Angband.oook.cz
Angband.oook.cz
AboutVariantsLadderForumCompetitionComicScreenshotsFunniesLinks

Go Back   Angband Forums > Angband > Vanilla

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old August 12, 2020, 03:24   #1
Egavactip
Swordsman
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 364
Egavactip is on a distinguished road
4.2.1: First Impressions

So today I finished/won my first game of Angband 4.2.1, on my third try with the character. The first death was some stupid mistake, the second at the hands of a monster made harder in this version (my first clue that this was a thing in 4.2.1). The dump is here: http://angband.oook.cz/ladder-show.php?id=23799

I deliberately chose a fighter, so that I could get used to the new environment without having to worry about the new classes and new spell systems. So these first impressions are about the environment and basic mechanics. Also, I decided to get a win before making these comments, but they are obviously based on a limited amount of play, so there could be some things I noticed that were not the product of actual changes but just extremes of chance or luck. So keep that in mind.

However, some of the things I observed during the course of play seemed to me to be legitimate problems, while other things, I felt, decreased the role that strategy and tactics play in the game--which in my opinion is bad.

So I hope that people will take the time to read through these comments, whether or not they agree with them.

1. The best aspect of 4.2.1, from my experience, was the increased number of room types and dungeon layouts. More variety is always good. The only one I didn't like (of the ones I experienced) was the dungeon layout with huge irregular rooms. It didn't make much sense and was not aesthetically appealing. Other than that, everything was fine. Whatever algorithms are used to draw the dungeon levels seem to be less elegant than previous versions, resulting in some clunky arrangements of rooms, corridors, etc., but I can live with that.

2. Nexus effects. I'm very glad the effects of stat switching are temporary now, not permanent. Fewer ruined games.

3. New game option. I never understood why this feature hadn't been there all along, but I am glad it is there now.

4. Traps. The first time I tried 4.2, the traps were so bad I stopped playing and waited a long time to play again. It was nice to see that they were made more reasonable in this version, even though I think the original trap and trap detection system is far better than this. At least this is playable.

5. Food/Hunger. I recently started a thread on this issue, expressing my feelings, so I won't repeat the full thing here, but this definitely needs to be fixed. It is way too fiddly and the full/slow effect is very detrimental. The changes add more player pain with no player gain. Not good.

6. Level Feelings. I also started a thread on this. The level feelings seem pretty messed up and unreliable (more so than before).

7. Rune/Identifying system. I did not like this idea in theory and I find that I don't like it in practice, either. IMO it slows the game down and requires more trips up to the shops level, where players' homes get filled with unidentified items. There are too few identify rune scrolls in the early and mid-game. Later in the game, they can just be ignored, as players accumulating money can just sell items then buy them back (although this still requires trips to the shops level). I haven't taken so many items up to shops level since back in the days when I had to sell items found in the dungeon in order to get $$$.

8. I would like "IGNORED" to flash in the message line when I step on an item that I have ignored, rather than have it just disappear without message.

9. Monster changes. I have some specific comments about certain monsters later but here I'll just note some of the arbitrary changes, such as replacing all elves with dwarves, which makes no sense at all, and which graphically is awful, as Angband continues to use elf sprites for the new dwarven creatures. There are a bunch of arbitrary monster changes in the game that don't add anything. These need to be looked over again and some reverted.

10. New monster sprites. Most of these graphics are in a different graphic style than the tileset I use when I play Angband (and I presume are also dissimilar with other tilesets). This is distracting. Some are kind of inexplicable. The huorn that can move through walls doesn't look like a tree, just like a pool of vomit or pea soup or something.

11. No way to identify potions/scrolls/rods/wands/staffs other than using/selling. This is not a good idea, because it basically forces players (esp. in the early game, when they have no money) to use items in order to identify them, to their detriment. The game shouldn't force players to hurt themselves; there should always be other options. What is the point of making players do something 1) they don't want to do in the first place and 2) will hurt them in the process. It makes no sense.

12. Willow trees/huorns, etc. I don't see why these are in Angband, a dungeon game. They are incongruous and make it difficult to suspend disbelief. In an outdoor game, fine, but they don't work in Angband, in my opinion.

13. Reusing Monster Sprites. There are now too many different monsters that use the same graphic sprite. New sprites need to be created for these new monsters. Sharing sprites is not a great idea ever, though rare examples intended to "trick" players who aren't careful are okay. Now, though, there are just too many different monsters that have the same visuals. This is especially a problem with the next item, below.

