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Old July 8, 2011, 07:08   #11
jens
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bulian View Post
ASCs are exploitive and shouldn't be possible.

A simple solution is to change tunnelling/STM. For example, give tunnelling and STM a 30% chance to collapse an adjacent square whenever those abilities are used.
I like!....
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Old July 8, 2011, 07:30   #12
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I actually disagree that ASC are abuse. It seems to me more like it is simply a good strategy-in order for a video game to be playable, you have to have workable strategies at your disposal, or it's all the same. Currently, summoning is impossible to deal with without ASC corridors, and with the recent nerfing of !CCW, taking all or even most of the upper level uniques is simply not practical.

I am a fan of both teleport other (in bolt form, not beam) and ASC because they provide viable strategies to the player to take on monsters that otherwise would be hopelessly overpowered. Take those strategies away, and the game because more difficult and more boring-a bad combination. Grinding is bad, the virtual lack of it is one of the greatest things angband has going in its favor(well, at least the way I play there's virtually no grinding-though in my last game I managed to get end-game gear when i was lvl 37-which was a little too early to take on morgoth).

When CCW was nerfed, the biggest impact that it had for me was that the game got more annoying-I killed far fewer upper level uniques (because I didn't have anywhere NEAR enough !healing-and I definitely wasn't going to grind for potions). It didn't make the game even a tiny bit harder-it just made it more annoying. I'm ok with changes that make the game harder, but not changes that make the game more boring.

ASC corridors provide an alternative to the basic hack and slash tactics-and for mages at least, they're not without their cost. Sitting there while a monster hacks at you is not exactly an ideal tactic for mages.

Regardless, I don't think nerfing either ASCs or tele other are sensible ways to make the game more challenging. I haven't heard of any reasonable alternatives to them that would give the player as many options as he currently has. Nerfing either one will simply cause the player to avoid summoning monsters and vaults-which will make the game FAR more boring.

Now, banishment...is massively overpowered for mages at least. And that mechanic is fairly boring. I'm ok with staves/scrolls of banishment, because they have limited uses, and mostly will probably be used for getting rid of Zs and Qs, which are pests. But mass banishment makes vaults trivial and I think should be eliminated entirely.
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Old July 8, 2011, 08:23   #13
Philip
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angelus View Post
I actually disagree that ASC are abuse. It seems to me more like it is simply a good strategy-in order for a video game to be playable, you have to have workable strategies at your disposal, or it's all the same. Currently, summoning is impossible to deal with without ASC corridors, and with the recent nerfing of !CCW, taking all or even most of the upper level uniques is simply not practical.
ASC are abuse, but it is necessary if you don't have a means of removing summons. The game is quite playable without them, or the final fight would be impossible. I am not sure if the 'nerfing' of !CCW is actually a nerf, or more powerful than it was in old V or in O. A paladin may have problems with summoning, but he can deal with it by finding a corner somewhere to limit the amount of available spaces. Anyone with the *destruction* spell or earthquake spell can create a non-ASC, summoning-limited area.
Quote:
I am a fan of both teleport other (in bolt form, not beam) and ASC because they provide viable strategies to the player to take on monsters that otherwise would be hopelessly overpowered. Take those strategies away, and the game because more difficult and more boring-a bad combination. Grinding is bad, the virtual lack of it is one of the greatest things angband has going in its favor(well, at least the way I play there's virtually no grinding-though in my last game I managed to get end-game gear when i was lvl 37-which was a little too early to take on morgoth).
I will remind you here that we are talking about nerfing summoning to remove the necessity for ASCs as a way of preventing efficient summoning for the monster. Grinding is definitely bad, but I don't notice it too much, except for EXP grinding. OTOH I play full spellcasters(if priest, 0%fail on heal, *heal*, banish evil, teleport, teleport other, destruction, if mage, 0%fail teleport other, teleport, banishment, mass banishment, destruction) which means grinding for consumables is unnecessary.
Quote:
When CCW was nerfed, the biggest impact that it had for me was that the game got more annoying-I killed far fewer upper level uniques (because I didn't have anywhere NEAR enough !healing-and I definitely wasn't going to grind for potions). It didn't make the game even a tiny bit harder-it just made it more annoying. I'm ok with changes that make the game harder, but not changes that make the game more boring.
CCW was nerfed because it was overpowered and replaced healing as a healing potion. It was nerfed because it allowed a clevel 30 character to take on the likes of fundin. The apparent problem with powering stuff up is that people get used to it or even played only with it. Then it is overpowered and there is a storm of disapproval.
Quote:
ASC corridors provide an alternative to the basic hack and slash tactics-and for mages at least, they're not without their cost. Sitting there while a monster hacks at you is not exactly an ideal tactic for mages.
ASC corridors remove the monsters biggest strength. If you don't allow them to summon, they are mostly helpless. Sitting there while a monster hacks at you is not an ideal tactic for mages, which is why they prefer banishment(for dragons,demons), mass banishment(for undead) or just keep on happily manastorming the target(weaklings).
Quote:
Regardless, I don't think nerfing either ASCs or tele other are sensible ways to make the game more challenging. I haven't heard of any reasonable alternatives to them that would give the player as many options as he currently has. Nerfing either one will simply cause the player to avoid summoning monsters and vaults-which will make the game FAR more boring.
They are perfectly sensible as long as either no-one views ASCs as the only way to deal with summoners. The player currently has two options you have explained, one of which doesn't work.(tele-other is a bolt, making it useless against summoning, as it should be) The player doesn't have many options, so we must give him more by making summoning interesting, not boring.
Quote:
Now, banishment...is massively overpowered for mages at least. And that mechanic is fairly boring. I'm ok with staves/scrolls of banishment, because they have limited uses, and mostly will probably be used for getting rid of Zs and Qs, which are pests. But mass banishment makes vaults trivial and I think should be eliminated entirely.
I agree with you here, mostly because once summoning is more interesting, a mage will have more options than banish, mass banish, ignore.
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Old July 8, 2011, 08:36   #14
Remuz
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Originally Posted by Derakon View Post
In short, this will require some serious design work, not just some "Let's make this tweak and see what happens."
I totally agree. Summoning is one of the big challenges of the late game, and should stay that way. Which does not mean that nothing needs to be done.

