Vicious Gaan-Telet

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Vicious Gaan-Talet is the penultimate challenge in Desktop Dungeons. It is a souped-up version of the Tower of Gaan-Telet, and is unlocked by completing the Oh, Horatio! quest.


The exterior of Gaan-Talet contains the shops, glyphs, and boosters of a normal dungeon. There are no altars (on the outside), and there is no normal subdungeon, although the Smuggler's Den will appear if you prep it. Ordinary monsters from level 1-7 appear on the outside; there are no level 8+ monsters or bosses on the outside. The inside of the tower begins revealed.

To complete Gaan-Talet, you must enter a series of special subdungeons inside the tower. Once all enemies in each level are defeated, the next becomes available.


The dungeon will host all unlocked basic monsters (as well as some special monsters, see below). Monster difficulty on the courtyard (main map) is 100%. The towers get progressively more difficult, each having a cumulative +10% difficulty. i.e. first tower is +10%, second is +20%, all the way to +90% in tower 9 of Vicious Gaan-Telet.


The final boss is the Monster: Goat Goat-shaped Horatio the Immortal. Despite his form, he does a relatively modest 75 damage. On Vicious, he has 5000 HP, Physical and Magical restances of 50%, and Berserks at 50%.

Special Rules

The stairs to the first tower subdungeon are accessible from the start. However, in order for the stairs of the next tower to be revealed, all five monsters must be defeated in the previous tower.

Each of the nine altars are accessible once the stairs to its respective tower is revealed. Any altars prepared (or granted by the Martyr ability) appear on the courtyard as an extra copy of the given altar. Furthermore, a special copy of the currently worshipped altar spawns close to the tower entrance. So it is possible to have up to three copies of the same altar.


Unlike the Hard version of the dungeon, the Vicious version has all 9 towers; and each must be cleared to access the tenth tower where Horatio resides.

Each subdungeon is a small level, initially unexplored, containing several tough monsters (one of which is exotic), an altar, and a exotic, useful item. On Vicious, this means that every altar will eventually be available. To make life even harder, most levels will give you some kind of penalty when you enter. (A few, including the first, do not.) You can travel freely between the current subdungeon, previous subdungeons, and the exterior.

The first, second, and third subdungeons contain monsters of level 8, 9, and 10, respectively. The 10th level monsters are not bosses, simply scaled-up monsters (for instance, the 10th level Goo Blob has Physical Resistance of only 50%, not 75%). Subdungeons 4-9 also have 10th-level monsters; on each level, the monsters get a progressively larger Health and Attack bonus.

The monsters in the subdungeons are - similarly to bosses - immune to the instant kill effects of Slayer Wand, IMAWAL or the Glowing Guardan's Absolution boon.


These will occur in a random order when you first enter each subdungeon.

  • The subdungeon is completely revealed when you enter, providing no exploration healing.
  • All monsters in this subdungeon gain Trait: No Experience No Experience.
  • All monsters in this subdungeon gain Trait: Bloodless Bloodless (Lifesteal doesn't work, and they don't leave a blood pool.)
  • All monsters in this subdungeon gain Trait: First Strike First Strike.
  • All monsters in this subdungeon gain Trait: Retaliate: Fireball Retaliate: Fireball.
  • You are afflicted with Trait: Poisoned Poisoned, Trait: Mana Burned Mana Burned and one stack each of Trait: Weakened Weakened and Trait: Corrosion Corrosion.
  • You gain three stacks of Trait: Cursed Cursed.

There are also (up to) three subdungeons that do not give any penalty. So there are a possible 10 penalty events (the 7 penalties and 3 no penalty results), and one is chosen for each tower. Which means that in a lucky case, one of the penalties listed above will not be encountered. The first subdungeon will always have a "no penalty" event.

Exotic Monsters and Items

Again, these will occur in a random order; however, the monsters and items are linked.

