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-   -   Z+Angband and ASCII. Something massive in my head changed and I love it! (http://angband.oook.cz/forum/showthread.php?t=4133)

Svladd Cjelik February 15, 2011 03:29

Z+Angband and ASCII. Something massive in my head changed and I love it!
 
Hi again all,

Long time lurker, but infrequent poster here.

I just dropped by to chat about tilesets and graphics for Angband and the many variants. I have been a long time Zangband player and have always used the been a fan of the old tiles and Adam Bolts tiles.

I simply could not get into the game using ASCII ...until now.

I don't know what it is, but for the first time ever (and I have been playing Zangband for 13 years my my count) I am using ASCII and loving it!

All of a sudden I turned the graphics off and from now on, that's the way they'll stay. I'm somehow more absorbed without them ...Wormtongue agent of Saruman took on a whole new form -I could see the poison dripping from his slimy lips as he spoke. ...the same for Freesia and more!

Like I said, I don't know what, but something changed and I love it!

Do you use tiles or ASCII?

will_asher February 15, 2011 04:06

Quote:

Originally Posted by Svladd Cjelik (Post 48704)
...Wormtongue agent of Saruman took on a whole new form -I could see the poison dripping from his slimy lips as he spoke. ...the same for Freesia and more!

Now I wonder what kind of fancy ASCII they have in Zangband:D

It's the same reason the book is always better than the movie -the imagination is allowed to do its work.

That said, I've been enjoying playing with tiles for the first time in awhile. I always played with ASCII on my old computer because the tiles looked horrible on the low-quality monitor. Now, I have a new computer where the tiles look how they're supposed to.

...I guess the tiles are simple enough to add a little flavor without hindering the imagination for me. I can't get into any of these newfangled PS3-type video games with the high tech graphics.

Ashkir February 15, 2011 09:26

I had a similar 'see the light and become converted' moment'.

My first foray into Angband and its' variants was thanks to a demo disc from either PC Zone or PC Gamer and was Tk-Zangband if I recall correctly. I can't remember what the tileset was called but it gave a 3d isometric enviroment to play in and I was hooked. However I could not bear to play with ASCII, was far too confusing and did my head in!!!

That was until I got stuck into Dwarf Fortress. I know it's very confusing at first and has an intense/hardcore learning curve not helped by the old school ASCII characters but I think it was the fact that it was in motion all the time that the squiggles, letters and lines began to form into terrain, creatures, items and features in my mind and suddenly it clicked. I haven't used a graphical tileset since.

Svladd Cjelik February 15, 2011 11:17

Funny that ...though I love Dwarf Fortress (and some time ago made a thread here raving about how good it was IIRC), I am just not able to play it without a tileset. Yet.

Cazliostro February 15, 2011 15:56

I prefer ASCII as well, but I would love to see someone create a "middle ground" - as I think it is futile to try and create a tileset that is representative in nature of the actual environment. Such tilesets always end up looking goofy and cartoony (which is fine if that's what you're going for) but really, just do yourself a favor and play Diablo or Oblivion if you want to immerse yourself in a graphical alternate reality. (Oblivion is awesome!)

I play *bands for the deep tactical turn-based element. I would love to see a tileset that still used abstract symbols (alchemical symbols make great all-purpose fillers, for instance) - but imagine a *band screen that looked like a wooden tabletop with colored tiles bearing symbols being moved on a parchment colored graph paper surface, maybe with little glass beads of different colors for markers and such. A sort of abstract board-game feel to it. That would be pretty nifty.

Svladd Cjelik February 16, 2011 01:55

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cazliostro (Post 48719)
I play *bands for the deep tactical turn-based element. I would love to see a tileset that still used abstract symbols (alchemical symbols make great all-purpose fillers, for instance) - but imagine a *band screen that looked like a wooden tabletop with colored tiles bearing symbols being moved on a parchment colored graph paper surface, maybe with little glass beads of different colors for markers and such. A sort of abstract board-game feel to it. That would be pretty nifty.

Yup, I'm all about the turn based tactical element. I love that sometimes you have to rethink each turn ...and I love that at any moment you can encounter "It breathes, you die".

On the tilesets, I will always be open to trying another out but I'd imagine it would have to be something pretty special. ...I'd love to attempt one myself one day but alas I imagine the tiles would now number in the thousands...

A little off topic, but I have a question and it's prolly better here rather than starting a new thread ...that red "V" on my character sheet next to electric resistance; is that a V for vampiric or vunerable :confused:

Mangojuice February 16, 2011 03:46

Quote:

Originally Posted by Svladd Cjelik (Post 48734)
Yup, I'm all about the turn based tactical element. I love that sometimes you have to rethink each turn ...and I love that at any moment you can encounter "It breathes, you die".