In my opinion, summoning is cool (tm), and the one thing that needs fixing is the use of ASC, I feel like a cheater when I use it.

In my current game, the most fun I had was when I tried to take on a Greater Draconic Q in the open. It was basically:
- deal a bit of damage to the Q, while he hopelessly blinks around the room
- Q summons ancient dragons and great wyrms
- @ teleports away and comes back via an ASC, prepared beforehand
- kill Ds
- repeat
Good times.

Question: When a monster is summoned, does the player have a free turn before the monster can move (as in when the player enters a level) ? If not, changing that would improve the survivability of fighting summoners in the open.
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Old July 8, 2011, 10:11   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fizzix View Post
While I certainly agree with you that monster mana would be very helpful, this very well may be a long way off from Angband. (It's also beyond my abilities, which are meager, on the coding front.) I don't think we should wait for monster mana to work with summoning.
I disagree. The code for this is already in a branch on github, waiting to be merged with a monster.txt that assigns monster mana (which is a non-coding job that sadly nobody has signed up to yet). I can add the mana cost of monster spells in half an hour (adding a field to list-mon-spells.h). In fact, I'll make it the first thing I do for 3.4, in order to allow plenty of time for consequent rebalancing and ironing out of bugs.

EDIT: I think this is important not just for summoning, but for a whole raft of AI improvements. Monsters with infinite mana *have* to be stupid, else they're impossible to kill. Once they have finite mana, all sorts of AI improvements become possible.
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Old July 8, 2011, 10:53   #16
jens
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I'll add mana to monster.txt, as soon as 3.3 is out :-)

Need some info though:
What should the syntax for the directive be?
What scale should we use for mana? I'd like to have a scale similar to @, but it depends on how monster spells are coded.
How fast will monsters regain mana? Should this be included in the directive?
Can you point me to the branch where this is implemented?
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Old July 8, 2011, 13:32   #17
jens
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Another summoning idea I'd like to throw out there, and it's on topic if you go by the topic title ;-)

I'd like all items to be useful in some context, and I just thought of how to make scrolls of summoning useful: If you summon monsters next to other monsters there is a chance that the summoned monsters will start attacking the other monsters. Guessing it's lots of coding for this, but I think it's a neat idea :-) And I like the flavour of reciting a scroll of say summon demon to fight against your enemies, then loosing control over the demon and having to fight that as well :-)
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Old July 8, 2011, 14:29   #18
fizzix
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Remuz View Post
Question: When a monster is summoned, does the player have a free turn before the monster can move (as in when the player enters a level) ? If not, changing that would improve the survivability of fighting summoners in the open.
No, summoned monsters come with a delay of 0. That means that they can get a turn before @ if they are fast enough.
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Old July 8, 2011, 14:31   #19
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Originally Posted by Magnate View Post
I disagree. The code for this is already in a branch on github, waiting to be merged with a monster.txt that assigns monster mana (which is a non-coding job that sadly nobody has signed up to yet). I can add the mana cost of monster spells in half an hour (adding a field to list-mon-spells.h). In fact, I'll make it the first thing I do for 3.4, in order to allow plenty of time for consequent rebalancing and ironing out of bugs.
I was unaware of this! I can try to do this along with jens, but I think we should first make a list of spell costs for all monster spells.

I'm guessing arrows and boulders count as spells for now, right?
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Old July 8, 2011, 15:37   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fizzix View Post
I was unaware of this! I can try to do this along with jens, but I think we should first make a list of spell costs for all monster spells.

I'm guessing arrows and boulders count as spells for now, right?
Yes, they do - but there's no reason they can't have 0 mana cost. In fact, that's exactly what they should have, as that will enable us to get rid of the terrible MIN_NONINNATE_SPELL hack, and just use if (!rs_ptr->cost).

For mana costs and monster mana values, please see NPP in the first instance - takkaria has said we'd like to start from there.

For the existing branch, please see http://github.com/elly/angband.
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