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-   -   The future of Oangband? (http://angband.oook.cz/forum/showthread.php?t=4551)

Bahman Rabii June 17, 2011 02:59

Quote:

Originally Posted by CJNyfalt (Post 54951)
I am not interested in being maintainer, but I am interested to keep O updated and in sharing my changes to it. That is the good thing with git, everyone can have their own version and share code.

As for 110u, well, it is missing one of the killer feature in 110, so I stuck to 110.

Hi. I just noticed this thread. Thanks for setting up the repo.

I am totally comfortable with having an "official" Oangband modernization repo, where interested players can port in UI improvements and code upgrades. I don't have much time to develop, but I can gate-keep and declare / version releases. Do people think this would be useful?

If someone wants to become a real maintainer, I am happy to talk and see if our visions are compatible enough to hand over Oangband in name, or to do a fork.

By the way, what is the missing feature in 110u?

For what it's worth, in the unlikely event that I start working actively, Oangband is FAR from done. There are a huge number of fundamental gameplay improvements still waiting to happen. Some would require heavy refactoring, some would not. My gameplay priorities:
- Further improvement to AI. This would really want a cleaner internal API for the AI module. Add cooldowns to monsters spells; and make the monsters even smarter.
- Further reductions in tedium. Even fewer, even better drops. Remove the incentive to grind for consumables. Further rework stat gain.
- Extend the idea of archery spells with more combat magic.
- Give more nifty tricks to Warriors, but without losing the pure fighter feel. Possibly by implementing combat techniques as activations or side effects for weapons and/or armor. Also with more warrior-friendly sources of shapeshifting.
- Make the early game a little more forgiving. Ramp up late game difficulty.
- Solve the big-three balance breaking abilities: Banishment, Teleport-Away, Destruction.
- Reduce the role of speed. Add in more "specialized speed" for casting, combat, and archery. Somehow make this smoother and less confusing than it currently is (i.e. specialized speed to affect cooldowns rather than
- Add cooldowns to many player abilities and rebalance around them.
- Add good things from Angband: gain/lose potions, new identify semantics, no_sell as default :)
- Generally rebalance artifact weapons. Some are way too general (*cough* Ulmo *cough*) and I would like to make sure each class always have different favorites.
- Reduce damage spikiness in the late game, and restrict high-end healing.

Fixes to things I was never really happy with:
- Set items. Maybe ditch them.
- Variable weapon dice. These are great, but they need to interact better with squelching and pseudo-id.
- The Ent player race. I don't know... they are super cool, and yet they feel weird.
- Druids are too good at too many things. Maybe move martial arts to the specialty list for them, rather than default?
- Remove some of the more boring specialities and develop/balance/add the ones that really affect gameplay.

CJNyfalt June 17, 2011 06:23

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bahman Rabii (Post 54969)
Hi. I just noticed this thread. Thanks for setting up the repo.

I am totally comfortable with having an "official" Oangband modernization repo, where interested players can port in UI improvements and code upgrades. I don't have much time to develop, but I can gate-keep and declare / version releases. Do people think this would be useful?

Yes, it would be useful if you would set up a github account, fork, and review my changes. I will avoid pushing more changes to github until you feel ready.

My issue is that I don't trust myself to keep O true to its vision, so having someone else audit and add stamps of approval would be a relief.

Quote:

By the way, what is the missing feature in 110u?
Multiple savefile handling, a feature I will never give up.

EDIT:
What is your feeling about removing trap-doors, tele-level monster attacks and forget attacks?

CJNyfalt June 17, 2011 10:07

BTW, how well does the Oangband Windows port work? Is there any need for the dos ports anymore?

CJNyfalt June 17, 2011 11:45

Update:

I created an oangband organization and moved the main repository there, this allows me to push to my own fork and allows me to add people to the project.

So, the new link is:
https://github.com/oangband/Oangband

EDIT:
I added Nick and takkaria to the project with pull rights since they have showed interest by watching.
I would also add Bahman as owner once he gets registered on github.

