Return of the Heptad Tournament
It was a dark and stormy night. Probably.
They sat, in a Rogue Camp, seven friends sat around the fire with the forces of evil roaming the land. They each had a quest, though where it had come from, they didn't know. These quests had rules, though where these had come from, they didn't remember.
"It's difficult," said Marluk, the Barbarian. "I've been hunting for the perfect weapon for days, but I want something that's special, something unique."
"That's funny," replied Marius, the Paladin. "Just the other day, I found this axe with 'The Chieftain' engraved on it."
"You WHAT?" roared Marluk, jumping up in surprise. "Can I have it?"
"Sorry," said Darius, "I threw it away. It was way too heavy for me." He showed off his non-existant muscle.
They bemoaned the loss of items that are tossed aside, or sold for far too little, just because they couldn't be used by the one who found it.
"Why," asked Marla, the Assassin "don't we meet up, every so often? We're bound to find things the others might want. We can share them among us and hopefully, we'll all be more successful."
From their seats in their various afterlives, Evermoore and Angreus, a Sorcerer and Paladin in life, looked on with exasperation at the familiar scene. It was going to be a long night.
This tournament is inspired by the original Heptad Team Tournament. You will have a team of 7 characters, one of each class and each character will have five restrictions. These restrictions are Attribute Restrictions, Skill Restrictions, Item Restrictions, Mercenary Restrictions and Grab Bag Restrictions (not all of which are actually restrictions). There are 7 of each type of restrictions and each one will be used exactly once.
You'll notice, when looking below, that each restriction comes with a difficulty level. A character will have five restrictions, so you need to sum the restrictions, to get the difficulty rating for each character, a number between 5 and 35.
This restricts how you may spend each set of five points gained from levels and from Alkor.
(1) No attribute restrictions.
(2) Two points to Strength, Two points to Vitality, one point to wherever you like
(3) Assign no points to Strength
(4) Even Distribution - Assign points to attributes with lesser points until they are equal. After that, you assign four points at a time, one to each attribute, and remaining points must be saved until you have at least four to assign
(5) Assign no points to Vitality
(6) Vitality Only
(7) Strength Only
While this restricts skill points spent in obvious ways, it also restricts item *use* somewhat. Items that have passive, or chance-to-cast mods are unrestricted. However, for items that have usable skills on them, skills other than those you select below may not be used. In all cases except restriction (6), quest skills are spent exactly like skills gained from leveling up. Refer to that restriction for a full explanation
(1) No Skill Restrictions.
(2) Pick five skills. Only these may be used. Prerequisites may have a single point and may not be used, though if they are passive, lucky you.
(3) Pick two skills at each level (1,6,12,18,24,30). No points whatsoever may go anywhere else, not even in prerequisites. You might still want to pick skills without picking their prerequisites, however, for item mods.
(4) No assignments in skills beyond level 18 are allowed
(5) Assign all points to a Single Skill Tree
(6) Scavenger's Apprentice Method. Pick a skill each act, then repeat in reverse order after act 3 NM. Below is a more detailed explanation, stolen from Wolron.
(7) Obssessive. Pick one skill and max it out, including all synergies. Then, pick another skill in another tree and max it out, including all synergies. Finally do the same in the third tree. Synergies include the masteries (Sorceress/Necro/Assassin) for the skill if the masteries help the skill.
NOTE: only the chosen skill(s) may be used. A sorceress that chooses fireball may not use meteor just because it's a synergy.
Scavenger's Apprentice Method
You can only assign skill points to one skill in each act. Of course, prerequisites can be assigned to get to the skill that you want to use. This continues until you are done with Act 3 NM. At that point you have assigned points to 8 skills and whatever prerequisites were needed to reach those eight skills. After that, you have another chance to develop each of the first seven skills as you work in reverse. In Act 4NM you develop the same skill that you developed in Act 2 NM, in Act 5 NM you develop the same skill that you developed in Act 1 NM, in Act 1 Hell you develop the same skill that you developed in Act 5 normal, etc.
