Angband.oook.cz
Angband.oook.cz
AboutVariantsLadderForumCompetitionComicScreenshotsFunniesLinks

Go Back   Angband Forums > Angband > Vanilla

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old October 4, 2011, 10:40   #1
Timo Pietilš
Prophet
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Climbing up from hole I just dug.
Posts: 4,096
Timo Pietilš is on a distinguished road
Some thoughts about spells

I started to wonder if there is something in the spells I would like to change, starting from "why don't I use this or that spell".

Turns out that I use almost all priest spells, but in mage arsenal there is quite a lot of room for tweaking.

Priest:

Cure xxxx wounds. These are too expensive compared to potions, and they are prone to failure while stunned and can't be used while confused and blinded. They should be better.

Brand weapon. Extremely rarely used. Could turn big-dice weapon to something better, but by the time you get it you are using ego or artifact that beats all single-brand weapons big dice or not. Also this should be mage spell, not priest. Some sort of "bless weapon" should work better. (I also think enchant weapon/armor should be mage spells).

Cause fear and turn undead. Fear is not very effective against monsters you care about. If it affects the monster it is too weak to bother using against. If you turn turn undead a duration-spell like blessing causing fear to any undead, it could work better, but still it would be rather useless.

Annihilation. Completely useless compared to OoD. Too restricted and too high manacost. IMO should be removed. Add in one of the shallower books a "holy light" or something like that beam of light (like mage spell).

Detect monsters. Mostly redundant. By the time you find Godly Insights you are usually capable of casting Detection instead. Detect evil is nearly as good if not better (detects invisibles, but not hounds).

Alter reality. There just isn't much use to it, except abuse a combo of clairvoyance & alter reality.

Mage:

All elemental ball spells, shards, meteors etc. destroy items at floor. There also is (too) wide variety of them, which causes annoyance in picking the right one (you can do only so much macros).

All elemental bolt spells. Same problem with selection. These IMO need to be a bit more effective compared to mm.

Create doors and stairs. Both just feel wrong. Create door could be replaced with "wizard lock" which enforces and jams the door (maybe from distance). Works a bit like rune in a door preventing monsters from opening or bashing it down easily. Create stairs is just "dive faster" shortcut. As such it makes balancing game a bit harder, it allows mage to go around restrictions that stairs in a level causes.

Confuse and sleep monster. Too few monsters are affected by them.

Polymorph other. Not interesting enough to be used. Could turn uninteresting monster an interesting one, but very rarely used by me.

Bedlam. Confusion ball just isn't useful enough. Anything that stuns works better, so this has rivaling spell shock wave that just is better than Bedlam. If Bedlam can work, then mass sleep works too, and mass sleep is better.

Rune of Protection. This IMO should be priest only spell. Mage could get "globe of invulnerability" which prevents all combat in both directions instead including banishments, earthquake and destruction. Doesn't prevent things that mage does to himself (haste, hero, teleport self, curing, healing etc.)

Mage version of elemental brand brands ammo. This is too powerful. It needs to be changed to something else or removed. In my games with especially ranger I have made rule to self that does not allow me to use this.


N:58:Ice Storm
I:90:5:4
D:Shoots a radius-3 cold ball.


(that one also stuns monsters. It is ice-attack, not just cold attack, so description needs to be changed. Very useful).

Rend soul and chaos strike. I don't recall what these do, so I probably have not used them much. Weaker than other same manacost spells?
Timo Pietilš is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 4, 2011, 11:59   #2
UglySquirrell
Swordsman
 
UglySquirrell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Vancouver Canada
Posts: 293
UglySquirrell is on a distinguished road
I really like the create doors spell, but I guess its kind of overpowered for dealing with ranged attackers. The priest Branding spell would work well if it added a temporary brand to you're weapon, light, fire, cold etc. And lasted for a set number of turns. Rend soul I believe is the nether based spell. It works great against angels and knight templars but is resisted by a huge number of creatures, should be in an earlier book. Chaos bolt works well against most uniques and I'm pretty sure has a chance to confuse them. But against regular creatures it usually polymorphs them. It works well against uniques with no ranged attack, otherwise rift is the better spell. Personally I'd like it if sleep worked for the whole game, and wasn't so easily resisted by most monsters after level 20.
UglySquirrell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 5, 2011, 05:13   #3
Timo Pietilš
Prophet
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Climbing up from hole I just dug.
Posts: 4,096
Timo Pietilš is on a distinguished road
bump.