Nick June 17, 2011 12:11

Quote:

Originally Posted by CJNyfalt (Post 55008)
I added Nick and takkaria to the project with pull rights since they have showed interest by watching.
I would also add Bahman as owner once he gets registered on github.

Cool.

Here is some of the stuff I said when releasing 110u:
Quote:

Originally Posted by Nick (Post 10128)
New interface features include new menus, full mouse capability, graphics (including double and triple tile), knowledge screens and visuals editor, squelch, notes, FA-style character dumps and NPP extended colours.

There are two small gameplay changes: 1) Unlight has been changed to the FA version, because I knew Bahman was not happy with how it was in O, and I believe the FA version was roughly as he had intended it to work, and 2) I have added a small device mode (ie max projection and vision distances halved) basically because it was as easy to put in as leave out.

Bugfixes include an issue with runes of protection, corrected store tables and a couple of terrain behaviour fixes. The doubling of items in shops has been fixed too, as a side effect of Bahman's savefile loading system being removed; I did this because I wanted simplest possible porting to as many places as possible, and messing around with filehandling didn't seem like it would help.

I think at least some of that would be good to add.

CJNyfalt June 17, 2011 12:25

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nick (Post 55014)
Here is some of the stuff I said when releasing 110u:

I think at least some of that would be good to add.

I agree that much of that would be useful. No doubt about that, as long as we keep the savefile loading system working I have no problems.

The best way would probably be that you fork and patch your version up to 1.1.0u, and then once Bahman is on board, we can start to pull the best bits in.

EDIT:
You might also want to watch my own fork, since I push my changes there.

CJNyfalt June 17, 2011 12:59

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bahman Rabii (Post 54969)
By the way, what is the missing feature in 110u?

For what it's worth, in the unlikely event that I start working actively, Oangband is FAR from done. There are a huge number of fundamental gameplay improvements still waiting to happen. Some would require heavy refactoring, some would not. My gameplay priorities:
- Further improvement to AI. This would really want a cleaner internal API for the AI module. Add cooldowns to monsters spells; and make the monsters even smarter.

Well, I know next to nothing about programming AI, but I would like to see the underlining game treat the player and monsters exactly the same way with the same rules. So that the game would be split into three parts UI, AI and game mechanics. Obviously there is a long way to go.

Quote:

- Further reductions in tedium. Even fewer, even better drops. Remove the incentive to grind for consumables. Further rework stat gain.
Agree, strongly agree. I would prefer to see most consumables as optional, so that a warrior would be able to win only using healing potions as consumables. As for stats, I prefer to gain stats from experience instead of potions.

Quote:

- Extend the idea of archery spells with more combat magic.
- Give more nifty tricks to Warriors, but without losing the pure fighter feel. Possibly by implementing combat techniques as activations or side effects for weapons and/or armor. Also with more warrior-friendly sources of shapeshifting.
I agree with this. As for shapeshifting, remember the tales of berserkers. Maybe add some cloak or armor that allows warriors to shift into wolf or bear form? Or add as a speciality for warriors?


Quote:

- Make the early game a little more forgiving. Ramp up late game difficulty.
- Solve the big-three balance breaking abilities: Banishment, Teleport-Away, Destruction.
I am the wrong person to ask about balance, but it is clear that we need to nerf some monsters to compensate for their removal. Of the three listed, I am least comfortable to remove teleport-away.

Quote:

- Reduce the role of speed. Add in more "specialized speed" for casting, combat, and archery. Somehow make this smoother and less confusing than it currently is (i.e. specialized speed to affect cooldowns rather than
Agree, it is a bit ridiculous how important speed is in *bands.

Quote:

- Add cooldowns to many player abilities and rebalance around them.
Details?

