A.k.a "Piroco's Stat and Skill training for dummies, Elona Custom edition". Had I known this would be such a general guide I would have named it that.
This guide is meant to list some methods for effective stat and skill training, based on general observations. None of the methods has been evaluated with Elosnack. For this reason, if you find any errors in the list, please add it to the comments.
THIS GUIDE IS INCOMPLETE, MORE WILL BE ADDED LATER.
Food stat training
Equipment as food
Can only be used on the PC, pets will equip the items instead.
As Elona+ added innate stat bonuses to specific types of equipment, these can now be exploited for stat training. Since only the PC can eat raw equipment, you can preserve other stat training foods for your pets or to eat at a later time, not to mention that certain stats like Speed have a very limited number of foods that train it anyways.
Simply find the adequate equipment, use scrolls of inferior material until they turn into raw or candy, and bon appetit~. Here are some recommended, easier-to-find pieces of equipment for your menu:
- STR: Clubs; these can be easily found in the wilderness, dungeons, armory shops and rewarded from extermination quests.
- DEX: Long bows; these can be easily found in the wilderness, dungeons, armory shops and rewarded from extermination quests.
- CON: Claws and rings (plain rings); these can be easily found in the wilderness, dungeons, armory shops and rewarded from extermination quests, and if you want more rings you can invest on Moyer the Crooked, but the prices will be triple.
- PER: Laser guns; these are regularly sold in the Cyber Dome.
- WIL: Knight helmets and engagement necklaces; the former is easily found in the wilderness, dungeons, armory shops and rewarded from extermination quests, while the latter spawns regularly in the Puppy Cave, including in the inventory of Wizards of Elea for you to steal.
- MAG: Talismans, the only armor that innately increases MAG; sadly not so easy to find and need rare materials to make with Tailoring, you can try investing on Moyer the Crooked, but the prices will be triple. Lich-type enemies commonly wear one.
- CHA: Engagement rings; these can be easily found in the Puppy Cave, including in the inventory of Wizards of Elea for you to steal.
- SPD: Shoes and speed rings; shoes can be bought from any armory shop, and easily made with a tailoring kit and a few levels in Tailoring, while speed rings are much rarer, Moyer the Crooked can sell some at inflated prices with a few levels in shop rank.
Mind that these are not all stat-raising pieces of equipment, only the most accessible and easy to find.
NOTE: Elona Custom has added "Feed" in Tweaks options, which allows the player to feed raw equipment to their pets. Haven't tested if feeding raw equipment has greater effects on pets as other stat-increasing foods have.
Can be used on PCs and pets alike.
By using the pot of fusion, you can mix herbs with food for greater stat training. According to the Food/Technical page, food with the herb bit increases 800 nutrition to all attributes (except Luck), while also increasing potential, which means better overall stat increase than eating the herbs alone. For this reason, it's recommended to save any herbs you find until you have enough (stomafillia+curaria+rare herb) to mix into food, greater quality or stat-training food if possible.
Depending on your priorities, you may wish to reserve your herbed food for the PC or pets. The PC has an easier time increasing stats thanks to focused skill training and the "equipment food" trick explained above, while pets receive 10x as much nutrition from herbed food than the PC, plus it's one of the cheaper ways to increase a pet's Speed stat (ignoring AP training); still, it is the PC who leads and determines the game, so this is a very optional suggestion.
If you're having trouble finding herbs, remember that you can easily obtain herb seeds from higher-level Harvest time! quests, plus food vendors ocassionally sell herbs (higher shop rank may be needed).
Can be used on PCs and pets alike, but benefits will be different.
There are many ways to increase stat potential, but the PC and pets benefit a little differently from each.
Potions of potential, preferably blessed, are better used on the PC. The reason is that the PC will suffer a rapid loss of potential from skill training, faster than that of pets, that blessed potions can greatly recover, compared to other available methods . Another reason is the relative rarity of said potions, plus their steep price.
Don't depend on guild trainers, as their stat training is too little to compensate the rate at which they appear around Your Home.
Pets are better off eating from large picnic baskets; not only do they offer full satiation, but also a good amount of potential training for pet, who do not train stats as constantly on their own. Plus, the baskets can be easily made as long as the player has the necessary ingredients.
If you're having trouble finding ingredients for the large picnic baskets...
- Vegetables can be commonly found in the wilderness (healthy leaf and edible wild plant).
- Fruits can gathered from (b)ashing a tree of fruits, said trees are commonly found in the wilderness.
- Fish can be fished from any water tile as long as you have a rod, bait, and a decent Fishing skill level.
- Bread can be bought from any baker in towns.
- Corpses can be obtained from monsters in the wilderness (not guaranteed) or by killing any offspring monsters in the Ranch (guaranteed); better have good levels on Anatomy.
- Eggs are laid by offspring monsters in the Ranch, and rarely sold by goods vendors or food vendors.
- Empty baskets can be crafted with the pot of fusion, but also drop after using a large picnic basket; since Lune gives you a free picnic basket every 20th of every month, you can recycle the empty baskets they drop.
- Finally, vegetables, fruits, fishes and corpses can be sold by any goods and general vendors, while the previous plus eggs can be sold by food vendors.
Luck stat training
Second method can only be used on the PC.
Increasing Luck, no matter how, is bound to become tedious, as most known methods to do so are slow, repetitive and not always rewarding.
The quickest way (so to say) is to mine four-leaf clovers from "forest" type dungeons. The clovers spawn very rarely, but compared to other available methods, this one takes less real-time. Just remember to *always* bless the clovers before eating, so you get 1 point in Luck for every clover. You can also use rods of wall creation and the Wall Creation spell for more mining chances.
