Thread: ComPosband
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Old November 17, 2017, 15:28   #22
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 305
Sideways is on a distinguished road
Had a good test run at ComPosband, which ended at Angband 98 when I got double-mana-stormed by Nodens in one turn for ~900 damage (and triple-mana-stormed over 2 turns, with a failed healing attempt in between). Here's a review of what ComPosband was like, intended both for players curious about ComPos and its current status, and as feedback for Gwarl as its maintainer.

Characters have an easier time in ComPos than regular Pos for several reasons. Weapon dice have been improved slightly, and many glove base types have small native to-hit/to-dam bonuses. Gloves of Slaying can now have off-weapon slays, which are overpowered but also fun and make picking the best gloves more interesting. The early healing potions have been buffed, which is probably currently the largest gameplay difference between ComPos and Pos. It's pretty much meaningless in the late game, but makes a huge difference in the early game; in particular, staves of cure wounds (while still useful) are no longer the critical early/mid-game items they are in Pos because potions of CCW now fill that role. Potions of curing have been essentially obsoleted, and I think it's Gwarl's plan to remove them from the game entirely; there's nothing else to do with them, really, unless Gwarl wants to give them a niche by making them significantly more useful against timed effects (read: poison) than CCW is.

I played as a half-orc weaponsmith. Half-orcs are a new race in ComPosband, and felt fairly strong (the version I played had a bug whereby I didn't get free rDark even though I should have done, but this has been fixed since). Weaponsmiths have been upgraded slightly in that they have two new combo-essences (Clarity and Vitality) that they can add. Clarity is combined rConf, rBlind and rFear and is actually a surprisingly useful combination in the late game. Vitality is a bunch of useless things that no one will probably ever add (but I suppose that just shows how useless the corresponding single essences are...) I believe Gwarl is planning to modify Vitality and add other similar combinations later.

There are several new quests which have been rather buggy in early versions of ComPosband, but most of the problems have now been sorted out. Gwarl is still working out the right balance for them, and I'm sure he would welcome input from test players. Elven Embassy was really brutal when I played it, and I had to bail out; Gwarl has already modified it to make it easier, but it's probably still best to keep your eyes open there. Gwarl has also reverted most of the quest-related changes Chris made in 7.x, with two exceptions: he kept the old Haunted House and Doom Quest II instead of clouded's new ones. I don't think Gwarl has any strong opinion about Doom Quest II, so he might bring clouded's version back if people want it. (clouded's Haunted House was deliberately not reintroduced because Gwarl prefers the original; watch out if you're used to clouded's version, because the original is much more dangerous.)

There is a new town, Thalos, which for some reason best known to Gwarl has been given an Arabian/Middle Eastern flavor. When I played there were no quests in Thalos, but Gwarl has now moved Orc Camp there and might add more quests later. (Given the flavor I wouldn't be surprised to see Gwarl put a djinni quest there...) Other details about where Thalos fits in are also still being worked out; for example, currently Thalos and Telmora have redundant arenas. (I believe Gwarl's long-term plan is to turn Camelot into another new town and put a non-redundant arena with Camelot monsters there, but it will likely be a while before he gets that far.)

ComPos is still very much a work in progress, but the major game-crashing bugs have been fixed (for now...), so if you're interested you can grab a copy from github and have a good time. Big ellipos fans are warned, though, that while Gwarl's plan is to add back most of the quality-of-life things that ellipos has, he hasn't got that far yet. (People less enthused about some of those things are warned that Gwarl plans to add back most of the quality-of-life things that ellipos has - and may even go further than ellipos did - so if you think things like easy ID dumb the game down too much, now's the time to convince him to make them optional rather than forced.)
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Last edited by Sideways; November 17, 2017 at 15:55.
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