  • Goblin Miner (Knockback, Mana burn) with 2 Wall Crushers. The Wall Crushers are not of much use, but convert for 25 CP each.
  • Dancing Sword (1 Death Protection/level, Blink) with the sword "Penance". Penance grants 2 base attack and 1 base mana, but grants a penalty of 1 base attack and mana if you convert it from inventory. Converting right from the ground does not induce the penalty.
  • Burn Viper (Blink, Mana burn) with a Cracked Amulet (when consumed, 5 XP).
  • Golden Statue (1 damage only, but has No XP, a lot of hit points, Weakening Blow, and Corrodes) with the Long Rant (when consumed, afflicts 3 stacks of Corroded on all enemies on the level).
  • Gelatinous Thing (Retaliate: Fireball) with Nom Nom (when consumed, poisons you but acts as a health booster).
  • Bridge Troll(50% Physical and Magic Resist, Fast Regen, Berserk at 50%) with a Sensation Stone (convert for 150 CP). The Bridge Troll is one of the more difficult monsters, but it drops a second Sensation Stone, making this a mixed blessing level.
  • Dragon Elite (50% Magic Resist, Poisonous, Curse Bearer) with a Compression Seal
  • Illusion (50% Physical Resist, Weakening Blow, Retaliate: Fireball) with the Ritual Scroll (when consumed, +5% Physical and Magic Resist, but 3 stacks of Cursed).
  • Immortal Yin (no XP) with Yang's Sword (small, +3 damage, consume for a level of Death Protection). This is one of the best pairings to find, because Yin is not difficult and the item is small provides a good power boost.


Although Vicious Gaan-Telet is similar to its hard version, it requires a unique strategy. Vicious Gaan-Telet has a number of challanges unique to this map, and a successful strategy will have an answer to all of these:

  • There is a shortage of blackspace. An average tower will have maybe 40 black tiles, and require you to defeat five very tough monsters.
  • The monsters in later towers can deal very high damage. For example, a tower 9 Warlock will deal 192 damage.
  • You will be afflicted several times with Trait: Poisoned Poisoned, Trait: Mana Burned Mana Burned, Trait: Weakened Weakened, Trait: Corrosion Corrosion and Trait: Cursed Cursed.
  • The final boss is very durable - without bypassing its 50% resistances, it takes 10 000 points of damage to kill it.

So all things considered, Vicious Gaan-Telet is an endurance run that requires you to be able to defeat lots of very tough monsters with very limited resrouces and several malicious afflictions. So most successful builds will have high Trait: physical resist physical resist; Trait: sanguine sanguine; and high damage.


The recommended races are Race: Human Human or Race: Orc Orc. These races allow you to boost your damage, which is essential to reducing the number of hits you need to take from monsters. Race: Dwarves Dwarves]] can also work for some builds, though are generally more difficult to play. Unfortunately the other races don't have much to offer in this endurance environment.


The easiest class to beat Vicious Gaan-Telet with is the Class: Vampire Vampire. Other good picks include the Class: Crusader Crusader who can ignore a lot of the malicious afflictions; and the Class: Rogue Rogue whose Trait: Dodge Dodge and Trait: First Strike First Strike trait make her surprisingly efficient in melee.


The best deities to worship in Vicious Gaan-Telet are:

  • God: Taurog Taurog is a surprisingly good initial deity, because his boons can provide both resistances and bonus damage.
  • God: Glowing Guardian Glowing Guardian offers bonus damage and health through Humility (and is often worth converting through just for that one boon); though he also offers Cleansing and Protection, a few shots of which can help a lot in dealing with mana burn / poison and giving a little extra help for a level-up.
  • God: Dracul Dracul is arguably the single best deity for Vicious Gaan-Telet, offering both Sanguine and resistances. While his quirkiness makes him better to convert into late-game to reap his many benefits, he is the most critical of the deities.
  • God: The Pactmaker The Pactmaker offers Body Pact to round up resistances as needed, though it is more expensive than either Tarog's or Dracul's boons. Only get it when you will not lose much Piety on it (resistances are capped).

A successful VGT run can easily use all four of these deities (for example, starting in Taurog for his resistance/damage boosts; then tripping through Glowing Guardian for Humility; then ending up in Dracul for Blood Shield and Blood Tithe; and taking Body Pact when needed for extra resists).

