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Old September 19, 2007, 04:00   #1
pamperedpeterson
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what is considered a clean win?

I was intro'd to Angband in 1995. I played off and on for several years, then tried with a vengeance again in 2005. After several weeks of playing a few hours each day, I finally won the game. BUT after reading some posts here, it seems I may have a dirty win. I would save the game as I went, and if I died, I would re-open the game before I got the tombstone, and play with a different action. It seems impossible to me to play the game without doing so, and still get past exp level 25.
So, is this a clean win? or should I stop doing that, and simply start over when I die?
thx
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Old September 19, 2007, 04:15   #2
Matthias
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No that isn't a clean win. It's called save scumming.

However stopping it is up to you, do whatever feels best for you. If you are trying to get that feeling of achievement, you should definitely try to win without it, and start over when you die. Now that you've won with save scumming and have seen the game, getting past level25 shouldn't be all that impossible anymore.
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Old September 19, 2007, 04:24   #3
Djabanete
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You're right --- that is not considered a legitimate win. It is called save-file scumming, and it's considered cheating. Not that there's anything wrong with a bit of cheating if you're just crashing through the dungeon looking for fun, but ... it won't be a legit win.

It actually *is* possible to win without ever dying. It requires some judgement and patience but people do it all the time. I think if you try to play without save-scumming, you'll find it more exciting --- and not as hard as you think. Especially now that you've had the experience of going through the whole dungeon, you're in a good position to win for real.

Good luck




Edit: Oops, Matthias beat me to it. Darn.
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Old September 19, 2007, 10:40   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pamperedpeterson View Post
I was intro'd to Angband in 1995. I played off and on for several years, then tried with a vengeance again in 2005. After several weeks of playing a few hours each day, I finally won the game. BUT after reading some posts here, it seems I may have a dirty win. I would save the game as I went, and if I died, I would re-open the game before I got the tombstone, and play with a different action. It seems impossible to me to play the game without doing so, and still get past exp level 25.
So, is this a clean win? or should I stop doing that, and simply start over when I die?
thx
Well, as the others have said, there is a convention of not doing what you did (reloading the same character from before the tombstone). It's hard to believe but people do win without ever doing it. Personally I've been playing for over 7 years and never got anywhere near.

But it's not just a simple choice. There are dozens of options and gameplay choices which make the game easier or harder:

- monster AI options (SMART_PACKS, SMART_LEARN etc.) - there is one called SMART_CHEAT, which allows monsters to cheat and know your resistance holes etc.

- autoscum for good levels (argument rages about whether this makes the game easier or harder, but it certainly changes things)

- connected stairs (game is definitely harder without them)

- abuse of no-reverse-line-of-sight (in some variants you can target a monster from range when it cannot target you)

- "anti-summoning" and "hockey stick" corridors which allow you to fight tough monsters more safely

- "pillar dancing" or "whack 'n' back" where you take advantage of extra speed to prevent monsters damaging you

- "ironman" mode means you can't recall to town - there are no up staircases and no recall scrolls

- other restrictive options (BIRTH_NO_ARTIFACTS, BIRTH_NO_STORES etc.) which make the game a lot harder

There is a whole spectrum of difficulty from setting all these to their most helpful (dumb monsters, connected stairs, using all the tactics described) to their most difficult (ironman, no stores or artifacts, smart monsters, no potentially abusive tactics). Some people consider some of the above so abhorrent that they would not recognise it as a "clean" win (I'm thinking particularly of hockey-sticks and pillar dancing - personally I don't have a problem with them, but some do). At the other extreme there are combinations of settings which make winning almost impossible (in variants with infinite monster mana it is almost impossible to kill self-healers if smart monsters is on - since these include Sauron, it is unlikely anyone could win).

So as the others said, it's entirely up to you. You play with the settings you find most fun, and if that includes save-scumming, that's fine. I have most fun without it (I tend to like my monsters smart-but-not-cheating, but I stack pretty much everything else in my favour), but when I lose a character I've been playing over many hours, it's sufficiently annoying that I take a break before starting again!

Cheers,

CC
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Old September 19, 2007, 14:36   #5
pamperedpeterson
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Well now that I've admitted it, I guess I'll be known as the cheater. LOL Just call me Cheaterson. I will definitely play the game without using the reloading...that is, if I can ever get it to work in Vista (but that's another thread)....or I go back to using my XP computer. Right now I am playing Zangband, and it's a little weird.
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Old September 19, 2007, 15:19   #6
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Btw shouldn't that be Orfax or Boldor in your sig?
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Old September 19, 2007, 15:26   #7
pamperedpeterson
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Psi View Post
Btw shouldn't that be Orfax or Boldor in your sig?
yep, probably. I (kinda obviously) haven't played a low level character in a long time.
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Old September 19, 2007, 16:13   #8
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I've been playing for 14 years and the only way i've ever won is by save-scumming, been trying to play without backing up since July and my 81st @ since then has just died (refusing to run away being my big problem). lol (I really suck) .
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Old September 19, 2007, 17:53   #9
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Without wishing to seem like a braggart, I can say I have won Vanilla with three characters (albeit two were High-Elf Rangers) and none were save-scummed. So it's definitely possible, and it's incredibly satisfying when you finally do it.
To get that first win under your belt, I'd say to take things slowly and advance only when things feel too easy at current depth, at least until you have enough playing experience to know which fights to start and which to avoid.
And don't be afraid to ask for advice - I never would have won were it not for the collective mentoring provided via the oook.
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Old September 19, 2007, 23:24   #10
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I used to save scum a lot but ultimately I find the game more fun without it. The "thrill of victory" just isn't the same without the "agony of defeat" to balance it out. I used to play all games in a save-scummy way (for example, Civilization) but it makes the game experience feel completely pointless. If there is no death, then ultimately there is no achievement. It devolves into www.progressquest.com.

Playing "for real" requires a change in attitude and tactics that may be hard to overcome (and I haven't... it's generally why I die). For example, you have to actually be prepared with escape and healing devices, and actually use them to escape from situations, and actually give up loot. The game is not forgiving, but it does give you many ways to escape, and any loot or monster you run from can always appear later in the game (unless you have preserve=off).

I think it doesn't have to be all or nothing. A resurrection mechanic could work in a *band as long as the cost is significant. For example losing equipment and/or having abilities permanently damaged (max stat--?) could be penalty enough. If the penalty was too much then it would be pointless and players would just start over (or save scum). If you could "insure" your life and equipment at cost, it would give gold another purpose.

A benefit to allowing resurrections is that it should allow for a riskier (and therefore more fun) playstyle. It could also allow more flexibility in the game design; for example not being as generous with escape methods.

Regarding some of the "unclean tactics" above, I hope many of these are fixable. For example removing autoscum, having delayed level feelings, and randomizing energy (as I think Hengband does) to make speed-based monster abuse less predictable.

The hockey sticks and anti-summoning corridors are harder, but shouldn't be impossible. The "pack AI" helps make some monsters less likely to follow you into bad tactical positions. Summoning monsters could probably use some tweaking. Line of sight issues are kind of strange. I know some *bands have monsters that know how to cast ball spells to get you around corners, which is good. Breath weapons should be able to flow around obstacles/corners.

Last edited by tigen; September 19, 2007 at 23:58.
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