Thread: Sil-Q Review
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Old January 14, 2019, 07:05   #50
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 9
Wiwaxia is on a distinguished road
Originally Posted by half View Post
If I were changing anything, it might be to drop the extra experience for killing it -- you already are rewarded with the items. (this would obviously require increasing experience a little to compensate)
The more I think about this, the more I really like it. It removes an odd disadvantage of pacifist builds that doesn't seem to have a strong reason to be there, further pushes the point that there are things you really shouldn't bother to fight, encourages diving past where you can safely win fights, and cuts out the "running around 100ft killing tanglethorns for the last 10xp you need for the first forge" nonsense I've gotten into occasionally.

Originally Posted by Quirk View Post
What I was sketching out last night is a structure that looks roughly like this:
  1. Song of Elbereth / Song of Challenge
  2. Song of Silence / Song of Staunching
  3. Song of Freedom / Song of Thresholds
  4. Song of Delvings / Song of Whetting (prerequisite Challenge)
  5. Song of Trees - (prerequisite Elbereth or Freedom)
  6. Song of Staying - (prerequisite Staunching or Thresholds)
  7. Song of Lorien - (prerequisite Silence)
  8. Song of Mastery - (prerequisite Elbereth or Lorien)
  9. Woven Themes
  10. Grace

Song of Staunching, based on Luthien's song of staunching sung to heal Beren, would shorten bleeding and more importantly greatly speed regeneration.
Song of Whetting I'm currently thinking gives an extra damage side. I don't like the old Sharpness implementation in which each additional Song point gives you 2% of Xd4 more damage against your opponents, it feels clumsy. On the other hand the canonical whetting spell allowed Beleg to sever metal shackles with a sword, which feels like it maxes out at more than just a damage side.

In both cases the scaling with Song is tricky. Songs tend to a linear scaling when for balance purposes this does not always work very well. I have tried to keep this, but in places it can lead to relatively inelegant implementation.

Having Staunching's regeneration scale linearly is problematic: it will do too little early on, and possibly too much late - particularly if Song is scaling a multiplier on the existing regeneration mechanic which also scales with Constitution. Ideally it would do enough early to save a player from death by poison, and still be usable later. I may try something like "Stops all bleeding and regenerates 2 + (Song/6) health per round" (the numbers here will be tweaked after much testing). I think it has to go quite early because it is potentially a useful emergency song that could be grabbed at the point you realise you won't survive the poison you just took.

Whetting scaling to multiple damage sides could easily become very broken, but perhaps something like 1 + (Song/12) damage sides would be plausible. The other mechanic I was debating was it granting the extra damage side to weapons weighing less than the singer's Song score, making it easier to whet a dagger than a greataxe. It might not be broken to have it grant actual sharpness to weapons weighing less than (Song / 5) lbs as daggers and shortswords are very much stealth weapons and the song could be a noisy one; you would need to get to 10 Song to whet a light longsword. This would make shortswords somewhat more viable without backstabs.

Whetting arguably shouldn't work on blunt weapons, particularly if it's granting actual sharpness, but this approach gets us toward the situation where you put aside your warhammer when you have to deal with an armoured opponent, which seems fundamentally wrong - I can't think of a better tool to deal with an enemy made of stone.

I'm not sure how I feel about prerequisites here. Prerequisites block off some builds, and punish skills: weaker higher-tier skills suffer from having a prerequisite, weaker lower-tier skills suffer from not being a prerequisite to a strong higher-tier skill. Delvings is not a prerequisite for anything, which may mean it is still too costly at 4 after the competition has hotted up; it may be better to swap its place with Silence, which will still be viable at 4 because it lives on an all-in Song/stealth build. I don't really want to split Challenge/Elbereth or Freedom/Thresholds because they make nice naturally opposed pairs at the same cost.
I like the new song tree design aesthetically, especially those two themed pairs. I'm not clear on how Song of Staunching is supposed to differ from the erstwhile Este. If I recall correctly, part of the issue with the original Este was the question of when you were supposed to sing it. If it's going to be a combat song, it needs to regenerate fast enough to compete with simply not taking that damage in the first place courtesy of Staying. If it's going to be a survivability song, it needs to regenerate enough to compete with ending unfavorable fights by scaring away enemies with Elbereth. Otherwise, it's left as a patch-up-after-battle song, which only really saves on turncount over regular healing, especially now that Thresholds makes it easier to make safe boltholes to rest.

Whetting granting sharpness by weapon weight is elegant. I'd be curious to see how it plays out in practice, although I imagine it would upset the light weapon vs. heavy weapon balancing you've already tried to do. It makes more intuitive sense for a whetting song to benefit knives more than axes rather than vis versa like adding a damage side would do. Spitballing, but in keeping with it being a whetting song you could have the effect build up over time as you sing it as you "sharpen" your blade.

A quick question about song interactions: does Freedom negate your own wards from Thresholds? I discovered that staves of freedom do, but I didn't have the spare experience to test the song.
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