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hein July 21, 2015 21:57

Angband simply rocks. What has changed from 1997?
Hello all,

I was a student back in 1997, where I forced myself to quit the game for good, beacuse of the addiction and time it took.

This summer, I downloaded 3.5 just before Xmas, and now the 4.0 version and started playing again. Wow. Why do people really play other games than this?:)

18 years later, Im hooked.

Some observations:

Game seems much faster. I can get a warrior to level 30 in 2 hours of playing time. As I remember it, I once spent 24 playing hours in 97, my stats werent even maxed, finding Ringil, and then be killed by the Angel of Death (where is he nowadays?)

At about character level 25, I thought the game was getting tedious back in 97. You had a huge jump in XP needed to go the next level, and you had identified most of potions, scrolls, wands and staves, so there was little new to be discovered. I remember back in 97, I attacked a troll pit, and died because I was too bored too see an Eldrak among them, effectively killing me.

My experience now:

Game is superfast. This is of course a bit due to faster computers(?), but also auto-selling turned off, auto-pickup working really nice, and, of course, haggling, charisma, and all that semi-useless stuff gone.

The game is throwing all the interesting stuff at me. If I, say, dive to 1000ft pretty fast, suddenly there is Lagduf, Mughash, Wormy, Grishnak, Golfimbul, Bullroarer, Smeagol, Gorbag, and Shagrat, easily there too see me at one level.

Artifacts and useful items also seem to appear much easier. And a better distribution of items, too. I think the deepest I took a character in 97 was about 2500, and that was then I (at least felt like) I was throwing my study time away. Now I have racked up several beyound 3000, without any sweat. I usually die because Im too impatient, but it takes so short time..

While I remember charlevel 25 to be the death of boredom back in the old days, now the game starts to get interesting. Maybe Ive already found Nimloth, Aglarang, Isildur? A small ring or boots of speed that can make a little difference? My character has by then already made a diversion from the others.

Maybe I just have more patience, now at my relatively old age (for a human). What do you guys think?

Malak Darkhunter July 22, 2015 02:51

lots and lots has changed...the idea was to make the dungeon more interesting and less boring and get you to those "interesting" levels faster...much improvement to UI and interface over the years as a matter of fact the game just got completely re-written from ground up...I haven't tried 4.0 yet but it will be next ( still trying to finish a game of Sangband). but I'm pretty eager to get it compiled and start playing. For more information about the various changes from version to version I would suggest visiting and looking at the version changes that came about from each release.

fizzix July 22, 2015 16:22

A lot of the changes you mentioned were deliberate gameplay changes to try to limit the boring/repetitive stuff. In some ways the drop rates for artifacts and other gear aren't all that much different from what they were in 3.06-3.09 and are far lower than they were in the heady days of 3.1-3.3, which you skipped over. if you want a super fast game, try loading up 3.2 where you'll be essentially drowning in artifacts.

Other recent changes to help keep the player from boring themselves were stuff like reduction in forcing the player to deal with the same challenges over and over again. Pit/net sizes were reduced both in size and frequency and increased in variety. Monster group sizes were dropped significantly and the worst offenders (hounds) were reduced in frequency. It's somewhat surprising how much a small change like this changes the game. It used to be that nearly every level had roughly 3-4 packs with 32 hounds a piece which was admittedly hard, but the boring kind of hard. Now monster packs can be varied with different types of monsters appearing together. It doesn't work perfectly, but it's passable for now.

I think the game plays very well up to level 40 or so. The second half still has some issues, but hopefully we can come up with good ways to solve that too. In roguelikes it's often better to focus on the first 10 levels than the last 10, because players will see those levels more.

Thanks for your post! It's always great to hear from players. It really makes us happy to know there are people out there still willing to pick up a game like Angband.

Also, The Angel of Death is sort of still around, he's been renamed as Osse, Herald of Ulmo and he killed my most recent character...

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