Challenge games are special victory conditions for an ADOM game aside from the usual endgames. They were originally created by the ADOM community to allow bragging rights — with the absence of in-game rewards — for players who successfully complete them. Generally, they are designed for players that have already managed a few standard or (particularly) special victories and are looking for more of a challenge.
Some of the more well known of these challenges — including the 'metal man' challenges and Plutonium Man — have since been acknowledged by the game through Steam achievements.

Alucard's Server currently has special modes for challenge games that can be selected at the start; if the player chooses to undertake one of the challenge games, the game will be terminated if the PC takes any actions that deviate from the rules of the challenge. Currently Lithium Man, Iron Man, Steel Man, Eternium Man and Brimstone Man can be played in this way.

Some of the more well known challenge games are listed below. More information and other challenge games can be found here.

Lithium Man[]

Goal: Complete the game after visiting as few locations as possible, preferably only the caverns of chaos and the Tower of Eternal Flames (only when necessary to get the Chaos Orb of Elemental Fire).

The key element of challenge here is limitation — the player is simply more limited in terms of the amount of resources potentially available to him/her, though with enough luck the player can still find decent enough equipment in the CoC. The challenge also requires some strategies for getting past some obstacles that cannot be overcome by easier means.

The challenge can be further coupled with further restrictions — such as only being able to use certain types of equipment — to create a stubborn lithium man challenge.

Iron Man[]

Goal: Make an immediate beeline for the Sceptre of Chaos, and leave the Drakalor Chain with it.

To elaborate, the PC must immediately enter the Infinite Dungeon, and take any down stairs (s)he comes across right away until (s)he reaches the SIL and finds the sceptre. For the most part, the challenge is based on luck — the PC can potentially meet increasingly dangerous monsters the further (s)he goes down, and there is a potential lack of decent equipment available to the PC. Perhaps the main challenge would be winning the battle with the deadly chaos knight MaLaKaI, if (s)he picks up the Sceptre before the PC reaches it or if the PC cannot escape from him/her after collecting the Sceptre.

Steel Man[]

Goal: The PC must reach level 50 without leaving the wilderness. Then, (s)he leaves the Drakalor Chain.

Perhaps one of the more tedious challenges, many wilderness monsters give such little xp that killing them to raise levels can take a long time. Starvation is also a significant threat due to the amount of wilderness travel required, unless the PC has the skills to handle this. There are also considerable equipment restraints, since until chaos knights show up all monsters will only drop danger level one items no matter how high levelled the PC is (or they are).

Victories achieved without save scumming (list is not complete):

Eternium Man[]

Goal: Enter the Small Cave immediately, and do not leave it until reaching level 50.

As many PCs spending too much time in the cave realize even without attempting the challenge, the cave gets considerably more dangerous the higher levelled the PC becomes due to not only the dungeon danger level but the level of each monster increasing as the PC levels up. The problem with levelling up is not finding monsters to fight, but actually surviving those fights... even against worms. With the increasing level of monsters coupled with the lack of items potentially available to the PC, this is an extremely difficult challenge to complete without the right strategies/tactics/scumming.

Victories achieved without save scumming (list is not complete):

  • By Barry Kearns for ADOM v.1.1.1[2] (first time challenge has been completed) around 18/11/2006. Achieved with a dwarven Bard in 516804 turns. Used tactics: gremlin bomb; pet for dispatching of gremlins.
  • By Jerzy Chalupski for ADOM v.1.1.1[3] around 3/12/2006. Achieved with a dwarven Merchant in 128374 turns. Used tactics: gremlin bomb; alarm traps for dispatching of gremlins.
  • By furious_styles for ADOM v.1.1.1[4] around 23/11/2008. Achieved with a dwarven Bard in 835019 turns. Used tactics: gremlin bomb; pet for dispatching of gremlins.
  • By nathrakh for ADOM v.1.1.1[5] around 08/02/2009. Achieved with a dwarven Bard in ??? turns. Used tactics: gremlin bomb; pet for dispatching of gremlins.

Brimstone Man[]

Goal: Proceed immediately at the start of the game to the Tower of Eternal Flames, dive in and acquire the Chaos Orb of Elemental Fire without visiting any other dungeons, leave the Chain with it.

Strategy is key when attempting this challenge, due to many guaranteed hazards. Firstly is the continuous fire damage — this is said to be 10 per turn for PCs with no fire resistance. PCs with two counts of resistance and the Immune to Pain talent can eliminate this damage. Secondly, the fire will more or less constantly destroy most items the PC has (although mithril items like elven chain mail stay safe). Thirdly, many monsters in the tower are very dangerous, particularly fire giant (kings) and fire demons. Lastly, should the PC manage to dig into the temple and survive the demon and elemental guards (s)he will have to defeat the very formidable Ancient Chaos Wyrm to complete the challenge.

Victories achieved without save scumming (list may not be complete):

  • By Zharradan for ADOM v.1.1.1[6] around 31/07/2011. Achieved with a gnomish Elementalist in 23995 turns. Used tactics: dragon gold doubling.
  • By gut for ADOM v.1.1.1[7] around 27/10/2012. Achieved with a gnomish Elementalist in 7566 turns.