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Old February 7, 2012, 17:20   #1
Magnate
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New version of v4

So, humbled by the speed with which Derakon implemented his combat changes, here is the "better late than never" update to v4, which addresses most of the issues that they created. It's version b6e5231, available from the usual place.

I say most, because I'm afraid missile combat is still broken. Now that the rest of this stuff is working, it's the top priority, but given how much development has slowed down recently, I thought it would be worth getting this version out rather than holding it all up while fizzix and I argue about spreadsheets.

So, what's changed:

- Slays and brands are now pvals. This is a big change, with lots of little consequences:
- MAX_PVALS is now 15
- only one pval (the highest) is shown after the object's name - 'I'nspect it to see the others (or use the character sheet to check stats)
- slays and brands are significantly less powerful than they were before - typically they add ~50% damage rather than 200%.
- random slays and brands (on ego items and randarts) now stack with repeated applications (+195% is the highest I have seen on randarts during testing)

- Critical hits now add one extra damage die per level of critical, so they are much less powerful than they were before - but they are now uncapped, so you could end up with a lot of extra dice.

- Hafted weapons will no longer get the BLESSED flag (it's pointless in its current form)

- Randart generation should now be a bit quicker

- Enchant weapon scrolls have been renamed, and now add 1d10 points of finesse or prowess if they work (limit 200 instead of 20)

There's quite a lot of change under the hood, but that's the basics in a nutshell. I could have introduced a number of buglets, especially around learning about object flags or monster flags, so please report any anomalies.

There are also likely to be balance issues remaining from the combat changes - but we can work on these properly (for melee) now that slays and criticals are updated. All views appreciated.

I hope we'll fix missile combat any month now.
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Old February 7, 2012, 18:01   #2
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For my part, I apologize for dropping off the face of the earth for the past month or so. I can't guarantee that I'll be much more active in the future, but I'll try.
Quote:
I'm afraid missile combat is still broken. Now that the rest of this stuff is working, it's the top priority, but given how much development has slowed down recently, I thought it would be worth getting this version out rather than holding it all up while fizzix and I argue about spreadsheets.
I assume the holdup here is on deciding what the right numbers are, not in porting over missile combat to use the same system as melee, right? Also, did you implement the simple fix to make missile weapons deal more than 1 damage/hit?
Quote:
slays and brands are significantly less powerful than they were before - typically they add ~50% damage rather than 200%.
I assume the "before" referred to here is for the previous version of v4, right after the new combat system was added, right?
Quote:
- Enchant weapon scrolls have been renamed, and now add 1d10 points of finesse or prowess if they work (limit 200 instead of 20)
I'd recommend 2d6 or 3d4 instead, to reduce the odds of getting a terrible enchant. But I'm generally not a big fan of 1dX dice rolls.

I'll have to take a look at the new crit algorithm; I'm curious how it works.
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Old February 7, 2012, 21:22   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derakon View Post
For my part, I apologize for dropping off the face of the earth for the past month or so. I can't guarantee that I'll be much more active in the future, but I'll try.
No worries, we've all been pretty busy with RL (or WoW, in my case). You haven't missed any momentous development discussions!
Quote:
I assume the holdup here is on deciding what the right numbers are, not in porting over missile combat to use the same system as melee, right?
Correct. I'm convinced that we should use the same system, but I think the calculation of shots and damage need to be a bit different than for melee. For example, prowess should feature in the number of shots calc, which it does not in the calc for melee blows. So we need a new parallel calc_shots fn, though we can possibly re-use the melee calc_multiplier fn, I'm not sure about that. I'm happy to use the same crit fn for the time being - I think it ought to be slightly amended for melee so that fin > prow (because prow crits will be much better because of the bigger dice), so happy to adjust it later.