14. The Maia problem. I was mildly irritated when Angels were switched over to Maia, but these new changes seem to impact actual game play for the worse. First, there are now many types of Maia, but they still use the same limited number of sprites, so there are many duplicates. You can't visually tell them apart--you have to look at their names. Which takes us to the next problem. Previously, you had Lesser Maia, Maia, Greater Maia, the odd Blue Wizard, and Istari. All of these had names that were easy to tell apart, which meant you could easily distinguish which were threats and which were less so. Now, however, there are Maia of Bob and Maia of Kristen and Maia of Jimbob and Maia of Steve and Maia of Susan and a million different maias, each with their own attributes, and many of them sharing sprites. Trying to keep track of all this is ridiculous. It's crazy. And most of them are ridiculously upgunned as well. This is just broken, in my opinion, and needsd a complete re-do.

15. Moving Through Walls. This version of Angband has FAR TOO MANY creatures that can move through walls or tunnel through walls. The structure of the dungeon, and the player's ability to somewhat alter that structure, is the basis for many player tactics and strategies. The more creatures that can ignore the environment and move through anything, the less opportunity players have to engage in tactical thinking. Battles just become brute force, or players have to waste banishment, teleport, or destruction constantly. This is not subtle, it's just throwing bricks at the player. Even limiting some creatures to only being able to move through CERTAIN types of rock still allows a tactical element. But as it is now, especially in the deeper levels, players don't need this constant aggravation. And adding this ability to some creatures, such as Greater Balrogs, is just gilding the lily. Those were ALREADY creatures I almost always avoided because they were too powerful/nasty/irritating. So why make them even worse?

16. Morgoth "double tunnelling." The increased tunneling effect for Morgoth is also a change that reduces the importance of tactics and increases reliance on brute force. I do not like changes that reduce the tactical elements of the game.

17. Stat Draining. There is way too much unstoppable stat draining in this version of the game. Previously, only Time could do that, and there were very few monsters that could deliver Time attacks. Now those have been much expanded and other monsters given unstoppable stat draining abilities as well. Those move-through-walls time-damaging hounds are just ridiculous. Players have to go to great length to protect their stats as is, and these attacks just say "screw you" to all those efforts. Again, it is just applying brute force to players. This is especially irritating for random artifact games, where based on the gear one acquires, one may need to save mushrooms of vigor for the final battle with Morgoth.

18. Upgunning. This version of Angband seems to have a ton of upgunning applied to it. Many monsters have their hit points significantly increased, while weapons dealing significant damage (with huge damage bonuses or frequent attack number bonuses) seem very common. Again, it could be a fluke of luck, but I don't remember any other playing of Angband where I found so many weapons that added additional attacks. I don't see the point of dealing more damage against creatures with more hit points. It is just gigantism.

Well, that's about it for now. Again, I haven't experienced the magic system yet or the new character classes, so this is a limited perspective. But it seems to me that there is still some work to do--and some to undo--to make this as playable and as fun as it should be.
Egavactip is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 12, 2020, 12:10   #2
Adam
Adept
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Posts: 159
Adam is on a distinguished road
Just a few points from me.
- Rune ID is the best change in my opinion since i started to play the game.
- Since the player has a cheap way to remove walls, i don't find it a bad thing that strong monsters can also do that. In my opinion STM should be less common and more expensive because it allows to set up fighting ground too easily. Yes, greater balrogs are now a pain and i leave the level if i find one of those big caves with them. The game needed some more dangerous monsters because 4.1 was too easy.
- Sharing tiles: yes, i also ran into this. A giant yellow snake didn't want to die after a number of rounds when i was over CL 40... surprising, but i guess it's not easy to have distinct tiles for all new monsters in all tilesets
Adam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 12, 2020, 15:39   #3
gglibertine
Adept
 
gglibertine's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Woking, UK
Age: 53
Posts: 196
gglibertine is on a distinguished road
I think so far it's pretty good, albeit harder than 4.1.x. My chief complaints:

