CW: This isn’t particularly far into the game, a particularly interesting character concept or a particularly interesting story so far. Or at least, not necessarily interesting to folks outside of me - I’m aware that there are people running around who can do 15 rune runes as SpFis of Chei and other such craziness, and i think the one time i managed to beat the game (which was long enough ago that i forgot the edition) was a 7 rune MiFi run, and there were enough flukes of luck on RandArt drops in that game that i attribute success to chance.
First: I’ve never really done a summons-centric build before. All the summoners i’ve tried to build before have died extremely quickly due to my impatience and lack of desire to let the summons do the fighting before me, and in backgrounds that encourage summoning creatures (such as Necromancers) I’ve always shied away from using their useful animation spells, with particularly kill-me-quickly results.
Something along the way, though…I’m not sure when or in what edition it changed, but incorporating summons into combat feels a lot more fun - at the very least, weaving ally backup in between regular spellcasting and melee combat feels a lot more natural and a lot more like something i can actively engage in, rather than a drop-and-wait approach. The snowballing approach of spells like Death Channel in particular are crazy fun, since I feel actively encouraged to engage the enemy at the start of combat before my ghostly summons can help provide backup or mop up an enemy mob. I can’t recall ever having this much fun with raising the dead, and honestly it makes me want to play necromancers a lot more!
Second: Varying god choices. Before, with a necromancer, I would have waited around to get Kiku even if it killed me, which it invariably did. This time, after picking the thoughts of several other people, I decided to actually muse through the earlier options presented to me and try to go with something that synergized with what i had even if it wasn’t “the god made for this class.” As a result, picking Ash was something that I’d only done a few times, and mostly felt ambivalent about before - but because of the way detection helps with a kobold’s decreased vision and the way the skill boosts are helping to shore up my hybrid woes, Ash almost feels like a god also tailor made for this species and/or background, which is pretty crazy!
(a minor third is that i can’t remember ever being this enthusiastic about kobolds either, but that’s not so much of a talking point.)
I guess the long and short of this is: Whatever the devs have done with the game in the few years since i took a break from it, they’ve been doing right. The game is fantastic, I feel silly about having missed out on how fun things are now, and I can’t wait to see how things go from here!
(Also, recommendations from what I should do in my position would be appreciated! They aren’t necessary, though.)