Note that in act 1 normal, you will probably want to select a level 1 skill, because if you do not, you will strand skill points that cannot be used until later in Act 5 Hell. For instance, if you picked a level 6 skill to develop in act 1 normal, you could not assign anything to it until you reached level 6. That would result in four stranded points. Finally in Act 5 Hell, you would get another chance to develop that skill and could immediately place those four stranded points.
In this skill assignment method, you can put quest reward skill points in any of the eight skills that you plan to develop (or their prerequisites, in an attempt to reach the skill).
NOTE: only those eight skills can be used. The prerequisites cannot be used (though if they're passive, lucky you). If you finally max out one of your skillsin a particular act, any added points you get in that act can be placed wherever you like, among the remaining 7 skills.
This refers to anything that you or your mercenary wear. This includes jewelry. Personalized items may be worn by the respective character at any time, though it doesn't help fulfill the equipment bonuses (see below in "Scoring")
(1) No equipment restrictions.
(2) You can only wear starting equipment and Yellow (Rare) items.
(3) You can only wear starting equipment and Blue (magic) items.
(4) You cannot wear any equipment or carry any charms that enhance strenght, vitality, dexterity or energy. Therefore, your attribute totals always appear white on the character information screen, except when under a monster's spell
(5) You can only wear starting equipment and Crafted items, or Rune Words, or Socketed items (the sockets must be at least partially filled). Note: the socketed items must be gray items. Magic items with sockets, for example, are to be used by the character with restriction (3), though it may of course fill these sockets.
(6) You can only wear starting equipment and set or unique items.
(7) You can only wear starting equipment and ethereal items. Jewelry may be worn, but bows, javalins and the like may not.
If your character fulfils an equipment bonus (see below in "Scoring") before picking up his merc, it gains these points and does not lose them or have to do anything else upon gaining its merc.
(1) No restriction. You may use any merc at any time, though you must have one, alive or dead.
(2) You may only use an Act 2 merc. This means you must go without a merc in Act 1 normal, and then purchase a Desert Warrior immediately upon arrival at Lut Gholein.
(3) You must only use an Act 1 Merc. As soon as you kill Blood Raven, you must have either the reward Merc, or hire a different Rogue Scout.
(4) You must always use the mercenary available in the current act (picking up your first immediately after killing Blood Raven). In act 4, you must use the Act 3 mercenary.
(5) You may only use an Act 3 merc. This means you must go without a merc in Acts 1 and 2 normal, and then purchase an Eastern Sorcerer immediately upon arrival at Kurast Docks.
(6) You may only use an Act 5 merc. This means you must go without a merc in Acts 1-4 normal, and then purchase a Barbarian Mercenary immediately upon arrival at Harrogath.
(7) You may not use a mercenary. You never need to find equipment for a merc, so those scoring bonuses (see below) are easier to fulfill.
Grab Bag Restrictions and Bonuses
These have a variety of affects on your characters playing. This is the big difference between the last Heptad tournament - they range from minor benefits or restrictions to game changing restrictions.
(1) Your character has two lives. There are three ways to deal with this.
First, if your party is technically softcore, you may simply play the character again once it dies for the first time. If you wish to use any items or gold from the body, however, you must collect it before save/exiting. The second time around, the character is gone for good and you must stop playing it in this tournament.
Second, if your party is technically hardcore, you may play another character to the same level or lower, and same point in the game (all quests must be at exactly the same point of completion. You may use twinking, rerunning, or any other method to get to this point. At that point, get rid of all gold and equipment, and respec your character to make it identical (or equivalently weaker for a lower level character). You may then use any equipment the other character could use, except obviously the equipment on him when he died (so anything from the Atma file is fair game).
Third, you may simply play without the second life, and if you are 30th level or above when the character dies, take the extra 100 points (see below)
(2) Once an act is complete, this character may rerun each act boss up to a maximum of two times (meaning you could kill each boss three times per difficulty). This involves going to the last waypoint of the act (which must already be activated to take advantage of this bonus) and killing anything you like on the levels from the level the waypoint is on to the final level.
