Monk Class Guide
- See also: Monk class profile
The Monk (or Nun) is a unique hand-to-hand class. The Monk is literally hand-to-hand, since he does not utilize conventional weapons, but relies on bare fists, with a damage bonus of willpower/4, rounded down. Because their primary attribute is willpower, a Monk's melee damage will scale with his leveling much better than that of a strength-based melee class, which only gets an additional point of damage every 8 points of strength. It also means they will spend much less time praying at temples before they can receive the temple's blessing. They are able to wield the Studded Knuckle Dusters (and later on, the Set of Brass Knuckles, see in the list below), both are unique in that they carry four socket slots, giving them a degree of Dwarven Beard Rings versatility not available to other classes in practice. The Studded Knuckle Dusters can also be enchanted for even more damage, thus making it the Monk's first-choice weapon, and a top priority for Monk players to obtain.
Monks also possess unique self-buff spells to increase combat proficiency. While Monks wear no armor other than robes, their Stone Skin spell helps mitigate this deficiency. Almost the same you'll have with low H2H and damage - Hands of Steel means actually <H2H +25 & Dmg +2> in battles. The MGR increase and health regeneration from the Iron Will is a quite serious advantage, reducing healing aid consumption in the early game, protecting himself from spell damage in the late game and giving 6% chance to deal critical hits time to time.
At the time of leaving Valmorgen Sewers (generally around level 10), Monks are weaker than most other melee classes due to low combat stats and lack of armor. Over time, as willpower improves and essential items such as the Studded Knuckle Dusters, Mithrilweave Robe and high end class-unique items are obtained, the Monk becomes significantly more formidable.
Below are the optimal items for each category, as well as other notable items important to this class. See also: items usable by Monk.
- Weapon: Set of Brass Knuckles (Damage: 0, PAR +10, H2H +10, DMG +1, Poisoned Weapon (3); Ruins of Thallis item) embed 4x Shield Beard Rings or other Beard Rings.
- However, Monks can more easily obtain the Studded Knuckle Dusters for their weapon (Damage: 0, PAR +10, ). It is the weakest of the only two available weapons available for this class. Socket the Studded Knuckle Dusters and embed them with fully uniform sets of 4x Goblin | Shield | Skull | and/or Ratman Dwarven Beard Rings. Craft more than one set of SKDs and embed each of them with a full set of these Dwarven Beard Rings for a more well-rounded arsenal.
- Armor: Robe of the Mind (Armor: 2, WIL +8; Thallis item);
- Cloak: Cloak of the Mind (WIL +8; Thallis item).
- Early on, should use Protective Cloak.
- Headgear: Circlet of Lycanthropy (H2H +15, PAR +15, DOD +15, Werewolf form spell; Wizard Tower Schematic) → True Werewolf Circlet (Additional ARM +1, MGR +10; Imp workshop upgrade);
- Belt: Belt of Brawling; embed any of the "Might" or "Poison" Holsters, Sheaths and Scabbard accessories (see comment in the Armbands section below).
- Belt of Rage is useful early on.
- Footwear: Boots of Lunord (Armor: 2, PAR +10, DOD +15, MGR +5, Damage +1, Speed +2);
- War Chargers (Armor: 3, HTH +10, STR +4).
- Glove: Gloves of Piyadasi (Armor value: 2, STR +4, H2H +15, WIL +4, Critical Hit +1; Thallis item); embed 2x Ratman Beard Rings; or...
- War Gauntlets (Armor value: 2, STR +4, H2H +5, PAR +10; DF Wizard Tower schematic); embed 2x Ratman Beard Rings.
- Armband: Bracers of Divine Walloping (DMG +8; Abandoned Library Schematic) → Bracers of Celestial Might (DMG +12, PAR +10, H2H +10, Crit.Hit +1 ; Imp workshop upgrade);
- Mithril Bracers or Nevryl Bracers embedded with 2x Ratman Beard Rings can be more useful in defensive situations.
- Don't forget to acquire a Bracers of Defilement. With your low damage output, sometimes you can kill monsters, especially those that regenerate and/or paralyze, such as Daemonwoods and Greater Gorgons, by poisoning only, and you've not access to Poisons. Only the Set of Brass Knuckles later on will help your Hero with that.
- Necklace: Ring Amulet; embed Ring of Protection or Dark Band.
- MGR-boosting Necklaces, such as the Dwarven Locket, are useful in certain situations. Amulet of Destruction will be helpful against a crowds of not-so-MGR-foes, especially early on, in conjunction with some INT boosts from the DF Aura and items such as the Bandanna of Thought Stimulation and Wizards Robe.
- Ring: Ring of Protection or Dark Band.
- Accessory: Carved Combo (H2H +15, Strength +15; Thallis item).
The biggest hurdle for a starting monk is the complete lack of armor. His stoneskin spell doesn't come along until level 4. It is probably a good idea to do Guard Patrols until you can get the additional 50 gold to purchase the Fire Shield spell, since you don't need weapons or armor. You may also take advantage of your big willpower and pray at temples for blessing, healing (Agrela) or vigilance and stoneskin (Dauros). Hard encounters from Ratman Kingdom will become much easier with Wind Storm from Temple to Lunord. From there, you can fight in the sewers until you can afford the Ring of Protection and hit level 4. Once this is accomplished, you have an effective armor value of 8(stoneskin) +2(ring) +4(shield) = 14 which gives you decent damage mitigation. Then, you can venture to the second level of the sewers and continue the fight. At level 7, your final spell takes a load off the healing aids needed and gives you dwarf-like MGR which is handy later. Don't forget at least 5 charges of Lighting Storm wands and head off to Venns Spire.
Once completed, you will want to follow the general guidelines in the strategy guide. However, you will want to focus solely on gaining lots of gold in the graveyard or goblin areas, after picking up the Blue and Green charms. Plus, you want to grab some rejuv potions.
It is a good idea to buy Ironcloth Robe in Traveller's Dell in HFM and enchant it right after leaving Valmorgen.