One of the more challenging achievements in the Steam version of Desktop Dungeons is Supreme Slayer, which requires you to slay a monster nine levels higher than you. In other words, you need to defeat a level 10 monster at level 1. Any good ideas on how to accomplish this? All items, classes, bonuses, etc. are fair game. Obviously you'd want to explore the entire level and pick up as much as you can, but I'm still struggling to come up with a way to do enough damage at level 1.


I managed to figure this out. I did Southern Swamp using a Gnome Warlord, and used corrosion to build up the necessary damage. For preparations I took

  • Earthmother (for corrosion)
  • Martyr Wraps (also for corrosion)
  • Sword (for a bit of damage)
  • Extra attack boosters (mana probably would've been better actually)
  • Can of Whupaz & Quicksilver potion (Schadenfreude would also have been good, healing is unnecessary)

One trick is that you need to get a glyph that will let you get past monsters without killing them. I found WEYTWUT. If you don't find something early, you may have to restart.

Find Earthmother as quickly as possible and worship her. When you have free mana, you can use IAMAWAL on monsters to get some piety (just be careful when using it on slowed monsters, you'll gain 1 experience and might accidentally level up!). For Boons, take Greenblood as much as possible, using Clearance if too many plants get in your way (and to regain mana).

The sooner you find the boss, the better. At first, you just want to hit him as many times as possible to add corrosion. Obviously you'll need to use CYDSTEPP each time, and don't worry about him healing. Explore the whole level, picking up whatever you can.

Once you've explored the whole level, it is time to fight for real. Use up any remaining piety and convert any items that aren't giving you damage or mana, then open your Can of Whupaz on the boss. Keep sucking down potions to cast CYDSTEPP and you should easily be able to tell deliver the 8-10 hits needed to take him down.

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I just pulled this off couple of times in the last 10 minutes with an Orcish Rogue in the Northern Desert, and I haven't even unlocked third tier potions yet. Perhaps this indicates that this is an easier approach than bwarner's.

Broadly, the plan is as follows:

  • Get our rogue's damage up to the point that he can kill the boss in three hits
  • Hunt down Aequitas, the level's glass cannon boss who has only 159 HP and no physical resistance.
  • Survive dishing out the first two hits through either two levels of death protection, or a level of death protection plus a lucky dodge. Then deal the final blow with impunity thanks to the rogue's guaranteed first strike.

"You mean to suggest that it's possible to get a level 1 hero to the point that they can kill a boss in three hits without even using corrosion? Surely not!"

Surprisingly, this is indeed possible. Here's an example from my most recent run.

I entered with:

  • Badge of Honor
  • Perseverance Badge
  • Strength potion
  • Guaranteed Taurog altar
  • Extra gold
  • Shop scroll
  • Compression scroll
  • Extra attack glyphs

I stumbled across 4 spell glyphs in my travels, one of which was BYSSEPS, which I cast right before converting all my glyphs, activating my badge of honor, and attacking the final boss.

I also managed to amass just enough piety to get three Taurog boons, thanks to the combination of killing level 1 wraiths and getting a kill on the weakest of Lekon's goats.

So how does the damage work out?

Base damage starts at 5. Skullpicker takes that to 10. 4 glyph conversions gives me exactly +8 as an orc, and by converting all the potions I found, plus my shop scroll and a purchased Whurrgarbl, I was able to get another 160 conversion points. That puts my base damage at 22.

As for my attack bonus; being a rogue gives me +40%. Perseverance badge is +10%. Three Taurog boons is another +15%, and I must have found 4 attack booster glyphs because my damage bonus ended up at +105%.

That's a damage output of 45, all without going beyond level 1 (or even needing perfect luck with item finds).

For the first strike, add on 10 to the base damage (from the strength potion) and 30% to the bonus (from BYSSEPS) and the first attack dishes out 32 * 2.35 = 75 damage.

Suddenly, we have enough to kill the boss in three strikes. 75 + 45 + 45 gives a damage output of 165 - more than enough to put down our pesky 159 HP boss.

Of course, there's a lot of luck involved. Sometimes you just won't be able to explore anything beyond the tiny area of the map you start in because you'll be penned in by enemies you can't kill without leveling up. In that case, you just have to restart. You may also have to rely upon dodge chance to survive the boss fight. In the run I've just described, I didn't find a second source of death protection anywhere on the map, so I had to rely on the rogue's 20% dodge chance to let me dish out the first two strikes. The odds aren't too bad, though; dodging on either of the first two attacks will do, so you've still got a 36% chance of success if you go into the boss fight with only one layer of death protection.

On a previous run, I stumbled across the CYDSTEPP glyph, which meant I didn't even have to rely upon dodging.

Let's sum up. To nail this achievement without needing any third-tier potions...


  • Go to the northern desert
  • With an orcish rogue

Take with you:

  • Badge of honor (for death protection)
  • Perseverance badge or sword (for damage)
  • Extra attack boosters (for damage)
  • Guaranteed Taurog altar (for damage)
  • Strength potion (for damage)
  • Compression seal (just in case you find multiple large damage items)
  • Any two other potions (for conversion)
  • Shop scroll (for conversion)

On the ground

  • Don't start worshipping Taurog immediately - delay until you need to kill a magical enemy, or multiple enemies, such that you'd lose piety by not worshipping him. This gives you some space to use glyphs without piety cost if you find them.
  • Explore as much of the map as you can without leveling.
  • Avoid picking up health boosters if you can; they'll be actively harmful to you if you stumble across CYDSTEPP.
  • If you find WEYTWUT, WONAFYT, PISORF or ENDISWAL, use them to get past enemies without killing them.
  • If you have to kill something, favor enemies who do magic damage in order to gain more piety.
  • If you're lucky enough to find CYDSTEPP, use it heavily, and preserve your mana potions to help you abuse it as much as possible. With only your 5 starting HP, you only need to reveal two tiles (or drink one health potion) to gain enough health to cast CYDSTEPP again.
  • If you find GEDINDARE, consider using it to boost your dodge chance. Definitely do so if you're not worshiping Taurog yet or already have enough damage to take out the boss in three hits.
  • If you find BYSSEPS and don't yet have enough damage output, use it.
  • Convert everything you don't have a use for to boost your damage output. Buy stuff just to convert it if you have to.
  • If you can do so safely, desecrate altars to get extra piety to spend on Taurog.
  • As soon as you have enough damage and sources of death protection to be guaranteed a three-hit kill on the boss, take him out. If you fall slightly short of that target, try anyway and if you're lucky your dodge chance will save you.

I haven't unlocked the third tier potions for myself yet, but based upon the descriptions here it seems that, if you've got them available, throwing a Reflex Potion into the mix would also increase your odds of success with this strategy considerably.

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EDIT: I have since played the full version and this particular method no longer works.

I haven't yet played the fully released version but I did do this in the alpha version.

I used a gnome warlord. You must find Apheelsik and the boss early. It's still extremely hard though. I'm not sure what changes were made to the warlord Cydstep or Apheelsik but with luck it should be possible.

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  • Unfortunately, poison works differently in the released version. The amount of healing it prevents is capped, so you wouldn't be able to prevent the boss from healing back up using this method. – bwarner Nov 12 '13 at 21:42
  • Welcome to Arqade! Do you have any more advice to add to this answer? From it I gather that a Gnome Warlord could be helpful and there are some characters that you must find early. Care to explain why? – ken.ganong Nov 12 '13 at 21:43

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