(3) You may not use town portals, while there are enemies on the screen. If you accidentally use one just as an enemy wanders on to a previously empty screen, by some chance, you may still go through the portal or if you manage to escape enough to get off screen from the monsters and use the portal under these circumstance, but the monsters are on screen when you walk through, that's fine. However, if you're running or fighting and there are monsters on screen, you can neither use or walk through town portals.
EXCEPTION (sort of): Portal shrines can be used and walked through at any time.
NOTE: Keep in mind, this pretty much means that you're probably going to have to get by Normal Duriel without using TPs. Plan accordingly.
(4) Mr. or Ms. Respec. There are two ways to do this restriction.
The first version, at the end of each difficulty, the character must use their respec. In the next difficulty, they may choose new skills/a new skill tree for their Skill Requirement to apply to (depending on what their skill restriction is). However, whatever they choose, any skill which had more than 1 point in any previous difficulty, may not have more than 1 point now.
The second version is way cooler, but probably more restrictive and requires bringing in your own Tokens of Absolution. You may bring in any number of these from outside the tournament and this is the only exception to the "no items from outside the tournament" rule. Note that in keeping with forum policy, softcore tokens can not be brought to HC characters. If you choose this version, you must respec at the end of each *act*, choosing new skills/a new skill tree for your skill requirement as in the first version. In this form of the restriction, any skill which had more than 1 point in either of the previous two acts, may not have more than 1 point now.
You must choose one version of this restriction and stick with it.
(5) The /players setting is restricted. You must play Act 1 Normal on /players 1, Act 2 Normal on /players 2 and so on until Act 3 NM on /players 8. Then you continue with /players 7 in Act 4 NM and so on until you get to /players 1 again in Act 5 Hell.
(6) At the beginning of every act, your character will have nothing equipped (see below). Once you equip an item to any slot on you *or your mercenary* (and it sees the outside of town; you may fiddle in town without worrying), you may not remove that item from that slot until the end of the act. At the end of the act, you must remove all these items from your Heptad stashes. None of your characters may use them again. Exception: your starting equipment and any personalized items may be freely equipped and unequipped at any time and used in further acts. Of course, once you've equipped an item, you may not replace it with these types of special items until that slot is freed at the beginning of the next act.
NOTE: This may make getting your equipment bonuses rather difficult since you'll have to live with those pieces of equipment for an entire act.
(7) Almost All Alone. This is based on a tournament done years ago. Your character may only enter town under special occasions, and even on these occasions may only talk to specific characters for specific purposes.
The short version of what these restrictions mean is
- No TP
- No gambling or use of stores
- No using Cain to identify stuff
- No repairing gear in town
- If you currently have a mercenary that is dead, and you light up a new waypoint or hit a new portal shrine, you may return to the town *only* to resurrect that mercenary. You may not use already lit waypoints or portal shrines for this purpose.
- At the beginning of an act, if you are required or allowed to collect a mercenary, you may talk to the appropriate NPC, *only* to collect the mercenary. You may also resurrect a dead mercenary.
- If you use an Act 1 mercenary, in Act 1 Normal, you may use the next waypoint you light up or portal shrine you activate to return to the Rogue Camp to collect your reward and optionally buy a different one.
- At the end of an act (once the boss is killed), you may return to town (except for Act 3), and talk to those necessary to complete quests from that Act only. Quests left undone at this point cannot be completed. This is when you will do things like imbue items, personalize items, and so on. You may not talk to anyone else in town, or use any store functions from these characters.
- Once you have the Scroll of Inifuss, you may return to town at the next lit WP and talk to Akara (collecting the skill point from the den of evil). You may not use her store function. You must immediately return to any lit WP. Once you're finished with Tristram, you are permitted to travel from the Stony Field to any non-town WP.
- Once Radament is dead, you may walk, WP or TP back to town. You may talk to no one.
- Once you have Completed the Horadric Staff, you may walk, WP, or TP back to town. You may talk to only those necessary to enter the Palace (note that this and the above rule allow you to do the Sewers leg before or after the horadric staff leg of the second act).