This is here to ignite discussion what should we do about spells, not just inform rest of you about my opinions. I think everyone agrees that spell lists are not perfect, some spells are redundant and could be removed, some are too powerful and should be weakened, some are in wrong place and so on. So lets discuss. Or should I post this in dev-forum instead?

I would like to handle this as "TMJ" -issue in spells. Resulting set should not be more powerful, but there should be less "clutter" in them.
Timo Pietilš is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 5, 2011, 06:36   #4
Derakon
Prophet
 
Derakon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 8,830
Derakon is on a distinguished road
How many attack spells do you need, really? If you remove the redundant/useless ones, then you end up with a rather anemic-looking spell list (that is nonetheless very nearly as useful as the current list). You could add new spells with non-attack effects, but then you're increasing the mage's versatility even more...

Off the top of my head the only spell the mage currently lacks that they clearly should have is Detection. They have all of the components for that spell, after all -- they can detect all monsters (visible or non, via Reveal Monsters), all items (via Detect Enchantment), and traps, doors, and stairs. Having one spell that does all three of these at once is a matter of convenience, not balance.

Last time I played a mage I got plenty of mileage out of the basic elemental bolts. Lightning bolt is good for groups that aren't weak against light; otherwise you use whichever of cold/fire/acid the monster doesn't resist.

I think Raal's would probably be better if its exotic damage type spells weren't all ball attacks. A good-damage icebolt would be better than ice storm -- a heavy-hitting, bolt that has decent odds of stunning and doesn't destroy items vs. a somewhat weak, item-destroying attack that might stun multiple targets? Generally, ball attacks are only useful when you're facing a large group of monsters that you don't mind standing in LOS of all at once, but Raal's shows up past the point at which that happens at all often.
Derakon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 5, 2011, 06:41   #5
Scraper
Apprentice
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Osaka, Japan.
Posts: 99
Scraper is on a distinguished road
I used to play mages exclusively. Really wanted to win with a mage first - I used to play mages a lot in D&D. I'm a newbie at best, but like you said, most of the ball spells destroy the loot, which makes them basically a no-no in my book. As an aside, the priest spell Orb of Draining doesn't drain any charges from things or destroy loot. Not that I want this changed, but it just seems like this should follow the same rules as the other ball spells.

To be honest I always found mages hard to play because they don't seem to have enough kick - for me at least. I never seemed to be able to put out enough damage. If you look at a staple bolt spell, versus melee damage, it really pales in comparison.

I only found out a few days ago that device skill increased the damage you did with devices, so I guess there may be the arguement that mages should be using a lot of devices. I'm not sure how much damage they put out, but is it comparable to melee?

The one advantage I find that mages have is that they can range attack a lot of stuff with their spells, but to be honest, the big uniques that breath for a stack of damage are more easily handled in melee imo. I would rather eat a couple of hits and hope for some misses than try to heal through the damage of a big breather. This is one of the reasons I find skull drujs so tough to handle. They just cast really hard on you.
Scraper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 5, 2011, 14:24   #6
fizzix
Prophet
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Madison, Wisconsin, US
Posts: 3,002
fizzix is on a distinguished road
Just to add to Timo's comments. There are some more spells that are pretty useless.

Priest:

Sanctuary (ineffective)

Neutralize/slow poison (too expensive, why bother.)

Cure light wounds and Heal are useful, but cure serious/critical/mortal are useless. However, if they're useful then priests become too powerful.

Chant/Holy Prayer. better to cast bless twice.

Mage:

Neutralize poison (same problem as priest)

Mana Storm (really needs to get to zero fail)

Now that being said, useless spells have a purpose for priests. Since they cannot select their spells, they may not get portal or OoD as quickly as they'd prefer. I'm not saying this is a good game mechanic, but it shouldn't be ignored when discussing useless priest spells. Of course this does not hold for mages.