Another method is through the Lost Kitty quest. This quest trains you luck stat for every stray cat returned, increasing 1 whole point every few times (around every 3 stray cats returned). The actual problem is finding stray cats to capture. Besides randomly spawning in dungeons, the wilderness and extermination quests, stray cats are guaranteed to appear during the Jure Festival in Noyel and Rain Festival in Ludus, but on limited amounts every year.
Another method is to finish the Pael and her mom quest so you get the happy apple as a reward, then exploit the Little sister quest to get multiple happy apples. This is perhaps the slowest of the three methods, and is recommended to do in tandem with one of the listed above, instead of depending on it alone.
Savescumming method for #3 (thanks NeithR!): To make the method faster...
- Save before entering a dungeon.
- If the floor or next floor doesn't contain a Big Daddy, keep reloading until you hear the sound of a Big Daddy (Do mind the minimum DL for it to spawn).
- To save/load faster, use F1 to save and F2 to load. This works outside wizard mode.
Investing (+cha up)
Can be used on PCs and pets alike, just be mindful that the latter must be near the shopkeeper for their Investing skill to be calculated and trained.
Possibly the quickest way to train CHA, for both pets and the PC. There are two ways of exploiting Investing, but be aware that they can be very expensive during the early game:
- Hire new shops, invest in them until high enough to become costly, dismiss, and repeat. While somewhat expensive at first, by the time you reach South Tyris you’ll likely be finding ways to turn you excess money into skill levels.
- If you don’t mind cheating, re-initialize a town so that all shops drop in rank, re-invest in them, and repeat. This is more effective in towns with many shops, like Palmia and Melkawn. Just to be sure, keep a backup of your saves.
As mentioned above, pets *must* be close to the shopkeeper to train Investing, so always try to remember that. Pets' Investing adds to you own to reduce the amount of gold needed to increase shop rank.
This guide previously favored increasing 50 levels in shop rank at once for quicker Investing training, but on second observations there doesn't seem to be any real adventages from it besides sparing the player on some button-typing; if anything it can be somewhat expensive, as gradual Investing becomes cheaper for every skill level reached.
Evasion and Greater Evasion (+dex and per up)
Can be used on PCs and pets alike. Ranch method is exclusive to the PC.
Asuras, Mitras and Varunas are excellent trainers for these skills, given their multiple attacks and high critical rate. Just skip turns with [s] or  in the keypad and let them attack you. Just make sure you have a safe exit to eat, sleep and heal, as you will quickly lose a lot of turns doing this. Besides the quick Evasion and GE training, this is a good way to train DEX and PER.
For faster training, find an isolated room or dungeon floor and summon monsters until you have around four Asura monsters.
Larna is a recommended location for the easy transition between the town and the Mountain Pass, a static dungeon, so you can enter the dungeon, spawn monsters until you have at least four Asuras surrounding the stairs, and skip turns, then simply press [Enter] when the character becomes too sleepy/hurt/hungry. However, the DL means that Mitra is the strongest asura monster that can spawn there, so high-leveled players may need to find ways to slow themselves down (the Fetter of Earth, for example) lest the location becomes obsolete.
Vishnus may also help, but beware their increased strength. Do not try this with Kalis, they are too dangerous and more likely to kill you before you get even a single skill level.
UNTESTED: Another method is to put an Asura monster in a Ranch until it breeds around 8 of its kind, then [b]ash them so they become aggravated and attack you; the process is pretty much the same as above, but training in the Ranch may prove safer, and there's more control on which Asura monster-tier to use for it.
Can be used on PCs and pets through different methods.
As mentioned in the Pickpocket page, a good place to start training the skill is in the the southeast and southwest corners of Palmia. There are few NPCs, so you can easily teleport the remainder away and rob the place, plus the furniture can sell for a decent amount of gold; it might be heavy though, so having decent STR and ways to cast Hero helps.
With enough STR and DEX (say... around 80~100) a new method opens up: stealing trees!. Just walk into the wilderness, kill any NPCs in you line of vision and start stealing trees. The skill will train quickly due to the trees' weight and players will (almost) never get interrupted. Sure, trees aren't worth much for selling, but a few stolen trees of fruits can be used to set up a nice fruit farm.
Pets train Pickpocket differently. The skill is used and trained by killing NPCs, taking a portion of their carried gold into the pets' inventory. The best way to train the skill is to simply let them kill stuff. For pets that don't have Pickpocket pre-leaned, you can buy a Robber or Thief NPC from the slave master in Derphy, then use them as skill donors for your pets through the gene machine.
Literacy (+ler up)
Can be used on PCs and pets alike, but one method is exclusive to the PC.
This method is more beneficial to spellcasters or magic users, but it can be reliably used to train LER. Simply buy and find spellbooks, then find a safe place to read them by lots.
The "best setup" would be to pile up a decent number of spellbooks, move to an exit corner of a wilderness map (to escape in case a failed reading spawns dangerous monsters), eat a high-stat-growth triggering food (ex: Putitoro) and read away. Players may want to keep pets around, in case an enemy tries to interrupt you.
For better results, try to find mid-to-high level spellbooks at sufficient Literacy levels, even failed readings train LER.
Pets can also train Literacy through the Reading Party special action, but it spends a lot of stamina. The steps are mostly the same as above, just using the special action instead of reading alone. While Literacy on pets doesn't have obvious benefits (it does calculate for successful Reading Party), it's the most reliable way to train LER for them.
Can be used on PCs and pets alike.
The simplest method to train Lock Picking is to use rods of make door or the Door Creation spell to, well, make doors to open. This way is much cheaper than buying gambling chests and can be re-used by 'C'losing and reopening the doors.
Another way is to use a deed of dungeon to create a room full of doors than can be regenerated anytime.
Note that pets get almost no benefit from Lock Picking beside some ocassional DEX training.