- Once you have rescued Anya, you may return to town immediately by means of a TP. If so, you may talk only to Anya (and only to activate the portal). You must immediately complete the quest, killing Nihlathak. Once this is done, you may return to town, by walking, WP or TP and then return to where you were by WP or TP (if it's still active from when you originally returned to town after freeing Anya).
- When you reach a Trading point WP, you may return to town (if you aren't already due to an above rule), and talk to no one, but take part in the Team Trading Session (this is covered below in "Trading")
- When you quit, obviously you will return to town. When you do this, talk to no one.
- At the end of act 5, after everything is completed, you may pick up a wirt's leg, purchase a tome of TP, and enter the cow level. Once you're finished with the cow level, you may never return to Harrogath and must proceed directly to the next difficulty level.
There are further restrictions
- You may not use your stash (except as a convenience, for items you plan to mule off the character, whenever you are already in town)
- You may only recieve a single item from Trading sessions (see below in "Trading"). Tomes you recieve must have 0 uses remaining. Any items muled off this character may not be muled back on, except by using up your single item during Trading sessions.
Your score is the sum of the point totals for each of your characters. Each of your characters will have a score according to the following rules.
There are bonus points and base points. The base points are calculated by multiplying the base score by the difficulty rating.
You get -1 base score per level of the character (including first)
You get +1 base score per waypoint activated (including the rogue camp)
You get +1 base score per mission completed (grayed out)
NOTE: The Kashya quest is considered complete once you kill blood raven, if you can't pick up that mercenary, due to your merc restriction. If you accidentally do talk to her, just get your mercenary killed immediately, killing as little as possible (this is difficult, the rogue is surprisingly sturdy - scouting out a champion pack is recommended).
Then, you get bonus points
+25 bonus points if he has filled all his and his mercenary's weapon, armor, and jewelry slots. Equipment used to fulfill this restriction may not be worn by another character (or their mercenary) for the remainder of the tournament.
+100 bonus points for filling all these slots with exceptional equipment (jewelry, obviously, is unaffected by this restriction). Similarly, this equipment may not be worn by another character.
+500 bonus points for filling all these slots with elite equipment. Similarly, this equipment may not be worn by another character.
+50 bonus points for the 'All All Alone' bonus: if your character with grab bag restriction (7) also has mercenary restriction (7), he gets this bonus as long as he never receives any items from his team (see below in "Trading") with the exception of a single Tome of Identify.
+100 bonus points for the character with grab bag 'restriction' (1), as long as he survives to 30th level without dying and you never play his second life. Note that this means that if he dies after 30th level, you can choose to not play his second life, and instead just walk away with 50 points.
So if Marluk is a barbarian who:
(7) May only put points in strength
(2) May not select skills above the level 18 bracket
(2) Must use rare equipment
(1) May use any mercenary
(5) May not use town portals while enemies are on the screen
This will give him a difficulty rating of 7+2+2+1+5=17. At the end of act 3 normal, he has 25 waypoints, has completed all 18 quests. He has filled all his and his mercenary's equipment slots with rare equipment and is level 28. His base score is then 25+18-28=15. His total score is then 15x17+25 = 255+25 = 280
Team Trading Sessions:
There will be carefully selected points in the game where your team will stop and you will be able to redistribute equipment between your team members. ATMA will be used for this purpose. For example, the first trading point is at the Outer Cloister way point. Create an ATMA file and name it something like “Heptad_OC”. When one of your characters reaches the Outer Cloister Way Point, dump any items that he has for trade into the ATMA stash and retreive any items you like, that are already in the stash. That character may continue on if you like, or you may decide to let him remain there while you work on other characters. If you decide to play your characters way out of sync with each other, you may need several of these way points. This is a proposed change from the last Heptad. Once a character reaches this WP, it may retrieve any items from the stash, but once it moves on, that character can't take anything from that stash any more.