* low danger levels have become much rarer
* there are so many water vortices/water hounds that it's hard to keep your AC at a reasonable level
* if you find a good piece of gear that has Slow Digestion, it's WAY too easy to find yourself full and slowed in combat. I've come to think of it as a curse.
gglibertine is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 12, 2020, 16:50   #4
Hounded
Apprentice
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Alberta
Posts: 79
Hounded is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by Egavactip View Post
So I hope that people will take the time to read through these comments, whether or not they agree with them.
While I personally disagree with points 4, 5, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 17 & 18 (largely for reasons gone over in other threads) I do appreciate the presentation of your perspective both here and in the other threads you've recently started. Appreciate your involvement an desire to keep this a great game.
__________________
It Breathes. You die.
Hounded is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 12, 2020, 17:05   #5
Egavactip
Swordsman
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 364
Egavactip is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam View Post
Just a few points from me.
- Rune ID is the best change in my opinion since i started to play the game.
- Since the player has a cheap way to remove walls, i don't find it a bad thing that strong monsters can also do that. In my opinion STM should be less common and more expensive because it allows to set up fighting ground too easily. Yes, greater balrogs are now a pain and i leave the level if i find one of those big caves with them. The game needed some more dangerous monsters because 4.1 was too easy.
- Sharing tiles: yes, i also ran into this. A giant yellow snake didn't want to die after a number of rounds when i was over CL 40... surprising, but i guess it's not easy to have distinct tiles for all new monsters in all tilesets
When players can manipulate the dungeon, it adds to tactical play. When too many monsters, who are not players, can ignore the dungeon, it subtracts from tactical play and makes combat in the game cruder and less interesting.

Re "more dangerous monsters": if players' weapons have to be increased in power to deal with the more dangerous monsters, which was my impression, then you haven't solved any problem at all, just upgunned both sides.

Re Monster Sprites: of course it is possible to have distinct tiles for all new monsters.
Egavactip is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 12, 2020, 17:30   #6
Adam
Adept
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Posts: 159
Adam is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by Egavactip View Post
When players can manipulate the dungeon, it adds to tactical play. When too many monsters, who are not players, can ignore the dungeon, it subtracts from tactical play and makes combat in the game cruder and less interesting.

Re "more dangerous monsters": if players' weapons have to be increased in power to deal with the more dangerous monsters, which was my impression, then you haven't solved any problem at all, just upgunned both sides.

Re Monster Sprites: of course it is possible to have distinct tiles for all new monsters.
My problem with STM is that an intelligent player has such a big advantage over the monsters which makes the game too easy. STM + assymetric LoS and you can kill anything without being hurt.

When i mentioned more dangerous monsters i did not mean upgunning is OK. What i meant is adding new skills to monsters or create new dangerous ones was needed. Whether it's too much to give balrogs tunneling, matter of taste probably.

Sprites/tiles: i know it's theoretically possible to have distinct one for each monster, i just had the feeling that supporting all new monsters in all tilesets is a boring task and maybe that lead to sharing tiles.
Adam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 12, 2020, 17:43   #7
wobbly
Veteran
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Adelaide, Australia
Posts: 2,390
wobbly is on a distinguished road
Which tileset? They are not all actively maintained. I know Tangar was working on a version of the Gervais set. Over here:

http://angband.oook.cz/forum/showthr...hlight=tileset
wobbly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 12, 2020, 22:03   #8
Egavactip
Swordsman
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 364
Egavactip is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by wobbly View Post
Which tileset? They are not all actively maintained. I know Tangar was working on a version of the Gervais set. Over here:

http://angband.oook.cz/forum/showthr...hlight=tileset
David Gervais tileset
Egavactip is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 12, 2020, 22:21   #9
DavidMedley
Knight
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Posts: 790
DavidMedley is on a distinguished road
Not a very positive review. Thanks for taking the time to share it, though!
DavidMedley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 13, 2020, 00:40   #10
ster
Rookie
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 18
ster is an unknown quantity at this point
V became a variant the moment serpent of chaoses and hounds of tindalos got added, it's true.

If you're complaining about the tiles being bad for an ASCII roguelike, that isn't the variant maintainer's fault, that's your fault for using tiles.
__________________
gwarl 09/19/2019
I can't ban ster from my roguelikes site though like all other roguelike admins have because it lets him win
ster is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
RandArt - first impressions Narry AAR 8 November 22, 2018 21:26
[video] DoomRL FIRST IMPRESSIONS tangar Idle chatter 1 December 30, 2016 23:40
Is is possible to use ttyrec to record? Also game impressions and character dump. bel Sil 0 July 27, 2015 18:15
Angband 3.1.2 impressions Susramanian Vanilla 10 March 16, 2010 17:29
General Impressions of the 3.1.0 beta bron Vanilla 1 March 24, 2009 08:37


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 16:10.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions Inc.