The main issue is deciding what balance and heft (draw) to give to each launcher, and doing a quick spreadsheet to check for sane numbers.
Quote:
Also, did you implement the simple fix to make missile weapons deal more than 1 damage/hit?
Sorry, no - either I missed it, or just forgot about it. Was it a *10 somewhere?
Quote:
I assume the "before" referred to here is for the previous version of v4, right after the new combat system was added, right?
Yes. Slays got temporarily very powerful at that point, because they were multiplying total damage (after the prowess mult). Now they're actually weaker than they were under the old combat system, but hopefully not too much so. It's very hard to tell, so we'll have to get quite a bit of testing.
Quote:
I'd recommend 2d6 or 3d4 instead, to reduce the odds of getting a terrible enchant. But I'm generally not a big fan of 1dX dice rolls.
That's unfortunately a lot harder than it sounds, because the same fn enchants armour in 1/10th the amounts. If we don't mind enchant armour adding two points of AC each time, it's easy enough to go to 2d5.
Quote:
I'll have to take a look at the new crit algorithm; I'm curious how it works.
It's not very different at all - I kept your chance calc and your while loop (sans cap), and merely added 1dX (where X is o_ptr->ds) for each power level. The main achievement was making the fn deal with AVERAGE and MAXIMISE etc., which is all irrelevant for actual combat.
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Old February 7, 2012, 21:31   #4
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Looking forward to trying this out.

Do you expect a Windows build soon?

Regards,
Jonathan
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Old February 7, 2012, 22:10   #5
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Originally Posted by Magnate View Post
Sorry, no - either I missed it, or just forgot about it. Was it a *10 somewhere?
I describe the problem in this post. In short, the order of operations is wrong -- you divide by 100 before applying multipliers instead of after, causing damage to be 1 in almost any non-crit situation.
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Old February 8, 2012, 11:27   #6
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Originally Posted by jevansau View Post
Looking forward to trying this out.

Do you expect a Windows build soon?

Regards,
Jonathan
Oooh, thanks for the tip-off - one of the buildslaves has fallen out with mingw, so the Windows build failed. We ought to try and programme it to try a different buildslave when that happens. Anyway, I've forced a rebuild which seems to have worked, try this link.
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Old February 9, 2012, 02:24   #7
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Thanks for this work! Since ranged is still broken, trying a warrior. The difficulty level seems about right at the beginning. 1st level dwarven warrior cannot just wade in and go toe to toe at low levels. Warrior has to be somewhat careful, which is good. Died to Fang, who was right below stairs down to DL1 (iron man game)... as it should be. However, by character level 5, warrior seems to smoke anything from lvls 1-5 without effort. Going to try and get a little deeper and stress out the new combat system a bit more.

Thanks again! Game feels great, and with Shockbolt's new graphics, it has a completely different mood.
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Old February 9, 2012, 12:57   #8
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Originally Posted by Old Coach View Post
Thanks for this work! Since ranged is still broken, trying a warrior. The difficulty level seems about right at the beginning. 1st level dwarven warrior cannot just wade in and go toe to toe at low levels. Warrior has to be somewhat careful, which is good. Died to Fang, who was right below stairs down to DL1 (iron man game)... as it should be. However, by character level 5, warrior seems to smoke anything from lvls 1-5 without effort. Going to try and get a little deeper and stress out the new combat system a bit more.

Thanks again! Game feels great, and with Shockbolt's new graphics, it has a completely different mood.
Excellent - thanks for the feedback, and glad it feels ok so far. With the changes to melee combat and slays, we're quite a long way from V now, so please don't be surprised if at some point during the game the balance seems to be quite a way off (i.e. you steamroller everything, or you can't kill anything). The item generation will need tweaking to ensure that weapons are appropriately powerful for their depth now. One example that springs to mind is that the slays on HA and Gondolin weapons will now be much weaker, rendering those weapons much less desirable than un-themed random affixes. This will get fixed in the round of tweaks immediately after the archery changes.

(Also, the dice on certain weapons will need changing to be more consistent with the new combat and crit system.)
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Old February 9, 2012, 18:04   #9
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I am getting a graphics problem with this new build.
Scrolls, potions, rings, and other floor items are only showing up as tiny ascII versions of themselves instead of the 64x64 tile.
Also, when starting a new game (or loading a save) I get the error:

Error in lib/pref/graf-shb.prf line 900 col 5: unrecognized s-val

And, no matter what race or class I choose, I always get the generic warrior picture for my @.

Thanks,
Fred
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Old February 9, 2012, 18:40   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Coach View Post
I am getting a graphics problem with this new build.
Scrolls, potions, rings, and other floor items are only showing up as tiny ascII versions of themselves instead of the 64x64 tile.
Also, when starting a new game (or loading a save) I get the error:

Error in lib/pref/graf-shb.prf line 900 col 5: unrecognized s-val
Quick fix...

graf-shb.prf governs the tiles. Once Angband encounters an error in it, it stops processing it. If you comment out the offending line with a #, then things should go back to normal (except for that one item).
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