Quote:

- Add good things from Angband: gain/lose potions, new identify semantics, no_sell as default :)
For the first, I prefer to gain stats from experience.
For the second, I noticed some changes that looked interesting but I am not up to date on what exactly has changed.
For the third, I agree with it, but I feel that it might be a bit too heavy-handed, and would prefer something a bit more elegant.

Quote:

- Generally rebalance artifact weapons. Some are way too general (*cough* Ulmo *cough*) and I would like to make sure each class always have different favorites.
I have always favored skill and character build over gear.

Quote:

- Reduce damage spikiness in the late game, and restrict high-end healing.

Fixes to things I was never really happy with:
- Set items. Maybe ditch them.
They are interesting but problematic.

Quote:

- Variable weapon dice. These are great, but they need to interact better with squelching and pseudo-id.
Well, that is something that I am not really sold on.

Quote:

- The Ent player race. I don't know... they are super cool, and yet they feel weird.
In what way do they feel weird?

Quote:

- Druids are too good at too many things. Maybe move martial arts to the specialty list for them, rather than default?
Would you really pick martial arts, if it needed an additional specialty?

Quote:

- Remove some of the more boring specialities and develop/balance/add the ones that really affect gameplay.
Well, I prefer to get more specialities rather than over-tweak them. I tend to mod the game so I get them more often. Since, after all the more the merrier.

Magnate June 17, 2011 14:27

Thank you - that's a very interesting list, almost all of which applies to V. We have already tinkered with both tele-away and destruction in the dev versions, so we'll see how people like the changes in 3.3. We also have a ticket to look at Banishment (but probably not until 3.4).

On new ID semantics, Eddie has been working for a long time on what he calls "rune-based ID", where @ can identify the property of (e.g.) Resist Fire on any item after seeing it on one item. I am quite excited to see how this works - he's been talking about it for a long time and I think it has the potential to take ID much closer to where it ought to be (interesting and low overhead). So if it does work, I think it is very likely takkaria will want it in V.

Bahman Rabii June 17, 2011 22:17

Quote:

Originally Posted by CJNyfalt (Post 55020)
Agree, strongly agree. I would prefer to see most consumables as optional, so that a warrior would be able to win only using healing potions as consumables. As for stats, I prefer to gain stats from experience instead of potions.

Well, its a fine line between consumables and charged items, so I am not sure I would make such a strong statement.

Quote:

Originally Posted by CJNyfalt (Post 55020)
I agree with this. As for shapeshifting, remember the tales of berserkers. Maybe add some cloak or armor that allows warriors to shift into wolf or bear form? Or add as a speciality for warriors?

We already have Lion amulets, Vampire potions, DSM, and Beornings. A specialty to enhance shapeshifting could be cool, and maybe 1-2 pure combat shifts.

Quote:

Originally Posted by CJNyfalt (Post 55020)
I am the wrong person to ask about balance, but it is clear that we need to nerf some monsters to compensate for their removal. Of the three listed, I am least comfortable to remove teleport-away.

It is a given that nothing major can happen without balance changes to compensate.

I also did not say "remove"; if they can be reinvented in a better way, great. For teleport away, I wonder if we can (1) remove beaming completely, (2) offer a partial saving throw to reduce the range.

Banishment is the biggest candidate for removal.

Quote:

Originally Posted by CJNyfalt (Post 55020)
Details?

Attack spells: Your biggest effects don't have to be spammable - you can use a larger rotation of spells. This also allows "Casting Speed" buffs to turn into "Spell Cooldown Reduction" buffs, which moves in the direction of all actions taking equal time.

Buffs: High cooldowns enable more varied and powerful buffs. For example, you could have a low level Haste spell that lasts for say 10 base speed turns and due to uptime tops out at 10% up time. I won't even speculate if you could bring back GoI in some form...

Debuffs: Really reliable debuffs have to either be weaker or less spam-able. This can also be implemented by giving the monster resistance to repeated debuffing.

