From Dungeons of Dredmor Wiki
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|Skill 1||Maces (Skill)|
|Skill 3||Berserker Rage|
|Skill 4||Artful Dodger|
Why maces? Well, maces fits absolutely amazingly with Smithing.
The Triple Flail (17 damage) is created entirely from iron and steel. 6 Iron Ingots creates 3 Rough Iron Maces. Add 3 Iron Ingots to make 3 Flails. Add 3 Steel Ingots to make 3 Slinky Flails. Combine those 3 to make the Triple Flail. That's 9 total Iron Ingots and 3 Steel. At level 5 Smithing, you will only need to find 1 Chalk, 1 Coal, and 3 Hematite to make it entirely from scratch. Not bad, not bad at all!
Even better, if you manage to find a Zodiacal Wand and a Pyrite Sun (both uncommon, but not horribly rare, I have found both on the first floor in my recent game) along with a single Platinum Ingot, you can take the Slinky Flail and create the Flail of Pleiades (19 damage) instead. The Flail of Pleiades is one of the highest damage crafted items available.
Smithing won't stop there, however, because you can also make the highest absorption armor (Embossed Serpentine Platemail) out of Steel/Silver/Gold/Platinum, as well as some other moderate equipment such as shields, helmets, and boots, depending on the ingots/raw materials you find. All that, and you get a small bonus to traps and a nice bonus to burliness (HP, Block, Melee Dmg)
Maces have a chance to knockback - the most useful of the weapon abilities, IMO, because a knockback will prevent the enemy from attacking their turn (assuming you are lined up such that they CAN be knocked back a space). Mace weapons can also be imbued to cause knockback independent of this via the Anvil of Krong. Combine those with assassination's chance on hit abilities and your enemies will be battered and bruised quite often.
Berserker Rage gives some very nice bonuses to melee combat. Hit points, melee power, and absorption are all increased, and the effects (There are 3 types!) even stack 3 times each. You could have a whopping +12, +9, +3, +12, +15 (Though that would be pretty rare to have them all up, but still, you'll often have a few berserker effects going)
In heaviest armors, your dodge rating will suffer, and Artful Dodger can help make up for that, but the skill is taken because of knightly leap. It's a short range teleport (you move like a knight does in chess, two spaces up, down, left, or right, then one space perpendicular) and is an absolute life-saver, letting you escape deadly engagements by leaping over water, lava, slime, through gates, past mobs, etc.
Assassination provides extra chances on attack to really slam dunk your enemy.
Perception helps you land hits and provides some of the anti-trap stats that can help you earn some extra xp.
Burglary's first skill is fantastic. Free lockpicks for the entire game, no more bashing down doors or losing items from chests. Later on, it can provide you with another two escapes (Ninja Vanish and Move in Mysterious Way) as well as some more anti-trap bonuses.
Weaknesses? AoE power is light (Only the mace special attack to do it). No Archaeology for tweaking your artifacts - don't get your uber flails cursed >.<