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Old October 7, 2010, 18:31   #1
Therem Harth
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Summoning hijinks

I'm testing Strawberry 0.04 in debug mode at the moment. I'm on level 127 (after slaying Morgoth) and just encountered a Greater Balrog. The Balrog decided to summon high demons.

The summons filled the hallway, and included nine or ten Pit Fiends, plus a dozen Hezrou and Gothmog. That's rather a lot, even for level 127, I think.

On the other end of the scale... When I was fighting Morgoth, he at one point summoned monsters. The monsters included some kind of tick, a ranger, and a giant pink frog. All of them were squashed by debris the next turn.

Is stuff like this intended behavior?

(The modifications in Strawberry, FWIW, don't include anything that should affect summoning.)
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Old October 7, 2010, 18:50   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Therem Harth View Post
I'm testing Strawberry 0.04 in debug mode at the moment. I'm on level 127 (after slaying Morgoth) and just encountered a Greater Balrog. The Balrog decided to summon high demons.

The summons filled the hallway, and included nine or ten Pit Fiends, plus a dozen Hezrou and Gothmog. That's rather a lot, even for level 127, I think.

On the other end of the scale... When I was fighting Morgoth, he at one point summoned monsters. The monsters included some kind of tick, a ranger, and a giant pink frog. All of them were squashed by debris the next turn.

Is stuff like this intended behavior?

(The modifications in Strawberry, FWIW, don't include anything that should affect summoning.)
There are two types of escort flags. escort and escorts. Both mean that monsters are generated with a group of same-lettered monsters when they're created. With the escort flag, individual monsters are created, and only multiple ones appear if they have the 'friends' tag. With escorts, you can get groups of monsters that don't normally come in groups, like balrogs, pit fiends or orc captains (for Azog).

So you can get a group of uruks with any orc unique, but only a couple come with a group of orc captains. Similarly, summon greater demons can always bring in groups of Hezrou, Barbazu or Vrocks but only Gothmog, Lungorthin and Moria can come with groups of pit fiends.

If you wanted to remove that behavior, you would have to remove the escorts flag entirely. However, then you wouldn't get groups of pit fiends generated with the unique on the level. Alternatively, you can make summoned monsters not come with escorts, or ignore the escorts flag and only consider the escort flag.

Morgoth and weak summons are trickier. Not letting him summon uniques below level 50 would help a bit. Also, removing summon_monsters would also help. However, be careful. Summon hi dragons almost always means banish, or phase, TO, destruct, unless you're really lucky and have lots of immunities. Summon hi undead can sometimes be ok (groups of wights) same with summon hi demons. However, Morgoth summons a lot, and he has the habit of killing weaker monsters with his attacks. so a weak summons isn't really all that terrible. As you noted, they were all gone in the next turn freeing up space for his next, more powerful, summon.
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Old October 7, 2010, 19:29   #3
Therem Harth
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Ah thanks.

Personally I think a better solution for seriously nasty summons would be to make it somewhat easier for the player to employ various defensive tactics. I'll make another post about that I guess.
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