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Old November 8, 2016, 17:27   #31
TJS
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Originally Posted by Derakon View Post
We absolutely want to teach the player that there are times when they should just leave the level. If you look at moderately-experienced newbies, one of their leading causes of death is sticking around on the level because they wanted to see a vault through to the end, or they insisted on killing every unique when they found them, etc.

Ideally at the time a player figures out that they can flee levels, they'll also figure out that they aren't really missing anything important by doing so, either -- whatever was on the level that they didn't see, will be replaced by equivalent content on the next level. Nothing in Angband is ever lost unless you're playing no-preserve mode, and the only time fleeing a level has any remotely significant penalty is when you're playing forced-descent. Even then you have something like twice as much game content as you actually need to put together a winning build.
I dunno, encouraging the player to avoid any interesting and challenging parts of a level doesn't seem to be the right way of going about things to me.
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Old November 8, 2016, 18:08   #32
Pete Mack
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TJS:
It depends on how you play the game. The only challenges you need face are Sauron and Morgoth. Anything else is either a risk, a distraction or an opportunity. The more the game diverges from that, the less it feels like a roguelike
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Old November 8, 2016, 18:17   #33
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@Derakon:
I just don't get this. If you've had enough of a particular monster, just don't attack anymore. Avoiding hounds is pretty easy once you have ESP. And orcs become nothing more than speed bumps, literally, pretty quickly.
The intent was to communicate "Okay, you've killed hundreds of these things, they're clearly not a threat any more, so we're going to remove the XP from them but also make them non-entities". Maybe this isn't necessary, I'm just brainstorming here.

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Originally Posted by Estie
If you want to teach players, you can write a guide or make a "lets play", why would you want to change your game and annoy everyone else who is not interested in your teachings ? A tutorial mode is one thing, but altering all of the game for the purpose of teaching sounds like a very bad idea to me.
Try to make the best game you can and let the players worry about how to play it. They will surprise you.
There's different kinds of teaching in games. The kind you describe is very intrusive and didactic, and I agree it's almost always a bad thing. But if you can subtly guide the player to do the right thing, then a) they don't get frustrated by getting stuck, b) they feel clever for figuring stuff out "on their own", and c) they don't even realize you're helping them! That kind of guidance is pretty much unalloyed good.

Go replay Portal with the dev commentary sometime and you'll see how much time they dedicated to guiding players through their puzzles without making said guidance obvious. The amount of effort that must be expended to get a player in an FPS to look up is amusing. (EDIT: or watch this analysis of the opening stage of Mega Man X and how it compares to later games by the same devs that aren't as elegantly-made).

The Angband parallel, then, is to figure out how to guide players to play in ways that aren't badly self-destructive without outright telling them "the way you play is about to get you killed". It's a tricky problem, not least because of Angband's roguelike nature (and thus, procedurally-generated content with wildly random threat types).
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Old November 8, 2016, 18:25   #34
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TJS:
It depends on how you play the game. The only challenges you need face are Sauron and Morgoth. Anything else is either a risk, a distraction or an opportunity. The more the game diverges from that, the less it feels like a roguelike
Interesting. I would change that to say the less it feels like THIS roguelike.

Other classic RL's seem to actually encourage the distractions. I'm thinking Nethack here. I'll never forget being chased around a level by a bunch of Keystone cops back in the day.

Both have their pluses and minuses but I don't think you can pigeonhole RL's this way.

I've often thought of Angband and Moria as more of a wargaming style of RL, whereas Nethack feels like more of a roleplaying style.

And then there's Dwarf Fortress, which from what I can tell is more of a civ sim.

I guess what I am saying is I don't think RL's can be pigeonholed into any particular style. Very few rules are universal. Permadeath might even be debateable....but I think I'd agree with that one<grin>. I used to think random non permanent levels was a defining characteristic...but there are examples that go against this(ADOM).

I actually prefer a game that can be played many different ways...with no preordained "best" solution.

Don't crucify me...I know I'm new and opinions are probably deep seated around here!
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Old November 8, 2016, 18:28   #35
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Originally Posted by Mudd View Post
I guess what I am saying is I don't think RL's can be pigeonholed into any particular style. Very few rules are universal. Permadeath might even be debateable....but I think I'd agree with that one<grin>. I used to think random non permanent levels was a defining characteristic...but there are examples that go against this(ADOM).
I believe what you're looking for is the Berlin Interpretation.

(the whole "what is a roguelike" discussion is basically a can of worms the size of New Jersey)
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Old November 8, 2016, 18:32   #36
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I believe what you're looking for is the Berlin Interpretation.

(the whole "what is a roguelike" discussion is basically a can of worms the size of New Jersey)
Don't I know it!

In my mind the only thing that matters is the players enjoyment!

Are we having fun yet?
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Old November 8, 2016, 18:40   #37
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TJS:
It depends on how you play the game. The only challenges you need face are Sauron and Morgoth. Anything else is either a risk, a distraction or an opportunity. The more the game diverges from that, the less it feels like a roguelike
I would kinda hoping to have some fun on the way to the final battles.
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Old November 8, 2016, 20:32   #38
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Giant hound packs do a great job of teaching players to leave the level; unfortunately they do this by convincing them to leave the game and move onto one that is not quite so silly.
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Glaurung, Father of the Dragons says, 'You cannot avoid the ballyhack.'
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Old November 9, 2016, 01:25   #39
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Originally Posted by Pete Mack View Post
TJS:
It depends on how you play the game. The only challenges you need face are Sauron and Morgoth. Anything else is either a risk, a distraction or an opportunity.
If you approach the game only from a win-or-bust ideology. I can assure you these games can be enjoyed in many other ways.

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The more the game diverges from that, the less it feels like a roguelike
Please don't play the "not-a-roguelike" card again. The "definition" is highly contentious (at best) and IMO... almost entirely vacuous unless you're going for really generic elements like "random monsters", "random fights", "random maps", "permadeath". Games exist for pleasure, fun, challenge, etc. but not to fit some definition of "Genre-X". If you're missing "challenge" (as I suspect you are), you say so instead of "not roguelike".

Last edited by AnonymousHero; November 9, 2016 at 01:32.
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Old November 9, 2016, 02:44   #40
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In all seriousness, the way I'd implement "achievements" is just a notice board in town that you could check if you so chose. It could also be displayed as a dump option on character death, and something you could check on the info screen (where you can see the other town stuff).
That would be, of course, perfectly acceptable. However, it would be the first game that I know of to not shove achievements up your a***. You know, psychology: if they can be avoided, maybe players actually ignore them.
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