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-   -   Using Level Feelings (http://angband.oook.cz/forum/showthread.php?t=7564)

Philip November 4, 2015 08:29

Yeah, giving separate feelings was a mistake. I actually agree that the player should be able to get level feelings, but only on condition that they are useless, like they used to be. I find it perfectly plausible that the player character learns to identify signs that something unusual is around. Sort of like pseudo-id for levels. Shouldn't be faultless though.

Bogatyr November 4, 2015 10:13

Quote:

Originally Posted by Philip (Post 105817)
Yeah, giving separate feelings was a mistake. I actually agree that the player should be able to get level feelings, but only on condition that they are useless, like they used to be. I find it perfectly plausible that the player character learns to identify signs that something unusual is around. Sort of like pseudo-id for levels. Shouldn't be faultless though.

No, separate level feelings do their job very well. They give a feeling for the difficulty of monsters, the potential presence of a pit, and if there are OOD items. Works great, I like it quite a bit.

Bogatyr November 4, 2015 10:15

Quote:

Originally Posted by PowerWyrm (Post 105800)
In my last game, 600ft was "scraps of junk", and a snaga I killed dropped a ring of speed +10. Imagine if I took the first stairs down...

Yeah, or if you'd taken one step differently, or if you'd cast a detect spell, fired a missile, dug out a wall, picked up some cash, or, or or, .... you *do* realize how the RNG works?

yyt16384 November 4, 2015 17:17

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bogatyr (Post 105823)
Yeah, or if you'd taken one step differently, or if you'd cast a detect spell, fired a missile, dug out a wall, picked up some cash, or, or or, .... you *do* realize how the RNG works?

Monster drops are generated when the monster is generated, and it's likely that this one was generated when entering the level, so what the player did before killing it doesn't matter a lot.

Thraalbee November 4, 2015 17:23

I like level feelings but agree they are a bit off sometimes. That random drops are outside of the rating is fine, that is also true for summons.

It has probably been suggested before, but one way to improve the treasure rating would be to ignore squelched items.

Derakon November 4, 2015 17:51

Quote:

Originally Posted by Thraalbeast (Post 105832)
It has probably been suggested before, but one way to improve the treasure rating would be to ignore squelched items.

One of the guiding principles of the squelch system is that it should be nothing more than a UI convenience. That means that it must not be allowed to leak information that the player couldn't get otherwise. This is why squelched items are still detected by Object Detection.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bogatyr
No, separate level feelings do their job very well. They give a feeling for the difficulty of monsters, the potential presence of a pit, and if there are OOD items. Works great, I like it quite a bit.

The argument is that the job that level feelings do is a bad job that should not be done, player opinion to the contrary. Of course players will by default like something that appears to be helpful, but that does not mean it is a good game feature.

Estie November 4, 2015 18:38

I have the option checked in my games, but have no strong feelings about level feelings (!).

The treasure part is unproblematic once you accept that the value is generic and might not apply to your current situation (wrong class, duplicate item,...).

However, I have seen posts by newer players who use the danger part as a meter whether to explore or leave ("only explore low danger levels"). This is imo a bad idea. The reason is that high danger indicator usually means a vault, and most of those are walled in and high danger levels are perfectly safe to walk and teleport about most of the time. Also, anyone doing even a modicum of detection isnt going to stumble into a graveyard unawares. For me as a player, the distance from the stairs or time spent on a level depends on depth and my current equipment, danger feeling has no impact.

There is nothing wrong with this situation, but I am wondering whether it might be possible to word it better. Maybe replace "You feel scared!" with "You sense powerfull minions nearby" or something.

Nick November 4, 2015 21:16

Quote:

Originally Posted by Derakon (Post 105835)
The argument is that the job that level feelings do is a bad job that should not be done, player opinion to the contrary. Of course players will by default like something that appears to be helpful, but that does not mean it is a good game feature.

The split feelings give a rough measure of the collective power of monsters and objects on the level. Why is that a job that shouldn't be done?

Before I took this job, I had the opinion that the randart system I had in FA was much better than the Vanilla one, and coming in, that was something I intended to eventually "fix". I have come appreciate the V system though, basically because the fact that a lot of people like it made me think that maybe it has some positives.

Lots of people like level feelings. Are those people really all wrong?

Bogatyr November 4, 2015 21:28

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nick (Post 105844)
The split feelings give a rough measure of the collective power of monsters and objects on the level. Why is that a job that shouldn't be done?

Before I took this job, I had the opinion that the randart system I had in FA was much better than the Vanilla one, and coming in, that was something I intended to eventually "fix". I have come appreciate the V system though, basically because the fact that a lot of people like it made me think that maybe it has some positives.

Lots of people like level feelings. Are those people really all wrong?

"The players are complaining about no rations in the general store!"
"Let them eat slime molds!"

Split feelings make the game more interesting. "Woohoo, got me here a 9-9!"

Derakon November 4, 2015 21:53

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nick (Post 105844)
The split feelings give a rough measure of the collective power of monsters and objects on the level. Why is that a job that shouldn't be done?

As I've discussed before, it shouldn't be done because the player shouldn't have this kind of information without making more direct observations of what's actually going on. "Visions of death haunt this place" is less interesting than actually seeing [evidence of] an Ancient Undead Tyrannosaurus or whatever. "There are many riches here" is less interesting than the player actually finding gilded door frames or chips of precious gemstones in the corners, let alone actually finding an item of interest.

And there's nothing to explain how the player gets these level feelings. Are Angband characters simply psychic? If so they do a very bad job of it (due to the vagueness of the feelings). Why are they psychic for the general value of items on the floor but not in monster inventories? The mechanic doesn't make any kind of internal sense and has no explanation; it's just an extra bit of incredibly imprecise information that the player gets handed for no reason.

Then we get into the gameplay effects, i.e. what the level feelings actually accomplish. Players who use level feelings: how does that impact their behavior? It seems to most prominently have two effects: first, that they avoid levels that have high danger ratings and that they might otherwise have explored, and second, that they fully explore levels with high treasure ratings that they might otherwise have left earlier. So level feelings encourage players to leave when the game would (in theory) be more interesting due to dangerous monsters, and they encourage players to stay when we all know that obsessively clearing levels is a more boring way to play compared to moving on when you feel "done" with the current area.

So in short my thesis is that level feelings have no in-game justification for their existence, and they encourage players to play in a way that is actually less fun for them (even if they don't realize it). Not not fun, so the argument isn't as strong as it was for no-selling -- I recognize that level feelings can sometimes create some feeling of anticipation that is worth figuring out how to preserve -- but they are not a net benefit as they are currently implemented. Thus we should remove them in the short term, and in the long term implement one of the several proposed ways to fix their flaws so that they're actually appropriate to the game.

I hope this answer is long enough for you, Nick. :)


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