Shop Items

Some items to keep an eye out for in Vicious Gaan-Telet:

  • Item: Soul Orb Soul Orb is really useful to avoid Mana Burn.
  • Item: Viper Ward Viper Ward is only needed if you don't have HALPMEH. But in that case it can be very useful.
  • Item: Tower Shield Tower Shield can give much-coveted physical resistance, and can help get close to the resist cap.
  • Item: Platemail Platemail is a good item to increase durability, though bear in mind that damage reduction happens before resistances are considered.
  • Item: Vampiric Blade Vampiric Blade gives you a layer of Lifesteal without having to sacrafice maximum resistances.
  • Item: Martyr Wraps Martyr Wraps helps immensely with the boss fight.
  • Item: Troll Heart Troll Heart, if purchased early, can give a bit of extra help, and then a bit of extra CP when converted at L10.
  • Item: Gloves of Midas Gloves of Midas can help earn more gold to purchase more conversion fodder.
  • Item: Dragon Soul Dragon Soul extends the amount of spells the character can cast.
  • Anything that increases damage - like the Item: Fine Sword Fine Sword, Item: Hero's Helm Hero's Helm or the Item: Badge of Honour Badge of Honour - is worth a consideration.

Other than these, items that give a good conversion value can become useful purchases.




  • The extra Apothecaries preparation is a prudent safeguard against the many afflictions of VGT.
  • Quest Items may be worth it for some builds who don't worry so much about afflictions.


  • Item: Perseverance Badge Perseverance Badge gives damage bonus for a small slot item, and is arguably the best blacksmith preparation for VGT.
  • Item: Bear Mace Bear Mace takes up more space and its use is more conditional, however the damage bonus it gives is also greater.
  • Item: Really Big Sword Really Big Sword is a reliable way to pierce Horatio's resistances, however not all builds can afford the drawback of having slow strike.


  • God: Taurog Taurog is a good starting deity for most general strategies.
  • God: Glowing Guardian Glowing Guardian is a good alternative for more glyph-dependent builds, especially those that start with high resists.
  • God: The Earthmother The Earthmother can be worth in some cases because preparing her altar means two separate altars will be present on the map, and both can be desecrated.


  • Item: Dragon Shield Dragon Shield is the most commonly used preparation thanks to the huge resistance bonus it gives.

Mage Tower

  • Extra Attack Boosters is almost always the best preparation. Some specific builds may benefit from one of the other two boosters, though.

Thieves Guild

  • Item: Patches Patches introduces a degree of randomness that is not welcome, however the benefits it gives can be huge, so most runs will risk taking him.
  • An alternative can be Black Market, given how money can buy at least more conversion points.



Most glyphs will end up being converted thanks to the shortage of inventory space, and the need for extra damage. There are some glyphs that can be very useful, though, and picking the right glyphs to keep can mean the difference between victory and defeat.

  • Glyph: BURNDAYRAZ BURNDAYRAZ is an effective way to round up damage and finish a monster; and it is especially useful against the Dancing Blade. It is recommended to keep it at least until that monster is defeated.
  • Glyph: HALPMEH HALPMEH greatly extends melee potential, and can also cure Poison. One of the best glyphs to keep until converting into Dracul.
  • Glyph: GETINDARE GETINDARE is a really effective way to finish monsters, and is a great way to conserve resources. Excellent glyph.
  • Glyph: BYSSEPS BYSSEPS is not very useful during most of the run, but can be very effective in stripping Horatio's resistances. It is often worthwhile to keep it on the floor, and pick it up for the boss fight.
  • Glyph: CYDSTEPP CYDSTEPP is a bit expensive, but can be very useful to land a killing blow.
  • Glyph: WONAFYT WONAFYT is a bit counterintuitive, but especially on the bigger tower maps it can be a good way to conserve blackspace.

Most other glyphs can be converted on sight.

External Links

[1] : a useful online tool to track the floors, monsters and penalties of Vicious Gaan-Telet