As far as mage bolts and ball spells. I don't think these are as problematic as Timo thinks. Yes ball spells kill loot and that's a bit of an issue, and I wouldn't mind Raal's giving a high powered bolt or two and moving some of the balls to MB4 or even MB3. There is chaos bolt and rend soul (nether bolt). But these come fairly late. I think replacing explosion with a bolt of shards is a good idea. Other than that, I think the mage spell-list works fairly well.
fizzix is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 5, 2011, 14:38   #7
Timo Pietilš
Prophet
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Climbing up from hole I just dug.
Posts: 4,096
Timo Pietilš is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by fizzix View Post
Just to add to Timo's comments. There are some more spells that are pretty useless.

Priest:

Neutralize/slow poison (too expensive, why bother.)
I use neutralize poison quite a bit. It saves me one CCW potion and cost is small. In F-K that has quite big effect (no cheap unlimited CCW there).

slow poison is pretty useless.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fizzix View Post
Chant/Holy Prayer. better to cast bless twice.
AFAIK bless durations are not cumulative. You just restart the counter with additional cast.

Prot. from evil duration is cumulative, and it last longer than it takes to regain mana, which leads to situation where you can get close to permanent protection if you just burn some turns to cast it in a row several times resting in between.

Not sure if that counts as issue or a cool feature.
Timo Pietilš is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 5, 2011, 16:08   #8
fizzix
Prophet
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Madison, Wisconsin, US
Posts: 3,002
fizzix is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by Timo Pietilš View Post
I use neutralize poison quite a bit. It saves me one CCW potion and cost is small. In F-K that has quite big effect (no cheap unlimited CCW there).

slow poison is pretty useless.
Did they lower the mana cost for neutralize poison? Maybe i'm just thinking of the mage spell that's too expensive then.

Quote:
AFAIK bless durations are not cumulative. You just restart the counter with additional cast.
bless durations are cumulative. So are berserk and hero. Unless that has been changed recently? Haste and resistance are not, for who knows what reason.
fizzix is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 5, 2011, 16:15   #9
Derakon
Prophet
 
Derakon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 8,830
Derakon is on a distinguished road
Fizzix: manastorm is still competitive even with a nonzero failure rate. IIRC at level 50 and max INT its failure rate is something like 9% or 13%, which still gives it better damage over time than your alternatives. It just doesn't mean that you can count on any particular casting dealing damage, but when it comes to fighting enemies with thousands of HP, that's usually not an issue.

Scraper: Mage damage should not be comparable to melee damage, reason being that mages don't have to stand in melee, so they aren't getting whacked on the head all the time. If you're fighting a monster that likes to summon, well, you also have the facilities to deal with summons (c.f. Banish, Teleport Other). Breath attacks happen with exactly the same frequency in melee and at range (in Vanilla anyway). So you really should be staying out of melee range as much as possible. Given that, devices deal excellent damage -- comparable or exceeding the damage you get from your own spells -- and they don't cost any mana to use.
Derakon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 5, 2011, 16:17   #10
awldune
Adept
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 113
awldune is on a distinguished road
Polymorph is sometimes useful to get rid of annoying weak monsters that are difficult to kill quickly:

Gelatinous cube/Ochre Jelly/Acidic Cytoplasm

Obviously it is more useful in the brief interval before you have a good success rate at Teleport Other.

Back in 306 I would agree about the bolt spells, but they are much improved now (or were in 3.1 anyway)

For priest, I never could figure out what Sanctuary even does. I see that the 'P'eruse command has a description now. Not sure why this spell is not renamed to "Sleep Monsters" like the staff.

The odds of sleeping or scaring a monster probably need to be doubled for them to be useful.

If Turn Undead had a duration effect, that might be useful against groups of Dreads in the mid-late game.

"Bless weapon" would be interesting, if you could apply Slay Evil/Undead/Demon possibly as a temporary brand. Don't know if temporary branding is possible in the current code.
awldune 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
S thoughts Philip Variants 5 June 19, 2011 16:30
Un 0.64 thoughts Therem Harth Variants 13 November 14, 2010 17:47
My thoughts on 3.1.1 TJS Vanilla 2 August 14, 2009 04:20
On less used spells bebo Vanilla 8 February 4, 2009 22:21
3.1.0 thoughts TJS Vanilla 11 January 15, 2009 16:39


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 10:11.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions Inc.