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Old June 12, 2020, 23:05   #33
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 268
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Originally Posted by Quirk View Post
Good question. There are two perspectives.
I'm open to hear arguments from both.
Mainly a gameplay concern since mithril anything is just strictly better, and it'd be nice to have some late alternatives to sword/greatsword.

Personally I wouldn't mind if you cut non-unique Mithril items altogether as they somewhat muck up the equipment balance and make the already easy endgame easier. Same goes for Galvorn Armor; maybe leave Maeglin his personal suit and leave it at that?

If going with rare metals though, Dwarfen Steel is mentioned in the story of Eöl, and Grond (the third age battering ram) was supposedly created out of black steel. Could be the basis for heavier quality items maybe.

It's just history, I guess. Were I coding from scratch the keyset would be much more like Brogue, but between the multiple ways that exist to do everything and the "Angband" keyset option, current Sil players are used to using quite a diverse range of key choices. I suspect many of them would curse me if I took away the keys they were used to using.
Well, if key sets are toggleable and you want to lure in newer players having a simplified moveset as standard would lower the difficulty threshold a great deal (as brogue and ToMe have shown).

Well, the charges are not limited; instead you have Focus points that accumulate over time and which you can spend to cast spells of various costs.
Would the focus points be inherent to the items or the player? Mentioned wands since I recall them recharging over time in ZangbandTk, but that's the only 'band variant I've spent any time with (and over a decade ago at that). If going with words of power style spells, any chance of working in voice usage instead of focus as a limiting factor? There seems to be quite the bit of overlap between the two conceptually.

This is a fair comment, but I would need to do great violence to the ability trees to incorporate spells and words of command (and no, before you say anything, Smithing stays, most players seem to actively enjoy it).
Well, you could.. nevermind. Alternatively, Tolkien never did seem to create any unified system of magic. "Magic" seems to be abilities inherent in the nature of beings more than a force in itself, with those abilities used as another tool in conjunction with other skills.

So, instead of axing or redesigning one tree to incorporate the mystical stuff, you could disseminate them as high tier abilities along all trees. A lot of abilities already do this, eg the old flaming arrows, or listening, or a lot of the current smithing/will tree. It wouldn't be that much of a stretch to have high perception characters casting scrying spells or having powers of foresight, or really stealthy characters working shadows and illusions and so on and so forth.

Also, from a gameplay perspective, staffs that simply grant some small bonus to existing skills are much less interesting than staffs that give new abilities. One issue Sil does have is that many people find its loot "boring". Given our staffs already bestow magical abilities, it seemed best to Tolkienise the way they did so somewhat.
No reason that flavor of staffs couldn't grant actual abilites though? The not-Gandalf's staff could grant, say, song of the trees for an instance. But I digress.

On the spells of Orcs front, do you know of any other references to them? Elves have plenty going on: Beleg's whetting spell, Galadriel enchanting her realm, Glorfindel healing Frodo, there's a fair bit more. Men (outside the Istari) are sketchier - Beorn shifts shape (this may be some innate ability), Aragorn heals (but he has long-distant Maiar blood), the Numenoreans are taught many things by Sauron. I can't think of any examples of Orcish magic being described specifically.
Not off the top of my head. Did some googling, from what I can gather JRR didn't seem to think men/dwarfes/orcs have enough mystical mojo to affect the world around them directly (but then again this is more inferred than stated outright in the books, and some things do seem to change the nature of things eg the rings of power or Morgul-blades). Someone mentions the Goblins ambushing Bilbo's party literally coming out of the walls (although thatwas more likely a cleverly hidden tunnel). There's also the aforementioned Grond from the siege of Gondor:

EDIT: the internet provides:

Originally Posted by RotK
Great engines crawled across the field; and in the midst was a huge ram, great as a forest-tree a hundred feet in length, swinging on mighty chains. Long had it been forging in the dark smithies of Mordor, and its hideous head, founded of black steel, was shaped in the likeness of a ravening wolf; on it spells of ruin lay. Grond they named it, in memory of the Hammer of the Underworld of old. Great beasts drew it, orcs surrounded it, and behind walked mountain-trolls to wield it.
So.. someone enchanted it. Likewise for the Morgul blades. Not sure if the Nazgûl/Sauron himself would take the time to create them, and there aren't a whole lot of other dark spirits mentioned as being in his service in the canon. EDIT: Oh wait, the Mouth of Sauron is a human sorcerer (unless sorcery in this context is a byword for charisma/might/general knowledge). So at least some sorcerers then?

Last edited by Infinitum; June 13, 2020 at 00:02.
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