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The Plane of Earth is ineligible to leave bones files. The entire level is no-teleport and has an undiggable floor.
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Most of the level is filled with solid rock, with some caverns scattered around as shown above. You will start the level in the bottom-right cavern at the point marked X; the portal to the Plane of Air is randomly placed in one of the other caverns.
When you enter the level, the Wizard of Yendor will make his only mandatory reappearance (helpfully carrying a Spellbook of Dig). There is also an Elvenking carrying a pick-axe and a Minotaur with a wand of digging nearby. The remainder of the level contains 27 earth elementals, eight rock trolls, five stone giants, five pit vipers, three barbed devils, three pit fiends, a rock piercer, an umber hulk, a dust vortex, four stone golems, a scorpion, and a minotaur, distributed fairly evenly through the caverns.
The Plane of Earth is probably the easiest of the planes. Once the wizard has been dispatched, the only real challenge is locating the portal. Most of the monsters should pose no real threat to an ascension-worthy character. Note, however, that the many earth elementals are much tougher than those generated in the dungeons. They will phase through the solid rock to get to you, and if you dig slowly, they may surround you, slowing your progress. Conflict could help with this. A good alternative is to turn into a phasing monster yourself, which will enable you to move around rapidly; the usual polyselfing caveats apply.
The portal can be located by the usual methods - scroll of gold detection, wand of secret door detection, spell of detect unseen, wearing the amulet, and so on. If one doesn't want to expend such resources, it is also quite plausible to locate the portal simply by visiting each cavern and walking over every square. Having the automatic searching intrinsic or extrinsic will be useful for this.
It is better to use wands or spells of digging to make your way through this level rather than a pick axe or dwarvish mattock, simply to reduce the time spent here (and thus the chances of the wizard reappearing). Digging with tools is not only slower than digging by magical means, but additionally, if you dig with a tool, monsters may be generated to hinder your progress ("The debris from your digging comes to life!")
It is sometimes quite possible to locate the portal with just the wand the minotaur leaves, but it is recommended you bring a few of your own (or a source of charging) in case the portal is a long way away. Three or four is probably quite sufficient.
|This page is based on a spoiler by Dylan O'Donnell. The original license is:
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