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Old December 10, 2017, 14:10   #1
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Cooperative Netplay? (or even deathmatch?)

The following is actually a terrible idea, but it amuses me, so I'm posting it anyway.

Back in late 1993, Doom introduced netplay where you could fight your friends online in real time on two different computers. Or you could work together with your friends cooperatively. I think it would be fun to play with one other person cooperatively in Ironman mode of Angband, but I suppose there are a few, shall we say, minor wrinkles to be worked out.

In a turn based game, how does it work if both players are taking turns at different rates? If you and your mate are in the same starting room, and your mate starts walking away, does your turn counter then start ticking over? That is, each time your friend moves, you rest if you didn't take an action yourself? Or you both have to alternate turns painstakingly slow? one turn at at time? Otherwise, if your mate leaves the room and runs down a hallway and you just stay standing in the room and don't follow him, then are you resting all the turns he just zoomed down the hallway? What happens if monsters start coming into the room from another hallway while your friend is running down aforementioned hallway? What if you zoomed down a different hallway but it was much shorter? What happens when your friend is battling monsters in one side of the level and you on another side? But you play much, much slower than your friend? How do all the actions of both players and the monsters they are affecting all stay in sync?

Perhaps you'd need a new message window for all the actions your friend took.

Maybe this: as long as actions one person takes doesn't impact the other player, they can move and take turns freely at their own pace. As soon as their actions impact your friend, then each time they try to take an action, a message pops up telling them that it's their friend's turn and everyone takes turns.

Or, perhaps a bit more realistic, players can only run down hallways when they are next to each other; follow the leader style. If someone attempts to run down a hallway, it will only work if their friend is right next to them, and then they will be "pulled" behind the player running, in order to save time and keep both players and the rest of the monsters in sync. If either player stops running, then both players are stopped.

Seems like there are a lot of hurtles to overcome, but would be cool if it could be pulled off my some Carmackian programming wizard. Not sure how it would work if two players are in the same room looking over loot from killing a bunch of monsters in a pit. Every time each player takes a turn toward a potion on the ground, they have to then wait for their friend to take one turn toward a scroll they are interested in? Seems like it would be painfully slow.

Anyhow, the idea would be that both players would be playing together on the same level, blasting a tough unique in tandem, sharing gear and loot found to make both players as strong as possible.

Further issues: if one person took the down stairs, would the other person be automatically pulled down, too? Could be annoying if your about to pick up an artifact but your friend didn't notice your message to him to wait.

All 127 levels maybe would need to be predetermined before the adventure even begins (so, persistent levels), so whenever two players are on the same level, they are in fact sharing the same rooms, hallways, etc. Not sure if both players would be forced to play on the same levels at the same time the entire game or not.

I suppose you could have it if one person hits the downstairs first, they'd descend and his/her partner wouldn't be pulled down. When the next person takes the stairs they'd end up on the same, live, level, so if your buddy went first and found an artifact, you'd no longer be able to find same item and monsters killed would be dead already when you enter the level.

Or, all downstairs would come in pairs, and both players would have to be on both stairs for either person to descend (and then both would descend at the same time). Or, perhaps simpler, both players have to descend the stairs before either can descend, so if one person descends a downstairs, instead of immediately descending, a message shows up on the other player's screen alerting them that their mate is ready to descend, then that person has to wait until their friend descends as well, and then both are brought to the next level at the same time.

Then there's problems when one person reads ?Deep Descent or another falls through a trap door or gets commanded far away and is sunk through the floor etc. If a player dies, I dunno; guess the other is on their own.

Maybe ?Deep Descents would be removed from coop mode.

One cool thing about this, aside from teaming up on Azog in a hallway from both ends, is that all items would only exist once. So good items found would have to be shared among both players. Though, if someone finds boots of speed early, not sure that'd be very fun for the other player. But, you wouldn't want both players to play the same class. One person would be green book class and one red book. No more early 9 level feeling levels with deep books going to waste!
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Old December 10, 2017, 14:57   #2
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You evidently haven't heard of MAngband, which has networked multiplayer. PowerWyrm maintains their own variant, called PWMangband, which is regularly updated to get the various improvements that modern Vanilla has.
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Old December 11, 2017, 08:41   #3
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Yes, what you want is PWMAngband. Set up your server with the options you want (you can even enable PvP instead of team co-op) and play with your friends!
PWMAngband variant maintainer - check (or to learn more about this new variant!
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Old December 11, 2017, 11:57   #4
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Fascinating. I'm not crazy about variants, but will have to check it out!
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