Healing (spells and potions): Limiting the frequency of the biggest heals, while also limiting the most "spikey" damage is a way to make the difficulty of the game feel less random and more fair. This is harder than it sounds, though, since it also means reworking escape mechanics (particularly teleport, teleport away, and teleport level). At the very least, a long cooldown gives us the ability to give a big heal to non-priests without breaking the game completely.

Quote:

Originally Posted by CJNyfalt (Post 55020)
In what way do they feel weird?

I still get caught up on an Ent using the same gear as other characters. I know the answer may be "get over it", but I have struggled with this.

Quote:

Originally Posted by CJNyfalt (Post 55020)
Would you really pick martial arts, if it needed an additional specialty?

To be clear, I am not sold on that change. But you might well still do it. MA is really quite good. Somehow, something is wrong with druids:

- Second best attack spells, both for hard targets and for large groups
- Second best heals
- Great utility spells (hard to argue about "best" here)
- Versatile shape shifts
- Unarmed melee is good enough to be a primary attack from beginning to end.

Maybe they just need general tone-down of both MA damage and spell damage.

Quote:

Originally Posted by CJNyfalt (Post 55020)
Well, I prefer to get more specialities rather than over-tweak them. I tend to mod the game so I get them more often. Since, after all the more the merrier.


CJNyfalt June 17, 2011 22:39

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bahman Rabii (Post 55125)


It is a given that nothing major can happen without balance changes to compensate.

I also did not say "remove"; if they can be reinvented in a better way, great. For teleport away, I wonder if we can (1) remove beaming completely, (2) offer a partial saving throw to reduce the range.

Beaming removal might be a good idea.

Quote:

Banishment is the biggest candidate for removal.
Agree on that, it feels like a hack to deal with overpowered stuff instead of fixing the issue.

Quote:

Attack spells: Your biggest effects don't have to be spammable - you can use a larger rotation of spells. This also allows "Casting Speed" buffs to turn into "Spell Cooldown Reduction" buffs, which moves in the direction of all actions taking equal time.

Buffs: High cooldowns enable more varied and powerful buffs. For example, you could have a low level Haste spell that lasts for say 10 base speed turns and due to uptime tops out at 10% up time. I won't even speculate if you could bring back GoI in some form...

Debuffs: Really reliable debuffs have to either be weaker or less spam-able. This can also be implemented by giving the monster resistance to repeated debuffing.

Healing (spells and potions): Limiting the frequency of the biggest heals, while also limiting the most "spikey" damage is a way to make the difficulty of the game feel less random and more fair. This is harder than it sounds, though, since it also means reworking escape mechanics (particularly teleport, teleport away, and teleport level). At the very least, a long cooldown gives us the ability to give a big heal to non-priests without breaking the game completely.
Now, I am very skeptical about these changes. It feels like there was added too much stuff for variety, and then forcing people to use worse stuff just so that it gets used. Consider for example attack spells:
Mages & Druids tends to have elemental attack spells, which encourages them to find out about resistances and pick the right one.
Priest & Necromancer have few attack spells, so they tend to use the same ones over and over.

Now, what will happen if you add cooldowns? I suspect that we will see people either use spells that gets resisted, start to melee or use any wands they have. Only the last seems fine, and only if they have wands.

Quote:

I still get caught up on an Ent using the same gear as other characters. I know the answer may be "get over it", but I have struggled with this.
That is a valid concern.

Quote:

To be clear, I am not sold on that change. But you might well still do it. MA is really quite good. Somehow, something is wrong with druids:

- Second best attack spells, both for hard targets and for large groups
- Second best heals
- Great utility spells (hard to argue about "best" here)
- Versatile shape shifts
- Unarmed melee is good enough to be a primary attack from beginning to end.

Maybe they just need general tone-down of both MA damage and spell damage.
I think that it is the attack spells that is the issue. Druids should not be second best - I would expect both Mages and Necromancers to be better.
As for unarmed melee, you miss out any resists from the weapon if you go unarmed.


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