Note that you do not have to play the game in any particular order, nor do you have to hit every way point or do every quest. However, the trading points must be hit by each character. The Outer Cloister way point must be activated as soon as you reach it (feel free to clear out the local monsters first). The Act 2 trading point is prior to entering the palace cellar, so that one is obvious. The Kurast Bazaar way point must be activated, however, you can decide whether to complete the local quests (book and heart) before or after you activate the way point. Whenever you do activate it, you stop and dump your trade items into ATMA. The Glacial Trail Way point must be activated. One of your characters may play Act 5 in such a way that he hits the Glacial trail way point before he goes after Nihlathak; another one might hit the Glacial trail after killing Nihlathak; still another one may not do the Nihlathak quest at all. In any case, the trading point occurs for that character when he activates the Glacial Trail Way Point.
Trading will allow the characters to acquire equipment quicker because there are seven characters searching for each of the different equipment types referred to in the “Equipment Restrictions”.
You may trade at the end of each act and at a point in about the middle of each act (except Act 4). Here are the trading points inside the acts:
Act 1 - The Outer Cloister Way Point
Act 2 – After cubing the staff and before going into the palace cellars.
Act 3 - Kurast Bazaar Way Point.
Act 4 - none
Act 5 - Glacial Trail Way Point.
1. You may play HC or softcore. However, once a softcore character dies, it's still out of the tournament. Your choice here actually affects the rules of Grab Bag Restriction (1) very slightly. Yes, the team will get smaller and smaller as you progress. Either way, since you're trading, all your characters must obviously make the same choice here.
2. Version 1.13c only. The Rune Word Module may be used.
3. No Multi-Player permitted. No trading between players, only between your characters, and only when allowed.
4. You may play on any players setting you wish (with the exception of Grab Bag restriction (4)), and change that setting as you see fit. Please do NOT engage in cheesy “kill monsters on players 1, open chests on players 8” tactics.
5. You may not use the escape key to bail out of a rough battle. If you cannot run away or portal out, RIP.
6. ATMA is permitted to extend your stash, both for personal stashes for individual characters and the trade point stashes described above. However no items may be used except items that you find in this tournament, buy at stores or gamble in this tournament.
7. You do not have to solve all quests or activate all WPs (except the trading point way points).
8. You can go back to previous acts to collect quest rewards (if allowed) or change mercenaries (if allowed), but you cannot leave town. You also cannot go back to previous difficulty levels, so all quests must be finished off before moving on to a new difficulty level. Quests that have their reward delayed cannot be counted in the score until that reward is collected and the quest display grays out. If a character dies before collecting the quest reward or talking to the appropriate person (Asheara for instance), that score point is lost!
9. No rerunning of areas (with the exception of that allowed by Grab Bag Restriction (2)). This is a single pass tournament. When you do have to quit and come back later, play at P1 and do not open chests or loot the dead until you get back to where you left off. Careful selection of stopping points can avoid this problem entirely.
10. What happens to equipment owned by a character that dies??? It is gone forever, including equipment in that characters personal stash (with the exceptions allowed in Grab Bag Restriction (1)). That will give a special incentive to keep a character alive that finds a very special item.
11. Except for the character with Grab Bag Restriction (3), respecs may not be used.
You should create a table like this for your team and include it when you update (EDIT: Actually this post has a much better one - use that).
Total Score = -210Code:PILGRIM Character Class Level WPts Quests Score Roxie(14) Amazon 12 6 4 -26 (calculation: 14x(6+4-12) =-28) Knives(20) Assassin 11 5 4 -15 (including 25 bonus pt equipment bonus Lucas Lee(21) Barbarian 13 6 4 -63 Todd(16) Druid 10 6 4 0 Patel(21) Necromancer 12 6 4 -42 Scott(23) Paladin 10 5 4 +2 (including 25 bonus pt equipment bonus) Ramona(22) Sorceress 13 6 4 -66
And you should add team to a table (whoever posts first should be the first name, since this isn't my actual team)
Code:TEAM SCORES Team Name Score Team Size Last Trading Point Pilgrim -210 7 Normal – Outer Cloister