On the tilesets, I will always be open to trying another out but I'd imagine it would have to be something pretty special. ...I'd love to attempt one myself one day but alas I imagine the tiles would now number in the thousands...

A little off topic, but I have a question and it's prolly better here rather than starting a new thread ...that red "V" on my character sheet next to electric resistance; is that a V for vampiric or vunerable :confused:

That means you're vulnerable to that element. You'll take double damage from electricity. It also halves the reduction in damage you get from resistance, so resist electricity will make electricity do 2/3 damage instead of 1/3, and double resistance will still give you 2/9 damage instead of 1/9. Immunity overrides vulnerability though.

Svladd Cjelik February 16, 2011 04:41

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mangojuice (Post 48737)
That means you're vulnerable to that element. You'll take double damage from electricity. It also halves the reduction in damage you get from resistance, so resist electricity will make electricity do 2/3 damage instead of 1/3, and double resistance will still give you 2/9 damage instead of 1/9. Immunity overrides vulnerability though.

Two things. Thanks for the prompt reply -I'll have to watch out for those eels :cool:

...and secondly, thankyou for giving some much needed love to my favourite of favourite of the *bands.

stv2049 February 16, 2011 22:32

Always ASCII
 
For me it's all about simplicity and ease of use.

Identifying threats is far easier for my brain to process when looking at an array of colored letters rather than graphics.

Same thing held true for me in Quake3 - I'd always choose 'simple objects' - floating icons instead of the complex weapon, model, and pickups since they were much easier to see from a distance, and visually process in the middle of a firefight.

In the sticky Zangband situations where you're carefully calculating your next (perhaps FINAL) move, fancy graphics would get in the way of my ability to strategize lots of possibilities.

Astaroth February 17, 2011 15:02

Just dropping here to say MangoJuice has made my day(s, endless)!

My first *banding was with the good old Zangband I got from the Ubuntu or whatever distro I was running repositories, in times when development already got to a stop. After Z i tried almost every other major roguelike in existence, from nethack, tome2, crawl stone soup (damn cool!), of course V (which I did not just try but played feverishly) to the newborn Tome 4 (proooomising)!

But with Z+ (doesn't even configure on my system but the windows build runs perfectly with Wine) I felt a joy I didn't feel since those old times! So hooray to MangoJuice!

Jude February 17, 2011 20:51

Oddly, I can only play *bands with ASCII, but Dwarf Fortress I find completely impossible to play without graphics sets. Not sure why; probably because there's SO many more objects in DF, and many of them are quite simple and can be easily represented with small tiles (barrels, tables, levers, doors, and so on). Whereas in *bands you have all manner of bizarre things to draw - pulsing flesh mounds and hydras with various amounts of heads, for a start.

pampl February 17, 2011 21:12

Quote:

Originally Posted by stv2049 (Post 48779)
For me it's all about simplicity and ease of use.

Identifying threats is far easier for my brain to process when looking at an array of colored letters rather than graphics.

Yeah, I think this is the main reason I like ASCII graphics as well. That said, it's possible for tiles to do this - in Crawl, it's actually easier to identify threats when you're using tiles, at least for low level threats(demon strength is more clearly conveyed in ASCII IMO).

I guess I understand the point the "text = imagination" people are making, but it's never really resonated with me. I'll stop and try to imagine a unique every once in a while but when I'm killing an orc pit or whatever I just see an "@" symbol making "o"s disappear. That kind of rote task isn't very immersive in a graphical game either, because my brain is 'turned off', but it's probably more immersive for me than text. Even when it comes to those uniques I stop and imagine, it's less impressive in my imagination than it is with a relatively modern graphical display, the same way a fireworks display is more impressive to me than reading a description of fireworks, even a description of really big fireworks. A picture is worth a thousand words so 60 pictures per second equates to an awful lot of descriptive text.

relic February 19, 2011 11:49

I have never used tiles, mainly because on the computers that I have had, there has only been small (8X8, or maybe 16X16) tiles available and that is too small pictures for me. Also, if I would start using tiles now, I'd have to learn what all those pictures represent which is too much work (I think :)).

buzzkill February 19, 2011 16:56

Quote:

Originally Posted by relic (Post 48897)
I have never used tiles, mainly because on the computers that I have had, there has only been small (8X8, or maybe 16X16) tiles available and that is too small pictures for me. Also, if I would start using tiles now, I'd have to learn what all those pictures represent which is too much work (I think :)).

They're recognizable pictures. The king cobra looks like a king cobra. A white dragon looks like a white dragon. That probably covers about 1/2 the tile set. It gets a bit more complicated with yeeks and demons etc, but (almost) every tile is unique, so once you know it, you know it. No more wondering if that o is violet, light purple or dark purple, or light dark, or light slate (is "light dark" a typo in monster.txt).


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