to relearn everything.

The Plan was complete. I had it all worked out. Stone to Flesh four times, Sleep six times, for a total of 90 mana. I had just shy of 300. I ate two food rations in a row to get to Satiated so that I wouldn't get Hungry while doing this. This was going to be a piece of cake.

Until the RNG refused to conform to The Plan.

First, when I cast S2F for #1, it didn't go seven squares. It went three. It consistently only hit the ant, tengu, and leprechaun. That wasn't so bad, however; I just went to the * and handled the c, o, and m statues with an extra Stone-to-Flesh + Sleep + Sleep combo. I then revived and paralyzed the g and m as per #3-4. The gremlin resisted, though, and required a few extra Sleep spells. I then altered my plan slightly. Since I couldn't expect much out of Stone to Flesh, I cast it leftwards onto the hobgoblin, lynx, and panther. Imagine my surprise when this also animated the zruty and hill orc! Anyway, three or four Sleep spells later, I managed to hit all five of them, too. I then went over to the fog cloud statue to get the floating eye, rat, kobold, and leprechaun. They went down pretty easily. Then, finally, I went to do the hobgoblin, leprechaun, homunculus, and fog cloud. An unwelcome @ (captain) showed up and I dispatched him pretty quickly. After finally casting Stone to Flesh, something very unexpected happened. The statue of a fog cloud turned into a meatball, because fog clouds have no flesh! Meanwhile, the damn homunculus was moving away from his post. Damn! I had to think up something in a jiffy, because I wasn't sure how much longer the monsters on the right were going to stay asleep. Thinking quickly, I considered pulling that statue of a lieutenant over for the @, luring the homunculus back to his place, and polyselfing into a fog cloud in order to complete things. Unfortunately, the lieutenant statue was too heavy, and I couldn't even zap myself with a wand of teleport while holding it. Plus, I was out of mana, having used way more spells than initially expected to accomplish this. Not willing to give up, I pulled out two spare magic lamps and a !oHW from my boh. Blessed the uncursed one, and wished up figurines of a fog cloud and a tengu. I applied them to the correct locations and then teleported myself to the spot where the @ belongs, and, voila!